Sunday, July 1, 2012

Under Construction...Will be back in August!

As you can tell from the lag time between this quick post and my last post, I have not been a good little blogger. I've been gone so long, my poor little blog has more than cobwebs...I had to beat off the dust buffaloes with a heavy, large stick.

I've gone from part-time freelance writer to full-time during the last three months and I'm currently getting readjusted to this new exciting but insanely busy schedule. I have, however, been keeping a journal notebook with blog post ideas and a format change. It is my plan **fingers & toes crossed** that by August I will be back with a slightly new look and some kickass posts you won't want to miss.

So if you're new(ish) to Writer Mom's blog, hang in there, I have not abandoned you. As Arnold would say...

"I'll be back."

Sunday, February 19, 2012

Playing on Pinterest

A friend sent me an invite to Pinterest. If you're not a member of the site or a bit fuzzy on what it is, here's the scoop. Pinterest is a pinboard site where members can virtually pin images they found while surfing the internet. Think of it as a giant bulletin board. You can have multiple boards organized into general categories or categories of your own design. For instance, I have one I call "Dreamin' of Disney" because I love my trips to Walt Disney World and am always discovering new, fun things online. Your boards are visible to other members and they can repin (copy) your images to their own boards. You can do the same with other members' boards as well.

It's easy to lose track of time when playing on Pinterest. There are so many interesting things to see, it's easy to sit down for just a few minutes and BOOM an hour has passed. Fuel Your Writing had a great post about using Pinterest. You can check out that post here. The post suggests using your boards on Pinterest for inspiration, a place a happy thoughts and such. I've created one board for myself titled "Inspiration." I am using it to store images I find that inspire moments, feelings and more for my WIP. I've found it very helpful and easier to use than the jumble of bookmarked pages I had been using. Everything is in one, easy to access location and I simply love how it looks. (Tried to figure out how to insert one of my pinboard pics here and it didn't work.)

If you're interested in exploring Pinterest, here's the link. I think it's kind of neat and definitely fun as long as you are able to budget your time.

Saturday, January 28, 2012

Been Writing, Reading & Writing Some More

Wow. WOW! Okay, I had to say it again, most emphatically. I can't believe my last post was December 9. Yikes! I knew I had taken a hiatus but it didn't really sink in just how long it has been until I looked at my last (and delicious) post about chocolate!

So what inspired me to hit the keyboard today and share something new? Well, this morning I was chatting with Roberta from More Thyme Than Dough blog on Twitter. By the way, if you are not reading her delightful blog, I really encourage you to do so. She is a wonderful writer, shares amazing recipes and many interesting food tips and stories.

Anyway....chatting with Roberta and realized how I keep putting off creating posts because of my other writing jobs. And I have been busy. Since the 18th of this month I've written 26 articles for several different clients. Don't get me wrong, I love what I do, but after writing for somebody else all day, I am often out of words when I've a bit of free time. What I realized is that I have been keeping up with rating and reviewing on GoodReads. So why not share one of those book reviews with you?

I've posted my GoodReads book reviews before, but would like to do so today and am hoping that this little foray back into my blog will inspire me to create some new content to share with you over the next several months. I can do this, right?

I am currently rereading "The Vampire Diaries" series by L.J. Smith. Going to share my review of Book 1.

The Vampire Diaries: The Awakening (Vampire Diaries, #1)The Vampire Diaries: The Awakening by L.J. Smith

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I find I give most books 4 stars, because my gut reaction upon finishing that last page typically is "I really liked it!" This first book in the Vampire Diaries series was definitely a "I really liked it" reaction, teetering on a "Wow!" The wow comes from the last page of the book. One word...cliffhanger.

If you have only watched the television show on the CW, I strongly encourage you to read the books. I read the series a long time ago, before the tv series and loved the books. L.J. Smith's characters are some of my favorite, especially Damon Salvatore. He is the king of attitude and I simply cannot get enough of him. Our heroine Elena, in my opinion, is annoying at best to begin with; such a self-centered snob, however, she does evolve nicely into a character you can believe and stand behind. Her best friends are some of my most favorite supporting characters. I just adore Bonnie's bubbly personality and innocence which balances nicely with Meredith's shrewd eye for detail. For those of you that watch the show, the original book Bonnie has very little in common with the witch Bonnie on tv. In addition, there are many differences between the show and books. They both have their merits and I encourage you to read the books to see how the original story unfolds.

So I haven't mentioned Stefan Salvatore, the book's tragic hero. I have to admit this is because in this series he has always been my least favorite character. To me, Stefan is weak and boring. I'd take a human Matt over the morose vampire. However, the love story between Elena and Stefan did grow on me as the book progressed. I can say that my ambivalence towards Stefan in no way deters me from enjoying the book. It's a good read and one I'd recommend to anyone who enjoys supernatural YA.

View all my reviews

Friday, December 9, 2011

Chocolate! Chocolate! Chocolate!

While researching an assignment for a client, I stumbled upon several tastebud tempting chocolate confections. Lucky me! I decided these were too yummylicious to keep to myself so I'd thought I would share them with you. If you have a chocolate freak (I mean lover) on your Christmas list, a gift from one of these chocolate purveyors may be just what your looking for. Just so you know, I am not being paid or have received any incentives from any of these companies that I'm listing. I found them on my own and they appealed to my own chocolate demons. 

Lake Champlain Chocolates. Located in Vermont, it was established in 1983 and continues to produces chocolates made on site. If you are in the area, you can visit their shop and take a tour of their factory kitchens to see their candies being made. Lake Champlain Chocolates offers a Tower of Obsession for the fine chocolate lover. It contains three chocolate boxes stacked in a tower that include caramels, dark chocolate squares, truffles and milk chocolate covered macadamia nuts.

Fannie May. As a Chicago-girl, I grew up with Fannie May. Every Christmas there was at least a box or two or three of Mint Meltaways in our home. My parents always brought them as hostess gifts and it was a treat to have a Meltaway after mom's lasagna dinner. A Chicago favorite since the 1920’s, Fannie May Candies features multiple choices for chocolate gifts. Mint Meltaways are a chocolate and mint creations perfect for the holidays.

Mackinac Island Fudge. Mackinac Island, located in northern Michigan is home to the Mackinac Island Fudge Shop. Fortunately, their decadent fudge is available online. This shop’s fudge style is more than 100 years old and continues to be made in their kitchens, not a factory. There are several gourmet flavors to choose from including Black Forest fudge, penuche walnut fudge, mocha pecan fudge and German chocolate cake fudge.

Hershey chocolate. I was thinking a giant/oversized coffee mug or ice cream bowl filled with Hershey candy bars would be a whimsical and delicious gift for fans of this American chocolate institution. It appeals to the little kid in me. **hint, hint darling Hubs** The online Hershey’s shop has several fun items that could be used as containers to stuff with a variety of Hershey’s chocolate bars. Wrap it up in cellophane and attach a bow! Or you could just opt for the fifteen-pound tin of Hershey’s chocolates!

Vosges chocolates. Wowsers! That's all I have to say. I'll say it again. Wowsers! Voseges makes exotic truffles. The one that caught my eye was their gift box filled with sixteen dark and milk chocolate bacon truffles. Yes, I said BACON truffles! Each truffle is made with organic cream and is topped with bacon caramel toffee or hickory-smoked bacon.Really, do you want to miss out on these? I didn't think so.

I hope your mouth is watering and that you have enjoyed reading this sweet post as much as I enjoyed writing it!

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Been gone, but coming back!

I was going to wait until December 1 to begin posting again, but.....I found myself not being able to wait. I've missed writing posts and am anxious to get back into a routine. I have been doing NaNoWriMo this month and it's going fine. I won't make 50K words but I am thrilled with what I've already accomplished so it's all good for me.

**insert my big cheesy grin here**

My freelance projects have kept me super busy, but again that's a very good thing going into the holiday season as the extra cash will be much appreciated. There have been lots of other things a-happening as stuff, personal stuff and again more family stuff. Have I mentioned I'm a mom? LOL

Anyhoo, I'm back and I'm looking forward to sharing some really neat posts with everyone.

I've kept up with my reading during this hectic time in my life, mainly because it's the one thing that helps me keep my sanity, along with my daily workouts. I have several books that I want to share with you and today I am sharing my short review of Robison Wells' young adult novel VARIANT.

Variant (Variant, #1)Variant by Robison Wells

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

VARIANT held my interest from the first chapter to the last. Robison Wells winds an intriguing story that at first seems like it is moving in one direction, and then BAM, it twists and takes you somewhere unexpected. I liked that. His main character Benson Fisher is likable and believeable despite the unbelievable situation he has found himself in.

Without sharing any spoilers, VARIANT takes the reader into Maxfield Academy, a boarding school without teachers or adults of any kind. Ruled by three "gangs" and an invisible presence who communicates via TV and computer screen. Benson is the newest student at Maxfield Academy and from the moment he steps foot onto the property, his life is no longer his own. Author Wells, offers several twists and turns as we experience Maxfield with Benson.

VARIANT is a quick read and one that was difficult to put down. If you enjoy stories like the "Twilight Zone" and Michael Grant's "Gone" series, VARIANT will not disappoint. Even if you are new this type of suspenseful YA fiction, VARIANT will not disappoint. It is a recommended read!

View all my reviews

Thursday, September 29, 2011

Trouble with Comment box

Just a very quick post here...I have been told that there has been some trouble getting comments to post in the box. I just tried to post a reply and was unable myself. I've also had the same problem at other Blogger pages. Not sure if I've done something wrong here, on my computer or if it is a glitch through Blogger. I am going to investigate this further tomorrow, so please bear with me. It will get fixed, I have faith!

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

GONE is better than good!

I don’t remember how I stumbled onto Michael Grant’s book Gone I was probably cruising the YA aisles in Borders looking for something new and the cover caught with the large white letters caught my attention. I am so glad I selected the book. From the first page, the reader is plunged into a world where everything has gone topsy-turvy.

On an ordinary November morning an extraordinary event occurs. Everyone over the age of 14 disappeared from Perdido Beach, California. Poofed. Gone. No more parents, teachers, cops or authority figures. Left alone, the children must survive without phones, internet or any way to communicate to the outside world.

It’s a new, dangerous world. Nicknamed the FAYZ for the Fall-Out Youth Zone, the kids must learn to work together for survival. Bullies, mutating animals and a power-hungry sociopathic teen are only the start of the troubles that will plague the already scared kids. In addition, the "littles" need round-the-clock care and there is a small problem with kids beginning to develop strange powers. A war between good and evil is unavoidable.

Although Gone features multiple characters, keeping track of each is not difficult. The shifts in action are fluid. Author Grant easily maintains the balance between action and exposition. He builds the tension in the book effortlessly.

The reader becomes acquainted with Sam Temple, Astrid Ellison, her autistic brother Little Pete and Perdido Beach newcomer Edilio Escobar. We can’t overlook Sam’s best friend and surfing buddy Quinn Gaither either. Is he friend or foe?  Other older children step up in the FAYZ to help keep things organized but when school bully Orc and his sidekick Howard get out of hand, keeping order will fall to Sam.

Sam can handle bullies, bossy Astrid and even manage his own developing powers, but can he handle the arrival of the Coates Academy newcomers? Do the boarding school students want to join forces with the town kids or is there something more sinister afoot? Caine, Diana, Drake and Computer Jack seem sincere but Astrid suspects a hidden agenda.

Gone's dialogue is believable teen dialogue. The conversations could have been plucked easily from any middle school. The banter between characters in enjoyable and Grant develops their relationships quickly, building on each throughout the book.

Gone by Michael Grant was originally released in 2008. There are currently three additional books available in this series:  Hunger, Lies and Plague. Book number 5 is to be released in 2012 and is titled Fear. The concluding book will be titled Light. You can check out author Michael Grant on GoodReads or at Harper Teen

Gone is a recommended read. This is now one of my favorite YA series and I am really looking forward to the release of Fear next year.