Friday, November 20, 2015

Native American Heritage Month!

November is Native American Heritage Month!  Although we should celebrate the rich culture and traditions of the natives in the land Americans now call home all year, November is a specific time to educate yourselves on the important history of American's native people.

Fans of the Chausiku series know that I have prominently introduced the Natosapi Clan in Chausiku: The Blood of the Clans Book Three.  They are members of the Blackfoot Tribe who primarily live in Montana, USA and in Canada.  The natives of Canada are called First Nations.  "Blackfoot" is the English translation of the word siksika which means "black foot" and is more commonly used in Canada.  In the U.S. "Blackfeet" is more commonly used but is more of an anglicized pluralization instead of a true translation.

The Blackfoot tribe is also known as the Niitsitapi (original people)...and in the Chausiku series they have very unique supernatural powers (of course!).

What fans of the Chausiku series don't know is that my great-grandmother Josephine was Native American.  I'm only 1/8 so clearly can't claim the heritage but I have always been interested in her heritage.  Native Americans have made such important contributions to the United States and if you want to learn more...check out the websites below.

Native American Heritage Month
http://www.ncai.org/initiatives/native-american-heritage-month
http://www.collegefund.org/content/ways_to_celebrate_native_american_heritage_month
https://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-office/2015/10/30/presidential-proclamation-national-native-american-heritage-month-2015
http://www.firstnations.org/news/events/native_american_heritage_month_2015

#nativeamericanheritagemonth #nativeamerican #firstnations #blackfoot #niitsitapi #chausiku

Monday, September 28, 2015

Hispanic Heritage Month!

As you readers of my series know, the Amaru Clan is from Peru and are Latino.  So today my blog is dedicated to Hispanic Heritage Month (September 15 to October 15).  Hispanic and Latino Americans have made important contributions to the United States and this is a time to celebrate their heritage and culture, regardless of your race or nationality.  So check out the websites below and celebrar!

http://www.hispanicheritagemonth.org/
https://navypier.com/blog/hispanic-heritage-month-kick-off-fiesta-navy-pier/
http://chicago.cbslocal.com/top-lists/best-ways-to-celebrate-hispanic-heritage-month-in-chicago/
http://www.hispanicheritagemonth.gov/
http://www.timeforkids.com/minisite/hispanic-heritage-month-1
http://www.ed.gov/blog/2015/09/during-hispanic-heritage-month-and-every-day-latinosteach/

Wednesday, September 9, 2015

Blog of the Day! Lee & Low Books-Tu Books

As an author of color who writes science fiction books with characters of color I use this blog to highlight quality organizations dedicated to publishing and promoting diversity books.  My pick today is Lee & Low Books and its imprint Tu Books.

Lee & Low Books' website states that it is the largest multicultural children's book publisher in the country.  They are also minority-owned and have been in the publishing world for 25 years.  Their mission is to publish diverse stories that all children can enjoy...so we clearly have much in common!

Tu Books is particularly interesting to me for obvious reasons as it is dedicated to "publishing middle grade and young adult novels that will spark your imagination, move your spirit, and keep you turning pages."  Eureka!  Nightmare of the Clans, Dark Soul of the Clans and The Blood of the Clans are science fiction, young adult, and page turning novels! (Sorry, I couldn't resist the self-promoting plug.) :-D

So if you are interested in YA, science fiction, fantasy and diversity books, click the links below to find some of the best.

Lee & Low Books
Tu Books

#Teen Scifi, #YA Scifi, #NA Scifi, #Scifi, #science fiction, #tubooks


Saturday, August 22, 2015

New Book Titles and Covers!

I have been struggling with the decision to change the title of my first two books in the Chausiku series for quite some time.  When I wrote my first book, I had a rough draft of the next books in the series but nothing solid so I really had no idea of what the title should be.  I don't even know how I came up with The Gathering Storm but hey...it sounded good at the time.  Then I wrote book two...The Secret Gambit.  People told me they really liked the book and were hooked on the series from the cliff hanger at the end but they scratched their heads and looked at me with creases between their eyes when I mentioned the title.  I had to admit that the title had nothing to do with my science fiction books...in fact; I realized that I lost some science fiction fans with it.  The old cover didn't help with science fiction readers either.  My boyfriend said it reminded him of the United Colors of Benetton ads...not what I was going for at all.

Next up...book three.  Personally, I love the cover (by Christina Cartwright-Digitell Design) and the title.  I felt that I had finally captured the science fiction going on in my series!  After Blood of the Clans, I knew I had to change the titles of my other books (and the cover of book two!).

So, let me know what you think.

Chausiku: Nightmare of the Clans Book One
Chausiku: Dark Soul of the Clans Book Two
Chausiku: The Blood of the Clans Book Three





Book Four will be released soon!

Saturday, July 18, 2015

The Blood of the Clans Book Trailer!

The new book trailer for Chausiku: The Blood of the Clans Book Three is out!  Check it out on  youtube by clicking the link below and let me know what you think.  Thanks!



Chausiku: The Blood of the Clans Book Trailer



#science fiction, #scifi, #books, #teens, #YA, #young adult, #teen scifi, #YA scifi, #blood, #clans, #fantasy, #paranormal, #supernatura, #powers, #dystopian, #book trailer

Why I Love #Wattpad!

I've fallen in love with Wattpad and for a very simple reason.  People are nice there.  When I first decided to write and self-publish the Chausiku series, I naively thought that readers would either like it or dislike it and then move on to their next read.  I was wrong.  There is a whole culture of "reviewers" out there that are trying to make a name for themselves as critics, I assume.  They are mean, their reviews can be scathing and they even insult the people that like your book.  They seem to scroll for as many free books they can find just to write reviews.  But this is not so on Wattpad.

The readers on Wattpad just want to read books.  They are encouraging and will let you know when you've misspelled a word so that you can correct it...not to trash your book.  They tell you when they like your chapter and they vote on it.  If they don't like a chapter they will give you suggestions to make it better.  They are nice and if someone tries to post a nasty comment, it is deleted.  They even support the writers that are writing to heal a broken heart.  I've seen comments like "Hang in there, it will get better over time..." or "Dry your tears because you'll find someone who deserve you."  How wonderful is that?

When I first started practicing law I was a litigator and I had to deal with enough malevolent actions to last me a lifetime.  I now work in an area of law where people have a common goal.  Things can still get a little nasty but in the end, it's a win-win for everyone.  I feel the same way about Wattpad.

As for the reviews, out of 31 reviews for Book 1, I only have 3 bad ones.  So I'll take my 90% of great reviews and keep writing my series!  OH, and if you want to read a couple of chapters for free, swing by Wattpad...feel free to let me know if I misspelled a word in your comment. :)

Chausiku Series on Wattpad

#wattpad, #fridayreads, #scifi, #science fiction, #teen scifi, YA scifi

Monday, May 18, 2015

#Asian-Pacific American Heritage Month!

May is Asian-Pacific American Heritage Month.  As you know, the Chausiku Series is about 6 secret clans across the world with supernatural powers and the Qiáo clan is Asian.  So I thought that I would check out what my hometown, Chicago, is doing for Asian-Pacific American Heritage Month.  If you live in Chicago or are visiting this month, join us as we celebrate!

Linda Yu will host ABC7 presents Asian Influences and will focus on stories about Chicago's Pan-Asian community.  Beginning at noon today, May 18, through Friday, May 22, several cultural groups will perform at Daley Plaza for the 14th Asian American Festival so be sure to stop by Daley Plaza.  Columbia College Chicago's president, Dr. Kwang-Wu Kim was honored at the 2015 celebration at the Thompson Center where he served as the keynote speaker and ABC7 Chicago anchor Judy Hsu was the emcee.

Silk Road Rising celebrates Asian-Pacific American Heritage Month with this Salute Video. http://www.silkroadrising.org/pages/asian-pacific-american-heritage-month.  Silk Road Rising creates live theatre and online videos that tell stories through primarily Asian American and Middle Eastern American lenses.  Performances are held at 77 W. Washington Street, Chicago.

On May 29, join the International House at the University of Chicago to celebrate with Tsukasa Taiko Performing Arts.

Events for all ages are being held by the following:
Families with Children from China-Chicago
Chicago ChinaTown chamber of Commerce
Asian American Coalition of Chicago
National Association of Asian American Professionals-Chicago Chapter

If you would like to learn more about Asian-Pacific American Heritage Month, visit the Smithsonian Education this webpage provided below.  Each year, the Smithsonian honors Asian-Pacific American Heritage Month with a calendar of events.

Enjoy the celebration of Asian-Pacific Americans!

Asian American Resources


#AsianPacificAmericanHeritageMonth, #Asian, #AsianPacific, #AsianPacificAmerican, #Chausiku, #Chausikuseries



Friday, May 8, 2015

Science Fiction Books Are For Fun…Aren’t They?

The main character and supporting characters in my series are diverse.  Chausiku is an African American teenage girl living in Chicago.  She has supernatural powers, is being chased by a crazed killer and has a streak for torture (read the books to find out why!) but otherwise she’s just like many other African American girls living in Chicago.

She is motherless but not abused and beaten by her father, a teen prostitute, a drug addict, a sex addict, or abused and beaten by a boyfriend.  She doesn’t live in poverty, isn’t struggling to overcome_____ (pick a serious issue here) or struggling with racial identity.

The same is true for my Chinese and Latino teen characters and their respective cultures.

So if you are looking for a book taking a serious look at the issues facing minority teens today I can recommend many excellent books that you should read.


My books are for those that like the supernatural…science fiction…and books that are just for fun!


#sciencefiction #TeenSciFi #YASciFi #diversity

Wednesday, April 29, 2015

Choosy Bookworm!

Check out today's featured ebooks on Choosy Bookworm!  Chausiku: The Gathering Storm Book One is Free!

http://choosybookworm.com/


Saturday, April 4, 2015

Sesi Magazine!

The Chausiku series is advertised in Sesi Magazine's spring issue.  Sesi is a print magazine covering the Black Teen/Young Adult Girl's Mainstream.  Subscribe!

Sesi Magazine

Blog of the Day! American Indians In Childrens Literature

The Natosapi clan in the Chausiku series are members of the Blackfoot Confederacy but while researching for the characters in my books, I gathered interesting information from different Native American and First Nations tribes.

Native American Children Literature

#nativeamerican, #natosapi, #chausiku, #teen scifi, #YA scifi

Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Women's History Month!

It's Women's History Month 2015!  Here are a few of the inspiring women that have shaped the world.

1) Madame C.J. Walker (1867-1919) born Sarah Breedlove was an African American and one of the first American women to become a self-made millionaire.  She invented a line of African American hair products in 1905.  She was also a civil rights activist.

2) Maya Lin is a Chinese American architect and sculptor best known for her design of the Vietnam Veterans Memorial in Washington, D.C.

3) Rosario Castellanos (1925-1974) was a Mexican writer who wrote novels, essays, poems and plays.  She was one of Mexico's most important literary voices in the last century.

4) Devon Abbott Mihesuah, Ph.D. is a member of the Choctaw Nation of Oklahoma.  She is a historian, a professor and a writer.  Her teachings and her books focus on stereotypes and misrepresentations of Native Americans.

5)  Lynn Sherr is an American broadcast journalist and author.  She is best known as a an ABC 20/20 news correspondent.

#madamecjwalker
#mayalin
#rosariocastellanos
#devonmihesuah
#lynnsherr

Wednesday, March 4, 2015

A Teenager's View on Social Media

This article is actually written by a nineteen year old college student.  He has a great perspective on social media and the Teen/YA generation and he even separates the most used  by high school teens from the most used by college teens and older.  Follow below.

A Teenager's View On Social Media


Tuesday, March 3, 2015

Blasian! (Repost update)

One of my main characters in the Chausiku Series is Kang, a Blasian born in China.  He is a member of the Qiao clan from Shanghai so he has supernatural powers.  But he still struggles with his identity as a #Blasian in Chausiku: The Secret Gambit Book Two.

All teens and young adults have issues to face and overcome.  But there are some struggles that are unique to biracial individuals.  While writing Book 2, I was particularly interested in the story of #LouJing, a biracial Chinese talent show contestant from Shanghai.   Biracial in America isn't new (my grandmother was half white/half black and my grandfather was half black/half Native American) but I wasn't as aware of biracials in other countries.

What's your story?  Send me your comments and check out some of the other blogs below.

blasiannarrative.blogspot.com

african-chineseguy.blogspot.com

sweetricechronicles.wordpress.com

askablasian.tumblr.com

thenerdyblasian.tumblr.com/

#blasian, #scifi, #YA scifi, #teen scifi, #chausiku

Peru!

The homeland of the Amaru clan in the Chausiku series is Peru!  I chose Peru because it is the homeland of my good friend, Jacqueline Sifuendes.  She has fascinated me with stories of her life in Peru and she travels home frequently to visit her family.

So teens/YA, share your stories of what's it like living in Peru.  What are your favorite foods, books and movies? What are your thoughts on the new Juana Burga (top Peruvian model) collection.  For those of you living in America, get a taste of Peru by reading Peru This Week http://www.peruthisweek.com

#JuanaBurga
#Peru
http://www.peruthisweek.com/blogs-peruvian-top-model-designs-ethical-fashion-collection-105199

Writing YA

My blog pick of the day is Writing YA.
http://writingya.blogspot.com/

Goodkindles!

http://www.goodkindles.net/

#goodkindles
#YA
#Teen
#NA
#Chausikuseries
#sciencefiction

Thursday, February 26, 2015

Native American, First Nation...and Supernatural Powers.

In my old post, Superhero, Diversity and Thor, I talk about the lack of superhero diversity.  It's the main reason that I began writing my Chausiku Series.  So it's no surprise that the six clans with supernatural powers includes the Natosapi clan from North America.

As I researched the Blackfoot Confederacy or Niitsitapi (original people) naming the 3 First Nation band of government in Canada and the Native American tribe in Montana, I became very interested in its history, current state of affairs and the future of its children, teens and young adults.

I hope that I have represented the people of the Natosapi clan respectfully.  I would also love to hear comments from teens and young adults.  Comments from adults are welcome too!

Here are some interesting websites.
http://www.strongnations.com/
http://www.kidsbooks.ca/KidsbooksRecommends/FirstNationsBooks/Department.aspx?DeptID=3700
http://www.raincoast.com/kids-teen-blog/
http://www.theamericanconservative.com/articles/off-the-literary-reservation/

#nativeamerican
#firstnation
#teens
#YA
#teenscifi
#yascifi
#scifi
#sciencefiction


Wednesday, February 25, 2015

#School Library Journal

Hot website of the day!

http://www.slj.com/

Page Turners Blog

Blog Highlight of the day!

http://www.pageturnersblog.com

#Australia

The Gale clan in my Chausiku Series is Australian.  So what books are on the #Aussie #Teen/YA lists?  Send me your comments.  

http://www.readings.com.au/news/tag/young-adult

#Zendaya!

Classy girl...classy response to racist comment.


Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Calling My #Latina Sisters!

My blog is like my books and my life.  I'm dedicated to diversity, inclusion and love for all people.  We are as much alike as we are different.  Different cultures, countries, skin tones, hair and eyes.  Same emotions, desires, disappointments and need for love.

As fans of the Chausiku Series know, Book Three introduces the reader to the Amaru clan from South America.  Today's post is for Latinas.

One magazine/blog that really caught my attention is Latinitas, an online community by and for Latina teens.  Check them out @  http://mylatinitas.com.  My blog highlight for today is Viva Fashion/Carmen Ordonez.  http://www.vivafashionblog.com  Today's tip is useful to everyone...and every clan! :)

8 TIPS FOR A GOOD NIGHT'S SLEEP

February 23, 2015   


Creating a soothing bedroom atmosphere for a more peaceful night’s rest is SO important. Not to mention that not getting enough sleep has been linked with a laundry list of health problems. Ever since my husband was diagnosed with cancer, we take our sleep pretty seriously. As a new mom, it’s not always easy to get 8 hours of straight sleep (who am I kidding) but I try to make sure that as soon as I hit the bed, I fall asleep pretty quickly. As part of my collaboration with P&G’s Try it & Love it Sleep Soundly program, I’ve been trying out the Febreze Sleep Serenity Bedroom Mist collection to help me achieve a good night’s sleep. On a night I had difficulty falling asleep, I’ve also had the chance to take ZzzQuil to help me fall asleep easily and sleep soundly.

Here are 8 tips that might help you get a better night’s rest too!

1. Stay off tech. As tempting as it may be, try to stay off your smartphone and stop using your computer at least 30 minutes before bedtime. This will help your body know it’s time for bed. I also recently removed the TV from our bedroom (which we’ve always had for the past 7 years!) This helps us to not be tempted to watch TV and stay up even later. I can’t tell you how many times I’ll start watching shows like Top Chef and then I don’t want to go to sleep until I find out what happens haha.

2. Read a Book: Reading a book is also another great non-stimulant that can help you relax and ready for bed. Just don’t read in bed. It’s important to separate activities to signal to your body that bed is meant for sleeping.

3. Exercise: Try to squeeze in at least 20 minutes of exercise each day, but make sure to do it several hours before bedtime. If you don’t have time to head to a gym, don’t worry, I love finding a Yoga workout video on Youtube and exercise from my living room.



4. Add some Zen: Incorporate elements that inspire a tranquil environment like fragrance. I like to mist a soothing scent such as Moonlit Lavender or Warm Milk & Honey from the Febreze Sleep Serenity Bedroom Mist collection. It helps eliminate odors while creating a relaxing atmosphere. I feel like I’m at a spa!



5. Make a To-Do List: Many times I find it hard to fall asleep because I’m thinking about all the things I have to do the next day. To avoid this, I like to make a to-do list right before bed. This helps release my mind of upcoming tasks so I’m not dwelling trying to remember them all.




6. If You Still Can’t Fall Asleep: For those night when you’ve tried everything and still have difficulty falling asleep, try a non-habit-forming sleep aid such as ZzzQuil. It’s available in liquid and LiquiCaps, to help you fall asleep easily and wake refreshed.  I recently tried it and it worked like a charm.


7. Get Cozy: There’s nothing that puts me in the mood for sleep like a nice cozy bed. Make sure to turn down your thermostat to between 60 and 70 degrees Fahrenheit. Also, make sure you room is nice and dark. You can try finding some blackout shades or consider buying a sleep mask.


8. Avoid Caffeine: Try to avoid caffeine beginning in the late afternoon. This also includes tea, if it has caffeine. Instead, try to go for a decaf version or have it early in the morning.

Monday, February 23, 2015

#BLASIAN

Today this post is about #Blasians.  One of my main characters in the Chausiku Series is Kang, a #Blasian born in China.  He is a member of the Qiao clan from Shanghai so he has supernatural powers.  But he still struggles with his identity as a #Blasian in Chausiku: The Secret Gambit Book Two.

All teens and young adults have issues to face and overcome.  But there are some struggles that are unique to biracial individuals.  While writing Book 2, I was particularly interested in the story of #LouJing, a biracial Chinese talent show contestant from Shanghai.   Biracial in America isn't new (my grandmother was half white/half black and my grandfather was half black/half Native American) but I wasn't as aware of biracials in other countries.

What's your story?  Send me your comments and check out some of the other blogs below.

http://blasiannarrative.blogspot.com
http://african-chineseguy.blogspot.com
https://sweetricechronicles.wordpress.com
http://askablasian.tumblr.com

Chausiku: The Blood of the Clans
iBooks
bit.ly/1BvVC0H
Amazon
amzn.to/15qXEB6

Sunday, February 22, 2015

#Asia In The Heart

My Chausiku books are about six clans from across the world with supernatural powers.  My Asian clan is the Qiao clan.  To discover more books about and from Asians check out http://asiaintheheart.blogspot.com/

I'd love to hear your thoughts on the Qiao clan!

#Asia
#chausikuseris

Chausiku: The Blood of the Clans Book Three
iBooks
bit.ly/1BvVC0H
Amazon
amzn.to/15qXEB6

Reading In Color

Reading In Color is another great website to find diversity books.  Check them out at http://blackteensread2.blogspot.com/

#blackteensread2
#chausikuseries

Chausiku: The Blood of the Clans
iBooks-
http://bit.ly/1BvVC0H
Amazon
amzn.to/15qXEB6 

Friday, February 20, 2015

#iBooks

Chausiku: The Blood of the Clans Book Three

https://itunes.apple.com/us/book/chausiku-blood-clans-book/id959095594

Monday, January 19, 2015

CHAUSIKU The Blood of the Clans Book Three

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars Four Stars January 19, 2015
By VR
Verified Purchase
Great next edition - CAN"T wait for the next book!!
Comment | 

Was this review helpful to you?

Sunday, January 18, 2015

Free on Amazon

CHAUSIKU The Gathering Storm Book One is free on Amazon.
http://www.amazon.com/CHAUSIKU-Gathering-Storm-Book-Chausiku-ebook/dp/B00A47AD06
Get started on the Chausiku series for free then get CHAUSIKU The Secret Gambit Book Two and CHAUSIKU The Blood of the Clans Book Three

5 Star Review of Chausiku The Gathering Storm Book One!

First off, I love the name "Chausiku"! This was an amazing read and the plot kept me on my toes. I have already read the second book and I can't wait for the third book!

Sunday, January 11, 2015

Chausiku Book 3 is published!

http://www.amazon.com/CHAUSIKU-Blood-Clans-Three-Chausiku-ebook/dp/B00S39GIFQ
Chausiku The Blood of the Clans Book Three is out!  Get it on Amazon.
http://www.amazon.com/CHAUSIKU-Blood-Clans-Three-Chausiku-ebook/dp/B00S39GIFQ