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I am working on new reviews today. I always forget how hard it is to get things done when the kids are home for summer vacation!

Big Easy Blog Hop

My first blog hop as an official author…exciting! Thanks to Tierney James, a fellow Black Opal Books author, who invited me to participate in this tour. So the gist of this is I answer a few questions and then list the authors who are following me on the tour next week. (But the two people who promised to follow me on the blog tour backed out at the last-minute so I don’t have anyone…yet. I will update when/if I get the info on the next person on the blog hop!)

Here is the question and answer section:

1 – What am I working on? Well, that’s a hard one to answer actually. I’m currently working on three different projects. I’m finishing up revisions on my muse story for a revise and resubmit I got from a publisher. I’m also hard at work writing book 2 in the Hollow Moon series – KISS ME. As if that wasn’t enough, today I’m starting Publisher’s BluePrint. BluePrint is an event through Savvy Authors where you work with a publisher to plot your book and then in July I will write it in a NaNoWriMo fashion of 50k in one month. I do best if I have a lot of pressure and deadlines so setting myself up to have a lot to do is just right for me.

 

2 – How does my work differ from others of my genre? My paranormal romances really focus very little on the paranormal. I like to call them light paranormal romances. In MAKE ME A MATCH, Maddy is a witch and it definitely affects the story, but the true focus is on the romance between her and Sean. The romance is the most important part of the story for me.

 

3 – Why do I write what I do? Um, I don’t know – I just do. I actually write in several different genres. The book I’ve contracted to publish is a paranormal romance, but I’m going to be working on a contemporary romance in July. I just love telling a good love story.

 

4 – How does my writing process work?  I am an extreme plotter. I do character sheets, a beat sheet and scene/sequel cards. I tried to write without plotting once and wrote myself into a corner that I couldn’t get out of without deleting most of what was written. My day-to-day process is fairly simple. I sit down with my coffee and browse the web or thirty minutes or so and then get to work. During the summer I write in the afternoon (morning is playtime with the kids). It’s pretty much the same thing, but with iced tea instead of coffee.

 

 

 

 

 

Read-a-Thon Time!!

For the first time since 2011 I am free during a read-a-thon weekend! I started reading right when I woke up this morning, but this is my first time at the computer to update 🙂

I love the read-a-thon. It is the perfect excuse to do nothing for the whole weekend, but lay around and read. This year my 7-year-old is going to read with me (in between playing outside with his new water gun and riding his bike). With my writing stuff taking off I haven’t spent as much time reading lately as I would like so this is the perfect time to catch up on all the books that I have saved to my kindle! This morning I already finished LETTING GO by Maya Banks and up next is STOLEN KISS FROM A PRINCE by Teresa Carpenter.

Another thing I love about Dewey’s Read-a-Thon are the memes! I’m going to play catch up and then hopefully stay on track for the rest of the day.

KICK-OFF MEME:

1) What fine part of the world are you reading from today? Oklahoma
2) Which book in your stack are you most looking forward to? THE SCANDALOUS ADVENTURES OF THE SISTER OF THE BRIDE by Victoria Alexander
3) Which snack are you most looking forward to? The peanut butter cookies I plan to make during a break this afternoon
4) Tell us a little something about yourself! Mother of 3, writer (just signed my 1st contract), stress baker, and avid reader
5) If you participated in the last read-a-thon, what’s one thing you’ll do different today? If this is your first read-a-thon, what are you most looking forward to? I plan to take a nap this afternoon so I can stay up later tonight 🙂

HOUR 5 UPDATE:

Total books read: 1

I’m halfway through book number two. I took a break for some kid time and now I’m back to reading! The plan is to read for the next hour or two without taking another break 🙂

HOUR 8.5 UPDATE:

Total books read: 2

Finished book number two and started number three. Number three is a novella, WOO’D IN HASTE by Sabrina Darby, so I should get through it pretty quickly. I took another quick break with the kids – they were having a water gun fight in the back yard and I had to get in the middle of all the giggles – and lunch. I’m back in my comfy reading spot with a big glass of iced tea and a banana (I’m saving the cookies for later). I’ll update again in a couple of hours!

HOUR 11 UPDATE:

Total books read: 3

I finished another book and started number four – PERFECT 10 by Erin McCarthy. I may have drifted off to sleep for a thirty minute power nap in the middle of book three, but now I can read for several more hours.

I’m going to take a break to make/eat dinner with the family and then get back to my books!

HOUR 13 UPDATE:

Total books read: 4

Another book down! I will admit that I picked books that are on the shorter side so that I could get through several in one day, because I know that if I started a long book then I am more likely to fall asleep 🙂 The rest of the family is watching a movie so I get another few hours of uninterrupted time. I think it is time for a bubble bath with my kindle and a glass of wine. Next up is BECOMING THE PRINCE’S WIFE by Rebecca Winters.

Mid-Event Survey
1. What are you reading right now? BECOMING THE PRINCE’S WIFE
2. How many books have you read so far? 4
3. What book are you most looking forward to for the second half of the Read-a-thon? Not sure – I keep changing my mind on what I’m going to read next.
4. Did you have to make any special arrangements to free up your whole day? No, luckily this is a soccer free weekend for my kids so we didn’t have to go anywhere all day (a very rare occurrence!)
5. Have you had many interruptions? How did you deal with those? Just kid stuff and I stop and do whatever they need me for – it’s what Moms do 🙂
6. What surprises you most about the Read-a-thon, so far? Nothing!
7. Do you have any suggestions for how to improve the Read-a-thon next year? Nope
8. What would you do differently, as a Reader or a Cheerleader, if you were to do this again next year? More snacks 🙂
9. Are you getting tired yet? No
10. Do you have any tips for other Readers or Cheerleaders, something you think is working well for you that others may not have discovered? No

HOUR 17 UPDATE:

Total books read: 4

Still working on book number 5. I took a break to get the kids in bed and spend a little bit of time with my husband. Now it’s back to reading, but honestly I’m getting sleepy.

HOUR 20 UPDATE:

Total books read: 6

I finished BECOMING THE PRINCE’S WIFE and HER IRRESISTIBLE PROTECTOR by Michelle Douglas. I thought about starting another book, but instead I’m going to bed. I read a total of 1351 pages today and my eyes are tired! Today was a lot of fun and I loved all of the books that I read. I hope that I have a free weekend the next time Read-a-Thon comes around and I can do this again.

 

Whatcha Reading Wednesdsay

9780062107732_p0_v4_s260x420I started THE VAMPIRE WITH THE DRAGON TATTOO last night, but didn’t get very far before I fell asleep. Our new schedule is kicking my rear! 6 soccer practices a week and trying to get the kids back on their school schedule. They start back tomorrow and they are very excited. I’m actually going to miss having them home and to myself all day – we have had the best summer (if you don’t count the tree falling on the house) and I’m sad that it is over. Last night I made my husband plan a getaway for us in October so that I have something to look forward to with the kids 🙂

What are you reading this week?

 

This Week…

I may not have many posts this week. My Grandmother broke her leg while visiting from out-of-town and had surgery on Sunday. She is still in the hospital and I’m spending most of my time there. She is doing okay and will hopefully only have to stay a few more days before they let her go back home. Any prayers and positive thoughts would be appreciated!

 

 

12 Days of Christmas: My Holiday Favorites!

I have been sick so instead of writing a couple of posts about my favorite holiday things I’ve lumped in all into one post (with pictures!).

CHRISTMAS COOKIES…AND FUDGE…AND SAUSAGE BALLS… Okay, I love all of the Christmas goodies. I start baking around the fifteenth of December and stop on Christmas Eve. Most of what I bake goes to work with my husband (I’ve already started getting requests from his employees) and to the mission that my Grandparent’s run. This year I plan on scaling back of what I bake for home. I’ve lost 60lbs since this summer and don’t want to add any back over the holidays. However, I did a test run of Cranberry White Chocolate Pecan Oatmeal Cookies this week and they were delicious!

 

 

 

THE ADVENT CALENDAR – I love the countdown to Christmas. The kids used to get those cheap ones with the yucky chocolate in them and one of them would eat every piece before the month was halfway over. This year we bought a Smurf Calender with little things to build or set-up each day – like the Lego advent calendars. I like this one a lot. We spend about ten minutes together as a family putting whatever that days part it together. With three super busy kids and a husband who works crazy hours, ten minutes is sometimes the longest time we are all five in a room together on any given day. The calendar helps us connect and have a bit of fun.

 

 

CHRISTMAS MOVIES AND MUSIC – I’m a Christmas music addict. I have more holiday music than I can possibly listen to in the month of December. In fact, I usually start right after Halloween and listen for two months straight. (This year I didn’t because I couldn’t get into the holiday spirit when it was still 80 degrees outside!) I still listen to the Dolly Parton and Kenny Rogers CD that I listened to as a kid, but I also get something new every year. My kids and husband love to tease me about my collection of Christmas music, but my daughter (whose 8) is slowly becoming just like me. This year she’s been making us listen to Justin Bieber Christmas music and that is something I could do without!!  I also own a rather large collection of holiday movies – classics, cartoons, comedies, and everything in between. My favorites are MEET ME IN ST. LOUIS and THE NIGHTMARE BEFORE CHRISTMAS. Every year those are the two movies I watch while I wrap the gazillion presents that I put off till the last possible minute. Friday nights are family movie nights at our house and in December they are holiday themed. Each kid gets a turn picking what the movie/snack is for that night and whoever is home cuddles up to watch together. Luckily the kids are still at an age where this is still a cool thing to do 🙂

*I had to look up when the Dolly Parton/Kenny Rogers Christmas Album came out because I know that I’ve listened to it for as long as I can remember. It was released in 1984. So, I’ve listened to the same Christmas music every year since I was 4. I remember listening to it on a record at my grandparents house, then I had a tape cassette, and the very first Christmas my husband and I were married he found it on CD. It’s a good Christmas CD 🙂 *

Those are some of my holiday favorites. What are some of yours??

 

HAPPY THANKSGIVING!

I hope everyone (in the U.S.) has a fantastic Thanksgiving today. Today is a special Thanksgiving for our family, because it’s also our daughters 8th birthday. She’s loving the fact that everyone is off for her birthday. She’s having a turkey cake and has been referring to it as her “turkey birthday” for over a month. We are celebrating at my Brother-in-laws house and then the kids are spending the night so that my husband and I can go Black Friday shopping. We go every year (the whole family – both sides – give us things to pick up so they don’t have to get out) and we make a date out of the night. We have breakfast, act silly, and enjoy the time spent together. We have gone out every year except the year out daughter was born and we brought her home from the hospital on Thanksgiving.

The girl’s cake – Which she wanted to say “Happy Birthday You Big Turkey” and I didn’t stop her since it’s her cake!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Happy Thanksgiving!