MOON TEARS IS RELEASED!

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I am thrilled to announce the release of my first novel, Moon Tears!

Readers from 12 to 112 will enjoy this story inspired by true events!

I couldn’t be more pleased with how the book turned out and how it looks in both paperback and e-book versions. And it is available on Amazon NOW! If you’re interested in picking up a copy of this historical fiction novel, please click here for the link to the paperback version and click here for the Kindle version!  And any and all reviews are graciously welcomed! And just a quick note – I decided to publish my novels under the name M. M. Frische to differentiate from my Picture Books which are published under my name, Muffet Frische!

Here’s a summary of Moon Tears:

1941. War. It’s coming. It takes your father. It takes your mother. Life will never be the same. Not for Lou Davis.

When fog requires Japanese dignitaries to reroute their flight from San Francisco to Claret Lake, fourteen-year-old Lou becomes suspicious about the direction of the war. Two weeks later her dreams of becoming a pilot are ripped away when Pearl Harbor is attacked and an error in the 1940 census results in every male over eighteen being drafted and all the women being forced to work in factories on the coast.

Lou and her asthma are left behind—and in charge. She has a secret crush on the oldest boy left in Claret Lake, but after her parents are ripped away from her, she feels alone and abandoned. Running a town full of unruly kids is worse than a full-blown asthma attack, and the only thing she sees looming on the horizon is the enemy’s plane and a boatload of disaster. How is she supposed to save a whole town when harsh winters descend, food becomes scarce, and the enemy threatens to destroy everything she has fought so hard to protect?

Then Lou remembers the ancient legend…the legend of the moon tears. Staking her town’s survival on lore from the past, she channels her inner Amelia Earhart and takes off toward an unknown future.

Inspired by true events, Moon Tears is a coming-of-age tale—a tale of war, a tale of loss, a tale of survival.

Thanks for your support of this adventure in publishing and writing! Hope you enjoy the story! And please let me know what you think of it! Happy reading!

Muffet 🙂

Two Goodreads Giveaways!!

cropped-MT-Header-2-1024x307-released.jpgTo celebrate the upcoming release of my first Young Adult novel “Moon Tears,” I am giving away a signed copy of the book on Goodreads! To enter the “Moon Tears” giveaway, please click here!

RELEASED-HEADER1.jpgAdditionally, we are giving away one copy of “Miss Muffet & Bitsy” signed by both Cindy and myself! To enter the “Miss Muffet & Bitsy” giveaway, click here!

The giveaways both end on July 4th, so enter the Goodreads giveaways today! And good luck!

“Miss Muffet & Bitsy” is now RELEASED!!

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Miss Muffet & Bitsy is now available for sale online!

Cindy and I are so proud of the release of our first picture book and hope that it is enjoyed by kids and adults for many years to come!  The journey has been a long one, but we are honored to share this book with you and the world. Here is a brief description of the story:

“Miss Muffet & Bitsy is a new picture book series in which Little Miss Muffet and the Itsy Bitsy Spider meet.  In the lighthearted introductory book, Miss Muffet is terrified of spiders. It is Miss Muffet’s birthday, and her mother has invited all her friends and her new neighbor to her party. But what will happen when a spider knocks on the door? Will this be the worst birthday party ever? Join us in the first of many adventures in which friends start out with perfectly planned days and find out things don’t always go perfectly as planned. Throughout the series, Miss Muffet and Bitsy not only turn lemons into lemonade, but they turn them into rosemary-infused strawberry watermelon lemonade – a bit unexpected, yet delicious and fun!  Join us in this first tale in the Miss Muffet & Bitsy series!”

Miss Muffet & Bitsy is available in both paperback and Kindle versions on Amazon! Click here to purchase from Amazon!

The paperback is also available at the Createspace eStore! Click here to purchase from Createspace!

We would love for you to check it out! And if you like it, please leave us a review on Amazon or Goodreads!

 

Miss Muffet & Bitsy will also be available on iBooks for Apple products in a few days!

Thank you all so much for your support throughout this first self-publishing adventure! Please let us know what you think!! We’re off to start working on the second book in the series!!

“My Writing Process” Blog Tour

The “My Writing Process” Blog Tour has made its way to many talented writers across the nation. I am honored to have been asked to join such a fabulous group of authors! My writing process is multi-faceted to say the least. I hope this post will resonate with a part of you, inspiring you to try something different and maybe start writing a new story or two!

THANKS TO JENNIFER!

Jen_Tim_Yes_143 - Version 3But first, a Texas-sized thank you goes out to Jennifer Larson for asking me to join the #mywritingprocess blog tour! Jennifer writes fabulous children’s books I know you will love! Her upcoming release is called “Lost Soles.” Please visit her website at www.authorjenniferlarson.com and read her “My Writing Process” post at http:/authorjenniferlarson.blogspot.com/2014/my-writing-process-blog-tour.html. You will love her insight!

THE TOUR

So – onto my writing process. Here we go!

WHAT ARE YOU WORKING ON?

Currently I have two projects in the works, both to be self-published. First is a picture book series called Miss Muffet & Bitsy. I teamed up with my friend, the very talented illustrator Cindy Rodella Purdy, to create a fun, whimsical world for the series. The introductory book, Miss Muffet & Bitsy, is a new picture book in which Little Miss Muffet and the Itsy Bitsy Spider meet. Miss Muffet is terrified of spiders. It is Miss Muffet’s birthday, and her mother has invited all her friends and her new neighbor to her party. But what will happen when a spider knocks on the door? Will this be the worst birthday party ever?  The book will be available in paperback on Amazon and as an eBook on both Kindle and iBooks. Please check back with me in the next few days for exciting release information!

Additionally, my first young adult novel, Moon Tears, is very close to publication. I am writing it under the name M. M. Frische. It is historical fiction, set in northern California during World War II. It was inspired by actual events in the life of my cousin growing up during the war. Because of a mistake in the census, all the men over 18 are drafted and all the women have to go to work in the shipyards on the coast. Asthma-ridden fourteen-year-old-Lou is left behind to run her remote town and has to overcome numerous obstacles she never imagined in order to keep the town alive. The cover art has been finalized this week, and the manuscript is ready to go. I am awaiting some reviews so that I can add a blurb or two to the back cover prior to publication.  Moon Tears will be available on Amazon as a paperback and on Kindle and iBooks as an eBook. And I am excited to share that my second Y/A novel is in the works as of last week. It is set in Siberia and is based on research I did while traveling on the Trans-Siberian Railway. Please subscribe to my blog to keep up with the various release dates!

HOW DOES YOUR WORK DIFFER FROM OTHERS OF ITS GENRE?

Again, this will be a two-parter. For my picture books, there are challenges that the characters face, but overall, the books are upbeat, fun and humorous. In the first of many adventures in which friends start out with perfectly planned days and find out things don’t always go perfectly as planned, Miss Muffet and Bitsy not only turn lemons into lemonade, but they turn them into rosemary-infused strawberry watermelon lemonade – a bit unexpected, yet delicious and fun!

As for my Y/A novels, they are coming-of-age stories heavily based on real-life experiences. Moon Tears is unique in that about 60% of the events in the book actually happened to my cousin. The book also incorporates many aspects of World War II that I had no idea occurred until I interviewed my cousin. I learned so much about the War that I never knew before, and I hope that the novel enlightens young adults as well as older generations about parts of the war that are not readily known.

WHY DO YOU WRITE WHAT YOU DO?

When I was spending my days as a professional landscape and wildlife photographer, I realized that my most rewarding days were when I had a show at a gallery or retail store and kids would walk up to my more humorous images and get these huge smiles on their faces. They would laugh and show their parents the photos. I loved being able to impact a child’s life thru art. I have always enjoyed finding the joy and subtle humor in nature through the lens of a camera, and I now enjoy creating this type of feeling through writing light-hearted, fun picture books for that same age.

Regarding the Y/A stories I choose, I find that in our culture today, there are no “rites of passage” for young people. I find that I am drawn to stories in which the characters learn about themselves through challenges that make them grow as individuals. I write strong, self-confident main characters who overcome the odds in order to survive. When I interview people who have gone through what seemed like insurmountable odds, there is an innate sense of self-confidence and intestinal fortitude that they acquired through facing difficult challenges during their youth. These experiences inspire me to write the Y/A stories that I do.

HOW DOES YOUR WRITING PROCESS WORK?

Once again, it this requires a two-part answer. When writing picture books, I have the Scholastic Rhyming Dictionary with me at all times. It is full of wonderful words for kids, not only for rhyming, but for adding colorful words to the manuscript. I typically will write three or four versions of a story before deciding on a path. After deciding which path I like the best, I do between 30 and 40 different revisions. I am adamant about making every single word count and have a reason for being included in the book, so I am very picky about the words I choose to tell the story.

My writing process for Y/A novels is a very different process. I begin by interviewing people or referring to journals I kept on my journeys. Then I outline the story on 3×5 index cards, detailing in brief phrases, each scene and plot point. After I am comfortable with the outline, I type it into the PC and begin writing. I know it’s going well when the story begins to write itself. After the first draft is complete, I revise and revise and revise. I utilize etymonline.com so that when I am choosing words, it doesn’t sound like I’m quoting a Thesaurus. When you look at the etymology of words, it provides a much deeper understanding of the meaning of words. Next, I take the manuscript to my critique group and have them pick it apart. Then when I have revised and revised yet again, I take it to my copyeditor to have it reviewed. After he is finished, I incorporate the changes I feel comfortable with and revise and revise again. Then I take it back to my awesome critique group and have them review it once more. When I think it is complete, I read the entire manuscript out loud. I have found this is one of the most important parts of the revision process for me. I find inconsistencies and errors that are not caught in any other type of review. After I am confident that the work is the best it can be, and that every single word has a reason to be in the novel, then it is ready.

Finally, location is a big part of my writing. Given all the trial and error I’ve experienced in writing, I find that when I am at home, I have to be completely by myself in order to write. Also, being out of town, without all the distractions of daily life, proves fruitful for my writing process. There are a few places I travel to with my husband for his work, and there are bakeries and cafes in those spots where I can write all day long.

NEXT STOP ON THE TOUR!

akierstI hope you enjoyed reading about my writing process and hopefully gleaned a few ideas along the way! Next week, Anastasia Kierst will be the featured writer. ANASTASIA KIERST was born in Wyoming and spent most of her childhood and college years in the Rocky Mountains. She is an explorer at heart and soaks up inspiration while traveling with her husband, Jeff Martin. In addition to writing and illustrating, she has worked as a graphic designer and a children’s art teacher. Anastasia has a B.A. in Art from Colorado Mesa University. Currently, she divides her time between Dallas, Texas, and Rollinsville, Colorado. Her titles include Imagination Vacation Colorado, Imagination Vacation Yellowstone  and P is for Pangolin  as both author and illustrator and Hummingbird Heaven  for illustrations only. Anastasia has plans to add more books to the Imagination Vacation  series. I know you will want to read her insights and pick up a book or two! Please visit her website at http://eternalsummerspress.com/. She will post her #mywritingprocess blog on Monday, June 2nd.

THANK YOU!

Thanks for joining me on the My Writing Process Blog Tour!  And please subscribe to my blog to follow me on the self-publishing journey and to be the first to know when future books will be released!

Happy Writing!

Getting Closer to Publication

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In this day and age of instant gratification, it is sometimes difficult to be patient. But Cindy and I are being patient with the publication process so that our picture book “Miss Muffet & Bitsy” is as perfect and professionally published as possible.  We have one printed proof in hand (as seen in the photo) and a second one on the way. We also have the Kindle and iBooks versions ready to be proofed.  So it looks like our patience is paying off and publication is right around the corner!  The introductory book in the “Miss Muffet & Bitsy” series will be available as a physical softcopy book via Amazon, and as an eBook on Kindle and iBooks!  Stay tuned for the actual launch date!!

Conferences and Possibilities

Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators (SCBWI) conferences are filled with equal portions of learning and possibilities.  The keynotes and breakout sessions with editors, agents, and authors from around the nation provide writers with new ideas and information on how to hone their craft and get their books ready for publication.  Additionally, one-on-one critiques and pitch sessions allow authors to receive helpful input and ideas directly from industry professionals.  This weekend, I am taking the “dummy” book we had printed of Miss Muffet and Bitsy, as well as my young adult manuscript, Moon Tears, with me to one of these conferences.   I am looking forward to the feedback and, like all authors, crossing my fingers for positive critiques and pitch sessions with the attending editors and agents!

New Target Release for TSB’s First App!

As August has come and gone, so has our initial target date for the release of TSB’s first interactive app, “Miss Muffet and Bitsy.”  But never fear!  We continue to work feverishly to get this app out to you before the end of the year!  Cindy has completed the beautiful artwork, and we have been showing the preliminary app to focus groups of young children.  After incorporating all of the changes we would like to include, Eric will finish up the coding, and we will start the submission process hopefully before the new year rolls around!  Miss Muffet and Bitsy are eager to meet you, so hold tight!  They’ll be arriving soon to an iPad near you!

Developing Blog Posts

Welcome to Ten Story Books!  TSB is proud to offer positive, fun books to young children.  With apps, e-books and printed books on the way, there will be something for every young reader to enjoy!  The introductory book of our first series is getting closer to completion!  The story and illustrations have been signed off on, and over the next couple of months, the final artwork will be completed, and development of the app and e-book will take over.  Fingers crossed, we are hoping for a book launch in the month of August!

How to Make an App

Producing a book app is quite an involved process.  At Ten Story Books, we have input into the process from the author, illustrator, and programmer.  The author is more involved in the beginning, when action is being planned.  The illustrator actually works more closely with the programmer overall.  Making sure the app will work on the numerous devices out there as well as present the illustrations in the most beautiful way takes a lot of coordination between the illustrator and the programmer.