Received Two Awards

I have been  given the honour of receiving two different blog awards!  Now, I do love getting these but there’s  fair amount of work required to acknowledge them here on the blog.  For that reason, I’ve decided on two courses of action.  First, I’ll be overlapping those I nominate to receive these rewards, rather than trying to nominate twenty-six different blogs!  Second, from now on, I will  not post awards received more than once in any given month.  That means that I’ll not post any other award(s) I get during July – they’ll have to wait, if I get any more, until August.

inner-peace-awardliebster2

On to the essential details!  The first award is the Inner Peace Award from the courageous Ajaytao.  Investigating the rules imposed on accepting this award, I discovered there’s only one: say something nice about your nominees.  No numbers were mentioned by the originator, but Ajaytao suggested 15.  I’ll do my best – but there are never guarantees.  The second award is the coveted Liebster Blog Award, from the very kind Jen Christopherson.  This carries the following rules:

  1. List eleven random facts about me.
  2. Nominate eleven bloggers for the Liebster Blog Award.
  3. Notify the bloggers.
  4. Ask eleven questions the bloggers must answer upon receiving the nomination.
  5. Answer the eleven questions you were asked when you were nominated.
  6. Link back to the person who nominated you.

Again, I will essay the challenge!

Starting with the Liebster, I’ve already covered number 6, above!  I’m going to be difficult and take things out of order now.

#1 Eleven random facts about me

  1. I love England but despise my home town and the national Government.
  2. I’m better at dreaming things up than executing them – so I can design a beautiful concept but could never take it into something material.
  3. I eat because I must, but I love inventing new recipes (especially vegetarian ones)!
  4. I abhor the The Lord of the Rings movies!!  To me, they are abominations.
  5. I love the Narnia movies.
  6. I love languages but can only speak one – though I know random words and phrases from others.
  7. I’m not a great fan of ‘comedy’.  I prefer the humour that is a natural part of life and relationships.
  8. I am virtually self-taught in everything I do, including using a computer (which I began doing almost as soon as PCs first appeared in the UK).
  9. I’m a big fan of the TV series Leverage.
  10. I used to play lawn bowls with a proficiency that surprised even me – not being very able in sports.
  11. I adore cricket – all forms!

#5 Answer eleven questions asked by Jen Christopherson

1. Do you want to be rich and famous?

No.

2. If yes why and if no why?

Such things always carry a price that I’m simply not willing to pay, in loss of privacy and control over your own life.

3. What is the most important day of the week for you?

I’d have to say Sunday, because it’s the ne day of the week that my wife never has to work.

4. What is your favorite dessert?

Ouch!  That’s impossible to answer!  There are so many!  Deep-filled Morello cherry pie with lashings of custard is very high, but so are so many others.  Eve’s Pudding made with tinned rhubarb instead of apples – with the syrup from the can drizzled over it.  A fruit pudding full of blackberries, a little apple, raspberries, currants (red, black and white), and gooseberries, with a thick (Veggie) suet lining and lid.  Fruit pie like the pudding and served with thick custard.  Macaroni pudding made with evaporated milk… I’d better stop…

5. How long did it take you to feel good about writing?

I’m not sure I really get the question.  Once I discovered writing, I felt good about it, and have done ever since.

6. What is your favorite time of day?

I don’t have one beyond lunchtimes and early evenings, when my wife gets home from work.  Other than that, I have very little sense of time.

7. Who do you depend upon?

My wife!   She’s my rock.  I have no idea how she copes with me, even ignoring my health problems!

8. Has anyone ever let you down?

Yes, several people, and some hurtfully.

9. Where on Earth do you think is closest to heaven?

I think that’s an intensely personal opinion, really.  And it isn’t simple to answer.  I’ve known places that are the epitome of heaven – but only in that moment.  Then I’ve known beautiful places that I would have thought everybody would have seen for what they were – and they’ve been destroyed by building homes or roads or some other authorised vandalism.  I can imagine somewhere like Tuvalu getting close – a tropical island with negligible economic or crime problems.  But many places look and/or sound heavenly, until you get up close.

10. What was the most valuable advice anyone ever gave you?

Slow down and be silent.  Walk with a light step and listen.  Don’t blunder through or look to leave your mark on everything and every place.  You’ll learn more, be wiser and stronger, and enjoy everything there is to be enjoyed.  And who knows?  Maybe you’ll see things others never can or will.  (The essence of my father’s advice)

11. What is the most indulgent gift you ever received or given?

Indulgent?  I’m not sure I could say hat I’ve ever received anything like that.  Or given anything of that kind.  I’ve often received and given gifts of no purpose, random things that made no statement and filled no need.

#4 Ask eleven random questions for nominees to answer

  1. Which would you prefer to possess  – power or wisdom – and why?
  2. What invention do you think has been the most important to Humanity?
  3. Which would you rather have – the ‘perfect’ body or the ‘perfect’ mind – and why?
  4. Do parents have rights over their children – or duties to them?
  5. Your child asks you: “I want to be a footballer but I want to be an artist  too.  My teachers say I have to choose one.  What do I do?” – What’s your reply?
  6. You have the ability to write the greatest epic novel of all time – given a great deal of time  – or you can write a hundred bestsellers in a few short years.  Which do you do, and why?
  7. You can go to the swankiest, most expensive, top-ranked chef’s restaurant – cost no obstacle – or you can go to a small family place with traditional, all freshly made, home cooked food.  Which one, and why?
  8. Traditional animation or CG?
  9. What’s your favourite tree?
  10. Your children/grandchildren:  a field, a bat and a ball or their school ports day?  Which is the most fun?
  11. Which: lying on a perfect beach beside a perfect sea or getting bramble-scratched and nettle-stung picking fruit with family?

#2 Name eleven nominees

  1. Chris The Story Reading Ape, for so much support and wonderful humour.
  2. Jane Risdon, writer, photographer and much more.
  3. The Day Dreaming, Candy Eating, Red Headed Bookworm, for a superbly eclectic reviews blog.
  4. Maya Panika, a very special person.
  5. The Life of a Thinker, working hard at thought and Life.
  6. Tim Flanagan – Author, for supporting other authors.
  7. Jane Dougherty Writes, an excellent, fascinating blog – not to be missed.
  8. Morgen Bailey’s Writing Blog, for so very much information and great support of authors.
  9. Thomas Rydder, writer, for bringing so many authors to our attention.
  10. write meg!, a truly dedicated book reviewer
  11. Alana Munro – The Author who loves to interview and support all authors , says it all, really!

All the above eleven receive both the Liebster Blog Award and the Inner Peace Award!

In fact, I’ve decided to stop there.  It seems fairest, to me.  So there won’t be an additional four nominees for the Inner Peace Award.  I’d also like to say that I think that eleven is really the absolute upper limit that these awards should be suggesting.

If you visit any of these blogs from here, please  don’t assume that you’ll see a blog award post!  Some may choose not to accept any, and others may simply be too busy to post about it.

All my best,

Steve

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Knock me down with a feather!

liebster2 I’ve been nominated for another blog award!  The very kind J R Barker, the author of the children’s book The Adventures of the Frog Prince, nominated me for the Liebster Award.  I am deeply honoured, and very grateful.  There are, of course, some rules attached to this award, which I’ll do my best to obey.  The hardest one is that those I nominate should have small blogs with less than 200 followers.  It’s exceedingly difficult to be sure of how many followers any blog has, and the definition of ‘follower’ is a bit hard to figure out.  I’m not clear whether that means ‘direct’ followers (who subscribe to a blog) or ‘total’ followers (including Twitter, Facebook, and other follow schemes).  So, if you think I’ve got it wrong – I’m sorry, but I’m not a blog auditor LOL!

“The Liebster Award is a way for blogs with less than 200 followers to connect with other bloggers, share a little more about you, and a way to help promote other small blogs.”

How does this work? Here are the rules:

Post 11 Random Facts about Yourself.

Answer 11 Questions from you Nominator.

Visit the other 10 blogs that were nominated with you.

Nominate 11 Other Blogs with fewer than 200 Followers and ask them 11

Questions – NO TAG BACKS!

Visit your Nominees and Let them know they won the Award!

11 Random facts about myself:

I’m not a ‘teetotaller’ (though medication means I have to avoid alcohol) but I do strongly dislike drunkenness, over indulgence and drink driving of any kind (and yes – that includes disabled people who drink and drive electric scooters and such!).  I have always felt the same way!

I don’t use strong language and I don’t really like hearing it, either.  I understand its use in certain situations of extreme stress, such as combat.  There are certain words I don’t even like having to type into word filters so they can’t appear on my sites!

I suffer from short term memory problems, to the point of forgetting what I’m saying!  That said, I have a very good memory for some things.

I always wanted to be a full time author.  However, if pushed into employment, I dreamt of being a landscape gardener or working with animals – neither ever got close to happening!

I detest being called “Stevie”!

I’m an animal magnet.  I’ve never met a species that didn’t respond to me, though some individual animals have failed to do so.

I used to breed and hand rear cockatiels.

I despise any kind of prejudice.

I prefer toffee to chocolate.

I’m under orders from a dietician to eat virtually all the ‘unhealthy’ foods!

I love watching cricket, American football and ‘soccer’.  I’d watch baseball too, but it’s on way too late here in the UK.

Questions for me:

1. What is your favourite children’s book?

That takes some mental dredging!  I guess I’d have to say Enid Blyton’s The Magic Faraway Tree.

2. Who’s your favourite story tale villain?

Believe it or not, I don’t think I have one.  I certainly can’t think of one, not from a children’s book.

3. Who’s your favourite story tale hero?

Again, I can’t think of one, not if we’re talking about children’s books.

4.  What’s your favourite fairy tale?

While I enjoyed them well enough, I don’t really have any that I’d regard as a favourite.

5. What’s your favourite childhood memory?

Christmas.  Not the gift giving/receiving bit.  The season – making things and decorating.  They were always happy times.

6.  Sweet or savoury?

Yes LOL.  Very mood dependent!  Mostly savoury, but sweet when the mood hits.

7. What genre of book do you prefer?

Tough one!  I guess I’d have to say epic fantasy.

8. Watching sport or playing sport?

Now, I’ve got no choice – I have to watch.  I was never sporty as a kid, but loved playing lawn bowls, cricket (well, bowling, anyway) and table tennis.

9. Cats or dogs?

Dogs!  No good telling cats that, though – they come to me whether I want them to or not LOL.

10. Name one story/ book that you feel has touched your life or changed it in some way.

That’s a difficult one.  How do you judge if a book has had a profound effect?  I mean, I learnt from George Orwell’s Animal Farm, my own attitudes were reinforced after I read Alan Paton’s Cry The Beloved Country, but my early writing was influenced by J R R Tolkien’s The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings, however that’s only partially true because I loved reading myths and legends.

11. Name one act of kindness that you have witnessed.

Myself being courteously assisted through a very difficult shop doorway by two youths, after they had checked with me that I required their assistance.  Why are shop doors so often on such tight springs that you need to be a muscle bound wrestler or a football lineman to open them?

My Nominees:

  1. Bite Size Canada
  2. Posed and Written
  3. Chris Allen: The Blog
  4. Lizzie Baldwin of mylittlebookblog
  5. Kathy and Sue-Ellen of Tartan Ink
  6. My Side of the Story
  7. Books are my Drug
  8. stephenedgerauthor
  9. DeAnna of Mommy’s Reading Break
  10. Luna’s Little Library
  11. Stories Are Forever – Mary Meddlemore

My Questions for Nominees:

  1. What’s your favourite colour, and why?
  2. Who has your favourite storyteller’s voice?
  3. Who’s your favourite children’s book illustrator?
  4. Do you have a favourite kind of non-fiction book?
  5. What was your favourite book you received as a gift?
  6. Black & White or Colour photographs?
  7. What’s your favourite movie, and why?
  8. Who are your favourite movie acting partnership (any genre)?
  9. What’s your favourite plant?
  10. Do you believe books should be compulsory reading just because critics have labelled them ‘classics’?
  11. Can a book be so morally bankrupt that it should never be published?

Breaking News

A Good Day

Today has been a good day!  First of all, I was delighted to receive 4 stars for Shade of Evil, from Wende Sheets of Julie’s Book Review blog.  You can read Wende’s review at Julie’s Book Review: Review of Shade of Evil By Steve K Smy.  On top of that, as you may have read on my general blog, Ramblings & Rumblings, yesterday I received my very first paperback of on of my own works – the very same novelette – Shade of Evil!  It was an incredible feeling, holding it in my hand.  I’ve dreamt of that moment for decades!  Believe me, it was even better in real life.

versatile-blogger-award The Versatile Blogger Award!

Another very happy piece of news is the fact that I have been given the Versatile Blogger Award!  This award was kindly given by Jo Robinson.  I am deeply honoured by the award, but I have a bit of a problem.  One of the rules of the award is that you nominate a further 15 bloggers you believe are deserving of it.  Now, I read many blogs, and there are definitely plenty who deserve an award.  The problem is the time required to choose just 15, and list them, and selecting so few from so many!  I will, however, do my best.

Rules of The Verstile Blogger Award, should you choose to accept it. You don’t have to if you don’t want to:

1. Display the award logo on your blog.
2. Thank and link back to the person who nominated you.
3. State seven things about yourself.
4. Nominate fifteen bloggers for this award.
5. Notify those bloggers of the nomination by linking to one of their specific posts so they get notified by pingback.

So, here we go…

Seven Things About Myself

1.  I have an unbreakable fear of needles!  I suspect it comes from being subjected, rather forcefully, to a lumbar puncture when I was 4 years old, and suffering from polio.  These days, it has become even more extreme than ever and I actually pass out when I have any needle-based encounter, such as having to give blood for tests.  My wife understands how to bring me back round and, so far, I’ve only met one person who has been ‘difficult’ about it.  Oddly enough, it was a few days ago, for blood tests.  A phlebotomist who was (apparently) supervising a trainee kept trying to insist that I should move from my wheelchair to the reclining seat they use.  We refused, despite her stubborn insistence.  In the end, we won.  The trainee, unconcerned by our wishes, not only carried out the procedure, she actually listened to what we said and did it as quickly as possible. I still passed out, but that was no big deal.

2.  I’ve been married since the end of June 1980.  Considering how such things go these days, I think that’s a major achievement.  It’s thanks to the fact that we’re both stubborn enough, and love each other enough, to actually work our way through difficult times!

3.  I love Nature, thanks to my Dad, who taught me a great deal about it.  In my youth, I spent many days, particularly Sundays, literally wandering over field and hill, through woodlands and exploring all the hidden places.

4.  I never had much success with shooting until a fairground stall holder suggested using my left instead of my right.  Amazingly, I instantly became a crack shot with a rifle!  I have never, and would never, shot at a live target – especially any animal!  I shot only at targets.

5.  Due to a slight limp that I didn’t even know I had (a consequence of polio), I was hopeless at sports at school.  In adulthood, however, I discovered the fine old sport of lawn bowls!  I was very happy to find that I had a natural ability at the sport, and frequently did well in competitions.  I also discovered some ability in table tennis, though not to competition standard.  Aside from those two sports, the only other thing I could do was bowl in cricket.  Sadly, I was not a good fielder or batsman, which was rather limiting.

6.  I started going grey when I was 13.  The process continued steadily throughout my life from then on.

7.  I normally sport a beard!  From time to time, however, I do shave it off – which pleases my wife considerably, as she thinks it knocks years off how old I look.

Nominated Bloggers

1.  Chris McMullen

2.  Trish Marie Dawson

3.  Tracee Ford

4.  Patrick O’Scheen

5.  C. Giovanni

6.  Luci’s Log

7.  Patrick & Sandy Jones

8.  Catherine Ryan Howard

9.  Ella Medler

10.  Susan Finlay

11.  Silver Wolf

12.  Rachel (Spilled Ink)

13.  J. D. Holiday

14.  Brian W Foster

15.  Amanda Taylor

~ Steve

Very Inspiring Bloggers Award

very-inspirational-blogger

Very Inspiring Bloggers Award

Loaded up this morning to discover that I was nominated for “The Very Inspiring Blogger Award” on Saturday by fellow blogger Angela of Angela’s World of Writing!  Thanks enormously Angela for this award.

According to the rules of the award, I’m now responding.

Rules

1)   Display the award logo,

2)   Link back to the person who nominated you,

3)   State 7 things about yourself,

4)   Nominate 15 other bloggers for this award and link to them.

7 Things

Thinking of seven things that you may not know about me isn’t too easy.  I mean, there’s tons but remembering what I may have divulged is not so simple.

1)  I have eclectic tastes in just about everything.  That’s always been true as far as music is concerned but has grown over the years in my reading tastes.

2)  I am an insomniac, and have been since my early teens.  That doesn’t help with creativity, unfortunately, as I’m often verging on total exhaustion.

3)  Jenny and I will have been married for 33 years at the end of June this year!  We have two sons and a daughter, two grandsons and three granddaughters, plus step-grandchildren.

4)  I am disabled, with post polio syndrome, with very limited mobility.  I contracted polio when I was 4 years old.

5)  Writing has been my ambition since my early teens, with jobs being taken, initially, just to cover until success arrived – I’m still waiting for my big break!  LOL!

6)  My eldest brother also showed an artistic bent, being an accomplished amateur dramatics actor.

7)  I have a deep love of Nature, thanks to my Dad, who opened my eyes to all  the wonders as a child.

Nominees (In no particular order)

  1. Patti Roberts – Paradox : The Angels Are Here One of the best indie author blogs, with interviews, reviews and more.
  2. Book Blogger Directory  A useful directory of book blogs.
  3. Hey Sweetheart, Get Me Rewrite!  “A Discussion of Writing For Those Who Have Spent Their Lives Writing”.
  4. Self-Publish 101  Fairly self-explanatory!
  5. Sethsnap  A gorgeous photoblog.
  6. Self Publishing Made Easy  Help for the self-publisher.
  7. Inspiring A World Of Listeners  ebook publishing articles.
  8. Cristian Mihai  A leading light’s blog.
  9. dribblingpensioner  A fun blog by a pensioner.
  10. brianwfoster.com  Tips, reviews and critiques in fiction writing.
  11. Wordplay  “Helping writers become authors”.
  12. Uncle Book  Book reviews, interviews and book promotions.
  13. Children’s Books For Life  The Steve Costello author Blog.
  14. Publishing… And Other Forms Of Insanity  The trials and tribulations of publishing.
  15. To Win The Lottery Of Words  Writing blog.

Congratulations to all of the nominees!

~ Steve

The Imagineer Blog Awards 2013

We are happy to announce the opening of nominations for the first Imagineer Blog Awards.  The awards will be given to blogs in the following categories:

  1. Authorship blogs, which give tips and general advice to prospective authors.
  2. Book review blogs, focussed on book/ebook reviews primarily.
  3. Publishing blogs, focussed on advice on publishing and self-publishing.
  4. Part-work blogs, where stories are presented in serialised form for reading online.
  5. Poetry blogs, where poetry is presented in blog format.
  6. Photoblogs, where photography is the primary feature of the blog and may involve books/ebooks about photography or photo “gallery” books/ebooks.

You are invited to submit your nominations for any or all of the above in the comments attached to this post.  Nominations close at Midnight (GMT) on 21st January, 2013.

The winners of the awards will be entitled to display the blog awards “button” on their blogs, and to announce their success publicly.  Winners will be listed on this blog and on the main Imagineer web site and Facebook page.  Links to them will also be included on this blog site in a special link category.