Trilogy Vcon AD 3 colour22 1024x732 Splintered Universe Trilogy for SaleOrder Here:

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EBM asquith press1 300x247 FREE Workshop on How to Format Your Book Interior for EBM

Asquith Press EBM

Along with the recent purchase and launch of its Espresso Book Machine (EBM) and formation of Asquith Press for self-publishers, The Toronto Reference Library is offering a FREE workshop with Instructor Nina Munteanu on how to format the interior of your book in preparation for printing on the EBM.

Create and publish your book with Asquith Press, the library’s new book printing service. This tutorial-style workshop will cover the basic steps needed to create a text block fit for publication (cover preparation is not covered in this workshop). Learn the layout, formatting and design tools you need to meet industry standards and prepare a text block for printing.? ?The workshop is suitable for those just beginning in text layout, although a basic knowledge of Word is required.  Bring a USB flash drive to take home materials from the course.nina reading close web 189x300 FREE Workshop on How to Format Your Book Interior for EBM

Using an unformatted Microsoft Word version of one of her professionally published books, Instructor Nina Munteanu coaches writers and self-publishers through the steps to professionally format their book interior. The workshop includes a demonstration of the EBM.

Classes have already started. The next class is Monday, July 14th, 2-4pm

To register for a class, contact the Digital Innovation Hub at the Toronto Reference Library (AsquithPress@torontopubliclibrary.ca) or call the library at 416-393-7007. You can also go to the website and register online. Classes are free.

Nina Munteanu is an award-winning novelist and short story writer and teaches writing at the University of Toronto and George Brown College. She is traditionally published but also helps run a small indie press, where she writes, designs and formats text interiors.

More about the EBM and Self-Publishing:

Surfing the Hybrid Wave of Publishing

Helping Editors Help Self-Publishing Authors

The Changing Face of Publishing

Publish Your Book with Toronto Public Library’s EBM

I Love New York: BEA and Lightning’s Book Espresso Machine

Embracing Your Future

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nina and siko jan2014 222x300 Helping Editors Help Self Publishing Authors

Nina Munteanu, BC coast 2014

With more and more authors choosing to self-publish, freelance editors are finding more demands–and challenges–in their efforts to help authors improve their works toward something that is worthy of publication. Editors aren’t necessarily teachers, but they can help authors by directing them to good teaching tools.

Nina Munteanu coaches writers to publication and adds, “When I’m coaching a writer I always send them to the library or the bookstore to buy a book–to read another writer. Usually, I’m advising them to buy a work of fiction to help them understand metaphor or setting or plot. As a storytelling coach, I find it helpful for them to learn by reading.”

Nina advises that editors do the same. She councils editors working with self-publishing authors to also direct them to appropriate resources. “It’s not surprising that some of the very best books on writing and storytelling are written by writers, who have learned their craft out there in the traditional publishing world.” She cites the following excellent resources for editors to direct their clients to, including her own guidebooks, used in the courses she teaches at The University of Toronto and George Brown College.

Some Resources that Nina recommends for Learning the Craft of Fiction Writing:

  • Dibel, Ansen. 1999. “Elements of Writing: Plot” Writer’s Digest Books. Cincinnati, OH. 198pp
  • Johnson, Bill. 2000. “A Story is a Promise” Blue Heron Publishing. Portland, OR.187pp
  • Maass, Donald. 2004. “Writing the Breakout Novel Workbook” Writer’s Digest Books. Cincinnati, OH.
  • Munteanu, Nina. 2009. “The Fiction Writer: Get Published, Write Now!” Starfire World Syndicate. Louisville. Louisville, KY. 264pp.

Nina stresses that good resources are a key feature of good instruction. “Reference guides that are easy to read and learn from can make a difference in a student writer’s success,” says Nina. This is why English writing professor David Merchant at Louisianna Tech University uses her guidebook over others on his shelf. Says Merchant, “Nina’s ability to take arid academic prose and make it interesting to students is actually rather remarkable. I have been regularly using material she created for helping my students understand the hero’s journey in literature – the students find her writing engaging, accessible, and (and this is important) easily applicable not only to their readings but to their essays as well. Brava, Nina, brava.”

Nina’s guidebooks, based on the expertise of many other writers and her own personal experiences,  are ideal resources for freelance editors working with self-publishing authors. Nina suggests that, “If your client is having problems with point of view tell them to read Chapter V; if they just aren’t doing dialogue well send them to Chapter D; if they’re not getting metaphors tell them to read Chapter M, and so on.”

Nina Munteanu’s Writing Resources:

FictionWriter front cover 2nd ed2 150x150 Helping Editors Help Self Publishing AuthorsThe Fiction Writer: Get Published, Write Now! (Starfire World Syndicate, 2009): this guidebook on fiction and non-fiction writing focuses on the major aspects of the craft of writing. Used by creative writing instructors of high schools through to universities in the USA, Canada and abroad, as well as by professional writers, The Fiction Writer provides an excellent reference for authors working with editors on their own project. It’s written in a conversational style that makes it easy to read and learn. Available on Amazon and a quality bookstore near you.

Journal Writer FRONT cover WEB3 150x150 Helping Editors Help Self Publishing AuthorsThe Journal Writer: Finding Your Voice (Pixl Press, 2012): this guidebook provides advice on all aspects of expressive writing from journaling to memoir, and includes instruction on the use of blogs and major social networks. It is available on Amazon and a quality bookstore near you.

The Writer’s Toolkit (Starfire/Lighthouse Media Group, 2010): this 3-DVD set of educational lectures on 1) how to get started…and finish, 2) craft, and 3) marketing and promotion covers all major areas for a writer to successfully publish. Used in libraries and schools, the DVDs are an excellent resource for authors just starting on a project. Available on www.ninamunteanu.com.

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NASAspacestation02 300x187 Putting the Science in Science FictionBy Pat Millar

October 8, 2013

“Good science fiction takes what’s current and projects on it–asks ‘what if?’” says author Nina Munteanu. “It takes existing science and bends it a little. To do that, you have to research and present the science quite well.”

Munteanu, a former ecologist, has published multiple novels. She has authored award-winning short stories, articles, and non-fiction books, and has won numerous awards for her writing.

Munteanu says that growing up, she always wanted to be a writer, but when she went to Concordia University, she instead decided to go into aquatic ecology and limnology (the study of inland waters) to “save the world.”

“I guess I always was drawn to it,” says Munteanu. “I always loved nature and had a thing for the environment, and it seemed like a way for me to make an impact and a difference.”

After years of working as an ecology consultant, Munteanu says she wanted to get back to writing.

“My writing took a back seat when I was working [as a consultant],” says Munteanu. “I never stopped, but it wasn’t my priority. I was still writing, and after a while, I got a break from consulting.” Since she always wanted to work full time as a writer, she decided to quit her job, move to Nova Scotia, and start writing full time.

Munteanu also lectured for over twenty years at colleges and universities, where she taught ecology, limnology & environmental education and published papers in scientific journals. She now teaches courses in writing and science fiction.

About why she enjoys teaching, Munteanu says that she likes to enable people and help them pursue their goals. “There’s the same fulfilling feeling in teaching science and writing “of helping others to turn lights on and follow their desires and helping others learn to communicate, which I think is very important.”

Munteanu says that the science described in her science fiction is meant to be both imaginative and accurate.

“The characters in my books usually represent societal response to scientific problems and [the] unknown,” says Munteanu. She also says that all of the science fiction that she writes is very much idea-based, with the theme usually tied to how society is evolving, technological and intellectual advancement, and consequences of a rift between how we connect with nature and how we exploit technology for our gains.

“It’s extremely important for me to apply my science and limnology and aquatic ecology knowledge to my writing–to take my science background and meld it with pursuit as a communicator.”

“In short,” says Munteanu, “my ecology background plays big part in my writings.”

Nina’s advice to prospective ecologists and writers is the same: just do what you love.

“It doesn’t really matter what you are pursuing, have passion for what you pursue. Do it because it has meaning in your life and is important to you. Go with what you’re interested in and don’t get bogged down by the steps ahead of you. The key to succeed is to look past mundane stuff that’s there in every job and look towards the fun parts that interest you and make you want to go into that field in the first place.”

This article by Pat Millar first appeared on October 8, 2013 in the NSTW Blog of the Government of Canada: www.science.gc.ca

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diana nina merridy betty glenda 300x214 Self Editing & Revisions Workshop in Snapd Article

Nina with some of her workshop students

“The most recent in a series of workshops called ‘Writers Take Flight’ by internationally renowned author and UofT writing instructor Nina Munteanu, was held on Saturday March 29th at Flight Café … Nina focused on self-editing and revisions and, for those who have waded into the oft murky waters of novel writing, she covers ten things you need to consider when revising your work. From ‘taking a break’ for a couple of weeks from what you think is the finished product (so you can look at it with fresh eyes and revise accordingly) to coming up with a believable plot that will then lead to the creation of interesting characters who have both depth and range and are neither one dimensional or infallible.the writers toolkit front cropped3 210x300 Self Editing & Revisions Workshop in Snapd Article

If you’re a serious writer of fiction or non fiction, these workshops would be invaluable in helping you along the way. And, if you can’t make it to one of her workshops, don’t despair, you will find everything you need on a six hour set of three DVDs called ‘The Writers Toolkit’, which you can buy directly from Nina: email her at nina.sfgirl@gmail.com.”–Article and Photos by Frank McKinney, SNAPD, May 2014

Nina Margot 300x222 Self Editing & Revisions Workshop in Snapd Article

Flight Cafe owner Margot Allin with Nina Munteanu

You can read the entire article “Writers Workshop: Self-Editing & Revisions” by Frank McKinney in Snapd here.

The 10 steps to successful revision include:

  1. Let your work breathe
  2. Dig deep
  3. Take inventory
  4. Highlight the surges
  5. Purge and unclutter
  6. Check Point of View
  7. Make a plot promise
  8. Deepen your characters
  9. Write scenes (show, don’t tell)
  10. Be concrete

writers need COVER editing 202x300 Self Editing & Revisions Workshop in Snapd ArticleYou can read about these ten steps and more in Nina’s ebook “What Writers Need to Know About Self-Editing & Revisions” for sale on Amazon.com for $2.99.

The seventh of a series of short books on writing craft and publishing for writers, this collection of papers provides instruction on the process of self-editing and revision, including the 10-step checklist. Topics covered include: exposition, simplifying, voice, language, POV, show vs. tell and knowing when you’re finished.

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