Michelle L. Johnson’s novel DIVINITY now available.


Michelle L. Johnson:

A little background on the writing process for DIVINITY and some of the folks who helped make it happen…

Originally posted on At the End of the Dock:

Johnson cites support from Norfolk’s The Muse Writing Center for helping her succeed. Launch celebration and author book signing Friday, October 3, 7-9 p.m. at The Muse Writers Center, Norfolk, NA. Public Welcome.

For most people, the idea of writing and publishing a book is a bit overwhelming. They picture a lonely person, holed up in dark corner, searching for words to tell their stories that somehow magically arrive in the right order at the right time.

Author Michelle L. Johnson, whose novel Divinity was released by Spencer Hill Press on September 23, had a very different experience thanks to her classmates at The Muse Writing Center in Norfolk, VA.

Divinity_ebooklg“The best writers, and all the advice books on writing novels, suggest that writers find other people, ideally other writers, to give them honest, constructive feedback on their work,” Johnson says. “I was fortunate to find a group of…

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Book Review: DIVINITY — by Michelle L. Johnson


Michelle L. Johnson:

I really love this review which breaks it all down without any spoilers, so I had to share!

Originally posted on At the End of the Dock:

Divinity_ebooklgImagine your reaction if the Archangel Gabriel appeared before you and announced that he was your father, and that you’re half Archangel. Not half angel. Half Archangel.

Would that create a little upheaval in your world?

When Julia Samson, the main character in Michelle L. Johnson’s new novel Divinity meets her father – yep, that’s Gabriel, the Archangel —  Julia is pointed down a path that seems pre-determined, or least Gabriel and the other Archangels think it is. Julia, however, has overcome many challenges in her 30-some years on Earth. She’s not going let angels suddenly tell her who she is and what she’s supposed to do.

Johnson has created a great cast of characters, discarding the traditional angel persona in favor of a fresh, less powerful and more human, group of Archangels. They have a non-traditional purpose too, assigned to keep the Earth simply balanced instead of pure and…

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Guest Post: ‘Good Vs Evil’ by Michelle L. Johnson


Originally posted on Draumr Kópa:

Michelle JohnsonGood vs. Evil is a common theme in fiction. After all, without it where would all of our beloved superhero stories be, from Superman to Batman? The inner struggle of those characters, the good vs. evil within themselves, is a large part of what makes them interesting.

In my novel DIVINITY, though, don’t assume that the traditional good vs. evil, angel vs. evil, rules apply. They don’t.
Every character – angel, human, and even the terrifying A’nwel – has an agenda. They each have a role to play, and a purpose that guides their actions.

When our main character Julia discovers that she is half-human and half Archangel, her agenda is to simply understand who she is, to learn about her family, and to understand how to use her own unique powers. Her agenda quickly converges with those of the Archangels, each of whom have their own sense of who…

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Justice for Baby Hope


baby-hope

The dedication and perseverance of the officers in this case is so incredible, when I read this original post it moved me to tears. This is how it starts:

BY ORDER OF THE CHIEF OF DEPARTMENT, THE FOLLOWING IS TO BE READ AT ROLL CALL TO ALL MEMBERS OF THE SERVICE AND POSTED CONSPICUOUSLY WITHIN COMMANDS:
On July 23rd, 1991, twenty-two years ago, the body of a four-year-old girl was found in a cooler off the Henry Hudson Parkway.  She had been starved and sexually assaulted. Despite a citywide appeal, the 34th Precinct Detective Squad was unable to locate her relatives. All leads were soon exhausted without even learning her name.

Using their own funds, the squad bought her a burial plot and a headstone. On the day she was buried, they christened her Baby Hope.

As life in a city of eight million people went on, the men and women responsible for Baby Hope’s memory never forgot about her. At the time, Assistant Chief Joseph Reznick was the 34th Precinct Detective Squad commander. No matter where his career took him, he would return to Baby Hope’s grave each year to collect evidence from the flowers and memorials left there.

There are good people in this world, capable of extraordinary things in the face of tragedy. To read the rest of the original post, please click here.

Author-Agent Pitch Sessions


In a week and a half I will be in Surrey, BC at the SiCW, taking pitches most of the conference, and hanging out with all the awesome authors. Before I get there, there’s something I would like to share with all you authors out there.

For most, sitting down to pitch a book to an agent is like sitting down in front of a fire-breathing dragon who may, after hearing your idea, open their mouths and unleash a ball of fiery doom on your brilliance, reducing it to cinders and soot. Dragon-Breaths-Fire-In-The-Game-Of-Thrones-Gif

It’s terrifying, and very few authors are able to sit down and feel even remotely comfortable. But there’s something authors need to remember about agents, and it will make your pitch session pretty simple once you wrap your head around it.

drum-roll-please

Are you ready for this? Okay. Here it is… Continue reading

5 Things NOT To Do In Your Query Letter


Querying an agent is hard, especially when you are just starting out. I know, I’ve been there. But being on the receiving end of the query letter, it’s a lot easier to pinpoint some of the common errors authors make. So here is a short list of what not to do, in hopes of helping even a few first timers.

 

  1. Do Not Self-Depreciate. I am surprised by how many new authors do this. “I know it’s only my first novel, and probably won’t sell…”  “I don’t have any education, or any real platform…” “You probably don’t have the time to waste on this…” The list goes on. Be confident. Confidence is sexy. Confidence sells.
  2. Do Not Use Bold Type, All Caps, Purple Lettering, or Italics. This does make your query stand out, but not in the way you are hoping. Agents look through many queries and manuscripts every day. Their eyes are beyond tired. Opening one of these emails is like being kicked in the head. You really don’t want that to be your first impression.
  3. Do Not Use a Form Query Letter. You want your writing to sell your work for you. Form letters tell us that you are either too lazy to write your own or incapable. Plus, inevitably you will forget to fill out something so what we will see is this: Dear (Agent’s Name), My book (Your Book Title)…
  4. Do Not Address Your Query To 50 Different Agents. We know you’ve sent out multiple submissions. But we like to think you are looking for an agent that fits you and your book and that you’ve done some research. Besides, I can guarantee you that the submission guidelines are different with each company. Which brings me to the final one…
  5. Do Not Ignore the Submission Guidelines. We don’t instantly reject or delete those that don’t follow our simple guidelines, but most others do. Do yourself a favor, go to the websites and make sure you follow the guidelines.

This is obviously not the full list of everything you shouldn’t do, but it’s a start. If you think it will help someone else, please share it around!