Thursday, May 31, 2012

A Quick Thought on Bad Reviews

Best-selling author (and just totally awesome person) Beth Revis just shared this blog post about bad reviews.

--> READ IT HERE <--

I love it.  A ton.  Hence me stopping by my blog for this quick moment to direct you all to it.

We all get bad reviews.  That is part of the business.
And while it does hurt, we have to remember: Even if that reviewer didn't like you, others did.  That is what matters.

Besides... some people don't like chocolate??  ?!?
Oh my.  What is this world coming to?

"If there are people in the world who hate puppies, Harry Potter, chocolate, and/or bacon, then there are people in the world who hate your book. Put in that perspective, things aren't so bad, huh?" - Beth Revis

Thank you Beth, for this awesome post.
We writers all need to remember this!
Now, off to eat me some more chocolate!

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

WIP Day - I'm Back!

What a busy few weeks!

We just got back this last weekend from a two week long vacation.  Hence my virtual blogging silence.  While the trip was completely awesome (we didn't want it to end...) it is nice to be back.

Onto the updates!

My biggest problem lately has been learning how to balance writing and photography.  This time last year I was nearly done with editing PN.  Every second of my day not dedicated to mommyhood was given over to that book.  That was also before I completely dove head first into my photography.

I have loved doing photography forever.  Last year, for Mother's Day, my hubby bought me my DSLR.  After that... meet obsession.

Right now I am working on ways to balance everything.  Writing.  Editing writing.  Photo sessions.  Editing photo sessions.  Advertising for both.  Being mommy.  Reading.  Sleeping somewhere in there...

I know the best bet is to set a schedule.  And actually stick to it.  I have learned that the best way to stick to a goal is to make sure everyone knows all about it.  Then you get nothing but guilt and pressure do it.  With the occasional friendly encouragement.  Which is how I work.  If I keep it a total secret, then it is no secret I will slack.  Majorly.

So here it is.  A screen shot of my new schedule.  I will cross things out as they get done, then print a fresh one once this list is all scribbled away.  This is just a simple one.  Once I see it working, I will make a more in depth one.  Now just to find a good place to hang it...

As for my writing.
I miss it.  More than I can even say.  It honestly feels like a piece of me is gone right now, tucked away in those saved files that have been neglected.  I am so excited to finish ITB.  Not to mention plot for my unannounced NaNoWriMo 2012 Project.

Hmmm when should I announce it?...

On top of all of this: I am back.  Back to the blogging world.  I miss you all so much.  It has been a few solid months of occasional blogging.  No more.  I have a stack of books to review.  Thoughts to share.  Rambles to... ramble.  Miss me much?

My little family on vacation.  :)

How are you?  Getting much done?  Do share!


Friday, May 18, 2012

Prison Nation FREE PROMO Weekend

That's right!
I am doing it again.
This weekend, May 18th and 19th, you can get your FREE Kindle copy of Prison Nation.  Two days only!
Help me spread the word about this weekend (hashtag #PrisonNation) and I will smother you in happy virtual hugs.

All of your support and great reviews have really meant the world to me. I love my readers!  Let the Promo begin!

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

WIP Day: Vacation and Promo Time

Why hello there.
If you didn't know:
I am currently on vacation.

My family is off enjoying the little island I grew up on.  And it is gorgeous here!  It has felt like summer the entire week.  My boys even have little tans and I have that nice pink sunburn glow that will only turn into freckles.  This is turning out to be quite the nice vacation, and I am already sad that it will eventually have to end.

Luckily, its not over yet.

We are staying in my childhood home.  The very one I was born in.  It is weird and awesome being here.  Watching my kiddos explore the rooms I lived in.  Letting them build forts in the bushes where I used to build forts.  Relishing the fact that seven years later, this old house still feels like home.

It is nice.

My little family watching the sunset 
Of course, there is no such thing as a true vacation.
I brought my computer along, for work.  (Crazy... work...)
I have my photo editing backlog I am hacking away at.  And let's just say I might have jotted down writing for my growing novel idea.  I won't talk much about that one, yet.  But I love it!

In a few hours Keary will be here for a play date.  Our kiddos are all around the same age, and I know they will have a blast today.

Speaking of Keary:  Her Launch party was awesome!  I took lots of photos and had tons of fun.  I will make a post only for that, soon.

That all being said, I need to get going for the day.  Time to wrap this post up and get ready for more sun fun!

Sunset... what a sight


This weekend (Friday May 18th and Saturday May 19th) I will be having another FREE PROMO WEEKEND for Prison Nation!  Didn't get your free Kindle copy last time around?  Want to spread the word about this novel of mine?  Here is your chance!  Two days only, you can snag it for free.  So... spread the word!

How has your week been?  Writing?  Traveling?  Do share!
Happy Writing!

Friday, May 11, 2012

What I Didn't Say Giveaway WINNER

Thank you to everyone who entered my giveaway for a signed copy of Keary Taylor's newest novel, What I Didn't Say.  It was a great turn out!

If by chance you are not today's winner, still make sure to go snag yourself a copy of this novel.  It is an amazing read!

Without any further delay, let's announce the winner, shall we?  *drumroll*

Congrats DeAnna!  

Email has been sent.  If I don't hear back from you within 48 hours, I will have to redraw my winner.  So go check your email!

Now, time for me to get my stuff together and head out to Keary's Launch party!  Pictures will come... soon!

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

WIP Day - More Backlog and More Dreaming

Once again all of my extra time is being claimed by photography.
Not that I am complaining, at all.  I love photography.

I need more hours in the day.  Never ending energy.  And free babysitting.  If only, right?

This last weekend I went off to the beach to do an engagement session for the couple I am photographing this July.  It was so much fun!  We romped around town, in the sand, and ended the shoot in the ice cold water.  My shoes were full of sand (along with my hair, eyes, and fignernails) and I took tons of fun shots.

Like this one.

Yesterday I was given the chance to photograph a little baby girl at the NICU.  She was born with Gastroschisis, and is getting to go home this week!  What a doll.  Moments like that help remind me why I love photography:  Capturing perfection.

Like this one.

Now my editing backlog is nice and full again.

We are leaving soon for a vacation, and I am packing my computer along so I can keep up with all of this photo editing fun!  (While already having two shoots planned during my trip.  Yay!)  Along with hopefully getting in some of that much needed writing time.

As for writing...
I keep having dreams about one of my novel ideas.  I won't post much about it, yet.  But these dreams just won't leave me alone.  I want to write this story.  Bad.  It helps play on one of my biggest phobias, while throwing in some good old Greek mythology and of course romance.  I honestly do not know how much longer I can resist it!

I want to finish ITB.  I really really do.  So how come I keep avoiding it?  Thoughts??

By the way...
Keary Taylor has released What I Didn't Say.  AH!  Following tradition, she let it release earlier than anticipated, and I am not complaining one bit!  This Friday is the official launch party and I am SO excited that I get to be there for it.

Have you entered my giveaway to win a signed copy?  No?  GO DO IT!

That's about it for today.  I need to get back to cleaning this home of mine before we leave for our trip.  I will no doubt still be blogging from the road.  So until then:

Happy Writing!

Monday, May 7, 2012

Great Article about Keary Taylor

Hey there Readers!
Check out this sweet little article about fellow indie author, Keary Taylor!

Her newest novel, What I Didn't Say, releases this Friday!
Excited?  I know I am!

Speaking of... Have you entered my giveaway for a SIGNED copy?  No?  You should!  I will be getting it personally signed for the winner at Keary's What I Didn't Say Launch party.

So click HERE and enter away!

Keary and I at her author shoot last summer.  Being awesome.  As always.
Happy Monday!

Friday, May 4, 2012

What I Didn't Say by Keary Taylor GIVEAWAY

The release of Keary Taylor's newest novel is only one week away!

To celebrate, I have decided to have a giveaway!  Yay!

On Friday, May 11th, Keary is hosting a Launch party for What I Didn't Say.  And I will be there.  (Yay!) The winner of this giveaway will win a copy signed by Keary at the party.

That's right.

I have read this novel, and let me tell you: It is amazing.  It made me laugh.  It brought tears to my eyes.  It is far from the genre I usually read, but I am so happy that I did.  You should read it.

Getting drunk homecoming night your senior year is never a good idea, but Jake Hayes never expected it all to end with a car crash and a t-post embedded in his throat.

His biggest regret about it all? What he never said to Samantha Shay. He's been in love with her for years and never had the guts to tell her. Now it's too late. Because after that night, Jake will never be able to talk again.

When Jake returns to his small island home, population 5,000, he'll have to learn how to deal with being mute. He also finds that his family isn't limited to his six brothers and sisters, that sometimes an entire island is watching out for you. And when he gets the chance to spend more time with Samantha, she'll help him learn that not being able to talk isn’t the worst thing that could ever happen to you. Maybe, if she'll let him, Jake will finally tell her what he didn't say before, even if he can't actually say it.  (Goodreads)
You can watch the book trailer here

  • This giveaway is only open to US residents.  
  • Follow the Rafflecopter prompts below.  And enter away!

Just enough time for me to contact the lucky winner and get that book signed!  Spread the word!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Book Review - Starters

by Lissa Price

Synopsis: (from Goodreads)

Callie lost her parents when the Spore Wars wiped out everyone between the ages of twenty and sixty. She and her little brother, Tyler, go on the run, living as squatters with their friend Michael and fighting off renegades who would kill them for a cookie. Callie's only hope is Prime Destinations, a disturbing place in Beverly Hills run by a mysterious figure known as the Old Man.

He hires teens to rent their bodies to Enders—seniors who want to be young again. Callie, desperate for the money that will keep her, Tyler, and Michael alive, agrees to be a donor. But the neurochip they place in Callie's head malfunctions and she wakes up in the life of her renter, living in her mansion, driving her cars, and going out with a senator's grandson. It feels almost like a fairy tale, until Callie discovers that her renter intends to do more than party—and that Prime Destinations' plans are more evil than Callie could ever have imagined. . . .

Why I Picked This Book:  The synopsis was captivating, and eerie, so how could I resist?  (I received this e-book from the publisher via NetGalley in return for a fair and honest review.  I was not compensated in any way.)

My Thoughts:
Starters is a captivating, creepy, high-energy read that thoroughly pulled me in from page one.  Price created a world that was believable, to the point that I would never want to step foot in it.

The world has ended, the whole middle age group dead, and it is just plain dangerous to be below the age of, oh say... 50.  That's the world Callie lives in.  She and her brother are in hiding, along with numerous other children.  The older adults (now able to age well into their upper 100's) are running the world.  And they tend to use the children as one main thing: slaves.

The only way Callie has left to make some money is to sign up for Prime Destinations.  An underground facility that rents your body out to the Enders (the old folk.)  That's right.  Rents.  You go to sleep, and they install their conscience into you to relive their glory days.  Three rentals, and you make enough money to survive.  This is working out for Callie.  Until her third rental happens... and she wakes up mid-rent.

Callie was a captivating protagonist.  Unlike other female leads in stories recently, she isn't night or day.  She doesn't have kung-fu powers, and she isn't a sniveling girlie needing a man to always protect her.  She is a teenager, struggling to survive.  I loved that.  Watching her grow and learn throughout the story, as she realizes the world is much worse off than she thought, was a great experience.

The world building was amazing as well.  Price crafted something that I would never want to live in.  It was easy to picture every aspect of this world.  From the run-down apartment buildings to the sprawling mansions.

I think my only true complaint about this book is the Enders.  Okay, yes.  Older people are wiser.  They do run our country and world.  But in Starters, it seemed ALL of the Enders somehow became rich, stuck up snobs who hate children and throw tempter tantrums.  While some weren't as extreme as others, it did become hard to believe that all good people stopped being good once they hit the ripe age of 50.

I think that right there is what pulled down my rating.
While the world was believeable, the story line captivating, I just couldn't fully understand a world where every old person alive acted like a teenager.

The love story part of Starters was... fast?  One of those "I see you and I love you" type things.  While at the ending it does make a little more sense, I still would have liked to see either more together time between the two, or less of the love all together.

My only other qualm is a spoiler.  So I can't say what it is.  But let's just say:  I called it.  And "ew."

All in all, Starters was a great read.  It should quench some of that thirst for any dystopian seeker out there.  I plan on snatching up book two as soon as it is out, to see where Price takes us next.

My Rating:

(4 out of 5 stars)

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Fairy Tale Giveaway HOP WINNER

What a great turn out!
Cinderella sure felt like she was at the Ball with this Giveaway.

Without any further ado, let's announce the winner, shall we?

The winner of my Fairy Tale Giveaway HOP, walking away with a new copy of Cinder by Marissa Meyer is:


Congrats Stacy!
I have emailed you.  If I don't hear back from you within 48 hours, I will have to redraw my winner.  So don't delay!

Thank you to everyone who entered.  These hops are just too much fun.  I cannot wait to do another, and I hope you all stick around to see what I have up my sleeve next!  See you real soon!


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