Saturday, December 31, 2011

Book Review: Heir to Power by Michele Poague

Heir to Power was an interesting read. Stylistically, it reminded me of Robert Jordan and Brandon Sanderson with its strong world building and multiple character viewpoints.

It is a fascinating world, there is no doubting that, with a lot of thought having gone into creating the religious system, the different mythologies, and the societies that are vastly varied in beliefs, language, and even things as simple as the weapons and technology.

Now, anyone who knows me, knows I am a character writer. That also makes me a character reader. That's what I love most about reading. It always has been and I imagine it always will be, and it was probably my favorite part of Heir to Power. The characters voices were strong and I really found myself sympathizing with so many of them in their plight to live up to the expectations of their society and yet long for something different.

The only problem I really had with the book was there were so many characters I occasionally got them confused, and then as Michele continued in that character's head, I fell in love with them all. Every time.

Overall, if you are interested in traditional fantasy with strong world building elements and intriguing characters, Heir to Power is just the book for you. I certainly enjoyed it.

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Awesome review today. Totally made me laugh!

http://www.shesgotthewritestuff.blogspot.com/

Thursday, December 22, 2011

Book Review: Faithful, Fit, & Fabulous by Connie Sokol

I was really excited to have the chance to review this book, for multiple reasons. I've got some issues that make me want to work on the 'fit' part of the book, and I definitely want to feel fabulous, but it was the faithful part that really intrigued me.

I try very hard to incorporate the spirit of the Lord into everything I do, especially my writing. I'm a  big believer in the Father wanting to help us succeed in those things that are important to us, and when we make Him a partner in our efforts, we can't help but succeed.

It's what I've done with my writing all these years. I know that I cannot write my best without reading His word and praying first, and thus, incorporating that element in the success of our lives really intrigued me in Connie's book.

I was not disappointed.

This book was hard to read straight through--not because it didn't make sense or wasn't interesting, because it was both. No, it was hard because I wanted to stop and savor each chapter the way the book was meant to be used. I wanted to do the exercises and really apply the things I was learning, but that's hard to do when I'm just doing a book review.

So, here's what I'm going to do. I'm posting my two thumbs up review here, right now, in that I love this book and think it can make a big change in my own life, but I'm also going to spend the next eight weeks applying these things into my life.

Starting January 1st, I'll update regularly here on what I learned with each chapter and let you guys experience it through me, and hopefully you'll go out and buy the book and try it yourselves. I truly believe this is a book that should be in every household. It's one of those that can change your life.

I certainly hope it changes mine.

You can purchase it at the following places:
Deseret Book
Amazon
Amazon e-book

Saturday, December 17, 2011

Friday, December 16, 2011

Expanded Christmas Specials

I got to thinking there might be a few of you out there who would still prefer a paper copy of my books to the e-books, so I set up some discount codes. It's my Christmas present to all of you, since I make no money off of this kind of discount, but since I can't afford to pay off K-Mart Layaways, like some kind souls are doing, I can at least do this.


So, to get your discounts, you have to purchase from my createspace pages. Here are the addresses and the codes.


The Sapphire Flute: https://www.createspace.com/3633037 and on check out enter code J4JNFLC9 for a $5 discount.


The Armor of Light: https://www.createspace.com/3642582 and on check out enter code RGEM5WRP for a $5 discount.


The Misadventures of a Teenage Wizard: Two Souls Are Better Than One: https://www.createspace.com/3715613 and on check out enter code BTL9AWX8 for a $4 discount.


Use the codes fast, because they only last until December 31st. 


Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays, my friends!

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Change in Christmas Specials


Sooooo, nobody seems to like my Christmas specials, so I'm going to make it much more simple and hopefully appealing. Having recently purchased a kindle for my bookaholic son, I know there are a lot of parents doing the same thing for Christmas--especially with the recent drop in price of the kindle and other e-book readers. So, here's my special:

Through December 31st you can get any of my YA fantasies for 99 cents, and as an added bonus, you can download my book of poetry for FREE! All you have to do is go to Smashwords.com and purchase it from there, as that's the only place getting the changed pricing.

I am also lowering the price of my "write someone you love into my books," but just for the month of December. These normally go for $25 apiece, but for December I am going to lower it to $15 and I'll even e-mail you a PDF certificate with my signature you can print out and give to them for Christmas.

So, to summarize, writing a person in as a character, you purchase from the sidebar of my blog. Yeah, look to your right. See the paypal button? The second one down? That's the one. Get it from there. :)

To get books for 99 cents, go here:

For "The Sapphire Flute" go HERE
For "The Armor of Light" go HERE
For "The Misadventures Of A Teenage Wizard: Two Souls Are Better Than One" go HERE
And for your FREE copy of "And The Mountain Burns" go HERE

Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays, my dear friends. I hope the season brings you peace and joy and lots of books!

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Book Review: Bound by C.K. Bryant

Okay, I'm going to admit first thing that I've read this book before in its early stages. C.K. Bryant and I have been great friends for several years and I adore the woman to no end.

That being said, I will also admit that I loved this book back then and I love it even more now. Not because she is my friend, but because it's a great story and she's a dang fine writer! Every once in a while--well, more than that--I would find a phrase that was so beautiful and visual that I will admit to being a tad jealous that I hadn't written it myself! Yeah, she's that good.

C.K. is not afraid to hurt her characters, which I love. My heart broke so often throughout this story, and then other times thrilled for the characters success. The love story aspect was well done, though I will also admit that, though I think Octavion is a hottie, if he treated me the way he treats the main character, I'd smack him with a frying pan. Now, having said that, I will add that he is not entirely human and is fighting his animal nature. I get it. I totally get it, but still. He could be a little nicer. But warped as I am, I even like THAT aspect of the story.

But mostly what I love is seeing our beautiful main character turn from a mousy girl who's afraid of her own shadow, to a strong woman who stands up for right, doesn't feel sorry for herself when things go horrendously wrong, and hangs on to those she loves, even if she doesn't entirely understand them.

This was one of those books I read, and even knowing most of the story ahead of time because of my previous reading, I didn't want to put it down. I read until my vision blurred and I couldn't see anymore. I stayed up late. I read during dinner, while waiting for my kids, and read instead of watching TV or taking a much needed break. The book WAS my break!

Needless to say, I love Bound and would heartily recommend it to any and all. It was a clean, fun read, with lots of twists and turns, which, much like my last review, is at its heart, a love story. Very well done, C.K.!!!

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Book Review: Exiled by RaShelle Workman


The very first thing I have to say about this book is how much I absolutely adore the cover! It is one I noticed and was interested in long before I asked to be included in the Dark CARMA Blog tour. I wanted to read it! With a cover like that, how could it not be good?

I wasn't disappointed, though it was a book that surprised me.

Let me explain: In the opening scenes we come upon Princess Venus. Now, with a name like that, I expected the story to be mythological in nature, and thus was confused by all the high tech involved. Beds that conform themselves to one's body and such. At first I thought, "Okay, she's meshed high tech with mythology," but then Venus finds herself on earth, where even the air she breathes is toxic to her. Her family has disappeared, her precious irrihunter (which it took me a while to figure out what the heck that was. lol) has been murdered, and she's been accused of sacrilege and treason by the Gods.

It was interesting, and I enjoyed it, but I was still thinking high tech mythology--and then space ships got involved.

Huh???

I suddenly had to adjust my thinking. This book was science fiction with some mythological undertones, yes, but it was Sci-Fi! Once I figured that out (I should have watched the book trailer before hand. Dead giveaway there! DOH!), the reading went much easier and was fascinating. But truly, at its heart, this is a romance, and a well written and enjoyable one at that. For me, that says something. I'm not a huge romance fan, but this story sucked me in so much that I found myself looking for a spare moment ANYWHERE to read. I ended up staying up until the wee hours of the morning to finish last night because I just couldn't stop, even when the words were blurry because I was so tired. I couldn't put it down! And now I am to be tortured, waiting for book two.

I'm beginning to understand how my own readers feel when they bug me for the next book. lol

So, congratulations, RaShelle, for writing such a fascinating story that sucked me into its world and wouldn't let go. I'm still thinking about it, all these hours later, and I would definitely recommend it to any and all readers. Its clean, exciting, and I couldn't help but root for the heroes. Very well done!

You can purchase Exiled at Amazon.com, barnesandnoble.com, and Smashwords.com.
You can also find out more about the author at her website, http://www.rashelleworkman.com/

Monday, December 5, 2011

Christmas Specials!!!



This year, I decided that my Christmas specials were going to be postage-less, with one exception. I think it's a better deal for you guys, and is a heck of a lot less work for me!


So, here are the deals:

1)Purchase: a paper copy of my newest book, Two Souls Are Better Than One.
Receive: Digital copies of the first two books in The Wolfchild Saga, The Sapphire Flute and The Armor of Light, for FREE!

2)Purchase: Digital copies of The Wolfchild Saga (The Sapphire Flute and The Armor of Light)
Receive: Pre-Ordered digital copy of book 3 in The Wolfchild Saga, The Emerald Wolf for FREE!

3)Purchase: All three digital copies of my fiction, (Two Souls Are Better Than One, The Sapphire Flute, The Armor of Light)
Receive: Pre-ordered digital copy of book 3 in The Wolfchild Saga, The Emerald Wolf AND a copy of my poetry book, And the Mountain Burns, for FREE!

4) Now, for those of you who prefer paper copies, the same deal applies, with one change. If you purchase Books 1 and 2, you may pre-order Book 3 (paper copy) and get it for free, paying only postage. I will also include autographed bookplates for those books you purchased elsewhere, and will sign and number The Emerald Wolf.

5) If you buy all three paper copies (The Sapphire Flute, The Armor of Light, Two Souls Are Better Than One) You will get Book 3 (Pre-ordered paper copy), The Emerald Wolf for Free, as well as ALL of the books I have written in e-book format for free. And as mentioned before, I will also include autographed bookplates for those books you purchased elsewhere, and will sign and number The Emerald Wolf. In addition, I will add any and all swag I have on hand--bookmarks, magnets, posters (if I have them), and such.

Now, the catch is, in order for me to know you purchased these books at the links below, I need a copy of your receipt proving purchase. You can e-mail it to me with just the pertinent information showing by using cut and paste, if you so desire.

My e-mail is karen (AT) karenEhoover (DOT) com

And here are the links for your purchases!

E-Books:

Paper:

Thanks, everyone! And Merry Christmas!!!

It's Launch Day!


I know I've hinted at my new book coming out around the twelfth, but thanks to several people working hard, it is available TODAY!!! It's called "Two Souls Are Better Than One" and is book one of The Misadventures of a Teenage Wizard. What is most fun about this book for me is all of the places are REAL. The main character, JJ, lives in my old house, and I used to follow a path through creepy trees to get to my grandmother's house. The incident with the milk really happened, but it was my brother scaring the crap out of me. The Grammy is based on my very own grandmother as well. It has been awesome reliving memories of the wonderful state of Oklahoma.

So, if you're looking for a great Christmas present for yourself, a loved one, a kid, this is a fun option. It's available for e-book through Smashwords.com, Amazon.com, and Barnesandnoble.com. Print copies are also available through Amazon.com and barnesandnoble.com. If you want to order a copy from one of them and still want an autograph, you can let me know and I'll mail you an autographed bookplate sticker you can put right inside.

I've got some Christmas specials coming up within the next couple of days, so be sure to watch for those!

And here is the book trailer once again, for those who missed it!

Saturday, December 3, 2011

New book trailer for new book!

I know I've been posting a lot of videos lately, but I can't help myself. They're just so fun!!! So, this is for my new book to be released next week. It's book one of The Misadventures of a Teenage Wizard titled Two Souls Are Better Than One.

Enjoy!



Sunday, November 27, 2011

Hilarious!

So, one day my kids were trying to get my attention while writing during NaNoWriMo and they recorded it. This was the result. (Pardon the mess. It WAS during NaNoWriMo. I wrote almost 80,000 words in 9 days of writing.)

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Updated version of book trailer

So, evidently some of the text wasn't on the screen long enough to get it all read, so I made a few tweaks, added a picture I forgot, tightened a few things up, and re-released my book trailer. Here's the updated version! Pretty much the same, except for the timing and the extra picture.

Monday, November 21, 2011

The Sapphire Flute Book Trailer

I just created my first ever book trailer and just had to share! :) Too much fun!!!




Friday, October 14, 2011

Book Review: Deep Blue Secret by Christie Anderson

Every once in a while I come across a writer that is such a great storyteller, I can't put the book down, I forget where I am, what time it is, and if there's anyone around me. I don't notice typos (if there are any), and I am oblivious to any flaws in the work (unless they are blatant), and I desperately hope there is another book coming with these same characters.

Christie Anderson is such a writer.

I was lost in the world of Deep Blue Secret and fascinated by the way she intertwined nature with magic. I desperately want to see more of this world! And I can't help but mention, the cover is absolutely stunning. I could put that poster on my wall any day.

Now to be absolutely fair, which I'm trying to do more often, there was one teensy little thing that bugged me, something that most people probably wouldn't even notice and may just be one of my "things." Transitions were a little too quick. For instance, she sat down to the table for breakfast, her plate mounded with food, and then suddenly she rubbed her stomach saying she was stuffed. I wanted to at least see her take that first bite.

But honestly, to me, that was such a small thing when I enjoyed the story so very much. I'm not sure what else to say. This book rocked my socks. It was a fun read, the characters felt authentic to me, and like I said before, I was left desperately wanting a book two so I can find out more about this world. Please say there will be a book two, Christie. Please? Please???

If you wish to purchase Deep Blue Secrets, it would be money well spent (and it's only .99 cents for kindle!) You can find the book HERE.

And thank you, Ms. Christie Anderson, for giving me some wonderful hours in your make-believe world. They were awesome!

Book summary:

California teen, Sadie James, thinks her life couldn’t get any better. She has great friends, an energetic mother she adores, and the beach practically in her own backyard. But her carefree life is turned upside down when she’s rescued by a mysterious and strangely familiar boy who won’t even tell her his name.

Each time the boy appears, Sadie’s unexplainable attraction to him deepens along with her need to unravel his secrets. The boy is there to protect her. But as wonderful and exciting as it might be to have an irresistible boy with crystal green eyes protecting her every move, every minute of the day...why does Sadie need one?

As Sadie finds answers, she realizes her life isn’t as perfect as she thought. Not only is she caught in a world of dangerous secret agents she never knew existed, but it turns out her true identity may be the greatest secret of all.

Monday, October 3, 2011

Book Review: The Key of Kilenya

When I first met Andrea, she had just signed on with my publisher. We were at a writing conference together and I looked at her and went, "now that is what an author is supposed to look like." She was stunning. Beautiful.

I was immediately intimidated.

Now, it's not that I'm ugly. At least I don't think I am. But I'm short and wide and . . . well, you get the picture. She was tall and slender with curly brown hair and I immediately thought she would make an awesome character in one of my books.

What I didn't know, was that she was as kind and non-judgmental as she was beautiful. I love people like that. Once Andrea and I got to know each other we immediately hit it off. Now, I tell you this, so that you know the truth. Andrea is awesome. She is as beautiful inside as out. And that makes what I'm about to admit that much more awful.

I really wanted to hate her book. I did! When I found out that my publisher had signed another YA fantasy author who had wolves in her book, I wanted to hate it. How dare she! How dare my publisher! That's how I felt then.

Boy, was I ever wrong.

Though the wolves in her story are integral to the plot, they are not primary characters. Her wolves are black and an apparent enemy to the protagonist. Mine are white and in one case IS the protagonist. Our books are nothing alike, and to top it off, Andrea is an incredible writer, with a depth of detail that is lacking in so many books. She balances excitement with thought, external conflict with inner, and adds just the right mix of mystery and realism. It is a very well written and enjoyable book, and I can hardly wait to share it with my sons.

It's one I know will become a favorite.

To purchase The Key of Kilenya for yourself go HERE. Believe me, you won't regret it.

About Andrea



Andrea is an avid reader and outdoor-er, who loves traveling. She and her husband (AKA Mr. Darcy) were married only a few months ago, and have settled near a river that someday will probably overflow and flood their house.

It took her nearly a lifetime to do so (nine years), but she graduated with a bachelor of science degree in Communications Disorders from Brigham Young University. She plans to open a flying bicycle shop eventually, but for the time being, she is happy teaching orchestra to elementary students.

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Recent Reviews


I did this last year with The Sapphire Flute, and it was so cool, I thought I'd do it again with The Armor of Light. I'm going to post links to recent blog reviews and an excerpt from the review that was particularly meaningful to me. I would totally recommend following the links and reading the whole review though.

Happy Reading!



Words and Works Blog: "Karen writes with passion and a talent for description that puts the reader inside the mind and skin of the characters she so colorfully details on the page. While reading her stories I get a 3-D panoramic vision as if I were in an IMAX theater. There were heartrending scenes of loss, humorous scenes with uncontrolled new skills, fantastic underwater and cave scenes, mind-boggling shape-shifters, and terrifying evil-doers."

Melissa's Bookshelf: "Hoover has made fantasy and adventure new again for me. I am completely captivated by the quest of the Chosen Ones (of whom we've only met a few) to unite the magical keystones and save their world. There is a wide array of characters on both the side of good and that of evil who are wonderfully developed. Relationships between many of the characters are molded, deepened, and in some heartbreaking cases, torn apart. With this second book the pieces of the puzzle really begin to come together, as we follow Ember's and Kayla's separate adventures that are destined to join as one. I truly cannot wait to see what Hoover's next book in the series brings to the story as we discover the next keystone and Chosen One."

Notes from the Writing Chair: "The Armor of Light is a wonderful continuation of the exciting story in that began in The Sapphire Flute. I love both of the main characters, Ember and Kayla. They each have unique strengths and weaknesses and I could relate to both of them. The book is full of action, danger and just the right amount of romance. The exciting ending took my breath away! Now I can't wait to read the third book!"

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Upcoming Release--Looks Interesting


After bouncing from foster home to foster home, Magdalene Mae is transferred to what should be her last foster home in the tiny town of Silver City, New Mexico. Now that she's eighteen and has only a year left in high school, she's determined to stay out of trouble and just be normal. Agreeing to go to the prom with Bridger O'Connell is a good first step. Fitting in has never been her strong suit, but it's not for the reasons most people would expect-it all has to do with the deep secret that she is a shape shifter. But even in her new home danger lurks, waiting in the shadows to pounce. They are the Skinwalkers of Navajo legend, who have traded their souls to become the animal whose skin they wear-and Maggie is their next target.

Full of romance, mysticism, and intrigue, this dark take on Navajo legend will haunt readers to the final page.





About the Author:
Bethany Wiggins has always been an avid reader, but not an avid writer. Seriously!!! She failed ninth grade English because she read novels instead of doing her homework. In high school, she sat alone at lunch and read massive hardback fantasy novels (Tad Williams and Robert Jordan anyone?). It wasn't until the end of her senior year that the other students realized she was reading fiction--not the Bible

Several years ago Bethany's sister dared her to start writing an hour a day until she completed a novel. Bethany wrote a seven-hundred page fantasy novel that she wisely let no one read--but it taught her how to write. The fifth novel she write, SHIFTING, is being published by Walker Books September 27, 2011.

Blog: www.suzettesaxton.blogspot.com

web page: www.bethanywiggins.com

Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/10224627-shifting

Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Shifting-Bethany-Wiggins/dp/0802722806/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1316660383&sr=1-1

Thursday, September 8, 2011

A BIG Goof!

So, I was double checking some typesetting stuff tonight in the digital book because of a comment by a fellow writer. I got about half way through and I realized . . . chapters 23 and 24 were exactly the same!

It was one of those palm to the forehead moments.

Thankfully, it is now fixed, and if you've already downloaded The Armor of Light, I apologize profusely, but if you want to read chapter 24, you'll need to download it again. With Smashwords, I know there is no additional cost. If you downloaded it through Amazon or Barnes and Noble and need a coupon code, please let me know. I am so sorry. I have no idea how this got past me.

Thank heavens the paper versions are correct!

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

It's Launch Day!

It's finally here! The Armor of Light is now available lots of places! Oh, you want to know where? Well, let me give you some links!

The E-Book is available at Amazon.com, BarnesandNoble.com, and Smashwords.com. And if you're bemoaning the fact that you can't get an autograph with an e-book, there's this awesome new thing called a kindlegraph that will send me a request, and I'll personalize a page for you to upload onto your kindle. You still get your autograph! It's so awesome!

Now, for paper copies, you'll need to go to either my personal createspace sales page (my preference), Amazon.com, or my local bookstore, The Purple Cow. They ship. If you choose that option, just click on books and do a search for The Armor of Light. And of course if you want autographed copies, or posters, magnets, bookmarks, etc., go to my blog.

This has been quite the journey, let me tell you! I had no idea how much work went into creating a book until I started up on this Indie route, but crazy as it sounds, I love it! I find that I really enjoy typesetting and polishing it up so it shines. I love working with my editor, Tristi Pinkston, and my artist, Deirdre Eden Coppel. They have been fantastic and this book wouldn't be the same without them.

And guess what? I've already got my first review on Amazon, and what a whopper it is! Wow, I almost cried when I read it. So awesome. I'm just going to steal it and re-post it here. I don't think the author would mind. :D

"The Armor of Light, by Karen Hoover book 2 in the Wolfchild Saga fantasy series is a fantastic novel that draws the reader into the world of Rasann - a place of magic full of battles between good and evil. Once you start reading you can't put it down. If you fell in like with Ember and Kayla in the Sapphire Flute, you will love them in the Armor of Light where all the same characters are back, and new ones have been stirred into the mix.

"Karen Hoover has a talent for description that puts the reader inside the mind and skin of the characters she so colorfully details on the page. While reading her stories I get a 3-D panoramic vision as if I were in an IMAX theater. There were heartrending scenes of loss, humorous scenes with uncontrolled new skills, fantastic underwater and cave scenes, mind-boggling shape-shifters, and terrifying evil-doers, and dragons.

"Issues we face in the real world are mirrored and expertly explored in this young adult novel such as self-esteem, class systems, environment, the meaning of love, choosing between right and wrong and taking responsibility for your actions. In my opinion her fantasy writing skill is near that of Anne McCaffrey, Orson Scott Card and Terry Brooks."

Margaret L. Turley
administrator of Writers Unite to Fight Cancer

How cool is that??? I have now been compared to two of my favorite authors of all time--Madeleine L'Engle with The Sapphire Flute and now Anne McCaffrey with The Armor of Light. I think I've died and gone to heaven.

To celebrate the day, I'm doing a giveaway. I'll do a drawing for six people (Because it's September 6th) who do all of the following things:
6) Follow my blog
5) Link to this blog on Facebook
4) Like The Armor of Light on Goodreads
3) Like my book somewhere else (you tell me where)
2) Purchase a digital or paper copy of The Armor of Light (I know, I know, I'm shameless)
1) Post a comment back here telling me you did all of this.

In return, you shall receive a poster of The Armor of Light, Bookmarks, A bookplate for the paper copies of the book or a personalized kindlegraph for the e-books, and two random books in the genre of your choosing (one of my favorites--I hope you like fantasy or mysteries. lol).

You might be wondering why I chose today of all days to release this book. Well, those of you who know me or have followed my blog for a while know how much my mom influenced my writing over the years. She's the one who told me I could do anything if I wanted to do it bad enough. She was my biggest cheerleader and fan, and the person who heard the first draft of everything I wrote.

Today would have been her 80th birthday. So, Happy Birthday, Mom! I'm celebrating this day in honor of you!

Saturday, September 3, 2011

Winner of the Awesome August Blog Hop


I apologize for being a bit late with this, but I did use Rand.org and we have a winner from the blog hop. And that winner is . . .

Chelsea Rafferty!

Congratulations, Chelsea! You'll be hearing from me shortly. And thanks everyone for entering!

Monday, August 29, 2011

Awesome August Blog Hop!


So, my good friend Tristi Pinkston started this blog hop and it sounded like a lot of fun, so I decided to join her!

Welcome to the Awesome August Blog Hop, where bloggers from all over the Internet have come together to throw a summertime party!

Every blog on this hop is offering a fun prize, and entering is quick and easy. Simply follow the instructions on each blog, leave a comment, and bop right along to the next blog. You can win multiple times, so be sure to check out all the participating blogs!

To enter here, you need to follow my blog for an entry, then go to Barnes and Noble.com, Goodreads.com, and/or Smashwords.com and either like/rate (star) my book, The Sapphire Flute, for one entry each, or write a review, for two entries each. (For Amazon, see NOTE below.)

Once you've done all that, leave a comment telling me what you've done and I'll add up your points.

Now, do you want to know what you'll get for doing all of that? Well of course you do!

You shall get a few things:
1) A $10 Amazon or iTunes gift certificate--your choice.
2) A hand-bound collection of my favorite quotes, some about writing, some not.
3) A copy of Mella Reese's book "Nia."

Now, surely that worth a little of your time? :D Good! See y'all on the other side!

NOTE: I have been informed that soliciting reviews for my book on Amazon is against their policy, so I have to withdraw that as being part of the contest, though if you have read the book and feel it genuinely deserving of your vote or comment, that is always appreciated.

Thank you!


Awesome August Blog Hop Participants
1. Tristi Pinkston, LDS Author
2. Karen Hoover
3. Michael Young
4. Kristy Tate
5. cindy Hogan
6. Julie Bellon
7. Margot Hovley
8. Laurie Lewis
9. Mandi Slack
10. Melanie Jacobson
11. Joyce DiPastena
12. Renae Mackley
13. Debbi Weitzell
14. Donna Hatch
15. Carolyn Frank
16. Marsha Ward
17. Stacy Coles
18. Bonnie Harris
19. Danyelle Ferguson aka Queen of the Clan
20. Diony George
21. Lisa Asanuma
22. Susan Dayley
23. Christine Bryant @ Day Dreamer
24. Stephanie Humphreys
25. Ranee` Clark
26. Tamera Westhoff
27. I Am A Reader, Not A Writer
28. Heather Justesen
29. Rebecca Talley
30. Jennifer Hurst
31. Aimee Brown
32. Cheryl Christensen
33. Rachelle Christensen
34. Imaginary Reads
35. Andrea Pearson

Learn more about Awesome August Blog Hop here.

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Friday, August 26, 2011

CHANGES


If you're wondering where all the challenge tabs went, don't be concerned. I haven't stopped doing them. Because they were taking over my blog, I moved them to a more writer friendly space that I'm already running--Sprint Writers Central. Challenges will start back up again on September 5th with the Poetry Challenge, so be prepared and go HERE to find it! :)

Thanks for your patience and understanding!

Oh, and just ten more days to pre-order The Armor of Light and get all the extra goodies. Don't forget to order it while you still can!

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Announcements

Hi guys. I am extending the Flash Fiction Challenge until Wednesday to see if we can get some more submissions, so if you still want to play there is still time.

I am temporarily suspending the Poetry and Flash Fiction Challenges until September. I've got too much on my plate at the moment and about to go more insane than I already am, so unless someone is willing to step up and take on the challenges for me for a few weeks, I have to set them aside for the moment. I hope everyone understands. This is only temporarily. We will be back online once I get The Armor of Light out there and follow up on a few projects I promised to do for people.

Thanks for understanding! If you want to take over, e-mail me, or leave a comment below and I'll get back with you.


Saturday, August 13, 2011

Winner! Poetry Challenge #7


Wow, what a week Rebecca Blevins is having! First she won the Flash Fiction Challenge, and now today she wins the Poetry Challenge for her poem "Adventures in Baking a Cheesecake!"

Congratulations Rebecca! We're so proud of you!

Second place was "The Wind," by Bethany Ricks


And now their poems for your viewing pleasure:



Adventures in Baking a Cheesecake(Rebecca Blevins)


Stir!

Beat!

Scrape, scrape,

I’m going to make a cake!


Crunch!

Smash!

Crumbs, please,

Pour lots of sweetened cream cheese!


Simmer!

Wet!

Set, set,

It’ll be the best one yet!


Oh!

No!

Fall down,

Sagging, unappealing brown.


Twist!

Turn!

Drop, plop,

Cherry filling fixes top.


Chill!

Slice!

Bite, bite,

This will be a tasty night!




The Wind (Bethany Ricks)


The Wind
The Rush
The Rush of breath
That brought me my life
My life of reason
My life of flight

Everything moving
Moving to a beat
A beat of a heart
The heart of the rush

Before the wind
Before the rush
The life that I knew
The life that was crushed

This rush that found me
Found and held me
Held me up and saved me

Now we walk
Hand in hand
Against the world
With the wind



Thursday, August 11, 2011

Flash Fiction Challenge #8

And here I am, late again. I apologize, people. My nephew got married today and it's just been a long and crazy day.

The prompts are finally up for Flash Fiction. You have until Saturday night at 10:00 PM Mountain time to get your stories to me. Remember you have one hour to write 1,000 words or less. When finished, send them to:

flashfictionchallenge@hotmail.com

Good luck!

Poetry Challenge #7 Voting open!

Voting for the Poetry Challenge is now open!

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Flash Fiction Challenge #7 Winner!

And we have a winner!

Congratulations once again to Rebecca Blevins for "Totally Gnarly"! She's becoming the master of Flash Fiction. :D

And here it is in its entirety for your enjoyment.


“PHONE!” Donna yelled. “It’s Jimmy! Hey, when are you going to make me a flower garden like his?”

I stopped hoeing the corn and dusted off my hands. “Never! It’s too much work!” I took the phone. My wife glared at me, then left for the store.

When I answered, the voice on the other end made an attempt at being cheery. “Hey, Buddy, get over here, quick!”

“Jimmy, I’m not coming over.”

“But DUDE!” he protested, “This guy is wacko! Crazy! Psychedelic! I talked to him this time and he won’t leave! He’s some alien scientist and he’s taking Gramma’s flowers!”

Dude, you’re the one who’s psychedelic. Wait— “You actually talked to him?” I set my drink on the counter and grabbed my keys.

“Yeah, dude. He’s okay, not a murder, I don’t think, but he won’t go.”

“Hang on Jimmy, I’ll be right there.” I put the phone down and hurried to my truck.

Jimmy’d been complaining of aliens—okay, one alien—in his backyard for the past week and each time, I’d seen nothing. Poor guy, I kept hoping he’d keep his promise to swear off grass, but it looked like he’d fallen back into the old pattern. And his Gramma thought she was doing him a favor, leaving him everything. The old gal hadn’t had a lot, but it was enough to enable Jimmy to make nothing of himself for a while.

When I pulled up, the first thing I noticed was that everything looked exactly the same. I’d really hoped to see a flying saucer hovering above the house, but nada.

My shoes crunched the sparse gravel as I headed up the walk. Jimmy’s face peered from the window by the dingy curtain, and the door opened a man-sized crack. “C’mere!” Jimmy waved frantically at me to come inside. Before I could step through the opening, he yanked me through, shut and deadbolted the door. “He’s there, man!”

“Who?” By the looks of him, Jimmy hadn’t slept for a week—or showered either, by the smell that threatened to knock me down.

He put his finger against my lips, I shoved it away, then whispered, “Who?”

Eyes bloodshot and crazy, he pointed at the kitchen, said, “Shhh,” and motioned me to follow.

Yep, has to be on something.

We went into the kitchen and Jimmy sneaked a peek through the ruffly curtains at the window, then he stepped aside. I couldn’t figure out how to get him to come with me if he thought I was taking him to rehab, so to humor him, for the fourth time this week I peeked through the window.

And saw an alien.

He glittered in the sun, green sparkly skin that shimmered colors like a holographic card. Countless waving ears stood out like trumpets on both sides of his three-eyed head. Decked out in a white, Elvis-inspired lab coat, the alien, or whatever it was, pranced around Jimmy’s yard, studying the flowers.

Jimmy must have noticed my eyes had gone huge because he shook me until my teeth rattled. “You see it, right Bob? Right? I’m not crazy!”

“Uh, yeah, I see it.” Then I opened the door and marched outside, Jimmy following and pleading with me not to go.

“Hey, you!” I called. “This is private property! No trespassing!”

“Groovy, dude!” the alien said. “Your friend doesn’t mind. This is research for the gnarly good of our Eustachian society! I’m doing no harm to these plant-creatures. See, they like it!” He held a Black-eyed Susan and blew gently. The yellow flower moved as if it were wriggling with pleasure, and deepened in color to rich gold.

“H-how did you get here?” I stuttered.

“Why, take a gander at my sweet love ship! I call her Willow, after my favorite Earth tree.” The green guy smiled, and I realized that besides his ears, third eye and green, color-shimmering skin, he looked a lot like us. Sounded more like Jimmy, but I was used to that.

The ship hid well among the huge flower garden. Willow had green moss trailing off her gleaming sides, which poked through here and there under all the flowers that grew on her. “Most impressive ship! Now, when will you be going?”

“Dude, I will leave your garden of flowers and love, man, when I get enough for the Head Mum’s wedding. Nothing but the best for her. See, we’ve been coming here from Eustachia for many years now, and we bring back stuff that we find totally groovy. Well, the Mum loves your green cabbage sprouts and beans, and wants to serve them at her wedding. Problem is, they do a number on our totally bogus digestive systems. So Mum needs some pretty radical flowers to help make her wedding dinner smell nice as a gnarly gardenia.”

“Makes sense, I guess.” I folded my arms while Jimmy quaked behind me. “But you can’t just steal things. Pick a third of the blossoms and pay my friend for them.”

The alien sighed. “Okay, dude. If we have to.”

“You have to,” I said.

He went back into the ship and came out with a sack, which he handed to Jimmy. “Will that be radical enough, dude?”

Jimmy opened the sack, which was full of gold coins. His mouth dropped open.

“Yeah,” I answered for him. “That’ll be fine.”

Jimmy and I went into the house and watched through the window as the alien carried piles of blossoms into his ship, then ship and alien disappeared in a flash of light.

“So,” I motioned to the pile of money, “are you going to party?”

He shook his head. “Nah. I think I’m gonna get me some gardener training. I don’t wanna sit here day after day and wonder if the aliens are coming back. But if they do,” he patted the sack, “I’ll be ready for ‘em.”

I left Jimmy burning with excitement. On the way home, I began planning my own flower garden.

Monday, August 8, 2011

Flash Fiction Challenge #7 Voting Begins!


Voting has begun for Flash Fiction #7! Go and cast your vote!

Friday, August 5, 2011

Poetry Challenge #6 Winner!

Well, it was a close run down to the wire, but we have a winner for Poetry Challenge #6. Now, what made this particular challenge so special, was that both of our lead poems were written by kids and they were neck and neck until the end. Thus, for the first time, I am awarding a first and second place widget to our winners and posting both of their poems. These are some special kids, guys. They beat out all the adults!

And so our first place win goes to Noah Blevins for World of Words! Congratulations, Noah!

Our Second Place win goes to Abby Finch for Aliens! Congrats to you as well, Abby. I'm so proud of the both of you!

And now here are their poems!

World of Words (Noah Blevins)

Opening a world
Swirling, twirling thoughts
Words dancing across the many pages
Feel the words stealing you away to a new dimension
See things that you have not seen
Hear sounds unknown to all
Smell forests, mountains, valleys
Taste foreign fruits
Living the lives of others
Feeling their emotions
Close the world
Wondering about what was just explored,
Hungry for more words


Aliens (Abby Finch)

Connect the stars

Way past Mars

As far as the eye can see

I can see you

But can you see me