Wednesday, 26 December 2012

Preditors and Editors Readers Poll: Vote now!

The Preditors and Editors Readers Poll is open now for voting and I have two entries included this year; Children's book for Out and About at the Zoo and 
Writers's Resource/Information/News Source... for Writers and Authors.

I'd really appreciate if you could take a minute to give me your vote. You can place your vote at

Sunday, 23 December 2012

FREE Out and About at the Zoo download for Christmas

That's right, I'm giving away FREE copies of my best selling children's picture story book this Christmas. All you have to do to get your hands on a FREE copy of my best seller is go to on either 24th, 25th or 26th December and download a copy. If you don't have a kindle you can still get a copy and read it on one of the kindle apps e.g. Kindle PC or Kindle ipad.

Why not gift a copy to your friends too? 

If you'd like to give back a little Christmas cheer I'd very much appreciate if you left me a review and clicked the like button ;)

Merry Christmas!

Wednesday, 12 December 2012

Wall Chat Wednesday: Special Guest Tannia Ortiz Lopés

My special guest for today's Wall Chat Wednesday feature is Tannia E. Ortiz Lopès. She'll be joining me on my Facebook page at 9:30 pm Central European Time (that's 3:30 pm for you folks in the US) today to chat about her books, photography and a whole bunch of other stuff too. She has some special offer to share as well. As always everyone is welcome to join us and you can post your own questions for Tannia directly to the wall during the chat.

You can also find info about Tannia and her projects on her website

Monday, 10 December 2012

Dear Santa Blog Hop

Welcome to the Dear Santa Blog Hop! With the holiday season upon us, and being a book junky, I thought it would be fun to have a blog hop that shares ideas for books as gifts.

How to participate
  • Link up a post related to Christmas and books. This can be a link to a book give-away, a discussion about why books make great presents, what books are on your Christmas wish list this year, the books you're buying for others or even about your all time favourite Christmas book.
  • Don’t link directly to your blog, it must be a specific post.
  • Check out the other posts and leave them some love in the form of a comment.  
  • Grab the banner above and put it somewhere on your blog, preferably the post you’re linking up and add a link back to this Hop so that others can find it and check out all these great book links!
  • Last but not least; tweet, share, and spread the word about the Hop!
Happy Hopping!

Friday, 7 December 2012

Out and About at the Zoo by Jo Linsdell

Out and About at the Zoo by Jo Linsdell

Rhyming text and colourful pictures accompany this fun day out discovering different animals at the zoo.

Author bio:

Jo Linsdell is a best selling author, award-winning blogger and freelance writer. A recognised thought leader in the world of book marketing she is also the founder and organiser of the annual online event Promo Day.

Originally from the UK she moved to Rome, Italy in 2001 where she lives with her Italian husband and their two young children.

She is currently working on another children's picture story book called Fairy May that is scheduled for release on 1st February 2013 and The Writers and Authors Guide to Social Media that will follow shortly after.

Purchasing  link:

Enter the give-away for your chance to win a free copy of this book

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Thursday, 6 December 2012

Mercury in Retro Love by Janie Emaus

Mercury in Retro Love by Janie Emaus

A story about crushes, conflicts and astrological confusion.
Finally, after years of making love predictions for her friends, fifteen-year-old astrologer, Emma Seigel, sees a boyfriend in her future. But there’s one big problem. Mercury is heading for Retrograde in four weeks, and she sure knows what that means. It’s like an astrological PMS. A disastrous time to start a new relationship.
Using her school newspaper column, Emmastrology, she sets a plan in motion and within a week lands hottie Evan Randolph as her boyfriend. She’s a Taurus. He’s a Capricorn. Both earth signs. What could be more perfect? But is he as perfect as her prediction claims him to be? The stars are telling her it’s right. But her heart says it’s all wrong.
Everyday her feelings are growing stronger for someone else, a Leo, so totally not the sign for her. And to make matters even worse, Emma’s actions, caused by her unflinching belief in astrology, get her in trouble with her best friends in the whole world.
Time is running out. Can Emma straighten up this mess she’s in before Mercury goes Retrograde again?

A Young Adult Novel
Author Bio:
I write fiction and non-fiction for adults and children. I am both serious and fantastical.
As a little girl I would read newspaper articles out loud to my family and friends, incorporating them into the stories. By the time I was in junior high, I was creating plots and characters of my own. And I have been a prolific writer ever since, writing everything from poetry to educational videos.
I have written several books for Parachute Press, the book packager for the Goosebumps and Fear Street series. I have been also a frequent contributor to the Los Angeles Times Kids’ Reading Room Page. My stories for adults have appeared in True Confessions, Woman’s World, Chicken Soup for the Soul books, and The Book Breeze.
I also write a weekly column for the popular website In The Powder Room and blog for The Huffington Post.


Purchasing link:

Enter the give-away for your chance to win a free copy of this book

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Wednesday, 5 December 2012

The Alien Mind by Virginia Jennings

Book Spotlight: The Alien Mind by Virginia Jennings

The Alien Mind by Virginia Jennings

The Alien Mind by Virginia Jennings
In The Alien Mind, Young Rivinaig shares her adventures and trials that began on that fateful day when a group of aliens called the Aruk abducted her and several other children. Another group of aliens called the Aunantet rescue the children and raise them as their own. Their new families teach them how to harness the full capacities of their brains, enabling them to defy the laws of physics and develop special mental abilities.
The past returns to haunt them as the Aruk plot revenge and make a bid to regain their control; the fate of the entire galaxy depends on whether the children can maintain their freedom.

Author bio:
Virginia Jennings lives in South Carolina with her husband, three kids, and two cats. She graduated from High School at 16 and was published by the time she turned 18. She is the author of two science fiction books and has plans in the works for two fantasy books as well. Her ideal evening is spent watching Star Trek or Eureka with her family over dinner. She enjoys playing putt putt and watching the latest sci-fi or action adventure movie. She does most of her best writing in the car as her characters prefer to talk to her while she is driving. Finding time to write down what they tell her- now that is where the real challenge is! When she is not hanging out with her family or writing she also runs the 'Where Writers And Authors Meet' writers group online.

Enter the give-away for your chance to win a free copy of this book

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Tuesday, 4 December 2012

Babysitting SugarPaw by VS Grenier

Babysitting SugarPaw by Virginia Grenier


2012 Mom's Choice Silver Award-winner!
2011 League of Utah Writers Silver Quill Winner!
A little bear named SugarPaw hopes to get rid of his babysitter, bonnie Whiskers, by getting her into trouble after making changes to his rules chart. As the story unfolds, SugarPaw learns about honesty and friendship. Babysitting SugarPaw, with its child-centered plot on gettng to know others, is the perfect book for littel ones scared of being left alone with a babysitter for the first time. This book will delight three-to-eight-year-old-readers, especially those who like to create mischief.
Illustrator: Keven Scott Collier
Author Bio:
VS Grenier is an award-winning children's author, founder & owner of Stories for Children Publishing, LLC, award-winning editor-in-chief of Stories for Children Magazine and chief editor for Halo Publishing, Int, and also, the host of the blog talk radio shows on The World of Ink Network: Stories for Children, The Writing Mama, What is Success and Families Matter. A California girl at heart and former fashion buyer, Grenier lives in Southern Utah with her supportive husband, their three children and the family's miniature schnauzer Taz.
Purchasing link:

Enter the give-away for your chance to win a free copy of this book

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Monday, 3 December 2012

The Mystical Mountains of Terra by Ngaire Elder

The Mystical Mountains of Terra by Ngaire Elder

A race against time. Good versus evil. The Sceptre of Malvado is at risk of falling into the wrong hands, and Soldier’s fate depends on its recovery. Can Cecilia and Soldier find the sceptre before the total eclipse of the sun, or will someone else beat them to it?

Another gripping adventure for Cecilia Spark, with lots of thrills and spills along the way.

Illustrated by Peter Maddocks. The second book in the new children’s series, The Adventures of Cecilia Spark.

Suitable for 5–8-year-old boys and girls.

Author Bio:

I was born and raised in Glasgow, Scotland. I spent most of my childhood playing outside with my brother and my imaginary friends and feasting on my grannies’ homecooking.

I can remember the magpie that followed me around my garden one summer, and the day my grandpa found the wild bunnies that I had captured and hidden in my bedroom.

After leaving school, I went to college and university (part-time) and embarked on a career in the health and safety sector, qualifying in 1993.

I met my husband through my work and have 4 children.

Now, I spend my time looking after my family, taking care of our collection of animals (2 dogs, 1 cat, 2 horses, 2 pigs, 3 ferrets and a budgie), nurturing the kitchen garden, learning Spanish, speaking Spanish and writing.

I currently live in Spain.

Purchasing link:

Enter the give-away for your chance to win a free copy of this book

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Sunday, 2 December 2012

Bella's Birthday Surprise by Kate Mueller

Bella's Birthday Surprise by Kate Mueller

Bella is turning one and excited about her first party.  She is in for a big surprise when she opens her last present and finds something very special inside.

Author bio:
From poems to short stories, I have always enjoyed putting my thoughts down on paper. After graduating from Purdue University, my husband and I settled down near our Indiana childhood homes. We now have two beautiful daughters, Bella and Sofia. We have cherished countless hours curled up reading together. It was from this experience that I knew I wanted to leave something for my daughters and future generations. A book was the perfect choice.

Purchasing link:

Enter the give-away for your chance to win a free copy of this book

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Saturday, 1 December 2012

Win free books for tots and teens!

From the 1st to 7th December 2012 people can enter this awesome give-away and be in with a chance of winning a selection of fantastic children's titles. The contest is international and all people have to do to enter is click through the rafflecopter (see below). The more you click, the more entry votes you have and the better your chances of winning.

I'm joined by authors; Kate Mueller, Ngaire Elder, Virginia Jennings, Janie Emaus and VS Grenier to offer some pre-Christmas fun and give readers the chance of winning a copy of our books. An excellent prize that can be downloaded directly to your kindle device. No waiting for the postman to deliver!

Reading is an important skill for children to learn and electronic reading devices like kindles are opening up the possibilities of getting children to read more. Ideal for those times when you need to entertain them in waiting rooms or during long journeys but also great for reading at home. This super prize will keep the younger members of the family entertained either independently or as a group activity.

I was trying to think up ways I could promote my book in the lead up to the holidays and give a little something back to all the people that support my work. I figured it would be more fun to include other authors in the children's genre and do it as a group project than to go it alone and so asked some of my colleagues if they wanted to join me. The result is a fabulous prize of titles suitable for tots to teens. 

The winner of the give-away will receive a copy of each of the titles giving them an instant library of children's books for their kindle... and just in time for the holidays!

Each day this week I'll be sharing with you some more information about each of the titles up for grabs and their authors so be sure to check back.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Wednesday, 21 November 2012

Time to use my super powers...

November is a busy month. Possibly the busiest of the year and not just because the run to the Christmas holidays is well and truly under way. For writers it's the month of the year that we look forward to but also dread to a certain extent. November is the official month dedicated to creative challenges like NaNoWriMo, PiBoIdMo, SkADaMo and numerous others where we push ourselves to our creative limits.

November is also the month we try to finish our projects, update our websites, evaluate our marketing strategies, review our pricing and a whole bunch of other tasks that will mean we can end the year in style and be set up for a successful start to the new year. Not to mention throwing ourselves into our promotional efforts for the holiday season. 

Order your copy now at

As if all this isn't enough to deal with I decided it would be a good time to finish my children's picture story book Fairy May and start preparations for it's release in February 2013. I'll be doing a 2 month long virtual tour to promote its release and so have been working on finding tour hosts, brainstorming guest post ideas and all the other tasks involved in putting together a tour.

I'm also taking part in several give-away's. A kindle copy of my best seller Out and About at the Zoo is up for grabs in both the Thanks-Giving Mega Give-away and the Winter Give-away.

With so much going on I surprise myself with how much I get done by the end of each day. Even more so when I think I'm doing it all with 2 small children. I guess I must have super powers ;)

Are you using your super powers this month? What's keeping you busy?

Monday, 12 November 2012

Winter give-away

I'm proud to be part of this fantastic give-away. To enter and be in with a chance of winning one of these fabulous prizes go to 


Friday, 9 November 2012

Pre-Christmas Promo Code for Out and About at the Zoo

I know that Halloween has only just passed and that those of you in the States are busy celebrating Thanks-Giving but I thought I'd offer a small discount on my book Out and About at the Zoo for those of you that like to start your Christmas shopping early.

To get your 5% off just insert the promo code S3HQFW8C at the check out.

These are just some of the things people have had to say about the book:

"Fun with cleverly rhyming text and is brightly illustrated. Your littlies will love Out and About at the Zoo."
- Pete Abela

"This book will become a family favorite quite fast".
- Jan Verheoff

"This simple children's book with bright colors of animals from the zoo is crisp in it poetic delivery."
- Bennet Pomerantz

"I can't wait to read the rhymes in this story to my grand-babies."
- Patricia Kemp Blackmon

"As a primary teacher, I recommend this highly for a beginning reader."
- Barbara Ehrentreu

"Filled with simple yet colorful pictures that even held my one year old's attention!"
- Virginia L. Jennings

"Your little angels, be they your children or the grandchildren or the neighbor's children, will love the memorable animal pals in the pages of this bright book".
- Claudia Moss

"The images of the animals are cheeky and fun and are complemented by the simple narrative with a strong rhyming element."
- Jennifer Poulter

"The colorful illustrations make this book a joy to read."
- Kate Mueller

"This is a clever story in fun verse that will keep children engaged. The colorful illustrations and the perfectly timed meter of the text will be a fun read for kids over and over. A great compliment for your summer list of books for kids".
-Terri Forehand

"Kiddo and I both hope there will be more Out and About books, as they would be great baby shower/birthday presents, as your child can grow with them!"
- Nicole (bless their hearts mom)

"The rhyming text and colorful pictures in Out and About at the Zoo not only make a truly fun story for children to read or have read to them and imagine what it’s like, but will also help to familiarize them with the different kinds of creatures that they will discover at the zoo when they do go".
-Wayne S. Walker

"I recommend this to parents of preschoolers and homeschoolers with beginning readers. Out and About At the Zoo will provide great fun, learning moments, and memories."
- Susan K. Stewart

"This book is a colorful, simple, and fun book perfect for the very young"
- Aileen Stewart

"What I think is so wonderful about this book is how it teaches children to cherish those times with their mother".
-Cheryl Malandrinos

"I base my opinion on a children's book on how my son reacts to the story and the fact that my son smiled and signed "more" when we were done reading the story made me enjoy this book even more!"
- Brenna Boyd

"I loved the book from beginning to end, and I’m sure every child who cuddles with Mommy or Daddy at bedtime will feel the same way."
-Irene Roth

"The whimsy, color, and rhyme of this picture book stole my heart."
- Ellen Maze

"Out and About at the Zoo now has a firm place on the daily reading aloud book list, as it never fails to bring a smile to the faces of the young and young at heart in this household."
-Hazel Nutt

"As a mom I can tell you there is no better compliment to a children's book than to have your child say, "read it again" when you finish reading a book. This is exactly what happened when I finished reading Out and About at the Zoo to my 3-year-old."
- Victoria Marshal

"My children at school loved the book. The pictures are beautiful, full of wonderful colors and the Pre K children found them intriging."
-Susan (via Amazon)

"Cute book ... kids love having their own books on the kindle that they can read! Good for beginning readers, enjoy having the independence to read on their own!"
-Kazar (via Amazon)

Get your copy now

Wednesday, 7 November 2012

Wall Chat Wednesday: Special Guest Virginia Jennings

My special guest for today's Wall Chat Wednesday feature is Virginia Jennings. She'll be joining me on my Facebook page at 9:30 pm Central European Time (that's 3:30 pm for you folks in the US) today to chat about her latest release Alien Mind. As always everyone is welcome to join us and you can post your own questions for Virginia directly to the wall during the chat.

A bit about Virginia
Virginia Jennings lives in South Carolina with her husband, three kids, and two cats. She graduated from High School at 16 and was published by the time she turned 18. She is the author of two science fiction books, The Alien Mind, and Visionary From The Stars. She also has plans in the works for two fantasy books as well. Her ideal evening is spent watching Star Trek or Eureka with her family over dinner. She enjoys playing putt putt and watching the latest sci-fi or action adventure movie. She does most of her best writing in the car as her characters prefer to talk to her while she is driving. Finding time to write down what they tell her- now that is where the real challenge is! When she is not spending time with her family, or writing, she also runs a large and very active writers group on Facebook.

Monday, 5 November 2012

Thanksgiving Mega Give-away

I'm excited to be part of this fabulous give-away. An e-copy of my best selling children's book is up for grabs as one of the prizes along with a vast selection of other titles and bookish swag. Enter now using the rafflecopter widget below for your chance to win.

Welcome to the Thanksgiving Mega Giveaway!! This giveaway was put together solely to say thank goodness for books and to celebrate them!

It was also put together to give back to readers and try to give as many people as possible some reading material for the holidays! There tons of ways to enter so everyone has a good chance of winning something. :)

A huge thank you to the authors who donated their awesome books  & swag and to the bloggers who also hosted and donated material!

Here are some simple rules to remember when entering.
  • paperback and swag will be mailed to the U.S. only
  • ecopies are international
  • You get to pick your prize if you're one of the winners of the contest!! You will only have 24 hours to pick your prize and return your choice in an email or another winner will be chosen.
Good luck to everyone and enjoy the holidays!

Friday, 2 November 2012

Picture Book Month 2012

November is Picture Book Month and to celebrate I'm taking part in Picture Book Idea Month (you can follow on twitter using the hashtag #PiBoIdMo).

So far I'm doing really well... in fact I've gotten a bit carried away in all the excitement and already have 26 ideas on my idea list... and it's only day 2! Hitting my goal of 30 ideas in 30 days shouldn't be a problem ;)

Just to be clear, I don't have 26 finished manuscripts. These are just ideas. In most cases I have just a working title and a few notes and maybe a quick sketch or two of what the characters might look like.

I've already been asked by several people how I've managed to come up with so many ideas in such a short space of time. Those of you that know me will know that coming up with ideas isn't a problem for me. In fact I often have too many. The real problem is finding the time to develop them all. As a mum to a 4 year old and a 1 year old I watch a lot of cartoons, read a lot of children's books and play a lot of games. I also get inspiration from just watching my kids. My 4 year old often comes up with some wonderful comments that spark my creative brain too.

My PiBoIdMo list will be handy for when I do 12 x 12 in 2013. The aim of the 12 x 12 challenge is to write 12 complete picture book drafts in 12 months.

These brainstorming challenges are great motivators to create more picture books and will definitely play an important role in the books I produce over the next year. They're also a fun way to connect with other children's authors and illustrators.

Are you taking part in any of these events?

Tuesday, 30 October 2012

Get to Know the Writer: Lily Stejskal

I always like to get to know other writers and especially those who share similar interests to mine, so it's my pleasure to be joined by children's writer Lily Stejskal for today's post. 

Lily Skejskal
Tell us a bit about yourself

My name is Lily Stejskal. I am twenty-six years old and live in northern Virginia. I am an aspiring children’s author who hasn’t published anything yet, but I have two blogs that I would love to share. I am currently searching for places to publish my work, and if you have any ideas, please let me know.

As a writer I am very spontaneous, and I tend to write whatever comes to mind. As a result, I have completed works in many different genres with many different themes.

I am very passionate about educating children, something that I’m sure shows in my writing. Another thing I am passionate about is the environment, and so I am hoping to write both fiction and nonfiction with environmental themes. I have already written many different environmental poems, many of which can be found on my writing blog.

I was born with autism, and another passion of mine is helping autistic children. In addition to many of my memoirs being about autism, I am getting ready to submit some shorter memoirs to the Autism Society’s web site. After I have done so, I will post a link to those stories on my blog. Maybe I will even write fiction about autistic children someday!

When did you start writing?

I’ve been making up stories ever since I could talk, and I was about eight when I first started typing these stories on the computer.

What genre do you write and why?

As mentioned before, I write all sorts of different genres. Right now I have poems, picture book manuscripts, personal essays, memoirs, and book reviews on my blog, but I have also just started writing short stories and have lots of ideas for novels. I write for all age groups except very young children. While some of my writing is for adults, most of it is for children ages four and older. I don’t have much of an interest in writing for children under four, for a couple of reasons. One is that books meant for this age group tend to rely on illustrations, and I have neither an illustrator nor adequate drawing instruction to provide those right now, though drawing is a hobby of mine. Another is that I like to write lengthy, complicated stories, and children under four don’t usually have the patience for those. I am, however, able and willing to try out just about any genre for any other age group, adults included. For that reason, when you visit my blog, I would love it if you would leave ideas for other things I can try. If you have children, I am especially interested in what they would like me to try.

Where can people see samples of your work?

People can see samples of the work I listed above on my writing blog:

What else do you post on your blog?

My writing blog is strictly for my writing, but I also have another blog: This blog is all about fairy tales. So far it contains analytical discussions of fairy tales, ideas for parents on sharing fairy tales with their children, and a couple original fairy tales I wrote. In the future I plan to also include fairy tale re-tellings and ideas for teachers to use fairy tales in the classroom. Just as with my writing, I am open to new ideas with this blog, so when you visit, please feel free to tell me what else you would like to see there.

Plans for the future?

I have lots of tentative plans for the future, and being a spontaneous writer, I never know which ones I’ll try when. I plan to write more short stories, but have no idea when I’ll have improved them enough to post on my blog. I also don’t know when I’ll have enough writing experience to start toying with one of my novel ideas. One thing I may do soon, though, is write more memoirs and personal essays.

Right now my biggest project is a screenplay for a possible children’s movie. This screenplay, which is almost complete, is a crossover story featuring heroes and villains from different musicals battling one another. This screenplay is too big to post on my blog, but I may find a way to make it accessible to the public once it is complete. Needless to say, finishing this screenplay is another plan for the future, as are publishing some of what’s on my blog. I also may post some additional poems, memoirs, and personal essays on my writing blog, but those I would like to first try submitting to web sites that publish only unpublished material. If I succeed in that endeavor, I will definitely post links to the web site(s) on my blog.

Wednesday, 24 October 2012

Wall Chat Wednesday: Special Guest Denise Turney

Wall Chat Wednesday is back. This week my special guest is Denise Turney who will be joining me to chat about her books and will share some tips on doing radio interviews. Don't miss the chat, 9:30 pm Central European Time (that's 3:30 pm EST) today on my Facebook page.

A bit about Denise

Denise Turney is a professional writer who brings more than thirty-two years of book, newspaper, magazine, radio and business writing to a project. She is the author of the books Portia, Love Has Many Faces, Spiral, Rosetta’s Great Adventure, Long Walk Up and Love Pour Over Me. Denise Turney is an internationally celebrated author who is listed in various entertainment and business directories, including industry leaders such as Who’s Who, 100 Most Admired African American Women and Crosswalk. Denise Turney’s works have appeared in Parade, Essence, Ebony, Madame Noire, The Pittsburgh Quarterly and Obsidian II. Denise would love it if you visited her online at –

As always you are welcome to post your own questions for Denise directly to the wall during the chat.

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