Friday, March 12, 2010

Pimps and Promises

I have received some beautiful awards lately. But for the sake of brevity, I will just tell you the who and what, for now.  So, big hugemungus thanks to Patricia Stoltey for the Prolific Blogger award, to Roxy Haynie for the Blogger Purrfection award, to Kimberly Franklin for the Stylish Blogger Award, to Kristi Chestnutt for the Creative Writer Blogger Award, to Julie Dao for the You are My Sunshine award, and finally to Annika of A Swede Abroad for the Happiness Award. I promise I will give your fabulous awards the attention they deserve in a future post. I appreciate every one of you.

I truly hope that everyone checks out the above blogs. They are all wonderful and funny and full of solid awesome.

Also, look at what I got in the mail today!!! EEEEEEEP!


A couple weeks ago, I won Kristi Chestnutt’s book release giveaway, which included her beautiful book, The Wolf Within, as well as a Barnes and Noble $25 giftcard, and a Starbucks $5 giftcard! Talk about serious luck, right? But check out what she did for me!


So not only was I lucky enough to win Kristi’s mega fab book, she also signed it for me—with a personalized message that mentioned my manuscript!! I <3 Kristi Chestnutt. That’s all there is to it.

Thank you, Kristi, for such a wonderful prize. I’m very much looking forward to reading your book. I hope that everyone will run out and buy The Wolf Within [like, from here]

Oh, one last thing: I’ve got some pimping to do….

*A Squirrel Amongst Lions is giving away a $20 Amazon gift card for her 100+ Followers Blog Party Giveaway. No end date specified that I could tell, so hurry up just in case.

*Suzette Saxton and Bethany Wiggins of Shooting Stars are giving away a partial submission and critique from agent Suzie Townsend of FinePrintLit as well as books and toffee in its Fantabulous Followers Giveaway. Awesome, yeah? This contest ends March 14, 2010. So go go go!!!

*In honor of her 700+ following, Elana Johnson is giving away seven fabulous signed books in her own Fantabulous Followers Giveaway. Talk about wicked awesome prizes, huh? Contest ends March 14, so up and at ‘em, soldier. Go win!

*And don’t forget to enter Sara McClung’s March Madness Giveaway. She’s giving away five seriously awesome book packages, so be sure to sign up, and if you’re lucky, you will WIN BIG. Ends March 22!

*Win a signed copy of Cleopatra’s Daughter and a Genuine roman coin from Confessions and Ramblings of Muse in the Fog. How cool is this contest? Why, very cool. This one ends March 29, 2010.


OMG! I almost forgot to tell you. I just graduated from a query workshop held by the fabulous CJ Redwine. And let me tell ya, this girl whipped my freakishly craptastic query into shape. So for those of you who are struggling with your queries--or even just wanting a professional opinion--you must check out her workshop. She also offers a course on synopses, about which I've heard nothing but amazing things. Don't feel bad if your query or synopsis sucks--it's not a sign of your writing ability. Seriously. The fact is, most writers are just too damn close to their work, and this makes it stupid difficult to work out what to highlight in your summaries. I'm almost afraid to admit that it took me six effing drafts to get this query right, but CJ held my hand through the entire process, refusing to give even a single wonky phrase a pass. It's a thing of beauty now, one I will be proud to send out to agents. So go sign up. t minimum, check out her blog. She does terrific things with a Spork of Doom and Manolo Blahniks. Actually, I'm pretty convinced she could hike Antarctica in a pair of five-inch stilettos with nothing but a case of gin and a boa. Yeah. She's that awesome.


Alright, folks. You may not see me for a while.

I’m sure I’ll be around, though, stalking like a cougar.


Yeah. I went there.

*Shrugs*        ……       He’s legal.   .......       Isn't he?

Wednesday, March 3, 2010


Mega contests going on now, so thought I’d pass on the news, in case you haven’t heard. In order of end dates:


1. 100 Followers Giveaway: Heather at See Heather Write is giving away The Art of War for Writers and Self-Editing for Fiction Writers as well as some handcrafter goodies. All you have to do is follow and fill out a very short entry form. That’s it. So go on, follow. Enter. Win. Ends March 5.

2Blog party/Contest: Sarahjayne at Writing in the Wilderness is giving away a $20 giftcard. Her contest is based on a point system, but it’s all very simple, so be sure you check it out. At the very least, go follow and leave a comment. Voila! You have easy points. Ends March 5.

3.  Nicole’s 100+ Significant Followers Giveaway: Nicole at One Significant Moment at a Time is giving away a signed copy of The Writer’s Bump Anthology and a $25 Barnes and Noble giftcard. You can win points a number of a different ways with this contest as well. But start off by following and leaving a comment. Does it get any easier? Ends March 14.

4. Dear Lucky Agent Contest: This contest is a third in  the “Dear Lucky Agent Contest” series hosted by Chuck Sambuchino of the Guide to Literary Agents Editor’s Blog. In particular, this contest is only for authors of urban fantasy or paranormal romance (adult or YA) novels. The prize? A 20 page critique from agent Joanna Stampfel-Volpe of Nancy Coffey Literary agency. But in order to win, you must submit the first 150-200 words of your book-length work. There are some other rules, too, so be sure to check them out. NOTE:  Shorter or longer entries will be disqualified. Ends March 14.

5.March Madness Contest: In honor of, um, March and, um, madness, Sara at The Babbling Flow of a Fledgling Scribbler is giving away 5 seriously awesome book packages. There is something there for everyone. Don’t pass this up. You can win points several ways, starting with a follow and an entry form. Easy, no? And, you know, if this is the first you read of it, be sure to tell her I sent you, will you? Ends March 22.


Whoa. Did you feel that? I just blew some lucky magic dust your way.


You’re welcome :)


You know what I just realized?  I never told you which of my statements were true and which were false (from my Agape awards post). To make things easier, I’ll post them again here:


1. This man, Rafael Valdez Cervantes, is my great great grandfather, founder of Compania Azucarera Valdez - Ingenio Valdez, the oldest sugar mill in Ecuador, which is still in operation today as a major supplier of unrefined sugar worldwide. Coca-Cola uses sugar from this company for several of its products.


2. I am related to this man on my mother’s side.
If you don’t know who he is, here’s a hint: this picture was taken just before he wrote The Sound and the Fury (no, don’t confuse him with Shakespeare—you might be thinking of MacBeth.)



Okay, I’ll tell you that one of them is true and one them is a lie. I’ll also tell you that the man in the second photo is William Faulkner. So, the truth is…I kind of like the idea of you thinking that I’m related to Faulkner…and that I’m related to this Sugar King, so I’m not going to tell you which one is the truthful statement.


[Cue wicked laugh]


Monday, March 1, 2010


You thought I was lying about that luck thing, didn’t you?

Ah well, I know it’s hard to believe. But just so you know, I won again. I am definitely feeling the love from old Miss Universe (no, not this one). Thanks to Kristi Chestnutt of Random Daily Thoughts, in her “The Wolf Within Giveaway” (in honor of her book release), I have won a signed copy of The Wolf Within authored by the amazing Kristi Chestnutt herself:

TWW cover

And a $25 B&N gift card                         And a $5 Starbucks gift card








I’m actually kind of floored right now. Though I believed it was possible, I didn’t expect I’d turn around and win something quite so quickly, especially a prize quite this fabulous. I almost feel like I’m spitting in the face of Fate. Seriously, how much luck can one person have?

So, is there a lesson in this? I think so.


Believe in possibility.


I do.

But, in order to maintain some sort of balance in the universe, I think it’s time I give back. And seeing that I am now on the verge of 200 lovely followers friends, I will likely hold a contest soon. I’m not sure what yet. I’ll have to think on it. But I’ll be sure to make it a good one that won’t require much from you. You’ve done enough, and you totally deserve it. And…by the way? My 200th friend will also receive a B&N gift card. It’s time someone else got lucky.

And while we’re on the topic of winning, I’d like to point you to the Dear Lucky Agent Contest where you can win a 20 page critique from agent Joanna Stampfel-Volpe (Nancy Coffey Literary). It’s the third contest in the series, but this one is dear to my heart because it’s for writers of Urban Fantasy and Paranormal Romance (thanks, Simon, for sending me the link). So am I entering? Heck yeah! But don’t let this discourage you.

I don’t win everything.

And I have a feeling that your manuscript kicks some serious bootie. So give it a shot—and believe in yourself. I believe in you.

And while you’re at it, stop by Kristi’s blog and see what she has to say—check out her book, The Wolf Within. It’s looks pretty frigging awesome. I’m sure you’ll also come to adore Kristi, just as I do.


P.S. I was going to go on hiatus, and I still will be taking a bit of a break—I’m determined to begin querying this month (and thanks to CJ Redwine and her Query Workshop, I intend to believe I’ll have a kickass query). But given that I have 3 more yummy blog awards to blog about, as well as a contest I will now be hosting, I will likely be blogging at least once a week. So I’ll be hanging around, sort of like this,

hanging monkey

looking all big-bellied…and furry…and freaky? Huh. Maybe not sort of like this.