Thank you!

Thank you for all the support you've given the Climbing Rose Young Adult line of The Wild Rose Press. Our stories are still available on The Wild Rose Press website, however, since we aren't publishing new stories, our blog is no longer active. We thank you again for the time you spent with us and invite you to visit our Climbing Rose bookstore.

Cover Art

Eric over at Pimp My Novel (gotta love that title) was musing about book covers the other day and what they should do for a book. His conclusion was this:
Book covers do a number of things for us, but in my opinion, the three most important are (in no particular order):

    1. Tell us what the book is called and who wrote it;
    2. Give us an idea of the book's genre (thereby already telling us whether we're likely to enjoy it);
    3. Provide an iconic, interesting image, so as to—as Seth Godin puts it—"tee up the reader so the book has maximum impact"
Which got me thinking about some of our Climbing Rose book covers. We have some of the best book cover artists in the biz here (if we do say so ourselves) including our own Tara West so I thought it would be fun to analyze the covers of some of our latest and upcoming releases using Eric's above criteria. So here they are, Krysta's Curse, by Tara West (our latest release), and House of Wacks, by Denise Gwen, When Mike Kissed Emma, by Christine Marciniak, and Spinning the Baiji, by Nancy Lindley-Gauthier (our next three releases).

How do these covers stack up in your opinion? Do they tell you the genre? Provide an interesting image? Which one is your favorite? Leave a comment and let me know what you think of our artwork.

Thursday Link-Up

What are our Climbing Rose authors talking about this week?

Well, Christine Marciniak, has been counting down the days to her upcoming CR release When Mike Kissed Emma at her Simply Put blog:
that's what Emma does in When Mike Kissed Emma. She dreams of the perfect role for herself and she spends time practicing it and dreaming of what it will be like when she gets that role.
Deb Logan author of Corn Maze and Angelic Voices is wondering who left the heater on:
My part of the world is experiencing an unprecedented heat wave. It was 105 yesterday, and today the mercury is supposed to go even higher. Here. In the Pacific Northwest. Where a REALLY hot day is usually in the low 90s.
Meanwhile in my world, it's too cold to go to the pool. What's with that? Enter the Parrot author Kiki Lon is having fun with a Yes/No meme:
Kissed any one of your Facebook friends? — YES
Been arrested? — NO
Kissed someone you didn’t like? — YES

Hmm, I'll have to ask Kiki about who she kissed that she didn't like :) bound to be a good story there!

And finally, from the YA blogosphere, check out the LibrariYAn's post about Judging a Book by Its Cover. Follow the instructions to find out what the cover of your debut YA novel will look like!

YA Musings and Krysta's Curse

What do Aprilynne Pike and Carrie Ryan have in common? They're both 2009 YA debut authors who have inked movie deals for their books. Why is that important? Well, just think what it says about YA - and the marketing power that you, the YA reader, have right now. Twilight showed that not only can YA books sell a ton, but YA readers will hit the theaters in droves to see movies about those books. YA is hot right now, which makes it a very exciting time for YA authors and readers.

And speaking of exciting YA stuff (awesome segue, as always) is the release day for Krysta's Curse by Tara West, Book 3 in the Whispers series. You can find the book on Amazon, or in The Wild Rose Press print store, or download the e-book here. And while you're at it, check out the multi-talented Tara West's website--she photographs and designs her own book covers and designs awesome covers for other authors, too. Pretty cool!

And since it's Wednesday - check out Waiting on Wednesday at Breaking the Spine - and check out the next Climbing Rose release we're waiting on, House of Wacks, by Denise Gwen.

Teaser Tuesday (more like Excerpt Tuesday really but that's not as catchy)

Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by MizB of Should Be Reading. Anyone can play along! Just do the following:

  • Grab your current read
  • Open to a random page
  • Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
  • Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!
My teaser (excerpt) is from Krysa's Curse by Tara West, Book 3 in the Whispers series

Swallowing back the rising bile, I cleared my throat. “What's wrong?”

“Sunny was murdered last night.”

The finality of AJ's words sliced through my stomach like a cold, hard blade.

“Krysta, are you okay?” Sophie asked, but her voice sounded distant, like she was in a dream.

Maybe that's what this was, just a bad dream.

I closed my eyes, wishing everything would return to normal. But in my mind I saw her, face and neck blotched with bruises, staring blankly at the wall behind me. “Poor Sunny,” I breathed while opening my eyes.

“I-I wonder who did it?” Sophie stammered.

“Her boyfriend.” I said through the hollow ache in my chest. Yeah, she was rude, but she didn't deserve to die.

Tilting her head, Sophie looked at me with a quizzical expression. “How do you know?”

Sunny's haunting words came rushing back to me. 'It was my boyfriend. He did it.' Leveling each of them a hardened stare, I saw recognition flash in their eyes. Choking back the emotion in my throat, I spoke through a whisper. “She told me last night.”

Can't wait! Krysta's Curse releases tomorrow!

Cool stuff for Monday (and for me!)

OK, so it's my birthday this week and the 'rents really came through--a Kindle! Can you believe it? I'm so excited! I won't actually get it until Wednesday but I'm already planning all the cool e-books I'm going to download. (You do know digital is the new black, right? and you did know all Climbing Rose titles are also available in e-book format, right?)

Anyway, Wednesday will also be awesome because that's the day Krysta's Curse releases. Krysta's Curse is the third book in the Whispers series by Tara West (check out my interview with Tara about the series here) and I'm can't wait to read the latest installment. Here's the blurb:

Everything about Krysta Richards is wrong, from her short height to her unmanageable hair. Her ability to talk to spirits doesn’t help things, either. Her physical flaws don’t seem to matter to Bryon, her lab partner. Just as the chemistry between them is about to ignite, a homicide detective asks her to summon a murder victim, her drunk father suddenly takes an interest in her life and her dead friends enlist her in a crusade to save their decrepit cemetery. She dreams of gracing the cover of Cosmo, but if she can't get her life back to normal, she’ll be labeled the poster child for Weirdo.
And if you missed Whispers Books 1 and 2, here's the 4-1-1 on Sophie's Secret, Whispers Book 1:

After shedding 30 pounds of baby fat, chubby Sophie Sinora has grown into a pretty, but insecure, teen in bloom. To make her life more complicated, Sophie can sometimes read minds. Sophie's BFFs, AJ and Krysta, are also 'gifted' with paranormal abilities. Keeping their gifts secret proves difficult, as their powers are strengthening, making them feel more and more like freaks. When Sophie falls for Jacob, she hopes he'll ask her out to the Freshman Formal. But when she's forced to cheat and lie for him, she wonders how far she'll have to go to make him like her. Add to her growing list of problems - her teacher's suicidal thoughts, a locker bully who wants to kick her butt, the totally hot school flirt who won't stop teasing her, her pregnant sister who boots Sophie out of her room, and the growing tension between Sophie and her best friends. Sophie's got issues. Hopefully, she can fix them in time to save her teacher's life and her social life.
And Don't Tell Mother, Whispers Book 2:
Raised under the shadow of her popular and spoiled brother, AJ Dawson struggles to get any kind of compliment from her mother. She can't escape her troubled home-life at school, when she is forced to deal with a lot of the same issues. Her immature coach is determined to turn the team against her, her teammates are bent on losing every game, and the rest of the school population cowers in her presence. AJ's mounting frustration could turn her into a ticking time bomb, and she knows the first step to solving her problems is to gain acceptance from her mother. Easier said than done. Her relationship with her mother goes from bad to worse when AJ's new green-haired boyfriend knocks on the door. She knows she'll have to clean up her guy if she wants to earn Mom's respect. But AJ's secret ability to foretell the future is driving her and her mom further apart, and if she doesn't tell her mom about her horrible vision soon, her brother will die.

Great Review for Enter the Parrot!

Enter the Parrot by our own Kiki Lon just got a great review from You Gotta Read reviews! They gave it a "You Gotta Read" rating (highest one, of course) and the review said:

I would definitely recommend this book; there wasn’t a single thing I didn’t enjoy about it. It is definitely one of the best and most original Young Adult books I have read this year.
Way to go, Kiki!

If you haven't picked up your copy yet (and why is that, exactly?) here's the scoop on Enter the Parrot:

Meet Jade, the White girl in the Wong family. On the surface, Jade fits in perfectly. But just below the surface lurks the fragrance of ginger, ginseng, and a secret kung fu society. When her crazy grandpa's deluded parrot goes missing, Jade must dive deep into the seedy underbelly of Chinatown to find him, keeping secrets from her best friends and her cute eco-mentor, Cedric: a.k.a. the hottest guy in school.

She'll need her wits about her to solve the riddle, especially when more than one bird goes missing. Could TF, the hot Chinese guy with the washboard abs, hold the key to the mystery? One girl. One parrot. One ancient kung fu mystery. Got kung fu?

Chatting with Tara West

Next week, the third book, Krista's Curse, in the fabulous Whispers series by Tara West comes out - and we can't wait here at Climbing Rose! Tara was kind enough to sit down with me for a while and answer a few questions. Welcome, Tara!

Can you tell us about your heroine, Krysta?
Krysta’s troubled home life has forced her to become independent at a young age. Despite the absence of her mother and her father’s alcohol problem, she tries to make the best out of life by focusing on her dreams of becoming a model. But recurrent visits from dead friends makes her life way more complicated. If it wasn’t for her two best friends, Sophie, who reads minds, and AJ, whose dreams always come true, she’d go insane.
This is the third book in the Whispers series, after Sophie's Secret and Don't Tell Mother--are there recurring characters in all the books?
Krysta’s two best friends, Sophie and AJ, are in Krysta’s Curse. All three girls are in all the Whispers books.
Do all your heroines have extraordinary abilities?
Yes, Sophie can read minds, but sometimes, other people’s thoughts, pop into her head without warning. This happens when people around her are dealing with extreme emotions, like when her math teacher was contemplating suicide in the first Whispers book, Sophie’s Secret. AJ’s dreams always come true, unless she can find a way to prevent the outcome. In Don’t Tell Mother, AJ foretells her brother’s death. She has to convince the family, mostly her skeptical mother, that her brother is in danger.
Why do you want to write YA?
My high school students convinced me to do it. When I started writing Sophie’s Secret, they would look over each chapter and give me feedback. It has been so much fun, especially since the three main characters are loosely based on my two best friends and me while we were growing up. A lot of freaky things happened to us.
What kind of books did you like reading when you were a teenager?
Actually, I don’t remember if the YA market was as popular as it is now. I mostly read my mom’s adult romance novels.
When a reader finishes a book by Tara West, what do you hope she takes away from it?
I hope she laughs. Being a teen girl is very stressful. I want my books to provide them an escape from the pressures of society and school for a while. Secondly, I hope she looks forward to the next book in the Series.
Thanks for answering my questions, Tara! I know everyone will want to snap up Krysta's Curse when it comes out next week!

Thursday Link-Up

What are Climbing Rose authors talking about this week?

Christine Marciniak, author of our upcoming release When Mike Kissed Emma (best title ever) is blogging about Putting Yourself in the Story:
It was in middle school that I really started to write longer stories. There was one in particular that got quite long and involved. I'm not sure of the exact location of the story right now - though I know I have it somewhere.
The Wolfy Chicks, Judith Graves and Kitty Keswick, are blogging about a new TV show that is right up their alley:
A ghost, a vampire and a werewolf are flatmates... sounds like a start to a joke, right? It isn't. It's a new series on BBC & BBC America.
Kiki Lon is excited about a great review for her fab book, Enter the Parrot:

"Enter the Parrot reads like a movie, and I think Hollywood needs to get on the case. Jade’s character is funny and sarcastic."

And finally, here's an idea for library hounds (like me). Eva and Marg over at A Striped Armchair host a weekly event called Library Loot that encourages bloggers to post the treasures they've checked out from the library. So check out (get it? check out?) their post and maybe post your own Library Loot. Later!

Waiting on Wednesday

"Waiting On" Wednesday is a weekly event, hosted by Breaking the Spine, that spotlights upcoming releases the YA world is eagerly anticipating.

So today I'm highlighting Krysta's Curse by our very own Tara West. It's Book Three in the Whispers series (please tell me you've read Sophie's Secret and Don't Tell Mother, Books One and Two in the series!)

Anyway, here's a sneak peak:

Everything about Krysta Richards is wrong, from her short height to her unmanageable hair. Her ability to talk to spirits doesn’t help things, either. Her physical flaws don’t seem to matter to Bryon, her lab partner. Just as the chemistry between them is about to ignite, a homicide detective asks her to summon a murder victim, her drunk father suddenly takes an interest in her life and her dead friends enlist her in a crusade to save their decrepit cemetery.

She dreams of gracing the cover of Cosmo, but if she can't get her life back to normal, she’ll be labeled the poster child for Weirdo.

Sounds fab, right? Well, you only have to wait until next Wednesday to get it! In the meantime, pick up Tara's other two Whispers stories--Sophie's Secret and Don't Tell Mother--from the Climbing Rose store.

Teaser Tuesday - Ordinary Me by June Sproat

Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by MizB of Should Be Reading. Anyone can play along! Just do the following:
  • Grab your current read
  • Open to a random page
  • Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
  • Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!
My teaser book is Ordinary Me by June Sproat:

I heard a throat clear behind me and looked in the rear-view mirror, directly into the brown eyes I’d been staring at right before the accident.


He was in the car, which means, he totally saw everything.

(OK, that's really 3 sentences, but stopping at 2 just didn't make sense!)

Want to play along? Leave MizB a comment with either the link to your own Teaser Tuesdays post, or share your 2 ‘teasers’ in a comment on her blog (if you don’t have a blog of your own). Fun!

Cool Stuff for Monday

Have you heard about Google Voice? It's not widely available yet--you have to apply for an invite--but it's a new way to keep up with multiple phone lines. You give out your Google phone number (just like a regular phone number) and tie all your phones (home, cell, work) to Google Voice. Then when someone calls your Google Voice number, it rings through to your phones and--here's the best part--you decide which phone it rings...or doesn't ring! (For instance, that annoying guy who just won't take the hint? Those calls go straight to voicemail.) It even works on text messages and will transcribe your voicemail messages into text. Pretty cool.

Watch a video about it here or check out the Google Voice website.

From Idea to Bookshelf

Now that my new book, The Chronicles of Casey V is available for sale online, people are starting to read it. I know, I know, that's the whole point of getting a book published -- getting your stories out there, available to the public. And even after five books, the whole process of moving a book from the idea stage to the point where it's sitting on people's bookshelves, is absolutely amazing to me.
I mean, let's think about this: one day in the shower, or while I'm driving (these are my two best idea-generating activities -- driving and showering -- I haven't a clue why) an idea pops into my brain. Usually a vague premise for a story. It appears in the form of two characters, usually the hero and the heroine, and a "what if" scenario:
What if a teenager accepts her first job and it throws her WAY out of her comfort zone, requiring her to do stuff she's not good at? What if she develops a huge crush on another camp counselor, but everytime he's around, she makes a total fool out of herself? What if one of the campers she's responsible for suffers a terrible injury that Casey could have prevented? What if one of her best friends back home is going through a majorly traumatic experience -- how would Casey help her?

And from there, I start plotting -- usually with a yellow legal pad. I agonize over ideas -- I lock myself away in my room, talk out loud, get frustrated, push my imagination for something better, something bigger. I sigh a lot. I tell myself I'll never have a unique, original plot. I get coffee and chocolate and pick up the legal pad again. It's hard work! But I end up writing an outline, sort of like you do in high school when writing a paper. Before you know it, I have a few chapters outlined with bullet points of major scenes -- and then I just can't wait to start writing.
I write and I write. I read it and rewrite. I revise, and ask others to read it and give me their opinions. Finally it's the best I can make it, and I send it out for submission. The editor provides her suggestions too -- all with the hopes of making this the best possible book it can be.
Fast forward MONTHS later after all the editing, art work, copyrights, permissions, everything is done -- till NOW. Release week. The first time the book is available to anyone and everyone who wants to read it. MY characters, MY ideas, MY words now out in front of everyone. People talking about Casey and Zander like they are real people! Telling me what they loved, what they laughed at, and what they cried at.
It never gets old. Never. It's why writers do what they do. Over and over again.
Hey, it's been so much fun blogging with you this week. Have a fantastic summer and happy reading!!!
Laurie Larsen

First kisses

Whoever invented kissing? Have you ever wondered that? Who, back in the dawn of human existence, decided that in order to show affection and love for each other, two people would press their lips together? Why not press other random body parts together?
Index fingers …
Cheeks …
Or, maybe the Eskimos had it right with rubbing noses. Then again, maybe not during cold and flu season …
Anyway, in my new book, The Chronicles of Casey V, (available online NOW!) Casey has a memorable first kiss with her summer crush, Zander. Check it out:
We headed around behind the stage and climbed the stairs so we were backstage. He tugged on my hand and led me till we were surrounded by the big heavy curtain. With fabric hanging all around us, he brought me closer and nestled his hand into my hair. There, hidden away from the rest of the counselors and campers, he leaned toward me and brushed his lips against mine, sending a whole new set of shivers down my spine.
It was a mind-blowing kiss, and with his hands in my hair, sort of supporting my head as the weight of his lips pushed me back, he threw me off balance. I held on to his shoulders, depending on him to keep me on my feet. I felt a little whoozy and breathless, but it was okay, because the spot where my lips and his had joined was the absolute center of my universe, and not a single other thing mattered. Just that kiss, and how intense it was, sweet and urgent at the same time.
How was your first kiss? Anyone brave enough to leave a comment about it? Was it great? Was it a disaster? I’d love to hear. After all, anything an author hears or sees is liable to end up in a book someday!
Have a great day!

Laurie Larsen

Crazy jobs...

Hello out there in blog land! I’m really excited to be with you this week. My new book, The Chronicles of Casey V. OR Mental Ramblings of the Most Awesome Summer of My Life hits the online bookstores tomorrow and I couldn’t be more thrilled.

The book is actually a journal kept by our heroine, Casey V as she heads off to her first job ever, and it’s a doozy of a first job – she has to live away from home – in a cabin – with a bunch of little girls – responsible for their care and safety. YIKES!

So this blog is about jobs. In my About the Author blurb in the back of the book, it lists the plethora of jobs I’ve done over my lifetime, including my weirdest one: vacuum cleaner tester. No kidding. For about six weeks straight one summer, I sat on a tall stool for eight hours a day and pushed a vacuum cleaner over little scraps of carpet.


To put as many miles as possible on the vacuum, so the advertising could accurately state how many miles the machine was capable of! Four teenagers were gifted with that job. We’d sit in a circle while we vacuumed. A timer was set for 55 minutes. You can imagine the noise in that room – no talking was possible, so we each sat there pushing and pulling our vacuums, reading a book or magazine to pass the time. When the timer rang, we’d turn off our vacuums and get up and stretch for five minutes. To break the boredom, we’d move to the next square of carpet in the circle. I mean, when you’re pushing over a square of SHAG carpet instead of INDOOR-OUTDOOR, it’s a whole different world, huh?

In retrospect, I think Casey V had a much better summer job than I did!! How about you? Leave me a comment and tell me about one of your crazy jobs. And give me a pro and a con about it. For example,
· Pro of the vacuum cleaner job: it was inside a nice, air conditioned building instead of out in the hot sun.
· Con: I ended up with ONE huge bicep by the end of the summer!

Till next time!

Laurie Larsen

Interview with Laurie Larsen

Today, I'm chatting with Laurie Larsen, author of The Chronicles of Casey V. which releases Wednesday (can't wait!) Laurie will be our guest blogger this week so I thought it would be fun to learn all about her and her heroine Casey V.

Here's the lowdown on Casey V:
On the bus, on her way to her first-ever summer job, Casey V is totally excited. And scared to death. First-time jobs are intimidating enough, but she'll be spending the whole summer out of state. Living in a cabin in the woods in charge of the safety and well-being of a bunch of homesick little girls. Yikes! Will this be the most awesome summer of her life or the biggest mistake in her entire sixteen years?

Sounds fab, doesn't it? And now, here's the lowdown on Laurie:

So, Laurie, can you tell us about your heroine, Casey?
Sure! Casey is a 16-year-old girl who loves to read, write, play volleyball and hang out with her friends. Her mom was a camp counselor as a teen, so as she’s scanning the paper one day she sees an ad for camp counselors at Camp Gitchy Goo Moo on the lovely shores of Lake Michigan, and convinces Casey to go for it. One relatively painless phone interview later and Casey’s gainfully employed, away from home for the whole summer! Casey has a hilarious take on life, is always up for a challenge, is a little bit of a perfectionist and has just a wee bit of self esteem issues. She knows this summer will either be the worst experience of her life, or the most awesome summer she can imagine. She’s hoping it’s the latter!

Your book is dedicated to your two nieces--how much is Casey like them?
Both my nieces Brianna and Christina are fun-loving girls with tons of friends and packed social schedules, and also excellent and dedicated students. In those ways they are very much like Casey. It was so much fun for me as an author to collaborate with my nieces in writing this book. I remember taking Brianna out for a coffee drink and brainstorming plot ideas before I started writing. Then, as I wrote each chapter, they read for me. I mainly wanted to know: a) does the dialogue sound like real teens talking, b) does anything strike you as “old-fashioned” or out of date, and c) does the action keep you interested and tuned in? By using them as my test readers, and changing things around as suggested, I ended up with a book that teen-aged girls should really enjoy.

Did you ever go away to a summer camp like the one in your book? Did you have fun?
I did – just once! It was a church camp, and it was only about 40 minutes from home, but it was my first camping experience, living with a group of girls in a cabin away from home and parents. I was about 13. We did all kinds of fun activities all day, and the big finale at the end was a dance, my first one ever. I remember a cute boy named Bruce asked me to dance, and we ended up keeping in touch for the rest of the summer. That was certainly a highlight!

Why do you write YA?
Young adult fiction is just so fun! I love the casual, almost conversational tone of YA, and I especially enjoyed writing this book in journal format. The whole story is told through Casey’s journal, emails and IM’s. When you’re a teen, you see the world around you with a fresher viewpoint. As someone who’s been out of her teens for awhile (understatement of the year!!) it was fun to reconnect with my younger self and bring back all the angst and excitement of growing up.

What kind of books did you like reading when you were Casey's age?
I was horse crazy. I had my own horse and did a lot of riding, so almost all my reading involved horses. In my local library and bookmobile, I knew exactly where the rows of horse books were, and I always headed there immediately. I’d run my finger along the spines of the books, whispering, “Read it, read it, read it,” and then I’d run across one I hadn’t read and whip it out and set it aside to check out! I also liked Christian fiction and mysteries –Nancy Drew was a particular favorite. Note: Casey has a horse experience in the book – unfortunately, things do not end up that well for her!

When a reader finishes a book by Laurie Larsen, what do you hope she takes away from it?

I have a couple tag lines that you’ll see listed on my website. One is: “Everyday situations, with just a twist of worst-case scenario.” I don’t write fantasy – you’ll never find vampires, werewolves, witches, wizards or time travel in my books. I’m grounded in reality, and that’s what I write about. But I always ask myself, “What if …?” What if things didn’t go well? What if every time that cute boy counselor is around, something happens to make Casey feel like a total idiot? Hmmm… Another tagline is, “Do you believe in happy endings?” No matter what happens in my books, no matter how far the characters stray, the reader can rest assured there will be a happy ending. Everything ends right.

Thanks for having me this week! I’m looking forward to blogging this week so stay tuned and visit back often!

Thanks for chatting with me, Laurie! Can't wait to read your posts this week.

Fashionista Friday!

Forget The Devil Wears Prada (OK, scratch that, I'll never forget that movie after seeing it 30 times) but how equally fab does this look:

It's a documentary called The September Issue, that showcases Anna Wintour, editor-in-chief of Vogue magazine and total fashion goddess! stylehive says:

The cameras take us through meetings, fashion weeks, and photo shoots so we can gain more understanding of the immense effort that goes into creating the magazine's most important issue.

Cannot wait to see this!

And speaking of things we can't wait to see (I rock at segues, don't I?!) Check back this weekend for an interview with Climbing Rose author, Laurie Larsen. She'll be guest blogging here next week to celebrate the release of The Chronicles of Casey V. Awesome!

Thursday Link-up

What are Climbing Rose authors talking about this week?

Christine Marciniak, author of the upcoming CR release, When Mike Kissed Emma, is blogging about her daughter's new braces:
Now that they're on though she's lamenting the things she won't be able to eat and he extra work involved in brushing them. Besides, 2 and 1/2 years looks like quite a long time when your standing at the beginning of it.

Laurie J. Edwards, one of our Summer Lovin' authors, is blogging about living out your dream:
One tiny step in the direction of your dreams would mean you were that much closer every week. No dream is impossible. Some may take longer to reach than others, but they’re all worth every bit of time and effort you put into them.

Bonnie J. Doerr, author of the upcoming, Island Sting, is blogging about Treachery in the Garden:
But he’d not only heard, he’d glimpsed that majestic feathered hunter and the sight left him terrorized. I explained that one of our resident red shouldered hawks was telling the other she’d spied dinner—likely, the small, quiet, long-eared creature in the clover.

And if you're a writer, check out Deb Logan's round-up of writing articles:
I've run across some excellent articles on writing-related subjects in the last few days. I hope you'll find them interesting.

And finally, over at We Love YA (another home of our own Kiki Lon) Vanessa Barneveld is chatting with her fellow Golden Heart finalists in the YA category:
Now, why is the GH such a big deal? After a preliminary round where manuscripts are judged by peers, the field is whittled down to one hundred books and read by acquiring editors. The competition has a great reputation for launching finalists into publication, whether they win or not.

Go check it out to read about the future stars of YA.

Not Facebook, Not MySpace, so where are you?

This is a fascinating (well, that might be a little strong--call it intriguing) item. Seems like younger people are fleeing Facebook, according to Facebook's own estimates:

How fickle are kids these days? Just when all the grown ups started figuring out Facebook, college and high school users have declined in absolute number by 20% and 15% respectively in a mere six months, according to estimates Facebook provides to advertisers that were archived for tracking by an outside firm. Facebook users aged 55 and over have skyrocketed from under 1 million to nearly six million in the same time period. There are more Facebook users over 55 years old today than there are high school students using the site.
The decline of MySpace has been well documented, so the question is, if teens have abandoned MySpace and are leaving Facebook, where are they going? Twitter?

What social networking sites do you use? Are you still on Facebook and MySpace? Or are you exclusively Tweeting these days? Leave a comment and let me know.

Teaser Tuesday - Sophie's Secret by Tara West

Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by MizB of Should Be Reading. Anyone can play along! Just do the following:

    • Grab your current read
    • Open to a random page
    • Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
      BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
    • Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!
My teaser book is Sophie's Secret from the Whispers series by Tara West:

"I tried to swallow, but the dryness in my throat was back with a vengeance. I looked into his penetrating eyes, searching for a sign this wasn’t a dream, the hottest guy in school really liked me."
Want to play along? Leave MizB a comment with either the link to your own Teaser Tuesdays post, or share your 2 ‘teasers’ in a comment on her blog (if you don’t have a blog). Fun!

Cool Stuff for your post-holiday Monday

Hope everyone had a Fab 4th. Rain put a damper on fireworks and parades in my corner of the world so we had a Fab 5th instead :)

Speaking of technology (nice segue, huh?) Have you discovered ChaCha? It's a mobile question answering service (or ur mobile bff as they describe themselves). If you're on the go and need to know where the nearest restaurant is, or what time the movie starts, or who Joe Jonas is engaged to (and come on, who hasn't needed to know those things on the fly?) just text your question to ChaCha and a real live human will find the answer for you. How cool is that?

They even have ThmbSavrs: Like you can just text 'W' and your Zip code to get the Weather; or 'HN' to get the latest hot news; or 'PUL' for great pick-up lines for when you see the hot guy of your dreams!

Blog Posting Month

Did you know that this is National Blog Posting Month (NaBloPoMo for short)? I know, not quite as catchy as NaNoWriMo and I think technically every month is National Blog Posting Month over there, but still it's kind of cool. If you've got a blog, why not sign up for their challenge and connect with other bloggers? (They've got prizes and everything :)

And thanks to NaBloPoMo member Tracy Delaney for the super badge (if you're a fan of all things arty and scrappy, check out Tracy's Pretty Little Things blog)

Thursday Link-Up

What's on the mind of Climbing Rose authors this Thursday before the holiday weekend?

Kiki Lon is blogging about The Zen of Reading:
But you know what I really need? Reading. While I read, life is good. nothing truly bad can happen, and if it does, it’ll end eventually.
Terry Lee Wilde is happy about a great (of course!) reader review for Deidre's Secret:
"This was an enticing book. The story line is imaginative and suspenseful. The creative writing style of the author really appealed to me. The characters in "Deidre's Secret" are diverse and fascinating. It's pretty fast paced with a spooky atmosphere, which kept me flipping the pages to see what would happen next."
Laurie Larsen is writing about her fab trip to New York City:
I'm in New York City, relaxing on the fifth floor of my hotel facing 7th Avenue, about 9 blocks from Times Square and the Broadway Theater district. I've been here for 5 days and have had a FANTASTIC time!
June Sproat is excited about her upcoming book signing:

Frontier Days Arlington Heights, Illinois Saturday, JULY 4th - 10:00 am to 6:00 pm Sunday, July 5th - 10:00am to 6:00 pm (Booth #124)

And although she's not a CR author, The LibrariYAn is wondering What Do Middle Schoolers Read:
So I'm coming to you, dear blog readers, for suggestions of titles new and old. I've brainstormed a short list of newer titles that I think will be good selections, but I need your help!
Got an opinion? Pop over and leave a comment.

Highly Recommended Review for I Was a Teenage Alien!

Wow! A "Highly Recommended" and 4 out of 4 stars review for I Was a Teenage Alien from The Manitoba Library Association. Check out the article in the June 26 issue of CM Magazine:

Greenhill's novel is creative and imaginative. The world of Zorca-twenty-three becomes just as alive for readers as earth becomes for April, down to the smallest detail. It is a refreshing new fantasy world which will certainly capture the imagination of young adult readers.
Greenhill demonstrates an ability to describe things in detail and from the point of view of someone who has never experienced them before. April's misunderstanding of what people mean and how things work and her ability to commit social major faux pas result in a very funny story.
Awesome! And if you haven't picked up your copy yet, here's the lowdown on Alien:

Oas is sent from her home planet of Zorca-twenty-three to rescue her brother Ralb from the worst humanoid known in the solar system--a teenage girl. With her traveling companions, Rotsen, a plant with an attitude who watches too many Sopranos reruns, and Lehcarr, a Venus Fly Trap with the habit of eating her friends, they set out to find Ralb.

Traveling through a black hole, Oas is transformed from her ananoid shape into a teenage humanoid, becoming what she fears most-a teenager. They land in Bedrocktown to find the teenagers aren't as bad as they feared-they're worse. Zen her handler has warned her to stay away from pizza and popcorn but she tries both, with horrible results. She needs to find her brother, figure out how humans kiss, save the town from an E. coli outbreak, and meet Johnny Depp, not necessarily in that order. Then all she has to do is find her way home, but are her ties to Earth too strong?

And here's an excerpt:

Nicola pushed one of the round buttons on the wall, and the doors creaked into operation. The humanoid eating-machine rushed to close us up inside.

"Wait," I screamed.But we plummeted towards the inner sanctum of Earth. Down, down, down we went at the speed of light or just about.

I opened my mouth to tell her I was going to get out and walk. My ears popped, and then a miracle occurred.

The doors slid open, and I saw daylight.

We were facing a large room filled with foresty plants and chairs that didn't look used. Sunlight trickled in through the wall's high glass.

I'd survived.

I pumped my fist in the air and locked arms with Nicola. Together we strolled outside. I swung my bag with my old clothes in it like I didn't have a care in the world. I didn't. I'd traveled through black holes, survived a hairdresser, eaten ice cream, done an endurance walk up countless steps, and finally lived to tell about my adventure in an elevator. No wonder I was feeling a tad asteroid-lagged.

Your copy of I Was a Teenage Alien is just a click (not an asteroid) away!