I intended on publishing this in October as a part of National Bullying Prevention Month, but we had a death in the family that delayed me from making it happen.
So, here it is now.
In my last blog post I talked about the differences between being rude to, mean to and actually bullying someone. Bullying is defined as repeatedly doing something intentionally hurtful and not stopping when asked to do so. Sometimes the bullying stops, and the victim is able to work through it. But, in some cases, this behavior has led to victims living not only with depression and self esteem issues but also hurting or even killing themselves because of it.
According to an article on the website, kidshealth.org, 60% of all teen suicides are committed by shooting themselves with a gun. Overdose, cutting and hanging are other options typically used by teens. How many kids have gotten to the point of wanting to kill themselves and changed their minds? According to the Center for Disease Control (CDC) suicide is the third highest cause of death amongst teens ages 15 to 24 and there is one teen suicide for every 25 attempts. In my opinion, with the number of the teen suicides there are, the fact that there are 25 attempted ones just makes me sad.
Teens are at a transitional age. They want to be adults, but don’t have the life experience to handle everything that life throws their way. It may be one reason why some teens feel suicide is the only way to ultimately get away from a bully.
There are many programs available to help victims of bullying, why don’t teens choose to use them more? Fear of retaliation from the bully and being seen as weak by their peers and others are two main reasons why teens don’t try and get help. They try to power through their feelings. If the bully ends up getting bored or move onto someone else, the powering through it worked. If the bullying continues, then the teen may reach out for help or may resort to drastic measures to escape.
What are parents and mentors trying to do to help teens deal with bullying? We may be sending mixed messages to teens through what we are saying and doing. We teach our kids not to tattle on others. Is this helping the bully get away with hurting others? I will talk about this in my next blog post.
On another note…
My books in The Way series focus on teen issues. I would like to get copies of them into the hands of teens. I hope these books will help teens relate to what my characters are going through and help them work through the issue they are facing. Reading a book about the issue is a great way to start a conversation about it.
My first book, The Hard Way was published in 2017 about peer pressure. My second book, The Bully’s Way, is due to be published summer of 2019 and is about bullying.
Be sure to check out my website for a link to get your copy of The Hard Way!
Along with the coming of fall and Halloween, October is also National Bullying Prevention Month. Here are a couple of key dates.
Go Blue Day – the first Monday in October. World day of bullying prevention and kick off to National Bullying Prevention Month.
Unity Day – October 25, 2018 – a day to wear the color orange to stand against bullying
I found this really cool photo on a Facebook post. When someone says something hurtful to you, it is mean and shouldn’t happen. What they said may make you feel bad, but sometimes you have to ignore what people say and walk away. Easier said than done, I know. But, if it continues to happen, then you need to get somone to help you make them stop.
After reading many stories and obituaries written about teens who have tried or actually ended their lives through suicide, I am upset by how many of them are doing it because of how other teens or adults have treating them. How do they get to the point that they feel there is no other way out? Has our society not given the victim a viable avenue to pursue to get help? Or do we have a way, but the victim is afraid to pursue it because of potential repercussions that may come from it?
According to the National Center for Education Statistics, one out of every five teens reports being bullied. That is a lot of teens being bullied. And if that is per the definition stated above, we have a lot of bullies too.
This is one of the reasons why I chose bullying for the focus of my second book, The Bully’s Way, to be published Summer of 2019. To bring the issue up in a readable format in hopes that a teen may find some help or reassurance they are not the only one going through it.
My next post is going to dig a little deeper into the subject of bullying with a few more statistics and some other thoughts. Be sure to watch for it!
Looking for a book about peer pressure, another big teen issue? Be sure to check out the books tab on my website.
It is fun to read a book by someone who you have gotten to know. Maybe not met face to face yet, but that is the way of social media these days. I met Brian Paone through a Facebook Group called Fiction Writing. Through this group, I learned a lot of valuable information that has helped me on my writing journey. This is Brian’s first published book, but he has been writing since he was a preteen like me.
Selma’s Book Review
Dreams are Unfinished Thoughts
Type of Book
He writes this memior as a tribute to his best friend, David Reilly, who was a vocalist and one of the founding members of the band God Lives Underwater, an Industrial Rock band which formed in the early 90s.
Summary of the story
Paone and Reilly become friends though his being a real fan of the band. Brian would get to their shows early enough to see the band arrive at the venue. Throughout the story, we see how their life paths grow together and apart through their teenage and early adult years.
Reactions to the book
I really liked the book. After reading it, I listened to a couple of their songs to get to know the band and add to my reading experience. There is a website dedicated to David Reilly where his songs and the songs from God Lives Underwater are posted on it. Here is a link David Reilly.
Not only was the book a passionate and personal story, but Paone also shows us how loyality to a band and a friend can influence your life.
Rock Fiction is the genre, but I feel this book would be a good read for young adult and adult audiences even if you aren’t into the rock band scene.
If you interested in learning more about the author, you can find out about him and the books he has written at Brian Paone.
It has been a while since I have been able to review a book. My summer project has been to get my second book, The Bully’s Way ready for my alpha readers. Well, I got it done and they are reading it this month in preparation for our book club discussion of it next month.
One day at my local area library, they had a table full of books that were being taken out of circulation. I picked up this one for $.25. Wasn’t sure what I was going to get, but was pleasantly surprised with a good read.
Selma’s Book Review
Don’t Tell Anyone
Type of Book
Middle Grade Fiction
Peg Kehret is a middle grade author. Her books won many book awards and have been chosen by the American Library Association as being great reads for reluctant readers. She lives in the state of Washington and is a polio survivor. She works for animal rescue organizations when she isn’t writing.
Summary of the story
Megan Perk is a young girl who stumbles across a group of feral cats in a vacant field. She starts to bring food and water to them and notices one is pregnant with kittens. A sign is posted that they are going to build an apartment complex on this field. Afraid that the cats will not make it when they prepare the field for the building, she starts to look for help. While at the field with the cats, she witnesses a car accident which introduces her to a dog and puts her into a serious situation.
Reactions to the book
I really liked the book. Once I sat down with it, I couldn’t put it down. The characters were easy to relate to and I could feel the authors love for animals through Megan’s care and feeding of the cats. It would be a great read for any middle grade reader looking for a fast moving and engaging story.
If you interested in learning more about the author, you can find out information about her and the books she has written at Peg Kehert
If you are looking for a copy of the book, here is a link to it on Amazon.com Don’t Tell Anyone
My first book, The Hard Way! Here is a little description…
Before starting his freshman year of high school, Paul Jones’ best friend moves away. He meets Anik Hatcher and starts hanging out with his friends who like to cause trouble around the city. What they do at the Homecoming football game, pressures Paul to become a key player in their most harmful prank yet. He learns the hard way that choosing friends and making decisions, good or bad, have consequences that could change his life.
Have you gotten a copy of The Hard Way yet? Check out Amazon.com now through August 25th and pick up a $.99 ebook copy. Here is a link to it.
And be sure to check out the Facebook Event that I will be involved in tonight at 7:00 PM eastern. It is an author takeover. I will be taking an hour to promote The Hard Way and get my name out there. It is a week long event with many YA authors (ones that write for the Young Adult Genre). Be sure and stop by and follow the thread and make a comment!
The Facebook event is called I <3 YA Books August 2018. The time slot is currently listed under the name of Sharon McAleer.
But most of all, there is a lot of creativity, work and fun.
Be sure to take a look through them and like your favorites.
Thanks for following me,
On August 22nd, I will be participating in an author takeover. I will also be having a $.99 sale on the ebook version of The Hard Way from August 22-25, 2018. Be sure to pick up a copy if you haven’t already.
Big weekend in the writing house. I was able to finish up my second editing read through of The Bully’s Way. I have one more read through to go before I hand it over to my book club for an alpha read next month.
Through the business building class I have been taking this month, Author to Authorpreneuer, I brain stormed an idea for the blog. It would be a series of posts on meeting with my muse. Here is my first post.
What is a muse? According to the dictionary on Google, a muse is a person or personified force who is the source of inspiration for a creative artist. Feels a little strange to talk about my muse as if she was a person, but according to the definition, she is a personified force. One to be reckoned with some days! I imagine my muse as young girl, kind of like the one pictured above.
Today, my muse and I had a meeting at West Side Perk , a local area coffee shop. Being over lunch, we had a sandwich with our coffee.
A couple of years ago, I wrote a series of posts called The Secret Pond which my muse was an inspiration for. It was another attempt at writing a series of a story on my blog. Here is a link to the first segment The Secret Pond – Chapter 1 – Abigail.
It is a story about Abigail and Sally. Sally created her own world and wanted to share it with Abigail, her tutor. She takes her on adventures to visit a pond where her friend Lila and a magical unicorn live. Lila is Sally’s muse and imaginary friend she writes about in her notebook. It was a fun series for me to write. It was a way for me to touch my inner child and follow my muse in a direction not on my normal writing path.
The novels in The Way Series are from the boy perspective. With two teenage boys living in my house, a lot of the information I am gathering is from their perspective. Also, I was a more of a tomboy growing up, so I didn’t do a lot of the things that would be considered really girly. You tend to write what you know, right? I think my muse was helping me to write something a young girl could relate to.
My business building class has been helping me jump start my business by giving me different tools and things to think about. You may notice some changes I’m making to grow the business. One change is I created an author profile Facebook page. I will keep my business page up and running for now, but I am planning to move all of the news and posts to my author profile page. I will be working on some other things with the business like bringing the branding for the series and my author side together.
I will also offering The Hard Way e-book for free later this month! Stay tuned for details coming in the next couple of days.
Last week I started a business building class called From Author to Authorpreneuer. I’m looking to revamp things with my business to get the name out there and sell more books. As part of the class, we are creating a morning routine to get into a writing groove for the day. It includes 15 minutes of journalling.
One morning while doing my journal, a couple of books came to mind which discribe my writing journey. One is Oh the Places You Will Go and Harold and the Purple Crayon.
According to Wikipedia, Oh the Places You will Go, was published in 1990 and was the last book Seuss ever published. It is a story where an unnamed character (could be you) leaves town and gets to the “waiting place”, where people go to wait for the next thing to happen. Dr. Seuss leaves us there to go on our own adventure to see all of the places we will go. This book is a favorite to give when someone in your life is embarking on a new adventure like graduation or a new job. I have been to many places, fictional and real, in my writing. Just never know where the next place I will go will be.
Harold and the Purple Crayon was published in 1955 by Crockett Johnson, a pen name for
a popular cartoonist and children’s book illustrator David Johnson Leisk. Crockett was childhood nickname for Leisk.
Harold is a four year old who creates his world by drawing it, with his purple crayon. Who wouldn’t want to be able to do that? The book is about going on an amazing adventure of imagination which authors and artists do when they create their works.
We are all inspired by different things, whether it is an event, person speaking, or something we read. Whether it is achieving a goal or helping us get by a challenge, what inspires us ultimately helps us make things happen.
One of the reasons I write for the teen and young adult audience is I want to mentor them through my writing. I hope someday someone will read one of my books and be inspired to do something that may be hard for them to do without some support. Like saying no to peer pressure or reporting the bully to a teacher.
I have been inspired by many others in my life and on my writing journey. That inspiration has helped me work through some challenges get to where I am today. Have you been inspired by someone or something to meet a challenge or achieve a goal in your life? Let me know in the comments below.