Thursday, February 27, 2014

Copyrights, Fair Use, & Distance Learning

Study this interesting piece,  copyright "fair use". It includes some information about distance learning that might be helpful to writers planning to offer "distance learning" educational courses.

Free Nonfiction Course Via Application at University of Iowa, International Writing Program

Free Nonfiction Writing Course  opportunity for nonfiction writers, however only fifteen slots via application, offered by the University of Iowa , International Writing Program.

Cutter Wood will be the instructor. He has a MFA from the University of Iowa’s Nonfiction Writing Program, and is published in such publications as Harper’s and the L Magazine. He lives and works in Brooklyn, New York.

Bookmark link , as they routinely offer FREE courses in different genres -- poetry and fiction have been offered in the past.

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Rasana Atreya's Wisdom on Self Publishing Basics

Rasana Atreya wrote a FAQ about Self Publishing Basics, on her blog, On Getting Published, Good Books, and Living Goddesses: Publishing Trends, e-books, Literary Agents

You will learn many things you need to know, but expect to visit FAQ  more than once so add it to your bookmarks. It takes time to absorb what she explains, such as the following:

* Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Apple etc. are vendors that you may use to sell your ebook.

* CreateSpace does paperbacks. Paperback formatting is very different from ebook formatting. While you can get away doing your own ebook formatting, or have someone do it for you on the cheap, paperback formatting is way more complicated - and expensive.

* Smashwords is an aggregator.

Rasana said, "... there's more on this in my FAQ. "

Why Good Books Don't Get Published

Evan Gregory's interesting take, at Flaubert's Pyramid, on why good books don't get published is worth your time to read.

Friday, February 7, 2014


The final volume of the Behind These Mountains  trilogy is also in Kindle eEdition now, preserving the history of northwestern Sanders County, Montana for posterity.

Because the books have been revised to include information not available before, plus being edited by professionals. Photographs reproduction is also enhanced. The editions are superior in every way to the original softcover editions and this online edition.

 Even if you don't wish to buy the books, do take advantage of Kindle's free "Look Inside".

 Viewers have the following responses ~~

"You've got that one wonderful paragraph about yourself moving to the area, which I think makes the whole thing so credible and worthy. I love that. I also think your other paragraphs have a lot of information in them that is interesting, and kind of gives a style or voice that people can get a feel for. YOU come through ... in the books regardless of the small amount of your own prose," Sheri McGregor

"Congratulations, Mona! YOU'RE the one who did the work, put in the effort. It is your accomplishment -- and a fine accomplishment it is, a real contribution to your region," G. K. Adams.

"I browsed through all three, and they look very good. Nice job! A little bit of history preserved for the ages! Bravo!" Gary Presley, Author of Seven Wheelchairs,

"You may have equally good days in the future, but never a better one. Hearty congratulations," Jack Shakely, Author, Confederate War Bonnet, Give Me A Log With You At One End, and many others,

"Huge congratulations, Mona. I know the struggles with following Smashwords' guide. But all three volumes! You're definitely on a champagne kick:-)" Joanna Weston,, and published in many anthologies and magazines.

"Dancing many happy dances for you, Mona! What a major accomplishment!!" Jody Ewing, Author, Iowa Cold Cases,

"Wonderful news! Congratulations, and much, much success," Guilie Castillo,

"Congratulations, Mona-what an accomplishment! Best," Judith Quaempts

"You have done a marvelous service here. If I lived in the area or had every lived in the area, I would definitely want your books. Nice going!" Judith Stock, Freelance writer,

"Big congratulations," June Gallant, member

"You are AMAZING!!!!!!!!! Congrats to you Mona," Kathy and Bill Creed.

"Mona, a simple congratulations just won't, FarrrrrrrOut! as John Denver would have said," Keith Bellinger

"This looks great! Two years! Plus the 20+ years before that. And the Kindles include pictures and footnotes. I know you were formatting all of this. You did so good. You're an inspiration. Victory, right! I posted announcements to Twitter, LinkedIn and Facebook," Katherine Kay,

"Congratulations!! I have been letting all my friends know about your books!" Michael Vanek

"Congratulations on the completion of your two-year project! What's next? I looked at your Mona's Kindle Store, but I haven't viewed the author page yet. $19.95 per volume is a good price, I think. Higher than most of the Kindle books I've seen--I assume because it's history with lots of photos--but still reasonable enough to be affordable for most folks," Marylyn Cork, Project director/co-author of the Bonner County History Book, Beautiful Bonner; co-author with Diane Mercer of Priest River and Priest Lake Memories; and co author with Diane Mercer and Jeanne Tomlin of Priest River and Priest Lake: Kaniksu Country in the Images of America series, Acadia Publishing.

"With all those photos, that's a major accomplishment. You set an example few can emulate," Mel Jacob, Author, "The Lilacs Bloom", "Deadly Valentine",

"Big Congrats!" Peter Bernhardt, Author: "The Stasi File," Quarter Finalist 2011 Amazon Breakthrough Novel Award; Sequel: "Kiss of the Shaman's Daughter." -
"They are good books--people will love them," Carol Page.

"pretty neat stuff!!" Frank Gremaux

"I found you at: and," David Miller.

"I peeked into Volume III and it's impressive, Mona. The phototgraphs are as clear as if I was holding them in my hand. Good, detailed write-ups for each one. Sometimes it seems like you've been working on this forever, but the truth is, you've accomplished a ton of work in a short time. I can only imagine the relief you feel at actually completing a task like this. It's fantastic! .... People are going to benefit from this history series for years to come." Sue Ellis,

"Congratulations, Mona. I can tell it's been a grand undertaking and the histories look fascinating. I wish you many, many sales," Carol Crigger, Author, Gone Rogue, Hereafter, Three Seconds to Thunder,

"Way to go! I was going through my books the other day, and it tickled me to see a lot of remembered names. Good job Mona, but now what will you do?" Neil Logan

"Mona, huge congratulations! I took a peek at your book through the Amazon Inside feature, and I am truly impressed. You have clearly worked long and hard, and your dedication has paid off," Bob Sanchez, Author, When Pigs Fly voted #1 Best Indie on Goodreads! and

"Congratulations. You must feel good having completed this project," Wayne Scheer

"Congratulations, Mona! Wonderful news, I'm thrilled for you. Way to go," - William Bartlett

"YAY!!!! I'm so proud of you!" Carla Street

"Dang, I hope yer still scribblin' stories gal.....yer notta writer! Yer, a story teller and. a dang gud 'un ta-boot welp, I kindee jist run acrost ya.....whilst diggin' up bones....The Thompsons are my maternal, funny thing about archeology ya jest never kno where thet trail will lead ya! And, it rode me, rite to you. Life really, throws folks curve balls sometimes it, seems like only yesterday I was, swilling a few cold pints with, my, favorite cousin.. Nipper.... on Okinawa, 1970...he being USAF on the western side of the USMC on the Eastern, remembering fallen comrades and, cousins KIAd in Vietnam. Never; realizing it, would be our last reunion...he was on my paternal side and, passed a year ago this past April. So, beings Im a travelin man, I jest pulled up stakes and, headed for Ehprata Wa. to visit his sister.

  Anyolways Im now residing in this sage brush and, rock rekindling old kinsmanships and, researching my mothers side...the Thompsons. So, whilst followin a trail , like a Blue Tick hound onna raccoons trail I barked up yer tree via the international web...Im David Thompsons 4th great grandson...knowing Thompsons Falls Montana is, named for him and, my mother Janes mother Eunice Neola Thompson was, raised on the Thompson ranch in, none other than, Thompson Falls, Im seeking written or,oral histories of, Montana Territory circa 1860-1950...and, hopefully pho-tee-graph√Ęs, on the flip side my maternal grandfather was a, a funny thing arises here at this, juncture he forbade talking of, his forefathers yet, the 2 families migrated outta Canada East, via Wisconsin about, the same time and, settled in Montana Territory as; your research has; probably shown you, if; you're aware of; D. Thompson they, were very acquainted and, friendly with, the indigenous tribes. It, just so, happens my grandfather Robert Murray Doherty was, buried on the Kootenai reservation in 1941....

    Bicca-Cutta...Mucka Cutta...means cut, bisquits grandmother....on, those cold freezing winter nights....when, the indian agent sold the Federal governments beef alottments for the indians; to pioneers and, miners...the tribes would head for the Thompson ranch..( Harry Albert Thompson and, his wife Sophie )..replete with, a barn....shelter and, above and, kinsmanship of, friendships spanning decades....So, out would come the fat and, flour, Harry would butcher beeves and, the pipe would be passed.....again....

   This, is; an oral history passed down from my grandmother, an interesting mother came to, visit me whilst I resided in Colorado about, 1992,she asked, to go to Estes Park so, up thru the Conifers along the old road we, drove...there, just up ahead and, to the right was, Charlie Silver Plumes indian trading post, stop she, beings Im an obedient 50s sumthin brat I do......after sum palaverin' and, rejoicing....Charlie had eaten at the Thompson Ranch as, a boy...ummm....wunder why, the many paths that are walked and, the many lives that are entwined throughout history come together a century later....what are the chances? A mere coincidence? A longing for old comrades to smoke the pipe again? A spiritual thing? Charlie passed 4 days later.

   So, here we and, I....onna fluke of mere chance....even, if; you kno nothing....I would honor you, by just outright buying a 3 volume set....bound of, course...

yer a good read....and. I mite add yer folks ˜ad a heckava sense of, humor.....naming you sech!


David J. Cheek"


Mona Leeson Vanek 
Montana Scribbler |
"Behind These Mountains, Vols. I, II, & III |
Mona's Author Page |
(Online copies of original softcover editions: