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Tag Archives: best holiday books

Stand Up for Sentimentality

When Mom and I were trying to push Holiday Connections at publishers, the only consistent reply we received back was that the stories weren’t hard-edged enough for commercial appeal. I’m afraid it’s true, folks; F. Sharon and Genilee created feel-good stories so I’m afraid you’ll need to go elsewhere for your blood and guts this holiday season.final cover

But that’s okay with us. We intend for these books to be sentimental. When mom created her first drafts, she had in mind the stories you used to get out of Good Housekeeping and Redbook. It’s  not that those stories didn’t address issues. They were often poignant tales of a simple person addressing a hard reality such as a kid growing up, a relationship falling apart or a major life challenge. They made you stop and lose yourself in someone else’s problems for a while. And yes, some of them ended happily ever after, but part of the beauty was that it wasn’t always. Kind of  like life is: some happy endings and many slaps in the face.

Mom and I have readily admitted we have no hopes of being branded literary geniuses—we entered the game too late. We are creators of tales we think people will want to read. That is their sole purpose: to get people to READ. The Fate Series was an evolution, and we think each book is better than the last for different reasons—we think the characters in Wretched Fate are more rounded than those in Twisted Fate. We were already falling in love with our protagonist Sam Osborne by Violet Fate, which is why it’s appropriate he fell in love in the third book. With Holiday Connections, we just let go and allowed ourselves to be saps about a lot of things.

We offer no apologies because we think reading should be a pleasure, and if you get pleasure out of short stories that end on a good note, you’ll like our newest book. We also understand that books can be an escape and for some people, escape works best as darkness, despair and deeper dilemmas than the characters in Holiday Connections face. We’ll leave the zombies, serial killers and graphic details up to television and movies, which do an excellent job.

Come to our books for a different reason: to get a brief respite from hum drum, but one that leaves you feeling positive and ready to read what happens next.

November is going by quickly folks. We’re offering the book at discount from what you’ll get on amazon.com and barnesandnoble.com so that we can afford to send them out at a better price for gifts. Write swopeparente@gmail.com for details on how to get a signed copy. And don’t forget yourself when you’re making out that gift list!

For kindle lovers, the book is now available in ebook form on amazon.com.

Genilee Swope Parente

 
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Posted by on November 12, 2015 in Uncategorized

 

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The gift of reading

Holiday shoppers who visit craft fairs are a different breed than those who storm the halls of malls; Authors can capitalize on that reality.

Fall 2015 St. Matt 3Fair shoppers don’t come armed with an idea of exactly what they need to get, and they don’t wear walking shoes because they know they’ll be traversing miles of floor. They’re there to browse and get inspired.  Like with retail stores, they may end up spending money on themselves when they intended to attack their gift lists. But their justification for making impulse buys allows them to feel less guilty. I will never again see this item that’s perfect so I HAVE to buy it NOW.

Those of us hawking books can take advantage of the art-and-crafts set of mind. Mom and I try to hand a card that explains the books’ plots out to anyone whose eye we can catch. The reason we do this is that we know many people are hesitant to spend money on a book when they came to look for crafts. If they are readers or they know readers, however, they eventually glance down at the card, take in a few words, move onto other booths, then glance down again and again until they eventually end up reading most of what’s on that card. We’ve noted that many of our buyers are people who return to our specific table on purpose, and the two most common phrases we hear are:

“I just couldn’t imagine anything more perfect for my friend than a gift set of mystery/romance books by the original author.”

And

“I decided to treat myself.”

Like all the vendors there at the fair who have spent countless hours creating their jewelry, photography or sewn goods, what Mom and I offer is the same: our passion. We love to read and we know others do as well, and we’re proud of what we’ve created.

This holiday season, we are aiming to get our fourth book in people’s hands. It’s the first that isn’t part of the Fate Series. Instead, it’s a gift possibility: Holiday Connections. Mom’s creative juices started with a theme: 12 different U.S. holidays. Then, in her usual manner, characters invaded her thoughts and the stories began to flow:

Easter: A little girl believes she will perish on this holy Sundayfinal cover

Fourth of July: A mail order bride wants to be a U.S. citizen

Thanksgiving: A mom disappears before the turkey can be served only to reappear exactly a year later

Stay tuned to this blog for an update on where and when the book will be out.

In the meantime, if you have children on your shopping list (and who doesn’t!), my little sister Allyn Stotz is offering what is my own personal favorite of her stories, The Color of Love, at a discounted price this month. It’s about a little boy and his mom who go through a series of adventures on a magic carpet trying to find what color best represents love. Write her at allyn_stotz@yahoo.com for details.

 

Genilee Swope Parente

 
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Posted by on October 14, 2015 in Uncategorized

 

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