Status: Drafting the fourth book in the PERILOUS series!

Monday, February 28, 2011

Learning to Swim

I've got another great book for you that I can 99% guarantee you've never heard of!

It's called Learning to Swim by Sara J. Henry.

Right away, this book sucked me in as the MC witnesses (on page 1) a little boy falling overboard off a ferry. Her instinctive reaction was so heroic and true and right that I couldn't help reading on to see what would happen. She's not a swimmer, and the water is freezing, yet she manages to get to the boy and pull him to shore.

But that's only the beginning of her adventures. She soon finds herself caught up in a kidnapping plot that takes her around Vermont and French Canada and the Adirondacks. This is a mystery all the way. And for me it was extremely fascinating, since the plot and the setting are so reminiscent to my own book, Perilous.

The story starts off with a bang and kind of slows down in the middle, but picks up again toward the end. My only complaint was that, like my own book, there is NO indication that there's going to be a sequel. The book wraps up the plot quite nicely, but not the characters, and that left a big gaping hole in my chest. But I contacted the author, who told me there IS a sequel. I wanted to make all of you aware of that too.

Find the author here. And get the book wherever books are sold!

Friday, February 25, 2011

Dirty Diapers

Have I ever mentioned that I cloth diaper? I do. I use cloth diapers, and I love it.

Well, as much as anyone can love diapering, that is. I'm very happy that DS#2 is potty training, though I wish he could SIT on the toilet when he does it so we don't get poo all over the rim. Better than in a diaper, right?

So I came across someone's Kickstart project the other day and thought it was so very cool, I want to share it with you.

First, what is a Kickstart project? It's a fundraiser. But it's all or nothing. People pledge a dollar or more toward the Kickstarter's goal, and if the goal is achieved, the money is used. If it's not, everyone gets their money back and the project's a no go.

Second, this project is to help make people more aware of the benefits of cloth diapering through a beautifully photographed picture book.

Now I can already hear some of you thinking, "Why do I care about the benefits of cloth diapering???" That's exactly what I mean. If you don't care, it's likely because you don't know. Cloth diapering is not what it used to be. IN GENERAL, it's cheaper, better for baby, and better for the environment than disposables.

I mean, really. Which baby would prefer this

over cloth?

If you've ever done a fundraiser, you know that every dollar helps. Every bit. This is a great cause, a great way to help people know about something they may not know about. So go check it out. Just take a look around. And if you want, donate!

Here's the link to the Kickstart! http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/sugarsnapphoto/the-dirties-on-diapering-3

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

How I Became a Belly Dancer

I'm obsessed with fitness. I generally go to the gym six hours a week, and Zumba is one of my favorite workouts. I headed out today, wearing a new gym top that a friend gave me, feeling pretty good because I can finally see glimpses of my figure-before-baby.

I think I know why my friend gave this top away. We had no sooner started our hip-rocking dance moves before my top started climbing. I tugged it back down and waved my arms as we went around in a circle. When we faced front again, I saw that my top was above midriff. Yep, above.

At that moment, I evaluated my options: tug it down every two minutes for the rest of class, or practice my belly dancing moves.

At least it's a smaller belly than it was a month ago... (that's not me, by the way. Yeah. I wish.)

Ever had articles of clothing attack you? What did you do?

Monday, February 21, 2011

Re: On Submission

I submitted the sequel to Perilous last week.

Nothing says my publisher has to contract the sequel. I sure hope they do, because Perilous doesn't really wrap up...and it would be a major bummer not to have the sequel published, I think.

So, wish me luck! And I'll let you know as soon as I hear something.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Princess Bride Revisited

So remember my promise to bring you great books from down under? (And I don't mean Australia, I mean great books that you've never heard of.)

Here's another one.

The Peasant Queen, by Cheri Chesley, is a high fantasy novel involving a peasant betrothed to an evil king but in love with another, sword-fighting heroes, magical events, and a man with six fingers on one hand...oh wait, that's a different story.

But no, really, this fantasy novel is fun and easy to read. It's clean and the story has a certain universal appeal. On a personal note, I did at times find the headstrong female character just a tad bit annoying. But even worse was the idiot king who believed her--over and over and over again.

Other than his gullibility, however, I did have a certain affinity for said king, who I found rather attractive. Alas, our dear peasant can't have both the love interest and the antagonist.

Who this book will appeal to: I think it's marketed as YA. Personally I think it felt more like MG, appealing to children, especially girls, aged 9-15.

Here's the author's blog! Go check her out, support her, and ask your local library to buy a copy!

Monday, February 14, 2011

Romance and Lemons

Did you make any new friends on Friday? If you did, post about it in the comments! I have a book to give away!

Today is the romance blogfest found on Jordan's blog. There's still time to sign up! So I'm about to share with you the scene from my novel Inevitable when Jayne, my MC, meets her love interest. There's a problem, though. Jayne can see how people will die. Not everyone. Just the people who smell like lemons.

The smell hit me two feet from the counter, and I staggered. No. There was no one in Cara’s check out line. He would go over to her line if I left. I turned around, knocking my thigh against the back counter.

“Hey, Jayne?” Cara called. “I need a bathroom break. Cover, please?”

Before I could even think of an excuse, Cara hurried past me. Fine. I took over for her, taking a deep breath. Lemon-person was in my line, and Cara could handle him when she got back.

“What are you doing?” Matt came over before I even started taking the first customer’s order. “You’ve got someone waiting at your register.”

“My register?” I didn’t know the registers were assigned. “Cara had a longer line and she asked me to cover for her.”

“You don’t ever leave your register.” He turned to the customer in front of me, dismissing me without another glance. “What can I get for you?”

I stood there, debating my options. I could run out the door, and lose this job on my first day. Or I could keep my eyes down, pretend to be shy, take this person’s order and be done with it.

Matt shot me a dirty look, and I backed away. Option number two it would be.

I shuffled back to my register, not lifting my eyes. I knew from the citrus scent that pervaded the air around me that the person hadn’t left. “What can I get for you?” I stared at the plastic covering the register keys.

“I’ll take a grilled Swiss sandwich on a cheese bagel with a side of potato wedges, please.” The customer’s tenor voice and rich English accent washed over me, melting me to the front of the register. I gripped the sides, using all my will power not to look up. Someone with a voice that beautiful had to be incredibly handsome.

“Anything to drink?” I hoped he didn’t notice how my voice trembled.

“Orange Fanta. Thank you.” Even the way he pronounced ‘Fanta’ tasted like a delicacy in my mind.

I rang up his order and handed him the receipt, not trusting myself to speak again. I stared at his tanned hands as he took the paper and then handed me a credit card. Aaron Chambers. Curiosity got the better of me—that, and the desire to hear his voice again. “Are you visiting New Jersey, Aaron?”

“No.” I heard a smile in his voice. “My parents just moved here from Herefordshire. That’s in England, if you didn’t know.”

His parents. How old was he? My hand lingered with his card between my fingers. I was desperate to look at him. Almost desperate enough to accept whatever I might See. “And what are you going to do now that you are here?”

“Jayne? That is your name, right?”

Betrayed by the name tag. I nodded, staring at the letters embossed on his card.

“I bet you have pretty eyes.”

I felt my face grow warm. He was flirting with me! Oh, Satan, get thee behind me! I handed him back his card, then gathered up his food items and put them on a tray. “Thank you for choosing JTs.”

“Thank you for serving me, Jayne.” My name sighed off his tongue, molding itself to the timbers of his voice. I listened to his footsteps die away, but only when the smell was gone did I look up.

Friday, February 11, 2011

Check Yes or No

Today is National Make New Friends Day.

Cool, huh?

And Indie Debut is launching their new blog devoted to promoting small press authors. Today is a day full of contest and activities. You can find all the fun here.

To top it all off, we're having a friendship contest. So, will you be my friend?

To catch all the other new possible friends you could have, check out Mr. Linky here (and feel free to add yourself to the list)!

I have 28 years of experience, if you count the friendship that started between me and my sister when she was born.

I am qualified to be friends with children, teenagers, moms, single parents, grandmothers, sisters, and a few men, depending on the situation.

My endearing qualities are: Funny, Loyal, Sensitive, Smart

I enjoy reading, writing, cooking, scrapbooking, exercising, and eating.

Interested? I'd love to be your friend!

Whoever gets the most new friends wins a new book! And if you follow Indie Debut, that friendship counts twice. Just tell me how many new friends you make today in the comments!

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

You don't have to like my book to be my friend

I'll admit to feeling a bit apprehensive everyone time someone I know buys my book.

What if they don't like it? What if they think it's stupid? What if they think I'm a terrible writer?

Will it make them not like me? Will they think I'm stupid? That I'm a terrible friend?

I think people generally feel uneasy when they realize they don't like something that a friend of theirs wrote/did. They don't want that person to ask what they thought of it because the honest answer wouldn't be too happy. So they avoid that person.

Let's put all those worried, unhappy feelings aside. Because the truth is, you don't have to like my book to be my friend. (And I don't have to like your shoes, or your dog, or your couch.)

Let's make new friends instead!

Friday is National Make a Friend Day. So I propose a sort of Blogfest. Let's find new people to be friends with. If you want people to come look at your blog, and maybe follow you (befriend you), add yourself to Mr. Linky here.

On Friday (Feb. 11), post something about yourself, something to attract potential friends.

That's not all! Whoever finds the most new friends will win a copy of this book (except the paperback edition, not the Kindle edition):

Then all you have to do is comment back and tell me how many new friends you made. This can be people who followed your blog and people whose blogs you followed, but it has to happen on Friday, February 11th!

But wait, there's more! Indie Debut 2011 is also holding their blog launch on Friday! So, if you go to Indie Debut 2011 and follow them on Friday, you'll get two extra friend points! Not to mention that they will have lots of fun activities and giveaways going on as part of their blog launch! And it's all part of my scheme to support the underdog!

So go ahead! sign your blog up on Mr. Linky to find new friends! What are you waiting for? We can all use more friends!

Want even more friends?? Post about this on your blog! Let's triple our friend count on Friday!

Monday, February 7, 2011

Five and Alive

Let's do something fun and frivolous today.

It might be horribly cold outside and I'm tired and ever so anxious to get out of the house. But I am also ALIVE and there are things in life that make me very happy. Such as

Sunshine. I miss you.

Babies. I love mine and they are all so precious!!!

Food in General and Pizza Specifically. I can't wait till I'm off my diet.

Long Dresses. They make me feel so sophisticated!

Flowers. I followed my friend Meg's advice and have a lovely live bouquet on my table. Helps make it feel like spring out there!

Share! What are five things that make you feel alive???

Friday, February 4, 2011

Librarians Rock!

I've been working hard to build up my author's platform and public speaking resume.

One of the first things I've done is go to public libraries and offer to speak for free. I wish I could personally go to every library in the United States, because the librarians have been SO supportive.

Plus, as my book is not yet in bookstores, this is the best way I have to get it out in the public view. It's also a great way for me to gauge public reaction. One YA librarian called me last week to set up a speaking date. She also said the one copy of my book they had at the library is extremely popular and in high demand. She actually spoke to my publisher and ordered more books for the library!!!

I can't tell you how happy it made me feel. She told me she is careful not to push books on the teens, but makes sure the newest arrivals are on display. And this book, MY book, became a hot item. She said they simply had to have more in circulation.

What this says to me is, my book attracts teenagers. It makes me confidant that when the book arrives in bookstores, it's going to sell. The young adult crowd, my target audience, is going to buy it. Hopefully like hotcakes.

And I don't know if librarians have conferences or conventions or email lists, but I hope this librarian tells all her librarian friends that they NEED Perilous in their library.

You can help! Go to your local library and request that Perilous be added to the wishlist! You'll need to know the title, my name, the publisher (WiDo Publishing), and maybe the ISBN (978-0-9796070-8-0). Many libraries even have a link on their website where you can request a purchase (if you own a library card to that library).

I love libraries!

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Stupid stupid snow

Thanks to the overabundance of snow that blew through (and probably hit most of you too), hubby won't be able to drive in for DS's b-day today. He was supposed to leave yesterday but they closed everything down, of course.

I-44 is still closed on the exit he needs.

Not the end of the world. We'll deal with it. But it frustrates me.
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