Thursday, May 31, 2012

Happy Graduation!


Well it’s graduation time! How many of you remember those days? My graduation was in 1975, many many moons ago! I don’t really remember much about the actual graduation day but I remember the feeling.  I remember sitting in the seat with my cap and gown on looking around at everyone wondering who I would probably never see again. It made me sad. I loved my classmates and they are still dear to my heart to this day.

However, I hated school. Studying and reading class assignments was such an awful chore to me. I couldn’t focus easily on what I was reading as I was too distracted by all my teenage thoughts. You remember them… boys, boys, boys! And of course how was I going to show my face in school with that big zit on my chin! What a crisis that was back then.

I have so many good and so many bad memories from that time. One that sticks so vividly in my head is the time my friend and I decided to frost my hair. Today it’s called “highlighting”. Anyway, we bought a kit from the store and away we went. We were so excited to see how it would turn out. Boy did we screw it up!! My natural hair color was auburn but not this day. I ended up with blonde bangs, and different colored blotches of orange, white, and red all over my head. I was mortified! And were we smart enough to do this on a weekend so that I could get it fixed by Monday in case it was a disaster? Nope, we were silly teens and had no doubt in our minds that it would turn out beautiful. Boy were we wrong. And the worst part was I had 2 more days of school before the weekend, which meant I had to be completely humiliated. I bet some of my friends remember how I looked, it was so ridiculous! But of course all my friends lied through their teeth and told me it really looked good. Luckily one of my friends mother was a hair stylist so over the weekend she performed an emergency “dye job” on me so that I was back to normal on Monday.

Anyway, that was just one of many crisis I had back in those days. Of course everything is a crisis when you are a teen. Well that is anything that has to do with us directly, especially how we look! I was so me, me, me back then it was pathetic. But today I rely on those memories. They help me write better because I remember all those feelings I had. I might not remember actual incidents very well but the inner feelings still ring clear in my head.

High School is a very dramatic and tough time in anyone’s life. Everything is so emotional it’s a wonder anyone actually gets through it. I really admire those that not only get through it but that accomplish their goals and come out on top of their class. To me that takes a tremendous amount of strength and focus.

So today I just want to tip my hat off to all the graduates of 2012 who have graduated or are about to. It wasn’t easy but I commend them all and just want to say Congratulations and keep up the good work! Your life is only just beginning!”

For your amusement, this is my high school graduation picture. I loved that top I had on. It was light pink and I had on hip hugger bell bottom pants to go with it. I couldn’t wear that outfit today for anything! But it was nice while it lasted.




Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Guest Author Angelia Almos


Recently, Enchanted Books hosted a promotion party for author Angelia Almos. She was just releasing her new YA Fantasy titled Unicorn Keep. Angelia is also the author of Horse Charming. I asked Angelia if she would talk today about why most of her stories include horses in them and she was gracious enough to explain.

Horses & Writing

Horses have always influenced my writing. When I first started to write in my teens I was at the peak of my horse craziness. Riding everyday, competing in multiple horse events, and riding in lessons and on friends horses in addition to my own. All of my first attempts at short stories and novels featured horses prominently.

 
In my college years, horses often found their way into one story or another, but I also started writing stuff where a horse wasn’t a main character or there weren’t even horses in the story at all. I was expanding my horizons as they like to say. Reading different genres and writing different genres. Now, I have stories where a horse(s) might be a major character, horses might make a small appearance, or not appear at all in a book. Just depends on the book I’m writing.

One of the cool things about writing young adult fantasy is being able to include all types of horsey characters. My one rule when writing YA is to write the books I would have loved as a preteen and teen. My love for equines is often reflected through the eyes of the heroine.

Unicorn Keep was doubly fun to write as I not only got to include horses (in particular, one spunky pony), but also unicorns which I have always adored as much as horses. Who doesn’t love magical horses?

Thanks to Angelia for enlightening us and being a guest speaker today. Loads of luck with Unicorn Keep. Below is a little blurb about what the book is about. Sounds fascinating! You can find out more about Angelia on her website: www.angeliaalmos.com or visit her on twitter or facebook:


Jiline of Ainsley is dismayed when her best friend is selected by the mages to become a unicorn keeper at the Keep, an isolated mountain fortress. Especially since Madelen is in love and engaged to the richest boy in the village. Jiline on the other hand has no prospects of marriage or a trade in their small village. So, she comes up with a plan to take Madelen’s place at the Keep and hopefully flunk out of unicorn keeper training before the mages can discover the deception. Unfortunately, the unicorns have their own plans for her.

Mage Herrick, son of the Keep Mage, returns home to the Keep as the trainee keepers arrive. A chance encounter with Jiline, who he believes is Madelen, on the trail sparks a magical connection between the two. Knowing he can’t feel a magical draw to someone who has no magic, he tries to prove Madelen (Jiline) has magic within her. His attention brings unforeseen complications for both of them.
Unicorn Keep is available at Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Kobo, Smashwords, and CreateSpace.

Friday, May 11, 2012

Today I wanted to share with you how much fun I had reading and signing my book The Pea in Peanut Butter at the recent Barnes & Noble Festival of Words in Mandeville, LA.. Although I always feel intimidated being in front of a crowd, the intimidation was well worth it. To see the looks and hear the laughs of the children while I'm reading them the words I wrote, is more than satisfying.




I even had one little girl come up to me after the reading and hug me. She told me my book was the most awesome book! Awe... that little girl just made all my blood, sweat, tears, and rejections more than worth it. It truly is why I love writing picture books. I just want children to laugh and have fun reading my words and looking at the pictures. Plus, I get to continue dreaming with words!

And watch for my words to continue coming as I have 2 more picture books coming out in the future. One will be from Frecklebox and it's a book that buyers can personalize with their own child's name. It's exciting for me because I get to work closely with the illustrator. No word on a release date at this time.

The 2nd book, I can only tell you my manuscript has been accepted but can not release any other information yet so stay tuned for further details!