Saturday, July 31, 2010

NICOLE LANGAN of TRIBUTE BOOKS - Spotlight Party Guest

Please welcome Nicole Langan, publisher, book reviewer, blogger and much more.

How are you diggin the party?
Any time books equal fun - count me in!

Tell me about yourself?
My name is Nicole Langan and I live in northeast Pennsylvania near Scranton.

Are you in the book business? What do you do?
I am the owner of a small publishing house, Tribute Books ( and I review books at my blog Tribute Books Reviews & Giveaways (

Have you read any of LM Preston’s books? Say something smashingly great about LM Preston or her books.

I've read Explorer X-Alpha. Following is an excerpt from my review (
First time novelist L.M. Preston succeeds in writing a book boys will want to read. Not an easy task when 12-year-olds are more captivated by a flashing screen than a stationary page. But Explorer X-Alpha primes its audience for an action-filled look at space camp in the year 2080.

What are you currently working on?
For Tribute Books, I'm working on promoting Thumbing Through Thoreau: A Book of Quotations by Henry David Thoreau by Kenny Luck (

Why God Matters: How to Recognize Him in Daily Life by Karina Lumbert Fabian and Deacon Steven Lumbert ( which are on virtual tours for June 2010, and I'm also getting Industrial Pioneers by Patrick Brown ready for publication.

For Tribute Books Reviews & Giveaways, I'll be reviewing and giving away copies of Female Nomad and Friends by Rita Golden Gelman through Promo 101 - Virtual Blog Tours with Nikki Leigh ( on June 16 and The Confessions of Catherine de Medici by C.W. Gortner through Pump Up Your Book Promotion ( on June 25.

Big things in your future?
For Tribute Books, Kenny Luck will have a book signing at the Shop at Walden Pond in Concord, MA ( for Thumbing Through Thoreau on July 10. Karina Fabian will be attending the Catholic Writers Conference ( in Valley Forge, PA on August 4-6.

For Tribute Books Reviews & Giveaways, we'll be participating in BlogMania on September 15-16 ( with over $100 in book giveaways.

THIS IS THE LAST WEEK of WEEKLY GIVEAWAY PARTY FAVORS! CLICK HERE and send your contact information to the publisher for your freebies. Go to the PARTY BLOG click here

Friday, July 30, 2010


Yep, the day soon approaches. D-DAY. Release Day! Yippee! If you haven’t gotten your party favor yet, this is the last week for getting a free book. Sunday, August 1st is the birthday for THE PACK. I’m having a small party of friends and posting up some teen comments from kids that got a free sample of books for their classroom. Yessir, we gave an entire class a copy of The Pack to read and give me feedback. Although, the book can be enjoyed by grownups, it was written with 7th-9th graders in mind.


I’ll officially start my in-person tour of The Pack on August, 14th. Come by and see me at the African American Book Expo in Columbia, MD. I’ll be hitting Books-A-Million (Dupont Circle, DC – Sept. 11th), Ukazoo Books (Towson, MD – Sept. 18th). At the Baltimore Book Fair, I’ll be giving away 2-books for just $7 with my signature, a great poster and keychain. Why do I love giving stuff away to my readers? Because I love them. Young people are my passion and writing strong male & female characters for them is my small way of respecting the strength they hold within during the most vibrant part of their lives.

MY PARTY BLOGThe place that keeps on giving

This is my official party blog site. That means that every month I’ll be giving something away. Whether it’s a poster, magnet, t-shirt, pen anything. Also, it’s a place where you can drop in and find out about what’s coming next. Also, some writing contest will be coming for a big prize giveaway for the holidays.

DON’T BE SHY Get your freebie :-D

So don’t be shy. Comment and when you want to find out about other YA books, Authors, Movies, Teen issues and tons of scifi stuff drop over to my LM Preston’s

And for teasers of upcoming books:
THIS IS THE LAST WEEK of WEEKLY GIVEAWAY PARTY FAVORS! CLICK HERE and send your contact information to the publisher for your freebies. Go to the PARTY BLOG click here

Thursday, July 29, 2010

INCEPTION review by Movie Diva - Monique

What do you get when you mix some of the elements of some of the best sci-fi movies (The Matrix, Blade Runner, etc.) ever ? You get a completely original take on the dreamscape idea in the form of Inception.

Let me break it down: the plot is about a heist man Dom Cobb (Leonardo DiCaprio) who has to do one last job in order to come home to his family. His employer, Saito (Ken Watanabe) wants him to implant an idea into his competitor, Robert Fischer, Jr. (Cillian Murphy) to liquidate his father's company, making Saito's company available to have a monopoly. That's as much as I'm going to tell you without spoiling everything, including what roles the characters played by Ellen Page, Michael Caine, Tom Hardy, and Joseph Gordon-Levitt have to the story and why Cobb's wife Mal (Marion Cotillard) has in the film.

This movie may not be everyone's cup of tea, but it certainly is one of the best movies of the summer and possibly the best, if not one of the best, movies of the year thus far. The reason why is that the movie's storyline, which is one that can easily fall apart, is kept tightly woven through Hitchockian methods and director Christopher Nolan's expertise. One note of caution, though: this film is two hours and 40-something minutes, so be prepared to sit, but I don't think it'll be much of a problem; this movie is really engrossing, and you'll forget about time, at least temporarily. I will say that the length does make the movie's tension a bit unbearable, and the with the stakes so high in the storyline, you just want to get to the end of the film to make sure everyone comes out okay. But high stakes are also what makes a good movie, so, you can be the judge of whether unbearable tension is a good or bad thing.

Overall, the film is one that will stay in your mind long after you've left the movie theater, hopefully making you think not only about unraveling the maze of dreams, but also about the effect of dreams themselves. If you want to tackle the mind-bender of mind-benders, this movie is for you.
Monique Jones, aka MOVIE DIVA, check out her entertainment website
owner, Moniqueblog (

THIS IS THE LAST WEEK of WEEKLY GIVEAWAY PARTY FAVORS! CLICK HERE and send your contact information to the publisher for your freebies. Go to the PARTY BLOG click here

Tuesday, July 27, 2010


Please welcome John, who's an awesome editor that was a guest Editor at the Maryland Writer's Association (MWA)

John David Kudrick is an editor and wordsmith who offers a full scope of services to authors, from manuscript evaluations and developmental editing to copyediting and book proposal development. With more than a decade of editorial/writing experience and a master’s degree in writing, John David has been privileged to work with some of the finest publishers in the nation, including David C. Cook, NavPress, Realms Fiction, Marcher Lord Press, and Whitaker House – where, as senior editor, he worked on James Byron Huggins’ Nightbringer, a book that Library Journal named one of its annual top five Christian novels. To date, John David has had the opportunity to serve as editor on 75 published titles, including both non-fiction and fiction.

How are you diggin the party?

Good stuff! My first virtual party, and I'm liking it.

Tell me about yourself?

In a nutshell, I'm all about God, my wonderful wife, our three peanuts, fiction (reading, writing, and editing it), fitness, and getting outdoors to enjoy nature, especially if it involves a fishing pole in my hands. In terms of career, I've worked at a monthly newsmag, a daily newspaper, a book publisher, a marketing firm, and now for myself as a full-time freelance editor/writer (see next question).

Are you in the book business? What do you do?

Indeed I am. Right now, I'm a self-employed freelance editor/writer who works mostly on fiction book manuscripts, although I am more than happy to help out with non-fiction, too. I do everything from initial evaluations and offering guidance to authors, all the way to the nitty-gritty of copyediting and proofreading. I also help authors with query letters, proposal packages, and marketing copy. And I do it all from my IKEA standing work station in a corner of our bedroom, which is where I am typing this right now.

Have you read any of LM Preston’s books? Say something smashingly great about LM Preston or her books.

Right in the middle of The Pack now (even read it in the chiropractor's waiting room today), and if I wanted to describe LM Preston as a writer with one phrase, it would be: An unbelievably wild and creative imagination that seems to have no bounds.

What are you currently working on?
As a book editor, I am working on a fantasy with dwarves, witches, and men; another fantasy with dragons, elves, and men; a YA vampire novel; an international thriller; a chick-lit novel that I am in absolute awe of; and a Christian living book on spirituality. As a writer, I'm working on an e-newsletter for a Middle Eastern department of tourism and some website copy for a humanitarian aid organization that also happens to be based in the Middle East.

Big things in your future?
Lots more editing projects coming down the pipeline, but I am determined to make time for my own fiction writing. So I have my sights set on being published and throwing my own virtual book-release party (thanks for the great idea, LM, and thanks for having me as a guest!).

Find out more about John David:

THIS IS THE LAST WEEK of WEEKLY GIVEAWAY PARTY FAVORS! CLICK HERE and send your contact information to the publisher for your freebies. Go to the PARTY BLOG click here

Monday, July 26, 2010



I’ve been meaning to write this post for a long time. I’ve realized the importance of cheerleaders. My daughter’s were cheerleaders for awhile and I never understood how it all started. I figure it started since we were born. Ideally our parents act as our cheerleaders. Then hey, it migrated to sports which is all about having a ‘can win’ attitude.


When you have someone cheering for you, you push harder. I’ve been lucky to be my own personal cheerleader as well as to have a wealth of others cheering me on. Their voices push me harder, farther and beyond what I’ve ever thought I could accomplish in my life.

If you are going into any career or trying to reach any dream, constantly cheer yourself on. Also, surround yourself with supportive and inspirational people who you can cheer on also.

Pull out one moment in time where having others encourage you have allowed you to push yourself further than you’ve ever thought possible. I have millions of those moments.


It’s okay to talk to yourself in the mirror. To constantly remind yourself that you can do anything. That a “No” is NOT your final answer. That you are strong enough to fight through whatever and to win your own personal prize in the end. That prize can be ultimate success, knowledge, understanding about yourself or a stepping stone to a future nugget of gold.

When you’ve done that, accomplished that one hurdle, push on. Push further. Do more, and spread the wealth by helping others to accomplish their dreams by telling them they can and lifting them up when they stumble.


Remember that saying “sticks and stones” well it still applies. What doesn’t kill you – makes you stronger, better, and appreciative of the victory over that circumstance.

As a writer you learn to push through walls, constant rejection from the beginning of the sales process to the beyond. Hopefully, it’s an experience that not only strengthens you in your writing career, but all aspects of life.

Those rejection letters from agents, those that said I shouldn’t do this, those that mark my success as failure all help me become stronger. Stregth that can be used to overcome any obstacle. I believe writers, actors, music producers even our President are truly strong to be able to face down all hurdles to accomplish their dreams in spite of others.

Do you know how they did it? I do – their secret weapon – A CHEERLEADER :-D

GET YOUR PARTY FAVORS! CLICK HERE and send your contact information to the publisher for your freebies. Go to the PARTY BLOG click here

Saturday, July 24, 2010

SUSAN KAYE QUINN - Spotlight Party Guest

Please welcome my spotlight guest, and check out her book!

How are you diggin the party?

I’ve been popping in and out, marveling at all you have going on, lady! Nice!

Tell me about yourself?

I write middle grade and young adult books, and I'm a mom of three boys, ex-engineer, rocket scientist, and elected official. But mostly I write stories for kids and love every minute of it. My first published novel, Life, Liberty, and Pursuit (2010, Omnific Publishing), is a teen love story about a college-bound girl who falls in a pool, the Navy recruit who rescues her, and their struggle to choose between following their dreams and daring to love.

Are you in the book business? What do you do?

I guess I am now! My book just published this last week, and I’m still trying that “published author” label on for size. So far, it feels kinda tingly, but several shades of awesome. But for some time now I’ve been blogging about writing and reading children’s books and connecting with writers. Having worked in many different fields, I have to say that the writing community is the warmest, most collaborative place I’ve ever seen.

Have you read any of LM Preston’s books? Say something smashingly great about LM Preston or her books.

Although Explorer X-Alpha is on my TBR list, I haven’t read it yet, which is something I need to remedy right quick. Especially because LM is the trifecta of awesome: MG writer, SF writer, and fellow blogger!

What are you currently working on?

Now that Life, Liberty, and Pursuit is launched, I need to get back to my other two WIPs: a middle grade science fiction (yay!) novel called Byrne Risk that’s near-ready for querying, and a young adult paranormal novel, Open Minds, which I’m still drafting. I have another pesky idea for a boy-centric middle grade novel knocking around in my head, but it needs to wait in line while I get these books written.

Big things in your future?

Hopefully more of the same: writing, blogging, publishing. I’ve only been writing for about a year and a half, but the passion for it has completely taken me over. I want to do this for the rest of my life. Is that too big to ask for?

Author of Life, Liberty, and Pursuit (June 2010, Omnific Publishing)

GET YOUR PARTY FAVORS! CLICK HERE and send your contact information to the publisher for your freebies. Go to the PARTY BLOG click here

Friday, July 23, 2010

How to survive a Zombie attack - By Raushawn

Please welcome a guest post from my son, a Boy Teen Star Guest, Raushawn.

In almost every zombie movie ever created there are always the few situations that usually end up getting people killed, or even eaten. It seems like in every situation it is always the same thing--being un-aware. When a zombie first attacks its host it is always sympathetic curious as to why the once living person comes at them like a meat eating carnivore. This just make you say to yourself if I was in that situation I wouldn’t just sit there an let them eat me. Therefore I have come up with a way to prevent this from ever happening

First of all when things just do not seem right, follow that gut feeling. If you see a person coming at you in a non-friendly way, keep your distance. If it just so happens to attack, don’t be afraid to get a little hostile. You should also stay in communication with the outside world and keep up to date with news reports. You’ll never be prepared unless you know what you’re up against. Lastly and most important, be careful who you trust because one minute somebody may seem cool but when all else fails he or she will cross you in a heartbeat. Therefore you must be sure to know who to trust, like family.

Nine times out of ten a zombie attack or anything similar to it may never happen but you’ll never know for sure. That is why it is always best to be prepared for what is to come. I chose zombies because it is something most people would never expect and if it were to happen it would be the most deadly. Thank you all for your time and I hope you enjoyed my little survival guide. If you have any comments or questions, feel free to ask.

GET YOUR PARTY FAVORS! CLICK HERE and send your contact information to the publisher for your freebies. Go to the PARTY BLOG click here

Thursday, July 22, 2010


Please welcome our Teen Guest Star YA Reviewer, Nyia. She just finished up TAGGED that I got from the ALA conference and another CAMP CONFIDENTIAL book. She loves that series.

TAGGED, by Mara Purnhagen

The book Tagged was an interesting romance/ mystery, which is why it was a great read. The story was fun to read, because you couldn’t figure out the mystery until the very end. Drama builds up in the school, between the friends, Eli’s girlfriend, and with the entire town, making the story truly unique. It’s hard to describe this story because so much is going on at one time, but the story is very interesting. Most stories that have a lot going on in them get confusing, but the author makes it so you can follow along with everything going on. Over all, this book is a 4 out of 5.


I’ve read all 24 books in the series and there’s only one or two that were not to my personal taste because I don’t like ghost stories. The camp confidential series is full of drama and excitement. Each story is different in its own way, but connects to all the previous stories. I also like that even though there are a lot of characters, each story only has a focus on one or two of them. This makes it less confusing, though it still gets complicated to follow all of the characters. The series captured my interested and made me want to read each story. At times the books did get boring in the middle of the series, which is the only downside. I would give the whole series a 3 out of 5. Teen girls would love the series and it made me really want to go to camp.

GET YOUR PARTY FAVORS! CLICK HERE and send your contact information to the publisher for your freebies. Go to the PARTY BLOG click here

Wednesday, July 21, 2010


Many new writers I’ve met are extremely shy about sharing their work. If they don’t learn to do so, they miss out on a valuable part of a manuscript review process.

One of the most important parts of my writing process is to find beta readers. Oh, there’s different types of beta readers and all of which I use for different reasons. They are indispensable in the process of getting your writing in shape.


Oh, yeah, there is always more than one side to a story. I’m sure you heard that one before. Well when it comes to writing there is the story you’ve written. The one that’s in your head, and the story that the reader reads.

The best part of reading a book opposed to seeing a movie is that no two readers play out the exact same story in their head when they read. Having people test read your writing shows you the things you forgot to tell them. Let’s you know when you tell too much. Picks out the times you forgot to show the story.
As an author, we know the story we want to tell in detail. And those parts that are our tough spots – places in the tale where we get too lazy to figure out. The reader picks up on them with clarity and reminds the author to fix those vague spots.


In order to turn your caterpillar of a story into a butterfly, don’t skimp on the Beta Readers. I have several sets of beta readers that I use. I break them up into groups and my expectations for them are different. I also find that coming up with questions for that group or a checklist helps them to focus their reading and gives them permission to be nitpicky.

AUDIENCE – This is the age, gender, group that the book is written for. I usually get a hand full of kids to read my YA books. They usually flush out lags in the story, dialogue issues, believability and story likeability.

PEERS – These are fellow writers. This is my secret weapon. Other writer’s are really good at picking apart grammar issues, plot holes, character issues and structure problems. They are golden and definitely never let anything go out without running your stuff by this group of beta readers at least 2 times.

RANDOM READERS – This is usually adults I get to read my middle grade and young adult books. They don’t usually read YA, but can give me a good indication of hidden audiences. If the story is strong enough to transcend the intended group and go mainstream.


As an author, beta reading other’s work is invaluable. I’ve become a better writer, editor of my work and others through beta reading. Also, it is a give and take. I love doing beta switches with other authors and critique their work at the same time they are critiquing mine. It ensures that they have an invested interest in helping my story succeed as much as I do in theirs.

GET YOUR PARTY FAVORS! CLICK HERE and send your contact information to the publisher for your freebies. Go to the PARTY BLOG click here

Friday, July 16, 2010


I love book signings. My signing was for my debut middle-grade novel, EXPLORER X-ALPHA. I had a signing at Barnes and Nobles in Fairfax, VA. Everything was well planned. The flyers were sent ahead of my event and I lucked out to be invited there during a school book festival day –which meant tons of young people were expected to flood the store.


On my way to my signing – my car died. Yep, I was on a busy highway and my baby started losing speed. Eek! This one embarrassing moment, I called my husband and yelled into my cellphone earpiece, “I’m gonna die!” Cars whizzed by and honked while I was stopped in the middle of a busy highway.

First, he told me to calm down. Then he asked me if I could make it. I restarted the car and it actually started again. However, it wouldn’t get past 40 miles per hour. So the honking cars still zoomed around me, but thankfully I made it to the store. Once there I wondered how I was going to get home. The car couldn’t be driven on the highway and I didn’t want to just hang out at the store and watch my car being towed. So, I did what anyone would do – I called my dad. Followed him home and called a tow truck.


Even though my car was sitting outside of the bookstore, taunting me, I still enjoyed my signing. I sold eight books in two hours and talked to tons of people. Yeah, I got those that looked at me from under their eyelashes while they rushed by. Some just waved hello or even chatted with me though they didn’t read YA or MG novels. Overall after just two hours, I’d signed and sold over half of the books ordered. The most rewarding part of my day was looking up at the wonderful young people and their parents who stood anxiously by while I signed a personal message in their books.

With my adventures, I have to admit, meeting people and being among books is one of the most rewarding experiences of all. Quite a different vision of my future as a writer when I naively sat down to write my first novel.

GET YOUR PARTY FAVORS! CLICK HERE and send your contact information to the publisher for your freebies. Go to the PARTY BLOG click here

Thursday, July 15, 2010

MOVIE DIVA MONIQUE Spotlight Party Guest

Hello all, please say hello to Monique, our Movie Diva. She has a Movie and Entertainment blog that is a MUST SEE. Check her out daily before you venture out to the movies or out on the town to the video store. Here’s her link www.

How are you diggin the party?

Tell me about yourself?
I'm Monique Jones, an entertainment blogger. My site,, primarily focuses on movies, but I also write about niche pop-culture topics such as Archie Comics and Harry Potter.

Are you in the book business? What do you do?
Aside from writing Polite Society and my other book ideas, I have been the art director for Aura, the literary magazine for my school, the University of Alabama at Birmingham. My sister, Ashley, who was editor-in-chief of the magazine, has been published in several literary magazines, including Aura.

Have you read any of LM Preston’s books? Say something smashingly great about LM Preston or her books.
I have been reading The Pack, and it's a really great read. Her ideas-people living on Mars, the main character being a blind girl who fights evildoers-are all really evocative.

What are you currently working on?
I'm working on several book ideas, but the one which is the most unique is Polite Society, a story about a group of young adults-some servants and some part of the elite-dealing with each other, relationships, and secrets. What makes this book unique is that it will be written entirely online. It can be read at

Big things in your future?
I hope for Polite Society to be one of my first successes in the book world, and after that, it'd be great if it became a movie or a tv show. Of course, I hope that for all of my book ideas. Other than that, I'll be using my major-journalism-to make it big in the entertainment industry. Hopefully, I can become the next Roger Ebert.

The PDF to the first chapter is attached; the first chapter as well as other info is on the site ( Also, you can use any images of the characters on the site; they're all drawn by me. Thanks for this!

GET YOUR PARTY FAVORS! CLICK HERE and send your contact information to the publisher for your freebies. Go to the PARTY BLOG click here

Wednesday, July 14, 2010


BY: R. Preston, Teen Guy Guest Blogger

Please welcome my son who’s offered to give a boy’s prospective on my blog. Since I write Young Adult SciFi for boys and girls in mind, I’m excited that he has agreed to post weekly this summer.

For some strange reason the new video game “Call of Duty” [COD] has caught the eye of almost every teenage boy who has ever picked up a game controller. Why is it so addicting? It is a question that we all must ask. Is it the special effects that blow all the other games out the water? Or is it because everyone plays it and you and your friends all have one special game in common?

I myself am a fan of “Call of Duty Modern Warfare”, or “COD” for those of you who play as much as me. From my experiences I’d have to say I love it mainly for how well everything comes together. It’s full of action and makes you feel like you’re truly in warfare, especially when you’re playing online against other competitors who are as good, worse, or better than you.

The one thing I love most about Call of Duty is that I can connect with my friends through it. I may not be able to hang out with them all the time since school is over and it’s hard to find the time to hang out together. But because each of us plays COD we can always find time to catch up over a good game of team death match. This is what causes the addiction. It’s such an adrenaline rush and with the realistic graphics you feel as though you are absorbed within the game, without the dangers of actually – well, being in danger.

GET YOUR PARTY FAVORS! CLICK HERE and send your contact information to the publisher for your freebies. Go to the PARTY BLOG click here

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

ROZA MARIE – Spotlight Party Guest

Please say hello to ROZA MARIE one of the great mods on you can drop into her blog or find her on Wed nights at the YAlitchat at 9pm using the hashtag #yalitchat

How are you diggin the party?
Yes. Love the party. Writers of all kinds coming here telling their story it is way cool.

Tell me about yourself?
I graduated from the University of Akron, and have a degree in Math (Which I rarely use). Teaching wasn't for me, so I began working at a sales company Byco Distributing, where I met my husband. Awww. I know. Anyways, we had our daughter, then our son, and we also have a lovely blue healer (That's a dog, our third child hahaha). We co-own a business. My current career business owner/ Office manager/ writer. I love writing, reading and playing outdoors. I believe in doing one crazy thing in life once, that way you can say you lived it with adventure. I've been writing since college and haven't quit, and my husband encouraged me to take it as far as I could go. So, one day at 24 yrs old I am learning about the business, and three years later... Here I am.

A quirky tidbit about me:
I love music, writing chapters with songs I listen to and swimming at least ten l

Are you in the book business?
I am not the owner of Books a Million because my last name happens to be Million if that is what you are asking LOL. Although I do get that one a lot. ;) Then I have to say nope but I am a writer, a group coordinator to a writing site YALITCHAT.NING.COM. and I am blogger.

Have you read any of LM Preston’s books?
I've beta read Bandits. But I've never read any of her recently published works. LM Preston is amazing with time management skills, LM Preston does a lot with the little time the world provides us with =)

What are you currently working on?
I just finished up a wip called Runaways: It's about seventeen yr old Felicity Taylor, on the run from the magical world she belongs to. This hybrid fairy was accused of killing her roommate Mary Swan. With the help of her guardian Brooks Rawson they might be able to figure out who actually murdered Mary.

I am also working on another wip called Limiting life: It's about sixteen year old Grey Anderson, an athelete and bookworm, with golden colored eyes. She has no idea that the doodles she draws out of bordem is actually the teachings of her past. Eric Covenington must gain a friendship with Grey before a dark shadow takes her, and turns her into a weapon against the magical world.

Big things in your future?
I hope so. I am querying right now, and hope to snag an agent soon for one if not all my lovely works. =)

ROZA MARIE’s Book Blog:

GET YOUR PARTY FAVORS! CLICK HERE and send your contact information to the publisher for your freebies. Go to the PARTY BLOG click here

Sunday, July 11, 2010

ECLIPSE Movie Review

I must be honest, I didn’t read all of the Twilight books. But I love the movies. Who wouldn’t? Two hot guys, vampires, werewolves fighting over a single girl. Neither boy can move on, they love her and only her and guess what? She gets to chose, after she samples both. This movie started off promising with a hint of suspense and a surprise. I settled in knowing from the great beginning that this was going to be a good one. There was the romantic triangle thing going on and the werewolves true story revealed. Bella’s love for Edward was tested and I’m sorry, I’m so in love with Jacob that my heart broke when she didn’t chose him. There was a vague villian that was stalking Bella trying to kill her which made her two hottie totties have to work together to keep her safe. It ended sweetly and I give it a 4 out of 5 stars, because my husband was with me and he vehemently disagreed that it was better than a 2 star. He argued that the story was incredibly unbelievable and the limited amount of action only lasted what seemed like 5 minutes. Whether you’ve read the book or not, this is an enjoyable movie.

Friday, July 9, 2010

MAGGIE MEI LEWIS - Spotlight Party Guest

Please welcome Maggie Mei Lewis, author of Moonlight Memoirs

I am please to have a wonderful copy of her book. My 6 yr old loves the pictures and poetic style of this book. I'm honored she is visiting us. This awesome picture is Maggie holding her IBPA award for her book. To think, at 13yrs she wrote a book, found her own Illustrator and started a publishing company with the help of her mother. An amazing young person that shows that thinking outside of the box can grant you riches beyond your imagination.

How are you diggin the party?
It's really cool, and I can't wait to see all the different books and authors featured! The Pack was an awesome book!

Tell me about yourself?
I am 16, and the author of Moonlight Memoirs the children's book. I wrote it when I was 13. I found my own illustrator, Melody Lea Lamb, on eBay. We had fun working together - I'd give her the words from the book for the illustration and some guidelines for what I wanted. Then, Melody would interpret the words into her beautiful illustrations!

Are you in the book business? What do you do?
My parents started a book publishing business, Good Times Press, and my book, Moonlight Memoirs, is their first published book.

Have you read any of LM Preston’s books? Say something smashingly great about LM Preston or her books.
I read the Pack, after meeting LM Preston at the Key School Bookfair. She is a kind, wonderful person, and her books are very alluring. Once you start reading, you can't put it down!

What are you currently working on?
I have been busy promoting Moonlight Memoirs, and trying to get it out there and noticed by more people. There's so much stuff to do, that I hadn't even realized existed. It's been an interesting experience and I keep learning more new things.

Big things in your future?
I hope to write another book, when the inspiration comes to me.
Maggie’s Blog:
Follow her on Twitter: Click here
Read her book:

GET YOUR PARTY FAVORS! CLICK HERE and send your contact information to the publisher for your freebies. Go to the PARTY BLOG click here

THE LAST AIRBENDER - Movie Review by Movie Diva Monique

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It's probably a good thing that I waited until the hate-spree died down before seeing this film. However, that doesn't mean that I'm going to let up on spreading the hate.

The plot of this film is, roughly, the same from the show--in a world where nations are divided by the elements (earth, fire, and water) and where people know how to utilize said elements in a martial-arts form, a special boy, the last of all the air nomadic monks, has the power to control all of the elements and must restore the balance, which has been taken over by the ruthless Fire Nation.

That's about all that is the same, though. Really, I'm not going to waste too much time on reviewing this movie; the film itself really doesn't have anything worth talking about, which is a shame, considering what television series it came from (one of the few animated series in the league of such greats as Samurai Jack, The Justice League, Batman: The Animated Series, Hayao Miyazaki films and Grave of Fireflies in my and other people's opinions). I'm tired from watching this film, so I'll just run through the main points:

1) Exposition and narration was horrible. The way it was inserted into the film was also choppy and inconsistent with the dialogue. Sometimes, the dialogue would reiterate what the narration (led by Katara, played by Nicola Peltz) had just told the audience.

2) The action sequences were way too slow and too orderly for action sequences. All of them were shot in slow motion, making the movie seem even slower, not to mention the horrible special effects.

3) The acting, for the most part, was atrocious. Peltz and Jackson Rathbone as Katara's brother Sokka were more than wooden; they were basically trees. Poor Noah Ringer, his first time in a big-budget movie, reeked of "acting noobie" throughout the entire movie. The Fire Nation, comprised of main characters Dev Patel (Zuko) Aasif Mandvi (Commander Zhao) and Cliff Curtis (Fire Lord Ozai, Zuko and Azula's father), Summer Bishil (Azula, Zuko's maniac sister), and Shaun Toub (Zuko's uncle Iroh) actually had the best acting in the whole movie, and out of that group of people, Patel, Bishil, and Curtis were the cream of the crop--and Bishil only had one line! I do think, however, that a lot of the blame for the drab acting lies squarely on the shoulders of Shyamalan himself--as a director, he should know what he wants out of his actors and how to make the audience like them, especially if the characters his actors are portraying are already popular characters with already popular traits.

4) The pronunciations in this movie throw fans of the show out of whack. "Aang" is pronounced "Ahng", "Sokka" is pronounced "Souka", etc. It's pretty moronic to do that to characters who are known by the Americanized pronunciations of their names. I know that he was trying to make stuff seem true to certain cultures by doing this, but really? This is the area you want to make true to certain cultures? Which leads me to one of the craziest things about this whole crazy movie:

5) Racebending. It's one thing to have all of your main "good" characters be white, even down to Sokka and Katara's grandmother (Katharine Houghton) with an English accent! But it's also a completely different thing to have said white characters be surrounded by a sea of INUIT PEOPLE! Every extra in the Southern Water Tribe is ethnic, just like how in the '40s and '50s, every extra in a movie set in an exotic locale were locals while the main characters were white. I'm not making this an issue just to have something to gripe about. The level of misunderstanding the importance of race in entertainment, especially movies, is beyond me. Shyamalan is a student of old-school film. He loves Hitchcock, so he knows the method for making gripping movies. He should also know how whitewashing is apparent in film history.

Along with changing the main good characters, the "bad guys" are all Indians (except for Taub, who's Persian, and Curtis, who's a Kiwi). I don't know what that means to Shyamalan (who says that Zuko is the actual star of the movie--that is debatable, to be sure), but to me, it seems like he's reiterating what a lot of people think about dark-skinned people in film history, which is, if you're dark, you're automatically evil.

But aside from that, Shyamalan included ethnicities that aren't even in the original series. While I appreciate his thought to put an African tribe in the film and cast Monk Gyatso as a black man (Damon Gupton, to be exact), it doesn't make sense in the realm of the series. The series is based in Asian and Inuit culture. Not Caucasian culture, not a culture from one of the many African countries--it's strictly Asian culture and Asian philosophy. The point is this--he could've cast a full Asian cast to respect the series, but even still, we'd have the other parts of this film I've already mentioned to contend with.

Overall, this film was a real letdown. As a fan of the series, it was a double whammy. I was angry over being bored, then I was depressed because the action and storytelling was much better in the series and how I'd rather watch any one of those seasons again than watch this movie. After a while, my brain shut down, as if it was protecting itself from the awfulness of this film. Watch it if you really want to experience the brute force of this movie, but in all honesty, you'll end up like me--tired, bitter, disgusted, disturbed, and ultimately saddened.

EDIT--By the way, in the film, Aang's story arc is that he has to accept his role as the Avatar and make peace with the fact that he caused the deaths of his Air monk brethren by running away all of those years ago. In the series, this is not the case; he's a 100 years in the future, yes, but he was put in the iceberg by the monks so he could be protected from the Fire Nation who were raiding the Air Temples. Aang always knew his destiny as the Avatar. He had already accepted it as fact. He didn't have to grow into it, so to speak, aside from learning how to master the other elements. And neither did the Fire Nation have to have lanterns and pots of fire with them in order to bend fire. Fire came OUT OF THEIR APPENDAGES! There. I am done.

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Wednesday, July 7, 2010


Ally E. Peltier is an editor, writer, and publishing consultant for individuals and businesses such as Simon & Schuster, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, Kaplan Publishing, Rodale Inc., and more. Ally formerly acquired and edited books for Touchstone Fireside/Simon & Schuster and has published articles in a variety of venues, including The Writer, Writer's Digest 2009 Guide to Literary Agents, and A Master of Arts in English and Creative Writing, Ally also ghostauthors nonfiction books and teaches workshops for writers.

How are you diggin the party?

I think this virtual book party idea is clever and perfectly suited to the way books are marketed these days. Very cool! I’m definitely diggin’ it.

Tell me about yourself?

I’m a book lover, no question! I’ve been reading since I was three years old and when my eyes give out I’ll just “read” audio books. I’m passionate about the written word and clear communication. I’m also passionate about helping people get published, whether via traditional routes or self-publishing or Indie publishing. I love going to conferences and speaking to writers, sharing my experiences and knowledge of the business to help them better achieve their goals. You’ve got to educate yourself about the industry and be an active participant in your success—like LM Preston!

Are you in the book business? What do you do?

I used to work for the Touchstone Fireside imprint of Simon & Schuster, where I learned what really goes on inside a publishing house and what it takes to turn a manuscript into a finished book. I had a wonderfully supportive boss and coworkers there who taught me so much. Since 2004 I’ve been a freelance editor, writer, and publishing consultant. I work with a variety of publishing professionals, writers, and also business owners to create or edit content—I do everything from book manuscripts to website copy and brochures.

Have you read any of LM Preston’s books? Say something smashingly great about LM Preston or her books.

I have a copy of THE PACK waiting in my “to-read” stack, and I’m looking forward to it. Lanita is such a great example of how to publish the right way—she takes her time to produce quality books (hiring professionals like editors and designers to help her) and formulate a marketing plan, which she then executes with creativity and enthusiasm. I hope other writers considering Indie publishing route take note. Her partnership in ownership of Phenomenal One Press shows her passion for her work.

What are you currently working on?

This summer I’m writing a couple of proposals for ghostwriting projects and also working with a publisher to create digital content for a series of health books. I’m really excited about that because we’ll be doing e-books and other types of content for e-readers and mobile devices, which are kind of the “new frontier” in book publishing. I’ve got a few article ideas to send around this summer as well.

Big things in your future?

I’m about to launch a new white paper on fiction book proposals to round out my current offerings (get free white papers at I also hope to turn my attention to a few e-book projects I’ve been formulating so that I can launch those early next year. I’ve always got a new ambitious enterprise on the horizon :)

Find out more about Ally!

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Monday, July 5, 2010


I visited the American Library Conference (ALA) in Washington, DC as an author, with my publisher and as a guest. I wanted to give my perspective from all sides regarding how great of experience this is for an author and a small publisher. This conference had hundreds of vendors, publishers and librarians in attendance and it was extremely fun.


My publisher was represented at this conference by its membership with IBPA (Independent Book Publishers Association) and several other publishing organizations. IBPA’s booth was large, well manned and maintained. It also had an area for authors to do signings and stack give away items from the publishers. My publisher worked the booth to get a feel for what is done at these conferences since my book will be displayed by IBPA and other collectives at several conferences.

Was it worth being there – yes! My publisher was able to make contacts, talk shop with some of the big name publishers. Even the wonderful, TOR, representative talked shop about advertising with him and gave some pointers. In addition, she also told me about their process of manuscript review and noted that they have ‘readers’ that review their manuscripts and that they review the manuscripts that come from agents first.

Also, he realized that giving away books worked much better than selling them. After talking with some of the librarians he found that they loved the free ARCs and couldn’t wait to review them for their orders for the next season.


I must say that I was in awe. So many publishers (not that I would cheat on mine) that I was able to meet. I saw what they were promoting and how they were promoting it and found that my publisher and I was doing pretty much the same amount of promotion for my books as they were. In fact, more in some cases. I also got to meet several other authors and found that book exchange is a great way to garner reviews and support.

After talking with other authors and some of the librarians I told my publisher to sign me up for a signing at our next big conference event. Definitely time well spent – oh and I wanted him to offer 100 books for free. Why? Because publisher’s that did that was able to collect the names/emails of interested librarians by swiping their cards as well as the librarian left with a free book with a smile. The author was smiling also because there is such a rush when you have a line of people waiting for your signature – even though they are doing it because the book is free.


I had a blast! I came home with over 60 free books. I purchased 10 reduced priced books. My kids lucked out and so did I. I got some awesome books that aren’t even out yet! Not to mention, I got star struck at the many authors that were signing my books. I will also be honest and say – I was really picky about the books I purchased. The books that were free, I just grabbed, got them signed if I could and stuffed them into my bag feeling as though I was a kid trick or treating at Halloween – magnificent!

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