28 November 2015

Chat With @JenniferLOtt and Win Prizes [Twitter Party]

If you have joined me in previous Twitter Parties you may remember author Jennifer Ott, author of several amazing books, and she has joined us again to chat about her new book Desperate Moon. I can't wait for her to join us and I'm sure you will be excited too!  It will be on Sunday, December 13th at 2pm PST (and this time I've triple checked that date).

Here's some information about her book - Desperate Moon - 



A thought-provoking take on the vampire mythos that makes you consider how the natural-spiritual and scientific worlds might intersect.

Countess Katerina Vaduva roams Eastern Europe as a vampire for nearly six hundred years experiencing the horrors of mortal man - wars, plagues, genocide and torture. For centuries, she seeks shelter and security in the castles of counts and sultans.

When her husband the Count of Slovakia passes, she pursues a new life with a colonel in the Prussian military. While her husband quests victory at battle, Katerina desires a Naturalist scientists who seduces her with knowledge and a greater understanding of herself, for this she will risk everything for the one thing she never had - immortal love and the pursuit of progress.

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Doesn't that sound exciting?? Not to mention author Jennifer Ott is really interesting to chat with. If you join in that day, we will have prizes for participants!

1. $10.00 Amazon Gift Card

2. (2) $5.00 Starbucks card.

3. eBook copy of Saying Goodbye
4. Compact Mirror (pictured above)

5. Flask (pictured above)

As well as a door prize of a $25.00 Amazon Gift Card awarded to one random participant.

Doesn't that sound amazing? Again, it's Sunday, December 13th at 2pm PST using hashtag #DesperateMoon. All you need to do is to RSVP below -



By the way, if you are new to the idea of Twitter Parties, I invite you to take a look at this website which tells you how to participate and what to do. Let me know in the comments if you have questions though, I'm happy to help! Also be sure to check out Jennifer Ott's website at www.jenniferott.com.

Let me know if you are joining in by clicking this link below which automatically tweets out your participation -

Join @BeingTheWriter on 12/13 at 2pm PST to chat w/author @JenniferLOtt and win prizes. RSVP to win #DesperateMoon


Here are some disclaimers -

Winners to be announced throughout the Twitter Party. I am not responsible for shipping the prizes to the winner. Selections of winners are random and based on whether or not the participant has participated in Twitter party and include hashtag # in their tweets in response to questions asked of participants throughout the party. Prize winners will be announced throughout the Twitter Party and must follow necessary directions to claim prize.

Please only RSVP once. Multiple RSVPs will not increase chances to win prizes. I have been compensated to host this Twitter party. I am not eligible for prizes.

15 November 2015

The Time Chamber - Get Lost in a Magical World (A Coloring Book)

A glimpse of my coloring technique!
I feel like adult coloring books are the latest obsessions hitting us this year. Have you heard of this trend lately? I didn't fully understand it at first. As a child, I wasn't a huge fan of coloring anyways (shocking I know, but I liked drawing my own pictures and writing stories and coloring books just seemed finished to me). As an adult, I've sort of likened to the idea of coloring as a way to relax but that usually isn't my first go to.

So I was really excited to review this coloring book to see if I could fully embrace the new coloring book trend. Here's a bit about The Time Chamber by Daria Song -

Korean artist Daria Song’s sequel to The Time Garden takes readers on a visual journey into a magical nighttime world seen through the eyes of a fairy.

This second book in the bestselling Time coloring series features the voyage of a fairy who, when the cuckoo clock chimes midnight, enters the human world. To the tiny fairy, everything seems enormous and magical, from the curtains to the chandelier to a mystical rowboat that takes her further into an inky adventure. With her she packs her favorite items, which colorers can find throughout the book’s pages: an owl-feathered pen, a star-scented spray, a time tape measure…even the key to the time chamber itself!

Filled with the imaginative, intricately detailed illustrations Song’s readers have come to love, The Time Chamber presents a view of our world made new—and ready for coloring.

The Time Chamber features extra-thick craft paper, ideal for non bleed-through coloring, and the jacketed cover with flaps is removable and colorable. Special gold-foil stamping on the cover and spine and a To/From page make it perfect for gifting to adults and kids alike.


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What I thought?

Coloring aside, the story is charming and the pictures are intricate and beautiful. For the coloring part of things, it made me want to run out and buy a bunch of fancy markers, pens and colored pencils. I had a collection that I used to color in some of the pages and I can see why people find this relaxing. If you're feeling anxious or nervous or stressed, start coloring in one of these pages and it will captivate your attention and set your mind at ease.

Some of the drawings to color in were a bit tiny and I clumsily scraped my colored pencil across the pages. I felt a bit disappointed in myself that I couldn't at least color in the lines (I know there is a metaphor there, but I wanted my coloring to be as neat and beautiful as the drawing and to me that means coloring inside the lines!).

As the holiday season approaches and you are trying to think of gifts to purchase for family members, friends, coworkers, neighbors, mailmen, and delivery people, you may want to consider adding this book to your gift list. It's a beautiful book and process of coloring the pictures in was truly relaxing to me. Add onto the gift of this book though, the gift of colored pens, colored markers, or colored pencils. I think a good majority of us may still have some somewhere but to give the gift of a coloring book without something to color with is a little like giving coffee to someone who doesn't own a coffeepot.

Find out more information Daria Song by following this link. Best of all, download some of your own coloring pages by following this link here! Purchase your own copy by visiting the link.

I received this book in exchange for my honest review.

10 November 2015

Chat with Author James DiBenedetto and Win Prizes! #DreamSeries

I have another Twitter party coming up that I want to share with you guys! We will be chatting with James DiBenedetto, author of the very popular books the "Dream Series." Just wait until you read what his newest book is about, I KNOW you will want to join in -

We'll be chatting with James about his book "Dream Student," which is the first book in the Dream Series. Here's what it's about -

College junior Sara Barnes thought her life was totally under control.  All she had to worry about was her final exams, Christmas shopping, applying to medical school – and what to do about the cute freshman in the next dorm with a crush on her.  Everything was going according to plan, until the night she started seeing other people’s dreams.

It’s bad enough that Sara is learning more than she ever needed to know about her friends and classmates, watching their most secret fantasies whether she wants to or not.  Much worse are the other dreams, the ones she sees nearly every night, featuring a strange, terrifying man who commits unspeakable crimes.  Now Sara wonders if she’s the only witness to a serial killer – and the only one who knows when and where he’s going to strike next.

Here's what you'll have the chance to win -

3 eBooks (or audiobooks) from the Dream Series
5 eBooks (or audiobooks) from the Dream Series
$10 Amazon gift card
USB Flash Drive with all author's book preloaded
Signed paperback of any book, winner's choice

Also, one random participant will win a $10 Amazon Gift Card.

This Twitter Party will happen on Sunday, November 22nd at 2pm Pacific Time. All you need to do is make sure you are following me @BeingTheWriter on Twitter as well as the author @jjdibenedetto. Make sure you use the hashtag #DreamSeries to check in and let me know if you are joining. RSVP below in order to win prizes by leaving a link to your Twitter Account and leaving your username in the "Title" section like I have below -


I hope to see everyone there! Make sure you visit the author's page on Amazon to see what amazing books he has to offer by clicking here or check out his website! Again, our hashtag for the party is #DreamSeries and it will happen November 22nd at 2pm PST! Click to tweet to let me know you are joining in!

Click to Tweet: "Join @BeingTheWriter and author @jjdibenedetto on 11/22 at 2pm PST to chat about his #DreamSeries books & RSVP to win http://ctt.ec/q1OmR+"

Here's some disclaimers -

Winners to be announced throughout the Twitter Party. I am not responsible for shipping the prizes to the winner. Selections of winners are random and based on whether or not the participant has participated in Twitter party and include hashtag # in their tweets in response to questions asked of participants throughout the party. Prize winners will be announced throughout the Twitter Party and must follow necessary directions to claim prize.

Please only RSVP once. Multiple RSVPs will not increase chances to win prizes. I have been compensated to host this Twitter party. I am not eligible for prizes.

28 October 2015

5 Scary Movies That Deserve a Sequel

I am an admitted scary movie fan - even the campy ridiculous horror movies tickle my fancy on occasion. And although you have some movies like Halloween and Nightmare on Elm Street that can't get ENOUGH of sequels, there are others horror movies that have so much potential for another chapter. So I thought I'd write up a post about five horror movies that I think deserve a sequel...especially since Halloween is just around the corner.

1) Sixth Sense (IMDB page)


sixth-sense


I think most of us have either seen this movie or heard of it, but it's basically about a little kid who has the ability to see dead people. Well, with that plot summary out of the way, I've been thinking about this sequel possibility for a long time. Even though Haley Joel Osmond is no longer a kid, but I feel like he could easily pull off being maybe a professor at a college and he gets involved with helping a ghost OR maybe he finds out that there is a kid out there just like him who has the ability to see ghosts.

This is just one of my favorite horror movies that I feel like could play out another story.

2) It Follows (IMDB page)

So this was recently released last year, so I guess it isn't fair to demand a sequel already, but there is a lot of sequel potential in this movie. It's about a teenage girl who has these creepy invisible zombie-like things that only she can see's that attack her - if they can get to her. It starts out when a guy she's slept with passes along this curse to her that she can only pass along if she sleeps with someone else. The creatures walk freakishly slow - slow enough for someone to run - but they look scary and are relentless to get to you.

I think this has potential to carry forward, mostly because I don't think this movie explored enough of these creatures. How did this even start and does it really stop? So, I'd like to see this quietly scary horror movie continue again. Maybe with a brand new set of characters, I imagine and a background of how these horrifying creatures even came to be.

3) Stir of Echoes

Okay, I know there was already a second movie made, but let's be honest, that second movie was awful. It was just terrible. I know I'm giving myself away here, but can you tell that I like movie's based around people that see things others don't? I love it. But this movie - based on  man who starts seeing images of a woman who has been killed in his house (and his creepy little boy who does too) - could have a similar sequel as the Sixth Sense idea that I had. The son was young enough in the movie that they could find an older actor who could play an older version of him. The new version could also carry forward another frightening ghost that has a need for their murder to be solved and needing someone out there to solve it.

4) The Strangers

The Strangers poster

Kind of a cop out considering this movie already has plans of a sequel to come out, but this movie is based on a couple who go off to a cabin in the middle of the night, only to find there's someone knocking at their door that won't go away. Obviously, it gets much worse from there. It's a frightening movie to watch at night and I've always enjoyed it. It's a little gory though, especially towards the end but I can imagine this same trio who attack the couple to find themselves again at yet another house in the middle of the woods to attack a new batch. Or instead of playing out the same plot line, maybe Liv Taylor's character hunts that trio down after hearing of a series of break-ins and home invasions with a similar theme as the one she survived. Oops, Spoiler alert.

Or even better the trio that attacked Liv Tyler start to stalk her again. Or maybe a different setting entirely, like a school, maybe? Like a teacher is staying late on night and thus the terrifying situation begins.

5) Invasion of the Body Snatchers (IMDB 1978)

If you haven't seen this classic movie theme, I highly suggest that you do. I recommend the one from 1978 with Donald Sutherland. But the thing is you always learn about the DISCOVERY of the alien invaders. You never really get to find out what has happened ten years down the road. Although there have been about two remakes since the 1953 original - the 1978 included - I would love to see an actual sequel take place where we find out what people do that ARE normal and haven't been invaded yet. Do we live underground? Do we attempt to blend in like what happened towards the end of the 1978 Invasion? Is it possible to take them down long after they've already come in? I'd love to see. It's a theme that's been done a lot but I want to see more and I think there's potential.

So what about you? Are there any horror movies or scary movies that cry out for a remake?

19 October 2015

Twitter Party with Romance Author Kimberly Dean - Chat and Win Prizes!

On Sunday, November 1st at 2 pm (Pacific Time), I am so excited to announce that I will be chatting with romance author Kimberly Dean!  I KNOW this will be a good one! We will be talking about her new book Courting Danger and I invite you to join in on the fun to get to know the writer and win some prizes.



Here's a bit about the book we're talking about -

Rielle Sands ventured too close to the fire once and got burned. Now when it comes to men, she’s vowed to play it safe. But then a dashing, mysterious man shows up at Luxxor Limited after hours, the agency she manages, needing an escort.

Darien Scott isn’t what he appears to be. Beneath the sexy smile and wicked charm, he’s hiding secrets. Yet the sizzling chemistry between him and Rielle is real. He tries to stay away, but his attraction to her keeps pulling him back. When he discovers that he’s not the only one haunted by danger, he changes tactics. To protect Rielle, he may need to stay close. Super close. Exclusive Luxxor contract close.

The reward is more than worth the risk.

--

I am so excited about this! Aren't you? Again the party is on November 1st at 2pm PST and not only will you be able to chat with the author, you can also win some amazing prizes.

You will have the chance to win an eBook copy of Kimberly Dean's book Everlasting. One winner will receive the eBook Roxie by Kimberly Dean. Another winner will receive a copy of the book Dream Man by Kimberly Dean. Two winners will receive front and back multi-color LED Bike-Wheel Lights. And one winner will receive a set of twelve multi-color LED battery operated tea lights. Plus there will be a Halloween Gift Bag to one lucky door prize winner!

If you have joined me for Twitter parties before, you know about the RSVP form right? Well, I'll make it a BIT easier on everyone. All I need for you to do is add your Twitter user name to the list below -

AND you must follow me on Twitter @BeingTheWriter and also follow Kimberly Dean on Twitter at  @KDean_Writer. Also to let me know you are joining in, click this link to send out a tweet -

Tweet: I'm joining with @BeingTheWriter on 11/1 at 2PM PST to chat w/author @KDean_Writer about her new book & win prizes! #CourtingDanger

And now for some disclaimers:

Winners to be announced throughout the Twitter Party. I am not responsible for shipping the prizes to the winner. Selections of winners are random and based on whether or not the participant has participated in Twitter party and include hashtag # in their tweets in response to questions asked of participants throughout the party. Prize winners will be announced throughout the Twitter Party and must follow necessary directions to claim prize.

Please only RSVP once. Multiple RSVPs will not increase chances to win prizes. I have been compensated to host this Twitter party. I am not eligible for prizes.

16 September 2015

The Little Paris Bookshop - Book Review #AmReading

I wanted to like this book a lot. I mean when I saw the words "Paris" and "Bookshop" and then I read what the book was about, I really REALLY wanted to like it.


Before we delve into things, here's what the book was about -


Monsieur Perdu can prescribe the perfect book for a broken heart. But can he fix his own?
Monsieur Perdu calls himself a literary apothecary. From his floating bookstore in a barge on the Seine, he prescribes novels for the hardships of life. Using his intuitive feel for the exact book a reader needs, Perdu mends broken hearts and souls. The only person he can’t seem to heal through literature is himself; he’s still haunted by heartbreak after his great love disappeared. She left him with only a letter, which he has never opened.


After Perdu is finally tempted to read the letter, he hauls anchor and departs on a mission to the south of France, hoping to make peace with his loss and discover the end of the story. Joined by a bestselling but blocked author and a lovelorn Italian chef, Perdu travels along the country’s rivers, dispensing his wisdom and his books, showing that the literary world can take the human soul on a journey to heal itself.


Internationally bestselling and filled with warmth and adventure, The Little Paris Bookshop is a love letter to books, meant for anyone who believes in the power of stories to shape people’s lives.




First I could tell this was a translation and it made me wonder if I could appreciate the original text better.


Although I liked the idea of Monsieur Perdu's bookshop boat where he cures what ails those who come aboard, I didn't like the character. I'm not too keen on the fact that this character kind of wallows a bit in self-pity. It's a tad annoying. He barely can stand touch from others, and will not let anyone in. I can understand that, of course. But still, the emotion he expresses throughout the book - up until the point I had to stop - didn't draw me closer to him. He pushed away those around him as well as the reader it seems.


Of all the characters I did enjoy, I actually preferred the annoying blocked writer who joins Jean Perdu's trip - much to Perdu's dismay - named Max Jordan. He was the comic relief this book needed and I enjoyed all the scenes he was in.


But tragically the plot didn't captivate me, and about a quarter of the way through the book I couldn't imagine continuing on. I really didn't understand the purpose of Perdu's journey either. I didn't know what he was looking for in his trip on his bookshop boat!

There were a few perks to reading though. Throughout the book were actual references to pieces of literature (through the recommendations that Monsieur Perdu gives his customers) and I kept track of them throughout my time reading the book. I didn't get them all, but I caught some that I listed onto my GoodReads to-read list.




But unfortunately the Little Paris Bookshop fell short with me. I wasn't interested and not really all that connected to the characters or their journey. I have to admit though, it was an adorable idea, and it did get some great reviews. So try it! Maybe you will enjoy it!

For fun, visit this link and try out the little tool that recommends books based on your mood. Find out more details about the author by visiting her website here. Purchase your copy of The Little Paris Bookshop by visiting this link.

 I received this book from Blogging for Books for this review

07 September 2015

Twitter Party Announcement - Chat With Children's Author Fiona Ingram

I am so excited to announce another upcoming Twitter party! This will be with children's author Fiona Ingram and we'll be discussing her latest book, "The Search for the Stone of Excalibur."  Join me on September 26th at 12pm PST to chat with the author and win prizes.

The Search for the Stone at Excalibur 2Continuing the adventure that began in Egypt a few months prior in The Secret of the Sacred Scarab, cousins Adam and Justin Sinclair are hot on the trail of the second Stone of Power, one of seven ancient stones lost centuries ago. This stone might be embedded in the hilt of a newly discovered sword that archaeologists believe belonged to King Arthur: Excalibur. However, their long-standing enemy, Dr. Khalid, is following them as they travel to Scotland to investigate an old castle. Little do they know there is another deadly force, the Eaters of Poison, who have their own mission to complete. Time is running out as the confluence of the planets draws closer. Can Justin and Adam find the second Stone of Power and survive? And why did Aunt Isabel send a girl with them?
Join Justin and Adam as they search not only for the second Stone of Power, but also for the Scroll of the Ancients, a mysterious document that holds important clues to the Seven Stones of Power. As their adventure unfolds, they learn many things and face dangers that make even their perils in Egypt look tame. And how annoying for them that their tag-along companion, Kim, seems to have such good ideas when they are stumped. Book extras include some historical background on King Arthur, the Dark Ages, warfare and weaponry during Arthur’s time, and details on Excalibur. A fascinating peek into the life and times of the real King Arthur, perfect for young time travelers and budding archaeologists.

I am so excited to talk about this book with Fiona! Do you want to join in the fun? Well, here's the details you need:

When: September 26th, at 12pm PST
Where? Twitter with hashtag #StoneofExcalibur
What? We'll be chatting with the author about her new book, her adventures and travels, and you can join in too! You'll have the chance to ask Fiona Ingram questions as well as win prizes along the way.

Here's what you can win:

A copy of eBooks Secret of the Scarab and Search for the Stone of Excalibur
$10 Amazon Gift Card
A print copy of Book 2: Search for the Stone of Excalibur
Plus there is a $15 Amazon Gift Card Door Prize for a random participant.

All you need to do to make sure you join in on the fun, is register via the RSVP form below (or via the link here).

Read more about Fiona Ingram and her books by visiting her website and her GoodReads page.


I have been compensated to host this party. I am not eligible for prizes.

01 September 2015

Imagery and the Staying True to My Meaning

I've been working on a poem lately and I notice sometimes with my poetry that it's really easy to get lost in the imagery that I'm using to explain my poem's meaning and it's so easy to lose track of the imagery. Somehow that imagery for ocean contorts and becomes as realistic as a scene out of Inception.



But like grabbing balloons out of the air that I never meant to let go, I try not to forget that the bottle of wine, cups of coffee, and driving in a car that I'm talking about in my latest creation are meant to represent something very specific. As I write, I remind myself, "You know what you're saying with this right?"


Well I just wanted to take a break from the clouds and check in with everyone. What are you working on these days? Anything you want to share? I would love to know. Aside from my latest poem, I'm still working hard on my short story that has been revised many times over but I'm feeling really good about the direction it's headed. Hopefully you're feeling pretty good about the direction your heading these days!

25 August 2015

Twitter Party Announcement - Saying Goodbye Book Launch (with @JenniferLOtt)

I am happy to announce that I will celebrating the Jennifer Ott's popular romantic series, "Saying Goodbye," as written under her pen name Mahima Martel. I am so excited to talk to her about this book and I hope you join with me September 5th at 2pm PST!



The Details:

When: September 5th at 2pm PST
Where: Join us to chat with author Jennifer Ott on Twitter using hashtag #SayingGoodbye. Make sure you follow me @BeingTheWriter and Jennifer Ott @JenniferLOtt so you don't miss out!
What: We'll be discussing her popular two part book series called, "Saying Goodbye." Check out the book blurb below -

As a social storm brewed across the Atlantic in 1964, vivacious and rebellious Hollywood starlet Frankie Robinson had no expectations when she met dark and introspective Alex Rowley, guitarist for one of the hottest English bands – The Dark Knights. 

For an eager young couple, neither Frankie nor Alex anticipates the scandal their public relationship will cause—reputations must be protected and images need to be maintained. As Frankie and Alex dream of a life together, agents and managers worry of the monies lost and the dangers to their perspective clients. Frankie and Alex are to be kept apart no matter what tragic cost. Behind the closed curtains of celebrity life, Frank and Alex find a way to keep their private love alive despite all obstacles. 

After a tragic event in which agents and parents keep them apart, Frankie and Alex maintain a long distance love affair throughout the turbulent Sixties, Separated, their love breeds strength to overcome obstacles that once held them down. Individually, they blossom creatively and their talents soar to new heights. Within the secrecy of their relationship, they learn greater lessons of love, lessons not defined by society, but by the heart and the soul.

Read more on Jennifer Ott's website. 

Why?: Aside from the fact that Jennifer Ott is really interesting and fun to chat with, you can also win prizes by joining in the fun! Here's what you can win:

$5.00 Amazon Gift Card
$5.00 Starbucks Gift Card
One of two coffee mugs.
A copy of the ebook "A Soul to Shine."

Make sure you RSVP below (you only need to do so once) and share the party details with your Twitter peeps! If you can't wait for the party to get started on this incredible series, purchase your copy of the book "Saying Goodbye" on Amazon.com today. 

If you are having trouble seeing the form below, RSVP here.

I have been compensated to host this party. I am not elligible for prizes.

22 July 2015

Twitter Party Announcement - #SoaringHigh - August 8th at 2 PM

I am happy to announce we have another book launch to celebrate! This time it will be with Jennifer Ott and we'll be discussing her newest book Time of Useful Consciousness. We'll be celebrating on August 8th at 2 pm with hashtag #SoaringHigh. I got inspired to select the hashtag for this Twitter Party #SoaringHigh based on the description of the novel. Read about it below -


Louisa Unger, a young German woman in Post-War World II Germany kills a man in cold blood. Despite her crime, her fate is up to her - give up her  countrymen for her freedom. She decides to play the loyalty card and remain in prison.

During the interrogations, Louisa weaves her tale of the events by evading any real information. She relives reuniting with her estranged brother Freddy, falling in love with Kris, a former reconnaissance pilot and learning to fly to a plane. She recounts in fairy tale fashion of monsters cloaked in shadows and lessons learned by incorrigible children.

Seduced into the bliss of romance and flying, Louisa fails to recognize any threat. She grows immersed in the life of a smuggler, a pilot and a lover. It is hard to come back down to earth, when soaring so high.

I think this sounds like an amazing, thrilling book! I can't wait to talk to the author about it. We'll be having a Q&A session with the author (I'll be asking some questions, but you can too!). Also, participants will have the chance to win prizes throughout the party. And actually, I am pretty stoked about these prizes. They sound amazing!

You will have the chance to win the following:


    1. An ebook copy of “A Soul to Shine." (Read about this book here).

2. Starbucks $5.00 Gift Card.

3. Amazon $5.00 Gift Card





















4. Coffee Mug (pictured above)



5. Wooden Book Marker (pictured above)




6. Journal (pictured above)


All I need you to do to win one of these awesome prizes is enter your information below or if the form isn't showing up for you, just follow this link. Also, one random participant will receive a $10 Amazon Gift Card door prize. So again, join us August 8th at 2pm! 

Make sure to check out Jennifer Ott's webpage for more details about this book and others as well as where you can purchase a copy.



Disclaimer: Winners to be announced throughout the Twitter Party, including the winner of the door prize. I am not responsible for shipping the prizes to the winner. Selections of winners are random and based on whether or not the participant has participated in Twitter party and include hashtag #SoaringHigh in their tweets in response to questions asked of participants throughout the party. Prize winners will be announced throughout the Twitter Party and must follow necessary directions to claim prize. Door prize is awarded to a random participant attending the Twitter party. You must have a valid Twitter username and email in order to be contacted for door prize. Prize winners has 24 hours to claim prize. Please only RSVP once. Multiple RSVPs will not increase chances to win prizes.

I have been compensated to host this Twitter Party. I am not eligible for prizes.

16 June 2015

Twitter Party Announcement - Angels #AngelsEverywhere by Michelle Beber #AmReading


If you have you a child in your life, you will want to gift them this charming book called, "Angels, Angels, Everywhere" by Michelle Beber. Here's what it's about (obtained from author website): 

"Angels, Angels, Everywhere is a non-denominational, multiracial book written in delightful rhythm and rhyme and accompanied by charming illustrations done by Susan Shorter. The themes are constant support and unconditional love. This book teaches children how angels can help them in their everyday lives and empowers them with faith." obtained from http://www.michellebeber.com/angels-angels-everywhere.php

And I get to take part in the celebration of the launch of this book, because we will be having a Twitter party on July 11th! This will be a lot of fun and you and I will have the chance to talk to the author about her new book. 

PLUS, you will have the chance to win prizes. What will you win if you participate?

One of three $10 Amazon Gift Cards.
One of three Angel car charms (pictured below)

And there will be one door prize awarded to a random participant. The door prize is an Angel figurine called, "The Angel of Love."

Angel of Love Door Prize

Angel Rearview Mirror Charm

Aren't they pretty?? Well I'm excited for you to join me with Michelle and I can't wait to hear her talk about her book and her experience creating it. Again, the #AngelsEverywhere Twitter Party will be happening on Saturday, July 11th at 2 pm Pacific Time.

In order to win prizes, please fill out the RSVP form I have linked here (and also it's embedded below, but click this link if you don't see it). This is what I use to award prizes (and check to see who is participating). You only need to RSVP once. And please tell your friends, the more people who join, the better! By the way, as you promote and talk about the upcoming party, use the hashtag #AngelsEverywhere

Make sure you take a look at Michelle Beber's website to find out more about her book. Also you must follow Michelle @bebermichelle and myself @BeingTheWriter. Also, make sure you check out Amazon to find out how you can purchase your own copy of the book Angels, Angels, Everywhere.




I have been compensated to host this Twitter party. I am not eligible for prizes.


31 May 2015

Photo Inspiration - An Old Fashioned Circus #AmWriting

It's been a long time since I've done a photo inspiration post. Writing is going well lately and I've shifted to revising a circus story that I started (and finished a couple of times...I'm on my third ending and haven't quite gotten it right yet). So this means I am heavy duty into thinking about the circus - both the kind you attend to as a kid and the creepy kind we see in horror movies. I'm asking questions about this setting - is it too outdated to appreciate now? Should I set up the circus to be something else? As the internal debate goes on with me and my muse, I found a photo that may just inspire you...

zoriah_photojournalist_war_photographer_coney_island_new_york_20090718_1291 

Next blog post may or may not feature a fictional interview between me and this headless woman...

15 May 2015

Book to Read When You Have Insomnia [Book Review]

It's been a long time since I've posted. I do have a pretty decent excuse for neglecting my blog. One of them is stress related and I just haven't had the mental space to write a very good post. The second is I've been editing a LOT more. Editing takes much more focus for me and I'm working on a longer project as well as a short story. Also, I have another blog I'm fairly active on, so that's been another factor in my absence. (I'm happy to say I've stayed away from most of my free time indulgences like video games or online shopping. Woo!)

Anyways, how are you doing lately? Are you looking for a good book to read?  Well, I may have one for you.


This book is called Black Moon by Kenneth Calhoun. 

Here's a little bit about Black Moon (obtained from the Random House website):






Insomnia has claimed everyone Biggs knows.  Even his beloved wife, Carolyn, has succumbed to the telltale red-rimmed eyes, slurred speech and cloudy mind before disappearing into the quickly collapsing world.  Yet Biggs can still sleep, and dream, so he sets out to find her.

He ventures out into a world ransacked by mass confusion and desperation, where he meets others struggling against the tide of sleeplessness.  Chase and his buddy Jordan are devising a scheme to live off their drug-store lootings; Lila is a high school student wandering the streets in an owl mask, no longer safe with her insomniac parents; Felicia abandons the sanctuary of a sleep research center to try to protect her family and perhaps reunite with Chase, an ex-boyfriend.  All around, sleep has become an infinitely precious commodity. Money can’t buy it, no drug can touch it, and there are those who would kill to have it. However, Biggs persists in his quest for Carolyn, finding a resolve and inner strength that he never knew he had.

Kenneth Calhoun has written a brilliantly realized and utterly riveting depiction of a world gripped by madness, one that is vivid, strange, and profoundly moving.



So, while reading the book, I noticed the book had some pretty low reviews on GoodReads. To me, I don't think this book was all that bad. You start out by getting to know a few characters in the midst of this sleep crisis. First you meet Chase who has just returned to his childhood home after college. He soon meets his childhood friend Jordan who is certain insomnia will spread throughout the city. You also meet Lila who lives with her parents and the only person in her family that can sleep. Also, Biggs and his wife live in the city (she has sleep problems). Biggs tries his best to keep his wife in the apartment (and soon tries to bring his wife back). Lastly, Felicia, Chase' ex-girlfriend who works within the heart of the sleep crisis as a scientist, seeking a cure.

This book was troubling, fascinating, intriguing, yet dull at times.  You get each of the above points of view of the insomnia that has plagued the world. Timelines do jump around and it took me a bit to figure out at different times. Although the book description says Lila is in high school, she struck me as being much younger than that.

In terms of the insomnia plague, it's very "somber zombie movie" once it gets into the heart of it. People become raging maniacs once they lose sleep, even murderous towards people who CAN sleep. This drives the story and the characters. Aside from this murderous rage though, the plagued insomaniacs are portrayed as really stupid and out of it.

Towards the end, I thought things started to slowly fall apart and I felt myself scanning. I don't want to give too much away but this aspect almost seemed to match things falling apart for the characters. When the ending did come, I noticed some lose ends, but that didn't take anything away. You are left to figure out some characters' fates, but isn't that the way life is sometimes? Not always clean cut.

If I was to rate this book, I would give it three and a half stars. It's worth reading and I'm glad I read it. I will probably read it again later down the road too. Purchase your copy now.

What book are you reading lately? Anything you can recommend?

I received this book in exchange for my honest review.

04 April 2015

Hearts Beneath the Badge by Karen Solomon - Twitter Party Announcement! Register Now!



I am so excited to announce the next Twitter Party I'm taking part in with book promotion service Pump Up Your Book. Join me May 3rd at 3 PM PST in celebrating the launch of Karen Solomon's book, "Hearts Beneath the Badge."

Hearts Beneath the Badge contains true stories about the hearts and minds of law enforcement. "It’s not about the crimes they witness or the judgment they face; it’s about them – Damien, Danny, Frances, Ken, Pamela, Brian, and more. Their thoughts, their fears, their proud moments and their heartbreak. It’s about the people we often don’t see because we are blinded by the uniform." (book blurb obtained from author's site).

On May 3rd we'll be chatting with the author about her book and you will have the chance to ask her questions too. Make sure you register in order to win prizes. You must attend the Twitter Party in order to win, including the RSVP prize.

You will have the chance to win one of three $10 Amazon Gift Cards and the grand prize is a $20.00 iTunes Gift Card. Plus, if you refer the most people, you have the chance to win a $25.00 Shell Gas Gift Card.

RSVP using the form below (or follow this link if the form doesn't show up). Once you RSVP, click the following link to tweet about the party to your followers.

Tweet: Join me on May 3rd at 3pm PST to celebrate the launch of @TheMissingNiche new book #HeartsBeneathBadge. RSVP today http://ctt.ec/TgDba+
 
Make sure you follow @BeingTheWriter and @TheMissingNiche. Read more about the book and purchase your own copy by following this link.



I am being compensated to host this party. I am not elligible for prizes.

23 March 2015

5 Things That Always Seem to Happen on Rainy Days





Inspired by a rainy March Monday morning, I decided to write my first normal blog post in a long time. I've been bogged down a lot lately by blogging to-do's and writing pursuits (which are going well!) and regular day-to-day blogging has taken a minor backseat. Until today!

So there are certain things that always tend to happen on a rainy day and a couple that have happened very recently. It's something about dreary days like today that bring out the bad crummy luck.

1) You miss your bus.

This happened this morning actually. Apparently my attempt at waving down the driver went unnoticed and I had to wait ten minutes for the next one. Sure, not terrible.

But I remember one year when it was in the teens here on a cold winter night my mom and I were trying to catch a bus home. Despite banging on the windows, the driver sped off, making us wait 30 minutes in really cold weather until we decided to just call a cab.

2) You slip and fall (into mud or dog poop).

Yes, ladies and gentleman. Two weeks ago, I missed the last step going down stairs outside of my apartment complex. This caused me to careen forward and fall right into dog poop a neighbor didn't pick up.

3) Your umbrella flips out.

This is a huge reason I don't like umbrellas and don't take them with me usually. I feel like such a dork when wind and rain pick up and the umbrella is flipping inside out.

4) You didn't wear warm enough shoes.

Sneakers aren't good rain wear. Neither are UGG boots actually. I think I need to invest in some decent looking rain boots because so far everything I wear in this weather isn't warm enough.

5) You have to use the bathroom. Really bad.

Isn't this always the case? Although I have no memorable stories behind this one, once I heard from this lady who said she was sitting at a bus stop and it started to rain really bad. She didn't have any coat or umbrella and had to use the bathroom too. With the bus not showing up, and the rain continuing she just decided to cry and wet her pants. Sometimes you just have to lean into the experience all the way.

But there are upsides to a rainy day, and despite the dreary commute, I do actually like rainy days. So to end this post on a high note, here is one of my favorite rainy day songs:


20 March 2015

Hausfrau by Jil Alexander Essbaum Book Review [And Giveaway]

I love when I read a book that brings me so emotionally connected to the character that I feel like I need to have a "Dr. Phil" type of intervention in order to set them straight. You will be rooting for Anna while you also are screaming at her to change her ways. At least that's how I was. It's sort of like when you're watching a horror movie and you just CANNOT believe they went into the house alone.

What the Book Is About (obtained from Random House' website)

Intimate, intense, and written with the precision of a Swiss Army knife, Jill Alexander Essbaum’s debut novel is an unforgettable story of marriage, fidelity, sex, morality, and most especially self. Navigating the lines between lust and love, guilt and shame, excuses and reasons, Anna Benz is an electrifying heroine whose passions and choices readers will debate with recognition and fury. Her story reveals, with honesty and great beauty, how we create ourselves and how we lose ourselves and the sometimes disastrous choices we make to find ourselves.

What I Thought:

First, this book had excellent writing. The writer was able to create such a vivid scene. I had a bit of trouble with the occasional dutch-german words that were included, but once I got used to them being included in the book, I barely noticed them. I could immediately feel the misery of the main character and I really didn't like her at first. She was cheating on her husband with a variety of men, didn't seem to connect with her children, and she absolutely seemed miserable in the country she was in. After a while though I started feeling sorry for her and felt sympathetic to her despite her flaws. Her husband was obviously cold and even had bouts of violence against her. I even started rooting for her at some point to turn things around and improve her situation in some way - ANY WAY.

Then the ending came around. I absolutely hated the ending and left me feeling sad and miserable after finishing the book. I don't really want to give away what happens, but please be warned, this isn't a pleasant, breezy read. In fact, if you aren't in a great mood, this book won't improve things much for you.
The book delivered a powerful message, though. It was excellently written . The sexual content wasn't a huge part of the book, so if you are concerned about that, I didn't feel like it stood out. One part I really really liked and paid close attention to was that the main character had sessions with her therapist and these sessions were sprinkled throughout the book as real life happens. I loved how this was done - the sort of examination of her present experience and the issues she was having. Oh, if only she could have opened up to the therapist more, maybe it would have saved things.

Anyways, I rated this book four stars on GoodReads. I might have lowered the rating due to the ending but I thought the writer was very good at drawing me in and connecting me to a potentially unlikeable character. I didn't even like the woman at first and then by the end I'm rooting for her. So, how about that for good storytelling?

Make sure you purchase your own copy of this electrifying drama. The book is on sale now too so visit this link to buy your copy.

Best of all I get to giveaway a copy of this book to one lucky reader! All you need to do is leave a comment letting me know what about this book intrigues you. Make sure you leave your email address so I can contact you if you have won.

**I just pulled a random winner and am happy to announce William Kendall won! **

For a bonus entry, follow author @JAEssbaum.
For another bonus entry, follow me on Twitter @BeingTheWriter.

For each bonus entry, make sure you note in the comments you have done it by leaving a comment with your Twitter user name.

Contest open to US only. Email address required to win. Contest ends on 3/29. 

I received compensation in exchange for my honest review.

03 March 2015

Get The Extra Layer of Internet Security with Freedome App



First of all, I am happy to announce that the winner has been revealed for the iPad Mini! Congrats to Colleen B. for winning the prize!

Security and protecting myself from identity theft continues to be such an important factor in my life, especially as online security is more and more at risk. You just never know these days! To have security with programs like F-Secure Freedom at our side is such a great feeling. Just take a look at how many sites I was protected from just by using F-Secure Freedom App on my Windows Tablet!

Just like this video shows, you really don't know how at risk you are, especially when you are using public Wi-Fi. Watch this video to see just how easy it is to hack into a computer using public WiFi:






Isn't that frightening?? I couldn't believe it when I watched that.

Anyways, now is the time to take charge and give yourself an extra layer of protection.

With my link and code provided, I am happy to offer my readers a 90-Day FREE TRIAL to the Freedome Security App. Follow this link and use the code qsf257 for your free trial.

I received compensation for my posts with F-Secure. My opinions are 100% my own.

The Ripple Effect of 1 [Guest Post by D.L. Anderson]

Will You Gain the Power?

Did you know that approximately 200,000 people die every day across the world? That’s a lot of people if you ask me; a massive lot of individuals who have breathed their last breath, felt one last caress, and experienced their final moment within the epic journey known as life.

True, this reality does tend to lose its shrill and intense bearing the older we get and the more people we are forced to bury. Nonetheless, death is not something we ever get used to; not to the point where it does not have some effect on us. The question is – what effect will it have on you?

The answer depends largely on the individual who is fallen. On this wise, the deaths of those true heroes will always have immense effects on everyone in their world and the broader world we all share. Trust me; I could painlessly line up hundreds of men and women throughout history whose lives and contributions transcend their existence on the earth; whose teachings and examples continue to be celebrated and followed even unto this day.

The simple question I have for each reader is this: will you be part of this heroic cast of characters when the days of your sojourning on earth are fulfilled? Or allow me to ask it this way: will you gain the power to realize the profound ripple effect that onw man or woman can have when they dedicate themselves to fulfilling their purpose?

IMPACT

If you answered yes, then I’ve got good news for you – I can help you in this grand endeavor. See I’ve ruminated on this prospect in my life and have come to the following conclusion: 

The enduring value of my life will not be measured by what I got out of it, but rather by how much I gave of myself – and in giving, how many lives for the better were changed.

For this cause, I sought to craft a formula which would allow me and those like me (who would rise to the highest callings in life) to have the greatest impact we could possibly have – and I did. It is a combination of 6 unique steps which, if followed sequentially, will ensure that neither your life nor your death are without profound meaning and enduring value.

Appropriately this formula is based on the acronym IMPACT and includes the following steps:

·        Inspire
·        Mature
·        Purpose
·        Achieve
·        Contribute
·        Transfer

Inspire

Visibly the first step is inspiration, for we will hardly do anything of value or requiring reckonable measures of labor if we are not first inspired to do so. This speaks to a crucial aspect of human nature; specifically our individual inspiration is generally contingent to the value we perceive is attached to that which we are to pursue. If it’s a high value, well then hello inspiration! If it’s not, then you’re better off letting someone else do the job because you’re either not going to get it done or you’re not going to do it well.

Now the key to inspiration is understanding the source, for there are many impulses and stimuli which are neither positive nor progressive. Consequently, if we are going to have a true and lasting impact on our world and the world we share, we must not only be inspired. The source of our inspiration must be positive progressive causes.

Less the world remembers us as villains as opposed to true heroes and heroines.

Mature

Upon being inspired, we must follow all the natural processes of maturation (i.e. the 2nd step in the process). These include a wide variety of personal developments (e.g. emotional, physical, and spiritual) which allow us to increase the breadth of our potential. This is critical because an immature person will fail to cash in on their aspirations simply because they have not ascended to a place where they can execute with any quantifiable measures of relevance or proficiency. They simply don’t know how. Thus it is incumbent upon each of us to follow every natural process of growth; else we find ourselves with a surplus of inspiration and a shortfall of realization.

Purpose

Next, and perhaps the most obvious, we must understand our purpose in life. Here’s why:

It is impossible to have a lasting impact on others if you are living outside of your purpose.

This shouldn’t be too hard to understand. For example, my car keys are only useful to me as a means to start or unlock my car. They have no impact outside of this distinct function, for they serve no other purpose. As such, the only impact they can have in my life is by successfully starting or unlocking my car.

True, this is a much simpler example than the complex network of callings and purpose of the billions of men and women presently cohabiting the world. Still the underlying principle holds true. We are all here for a reason and have been uniquely designed to achieve specific objectives and goals in our lives – and if these are fulfilled, we will assuredly have a tremendous impact on everyone we meet and many who we have never met.

Achieve

This speaks to the next step in the process; that is achievement, the certain conclusion of purpose. This truism lends itself to the question – if you have fulfilled your days and, simultaneously, failed to fulfill your purpose, then what you have really done? What have you accomplished? What have you achieved?

On the scale of impact, you haven’t accomplished too much – and what you have accomplished will not last, for it (like you) will be both scarcely and vaguely remembered; simply because it was all executed without an authentic purpose. Thus it does not endure.

Contribute

Achievement, then, leads to contribution. It’s as natural as the dawn of the morning, and the evening when shadows fall. Here’s why: our greatest achievements are not executed for the betterment of ourselves or a small group; rather they are the amazing results of an authentic desire to improve the lives of all men and women everywhere.
In this order, we must not only be willing to contribute to the brotherhood of man; contributing on this pervasive scale should be our focus. It’s like I always say – the best kind of business is the business of helping others; but you will never know it until you try it.

Transfer

Lastly we must willingly and effectively transfer our legacies to those we are leaving behind. This is critical for the following cause:

We diminish the power of our legacy by foolishly trying to hold onto it.

In spite of this fact, you will find countless men and women more concerned about making a name for themselves than ensuring that their works have redeeming value. What these fail to realize is that there is no better way to realize the redeeming value of our works than by transferring our legacies (in their currency) to others while we are yet living. This act elevates the work (which has the potential to be eternal) above the individual (which has no potential but to be temporary), and positions it to be carried on successfully for generations to come.

To Be Never Broken Again

This brings me to the conclusion of the process and this matter; explicitly this:

The legacy we leave behind after we are gone is contingent to the impact we have on others while we are yet alive.

So take my advice and don’t be as those vain men with questionable motives, whose works are of selfish reasons and enduring no longer than a season. Their impact is at first negligible, and then silently non-existent.

Instead you be as those men and women of renown, who realized that they were merely individual yet united links in the infinite chain of humanity – and that their lives were nothing more than a unique opportunity to effectively strengthen the chain, and to ensure that one day the circle of all life would be restored to be never broken again.

Here’s a question I have for each reader: are you living your life with purpose and having a positive progressive impact in all the offices and groups you are a part of? Or are you being negatively impacted by adverse realities and occasions, and positioning yourself to be all but forgotten the moment you are gone?

Or maybe you’re somewhere in between and ultimately aren’t living as impactful a life as you desire to lead. In each occasion, I would recommend that you visit us at Life Pinnacles, for our reason for existing is to have positive progressive impacts in as many lives as possible – and our mission is to help others as they work towards fulfilling the same cause in their lives.

If you decide to join us, you will receive access to my very first admission in my “Declarations of Independence” series, a compilation of short works dedicated to illuminating man’s search for fulfillment, and independence from all those things which are preventing him from finding it.

D. L. Anderson is a speaker and life trainer whose goals are centered on helping others live a life of purpose, excellence, and balance. Drawing on 15+ years of experience in various fields including information technology, consulting, and business management, D. L. Anderson is very excited to be able to effectively teach others the same principles which have made his life both fulfilling and successful.

His latest book is the self-help book, Unlocking the Mystery of You: The Pinnacle of Purpose.

Visit D.L. Anderson's website or visit him on Twitter  and Facebook. You also have the chance to win a $25.00 Amazon Gift Card! Enter below.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Giveaway ends March 27.
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