Saturday, October 29, 2011

Giveaway and Slayers Blog Tour, by C.J. Hill

From the back:

Dragons exist. They’re ferocious. And they’re smart: Before they were killed off by slayer-knights, they rendered a select group of eggs dormant, so their offspring would survive. Only a handful of people know about this, let alone believe it – these “Slayers” are descended from the original knights, and are now a diverse group of teens that includes Tori, a smart but spoiled senator’s daughter who didn’t sign up to save the world.

The dragon eggs have fallen into the wrong hands. The Slayers must work together to stop the eggs from hatching. They will fight; they will fall in love. But will they survive?

The gorgeous cover and blurb alone should convince you to give this book a try. (Because you really should give this book a try.) The engaging characters will suck you into their world of superpowers, fears, wonder, and discovery as they navigate through the first few weeks of summer camp. You'll find yourself understanding and sympathizing with almost everyone--including a ferocious dragon.


As the first book in a series, Slayers is witty, intriguing, suspenseful, romantic, and best of all--totally clean. It's a book I'd recommend to anyone. Thank you, C.J. Hill, for a wonderful read! Feel free to check out her site and/or blog.

And if all of the above doesn't convince you to read it, this awesome trailer will:

To win your own signed copy of Slayers, simply fill out the form below. Contest will end November 26th! A big thanks to Fire and Ice, for organizing this blog tour!

Monday, October 24, 2011

Giveaway Winners Announced!

Congrats to Katie, for winning a copy of
Faithful, Fit, and Fabulous
by Connie E. Sokol

Way to go, Library Lady, for winning a copy of
The Nextdoor Boys,
by Jolene B. Perry

And finally, yay, Katie Dodge, for winning the
$35 Amazon gift card

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Spooktacular Blog Hop

A huge thanks to I Am a Reader, Not a Writer and The Diary of a Bookworm for hosting this hop!

Fill out the form below to win your choice between either
A $10 gift certificate

or books valued at $10 or less from the Book Depository:

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

The Cookie Monster

That could be my nickname. I seriously LOVE cookies. I'm not picky either. Chocolate chip, oatmeal, peanut butter, snickerdoodles--they're all yum, yum, yum. Put one in front of me and I won't say no. I CAN'T say no. Guaranteed.

It's a weakness. One of many.

But weakness can and should become strengths, right? So I've decided to come up with five good reasons my love of cookies make me a better person. Here goes:

1. Each one is unique, reminding me that diversity is a beautiful thing.
2. Without the sugar contained in them, I wouldn't know the bitter from the sweet.
3. They make me happy.
4. When I give the extras away, they make other people happy.
5. Without them, I wouldn't be half so culinary as I am. (I bake WAY better than I cook :))

Well, what do you know? Liking cookies isn't so bad after all.

What about you? What's a weakness you have--and one reason it's not really a weakness? :)

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Why do I do this again???

I love writing. I do. It's an escape, an out from the reality of raising four kids.

But these books take time to write. Oh so much time. And the compensation is pretty paltry--at best. I definitely don't write for the money--at least not right now. :) So why do I do it?

It's not because I love having conversations with fictional characters in my head. And it's definitely not because I like revising. And revising. And revising. (So not joking.)

But finding the time to achieve this goal seems to be getting harder and harder. My family sacrifices for it. I sacrifice for it. Sometimes I wonder if it's worth that sacrifice. If maybe I'm putting my own wants ahead of my family. Maybe my books really aren't making a difference.

Because that's what it has to be for me. Every day I pray that something I write will somehow make a positive impact in this world. It's my reason for keeping at this writing thing even through my house gets neglected, my dinners are un-gourmet, and my kids have a scatter-brain for a mother.

I so badly want there to be more good, uplifting books out there. For me, for my kids, for everyone. This world needs more light, and I want to contribute to that--even if it's only 5 watts worth. I'm a firm believer that everyone has been given talents for a reason, that those talents should be used and improved upon in a good way. This is my lifeline.

But when my precarious balancing act tips and falls flat, I can't help wondering: Is it really worth it?

If you're a writer, what keeps you going? If you love to read, what do you love most about books?

Sunday, October 2, 2011

Giveaway & Meet Jolene B. Perry!

If I could describe this book in one short line, it would be:

A book with LOADS of heart.

Reading The Next Door Boys is like floating down a perfectly paced lazy river through a gorgeous meadow of wildflowers. Seriously, it's a beautiful, uplifting tale about growth, friendship and love. And the romance? Yeah, loved the romance.

As well as the cover AND the title.

In other words, this book has it ALL.

You can find it on Amazon HERE, and Goodreads HERE, or on Jolene's website, HERE.

Or, simply leave a comment to either win a copy of your own or a $35 Amazon gift card so you can BUY a copy of your own. :)

And if any of the above doesn't convince you to read it, meeting Jolene definitely will.

Me: So Jolene, what is one book everyone should read?

Okay - this is too easy. The Next Door Boys??? :D

Me: That was easy, and so true. So what's your favorite flavor of ice cream?

Easy - Moose Tracks (I hope this isn't an Alaska thing, because you all would be seriously deprived)

Me: Thank goodness it's not. I LOVE that ice cream. What about breakfast foods, got any favorites?

My favorite thing to eat would be oatmeal pancakes. What I actually eat for breakfast, almost every day, is a carnation instant breakfast drink. How boring, right??

Me: Not if it's the chocolate kind. :) So, Skittles or M&Ms?

Okay - one of these has chocolate, and the other one doesn't. Is this a trick question?

Me: LOL. I take it your Carnation drink IS chocolate? :) Now here's a toughie. Tell me in one sentence only, why we should read your book.

I think I can do it in three words and a smiley:
Brian is yummy :D

Me: Okay, that did it. Especially since I completely agree. :) So if you could choose only one time period and place to live, when and where would you live and why?

Right here, and right now. I'm partial to good hygiene, and I hate being cold. Also - what would I do without the INTERNET??

Me: You hate being cold and yet you live where??? :) So did you always know you wanted to be a writer or did you have something else in mind when you were younger?

I competed in show jumping while in high school and did several clinics with people who competed in show jumping in the Olympics. I would have had a spot with Greg Best after high school, but it just wasn't right.

Me: Wow, who would have thought? You have to be the most well-rounded person I've ever met. :) What movie and/or book are you looking forward to this year?

I can't wait for Miranda Kenneally's Catching Jordan, but I'm partial to YA contemporary . . .

Me: If you could have a signed copy of any novel what would it be and why?

Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen. I would love it, breathe it in, sell it, and retire :D

Me: LOL. Just remember to share the wealth. And speaking of wealth, if you won one million dollars what is the first thing that you would buy?

I would buy our way out of my husband's law school debt. And you think I'm kidding . . .

Me: Ah, just wait. Soon you'll be a best-selling author and will have no need of Jane Austin's autograph. In the meantime, what do you do in your free time?

I don't understand the question - what is this "free time" you speak of??
I sew, I play the guitar, I force my kids to climb mountains with me, and go snowmachining at my parent's cabin.

Me: So what's a typical day like for you?

Wake up, check email, get kids ready for school, check email, run kids to school, check email, start a load of laundry, check email, clean kitchen, check email . . . you get the idea. It's one of the hazards of having multiple projects in multiple places. With any luck CFI will sign me for To Take This From You, and Want To Be sometime next year. Also look for The Happiness of Joy (at publishers now) and a book that will either be called Chasing Sky, Night Sky or My Senior Year goes something like this . . . it depends on the cover designer's take - I believe that will come out in Feb. Okay, I totally cheated and answered two questions in one question. I'm okay with this.

Me: Okay, wow. I have to refer back to the soon-to-be bestseller comment for this one. Now tell me, in your wildest dreams, which author would you love to co-author a book with?

Hmmm . . . good one . . . let me think . . . maybe Kaylee Baldwin and Rachael Anderson?? HA!!

Me: I completely agree! :) Now last, but certainly NOT least, what are your top 5 favorite quotes from The Next Door Boys?

Jolene's favorite five (that don't totally ruin the plot):

“When I realized I had no control… that was when everything changed. There are a lot of things I have control over, but there are a lot more things that I have no control over. When you’re no longer afraid of death, there are a lot of things you’re not afraid of anymore.” - Leigh

"I clasped my hands together in my lap and stared at them. My heart felt like it was being squeezed into parts. Teeny parts that I hoped I’d be able to put back together again. The thought that I did the same to him just made it even worse. I put my hands to my stomach as if it would somehow relax me or hold me together."

"I closed the door, leaned my back against the wall and took a few deep breaths. How had he made me feel that way? Made my heart jump and made me want to be closer to him? For most of the year he’d fit into a tidy box of other brother and protector. The lines suddenly felt all blurry and I didn’t know what to do next. Or if there was a “next.” Did I want to face him? Did I know what I wanted? Was there any chance of him feeling the change between us that I had?"

"My throat tightened, and I got tears in my eyes. It was their moment, not mine. I wouldn’t get to have this moment for myself. The pain of the realization hit me like an unseen force that felt like a brick wall."

"My stomach twisted in knots, not over what he said but the way he said it. The way he looked at me. Like I wasn’t his sister. I knew what he was going to say, or I knew some of what he was going to say. Once the words were out, there’d be no going back, no friendly - - - - - because things would be different. Could I give that up? What would it change?"

See? Told you you'd love her. You'll also love her book.

Again, simply leave a comment to win either a copy of The Next Door Boys or a $35 Amazon gift card. That easy. (Giveaway runs through Oct 20th)