Friday, June 21, 2013

Quote of the Day


One of the most beautiful qualities of true friendship is to understand and to be understood.
~ Lucius Annaeus Seneca

Monday, June 17, 2013

Friday, June 14, 2013

Cats - Brilliant meme

In place of the Quote of the Day today, I give you this brilliantly observed meme (if you have cats, you will know exactly how true this is!) :D

Friday Art & History Feature - Borgias TV Show (a rant)

Today, I'd like to take the opportunity to vent and rant about the cancellation of the Showtime show Borgias.
Yes, I'm very upset. This is the 3rd season of the show, that was originally planned for 4 season, and it's been the strongest season. Why cancel it?

Apparently, politics (what else, isn't it always) of the network is to blame. From what I could gather, the former big boss of Showtime wanted it to continue, but the current big man doesn't. Whatever the politics involved is, I think it is disrespectful and downright rude to the millions of fans who love the show and would like to see it to its conclusion.

Spectacular costumes on some of the Borgia women

What is more upsetting is that the final episode, which was supposed to be the season, not the series, finale seems to be just that. It does not provide, in my humble opinion, a good conclusion, as it doesn't wrap up everything that needs to be to make this a good series finale.

There's a possibility that the show's creator, Neil Jordan, might do a 2-hour movie to conclude the series. I sincerely hope that this in fact happens. There are also petitions going around the Internet signed by fans to force the network to do a 4th season. Sadly, I doubt they will make much of an impact on the final decision of the network executives.

And so, I say a sad and fond farewell to this beautiful show that brought the world of the infamous Borgia family to our screens for the last three years. I especially applaud the amazing performances by the handsome Francois Arnaud, who plays Cesare Borgia, and Holliday Grainger, who plays Lucrezia Borgia, the other half of the incestuous sibling couple, as well as Jeremy Irons - Pope Alexander himself.

Francois Arnaud as Cesare, Holliday Grainger as Lucrezia and Jeremy Irons as Pope Alexander
If you love good period shows and have never watched the Borgias, I would recommend picking up the 1st and 2nd seasons now, and the 3rd season when it comes out on DVDs.

Thursday, June 13, 2013

Quote of the Day

Iron is full of impurities that weaken it; through the forging fire, it becomes steel and is transformed into a razor-sharp sword. Human beings develop in the same fashion.

~ Morihei Ueshiba, founder of Aikido

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Quote of the Day

Never give in. Never give in. Never, never, never, never—in nothing, great or small, large or petty—never give in, except to convictions of honour and good sense. Never yield to force. Never yield to the apparently overwhelming might of the enemy.

  ~ Winston Churchill

Friday, June 7, 2013

Cover and Synopsis Reveal - Watermark by Kriss Dallas

Today, we interrupt the usual programming for the exciting reveal of the cover and plot synopsis of Watermark by the wonderful Krissi Dallas!

Watermark, the fourth installment of the YA fantasy Phantom Island series by Krissi Dallas is finally releasing this fall! If you haven’t jumped on board this island adventure full of magic, mystery, and romance, now is your chance. Enter to win an autographed Phantom Island trilogy pack, an autographed copy of Watermark when it releases, a tribal t-shirt, or an autographed copy of The Collector by debut author Victoria Scott! The giveaway will be open for entries until Friday, June 14. See information below.

And now for Watermark… the dramatic conclusion to the first half of the Phantom Island series…


I stared at her in frustration. “What is with you?!” I exploded. She was not acting like my best friend. Like my Morgan. “You’ve been so different this summer, and I don’t get it!”
“Well, you’ve been different too! People change, you know,” she snapped back.
“If I’ve changed, fine. But at least I’m still honest with you. You, however, have turned into a liar! If we don’t have trust between us, then what do we have, Morgan?”

Plot Synopsis:

Relationships on the White Island are volatile and Whitnee, Morgan, and Caleb aren’t sure who they can trust—even each other. Politicians are lying, history is being rewritten, and motives are questionable. Whitnee sets out with Gabriel and a band of rebel spies to take back the enemy's biggest weapon—Whitnee's father. However, a shocking turn of events proves once again that the Island's secrets have the power to destroy more than just the truth. Separated from her friends, Whitnee battles her own fears in order to survive and protect the ones she loves. But when Morgan's illness finally comes to light, Whitnee faces a decision that could alter her future—and Morgan’s—forever. And whether she ultimately stays on the Island or leaves might not be her choice, after all.

 “…[An] earnest tale of magic and romance that deals with the great distance between pain and recovery.” –Kirkus Reviews (Windchaser, Phantom Island Book 1)

 If you haven't read  the first three books, hurry to pick them up right now on Amazon, Barnes & Noble or White Island Shoppe!
And for some extra fun, take this quiz to see which tribe you belong to.

Meet the Author:

Krissi Dallas loves pop music, mismatched socks, and fried chicken. She lives in Fort Worth, Texas with her youth minister husband, Sam, and their two wicked Yorkies, Elphie and Luna. Krissi enjoys hanging out with her quirky middle school students and building the dramatic, magical, and mysterious world that makes up the Phantom Island series. Be sure to check out Windchaser, Windfall, and Watercrossing. Krissi loves connecting with teens, as well as readers and writers of all ages! You can stalk her online at

Don't forget to enter! The giveaway is open to US residents only.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Thursday, June 6, 2013

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Guest Blogger K.W. Gish - On Her Favorite Writing Book

Last week, Paul Deane guest blogged on Writing Collaboration. Today, I have the pleasure of having the second part of this collaboration team, Kimbra Wilder Gish, guest blog about one of her favorite writing books! I'm very excited about this post, as I'm always looking for new great books on the craft. Please welcome Kimbra and make sure to check out her suggestion!

I love writing books. I love them a little too much, perhaps - after all, it's always easier to pick up a writing book and congratulate myself on how much I'm accomplishing by learning what this author has to teach than it is to actually write.
I wish I could say that I am the type of writer who sits down at exactly the same time every morning, six or seven days a week, and writes. I am sometimes a writer who writes every day, and my life is better when I do it. But sometimes life does get in the way more than I want, and in those times it is a real challenge to make time for writing. I think life is like that for many of us who write: we have wonderful plans and hopes and dreams, but life gets in the way, and so for me the best writing books are those which help me to tap into my writer self, to find a way into that magical place I discover when I really start to write. For that, I most often turn to Leslea Newman's Write from the Heart: Inspiration and Exercises for Women Who Want to Write.

Despite the title, this book isn't valuable exclusively to women - I don't know of any person, male or female, who couldn't benefit from this book - though for women writers, it is as valuable and important a work as Virginia Woolf's famous "A Room of One's Own." It's a book of writing exercises for fiction and poetry, a few words on publishing, and appendices full of valuable writing resources, including lots of reading recommendations. Many of the exercises are simple - sometimes deceptively so. They have a way of sucking the writer in, revealing where powerful memories and material lie buried, revealing things I didn't know about the character I'm working on, unlocking information about a project that I didn't know was there. The exercises are wonderful as a daily writing practice, and many are also fantastic for use with a particular character I'm wanting to develop for a book or short story. I generate more material than will ever survive in the final draft, but in doing so, I discover where the story lies, whom the story is about, what those characters are like.... The exercises are written in a warm and inviting manner - Newman is now a writing teacher in the low-residency MFA program at Spalding University, and it's easy to see what a great teacher she must be, because she has this absolutely conversational tone. It's as if your favorite aunt is a writer and has invited you in for a chat over tea and homemade cookies, and as you chat she invites you to your writing space with all the warmth and ease of an experienced and gentle guide. She gives lots of examples for reading fun; she covers poetry as well as fiction...she's simply stunning. It's so simple and yet it's like a master class you can take over and over and over again, and still gain something, learn something, every time you open the book. It's absolutely my favorite book on writing.

I could recommend at least half a dozen amazing writing books, and dozens of good ones, but if you buy only one book on writing (poor you!), this is the one you MUST have. It's a good size to throw in a totebag or briefcase or even an oversized purse, and it's like having a master teacher with you. All you need is this book, a notebook, and a pen, and you're ready to tap into your inner writer. Through these prompts and exercises, you can discover what matters deeply to you, what matters deeply to your characters, and the inner writer you know is in there, hiding somewhere. Write from the Heart always brings my inner writer out to play. I hope it will do the same for yours!

Thank you, Kimbra, for stopping by! I'm running out to check out this book!

Kimbra Wilder Gish was born in Middlesboro, Kentucky, part of the Appalachian region. By the time she was in elementary school, she often pretended that the back of her parents’ car was a hobbit-hole. In first grade, she refused to color her coloring pages, and instead turned them over, wrote stories on the backs, and signed them with the names of such fictional characters as Bilbo Baggins and Peter Rabbit.
Kimbra now lives in Henderson, Kentucky with her supportive husband, Darren, and a ten-pound chihuahua mix who thinks he owns them both. A former librarian specializing in children's and young adult services as well as medicine, she has a passion for information and books and is happiest in a library. Her favorite fantasy authors include J.R.R. Tolkien, C.S. Lewis, and Rae Carson.
When not reading or writing, Kimbra enjoys crocheting and simple cooking. Her YA fantasy books in the Aislin (pronounced "eyes-lynn") saga, beginning with Daughter of the Signs, are collaborations with Paul Douglas Deane, an awesome writing partner and friend whom she met online through a mutual love for J.R.R. Tolkien. 
You can find Kimbra on Twitter: @kwgishwriter. And check out her blog.

Quote of the Day

Do you want to know who you are? Don't ask. Act! Action will delineate and define you. 

  ~ Thomas Jefferson

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Quote of the Day

(photo credit: Yelena Casale)

People from a planet without flowers would think we must be mad with joy the whole time to have such things about us. 

― Iris Murdoch

Game of Thrones Fans Reactions Last Sunday's Episode

Ok, if you haven't watched the last Sunday's episode of Game of Thrones, you might want to avoid this. Spoiler Alert!

For the rest of you, was this close to the reaction you had when you saw it? It definitely was to mine. Enjoy!

Monday, June 3, 2013

Contests & Giveaways in the Writing World - week of June 3rd

And check out a few giveaways and contests to make your week more exciting!

Love Vikings, tales of Old Britain and historical fiction in general? Check out this GoodReads Giveaway of The Briton and the Dane: Legacy - 2nd Edition by Mary Ann Bernal.

Hurry to see the Release Event and Giveaway for Everly by Raine Thomas, hosted by Into The Night Book Reviews. Prizes include signed copies, Everly inspired bracelet and an Amazon GC! 10 Days to go...

The Autumn Review is participating in the Endure Book Blast. Endure is book #4 in the Protector Series by M.R. Merrick. Prizes include the winners' choice of eBook from the series, with the Grand Prize winning signed copies of all four books in the series.

English Historical Fiction Authors is giving away a copy of Blood Between Queens by Barbara Kyle. Just leave a comment for the chance to win!

Looking for a good writing contest? Enter the 2013 Weta Nichols Writing contest! 42 days to go. Note that the contest is open to both published and unpublished authors, but the piece submitted must be unpublished and not be under contract to be published. Categories include contemporary, Paranomral/Sci-fi and Young Adult. Find out more details on here.

*As always, please contact me for the inclusion of your contests/giveaways into the Monday Contests and Giveaways in the Writing World posts.

Have fun and good luck! 

Also, don't forget to become a follower of this blog to make sure you catch giveaways coming soon!

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