Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Growing Up, Musically

Happy Wednesday Everyone,

Recently a friend of mine asked some help with a project. This friend is trying to come up with songs that talk about growing up and different stages of life.

The project got me thinking about songs that define my childhood. Music that either makes me think of particular instances, or memories I cherish.

There's the mental snapshots of my Dad strumming away at his guitar while singing songs from Peter, Paul & Mary, Paul Anka, and the Kingston Trio. Or times when one of my uncles would join in with his guitar and we'd sit around singing The Beach Boys' Sloop John B.

Or the many family reunions at one of my other aunt and uncle's lake house, where another uncle brought out his collection of microphones, guitars, kazoos and whatever other musical instruments he happened to have with him and we'd have these amazing family singalongs.

I recall singing Walking On A Wire by Lowen & Navarro one year, while my younger brother played one of the electric guitars.

There's simple things I also remember (and at times, still get to enjoy) like singing harmony while my Dad sings Paul Anka's Diana, or knowing how comforting Dad was growing up while Mark Wills' In My Arms plays on the radio.

There's moments where I'll catch myself singing songs my Mother used to sing to us. Lullabies, an annoying wake up song  (that I now sing to my offspring LOL) or just humming brings back a flood of memories from growing up.

I don't think I'll ever be able to hear The Kingston Trio's Charlie And The MTA without thinking of my Dad and wondering why such a depressing song has such an upbeat tune.

I remember how me and my siblings used to beg for a country-western tune my Dad hated, but would eventually relent and sing the song with an exaggerated southern accent, much to me and my siblings' great delight.

So there's something about looking for songs that define different stages of childhood that make me think back on my own, personal musical history.

What about you? What songs bring back childhood memories?

Have A Whimsical Day!

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Releases Galore, Reading, Writing & Life

Happy Tuesday All,

Well Blogger has changed its format on me, so I'm learning the new format. Please bear with me while I figure it all out (it doesn't look hard, however, like with all changes you have to get used to them).

The other thing you'll have to bear with me on is the fact that I'm behind on new release reports:

Two of my chapter mates have recently released new novels, and I wanted to make sure I let you all know about it:

Suzan Harden has put out a brand new e-book called Amish, Vamps & Thieves book 4 in her Bloodlines series. You can get it on Amazon Kindle and Barnes & Noble Nook. Also available is Ms. Harden's newest Erotica, Seasons Of Magick: Autumn on Amazon Kindle and Barnes & Noble Nook.

Melissa Ohnoutka has also put out a brand new short e-book, entitled, The Wicked Secrets Beneath which you can find on Amazon Kindle and Barnes & Noble Nook.

There's a lot going on in my life, mostly good stuff, but it sure keeps me busy. I'm working on one of my WIPs (Works In Progress), which is one of the things keeping me busy. The other thing is family and friends--but I enjoy that kind of busyness.

The other thing is, if you haven't checked out Beth Fantaskey and you like vampires, please check out her Jessica books! The first one is Jessica's Guide To Dating On The Dark Side, which I got on my e-reader. I read it and thought "Interesting...I might read more." I found out she posted a prequel to the sequel (short story) on her website, read that, and fell even more in love with the story and purchased the sequel, Jessica Rules The Dark Side, on my e-reader. The e-book version of the sequel came with the short story that was on Ms. Fantaskey's website, which is really cool because now I have all 3 stories. I love them. Very romantic, and the second one has so much suspense! I stayed up late to finish reading it. They're in print and in e-book form (well the short story isn't in print, but the other two are). These vampires are unlike any I've read. They're slightly darker than some of the other vampires out there, but not by much. It's a YA series that I truly have enjoyed and if she puts out any more, I'll be wanting to read them.

The sequel to Josephine Angelini's Starcrossed, entitled, Dreamless comes out in May (release date: May 29, 2012). I've already pre-ordered this one (in print). I loved Starcrossed. I've read it probably around 3 times and would read it again. I cannot wait to read this one, and I've been chomping at the bit to read it since last year!

I'm hoping to finish reading Nicholas Sparks' The Lucky One before I see the movie. We'll see if that happens. LOL. Either way, I think I'll like the movie. The previews look good. My favorite N. Sparks' books (and movies) are A Walk To Remember and The Notebook. I think those two are his best.

So what's going on in your world? Read anything good lately? Seen any good movies? Feel free to chime in :-)

Update Added 2:57 p.m. Central Time 4/24/2012:  A follower posted this comment (I saw it waiting for me in moderation and decided to post it here instead of in the comment section):  "In December, the City of Mesquite, NV is hosting a "Weekend of Writers" including booths, workshops, and many other events for the city. Authors can come and sell books, do signings, and many other activities. For more information:  mattjenbennett@yahoo.com"  ***PLEASE NOTE:  I don't have any further information about this, so if you're interested, contact J.J. at the email listed in the quotes. Thanks!***

Have A Terrific Tuesday!

Thursday, April 19, 2012

You-Whooo, Writers!

Happy Thursday All,

So sorry I've been away--there's been a lot going on over here, so I've been very busy. Allergies are a little better--thank you to everyone for your good thoughts/wishes/prayers.

The other day I mentioned my RWA (Romance Writers' of America) chapter, the Northwest Houston Romance Writers of America is having its annual Lone Star Contest for writers. There are several categories to enter, everybody. There's great prizes available and an opportunity to get your work in front of editors and agents.

One year I was a coordinator for one of the categories and I saw some really talented writers come through. This is a chance to show people what you're doing with your work. It's fairly easy to enter, and it's not real expensive either.

Please go to the contest web page and check out further details. The category chairs (coordinators) are all really nice people and the person who heads it up is so helpful.

Have A Thrilling Thursday!

Monday, April 16, 2012

Rain, Comments, Contest & Books

Happy Monday All,

It's rainy, wet, and thundering around here--not cool and very gloomy out, which isn't really conducive to feeling awake and peppy, but I'm going to try anyway. I've got my coffee, so that should help quite a bit.

I don't know about you all, but I'm sick of allergies. I've got them and my offspring has them and either way you look at it, it's just annoying, right? Well, the upside is, I'm feeling a bit better and I got some rest yesterday, so hopefully I'm mending the rest of the way.

There's a couple of things I wanted to address...first off:

I've been getting some questions lately about posts not showing up. Let me explain:  comments are, in fact, showing up...the thing is, every single comment goes through moderation. That is, they show up in my administrative files on Blogger. When I sign in, I see them, and press the "Publish" button and then the comment shows up in the comment section of the blog post. Unfortunately, I haven't sat down and addressed this in an official blog post, but there is a little note at the top of the space where you type in your comment. I apologize for the inconvenience, but this has cut down on commenting issues (why, I have no idea) and it has also given me an opportunity to make sure there aren't duplicated posts. Sometimes it takes me awhile to sign in and see your comment and get it posted onto the blog--that does NOT mean that it's not there, it just means yours truly hasn't signed in to get it. If you don't see your comment up within 24 hours, please, send me an email and I'll check and see if it got caught in moderation or if Blogger decided to have a glitch. Thank you for your patience.

Guess what! The Northwest Houston Romance Writers of America has opened up its annual Lone Star Contest for writers! (This is a chapter of RWA I'm a member of) There's some great prizes this year, so be sure to go check it out. Deadline for entries for the Lone Star Contest is midnight June 9, 2012. Please click on the link above for further information.

I got to go to C.C. Hunter's book signing at Katy Budget Books on Saturday. I also met author Joy Preble. I purchased the first book in Ms. Preble's series, it's called Dreaming Anastasia. So far, so good!

What's going in your world?

Have A Marvelous Monday!

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Releases, I Hang Out With A Beast & Life In General

Happy Wednesday All,

Okay I'm late on reporting this (Bad Bethany!!) but, hopefully it's worth the wait. My wonderful critique partner, Tess St. John has put out a brand-new novel, Angel Eyes. For anyone who's read Don't Let It Show and Eyes Of Jade, this is Roy's story! Also, you can get for free, the prelude/prologue short story to Angel Eyes called Violet Eyes (which I've read and helped critique...it's really good. I helped critique a little bit on Angel Eyes--I remember I liked what I read). Most of her books are available on Amazon Kindle and Barnes & Noble Nook, and some of her previous titles are available in-print through Amazon. Violet Eyes is only available through Tess's website, you can download it for free here on her book portion of her homepage.

Lately I've been re-reading Alex Flinn's Beastly (one of my favorite re-tellings of Beauty & The Beast) and she put out on E-book Beastly: Lindy's Diary (which is the story told from Lindy's point of view). So far it's good. I just started Lindy's Diary yesterday, but it's a pretty quick read so I'm already making good progress--I like it!

I'm doing some work on one of my manuscripts, and so that's coming along pretty steadily--not quickly--but steadily.

Life is pretty busy, but a lot of it is a good kind of busy.

So what are you reading now?

Have A Whimsical Wednesday!

Monday, April 9, 2012

Thirteen Things I've Learned From TAKEN AT DUSK--Guest Post By C.C. Hunter

Happy Tuesday All,

Before I get to C.C. Hunter's guest post (as noted in the title of this post) I hope you all had a great Easter. I apologize for so much silence. Last week I took most of Holy Week off and had a friend visiting, and Monday I had some thing else going on, so I was unable to post on here.

I have the wonderful and talented C.C. Hunter as guest today, describing 13 things she learned from TAKEN AT DUSK, which is available today (Tuesday, April 10, 2012) from Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and other bookstores.

So, take it away, C.C.!

Thirteen Things Learned From TAKEN AT DUSK
by C.C. Hunter

1. The only thing worse than trying to help a woman with amnesia remember her name and life is trying to help a dead woman with amnesia remember hers.

2. Be careful what you wish for—you might just get it . . . and the reality will probably not be anything like the fantasy.

3. The person you think is your enemy could just turn into a friend who'll do anything to save you.

4. The scariest thing in the world isn't ghosts or rogue vampires bent on murder—it's falling in love.

5. Explaining why you have a skunk curled up in your arms to your mom and your old best friend is as easy as eating a brownie while brushing your teeth.

6. We all make mistakes, which is why it's so important to practice forgiveness.

7. The only thing worse than a pissed-off shape-shifter is a pissed-off shape-shifter in love.

8. Sometimes the earth really does have to open up and swallow you whole before you can accept the truth that's right in front of you.

9. Vampires have no sense of humor . . . especially when they get turned into a kangaroo.

10. Free will gives us choices, but even making the right choices can't change destiny …and learning to accept that can be the most painful lesson of all.

11. People aren’t always who they say they are, even if you really want them to be.

12. Sometimes when you try to save someone, they end up saving you instead.

13. Never get between a dragon and a warlock on the war path.

Bethany here again, hope you enjoyed C.C.'s list...I know I did.

Be sure to pick up your copy of TAKEN AT DUSK.  Also, this Saturday, April 14, 2012 from 2 p.m. until 4 p.m. C.C. Hunter will be at Katy Budget Books, so if you're nearby and have a moment, please come by and say hello! (please check here for more information about C.C.'s appearance at Katy Budget Books).

Have A Terrific Tuesday!

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Mystery Abounds In SHADOWFALLS...

Happy Wednesday All,

I apologize for all the silence. I've had a lot going on lately, and with it being Holy Week, I'm taking some time to reflect and prepare myself for the Easter celebration. For that reason, I will NOT be putting up a post on Friday since it's Good Friday.

However, I have a special post for today...

It’s almost here! C.C. Hunter’s release of her 3rd Shadowfalls book, Taken At Dusk, will arrive on shelves on April 10, 2012.

In the meantime, here’s a glimpse into the exciting next installment of Kylie Galen’s adventures:

When Awake At Dawn closed, Kylie was about to meet her grandparents. Yet, what should’ve been a happy reuinon, turns into a bigger mystery than before. Especially when they leave Shadowfalls and just go poof!

If that's not enough strangeness, Kylie starts seeing weird evil-looking animals coming after her. Burnett and the others start wondering if there’s some kind of shapeshifter at work. It’s got to be Mario, but Mario isn’t a shapeshifter…so who is the one doing this?

The love triangle between Kylie, Derek, and Lucas takes a new turn when Kylie and Derek call a quits. But, is it really over? Can Kylie give Lucas the chance Miranda and Della want her to give him?

Of course, none of these things would be complete without the amnesasic ghost haunting Kylie. When Kylie learns of a possible identity of the ghost, will she continue to help the specter, or is it “Adios, spirit!” for the identity-challenged ghost?

One thing is for certain: every twist, turn, mystery and new information you learn with Kylie will be nothing you expected. As far as I'm concerned, Taken At Dusk is Ms. Hunter’s most exciting installment, yet!

Taken At Dusk will be released at bookstores everywhere on April 10, 2012, check your favorite bookstore or website for more information.
*********GIVEAWAY IS OFFICALLY CLOSED.  I am NOT accepting anymore entries. Thank you.*********** 
I got an email from Ms. Hunter's assistant who let me know that she's giving away a copy of TAKEN AT DUSK!

Here's how to enter for a chance to win your very own copy of this awesome novel (please read the directions CAREFULLY):

Two ways to enter (one entry per person):

1.  You can comment on this blog. When you leave a comment please put your FIRST name and your email address. (If you do not include your name and email address I will NOT be able to enter you).  (NOTE:  When you leave a comment it goes into my moderation folder for me to publish before it appears on my blog. If you don't see your comment within 3 hours of posting, please send me an email).

2.  OR, if you don't want to leave a comment, you may send me an email at bethany.averie@yahoo.com please give me your first name and email where I may contact you. If I haven't responded to your email within 3 hours, please email me again.

I will be notifying the winner through email.

****I will close the giveaway at 11 p.m. Central Time today, Wednesday, April 4, 2012. Any entries I receive AFTER 11 p.m. Central time on Wednesday, April 4, 2012 will not be entered.****

***Note on INTERNATIONAL entries: I've emailed to ask if we're accepting international entries. I will update the blog post once I find out.***  EDITS: 8:35 p.m. 4/4/2012:  I apologize, but this giveaway is restricted to USA only. Thank you!

Have fun :-)

Have A Wonderful Wednesday!