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Adventure Books and Mind Control: What Your Mama Didn’t Know


When we were kids, we climbed tall trees and splashed in bottomless puddles Now as an adult, I pause when walking through those same puddles and look at the other me that exists in that reflected world.

She is someone brave who does not forget to find joy in a moment. She feels for the life that is and the life that could be.

As always I have to look away and see the counting down of the street crosswalk and leave my ripples in the puddle to find their own journeys. My dripping feet leave wet and quickly disappearing footsteps behind me – like my childhood that is hard to hold on to and dissipates into barely visible memories.

It is important to find the magic where you can.

Because so much will try to steal your joy.

My mother taught me better than to let it.

And she did it with a book.

I was reading a BookBub article this morning – an interview with author Celeste Ng. She said:

 The person who helped me fall in love with reading was: my mom —

she gave me tons of books

when I was a kid and made a point of giving me books

about strong girls and women

so that I could imagine becoming one too.

With books, Celeste’s mom taught her to be braver and showed her what strength she would need to be a woman in our world. What books had made me and what did they say about women? Reflecting, the first book I can think of is Mercedes Lackey’s Arrows of the Queen.

The book features a girl named Talia, curly brown hair and big brown eyes (my exact likeness), and a big heart brave enough to stand up for others but not herself ( I was also a timid child). I related too much.

Servant girl Talia is kidnapped by a white stallion and told she is a Herald, a mage with gifts that make her the queens right-hand counselor. Adventure ensues and she learns how to use her gift, the power to feel others emotions and impact their thoughts.

Not to spoiler it, but she learns that to feel another’s emotions is a heavy burden.

I think my mother knew the kind of hero I would need. On the page and in our house, I learned what compassion, kindness, and strength could be. To this day, I wonder if I worry too deeply and give too much. I realize from Talia, that emotions are not a weakness–feeling too much and learning how to control it–it is power in yourself. It is a respect for all people and a need to see that connection in others. The villain isn’t simply evil but has become so through their own circumstances and choices, and the hero is not always free of guilt.

What I hope to impart as Mother’s Day has just passed, is that for both Celeste and myself, our mothers chose books that directly impacted our views of what it means to be a woman. For her, it was strength. For me, it is compassion.

You may not realize how much mind control those first bookling years impacted you, but don’t lose the magic your mother helped instill in you with those first books. Reflect on those adventurous days and remember they are so many new adventures ahead.

Moms and mom figures are a crucial step in how we define ourselves as women. I thank mine every day for being the spunky, eclectic, and open-minded creature she is, and for showing me that I can have a big heart and be brave and powerful and grounded. She taught me to see worlds in puddles and the possibilities in myself- I find that in yourself today!

Happy Belated Mother’s Day Bookworms!

Let us know in the comments the book your mom first impacted you with!

Sincerely,

The Bookworm.

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The Best (and eh) Places to Live in Boston

When looking at the extensive list of apartments online from broker sites and apartment listings can be overwhelming. When I first started looking at apartments, I didn’t know where to start.

Only after some research I found out the there are some areas that are cheaper, older, have more or less crime, and some that are overpriced just because of where they are located *Back Bay and Southie*.

Below, we shall delve into what the various areas are around Boston in relation to Emerson College. For those of you attending other schools or just looking for the area information, Emerson is located directly in the middle of downtown Boston across from the Boston Commons and the Boston Public Gardens (with the famous statue of Washington on a horse).

So with downtown as our center point, let’s work our way directionally!

Most Popular areas: East & West

images

East

If you travel east of downtown, you will pass through Chinatown (some inexpensive housing available not much) and then the Financial district. A little north of the city is the North End, or Little Italy with some housing as well. North End and the Financial District can be a bit price because they are prime real estate, tourist areas, and close to the city.

The next section and the furthest you can get without running into the Pacific Ocean in East Boston. Surrounded on three sides and connected by the bridge and the Blue line of the T, East Boston is a bit farther from the city than other areas but is more economical for it.

Primarily families, schools, and students, East Boston is right next to the airport and has close access to the water. There are high-end condominiums along the water if that is your thing as well! The further away you get from the water the cheaper the rent. Water= scenic = $1000 more in rent!

East Boston is a nice place to live if you don’t want to be right next to the city and nightlife and pay a reasonable cost.

images (1)

West

Traveling from Emerson, you will pass through the Back Bay, Fenway, Allston, and Brighton neighborhoods. Take note that these areas are all accessible off of the B Line of the Green Line train, the longest and most crowded train line on Boston Red Sox game days. However, I live off this line and haven’t had any problems, yet the B line is a little slower than the others because of all the Boston College stops it makes.

If you are thinking price wise, just remember the closer to the city the more you will pay for a smaller size of an apartment. Back Bay and Fenway are closer to the city and are have things like Newbury St. (quaint shopping street popular with tourists), Trinity Church (old gothic church that is free is you go on Saturdays and attend the 9a.m. service), Boston Public Library (with the majestic vaulted ceilings), and Fenway Park (because Boston is serious about their teams).

Hence, Allston is the area of the college students, and not necessarily the graduate students. Close to Berkley, Boston College, and a few other colleges, Allston is the most economical of the areas without traveling south of the city or far north. However, the building tends to be much older and not in as great a shape. So if you want to live in Allston, make sure to view beforehand!

Brighton is also a nice way to go. Traveling almost to the end of the B-Line you will reach Brighton. It is a quaint area, quiet, nicely laid out with row houses and old big historical homes. The apartments aren’t too expensive but are more expensive the Allston for sure.

Next week we will cover the “The Ups and Downs of Living in Boston, The South and North Side”

Next Week Bookworms!

Sincerely,

Kime J. Sims.

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What Kind of Apartment is Right for You?

You want an apartment in Boston but don’t know which room is right for you? There are so many options it is difficult to know what is right for you and your lifestyle (or pocketbook). Some floor plans and sizes are better suited for the privacy seeker or the thrift shopper.  But there are some key things to watch out for with each!

Here are the different types of apartment and which could be best for you!

  • Studio: This will often be a single room with a bathroom and kitchenette attached. If you are lucky it might have a full stove and fridge, but many of them come with half fridges and a small two burner stove. A lot of people like the studio because of it’s privacy and ease. However, some people find that the studios can be overpriced and lacking on space due to the tight constraints of Boston’s old buildings. If you want to share a studio with a roommate, you should check with your landlord/building management because there are certain Boston city codes on how many people can live in a certain square footage.
    • Cost:
      • Low end: $1000-$1600/
      • High end: $1600-$2500
    • Pro’s: Your own space!
    • Con’s: Pricey and Amenities can be lacking

 

one bedroom floor plan

  • One Bedroom: One bedrooms are similar to a studio and can be almost the same square footage. However, someone bedrooms have the ability to fit two people, one in the bedroom and one in the living room. These apartments are called “one-bedroom-splits” or just “splits” to keep it simple. These can be economical and make the rent easier to handle. My roommate and I currently have this structure and were lucky to find a one bedroom that had two entrances. Make sure this is okay with your landlord before you turn a 1-bedroom unit into a split. (I put up an accordion door in mine to make it a split since the living room didn’t have a door.
    • Cost (per month):
      • Low: $1500- $2100
      • High: $2200-$2700
    • Pro: Fewer people involved, economical
    • Con: Harder to find

 

  • Two Bedroom: Two bedrooms can be great where you can find them. They offer both residents privacy and often come with a living room space that allows for you to have company. One bedrooms are a bit too crowded to have friends over. It’s not impossible but hard! Two bedrooms tend to be more expensive than their one-bedroom-split counterparts because they tend to be larger and are
    • Cost:
      • Low: $1700-$2500
      • High: $2500-$3000
    • Pro: Common area, won’t be lonely!
    • Con: More expensive than a split

 

  • Three Bedroom: Three bedrooms are a nice compromise for people that want to share an apartment but are trying to cut back on the amount of liability. When you have roommates there is always some risk factor. The more people pitching in the higher the chances that someone will: not be available right before you sign the lease, have financial difficulties, or other unforeseen circumstances that would cause them to be unable to offer their portion of the rent. The more bedrooms, the cheaper you can get a nice place as well, so it’s a trade-off.
    • Cost:
      • Low: $2100-$3000
      • High: $3000-$4000
    • Pro: More people, cheaper price
    • Con: Increased Liability, possibly only one bathroom

 

  • Four Bedroom: Four Bedroom apartments offer some of the best rates. Why? Because of how difficult it is to get four people to agree on an apartment! Often times there will be one or two people who do the looking and then decide on the place. If you do get a four bedroom, you will be able to find someone to take a room, but it may not be someone you want to live with. A great way to find roomies is to check your school website for housing connections and your grad program Facebook page. Emerson has a great one and that’s where I met my roommate!
    • Cost:
      • Low: $3000- $4000
      • High: $4000-$6000
    • Pro: Cheaper! Easier to find since not many people put in the time to get them
    • Con: Increased Liability, Application approval may be harder since each person has to apply for the room separately

 

  • Five Bedroom: The five-bedroom is a mystical place that I have seen on my searches, but never heard of anyone that made it work. This layout tends to apply to homes where there are common areas and multiple bathrooms.
    • Cost:
      • Low: $ 3500-$4500
      • High: $4500-5500
    • Pro: Cheaper, multiple bathrooms ensured
    • Con: May not be the newest location/ house comes with other problems (cutting the yard, increased utilities, etc.)

There are many different kinds of apartments. For myself, my parent’s were co-signers and wanted me to be with a reputable property management company. My one bedroom was perfect since they worked with me from afar and send pictures, floor layouts, and we did all our paperwork online

If you won’t be able to see the apartment before renting, this is called, “site unseen viewing.” Make sure that this is okay with the apartment or agent that you are working with. Not everyone is willing to do it for liability reasons. However, you will find many agents who are willing to show you a Skype or Google Hangouts video call and show you the apartment.

Thanks for reading! And check back next week for the Top 5 Questions You Should Ask When Looking For an Apartment.

Until next week, Happy Friday Bookworms!

Sincerely,

Kime J. Sims.

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Trade Books: You Know More About Them Than You Think!

Ok, so you’ve decided that you want to work with books in some capacity. You know about The Big Five and some ways to pursue a higher ed degree in publishing, but do you know what  TYPE of books you want to go into? A lot of people say, I love reading Harry Potter or YA Fiction, but is that really the work you want to do? Do you want to read the good and the bad of all the genre you work in? If you’re not sure, check out the areas of book publishing below. There are so many application of literature and writing to explore!

There are three main key categories of book publishing markets:

Trade, Academic, and Professional. 

#1 Trade Books

Trade books are the paperbacks you see in grocery stores, on the physical shelves of Barnes and Noble and the digital ones of Amazon. All New York Times bestsellers count and most audiobooks. If you read Green Eggs and Ham as a child you have participated in this form of publishing pyramid.

Merriam Webster defines trade books as “a book intended for a general readership” General being the keyword.  Anyone can go into CVS and buy their choice of a cheesy romance or self-help book.

Trade books are both accessible in location and price. Tending to range from $7-$25, the majority of the population doesn’t mind spending a little here and there for a good story.  $1.99 on a Kindle book doesn’t seem so bad compared to a $7.99 paperback.  But the they are both pretty cheap.

Whether it is a collection of Brontë or a hardcover first-edition of Stephen King’s It, there are no rules to what can be sold under trade books, both in digital and print.

Some examples are:

  • Romance novels
  • YA (Young Adult)
  • Children’s books
  • Thrillers
  • Fantasy
  • Biographies
  • Cookbooks
  • History
  • And so much more!

New categories of trade books are constantly being created. The Amish love story genre didn’t exist twenty years ago! Compare that to the raunchy 1392 Canterbury tales and you’d have a fun analysis.  Trade books are what most editors hope to one day explore and be a part of. To find the next JK, C.S. Lewis, E.L. James, or other ambiguous initialed name, would be a dream come true.

However, check out the less glamours ways to look at the publishing field in the next article, ” Academic and Professional Publishing: A Look at the Other Side.”

Until then,

Have a great day Bookworms and talk soon!

Sincerely,

Kime J. Sims.

 

 

Resources:

https://www.thebalancecareers.com/what-is-trade-publishing-2800076

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Who Are “The Big Five”? And Why Are They Important?

One of the first things people think when they hear that you want to work in publishing is they assume you aim to be part of “The Big Five.” “The Big Five” as the industry likes to call them are the largest conglomerate of publishing houses in America. They are constantly growing and are pushers of the American book market.

Per an article by BookBusiness.com titled, “What the Big 5’s Financial Reports Reveal About the State of Traditional Book Publishing” author Thad McIlroy states that:

“In April 2015 Publishers Lunch (firewall) took a stab at calculating the overall U.S. book publishing market share of the big 5ers (using Association of American Publishers data). (With qualifiers) the report listed. That’s over 80% of the U.S. trade publishing pie. Sounds a bit high, but it reveals the swath these companies cut.”

“Penguin Random House    37 %
HarperCollins                     17.5 %
Simon & Schuster              11.7 %
Hachette                                   9 %
Macmillan               (possibly 5 %)”

You can read the rest of his article here.

In the current day, the 5’ers have grown even more as they continue to buy up small publishing houses and combine their markets.  Below is a short overview of who they are and maybe a bouncing place for you to see if they have an office or internship near you!

  • Penguin Random House
    • Info: Has almost 250 imprint and publishing houses
    • Subsidiaries: Random House Publishing Group, Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group; Crown Publishing Group; Penguin Group U.S.; Dorling Kindersley; Mass Market Paperbacks, Penguin Group U.S.; Random House Children’s Books; Penguin Young Readers Group, U.S., etc.
    • Penguinrandomhouse.com
      • Random House Offices
        • 1745 Broadway, New York, NY 10019
        • (212) 782-9000
      • Penguin Offices
        • 375 Hudson Street, New York, NY 10014
        • (212) 366-2000
      • Dorling Kindersley
        • 345 Hudson Street, New York, NY 10014
        • (646) 674-4000

Penguin Random House Branches
Penguin Random House Branches

 

  • HarperCollins
    • Info: subsidiary itself, of a larger global company News Corp.
    • Subsidiaries: William Morrow; Avon Books; Broadside Books; Harper Business; HarperCollins Children’s; HarperTeen; Ecco Books; It Books; Newmarket Press; Harper One; Harper Voyager US; Harper Perennial; HarperAcademic and Harper Audio, etc.
    • 195 Broadway, New York, NY 10007
    • (212) 207-7000
    • harpercollins.com

Harper Collins Publishing House Branches.
Harper Collins Branches

 

  • Simon and Schuster
    • Info: covers adult, children’s, audiobooks, and digital book publishing
    • Subsidiaries: Atria, Folger Shakespeare Library, Free Press, Gallery Books, Howard Books, Pocket Books, Scribner, Simon & Schuster, Threshold Editions, and Touchstone, etc.
    • 1230 Avenue of the Americas, New York, NY 10020
    • (212) 698-7000
    • simonandschuster.com

Simon & Schuster Publishing House branches
Simon & Schuster Branches.

 

  • Hachette Book Group
    • Info: an off shoot of the 2nd largest book publisher in the world. Hachette Livre.
    • Subsidiaries: Grand Central Publishing; Little, Brown and Company; Little, Brown and Company Books for Young Readers; Faith Words; Center Street; Orbit; Yen Press; Hachette Audio; and Hachette Digital. Read about Forever, Hachette’s Romance line, and about Forever Yours, their digital-first Romance line, etc.
    • 237 Park Avenue, New York, NY 10017
    • (212) 364-1200
    • hachettebookgroup.com 

Hachette Books Publishing House
Hachette Branches

 

  • Macmillian Publishers
    • Info: global trade book publishing company, publishes a lot of college/ academic books
    • Subsidiaries: Farrar, Straus and Giroux; Henry Holt and Company; Picador; St. Martin’s Press; Tor/Forge; Macmillan Audio; and Macmillan Children’s Publishing Group, etc.
    • 175 Fifth Avenue, New York, NY 10010
    • 646-307-5151
    • us.macmillan.com
Macmillan Publishing House Branches
Macmillan Branches

 

I know that was a little long! Thanks for sticking with me!

Overall, “The Big Five” are in essence the small 200. There are so many small houses that work under each company that there are always new and growing ways to join in on the industry where ever you are at. Many of the smaller companies are able to focus on non-mainstream projects and independent ideas that help bring the ever-changing market we have today. I hope this has been helpful!

And please don’t forget to send any of your questions and comments in the section below!

Happy Hunting Bookworms!

Sincerely,

Kime J. Sims.

I compiled the above information from The Balance Career. Thanks! Link here and here.

 

Looking for More Information?!

A few other great current articles to read about the 5’ers are:

https://www.publishersweekly.com/pw/by-topic/industry-news/publisher-news/article/72889-ranking-america-s-largest-publishers.html (more on who the Big 5 are)

https://www.janefriedman.com/the-first-half-of-2018-traditional-publishers/ (current state of publishing in 2018)

https://www.janefriedman.com/key-book-publishing-path/ (other offshoots of the growing industry of publishing)

http://publish.illinois.edu/englishadvising/big-five-publishers/#sthash.1vImUw0t.dpbs (internships with the big 5!)

https://kriswrites.com/2018/01/03/business-musings-the-big-five-2017-in-review/ (analysis of the Big five’s impact on the industry)