Comment on today's post before next Wednesday 11.59 pm EST and be entered for a chance to win a copy of the anthology, TOMO: Friendship through Fiction, edited by Holly Thompson.
TOMO was released on Saturday, almost a year to the day after the disaster in Tohoku. It features 36 contributors who are somehow linked to Japan, and proceeds will be used to help teens in Tohoku. Even if you don't win, click the book to be taken to Book Depository, where you can buy a copy with free shipping (unless you're in Pakistan :( ).
I'm a contributor to the book. I wrote a choka. Choka, translated literally, means "long poem." It is structured 5 syllables- 7 syllables, 5-7.5-7,...5,7,7. I decided to write a choka, because Japan is famous for haiku, but there are a zillion other poetic forms.
Anyhow, having the books got me to wondering if contributors sign anthologies. I mean, it's kind of technically "your book," but it's also kind of technically not. That led me into a whirlpool of reasons to sell myself short on being a TOMO contributor.
-- All contributors have a connection to Japan, and are writing in English, ie, smaller competition pool.
-- I know the editor.
-- I live in Tohoku, and was here for the earthquake. Including me = great marketing tool.
-- It's not like it's a novel or anything.
-- I didn't have to contact an agent or a publisher.
I could go on and on with reasons why being selected for an anthology - this anthology - isn't important. But there are so many reasons why I'm happy that I'm a part of it.
Firstly, it's for a great cause, a cause I believe in, heart, mind and soul. I'm so proud to be able to contribute in these little ways. I mean, I decided to become a writer since I lived here.That's not to say I wouldn't have gotten here eventually, but I owe Japan and Tohoku for all of it. It's the least I could do, give my help when it's needed.
Secondly, I'm in a book. I mean I've written stuff before. I've appeared in organisational journals, and magazines and newspapers and even one e-book non-fiction anthology. But, now for the first time ever I'm in a real fiction book. People can go on Amazon and buy a physical copy of something with my fiction (well, poetry, potayto-potahto) in it. That's crazy!
And so in honour of the strong little creatures that still make me laugh every day, despite all we've been through -- in honour of these teens of Tohoku, I'm offering up a copy to one lucky commenter. Remember it's open until next Wednesday, 11.59 pm EST, and international. Also, I'll sign it if you want. Still haven't figure out the protocol on that. lol.