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BackWords: A Backwards Word Book for Gamers

BackWords Book Cover 

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Description and Press Release
Blurbs and Reviews
Author Bio
Interview
Author Activities

 

Available in paperback, as an eBook for Kindle and Nook, and as an iphone application and Android App.


Description and Press Release

  • Paperback: 276 pages
  • Publisher: Wisdom Creek Press, LLC (2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0981875688
  • ISBN-13: 978-0981875682
  • Available through Baker & Taylor, Amazon.com, etc.
  • Product Dimensions: 10 x 7.5 x 0.6 inches


    Backwards Dictionary Helps Gamers and Writers

     

    BackWords: A backwards word list (alphabetical by last letter) for gamers released in 2009

     

    ATLANTA Wisdom Creek Press has released a book to assist poets, word gamers and other wordsmiths in their search for just the right word. The opposite of traditional dictionaries, this word list is arranged alphabetically using the LAST letter of each word.

     

    “My original motivation for researching and writing this book was personal,” said author Cherie K. Miller. “My husband and I are both authors and enjoy playing word games, like ScrabbleTM. When we play, we allow dictionaries because we like to increase our vocabulary and competitiveness. But it frustrated us when we needed, for example, a three letter word that ended in “Q”. That’s where the traditional dictionary fails gamers. With BackWords, gamers, writers, and poets can find words that end in a certain letter."

     

    Uses include:

    • A handy reference for word gamers.
    • A unique gift for the word gamer in your life.
    • Help finding words for poetry or prose.
    • Lists to memorize for those who compete in Scrabble tournaments.

     “As we write prose or poetry, we’re always conscious of the sounds of the words, and not just the meaning. It’s simply another way to increase vocabulary, get more competitive at word games, and find just the right word. Or maybe we just can help it - we’re word-nerds.”

     

    For more information, visit www.wisdomcreekpress.com .

    Blurbs and Reviews

     

    "As Scrabble nuts, we are supercalifragilisticexpialidociously excited to have BackWords by our beds." - Arielle Eckstut & David Sterry, authors of Putting Your Passion into Print.

    "I can't tell you how long I've been waiting for this..." - Sonic Storm music blog

    "Kids of all ages need this book! BackWords will enhance family fun, increase vocabulary, expand literacy, and will develop greater competency in this 'critical thinking' skill activity." - Dr. Helen B. McIntosh, former school counselor and educator, author, inventor, and CEO of The Peace Rug Co., Inc.


    "If you like word games, you will LOVE Backwords. As a writer, I am discovering this to be a useful tool and a valuable addition to my reference library." - Lisa M. Russell, Georgia Writers Association.

     

    New book is perfect gift for those who do things ‘sdrawkcab’

    By Cory Bilicko, Entertainment Writer, Signal (California) Tribune

     

    Just in time for post-holiday shopping, BackWords: A Backwards Word List for Gamers may be the perfect gift idea for those who engage in a bit of backwards thinking and doing, like giving presents after the traditional season for it.

    Compiled by Cherie K. Miller, founder and publisher of Wisdom Creek Press, BackWords is a list of words presented alphabetically using the last letter of each word. The idea for the book was born of her and her spouse’s frustration while playing word games. “My husband and I are both authors and enjoy playing word games, like Scrabble,” she says. “When we play, we allow dictionaries because we like to increase our vocabulary and competitiveness. But it frustrated us when we needed, for example, a three-letter word that ended in ‘Q’.”


    Since traditional dictionaries fail game-players on this count, Miller developed BackWords so that “word nerds” can look up entries that end with a certain letter.


    The result is a well-organized, 261-page reference that is easy to use. In addition to being arranged in alphabetical order by last letter, BackWords also lists words by the number of letters they contain. For example, for the letter “U,” there are lists of words with two letters, three letters, etc. There’s even a thumb index to help gamers find entries quickly while their opponents are tapping their fingers.

     

    Book review at Robin's Nest. "This book is amazing for gamers, students and just an all around fun book to check out words. If you are a writer this book is a must! It's a great addition to my desk of information. If you love to rhyme in your poetry, this book is a must!"

     

    Cherie Miller PhotoAbout the Author

    Cherie K. Miller is the founder and president of Wisdom Creek Press, LLC and works with the Masters in American Studies program at Kennesaw State University. She has published books, written for national magazines and written a newspaper column called Kidding Around for a Chicago newspaper chain.  She achieved her MA in Professional Writing from Kennesaw State University in 2007. Miller is the current President of the Georgia Writers Association, a state-wide nonprofit organization promoting authorship in Georgia. For more information about Miller, visit www.cheriekmiller.com .

     

    Interview

     

    Thank you Cherie for taking the time to answer some questions for us! Please tell us about your latest project.

    In my life it seems I've had a tendency to do everything backwards. I remarried and blended a family that accumulated seven sons and THEN I decided to attend college. So I was juggling a full-time work load, a family and graduate school. Another layer I've added is my mother-in-law, father-in-law and granny-in-law moved next door to our home so that we could become hands on with caregiving for Granny (who's 103) and Dad Miller (who had a massive stroke).

    During the long nights of caregiving and being stuck at home, my mother-in-law, Ann, started having a continuous Scrabble game on her kitchen table. We'd play week-long games with her taking a leisurely time to place our tiles into high scoring words. Since I hadn't played a game of Scrabble in years and years, I must say I was rusty with my vocabulary. I often became frustrated with the Scrabble dictionary as I needed to look up  words that ENDED with a letter, for example, K, rather than a word that began with a letter.

    So I looked for a book that listed words in order arranged by the last letter of the word, rather than the first. There wasn't one - so I created a Scrabble word book entitled BackWords: A backwards word list for gamers, which was published by Wisdom Creek Press in July, 2009.

    What inspired you to write this book?

    I was frustrated trying to figure out how to think of words from the last letter to the first as I tried to beat my high-scoring mother-in-law during our continuous Scrabble games. So I created BackWords: a gamers word list. I thought if it helped me, it would also help others who are into word games, such as crossword puzzles, Boggle or Scrabble.

    Have you received any awards for your work?

    As an undergraduate Communications major in 2004 I won the Best Research Project for my thesis.

    Do you also do speaking engagements, or seminars?

    I have spoken to various groups, especially those on the campus of Kennesaw State University. I've also moderated panel discussions and spoken at the Georgia Writers Association.

    How has your education, profession or background helped you in your writing career? Or conversely, how has you writing success helped you in your  profession?

    For the past 15 years I've been a freelance writer, especially writing on parenting topics for newspapers in Chicagoland. I wrote a column for 8 years called Kidding Around, which was primarily focused on events you could take your children, grandchildren, etc. to attend.

    Since I moved to Atlanta I finished my schooling with an MA in Professional Writing. This has opened up lots of doors for my writing. I currently work as a professional administrator for the MA in American Studies program at Kennesaw State University where I write a bi-monthly newsletter for the faculty and students in the program. Writing website content, press releases and newsletters has always been important.


    What kind of other works (books, scripts, poems etc.) have you had published?

    I've been published as portions of a book entitled Women at the Well: 33 Devotions for a Thirsty Soul. I've written a couple of church dramas that were performed in front of live audiences, which is a terrific kick to hear people laughing about something that I've invented in my mind. I've had a column syndicated in the Sun Newspapers (Chicago suburbs). I've also been published in Focus on the Family magazines, Today's Christian Woman, Group Magazine, Youth Worker Journal, Magnolia Magazine, History's Women, Home & Away (AAA Magazine) and Country Magazine. I've also written a lot of content for websites.

    Is there any aspect to your profession that gets you in touch with your readers directly?

    I'm very active in Social Media, therefore, I have Twitter, Facebook and Linkedin profiles, which gives me a lot of interaction with my readers. These new innovations have been wonderful for an author to receive immediate feedback. In years past I would write an article in the newspaper or a magazine and rarely get feedback. Nowadays, with the explosion of social media outlets, I have a lot more conversations about writing than I ever have before.

    What will your next project be?

    I've got a new project laid out entitled Writing Conversations: Spend 365 days with your favorite authors learning the craft of writing. This book will be available for sale by Christmas, 2009, and is very helpful nuggets of advice by the very top authors on their own writing processes.


    Who inspires you on a personal or business level?

    I'm inspired by creativity. If someone has a terrifically unique way to say something, I perk up. I'm also very inspired by true stories of people who've documented experienced of people who cannot write about their own lives. For example, I will always remember the book Nickel and Dimed: On (Not) Getting by in American by Barbara Ehrenreich. She lived the life of a low-wage worker and wrote about the ins and out of living at the poverty line. I was so inspired by her work that I went and interviewed local day laborers about what their lives are like. I wanted to know what it's like to come to a country without a job and to wait on street corners to see if someone was going to put you to work that day so that you could eat. People have amazing courage and optimism.

    What type of work is the most rewarding or satisfying for you?

    I love both people and communicating, so any type of work that combines those two things are deeply satisfying. I also like to assist people in achieving their goals. All day long I help people achieve their dream of earning a Masters or learn how to become published authors. I'm living in my dream job being in a university setting. It's a wonderful place with many, many opportunities to learn about diverse cultures, ideas and from people from many different countries. There are plays, readings and speakers on many, many topics. So, I'm always learning, which is a good thing.

    What can you recommend for writers who are just getting started and are trying to make a name for themselves?

    Buy my next book: Writing Conversations! But, no seriously, writing is a craft that takes practice. You cannot expect to just sit down and write a terrific article, essay or novel without learning about the craft of writing. Take classes, attend a workshop, invest time in a writing critique group, every thing you can do to make your writing just sing is worth any amount of  time or money. Find courses at your local community college. Those professors are writing experts and will teach you everything they know about grammar, logical arrnagements and plot. And then go home and write.

    How did you get started as a writer?

    For several years I didn't  know I WAS a writer. I wrote long letters to my mom, but never did anything on a formal basis. But, I've always been an avid reader, devouring everything in print. Then a newsletter I subscribed to asked readers to contribute. I sat down and wrote a short article and it was printed the next month. I was astounded. And inspired to continue writing. I bought a book entitled "How to make $25,000 a Year Writing."  In there it described how to be a newspaper columnist. I followed the instructions to the letter, pitched the proposal to my local newspaper and the next thing I knew I was a newspaper columnist. I expanded to writing feature articles for the newspaper and then started learning the process on how to query magazine editors. That flourished and then I expanded my writing into book-length projects. It's been a gradual process of learning, but it's been a wonderful journey.

    Which is your favorite book/work published? Is there a favorite?

    It's terribly difficult to narrow my choices down to a favorite. Whatever author I'm reading right now is my favorite. I'm reading A Walk in the Woods:Rediscovering American on the Appalachian Trial by Bill Bryson, which is a wonderfully funny book. I'm a book slut and will read almost anything between two covers, as long as the author can write. I cannot stand the books where the author is trying to be pretensious and use long, convoluted sentences. Give it to me snappilly and I'm a fan for life.

    What does a typical work day look like for you?

    I work in an office on the 2nd floor of the a large College of Humnanities at Kennesaw State University. My office is located in a suite that includes seven areas of study:  African and African Diaspora, American Studies, Asian Studies,  Environmental Studies, Gender and Women Studies, Latin American Studies, and Peace Studies. Each of these areas of study in the university are broadening. I specifically work with the graduate students who are studying for an MA in American Studies. They are terrific! One just came back from three years in the Peace Corp working in Turkmanistan. Another works in an art gallery. Several are teachers and all are passionate about learning about American in a transnational context. What does it mean to be an immigrant? How has Japanese culture (anime, etc.) affected American culture. It's all very thoughty.

    Have you ever had a mentor, or someone who sparked your passion for writing?

    My professors who taught my MA in Professional Writing classes have been mentors. Additionally, everyone who was in class with me were my mentors as they struggled with helping me to improve my writing.

    Who is your favorite writer/author?

    My mentors have been writers who've written about writing. Anne Lamott (Bird by Bird), Natalie Goldberg (Writing Down the Bones or Wild Mind) , Julia Cameron (The Artist's Way), William Zinsser (On Writing Well) and every issue of The Writers Digest!

    Finally, a most important question: what was the last song you sang out loud when you were by yourself?  :)

    The very first concert I attended was when I was 18. I went to Summerfest on Lake Michigan in Milwaukee. It was a summer night and the sweet smell of marijuana drifted over the crowd as the wonderful story songs of Harry Chapin changed my life. I've been listening to his cd this week, so I must say I was singing along to Taxi. Loved those seven-minute songs that were never played on the radio because they were too long. His only one that crossed over into popularity was Cats in the Cradle, because it was short. But, his songs always had a message, which I loved.

    Thank you Cherie! We wish you great success with your new book Writing Conversations: Spend 365 days with your favorite authors learning the craft of writing!

     

    Author Bio

    Cherie K. Miller lives on a lake in Georgia with her author husband, Steve, and a blended family of seven sons. She has written for several national magazines and newspapers in both Chicago and Atlanta. Cherie graduated with a BS in Communications and an MA in Professional Writing from Kennesaw State University. She works in the MA in American Studies program at KSU and enjoys her volunteer work as the President of the Board for the Georgia Writers. Cherie is the President of Wisdom Creek Press, LLC, which in 2009 issued her book: BackWords: a backwards word list for gamers.

     

    Author Activities