Thursday, September 27, 2012

Banned Books Week Bloghop Giveaway!

September 28th to October 6th
Hosted by I Am A Reader, Not A Writer & I Read Banned Books

Thank you for stopping by and checking out my giveaway! I'm so excited for the opportunity to participate in this blog hop and offer a lucky winner one of the controversial books listed below.

On to the books...

Kendra, fifteen, hasn't felt safe since she began to recall devastating memories of childhood sexual abuse, especially because she still can't remember the most important detail-- her abuser's identity. Frightened, Kendra believes someone is always watching and following her, leaving menacing messages only she understands. If she lets her guard down even for a minute, it could cost Kendra her life. To relieve the pressure, Kendra cuts; aside from her brilliantly expressive artwork, it's her only way of coping...
~Go to the entire Goodreads description of Scars by Cheryl Rainfield

Hold Still
Devastating, hopeful, hopeless, playful . . . in words and illustrations, Ingrid left behind a painful farewell in her journal for Caitlin. Now Caitlin is left alone, by loss and by choice, struggling to find renewed hope in the wake of her best friend’s suicide. With the help of family and newfound friends, Caitlin will encounter first love, broaden her horizons, and start to realize that true friendship didn’t die with Ingrid. And the journal which once seemed only to chronicle Ingrid’s descent into depression, becomes the tool by which Caitlin once again reaches out to all those who loved Ingrid—and Caitlin herself
~Go to the entire Goodreads description of Hold Still by Nina LaCour

 Crank (Crank, #1)In Crank, Ellen Hopkins chronicles the turbulent and often disturbing relationship between Kristina, a character based on her own daughter, and the "monster," the highly addictive drug crystal meth, or "crank." Kristina is introduced to the drug while visiting her largely absent and ne'er-do-well father. While under the influence of the monster, Kristina discovers her sexy alter-ego, Bree...
 ~Go to the entire Goodreads description of Crank by Ellen Hopkins

The Marbury LensSixteen-year-old Jack gets drunk and is in the wrong place at the wrong time. He is kidnapped. He escapes, narrowly. The only person he tells is his best friend, Conner. When they arrive in London as planned for summer break, a stranger hands Jack a pair of glasses. Through the lenses, he sees another world called Marbury...
~Go to the entire Goodreads description of The Marbury Lens by Andrew Smith

Here are the official rules/guidelines for the giveaway:
  1. You must be a follower of this blog. Just click the Join this Site box below "Followers" on the sidebar.
  2. You can gain extra entries by following me on Goodreads, Twitter,"liking" my Facebook fan page, tweeting about this giveaway, or leaving a comment below.
  3. This is open to international followers. (Only if The Book Depository ships to your country; please check this link to see if your country's included.)
  4. This contest runs from Sept. 28 - Oct. 6.
  5. The winner will be selected on October 7th via Rafflecopter random selection and announced in this post. You will have 48 hours to respond or I will draw another winner. 
***As the winner, if you are just dying to get another YA book, then you may substitute one of the books listed above for another of similar value from The Book Depository***

Thanks Again & Good Luck!
a Rafflecopter giveaway
Also, make sure to check out the other blogs participating in this Giveaway Hop, too!

Monday, September 24, 2012

"I'm Kind of a Big Deal"

I watched Billie Joe Armstrong's (of Green Day) meltdown at the iHeart Radio Music Festival (I wasn't really there, I just saw it on YouTube), and it was funny, but disappointing. I've loved Green Day a long time, not since 1988, but since the mid '90s. I believe their music has gotten better over the years, which is rare. Most highly successful bands get better over a few albums, hit a peak, and their subsequent albums never quite make it back to that peak level.

Green Day's capable of putting on one of the best live shows in rock, but what I heard from the iHeart Radio Music Festival performance did not live up to their usual standard. I heard that their set was cut short because Usher's ran long. I understand that festivals (especially one like this that had such a wide range in music) aren't filled to capacity with your fans. He was probably drinking too much before the show, and he's not as young as he used to be (I can relate to that). It was too bad that fans of different music couldn't see Green Day kick ass like they would have for one of their own shows.

The funny thing about the rant was all the imagery it stirred up for me. First, it reminded me of all the rants that Axl Rose used to do at his shows back in the day; his own public therapy sessions. Then I heard Ron Burgundy in his tone: "You may not know this, but I'm kind of a big deal." And lastly, with Billie repeating "one minute, one minute!" over and over throughout his rant, I heard "two dollars, two dollars!" from Better off Dead and parodied wonderfully in Not Another Teen Movie. With all of this imagery going through my head, his rant became comically cartoonish.

The rant was disappointing because I know Green Day is better than that. It doesn't help to punish the people in the audience for their perceived injustice by the concert coordinators/management. They certainly didn't win over many, if any, new fans. Maybe it was part of a stunt for free press for their new album that drops tomorrow. Oh well, that's enough of me ranting (using less expletives) about his rant. 


This Week in Happenings...

Come back Friday to participate in the Banned Books Bloghop Giveaway, hosted by I Read Banned Books and I Am A Reader, Not A Writer! How can you say no to free stuff? Have a wonderful week.

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Talking with M. Pax

As I announced on Monday, today I am visiting with M. Pax for a special Spacedock 19 discussion about the adventures of self-publishing. Please go and check it out HERE. Thank you in advance for visiting the Spacedock. Have a seat, grab a beer (only if you're over 21, of course), and enjoy!

Thanks, Mary, for having me! It was a privilege to be invited into the Spacedock. I do hope I can return.

Monday, September 17, 2012

Genre Favorites Blogfest

This is another one day blogfest event hosted by the one and only Ninja Captain Alex. We are listing our favorites in music, movies, and books. And then adding a favorite guilty pleasure in one of the three genres. Enjoy!

Music: The Used (Aternative/Hard Rock)

Over the past few years The Used have become one of my favorite bands. I've talked in other posts about Elliott Smith and Tool. The Used have joined the ranks of those artists on my list of favorites. Each of their albums have such range and they're continually experimenting with their sound. The Used were first known for relentless screaming and crashing guitars, but they are so much more. From their third album, Smother Me is a taste of their softer side.

Movie: Donnie Darko (Sci-fi, Dark Comedy)

Donnie Darko has become a cult classic--a strangely wonderful movie. But it's certainly not for everyone. He had been in other movies, but this was my introduction to Jake Gyllenhaal. Donnie Darko has disturbed teens, time travel, awesome '80s music, a haunting six-foot rabbit, and a discussion on the sexuality of Smurfs. What's not to love? I recommend the theatrical version over the unrated version, mainly do to changes in the music.

Book: The Harry Potter Series (Fantasy MG/YA)

Harry Potter rekindled my interest in children's books. The story in its totality, over all seven books, is epic and brilliant. I truly hope they stand the test of time and are required reading in schools one day soon like Tolkien is today.

Guilty Pleasure: Fifty Shades of Grey (NA Romance/Erotica)

I probably shouldn't have, but I read Fifty Shades of Grey about a month back and it was terribly entertaining--I mean, terrible and entertaining. I am always interested in the big phenomenons, curious as to why they become so popular. Anastasia Steele does sound a lot like Bella Swan, but I so hope Kristen Stewart doesn't play her in the movie.

I hope you enjoyed my favorites. Now it's time to check out some of the other participants in the blogfest. But come back Wednesday for a special discussion with M. Pax as I'm invited onto the exclusive Spacedock 19. Cheers!

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

On Top of the World

For a majority of my day I work as an assistant project manager for a glazing subcontractor. When I got the opportunity to transition from retail management to this, I had very little idea of what a glazing subcontractor was, but I was eager to learn. I was entering a whole new world.

We design and install the exterior skins of large commercial buildings, mostly window systems, but we're capable of doing everything exterior related. The exteriors of these two highrises are examples of what we do, but they're not ours. Our building is the one I took the picture from, my first opportunity to venture up to the quite twentieth floor. We're currently installing windows on the 10th floor.

I was hoping for a clear day, where you'd be able to see the ocean and quite possibly Los Angeles in the distance, but the fog shrouded the world around us. In a way, it was even more impressive.

I quite enjoy heights, and it was exilerating to be up that high with only a steel cable stretched across the empty window openings standing between me and a twenty story drop onto an active jobsite. There was so much commotion on the ground floor, but up there, it was peaceful. It reminded me of the opening scene in SUSY Asylum, with Desiree on the roof of Lorne Tower, gazing down over the edge, far removed from the rest of the city. I felt far removed. Alive. Free.

SUSY Asylum is now in the hands of several beta readers. I need to keep my mind occupied while I wait. It's time to start a new project.

How are your current projects going?

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

IWSG Wednesday - Word of the Month

Happy Insecure Writer's Support Group Wednesday. Thank you again to Alex J. Cavanaugh, the creator of the group. The first Wednesday of every month is dedicated to this group of supportive writers. If it's something you're not familiar with, then please click on Alex's link above for more information and to sign up!

I just finished my 40 mile drive into work and have 40 minutes before my workday officially begins. I tried to write a post over the holiday weekend, but I barely had time to get on the computer. I had planned to write this post last night, but between tending to a fussy baby, returning emails, and fighting a sinus infection, I again was unable to sit down and concentrate on writing a post. This has been what my entire month of August has felt like. The word of the month is:
I've felt behind all month, and the constant feeling has been absolutely draining. I've accomplished a decent amount of editing in my new manuscript, but it's only a fraction of what I had planned to accomplish last month. September can't be a repeat of August. If I want to one day support myself through my writing, I can't wallow in self-pity and succumb to complacency. I need the drive, passion, and persistence to propel myself forward. Excuses will not get me where I want to go.

*Taking a moment to breathe*

I hope August has been productive for you. Summer is ending and I look forward to the changing seasons. Cooler weather with a hot cup of coffee feels like ideal writing weather. But waiting for ideal doesn't build momentum. I know that; I just need to actually apply what I know. It's time to get back to work. Thanks for your support, and as always, thank you for reading!
Blog Design by Imagination Designs all images from the Dark City kit by StarLight Designs