HalCon Review – Author Panels

On Saturday November 5th, I attended HalCon, the biggest, geekiest sci-fi convention in Atlantic Canada. There were many wonderful demonstrations, vendors and author displays. There was also author signings, autograph sessions and endless streams of characters.

Shortly after I arrived, I sought out the room for the Editing and Formatting panel session. The speakers for the event included

The description of the session stated: To Oxford Comma, Or Not.  This and other questions about editing formatting will be answered.  If you’ve ever wondered about cutting parts, proper structure or when not using proper grammar is okay, then this may be the panel for you. Continue reading “HalCon Review – Author Panels”

A Busy Weekend of Events

There are many events going on around the province this weekend so if you live in Nova Scotia, you have plenty to keep you busy. Here are just three events I’m either involved in or wish I was involved in.

Craft Show: First up is the In Hants Craft Show at the Milford Recreation Hall, Milford Station, East Hants. The show hosts the creative works of more than sixty local crafters. You’ll find everything from quilts to cookies, from fancy hats to wooden carvings. You shop as if you’re in a gift shop, then pay for your purchase all at once at the check-out using cash, Visa or MasterCard.

This is the second year I’ve participated in the show. Last year I sold books and homemade goat milk soap. Only my books are there this year.

The hours of operation are Friday (9:00 am to 9:00 pm), Saturday (9:00 am to 5:00 pm) and Sunday (12:00 pm to 5:00 pm). I was there for more than four hours today, and a steady stream of people came and went, many carrying baskets of goodies and gifts out the door.

Continue reading “A Busy Weekend of Events”

Register Now: Online Indie Author Fringe Event April 15th

The first online Indie Author Fringe Event of 2016 kicks off at 10:00 am on Friday April 15th. This is London, England time, so in Nova Scotia, that’s 6:00 am (fours in the difference).

There’s an amazing line-up and many will recognise some of the names from the self-publishing industry:

  • Mark Coker (of Smashwords)
  • David Gaughran
  • Joanna Penn
  • Jane Friedman
  • Bob Mayer
  • Roz Morris

Continue reading “Register Now: Online Indie Author Fringe Event April 15th”

Twistmas Goodreads Giveaway

Goodreads GiveawayIt’s been over two years since I ran my last giveaway on Goodreads. I usually host one when I publish a new book, but I didn’t last time. Not because I didn’t want to. I was just too busy with working six days a week outside the home.

With the recent release of Twistmas – The Season for Love, I wanted to get the news about the book out to as many people as I could in the shortest amount of time. As you might suspect, it’s a love story that takes place at Christmas time. Although some readers don’t mind reading seasonal stories on the beach in July, most read them in December.

So time is of the essence.

I had intended to have the giveaway on December 1st, but I quickly learned I couldn’t. Things had changed since my last giveaway, and I could not create a giveaway one day to see it up and running the next day.

I had waited until the last minute to create the giveaway because I wanted copies of the book in my hand to ensure I had them to giveaway.

Continue reading “Twistmas Goodreads Giveaway”

2015 HalCon Review

As I mentioned in my previous blog HalCon History, I attended HalCon for the first time on the weekend. Although the event runs three days, I could attend only one, so I chose Saturday. This is typically their busiest day.

We showed up early (8:30 am) on the advice of my nephew who had attended past HalCon weekends. Since we hadn’t attended on Friday, we had to register and trade our ticket for a bracelet. For anyone going for the first time, this might be a little confusing. I mean, when you attend a concert at the Metro Centre, the attendant at the door scans your ticket and you’re in.

At HalCon, you first have to register, which means show your ticket to the clerk along with a piece of ID, preferably with a picture. She matches up the name on the ticket with your ID, and you get your bracelet. Since the doors didn’t officially open until 9:30, we had to then go in another line, one that would get us officially in.

This line didn’t take long, and shortly after 9:30, we were walking into the vendor area where many things related to fantasy, science fiction and games could be found. It took a few minutes to get our bearings, but eventually the two people I came with, went off to seek the things that interested them, and I went to a presentation I thought was interesting.

Continue reading “2015 HalCon Review”

Fall into Books this Saturday

A wonderful first-time event is taking place in Musquodoboit Harbour this Saturday November 7th. Twenty authors are coming together for a book fair. The fair itself from 1:00 pm to 4:00 pm is free. Anyone can browse through the fair, chat with authors and buy their books.

Later in the evening at 7:00 pm, several authors will read. This event costs $5.00. The money will help cover the costs of the event and perhaps go towards similar future events.

If you can make it, even for a drop-in to see what’s going on, please do. Come out and support your local authors and writers.

Fall for Books new

HalCon History

Dubbed the “biggest, geekiest sci-fi convention in Atlantic Canada”, HalCon doesn’t disappoint in size or in science fiction and fantasy. Thankfully, it takes place less than an hour’s drive from home in downtown Halifax.

HalCon began in 2010, and since then, it has grown by leaps and bounds. Last year, they had so many people arrive on Saturday, the fire marshal closed the doors and wouldn’t let anyone else in until someone left. This is a problem most events would love to have.

From HalCon’s About page, we learn Nova Scotia has a history of conventions. They existed from the 1970s to the 1990s but eventually disappeared. In 2008, the idea to revive such an event took root. Two years of planning and fundraising created the first HalCon which took place at the Lord Nelson Hotel in Halifax. It turned out to be such a success, that it moved to the World Trade & Conventional Centre in 2011.

What started out as a 1,500-fan attendance in 2010, transformed into 6,400 attendees in 2014. This year, it included floor space at the World Trade & Conventional Centre and the attached Scotia Centre (the Mero Centre for the locals who have known it as that for decades).

Continue reading “HalCon History”

Impressions OR an Overview of CCMA

ImpressionsWe are often told you don’t get a second chance at making a first impression. Those first impressions brand themselves in our memories. We recall them every time your name is mentioned or your work passes our eyes. By the time you get to make a second impression, we may have recalled the first impression a dozen or more times, making it difficult to bump it aside for a different impression to take root.

Bad impressions imbed themselves deeper than good impressions—for the most part. This means if you made a bad impression the first time, you’ll have a mountain to climb to mend the fence.

Obviously, good impressions are important in our personal lives, but they are vital in our professional lives. They can make or break our business (which is gaining a reading audience), so it’s important to pay attention to your actions and words when in public, particularly if you’re in the company of readers and writers.

The flip side of that is we are always judging the impressions of others, both new and old acquaintances. We may not consciously do this, but we do it because it’s our nature. We use our morals and opinions to apply that judgement. So while something you did was great in the eyes of one person, it might not be so hot in the eyes of another.

It’s a tough road, but one we travel every day.

I was reminded of first and lasting impressions over the weekend when I attended several events associated with the Canadian Country Music Awards (CCMA) held in Halifax, NS. This was my first CCMA show, so my mind was wide open to what may or may not happen.

Continue reading “Impressions OR an Overview of CCMA”

East Hants Fine Art Show

If you are in the Milford Station, Hants County, Nova Scotia, area this weekend, you might be interested in stopping at the East Hants Fine Art Show. Dozens of artists will have their work on the display. Visitors can also purchase a selection of artwork.

The show is open to the public on Saturday and Sunday May 1st and 2nd between the hours of 10:00 am and 4:00 pm. If you are interested in joining the East Hants Fine Art Association, you can pick up an membership form there. If not, drop me a line, and I can help you get in touch with the right people. Continue reading “East Hants Fine Art Show”

Book and Soap Sale Event

Today (Saturday March 14) I will be selling books at the Crafter’s Train Vendors Market taking place at Sackville Lions Club, 101 Old Beaverbank Rd, Lower Sackville, Nova Scotia.

I will have for sale copies of the following books:

Diane Lynn McGyver

  • Shadows in the Stone
  • Fowl Summer Nights
  • Pockets of Wildflowers
  • Nova Scotia-Life Near Water

Sheila McDougall

  • City of Light and Shadow

Sam Lynn Smith

  • Boys Ride, Too

Also for sale will be my homemade Moonshire Goat Milk Soap. The varieties available are

  • Coconut Creamy
  • Safflower Supreme
  • Luscious Lavender
  • Citronella Bug Off
  • Gardener’s Delight
  • Oatmeal and Honey
  • Lemon Poppy Seed

The event runs from 10:00 am to 3:00 pm. Hope to see you there.

Goodreads Giveaway Ends Today

If you haven’t entered the Goodreads Giveaway for Fowl Summer Nights, today is your last chance. The giveaway ends tonight at midnight (not sure which time zone). So far 491 people have entered.

UPDATE (7:00 pm, Nova Scotia time): With just nine hours to go, there are now 632 names entered in the giveaway.

 

Goodreads Book Giveaway

Fowl Summer Nights by Diane Lynn McGyver

Fowl Summer Nights

by Diane Lynn McGyver

Giveaway ends April 11, 2014.

See the giveaway details
at Goodreads.

Enter to win

National Stompin’ Tom Connors Day

Square BannerSeventy-eight years ago today, a Canadian legend was born in Saint John, New Brunswick. For decades he criss-crossed our beautiful country, gathering stories, writing songs, sharing our history, singing and reminding Canadians, “We’ve got something special here.”

Charles Thomas Connors, better known to all as Stompin’ Tom, was our most prolific and well-known country and folk singer-songwriter.

And today, February 9th, is his day: National Stompin’ Tom Connors Day

It’s a day to remember him and the songs he gave to our country. A day to sit back and listen to familiar old tunes like “Bud the Spud”, “Margo’s Got the Cargo” and “Sudbury Saturday Night”.

Tom passed away last year on March 6th, and still nothing has appeared on the horizon to immortalise this Canadian icon, so I have declared this day his.

Long live his music, and let the legend play on.

While browsing YouTube, I discovered several wonder videos I’ve never seen before.

The first is a true story about a horse named Farmer who swam the channel from Grosse Île to Île d’entrée (Entry Island) in the Magdalen Islands in the Gulf of St. Lawrence. I have several of Tom’s albums, but I’ve never heard of this song or the story before.

Continue reading “National Stompin’ Tom Connors Day”

Snaps from Today’s Craft Show

The Christmas Festival of Crafts Show in Middle Musquodoboit was very busy today. It was shoulder to shoulder walking between the displays. Dozens and dozens of people stopped at our stand, looked at our books, discussed the books, picked up flyers and business cards and many bought books. In total we sold 30!

Here we are all set up at the start of the day.

Mindy George, Diane Tibert and Jayne Peters.
Mindy George, Diane Tibert and Jayne Peters.

As the day progressed we discovered things we should have done and things we should have brought, like bags for people who bought our books. Early next week I’ll make a list of things I learned from attending this event and share it here. We thought about a lot of things, but there are several things we can do to improve the outcome of the event.

Craft Show Mid Musq 2013 Dec 7 b

Craft Show Mid Musq 2013 Dec 7 c