Sunday, 15 April 2012

Our Solar System: A Poem to Teach Children by Kurt Chambers


I’m certainly no poet, but I did once write a poem with my youngest daughter, Jayde Sky Chambers, as part of her science homework. The idea was to teach children a little bit about each planet in a fun way that they could remember.

Our Solar System

The moon shines so very bright,
especially on a crisp clear night.
The Sun is big and very hot,
and also covered in little spots.

Mercury is indeed quite small,
against the Sun it's a tiny ball.
Venus is cloudy like a rainy day,
but much too hot to go out and play.

The Earth is blue and warm and nice,
and this is where I spend my life.
Mars is next and oh so red,
but there's no life, it's completely dead.

Jupiter is the biggest of them all,
but it's just a giant gas ball.
Saturn looks cool with its enormous ring,
It's the solar systems ultimate bling-bling.

Uranus always gets a laugh,
but it really isn't quite that daft.
Neptune is next upon the list,
with its almost invisible disc.

Now we've come so very far,
from our friendly yellow star,
we come to Pluto which some do say,
is not a planet anyway.



If you liked this poem, you may also like the free epic fantasy novel written by the same author.

Truth Teller by Kurt Chambers


How can ten-year-old Charlotte ever envisage that magic really exists? The place for other realms belongs in a child’s fairy tale. Or so she thinks, until she discovers the strange shopkeeper and begins an adventure that changes her life forever.
Discovered alone in a far away forest, Charlotte embarks on a journey encountering heart-stopping dangers and real life monsters, but a far greater threat shadows her every move. Even the strength and skill of her new companions cannot protect her against a ruthless druid assassin.
But in this realm, Charlotte is not the vulnerable little girl she thought she was.

Download a free copy in any format for any device:


Smashwords:

Amazon:

Barnes & Noble:
http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/truth-teller-kurt-chambers/1108337633


New Release: Unknown Reality A Sci-fi Adventure by Kurt Chambers


Blurb


Eleven-year-old Chloe gasps in awe at the magical splendour of the theatre performance, but her excitement soon vanishes during an autograph hunt and an encounter with the baddie from the show. His unbelievable claim of a flawed universe freaks her out. This starts a chain of unexplainable events that threaten to destroy the only reality Chloe has ever known.

Then, one night, they come for her.

If you think this is the kind of story you would like to read, here is where you can pick up a copy...

Links








To Reviewers:


If you are interested in reviewing this story and posting your review on Amazon for me I will offer a free eBook in a format of your choice. Please contact me via authortruthteller (at) googlemail (dot) com and put 'UR Review' in the subject line.

Tuesday, 10 April 2012

Dark Heirloom by J.D. Brown - Free Give Away Tour!

It is my greatest pleasure to host an amazing author and wonderful lady, J.D. Brown. She has just released her debut novel, Dark Heirloom, and is giving every reader a chance to win a free copy!

Yes, I said FREE! So, let me hand you over to the lady herself. I give you, the wonderful, the amazing, J.D. Brown! Take it away, girl.


I’m going to tell you a fact; history is important.

I didn’t always think it was. In high school, I thought it was one of the most boring subjects of all, right up there with trigonometry. Really, what was the point of remembering dates and battles and names of people who’d been dead for a hundred years?

But the fact is history shapes the world. And our personal history shapes who we are, how we view ourselves and the people around us. It’s why we make the choices that we do.

Just look at the word. History. His-story.

Everyone has a story. Some people blab it to the world non-stop. Other people twist and re-shape it, then paint it on a canvas or write a rap about it. And some people carry it around like a burden on their shoulders.

Before I sat down to write Dark Heirloom, I did some heavy research into European history. The civilized world has a complex past, but it’s also flawed. There are loopholes everywhere. There is an abundance of gray area ripe for rebuttal and conspiracy. Not that I doubt my good history professors who tried so hard to make their lectures fun. But you have to admit, that type of thinking space is an idea breeding ground for writers and story tellers.

I wanted to tell a vampire story where the vampires were to blame for all of mankind’s failures as well as all their successes.

And it was really, very easy to do. Because that is exactly how things work in nature every day. In biology, the success rate of a species of prey is directly proportional to the success rate of a species of predators. If wolves flourish, deer prosper. If wolves die out, the deer suffer starvation.

Vampires prey on humans. Vampires are mankind’s natural enemy. That makes man’s survival hang in the delicate balance of the vampires’ survival.

It’s a good thing vampires like to survive. But how long can they live on their “vegetarian” diet and stay hidden before the humans start to metaphorically starve? Natural will call for balance.

With all the loopholes in our history, it was easy to cram my vampire world into the gapes. Factor in a personal history for each character and voila! A paranormal alternative was born.

In the following excerpt from Dark Heirloom, the main character, Ema Marx, and another female vampire character named Leena, chat about some of that alternative past:

I tried to keep my mind clear but I had too much space to ponder. I wondered if Leena could control her ability. Could she choose to read a specific person’s mind or did she hear everyone’s inner thoughts all the time? Leena said Jalmari had shut her away from his mind. How was he able to turn her ability off?

Leena glowered. I shrugged and kept walking. “I’m sorry. I can’t help being curious.”

She spoke through clenched teeth. “I have to remind myself that people don’t speak their mind out of politeness.”

“You don’t like talking about it.” I stated the obvious.

“It has been a difficult journey.”

“Your father thought you could speak to the gods. That must have been something.”

Leena nodded. “My father convinced the city of Athens that I had been given a gift from the gods. Back then, a gift from the gods made you a little bit more than human and people started to believe I was a demigoddess.”

“Are you?” Hey, there are vampires, why not goddesses?

Leena shrugged. “Nothing seems to constitute as godly anymore. I would simply be a telepath. My struggles came when I met Jalmari.”

I nodded, understanding all too the well the difficulties of becoming a vampire. I felt sympathetic for Leena. She had a bright future ahead of her before Jalmari took it away.

“Do not blame him,” Leena warned. “I knew what he was and I still loved him. I wanted him to turn me. I wanted to be with him always. I could not stand the thought of growing old and dying so soon before him.”

That was something I hadn’t considered. “You gave up everything, though.”

Leena snorted a laugh. “Hardly. The world was so different then. It was easy for vampires to call themselves gods and demigods and live in temples. It made life very convenient for us.”

My eyes grew wide. “Why would anyone worship a vampire?”

She laughed. “Why not? Humans didn’t know the difference back then. The pre-Christian world worshiped pagan gods. Some of those gods represented death, darkness, destruction. Vampires fit in with those aspects. And with our powers who would dare to question our authority?”

“So you could walk into any Greek city, claim you’re a god, and demand they build you a temple and worship you?”

“To put it simply, yes.”

I rolled my eyes. “That explains why the ancient gods demanded human and animal sacrifices.”

Leena giggled. “Why, yes, that is exactly why.”

Gosh. First Jack the Ripper, then the Holocaust, and now Greek gods. Was there any part of human history that wasn’t laced with vampirism?

“Not really,” Leena answered my mental question.

“So what happened? Why did humans stop worshiping them?”

Leena wrinkled her nose in disgust. “The Crusades.”

* * * *

GIVEAWAY!

In honor of the release of my debut novel and month-long tour, I’m offering one FREE ebook copy of Dark Heirloom to a lucky commenter!

Please leave a comment below with your name and email address and I will and you to the drawing.

* * * *

DARK HEIRLOOM

An Ema Marx Novel 1

By J.D. Brown

“You’re a vampire” is so not what Ema Marx wants to hear when she wakes from a two-day coma in a cryptic yet exquisite castle in northern Finland. Unfortunately, it explains a lot. Like why she’s able to see in the dark and walk through solid objects. What she doesn’t understand is why the other vampires expect her to have all the answers. It’s their fault she turned into one of them…right?

Jalmari’s hatred for his old-man intensifies when he’s ordered to bring that troublesome girl to their castle. He has a clan to run, there’s no time for babysitting newborn vampires no matter how they were converted to their culture. But when a two-thousand-year-old premonition threatens to take the crown and his life, Jalmari sees no other choice than to take out the catalyst. Ema Marx. Fortunately for Ema, she could also be the clan’s only savior.

The race to figure out her vampiric origins is on. And maybe she’ll get the hang of the blood-drinking gig along the way…

Buy Dark Heirloom at: http://museituppublishing.com/bookstore2/index.php?page=shop.product_details&flypage=flypage.tpl&product_id=339&category_id=205&keyword=dark+heirloom&option=com_virtuemart&Itemid=1

Website: http://authorjdbrown.com

Facebook Page: http://facebook.com/authorjdbrown

Blog: http://authorjdbrown.blogspot.com

Sunday, 1 April 2012

Writing Advice: How to Show Emotions in Your Writing




Here is a list I compiled with the help of my friends that I use to help me express emotions when I'm writing. If you have the same habit as me of telling the reader instead of showing, then this list may be of some help to you. I have posted my list here to benefit anyone who finds it useful. I use this all the time when I'm writing, and it has proved to be very popular on writing.com, so I thought it was time to share it with the blogging world. Please feel free to copy this and print it out if you find it useful.



The List...

Happy...

Facial expression...

mouth curve upward
upward curl
features lightened
eyes crinkle - crow's-feet
brows lifted
wrinkled forehead
lip corners stretch sideward
lips drew backward
brightness
eyes sparkled
face lit up
teeth flash
eyes dance
eyes: shine, glitter, glisten, flash, flicker, twinkle, glint, shimmer
cheeks burn rosy
crooked smile
little breath
face brightened
face flushed


Posture...

dancing about/spin around
clapping hands
body relaxed
deep breaths
threw head back
jumping with joy
clutching/rubbing hands together
threw out arms
punch air
run around
throwing things in air
shoulders lifted
smile/grin/laugh/cheer/cry
giggle
squeezes self
pinches self
tension eased from muscles

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Sad...

Facial expression...

downcast
blubber/bawl/howl
dejected
sniffing
tearing eyes
tears swelled in eyes
blinking away tears
glance downward
lips bowed
contorted features/face
mouth opened
close eyes
lower jaw/lip quivered
nose tiptilted
face dropped
frown
lowered eyelids
wrinkled forehead
cry/weep/sob
deep sigh
heart heavy
snivel
snuffle
blubber
heave a sigh
mournful eyes
downward turned lips

posture...

drooping shoulders
mope/sulk
crestfallen
bowed-head
press temples
shake head
sunken chest
limp body
slumped
wave hand (dismissive?)
hold head
hunch/sprawl
sagging limbs
curl up
suck thumb
cover mouth
tremble/shake/shudder
cup chin in hand
racking sobs
wipe away tears
rub sore nose
shove hands in pockets
disconsolate


----------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Scared...

Facial expression...

face flushed
eyes widened
eyelids/eyebrows lifted
panting/gasping
heart raced
head rushing
mouth opened
jaw dropped/gaping
pupils narrowed
brows lifted
wrinkled forehead
teeth chatter
sweat/shiver/cold
butterflies
crying
face paled
blood drained from face
Colour drained from skin
teeth on edge
eyes white with fear
eyes rolling
whispered prayers or curses
voice broke
wheeze/stutter
stammer


posture...

drawing back
fidget
jump
raising arms
cover/hide face
shaking/tremble
knees folded
palms folded
falter
squirm
curl in a ball
fettle position
collapse
shiver/quake/Tremor
clench fists
uncontrollable spasm tremble/shake
stumbled
head wobbled
cringe/shrink/recoil
cower
shudder
knees give way
neck hairs raise
nauseous/vomiting
pass wind (Lesley's suggestion)
wet yourself (Jayde's suggestion)
chill bumps on skin
hair standing on end
clutches self
clammy skin
cold sweat


----------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Angry...

Facial expression...

bared-teeth
smouldered
intense stare
flared nostrils
eyes narrowed
eyebrows draw together
eyelids drew together
flushed cheeks
blushing deep red
wrinkled nose
neck reddened
lips thinned
jaw line pulsed
jaw muscles twitched/trembled
throbbing veins
grind teeth
clench jaw
rigid throat
bite down/finger
draw breath/inhale
face tightened
scowl
glower
snarl
growl
bellow
puff
face burning
harder voice
smile: curved, warped, twisted

posture...

aggressive stance
seize
clench/wave fist
trembling hands
stiffened/tighten muscles
shaking arms upward
punch air
stamp foot
snort/huff
kicking
agitated
sharp footsteps
thumping fist
lashing out/throwing
dropping to knees
flinch/tremble
pacing
cry out
scream
mumbling
lash out
bunch fists
curl fists
hammer at
tap foot/fold arms
pull own hair
strangle on a scream
shriek


----------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Confused...

Facial expression...

blank expression
frown
eyebrows lowered/drew together
gaze downward
eyes narrowed
tongue protruding
biting tongue
mouth opened
lips to one side
sigh/blow/exhale
squeeze lips together
pursed lips
mumble
mutter
screw up face in thought
cock one eye up
slatted eyes
lift of chin
puckered/wrinkled/knit brow

posture...

shaking/scratch head
tilted head
rub back of neck
focused/precise movements
finger to chin/mouth
pull head back
lean backwards
blank stare
fidget
shrug shoulders
hand over mouth
rub face
hand on head
hold out palms
cock head
hands on hips
tap foot
hunker down
shrug

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Surprised...

Facial expression...

open-mouthed
jaw dropped/gapped
eyes widened
pupils narrowed
eyelids raised
brows lifted
nose/nostrils flared
face flushed
tongue protruding
fluttering eyelashes
flickering eyebrows
wrinkled forehead
gasp/pant/inhale
sharp intake of breath
jaw tensed
exclaim
brows fly up on head
open mouth
cried out

posture...

step/draw backwards
jump
put hands to mouth
raise arms
grasp cheeks
hold hands to chest
cover mouth
bite together/finger(s)
flinch/wince/tremble/shake
cower
yell/cry/scream
clasps hands before chin
slaps own face with one or both hands

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Excited...

Facial expression...

exhilaration
panting/gasping
eyes widened
smile/grin/laugh
lips curled
cheeks lifted
flushing
red face/neck
pant deep/short breath
gape/drool
dancing eyes
eyes over-bright
tongue flicks over lips
heart quickened
tingling on skin


posture...

dancing about
clapping/rubbing hands
clutching head/hands together
hop/skip
jumping around
cover face
punching air
bobbing up and down
slapping thigh
shaking fists
biting finger/grit teeth
running on spot
cartwheel
reach into the air
cry/yell/scream/squeak/shriek
wringing their hands
bounces on toes
rocks on heels
feels faint
swoons
holds breath

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Pain...

Facial expression...

face contract in a grimacing smile
face crumpled
veins bulging
grit teeth
closed eyes
eyes glazed
eyes watered
flared nostrils
reddened face/features
bite lip
neck widened
curse
gasp/pant
licks parched lips
grunts
groans
moans
cries out
weeps
pleads
delirium
tosses head from side to side
ragged breath
face clenched


posture...

muscles tightened
involuntary spasm
ridged/tense
arched back
reaching
clenched fists
shiver/tremble
fitting/flinch
thrash
nauseous/vomiting
strains
limps
hobbles
stumbles


Shameless plug


Truth Teller by Kurt Chambers is free to all readers


How can ten-year-old Charlotte ever envisage that magic really exists? The place for other realms belongs in a child’s fairy tale. Or so she thinks, until she discovers the strange shopkeeper and begins an adventure that changes her life forever.
Discovered alone in a far away forest, Charlotte embarks on a journey encountering heart-stopping dangers and real life monsters, but a far greater threat shadows her every move. Even the strength and skill of her new companions cannot protect her against a ruthless druid assassin.
But in this realm, Charlotte is not the vulnerable little girl she thought she was.

Download a free copy in any format for any device:


Smashwords:

Amazon:

Barnes & Noble: