Thursday, February 2, 2012

Two incredible opportunities

I figured I would pass these along to my fellow readers/writers.

For Writers:
Brenda Drake's blog is hosting a critique fest.  I'm on the list to be one of the people critiqued, because believe me, my latest piece of work needs all the help it can get before it's on querying level.  The first 60 people are accepted, and they are filling up fast.  So sign up now!  Brenda Drake does a lot of awesome contests (and as much as I want to keep her blog a secret for myself, I feel it is important to share these things).

For Readers:
Sarah Johnston from YATopia just launched her new website and is doing a huge/massive giveaway.  These prizes are well worth it - from books to a $50 voucher to Barnes and Noble.  Seriously?  $50!  What's not to love.  The gals at YATopia are all fantabulously awesome.  So check out her new website and all of the massive giveaways!


I came up with rough cover ideas for my two short stories last night.  I sincerely hope to self publish them in a week.  "Yellow Eyes" inspired by my chalk eating DnD character, and "She's the Bird" a short memoir of sorts.

Oh - and a personal life update - I lost my job.  I attribute this to many things, but mainly, I think it's because my mentality cannot be stuck behind a desk all day.  Has anyone else ever worked in an office?  Did you like it?!  And if so - how could you?!

I'm not saying that I'm high and mighty - "Look at me I'm above working" - because I'm really not.  I actually like to keep myself busy, but office work was taxing on my creativity.  It was hard to balance a creative life and a full time job.  And yes, I am job searching.  But I am hoping to find something in a creative firm - or maybe video games - where my aloof brain would fit in and I could spend all days dreaming of ideas.

In the meantime, I will self publish those two shorts.  I will continue to edit my two finished manuscripts.  I will query more agents.  I will finish my third WIP, Rioss.  I will, I will, I will...

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Giveaway Winner!

Last month, I ran a giveaway for a paperback copy of Water for Elephants!

Congratulations goes to:

I'll be in touch shortly to get your mailing address!

Additionally, I am participating in the I Heart YA Giveaway Hop!  I will post on February 13th with details, but please note that rafflecopter will not open until midnight on the 14th (as per giveaway hop rules).  It looks like I'm going to have some fun library copies to give away.  The winner can choose one of the four books.  In March, I'll be doing another giveaway with the three remainder books - so on until they are gone!

In addition, it's been a really long time since I've posted any writing, so here's an excerpt of my short story "Yellow Eyes."  It is based on my DnD character!  *pushes up the nerd glasses*

Telleke bent over me and soothed my hair, “Sorry, I didn’t mean to.”  His voice was calm, collected, cool, everything that I wasn’t.  He offered his hand.  I took it.  When I was back on my feet, a few steps later, he shoved his leg between mine again, and I crashed into the ground.  The class roared with laughter.

I rolled back onto my feet, hunched my back and glared at him.  I launched myself and screamed at the top of my lungs.  I tackled Telleke into the ground and shoved my fist into his nose.  The crack of my knuckles against his skull sent a shooting pain up my arm, but it was no worst that what happened to his face.  His nose was skewed, off-center.  It was already turning purple.  Not to mention the blood.

I scampered backward off of him.  The whole class stopped breathing , the instructor rushed to Telleke’s side.  I stared down at my hands.  The blood, the blood, the blood.  A flash of my mother’s face, the twisted knots in her hair catching all the falling red that escaped her mouth.  All of the deep red that pooled around the back of her skull.

That's all you guys get for now ;)  Ideally, I want to publish this for .99 or something really cheap.  I really love the weird, random story that my DnD character managed to create.  Did I mention that she has massive compulsive disorders now?  Oh, yeah, and she eats chalk.  She's quite fun to play, though she can't contribute that much to the group.

Congratulations again Janina!  I look forward to next giveaway! 

Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Monthly Book Recommendations

Birthmarked by Caragh M. O'Brien
YA Science Fiction - Dystopian
Highly recommended because of the main character, Gaia.  O'Brien creates an amazing character that works so fluidly in the dystopian world of the Enclave.  She accidentally falls into the hero role because of her good nature and naivety - and her blind determination to save her parents from jail.  O'Brien's writing is well composed, descriptive, and still has you hanging on the edge of your seat.  Though it is not as action packed as some other YA Dystopian novels, I feel like this one is a great change of pace for someone that wants a mellower, but still intriguing Sci-Fi read.  I have a longer review on
*TBR Pile Challenge book*

Warm Bodies by Isaac Marion 
YA Zombies / Horror / Romance
Here’s the deal: People that expect this to be a gnarly, gut ripping out, zombie story will be in for disappointment (I wasn’t disappointed in the slightest, though, and I love brain gushing zombies as much as the next person). While Isaac Marion does give us several gory details, his story focuses on “R” a zombie that is way too intelligent. A zombie that feels trapped in a useless body and a useless life and wants to find a reason to live again. Enter Julie. He happens to fall in love with her because he ate part of her boyfriend’s brain (whoops). Marion does a great job with describing what it would be like to be an intellectual person stuck in a rotting, walking corpse. The descriptions are fantastic, and I overall really love the story.  I have a longer review on examiner.
*TBR Pile Challenge book*

Vampire Academy by Richelle Mead
YA Urban Fantasy / Vampires
I know, I am so far behind the times.  I picked this up solely on a whim and because some people on goodreads really recommend it.  I wasn't disappointed, but I think the pacing could have been a bit strong in the beginning.  But once I got into it, I tell you... Richelle created an amazingly vicious and beautiful vampire world.  My hope for this series is that it gets a little bit darker, because I really want some deliciously dark YA vampire stuff.  But so far so good, it didn't disappoint, and thus it makes it onto my recommendations list.  For a longer review check my examiner. 
*TBR Pile Challenge book* 

Try Not to Breathe by Jennifer R. Hubbard
YA Contemporary / Fiction
I had the pleasure of reading this as an Advanced Reader's Copy - and was I happy that I won it.  Jennifer Hubbard's writing was so enticing.  She did such a good job at portraying what life would be like after an attempted suicide.  Ryan's brain is muddled, confused, and he's just starting to figure himself out.  Hubbard's writing and pacing are quiet, but they sneak up to you.  Her words weasel their way into your brain and you are thinking about them for a long time afterward.  This is a great read if you want a change of pace from the action-packed dystopian literature.  I was very pleased.  My full review is on examiner.
*ARC Book*