Enthralled Magazine Vol 1 Issue 1 - Explore


Volume 1 Issue 1 January 2018

enthralled -

To be captivated, delighted or taken by something;

to be held spellbound and charmed.

Join us on Facebook - enthralled magazine

Email -enthralledmag@gmail.com

To subscribe or submit articles please visit - enthralledmagazine.com

enthralled magazine - January 2018 3

e n t h r a l l e d

Editor: Susan Day

Contributors: Geri Spieler, Emma

McTaggart, Debbie - Random Musings,

Barbara Avon, RJ Simon, Andreya Via ,

Patricia Furstenberg, Dayne Sislen, Susan


Layout & Graphic Design: RJ Simon &

Susan Day

Images: Stock Photo Secrets

Editorial enquires:

Susan Day








Published In: Dunolly, Victoria, Australia

January 2018

Privacy Policy:

We value your privacy. If you have

supplied enthralled magazine with your

social media contacts we will publish

them with your permission only. Your

details will not be shared with any third

parties. Every article published in

enthralled magazine is for the benefit of

our contributors and subscribers.

4 January 2018 enthralled magazine


This month’s theme is explore.

to traverse or range over a region, area, for

example, for the purpose of discovery

to look into closely; scrutinize; examine

We hope you enjoy ‘exploring’ with us.

A word or two about words…

Contributions made to this publication came from all over

the world. So as not to get bogged down or begin a trans-

Pacific war on words, the editor has made the decision to

leave each article in its original format. You may see

different forms of English used in different articles. This may

to some seem inconsistent, but we believe in the

universality of the written form, and wish to engender a

wider tolerance.

enthralled magazine - January 2018 5

Mission Statement

enthralled magazine creates a place

for authors and writers to share their

ideas and journeys. A place where

they can speak and be heard. It will be

the role of enthralled to empower,

educate, inspire and challenge all

writers and authors with articles,

news, tips, advice and more. While its

initial construction was the idea of a

few people, each issue will be a

collaboration of ideas from writers

and authors from across the globe.

from the editor

Welcome to the first edition of enthralled, a


With the help of some amazing creative souls this

magazine has come to fruition. One in particular, RJ

Simon, pretty much whipped, cajoled and

encouraged this production into shape. Others

cheered from the sidelines, and many wonderful,

talented authors put up their hand and offered to

contribute. I can’t thank you enough.

Why enthralled?

There is one thing that all authors and writers aim to achieve. That is to

leave their reader enthralled. Whether they write for children, Sci-Fi,

romance, or thrillers, an author’s goal is to captivate, delight, charm and

hold their readers spellbound, and enthralled.

Why this cover?

When I first thought of creating a magazine for authors I knew I was

going on a journey of exploration and discovery. When I saw this

inquisitive, thoughtful little face, I knew she would do just nicely for the


I hope you enjoy this, our first edition of enthralled magazine. Each

month we will have a theme around which our articles and stories will be

present. This month our theme is ‘explore’.

Please check out our website if you want to subscribe. We are always

ready to accept articles too. After all, it is our mission to keep our readers

enthralled, spellbound and captivated, too.

- Susan Day, Editor

enthralled magazine - January 2018 7



feature article

12 International

Read to Me! Day

- How to Get


34 An author’s journey from

book to movie, and the story about the

woman who attempted to assassinated US

President Gerald Ford


24 Has your writing gone to the dogs! Take a

look how dogs can help you become a better

writer, and how your life as a writer can help

28 Writers, do you need to explore the wider

implications of their work and discover how to

change the world for the better?

18 Are you really a writer, like an

author, or something like that?

Had this conversation before?

50 Learn what is involved in

hiring an illustrator

44 Do You buy books from unheard of

authors? Take a look at why getting yourself

known online is an important part of selling books.

62 Writing time-travel is easier than you think!

regular features

the news

8 book news, updates & more

your turn to write

digital market-

74 Write a short story about our cover photo

56 Not getting found online? Find out where your

blog posts are going. .

book of the month

70 Looking to read something different?


68 Guest poet this month is Patricia Furstenberg. Read

her moving tribute to a friend’s passing, and the dog left


classifieds 76 got a skill to share or are you in need of some help?

enthralled magazine - January 2018 9

the news

Christmas print book sales were 7% higher than in the comparable week last

year, and a lot of books saw substantial sales jumps.

Top 5 Best Overall Sellers in Print for January 2018:

The Getaway (Diary of a Wimpy Kid #12)

The Rooster Bar


The Sun and Her Flowers

Wonder (movie tie-in)

The Top 5 Most Popular Books on Goodreads for January 2018

The Cruel Prince

The Woman in the Window

The Immortalist

Still Me (Me Before You #3)

Fire and Fury: Inside the Trump White House

Captain Underpants, the fourth in his Dog Man series, debuts a new

character: Cat Kid, who joins Dog Man on a quest to find a missing movie

star. It lands at #8 on our Children’s Fiction list, with 17k units sold in its first


Michael Wolff's tell-all book about the Trump White House, Fire and Fury,

sold 191,838 copies in the week ended January 14. To meet the growing

demand, John Sargent, CEO of Macmillan, said that an additional 700,000

copies of the book were being shipped. Last week, Sargent said the company

had 1.4 million orders for Fire.

Two new books with a negative take on Donald Trump's presidency, David

Frum's Trumpocracy: The Corruption of the American Republic (Harper)

and David Cay Johnston's It's Even Worse Than You Think: What the Trump

Administration Is Doing to America (Simon & Schuster), have seen demand

increase on Amazon following the fray surrounding Michael Wolff's Fire and


News and Updates were obtained from Publishers Weekly and Goodreads

10 January 2018 enthralled magazine



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enthralled magazine - January 2018 11


onal Read to Me! Day

International Read to Me! Day

19 March 2018

International Read to Me! Day is an international campaign aimed at

encouraging children to remind the adults in their village to read to them


It was created as another essential cog in the literacy advocacy wheel, by

empowering and encouraging children to participate in the conversation about

their own literacy.

14 January 2018 enthralled magazine

International Read to Me! Day aims to:

1. Change the dynamic and empower children to ask for more

support, not just from their birth family but also from their

community. Marking a day when kids can ask to be read to is a

key part of this strategy.

2. Promote, encourage and inspire reading activities within


3. To showcase organisations who are passionate about

improving the literacy standards of the children around them.

4. To address the disparity between resources and where they are

distributed, by supporting a book drive and sending the collected

books to locations around the world to those who are looking for


enthralled magazine - January 2018 15

Click here: Read To Me Day Pledge and make a pledge to share a photo of

you reading to a child on March 19th.

What YOU can do…

1. Share this great day with your friends and family on Facebook Read To

Me Day!

2. Volunteer to read to children in your village – offering your time to

schools, child-care facilities, the next door neighbour’s children or volunteer

to read to children via an established literacy organisation (see Read To Me

Literacy Organisation) Tag your photo with #readtomeday

3. Host a ‘It’s Not About Me’ Morning Tea! Invite your guests to donate a

children’s picture book. There are organisations and groups around the

world who desperately need resources, such as the Reading Club in

Tanzania championed by Lameck (Tanzania Ambassador for IR2MDay) or

send money or books to an established literacy organisation.

16 January 2018 enthralled magazine

The Conversation

How many times have you had doubts about your ability to write? Once a week,

every day, every minute! RJ Simon takes a look at that self-doubting voice we all


But I don’t feel like a real ‘writer’!

Well why not?

Writers are special. People can’t just *become* writers. You either are a

writer or you’re not...

Can you elaborate on that?

Writers are like mythical creatures. We see them sitting around in black

and white photos at fine wooden desks laden with typewriters, quills, and

perfectly angled ink black words scrolled beautifully on piles of parchment

paper. A single cat curls up neatly by their feet. They stroke beards, puff

on their writerly pipes, as they gaze all knowingly through their glasses out

the window and down upon the world beyond their rich leather clad

library. It’s all so perfect.

20 January 2018 enthralled magazine

Maybe a little too perfect...

Oh you are right! Of course, there are those CRAZY writers, in pyjamas,

scrunching up piles of paper and throwing them on the ground quicker

than the forests can grow and be milled to provide them... But they know

they are writers and they always beat their writer’s block in the end.

They just need to go on a once in a lifetime adventure?

Yeah! Exactly!

Well, what about young writers?

Oh YES, there are those romantic Anne of Green Gables types obsessed

with alabaster brows! They almost always just need a little more life


22 January 2018 enthralled magazine

Um okay...

See! I’ll never be a REAL writer! I’m boring. My life is boring. I don’t own a

tweed jacket. I’ve never been shipwrecked or held hostage by a clown...

and I’m not even an orphan. Besides, I don’t FEEL like a writer. If I was a

writer, I would FEEL like a writer.

Oh, I understand. And I see what you’re saying.

But what if the truth is... that those stereotypical writers that we so admire are

often fictional idealisations created by writers...

Um, I don’t know. I suppose you might have a point... maybe.

So um, if you don’t feel like a ‘real writer’ maybe it’s time to ask yourself what a

writer really is? Do you think maybe you could try that? Just for fun.

Yeah okay... I guess sometimes in the movies they don’t feel like writers...

even though they are writers.

Exactly. Now, don’t forget to write it all down so you can show me later okay?

Yeah okay... but I might have to buy a new book, all the others are full of

random things, like ideas and half started stories and other stuff…

RJ Simon occasionally describes herself as an artist, writer, nature

lover, cat whisperer, and an average cook. Read about her fantastic

books at Books by RJ Simon

Join our online community to discuss the ideas in this post further.

Facebook or Blog

enthralled magazine - January 2018 23

Has Writing Gone to the Dogs?

Has Writing Gone to the Dogs?

There is no doubt that dogs play an

important role in all our lives.

However, after some investigation we

found that many writers and authors

share their writing space with some

very special canines.

Much has been written about famous

authors and their dogs. Many of you

may know that Stephen King’s

Marlowe, a much-loved corgi, inspires

many of his canine characters, in

particular Horace in Under the Dome,

and Daisy in The Regulators.

When Steinbeck was short of ideas

and needed inspiration, he put his

French Poodle, Charley, into his truck

and the pair would travel across the

country seeking inspiration, release

and concepts to explore.

What’s in it for the writer?

Having another being close by has

many benefits for writers.

For one, you can sound out any ideas

you may be having doubts about. You

could also describe the behaviour of a

character, stare into your dog’s eyes,

and see if it resonates with his pure,

loyal doggie heart.

You also have an excuse when writer’s

block takes heed to leave the damn

writing and walk the dog, feed the dog,

brush the dog… you name it. Your dog

has many needs, all of which are great

alternatives to staring at a screen for

hours on end.

26 January 2018 enthralled magazine

What’s in it for the dog?

Yes, what is in it for the dog?

Let’s face it, unlike cats, dogs love to

be with their owners no matter how

distracted, or dare we say, boring

they are.

Dogs need about 23 ½ hours sleep,

which suits many writers. They never

complain when the internet is down, when clumsy fingers keep spelling wrong,

or when, hour after hour, you sit banging your head on your desk.

And, when that spark of brilliance occurs and you finally type, ‘The End’ who,

but your humble dog will be there to celebrate with you?

Join our online community and share the pet that supports you

through your writing career. Facebook or Blog

enthralled magazine - January 2018 27

Writers Need to Explore More

Writers Need to Explore More

Writers and other explorers – and all

people – today face many profound

and often difficult challenges: how to

ensure own personal survival and

wellbeing, for our family and loved

ones; how to ideally help people in our

local community, state, nation, country,

and worldwide; and how to solve

environmental, political and other

problems on local and world levels.

How do we help improve personal and

the collective wellbeing of ourselves

and others?

This world has had so many different

and difficult complex problems that

help of all is needed to solve them.

Writing and journaling have long been

among useful therapeutic tools for

personal change and wellbeing, for

sorting through events and emotions,

figuring out what we think, and to

explore what we wish to say or do.

“The pen is mightier than the sword” -

Variants of this saying have been

present from the ancient times, and still

hold true today.

A children’s book has helped abolish

slavery, and a children’s book author

has helped improve wellbeing of

animals and children, and topple a

government. Just Google ‘Lex

Lindgren’, or read about Astrid

Lindgren’s life, the author of Pippi


Public Relations is a powerful tool or it

can be used as a weapon. Like fire it

can be used for good or not-so-great

purposes. It strongly influences local

and world politics and decision

making, however, with social media

and internet, everyone can share their

ideas and opinions!

Writers and explorers, especially

journalists and critical thinkers, need

to explore how to say things in a

constructive way: respectfully or even

playfully – when appropriate. They

need to find and build consensus:

something we all can agree on, and

promote problem-solving in creative

and innovative win-win ways.

How can we promote ‘old-fashioned’

values and virtues to today’s and

tomorrow’s generations? Like

patience, persistence, courage,

wisdom, international friendship built

from fun and interesting work. We

need to explore ourselves living and being together as people, and naturefriendly

projects and programs, respect of all beings and nature, including

ourselves, caring, solidarity, treating ourselves and other people decently.

We need to learn how to listen and get out into the real life. And, we need to

learn how to work for the common good, for the greater good of all.

Andreya Via is a lifelong explorer who explores Life, the

Universe and Everything at LaExplorella

She has written poetry, fairytales for kids and adults

(fantasy and SciFi), songs, interactive fairytales and stories,

and an occasional half of musical!

You can find her on Twitter

Join our online community to discuss the ideas in this post further.

Facebook or Blog

feature article

How did I get here?

A Writer’s Journey from Reluctant

Author to Movie

Our feature article this month is a

remarkable story of a woman who

became an author so she could tell the

story of another woman’s life. Taking Aim

At The President, is a remarkable story,

but like many true tales, the story behind

the story is just as interesting.

This is Geri Spieler’s story…

too difficult to write.

I had no intention of writing a book. As

I’ve said to many friends and even

strangers, books take too long and are

Well, how that changed. It began as a curiosity when I was approached by a

would-be presidential assassin, Sara Jane Moore - the 45-year-old mother and

doctor’s wife who pulled a gun from her purse, took aim and fired a bullet at

the head of President Gerald Ford and missed his head by a mere six inches.

Yeah. I know, right!

36 January 2018 enthralled magazine

She wanted to meet me. She sent a note to the publication company where I

worked at the time. She had seen an article that I wrote about Sybil Brand Women’s

Prison in Los Angeles, and the class action suit that had been brought against them.

After her court hearing and sentencing she did end up at the Federal Correctional

Institution, Terminal Island in San Pedro, CA and that is where our “relationship” of

sorts began.

It was not until January 1976 when I went to meet her for the first time. It was a

whole new world; prisons, guards, and such.

It is time for you to write my book

There I was sitting in this big empty room: A human warehouse. I had seen pictures

of Sara Jane, but I was not prepared for what happened next.

A woman came through a door on the opposite side of the room. She had curly

brown hair, rosy cheeks and a very purposeful walk. She was wearing street clothes

so I assumed she worked there.

When she approached me, she said, “Are you Geri?”


“I’m so glad you came. It is lovely of you.” And she took my hand.

38 January 2018 enthralled magazine

This is quintessential Sara Jane Moore,

as I learned. Charming, gracious,

highly intelligent, with impeccable

manners and as I learned later, perfect

penmanship and flawless grammar.

I agreed to help her send birthday and

Christmas gifts to her son a nine-yearold.

Remember his mother had just

tried to assassinate the president of

the United States so relationships

were strained to say the least.

So, that is how our acquaintance

began and it just rolled along from

there. I had no agenda. I had no plans

to write about her. As I mentioned

earlier, I did not write books.


At that time, Sara Jane was a footnote in my life. I moved around the country a

bit and she was moved to several different facilities over the years until she

ended up in the prison in Pleasanton near the San Francisco Bay Area, and I

ended up living in the area.

It was at this juncture that my job circumstances changed, and I went to see her

a few weeks later.

“So, now maybe it’s time to get back to your real writing,” she said.

“Well, what would that be?”

“It’s time for you to write my book,” she said in all seriousness.

That was my first red flag

enthralled magazine - January 2018 39

I still didn’t want to do it, but I finally said I’d look into it. I knew what I needed

to do: I needed to actually interview her, like a real journalist and get to know


I suggested we set up some meeting times and I’d need to work with the prison

so I could bring in a digital-recorder and notepaper. But first while there I asked

her what it was like growing up in Charleston, West Virginia.

I started casually enough.

“So, Sally, what was it like to grow up in Charleston, WV?”

“How do you know that?” she said through gritted teeth.

“It was all over the news. Everyone knows that.”

“Yeah, well I didn’t tell you.”

That was my first red flag. In other words, in her mind if she didn’t tell me about

her, I couldn’t know it. It all went downhill from there. She demanded that she

control everything I wrote and I couldn’t talk to anyone she did not approve of.

I told her it doesn’t work that way and she said, “Then I am no longer at home

to you.”

Apart from her attitude, I needed to ask myself some questions. Did this story

need to be told? Was it a compelling story?

40 January 2018 enthralled magazine

As well, writing a book was foreign to me. It was a world I didn’t know and had

never aspired to. I didn’t know what I didn’t know.

The Book

I began to research Sara Jane Moore and attempted to reconcile what I learned

about her to what I found reported about her in the papers, and information

online. Nothing matched up from any sector.

I found the court documents from her hearing, which were the most remarkable

pieces of information. In what Judge Conti said and in what I saw online I could

see that there were fragments of information that completely contradicted the


Two points are worth raising here: Sara Jane Moore did not shoot wild and she

was not acting alone.

I found and interviewed her brothers, neighborhood friends and the FBI case

officers who were assigned to research her life for the feds. Everything that was

in the press and online was false; deliberately put out there to calm the public.

After all, President Ford was safe and the feds just wanted it all to go away.

This information came directly from the case agent who got the records

“unsealed” and said it was time to set the record straight after almost 30 years.

I think because of this new and remarkable information plus the additional

enthralled magazine - January 2018 41

esearch about the political client of San Francisco in the 70’s I was able to land

a literary agent, Sharlene Martin. Her determination landed me a contract with

Macmillan/St. Martin’s Press. That was in 2009 and launched Taking Aim at The

President: The Remarkable Story of The Woman Who Shot at Gerald Ford.

As Sharlene had lived and worked in Los Angeles and was closely tied to the TV

industry, she worked her contacts to try and get Taking Aim picked up by HBO,

Showtime, TNT and Lifetime.

No interest. What came back was resounding: “No one cares about a person

who was so awful to her kids, her parents, lovers or anyone else. There is

nothing redeeming about her and nothing sympathetic. So, after about two

years of trying, we both just let it go.

Occasionally I had emails from time to time expressing interest in doing a

documentary or film, but nothing ever happened. So, when I was contacted via

my website in 2015 from some guy named Andrew Logan suggesting Taking

Aim would make a “compelling” movie and asking me if I still had the rights, I

was not impressed, but sent it on to Sharlene as usual.

Well, obviously this time was different. Andrew Logan and Taylor Allen are

award winning screenwriters and executive producers of the movie,

Chappaquiddick. Now, with that one out of the way they are working full time

on the screenplay for my book. If all goes well the completed movie could

premier in 2020.

42 January 2018 enthralled magazine

How did they find me?

The question I get asked the most is how did they find me? Who was looking

for a woman, so obscure in the history of assassins who missed and purposely

buried in the historical annals? No one.

Taylor received a Tweet from one of those historical websites that writes: “On

this day in September, 22, 1975, in San Francisco, Sara Jane Moore shot at

President Gerald Ford in front of the St. Francis Hotel.”

He clicked on it and saw a bio of Sara Jane. Then he did a Google search and he

found my book. Being the curious guy, he bought it and read it, talked to his

writing partner, Andrew and there you have it.

It all started with a Tweet.

Find more about Geri Spieler on her website -


The Book:

Taking Aim at The President: The Remarkable Story of The Woman Who Shot at

Gerald Ford.

The Movie:

The Woman Who Shot Gerald Ford the Movie

enthralled magazine - January 2018 43

Do You Buy Books

from Strangers

or Authors

You Know?

Do You Buy Books from

Strangers or Authors

You Know?

One Indie author goes out of her way to help and

encourage other authors. In this in-depth article,

Debbie from Random Musings ask some pertinent

questions all authors should consider. As she says,

you most likely to purchase a book from an author

you’ve never seen before.

As any Indie author knows, writing a book isn’t the

hard part – selling the book is the hard part.

Why? Because no matter how good your book is, if

people don’t know it exists, they can’t buy it.

It’s the age old problem that Indie authors face.

You want to spend your time writing, not marketing, but if you don’t spend time

on marketing, your writing won’t reach your target audience.

It’s a vicious circle that we all find ourselves trapped in.

The Author Interview

I believe as Indie authors, it’s so important that we support one another. The

book market is huge and if we can help introduce each other to just a small

piece of it, then we’re winning the battle.

46 January 2018 enthralled magazine

Those two factors combined where

what gave me the idea to start The

Author Interview series on my blog.

I’d already been running two

interview series for bloggers and it

suddenly occurred to me that I

should be offering authors the same


It’s true that people respond to

people, and by taking part in

interviews and getting your name

and, more importantly, your face in

front of a new audience, you’re

opening up a door to new readers

who may never otherwise have found


My interview series is a good way to

give your latest book(s) a little plug,

but more than that, it gives you a

chance to introduce yourselves to my

readers on a more personal level.

It gives you the chance to talk about

the inspirations behind your book,

your most and least favourite thing

about being a writer and give some

advice to any new writers out there

amongst other things.

Think about this: Unless you’ve

specifically gone online with the sole

intention of buying a book (in which

case you’re most likely on Amazon

rather than browsing the web) when

are you most likely to purchase a

book from an author you’ve never

seen before?

Is it because you saw a faceless ad in

someone’s side bar?

Is it because you saw a tweet telling

you should?

Is it because you read something by

the author that showed their passion

for their book and made you excited

about it?

I believe as Indie

authors, it is so

important that we

support one another.

Or is it because you read something

personal about the writer that

touched you?

For me, it’s always most likely the

third or fourth options.

Now let’s be honest here – every

person who reads your interviews

isn’t going to rush out and buy your

book. No matter what your book is

about, it won’t appeal to everyone.

enthralled magazine - January 2018 47

The people who it does appeal to are

those your book is targeted towards,

so let’s take those people. Again,

reading an interview isn’t going to

make them all rush to buy your book.

It might make a few people buy it,

but it won’t cause a huge spike in

sales. And that’s ok, because this is

only the first step.

Assuming you have something

interesting to say, what will happen is

that people reading your interview

will want to know more about you as

a person. They might follow you on

social media or visit your own blog.

And that’s where the magic happens.

You now have new eyes on your blog

and social media channels. Interested

eyes that like you and will now see

your book again each time they visit

your site.

Keep them interested. Show more of

your personality and show them,

through your blog, why they need

your book in their lives. The more

people you have visiting your site, the

more people you can convert into

buyers and, hopefully, over time, fans.

About Debbie

Born in 1982 in North East England, I

knew from an early age I wanted to

be a writer. Life got in the way, and

the dream was put on the back

burner, although never forgotten.

I took the plunge, leaving a full time

job in 2016, and I am now a full time

author, freelance writer and blogger.

I have published three novels, two

short story collections, a non-fiction

book and a collection of funny


If you would like to take part in The

Author Interview series, drop me an



If you would like to stay in touch, you

can find me here: My blog, Twitter,

Facebook, Instagram and Amazon.

And don’t forget to join my new

Facebook community for writers, The

Writer’s Den, where you will find

writing prompts, chances to promote

your books, and tips and advice from

other writers.

How do you promote yourself online? Share your thoughts on

Facebook or the enthralled blog

Bringing your

manuscript to life as

a picture book

Bringing your

manuscript to life as a

picture book

Professional Illustrator, Dayne Sislen, talks to us this

month about what goes into illustrating a picture


So you have finally finished writing and re-writing

your picture book manuscript.

You have had it critiqued and edited and hopefully

read it to more than a few children of the

appropriate age.

You are ready to make the next step.

Are you going the traditional publishing route or are

you going to try self-publishing?

If you are intending to submit your text to a traditional publisher or literary

agent (as opposed to publishing the book yourself), you do not need to have

your story illustrated when you submit.

If your manuscript is acquired by a traditional publisher, they

will choose an illustrator they believe will complement your

story and pay them to do the job.

They will receive one half or more of the advance for the book

and one half or more of the royalties. You will have little or no

control over the process.

52 January 2018 enthralled magazine

You will only need

to find an illustrator

and book designer

if you are selfpublishing.

The illustrations in a

picture book tell one

half of the story. A

majority of picture books written in

the last few years are between 800-

350 words. So a picture book author

doesn't have a lot of words to use to

tell their story. But lucky for them,

they don't have to put a detailed

description in the text because the

illustrator will show the characters

and actions on the page.

Children's book illustration may look

easy and fast because it seems to be

just a few simple lines and color, but

the illustrator usually spends months

getting everything just right by:

• Reading your story over and over

again until they can clearly see the

characters and the actions taking

place in their minds before they even

start the drawings.

• Coming up with ideas for a unique

interpretation of the story

• Finding reference

material online

• Pagination of the text,

with special attention to

suspense and surprise.

• Thumbnail sketches of

each double-page spread

• Character design and development

• Preparing full pencils for each

spread or illustration for your


•Doing color studies

• Drawing, redrawing, redrawing, and

redrawing, to get things just right

• Final color artwork

• If you shop wisely your illustrator

may also design the type layout and

format your book for printing.

enthralled magazine - January 2018 53

What to expect:

Experience: A good illustrator doesn’t just lay down a few lines and add some color

to create a cute stuffed bear or a sad donkey or a believable child character, they

breathe life into a story and emotion into the illustrations through their experience

and many trials.

Each illustration is an integral part of a bigger whole that tells the total story. Don’t

think of your illustrator as an employee hired to do your bidding but a professional

collaborator with expertise in the field of creating illustrations that enhance your

words in a form that is appealing to kids and positions your book for the industry.

Payment: Experienced professional illustrators working on self-published books, do

not work for royalties. Expect to pay a deposit and payments for certain milestones.

Contract: Choose an illustrator who offers you a contract with deadlines both for

payment and deliverables. You should not work with an illustrator without a simple

contract which protects you both and explains what you will get.

54 January 2018 enthralled magazine

Price: Start the process

with a reasonable

understanding of how

much it is likely to cost

and an appropriate


The Graphic Artists Guild

Handbook: Pricing and Ethical

Guidelines provides the current

industry rates for cover and interior

book illustration and is used by the

majority of professional illustrators to

price their work.

How can you find the perfect

illustrator for your picture book?

Do your research. Try a Google

“image” search for characters similar

to yours. You might be lucky and find

your illustrator right away. Other

sources for professional illustrators

are the Society of Children's Book

Writers and Illustrators' (SCBWI)

scbwi.org or Children's Illustrators


A Professional Children's Book

Illustrator can help with sales. A

book's illustrations can make or break

its success. First and foremost don't

forget, picture books are judged and

purchased by their covers and the

text and reviews on the back cover.

Trying to save money on

illustration and design

may very well doom your

great story from the

outset. Make sure you

entrust your manuscript

to someone who is

knowledgeable about

children's picture book construction.

It's not just a matter of illustrating a

few cute pictures. The illustrations

must carry one half the story, and

create the mystery and excitement to

move the story forward with exciting

page turns.

Having an illustrator who also

designs and prepares your book for

print is a plus.

You may contact me

through my website, I

will be glad to answer

your questions about

self-publishing, picture

book illustration, and



Please note, Dayne very kindly have us

permission to publish her fabulous

illustrations without watermarks. Please

respect her artistic integrity, and yours,

and never use them without permission.

enthralled magazine - January 2018 55

What Authors Don’t Understand Ab

Blogging and Search Engine Optimiza




What Authors Don’t Understand

About Blogging and Search Engine

Optimization (SEO)

Blogging like many things is a science or it should be viewed as one at least. It’s

not just a practice where an author, writer or blogger puts down their thoughts

and ideas; there is a lot more to blogging than that.

Truth is, authors and writers being the more creative types tend to approach

blogging in the wrong way.

If done the right way, your blog posts can attract the right kind of visitors to

your site – the ones who will buy your book.

If you learn how to write articles and format them in the right way, you will find

that the Search Engine Optimization of your website will improve. This will lead

to more people finding you and wanting to read your book.

Blog the Right Way – Write to Your Audience

When creating a blog post it is important that you write for your audience.

These might be slightly different people than those who read your book, they

are those folks who are interested, but not quite sold yet.

Choose topics that would interest this group of people. What are they into?

How old are they? Are they male or female? Consider these and many other

points too.

What themes or ideas does your book contain that would interest them?

58 January 2018 enthralled magazine

Blog the Right Way – Structure Your Post

Keep your post between 200 and 350 words. You can write longer posts if you

wish, but Google only scans them up to a certain point, then ignores the rest.

If you want to write a longer piece, why not spilt it into parts?

The blog posts you have, the greater your online presence will be.

Also, tag your images with the key words or the title of your post. Well tagged

images can increase the likelihood of the article being found by up to 30%.

Include subheadings with key words (just like I’ve done here). Subheadings, and

images, work as place markers as well; helping readers follow your post on

smaller screens such as smartphones and tablets.

Use links to outside sources and to other articles and posts you have created.

Sharing information by linking shows that you are open to sharing and

supporting others online – this is something Google looks for and tracks.

enthralled magazine - January 2018 59

Blog the Right Way – Regular Posts

Regardless of what anyone tells you, you should be posting on a regular basis.

In fact, the more the better.

Once a week is okay, but two or three times a day will bring you the maximum

benefits. Now, you don’t have to keep to this schedule each day. If you can stick

to it for 4 months, your site will really get a lot of notice.

Best of all, enjoy writing and sharing your passion for books the right way and

improve your Search Engine Optimization.

This article was originally published in here

Join our online community to discuss the ideas in this post further.

Facebook or Blog

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Why Writing Time-

Travel is Easier Than

You Think

Why Writing Time-Travel is

Easier Than You Think

Canadian writer, Barbara Avon has a passion

for writing and telling stories. Never dulled by

naysayers, Barbara talks to us this month about

how she created a time travel book, which

leaves science behind.

It was brought to my attention (not so subtly)

that I must be insane to attempt to write a time

-travel themed fiction novel as the dynamics of

such a task would be just too complicated; like the inner mechanism of a

pocket watch, everything would have to sync and flow in tandem.

I grew up admiring Jack Finney for his eloquent prose and subsequent tale that

follows Simon Morley in Time and Again (1970) and its sequel, From Time to

Time (1995).

64 January 2018 enthralled magazine

In fact, both novels still occupy a prominent place on my bookshelf. As an

author of romance/suspense fiction, I never wanted to limit myself to one genre

and attempting to write time travel was the next logical choice (in my mind, at


When a would-be naysayer tried to rain on my parade, I simply nodded and

smiled in a creepy way that suggested the very insanity they were accusing me

of. Really, though, it’s like this: Writing fiction is a remarkable trek through

“Freedom Park”. It’s not supposed to be realistic, hence why it’s categorized

under fiction. Granted, there are certain things to be careful of when writing

about things in the past. I am meticulous about researching (a.k.a Googling)

every minor detail. If my male protagonist is popping a Tic Tac am I sure the

one-and-a-half calorie breath mint was available in 1967?

enthralled magazine - January 2018 65

Other than that, creative license belongs with the author. I weaved my tale by

marrying an old relic with the appropriate setting and words and thus, a time

travel novel was born. Along with its sequel and subsequent third and standalone

time travel novel.

It’s not scientific. We’ll keep science where it belongs – on the shelves of college

bookstores. With an open mind and a heart that aches to get the underlying

love story told, writing time travel is as easy (or as difficult, whatever your

stance might be) as writing any other fiction novel.

Just be sure that if the present day is in the year 1986, the word “smart phone”

stays out of your book.

Meet Barbara Avon Online - Barbara Avon

And on Twitter - Barbara Avon


The Night You Went Away

Patricia Furstenberg

When all's asleep and night is calm

And cats on windows, birds in trees and even owls rest,

A dog wakes up for he has heard:

The call of that one bird.

The birds that sings

But once.

And in the middle of the night, when mice

and hens, the rooster too,

All share that one rhythm, of dreams and


A dog gets up and moves along; he wants

just one more pat

Before his master leaves.

For the one bird had sung,

Just once.

68 January 2018 enthralled magazine

His master sleeps, his breath so soft, as quiet as the night.

He knows, more than he feels, his dog is by his side.

And in his slumber state he strokes the

pet. Once more.

Then breathes out, hand slides down and…

just like that, he's gone.

And birds and hens, the mice, the trees

Still sleep the night's deep sleep.

The dog barks once; he jumps from bed

And whines and licks the hand, last time.

So kind, so warm, yet never will it move


They're all awake now. They call, they cry.

"He's gone", a soft whine comes.

The bird had sung.

And with the first rays of new day when all wake up with hope,

The house where his master lived is all awake, yet sad.

The hens cluck, busy; eggs are done! The rooster calls the time.

And birds sing sweetly, the cat meows, she stretches, looks around.

Yet no one's there to pick the eggs, to feed the cat, to smile.

He’s gone, barks dog. He went away last night.

They came at lunch time; with a van.

Mom's lost, the rest still cry.

They took him with and yet… the dog still sits and waits.

He's by the gate.

And hopes that if the one bird comes and sings again,

His master will return.

Patricia Furstenberg is a talented children’s author and regular

contributor to My Puppy Club. You can find Patricia online at her

website, Patricia Furstenberg.

enthralled magazine - January 2018 69

ook of the month

ook of the month

gutsy girl

Gutsy Girl - Review by Susan Day

Gutsy Girl is the sort of book you

shouldn't read in a quiet place, like a

library or on public transport.

This is because there are some

genuinely funny laugh-out-loud

moments that are far too irresistible.

Holding your laughter in can be

injurious to your health so I would

advise you only read this book

somewhere LOL’ing is accepted.

If you are a parent or grandparent of a little girl, or you believe in the equality of

women, then you should read this book.

Caroline Paul takes us on her quest to have worthwhile and meaningful

adventures. She goes to the most extreme places on the planet, and somehow

makes it back in tact.

There is a legal disclaimer in the beginning - which of itself is hilarious, too. It

goes along the lines of “don’t try this at home,” but is indicative of the sort of

humour some people discover within themselves as they plummet over a cliff to

their deaths.

This book looks at the way we treat girls, and how our low expectations of their

abilities to keep themselves safe, inhibit and restrict what they can achieve.

72 January 2018 enthralled magazine

As I was once labelled a “Tom Boy” I

completely identified with what Paul

was saying. However, lacking her

courage I didn’t quite understand

how she readily put her life in danger

in what could best be summed up as

an “Oh, let’s try this and see what

happens” attitude to life.

I did learn how to tell how many

minutes there would be until the sun

set by using my fingers, and how

cotton balls dipped in Vaseline are

actually flammable - who knew??

How these things will be useful in my

life I don’t know, but I did feel

empowered and a stronger after

reading this book. And, if is for this

reason I wanted to include it here,

and share it with you all.

I’ve also bought copies for my

granddaughters. I hope when they

are old enough they too will

become Gusty Girls, go on

marvellous adventures, grab the

world with both fists, and shake it

vigorously. And, as long as they

don’t tell their granny how

dangerous it all was everything in

the world will be just fine.

You can grab a copy from Amazon

by clicking here - Gutsy Girl I

recommend the hardcover version.

It’s a beautifully presented book and

cheap as chips!



There are moments in this book you will

laugh so hard coffee may spurt out your

nose. I laughed so hard I nearly fell out

of bed, twice!

Got a book you would love to review? Let us know -

Facebook or Blog

enthralled magazine - January 2018 73

your turn...

Write about our cover phot

74 January 2018 enthralled magazine


What thoughts or ideas does it evoke? What happens

next? What just happened? Who is the little girl with the

magnifying glass? What is she looking for or looking at?

Send your entry to our Facebook Page. A selection will be

chosen for next month’s publication.

Enter Here

enthralled magazine - January 2018 75



Eye reolly kneed help editing my

worke. I was writing for meny

years but I can’t seam to sepll rite.


This is the spot for any updates or

news in the indie self publishing



This is the spot for any updates or

news in the indie self publishing



This is the spot for any updates or

news in the indie self publishing



Advertise here in our classified

section for just $5 a month.

See website for full details.


This is the spot for any updates or

news in the indie self publishing



This is the spot for any updates or

news in the indie self publishing


76 January 2018 enthralled magazine

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would love to see or anything you hated? Please let us know so we can

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