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Tag Archives | novels

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Best-selling author Jackie Collins: 1937 — 2015

Best-selling author, Jackie Collins, has died after a valiant battle with breast cancer. She passed away yesterday at the age of 77. Collins who made a name for herself and sold millions of novels, writing about characters who lived glamorous or adventurous lives.  Many of her  novels were set in the glitzy world of Hollywood, which she knew well. She was also an actress and the younger sister of actress, Joan Collins. Here’s part of a statement the family posted on the writer’s website: “She lived a wonderfully full life... Read More →

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“Looking for love” contest: Win book contract, $10,000, and maybe get movie deal

  There are tons of talented writers in the Southland, especially here in the Media City, with all kinds of stories to tell. One of them could have just what Quirk Books is searching for through its “Looking for love” contest. Quirk is not on the prowl for the typical love story. This company likes to publish offbeat books like “Pride and Prejudice and Zombies,” which became a New York Times bestseller and is in development to become a movie. Another Quirk book, “Miss Peregrine’s Home... Read More →

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colorful books clipart

Kevin Costner snags new adventure series book deal

Actor/director/producer, Kevin Costner, reportedly has a new book series deal with Simon & Schuster’s Atria Books. The first book in the adventure series, “The Explorers Guild, Volume One: Passage to Shambhala,” is set for release in 2014. Costner told’s Mike Fleming he feels “… the book has the sweep of adventure classics he grew up reading, including “Arabian Nights” and “The Red Badge Of Courage.” Costner hopes the book will connect with young and adult lovers of adventure and lead to a movie based on it.... Read More →

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M. Catherine Berg photo courtesy author

A Writer’s View: From TV police drama “Hunter” to mystery author

My first paid writing job fell into my lap when working for a TV syndication company.  My boss needed to hire someone to watch seven seasons (23 shows a season) worth of “Hunter,” the police drama starring Fred Dryer and Stepfanie Kramer, and compose a one page, double spaced synopsis of each show to be faxed (our office didn’t have a computer yet) directly to TV Guide.   Since I happened to be the only one around the office (and probably the only one that would undertake such a chore)... Read More →

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Think like A Man movie poster

“Think Like a Man” Number 1 at the box office

A surprise at the domestic box office. The big sci-fi hit, “The Hunger Games” got kicked to the curb this weekend by romantic comedy, “Think Like a Man.” After four consecutive weeks in the number one spot, “The Hunger Games” got dethroned by “Think Like a Man, ” which pulled in $33.6 million on its debut weekend, according to the final figures released today. “Think Like a Man” was produced on a small budget of $12 million. “Think like a Man” is based on... Read More →

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Fifty Shades of Grey book cover

Major Hollywood book to film rights deal for “Fifty Shades of Grey”

Who says romance doesn’t sell in Hollywood? “Fifty Shades of Grey,” a bestselling erotic romance novel trilogy, with BDSM (bondage, discipline, sadism, masochism) elements, reportedly has sold to Universal Pictures and Focus Features. The X-rated book series was inspired by the hugely popular “Twilight” book saga and is written by British author E. L. James. The romance is about a female college student and a young intriguing billionaire who has some dark sexual desires. The  other two novels in the series are... Read More →

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Photo: Cover fof new short story, "Where's Your Daddy?" by Sue Ann Jaffarian

A Writer’s View: Short stories a hot writer’s market

Since I was a kid, I have loved short stories.  Amongst my favorites were “The Ransom of Red Chief” and “The Gift of the Magi,” both by O. Henry, “The Lottery” by Shirley Jackson, and “The Telltale Heart” by Edgar Allan Poe. They packed fun, poignancy and terror in just a few short pages, providing word for word a powerful punch. Short fiction has always been with us, but in the past few years it has been enjoying a resurgence in popularity.  When print magazines and online e-zines, always a... Read More →

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"The Help" movie poster

“The Help” gets promoted to top spot at box office

“The Help” got a boost to number one at the domestic box office with a weekend estimate of $20 million. The comedy-drama is about a young southern white woman and her relationship with the black “help” during the Civil Rights Movement of the 1960s. Emma Stone, Viola Davis, and Octavia Spencer star. “The Help” is based on the 2009 bestselling novel of the same title by Kathryn Stockett. The film’s budget, $25 million. In two weeks, it has made around $71 million and is getting some Oscar buzz as... Read More →

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cover of novel "Dollhouse" by Kardashians

Kardashian sisters’ new novel coming out

The Kardashian sisters, Kim, Kourtney, and Khloé are about to become published novelists. That’s right. The reality show divas have written a novel and it’s called “Dollhouse,” according to the publishing industry website, Galleycat. A fan of the sisters came up with the title and reportedly is featured in the book, which hits store shelves this November first. More here.

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clip art of books

Jane Austen’s unfinished manuscript sells for $1.6 million

British author Jane Austen is a superstar in the literary world.  Only six of Austen’s novels were published: “Emma,” “Sense & Sensibility,” “Mansfield Park,” “Northanger Abbey,” “Pride & Prejudice, ” and “Persuasion.”  Austen died on July 18, 1817 at the age of 41, but  the writer still has plenty of buzz these days. Her novels have been the inspiration for movies, TV series, and other books. Austen is as popular as ever.  Last week, an unfinished manuscript by Austen sold at auction for $1.6 million. The handwritten draft of... Read More →

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cover of Montana Hearts. The book is by Charlotte Carter

Living it up with Author Charlotte Carter

Author Charlotte Carter is a mother of two and grandmother of five, but you’d never say she’s over the hill. Not with the activities Carter is involved in. The talented SoCal writer and ardent volunteer, has had more than 50 romance, mystery, and inspirational novels published. A few years back, I was the moderator for a writers/authors group in Burbank and Carter was a guest speaker a couple of times. An experienced workshop facilitator, Carter has  participated in writers’ events at the Burbank library as well. Carter’s newest book, “Montana Hearts,” hits store shelves today. It’s... Read More →

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National Novel Writing Month logo

Write a novel in a month — thousands are trying to do it in November!

   Writers around the world are pounding computer keys or scribbling as fast as they can in notebooks — as part of the annual Write A Novel in a Month project. It kicked off today and writers have until November 30 to produce 50,000 words — that’s a short novel of 175 pages. Last year, 165,000 writers reportedly took the challenge and 30,000 were victorious. This popular creative writing venture is run by a non-profit, which has a host of sponsors this year including The word count of 50,000 words is a... Read More →

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photo of person writing on a computer kepyboard

ShowBiz Bits

 Hot Hollywood Movie Deal I thought it was a bizarre combination when the novel came out last spring: President Abraham Lincoln and vampires. No matter. Hollywood is hot to take this property to the big screen. Several studios were bidding on the project, but over the weekend, 20th Century Fox came out the victor, according to Nikki Finke & Mike Fleming over at Los Angeles Author Seth Grahame-Smith’s novel, “Abraham Lincoln Vampire Hunter” has our 14th President taking out the blood suckers and their slave-owning allies,... Read More →

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Photo: PR NewFoto/Columbia Pictures/Merrick Morton -- Actor Daniel Craig

News Bits: President Obama’s visit, Casting for “The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo” & Box Office numbers

President Obama raises $1 million & snarls traffic in Southland   It happens almost every time a U.S. President visits the Southland. The bad traffic situation gets worse. That’s what occurred today, when President Barack Obama dropped in for one of those high-ticket priced Hollywood -type fundraisers. Obama reportedly raised $1 million dollars for the Democrats and the ire of some Southlanders over the traffic problems caused by his visit. Nice report and photo on the Los Angeles Times website. “The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo”  Actress Rooney Mara has won one of the most sought... Read More →

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“A Nightmare on Elm Street” slashes its way to the top of the Box Office

A familiar scary face, Freddy Krueger, topped the Box Office this weekend. A remake of the 1984 “A Nightmare on Elm Street” debuted red hot — with an estimated $32.2 million — to become the number one film in the country. This fright franchise is apparently very much alive. It now includes 9 slasher films, novels, a TV show, and comic books. In the 2010 reboot/update Krueger is up to his old tricks of stalking and killing victims by first attacking them in their dreams. The horror flick stars Jackie Earle Haley, Kyle Gallner, and Rooney... Read More →

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