Monday, June 29, 2015

ain't we got fun kindle edition giveaway!

purchase here!
Ain't We Got Fun released exactly one month and four days ago. I know. Time flies so fast. It's almost terrifying.

Thank you so much to all who have shown so much enthusiasm for our book, and for all of you sweet people who have purchased copies. Your support is such a blessing to us, and I cannot begin to tell you how much we adore your adoration for the story.

Way back when we ran that book release giveaway (it was one month and four days ago, y'all), we received a number of disappointed comments from those unable to enter the giveaway because it was open only to residents of the United States. The comments saddened us as well. We wanted you to be able to enter just as much as you wanted to be able to enter, but we are simply starving artists who cannot afford to send a box overseas.

I think it was Jessica who suggested that we run a giveaway for a Kindle copy. And we decided to take her suggestion! Below is the Rafflecopter in which you can enter for the chance to win a copy of Ain't We Got Fun! At the end of the week, we will pick two lucky winners who will each receive a free Kindle copy. Enjoy! And may the odds be ever in your favor.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Monday, June 22, 2015

alpha to omega

via
I've been very uninspired lately, especially when it comes to blog-writing. So what do you do when you can't write a blog post? Why, you answer tag questions. It's probably against the Blogger Code of Rules to answer tag questions that you weren't tagged in, but I'm going to be a rebel here and break that code of rules. (MWAHAHA.)

I found this very interesting tag on a blog I stumbled across, and I want to try it out. So, here goes!

A-Z BOOKISH QUESTIONS

Author you've read the most books from: When it comes down to it, it would frankly be Valerie Tripp, Beverly Cleary, or Lois Gladys Leppard. I read so many American Girl books when I was little that were written by Valerie Tripp; I read all the Ramona books and Henry books and other books by Beverly Cleary; and I read probably around fifteen or twenty of the Mandie books by Lois Gladys Leppard. Yes. Heavy stuff, guys.

Best sequel ever: The first thing that comes to mind is the third installment of the Anne of Green Gables series, Anne of the Island. It was my favorite book in the series, and it counts as a sequel, right? We'll say it does.

Currently reading: A multitude of books, it seems. Oliver Twist by Charles Dickens, Emma by Jane Austen, and Resist by Emily Ann Putzke. Technically, I'm editing that last one. And boy, oh boy! When this book is finally published, you're going to hear all my many, many fangirlish rants thoughts on it. So far, it is so good. So, so good. And it's very different from Ain't We Got Fun. Resist ain't a light read in the least!

Drink of choice while reading: Either lemonade or a smoothie in the summer, or hot chocolate in the winter.

E-reader or physical book: Back a couple months ago, I would have said physical book without a doubt. However, I am now so accustomed to using my screens, be it computer or phone, that it's almost become easier for me to focus on something that's on a screen. It's horrid, really. I need to wean myself from this habit.

Fictional person you would have probably actually dated in high school: Well, I just got out of high school ... but I likely would have dated Peter Pevensie. Heck, I'd still be dating Peter if only he wasn't fictional.

Glad you gave this book a chance: Veiled Rose by Anne Elisabeth Stengl. When I was thirteen, I read Stengl's first book, Heartless. And I hated it! It disturbed me to the core of my being, and I didn't dare continue the series. However, as I've grown older, the things that made me uncomfortable to read when I was younger (such as some violence and fantastical imagery) don't bother me as much. So I read Veiled Rose, which was okay. But that led me to read Moonblood, and that story is so rich and beautiful. I emerged christening it one of my favorite books.

Hidden gem books: When I was younger, I rarely read books outside my realm of American Girl and Ramona Quimby books. However, one obscure book that caught my heart was Understood Betsy by Dorothy Canfield Fisher. I read that book over and over again.

Another book that I enjoy today (and isn't so very well known) is Interrupted by Rachel Coker. That is another book I didn't love when I was younger, but I've grown to love it as I've grown older and my tastes have changed. It's a sweet little story. If you liked Ain't We Got Fun, you'd probably like Interrupted. It has more heartache than AWGF, but it's still very sweet and fun nonetheless.

Interesting bookish question that you wish this list included: Which book is most dog-eared on your book shelf? Well, this is going to be a toss-up between Heidi, Caddie Woodlawn, The Witch of Blackbird Pond, and The Scarlet Letter. The first three are merely childhood favorites, and the latter is a book I had to read for school last year. Meaning I needed to refer to it many times, and it, therefore, wasn't handled in the gentlest of ways. 

Just finished: I honestly cannot recollect what book I read last! I think I reread Interrupted last, but the last new-book I read was The Scarlet Letter, I believe. Or was it The Giver?

Kind of books you won't read: Books with much gore and immorality. Those are books I won't read. Those and the tomes that simply would take too much time to delve into. 

Longest book you read: This is tricky! Which book is longer? Little Women or To Kill a Mockingbird? Because I believe those are the longest books I've read. Unless you count The Lord of the Rings as one whole book. ;)

Major book hangover: I think I'm going to say The Last Battle by C.S. Lewis. I don't think you'd be able to leave that series without a major hangover  especially not with the way Lewis ends it! Although, Moonblood left me with a pretty hefty hangover as well.

Number of bookcases you own: One, and I'm quite proud of it. It's my favorite part of my bedroom.

One book you've read multiple times: Well, this is tricky. Perhaps A Little Princess by Frances Hodgson Burnett?

Preferred place(s) to read: My bed! Or the sofa. Or the cushioned bench on our back porch.

Quote you like from a book you read: Well, this is rude. I cannot pick just one. Therefore, I'll share a couple.

"There's some good in this world, Mr. Frodo, and it's worth fighting for." 
― J.R.R. Tolkien, The Two Towers

"I'll choose an ugly truth over your pretty lies any day." 
― Anne Elisabeth Stengl, Moonblood

"I think there's just one kind of folks. Folks." 
― Harper Lee, To Kill a Mockingbird

"It isn't Narnia, you know," sobbed Lucy. "It's you. We shan't meet you there. And how can we live, never meeting you?"
"But you shall meet me, dear one," said Aslan.
"Are - are you there too, Sir?" said Edmund.
"I am," said Aslan. "But there I have another name. You must learn to know me by that name. This was the very reason why you were brought to Narnia, that by knowing me here for a little, you may know me better there."

― C.S. Lewis, The Voyage of the Dawn Treader


Reading regret: Having become too caught up lately with technology to enjoy a good read. I need to sit down and read again. I'm thinking a good start would be one of the books on my reading list: The Horse and His Boy. It's been too long since a visit to my favorite world.

Series you started and need to finish: Perhaps the Anne of Green Gables series, or the companions to The Giver. 

I stopped after reading Anne of the Island, because the ending felt like a perfect ending to the series. (And my mother said that they rather go downhill after Windy Poplars.

I also own the companions to The Giver, but I haven't had the heart to read them yet.

Three of your all-time favorite books: Little Women by Louisa May Alcott, The Chronicles of Narnia by C.S. Lewis (is that cheating? ;)), and Ain't We Got Fun. Wait, I'm not certain the latter counts since I'm one of the authors ... but in all actuality, it's one of my favorite things ever. So perhaps it does count.

Unapologetic fangirl for: The Chronicles of Narnia.

Very excited for this release more than all the others: Resist by Emily Ann Putzke! Oh. Oh, the feels. But I'm not even finished with it yet.

Worst bookish habit: Starting too many books at one time? Dog-earing the pages? Putting a book down to go watch Netflix? You pick the worst.

X marks the spot (that is, bookmarks): I only have one bookmark. As the bad habit hints above, I tend to dog-ear pages. Although, I'm becoming a bit more peevish about that, so maybe that habit is waning. Anyway, I use this bookmark a lot: a Jane Austen sketch bookmark that I won in a giveaway. It's rather pretty, and it has remarkably not gotten lost.

Your last book purchase: I believe it was A Tree Grows in Brooklyn by Betty Smith.

Zzzzz snatcher book: I don't have one in particular. Just any book I happen to be reading for the first time that has me all caught up in the story.

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This took me an entire hour to fill out. I'm off to go contemplate my life choices.

Thursday, June 18, 2015

mine

"you made a rebel of a careless man's careful daughter."
- taylor swift -

I held my breath, clutching my stomach as if someone had just hit me. Someone sort of had. In my eyes, anyway. Ashlee would wave her perfectly manicured fingers, scoffing at me for considering love at first sight to be a tragedy.

Was that love at first sight? I felt like I needed some air, but he had gone out there to get a paper. I would run into him. But he was coming back inside. Why didn't I put my foot down? Now I would go to work without breakfast, because I would be far too distraught and nervous to eat. It was a pity, too. This was my favorite diner.

via
Oh, dear Ashlee. If only she were here. I clicked my heels together under the table, impatiently waiting for the young man to return though I dreaded it. Daddy said there was no such thing as love at first sight. He said it was only mumbo-jumbo that would get you into trouble later. That's what happened with Mom.

I didn't want that to happen to me.

Then the door clanged as the young man returned, a paper stuffed under his arm and a cavalier smile on his face. "I hope you didn't mind my inquiries to sit with you, Miss ...?" He looked at me questioningly with those clear, green eyes that would be permanently implanted in my mind.

"Um ... everyone just calls me Dani," I choked out, hugging myself tighter. There they were again. Those butterflies in my stomach. I wanted to quench them, but then I didn't. "I don't mind you sitting," I found myself saying, and I didn't quite regret it.

"Good." He sat down across from me. "Dani," he mused, laying the newspaper on the table and thoughtfully clasping his hands together. "Is it short for Danielle?"

"Yup," I replied, looking toward the kitchen. I rather wished they had forgotten my order. Three pancakes and bacon on the side. How fattening. I would have to eat it in front of him, too. He, of course, would insist that I eat, denying any impoliteness it would cause.

"Nice name," he said. "It's like the girl from ... what's that movie called? The Cinderella one."

"Ever After." I smiled, feeling the butterflies rise to my throat.

"Yes," he mused, gazing at me deeply. "You look like her, too."

I snorted before I realized it. Then I blinked in embarrassment and stammered, "I look nothing like her, sir."

"Well, if it's not her face then it's her beauty." He winked and snapped open the newspaper.

That was forward. I stood, feeling rather uncomfortable and enjoying it. "I must leave," I said, finding it hard to breathe again. "I must go."

"Oh, must Cinderella leave so soon?" he exclaimed, resting his arm on the back of the chair. "Why, it's not yet twelve o' clock." He winked.

"I forgot, I ... I need to meet a friend."

"A friend?" His eyebrows rose. "Ah, I see. Prince Charming."

"Oh, no, no!" I cried. "I don't have one of ... those."

His charming grin spread again. "Really? I'm surprised."

I paused, halfway out the door. I wanted to stay, but I knew I couldn't. I needed to breathe. Maybe I would return. Maybe. Just in case, I spoke. "I'm sorry, I didn't catch your name."

His green eyes sparkled at my interest. "It's Dave, Cinderella."

Wednesday, June 3, 2015

summer reading list

via
I'll let you in on a Sort Of secret. I've actually never compiled a summer reading list for myself. I never liked the idea of it. That's no fun, I thought. It's like ... schoolwork or something. It's like a cage. "Read this. Don't read that." I liked the freedom of choosing what I wanted to read, and reading it when I wanted to read it. However, I've noticed my reading declining steadily in the past, well, year, and I'm beginning to realize that having a reading list might, in fact, pique my interest again in the written word. Plus I have several books on my shelf that need to be read. (For although I may struggle with actually reading books as of late, I've had no problem buying new ones. Because books are so pretty, guys!)

- A Tree Grows in Brooklyn by Betty White -

- Emma by Jane Austen -

- The Adventures and the Memoirs of Sherlock Holmes by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle -

- Rose in Bloom by Louisa May Alcott -

- Resist by Emily Ann Putzke -

- The Horse and His Boy by C.S. Lewis -

- Captivating by John and Stasi Eldridge -

- Little Women by Louisa May Alcott -

- Starflower by Anne Elisabeth Stengl -

The first four books have been on my shelf for quite some time now -- except A Tree Grows in Brooklyn, actually. I picked that one up at a used bookstore just a couple weeks ago. It was a rather spontaneous purchase, too. I can't resist pretty, used books. Anyway, those four need to be read because I own them. It's a fact.

Resist is actually not published yet. Fortunately, I'm pretty good friends with the author. ;) And I've been recruited to help edit it. (Okay, okay ... I was asked to help edit it, to which I responded "YES!" quite heartily.)

I've only read The Horse and His Boy once in my lifetime. I picked up this little copy as well at the used bookstore, after having a discussion with a man at my church about the Narnia books. He mentioned this one, and I recalled I hadn't read it in a very long time. I knew I needed to fix that as soon as possible.

Captivating was recommended by a lady I like to consider my second mother. I'm already halfway into it, and so far, a good portion of it has been very good for the soul.

Naturally, Little Women is a reread. I have several reasons for wanting to reread it, one of which is the fact that I haven't read it in a very long time. I miss the characters.

Starflower. Chloe, I'm looking at you. ;) Chloe gave me Starflower about eight-ish months ago to borrow. Ashamedly, I never ended up reading it. I still want to read it, however, even though I returned it to her a short while ago while attending her graduation party. (Hey, on that note, here's a public congratulations to you, friend!) All that to say, we've both decided I'm coming back to her house soon to borrow it. Then I'll have to return to her house to return it to her. So you see, it's all a very good method. I get to see her at least twice in the process. Very good, very good.

WHAT SORT OF BOOKS ARE YOU READING THIS SUMMER?

Monday, June 1, 2015

sleeping beauty

Not long ago, you heard me mention a fairy tale contest hosted by Anne Elisabeth Stengl and Rooglewood Press. I discussed it with another blogger, Ana, in the comments of that post and we speculated that it might be Snow White. I was hoping, however, that it would be Sleeping Beauty. You see, I have had an idea for a Sleeping Beauty retelling for over a year now. Well, readers ...

Rooglewood Press is delighted to introduce their second fairy tale novella contest—

FIVE MAGIC SPINDLES
a collection of “Sleeping Beauty” stories


The challenge is to write a retelling of the beloved fairy tale in any genre or setting you like. Make certain your story is recognizably “Sleeping Beauty,” but have fun with it as well. Make it yours!

Rooglewood Press will be selecting five winners to be published in the Five Magic Spindles collection, which will be packaged up with the phenomenal cover you see here. Maybe your name will be one of the five listed?

All the contest rules and information (how to enter, story details, deadline etc.) may be found on the Rooglewood Press website. Just click HERE and you will go right to the page.

Rooglewood Press’s first collection, Five Glass Slippers is available for purchase, and our second collection, Five Enchanted Roses is scheduled to launch on July 27, and is currently available for pre-order. Be certain to get a copy of each and see what previous winners did with their wonderful retellings.

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Will you be entering?! I know I'm going to at least attempt to pound out that Sleeping Beauty retelling at last! And isn't the cover gorgeous?