Death and a Short Story Competition

My neighbor, Laura, died on Monday night. She and I are the same age, so it hit home rather hard. It was only a month ago she told me she had cancer. Laura was a warm, lovely person who always asked me about my writing. Her death reminded me that nothing is promised in life. It’s easy to noodle around and write when you feel like it, but your goals won’t be fulfilled unless you make it happen.

So, I spent yesterday polishing a short story for the Seán Ó Faoláin Short Story Competition. The grand prize is fabulous: €2,000 (approx. $2,690), publication in the Irish literary journal, Southword, and a week-long residency at an Irish writer’s and artist’s retreat. The entry fee is €15 (approx. $20) and the deadline for postmarked entries is July 31, 2012.

This is an international competition, so anyone can participate as long as the entry is in English. If you have a story ready, or near ready, consider joining me and honoring Laura by entering this competition.

Seán Ó Faoláin Short Story Competition

An Irish Novel and Guides to London and Britishness

Free Today on Amazon

Honest, I didn’t plan on collecting Irish novels or London guides. It just happened that way, though some of it certainly has to do with the upcoming Olympic games.

Anyway.

“After the Rising” is about the Irish Civil War of the 1920s and was previously published by Penguin Ireland. I’m going to take this opportunity to shout out a favorite movie about the conflict, “The Wind That Shakes the Barley.” It stars one of my favorite actors, Cillian Murphy, so I may be a bit biased, but I think it’s a fabulous movie.

The latest of the London guides I’m listing claims to be designed especially for the Kindle. This certainly adds to its appeal. We’ll see how it stands up to that claim.

Finally, I found a book by a US expat containing explanations of British phrases and colloquialisms. I think this could be useful for writers as well as travelers and potential expats.

  After The Rising by Orna Ross
There are so many reasons to recommend this book. It’s an engrossing page-turner of a family saga, covering three generations. It’s a poignant and unusual love story. The characters are complex, believable, sometimes heartbreaking. If like me you’re woefully ignorant of Irish history, AFTER THE RISING will fill some gaps in your knowledge (though the novel pulls no punches showing the horrors of civil war and the destruction of families and communities. (from an Amazon review by Alba52)

  ONE – TWO- GO London: The Ultimate Guide to London 2012 by Michael Wynn
This book is exclusively written and designed for Kindle. This opened up the opportunity to not only use established techniques like printed maps but also to add some multimedia content and helpful functionality like online maps for easier navigation and videos for each Point of Interest. We give you practical tips on how to go to London, from purchasing a flight ticket, considering the right Hotel and a lot of useful tips on how to get around. We did include all the important malls, landmarks, hotels, bars and clubs.

  An American Guide to Britishness by Alana Muir
An educational and humorous look at life, language and culture in Britain through the eyes of an American who lives in Scotland, sometimes against her will.

Descriptions provided by Amazon

Disclaimers and Disclosures

I found these books via Amazon’s Kindle eBooks store. Resources for free Kindle and other format eBooks are listed in my sidebar.

These freebies are limited time offers, so there is no guarantee any of these books will still be free when you click on the links. Grab them sooner rather than later.

Books that I have previously listed will occasionally come up free again. I add those to my current posts for people who didn’t see them the first time.

San Francisco Freebies and Irish Drinks

Free Today on Amazon

I really did leave my heart in San Francisco. I was born there and I return as often as possible. I even set my book, “Fake,” there. It gives me an excuse to go back and do research. 😉 I’m pretty well versed in what’s free and cheap in the city, but there’s always more to know, which is why I picked up this travel guide of San Francisco freebies. I’ve listed it before and it’s come up free again, so get it while you can.

I also grabbed a book of Irish drink recipes and toasts. Strictly for research purposes, of course. 😉 Here’s one of the toasts, to all over you. Sláinte!

Dance as if no one were watching
Sing as if no one were listening
And live every day as if it were your last.

   101 Free Things To Do In San Francisco by Daniel Davidson
You’re not going to believe how many great free things there are to do in San Francisco. Free bike tours, kids activities, arts, theater, concerts, food & drink, beaches, carousels, shows, markets…the list goes on. Sure, everyone knows about Golden Gate Park, but did you know the Golden Gate Band plays free public concerts Sunday afternoons all summer long? Did you know the Japanese Tea Garden is free to all visitors Fridays before 10 AM? Or tickets to the Partybus includes free entry to many clubs and bars? The best of free ‘Frisco — meaningful travel experiences that won’t cost you a dime — is all here in this book.

  Irish Drink Recipes and Irish Toasts For St. Patrick’s Day And All Year ‘Round! by Sean Healy
In this book Sean Healy brings you 43 Irish Drink Recipes and 38 Irish Toasts. Sean lived with family members in Dublin for one year and immersed himself in the Irish pub culture. His favorite pub was Mulligan’s at Poolbeg Street where he communed with the spirit of famed Irish writer James Joyce, one of Mulligan’s more famous customers. In addition to the Irish Drink recipes and Toasts & Blessings, Sean shares what St. Patrick’s Day is like in Dublin, what the Irish themselves drink on St. Patrick’s Day and what they eat for their holiday dinner. You’ll learn the proper way to drink a Guinness® Draught and what a Bacon Butty is!

Descriptions provided by Amazon

Disclaimers and Disclosures

I found these books via Amazon’s Kindle eBooks store. Resources for free Kindle and other format eBooks are listed in my sidebar.

These freebies are limited time offers, so there is no guarantee any of these books will still be free when you click on the links. Grab them sooner rather than later.

Belfast Girls – Free Today

Free Today on Amazon

I’ve always been interested in Ireland. I love Irish music and am fascinated by the country’s history and culture. It’s probably the reason why Rhian, one of the protagonist’s in my novel, “Fake,” is Irish.

It’s been awhile since I’ve read a novel set in Ireland, so this one instantly caught my eye. It’s set in modern Belfast, after the Troubles, though there still seems to be lots of trouble to be had. All the Amazon reviews are 5 stars. It’s like the book is shouting, “You want to read me!” Okay, I will.

  Belfast Girls by Gerry McCullough
The story of three girls – Sheila, Phil and Mary – growing up into the new emerging post-conflict Belfast of money, drugs, high fashion and crime; and of their lives and loves. Sheila, a supermodel, is kidnapped. Phil is sent to prison. Mary, surviving a drug overdose, has a spiritual awakening. It is also the story of the men who matter to them – John Branagh, former candidate for the priesthood, a modern Darcy, someone to love or hate. Will he and Sheila ever get together? Davy Hagan, drug dealer, ‘mad, bad and dangerous to know’. Is Phil also mad to have anything to do with him? Although from different religious backgrounds, starting off as childhood friends, the girls manage to hold on to that friendship in spite of everything.

Descriptions provided by Amazon

Disclaimers and Disclosures

I found this book via Amazon’s Kindle eBooks store. Resources for free Kindle and other format eBooks are listed in my sidebar.

This freebie is a limited time offer and there is no guarantee it will still be free when you click on the link. Grab it sooner rather than later.