Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Speak Out Against... YA Book Tour

I'm excited to be hosting Susan Oloier and Rebecca Green Gasper today as part of their Speak Out Against... Book Tour. Thanks for being here, Susan and Rebecca!

For their post, Susan and Rebecca created music playlists for the characters in their novels Break From You and Outcast. As I have posted before, I am a music nut and love listening to music of all kinds, so this was a fun topic for me. I think music can be a great way to get to know people better, and I'm sure the same principle can apply to characters. So, here are the musical playlists for the people who populate the worlds of these great books.

Also, Susan and Rebecca are holding a giveaway as part of the blog tour. If you'd like to enter to win a copy of Outcast or Break From You, there's an entry form at the bottom of this post.

Now on to the playlists.   

Character Playlists


Break from You




“It’s Not My Time” by 3Doors Down

“I Won’t Give Up” by Jason Mraz



“I’m Yours” by Jason Mraz

“Footloose” by Blake Shelton

“I Don’t Want This Night to End” by Luke Bryan



“Over You” by Blake Shelton & Miranda Lambert

“What Hurts the Most” by Rascal Flatts

“Red” by Taylor Swift

“Part of Me” by Katy Perry

“Paradise” by Coldplay

“Because of You” by Kelly Clarkson

"Face Down" by Red Jumpsuit Apparatus




“Oxygen” by Colbie Caillat

“Kiss a Girl” by Keith Urban

“You Got No Right” by Velvet Revolver

“Do What You Have to Do” by Sarah Mclachlan


“Boyfriend” by Best Coast

“Perfect” by P!nk

“Blue Room” by Miles Davis

“Oxygen” by Colbie Caillat

“Thoughtless” by Korn

“Outsider” by The Ramones

“Girl Next Door” by Saving Jane


“Teenage Dream” by Katy Perry

“Irreplaceable” by Beyonce

“Miss Popularity” by Jordan Pruitt

“Popular” Wicked

“WhoSays” by Selena Gomez—a huge proponent of anti-bullying

About the books:


Outcast by Susan Oloier

Noelle dreams of a different life, one where Trina Brockwell doesn’t exist. Trina has bullied Noelle since junior high. Now she’s tired of it. With the help of her black-sheep aunt and a defiant new classmate, Noelle seeks revenge. But vengeance comes with a price: Noelle risks friendship, her first love, and herself to get back at those who have wronged her.

Moxie Writers

Break from You by Rebecca Green Gasper

Love shouldn’t hurt this much…Brooke Myers wants to believe she has it all: the perfect guy, the perfect relationship, the perfect life. She wants to believe it so much that she's willing to overlook the fear, the isolation, and the pain her boyfriend has caused her. She knows it isn't right but tells herself that love isn't always easy. However, when a fire destroys the restaurant during homecoming dinner, she forms an instant bond with the boy who saves her, one her boyfriend wouldn’t like. With the pain of a concussion reminding her of how bad things can get, she is forced to re-evaluate the relationship she has with her boyfriend and face the ghosts that haunt her. Brooke once believed love was all it took…but is it enough? Is it truly love when you've lost yourself in it?

Barnes and Noble
Moxie Writers

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Tuesday, November 27, 2012


I'm super excited today because I actually finished my NaNoWriMo novel, The Ghosts of Aquinnah, with a few days to spare! I've been doing the happy dance ever since I sent in my text to the word verification program on the NaNo page.

My brain is fried and I am feeling like a total zombie after a frenzied writing weekend, but I'm still so excited to have actually finished a draft of my novel. I know I will have TONS of revising and editing to do but I never dreamed I'd have a draft done so quickly. Signing up for NaNo turned out to be a fantastic motivator for me.

I've neglected nearly everything else this month and I know I have a ton of blog reading to catch up on, so it will be nice to get back into a more normal routine now.

Even when I signed up for NaNo, I honestly didn't believe I would be able to get the whole 50,000 words written in the month's time frame, especially since I have always been a procrastination queen. So I realized I can now add something else to my list of things I've learned since starting this blog almost two years ago.

What else is possible? Finishing a novel in a month!

Sunday, November 18, 2012


Source: Public Domain

We can only be said to be alive in those moments when our hearts are conscious of our treasures.  ~ Thornton Wilder

Happy Thanksgiving! 

I am checking out of the blogosphere for the week to enjoy the holiday and to continue to work on my NaNo project. I was really excited to cross over the 30,000 words mark today! 

Next week, Moxie Writers Susan Oloier and Rebecca Green Gasper will be here as part of the Speak Out Against... Blog Tour. Please stop by on Wednesday, November 28th to hear from Susan and Rebecca and learn more about their books Break From You and Outcast

Until then, good luck to all of my fellow NaNoers and a very Happy Thanksgiving to all of my American friends.

I hope everyone has a great week! :)

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Nightmare Collection Cover Reveal

I'm briefly stepping out of my NaNo cubbyhole to help celebrate the cover reveal of Cherie Reich's latest, The Nightmare Collection. Congratulations, Cherie!

Nightmare Collection cover

Nightmare Collection spine

Cover art by Nicemonkey at Cover design by Aubrie Dionne. Bookworm logo for Surrounded by Books Publishing created by Cherie Reich.

I was lucky enough to get an ARC of The Nightmare Collection and it is a great, suspenseful, and spine-tingling read. The tagline, A Legend is Hungry Tonight, is creepy and spooky all by itself. 

Here is all the info on both the book and the author: 

Book Description: 

A legend is hungry tonight.

A child monster will get its first taste of blood in
Nightmare at the Freak Show. Four friend will enter the forest on December night, but only one can survive in Once Upon a December Nightmare. Almost ten years after Cassie's December nightmare, the monster awakens to hunt again in Nightmare Ever After.

Forthcoming late November 2012

Author Bio:

A self-proclaimed bookworm, Cherie Reich is a writer, freelance editor, book blogger, and library assistant living in Virginia. Her short stories have appeared in magazines and anthologies. Her e-books include the horror series Nightmare, a short story collection with authors Aubrie Dionne and Lisa Rusczyk titled The Best of Raven and the Writing Desk, the futuristic space fantasy novelette trilogy Gravity, and The Foxwick Chronicles, a series of fantasy stories. She is a member of Valley Writers and the Virginia Writers Club.

Author Links:

Congratulations again to Cherie! I'm closing in on the halfway point for my NaNo story so I'm heading back into my writing cubby. I hope everyone has a great rest of the week! :)

Monday, November 12, 2012

The Renaissance of Hetty Locklear Launch Party and a NaNoWriMo Update

Today is a big day in blog land, as it's the official launch of M. Pax's latest book, The Renaissance of Hetty Locklear. But the launch is just the start of it. Mary is also hosting the blogosphere's first ever jousting tournament. Several knights are participating in the tournament, and the contest lasts all week. Stop by here to cheer on the knights and you'll be entered into a drawing to win one of five ebook copies of The Renaissance of Hetty Locklear.

Before I get to all the scoop on the Hetty launch, I have to share an update of my NaNoWriMo progress. I'm really excited, as I met my goal for the weekend and actually made it past the 20,000 word mark. 20,506 to be exact. I'm thrilled and feel like I'm really getting into my Ghosts of Aquinnah story as I go along. Signing up for this challenge has been a fantastic motivational tool for me so far. So here's hoping I make it past the halfway point this week. To my NaNo buddies, I hope you had a productive weekend as well! :)

And now back to today's big launch. Here is everything you need to know, courtesy of M. Pax herself.

The Renaissance of Hetty Locklear


A New Adult Urban Fantasy, The Renaissance of Hetty Locklear is the first book in a new series. And it’s now out! The main character, Hetty, is a twenty-two-year-old, stumbling about in an effort to become a full-fledged adult. She struggles with self-esteem, weight, relationships, and making the transition between college and the real world.


Graduation from community college isn’t the magic elixir Hetty Locklear counts on for becoming an adult. Her parents, who work the Renaissance fair circuit, insist she spend part of the summer with them. Hetty doubts pretending to live in the Middle Ages will help her find her way.


To make it worse, an entity haunts her at her dead-end job, warning her of a dangerous man she doesn’t know. The ghost leads her to a lover who has a lot of secrets. He pulls her farther into peril and into a strange, hidden world of genetic experimentation.

New Adult Urban Fantasy with a contemporary sci-fi twist. Mature content.


Available as an ebook at Amazon / Amazon UK / Smashwords / iTunes / Kobo

Visit for more links.

And check out this awesome trailer for Hetty Locklear:

Congratulations to Mary, and good luck to all the knights!!

Photo courtesy of M. Pax

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

IWSG and the Resurrection Blogfest

It's the first Wednesday of the month and that means it's time for another meeting of the Insecure Writer's Support Group, hosted by Alex J. Cavanaugh

This month's insecurity topic is an easy one for me, as I'm totally insecure about finishing my NaNoWriMo project now that I've started it! I planned to really amp up my word count over the past weekend but unfortunately I didn't even come close to my goal. While I'm ashamed to say it, I actually wasted several hours on Sunday afternoon watching the always pathetic Cincinnati Bengals. What can I say, I'm a glutton for punishment. 

I'm now doing my best to stay on track with my goals for this week and continue churning out the words and pages of my novel. So far I'm really glad I signed up for NaNo as it has been motivating for me, but I can't deny I'm also kind of frazzled by the whole thing. 50,000 words seems a LONG way off! 

Today is also the day of the Resurrection Blogfest, hosted by Mina Lobo to celebrate her first anniversary of blogging. Congratulations to Mina!

To participate in the fest, all we had to do was "resurrect" a post from our first year of blogging. The post I decided to share is just one that makes me laugh because, to my continued surprise, it has consistently been the most popular post on my blog ever since I first wrote it. I never would have imagined how many people search google for "Sesame Street Vampire," "Counting Vampire," and "Vampire Von Count." But now I know. 

I'm also sharing it because I still love Count Von Count, and I never tire of his counting. :D And because it's a reminder of how much I enjoyed participating in the A-Z in April Challenge in both 2011 and 2012.  I encourage everyone who is interested to give the 2013 challenge a try. You won't regret it!

And so here it is, the post I came up with in April, 2011 when I was totally desperate for a "V" word. 


V is for Von Count

I was originally going to use vampires for my V post, as I love vampire characters and stories. But then I really couldn't think of much to write beyond the fact that I love vampire characters and stories. So, I decided to write about the first vampire character I ever loved, Count Von Count.

The Count rocks, and I still totally love him. I found this clip on youtube, and I love how he enters the scene with his cape half over his face. I also love the crazy laughter, and the lightning and thunder.

I read that in later years The Count was toned down and made friendlier, over concerns that children were frightened of him. I don't know if that's true as I wouldn't have still been watching Sesame Street then, but if so it seems kind of a shame to me. Maybe I was a weird kid, but I was never frightened of The Count. I thought he was awesome.

It's kind of funny though, as I have mild OCD and can be compulsive about counting. It's nothing debilitating, but it's just something I've always done, counting things like steps and tiles, etc. When I watch The Count now I can't help but feel like the poor guy has a really bad case of OCD, and that's why he can't stop counting. Regardless, I've no doubt he helped generations of kids learn about numbers, and how to count.

I'd like to write my own vampire story someday, and have been kicking ideas around in my head. I don't know if it's possible, but I hope I can find a way to work in some sort of homage to my first vampire love, Count Von Count.


Thanks as always to Alex for hosting our monthly insecurity meeting and congratulations again to Mina on her first blogoversary! And to my NaNo friends, how are you all doing? I hope you are maintaining your sanity while also meeting your goals. :)