Wednesday, 21 September 2016

Week Three! Almost there! #ChaBooChaLite #ChaBooCha

We have now entered the third week of the challenge. There are only nine days left to go! I hope everyone is busy writing!

If you're struggling with your story right now, there are some ways to help reignite your muse. Maybe taking a look back at our previous post "Getting through the middle of your story" will help.

What kind of story are you writing? I'm always curious about what genre each of us chooses for our individual stories. My chapter book and middle grade stories tend to fall in the paranormal and fantasy genres, with my YA skewing, more specifically, towards urban fantasy most often. But I know we have a wide variety of authors in this challenge (with almost 400 members at the moment), and this means there will be a wide variety of story genres represented within our challenge.

That's just one of the questions an agent will want to know, if you are going to send your book out into the world in the hopes that someone in the publishing industry will fall in love with it. Some other questions will be: What age are you aiming at for your story? Is it a chapter book, a middle grade book or a YA novel? What about comparable books; is there a book out there that you would be willing to say your book can compare with? (The question about a comparable book is my least favourite question to try and answer, because, of course, all of our stories are unique. Right? And yet, still, a publisher will want to know the answer to this question.)

You are getting close to the completion of your book. These, and other questions will be things to start thinking about when you are done.

Comment below to be entered into a drawing for a $5 (USD) Amazon gift certificate. (Signed-up members only.) The drawing will be done on the last day of the challenge (September 30th, 2016).

Wednesday, 14 September 2016

The Second Week #ChaBooChaLite #ChaBooCha

We've already reached the second week of the Lite challenge. How are you all doing with your stories?

The second week can often be difficult, because the first rush of the idea and your opening scene are done now and you have to start getting from one point in your story to the next. If you've outlined your story ahead of time, you might find this stage easier, but for those of you who, like me, create the story as you write it, you might find the writing comes to you a little bit more slowly now. You'll have to think about the story and where it is going before you write these next scenes.

Feel free to browse through previous posts here in the blog if you need some help or inspiration. ChaBooCha guest authors have covered a lot of topics during past challenges.


And now for this week's prize:

Some of you might know that I, occasionally, create book covers: some for books I publish and some for clients. Here, you can see some examples of the covers I have created in the past. I am, by no means, the best at cover creation, but my covers do appeal to readers.

I'm offering, for this week's prize, to create a *book cover for one winner. You need to comment on this post to enter. The winner will be drawn by a random number generator drawn from signed-up members who comment below. The winner will be announced on September 30th.

*I work with photo-manipulation. My style might not be right for the book you are creating, but you are under no obligation, if you are the winner, to use the cover I create. I will do my best to come up with something that reflects the title and theme of your book. 

Wednesday, 7 September 2016

The First Week #ChaBooChaLite

The first week of writing for ChaBooCha Lite has passed. How is everyone doing?

There are a lot of places on-line to use if you would like to keep a ticker showing your progress as you write your story for the challenge.

Here's a link to one that you might find useful (as well as an example of how it will look):

Critique Circle meter builder

Let me know in the comments how you are doing and you will be entered into a drawing to be done at the end of the challenge for one of my homemade charm bookmarks. (An example of one of my homemade bookmarks is pictured below. The actual one made and sent out may use different charms.)

Thursday, 1 September 2016

Welcome to ChaBooCha Lite 2016 #ChaBooChaLite

ChaBooCha Lite is another chance to write an early reader, chapter book, middle grade book or YA novel within a month. The premise is the same as the premise of March's Chapter Book Challenge. (The Lite challenge will have less prizes and less guest blog posts.) You will still be trying to write your book during the 30 days of the month, but instead of running in March, ChaBooCha Lite runs in September.

It's also completely acceptable for you to finish a book previously begun or to edit one you have already written, as long as you complete the work in September.

It's another chance to challenge yourself, and to give yourself a deadline for writing your book. Want to join us? Sign up here.

There will be some prizes during the challenge, mostly hand-made ones.

Grab a badge form below and feel free to share it on your blog or website! (Different sizes provided.)

Friday, 12 August 2016

The References: A Superhero Tale by Mark Dennion #Superheroes

My friend Mark Dennion has a new book out for kids that I am happy to introduce you to. Some of you might have already read his short story "The Abacus" in SuperHERo Tales: A Collection of Female Superhero Stories (Volume Two).

The References by Mark Dennion


Richard Shanary isn’t the best student. In fact, when it comes to English, he’s struggling for that “C” average his karate scholarship requires. 

On a stormy night in the bowels of the library, a freak lightning strike sends a jolt of electricity—and magic—into the hard line of the old desktop computer. Richard is injected with enough voltage to fry eggs—not to mention download the entire contents of the web dictionary he’s currently scrolling. Every word from A to Z is seared into his brain forever. 
By the time he wakes, Richard has gained the superhuman ability of instant recall on any definition in the English language, and even a few in French, Spanish, Portuguese, and German. Richard Shanary has become the Human Dictionary. A superhero bound to uphold the laws of society and grammar with his immense martial arts abilities and his power of instantly recalling the definition of the last word someone speaks to him. Not a single slang term or crooked criminal is safe. 

But Human Dictionary isn’t the only one with a gift. 

A scientist turned T Rex. A mapmaker with route recall better than any GPS. And an evil villain with an affinity for spandex intent on destroying them all and ruling the city herself. But she’ll have to take it from the meanest slang-slinging gang this city’s underbelly has ever seen. 

What we need is a hero. Or three. And so, a new era of superheroes begins… 


Mark Dennion is a graduate of Rutgers Camden and is a middle school Reading/Language Arts teacher who has been a fan of comics and heroes for as long as he can remember. He got the idea of The References from a project that he assigned his students after watching an episode of South Park. The References is his debut novel, but he hopes it to be the start of a long career. He lives in New Jersey with his beautiful wife and their "squirrel" in their small river cottage.

List of Links: 

Amazon Link:

Author’s Website:



Friday, 29 July 2016

Teapot Tales: Volume 4 - Now taking submissions #TeapotTales #ChaBooCha

Teapot Tales: A Collection of Extraordinary Fairy Tales (Teapot Tales: Volume 4)

Do you like to write fairy tales?

Every year we bring out a new volume of our Teapot Tales anthologies with proceeds to benefit the Chapter Book Challenge. This will be the third volume and the theme is returning to fairy tales.

The stories are flash fiction (minimum word count 300 words/maximum word count 1,000 words) and are to either be a new take on an old fairy tale (sometimes called twisted fairy tales or fractured fairy tales) or completely new fairy tales.

Submissions are only open to Chapter Book Challenge members (it's free to join and the sign-up sheet is on the ChaBooCha blog). Previous Teapot Tales anthologies are "Teapot Tales: A Collection of Unique Fairy Tales" (Teapot Tales: Volume 1), "Teapot Tales: Pirates, Mermaids and Monsters of the Sea" (Teapot Tales: Volume 2), and Teapot Tales: A Collection of Unusual Fairy Tales (Teapot Tales: Volume 4). The anthologies are sold through Amazon, but will be expanding to other retail outlets. All authors retain the copyrights to their stories to publish in their own collections or on their own websites. Up to three stories may be submitted. Artwork (line drawings) is also accepted.

All work must be your own.

Please include a one-paragraph, third-person author bio with your submission. Website links to your sites are allowed within reason.

Deadline for story submissions (and artwork): August 31st, 2016

Thursday, 31 March 2016

Final day of the Chapter Book Challenge #ChaBooCha

Today is the final day of the Chapter Book Challenge. If you managed to write an entire first draft of a chapter book, middle grade book or YA novel, from start to finish, during the month of March, then e-mail me at Rebecca (at) Fyfe (dot) net and I will send you a jpeg of the winner's badge.  Whether you won or lost, I hope you managed to get further along in your story during this challenge, and I hope you realize that any progress is a personal "win."

I did manage to finish a first draft of a chapter book during this year's challenge, but it's so truly awful that I'm not sure I will ever take the time to edit and revise it into something usable. (It all depends on how long it takes me to polish up previous projects.) Still, it helped to get the story written because the idea for it would continue to pester at me and niggle at the back of my mind, causing all kinds of distraction for me while working on other projects and, now that it's written, I can safely go back to working on those other projects, knowing that this one won't keep interrupting and pushing its way into my thoughts, for now at least.

This is the fun part of the challenge. I get to announce all of the winner's of the prizes this year. Just to warn you all, I am anything but timely when it comes to getting the prizes sent out, but you will eventually get your prizes. You have two weeks from the date of this post to contact me with your mailing address and accept the prize. If you don't contact me within two weeks, you forfeit the prize and your prize will be set aside and become part of next year's prizes.

Read below to see the list of prizes and the winners of those prizes, all selected through a random number generator.

Jen Garrett


The winner of the $5 USD Amazon gift certificate is:


The winner of The Indie Author's Guide to: Building a Great Book by Jo Michaels is:

Robyn Campbell


The winner of the Bullyland badger figurine is:

Dot Day






 by C. Hope Clark is:

Ashley Howland


The winner of Orison by Daniel Swensen is: 

Joanne Roberts




The winner of the e-book copy of Swallow Me, Now! by Melissa Gijsbers is:

Kelly Vavala!

The winner of the Kindle Fire 7" is:

Anne Bielby

Be sure to contact me soon if you are one of the winners! And I hope you got some benefit other than just the prizes from participating in this challenge.