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Check out my interview with @JayRequard

It’s not everyday that I get to sit down with a SciFi & Fantasy author to chat, people. But I had a really great time talking to new author, Jay Requard, on his blog, Sit. Write. Bleed. Rest assured: I only sat and wrote … no bleeding, thank goodness.

sit-write-bleed

Jay’s first story will be released in an anthology during the summer called The Big Bad: An Anthology of Evil. I will congratulate him, perhaps share a glass of champagne (or, in his case, a mug of mead), read it and wince, and pray for no nightmares.

Check out the interview on Sit. Write. Bleed, follow Jay on Twitter, and check out his blog when you get a chance. He’s an interesting fella.


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Winner Announcement from my stop on the @EvernightPub Christmas Blog Hop: @uavery, come on down!

Happy Holidays, y’all!

BlogHop1SThanks for participating in Evernight’s Christmas Blog Hop. My stop on the tour had lots of traffic and conversation, and now that the contest has wrapped, I’m announcing the winner for my Fidget Bead Bracelet. Through the strict scientific method of numbering each of the comments, then having my 14 year old pick a number between 1 and 37, we have arrived at a winner:

Ursula Avery

Ursula, keep an eye out on your e-mail for a note from me. Once I get your mailing address, I’ll put your Fidget Bead Bracelet in the mail. Hopefully you’ll get it before Christmas.

Thanks everyone for participating. And good luck on the BIG prize of the iPad 2!


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Winner Announcement from my stop on the @DecadentPub Book on the Nook Blog Hop

Happy Holidays, y’all!

ReaderAReader_poster_blue3Thanks for participating in Decadent Publishing’s Book on the Nook Blog Hop. My stop on the tour was December 9, and now that the contest has wrapped, I’m announcing the winner for my stop. Through the strict scientific method of numbering each of the comments, then having my 14 year old pick a number between 1 and 7, we have arrived at a winner:

IRIS

Iris, keep an eye out on your e-mail for a note from me. Once I get your mailing address, I’ll put your Fidget Bead Bracelet in the mail. Hopefully you’ll get it before Christmas.

Thanks everyone for participating. And good luck on the BIG prize of the Nook!


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Christmas Blog Hop with @EvernightPub

BlogHop1SWe love the holidays at Evernight Publishing, we love making our readers happy and we love giving away swag.

What better way to do that than to hold a blog hop? Here’s how it works… the more blogs you hop to (shown below) the more chance you have of winning prizes. Each site on the hop is offering a prize and Evernight is offering an iPad 2 as the grand prize! To be in with a chance of winning the site prize simply follow the blog you’re visiting and leave a comment which includes your email address. Each entry on each blog is then counted towards the grand prize draw. The more entries you have, the better your chance of winning that iPad 2! You also get extra points for liking the Evernight Facebook page. Just make sure you let us know in the comments that you’ve done so. Happy hopping!

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Everybody needs a guardian angel, particularly during the holidays. Depending where you are in life, the holidays can be the best, or the worst, of times. For me, they’re wonderful. I love decorating our house, baking things with my son, the extra time my husband has for relaxing around the house and being silly. We like to drive through neighborhoods and see the lights; I love holiday music (and singing it enthusiastically, much to the chagrin of my husband and son), and the way folks smile and speak when you’re out and about. My boys are my guardian angel, and I know that if I’m feeling a little blue, missing family and friends who are far away or passed on, I can grab a quick hug and recharge.

I found an article on 20 dependable holiday stress busters with some pretty good, practical advice. Things like slow down, don’t try to be everywhere at once, let family and friends help out, and the best of all: “hang on to hope.”

GA_LGI hope you’ll check out my Guardian Angel, released by Evernight Publishing in 2011. Here’s the blurb:

Hot shot graphic novelist Sasha Mitchell is learning how to adjust to life as an underground hero with one of the hottest video games on the market. Her newfound wealth is no replacement for her brother’s recent passing, though, and certainly no balm to Doctor David Ellington, who’s adjusting to life without the dominating wealth of his powerful father.

And even though this senator’s son is far more interested in making his mark in the community through the clinic where he volunteers, he still has to overcome decades of enforced emotional barrenness to let Sasha’s powerful character reignite his passion.

– – > Click here for an excerpt of Guardian Angel

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So tell me: Who’s your guardian angel during the holidays?

One lucky commenter on this post will win a Fidget Bead Bracelet (continental US residents only; $5 Amazon gift card if you’re far away). Be sure to leave your e-mail address in the comments so I can contact the winner on Dec. 15 to get your addy.

PS. I always appreciate when you LIKE me on Facebook, and FOLLOW me on Twitter. Thanks y’all!


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Christmas Cookies with Anise … and @DecadentPub

anise cookiesWelcome to my stop on the Decadent Publishing Book on the Nook blog hop.

–> Check out this cool promo!

I thought we’d nourish our mind a little before dessert. Aniseed is also known as anise. According to HowStuffWorks.com:

The ancient Greeks and Romans believed that you could increase desire by sucking on anise seeds. Aniseed does include estrogenic compounds (female hormones), which have been reported to induce similar effects to testosterone.

I witnessed the draw to anise firsthand with anise sugar cookies. The men in my life love them, and when presented a variety of homemade baked goods, they go for the anise cookies every time. And I always get a kiss or a hug. Hmm, go figure. Ladies, add this recipe to your holiday reportoire and I guarantee great results.

Ingredients
–  1 cup butter
– 3/4 cup sugar
– 1-1/2 tsp anise extract
– 3 eggs (add them one at a time)
– 3-1/2 cups all-purpose flour
–  2 tsp cream of tartar
– 1 tsp baking soda
– 1/2 tsp salt

Directions … preheat oven to 350 degrees
1.  Cream together the butter, sugar and eggs. Add the anise, and then the dry ingredients.
2.  Turn the batter out onto a clean surface (I use a large cutting board, but if you typically roll out dough on your countertops, that’s a good place, too). There will likely be some pebbled, unincorporated bits of dry batter, but once you knead it all together before rolling, it all works in. Don’t worry. 🙂
3.  Roll cookies out to the thickness you prefer for cookies; I try to roll it between 1/8 to 1/4 inch and find this recipe bakes up nicely. If I’m using little cookie cutters, I roll it thicker.
4.  Place cut-out dough onto prepared cookie sheets (I use parchment paper), and bake for 6 – 8 minutes, until very, very lightly browned.
5.  I like to glaze them, but you could eat them plain out of the oven. To make the glaze: 2 cups powdered sugar, 1/2 tsp anise extract, 3 Tbsp water; whisk it together until smooth (it’s thin), and either dip your cookies into it, or brush it on with a pastry brush.

We freeze about half of the batch since we can’t eat them quite fast enough, and I’ve found that they can live happily in the freezer for about three weeks.

Leave a comment below to let me know what your favorite holiday cookie is, and one lucky commenter will win a Fidget Bead Bracelet (if you live in the lower 48; $5 Amazon gift card if you’re far away). Be sure to leave your e-mail address so I can get in touch with you if you win.

ReaderAReader_poster_blue3AND … Good luck on the Book on the Nook blog hop … click here to check out the rest of the authors on the hop after you comment here.

PS. These are a great recharge for hikes in the great outdoors … if you’re looking for a little romantic adventure over the holidays, check out my 1 Night Stand, The Great Outdoors. It makes a great present!