Fairy Tale Fun Blog Hop featuring Kimberly Long from Blogger Girl

THE WINNER HAS BEEN CHOSEN AND THE BLOG HOP IS CLOSED. THANKS FOR PLAYING!

Welcome to the Fairy Tale Fun Blog Hop!

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Unless mine is the first post in the hop you are reading, you already know that the theme of this blog hop is princesses. We are supposed to compare the heroine of our novel(s) to a princess. At the risk of being thrown out of the blog hop (and the female gender), I have a confession to make: I don’t know very much about princesses. I don’t know why, since I grew up in a household full of women—my mom, two older sisters, and a grandmother. I watched a lot of soap operas and beauty pageants (both with my grandma) and sitcoms (I was supposed to be in bed, but I hid in the hallway outside my mom’s bedroom while my sisters played “look-out” so I could watch Laverne & Shirley) but nothing with princesses! And while I wasn’t a tomboy, I played sports and collected caterpillars (gross, I know), but I didn’t play princess.

In order to participate in this blog post, I did some internet research on the characteristics of princesses and other Disney characters. I had every intention of comparing Kimberly Long, the heroine of my novel, Blogger Girl, to a princess, but the first descriptions I read reminded me so much of Jane from A State of Jane and Maggie from How Do You Know?, that I decided to pick one princess to compare to each of my four heroines. But then I couldn’t find one that reminded me of Stephanie from  Just Friends with Benefits so I reverted to the original plan and stuck with Kim. And then I discovered that Kim shares characteristics of several princesses (or other Disney characters) and so to give you the most insight into her character, I’ve listed them all here:

Belle from Beauty and the Beast

Why? Because Kim loves to read and is not shy about it. She’s a (book) blogger girl, after all!

Why not? Because Kim’s love interest, Nicholas, is certainly not a beast. He’s a hottie with penetrating brown eyes and terminal five o’clock shadow.

Cinderella from, duh, Cinderella

Why? Because Kim learns that if you want to make a dream come true, you have to do the legwork. Kim’s Fairy Godmother in this path of self-discovery is very unexpected to everyone, Kim most of all.

Why not? Because Kim’s parents are alive and doting. And while her younger sister Erin is annoying and has a girl crush on Kim’s nemesis, she’s not evil.

Tinker Bell from Peter Pan

Why? Because Kim’s insecurity regarding her position at work and what she considers less “ambitious” life goals often leads to misguided jealousy.

Why not? – Because while Kim is not a pushover and will stand up for herself, she’s not vindictive either.

Dot from A Bug’s Life

Why? Because Kim is vertically challenged at only four foot eleven.

Why not? Because Kim doesn’t hate being small. She is, however, bored with the constant Long/Short jokes

Jessica Rabbit from Who Framed Roger Rabbit?

Why? Because like Jessica, Kim has big boobs, is confident about her sexual prowess, and loves her man

Why not? Because Jessica is probably a foot taller than Kim and whereas Jessica has green eyes, Kim’s eyes are brown—this physical characteristic plays an important role in the novel

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Blogger Girl on Amazon

The Grand Prize for this hop is the Congratulations Magic Morsels 48 Gift Box from Fairytale Brownies http://www.brownies.com/, which includes a bite-size assortment (Caramel, Chocolate Chip, Original, Raspberry Swirl, Walnut, Cream Cheese) of 48 delicious gourmet brownies.

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***EXTREMELY IMPORTANT*** To gain entry to win the grand prize described above, please comment by answering the question: With which Disney princess do YOU most identify and why? And please include your e-mail address along with your comment. Entries will NOT be valid if you don’t include an e-mail address. The contest is only open to U.S. citizens.

To continue hopping for seventeen more chances to win the grand prize, check out these fabulous posts:

 

Age is Just a Number Blog Series – Whitney Dineen talks turning 30 and then 40

I’m stoked to get the Age is Just a Number Blog series rolling. First up is Whitney Dineen. Whitney is the author of She Sins at Midnight. Her post shows that contrary to popular belief, sometimes life gets better as we get older. (Hooray!) 

The morning my mom turned thirty, she slammed back two martinis before lunch, ostensibly, to inebriate herself into submission. Even as the proud mother of two (beyond adorable children), wife to one, homeowner, budding gourmet cook and journalist, she needed sedation to handle this milestone.

Enter me. I always assumed that by the time I turned the big 3-0, I’d be head of the P.T.A. , proud mother of between two and four stellar offspring, happy owner of a state of the art minivan and still manage to keep my size six 6 rear end in quarter bouncing shape. I would do this by playing competitive tennis at the local country club where I would be dining 1-3 times a week; the fact that I had never played tennis never entered into my fantasy. Oh, and I’d have a cleaning lady. Cause with my rigorous duties as June Cleaver, there would be no time to clean my own toilets. I think I might have had a gardener too, but I’m a bit fuzzy on that.

The reality was a radically different animal. I was married to the man of my dreams and had been for eight years. So yes, score one for me! My svelte size six butt was buried deeply under what I like to call think of its protective layer, my size fourteen butt. My children were still in egg form so there was no need to own a minivan, the P.T.A. didn’t want me without kids and still had no idea what I wanted to be when I grew up. Happily, my husband and girlfriends threw me a surprise party so I could join the family tradition of tying one on to “celebrate” entrance into my fourth decade of life.

In great contrast to my misery over turning thirty, turning forty was full of joy! I was happily pregnant with my first daughter after several miscarriages. I decided minivans were ugly and I didn’t really want one. The dream of playing tennis and having a size six derriere seemed so foolish as if not to even matter anymore, and while I did have a gardener, I valiantly cleaned my own toilets. When I turned forty, I was convinced that life couldn’t possibly be any sweeter.

Here’s what came next. In the last five years, our house came perilously close to burning down in the San Gabriel fires, my father-in-law died, we packed up our lives and moved to Oregon, we added another healthy pregnancy and daughter to the mix, my butt never did get smaller, I am my own gardener, I still clean my own toilets, and my husband was diagnosed with stage four cancer.

This is what growing older has taught me about life. Age is just a number, not a deadline on happiness. Health and love are the most important forms of prosperity you can own. Who cares how big your butt is?

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Link to She Sins at Midnight:
http://www.amazon.com/She-Sins-Midnight-Whitney-Dineen/dp/1496150457/ref=tmm_pap_title_0?ie=UTF8&qid=1411315886&sr=1-1
Kirkus Review:
“This whirlwind comedy/drama…centers on Lila Montgomery and her high school crush, a hilarious cat fight with a Hollywood starlet and her award-winning romance novel nobody know about. This fun, quick read examines the envies and dissatisfactions in women’s lives, reassuring reader that no one’s life is truly perfect.” –Kirkus
Author Bio:
While attending the University of Illinois in Chicago, Whitney Dineen was discovered by a local modeling agent and began an unexpected career as a plus-size Ford model. She modeled in New York City before moving to Los Angeles with her husband.
When she wasn’t modeling, she was in the kitchen, baking delights to share with friends. Soon, her friends began asking her to send baskets of her wonderful candies and cookies to business associates, agents and production studios. Word spread like wildfire, and the rest, as they say, is history. Whitney’s sensational creations are still in great demand by her loyal celebrity clientele (www.WhitneysGoodies.com).
During “The Hollywood Years,” Whitney was bitten by the writing bug and started creating characters that are inspired by strong women with a great sense of humor.
In addition to her love of chick-lit, Whitney has also written a series of adventure books for middle readers The first of which, Wilhelmina and the Willamette Wig Factory, is nearing completion.
Whitney and her husband, Jimmy, have recently relocated to the beautiful Pacific Northwest to raise their children, chickens and organic vegetables.

 

Coming soon:

How Do You Know? – December 2nd.

What if you were approaching the end of your thirties and all of the life milestones you took for granted in your youth suddenly seemed out of reach?

On the eve of her thirty-ninth birthday, Maggie Piper doesn’t look, act, or feel much different than she did at twenty-nine, but with her fortieth birthday speeding towards her like a freight train, she wonders if she should. The fear of a slowing metabolism, wrinkling of her skin, and the ticking of her biological clock leaves Maggie torn between a desire to settle down like most of her similarly-aged peers and concern that all is not perfect in her existing relationship. When a spontaneous request for a temporary “break” from her live-in boyfriend results in a “break-up,” Maggie finds herself single once again and only twelve months from the big 4.0. In the profound yet bumpy year that follows, Maggie will learn, sometimes painfully, that life doesn’t always happen on a schedule, there are no deadlines in love, and age really is just a number.

Blog Roll – My Writing Process

I’ve been tagged by Samantha Stroh Bailey, author of the fabulously fun novel, Finding Lucas, co-founder of the equally fun and fabulous BookBuzz author/reader mix and mingle, and one of my closest friends and confidants to participate in the Blog Roll – Writing Process. In the post below, I have answered questions regarding my writing process and at the end of the post, I have tagged three authors to answer the questions too and tag three more authors and so on and so on and so on.

Question: What am I working on?

I currently have two works-in-progress. The first is almost ready for submission to my publisher and is about a thirty-nine year old woman who is struggling with the impending end of her thirties having not reached life milestones like marriage and children typically reached at an earlier age. I hope my publisher, Booktrope, will release this novel in late 2014. The second is a sequel to my third novel, Blogger Girl. It is twenty-nine pages and counting!

Question: How does my work differ from others of its genre?

My books are inspired by real life and the characters I create are, sorry to possibly overuse this word but “real.” They do not have dream jobs, closets full of designer clothes, regular invitations to hot restaurant openings and parties, and boyfriends with perfectly chiseled bodies. But they are not typically underdogs either. They have a lot going for them. They are intelligent, attractive, down-to-earth women who struggle with (here comes that word again) “real” problems. They do not always act with the best judgment and are often misguided. They feel emotions that women typically do not like to admit experiencing, like insecurity, jealousy, bitterness etc. and, yes, sometimes they drink too much. Some readers have complained that my characters can be whiny and insecure at times but others (most people) applaud them for letting their “flaw flag” fly. Show me a woman who has never whined or experienced insecurity and I’ll flash you my boobs. Seriously! I dare you.

Question: Why do I write what I do?

I write real women’s fiction with humor because it comes naturally to me, probably because I’m a real woman who happens to be quite funny. I’ve made many mistakes myself and I want to speak for women like me to let them know they are not alone. Life can be very challenging sometimes, but even in the most trying of times, someone will make a joke, spill something, trip on the sidewalk etc. Laughter lightens even the darkest moods, even if only temporarily.

Question: How does my writing process work?

I work a full time job and I must make an effort to carve out time each week for writing. Whenever I do not have plans after work, I go straight to my favorite writing place—The Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf—where I write for a couple of hours. Additionally, I use most of my lunch hours to do some light writing, like blog posts. I also try to spend at least one afternoon of every weekend writing. So far, this routine has enabled me to release approximately one novel a year.

Question: And the other part of this question, how does my writing process not work?

What doesn’t work is comparing myself to authors who write more quickly and release multiple books a year. Some of these authors do not work full time jobs, but some of them do and yet manage to write more quickly. That is them and this is me and it’s okay. I try to keep my life as balanced as possible, which means having a social life, an on-again/off-again love life (the “off” part is not by choice), working out, and simply zoning out in front of the television. Messing with the balance I strive so hard to maintain does not work for me.

Who’s next?

I am tagging the following wonderful authors below:

Mary Rowan, author of Leaving the Beach, a gritty story about illusion, reality, and the odd ways that music can blur the lines between the two.

Patricia Mann, author of compelling and thought provoking Is This All There Is. Quote from one reader, “This book, quite simply, was stunning.”

Sheryn MacMunn –bestselling author of Finding Out, a story of love found and lost, true friendship, and how the human spirit endures.

The Pollyanna Plan Meets Blogger Girl in London

As part of the United Authors of Chick Lit Promotion, I would like to welcome Talli Roland and Emma Beckett, the main character of her fabulous chick lit novel The Pollyanna Plan to my blog today.  As an aside, Talli is one of my favorite chick lit authors. I’ve read all but one of her books and so I’m kind of giddy about co-promoting with her. Additionally, I’ve never been to London so I get to live vicariously through Kim on her trip. I hope you’re as curious about how Emma showed Kim around London as I am!  When you’re finished, check out Talli’s Blog to see how Kimberly Long, the main character of Blogger Girl, showed Emma around the town in NYC and don’t forget to pick up The Pollyanna Plan. You won’t be sorry :).

The Pollyanna Plan Meets Blogger Girl in London

Since Kim from New York is passing through London, Emma has taken the day off to show her around the ‘hood. First of all, they climb to the top of chi-chi Primrose Hill, where Gwyneth  Paltrow resides.  As Kim is rather short, she has to struggle to keep up with Emma. Unfortunately, Paltrow et al weren’t around today.

The view from Primrose Hill.

They head down the incline towards Regent’s Canal, following the towpath that Emma only discovered after meeting Will, her boyfriend. Will lives on one of the brightly coloured canal boats in an area called Little Venice. It’s a gorgeous time of year for a walk on the canal, with the leaves shining gold in the sun.

Over lunch on a boat cum cafe docked in the basin, Kim confides she’s a chick lit addict. Emma’s not so keen, but since agreeing to the Pollyanna Plan – where she attempts to always see the upside – she decides to give it a try.

Lunch devoured, the pair decide to spend the afternoon in nearby Regent’s Park, lolling about on the grass and enjoying the lovely weather.

After a busy afternoon relaxing, hunger called and Emma led Kim back to her flat where she whipped up her infamous Thai curry. When the bottle of wine was polished off, Kim left to catch her flight back to New York, and the two promised to keep in touch.

About The Pollyanna Plan

 

Thirty-something Emma Beckett has always looked down on ‘the glass is half full’ optimists, believing it’s better to be realistic than delusional. But when she loses her high-powered job and fiancé in the same week, even Emma has difficulty keeping calm and carrying on. 

With her world spinning out of control and bolstered by a challenge from her best friend, Emma makes a radical decision. For the next year, she’ll behave like Pollyanna: attempting to always see the upside, no matter how dire the situation. 

Can adopting a positive attitude give Emma the courage to build a new life, or is finding the good in everything a very bad idea?

 

Available on Amazon UK and Amazon.com.

United Authors of Chick Lit!

final promo art US

Fasten your seatbelts and put your tray tables in the upright and locked position. Over the next few days, some of your favorite Chick Lit characters will be jetting across the Atlantic to visit with fictional friends on the other side of the pond.

 

The event kicks off on Monday, Oct. 21.

 

On Tuesday, Oct. 22, read about Stella from Fat Girls and Fairy Cakes and Chloe from Lying to Meet You as they travel across the Atlantic to visit each other.

 

On Wednesday, Oct. 23, it’s time to discover what happens when Emma from The Pollyanna Plan and Kim from Blogger Girl meet.

 

On Thursday, Oct. 24, Izzy from Izzy’s Cold Feet and Jamie from Finding Lucas will be taking you on a trip alongside their characters.

 

And on Friday, Oct. 25, Kate from Sealed with a Kiss and Pilar from In Need of Therapy will be chatting about their overseas experiences.

 

Here’s a little sneak peek at the fun, frothy books and sassy gals featured in our international promo, all of which are priced at $3.99 or less:

 

Finding Lucas by Samantha Stroh Bailey – Daytime talk show producer Jamie Ross is beyond fed up with her toxic bad boy turned metrosexual boyfriend. Spurred on by her gang of quirky friends, she goes on a hilarious, at-times disastrous, and totally life-changing hunt to track down the ”one who got away.” But are some loves best left behind? Available on Amazon.com http://www.amazon.com/Finding-Lucas-ebook/dp/B007VIIU6A/ Amazon UK http://www.amazon.co.uk/Finding-Lucas-Samantha-Stroh-Bailey-ebook/dp/B007VIIU6A and Kobo http://store.kobobooks.com/en-ca/books/Finding-Lucas/-wfpLcDV6keHZR-T80qCUg

In Need of Therapy by Tracie BanisterHandling the problems of hysterical hypochondriacs, lovelorn neurotics, and compulsive man whores is all in a day’s work for super-shrink Pilar Alvarez. But can she deal with her crazy Cuban family, a trio of unsuitable suitors, and a threat to her practice without ending up on the couch herself? Available on Amazon.com http://www.amazon.com/In-Need-of-Therapy-ebook/dp/B008N6Z36Y Amazon UK http://www.amazon.co.uk/In-Need-of-Therapy-ebook/dp/B008N6Z36Y and B&N http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/in-need-of-therapy-tracie-banister/1112265620?ean=2940015006889

Lying to Meet You by Anna Garner – Overworked New York fashion girl Chloe Lane has no time for a real relationship, but when her childhood pal asks her to play the part of his girlfriend in order to test a theory, she decides to go for it. The lies start piling up and things start getting crazy. Will Chloe be able to keep it together? Available on Amazon.com http://www.amazon.com/Lying-to-Meet-You-ebook/dp/B00EZR5M9I Amazon UK http://www.amazon.co.uk/Lying-to-Meet-You-ebook/dp/B00EZR5M9I and B&N http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/lying-to-meet-you-anna-garner/1116838753?ean=2940148616924

Sealed with a Kiss by Rachael Lucas – Kate breathes a sigh of relief when she’s dumped at her best friend’s wedding. When she takes a job on the island of Auchenmor, she’s determined to have a year off men, but that’s before she rescues Flora the seal pup with the help of Roddy, her mysterious new boss… Available on Amazon.com http://www.amazon.com/Sealed-with-a-Kiss-ebook/dp/B00BE9EUW0/ and Amazon UK http://www.amazon.co.uk/Sealed-with-a-Kiss-ebook/dp/B00BE9EUW0/ 

 

The Pollyanna Plan by Talli RolandEmma Beckett has always looked down on ‘the glass is half full’ optimists. But when she loses her high-powered job and fiancé, Emma makes a radical decision: from here on in, she’ll attempt to see the upside, no matter how dire the situation. Can adopting a positive attitude give Emma the courage to build a new life, or is finding the good in everything a very bad idea? Available on Amazon.com http://www.amazon.com/The-Pollyanna-Plan-Talli-Roland-ebook/dp/B00AFAW2GK and Amazon UK http://www.amazon.co.uk/The-Pollyanna-Plan-Talli-Roland-ebook/dp/B00AFAW2GK

 

Blogger Girl by Meredith SchorrKimberly Long has two passions: her successful chick lit blog and Nicholas, her handsome colleague down the hall. But when her high school nemesis pops onto the chick lit scene with a hot new book and eyes for Nicholas, Kim has to make some quick revisions to her own life story. Available on Amazon.com http://www.amazon.com/Blogger-Girl-ebook/dp/B00EDTLDSW Amazon UK http://www.amazon.co.uk/Blogger-Girl-ebook/dp/B00EDTLDSW B&N http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/blogger-girl-meredith-schorr/1116358028?ean=2940148503125 and Apple iTunes https://itunes.apple.com/us/book/blogger-girl/id686654939?mt=11

 

Izzy’s Cold Feet by Sarah Louise Smith – Izzy is engaged to Greg, who is everything a girl could want. The trouble is – all she can think about is the men she loved before she met him. In the week leading up to her wedding day, Izzy is forced to ask herself who she loves the most. And, given the choice, who would she want to spend her life with? Available on Amazon.com http://www.amazon.com/Izzys-Cold-Sarah-Louise-Smith/dp/1909841005/

Amazon UK http://www.amazon.co.uk/Izzys-Cold-Sarah-Louise-Smith/dp/1909841005/ B&N http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/izzys-cold-feet-sarah-louise-smith/1116263752 and UK Nook http://uk.nook.com/ebooks/izzys-cold-feet-by-sarah-louise-smith/2940045154499

 

Fat Girls and Fairy Cakes by Sue Watson – TV Producer Stella is over worked, over weight and under fire battling to balance family, career and those weighing scales. In the past she’s always found comfort at the bottom of her mixing bowl but now the most delicious lemon sponge with zesty frosting has no effect. However, life is about to get even tougher… and Stella has to face some truths about herself, her life and her future. Available on Amazon.com http://www.amazon.com/Fat-Girls-Fairy-Cakes-ebook/dp/B005L92JB8 and Amazon UK http://www.amazon.co.uk/Fat-Girls-Fairy-Cakes-Watson-ebook/dp/B005L92JB8

 

 

SCHEDULE OF EVENTS:

 

Tuesday, Oct. 22

Stella will be on Anna Garner’s blog http://libby-mercer.blogspot.com/ and Chloe will be on Sue Watson’s blog http://fatgirlsandfairycakes.blogspot.com/

 

Wednesday, Oct. 23

Emma will be on Meredith Schorr’s blog https://meredithschorr.com/blog/ and Kim will be on Talli Roland’s blog http://talliroland.blogspot.com/

 

Thursday, Oct. 24

Izzy will be on Samantha Stroh Bailey’s blog http://samanthastrohbailey.blogspot.ca/ and Jamie will be on Sarah Louise Smith’s blog http://sarahlouisesmith.com/

 

Friday, Oct. 25

Kate will be on Tracie Banister’s blog http://traciebanister.blogspot.com/ and Pilar will be on Rachael Lucas’s blog http://rachaellucas.com/blog/

 

Welcome Eleanor Parker to the Celebration of Bloggers Tour

I am so pleased to welcome my friend Eleanor Parker (“Ellie”) to the Celebration of Bloggers Tour. You probably have not heard of Ellie yet but, trust me on this, you will. Once her historical fiction novel A Decent Woman is released to the world, she will be a household name. 

If you read my blog post introducing the Celebration of Bloggers Tour, you know that before I became an author, I blogged my personal experiences anonymously. This is how I met Ellie in 2008.  Despite an age difference that she seems to think is 30 years but is really somewhere between 15 and 20, we really related to each other, mostly in terms of dating experiences. I gave my suitors nicknames whereas if I recall, Ellie used first initials. In any event, we shared many of the same highs and lows as well as lots of laughs. I don’t write that dating blog anymore but I’m so glad that Ellie and I reconnected on Facebook. I follow her new blog, The Writing Life and am pleased to confirm that it is equally as entertaining as her previous one. The Writing Life chronicles Ellie’s journey to becoming a published author but it still includes humorous and touching anecdotes from her life. If A Decent Woman shares the same heart as Ellie’s blogs, I’m sure it will resonate with many women. Please take a minute and explore The Writing Life as well as Ellie’s post below:    

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In 2007, my son suggested I write a blog. Write a what? I immediately thought blogging was a style of dance like clogging or maybe it was a new way to meet people as I was a newly divorced 50-year old woman. Since I’d journaled long-hand a la Julia Cameron for decades, my son thought I would like it and in the process, give my writing hand a break. Son, you were right. I took to blogging like a duck to water. I bought a bright red laptop and entered a strange and magical place.

In my first blog profile, I joked that I blogged because I had a lot to say and my adult children were tired of listening to me and would no longer answer my calls. My beautiful children had graduated from college, moved out and found great jobs which made me happy, but I also knew that they wanted me to find a life and start writing again. Blogging became my new hobby and before I knew it, became my new addiction.

Soon, I made cyber friends by reading and commenting on blogs and grew a blog readership which is how I met Meri from New York City. Despite our 30-year age difference, Meri and I had something in common—dating.  My niche was dating in your 50’s and the funny stuff that happens along the way. Believe me, funny stuff ensued. I loved writing anonymously about my dates which was very therapeutic, actually. I soon discovered that dating at any age had not changed all that much–men were still from Mars and women were still from Venus.

I blogged about my dating adventures and misadventures for three years until I grew tired of dating, false starts and 60-year old men who were still finding themselves. By that time, I’d met four blogger friends in person who are still dear friends to this day, but I was listless and bored. It was time for a change. I decided to focus on moving West, buying a house and I started writing a chick lit book entitled The Prime of Ms. Ellie Parker. Believe me, I had plenty of material. However, my first novel-length manuscript, A Decent Woman, kept nudging me. I’d finished the historical fiction novel set in Puerto Rico in the 1900’s in 2006, but with divorce, working, kids heading to college and a trans-Atlantic move, I’d shoved the manuscript into a packing box and forgotten about it.

I moved into my new/old house in 2010 and when I unpacked my manuscript, I knew what I had to do. Instead of continuing with the chick lit book aka autobiography, I finished editing, A Decent Woman, which as we speak, is in the hands of a NYC agent and a small press publisher. (Prayers are welcome.) No more blogging, I thought. It was time to focus on finding an agent and publishing my first book. I queried agents every day and while waiting for the Golden Ticket and wondering if I could repaper my bathroom with rejection letters, I discovered author blogs—a brand new adventure in writing and blogging for me. Every writer and author had one, so I jumped on the bandwagon. I decided to call my new blog, The Writing Life, which would encompass my life as a writer.

Although at times my musings on life, gardening, adult children, and restoring a 107-year old house creep into my author blog, I write about the writing life as I see and experience it. What I don’t include in my author blog is my dating life. I have more material than one adult woman should have and then, some. Amen.

I still have a lot to say and have been known to exclaim, “Hey, I wrote a blog about that!” Friends will playfully roll their eyes and tolerate me and for the most part, friends, cyber friends, and family who follow my blogs, keep up with me which I very much appreciate.

Blogging is a great creative outlet and author blogs are wonderful marketing tools. I see blogging in my future as I continue to connect with readers, writers and bloggers from around the world. I am a work-in-progress and my new writer website is under construction. You’re never too old to learn, folks.

Coming August 28th: Blogger Girl

What happens when your high school nemesis becomes the shining star in a universe you pretty much saved? Book blogger Kimberly Long is about to find out.

A chick lit enthusiast since the first time she read Bridget Jones’s Diary, Kim, with her blog, “Pastel is the New Black,” has worked tirelessly by night to keep the genre alive, and help squash the claim that “chick lit is dead” once and for all. Not bad for a woman who by day ekes out a meager living as a pretty, and pretty-much-nameless, legal secretary in a Manhattan law firm.

While Kim’s day job holds no passion for her, the handsome (and shaving challenged) associate down the hall is another story. Yet another story is that Hannah Marshak, one of her most hated high school classmates, has now popped onto the chick lit scene with a hot new book that’s turning heads–and pages–across the land. It’s also popped into Kim’s inbox–for review. With their ten-year high school reunion drawing near, Kim’s coming close to combustion over the hype about Hannah’s book. And as everyone around her seems to be moving on and up, she begins to question whether being a “blogger girl” makes the grade in her off-line life.

Celebration of Bloggers/Blurb of Blogger Girl

Before writing books was even a blip on my radar, I was a blogger.  I blogged about everything from my friendships, to my family, to my BFF from high school who turned out to be a pretty horrible friend, to the effects of PMS on my personality, to unrequited crushes, to romantic relationships – especially romantic relationships.  I often surprised myself by how honest and open I was, even when it left me feeling very vulnerable or didn’t paint me in the best light.  I loved it.  There is something about putting all of your deepest thoughts in writing that is extremely cathartic.  While I was blogging, I became friendly with other bloggers across the globe, from Virginia, to Florida, to Kentucky to Belfast to Pittsburgh, to North Carolina to Australia and everywhere in between.  These “virtual” friends became as important to me as my off-line friends and I felt a stake in their lives just as they felt one in mine.  In many cases, these people knew more about me than the people I saw on a weekly basis.  After my first novel came out, I became less comfortable putting myself out there to such an intimate degree but I still keep in touch with some of these bloggers.  In fact, one has become a best “off line” friend and I’ve planned a vacation to visit her later this summer. 

Back when I was blogging personal experiences, I thought that was what “blogging” was – publishing an online personal diary.  At the time, I was not aware of book bloggers, beauty bloggers, mommy bloggers, fashion bloggers, food bloggers etc.  After Just Friends with Benefits came out and with my introduction to social media, I became very familiar with other types of bloggers, especially book bloggers.  Book bloggers have become a very important part of my publishing experience and some of them have become good friends of mine as well.  To take the influence of book bloggers on my life to a whole new level, they inspired the plot of my third soon-to-be-released novel, Blogger Girl.  Keep reading for the blurb of Blogger Girl, to be released in August, 2013.

To celebrate the launch of Blogger Girl, I have decided to celebrate blogging and bloggers in general beginning, July 16th.  Each day, I will host a different blogger on my website.   I have asked each blogger to either write a post about anything related to “blogging” or take part in an interview.  I have been the guest on a countless number of blogs over the past three years as an author and I think it’s time to turn the tables and give these amazing bloggers the spotlight.  So, stay tuned for guest posts from amazing bloggers like the following:  (I plan to continue the blogger celebration well after the release of Blogger Girl and so if you’d like to be featured, please let know!) 

Samantha March, author and founder of Chick Lit Plus
Kelly Perotti, author and founder of mommy blog Crib Notes Kelly Isabella Louise Anderson, founder of Chick Lit Goddess
Marlene Roberts Engel, founder of Book Mama Blog
Francine LaSala – author and founder of Clippings in the Shed
Stephanie Territo, founder of Steph the Bookworm
Eleanor Parker, founder of The Writing Life
Melissa Amster, founder of Chick Lit Central and Merryland Girl Blog Laura Chapman, founder of Change the Word
Kaley Stewart, founder of Books Etc.
Ashley Williams, founder of The Book Fetish Blog
Samantha Stroh Bailey, author and blogger
Michelle Bell, founder of Michelle’s Book Nook
Julie Valerie, founder of Chick Lit Chit Chat

And now, without further ado, the blurb to Blogger Girl!

What happens when your high school nemesis becomes the shining star in a universe you pretty much saved? Book blogger Kimberly Long is about to find out.

A chick lit enthusiast since the first time she read Bridget Jones’s Diary, Kim, with her blog, “Pastel is the New Black,” has worked tirelessly by night to keep the genre alive, and help squash the claim that “chick lit is dead” once and for all. Not bad for a woman who by day ekes out a meager living as a pretty, and pretty-much-nameless, legal secretary in a Manhattan law firm.

While Kim’s day job holds no passion for her, the handsome (and shaving challenged) associate down the hall is another story. Yet another story is that Hannah Marshak, one of her most hated high school classmates, has now popped onto the chick lit scene with a hot new book that’s turning heads–and pages–across the land. And it’s also popped into Kim’s inbox–for review. With their ten-year high school reunion drawing near, Kim’s coming close to combustion over all the hype about Hannah’s book. And as everyone around her seems to be moving on and up, she begins to question whether being a “blogger girl” makes the grade in her off-line life.

International Chick Lit Month Author Blog Hop

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Welcome to my stop on the Second Annual International Chick Lit Month Author Blog Hop!

As you probably know by now, one lucky hopper will win the GRAND PRIZE: A FREE Kindle Keyboard 3G, with Free 3G + Wi-Fi, and a 6″ E Ink Display. That lucky grand prize winner will also receive a “chick lit starter library” filled with great chick lit books written by the indie authors participating in the blog hop. Please see bottom of post for instructions.  For More Information Click Here:

The topic of this Blog Hop is “What’s on Page 25” and today, I am sharing the contents of page 25 of my chick lit novel, A State of Jane.

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On page 25 of A State of Jane, my main character, Jane Frank, is assuring her doting father that she is studying hard for the LSAT exam. There’s one problem though: Jane is lying.

Jane’s father is definitely her favorite of her two parents as she considers her mother to be a bit on the critical side. Whereas her mother often encourages Jane to wear dark clothes to disguise her curvier lower half, Jane can do no wrong in her daddy’s eyes and she’s a daddy’s girl to the Nth degree. Since she was a little girl, Jane and her father talked about working side-by-side on multi-million dollar deals as legal partners. Jane’s life plan includes kicking butt on her LSAT exam so that she can get into a top tier law school like the Ivy League Columbia.

Unfortunately, Jane’s life plan also includes finding a serious boyfriend. She waited the requisite year after breaking up with her first and only boyfriend of nine years and is ready (and eager) to fall in love again. Jane is afraid that if she waits too long to commence the boyfriend search, she will start law school single and have no time to date. After a few “false-starts” on eHarmony, Jane is getting ready for a first date with a guy she randomly met at an ATM machine and her daydreams about their future together are getting in the way of her studies. (Win the grand prize! The 7th secret word in the 25-word sentence is: Blog) Jane is positive that she can juggle preparations for the exam with her romantic aspirations and she does not see the need to concern her father with minor details like how much she has strayed from her studying schedule ( a lot).

Does Jane really have it all under control or is she about to encounter a rocky road on both the academic and romantic fronts? You must read the book to find out and I hope you will 🙂

Learn “How to Hop & Win!” New to blog hops? Want to learn how to win the grand prize? Find complete information here.

Keep hopping! Click here to return to the list of blogs.

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P.S. Speaking of buzzing over books and summer parties… If you happen to be in NYC on Thursday, May 30th, please come on down to Stone Creek Bar and Lounge on East 27th (between Lex and 3rd) from 7pm to 9pm for a mix-and-mingle event a few of us in this Hop are hosting. Should be a hoot! Book Buzz 2013–click here for details!

Stay Tuned – Second Annual International Chick Lit Blog Hop – May 20th-27th

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WHO: fabulous chick lit authors of the world

WHAT: The Second Annual International Chick Lit Month Blog Hop – this one is being hosted by the fabulous blogger, Julie Valerie.

WHERE: Chick Lit Author Blogs everywhere

WHY: Because we’re fabulous, that’s why!!

WHEN: May 20-May 27th

EXTRAS:

TOPIC: The topic of this year’s Blog Hop is “What’s on Page 25?” and each participating author will be writing a post on the contents of page 25 of their novel.

PRIZES: A grand prize will be awarded in the nature of a FREE Kindle Keyboard 3G, with Free 3G + Wi-Fi, and a 6″ E Ink Display. That lucky grand prize winner will also receive a “chick lit starter library” filled with great chick lit books written by the indie authors participating in the blog hop.

Individual smaller prizes will be awarded by participating authors. I have not yet decided what I will be giving away, so please feel free to leave a comment with suggestions. Please be reasonable, i.e “gift certificate to Barneys New York” or “helicopter ride around NYC” are not viable options until I become a major best selling author, sorry!

For more information, click here:

http://www.julievalerie.com/2013/05/12/chick-lit-author-blog-hop-starts-may-20/

 

Girly Books Blog Hop – location!

girly book promo with prize info FINAL

Congratulations to Kimberly Holgate – winner of the gift card for $5!  The winner has been informed and the prize has been delivered.  Thanks to everyone for participating and see you next time!

I am so excited to be participating in the 2nd ever Girly Books Blog Hop!Thank you to Libby Mercer for organizing yet another fabulous blog hop, this time on location, location, location.  Please read for your chance to win a $5.00 gift card from Amazon or Barnes & Noble.  And don’t forget to read the posts of the other authors and bloggers for chances to win even more prizes and a fabulous grand prize!

What inspired me to write A State of Jane was my experience dating in New York City.  I have a boyfriend now but at the time, I was single and one after another, guys who seemed to be completely smitten with me would simply disappear.  Sometimes it was easy to figure out what happened, for instance, when the guy came on super strong, was oozing with charm and then never called me again when I refused to go home with him.  Other times, I was completely thrown.  Like the time a guy disappeared in the middle of an email exchange.  We had gone out several times and I thought we got along famously but once I confessed that I preferred Mr. Furley to Mr. Roper as the landlord on the television show Three’s Company, he ceased our email exchange and never asked me out again.  I didn’t hear from him until years later when he asked to connect with me on Linkedin of all places!  Another guy pulled a Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde on me in the middle of New Year’s Eve.  Yes, he was all touchy-feely and excited about ringing in the New Year with me at 11:59pm on December 31, 2007 but by 2:00am on January 1, 2008, he was more interested in his buddy at the sports bar he took me to after dinner.  Oh, and let’s not forget about the guy I was dating for a couple of months who made me breakfast at his place after a sleepover, showed me the home movies of his students practicing for crew, took a nice leisurely walk around the lake and waited with me for an hour after I missed my train, only to never call me again as well as ignore my phone call and email to him.  Not only did he lack the decency to initiate a “break-up”, he couldn’t even locate the balls to respond to an email I sent asking him if everything was ok.  If he didn’t want to see me anymore, he could have lied and written an email saying he was too busy with school to date.  That would have at least been an attempt to spare my feelings, but no, it was like I ceased to exist and it hurt.  I wasn’t in love with the guy but I felt so violated and, well, stupid!  I cried for days.

As mostly anyone who has been single for a significant period of time can tell you, dating in NYC is brutal.  I’m sure it is brutal elsewhere but NYC is a whole other type of brutal.  So, when I decided to write about a naïve woman who dives head first into the dating scene after a long term relationship, all optimistic and expecting to meet the love of her life, only to find an island full of men who are interested today and gone tomorrow, the location was a no-brainer – New York City – or as I like to call it “The planet of the flakes.”

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In A State of Jane, there are many mentions of New York being a difficult place to find “the one.”  Without giving any spoilers, I thought I would share some of these lines with you:

“Yes, Manhattan is full of eligible bachelors.  Eligible bachelors who are looking to get laid, unemployed, not interested, or gay!”

“I’d like to know the reason God put all the asshole single guys on the island of Manhattan!  They are only good for one thing, some of them better than others.”

“I think normal has a different definition when it comes to guys in New York City. There are so many girls here that for guys it’s like eating at a Chinese buffet.  They want to sample everything.”

“I got him unjaded.  Unlike some of these others New York City guys.”

“I’d heard that New York City girls were a ruthless bunch but, blimey, I wasn’t expecting it from you.”  (Yes, sometimes we ladies are pretty messed up too….)

He just faded into oblivion – like every other guy I dated before him since my reentrance into the dating world. I didn’t think my mom would understand behavior like that was par for the course in New York City, especially since three guys flaked on me before I wised up.

“Not as difficult as finding a husband.”  I pointed out the window of the bus. “Especially in this Godforsaken city!”

“It’s because of the men in this city!  You dump us when we don’t sleep with you.  You dump us when we DO sleep with you.  And sometimes, you dump us for no reason at all!”

True that!

For a chance to win a $5.00 gift card from Amazon or Barnes & Noble, please leave a comment with your email address and the city you think is the best place to fall in love.  And don’t forget to check out all of the other participating blogs!

Click here to enter the grand prize and to continue hopping:

http://libby-mercer.blogspot.com/2013/01/enter-to-win-girly-books-blog-hop-grand.html