A Note to Aspiring Writers and Parents – by C. L. Lewis www.creedgriffon.com www.facebook.com/creedgriffonfictionseries

I”m often asked how I got started writing young adult, teen, and tween fiction. And if you’ve read my biography on the Creed Griffon – Road to Dendura website, then you’ll know initially, my experience led me in a totally different direction. One of my main reasons for writing this series was (and still is) the fact that I’m a teacher who wants to inspire kids to read. However, I didn’t know how many intricate slippery-slope pathways or tumultuous seas I’d have to cross to get my idea into print. Neither did I fully expect the countless yet valuable lessons I’d learn along the way. Nonetheless, the following topic is something many people may not be aware of when purchasing a book:

Suggested Age Ratings for Books and How They Come Into Being… 

Warning: Ratings are not determined by magical wand waving pixies who sprinkle sparkly dust over said reading materials resulting in their categorization into the appropriate age groups… ( I was absolutely crushed when I found this out)

 

If you’re an aspiring writer take heed. If you’re a parent choosing books for your kids keep reading, this may surprise you. When pertaining to books, we often use words like children’s books, tween, teen, and young adult – but did you know that there’s really no set age range for any of these categories? Now, the American Library Association may argue this statement, but unfortunately not everyone follows their guidelines, and that’s a fact! More often than not, age guidelines set themselves because vendors go with the age group of individuals purchasing or receiving the books. Below is a rough guideline for each category per age group. By no means is it the only one, the official, or complete one. As a matter of fact, if you scout around you’ll find that most age level recommendations for books conflict. I understand that the suggested reading levels below don’t really pertain to adults, but it gives you a basic idea of how each term is viewed. 

Age Related Categories:

Children’s Books: 8 – 10
Tween Books 10 – 12
Young Adult Readers 12 – 22 

When I first started out, I thought I had a general knowledge of what these categories meant. However, I quickly learned that sometimes, the industry simply groups books together and recommends them to readers of all ages when really, if we were to hold true to any definition, we’re talking the difference between a picture book, and something like Hunger Games. Case and Point: Harry Potter was deemed as a children’s book. In many bookstores you’ll find it in the children’s section. However, I know countless parents who won’t let their children read the series because of the ‘graphic content’. (And no, I’m not one of those parents, but I understand and respect their opinions) 

 

Regardless, the author of course has NO control over age rating issues aside from giving his/her own personal recommendation of their works. When a professional/bookstore recommends a reading age for a particular book, that rating will depend solely on their opinion. This is where you need to be careful because someone else’s idea of what’s good for you, your teen, or tween may differ than what you may consider appropriate. I’ve had children as young as nine read The Road to Dendura and love it. I’ve had teen, tween, and young adult readers do the same. I believe aspects such as this also fall on the readers maturity and reading levels.

Solution? As a parent, if your kids are still in the age range where you’re concerned about what they’re reading, then my suggestion to you would be to read the book in question for yourself. No one knows your child’s reading needs better than you. Meanwhile, previewing or reviewing allows you to be in more control of the situation. In most cases, libraries keep copies of the latest books on their shelves. Librarians also make a good point of reference for age appropriate books. And if you’re a writer? Learn to go with the flow. You may have written your story for an older or even younger audience, but the suggested age level will ultimately depend on those buying/receiving it. 

Respectfully,

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Free Book to the First Person Who… By C. L. Lewis www.creedgriffon.com www.facebook.com/creedgriffonfictionseries

Hi, I’m C. L. Lewis, author of the Creed Griffon Series. If you’d like to learn more about Creed Griffon and The Road to Dendura, visit www.creedgriffon.com, www.facebook.com/creedgriffonfictionseries or click on any of the purple links in this blog. Please know, this isn’t a cheap attempt to try and sell you something. Rather, this is a simple contest. If you’d like to enter or know someone who’d be interested in doing so – then keep reading.

Currently, I’m offering a free signed copy of The Road to Dendura to the first two people who can correctly answer the two questions I’m about to reveal. Know that the last time I did something like this, it took almost two weeks to find our winners. By chance, if you’re reading this blog a week after the fact, don’t think it’s to late to email in your reply. You never know, your answers might be the only ones that are right! 

Before I can reveal the questions, I need to cover a few simple rules. I know… What would fun be without rules? Yawn

Here goes: 

1. This contest is open to United States residents only. I apologize to my international readership. I don’t often get a chance to make contest rules where my books are concerned. I hope you can understand and know that I”m looking to the future for changes in this area.

2. All participants must send in their responses by  using the contact us form located on the Creed Griffon website. Simply click on the purple link located directly above to go to that page, or you can visit the website and use the ‘Contact C. L. Lewis’ link located in the menu.

3. Winners are determined on a first come first serve basis. The First two individuals to to answer both questions correctly per our discretion will be the winners. It’s that easy.

4. Yes, you can enter as many times as you like! Kids, make sure it’s okay with your parents first.
Please understand that we are not responsible for underage individuals that enter without the proper permission.

5. By entering, you agree that we are not responsible for computer malfunctions, and/or emails lost or not received. Winners are responsible for providing the correct mailing address and for receipt of item.

6. By entering, all participants agree to allow us to publish their name along with their answers. 

7. Only one book per winner.  

8. This contest will end February 28th 2014. 

That’s it! So what are the two contest questions?  
 
1. All living Pharaohs were said to be the living incarnation of what Ancient Egyptian god?  

2. Name an invention created by the Ancient Egyptians.


Good luck! Respectfully,

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Drive Through Mentality by C. L. Lewis Author of The Creed Griffon Road to Dendura Series

The times we live in are
amazing. We are such a fast paced society reinforced by limitless technology.
We’re able talk to people half way around the world via a computer the size of
our palm or by a pocket sized phone we text with in one hand while driving with
the other!

From fast food in five minutes, dinner microwaved in ten, to coffee
brewers for our cars, most of us aren’t left wanting for instant conveniences.
(Personally, I’m waiting for chocolate air) One of my favorite questions I get
asked at book signings is, “When do you find time to relax?” The answer is
simple, I don’t find time, I make time – or I lose all creativity. 

Like many of you, I
get caught up in what I like to call the drive though rush mentality – the
ultimate hurry up and wait drama. It begins to wear on me over time and eventually
I start to find it hard to distinguish between things that aren’t really
important versus things that truly are..

I travel a lot and it only compounds
this false sense of urgency. This everyday relentless hustle and bustle has
become the norm for all of us to include our kids.

Gee…Do I really
need to answer those twenty emails, or should I see what the family is up to
tonight? We’ve become so interconnected that in some ways were disconnected
from the things that matter most. I’m first in line to confess…

Although,
I’m sure there are those of you who enjoy the pace and aren’t bothered by it in
the least. But I know there are mortals out there who can sympathize with me… So,
I answer my favorite question something like this -“When I sense the lines
of importance blurring I take time out. More often than not, I take time out
anyway. I’ve formed a habit of making myself slow down.”

Turn off the television,
and cell phone, unplug your computer and get back to basics. Time out doesn’t have
to be an extravagant vacation in Rio. Take a
walk – Read a good book – Laugh – Try being bored! You’d be amazed at the results if you just
give it a try. Not just one time, but form a positive habit. Our children emulate what
we do. You could really help them relieve stress now, and into adulthood by showing them how to put on
the brakes and rediscover simplicity.

Respectfully,

 

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