Fancy a bit of poisoned bakery? I’ve just finished editing and publishing (via Crickhollow Books, as a Crispin imprint edition) the paperback and Kindle versions of Cook the Books, by Oklahoma mystery writer Marion Moore Hill. Marion is a member of Mystery Writers of America, Sisters in Crime, and Oklahoma Writers’ Federation, Inc. I didn’t meet her when I spoke a year ago at OWFI, but she somehow heard of Crickhollow and reached out to us about picking up her Scrappy Librarian Mystery series. So I’m publishing #3, Cook the Books, and will also re-release books #1 and #2 (Bookmarked for Murder and Death BooksRead More →

Last week, I was taking a walk in the woods out in the Wisconsin countryside (on the grounds of the Cedar Valley Center, not far from the Theresa Marsh and the northern Kettle Moraine area). I was taking a break from the sessions of the novel-writing book camp I was teaching at (terrific experience, by the way). And encountered a badger. In many years of walking in the woods, in Wisconsin and elsewhere, it was the very first I’ve ever seen! (Although once or twice I’ve spotted what I suspected was a badger den, a distinctive eyebrow-shaped hole in the side of a hill.) AtRead More →

Are you an emerging novelists with a work in progress? Check out this week-long program: Novel-in-Progress Bookcamp. I’ll be teaching at this program for novelists at the Cedar Valley Center in West Bend, Wis. (May 18-24). I’m coordinating the teaching program and leading a number of sessions. I’ll also be there round-the-clock to work one-on-one with writers on their novels’ specific needs and challenges, not only to develop the work itself but also to discuss viable strategies to see it published in the best way. The best part: SJ Rozan (Edgar, Shamus, Anthony, Nero, & Macavity awards) will be author-in-residence! It’s a fantastic chance toRead More →

I wanted to give a shout-out to a historical novel I edited for Crickhollow Books a couple of years ago. A War of Her Own, by Sylvia Dickey Smith, is an ideal novel to recommend for Women’s History Month. It’s the story of a young mother who goes to work in the shipyards of Orange, Texas, during World War II. The historical novel won won nice accolades following its release in 2010. “A well-written book.” – Dallas Morning News Best Novel of the Year – Press Women of Texas Best Novel of the Year, 2nd Place Award  – National Federation of Press Women The bookRead More →

What am I working on? I’ve just finished editing and doing the page layout for Odin’s Promise, a middle-grade historical novel by Wisconsin author Sandy Brehl. Odin’s Promise is set in Norway in the early years of World War II, as neighbors in a small village in western Norway begin to organize their quiet resistance against the German occupying soldiers. Odin is young Mari’s elkhound. Mari is eleven as the story open, and the Germans have recently invaded the country under the pretense of having been invited in (by a puppet government), ostensibly to “protect” the citizens of Norway against imagined threats from the AlliedRead More →

Congratulations to Milwaukee novelist Michael Zummo, who self-published his science-fiction novel, D’Mok Revival: Awakening, in Fall 2013. As a reader on Amazon said: “It has all elements of a great sci-fi saga: epic span of multiple locations in the universe, creative locations and creatures, the mysterious evil threat, interesting well-developed characters, and of course suspense and action.” He’s also done an impressive job with the cover and website, a place where a lot of authors fall short when tackling self-publishing. If everyone did as good a job as Michael has done, self-publishing would have a far better reputation! The D’mok novel (the first installment inRead More →

Congratulations to Tom Biel, an award-winning Milwaukee author and public school teacher, on the release of his collection of linked short stories, Badlands. I’m pleased to have been hired by Tom to give the work a bit of editorial polishing. It’s always a delight to work with great, well-worked material that only needs a bit of tweaking to make it a little better. The collection has already earned some very nice praise from an author I respect highly, Larry Watson: “Badlands is full of vivid images, striking turns of phrase, original metaphors, and funny, touching moments.” – Larry Watson, author of Montana 1948 and AmericanRead More →

I’m thrilled to announce that I’ve been invited as a guest to the 2013 OWFI Conference in Oklahoma City, May 2–4. The Oklahoma Writers’ Federation Inc. runs one of the best-run and friendliest conferences in the country, bringing together hundreds of writers with experienced editors, agents and authors. For me, it’s a return visit; I’ve been a speaker there a number of times (2003, ’04, 06, and ’07), presenting on topics from developing a sense of place and story techniques in fiction to tips on working with publishers or self-publishing. It’s a talented group of writers that organize this big annual get-together, and they takeRead More →

The New Writer’s Handbook 2007: A Practical Anthology of Best Advice for Your Craft & Career Edited by Philip Martin • Scarletta Press, 2007 Writing/Reference 288 pp. • over 60 contributors • ISBN 978-0-9765201-6-0 • $16.95 Winner, Book of the Year Award (careers category) National competition sponsored by ForeWord Magazine “representing the best work from independent publishers” Reviews “From the preface by Erica Jong to the closing piece by Mary Pipher, it surprises and satisfies.” – Library Journal (Starred Review) “The most evident indication of the quality of Philip Martin’s book is its wide and various array of authoritative contributors . . . Their individualRead More →

How To Write Your Best Story: Advice for Writers on Spinning an Enchanting Tale by Philip Martin Crickhollow Books • June 2011 Writing / Reference / Instructional Guides $14.95 • softcover “An inspiring, captivating gem of book on the storyteller’s art. I loved it.” – Douglas Clegg, author of Neverland, Isis, Afterlife, and other acclaimed & bestselling novels “What he succeeds in doing, admirably, is not only describing some of the elements of good storytelling, but describing them in such a way as to model good storytelling in the very act of explaining it. In short, this book is wonderfully readable.” – Moira Allen, Writing-World.comRead More →

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