Recent Blog Posts

Sultans of String Launch New Weekly Online Interview & Music Series: BACKSTAGE

New weekly livestream kicks off Friday with new video/single! Sultans of String are excited to announce… BACKSTAGE! Their new online Interview & Music series features guests from their Refuge and Sanctuary albums. Join Sultans of String each Friday at Noon EST on Facebook as they dive into the lives and the music of these fascinating artists,Continue reading “Sultans of String Launch New Weekly Online Interview & Music Series: BACKSTAGE”

Too Close to Heaven: A Poem by Christine Bode for Those Suffering With Their Mental Health

Do you or someone you know feel as if you’re getting too close to heaven? Do you feel that life is unbearable on this crazy blue planet and that you don’t know how much longer you can live here? I have felt that way too, I assure you. Acutely aware that an innumerable amount ofContinue reading “Too Close to Heaven: A Poem by Christine Bode for Those Suffering With Their Mental Health”

Exclusive Review of Finny McConnell’s (The Mahones) Debut Solo Album, The Dark Streets of Love

I’m honoured to be the first person to review Finny McConnell’s (The Mahones) debut solo album, The Dark Streets of Love!

After 30 glorious years of leading worldwide, renowned Celtic punk rockers, The Mahones—who have shared stages and toured with the likes of Dropkick Murphys, Shane MacGowan (The Pogues), Stiff Little Fingers, Billy Bragg, The Buzzcocks, Sinead O’Connor, and The Damned to name a few—Finny McConnell decided that it was time to make an album for himself as he winds down and adjusts to his “Van Morrison years”, although I’m sure he has enough piss and vinegar left in him that he will not go quietly or gently into the night.

Fantasy Book Review and Author Interview: A Drowned Kingdom (The Drowned Kingdom Saga Book 1) by P.L. Stuart

Fantasy Book Review Title: A Drowned Kingdom (The Drowned Kingdom Saga Book 1)Author:  P.L. StuartPublisher: FriesenPressReleased: February 2, 2021Pages: 404ASIN: B08VS15WTRBook Reviewer: Christine BodeStars:  4 Othrun, son of King Atalan the Falcon, the Second Prince, and estranged half-brother to Erthal, the First Prince (sons of the pear-shaped island kingdom of Atalantyx), narrates this epic taleContinue reading “Fantasy Book Review and Author Interview: A Drowned Kingdom (The Drowned Kingdom Saga Book 1) by P.L. Stuart”

3x JUNO Nominees and Billboard Charting SULTANS OF STRING Commemorate the Anniversary of the 1988 OJHRI CAMP Disaster With New Video From Their REFUGE Project

WHEN: Video Premiere – Friday April 9, 2021 at 10:30 am ESTSONG: Ojhri Camp, from album Refuge Sultans of String, featuring Anwar Khurshid & Ravi Naimpally Go to the video on YouTube at this link https://youtu.be/L4TQs_WGbNI to SET REMINDER for the premiere. [Toronto ON] Sultans of String are releasing this song to coincide with the April 10 anniversaryContinue reading “3x JUNO Nominees and Billboard Charting SULTANS OF STRING Commemorate the Anniversary of the 1988 OJHRI CAMP Disaster With New Video From Their REFUGE Project”

Author Dawn James Cheated Death and Now Shares Profound Revelations in her New Book, Unveiled: Autobiography of an Awakened One

Toronto, Ontario, Canada —March 18, 2021— Author Dawn James wrote a spellbinding new autobiography, Unveiled: Autobiography of an Awakened One, set for release on March 20, 2021.  James, who conquered vision and hearing loss, being paralyzed and mute, shares her audacious story of how she cheated death and awoke to life-altering revelations.  This memoir highlights James’s spiritualContinue reading “Author Dawn James Cheated Death and Now Shares Profound Revelations in her New Book, Unveiled: Autobiography of an Awakened One”

Chris Sunfield’s Second Single “Predator” is an Abrupt About-Face Following His Sunshine Pop Debut!

“PREDATOR” by Chris Sunfield OUT NOW! 12 February 2020 (TORONTO) – Chris Sunfield’s second single “Predator” is an abrupt about-face following his sunshine pop debut “The Little Things”. Predator is a provocative poison pen letter to romantic predators, exposing their psychopathic and Machiavellian ways. The lyrics, with their reptilian metaphors, serve to validate anyone who’sContinue reading “Chris Sunfield’s Second Single “Predator” is an Abrupt About-Face Following His Sunshine Pop Debut!”

Award-winning Celebrity Skincare Entrepreneur Jean Pierre Releases Powerful New Memoir on the Uphill Climb to Personal & Professional Success

TORONTO – Feb. 3, 2021  — On February 27th, Jamaican-Canadian Icon and Skin Care Guru Jean Pierre is set to release a bold new memoir entitled Uphill Climb. The book details Pierre’s inspirational journey as a healthcare practitioner, entrepreneur, international public speaker and creator of the popular Obsidian Skincare line. Uphill Climb delves into Pierre’s deeply personal health struggles as aContinue reading “Award-winning Celebrity Skincare Entrepreneur Jean Pierre Releases Powerful New Memoir on the Uphill Climb to Personal & Professional Success”

“The Matrix” a Poem by Christine Bode

The Matrix by Christine Bode Everett,in the movie Paterson says, after pulling a fake gun on everyone in the bar, “Without love, what reason is there for anything?”I don’t know, Everett… nothing, not a fucking thing that matters anyway.Without love, every day is the same damn pandemic day.Wake up, walk the dog, make coffee, drink coffee, read a book,do housework, workContinue reading ““The Matrix” a Poem by Christine Bode”

Sultans of String Interactive Zoom Concert #5 – Lockdown Smackdown on January 23, 2021

Happy New Year friends, I don’t know about you, but this new lockdown is making us feel a little too isolated…Therefore announcing our Sultans of String Livestream January 23, 8:00 pm EST Livestream -Lockdown Smackdown Edition! Let’s super-spread some good live-streaming vibes and keep connected. Isolating doesn’t have to be lonely! And we can celebrate the inaugurationContinue reading “Sultans of String Interactive Zoom Concert #5 – Lockdown Smackdown on January 23, 2021”

New Book, And Still Champion, Introduces the World to a Group of Undisputed Champions

Bold Men Who Have Found Victory in Telling Their Most Personal Stories Don’t quit. Suffer now and live the rest of your life as a champion. ~ Muhammad Ali Atlanta, Ga. – Dec. 30, 2020  — New anthology And Still Champion: The Reality of What 7 Men Endured features the most revealing, provocative and personal stories of seven Black menContinue reading “New Book, And Still Champion, Introduces the World to a Group of Undisputed Champions”

New Book Captures the Courageous Untold Stories of 13 Women Who Have Triumphed Over Adversity

Atlanta, Ga. – Dec. 18, 2020 — Thirteen women reveal the hidden stories behind their smiles in a new anthology called, Beyond the Smile, released on Thanksgiving Day 2020 with a virtual launch event that took place on Cyber Monday, November 30th. Beyond the Smile contains 13 powerful stories of African American women who have beaten the odds and haveContinue reading “New Book Captures the Courageous Untold Stories of 13 Women Who Have Triumphed Over Adversity”

Anti-Labyrinths by Boris Glikman and Michael Cheval

Discover the Philosophical, Fantastical Fiction of Australian Writer Boris Glikman, and a Sneak Peek of His Upcoming Coffee Table Book, Anti-Labyrinths, with Art by Michael Cheval Over the years, I have published many of Australian author, Boris Glikman‘s short stories on my blog, because I’m a fan of his work. He is currently working onContinue reading “Anti-Labyrinths by Boris Glikman and Michael Cheval”

Mary’s Meals Canada celebrates Annie Lennox and “Universal Child” Gift

Mary’s Meals Canada Celebrates ANNIE LENNOX and“Universal Child” Gift TORONTO, Canada. Mary’s Meals Canada, the school feeding charity, celebrates Annie Lennox and the gift of her hit single, “Universal Child.” Recognized as one of the most successful, iconic, and revered pop artists, Ms. Lennox has sold over 86 million albums worldwide. “With deep gratitude, we areContinue reading “Mary’s Meals Canada celebrates Annie Lennox and “Universal Child” Gift”

Raise Your Vibration and Transform Your Life with Dawn James

Title: Raise Your Vibration, Transform Your Life: A Practical Guide for Attaining Better Health, Vitality and Inner PeaceAuthor: Dawn JamesPublisher: Lotus Moon PressReleased: 2010Pages: 158ISBN: 978-0-9865378-1-3Stars: 4 Title: How to Raise The Vibration Around You: Volume 1 – Working with the 4 Elements to Create Healthy and Harmonious Living SpacesAuthor: Dawn JamesPublisher: Lotus Moon PressReleased: 2014Pages: 171ISBN: 978-0-9865378-0-6Stars: 4Continue reading “Raise Your Vibration and Transform Your Life with Dawn James”

3x JUNO Nominees and Billboard Charting SULTANS OF STRING take their Global Grooves & Goodwill to hearts and homes with their Christmas Caravan & UNHCR Fundraising Zoom Concert!

SAT. DEC. 19, 2020 – 8:00pm EST (5:00 PST / 7:00pm CST) SPECIAL GUESTS: Rebecca Campbell, Tamar Ilana, Donné Roberts, Kristine St-Pierre & more TBA! ZOOM TICKETS: http://christmascaravan2020.eventbrite.caFACEBOOK EVENT: https://www.facebook.com/events/202730184800176 As winter crests and the mercury falls, everyone from your taxi driver to the music supervisor at the mall starts running timeless hits like “Jingle Bells” andContinue reading “3x JUNO Nominees and Billboard Charting SULTANS OF STRING take their Global Grooves & Goodwill to hearts and homes with their Christmas Caravan & UNHCR Fundraising Zoom Concert!”

21 Resilient Women: Stories of Courage, Growth, and Transformation

This autumn, I have been honoured to work as a copy editor on four books for PublishandPromote.ca and this book was the first of a trio of anthologies. This anthology contains stories by 21 different women who are sure to inspire you with their courage, growth, and transformation! The book was compiled by Canadian careerContinue reading “21 Resilient Women: Stories of Courage, Growth, and Transformation”

Debut Single by Chris Sunfield “The Little Things” Out Now!

Reinvented, former consultant teams up with Juno-Award winning producer for later-life debut single! “The Little Things” Chris SunfieldOUT NOW! 15 OCTOBER 2020 (TORONTO, ON) – “The Little Things” is the debut single by Chris Sunfield on Radar Love Records. The song, written by Sunfield, is a modern, sunshine pop song on steroids, with a wall-of-soundContinue reading “Debut Single by Chris Sunfield “The Little Things” Out Now!”

Canadian Singer-Songwriter David Leask Releases “Voyageur in Song”

Republished with permission from David Leask Today is the release of my new record, “Voyageur In Song”, songs written on and with the Six String Nation guitar, nick-named Voyageur.  This incredible instrument is made of 64 pieces of Canadian history and culture.  I have written songs about a group of those pieces and their inspiring stories.  There’s a reasonContinue reading “Canadian Singer-Songwriter David Leask Releases “Voyageur in Song””

Sultans of String featuring Béla Fleck and Robi Botos release “The Grand Bazaar” from the New Album REFUGE

Artist: Sultans of String Single: The Grand Bazaar, featuring Béla Fleck and Robi Botos From the new album REFUGE “Refuge is a fantastic, moving, dreamlike, epic, timely album.” ~ Ken Micallef (Jazz Times, Stereophile, Downbeat) New York, NY – Sultans of String release gorgeously evocative and powerful single The Grand Bazaar, featuring 15 time Grammy AwardContinue reading “Sultans of String featuring Béla Fleck and Robi Botos release “The Grand Bazaar” from the New Album REFUGE”

Reality and “Reality”: A New Perspective by Boris Glikman

Reality and “Reality”: A New Perspective by Boris Glikman   Part I Imagine if you had a friend who had the following characteristics and personality traits and behaved in the ways described below.  Suppose that this friend considered it his sacred duty to visit you daily at your home and make a report to youContinue reading “Reality and “Reality”: A New Perspective by Boris Glikman”

Book Review: Burt Reynolds on Screen by Wayne Byrne (Featuring Q&A with Author)

BOOK REVIEW Title: Burt Reynolds on Screen Author:  Wayne Byrne Publisher: McFarland & Company Inc. Released: December 19, 2019 Pages: 314 ISBN: 978-1476674988 Stars: 5 In 1972, Burt Reynolds became famous with his breakthrough role in Deliverance. The actor also posed as Cosmopolitan’s first-ever nude male centerfold in 1972, “marking a milestone in the sexualContinue reading “Book Review: Burt Reynolds on Screen by Wayne Byrne (Featuring Q&A with Author)”

20 Self-Editing Tips That Save You Money

For 35 years I have been an editor and proofreader. Yes, you read that right. Thirty-five years! I’ve edited everything from legal and medical reports to liner notes for CDs; press releases to websites; and Ph.D. theses to novels. And yes, I know that both PhD and Ph.D. are correct versions of the abbreviation for the Latin term Philosophiae doctor. I read every single day. Being a voracious reader has made me a better editor so the first piece of advice I have for anyone who wants to write a book is, read a book

Read a best-selling book in the genre in which you want to write and pay attention to the book’s structure, style, diction, tone, and narrative voice, as well as the author’s use of punctuation. Take notes. Look up “How to Write a Nonfiction Book Outline” or “writing an outline for a fiction book” on Google, read about that, and then write an outline for your book. Once you have created an outline, write the first draft of each chapter, paying attention to your narrative tense. Be consistent with it. If you’re recounting something that happened in the past, use the past tense.  Think about who your audience is and write to them. Don’t use a flowery word when a simple one will do. These things alone will make your editor very happy and save you considerable expense.

However, before you submit your manuscript for editing, here are 20 self-editing tips that will save you a lot of money: 

1. Answer the questions, “What do I want to offer the reader?” and “How can I stand out from the crowd?”

2. Consider who your book is for and create a target demographic audience for it.

3. Write for that target demographic. For example, if you’re writing for teens, know the authentic slang used by modern teenagers and make them believable. Interview them to get the right voice.

4. Research, research, research!

5. Decide whether you’re going to use American or British spelling and be consistent. 

6. Create an outline for your book that is broken down into chapters with working titles and then write out what you want to convey in that chapter on recipe cards that you keep at your computer. Refer to them to make sure you’re staying on point.

7. Write your first draft without worrying about it being perfect.

8. When you write your second draft, flesh out all the points you mean to cover to support what that chapter is offering the reader.

9. Stay true to your voice and ask yourself how you can make the book as interesting, informative, and insightful as possible to your readers. 

10. When writing fiction, pay attention to character development, back story and character history, timeline, and a dramatic arc about two-thirds to three-quarters of the way through the book that then becomes resolved in the denouement.

11. Be mindful of changing up the lengths of your sentences. Don’t list everything in a long sentence. Break it up and highlight the most important parts of the paragraph with a shorter sentence. 

12. Don’t use the same word over and over within one paragraph. Use a synonym finder to find different ways of describing the same thing and be careful about being too repetitive.

13. Start a new paragraph if a specific thought has been completed in the one that you’re writing.

14. Pay attention to your diction. Diction is word choice, or the style of speaking that a writer, speaker, or character uses. The diction that you use when you speak or write should be matched to your purpose or audience. 

15. Understand what syntax is. The syntax is the arrangement of words and phrases to create well-formed sentences in a language. In this case, it would be the English language. Pay attention to word order. 

16. Be concise. Express what needs to be said without unnecessary words.  

17. Make sure that you’ve covered your key points for each chapter.

18. Watch your punctuation. If you’re writing something in quotes and then adding a comma after it, the comma falls within the quotes. The same goes for a period if you’re ending a sentence while still within the quote. When you start a sentence and then add a quote within it, start the quote with a capital letter. Make sure that if you’re asking a question, you use a question mark. Sometimes it’s better to use a conjunction like and or but rather than a comma. Read the sentence back aloud and check its fluidity when in doubt.

19. Put your work through WORD’s Editor and Grammarly’s proofreading service before you submit it to your editor.

20. Above all, enjoy the topic you’re writing about and this process!

Don’t skip this self-editing process unless you want to go broke before you sell a single book. I promise it will be worth your time.

Goodbye Scully Love Promo, Hello Bodacious Copy

When I first got involved with social media management back in 2008 and started Scully Love Promo, it was because I wanted to work with musicians.  After all, I have been a music fan my entire life, and having the privilege of working with so many amazing recording artists has been one of the great pleasures of my life.  I don’t know what I was thinking but it was never my intention to become a marketer, I simply wanted to help artists with their social media.  However, as we now know, today, it’s all about marketing.

After one of the most challenging, if not the most challenging year of our lives, I have decided that I need things to change and I need my life to be less stressful because my hair has been falling out.  I’m committed to doing what it takes to make that happen including a change of diet, change of residence, and career change.  I will be 57 years old in January and I can no longer work 12 hours a day at my desk, and in fact, I find seven hours a day to be a challenge, both physically and mentally.

You may already know that I have been working as a copy editor for some time and so far, this year, I have had the honour and pleasure of editing four books.  I invite you to visit my new website for Bodacious Copy at bodaciouscopy.com for details.  I want to do more of this work because I enjoy it and I’m planning to study editing through Queen’s University, beginning in January, to become accredited for the skills I have developed over the past 35 years. You may ask why I am calling my new business Bodacious Copy and the reasons are twofold: “Bodacious” has been a nickname of mine since my college days, and creating bodacious copy is what I do.

As of January 2021, I will be offering my services as a social media marketer using Twitter ONLY because I can no longer keep up with the constant changes and frustrations of the Facebook and Instagram platforms.  I have personally had the most success using Twitter without having to spend money on ads than with any other platform.  I have a strategic plan for how I can best assist musicians and writers with their goals, using Twitter.

These days, it’s more important than ever that musicians get as many listeners and followers (followers are most important) on Spotify and YouTube as possible, particularly for those who have monetized their YouTube channels.  So, it makes sense that we should be using Twitter to connect with Spotify playlist curators and other music curators (because there are many out there), radio stations, and podcasts who will play your music.  The connections that we can make on Twitter with music industry professionals who could be helpful to your career are significant.  You simply need a plan to utilize this platform to the best of your abilities and this is what I want to focus on moving forward.

For first-time or self-published authors, it is important to connect with capable industry professionals who can assist with copy editing, proofreading, interior layout, book cover design, and marketing, as well as with publishing houses, university and literary presses, literary agencies, bloggers, and other online publications who will publish your work.  And of course, you’ll be looking for readers.  I can help you find them.

If you know of any musicians or writers who would like to have assistance with their Twitter marketing, or of anyone who needs an experienced, capable copy editor, I would be delighted if you would share my contact info with them. I can be reached at christinebode@hush.com. Or, just write me a note and let me know how you’re doing.

Thank you to everyone who has trusted me over the years with your social media marketing and copy editing. You know who you are.  You have enriched my life and allowed me to fulfil my dream of being my own boss, and I am deeply grateful.

My best wishes to you for a happy holiday season despite whatever challenges you may be facing.

With gratitude,
Christine Bode

Self-Publishers: Research Your Copy Editor!

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Updated: December 8, 2020

I have reviewed quite a few self-published authors’ books of late and I must say there is some wonderful talent out there who deserve more widespread recognition!  It’s a shame that finding an agent and a publisher is such difficult work and that rejections are so very plentiful – which is hard on the ego – when all you want to do is write and be read.

There is a reason why some authors don’t find publishers and turn to self-publishing (there are hundreds if not thousands of self-publishing companies now at your disposal via the Internet.  I used Lulu.com for my collection of poetry and lyrics entitled Eden Refugee, in 2008, and I carefully copy edited and proofread it numerous times myself).  Some authors are either not a strong enough writer, their work is cliché, or the copy editor they hired to proofread and edit their manuscript was a fraud.

If there is anything that can deter a reader/reviewer when reading your book, it is a sloppy editing job.  I truly believe that all self-published authors should be very careful about who they hire to edit their manuscripts. I’ve been reading some that have supposedly been edited by professionals and I’m sorry to say, they’re not! They’re a mess and that’s very embarrassing for the authors who I am sure only want to present their work to the public in the most professional manner possible.  After all, they are asking you to buy it and for most of us, books are a luxury item these days.

I have been paid to edit everything from novels to non-fiction books, websites to Ph.D. theses, and it is a time-consuming process.  I don’t have a university degree, but I do have two college diplomas and I worked as an administrative assistant/legal assistant for over 25 years which involved extensive editing and proofreading in almost all my jobs.  I have worked as a freelance copy editor for the past 12 years for PublishandPromote.ca and just started my own copy editing business, Bodacious Copy.  Not to toot my own horn, but I have a good eye for details (when I’m not tired) even though I have made mistakes, as we all do (believe me, I’ve caught numerous mistakes in books published by major publishing houses), and we can be prevented from doing our best work by the author’s budget.  However, if someone is giving you an editing deal that seems too good to be true for the price, it’s probably because it is.

I strongly urge writers who want to become self-published authors to do their research when it comes to hiring a copy editor.  Request a PDF copy of your potential copy editor’s University English degree, specialty editing diploma, or relevant qualifications before you hire them!  If they are legit, they should have no problem proving that they are.  If they are not, you’ll smoke them out in no time and save yourself time, money, and much mortification.

Happy writing!