World Adventurers is Moving


magazineWe’re moving to a new home! After three years with WordPress.com, World Adventurers is finally merging with my author’s web site, MG Edwards, hosted by WordPress.org. MG Edwards will be a one-stop shop for all my content from books to travel articles and videos. Please visit the new site and subscribe to it.

I will continue to cross-post here for a few months during the transition. Although I’ve added all the content on this site to the new one, I will leave this blog as-is for the foreseeable future until the migration is complete.

I think you’ll find the new site easier to use with a better design. All blog posts will be organized into articles for the World Adventurers Magazine, an online resource for travel and more. You’ll also notice more content, more updates and more variety.

So…come on over to MG Edwards and sit back, relax, and enjoy the write!

100,000 Travel Confessions


It’s time for 100,000 travel confessions! Wait, that’s not quite right. I have a few travel confessions to share but not that many. Oh, I remember what the number 100,000 means. It means that this blog just passed 100,000 hits! Thank you, dear readers, search engines, and cross-posters for visiting World Adventurers. It took two years, from October 2010 to October 2012, for this blog to reach 50,000 hits and then doubled this total in less than five months. That’s incredible. I must be doing something right.

I Must Confess!

So on to the Travel Confessions. A big thanks to Letizia for tagging me to make some Travel Confessions. Letizia was born and raised in the Netherlands but is now living in Borgomanero, Italy. I have to confess that her blog Dutch Goes Italian is excellent. I love her articles about Italy and mouth-watering food and drinks. Thanks for tagging me, Letizia!

About Travel Confessions

As you might know from other awards I’ve received, I enjoy researching the origin of blog series like Travel Confessions. Caroline and Josh from the blog Traveling 9 to 5 started the Travel Confessions chain in August 2012 as a way for travel writers like Letizia and me to confess our deepest, darkest travel secrets. As Traveling 9 to 5 puts it:

Is it a routine that gets you through long trips, a guilty pleasure destination or food, or maybe a pair of white Westin slippers that have seen better days? This is your time to come clean and maybe even feel better about your own confession as we read about everyone else’s!

How To Confess!

Here’s how it works:

1. Post a photo and description of your confession.

2. Tweet your post with hashtag #travelconfession and follow/tweet @traveling9to5

3. Tag 3 – 5 other travelers whom you would like to expose, and mention them on Twitter.

*This has no prize or big cash win at the end, it is for pure enjoyment for all of us travelers who carry our sanity around with us!

Confessions Badge

To my knowledge, no one has created a Travel Confessions badge, so here’s my own version of one. You’re welcome to use it if you wish.

confessions

My Travel Confessions

Without further ado, here are some of my deepest, darkest travel secrets:

1. When I stay in hotels with complimentary shampoo and soap, I like to take and use them on different continents. I once took a free bottle of shampoo made in the United States from a hotel in Punta del Este, Uruguay and then used it in Africa and Asia before it ran out.

Free shampoo and soap from around the world

2. My family and I often forget to bring something important when we travel. It got so bad that I had to make a list of things to bring. Then I forgot to look at it before our last trip and left something important behind!

todolist

A to-do list only works if you use it!

3. Travel wears me out after being on the road more than three weeks. After three weeks at home, I’m ready to hit the road again.

Wall in my office with arts and crafts from Africa, Asia, and South America

4. I like to keep track of how many American fast food restaurant chains I can find in a given city and pop in to see what local cuisine they’re serving. The McDonald’s here in Bangkok serves a spicy Thai chicken and rice dish that’s cheaper and tastier than a Big Mac. The taro pies aren’t bad but not as delicious as cherry.

A food court in Cape Town, South Africa

5. I enjoy getting lost in a place I’m visiting for the first time and wander around until I find a landmark I recognize. I once drove after nightfall in rural Africa toward Lake Malawi hoping to find the town of Cape Maclear, Malawi. Three hours and a lot of nervous sweat later, I finally found it.

Night

Nightfall at Cape Maclear on the shores of Lake Malawi

6. I have a fetish for photographing the hotel rooms where I stay because I want to remember all those idle moments and funky rooms.

Hotel (2)

Hotel

A boutique hotel in Cape Town, South Africa

Love Motel

A love motel in Wolchulsan, South Korea (with my family!)

Lucky Travel Writers

Here are three outstanding travel writers. Are they up to writing some of their own Travel Confessions? We’ll see!

1. BlueBalu (Living in Hong Kong)

2. Lesley Carter (The Bucket List Publications)

3. Russel Ray Photos (Life from Southern California)

clip_image003M.G. Edwards is a writer of books and stories in the mystery, thriller and science fiction-fantasy genres. He also writes travel adventures. He is author of Kilimanjaro: One Man’s Quest to Go Over the Hill, a non-fiction account of his attempt to summit Mount Kilimanjaro, Africa’s highest mountain and a collection of short stories called Real Dreams: Thirty Years of Short Stories. His books are available as an e-book and in print on Amazon.com and other booksellers. He lives in Bangkok, Thailand with his wife Jing and son Alex.

For more books or stories by M.G. Edwards, visit his web site at www.mgedwards.com or his blog, World Adventurers. Contact him at me@mgedwards.com, on Facebook, on Google+, or @m_g_edwards on Twitter.

For more books or stories by M.G. Edwards, visit his web site at www.mgedwards.com or his blog, World Adventurers. Contact him at me@mgedwards.com, on Facebook, on Google+, or @m_g_edwards on Twitter.

© 2013 Brilliance Press. All rights reserved. No part of this work may be reproduced or transmitted without the written consent of the author.

Introducing Brilliance Reviews


Dear Reader, let me introduce you to Brilliance Reviews, my new blog dedicated to reviews of the books, novels, and short stories I’ve read. I will publish a new post whenever I finish reading and reviewing a work. You’re welcome to follow Brilliance Reviews as well as World Adventurers; both will run independently.

brilliancereviews

Why are you starting a new blog? Book reviews didn’t fit the theme of my current blog, World Adventurers, which has evolved into a popular blog featuring travelogues and whimsical musings about life. Both blogs have unique target audiences. World Adventurers will primarily feature my work while Brilliance Reviews will focus on other authors’ works.

What kind of books do you review? I’m an avid reader and enjoy discovering books from many genres. Book written by indie authors are of particular interest to me because I believe that much of the groundbreaking literature is being written by self-published authors. I still read traditionally published books and will review those too, but my preference is toward indie authors’ works.

What kinds of book reviews do you write? I try to write honest reviews with a 1-5 star rating (1 being poor and 5 being excellent), clearly stating whether I recommend the book (or not). I try to offer positive and negative points about each book regardless of their rating. No book is perfect, and most have at least some redeeming qualities that attract certain types of readers even if I don’t like them. The reviews reflect my own opinions, and I recognize that others may enjoy books I don’t.

How did you get started? For the past year, I made it a habit of posting book reviews on Amazon, Goodreads, and other sites. I thought it was time to post them on a single blog that others can follow. The purpose is to support fellow writers, especially indie authors, who need book reviews to get the word out about their books. I’m happy to support my peers whenever I can.

How often will you post reviews? I try to read about three books a month and post reviews. I’ll post as often as I can.

Why did you choose the name Brilliance Reviews? Brilliance Press is the name of my publisher. I chose the name because it evokes positive images of something intelligent or dazzling.

I’m an indie author. Will you review my work? If you’re an indie author and would like to submit an book for review, contact me at me@mgedwards.com and send me your book in Kindle (MOBI) format. I don’t accept print books. I can’t guarantee that I will review your book or give it a high rating. Reviews will be posted to Brilliance Reviews and the book’s page on Amazon and Goodreads. Those who submit their books for me to review must agree to allow the cover art to be published along with the review and accept the rating and review I give. I will try to give honest feedback.

Do you do author interviews? Certainly. I’m happy to feature other authors on this blog. If you want to be interviewed for this blog or cross-post material, contact me at me@mgedwards.com.

I hope you’ll follow Brilliance Reviews and learn more about some of the great books out there waiting to be discovered.

5 star

M.G. Edwards is a writer of books and stories in the mystery, thriller and science fiction-fantasy genres. He also writes travel adventures. He is author of Kilimanjaro: One Man’s Quest to Go Over the Hill, a non-fiction account of his attempt to summit Mount Kilimanjaro, Africa’s highest mountain, a collection of short stories called Real Dreams: Thirty Years of Short Stories and Alexander the Salamander, a children’s story set in the Amazon. His books are available to purchase as an e-book and in print from Amazon.com and other booksellers. He lives in Bangkok, Thailand with his wife Jing and son Alex.

For more books or stories by M.G. Edwards, visit his web site at www.mgedwards.com or his blog, World Adventurers. Contact him at me@mgedwards.com, on Facebook, on Google+, or @m_g_edwards on Twitter.

© 2013 Brilliance Press. All rights reserved. No part of this work may be reproduced or transmitted without the written consent of the author.

World Adventurers’ 2012 in Review


This year was a good one for  my blog, World Adventurers. In 2012, there were 116 new posts, growing the total archive of this blog to 911 posts. The busiest day of the year was April 4th with 3,919 views. The most popular post that day was Top Ten Things to See in Zambia (with Photos) when WordPress featured it on Freshly Pressed.

According to WordPress, 4,329 films were submitted to the 2012 Cannes Film Festival. This blog had about 57,000 views and 5,900 followers via Twitter and WordPress in 2012. If each view were a film, this blog would power 13 Film Festivals. That’s a tall order! But just as notable is that readership and views this year more than doubled the past three years combined. How did World Adventurers grow so fast? Frequent posts with good content, photos, and detailed tags to help users find the right posts in search results.

 

 

Click here to see the complete report.

Happy New Years to All! May you have a peaceful and prosperous 2013.

Reader Appreciation Awards World Adventurers


Thank you fellow literary colleague and friend Lada Ray for nominating me for the Reader Appreciation Award! I am honored to receive this recognition from a peer I greatly admire. Lada is my indispensable resource for all things Russia, feng shui, felines, New York, and international thrillers. What do these topics have in common? Visit Lada’s blog by clicking here and find out for yourself!

ABOUT THE AWARD

You may know from the One Lovely Blog Award and the Versatile Blogger Award I received that I love digging into the origins of blogger awards to discover what inspired their creation. I learned that The Reader Appreciation Award was created in November 2011 by blogger Jennifer Avventura, a Canadian living in Sardinia, Italy (her Italian surname is an assumed pseudonym). On her blog, which I am now following, she wrote:

“I’m giving an award to those that have made this past year of blogging worthwhile. You have kept me on my toes, left comments, advice and tons of encouragement. For this I am grateful. Thank you.” (Jennifer Avventura)

AWARD CRITERIA

Jennifer’s rules were a bit different than the ones I received. Here are her original instructions:

1. Award your top six bloggers who have commented the most.

2. Be thankful.

3. You cannot award someone who has already been awarded. And you cannot give the award back to me.

4. Don’t forget to tell the bloggers you’ve awarded.

5. If you don’t want to pass on this award, that’s okay too. Just admire it.

 

A few more rules passed on to me were:

1. Post seven interesting things about yourself.

2. Nominate five people who in turn will post on their page the award with the link to the giver.

3. Let them know about the nomination.

4. Thank the blogger who nominated you and link back to their blog.

5. Post the award logo.

READERS APPRECIATION LOGO

The first order of business is the award logo. I’ve posted the original daisy flower logo and a new one that I want to suggest as an alternative logo. Other blogger awards I’ve seen have more than one variation of the award logo, so I’m proposing one that’s a bit less flowery and may look more attractive on some blogs. A daisy on a post-apocalyptic, avant garde, or industrial blog may leave some readers askance, so I made a new alternative one with a metallic trophy. The blue, white and red lettering reflect the standard colors of competition ribbons.

reader-app-awardrdaward

OTHER CRITERIA

It’s a tall order fulfilling ten different award obligations, so let me try an amalgamation and answer as many as I can.

1. Award your top six bloggers who have commented the most.

2. Nominate five people who in turn will post on their page the award with the link to the giver.

3. Thank the blogger who nominated you and link back to their blog.

These are similar and reflect how the award criteria have changed. Let me do this — I will award the top six bloggers who have commented the most on World Adventurers and in turn will post on their page the award with the link to the giver. Here are my nominees, great friends and colleagues who always post excellent comments on my blog (in alphabetical order):

David Cassidy (http://www.davidccassidy.com): David is a writer, photographer, and graphic designer. Check out “Blog Categories” to read his many posts about writing, photography, and his endearing support for other writers with book reviews and author interviews. I really appreciate his efforts to help fellow indie writers and must mention that his novel “Velvet Rain” about a mysterious drifter with godlike powers is on sale September 28-30.

Renee Craves Adventure (cravesadventure.wordpress.com): Renee writes lovely stories about the West and enjoying life to the fullest. I love her photos and enthusiasm! She recently started a new series called “Living the Big and Beautiful Life” that you might enjoy.

August McLaughlin (augustmclaughlin.wordpress.com): A wonderful, talented lady who shares her passion for writing through her blog and books. August has some of the best insights I’ve read on everyday life and success. I love her health tips and witty sense of humor.

Sheila Pierson (sheilapierson.wordpress.com): A writer who pens some of the most profound and inspiring poems and short stories that I’ve read. She has a gift for conveying emotion through her words and connecting with readers.

Russel Ray (russelrayphotos2.com): A photographer and blogger from Southern California who helps keep me grounded with reminders of the United States and words of wisdom from his grandmother, among other platitudes. A great melding of stories and photos.

The Tale Of My Heart (justsimplyinlove.wordpress.com): Although he doesn’t comment often, I know he’s there because he visits my blog and always leaves his “Like.” It’s an honor because his blog is popular, and for obvious reason — his poetry, prose, and imagery are genuine works of art.

4. Be thankful.

I am thankful for great readers like you who make blogging worth the effort. A special thanks goes to Lada Ray for her nomination and to Jennifer Avventura for creating the award.

5. You cannot award someone who has already been awarded. And you cannot give the award back to me.

True, but I can acknowledge Jennifer Avventura for creating the award. Her initiative has taken on a life of its own.

6. Don’t forget to tell the bloggers you’ve awarded.

7. Let them know about the nomination.

These are duplicates, methinks. I will if they don’t post a comment on my blog first!

8. If you don’t want to pass on this award, that’s okay too. Just admire it.

I’ll pass it on and admire it.

9. Post the award logo.

Done. Well, two actually.

10.  Post seven things about yourself.

Based on the original criteria, I don’t have to share seven more things about myself. That’s a relief! I would rather focus on the award giver and six recipients; seven things, one per person. After all, it’s an award to acknowledge the readers, not the blogger. Please visit their blogs and learn more about these intriguing people and their fascinating stories.

ONE MORE ROUND OF THANK YOUS

Thanks again, Lada and Jennifer!

 

buythumbM.G. Edwards is a writer of books and stories in the mystery, thriller and science fiction-fantasy genres. He also writes travel adventures. He is author of Kilimanjaro: One Man’s Quest to Go Over the Hill, a non-fiction account of his attempt to summit Mount Kilimanjaro, Africa’s highest mountain and a collection of short stories called Real Dreams: Thirty Years of Short Stories. His books are available as an e-book and in print on Amazon.com and other booksellers. He lives in Bangkok, Thailand with his wife Jing and son Alex.

For more books or stories by M.G. Edwards, visit his web site at www.mgedwards.com or his blog, World Adventurers. Contact him at me@mgedwards.com, on Facebook, on Google+, or @m_g_edwards on Twitter.

© 2012 Brilliance Press. All rights reserved. No part of this work may be reproduced or transmitted without the written consent of the author.

Superhero Author Interviews M.G. Edwards


Reblogged from KevinRau.com:

interviewAn Interview with M.G. Edwards

Many thanks to fellow author Kevin Rau for his invitation to interview me with a superhero twist! Although I am mortal, I’m happy to have the opportunity flex my lone superpower — my amazing ability to bend and twist prose. Thanks again, Kevin! I’ll try to keep this interview coherent and on topic. If not, just tell the words to get back in line.

When did you start writing, and was there a significant event that prompted you to do so?

When I was ten years old, my teacher asked our class to write tall tales in small groups and present them in class. Some groups chose to tell the story of Paul Bunyan and other well-known legends. Inspired by the 1981 eruption of Mount St. Helens, I wrote a tale called "How Little Big Chief Calmed the Mountain." Featured in my book Real Dreams, the story tells of how Little Big Chief made the ultimate sacrifice — offering what was most precious to him to appease an angry volcano. The role of Little Big Chief went to a good friend with cerebral palsy. His amazing performance is one of my fondest childhood memories.

Kev’s response: Hmm, I’ve always found that interesting. Personally, I have no memories below the age of 13 or so. None. I joke that I was hatched at that age. It’s fascinating to hear about others with their memories.

If you could have one superpower, what would it be? (Assuming said power would be reasonably powerful.)

I would like the ability to clone myself like Michael Keaton did in the movie Multiplicity. Not that I relish dealing with multiple versions of myself and their escapades, but they sure would come in handy to help me multitask. One could focus on brainstorming ideas for novels, another on writing outlines, a third on drafting the manuscript, and a fourth on editing it. My productivity would soar! At least, that’s how it would work in theory.

Kev’s response: Just the ability to brainstorm ideas in a group for storylines would rock.

Do you have a favorite superhero from novels, comics, or movies?

I’m a big comic book fan. My favorite superhero — long before The Avengers movie came along — has always been Thor. I mean, how can you beat a demigod? I know that Ironman seems cooler, the Hulk is a force to be reckoned with, and Captain America is America’s superhero, but it’s hard to beat a Norse god and his mighty hammer.

Kev’s response: Thor is a full-blown deity, you know. Perhaps not in the Marvel Universe, however. He is filled with much awesomeness – and Chris Hemsworth has done an excellent job portraying him in the Thor part. :)

Click here to read the rest of my interview on Kevin’s super-fabulous blog!

thor

About Kevin Rau

Kevin Rau is the author of six novels, including the H.E.R.O. series, an Illustrated Guide, and short stories in the SciFi/Superhero genre. He also does character art. He launched the Author Interview pages to promote fellow authors and create some cross-links back to their websites or social networks within the interview. Visit his interview page for more great interviews from other authors. For more information about his work, visit KevinRau.com.

Thor’s Battle Against the Jötnar (1872) by Mårten Eskil Winge is public domain.