April 28, 2020

The Jack & Phil Show Returns! A Book Marketing Strategy That Really Works

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The Jack & Phil Show Returns! A Book Marketing Strategy That Really Works

UPDATE April 28: Our apologies for the snafu last week! Technical difficulties, which have now been addressed and corrected. We hope you’ll come back tomorrow, April 29, to enjoy our presentation. Please make sure to register at the link below if you have not re-registered since the presentation’s postponement. If you aren’t sure whether you are registered or not, you can click on the link below to make sure. Are you the author of a book, self- or indie-published, fiction or non-fiction? If you’ve tried any of the latest (usually costly and relatively unsuccessful) schemes and strategies to publicize and market your book, you may have given up hope. Here’s a free webinar that will help you do just that, and have fun doing it! Take heart. Fictional Café founder and author Jack B. Rochester and…

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April 12, 2020

Arya F. Jenkins — An Author Interview

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Arya F. Jenkins — An Author Interview

Editor’s Note: We asked author and FC member/contributor, Arya F. Jenkins, a few questions about her book of short stories. Interview with Arya F. Jenkins  Author of Blue Songs in an Open Key  Short stories published by Fomite, 2018  When did you first get the idea to write this book?  I was in the midst of a long love affair with jazz when I first started writing fiction with the idea of having it published. I decided to do something a little different and interweaved my love for that music into a story. My short story, “So What,” was inspired by the first cut in the seminal album by Miles Davis, Kinda Blue, and won first prize in a fiction contest in Jerry Jazz Musician, a jazz-based zine run by Joe Maita.   That was in 2012, and subsequently I was asked to write more stories for Jerry Jazz Musician, which I did, at…

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March 12, 2020

Our New Baristas! Welcome Michael, Amanda & Yong

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Our New Baristas! Welcome Michael, Amanda & Yong

Please join us in welcoming our new baristas to The Fictional Café! These three talented additions to our staff have rolled up their sleeves to help us brew the tastiest “fresh java” this side of Pluto. Michael Piekny has joined our Editorial Board, which also includes our editor and all-star submissions manager Ruth Simon and our editor and anthology barista, Mike Mavilia Rochester. As an Editorial Board Barista, Michael brings a robust enthusiasm for editing based upon years of practice, and the work he does at his own company, Hub Edits. If you’ve recently been published on FC, you’ve surely enjoyed working with him. Our new Visual Arts Barista is Amanda Grafe. She’ll be curating our visual art offerings, which includes anything from paintings to sculptures to photography. An artist herself, Amanda’s passion for art…

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February 18, 2020

“The Escape to Candyland,” A Review

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“The Escape to Candyland,” A Review

In Yong Takahashi’s debut collection of stories, The Escape to Candyland, the main character is dilemma.  That’s the featured role in this series of recursive, interwoven stories: the human heart in conflict with itself.  Takahashi’s protagonists labor under myth-like predestination and curse; they are often tortured by the knowledge of what ails them, compounded by the inability or unwillingness to overcome it.  Hence dilemma.  Very few suffer in ignorance – most of the men and women in these stories know they are beset by a personal menace (an abusive husband, guilt over a brother’s death, an obsessive-compulsive mother), and many understand that their deliverance lies in plain sight, but who among them can seize it and afford to lose a pillar of their identity – past trauma.  Perhaps, then, the apt word to describe each member of…

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December 23, 2019

Jim Best’s Last-Minute Gift Ideas

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Jim Best’s Last-Minute Gift Ideas

Author James D. “Jim” Best is one of our favorite fans, and we’re one of his, too. Jim cares passionately about reading books, and offers these last-minute suggestions for people on your holiday gift-giving list. 18 Ideas for Gifting Books At times, friends and relatives can be hard to buy for. Some seem to have everything. Due to age or illness, others may be less mobile than in years past. Some don’t really want much. Families scatter across this huge country and selecting a gift, packaging, and shipping can be a chore.A book is a perfect gift … and a great way to avoid the crowds. Books provide a great entertainment value, delivering hour upon hour of pleasure. Reading fiction is like taking a mini vacation without leaving home. An engrossing story makes worries fade…

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