Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Wednesday Randomness - A Few of My Favorite Things...Book Covers Edition

This week's Wednesday blog is all about our favorite book covers. Anyone who knows me will probably not be surprised by the ones I chose to include. I love color and lots of it. I think you'll find that my favorite book covers stick to that pattern.

The Dark Divine by Bree Despain. I love all of the covers, but this one is my favorite. It's very ethereal and haunting. And purple, which is my favorite color.

The two above are from the Soul Screamers series by Rachel Vincent. The first book is the last in the series, the second is the third omnibus. Again, I love the color. And apparently I have a thing for flowing dresses. I tend to also like covers that don't show faces directly.

Or in the case of the series above, show the face partially obscured. I'm still working my way through this series, but I included all of them here because they are gorgeous. And mysterious.

Again with the partial face and bright colors. I'm starting to feel reptitive. :)

Okay, one more YA series. The covers to the Ruby Red Trilogy by Kerstin Gier are just stunning.

In trying to find the cover for Savannah Blues by Mary Kay Andrews, I discovered that they reissued it with a different cover. One that is more similar to her newest releases. Disappointing, I say! I love the original cover because the picture, combined with the title, speaks to my Southern roots. I can feel the heat and humidity in the summer with a fan blowing that does nothing more than push the hot air around. All that from a fairly bare-bones kind of picture.

These are just a few of my favorite book covers. Click a name below to see what covers appeal to the other Wednesday bloggers:

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Cover Reveal - Eventide by Chris Allen-Riley

I am so pleased and excited to share something with you this morning! Today is the cover reveal for the first book in a new YA series by Chris Allen-Riley. The book is called Eventide and will be released in October.
I have had the immense privilege of reading this book and I can't for everyone else to do the same! So, without further ado, the (beautiful) cover for Eventide.
Eventide (Iron Falls, #1)
Release Date: 10/2014

Summary from Goodreads:
The driver in a tragic car accident that killed her best friend, Devon Greer is consumed by guilt. When powerful hallucinations convince her that she’s seeing Rachael everywhere, Devon thinks she’s going crazy. But her friend isn’t truly gone.

To save Rachael from the faeries who stole her, Devon must pit herself against the Court of the Sidhe. Once she witnesses the true form of the fey, Devon’s life is in danger—and so are the lives of everyone she loves.

Now, Devon must not only protect herself, but also Jonah Seafort, Rachael’s cousin and the only person Devon can trust to help her. While the Sidhe walk among them, no one is safe…

About the Author
Lover of books, nature, cats and shiny things. Active disliker of cooking, cleaning and stress. Mom, freelance editor & YA author - also a bit of a nerd.

Author Links:
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Cover Reveal Organized by:

Wednesday Randomness - Self-Interview with James Lipton

Good Morning fellow sentient beings! It's Wednesday again and time for another totally random blog. This week's topic is to conduct a self-interivew ala James Lipton. I decided to stick with his ten questions because I've never actually answered them before.

  1. What is your favorite word? - Scrumtrilescent (I had to do it, there's too many to pick one of my own)
  2. What is your least favorite word? – Moist *shudders*
  3. What turns you on? – Ummmm…ummmm… It probably shouldn’t be so hard to answer this question. Something to do with glasses and curly hair, I think.
  4. What turns you off? – So many things. I have many little idiosyncrasies and things that annoy me, it doesn’t take much.
  5. What sound or noise do you love? – Waves crashing
  6. What sound or noise do you hate? – A dog left outside barking his fool head off. Or a baby crying. They both grate on my nerves. And a stapler. And people chewing. I could really go on and on with this one. No, seriously. I have sensory issues related ot noise.
  7. What is your favorite curse word? – The F word. Without a doubt. I can swear like a sailor when the mood strikes, but I like to try and keep it clean on my blog. J
  8. What profession other than your own would you like to attempt? – That’s an easy one. Writer.
  9. What profession would you not like to do? – Anything involving something gross, like cleaning out horse stalls or septic tanks. I have a really weak stomach.
  10. If heaven exists, what would you like to hear God say when you arrive at the pearly gates? – Uh, didn’t expect to see you here.
Check out the other bloggers to see their interviews and maybe find out something new!
Bronwyn Green
Jess Jarman
Kellie St. James
Kris Norris

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Wednesday Randomness - What Motivates Me?

This week’s Wednesday Randomness blog is on a topic I seriously need help with.

What Motivates Me?

There are any number of topics I need motivation about; exercise, cleaning, projects around the house, writing. I could go on, but I’ll focus on writing because, you know, I don’t want to think about the other ones.

First, here’s a motivational picture. Just a little something to put myself in a good frame of mind. Of somewhere else I would MUCH rather be.

Ok, what motivates me to write? So far, not much. It’s not my full-time job. It’s not even my part-time job, so I have a tendency to push it aside. Even though I would very much like it to be my full time job at some point in my life. Part of my problem is that after spending nine hours a day in front of a computer at work, I don’t want to spend any time in front of a computer when I get home. But that’s just an excuse.

The biggest problem though; I’m a huge procrastinator. And, I’m lazy. I’ve actually been told that…by one of my parents. I remember it well. We had to ask a parent to choose three words to describe us for health class. One of the words chosen was lethargic. Isn’t that nice? Made me feel great having to say that to the whole class.

Apparently this post is turning into free therapy, sorry about that.

Back on topic.

Physics.  Physics. PhysicsPhysicsPhysics. PHYSSSSSSSSICS. I hope you’re all getting this down.

Can you tell I’m having a hard time writing this post? It must be a lack of motivation.

See what I did there?

Deadlines motivate me. But I don’t currently have any that are writing related, so that’s not overly helpful. Sure, I could set my own. But my own deadlines usually don’t work, I just ignore them. I need someone, somewhere waiting on me turn things in. Someone that I can get in trouble with. That’s a motivator.

Even setting myself rewards doesn’t really work because if I really want to do something, I’ll just do it anyway.

Guilt is also a big motivator, but I've yet to figure out how to guilt myself into writing. It's usually other way I around. I feel guilty spening time writing and ignoring my family and the other things I need to be doing around the house.

The post has not gone at all like I intended, but there you have it. If anyone has any good ideas about self-motivation, lay 'em on me!

Check out the other Wednesay bloggers to see what motivates them:
Bronwyn Green
Jess Jarman
Kellie St. James
Kris Norris
Jenny Trout
Gwendolyn Cease


Wednesday, July 9, 2014

If I Could Have a Superpower, I'd...

After missing a few weeks of the Wednesday blogging, I’m back. And I’m kind of excited about today’s topic, because I am a major nerd.
If I Could Have a Superpower, I'd...  Well, I'd be awesome, obviously.
This is actually a question I've pondered quite often over the years, there are a lot of possibilities. But, ultimately, I think I would want to be telekinetic. Partially because I'm lazy. But also because it would just make so many things a million times easier!
Think about it.
No more having to practically break my wrist trying to carry in all the groceries in one trip so I don't have to go back out to my car. Instead, I could hover them into the house. And put away lots of things at once, not just one or two at a time. I'm not sure if this goes back to the lazy thing or is just really efficient.
Also, I could finally get back at people who used ot hold things over my head out of my reach. *cough cough, my brother, cough cough* I could put things like his work tools just out of reach and make them look like they are going to get closer, and then shoot them back up into the sky. Although, I hope I can levitate my self out his reach, too.
But, I think it would come in most handy when I want to keep my annoying neighbor off my property. I would pelt her with mulch and small rocks and things while I stayed safely inside the house. She would never even know it was me. That would be awesome because that woman is a pain in my ass.

I'm sure I could come up with a million more uses, but those are the top three that come that come to mind. I have to add, if I couldn't be telekinetic, I would totally want to be able to fly. Or somehow transport between to places instanteously. I'm tired of commuting to work.

Check out what super powers my fellow Wednesday Bloggers would like to have:
Bronwyn Green
Jess Jarman
Kellie St. James
Kris Norris
Jenny Trout
Gwendolyn Cease

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

If I Had a Million Dollars (If I Had a Million Dollars)...

Please tell me someone else thought of the Barenaked Ladies, too.

Anywho, today's Wednesday Randomness blog topic is...The First Five Things I'd Buy if I Had a Million Dollars.

I could go all noble on this and help others, and I would do some of that for sure, but I'm going to focus on the material aspect here, people. Just assume I also do good for others. :)

First, a new house. I don't need a huge, multi-million dollar house. Who would want to clean that? I would like more than one bathroom (preferable with a huge, free-standing, amazing tub), a fireplace, and a nice size kitchen with an island and an oven in the wall. I've always wanted an oven in the wall. I think I can get a house that has these things for a relatively reasonable price. Oh, and a two-stall attached garage. Especially if the house is still in Michigan.

A weeks long trip to Europe for two. I'd hit all the big places and make my waty from the U.K. to Eastern Europe.

Maybe a new car. My car isn't old and I like it fine, but I gave up something with 4-wheel drive and I'd kind of like to have that back. And heated seats. I REALLY missed my heated seats this past winter.

A top of the line Mac. A nice desktop to go along with my laptop so I'm not always typing on a 13" screen.

Okay, that's four, but that's all I can really come up with. I'm sure there are other, smaller things, but nothing significant, so I'm sticking with four.

So, that's what I would do if I won a million dollars. Click below to see what the other Wednesday Ladies would buy.

Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Wednesday Randomness...Stress, ugh.

The topic for this week’s Wednesday blog is what I do to relax when I’m stressed. I kind of laughed when I saw this topic because people who know me know that I am pretty much a huge ball of stress most of the time. I do manage to keep it bottled up quite a bit, but that doesn’t help. I have tried different things over the years to relieve my stress and so far, none of them have stuck. But, let’s see what I’ve at least attempted.

Yoga. Yup, I tried it. I liked yoga, but I didn’t find it particularly de-stressing. I was always worried about not being able to do the poses or people judging me for being too overweight to wear yoga pants in public, so it wasn’t a relaxing experience for the most part. It did help with my flexibility though.

Meditation/relaxation techniques. This did not work at all. I seem to have a very hard time quieting my mind; I spent most of the meditation time worrying that I couldn’t quiet my mind, so that made the whole process even harder.

Massages. I’ve tried getting massages a few times over the years. And I do like them, but the relaxation I experience at the time ends as soon as I walk out the door.

Gardening. A couple of years ago, I planted my first vegetable garden. It has gone all right, for someone who has always had a black thumb. I get a ton of tomatoes every year, but haven’t found my stride with other veggies yet. And, while I like trying to grow my own food, I don’t find it relaxing. I’m always worrying about why some plants aren’t growing and not weeding enough and are they getting enough sun/water.

In case you haven’t caught on yet, I can pretty much take anything that should be enjoyable and/or relaxing and turn it into a stressful situation. It’s my personality; I’ve always been this way. There are a couple things I can do that sort of help, but I still walk away feeling some level of stress.

Reading. I love to read, it’s really my favorite pastime. But it’s not as relaxing as it should be. I get too caught up in things emotionally, or spend too much time worrying about the tasks I *should* be doing while I’m reading.

Exercise. The ultimate de-stressor. All those endorphins are supposed to make you happy. All I do is worry that I’m not doing right, that I’m being judged for being too overweight (if I’m out in public), or that I basically just suck if I miss a day in my schedule. It’s good for the half hour/45 minutes that I’m exercising, but then things start up again in my mind.

What it comes down to is I’m basically always stressed and worry most of the time. I’m too tightly wound for my own good. Even writing this post made me anxious because I can’t really answer the question posed. So, if anyone has any other good stress relieving suggestions, let me know!

Check the blogs of the other Wednesday ladies to see how they de-stress:

Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Wednesday Randomness...My Dream Yard!

Today's Wednesday Randomness blog is about our dream yards. This blog was a lot fun because I got to search for pictures (and maybe I did some of that at work...shhhhhhhh), but I seriously had to reign myself in.

When I picture my backyard, I see an English garden. And let's be honest, I see myself in the cottage, too. I love the wildness of an English garden.

And in that yard/garden, I would need to have an extremely comfortable place to relax, read, and drink tea. Something like the bench below, but full of big, squishy pillows.

That bench would need to be nestled under an arbor covered with plants and vining flowers.

 Next to my arbor I would really like to have a fountain. The water sounds would just add to the relaxation aura of the whole space.

The last item of my dream yard would be a fantastic vegetable garden. Something where I could grow all my vegetables for the whole summer.

Of course, along with all this I would also need to have a gardener to tend to it, because while I have managed to grow tomatoes and impatiens in recent years, that's the extent of my ability. And let's be fair, those grow themselves, really. 

Check the blogs of the ladies below to see their dream yards:
Bronwyn Green
Jess Jarman
Kellie St. James
Kris Norris
Jenny Trout

Wednesday, May 7, 2014

These are a Few of My Favorite Things...Books Edition!

Time for Wednesday Randomness again and the topic this week is one dear to me. Books! It’s going to be tough to keep this from becoming a ten page blog, but I’m going to try to keep it to just my absolute faves. 

Little Women (Louisa May Alcott) - This is probably my all time favorite book. I can't count the number of times I've read it and I'm sure I will read it again and again in the years to come.

Pride and Prejudice (Jane Austen) - My AP English teacher in high school turned me on to this author. She was such a super fan, I remember she had an apron she would wear during class with Jane Austen's picture on it. She wore it everyday during this unit.

The Mummy (Anne Rice) – This was a standalone book and is not like most of her other works (that I’ve read). That’s all I’m going to say, except READ IT.

The Eyes of the Dragon (Stephen King) – This was originally a fairytale type story he wrote for his kid(s). It has two princes, an evil magician, and a daring escape. 

Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy (Douglas Adams) – Awesome in every way possible. Enough said. 

To Kill a Mockingbird (Harper Lee) - A large part of my family comes from the deep south so I always like to read books with that kind of setting, they feel familiar.

The Amelia Peabody Series (Elizabeth Peters) – This is a series that takes place from the late 1800’s up through the early 1920’s about an English family of Egyptologists. They are mysteries and are wonderfully written. The author actually studied Egyptology and the books include real people as minor characters (i.e. Howard Carter who discovered King Tut’s tomb), so they are loaded with tons of information about Egypt. 

These are all a bit older, but I do read current stuff, too! Here are a couple of my new favorites. 

Blackbirds (it’s a series, actually) (Chuck Wendig) - These books are edgy and intriguing. If you’re not familiar with Chuck Wendig, his language is colorful and inventive. It always makes me think of that quote from A Christmas Story. It’s something like, the Old Man worked in profanity the way other artists might work in oils or clay. It was his true medium, a master. I mean this as a compliment to the author; his writing is original and turbulent.

The Vampire Academy Series (Richelle Mead) – Vampires, sure. Been there, done that. (Don’t get me wrong, I love vampires.) But this is a bit of a new twist with natural born vampires and made vampires and the world they inhabit. Richelle Mead’s writing is fantastic and the six book series is well paced all the way through. She has an additional series focusing on one of the somewhat minor characters introduced halfway through the first series. I haven’t read those yet but I’ve heard they are even better than the originals. 

Okay, I'm going to stop there or this list would really get out of control.

Check out some of the favorite books of my fellow bloggers! 

Monday, May 5, 2014

If Ever I Would Leave You Cover Reveal!

Today, authors Bronwyn Green, Jessica Jarman, and Jenny Trout unveil the cover of their upcoming anthology:

If Ever I Would Leave You
(July, 2014)

Keep reading for a chance to win an Arthurian-themed DVD prize pack or a $25 Amazon gift card!

Bronwyn Green

A year after Tabby Nolan's sister vanished from the Lake Michigan shore with her boyfriend, Liam, Tabby visits the spot where the two were last seen-- and finds herself pulled into the crumbling world of Avalon.

Since his disappearance, Liam has been trapped in the mythical land, with no link to the world he knew. Now, their shared memories of Tabby's missing sister are all they can cling to as Avalon dies around them.

But Tabby doesn't want to be a replacement for her sister, and her growing attachment to Liam feels like a betrayal. As Avalon fades around them, Liam and Tabby must rely on each other-- or be lost with the ancient kingdom forever.

Albion’s Circle: The Deepest Cut
Jessica Jarman

For nineteen years, Anna has been plagued by dreams of lives lived only in legend. Finally free from the family that believed her hopeless and worthless, she’s ready to start her life over—alone.

When Anna meets an enigmatic stranger claiming to be the legendary wizard Merlin, she is forced to question the very reality she’s struggled to accept. With the mythic figures from her dreams intruding on her waking life, Anna learns that she’s been reborn to fight an ancient evil alongside King Arthur and his Knights of the Round Table.

Caught in an ages old conflict, Anna is the key to stopping a dark magic that will destroy the world—and Merlin wants to make sure that this time, Anna isn’t alone.

A Choice Fit For A Queen
Jenny Trout
writing as
Abigail Barnette

For perpetual overachiever Madison Lane, a summer studying Arthurian mythology in the Welsh countryside with professor Thomas Evans is a dream come true, and the adventure of a lifetime.

Of course, the enormous crush Madison developed on the professor after a semester of his lectures at U of M has absolutely nothing to do with her desire to learn more about the enduring legend of Camelot. At least, that’s what she’s telling her parents.

When Madison meets fellow student Rhys Crewe, sparks fly, throwing her plans for wild fling with Professor Evans completely out of whack—as do her unexpectedly complicated feelings for Thomas. With tales of Arthur and Lancelot haunting her every waking moment, Madison has to make the most difficult choice of her life.

Jessica Jarman is an author, blogger, and rather obsessive fangirl. Having grown up in Upper Michigan and currently living in Minnesota, she is a Midwestern girl through and through. And wouldn’t have it any other way.

When Jessica isn't working to get words on the page, she passes the time with her amazing husband and four children, attempting to be crafty (and failing miserably), squeeing uncontrollably over her favorite shows or curling up with a good book. 

Bronwyn Green is an author, blogger and compulsive crafter. She lives Michigan with her husband, two sons and three somewhat psychotic cats. When not frantically writing, she can be found helping in her youngest son’s classroom or binge-watching Netflix while working on her latest craft project.

Abigail Barnette (Jenny Trout) is a writer, blogger, and funny person. She has written award winning and bestselling erotic romance as Abigail Barnette. Writing as Jennifer Armintrout, she made the USA Today bestseller list with Blood Ties Book One: The Turning. Her novel American Vampire was named one of the top ten horror novels of 2011 by Booklist Magazine Online. She is a proud Michigander, mother of two, and wife to the only person alive capable of spending extended periods of time with her without wanting to strangle her. Visit her on twitter (@Jenny_Trout) or at her blog,
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Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Wednesday Randomness...Behind the Scenes

After missing Wednesday Randomness Blogging for a week, I’m glad to be back and to welcome a new lady to the group. Say hi to Gwendolyn Cease!

Had I written this blog last week, it would have been completely different. At that point I considered a different WIP my current project but then I had lunch with the fantastical Bronwyn on Saturday and now I’m going in a whole new direction. Or maybe it’s going back in an old direction, but with a new twist?

See, I wrote the first draft of this book that I thought would be the first in a series of four. Something felt off though. What I realized is...its not supposed to be a series. Its supposed to be one book.

How can I go from four books to one you ask? Well, let me tell you. It is going to be one page-turning, action-packed, conflict-filled piece of YA. If I do say so myself.

Here's the gist of the story. Girl is a witch, and a bad one, as in no talent. Her family has an affinity for the element of water, dating back to a spell cast centuries ago. Things are going awry because that spell is causing the natural order to be thrown out of balance. Girl meets boy who has an affinity for the element of fire and a quest begins. Originally that quest was going to be completed over the four books. Instead, its going to be one intense ride.

I have to say, this decision to re-work the story feels right and I'm excited about it again. I haven't been excited about writing in quite awhile. 

Here are a few pictures to show you some of my inspiration for this story.
Lake Michigan - the true inspiration
The lighthouse in Grand Haven

Main Street - home to the Silver Moon

To see behind the scenes of everyone else's projects, click on a name below.

Alright, back to it. I have a LOT of editing to do.