Monday, July 1, 2013

The future of publishing looks at Penguin and Random House

MERGER OF PENGUIN AND RANDOM HOUSE IS COMPLETED: Random House and Penguin completed their planned merger Monday morning, creating the biggest and most powerful book publisher in the world.  The new company, called Penguin Random House, will control more than 25 percent of the trade book market in the United States, giving it unmatched leverage against, a growing force in the industry.

Sunday, June 23, 2013

World War Z movie will leave you breathless

                                                                   by Trina Boice

Brad Pitt. Need I say more? Well ok, if you're a guy, you're going to want more out of this June thrill ride than just staring at the aging, yet still handsome half of Brangelina. World War Z is a fun summer blockbuster about a zombie apocalypse, loosely based on the popular book that my sons devoured back in 2006 entitled "World War Z: An Oral History of the Zombie War" by Max Brooks. I wonder if Brad Pitt's kids also read the book when it came out and clamored for pop to film it. His production company, Plan B Entertainment, quickly secured the screen rights for it in 2007. Rumor has it that the budget for this flick chewed up over $400 million with some post-production re-writes that caused its later release. In fact, the last 40 minutes of the movie were completely remade. Some critics claim the post-production troubles make the movie a bit choppy, but as long as you have popcorn in your mouth, you're going to be entertained.

The zombie craze still seems to be alive and well, so ticket sales look promising. Brad Pitt is confident it's going to do well and told US Today, "Listen, I'm pretty proud of this film. It's just big and fun and this is the most intense thing you're going to see all year." He said it was the most intense thing he's done, and he certainly has skin in the game on this to speak. Brad Pitt plays Gerry Lane, a retired UN employee who gets called in to help find the origins of the undeadly strain that is turning humans into rabid zombies.

Gerry Lane is properly motivated to search the globe for a cure in return for his family's safety and protection on one of the few floating ships turned safe zones in the ocean. Combine Gerry Lane's effective survival skills with Brad Pitt's golden locks and you get some action scenes that even hard-core preppers will admire. It's challenging enough to survive the slow-moving zombies in "The Walking Dead", but these creepy corpses "turn" in only 12 seconds, race after you at very quick speeds, jump onto the high walls surrounding Jerusalem, and even pull down a helicopter.

Your heart will pound in suspense and you'll try to quiet your breath when you learn that loud sounds attract the rabid humans. Gerry Lane counsels a family locked up in a New Jersey apartment after the chaotic outbreak that "movement is life." His former experience getting in and out of hot zones helps him come up with resourceful survival ideas, saving himself and others along the way, including a female soldier in the Israeli army.

 If you loved the popular TV show "Lost", you'll get a kick out of seeing Matthew Fox as one of the parajumpers that fights to protect those seeking a cure. Audiences will be introduced to Mireille Enos, who plays Brad Pitt's frightened and dutiful wife. The special effects are amazing and pretty believable. As my kids say, "It could happen."

The movie is being released in 2D, RealID 3D, and IMAX 3D. While I love a good 3D experience, this particular film doesn't work well in 3D because of the camera's shakiness, so see it in 2D and you won't get dizzy.

I love it when a book turns into a movie which, in turn, returns enthusiastic viewers to the book!

Sunday, May 19, 2013

Book launch Twitter Party!

Yesterday my publisher, Big World Network, hosted a fun Twitter party to launch my new book "Climbing Family Trees."  

Below is the dialogue that trended all morning long:
Trina Boice has been with since the beginning of the site in late fall of 2011, and has since published several series and books with us. How to Stay UP in a DOWN Economy, a nonfiction book about earning and saving money from home, is available now in paperback, eBook, and audiobook.

Trina’s newest novel, originally published in 2005, and then as a series on BWN, is a joint effort with her twin sister, Tracey Long – Climbing Family Trees: Whispers in the Leaves.

Climbing Family Trees is a nonfiction/inspirational book about genealogy, with advice as well as personal stories from the twins and others. The book released this past weekend, starting with a Twitter Release Party in which BWN asked the sisters to join us and answer some questions about the book.

BWN: Welcome to BWN’s second ever Twitter Release Party! Featuring new book release Climbing Family Trees: Whispers in the Leaves. This is the 2nd edition of Climbing Family Trees. What originally inspired you and Tracey to take on this book?

Trina: Our own family inspired us to write Climbing Family Trees several years ago. We had been bit by the genealogy bug and loved inspiring stories. It was such a fun book to write! Any time you want to have a spiritual experience, just do genealogy!

Tracey: It was such a fun project to do together. Because we're twins, we think alike so we're already "on the same page."

BWN: How did you go about gathering so many inspiring personal stories about genealogy?

Tracey: We sent query letters to genealogical societies and got great stories.

Trina: Genealogists are VERY giving. Sharing is what they do all day long, so they were eager to contribute. We put a call out for inspirational stories of people who felt help from heaven with their family tree. We received so many heartwarming stories. Heaven truly helps those who want to unite families! So sweet!

BWN: Further proof that writing can be communal! What was the most difficult hurdle while working on Climbing Family Trees?

Trina: We wrote the book before cloud computing and had to email the manuscript back and forth. Our computers crashed TWICE while writing it. Luckily, we each had manuscript versions to email to each other. The two of us are in the process of writing another fun book together. We love the collaboration.

BWN: What new title are you working on? Can you give us a sneak peek on the topic?

Tracey: Because our focus is "families" & "fun" we're writing a book of party games. People often rely too much on watching videos for group entertaining because they don't know what else to do!

Trina: We're usually working on several things at a time! We’re working on a kind of Whose Line Is It Anyway party game book. Our nephew was in a comedy improv group in college and shared some of his group's warm-up games to add! We've tried many of them at parties. Soooo much fun! We'll post videos when the book comes out.

BWN: That sounds fantastic! I know my family get togethers could use some fun ideas for activities.

Trina: Every family has natural hams, so interactive party games at family reunions are always a hit. We have a whole chapter in Climbing Family Trees with fun family reunion party games too!

BWN: Was Climbing Family Trees your first time writing something together?

Trina: Yep, the first official published work. We had collaborated on other projects together and still do.

Tracey: We competed in a National Speech/Debate event together as twins.

Trina: Can you believe Tracey was my live prop once in college for an expository speech about twins? We won 1st! Another project could be to gather fun stories about twins. People love stories about twins tricking people.

BWN: Have you and Tracey ever tricked anyone as twins?

Trina: Of course! We switched classes, and tricked dates. Tracey's husband almost kissed me on her wedding day!

Tracey: The question is how many times have we tricked people! That's a great book idea!

BWN: Agreed! Thank you both for joining us today! Genealogy is something anyone can get involved in, and often engrossed in before they even realize it.

Trina: Absolutely! It's not just for "old" folks. We all have a hunger to know where we came from. Genealogy isn't just finding your ancestors, but connecting with your living relatives and celebrating family.

Tracey: Alex Haley, the author of Roots stated everyone has a deep thirst to know more about their family. Our book helps you start learning how. Many people believe in a guardian angel, and who best but an ancestor of yours to help guide you in climbing your own family tree.

Trina: Climbing Family Trees includes TONS of ideas to honor your heritage and celebrate family every day. It also includes touching stories of adopted children finding their blood relatives. Very tender.

Tracey: We even have a chapter on animals involved in genealogy. And we'd love to know how the book helps readers and listeners find and connect with their own family trees!

To let Trina and Tracey know your thoughts on the book, feel free to respond to this blog post, on their series page, on any episode pages for Climbing Family Trees, or leave a review on Amazon.

Purchase your copy of Climbing Family Trees: Whispers in the Leaves now at: … and receive a FREE audiobook with purchase of the paperback

Check out the video promo here: …

You can also download and print a FREE bookmark at the Climbing Family Trees series page: …

Friday, February 15, 2013

A FREE Valentine's Day gift just for you!

Happy Valentine's Day!
Thank you for taking the time to read my silly blog posts. I truly LOVE my readers!

In honor of Valentine's Day and all things love, click on this link to get a FREE copy of my fun love pun ebook entitled "A Visual Pun Book of the Heart." I think you'll get a kick out of it! The link will allow you to download the ebook to your Kindle instantly.

The ebook is free until February 17th, so hurry! Feel free to share it with others and even write a review about it on Amazon!