Saturday, July 31, 2010

T-800 Double Blog Party Winner Announced

The winner of the Grand Prize Drawing is…

Out of 55 entries…





Mari Goodman!



Mari swears she never wins anything, but this is the third time she’s won on this blog, so I think she’s come into her own luck!

She wins a $15 gift card to Best Buy, a $15 gift card to Barnes and Noble, and a year’s subscription to the magazine of her choice.

Congrats, Mari! (I’ll bring over your prizes when I bring you your birthday gift… a month late. Ha, ha.)

Thanks to all for playing, for being such good sports with the off-the-wall questions, and for being my friends. A special thanks to Sharon, whose great idea this party was. We had a ball giving away stuff!

And just because I wanted to join in on the fun, here are my answers to the questions. Check back Monday and I’ll answer Sharon’s too. Then on Wednesday I’ll answer my first Wild Wednesday question (I’m looking at you, Jen Daiker)!

1. What’s more important to you, shoes or food? Foodie, all the way. But give me a good Dansko, and I might waffle.
2. Are you a lister or a Post-it all over the office type? Both. But I lose them all every time.
3. If you could choose your own last name, what would it be? Love. I love Love.
4. MG Fantasy or YA Sci-fi? MG Fantasy!
5. Like life sweet or salty? Both. Together.
6. A picture or a word person? Words definitely
7. If your life was an open notebook, what would the headline read? My Many Shades of Green
8. At home do you like to go barefoot, slippered, socked, or shoed? Anything is better than barefeet. HATE barefeet. Hate feet period.
9. You’ve heard it said everything you need to know you learn in Kindergarten? Name one of those things. Never wear a dress on the jungle gym
10. What’s your favorite cookie? Chocolate chip oatmeal… with many close seconds (including shortbread with Nutella)
11. What is the wildest thing you’ve ever done? As a high school Senior, I invited a teenage kid to come home and be adopted by my parents. Turned out he was a sociopath.
12. What is one of your favorite smells? Many! Lavendar, Pine, Magic Marker, Gasoline, Jasmine, Ginger, Baking Cookies, Baking Bread, and Baby Smell
13. What is an interesting bedtime ritual you have? Like Kelly, I set a hand on each of my kids' chests to check to make sure they’re breathing.
14. What is an interesting morning ritual you have? Recapping my dreams. Great writing fodder.
15. Have you ever known a “one-upper” and if so, what was it they did/said? Bought a house they couldn’t afford
16. Favorite meal of the day? Breakfast
17. What is your biggest pet peeve, the thing that can heat you up so fast you’ll pop your hull? People who are too dumb to know they’re being rude or cruel. Deliberate rudeness doesn’t really bother me
18. If you were king/queen of the world, what would be the first thing on your “To Do” clipboard? Stop abuse of women, children, and animals
19. Favorite breakfast food? All? Lately my favorites are beignets and fresh fruit together
20. What’s your favorite magazine? Scientific American
21. How often do you wash your hair? Every day (and yes, I know it’s not good for my hair or the environment)

Friday, July 30, 2010

Final Double Blog Party Day

The final daily prizes of the Double Block Party are:
1. Vicki Rocho—A bottle of gourmet syrup in case she wants to mix her bacon and egg mornings up with some pancakes too.
2. Jill Kemerer —A $10 gift certificate to magazines.com so that she can choose her own guilty pleasure. (Although her answer made that pretty clear. Read it for a good laugh!)
3. Mari Goodman— A spa set to enjoy a bath every once in a while. (And for a little plug, Mari is a close friend of mine and runs a great adoption blog, if you know of anyone looking into placing a child. Click on her link!)

As a CONSOLATION PRIZE, I decided to randomly choose a name from those who played everyday and still did not win once. Random.org chose:

4. Jemi Fraser! Thank you so much for playing. She receives a pen and notepad just for being a good friend.

Please email me your addresses, ladies, @ jackee(dot)alston(at)gmail(dot)com.

Please don’t forget to enter the Grand Prize Giveaways on both of our blogs by midnight Friday, July 30th.

Here’s all you have to do:

1. Follow Sharon’s blog. (You’ll want to enter her contest while you’re there.)
2. Follow my blog.
3. Fill out the form HERE to manifest it.


Thanks for joining in on the fun! It’s been a wonderful party for Sharon and me. We can’t believe we’re almost to 1,000 followers! All because of you, our wonderful friends.

Have a great weekend! (And excuse my mess while I play around with my new blog look.)

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Double T-800 Blog Party: Day 15

Neither rain nor sleet nor gloom of night…

can stop the blog party! Poor Sharon, her house has flooded more than once now, so please go over and wish her well. She needs a smile or two. So many people I know are fighting flooding, it makes me hurt for them and feel a little guilty too...

but we're still determined to party on both blogs.



Today’s Winners (according to random.org) are:
1. A.L. Sonnichsen —An at home popcorn party because her list of pet peeves was long and luscious. (Though I admit I blushed… not that I admit to USING some of that country bumpkin slang! Hee, hee.)
2. Brooke —My own little sister! You win a package of gourmet scone mix, since you love breakfasts AND cooking. (But you’d better share with Mom, you know how much she loves scones.)
3. Jen Daiker— (Winning two days in a row!) A pretty clipboard so that her listing of complaints can be long and detailed, as we know it will be because she is far too nice to be Queen of the World.

Please email me your addresses, ladies, @ jackee(dot)alston(at)gmail(dot)com.

Not a winner this time? No worries! There is another chance today and the Grand Prize is still up for grabs. And if you’ve won already, please feel free to play again. Consider it winning one of my gift baskets… one piece at a time. Here’s what you should do to play with us:

FIRST, click here to enter my grand prize giveaway (TBA July 31st). NEXT, go and enter Sharon’s grand prize giveaway. THEN visit both of our blogs for daily prizes.

To play for Friday’s prizes, please answer all three questions (answer creativity is appreciated though not rewarded extra entries). On Friday I’ll announce the three winners for the award that corresponds to the question:

1. What’s your favorite magazine? (G-rated, remember...)
2. How often do you wash your hair?
3. What is your favorite breakfast food?

Thanks for joining in on the fun! See you back here on Friday for the winner announcement and more off-the-wall questions/prizes!

As a side note, I’ve added a feature to the blog that I hope some of you might be interested in. (At least I HOPE you will be interested.) I’m taking questions—any questions--all questions—you writers have about nature, especially plants and animals. If you need help with world building, creating setting, or fact-checking, I’m here and happy to help. See the sidebar for my email address to ask me a question and then I’ll post the answer here for all to benefit. If you like, you can even be anonymous. But I have to ask, is this conceited of me or is it something that might be helpful to others? I mean, I’d hate to waste my nine years of biological education and all. (*Insert mad laughter here.*)

Have a great Wednesday!

Monday, July 26, 2010

Double T-800 Blog Party: Day 13

Lucky day THIRTEEN! Hopefully everyone is still having a good time and the prizes are at least worth coming back for. Sharon and I are having fun, and since we’re both battling flash floods (her basement and my mountain side), this party has been a great escape from reality for us!

Today’s Winners (according to random.org) are:
1. Jacqueline—A copy of Daily Morning Quotations, for those peaceful mornings watching the birds at the bird bath. (BTW, she IS named after the lovely Jacqueline Kennedy. I asked. Ha, ha.)
2. Theresa Milstein—A copy of Ten Apples Up on Top by Dr. Suess. Your son can read it and not even know it’s about him! LOL!
3. Jen Daiker—A copy of Daily Evening Quotations. Anyone up at 5 am to go to work has to get inspiration at night because there is no time that early in the morning!

Please email me your addresses, ladies, @ jackee(dot)alston(at)gmail(dot)com.

Not a winner this time? No worries! There is another chance today and the Grand Prize is still up for grabs. If you have already won, please feel free to play again. Consider it winning one of my gift baskets… one piece at a time. Here’s what you should do to play with us:

FIRST, click here to enter my grand prize giveaway (TBA July 31st). NEXT, go and enter Sharon’s grand prize giveaway. THEN visit both of our blogs for daily prizes.

To play for Wednesday’s prizes, please answer all three questions (answer creativity is appreciated though not rewarded extra entries). On Wednesday I’ll announce the three winners for the award that corresponds to the question:

1. What’s your favorite meal of the day?
2. What is your biggest pet peeve, the thing that can heat you up so fast you’ll pop your hull?
3. If you were king/queen of the world, what would be the first thing on your “To Do” clipboard?

Thanks for joining in on the fun! See you back here on Wednesday for the winner announcement and more off-the-wall questions/prizes!

Friday, July 23, 2010

Double T-800 Blog Party: Day 10

First, can I just tell you how much I’ve loving your answers? They are so entertaining and such lovely, little insights into your lives. Thank you for sharing! Truly!

Next, I apologize to those of you I have not responded to or blog visited the last few days. A month ago my town had a big forest fire (if you remember the story here). Now we’re in the middle of monsoons and getting flooded out from the burn area run-off. Neighbors and friends have all come together to sand bag and take care of each other--a great thing--but it has kept me away from the computer and exhausted into incoherence when I am here. So please excuse me of my blog rudeness lately! I swear I’ll be back and catch-up. (My list of people to visit is already going strong.)

Now to continue on our DOUBLE T-800 Blog Party. There are still many prizes to be had!

Friday’s Winners (according to random.org) are:
1. Angie Lofthouse—Walker’s shortbread and Nutella, one of my favorite cookie blends. (Though I believe if I tried her son’s Tollhouse chocolate chip ones, they’d be my favorite too!)
2. Catherine—Gingerbread Scented Soaps. She loves the smell of a Christmas turkey, so maybe this smell is a close second (I'm guessing because she likes Gingersnaps).
3. Terri Tiffany—A copy of Where the Wild Things Are, for the girl crazy enough to fall in love and right away jump in both feet first!

Please email me your addresses, ladies, @ jackee(dot)alston(at)gmail(dot)com.

Not a winner this time? No worries, there is another chance today and the Grand Prize is still up for grabs. Here’s what you should do to play with us:

FIRST, click here to enter my grand prize giveaway (TBA July 31st). NEXT, go and enter Sharon’s grand prize giveaway. THEN visit both of our blogs for daily prizes.

To play today, tomorrow, and Sunday, please answer all three questions (answer creativity is appreciated though not rewarded extra entries). On Monday I’ll announce the three winners for the prize that corresponds to the question:

1. What is an interesting bedtime ritual you have? (Again, keep it CLEAN. lol)
2. What is an interesting morning ritual you have? (See warning above.)
3. Have you ever known an “one-upper” and if so, what was it they did/said?


Thanks for joining in on the fun! See you back here on Monday for the winner announcement and more off-the-wall questions/prizes!

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Double T-800 Blog Party: Day 8

We’re continuing on the DOUBLE T-800 Blog Party. Sharon and I are having a lot of fun. Keeping coming and commenting, there are more prizes to be had and it doesn't matter if you've already won one!

Wednesday’s Winners are (according to random.org):
1. Jill Kemerer—Kinder Packs to remind her of those days when you can never trust an adult.
2. Angela A—Fuzzy socks, since they’re her favorite.
3. Amy Allgeyer Cook—A notebook for the lady that won’t quit, or at least says it’s not over until it’s over!

Please email me your addresses, ladies, @ jackee(dot)alston(at)gmail(dot)com.

Not a winner this time? No worries, there is another chance today and the Grand Prize is still up for grabs. Here’s what you should do to play with us:

FIRST, click here to enter my grand prize giveaway (TBA July 31st). NEXT, go and enter Sharon’s grand prize giveaway. THEN visit both of our blogs for daily prizes.

To play today please answer all three questions (answer creativity is appreciated though not rewarded extra entries). On Friday I’ll announce the three winners for the prize that corresponds to the question:

1. What’s your favorite cookie?
2. What is the wildest thing you’ve ever done? (Keep it clean, this is a G-rated blog. Hee, hee.)
3. What is one of your favorite smells?

Thanks for joining in on the fun! See you back here on Friday for the winner announcement and more off-the-wall questions/prizes!

&JUST4KICKS: Check out my sidebar where so many other great contests are going on.

Monday, July 19, 2010

DOUBLE T-800 Blog Party: Day 6

Today we’re continuing on the DOUBLE T-800 Blog Party. Keep coming and commenting, there are many prizes to be had!


Wednesday’s Winners are (according to random.org):
1. Theresa Milstein—An apron that combines her love of shoes and food.
2. Candyland—Post-it pack, since she uses both post-its and notepads. (Also, don’t miss her benefit giveaway going on right now!)
3. Diane WolfeDaniel X by James Patterson. (I think we all agree Diane has the coolest last name ever, so of course she answered that she doesn’t want to change it.)

Please email me your addresses, ladies, @ jackee(dot)alston(at)gmail(dot)com.

Not a winner this time? No worries, there is another chance today and the Grand Prize is still up for grabs. Here’s what you should do to play with us:

FIRST, click here to enter my grand prize giveaway (TBA July 31st). NEXT, go and enter Sharon’s grand prize giveaway. THEN visit both of our blogs for daily prizes.

To play today please answer all three questions (answer creativity is appreciated though not rewarded extra entries). On Wednesday I’ll announce the three winners for the prize that corresponds to the question:

1. If your life was an open notebook, what would the headline read?
2. At home do you like to go barefoot, slippered, socked, or shoed?
3. You’ve heard it said everything you need to know you learn in Kindergarten? Name one of those things.


Thanks for joining in on the fun! See you back here on Wednesday for the winner announcement and more off-the-wall questions/prizes!



&JUST4KICKS: Check out these unique shirts and other gifts my good friend designs. Aren’t they awesome?! Hugs are something none of us have enough of. (Or t-shirts for that matter, I have four of these babies.) If you’re interested in purchasing them, you can find her line at CafĂ© Press.

Have a great week!

Friday, July 16, 2010

Double T-800 Blog Party: Day 3

Today we’re continuing on the DOUBLE T-800 Blog Party. Anyone having fun yet?

Wednesday’s Winners are:
1. Vicki Rocho—a tray of marzipan fruit!
2. Susan Fields (a.k.a. best blogging friend who is super good at winning contests)—glittery photo album
3. Janet JohnsonCandy Shop Wars by Brandon Mull

Please email me your addresses, ladies, @ jackee(dot)alston(at)gmail(dot)com.

Not a winner this time? No worries, there is another chance today and the Grand Prize is still up for grabs. Here’s what you should do to play with us:

FIRST, click here to enter my grand prize giveaway (TBA July 31st). NEXT, go and enter Sharon’s grand prize giveaway. THEN visit both of our blogs for daily prizes.

I’m going to do today’s prizes more like Sharon’s because her way is much more fun and has more chances to win, so please answer all three questions (answer creativity is appreciated though not rewarded extra entries). On Monday I’ll announce the three winners chosen by random.org for the prize that corresponds to the question:

1. What’s more important to you, shoes or food?
2. Are you a lister or a Post-it all over the office type?
3. If you could choose your own last name, what would it be?

Thanks for joining in on the fun! See you back here on Monday for the winner announcement and more off-the-wall questions/prizes!

In other news, I just finished another rough draft. Yay! I’m pretty sure I wrote over 3,000 words yesterday, though who knows where I found the time. Where there’s a will there’s a way, I guess? That leaves Jedda Hitler, Traitor to the Party at 150 pages for its first write through. I’ll bone it up soon, though.

Have a great weekend!

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Double T-800 Blog Party: Day 1

Today’s the day we start the DOUBLE T-800 Blog Party! I’m telling you, Sharon and I have had so much fun putting this together. If I had more money, I’d do it every month!

Here’s what you should do to play with us:

FIRST, click here to enter my grand prize giveaway (TBA July 31st). NEXT, go and enter Sharon’s grand prize giveaway. THEN visit both of our blogs for daily prizes. (We'd also appreciate it if you'd follow us while you're visiting, but no one's forcing you. Ha, ha.)

Today’s prizes are in the form of clues. Please choose the question you’d like to answer (only one) and you’ll be entered into a random drawing for the prize that corresponds to the question:

1. MG Fantasy or YA Sci-fi?
2. Like life sweet or salty?
3. A picture or a word person?


Thanks for joining in on the fun! See you back here on Friday for the winner announcement and more off-the-wall questions/prizes!

As a side note, for those of you who know about my book trailer, I wanted to let you know I finally scrounged up enough courage to post it on YouTube. Here’s the link:


Sunday, July 11, 2010

The Double T-800 Followers Party!

First off, I want to thank all of you who follow this blog. I never would have imagined over 200 people would want to read anything I have to say. I’m so grateful for the friendships I have made on here. And speaking of friendships, one of my blogging friends, The Great SHARON K. MAYHEW (she of Random Thoughts fame), and I have to decided to join forces and have a double party.

We’re celebrating how close we are to 1,000 followers. (Less than 800 to go, baby!)

We’re celebrating how close we are to getting published. (Only x number of rejections to go!)

And,

We’re celebrating as backwards and as off-the-wall “random” as we can.

First off, sign up to win the last prize in the form below. (The grand finale first. Yeah, I know. Just embrace the topsy-turvy.)


Then check both our blogs starting Wednesday where you’ll be able to win a prize each day or every other day the whole month of July.

All you have to do is a) be a follower of both our blogs and b) answer a simple question.


The Grand Finale prize (form below) will be for a group of gift cards and is open to international friends.

Have fun! Good luck! And again, thanks for being such wonderful friends.


Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Living with the Guilt

Guilt. I'm loaded with it. Here are a few recent reasons why:

Honestly? I feel guilty about blogging. I feel like it’s a bit self-indulgent when I should be writing, living real life, sweeping the floor, feeding children, reading books, working at the soup kitchen, volunteering at the library, earning a living, annnnndddd...

the list goes on. Not necessarily in order of importance. It’s a great source guilt, as it might be to you as well. But does anyone have reasons that make them feel better about being on here instead of all these other places? I could really use your justifications, friends. To use for my own peace of mind, not to judge or anything. So, please pass them on!

Then there’s another source of guilt… I’ve some great awards I haven’t even acknowledged!
#1
A big thanks to Miss Ali for The Lovely Blog Award. It’s so nice and it totally made my day! (Though she gave it to me a month ago….)


#2
Thank you to Myrna, Bec, and Medeia for The Versatile Blogger Award. It took me so long to post it that I feel bad I received it three times! My bad! (But I’m grateful all the same for their thoughtfulness.)
Seven things about me go with this one:
1. My favorite writing advice: Don’t be afraid to throw in the towel. If you have a true writer’s heart, you’ll pick up the towel when the time is right. Writers are never able to stay away from writing for long.
2. I live on 2.5 acres and have 13 chickens. I like the idea of being a farm girl, but not enough to have to live with all the literal crap that comes with it.
3. I don’t consider myself a writer of historical fiction or fantasy. Instead I always say I write adventure and go wherever the setting takes me. The adventure is what appeals to me first in any kind of writing (even nonfiction).
4. I think energence should be a word. Doesn’t it sound cool and full of possibility???
5. I’m married to a guy with a PhD in biochemical engineering. His cranium is disproportionately larger than his body. But instead of making him look wonky, I think it’s endearing. :o)
6. I gain and lose 55/60 lbs with every baby. That means with all three of my kids I’ve had to gain then lose that much. Still working on the last 15 from baby #3… who’ll be one on August 10th.
7. It bugs me when people say “random” because to a biologist or a statistician, random means TRUE RANDOM (i.e. governed by or involving equal chances for each of the actual or hypothetical members of a population). Usually people are referring to what is in fact, NOT random but arbitrary (i.e. determined by chance, whim, or impulse, and not by necessity, reason, or principle).

I’m going to pass these on to my newest friends, Take one or both, please:
Yvonne Osbourne, the great host of The Festival of Trees
Dana Chabino, the beautiful painter
Jill Kemerer, the beach writer
E. Elle, the writer at the Funhouse
Miss Ali, the lovely blogger herself
Sandy Shin, the dreamer, writer, and one of the best commentors
Nicole McDonald, the kiwi writer who needs no rescuing


And my last source of guilt?

I never had a 200 follower contest and I haven’t had a giveaway since June 1st. I would say it’s about time for some fun! (At any rate, I’m so close to 1,000 followers that we’ve GOT to celebrate! Right, Sharon? Ha, ha.)

Look for the par-tay Monday or Tuesday!