Contests

I want to thank all the participants of the blog hop LABOR DAY tour. I hope everyone enjoyed their visits and found some new authors along the way. The official contest closed at NOON EDT and I know I will be getting the complete list of winners as soon as our fearless leader Alanna Coca recovers from her family bbq (you know how those westerners love their beer … ahhhhh, just kidding Alanna.) Actually, LOTS of people toured from beginning to end and she’s got A LOT of prizes to sort out. Good luck to everyone.

Until then I’ll pick a winner from all the commenters on my blog. Drum roll please … And the winner of an ebook is …

CATHY M.

Congratulations Cathy!

Now for my OTHER really big news! I’m so excited about this and can not wait until the middle of this week when the UPS Drive shows up with my PRINT copies of HEALER’S GARDEN. Yep, you read that right … Healer’s Garden is now available in print!
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Isn’t it beautiful! Watch for announcements for a contest to win a copy of the book. In the meantime please enjoy this EXCERPT

The sound from the crowd rolled up from the grass. The noise engulfed him like a thunderous storm. He had never delivered the words with such enthusiasm and confidence. Putting his arm around Jahara, he was showered with the strength flowing from her. He kissed her passionately, barely able to control the impulse to run his hands down her body and feel her respond to his touch. She melted into him and he held her until the noise diminished, satisfied in the minimal contact.

Knowing the next step would be the hardest, he hugged Jahara close to him. Her body tensed. She understood what was coming. “Most honorable friends.” He raised the book, waiting for the din to subside. “The time has come. We have waited and now it will begin.” Pausing a heartbeat, Brenimyn let the suspense hang in the air. “Men, no longer will we submit to the domination of the female gender.” The breeders whooped and raised their fists. “No more will we be treated as animals good only for increasing the female population.” Some men jumped to their feet. “We will no longer accept that we are not worthy of gifts and education.” Even with the amplifier, Brenimyn had to shout to be heard over the celebrating crowd.

“Women, you will no longer be forced to procreate for the sake of continuing humankind. Mating will be a choice, one’s body freely given to another for the sake of love, not obligation for reproduction.” Everyone was on their feet. “The time has come to stop ripping your children from your womb and your hearts.” He watched the pregnant women cradle their swollen stomachs. “We have waited long enough, the time is now.”

He let the crowd have their moment before lifting the book to silence them. The crowd settled back into the grass. The murmurs of approval still rippled over them like a pebble dropped in water.

“The prophecy says two great warriors, a woman and a man, shall join together to ready an army for a monumental battle. It will not be fought with weapons as our ancestors had done, but with intellect and cunning. This war will oppose all common beliefs and bring about a new world order where men and women, as equals, shall reign.” Jahara went slack in his arms. She braced her hand on his chest, her gaze flicking wildly about the people below. Holding her quivering body, Brenimyn knew only his arm kept her from collapsing. This was a burden anyone would find difficult to shoulder.

“Many visionaries have confirmed the prophecy. As you know, from a young age, I understood I would be chosen to begin the fight. I accepted the responsibility many years ago and have prepared the way, waiting anxiously for the woman who would stand at my side.” The crowd stilled, holding a collective breath, already knowing the words he would speak. Unsure of her reaction, Brenimyn looked down at Jahara. He watched her transformation in rapt fascination.

Stepping away from him, she stood with her feet planted, pulling herself up tall. She filled her lungs, her bare breasts held high. The dark triangle of her womanhood was visible through the gossamer fabric of her breeches billowing in the breeze. She looked so feminine. Yet, under the lifted chin and unpretentious set of her mouth, he could see the fierce warrior the visionaries had promised. She held her arms casually at her side, not at her hips in defiance as many would.

Thank you everyone for hanging out with me and joining in the fun. But here’s the truth about me.

1. Champagne lunch in Grand Canyon: Mr. Nina and I vacationed in Las Vegas sometime around 2007 or so. I set up a helicopter tour of the Grand Canyon from our hotel. And I got to sit in the front seat! We flew over the Hoover dam and right down into the canyon where we were treated to a champagne lunch. I LOVED the tour. Poor Mr. “motion sick” Nina … not so much.

2. Went over waterfall in innertube: Okay, I was young and stupid. Mr. Nina and I trusted his very gutsy older brother to take us safely down a “quiet” river in Connecticut in inner tubes. Of course he was in a kayak. (I should have known I was in trouble at that point.) When he told me we were entering a “tricky” part of the river I did have second thoughts … but I hate to be out done by the guys. So I bravely paddled until I was sucked down over a dilapitated dam. Yeah it was a good 10 or 15 foot drop straight into rapids. When I got caught in a backwash, Mr. Nina’s brother bumped me out and safely to shore with his kayak. Fun day.

3. Skydiving: It speaks for itself. I did indeed step out of a perfectly good plane out on to the wing strut and stepped off into nothingness. It was one of the most peaceful experiences I’ve ever enjoyed.

4. Valedictorian: Hard to believe, but there were actually three of us .01 of a point apart. So that year the University of New England graduated tri-valedictorians. One of them a summa cum laude, 3.89 GPA, marine biology major. A water disaster swamped my trunk full of memorabilia and the only thing that it did was wash the honors off my degree … I have no proof. LOL!

5. Volcano and 7. Dolphins: actually go together. Mr. Nina and I were fortunate enough to travel to Hawaii for 10 days. In preparation I went to one of those spray-on tanning places and I looked goooood! But the day we went to the volcano I stood near one of the sulpher vents. The fake tan started running down my legs. I ran back to the car and patted it with a napkin. It dried … all blotchy. And that’s the tan I had on my legs for the rest of my dream vacation.

On the same trip, Mr. Nina surprised me with an afternoon swimming with dolphins. Heaven. They feel like rubber and I just fell in love with them. Cross another thing off my bucket list!

AND THE LIE … #6. Times Square! I lived in Poughkeepsie, NY for nearly two years. We were newly married and only 45 minutes out of the city with a place to stay. AND WE DIDN’T GO! How dumb are we? But of course that New Year’s Eve we ended up at a remote restaurant who’s Spanish-speaking chef continued to take reservations long after there was no room … including us. Long and the short, we were so laid back about our dinners (since they’d run out of food) they offered us champagne and free drinks and invited us to stay and party with the family. We ended up staying until 3:00 in the morning! So no Times Square but a great memory none the less.

So the winner is:
DONNA!
She’ll win an ebook from my backlist.

I hope everyone is still enjoying their holiday weekend. Mr. Nina and I are nursing sunburns because we foolishly went kayaking on the lake without sunscreen. I know … stoooopeeed! LOL! On the upside the lake was like glass and we had a wonderful time with our friends.

We took Baby Girl to the fireworks which turned out to be amazing. Like all towns, funds are low in the coffers and so it was a real surprise that they lasted nearly 30 minutes (without the usual 1 min lagtime between *g*). I sure hope you enjoyed your celebration.

Thanks to everyone who took time to jump on the blog tour bus. I hope you had fun. The winner of an ebook copy of “Hearts Afire – May” was …

MARIA of
St. Charles, Missouri

And the winner of the prize pack I was giving away as part of the tours grand prizes (and other goodies), goes to ..

Jody of
Lincoln, Nebraska

Other winners and prizes from the tour include:

Susan
Choice of backlist by Olivia Brynn
Intimate Strangers by Gem Sivad
Midnight’s Ghost by Sara Brooks

Loretta
$5 MBaM gift certificate from Hailey Edwards
Winner’s choice of backlist by Trina M. Lee
Star Spangled Kiss, (Kissin Cops 2) by Christa Page

Carolyn
Scent of the Roses by PG Forte
The Virtuous Vampire by Monette Michaels
Winner’s choice of backlist by Juniper Bell

Maria
Winner’s choice of backlist by Tina Holland
Copy of First Heat by Jocelyn Modo
An autographed copy of The Cowboy Way from Tori Richards

Anna
Ex Appeal by Cari Quinn
Witch Hunter by Lyn Armstrong
Felicia’s Fling by Jolie Cain

Yadira
Winner’s choice of backlist by Dee Carney
Winner’s choice by Tina Donahue (info via email)
Rhythm of Love by J. Hali Steele

Valerie
Sacred Secrets by Roxy Harte
Winner’s choice of backlist by Elise Logan
One Wilde Night by Rhonda Leah

Thanks again to all of you who hung out with us this weekend. I hope you had a wonderful time and will join us on our next blog tour.

Contests. I love to hate them. (Sheesh, this love/hate thing seems to be a theme this week.) Anyhoodles. Writers have many opportunities to participate in contests. I entered them when I first began writing because I needed the affirmation that I’d written the next best seller. (Lack of confidence has never been one of my problems. *g*)

What I discovered instead was several wonderful judges who took the time to explain all the things I was doing wrong. Since I entered all different contests from first chapters, to first kiss, to best endings, I learned so much. I never did final in a contest for unpublished writers. As a highly competitve person who always wants to finish first this was such a bummer, but I survived. And I not only survived the constructive criticism, I learned

I now have the opportunity to do the same for other writers. I’m judging writing contests and thoroughly enjoying myself. With my teaching background I rarely have problems finding positive ways to offer advice and soften the teaching moments. (I hope.) Still, it hurts. I have no doubt these writers sent in a story they believed was ready to be published. And some of them were, others … not so much.

I’m happy for the finalists, but my heart is with those that are going to receive less than stellar scores via email or snail mail. For some, there will be tears and frustration. Disbelief as they leaf through the pages reading judge’s comments. I have no doubt. I’ve been there. I can only hope these writers don’t become so discouraged that they walk away from their dreams. I hope they take this opportunity and learn from their mistakes so that their stories become stronger and their writing better.

Being a published author takes tenacity. Perseverence. Thick skin. I hope if you’ve entered a contest that you keep on keepin’ on. Because that’s the only way to get the brass ring.

The Long and the Short Reviews is hosting an easter contest. Beginning March 29 and running through April 4 they are giving readers an opportunity to win a basket load of prizes. And the winning is easy!

Author sponsors have hidden an easter egg logo on their websites. All you have to do is visit the authors listed at the LASR WEBSITE and email the url where you found the egg back to “lasrcontests AT gmail.com” and you’re entered. Each correct answer is an entry.

Prizes to be given away include $25 gift certificate to Amazon or Barnes and Nobel, publisher’s gift certificates, autographed books, totes, baskets of goodies and much more!

I hope you’ll think about joining me on this fun easter egg hunt. And don’t forget to stop by my website because I’ve also hidden an egg!

Thank you to everyone who took time to visit my website and enter the contest to celebrate the release of “Healer’s Garden” from Ellora’s Cave.

CONGRATULATIONS!
Winner of the candle tote
Laura Ostrem
Montezuma, Iowa

Winner of an e-book
Jane Cheung

Winner of a Nina goodie box!
Dena Walton
Bremerton, Washington

Thanks to everyone who made this contest so much fun! I’ve got some new books coming out in 2010 so check back to see what I’m doing to celebrate!

First of all I want to thank everyone who took time to visit my website over the past couple of months and enter my Coming Out Party! To enter participants simply had to read an excerpt from Bonded by Need and answer the question:

Who is the wolf who saved Jayda?
the answer is: Cole Takoda

Thanks again for all of you who mentioned you enjoyed the excerpt. Bonded by Need is an erotic suspense novel available from Ellora’s Cave. So I chose names at random from all correct answers and the winner of the Antonio Melani handbag full of goodies is (drum roll please)…

Jackie Wisherd of
La Mesa, California

and the second winner of Furry, Fluffy & Wild…
Judith Rachmani of
Ramat Gan, Israel

Congratulations ladies! And again, thank you to all who entered. It was really fun! Please keep checking my website for news on upcoming books and more contests!

Wow! What fun. Over 100 people took time to visit my website and participate in my January contest. So with a wonderful drumroll please …

CONGRATULATIONS!
to

Grand Prize winner:
Mary Lou Loyanich
of Cincinnati, Ohio
(who won this quilt — without the kitty)

2nd Place winner:
Lisa White
of London, Ontario
(who won a copy of Blind Love)

and the third place winner:
Eva Daniell
of Cedar Creek, Texas
(who won a gift pack of assorted stuff from my goodie closet!)

Thank you to everyone who came on over to my website. Be sure to check back for more fun!

Thank you everyone for sharing all those wonderful memories with me during the Liquid Silver Stocking Stuffer Giveaway. They really touched my heart.

It was fun to see all your comments on the other blogs along the Liquid Silver trail. I hope you enjoyed all that Christmas candy. I would like to congratulate:

Donna for winning a copy of The Healer’s Garden.

And the grand prize winner of the stocking full of books is:
Debbie Tsikuris! Congratulations!

Each author will be emailing you individually, Debbie with your books, including mine, the first novella in the Tilling Passions series, Blind Love.

HAPPY HOLIDAYS ONE AND ALL!!! 

Welcome! You’ve made it to the beginning of the Liquid Silver Stocking Stuffer Give Away! All you need to do is follow Santa’s trail along nine other Liquid Silver Blogs. Including:

Paige Tyler
Savanna Kougar
Kim Knox
Jeanne Barrack 
Dawn Montgomery 
Tina Holland
Taige Crenshaw
McKenna Jeffries
Stephanie Adkins

Leave a comment on each one at their Stocking Stuffer post and be eligible to win a stocking full of Liquid Silver ebooks! Because as you know, giving is so much better than receiving.

One year I gave my sister-in-law a really tacky gift and signed it from her sister. In the confusion of opening the gifts neither sister knew what to do when the gift was opened. The receiver thought “Umm… what do I say about this ugly thing?” and the giver thought “Why would my husband buy that for her?” Me? I was laughing my butt off. (As was my DH and the brother-in-law that I shared it with.) Really, it is a Christmas classic that I’m not sure I’ll ever be able to outdo.

So share with me in my comments (which are above this post) the favorite gift you gave or received and you’ll be entered for a chance to win a copy of The Healer’s Garden AND a chance at the grand prize (if you visit ALL of the Liquid Silver authors)  … a stocking FULL of ebooks including the first novella in the Tilling Passions series, Blind Love.

And of course I couldn’t have you showing up to my blog without a little incentive. How about some calorie-free Christmas candy to reward your efforts?

Don’t forget your next stop is Paige Tyler’s (http://paigetylertheauthor.blogspot.com) blog. Stop by here tomorrow and check out the winners! Happy hunting for more Santa candy!

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