Sunshine Blogger Award!!

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I WAS NOMINATED FOR AN AWARD hehehehehehehehehehehehehehehe

As I was saying….

I was nominated for the Sunshine Blogger Award by Coffee Loving Bookoholic !!! So now I get to answer the 11 questions she has asked, and then I get to write 11 questions and nominate 11 more blogs to answer them!! (Okay but seriously what is with the number 11? I’m confused)

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I will now lay out the official “rules” of this award for you because I am a good Samaritan (or am I?)

  • thank the person who nominated you in a blog post and link back to their blog
  • answer the 11 questions sent by the person who nominated you
  • nominate 11 new blogs to receive the award and write them 11 new questions
  • list the rules and display the sunshine blogger award logo in your post and/or on your blog
I guess that wasn’t so hard…

OOOkay! So here are the questions for me to answer, complete with (you guessed it) MY ANSWERS!!

1. If you could do one job for the rest of your life, what would it be?

Is professional sleeper an acceptable answer?

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2. What’s the most important thing for you in a book review?

Writing one or reading one?
Writing one: uhh I don’t know… I just kind of wing it?
Reading one: I guess just being able to easily see what the person rated the book *shrugs*. I really like reading all different types of reviews.

3. Which author would you love to meet and why?

Kendare Blake because she has been my favorite author for as long as I can remember. (Which you can probably tell by how much Anna Dressed in Blood shows up in my posts!)

4. Is there one book memory from your childhood that you will never forget?

Not really…. although I wish I had some kind of cool story to tell you guys.

5. If you could time travel, which event would you like to be part of?

ALL OF THEM.
OH WAIT STOP NO THERE ARE SO MANY BAD ONES WHAT AM I DOING TO MYSELF??????

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*Distant gunfire*
*Gasping*
*Indecipherable screaming*

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*whispers* “please, never make me do that again”

On a totally unrelated note, I think it would be totally cool to visit Laura Ingalls right around the time she was a teacher.

6. What would your perfect day look like?

Reading. All. Day. In. My. Grownup. Onsie.

7. Are you more productive in the morning or in the evening/night?

This is actually a tough question because I’m a morning person and a night owl. Like I wake up super early (like 6 AM) and go to bed super late (like 12-2 AM) so I pretty much never sleep. And I’m kind of productive during both times?

8. Pc or mac?

I have a PC, but I like the apple software more… so probably mac.

9. If you could turn your favorite book into a movie, which actors would you choose to play the parts?

Gosh I’m really bad at casting….
So I would do Anna Dressed in Blood (obviously) and here would be my cast (sticking to the 4 main characters here):

Cas: Nick Robinson
Carmel:
Liana Liberato
Thomas:
Asa Butterfield
Anna:
India Eisley

wow that was hard….

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10. What talent would you like to have?

The ability to never seem like a clutz

11. If you had three wishes, what would they be?

I honestly would have no idea what to do with three wishes… like all of the things I would wish for would be weird… oh wait, how about this:

1. A at-home library that never runs out of shelf space
2. Free books for life (hardback and paperback… not that e-book stuff)
3. The ability to freeze time so I can read forever and not miss out on the world….

AND NOW: for my nominations….

  1. Lucy @ Down the Rabbit Hole
  2. Lily @ Cheeky Booky
  3. Mandy @ Book Princess Reviews
  4. Ashley and Sabrina @ 5171 Miles
  5. The Orangutan Librarian
  6. Lauren @ Comma Hangover
  7. Diana @ Bookish Diana
  8. Rosie @ Reads and Roses
  9. Heather @ The Sassy Book Geek
  10. Analee @ Book Snacks
  11. Nia @ Shades of Paper

(I’m not sure if any of you have been tagged by someone else, but now you get to answer my questions too!!!!)

My Questions for you:

  1. First five things that pop into your head. GO:
  2. If you could turn into an animal, what would it be and why?
  3. What is your spirit animal? (Is it the same as the animal you would turn into?)
  4. What is one book you think everyone should read?
  5. Favorite ice cream flavor?
  6. What is your most controversial book-related opinion?
  7. What character (from books/TV/movies/etc.) is literally you?
  8. Glass half full or half empty?
  9. Telekinesis, teleportation, or telepathy?
  10. What food speaks to your soul?
  11. Whatever you do, don’t think about pink elephants. Okay, what are you thinking about?

To those I nominated: I can’t wait to read your answers!

To everyone else: Thanks for reading!! See you next time!

 

 

Siblinghood of the World Bloggers Award

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I was nominated for the Siblinghood of the World Bloggers award by Sarah over on smitchjack. The idea behind it is to answer 10 questions from the person who nominated you, and ask 10 new questions to 10 people you choose to nominate.

Here are the answers to the questions I was asked:

1. What is your favorite breakfast?

Hmm. I love chocolate chip pancakes with whipped cream, strawberries, and blueberries.

2. What is the shortest piece you have written?

A flash fiction piece. I actually posted it on the blog (you can see it here).

3. What made you decide to start blogging?

I’m not really sure. I have always wanted to start a blog (I’ve started a few before, but never stuck with them), and after watching (sorry, binging) Awkward, I decided to go for it again.

4. What is your desk like? (If you don’t have one than tell me about your writing space)

I do have a desk, but I don’t write at it. Instead, I put my journals and notebooks inside, and my computer on top. When I write I hold my computer on my lap and find somewhere comfortable to sit.

5. Who or what inspires you to write?

I don’t think my inspiration comes from just one source. I get ideas for writing from many different things, but usually they come to me during car rides, when I’m thinking about past events in my life and my mind wonders into the “what-ifs”.

6. If it weren’t for social media, how many other writers would you know?

Only one or two. I meet most of my writer friends on social media (thank you twitter).

7. What do you read?

Oh man, I read pretty much everything. There are some genres I don’t go near, but for the most part if the description on the back/dust cover looks good, I’ll read it.

8. If you didn’t write, what would you do instead with the time?

Honestly it would probably bee spent on Netflix. I watch wayyyyy to many movies and TV shows.

9. What do you tell your family about your writing when you are working on something?

Everything about it. My older brother and I love talking about my plot lines, and he helps me come up with ideas. He also reads everything right after I write it, and gives me feedback. My one-younger brother also reads everything right after I write it, and is always asking me when the next “update” is going to come. My youngest brother asks me about it, but isn’t much of a reader. My dad isn’t much of a reader either, so we never really talk about my writing.

10. What is your favorite word and why?

My favorite word is definitely “dilemma”. It’s been my favorite word since the sixth grade, mostly because it has my name in it.

Now to nominate 10 bloggers:

  1. Kelly from Bright Book
  2. K J Chapman from kj86chapman
  3. Bunnita from Worth Reading It
  4. Universe Notebook
  5. Simon from Universe of Possibility
  6. Jade from Scatter Booker
  7. Sammie from Dreaming Writer
  8. Caitlyn from Ink Witch
  9. Sarah and Sophie from Contemporary Corner
  10. Rawls E.

Here are my questions for you:

  1. What is your favorite weekend activity?
  2. If you could meet anyone (alive or dead), who would it be and why?
  3. Are you a cat person or dog person?
  4. What is something you can’t live without?
  5. What do you waste the most time doing?
  6. What is something you used to hate but now love?
  7. Do you have any pets? If so, tell me a bit about them.
  8. In your opinion, what is the grossest thing in the world?
  9. What is one weird habit you have?
  10. What is something you think the world should know?

 

The Liebster Award

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The Liebster Award is an award created within the blogging community to offer support and recognition to new up and coming bloggers. And I am very honored to be nominated by Down The Line. Thank you very much for the award!

So Let’s Get Down to the Rules

  • Thank the person who nominated you and link back to his/her blog.
  • Copy and paste the Liebster Award badge to your post.
  • Answer the ten questions the person who nominated you asked.
  • Nominate 10 new bloggers with less than 200 followers that you want to share with the world.
  • Then create ten new questions for the bloggers you are nominating
  • Notify the bloggers that you have nominated by leaving a comment on their blog.

Here are the answers to the questions that Down The Line asked:

  • Describe yourself in one word.

Creative

  • If you will have one superpower, what will it be, and why?

That’s actually a really tough one. I am a huge super hero fan, and there are just so many powers I want! I think right now I have to go with Mystiques power from X-men.

  • If you could teleport to one place right now, where will it be and why?

To my best friend’s house. I only get to see her two or three weeks a year, so I miss her constantly.

  • What do you do in your free time?

Write, and binge-watch way too many TV shows.

  • What is the first thing you will do when you wake up in the morning?

Drink coffee. Lots and lots of coffee!

  • How many countries have you been to outside your own country? What are those countries?

Well, assuming the United States is “my country” (I grew up there but moved out of the country four years ago), four. I am living in Dominica now (not the Dominican Republic), and have visited Canada, Guadeloupe, and Antigua. I’ve also been to Puerto Rico, but I consider that part of the USA, so I didn’t include it in my count.

  • What is your favorite color?

I always say my favorite color is pink, but I am really drawn to blues at the moment. And greens. And green/blues.

  • When was the last time you cried?

Last week. My dad fell out of a coconut tree, broke 2 ribs, and punctured his lung. It was one of the scariest moments of my life. Especially because the hospital here looks like the hospital in any movie about Indian slums ever.

  • What is one thing you have regretted doing/not doing in the past?

I don’t really have many regrets, but if I had to choose something, it would probably be the time I drunk texted this guy from my friends phone, asking if he liked me. I’m almost 100% positive he knew it was me, and I am mortified whenever I think about it (especially because I was dating his best friend at the time).

  • If given the chance to switch lives with one famous person, who will that be?

That’s not really a fair question. We don’t really know what their lives are like, we only know what they show us. But, if I had to choose, I would have to say either Chrissy Tiegen, Jennifer Lawrence, or Jenna Dewan Tatum.

Here are my nominees:

  1. Boho Street Queeen
  2. Bonny’s Soulfood
  3. DadvWorld
  4. Golden Wolves
  5. High Heels & a Backpack
  6. Holloway’s Hideaway
  7. Nicole’s Story, Views, and Reviews
  8. Over 50 and Ranting
  9. Travelling Book Junkie
  10. Travel Pockets

My questions for the nominees:

  1. Why did you decide to start blogging?
  2. How long have you been blogging?
  3. What are the top three things you want to do in 2016?
  4. What is your biggest pet peeve?
  5. If you could meet any person (alive or dead) who would it be and why?
  6. What is your favorite thing about yourself?
  7. What is something you used to hate but now love?
  8. If you could choose a different name for yourself, what would it be?
  9. What is something you can’t live without?
  10. What is something you want the world to know?

Congratulations to everyone nominated! Be sure to check out each others blogs, and leave a link to your Liebster post in the comments below! I can’t wait to read your answers!

Author Q&A- Tricia Stewart Shiu

Today I had the pleasure of interviewing Tricia Stewart Shiu, an amazing writer who has won many awards for her books. Her newest book, Please Hold, is on sale now. Read the interview below to see a glimpse of Tricia’s life.

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Q: How long have you been writing?

A: I’ve been writing since I was twelve years old. I was in middle school and read James Joyce’s “Portrait of an Artist” for the first time. About an hour later, I was overcome by an urge to write, and indulged the impulse. Time stood still, I have no idea what happened. All I remember is coming to, with pages upon pages filled with words in front of me. It felt incredible to express myself so freely and I never looked back.

 

Q: Do you have a muse? What inspires your writing?

A: Just about every experience I have (emotionally, spiritually, energetically) inspires me in some way. No matter what the genre, I draw from my human experience on that particular level. So, in the MOA Series, I write about my metaphysical experiences and spiritual awakening after a personal encounter I had with a Hawaiian spirit called, Moa.

 

Q: You have won an impressive 25 awards for your writing. Can you tell me a little bit about them? Which are you most proud of?

A: The Moa Books—MOA, STATUE OF KU and IRON SHINTO—have earned numerous awards and honors at several national and international book festivals. Here are a few: IRON SHINTO won Best YA Novel at the DIY Book Festival, an ‘Honorable Mention’ in the London and New York Book Festivals in the Young Adult category and ‘Runner Up’ at the renowned Beach Book Festival. The book was also ‘Runner Up’ at The Great Southeast Book Festival, ‘Honorable Mention’ in the San Francisco, Southern California and Los Angeles Book Festivals in the Young Adult category and in Portland Oregon’s Great Northwest Book Festival. MOA received a ‘Runner Up’ and STATUE OF KU ‘Honorable Mention’ in the Spiritual category at the Pacific Rim Book Festival. PLEASE HOLD won Best Unpublished Manuscript at the Southern California Festival and Best First Chapter at the Novel Festival. I can’t pick one specific award or book of which I’m most proud. So happy to write and share and love it all!

 

Q: Tell me about the MOA series. What was the initial idea behind them?

A: When I was five, I was visited by a vision. I’ll never forget it, I was running down the stairs and the entity, a girl with dark hair, stopped me in my tracks. The spirit said that I would go through a deeply challenging time in my life, but would resurface, later in life, with unimaginable joy and fulfillment. That vision stayed with me. In middle school, I would sit quietly at my desk adding up the years to figure out exactly when my life would turn around.

And then I forgot. I moved to Los Angeles after college, somehow that kimono made it into the mass of clothing I put in the back of my red Toyota hatchback. I got busy, my work and then, many, many years and moves around the city later, the stress of family life took over and I was completely overwhelmed and in desperate need of a vacation. My husband, daughter and I decided to go to Hawaii.

When the plane landed in Honolulu, I remember feeling the difference in the atmosphere as I disembarked. The air made me somehow, remember that there was a part of me that knew…something…what was it?

Never mind, I was in Hawaii it was time to see the sights! So, I sped off to see Diamond Head, Waikiki Beach and then headed home for an afternoon nap before an evening luau. As I drifted toward sleep, I heard my name being called. In my mind’s eye, I saw a beautiful young woman with dark hair, who said her name was Moaahuulikkiaaakea’o Haanaapeekuluueehuehakipuunahe’e—Moa for short.

And then I remembered.

Boy, did I remember. That final experience sparked a spiritual journey that continues to this day. In fact, the event and subsequent interactions with Moa (oh yes, they continued) opened the door to my writing the entire Moa Series (MOA, STATUE OF KU and IRON SHINTO).

My biggest lesson throughout the years of metaphysical studies has been that we all possess these gifts, and much more, to some degree, and I have dedicated the rest of my existence to spreading that message. As frustrating as it is to hear, we all have the answers to those burning questions, deep within us and if we find them, we find our truest form of self-expression.

 

Q: Tell me about the other books you have written. Which was the most fun to write? Which was the most challenging?

A: The time between stories is the most challenging for me. When I am inside a story and writing I am at my most peaceful and joyful. Not only do I mourn the end of a story when I write, I also do it when I read a great book. Nevertheless, I believe that this sadness brings with it, a great opportunity and depth of creativity and I wouldn’t change a thing about the process. My latest book, PLEASE HOLD, is a New Adult Romance and a departure from the YA, SciFi genre. In it, I write about the world of high-level executive assistant’s world in which I worked for many years.

 

Q: How much ‘grunt work’ goes into each book? Is there a lot of research involved?

A: Quite a bit of research goes into my writing, but, because it is organically driven, it doesn’t feel like work.

 

Q: If you were transported into the life of one of your characters, who would you want it to be and why?

A: I am fascinated by the lives of the spirits who narrate each of the MOA books and find that when I write from each omniscient perspective, I am transported. It would be fascinating to spend time as Moa, the Hawaiian spirit. I love how she is able to articulate the human experience from a different plane. How fun it would be to effortlessly move between the worlds!

 

Q: If you could travel anywhere in the world in any era, when would it be and why?

A: I would love to travel to the exact time frame when Stonehenge was created. It would be glorious to know why and how it was created.

 

Q: What advice do you wish you had received when you began writing?

A: There is nothing I would change about my journey with writing, as I believe I am who I am, as a writer, because of that experience. One thing I can pass along, in a word is: tenacity. Everyone has her own journey in writing and nothing should get in the way (whether positive or negative) of the every moving, consistently changing story flowing through us. Keep going through the rough times, the good times, the light and the dark. In the end, all of it will make for a good story.

 

Q: What is something you want the world to know?

A: Each of us has at least one divine gift to remember. The moment we wake up and retrieve the memory of who we are and what we are here—on earth—to do, the adventure begins. Be kind to yourself and to others.

Find Tricia Online:

Twitter

Website

Author Q&A- Don Bruns

Today I had the pleasure of interviewing Don Bruns, the award winning author of two mystery and thriller series. Read the interview below.

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Q: How long have you been writing? Why did you start?
A: I wrote my first story at age 12, sent it to Alfred Hitchcock Magazine, and they promptly sent it back. I wrote ad copy for years…that was mostly fiction, but I have written novels for fifteen years.
Q: What inspires your writing? Do you have a muse?
A: I simply have dozens of stories rumbling around in my head and until I can tell them all I will continue to write.
Q: You just won the Silver Falchion Award at Killer Nashville for your book, Reel Stuff. How did that moment affect your life?
A: I’ve received dozens of awards…local and national. Dozens of reviews, mostly, thank God, positive. They don’t change my life, but I do try harder…I want a positive result no matter what I write.
Q: Where is the strangest place you have gotten inspiration in?
A:I am inspired by winter because I only want to write about warm climates. I am inspired by poverty, because I want my writing to be profitable. I am inspired by too much blandness because I want to write about exotic locations.
Q: If you were in one of your books, who would you be? Why?
A: A writer is, like it or not, part of every character he or she creates. Bad or good, I am some of everyone.
Q: When do you do most of your writing? Do you have any ‘rituals’?
A: I create more in the evening after a glass or wine. Or two. Or three.
Q: What is some advice you wish you had gotten when you began writing?
A: Persevere. In writing, searching for an agent, finding a publisher…keep on keeping on.
Q: You have published two mystery/thriller series. Tell me about them. What were the original ideas behind them?
A: Last week I signed a contract with Severn House Books in Great Britain for a third series. The first book, Casting Bones, releases in England and Australia in June in the States in October. It’s about a New Orleans homicide cop and a voodoo queen who solve a murder. The Mick Sever series is about a journalist who covers the entertainment industry, and the Stuff series is about two 24 year old private eyes who have no idea what they are doing and they get in all kinds of trouble.
Q: If you could be a character in any movie, who would you be and why?
A: Chili Palmer, in Elmore Leonard’s “Get Shorty.”I love a good con man.
Q: What is something you want the world to know?
A: The world? That I tell great stories!
Find Don Online:

Author Q&A- K. M. Weiland

Today I had the pleasure of interviewing the lovely K. M. Weiland. She is the award-winning and internationally published author of the bestselling Outlining Your Novel and Structuring Your Novel. Read the interview below.

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Q: How long have you been writing? Why did you start?

A: Stories have always been my mode of interpreting and communicating with the world around me. I made up characters and told myself stories from a very young age, but I didn’t start writing them down until I was about twelve. During high school, I edited and published a small newsletter that featured short stories and informative articles. From there, it was a natural progression to novels.

Stories are like breathing. Life without a story in my head is one-dimensional, stagnant, vapid. I love the life God has given me, but I think I love it better because I’m able to live out so many other lives on the page. I’m more content to be who I am because I’m not trapped in that identity. When I sit down at my computer and put my fingers on the keys, I can be anyone or anything, at any time in history. I write because it’s freedom.

 Q: You have written many fictional books as well as non-fiction books. Tell me a little bit about what it is like writing in these different genres.

 A: Most of my stories fall into under the headings of historical and speculative fiction (and sometimes a combination of the two), but, in general, I dislike pigeonholing myself in a particular genre. As a reader, I enjoy many different types of fiction. If it’s a good story, I’ll love it, regardless of genre. And that’s pretty much how I feel about my writing. I’d love to write something in every genre before I’m finished!

Q: Where do you get the inspiration for your books? Do you have a muse?

 A: I like to say that inspiration is everywhere—and it really is. I’ve picked ideas from such disparate places as the dust on my windowsill (I’m a terrible duster) to my pets to the grapefruit I had for breakfast. It’s really just a matter of being open to whatever you’re experiencing at the moment.

But I will say that most of my inspiration is usually the result of other people’s art. The three big ones are most definitely:

 

  1. Books
  2. Movies
  3. Musi

I feed off other people’s stories and glean little tidbits that inspire stories of my own. The characters and themes in books and movies and the half-answered questions in songs are endless sources of inspiration for me.

Q: What advice to you have for budding authors and bloggers?

 A: Write for the love of it, first and foremost. As Anne Lamott says, “Being published isn’t all it’s cracked up to be. But writing is.” Write the stories of your heart, not the stories you think the market wants. Write the story you’d want to read if you were one of your own readers.

Q: What is something you want the world to know?

A: That sometimes starting is the hardest thing you’ll ever do. But it only takes five seconds of courage, and it only gets easier from there.

Find K. M Online:

K.M. Weiland’s Bio

Twitter

Website