Launch of “The Imaginaeries of Faerie Glen” on 25th November 2017 @14h00

The Imaginaeries of Faerie Glen will be launched in the very same nature reserve where this story is set!

On Saturday 25th November, between 2 and 4 pm you are invited to come and spend some time in the Glen and imagine your own fairies.

Or try your hand at hula-hooping and see if you are as good as Ivy Lion. (No – this is not only for kids – adults are welcome to try too!)

Go on a fairy walk and see if you can spot some magical stripey beasts, or maybe one of the other furry critters that lurk in the bushes. You might even see Frederique…

Hmmm…. You are wondering who Frederique is, aren’t you? You’ll have to come to the launch and buy the book or ask the author.  Or you could buy the eBook on Amazon now already if you can’t wait that long to find out.

There will be other magical fun stuff too.

Normal Faerie Glen Nature Reserve rates apply: Pre- schoolers are free; R6 (children 6-12y); R6 (pensioners); R11 (adults 13 – 60y).  A portion of the sales on the books will also be donated to the Friends of Faerie Glen Nature Reserve.

Pre-Order your own signed copy NOW!

It gets even better – everybody who either buys a book on the day or pre-orders a copy of The Imaginaeries of Faerie Glen goes into a lucky draw and stands a chance to win this adorable little Ribbets Ridge fairy house to start your own fairy garden. (Kindly sponsored by Fairy Wonderland Suppliers.) Special launch price is R100 and they will all be signed too. The real books have delightful illustrations – although we’d prefer it if you imagined your own fairies! They will make gorgeous Christmas presents.

It’s really easy to pre-order – just click on the link.

 

Want to write a review?

But that’s not all… if perhaps you have already read The Imaginaeries of Faerie Glen – and you’d like to write a review (either on Amazon or email it to Ginny and she’ll post it as a blog) you’ll go into the lucky draw and stand a chance to win this particular one of Igz special one-of-a-kind Imaginaerie dolls by the name of Poppy Mars.  (Igz, the illustrator, is not only an artist on paper but is also fabulous when it comes to creating other wonderful things too.)

 

 

Want to know more about what’s in the book…

Amid the hustle and bustle of daily life in the Glen, the Imaginaeries are also getting ready for The Ball – a glittery event that takes place at the first new moon after the leaves have fallen. But will PESCOM come to the party?

Ivy Lion makes Gogo Gaia very angry when she experiments with colour and Winona Wurm’s mischievous pets are given the ultimate warning at the Moonlight Meeting. Marigold discovers that not everybody is sunshine-flavoured. Madame Shews, the snooty French shoe designer is up to something for sure and the Bollywoggles are keeping an eye on her. Mor-a-Bella escaped from a cabbage bog but is life going to be any better in the Glen? Will Pete the Publisher ever perfect his environmentally friendly newspaper? Can Granny Catty convince Mr Grumpy Pants to stop being a hermit and accompany her to The Ball?

Meanwhile things keep disappearing… could there be a thief in the Glen?

The Imaginaeries of Faerie Glen is a whimsical fairy story set in a real nature reserve in Pretoria, South Africa.

Feel free to contact Ginny if you want any more information.  Remember you can like The Imaginaeries on Facebook too!

Red Paintbrush

Clearly Ivy Lion has been very busy in the glen lately. Check out this magnificent flower that I spotted nestled in the bush.

It’s called a Red Paintbrush. In Afrikaans – a Poeierkwas (Scadoxus puniceus) and according to Leafy Lou aka Louise (yes – there really is such a person who is a bit like the custodian of the glen) this lovely plant is sadly declining due to habitat destruction and harvesting.

It’s sad to think that some people actually steal plants out of the Faerie Glen Nature Reserve.

Gogo Gaia (the Imaginaeries’ leader of the glen) is going to have to be more watchful in future and think up a suitable punishing spell to cast on those humans who do such a wicked thing!

If you live in Pretoria – do yourself a favor, take a hike in this gorgeous nature reserve and check out all the flowers and wildlife – not only are there Magical Stripey Beasties but there’s a variety of other bokkies and little creatures. It’s a fabulous venue for bird-watchers too.

For those who live elsewhere in the world – we’d love to hear about your local nature reserve or any place where you get out and sniff the fresh air. Pictures and guest blogs are very welcome.

Review from a self-professed fairy tale expert – Liza Martz

Hello dear,

I am SO sorry it’s taken me this long to respond. I kept waiting for a time when my life was uninterrupted and today was it. And I’m so glad I waited so I could read the whole thing in one fell swoop. The proof of what a good story is, my doggies were requesting many outside and inside trips and I was getting irritated that they were interrupting my reading.

The Glen is such a wonderfully magical place. And the various characters have such distinct personalities that make each of them individual. The writing is simply the best. As  you know I am a big fan of magical places in stories and you have nailed it, my dear, and brought the Faerie Glen alive.

Your style reminds me of two of my all time favorites, E. Nesbit and Eva Ibbotson. I can read their stuff over and over and it always sweeps me away. And The Faerie Glen is in that same league.

Now, I do have to admit to being puzzled at the end when the Beatles Boys show up. I had gotten the impression they were kind of tough guy thugs and that their return would not be cause for celebration. But I couldn’t tell if they were welcome or if everyone had a feeling of, “Oh no, here they come and wreck everything.”

BTW, I am in love with the worms. They are hilarious little pranksters and totally crack me up!!!! Mr. Grumpy Pants reminds me of my maternal grandfather except he would never have come around to seeing things any other way but his own. I’m glad Mr. G. got to test out the new fangled stuff and see the benefits.

I can go on for days about how lovely this is, it is just wonderful. I’m sorry to gush but it is needed here. Thank you so much for allowing me to read it. And I sure hope it gets published by a major publisher, Peter the Publisher????, haha! and I can buy my own hard copy here in the USofA!

Very nicely done!!!  xoxoxoxoxo

Liza Martz


Liza lives in the USA – and it was great to see that she enjoyed the book – South Africanisms and all!  Thanks for such fabulous feedback my friend.

What the Grade R’s think of the first chapter.

Thanks very much to Taryn Pereria for test-driving our book with her class.

This is what she said…

Thank you so much for letting me have a sneak peak of your wonderful story. What a magical idea! 

My class is Grade R so their ages range from 5 to 7. Usually at this age, children enjoy short picture books with very little writing, so I was feeling a bit apprehensive about what their feedback would be, but I was pleasantly surprised. 

I told them that this was a special story written by one of my friends and that I wanted to them to tell me what they thought afterwards…they all felt very important! I also told them that there were no pictures yet but that they should use their imaginations to imagine the story. 

Story time lasts for about 25 minutes at this age, so I managed to get through the first chapter and then we chatted about it afterwards. They listened beautifully and were visibly enthralled by the characters. Their favourite parts were when Marigold grabs one of Bradley’s legs and yanks him back inside when he tries to escape, and also when they skip through the puddles and go home to enjoy a berry breakfast.

The story is so well written and lends itself to the reader being able to use a great variety of expression, which the children absolutely love. I honestly loved reading it to them because it was so easy to get totally involved and become each character. Well done Emma and Ginny, you’ve created something so special for our children! 

Taryn was also kind enough to give the following constructive criticism

  1. Use each chapter of the book to make a stand alone story picture book with big illustrations on each page (the series of stories could be called “Imaginaries”).
  2. Perhaps some of the more tricky vocabulary could be simplified for this age group (e.g. snit, glum, considering, pondered, alternate, fond, loathed, conned, myriad etc)
  3. A few of the more tricky expressions could also be simplified for this age group (e.g. “had a bash at cheering Bella Dew up” could simply be changed to “had tried their best to cheer Bella Dew up” and “you can’t order up life to please your own self” could be simplified to “you can’t always have everything exactly the way you like it” etc.).
  4. As an added bonus, to have a CD with the story being read by someone and with a few sounds effects and background music is always a HUGE attraction to parents and teachers who don’t always have the skill or energy to read stories with as much oomph. I know that our teachers at my school love a good audio book and so do the children.

It is lovely to have a few tricky words here and there, because the children will slowly be introduced to new vocabulary, but it can become a little distracting to have to stop the flow of the story too often to explain a word or phrase to them…the trick is to find a happy balance.

Before teaching Grade R, I spent 5 years as a Grade 3 teacher where the average age is 9. I feel that a chapter book with a few illustrations here and there would be perfect for this age group. I.e. keep the story as is with all the chapters in one book, and include a small black and white illustration on every few pages. The 9 year olds would also be more able to appreciate the humorous references like “inter web” and “sneakers” being quiet shoes etc.

As a side note, there is a gap in the market for good puppet shows for this age group (4-9). Pre Primary and Primary schools are always keen for a good quality puppet show. Our school tries to have at least 4 a year (usually on the last day of each term as a treat for the children…and teachers). But we so often struggle to find a good one and even if we do, they are most often fully booked. So… just an idea to use your wonderful story telling skills and creative doll making to fill a gap in the current market?  (This is a fabulous idea and we will certainly consider it.)


Originally my plan was to make each story a separate book with loads of pictures – but then it morphed into a proper book with chapters and we are actually aimed at slightly older than Grade R kids. Having said that, it’s great to see that they enjoyed the story and we might end up doing both.  We also definitely plan to do an audio book.

Again, thanks to Taryn for taking the time to read our book to her class.

Feedback from Toni Henning

We’ve been sharing The Imaginaeries with various people who have indicated an interest in “test-driving” the manuscript and so far the feedback has been rather awesome.

Below is from a new friend of mine – a lady who I have never met – but hooked up with on Niume, after I read her blogs and realised she was a bit of a kindred spirit and fellow scribbler.

Toni Henning has her own marketing business – see details below!

Thank very much for your positive feedback (and pointing out some of the glitches) Toni.

Where do I begin? 
At the beginning I guess.
You had me hooked at Imaginaeries! I love the name! 

I love the South Africanisms – the guinea fowl taxis (I had a good laugh!), PESCOM (so glad they got there comeuppance and the worms shone thru), the simba chips packet, the indigenous and alien plants, the loeries saying go away – all fantastic! And the expressions like ‘beastiepoop’… so funny. The interwebs and flutterbytes – so clever! 
Really everything is quite brilliantly written.
Otherwise it’s a very cute story and all your characters come together really nicely at the end. 
Kids (and grown-ups) … but more importantly kids … are gonna love your humour and your amusing character descriptions. 
Thank you for letting me read your book. I trust the feedback is relevant.
Looking forward to hearing the news of it being published and becoming a top seller! 

 

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Contact us and let us put together a social media plan that will take your business into the future.

Content writer and social media manager:
tonih@netactive.co.za  www.toni-with-an-i.co.za
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Impatience vs Imaginaeries!

Have to say – I am dying here!

Most writers are such insecure little weasels and I am no exception.

Impatience is my middle name and I have to suck it up and be as patient as possible waiting for feedback from everybody who volunteered themselves and their kids to test drive “The Imaginaeries” for us and give feedback.

Totally understand that people are busy and that this is not like my other books that are a quick read. I mean its 90 whole pages for goodness sake! A novelette.

I’ve had a few great comments back from adults but am now busting to hear what the kids have to say.


“I’ve read it folks and is spontaneous, ingenious, captivating . Big hats off to Ms Stone. Suitable for all ages with a penchant for things faerieistic.”  – Peter Sanderson

“My current favourite read! Can’t wait to hold a hard copy in my hands! Signed of course.” – Lisa Chella (Lisa was the first person I sent the book to read and she wants to be our marketing lady so she must like it!)

“I really, really loved the stories. They reminded me of the Enid Blyton I used to read, but somehow friendlier! So, THANK YOU, for letting me have an early look at them.” – Jaynie Padayachee (Jaynes kindly edited the first draft for me too.)


My family think it’s really funny – this me having to wait thing. They are of the opinion that as soon as I think of something I’ve already done it. So they reckon this is a good life lesson for me. Meanies!

Stay tuned

About the illustrator

Igz is a creative dabbler of note!

Her first love is sewing, preferably renovating previously loved articles into something innovative and dashing.

She’s been doing this since she was a little girl – her mother would find neatly cut up articles of clothing, often new clothing, stashed in various places. At the age of three she would make pictures on the floor with her clothes in the morning, add a scarf or a belt, and then when she was happy with what it all looked like, she would climb into the picture.

She went to extra art classes when she was in primary school. Her gran had given the classes to her as a gift. When the series of classes came to an end, the art teacher told her gran that she would prefer it if Igz did not return. The reason – she wanted to do her own thing. She refused to follow orders and make the same stuff that everybody else was making.  She broke the box at a very early age.

She makes one-off dolls to die for. Fabulously quirky creatures.

Imaginaeries – the dolls

These are the original Imaginaeries – complete with tattoos, piercings and trendy clothes. (They sell for R350 if you are interested in having a one-off designer doll!)

When she’s not sewing, she can be found drawing – on paper, material or any surface that she fancies. Fabulous ink blot drawings, mushrooms, mandalas or more quirky little creatures.

When she’s not drawing or sewing she’s rather fond of hula hooping and is a pro. She spent a year supporting herself by giving hula hoop lessons via skype to ladies in the USA! Not to mention being imported to KZN do hula hoop workshops for kids and adults at a science festival.

At one stage of her young life Igz was a drummer in a band. At another… a tattoo artist.

Like a true artist, she gets bored easily and moves on to the next thing.

Various versions of the Imaginaeries have been circling in her head (and on paper) for the last few years and it’s only now, with her mom available to put her thoughts into words, that the story has fully materialized.

 

 

 

It takes just a little Imagination!

My younger daughter, Igz and myself have written a book… called “The Imaginaeries of Faerie Glen”.

I did the writing but she gave me all sorts of weird and whimsical ideas.

Igz ihas done the illustrating. (This was quite a process.  The concept kept changing slightly but the idea remained the same.)

Actually… we want you to imagine your own characters.

How it started…

My lovely husband and I often go for hikes over the weekend in Faerie Glen Nature Reserve (Pretoria East). It’s beyond lovely there. We think of it as our sanity time in the midst of all the hustle and bustle of daily life.

The veld changes from season to season, but magic is always around. Sometimes you just have to look a little harder.

The idea for a faerie tale first came about when I saw kids (of all ages) mooching around the Glen, trailing after their parents, looking a tad disgruntled. I wondered if they would have rather been at home with their play stations or something instead of being out sniffing the fresh air?  (Of course there are plenty of kids who also frolic and gambol around and are perfectly happy to be there.)

I started imagining all sorts of little faerie-like creatures lurking in the flowers, bushes and trees and began writing stories in my head. Then realised that the Imaginaeries that Igz had been drawing for years would be just perfect. Many of her Imaginaeries already had a back-story and the book simply grew from there.

Also started driving my lovely husband bonkers by stopping every few steps to take photos – from all sorts of crazy angles – because it looked like a great place for a… something… (not giving away any of the story line yet).

Often I’d sheepishly have to pretend to be tying my shoelace or something – to stop from feeling like a real wally when another Faerie Glenner strolled passed us.


It’s actually quite a cutie story, but don’t take my word for it – see what other people think about the book.