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Friday, April 30, 2010

Contest Closing

Thanks so much to everyone who participated in the What's Your Fortune, Cookie? contest! I received soooooo many fun, funny, creative, insightful entries... you all thoroughly entertained me. Not to mention, you've made my job as a fortune judge entirely too hard. I will be choosing winners tomorrow and announcing them at some point this weekend with another blog post. If you're not chosen as a winner this time around, have no fear, because I have plenty of other contests in store for you all! In fact, there may be a special giveaway scheduled next week. :)

Stay tuned...


Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Contest! Contest! Contest!

Enter the What's Your Fortune, Cookie? contest to win an Amazon gift card! Details below...

I love the fine art of fortune telling (or the fine art of BS to those skeptics out there). I'm a sucker for psychics, tarot cards, Nostradamus, Magic 8 Balls, astrology... you name it! Whether it's real or not, I suck up fortune-ology with a straw. Unsurprisingly, I love the crisp prediction goodies otherwise known as fortune cookies. Several weeks ago I was horrified to find that my favorite part of Chinese takeout (the fortune cookie) was empty inside. EMPTY! No fortune! Nada! Clearly I was gypped.

To counterbalance my recent lack of fortune fun, I have decided to hold a contest to collect creative fortunes. Since asking for a bunch of random fortunes for me would be a bit selfish, I'm asking each participant to come up with a creative fortune for a fictional character or anyone (or anything) in pop culture. I will then choose up to three of the most creative (or laugh-out-loud) entries to win the following prizes:

First Place - $30 Amazon gift card
Second Place - $20 Amazon gift card
Third Place - $10 Amazon gift card

In order to enter the contest for a chance to win you must:

1) Be a follower of my blog

2) Leave a creative pop culture or fictional character fortune in the comment box below. Make sure to add the name of whom or what it's about somewhere in your comment. Keep in mind that fortunes in fortune cookies are short, so please don't write a dissertation. Funny entries will get extra kudos!

3) Enter ONE creative fortune per participant. You can submit up to TWO extra fortunes to be evaluated for prizes if you mention this contest on your blog, twitter and/or facebook page. Please provide me with the link to your online shout-out with each extra fortune you enter. This means no more than THREE creative fortunes should be entered by any one participant.

4) Remember to play nice in the fortune factory sandbox - no mean predictions, please.

An example of a pop culture fortune (for Brangelina):

An example of a fictional character fortune (for Pinocchio):

Now go ahead and entertain me with your fortune geniusness, my Nostradamus reincarnates!

*Adriana at Loves to Read was the first to answer my bonus question correctly in my last blog post. Congrats, Adriana! If you choose to participate, you can submit an extra entry*

Winners will be chosen on May 1st. Good luck and have fun!

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Sunday, April 18, 2010

I'm Baaaack...

Did you miss me? Because I missed you... each and every one of you. I feel like we have a lot of catching up to do.

"Soooo....what is up? What's the 411? What has everybody been up to? What's the hot gossip? Tell me everything. What have you guys been listening to? What are the cool jams?"

The first person to tell me what movie and character this above quote is from will get an extra entry (if you choose to participate) in my upcoming contest. Yes, I DID say contest! You didn't think I was lying when I told you all I was planning a contest for April, did you? Well, shame on you if you did! Check back Tuesday, the 20th, for my first official contest. You must be a follower of my blog to enter... and you must love cheese. Okay, cheese actually has nothing to do with it, but I thought it would sound more "official-like" with two entry rules. More to come...

On the author front, my fabulous web designer, Denise Biondo, is working on my website drafts as we speak... er, type. Sometime soon my author website will be up and this blog will be one of its internal pages. If you're one of those types who's not fond of change, I'm warning you now that my blog template WILL BE CHANGING (the horror!) when my full website is up and running. Hence I may not be able to post all the various blog awards you've given me anymore (thank you for the awards!!). That said, I have several more awards that I want to acknowledge and post now, but I won't be passing any more on because there are too many great blogs to choose from, and to be honest, figuring out who doesn't already have the awards I want to pass along makes my eyes cross. For the love of uncrossed eyes, I hope you all understand. If, however, you want any of my awards, let me know, and I'll be happy to pass them along to you.

Without further ado, I shall acknowledge the awards now...


Medeia Sharif for the Awesomesauce Award and the Super Comments Award! Medeia also tagged me in a fun Q&A blog post which I will be participating in and posting at some point in the future...

D.L. Hammons at Cruising Altitude for the Sunshine Award


Claire at Points of Claire-ification for the From Me to You award and the Soulmates Award!

Claire had to invent a fictional fact about each person she chose to pass the Soulmates Award onto. Since I won't be passing it along, I thought I'd at least share the awesome fact Claire invented about me: Amy Holder's the current Chocolate Diving Champion of Pennsylvania. To win this title she dove into 6 feet of chocolates to retrieve a teddy bear, with a time of 15.26 seconds.
Hahahaha! I love it!

Thanks again to all the wonderful bloggers who've passed along blog awards to me!

Make sure to come back on Tuesday to check out and participate in my contest!

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Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Spring Fun

Happy spring! I have limited internet access this week, so if I'm MIA from commenting on all of your fabulous blogs, you'll know why. I want to take a minute to share some fun news and links before I disappear into the abyss for the week.

First, Carrie Harris (my friend and fellow 2011 debut author) announced the new title of her much anticipated YA zombie comedy this past weekend. The book was previously called NO PAIN, NO BRAIN, but has since been switched to (drum roll): BAD TASTE IN BOYS. How fantastic is that?! I LURRRRVE it! If you feel the same way, check out Carrie's official announcement .

If you're still looking for laughs after reading some of Carrie's laugh-out-loud blog, take a look at this blog post comparing rejection letters to dating by Shelli at Market My Words. The analogy is funny, clever and so true!

In other news, there's a great new YA book blogger (Voracious YAppetite) who hosted a Women of YA Tribute on her blog last month. Make sure to check it out if you haven't already. Eleni at La Femme Readers did a Q&A for the tribute and gave me a shout-out. Thanks, Eleni!!!

Finally, I'm excited to announce that the KidLit Authors Club (which I'm a member of) will be holding their first in-person events this month. There will be authors, books, balloons and party bags! If you live in the NJ, PA, DE or MD areas, don't miss out on the fun! Although I won't be at these April events, there are many more to come that I can't wait to be a part of! You can find more information at the KidLit Authors Club Blog , Website and Twitter.

Here is a list of events scheduled so far:
Big Blue Marble Bookstore, Mt. Airy, PA, April 10
Barnes & Noble, Wilmington, DE, April 14
Barnes & Noble, Moorestown, NJ, April 15
Barnes & Noble, Rittenhouse Sq, Phila, PA, April 17
Barnes & Noble, E. Brunswick, NJ, April 20
Barnes & Noble, Deptford, NJ, May 2
Sparta Books, Sparta, NJ, May 22
Barnes & Noble, Howell, NJ, June 2
N. Wildwood Beach Writers Conference, N. Wildwood, NJ, June 8-9

I'll be back with more fun stuff (and maybe a contest) soon. In the meantime, I hope you're all enjoying beautiful spring weather (I know I am)!

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Saturday, April 3, 2010

Thank You for a Week of Inspiration!

I hope the past five days of interviews inspired, entertained and/or encouraged you to chase your own dreams. If you haven't already, please remember to read some or all of the other inspirational interviews on these blogs:

Elana Johnson
Carrie Harris - Read my interview on Carrie's blog here.
Lisa & Laura Roecker
Kathy McCullough
Beth Revis
Kirsten Hubbard
Leah Clifford
Kim Harrington
Tiffany Schmidt
Susan Adrian
Dawn Metcalf
Suzette Saxton & Bethany Wiggins
Victoria Schwab
Gretchen McNeil

Thanks again to Kathy McCullough, Sara Bennett Wealer, Bettina Restrepo, Gae Polisner and Denise Jaden for letting me interview you all on my blog! And thank YOU (the reader) for taking the time to read the interviews.

Finally, I'd like to leave you with several inspirational quotes that I think are relevent to the long and winding road to publication:

Every artist was first an amateur. ~Ralph Waldo Emerson

The journey is the reward. ~Chinese Proverb

If you can dream it, you can do it. ~Walt Disney

Whether you think you can or whether you think you can't, you're right. ~Henry Ford

*Best Wishes & Lipstick Kisses*

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Friday, April 2, 2010

An Interview With Denise Jaden

Today, I'm closing this wonderful week of inspirational interviews with debut author Denise Jaden. Her young adult novel, Losing Faith, will be available this fall.

Tell us about your book.
Losing Faith is due out September 7, 2010 from Simon Pulse/Simon & Schuster. After Brie’s sister, Faith, dies in a mysterious accident, Brie uncovers her sister’s role in a dark and twisted religious cult…a cult that now wants Brie as a member.

Can you tell us a little bit about your road to publication?
The road to finding an agent was definitely an arduous one for me. I queried three different novels over several years and now have enough rejections (yes, I kept them!) to easily wallpaper a room. I always kept about five queries out with agents and replaced those (or reworked my query and book) as rejections rolled in. At the time, I was also submitting short stories to magazines, and though I don’t believe you can ever actually become immune to rejection, it certainly became easier for me because of the regularity of it. The first offer I received for representation is still the moment I consider the most rewarding of my career so far. It was the first time I felt truly validated as a writer, the first time an industry professional used the “L” word about my writing. I still have her message saved on my answering machine.

Was there ever a time you felt like giving up? Why didn't you?
I think anyone who seriously pursues publication will feel like giving up from time to time. It’s a hard business! And to be honest, I did give up on the idea of getting published several times. What made me continue to write, and eventually submit again, was learning to fall back into love with words and sentences, characters and stories. I believe that this process of embracing the creative side and temporarily forgetting the business side is what helps breathe life into my stories. I’m in a better mood when I write and express my creativity every day, and what I always have to do is come back to the writing for the sake of writing. Publication is a secondary goal for me, and I won’t regret any of my writing, even the pieces that will never see the light of day.

Thanks so much for stopping by my blog and telling us about Losing Faith and your publication journey, Denise!

To find out more about Denise and her book, check out the links below:
Denise Jaden's website
Denise Jaden's blog
LOSING FAITH on Goodreads

Don't forget to read the other inspirational author interviews going on this week at the blog links located here.

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Thursday, April 1, 2010

An Interview With Gae Polisner

Today, the inspiration continues from this interview with debut author Gae Polisner. Her young adult novel, The Pull of Gravity, will be available in 2011.

Tell us about your book.
The Pull of Gravity is my first YA novel. It’s about two kids who go on a brief road trip to keep a promise to a dying friend and maybe fall in love and learn a little bit about Steinbeck in the process. It’s slated to be released spring 2011, by Farrar Straus & Giroux, Books for Young Readers. I love the kids in it – Nick & Jaycee – they’re really funny and real together. And a piece of trivia, the title comes from a Yoda quote that appears in the book, but you’ll have to read it to know where and why.

Can you tell us a little about your road to publication?
It took me about six years of shopping my first manuscript, a piece of women’s fiction called The Jetty to get agented. You heard me, six years! The Jetty got some great editorial feedback (and was a Top Semifinalist in the first Amazon Breakthrough Novel Contest), but never got published. In the meantime, I wrote The Pull of Gravity and another women’s fiction novel. Gravity got picked up first (a deal, finally, eight years after I set out to get one!), but I still have huge hopes for my women’s fiction. And, fyi, the editor who ultimately fell in love with and bought The Pull of Gravity came my way through a stroke of pure luck (not my agent). These days, I believe getting published almost always takes some luck, plus the talent to back it up when it comes your way.

Was there ever a time you felt like giving up? Why didn't you?
Not really. I’m a lawyer, a mother, a wife. I’ve been around a long while. And I knew I wanted this more than anything. In my many years on this planet, I’ve learned I’ll pretty much accomplish anything I want to, as long as I keep trying. So, the only option was to keep trying.
And, see, voila!

Thanks so much for stopping by my blog and telling us about The Pull of Gravity and your publication journey, Gae!

For more information about Gae and her book, check out the links below:
Gae Polisner's blog
Gae Polisner's Facebook Fan Page

Also, don't forget to read the other inspirational author interviews going on this week at the blog links located here.

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