Thursday, August 30, 2012

Thursday Thirteen - 13 Dumb U.S. Laws

I've always been fascinated by stupid laws in the United States, most left over from days gone by, but there are some laws on the book that just make you go:  WTF?    And the best things is, they don't even require commentary.  They WTFery pretty much speaks for itself:

1.  Monkey's are forbidden to smoke cigarettes in South Bend, Indiana.

2.  North Andover, Massachusetts prohibits its citizens from carrying space guns.

Not in North Andover, you don't!
3.  In Michigan, a law stipulates that a woman's hair is property of her husband.

4.  It is illegal to whistle underwater in Vermont.

5.  It is illegal to use a lasso to catch a fish in Tennessee.

6.  In Memphis, Tennessee it is illegal for a woman to drive by herself; "A man must walk or run in front of the vehicle, waving a red flag in order to warn approaching pedestrians and motorists." 

7.  In Pennsylvania, "Any motorist who sights a team of horses coming toward him must pull well off the road, cover his car with a blanket or canvas that blends with the countryside, and let the horses pass. If the horses appear skittish, the motorist must take his car apart piece by piece, and hide it under the nearest bushes."

8.  Unmarried women who parachute on Sunday's will be jailed in Florida.

9.  In Nebraska, if a child burps during a church service in Omaha, his or her parents may be arrested.

Not on Sunday in Columbus!

10.  In Columbus, Ohio, it is illegal for stores to sell corn flakes on Sunday.

11.  In Oxford, Ohio, it is illegal for a woman to disrobe in front of a man's picture.

12.  In Minnesota, it is illegal to tease skunks.
Nanny-nanny You stink!?! 
(Okay, so I put in one comment, but seriously, you know someone had to try it for the law to be made. )

13.  In Oklahoma, whale hunting is strictly forbidden.

Wanna read about more stupid laws?  Check out:

Know any dumb laws?  Please do share! 

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

"Waiting On" Wednesday - Crewel by Gennifer Albin

"Waiting On" Wednesday is a weekly event, hosted by Breaking The Spine,that spotlights upcoming releases that we're eagerly anticipating.

I'm really looking forward to reading:

CREWEL by Gennifer Albin coming October 16th. 

From the Goodreads page for Crewel:
 Incapable. Awkward. Artless.
That’s what the other girls whisper behind her back. But sixteen year-old Adelice Lewys has a secret: she wants to fail.

Gifted with the ability to weave time with matter, she’s exactly what the Guild is looking for, and in the world of Arras, being chosen as a Spinster is everything a girl could want. It means privilege, eternal beauty, and being something other than a secretary. It also means the power to embroider the very fabric of life. But if controlling what people eat, where they live and how many children they have is the price of having it all, Adelice isn’t interested.

Not that her feelings matter, because she slipped and wove a moment at testing, and they’re coming for her—tonight.

Now she has one hour to eat her mom’s overcooked pot roast. One hour to listen to her sister’s academy gossip and laugh at her Dad’s stupid jokes. One hour to pretend everything’s okay. And one hour to escape.

Because once you become a Spinster, there’s no turning back.

I swear, I have heard some AMAZING things about this book, so I really-really-really want to check it out.  

What are you waiting on?

Monday, August 27, 2012

Teaser Tuesday - Game On by Kyra Lennon

Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by MizB of Should Be Reading. Anyone can play along! Just do the following:
• Grab your current read
• Open to a random page
• Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
• BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
• Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!

And, what am I reading right now? 

And it's soooo good!  Seriously, I'm loving it, girl!  :D

So, here's the teaser:

I didn't even notice McCoy behind me until my killer heels crunched down on his foot.  I whirled around to apologise but when I saw him, I swiftly changed my mind.

Heather McCorkle's Cover Reveal for Rise of a Rector!

It's finally here, the cover reveal for Heather McCorkle's Rise of a Rector, the final novel in her channeler series (due out this October). To celebrate Heather is giving away two copies of her historical fantasy novel, To Ride A Puca. Before we get to that though, here is the cover:

To add it to your Goodreads lists click here. If you'd like to check out the rest of the channeler series (her novella Born of Fire is now FREE on Amazon & B&N!) you can do so on Amazon and Barnes and Noble. To win an eBook of To Ride A Puca, all you have to do is help Heather spread the word. There will be two winners! To enter fill out the form below.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Saturday, August 25, 2012

I miss paperbacks!

Hey, all!  Long time no write!  (I just haven't had time!)

Anyway, today's post is something I've been thinking about since I got back from RWA:  paperback books!  I love them and haven't realized how much I miss them.  Don't get me wrong, I love my digital readers.  I have a Kindle DX and a Kindle fire, Kindle, Nook, and Kobe downloaded to my phone and it seems like millions and millions of books on them that I love to read (at prices I can afford)...but, after coming home from RWA with two boxes worth of paperbacks (and some hardcovers), I've realized how  much I really miss having a tangible copy in my hand of books I love.  Seeing them on my overstuffed bookshelf really makes me happy!

Two of my overstuffed bookshelves.
While I don't really have a lot of room for them (most of those are two or three copies deep) seeing all these books just puts the hugest smile on my face.  I really need more bookshelves, and this coming summer, my BIL is planning to come help us build a library in our dining room/sitting room, if we're still living here.

Anyway, while it's an expensive habit, I'm starting to want to buy copies of many of the books I love and have on my Kindle.

I've already decided I want to buy copies of the Thoughtless Trilogy by S.C. Stephens, Slammed and Point of Retreat by Colleen Hoover, and just purchased ANOTHER print copy of Beautiful Disaster by Jamie Mcguire (Don't laugh, Victoria - it was there right in front of me at Target; I had to do it.)

I've been fortunate this week alone to get 4 books in the mail - ones I already own on kindle and only two at my expense. 

I won a signed copy of On The Island signed by Tracey Garvis Graves, which I was really excited about.  And also won a copy of Game On by one of my favorite bloggers Kyra Lennon through the awesome Clare Dugmore's blog contest, which arrived last night, much to my excitement. 

And then there are the two books at the bottom, which I was thrilled to get on Monday, not only because I enjoy the stories, but because I designed the covers.  You can see them at the bottom, but here's a close up:

 These are the second and third book I've received in print with my covers on them and I was really excited with the way they turned out.  It makes it feel real that I'm doing this.  Now, I'm telling anyone who buys my services that they should get print covers because I want to buy them.

This was the first cover I saw in print:

All getting these books in the mail has done is make me want to go buy more and more print books.  MOOOORRRREEEE, I say!  I'm like a junkie all of the sudden. 

I can't really afford it on a teacher's salary, but man, I really want them and I usually get what I want.  I'm kind of a spoiled brat that way, although I buy them for myself, with my money, so there's some satisfaction in that.

Anyway, to bring this to a close, I want to know, what are your feelings on the whole digital vs. paperback thing - are you happy to just have digital books or do you still love your paperbacks?

I look forward to hearing your thoughts.  Now, I'm off to my first local RWA meeting this morning -  wish me luck!

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Pics from my trip to RWA Nationals in Anaheim!

So, I promised I would share some pics, but I've been so busy that this is the first chance I've gotten.  I took them on my phone because I forgot my camera.  Anyway, there are only two pictures from RWA itself - the rest were just from parts of the trip we did outside of the convention:

Here's me and Simone Elkeles after she signed a copy of Chain Reaction for me.  :D
And can I saw, what a cool friggen lady!  You gotta love her bow!

And me and Shelley Corriel, author of Welcome, Caller, This is Chloe, which I got signed.  She's also promised that if I get any kind of publishing result after my pitches, she will buy me a drink next year at nationals - I'm gonna hold her to it.  LOL.
Love her flower pin!

Ahem - Ignore my bad hair.
Here's Victoria and I getting ready to eat at Bubba Gump Shimp Co.

And me about to dig into this big seafood dinner I got.  Gotta love the bib!

And when we got back, we had this lovely surprise of milk and cookies from Alysia Gray Painter, NA author who wanted to come see us but couldn't.  So awesome and those cookies were so tasty! 

And here's Victoria as we were standing outside the restaurant at Disneyland we were going to.  We splurged.  I had filet mignon and lobster, and creme brulee for dessert.  Yum!  Sooo good!
I swear, I gained 5 lbs on this trip.  We ate so many yummy and rich foods!

And, because I bought my daughter a big Rapunzel doll and had to show her the castle I bought it at, here's Disneyland Castle at night:

And then, we stopped at Downtown Disney and got to see these cool lego statues at the Lego Store:

 Anyway, hope you enjoyed the pics!  Next time, I promise to bring a real camera and take real pictures!  :D

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Juliana Haygert's Into The Darkest Fire...Contest Entry!

A few days ago, my NA Sister, Juliana Haygert, contacted me about designing a cover for a short story contest she wanted to enter from HarperTeen on Figment.  Well, I couldn't say no, so she gave me a brief blurb and after reading it, I remembered this image I'd bought a long time ago that was just sitting on my computer, unmanipulated and lonely...ready to have something done with it.  So, this is what I came up with for her:


I told Juliana that as soon as she published it on the site (you can read about the awesome contest and opportunity HERE), she had to let me know so I could check our her story share it with all of you.  I read it today and it's soooo good.  It is usually hard to get emotionally involved in a 4000 word story, but I was sucked in and wanted more.  It was intense, well-written, and heartbreaking!  I suggest you run right over there and give it a read this instant!  

After you read it, it would also be pretty cool if you leave her a review or a comment - the story is great and she deserves to hear it!

Big hugs to my girl Juliana!  < 3

Friday, August 10, 2012

Guest Interview - Kyra Lennon on her Game On Blog Tour!

Hey, all!  Today I'm interviewing the awesome and talented Kyra Lennon as part of her Game On Blog Tour!  Whoo-hoo!  Big hugs, girlfriend!


After swapping her small town life to work for one of the top soccer teams in the U.S, Leah Walker thought she could finally leave the ghosts of her past behind. However, when she meets serial womanizer, Radleigh McCoy, the memories of her old life come swarming back, and she is forced to ask herself whether she has really changed at all.


Describe your heroine in three words.
Feisty, Guarded, Stubborn

Describe your hero in three words.
Arrogant, Sexy, Talented ;)

What’s your favorite scene in Game On?
This is a tough one, because most of my favourite scenes are ones which contain spoilers! My favourite non-spoilery scenes are the ones that occur between my MC, Leah, and Jesse Shaw, a young soccer player who sort of becomes like a little brother to Leah. They get on fantastically well and I enjoyed building their friendship. 

What was your inspiration for Game On?
Radleigh McCoy lol! He was the first character who popped into my head, and every aspect of the story stemmed from him. I literally built everything around the idea of a guy who was used to getting what he wanted, and was faced with someone who refused to give in to him. It sounds a bit bland when you lay it out like that, but those were the very bare bones of the story, and the plot grew more complex from there.

What was the hardest part of writing Game On?
Finding a suitable end. I struggle with endings most of the time, and I wanted to tie up Leah’s story in a way that not only made sense, but didn’t leave the reader feeling like there were too many loose ends. It took a lot of drafts before I was finally happy with the outcome, not to mention some invaluable advice from my CPs!

What made you want to be a writer?
The phrase, “You don’t choose the things you love, they choose you,” rings true. It’s a bit of a sappy phrase, but that is honestly how I feel. There was never a defining moment when I thought, “Yeah, I want to be a writer,” it’s just something I’ve always done since I learned the letters of the alphabet. There were other things I wanted to do as I was growing up, but writing is the only thing that never seemed to be just a passing phase. It stayed with me, and … here I am! :D

What book is sitting on your TBR pile that you can’t wait to read?
Not Your Average Fairytale by Chantele Sedgwick! I have a bunch of books on my TBR list, but I cannot wait to get into Chantele’s book!

What do you have planned next?
Right now, I am almost finished writing the second book in the Game On series, which is all about Jesse Shaw. I would like, if I can, to get it published for late November. After that, I plan to take a break from Game On to revise an old project I am very excited about!

Who is Kyra?

Kyra Lennon was born on the South coast of England, and to this day, still lives by the sea. Fiction writing has always been her passion, but she also has numerous articles on a variety of topics published on prolific websites.

Kyra's blog


Game On Buy Links
Amazon UK paperback

Ooh, and you can enter to win a paperback copy at the awesome Clare Dugmore's blog!

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Vlog of Victoria H. Smith and myself from RWA Nationals!

Hey, all, I'm back!  Did you miss me?  :D  (Wow, that's a lot of crickets I'm hearing..j/k)

Anyway, to report on some of our findings at RWA, Victoria and I put together this little Vlog, so you can hear a bit about our experience at nationals.  I will be posting more soon, including some pictures, but I just went back to work on Monday and am having a heck of a time catching up on everything (didn't help that I lost internet several times since then due to these freaking monsoon storms in Tucson).  

Some of the cool things that happened to me, which I mention on the Vlog, is that I received a request from both the pitch sessions I attended.  The first was from the awesome Heather Osborne of Samhain Publishing, and the other was from Agent Pamela Harty at the Knight Agency.  Very exciting!  I also received a cool request to be added to the Knight Agency's Roster of cover artists, which was freakin' awesome, and since I've returned, have already had 7 requests for covers and/or WordPress themes!  Woot!

Anyway, enjoy the video!  Give me a few days and I'll get the rest of everything up!