Wednesday 14 March 2018

Irish-born Philosopher, John Toland (1670-1722), Commemorated Online

John Toland (1670-1722)

– Irish-born rationalist philosopher and freethinker –

John Toland image
A new website dedicated to the life and work of the philosopher, John Toland (b. 1670), was launched last Sunday, 11 March (the anniversary of his death in 1722).

John Toland was Irish-born rationalist philosopher and freethinker of the early Enlightenment period. He made important contributions to the various fields of philosophy – in what today would be regarded as both the natural and social sciences. "If you would know more of him, search his writings," he wrote in a self-penned epitaph that appeared following his death.

The purpose of of this web-based project, say the organisers, is to serve as a free, online resource and repository of knowledge pertaining to Toland, his writings, the times in which he lived and to the social movement that he, along with others, spearheaded and represented, with particular reference to the enduring legacy and effect.
There is a lot that has been said about John Toland and probably a lot more that could be said. This web-based project will serve the purpose of ensuring that nothing that should be said will go unsaid. This is also why we are making the material posted to this website freely available and open to anyone who may wish to contribute. Furthermore, we invite those who may wish to contribute to get in touch with us.

The unveiling of the website on the anniversary of Toland's death is not coincidental. "In fact, the date has been deliberately chosen ..."
The 350th anniversary of Toland's birth will be observed on 30 November 2020 and the 300th anniversary of his death falls less than two years later, in 2022. We particularly encourage anyone who has an interest in these anniversaries to get in touch with us, to ensure that they are properly observed and accorded the respect that they are due. We will do our best (without fear or favour) to publicise events that are taking place, using networks and channels of communication within our reach.

John Toland commemoration, Ardagh, Co. Donegal
John Toland (1670-1722) website is owned and managed by The Manuscript Publisher, an Irish-based publishing services provider who have published, or otherwise made available, several works by or relating to John Toland, including J.N. Duggan's short biography Ireland's Forgotten Philosopher, Scholar ... and Heretic.

They go on to specify however that "this is not intended as an advertisement or an endorsement. Furthermore, we welcome correspondence from authors, publishers, educationalists, historical societies, groups and individuals who might see some aspect of their own interest or remit reflected in this initiative."

Persons interested in this web project are invited to keep in touch. Visit the website to subscribe, using the facilities that are available such as, by signing up for e-mail alerts. You can also follow on Facebook and on Twitter.

Thursday 8 March 2018

Book Launch: Would You Believe? by Dezi Jay M

Would You Believe? by Dezi Jay M

– a collection of morality tales told with underlying comedic intent –

Would You Believe? by Dezi Jay M (the author's fourth published outing to date) will be formally launched on Thursday, 15 March at Parnell's GAA Club in Coolock Village, Dublin, starting 7.30pm.

The author's offering is a collection of morality tales, told mostly through verse and delivered with impeccable comedic judgement and effect. The author displays a craftsman-like knack for word play, colourfully illustrating the problems and predicaments drawn from everyday life, which are rarely black and white.

Dezi Jay M says that he grew up in a world that seemed confusing. Neither he, his parents, his teachers, nor anyone else were aware that he was autistic. Today he has come to acknowledge his Asperger's as a gift. He looks at life from a clearer perspective, allowing him to express his sense of humour in a healthy environment.
"Some say life is a gamble. I would prefer to say that in life, one may take risks. Much of my work is about people going through difficult situations and turning it around. Each poem, each story has a meaning to it, has a consequence. It has vindication and most importantly, the essence of Love."

Dezi Jay M is an author, actor, performing poet (AAPP) who lives and works in Dublin, Ireland. His writing reflects themes and personal preoccupations with issues related to alcoholism and addiction, homelessness, church and state and the state of the world in general. Previous publications include, The Day the Poppy Met the Shamrock (2014), The Resurrection of Peter (2015), Legacies (2016). He is currently working on a volume of memoirs that he intends to have ready for publication shortly. Further information about his literary and other activities can be found at his website –

Would You Believe? by Dezi Jay M is on sale now and available to buy online (RRP €12.99 plus P&P), along with the author's other publications. It will also be on sale on the night of the launch (Thursday, 15 March) at Parnell's GAA Club, Coolock Village, Dublin. Entertainment and light refreshments will be provided. Doors open at 7.30pm and everyone is welcome.

A sample or teaser edition has already been published and is available to download for free.

Monday 5 March 2018

Read an Ebook Week Sale Runs March 4-10

It's Read an e-Book Week 2018 all this week until midnight (depending on where in the world you are, of course) on Saturday, 10 March. Once again, thousands of titles are deeply discounted along with some that are free!

To participate, simply visit the Smashwords storefront and look for the titles that are to your liking and being offered at discounts ranging from 25%, 50%, 75% and even 100%. Tell your friends about it too.

Authors and independent publishers who have published on Smashwords can participate in this promotion by following the simply laid-out guidelines and instructions.

If you have not yet published on Smashwords (the world's largest retailer of independently published e-titles), there is still time but you'll want to get moving if you intend participating in this site-wide promotion. Sign up to Smashwords to create an account then, upload your pre-formatted files for e-book conversion – for this, you will want to refer to the Smashwords Style Guide by Mark Coker, which is available from Smashwords (appropriately enough) and also free to download (all year round, not just during Read an e-Book Week).

If you are an author or independent publisher but e-publishing is foreign territory to you, then you are probably facing into steep learning curve. Unless you are fast learner, you may want to talk to the professionals, in this area, many of whom are more than willing to offer you free consultations and advise you on the road ahead. The Manuscript Publisher, to take just one example, is a publishing services provider that has expert advice to offer in this area. (In the interest of transparency and full disclosure, they also operate this website – read more... ).

In any event, don't worry too much if you miss out on this year's Read and e-Book Week promotion. It is an annual event, now in its tenth year (ninth, according to the organisers but it looks like they have lost count) and will surely run again next year, in 2019, most likely during the first week in March.

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