Roses are red.
Violets are blue.
Two inane observations
suck as poetry.
Roses are red.
Roses are red.
Violets are blue.
Two inane observations
suck as poetry.
I have always wanted to be a novelist. I have attempted a couple novels, but have not completed one to date. So, I decided to write a book of poetry, and then I decided to write children’s books to keep myself writing, authoring – journeying towards Novelist. My children’s books are a reflection of my four children and their idiosyncrasies and quirks. I believe being African American is something to be celebrated and not enough of us are creating positive imagery for Black youth. My books highlight Black main characters in a way that is relatable to all.
If you enjoyed Orwell’s 1984, Huxley’s Brave New World, or even Pixar’s Wall-e there is something for you in Nate Ragolia’s The Retroactivist. Throw in a bit of nuanced Stepford Wives and a splash of Bellamy’s Looking Backward and you have a sense of the novel: a speculative fiction piece focused on what truly qualifies a society as utopian and a person as happy.
(More below cover art)
Set in the year 2087, the government has solved hunger, illness, social strife and all major components of societal duress. Citizens travel the world via tube cars and enjoy cocktails made in convenient replicators. Sexual gratification is omnipresent and all activities are scheduled and paid for by the flick of a wifi wristband. The primary goal of citizens – enjoy life.
Society is ‘perfected’, yet perfection leaves main character Reid Rosales unfulfilled.
Akin to Alice tumbling down the rabbit hole, Reid finds an underground sect of fellow Citizens with a shared longing for the past. Reid decides to eschew the safety of perfection for the excitement of uncertainty. He leaves his sultry girlfriend, a cush apartment and a life of leisure in the United Sociocracy of the Americas. He immerses himself in the philosophy, economy, and society of the 20th century. His newly acquired cohorts band together and take it upon themselves to be ‘retroactivists’.
Ragolia has a knack for presenting the fantastic as believable, unfolding a unique perspective on what it means to be genuinely fulfilled, not just comfortable. I have a sense if Margaret Atwood and Ayn Rand sat down for an afternoon of Chardonnay, they would have lots to say about this novel. Ragolia also gives the reader a treat by nestling into the novel subtle references to the 20th Century that if you are on your toes you will read with a smirk. The Retroactivist reads quickly, has a steady pace and is a tribute to what Indie Authors have to offer. Kudos to Nate Ragolia. Buy it!
Rob Cooke’s Author Spotlight on IntrovertPRESS
Coming soon: The Lost Song of Miriam Landry
Rob Cooke wrote early scenes of Moonshiner’s Legacy while undergoing treatment for cancer. He took his kids to the library, checked every book about the era in his novels and built the story one page at a time. The whole family was involved. From those research adventures with his kids, his series began. Moonshiner’s Legacy starts with Bo Barnum and his pursuits of handling the family moonshine business. Sara, his daughter, and granddaughter to a Creole Indian, is the focus of Sarah’s Swamp Blues.
Rob’s stories unfold with dynamic roots growing into the deep Southern culture of 1920’s Arkansas and Louisiana. Receiving 5-star reviews, Sara’s Swamp Blues continues the legacy into the violence and tumult of the 1950’s. Rob himself is from Nebraska and has a passion for Depression Era themes, especially the music of that time period. He is also a budding guitar, banjo and harmonica player.
Connect with Rob here. Please re-post and re-tweet to support Rob!
Thanks for visiting the IntrovertPRESS site. We are pleased to spotlight our authors and their literary ventures. If you would like to see the authors supported by IntrovertPRESS click here.
There are vampires and werewolves, spaceships and new planets, underworlds and water worlds. All of these genres expand the mind and transport the reader. Literary fiction, as a point of departure from the exotic, dwells in the moment of real human interaction…making the mundane breathtaking and normal people complex.
Writers in Oxford Competition. Restrictions: Oxfordshire writers aged 18-30. Genre: Fiction, nonfiction. “Submissions are invited of a piece of writing ‘Inspired by Oxford.’ The work can be ﬁction or non-ﬁction, up to 500 words in length, and can have been previously published.” Prize: Two prizes of £350 and three prizes of £100. Deadline: September 1, 2017.PEN Prison Writing Contest. Restrictions: Anyone incarcerated in a federal, state, or county prison in the year before the September 1 deadline is eligible to enter. Genres: Poetry, fiction, drama, creative nonfiction. Prize: $200 top prize per category. Deadline: September 1, 2017.
Cheshire Prize for Literature. Restrictions: The writer must have been born, live or have lived, study or have studied, work or have worked, in Cheshire, UK. Genre: Original and previously unpublished children’s story or poem. Prize: £2,000. Deadline: September 1, 2017.
Helen Schaible Shakespearean/Petrarchan Sonnet Contest. Genre: Poetry. Prize: $50, 2nd Prize $35, 3rd Prize $15, three Honorable Mentions, three Special Recognitions. Deadline: September 1, 2017.
On The Premises Short Story Contest. “For this contest, write a creative, compelling, well-crafted story between 1,000 and 5,000 words long in which the idea of community (or some kind of community) plays an important role.” Prize: Winners receive between US$60 and US$220, and publication. Deadline: September 1, 2017.
Toni Beauchamp Prize in Critical Art Writing. Genre: Scholarly essay. All work submitted must have been written or published within the last year. Prize: $3,000. Deadline: September 1, 2017.
Concis Pith of Prose and Poem Contest. Genre: Poems, prose poems, visual poems, flash fiction, micro-essays or what-have-you. Prize: First prize $250 and publication. Deadline: September 3, 2017.
Pitch America is a pitch contest created by Laura Pohl to focus on submissions and books produced by Latino voices. This contest will feature the first 500 words and the 35-word pitch of completed and polished manuscripts written by Latinos. Please keep it in mind that this exclusively for Latino writers. Prize: Chance at representation. Deadline: September 3, 2017
Young Lions Fiction Award. Restrictions: Open to US citizens 35 years of age or younger. Genre: Novel or a collection of short stories published between January 2017 and December 2017. Submissions by publisher only. Authors may not submit their own work. Prize: $10,000.00. Deadline: September 8, 2017.
Solid Essay Contest. Restrictions: Open to high school students. Genre: Essay (See site for topics.) Minimum number of words is 600 and maximum is 800. Prize: Scholarship of $1000. Deadline: September 8, 2017.
Michael Marks Awards for Poetry Pamphlets. Restrictions: Poetry poetry pamphlet must be published in the UK between 1st July 2016 and 31st July 2017. Genre: Poetry. Prize: £5,000. Deadline: September 13, 2017.
Shaughnessy Cohen Award for Political Writing. Genre: Book of literary nonfiction that captures a political subject of relevance to Canadian readers and has the potential to shape or influence thinking on contemporary Canadian political life. Book must be published in Canada. Prize: CAN$25,000.00. Deadline: Books published between July 5 and September 12 must be received by September 13, 2017.
VCU Cabell First Novelist Award. Genre: First novel published January–June 2017. No self-published books. Prize: $5,000. Deadline: September 14, 2017.
PEN/Phyllis Naylor Working Writer Fellowship. Restrictions: Candidates must have published one or more novels for children or young adults that have been warmly received by literary critics, but have not generated sufficient income to support the author. Genre: Book-length children’s or young-adult fiction. Prize: $5000. Deadline: September 15, 2017.
Cha International Poetry Prize. Genre: Poetry. Each poem must be a translation (loosely defined) of a text (loosely defined) from/about Hong Kong or China, written originally in English or Chinese, into a poem that is about contemporary Hong Kong. Prize: First Prize US$1501; Second Prize US$800; Third Prize US$400 and five Commended Prizes, each US$100. Deadline: September 15, 2017.
The PEN/Heim Translation Fund. Genre: Book-length works of fiction, poetry, creative nonfiction, and drama in translation. Beginning in 2017, under the administering of the PEN/Heim Translation Fund, PEN will also offer the PEN Grant for the English Translation of Italian Literature. From the pool of annual submissions, judges for the PEN/Heim Translation Fund will select one project of narrative prose that has been translated into English from the Italian to receive this award, which will come with a $5,000 prize. Prize: $2000 – $4000. Deadline: September 15, 2017.
Kathy Fish Fellowship for Emerging Writers. Restrictions: All writers previously unpublished in SmokeLong Quarterly and who do not have a published chapbook or book-length work in any genre (or are not under contract for such) are eligible to apply. Genre: Flash fiction (1000 words max). Prize: $500. Deadline: September 20, 2017. (The contest is free up until Sept 20, but requires fee after that date.)
Barnes & Noble Discover Great New Writers Program. Restrictions: Publishers recommend writers making a strong literary debut. Authors cannot submit their own work to the program; self-published writers and titles published via print-on-demand or available only as NOOK books are also ineligible for submission. Genres: Literary fiction, short story collections and literary non-fiction, such as travel essays, memoirs, or other non-fiction with a strong narrative will be considered. Books should be intended for an adult or a young adult audience. Prize: $35,000 to six writers. Deadline: September 21, 2017.
Sunday Times EFG Short Story Award. Restrictions: The award is open to any novelist or short story writer from around the world who is published in the UK. Genre: Short story. Prize: £30,000.Deadline: September 28, 2017.
Writers Online Picture Book Prize. Genre: Unagented and unpublished picture book up to 800 words. (No illustrations.) Prize: £200 and critique. Deadline: September 29, 2017.
Lilith Magazine Fiction Competition. Genre: Story of interest to Jewish women. Prize: $250. Deadline: September 30, 2017.
Lee & Low Books New Voices Award is sponsored by Lee &Low Publishers. Restrictions: The contest is open to writers of color who are residents of the United States and who have not previously had a children’s picture book published. Genre: Children’s books – fiction, nonfiction or poetry. Prize: $1,000 and publication. Deadline: September 30, 2017.
Iowa Short Fiction and John Simmons Short Fiction Awards. Genre: Short story collection. The manuscript must be a collection of short stories in English of at least 150 word-processed, double-spaced pages. Prize: Publication by the University of Iowa Press, royalties. Deadline: September 30, 2017.
L. Ron Hubbard’s Writers of the Future Contest is held four times a year. Restrictions: The Contest is open only to those who have not professionally published a novel or short novel, or more than one novelette, or more than three short stories, in any medium. Professional publication is deemed to be payment of at least six cents per word, and at least 5,000 copies, or 5,000 hits. Genre: Short stories or novelettes of science fiction or fantasy. Prizes: $1,000, $750, $500, Annual Grand Prize: $5,000. Deadline: September 30, 2017.
Jerry Jazz Musician Fiction Contest. Genre: Short fiction. Prize: $100. Deadline: September 30, 2017.
Solution Loans Short Story Contest. Restrictions: Open to UK residents 18 years and up. Genre: Short fiction on theme of “Coins.” Prize: £200 and publication on the Solution Loans website. Deadline: September 30, 2017.
Salisbury Story Prize. Genre: Short fiction (500 words) on theme of “City of Stories. Open to ages 4 and up. Prize: £50 for children to be spent at Waterstones. Free online course for adults. Deadline: September 30, 2017.
A very worthwhile read…
On Monday, I found out that some bug hit a German e-book site causing the reactivation of long-dead listings, including one of mine, putting myself and some other authors in breach of KDP Select’s exclusivity rule.
Amazon pounced into action and cancelled my Countdown deal which was scheduled for this week, screwing up a carefully planned promotion. And despite pledging to resolve the matter and restore the promo, Amazon has not done so.
I’m going to go through what happened in detail so you can be sure that I acted correctly at all points – because there is a lot of shadiness going on at the moment – but feel free to skim some of the details if you wish.
View original post 2,150 more words