Tuesday, February 28, 2012

That's Right --- Cassie's HERE!

That's right - I've have all sorts of fame and Mt. Dew drinkin', chest bumpin', awesomeness here today!

I know a lot of you know Cassie, but how much do you really know her? Hmmm?  I'll tell you what, I have been hooked on her blog since the day I found it. I don't know of anyone who can compare to her. She is so freakin' funny - I am constantly rolling and running for the potty after reading her stuff. (Yes, I said running for the potty - I don't want to pee my pants laughing!)

So - if you think you can handle it, or you at least have your depends on, or a potty close by... be sure to hop over and check it out. Cassie Mae ~ Reading, Writing & Lovin' It!

Anyway... are you ready to see what she has to say for her interview? I thought so! Lets get right to some answers!

First off, Leigh, you are so supa amazing and I can’t believe you are allowing me on your blog! Your blog is FAMOUS! *blows kisses and pageant waves*

Famous?! I'm so not famous - YOU'RE FAMOUS! That's why its so super epic that you are HERE! *sprinkler dance!* But feel free to call me famous if you please - a like it.

1. Tell us a little bit about yourself in 40 words or less.

Forty words or less? I don’t think I can do that. I’m way too blabby for this question, I’m sure of it. I’ll take a stab at it, but pretty sure I’ll be cut off before I can even say…

*giggles* I'm blabby too! I always got the "Most Talkative" awards. That and "Biggest Flirt." But that's a different story. Ahem...

2. Give us a brief synopsis of your current WIP.

My current one, eh? Well the one I’m working on now is about a kid who falls for the chubby girl in his class, and does whatever he can to prove she’s not as fat as she thinks she is. :)

Awww! Love this idea! My heck - you come up with the best ideas! I can't believe what an amazing writer you are too. (And yes, I've read some of her stuff!) I know - I'm so lucky!

3. I've seen mention of a couple different stories from you. Where are you at with them? Writing, editing, querying etc?

Writing the one I just answered in question number 2. ;) Querying HOW TO DATE A NERD right now. And the others are sadly on the backburner.

HOW TO DATE A NERD! Titles don't get much better than that! Good luck with your querying. So exciting!

4. How long have you been blogging and why did you decide to start?

Oh man, it feels like forever ago! But I wrote my first blog post in August of 2011. I haven’t even had a blogoversary! And I want one so bad! I can’t wait till August, lol.

And I started cuz Mommy said it was a good idea. And Mommy’s a smart woman :)

Yes - Mommy is a smart woman! And we totally started blogging at the same time! Does that make us cool? I think it should!

5. What is your favorite thing about being a writer?

Getting to call myself that. It pretty much rocks when people ask, ‘So, what do you do?’ And I say, ‘I’m a writer. Beat that.’ Haha!

Okay, I'm so proud of you for that! I'm such a wuss when it comes to telling very many "non-writer" people what I do. I'm working on it. You're my inspiration! *uh-oh... now that song is in my head!*

And now... the ever famous, chocolate chip questions. Oh-yeah, they're that good!

Just want to add, I’ve eaten an entire bag of chocolate chips before, lol. Don’t judge, I was in a bad place. I couldn’t buy Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows when it came out on DVD. Yeah, I still don’t have it :(

Must find chocolate now!
That is a seriously good reason for doing so. I would have went for the entire pan of brownies. And ... let me tell you something worse. I bought the movie. Watched it once. My bro borrowed it the next day - watched it. Gave it to little bro to watch. Now... it's lost. If their bodies turn up missing don't look at me!
6. We know you have a Mt. Dew addiction. Is there any possibility I could sway to Coca-Cola?

I LOVE Coke! (The drink, I’m not like doing lines or anything.) But nothing diet. That stuff is not soda. It is brown water posing as soda. Judge me all you want Diet Coke addicts!

See - you just keep building yourself up in my mind! DIET is not soda! It's yuck! Yuckity, yuck, yuck YUCK! And I'm glad to see you like Coke too! Whew.

7. If you could build a vacation home on any planet, which one would it be, and why?

I’d say Alderaan, but Darth Vader blew that sucker to pieces. So I’d have to go with Naboo, in the underwater thingy… but only if Jar Jar Binks has died.

*snickers* Love your choices.

8. You've recently starred as Princess Leia on a spectacular video on FB. How was it playing that part? (I'm totally posting this video.)

Awesome! It was an honor to star with such talented people. Mike (I mean Mark!) has a wicked beard. Leigh, you play an excellent guy. And David is definitely an actor on the rise! 

I know what you mean. It was a pretty epic casting and acting experience.

Personalize funny videos and birthday eCards at JibJab!

9. Do you have any odd or unusual habits we need to know about?

Need to know about? Lol, no. No one needs to know about my habits. But um, I’ve got one.

So, I’ve recently shared on my blog that I’m terrified of getting shot on the toilet, so when I use a public stall, I put my feet up against the door so no one knows I’m in there.

Don't worry - I made it to the bathroom in time! You crack me up!

10. Share your favorite thought or quote.

“Is this real? Or has this been happening inside my head?”
“Of course it is happening inside your head, Harry, but why on earth should that mean that it is not real?”

And another because I couldn’t decide on which one I like better:

“Words are, in my not-so-humble opinion, our most inexhaustible source of magic. Capable of both inflicting injury, and remedying it.”

Always a Harry Potter quote. :)

Love these both! Harry Potter gives us some great stuff!
Big THANKS and major cyber chest bumps to my peep, Leigh for allowing me to spew on her blog. Love you girl!!!

Chest bumps back! Oh man, now my boobs hurt! O-well. It was worth it to have you on my blog and there was totally no spewage, just awesome-sauce!

Thank you SO MUCH for spending time over here today Cassie! I have loved every second of it. You're the rockstar of all the blogging world!

So everyone throw out your chest bumps and awesome-sauce comments for Cassie. Show her some love! And also --- don't forget that CASSAFIRE by Alex J. Cavanaugh is out today! Whoot-whoot! Congrats to Alex! 

Monday, February 27, 2012

Winner - Notebooks & Magazines!

You may remember that today I am supposed to announce the WINNER of EVERNEATH by Brodi Ashton. I read this right after the LTUE conference and I am SO in LOVE with it! Ashton did a wonderful job! So - in honor of reaching 200 followers, I did a giveaway. Are you wondering who the winner is? I won't keep you waiting. Congratulations to
Ruth Josse!
I will be in touch with you soon!

Now... how many of you own a bunch of these? Big ones, small ones, thick ones, thin ones? Maybe yours are one color, maybe they have pictures, or maybe a fabulous design. I have several and I love them. The most precious of them sits next to my bed because it has all the notes for my current WIP. 

Notebooks are great to have for brainstorming. And I mention them today because I had a brilliant idea for a post today! It was wonderful. I went through the whole thing in my head. But guess what? ... Yeah - you guessed. I didn't write it down. So, for the life of me... I can't remember what I wanted to post about! Grrrr! I am officially reminded about the importance of notebooks for writers.

Do you like that quote? I did when I read it. That's why I wanted to share it with you. And where did I read it, you may ask? In the March/April 2012 issue of Writers Digest. I couldn't find the link to the exact article. It may not be out yet, but it's phenomenal. I will share some of the tips soon - when I'm able to link back to it. The article is: 5 Story Mistakes Even Good Writers Make by Steven James. 

When I first came out of the closet as a writer I learned that I should check into some writing magazines. Writers Digest is a great magazine with wonderful articles and it's not too expensive. I'm so glad I took the plunge and signed up for it. I love reading the articles. If you are looking for a helpful, yet affordable magazine, I'd highly recommend it. (I'd highly recommend it anyway!)

So... do you carry notebooks with you wherever you go? Are you addicted to them? How about magazines? Do you have any favorites? Do you find them helpful?

Friday, February 24, 2012

Bits of Awesome....

This is the last day to enter my giveaway for EVERNEATH by Brodi Ashton. Go HERE to enter. I will announce the winner on Monday!

Jessica Therrien's debut novel OPPRESSION is available NOW on e-book! The official release date is February 28th, so take advantage of this opportunity! It's only .99 cents!

Also - Kyra & Rachel are hosting a blog hop coming up on March 9th!
It's going to be fun. Go HERE for more details or click on the button in my sidebar!

And lastly... a fun quote from Katie's blog to inspire you for the weekend!
What bits of awesome are going on in your life?

Thursday, February 23, 2012


This picture is so pretty AND cool --- I just had to use it. Awesome right?

And I wanted to give you a few notes that I got from the LTUE Conference. This was a class I went to on "Magical Systems," which I found very helpful and interesting, especially since my current WIP is a YA fantasy with magical elements. 

Here are some of the tips they gave us:
  • Magic needs to have a purpose & drive the storyline. (that should be obvious, right?)
  • Consistent. Don't just pull things out of the blue. Build up. Lead. Earn them.
  • Have Rules. Simple cause and effect matters work great with magical systems.
  • Magic is a tool. Make sure your character uses it as a tool and it isn't the only thing that defines them.
  • Even magical characters need flaws and weaknesses. 
The one thing I love about magic is that you can do with it whatever you want. The magical system you create can be as simple or complex as you want to make it. They would suggest (and I agree) not to make it TOO complex. It bogs the reader down. Let them enjoy the magic with simple cause and effect. There are so many opportunities with magic and it's all at your fingertips. Let your imagination lead the way!

And if you're stuck on how to use magic for your book, here's a fun idea: Take something simple and make it extraordinary! Give it a little twist or a tweak and you'll see amazing things happen.

Also - if you've missed out on the awesome sauce movies floating around Facebook - here you go!
This one features Chantele Sedgwick, David Powers King, Cassie Mae & Me! Don't worry - there are MORE! So stay tuned!

Personalize funny videos and birthday eCards at JibJab!

Do you have magic in your book? What are some of your favorite books with magic?

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Lara Schiffbauer Takes the Stage!

I have to make a quick note... I finished EVERNEATH over the weekend and OH.MY.GOSH! It is wonderful. I'm dying here! So, if you haven't read it yet, and would like the chance, be sure to enter my giveaway HERE. The contest closes Friday so don't forget to get entered!

Now... I am SO excited to have Lara Schiffbauer here today! She has graciously agreed to participate in one of my interviews and I'm so glad. This girl is a blogging queen! I swear, when I first found her blog, not long ago, she only had a few followers. NOW... she's almost got her first 100! That's incredible. And once you visit her blog, "Lara Schiffbauer's Motivation for Creation," you'll understand why she is growing so fast. Plus - she is a wonderful blogging friend!

Lets jump right in to the questions!

1.    1. Tell us a little bit about yourself, in 40 words or less.
I am a writer, a licensed clinical social worker, mother of two little boys, dreamer, optimist, and science geek. I wish I could write science-fiction, but I’m not that intellectual!

2. How long have you been writing, and what made you decided to be a writer?
I began writing “seriously” three years ago this coming April.  I started writing because I needed a creative outlet, but also because I don’t think I can be a social worker for the rest of my life!  I decided to meld the need for a different career, flexibility in output because of my young children, and being creative together and try writing.

3. What genre and age group do you write?
My first novel is adult contemporary fantasy, as is my story Bear Hug, which is slated to be published from Feb. 5th through 18th at Hogglepot.  However, I have had short stories published in the horror genre, as well.

4. Tell us a little about your current WIP.
Finding Meara is about a woman, Hazel Michelli, whose entire world is turned upside down when she is mistaken for the half-sister she didn’t know she had, and kidnapped from her Denver apartment.  Taken to a parallel world where magic and monsters are real, she escapes with the help of an unusual cat and begins the race to find four year old Meara herself, and save them both from being sacrificed. Obviously I haven’t written a synopsis yet, so I hope that made sense!

5. What part of the writing process are you in?
I am editing Finding Meara, and beginning to plot my next novel.  I just completed a flash fiction blog challenge in January that I used to introduce myself to the characters and am pretty excited to move on to the actual story development.

6. How long have you been blogging & what's your favorite part of blogging?
I have been blogging on Blogger since Nov. 2010, so a little over a year.  My favorite part is getting comments.  I admit it.  I love getting to know like-minded people through the comments feature.  Secondary to that, I obsess over stats, just because I can’t believe people actually come to read my blog!

Now my chocolate chip questions. These are the fun little morsels - that I like to add!

7. If you could take a trip in a time machine, would you go to the past or future - and why?
Totally the past, because I have no desire to know the future, especially if I had to go back to my own time with the knowledge of what the future held.  I think it would be a very heavy burden.  I would hate to be a clairvoyant.

8. If you could be a literary character for a day, who would you be, and why?
I don’t know if it is exactly literary, but I would choose Anita Blake – I want to meet Jean-Claude.  I’m not into the whole vampire thing, but I do have a crush on Jean-Claude.

9. If you were a superhero - what super power would you have?
I always wanted to be Storm from the X-Men.  The ability to control the weather always seemed so cool, plus be a street criminal and a kick-butt fighter.  Wow.

10. Tell us a favorite quote of yours.
There are so many! I love quotes, and use them a lot to lead into blog posts.  I just referenced the one by Ray Bradbury “You must stay drunk on writing, so reality can’t bite you in the (backside).”  That one kind of says it all for me.  Reading and writing are both ways I escape reality, and I’d love to be able to provide an escape for other people.

 She's so awesome, right? And I agree with Lara, Storm is so cool! It would be fun to be able to control the weather. I could make it rain whenever I wanted and it would never snow! Whoot-whoot!

If you haven't had the opportunity to visit Lara's blog, be sure to hop over. You won't regret it. And you can find her on twitter too!

Thanks for sharing with us today, Lara! It's been a blast!

Monday, February 20, 2012

My Brain Is Dead!

I have honestly wrote 2 different posts for today and erased both of them. Apparently they weren't making the grade. OR... maybe the fact that my daughter tackled some unknowing child at church yesterday, has me a little out of sorts. Honestly - that girl is going to take over the world one day. I just have to channel her energy for good and not evil. So far... well, you heard about the tackling. *sigh*

I attended a fun class by EJ Patten at LTUE this year. It was called "Building a Bare Story." His first book, RETURN TO EXILE, just came out this fall. You can find it on Amazon, HERE.
I'm not going to go into all of that, but I'm going to show you the picture he shared with us.
Ta Da!
Fun, right? Many of you may have seen something similar to this before. These are the 3 main elements in any story.
  • Plot - WHAT is happening.
  • Milieu - WHERE it's happening, WHEN it's happening, and WHY it's happening
  • Characters - WHO it's happening to
Not all stories are created equal, and not all elements are given equal attention in a story. Go ahead... think of your favorite book. Which element is represented the strongest? 
With a thriller, or mystery, something with suspense --- the "plot" is usually the main factor of that story. Everything else is just a pawn or piece of the puzzle, getting the story where it needs to go.

Romance you say? --- most likely the "characters." Right?

If you look at a dystopian or fantasy --- the "milieu" usually play a big role in those stories.

This isn't by the book. This is merely a generality of the types of stories. However - when writing, we need to have something going with each element. It may not be the key player or major theme to our book, but we always want to have more than one thing going on. That way, when one problem is solved, there is still another problem that they need to work on. One of the fun things about these elements is that they show you what the writer cares about.

In my current WIP, my strongest element is probably the characters. The story is based around them, although I hope the plot creates some suspense and surprises and the milieu keeps it interesting.

What element is the main focus of your MS?

Friday, February 17, 2012

Let's Celebrate!

First off --- have you noticed the changes to the blogger word verification codes just turned impossible? Well I did! I hate 'em. Seriously - it takes me at least 2 tries to make the darn thing work! So... if you haven't read J.A. Bennett's post on how to turn these little SOB's off, go HERE to find out. Of course, afterwards, you really should turn yours off. Am I being mean? No! I'm not trying to be. It's just that I really want to keep commenting on your blog but if those verification codes are there, it may weaken my resolve. Just sayin.


If you missed my last post, you'll notice that I reached 200 followers! I love it! I'm so excited you guys. It means so much that you would follow me. I, in return, love to follow you back, as long as google friend connect allows me to find you. I love meeting you guys and finding out how truly awesome you are. In honor of your "awesomeness" ... I have a prize!

A copy of EVERNEATH by Brodi Ashton
I am currently reading this & LOVING it!

a Rafflecopter giveaway Contest closes Friday, February 24th. You must live within the continental U.S. to win. WINNERS will be announced on Monday, February 27th.

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

You're IT!

First of all - I just noticed that I am at 200 followers! WOWZA! That totally made my day! Thanks everyone! Thanks so much! I think I need to come up with a giveaway to celebrate, so stay tuned!

Also... if you haven't heard... Mark Koopmans is having a fabulously fun blog hop for St. Paddy's Day! (Yes, it's St. Paddy's (with the D's). A real Irishman uses the "D's" - Mark is keeping me up to date! The linky will open up on the 27th, but get the button on your blog and mark your calendar! Go HERE for more info on the HOP!

Now... I have officially be "tagged by A.E. Martin and Melanie Fowler with a fun tagging game that is going around the blogosphere. I'm totally stoked to participate so, here are my answers to their questions!

A.E. Martin's Questions:
1. What is your biggest fear?
Losing my kids. Yeah - I worry about the craziest crap, but if something ever happened to my kids, I don' think I could survive it.
2. What would you wish for if you had three wishes?
   1 - To live in Hawaii
   2- To be a fabulously brilliant, published author
   3 - To have a happy family
3. What's your favorite childhood novel?
I honestly loved reading the Boxcar Children books! They were awesome. I love mystery!
4. What's your earliest memory?
I remember riding my strawberry shortcake big wheel to my neighbors house. I remember their driveway, yellow brick house and side porch. I was only 2, so that's a pretty good recollection, right?
5. Would you rather be the hero or the villain of a story?
I'm all about saving the day. Count me in as a hero!
6. Vampire, Witch, Werewolf, Mermaid -- which would you be?
*twiddles thumbs, while making strange oooh-ing sound* It's a toss up between a vampire and mermaid. Although a witch would be cool too. I'm okay with not being a werewolf.
7. What's your favorite song?
So many! Right now I am on a Katy Perry kick: "The One Who Got Away." Also love Taylor Swifts, "Long Live." Those are my two current faves!
8. Would you rather go back 50 years to the past or 50 years into the future?
I ask a similar question in my interviews, and I have no idea the answer! Agh! I'm going to say future. It would be cool to check that out, as long as the world hasn't turned to hell.
9. If someone could tell you how you were going to die would you want to know? (maybe this question is too macabre lol)
I can handle "macabre." But I'm going to say "HELL NO!" Seriously, I have a serious "worry wart disease!" Yeah. I don't want to know. I try not to think about it. lol
10. Are you more spontaneous or do you like to plan ahead?
I live for spontanaity! I love it. It doesn't give me time to worry. On the down side, I do tend to get myself into trouble with it too. That's when planning ahead is a good thing. Just not easy for me.
11. Which came first, the chicken or the egg?
The chicken! (Yeah, I have no idea, but I'm going with the chicken.)

Melanie Fowler's Questions:
1. What's your favorite meal?
So hard. I like to eat. Spaghetti is good. Love pot roast. Love spring rolls. AND... hamburger pie!
2. Morning person, or night owl?
Not even a toss up - NIGHT OWL! Although I am super lame now that I'm old and have kids. I used to stay up for.ev.er! Now I'm in bed early, but I still don't get up early. No way!
3. What's your favorite season?
Fall - of course! I love it! Perfect weather, perfect clothes! And pretty landscapes!
4. What is your dream vacation?
This is a toss up between Hawaii and a Caribbean Cruise. OR... I'd LOVE to spend a summer touring Europe! (Simple thing, right?)
5. What time of day do you write?
Nighttime! Once the kiddos are in bed, I can finally write!

Wasn't this fun? I loved it guys! Thanks for the tag guys! Now... IF I tag you, you need to answer the following questions:

1. What is your dream vacation?
2. Are you spontaneous or do you like to plan ahead?
3. Tell us one thing you want to do, but don't dare to do. (Unless of course, you dare to do everything!)
4. What's your biggest phobia?
5. If you were stranded on a desert island - what 3 things would you want with you? (not including laptop, or family.)
6. Name three blessings in your life.
7. What was your nickname in High School?
8. If you could meet the President of the United States, what would you say to him?
9. If you could be any literary character for a day, who would you be?
10. What is your favorite quote?
11. In the color code personality test, what color are you? (If you don't know, go HERE!)  

Okay... there are my questions. NOW... here are the people I am tagging!

Whew! That was wild and fun! Can't beat that, right? Tag games ROCK! I hope you'll join in the fun and do some tagging of your own! Now... I have serious Blue & Gold Banquet to prepare for tonight. *sigh* I'm hoping it goes well.

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Is It Getting HOT in Here???

Happy Valentines Day!
In case you haven't heard, Cassie Cook and Hope Roberson are hosting the "Is it Getting Hot in Here?" Blog Hop, in honor of Valentines Day!

Here's what to do: Please share one of your favorite kissing scenes from a book you've read, from your own WiP, make one up, or write about one of your own memorable kisses.

In all honesty... I've had some totally awesome kisses, but... I have only wrote one "kissy" scene and it's not quite HOT enough for such a hop. So... I'm going to share one of my favorites! This scene is from SHATTER ME by Tahereh Mafi and it had me blushing from head to toe! Love it!
My face is in his hands and my lips are at his lips and he's kissing me and I'm oxygen and he's dying to breathe. His body is almost on top of mine, one hand in my hair, the other feeling its way down my silhouette, slipping behind my knee to pull me closer, higher, tighter. He drops kisses down my throat like ecstasy, electric energy searing into me, setting me on fire. I'm on the verge of combusting from the sheer thrill of every moment. I want to dive into his being, experience him with all 5 senses, drown in the waves of wonder enveloping my existence.

I want to taste the landscape of his body.

He takes my hands and presses them against his chest, guides my fingers as they trail down the length of his torso before his lips meet mine again and again and again drugging me into a delirium. I never want to escape. But it's not enough. It's still not enough. I want to melt into him, trace the form of his figure with my lips alone. My heart is racing through my blood, destroying my self-control, spinning everything into a cyclone of intensity. He breaks for air and I pull him back, aching, desperate, dying for his touch. His hands slip up under my shirt, skirting my sides, touching me like he's never dared to before, and my top is neraly over my head when a door squeaks open. We both freeze.

I warned you it was HOT in here! Thanks Cassie and Hope for the fun blog hop! 
Now everyone hop around and check out the other awesome "kissing scenes."
1.Leigh Covington2.A.E. Martin
3.Emily R. King4.Angie Cothran
5.Kelley Lynn6.Jenny S. Morris
9.Trisha @ WORD STUFF10.dreamwritepublish
11.Cortney Pearson12.ali cross
13.Motivation for Creation14.Jenna Cooper
15.Jenny @ Castles in the Sky16.An Author's Ramblings
17.PK HREZO18.Thardrandian Thoughts
19.Carrie-Anne20.Marta Szemik
21.Charity Bradford22.Bonnie Rae, Just Words
23.Wendy S. Russo24.David Powers King
25.Krista McLaughlin26.BragonDorns Asylum
27.Vive le Nerd28.Tara Tyler
29.J. A. Bennett30.Jennee Thompson
31.Cutest Landing32.A.J. Mullarky
33.Jolene Perry34.Julie Dorris
35.A Writer's Journey36.Melissa Sugar
37.Susan Oloier38.Unyielding
39.epitome40.Brinda Berry Blogs
41.Tracy Bermeo (A2ZMommy)42.Lisa L. Regan
43.Write Here, Write Now44.Lori M Lee
45.Stina Lindenblatt46.Clare Dugmore Writes
47.Shell Flower48.Julie Tuovi
49.Jack Flacco50.Stephanie Diaz
51.Angela Quarles52.Through the Looking Glass
53.Crystal Licata54.Morgan Shamy
55.Angela M @ Jaded Love Junkie56.The Capillary
57.Kelley Vitollo58.Nancy S. Thompson
59.Ashley Nixon60.Lynn Kelley: Random Acts of Weirdness
61.Tales from the Rh?n62.Signage
63.Rachel Morgan64.Cara M @ CP Slayer
65.Kiru Taye Writes66.Larissa's World
67.Loralie Hall68.Elizabeth Prats :)
69.Theresa Paolo70.Love in Flight by Glo
71.The Submission Process
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Monday, February 13, 2012

The Man Beneath the Newspaper...

Oh WOW! Happy Monday everyone! I am so overloaded with joy after the LTUE weekend! Yeah, I only made it to one day of it, but it still left me informed and so motivated. In fact - I skipped Saturday at LTUE so I could go to the library and write. They had me so pumped up after the classes, I couldn't help myself. Kind of bummed out that I missed out on meeting some awesome peeps on Saturday, but getting 3 more chapters written was good. I will tell you more about LTUE later in the week. Right now, I have a special guest!
Do you recognize this guy? Or at least the newspaper, blue shirt and tie? I know a lot of you have been to his blog before. And I've got to tell ya, I've always wondered about the man beneath the newspaper. And guess what? I have an exclusive! O-yeah! Here he is for real!

So let me welcome Iain from Iain's Iainspiration! Thanks for being with us today Iain! It's fun to have you here and have a great revealing! Ta-da! But wait --- we will reveal even more! Yes, with my legendary interview skills will learn even more about this awesome guy! Ready. Set. Here we GOOOO!

1. In 40 words or less, tell us a little about yourself.  
I'm tempted to claim that I was abandoned as a baby, and found and raised by squirrels, or something, but that seems to be everyone’s story these days.  Basically, I live about 30 miles south east of London, and have been writing for about 10 years.

2. Tell us about your current WIP.
Odd Squad is a YA Adventure Fantasy.  The summary blow is still a very rough version (it's so clunky that I cringe when I read it.)

T.D. has been recruited into the ‘S’ Division of MI6 due to his extraordinary ability to become invisible.  Along with the rest of his team, T.D. is part of a convoy transporting a nuclear warhead back to Falsane naval base, when they are ambushed, and the warhead is stolen.  They discover that if the bomb is successfully detonated, the devastating effect will be so great that the Unites States will never recover.  The Odd Squad, as the team is affectionately known, have to find the clues that will allow them to track down the bomb, and stop the mysterious Deimos behind the plot.

3. What stage of the writing process are you in? (drafting, revisions/editing, querying, publishing, etc)
I thought I was at the end of revisions/editing, and about to send it to some Crit partners when I realised that there was a shedload of changes/additions that I’d completely overlooked.  This has put me knee deep in revisions again.

And now the "chocolate chip questions..."
4. If you could take a trip in a time machine, would you travel to the future or the past, and why?
Oooh, tough one.  I have a bit of an aversion to History (my mum was a history teacher, and if I showed any vague interest in something historical, then I had a lesson directed at me on the subject.)  Having said that,  if I could send my MS back thirty years when publishers were taking greater risks with new authors, then it’d probably be then.  (I’d also leave notes for loved ones, giving them clues on things to avoid in the future.)

5. If you were a superhero, what super power would you have?
I’d thought about this one when I was younger - stealing a radioactive isotope and irradiating the animal I wanted to get bitten by so I could gain it's powers.
Firstly I thought about a hamster.  I could store the villains in my cheeks once I’d captured them.  The problem is I’d have to sleep a lot during the day.
            Then, I thought about a dolphin, but this meant I could only fight crime at sea, or in swimming pools.
            A dog? – Too easily distracted by bikes and cats.
            A spider? – Probably get sued by DC Comics for breach of copyright
            A cat? – probably get told off for toying with the villain before ripping his head off and leaving the body on the commissioners doorstep for him to find in the morning.
            A halibut? – Do they have teeth?  It’d probably just give me a nasty suck :o|
            In the end, I decided that the best power is to be able to make people smile and see the positive side of things.

6. What is your favorite quote?

If you see someone without a smile. Give them one.
It’s a hundred miles to Chicago, we’ve got a full tank of gas, half a packet of cigarettes, it’s dark, and we’re wearing sunglasses…. Hit it! (Blues Brothers)

7. Any advice for other aspiring authors?

DON’T DO IT!!  It gives the rest of us a better chance! ;o)
Seriously though, I think there are people much more qualified out there than me to give proper advice, but if pressed, then I’d say: read as much as possible in your chosen genre, write every day, and read at least one book from an expert on how to write and get published.

Thanks for letting me take part in this.  I've enjoyed thinking about something other than my WIP.

Cheers! Yeah - everybody join in on saying "Cheers," cause I know you're all dying to. At least if you're from the U.S. like me. I totally wish I could pull off an awesome "Cheers!" in real life! Alas - I'll have to leave that to Iain. Now everybody show him some love and don't forget to hop over to his blog and give him a follow!

Saturday, February 11, 2012

Books I Love...

Hey guys! Sorry I'm slow in posting. For some reason I thought this was Tuesday. Yeah - that's how out of it I am after the conference. Still, I love blog hops and Rebecca Kiel has a fun, easy one going on today. In honor of the "Books I Love" hop, here are my choices:
I just finished this... like two minutes ago! Very intense and awesome!
Another one that I recently finished. AMAZING!
The Hunger Games Trilogy - of course!
Honestly - the Hunger Games has to be one of my favorite trilogies of all time. I loved the characters. I loved the story. People sucked. People died and some people I fell in love with. I couldn't put these books down. I can't wait for the movie!

Who else is counting down for this movie? Did you like the books?

Friday, February 10, 2012

Feeling Emotional?

How are all my favorite people this morning? I want to give you a quick warning, that I won't be hopping around blogs until Sunday. Sad, I know! It's going to be hard to wait that, but I'll be at the LTUE conference for the next couple days. (Don't worry - I'll tell you all about it!)

Now... on to more important things. It is the final day of the "I'm Hearing Voices" Character Blogfest, hosted by the lovely Cassie Cook & Angela Cothran! A quick shout out to these ladies for putting together such a fabulous FEST! It has helped me a ton with my characters, and I've had a lot of fun reading other posts and making new friends!

Today's challenge is to write a 250 word flash fiction to make the reader "Feel" whichever emotion you are trying to evoke.
*Note: I have had a HARD time deciding which "emotional" part to share for today. If you know me, I like to go against the norm, but... I really had to introduce you to Clovis. So check it out.---(BTW - Skye is the one speaking.)
Meet Clovis! (source)

We walked in silence behind Clovis’ silhouette, not knowing what to say to such a fearsome creature. Clovis made a sudden stop and put his hand up, signaling for us to do the same. I heard a small noise, but I couldn’t place it. Grabbing Logan’s forearm, we both searched the area, trying to identify the noise. Clovis raised his trident and my eyes grew large. Logan grabbed my arm and we backed against the wall.
With a quick swoop, Clovis made vicious stab at the ceiling, the sound of metal and rock colliding. Logan’s muscles tensed around my waist. Clovis moved the trident into the faint light of the tunnel showing a black furry ball on the end of one prong.
“Bats," he said.
Bats? Oh my gosh he just speared a bat! Apparently Harvok’s didn’t like bats in their caves.
Clovis pulled the twitching creature off the trident and shoved it in his mouth. A loud crunch followed and my mouth dropped.
“Bats goods,” Clovis said.
My nails dug into Logan’s arm but he didn’t seem to notice. His eyes were like giant orbs when we looked at each other. “I think I’m sick,” he said. All I could do was nod in agreement.

So, what did you think? What did you feel?
And be sure to hop around to the others. There are some amazing people doing this hop. I promise... you don't want to miss what they have to offer. 
1.Michael Offutt2.Kelley Lynn
3.Miranda Hardy4.Hope Roberson
5.Cutest Landing6.Kim Karras
7.Jessica McKendry8.Emily R. King
9.Ian's Realm Trilogy10.Ruth Josse
11.Jenny S. Morris12.For Science!
13.Leigh Covington14.Sara Bulla
15.Melissa Sarno16.The Ubiquitous Perspective
17.Melodie Wright18.Jenna Cooper
19.Donna Hole20.laughingwolf [aka tony hunt]
21.My Demon Spirits22.Frost Lord
23.Clarissa Draper24.Sarah Ahiers
25.Thinking The Lions26.Sherri's Graphomania
27.Kathy McKendry28.Writing with Shelly and Chad
29.Sarah Barnett30.mountainlyon
31.Aldrea Alien32.Emily L. Moir
33.Pen and Chocolate 34.Medeia Sharif
35.Gwen Tolios36.Jade Hart
37.Under the Tiki Hut38.Ainsley Shay
39.Scribble and Edit40.Stephen Tremp Breakthrough Blogs
41.Cortney Pearson42.Lisa the Word Nerd
43.Damyanti@Amlokiblogs44.Sarah McCabe- The Aspiring Sub-creator
45.In My Write Mind46.Trisha @ WORD STUFF
47.Melissa Sugar48.Tasha Seegmiller
49.Q Writers Muses50.JUSTINE DELL!
51.Jess Stork @ InkspotPlot52.Nicole Zoltack
53.Hildred Billings54.Grumpy Bulldog
55.My Different Corners56.RachelMaryBean
57.Write Here, Write Now58.Ashley Nixon
59.Kristin Dee60.Use Your Words...
61.Clare Dugmore Writes62.The Capillary
63.The Capillary64.J. A. Bennett
65.Cristina Dos Santos66.Amber
67.Hywela Lyn68.A Writer's Muses
69.Lyla Lee70.Terias McKlay
71.One DV Rebel72.Meet Matty
73.Funny Girl74.Roland Yeomans : Writing In The Crosshairs
75.Sharon Bayliss76.William Brian Johnson
77.Sari Webb78.tara tyler
79.AmyMak80.Bouquet of Books
81.Entertaining Interests82."I'm Hearing Voices" Day 2: Dialogue Introduction
83.Deana Barnhart84.Bouquet of Books
85.Lady Bluestocking86.Tales from the Rh?n
87.Tales from the Rh?n
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Wednesday, February 8, 2012

More Voices!!!

Today is the 2nd challenge for the "I'm Hearing Voices" Character Blogfest, hosted by Cassie Cook and Angela Cothran. I will admit - this has been a wonderful blogfest so far, helping me out TONS with my characters. Thanks again ladies!

Here's today's challenge: Dialogue Introduction: Have two characters introduce each other using only dialogue—no backstory, no internalization, just dialogue between the two. Max 250 words.
Skye:  "Hello everyone! Thanks for having us today. I am here to introduce Cerron, leader of the Guardians."

Cerron: "And I am here to introduce Skye.... our only hope."

Skye: "Oh, please! I've told you over and over. There is nothing special about me. I will help you fight, but I'm not the key to defeating the king."

Cerron: "Obviously Skye is too modest. She doesn't see the strength that lies within her, but she will."

Skye: "Anyway... Cerron leads the Guardians. They fight against the King to free the children enslaved on the Island."

Cerron: "Skye escaped the Island."

Skye: "I didn't do it alone. Logan came with me. If it wasn't for him, I wouldn't have made it."

Cerron: "Uh-huh."

Skye: "Aside from Cerron always being on my case - thinking I'm something that I'm NOT... I've found in him someone I can trust. He is the only one besides Logan that cares about me."

Cerron: "If you trust me so much, why not believe me when I say, there is more to you than meets the eye?"

Syke: "Because I know what I am! You've only known me a few days. I am no hero. That's your job."

Cerron: "We shall see."

Skye: "And that's when I'll say, I told you so!"

Cerron: "That's your introduction to Skye. A beautiful smart ass, who doesn't believe in herself."

Skye: "Co-hosted by one of my favorite people, even if he doesn't get it."

Now be sure to check out the other awesome peeps that are participating!
1.Michael Offutt2.Kelley Lynn
3.Miranda Hardy4.Hope Roberson
5.Cutest Landing6.Kim Karras
7.Jessica McKendry8.Emily R. King
9.Ian's Realm Trilogy10.Ruth Josse
11.Jenny S. Morris12.For Science!
13.Leigh Covington14.Sara Bulla
15.Melissa Sarno16.The Ubiquitous Perspective
17.Melodie Wright18.Jenna Cooper
19.Donna Hole20.laughingwolf [aka tony hunt]
21.My Demon Spirits22.Frost Lord
23.Clarissa Draper24.Sarah Ahiers
25.Thinking The Lions26.Sherri's Graphomania
27.Kathy McKendry28.Writing with Shelly and Chad
29.Sarah Barnett30.mountainlyon
31.Aldrea Alien32.Emily L. Moir
33.Pen and Chocolate 34.Medeia Sharif
35.Gwen Tolios36.Jade Hart
37.Under the Tiki Hut38.Ainsley Shay
39.Scribble and Edit40.Stephen Tremp Breakthrough Blogs
41.Cortney Pearson42.Lisa the Word Nerd
43.Damyanti@Amlokiblogs44.Sarah McCabe- The Aspiring Sub-creator
45.In My Write Mind46.Trisha @ WORD STUFF
47.Melissa Sugar48.Tasha Seegmiller
49.Q Writers Muses50.JUSTINE DELL!
51.Jess Stork @ InkspotPlot52.Nicole Zoltack
53.Hildred Billings54.Grumpy Bulldog
55.My Different Corners56.RachelMaryBean
57.Write Here, Write Now58.Ashley Nixon
59.Kristin Dee60.Use Your Words...
61.Clare Dugmore Writes62.The Capillary
63.The Capillary64.J. A. Bennett
65.Cristina Dos Santos66.Amber
67.Hywela Lyn68.A Writer's Muses
69.Lyla Lee70.Terias McKlay
71.One DV Rebel72.Meet Matty
73.Funny Girl74.Roland Yeomans : Writing In The Crosshairs
75.Sharon Bayliss76.William Brian Johnson
77.Sari Webb78.tara tyler
79.AmyMak80.Bouquet of Books
81.Entertaining Interests82."I'm Hearing Voices" Day 2: Dialogue Introduction
83.Deana Barnhart
Submit your link:

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