Monday, October 31, 2011

Halloween Treat - Cherie Reich interview and giveaway

Happy Halloween!

No tricks today. I'm giving everyone a fantastic treat.

Please welcome my good friend and critique partner, Cherie Reich.
She's willing to fill someone's treat bag with a copy of her horror story, Once Upon a December Nightmare.

Cherie has so kindly agreed to do an interview. My first interview! Thankfully she knows me well enough to forgive all my quirks in trying to conduct a proper interview. I won't waste any more time. Let's jump right into it!

I know that Once Upon a December Nightmare was inspired by something that happened to you. What's the short version?

Cherie: It's loosely based on true events. In late December 2002, my friends and I were going to go to a movie and out to dinner. The movie was sold out, so we ate at Subway and went riding around some country roads. We went up this trail along the Jefferson National Forest and the truck broke down. We had to walk to the main road to call my dad to pick us up. The entire way I talked about all that could go wrong--aliens, mass murderers, big foot, wild animals, etc. I think I scared everyone, but it made me feel better. More prepared. It also made a good story to write later on. Also, the dead deer in the clearing are a true fact. Creepy. Seriously.

That's frightening! I'm sure you had your friends jumping at every little noise. What about the horror genre interests you?
Cherie: Not that I think I'll meet up with a vampire or zombie or something anytime soon, but I love reading horror and thinking "what would I do" in that situation. How would I survive to the end? I love to see who can live. Who dies. I suppose I just like to be prepared. Perhaps it's the former Girl Scout in me. 

I'm the same way. Why do you think people like to be scared?
Cherie: I think people like the thrill. A lot about horror and scary stories includes intense emotions. It's a high and rush. It gets the adrenaline flowing without having to exercise. 

I definitely like the rush! What was your first introduction to horror literature?
Cherie: My very first introduction to horror was R.L. Stine's GOOSEBUMPS series. Then, I graduated to Stephen King. Both can be scary.

King is my favorite. He's a horror genius. Any tips for writing scary stories?
Cherie: Pacing, pacing, pacing. Keep an eye on it. Know when to prolong the tension and when to speed it up. Short sentences can pack a lot of punch. Also, know what scares you and find ways to show people that terror.

Great tips! Finally, what is your favorite Halloween treat?
Cherie: Halloween is great for candy, but I do like having some candy corn around Halloween. It's something I look forward to each year.

Thank you, Cherie. Now on to the giveaway! One lucky winner will win her e-book, Once Upon a December Nightmare. Just leave a comment below with your email address. The winner will be picked by Also, three people will win postcards signed by Cherie. You have until Thursday at midnight to enter. The winners will be announced on Friday.

Have a safe and fun Halloween!

Author Bio: Cherie Reich is a writer, freelance editor, book blogger, and library assistant. She enjoys writing horror, fantasy, and mysteries, but she doesn't let that stop her from trying other genres. Her short stories have appeared in magazines and anthologies, and her e-book Once Upon a December Nightmare was published in August 2010 by Wild Child Publishing. She is a member of the Virginia Writers Club and Valley Writers and placed third in Roanoke Valley's BIG READ writing contest. When she isn't writing short stories, flash fiction, and blogging, she's working on her work-in-progress novels.

Author Links:

They were only going out to dinner and a movie.

But when their plans go astray, friends Cassie, Mary, Denise, and James decide to take a detour down a lonely mountain road. A felled tree blocks their passage and forces them to turn around in a clearing containing a disturbing arrangement of four deer carcasses.

But when their truck breaks down, and their cell phones don't work, they must brave the cold December air, nightfall, and a long hike. Yet this is the least of their troubles. Tension runs high between the four young friends…and they are not alone. Each step brings them closer to safety, but will they make it to the main road alive?

Sunday, October 30, 2011

Chocolate for the rejected, please

I queried my latest WIP and I was rejected. Rejected fast and hard.

Right now I'm eating chocolate and ice cream, feeling like it isn't worth it in the end. The rejection depression is not good right when NaNoWriMo is due to start. I lost the desire for it. I ask myself why I bother when I'm never going to be good enough.

I know when Tuesday rolls around, I'll force myself to start up on NaNoWriMo even if I'm still feeling depressed. I have no doubt I'll get caught up in it and let that creative rush bring me back my love of writing. Even if it isn't NaNoWriMo, it will be another story. My compulsion to write, the ecstasy of it, always comes back.

It's just at moments like this that I feel the lowest of the low.

I aimed high. I queried the number one epublisher of romance. I'll go over my cover letter, synopsis and manuscript again. I'll query the number two press next.

I also wanted to let everyone know that my posts will be shorter and less frequent in November. Some posts might just be my NaNo word count for the day. I won't be able to read and comment on blogs as often either. Most of you know how NaNoWriMo consumes you. Please don't think I've forgotten about you. Come December, I'll be making the rounds routinely again.

Good luck to everyone doing NaNoWriMo! The buddy tool still isn't working. I hope they get it fixed soon.

Update: A big thank you to Josh Hoyt and Krista for giving me The Versatile Blogger Award. You made me smile today.

Saturday, October 29, 2011

Saturday Snapshot for October 29th

Saturday Snapshot is hosted by Alyce over at At Home With Books.
There's my adorable little bat.
You can only imagine how many times it took to get a decent picture!

Posed pictures are great, but I like random in-the-moment shots best.
He likes autumn as much as I do.
Any pile of leaves I make gets immediately destroyed!

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Halloween Treat Tease

On Monday, I'll have a special Halloween treat for everyone. It includes a

Here's a little peek of what it will be:
Be there or else.

Or else you'll miss out on an awesome treat!

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Wicked Wednesday - demons

Vampires have their sensuous bite. Shapeshifters have their animal magnetism. Then you think demons and the fearsome red skinned devil comes to mind. Yet demons can have sinfully hot bodies, unlimited powers and immense hearts to entice not only the protagonist but the reader into temptation.

Demons are my favorite paranormal romance characters. Sometimes I like to read about the traditional Christian version of angels and demons, but the nontraditional versions are endless. A writer can stretch her imagination any number of ways. Demons from different dimensions, a secret world right under the feet of humans, within human bodies themselves. Not every demon lurks in the dark shadows. Some don't shun the sun, but revel in it clad only in enough clothing to be considered barely legal.

Readers do expect familiarity. The trick is to add your original spin onto something that they know. Have one form that is human in appearance while the other is monstrous. The dark personality mixed with compassion and vulnerability. Demons can have souls. They can be good. They can love.

Do you like to read about demons who can love or do you prefer them to stick to being the bad guys? What are some of your favorite paranormal romances that feature demons?

My favorite: Barrons from Karen Marie Moning's Fever series.

Another friendly Halloween reminder: join me Monday for a special treat!

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Teaser Tuesday with Please Ignore Vera Dietz

Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by MizB of Should Be Reading. Anyone can play along! Just do the following:

  • Grab your current read
  • Open to a random page
  • Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
  • BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
  • Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!
Please Ignore Vera Dietz by A.S. King is one of the prizes I won from the First Campaign Challenge. I've heard great things about it. It's not something I would have picked up on my own, but the premise intrigued me. I've only read the first few pages. Please don't tell me how it ends! Well, maybe you can give me a hint.
 Here's your teaser:
"But you even know she's a mythomaniac!" I said.
"Stop using those big words. You sound like a fu@king geek." (page 53)

Monday, October 24, 2011

Revising, planning and deciding

This week I'll be doing some more revisions on my latest WIP. Hopefully I'll get the majority of it done before November. I might send out my first query for it on the weekend. The cover letter and synopsis have been worked over about ten times now. Are they perfect? No. I don't think I'll ever get a cover letter and synopsis perfect, but they're good. Much better than what I started with.

I did some planning for my NaNo novel. I usually don't plan ahead and I'm finding it difficult to do so. I gathered a list of names and monsters from the net. This will keep me from searching for something online when I should be writing. I have all the main characters named, described and generally settled into the plot. That really means I know who the good guys and bad guys are. I know the general overall plot. I know how it will start and how it will end. The middle, well, I have no idea. I tried to plan out each event, but after the first five, my muse smacked me with a stop sign. I'm not allowed to know until I get there. That's how it usually goes with my writing. I know it might drive some people bonkers, but I like the surprise. I like just writing and seeing where it takes me. Do my stories make sense that way? Yes, they do. Somehow I'm able to keep everything together. Sometimes I'm jealous of the plotters, because it seems it would be much easier in the long run. Yet I'm happy to be a pantser. (I really wish there was a different word for that!)

I still haven't decided on a Halloween costume yet. I went out this weekend, but there wasn't anything that caught my eye that I could afford. I thought about just going in a silly outfit as a character from someecards with a little poster board around my neck with the sarcastic saying. Ah, those ecards make me laugh!
 My other idea was making a big poster with a hole cut out for my head and design it as a MySpace page for a zombie. When I don't get enough sleep, I look like the dead!

Finally, please come by on Halloween when I'll have a special treat for you.

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Saturday Snapshot for October 22nd

Saturday Snapshot is hosted by Alyce over at At Home With Books.
My son turned 18 months this past week.
A year and a half already.
We celebrated by going to the local children's science museum and
out for cookies and juice at a cafe with friends.

Thursday, October 20, 2011

NaNoWriMo - nays and YAYs

Eleven days until National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo).

I've participated in NaNoWriMo every year since 2003. I eagerly await November and gather a stash of Halloween candy beside the computer. It doesn't lose its thrill year after year. It's a wild romance I have once a year with my muse where we let loose and anything goes. Oh, sometimes we have our moments during the year, but November, it's the time set aside for complete creative immersion. I really need it this year after all the editing and revising I've been doing.
Writers usually hate or love NaNoWriMo. I don't understand the hate. I recently listened to one trash not only the whole idea of NaNoWriMo but the acronym as well. What's wrong with the acronym? He's a notorious nitpicker, though.
Here's what the naysayers argue:
- NaNoWriMo promotes quantity over quality. (And it does. It encourages you to stop stressing the details. Leave the editing for later and just write.)
- If you're serious about being a writer, you don't need it.
- November is a bad month for it with the American Thanksgiving and the holidays approaching.
- The stress is too much with such an unrealistic goal.
- Family, friends, work, and everything else suffer while the writer is trying to reach their goal.
Yet those arguments should not deter you. There are so many great things about NaNoWriMo:
- The community. This is the number one reason. The forums, online groups and real life regional groups are fantastic. There's so much support and love. There are write-ins and parties, and motivational emails by famous authors. It gives you great motivation.
- It motivates you to write without worrying about quality. While the naysayers say it's a bad thing, I believe it to be a good thing. No first draft is perfect. It's important you get the story out there first. You can make it pretty later.
- It gives you a clear goal. 50,000 words might seem daunting, but it's not impossible. You can do it. You might surprise yourself with the ease of which you can do it.
- It allows you to let your creative juices run wild. It's such a creative rush! Plus, it gives you a break from the tediousness of editing and revising.
- People have published the books they wrote during NaNoWriMo. Great stories do come out of the frenzy.
I'll be doing it again this year. Every year except last year, I managed to make the 50,000 word count. (Babies take up so much time!) My fastest year was ten days. I'll be happy just to make 1700 words a day this time around. November is National Napping Month for toddlers, right? I'm going to create a general outline for my novel. I don't know if I'll stick to it, but since I have limited time, I'm hoping it will help me keep on track. I'll be writing a paranormal romance with the working title of Sorrow Phage.
If you're participating in NaNoWriMo this year, good luck! You can do it. I'll be with you every step of the way. Once the buddy tool is fixed on their site, feel free to add me as a buddy. I'm Kalligenia. Leave me your NaNo name in the comments below too, please.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Wicked Wednesday - shapeshifters

As you can see, I'm doing a bit of a theme this month. Vampires last week, shapeshifters today. I could do a whole month on the various kinds of shifters, but no matter how much they might protest, I'll line them all up here together.

The ruggedly handsome were-creature driven by instinct. There's something incredibly alluring about a mix of man and animal. Alpha males are hard to resist even if they can be possessive and territorial. There are mysterious and magical shifters who aren't driven by their animals, but by a need to protect that sassy girl who has gotten herself in way over her head.  Oh, don't forget the shifters who can change into other people. Becoming someone else can lead into a mess that even the best soap opera couldn't top.

Not so surprisingly, werewolves top the list of the most popular shifters. In fact, they're more in demand than vampires these days. Most cultures have werewolf myths and there are various ways a person can become one. The most common one in paranormal romance is the bite. Not quite as sensual as a vampire's bite, but it says something about the mindset of the audience. A werewolf can be born from one or two werewolf parents. A person can use a wolf's skin and transform into one or drink water from the animal's paw print. A curse or a Satanic pact. There are myths that say sleeping under the full moon can make a person shift.

What is your favorite shapeshifter? Do you like the traditional western myth or do you prefer something out of the ordinary?

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Teaser Tuesday with Semper Audacia

Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by MizB of Should Be Reading. Anyone can play along! Just do the following:

  • Grab your current read
  • Open to a random page
  • Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
  • BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
  • Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!
This is the first story I'm reading on my new Nook Color. Semper Audacia is a space opera novelette by M. Pax. It's fantastic so far. I really need to read more science-fiction. She had rekindled my love of it.

 Here's your teaser:
Something akin to gladness then pride flickered through Leda's synapses. So much time had passed since experiencing such things, the sentiments rolled foreign and hard to grasp among her thoughts. (page 22)

Monday, October 17, 2011

Third Campaign Challenge

It's time for the third and final challenge in Rachael Harrie's Writers' Platform Building Campaign. I don't want it to be over. I've had a fantastic time with it. But, oh, is this last challenge a rough one.

Here's what Rachael says about this last one:
Write a blog post in 300 words or less, excluding the title. The post can be in any format, whether flash fiction, non-fiction, humorous blog musings, poem, etc. The blog post should show:
  • that it’s morning, 
  • that a man or a woman (or both) is at the beach
  • that the MC (main character) is bored
  • that something stinks behind where he/she is sitting
  • that something surprising happens.
Just for fun, see if you can involve all five senses AND include these random words: "synbatec," "wastopaneer," and "tacise."   (NB. these words are completely made up and are not intended to have any meaning other than the one you give them).
Once you’ve posted your Challenge post on your blog, pop back here and link directly to it in the Linky List below (please make sure you include the direct link to your post, not just the link to your blog!).

Entries in the Third Campaigner Challenge will close on Monday, October 24th (at 11.59pm EDT) (one weeks' time exactly). So make sure you get your post in the Linky List before then if you want to be eligible for a prize! As usual, while everyone is very welcome to take part in this Challenge, only Campaigners will be eligible for prizes.

Oh boy. I'm going to try to continue from my last two challenge entries. I just hope it will make some sense!

Here it goes!

I let my hand dangle and trailed my fingers through the soft sand. The colors in the morning sky were beautiful, but a tiresome sigh escaped me. I've never lounged on a beach, but I couldn't remember the reason why.

“Relax, love. You think too much.” Soren's lazy drawl drew out my smile.

I turned my head to drink him in. The sun's rays danced along his sculpted body. A wave of heat flowed through me. I nipped my lower lip.

“Well, I won't complain when you're thinking that.” He reached over and took my hand, bringing it to his lips. He kissed the back and then the palm. “Those are the thoughts you're suppose to have while on your honeymoon.”

My hand curled around his, tugging him toward me. I shook my head. It felt heavy and light all at once. “Honeymoon? Synbatec?”

My throat tightened with the effort to not gag as a smell of rot wafted up from behind me.

“The word is synchronicity, love.” Soren chuckled and nudged my nose with his. His hand tightened around mine. I winced as his nails dug into my skin. “It's what brought us together, remember?”

“Remember,” I murmured, focusing on the pain and the stench. The gulls growled and the sunrise flashed crimson night before returning to gold. “I was to... wastopaneer. Tacise.”

I pushed through the sludge in my brain. I couldn't look away from him. Soren squeezed harder, forcing me to acknowledge he had put something in my hand.

“You mean precise. Be precise, love.”

I spun around and drove my blade into the heart of the Queen. My ears bled with her screams, but my aim was true. My nightmare had been a honeymoon on the beach.

(exactly 300 words)

Halloween Costume Suggestions, Please!

I still haven't decided what I want to be for Halloween this year. Yes, I know. It's horrible. I should know these things months ahead of time. I just don't know what to be. Please help me, my creative friends.

First off, I don't have a lot of money to spend on anything. I might be able to spend a few bucks at Good Will or for one key accessory. I can sew... to a point. I like creepy costumes, but since the party I'm attending will have children present, it must be child friendly. It must be a warm costume for taking my son out for trick-or-treating. I don't like showing a lot of skin to begin with. I'm built like a Viking Warrior Maiden with the reddish hair. I have a sense of humor. I can go the funny direction.

Keeping all that in mind, throw at me your suggestions!

Friday, October 14, 2011

Journal Giveaway Winners

Thank you to everyone who participated. I wish I could give you all a prize.
And welcome to my new followers.

Now here's what you've been waiting for! The three numbers chosen by the widget at are:
17, 2 and 14

Winner #1 is Heather at My Demon Spirits
Winner #2 is Tara Tyler at Tara Tyler Talks
Winner #3 is Trish at Tales from Trish

Yay! Congratulations!
I'll be in contact shortly.

Have a great weekend!

Pay It Forward Blogfest

Today is Matthew MacNish's awesome blogfest.

This is what he says about it: The idea is to introduce everyone to everyone else. We want this to be an easy post that allows you to meet and follow as many other bloggers as you can. In your post, we would like you to please list, describe, and link to three blogs that you enjoy reading, but that you suspect may fly under the radar of a lot of other bloggers. Or they can be famous blogs, as long as they're awesome.
Here are my three:
1) Amanda at Ramblings. Wonderfully inspirational woman. She blogs for herself and it makes her posts all the more interesting. Fellow stay-at-home mom, book lover and Harry Potter fan.

2) Prerna Pickett at The Sands of Writing. She's a YA paranormal romance and urban fantasy writer. A fellow Campaigner too. She has great reviews and interviews, and thought provoking posts.

3) Tania Walsh at T.F. Walsh. She's a fantasy writer, the darker the better, and a fellow Campaigner. Member of Romance Writers of Australia. She posts Mondays with her Mythical Creatures series and Wednesdays with her Guilty Pleasures meme. She's smart, funny and shares several of my geek tendencies.

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Awards, giveaway reminder and news

The wonderful Tara Tyler has passed on this award to me:
I'm going to go with Tara's Halloween theme because it was so much fun reading hers!
Here are seven Halloween facts about me:

1. Halloween is my favorite holiday of the year. I love the costumes, trick-or-treating, and all the horror movies on TV.
2. I dressed as the Bride of Frankenstein in grade seven. It was a fantastic costume, but it took a few days to make my hair lie flat again.
3. We didn't have much money when I was growing up. When I was seven, I dressed up as a witch with a big black sweatshirt and a construction paper hat, and my brother wore a garbage bag with the word BOO! in paper letters across it.
4. In grade eight, I dressed as an accident victim and was complimented on how realistic my injuries looked. My acting was horrendous, though!
5. We lived on a street full of townhouses. Most families were young families and had lots of kids. We'd go trick-or-treating to over 200 houses and fill two pillow cases with candy.
6. I dressed up as an alien when I was eight. I wore an inflatable head on top of my own. I looked more like an alien totem pole!
7. When I was 12, I was told I was too old to be trick-or-treating. I was devastated. Now I'm excited to have a child of my own and experience the excitement with him.

I also received this award from the fabulous Summer Ross:
Thank you, Summer and Tara, for the awards.

I pass on the I <3 Blogging award to:
Cherie Reich
Tania Walsh

I pass on the Seriously Cute Blogger award to:
Jessica G.
Sabrina Llave

I want to remind everyone that today is the last day to enter in my Journal Giveaway. New followers are welcome to enter too.

In other news, I finally have my new Nook Color. I love it! I've been playing too much Angry Birds. I need to read more. That's what I got it for. Yet those green pigs are taunting me. I must crush them!

I had a good birthday last week and a nice visit with my mother. It helps to have another adult around during the days to entertain the munchkin. My mom made me a huge Death By Chocolate cake. I'm still feeling it sit in my belly. I regret nothing.

I've been doing a lot of reading and critiquing lately. I have my monthly writers' group this coming Saturday. I submitted a medieval zombie story to be critiqued. It's a story that I've had short-listed three times and then rejected in the end because it's "too different."

I hope to have my current WIP ready to be sent out by the end of the month. I want to go into November and NaNoWriMo with no other projects. I'm not sure what I'm going to do for NaNoWriMo this year, but I want to try to outline first. I'm a pantser. I've never managed to follow an outline before, but since I have such limited time to write, I thought it might help me this year.

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Wicked Wednesday - vampires

Oh, the dark and sexy creatures of the night. I have a long love affair with vampires. I remember as a teenager sleeping with my window open and making sure my neck is bared in that direction. Even on cold nights. I watched The Lost Boys hundreds of times. Hey, it was a great movie at the time and the vampires in it were hot. Kiefer Sutherland was supernaturally gorgeous.

There are many kinds of vampires in fiction these days. I like a little twist on the traditional model. I still love the fangs, the pale skin that will burn to ash in the sunlight, the preternatural senses and grace, and the predatory nature. Not all vamps need be super gorgeous or clever. They don't need to fly or shape change. I like Charlaine Harris' take on vamps that only a few individuals have certain powers. Eric Northman is one of the few that can fly. Mmmm, Eric. Uh, anyway, yes, carrying on.

The vampire origin myth is a fun one to play with. Cursed? Demons? Virus? It could be any number of things. The origin of the vampires also play into their nature. I like seeing vampire characters struggling with their dangerous essence. Not only fighting for themselves, but for their love interests. It adds another level on to the romance.

There's a lot of vampire fiction out there right now. Will the readers start to lose interest? No, I don't think so. I love vampires as much as I did twenty years ago. The legends fascinate me. I've been seduced by a flash of a fang and the hungry glint in their eyes.
Do you prefer your vampires traditional or with a different twist? Or a little bit of both?

A reminder: Don't forget to take advantage of my Journal Giveaway. Only two days left.

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Teaser Tuesday with Clockwork Angel

Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by MizB of Should Be Reading. Anyone can play along! Just do the following:

  • Grab your current read
  • Open to a random page
  • Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
  • BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
  • Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!
I finished three books in Cassandra Clare's The Mortal Instruments series. Now I'm heading into her newest series. I've heard great things about Clockwork Angel. Let's hope the book lives up to the hype.
Here's your teaser:
It was a long time before Tessa could sleep again. She lay awake, the Codes open at her side, the clockwork angel ticking at her chest, and she watched the lamplight  trace patterns across the ceiling. (page 110)

Monday, October 10, 2011

Fabulous Journal Giveaway

I'm excited to announce my first ever giveaway. I'm celebrating my first 100 followers. Woo-hoo! You guys are the greatest. You have given me so much encouragement, made me laugh when I was having a bad day, and inspired me with your stories. This giveaway is my way of saying thank you.

Every writer needs a journal. Sure, a blog is a swell thing, but there's nothing like taking pen to paper and scribbling down your ideas. You can take it with you wherever you go and write when the inspiration hits you. The Great Muse knows that inspiration comes to us at the strangest of times and you've got to be prepared. Even if you can't read all of your handwriting later!

I'm going to give away three journals. The three lucky winners will be chosen by All you have to do is leave a comment below. This giveaway is open to all of my followers no matter where you live.

The first winner chosen will get to pick which journal they want first. Then the second will choose between the remaining two journals. The third winner will receive the remaining one. Have no fear! All three journal are gorgeous. I have them sitting right here in front of me. I would take a picture of them, but my son sat on my camera and broke it the other day.

Journal #1 - This hardcover journal is from designwallas. They have an awesome selection. The one I'm giving away is from the Suede Damask collection. It's the black and white one with 224 cream colored pages.

Journal #2 - This journal has a brass spiral spine and hardcover. It's from the Pine Ridge Art Inc., but I can't find the artist on their site. The artist, Charles H. White is wonderfully talented. The painting featured on the cover is called Cobblestone Courtyard. Beautiful and inspiring.

Journal #3 - This is a hardcover journal and writing pad on a small clipboard set. I can't find it anywhere online to show you a picture. The pattern is a lovely soft blue, gray and white. On the back cover, there's some floral artwork and the quote: "The journey begins with one step."

It would be a good idea to include in your comment your first and second choices in case you're a winner. Oh! Also your email address. I'll need to contact you if you win. Yes, you can tell this is my first giveaway.

The giveaway will go through today through the 13th. I will announce the winners on October 14th.

100 followers. Wow. Thank you. Thank you all so very much.

Saturday, October 8, 2011

Saturday Snapshot - October 8

Saturday Snapshot is hosted by Alyce over at At Home With Books.
This giant Lite-Brite is at our local children's science museum.
My son goes to it the first thing every time we go there.

In other news, I have over 100 followers!
I'll be having a giveaway on Monday.
Thank you all for your support. You're the greatest!

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Wicked Wednesday - paranormal birthdays

Today is my birthday. It would be nice if some supernatural creature came along and told me that I've finally hit the right age where my powers develop. It's taken a while because my species take a long time to mature being only half-human. I guess that's still why I have freckles. I was promised when I got older, my freckles would go away. If I'm not that old for my species, I can live with my freckles as long as I can have my fantastic powers.

You see that a lot in paranormal books. When the protagonist hits a certain age, she comes into her power or is granted it. "Happy birthday! You might notice you're starting to sprout a tail and you can smell things miles away, but don't worry. It's normal. Do you like the cute top I got you?"

I'm not a big fan of the coming of age stories. It takes a wonderfully unique reason why the powers start to manifest at a certain age to nab me. Being a teenager is hard enough without suddenly being able to see ghosts or developing a knack for fighting vampires. What would be more interesting is if a character turns a particular age and expects to have powers, but never develops them. In a paranormal world where it's expected that it happens, what if it doesn't? Or if the powers that are expected to manifest don't and something else does? Oh, the possibilities!

Of course, if I was given a paranormal power for my birthday, I wouldn't say no. What would I choose? That's a difficult question to answer. So many powers I would love to have. I would say time travel. That's top in my mind right now. (Only because I just watched the season finale of Doctor Who! The Doctor and River Song. Now there's a romance to light a billion stars.)

What paranormal power would you choose?

My fifth birthday party. That's me on the top left.
Surely that dress had to be supernatural.

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Teaser Tuesday with Bloodlines

Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by MizB of Should Be Reading. Anyone can play along! Just do the following:

  • Grab your current read
  • Open to a random page
  • Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
  • BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
  • Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!
You know I loved the Vampire Academy series by Richelle Mead. Bloodlines is a spin-off with Sydney the Alchemist. I loved her character and I hope she'll be just as great in this book.

Here's your teaser:
Her features were just barely discernible in the early light. She lay there, eyes wide open and staring off into nothingness, a haunted look on her face. (page 159)

Monday, October 3, 2011

M. Pax's Semper Audacia

Today M. Pax's new space opera novelette, Semper Audacia is out!

She's a wonderfully talented writer and fascinating individual.
Stop by her blog and join the release party.
 She's giving away five copies of her story!

Saturday, October 1, 2011

Saturday Snapshot - October 1

Saturday Snapshot is hosted by Alyce over at At Home With Books.
 October is my favorite month of the year. I love the chill and colors of autumn.
What I love most is Halloween!
This is my son dressed up last year.
Yes, those are pirate socks!