Thursday, June 20, 2013

Who I Am

No matter how much I try to distance myself from it, writing has become a part of who I am. I can't function without it anymore. There's a sense of peace, actually, that comes from doing what you know you're meant to do. A sense of being. Who knows if this will always be the case for me, but for right now, I'm embracing it.

I'm gonna take a bit of a bloggy break and take advantage of my homeschool-free summer, getting some serious writing in for a few weeks. Or at least attempt to. I'll be back before you know it. Until then, happy writing!

Oh, and by the way, since Google Friend Connect is apparently leaving us high and dry, I've added a couple of ways for you to follow my blog on the side bar instead. I usually share a link to my posts on FB and Twitter as well. You can find me there via the contact tab above. Any other suggestions? I may cave and join Google+ too. IDK. We'll see. 

Writing is my remedy. My clarity...

Monday, June 17, 2013

I just don't get it...

I rarely if ever get political on my blog, or online for that matter. And I try to be positive as much as possible (except for my monthly IWSG complain-fest :). But something's been bothering me A LOT lately, so forgive my soap-box moment for today.

Have any of you seen this?

I think it's adorable. But it created quite the backlash from viewers who were disturbed by the portrayal of an interracial couple. So much that Cheerios had to disable comments on its youtube channel. Really, people? Really?

I'm smart enough to know there are very mean people out there with unkind views toward others based on things like race, gender, sexuality, etc., but I also know those people make up the minority. In fact, this commercial received way more thumbs up than thumbs down. But right now I'm feeling really naive, because it never even occurred to me that a simple commercial like this would stir up so much hate 2013.

Maybe it's because I grew up in Hawaii. I read that it has more interracial marriages than any other US state--almost half the marriages there are interracial. Maybe it's because I come from a long line of interracial ancestor couples: I'm Hawaiian, Tahitian, Caucasian, Chinese, and Native American...there was some definite mixing going on there. Or maybe it's because my own marriage along with every single one of my sibling's marriages are interracial. Regardless of the reason, I HAD NO IDEA THIS WAS EVEN AN ISSUE TODAY. Seriously. I know there are extremist thoughts on everything, but enough on this particular subject to generate this much hate? I just don't get it.

The majority of my books feature multicultural main characters, and a few involve interracial couples, including REMAKE, which will be out for the world to read in a year. I know my book is going to upset some deals with some very controversial and sensitive issues, but never once did it occur to me that an interracial romance would be one of those issues. But now I wonder...and it makes me really curious to know what you all think. It also reminds me of this post from a couple years back.

How many of you have written a book with an interracial couple? Can you name some favorite YA books with them? Would you pick up a book that featured an interracial couple on the front of it?

If we do the unthinkable, would it make us look crazy?

Thursday, June 13, 2013

My Magazine Article

I wrote an article for The Friend magazine a couple years ago. It's a monthly publication from The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints geared for children ages 4-12. It was accepted for publication back in 2011, and after working on revisions, copy-edits, and even talking with the illustrator over the phone, it's finally out this month!

It's been fun to see my name in print, especially connected to a true story about my family. It's also super cool that it has been translated into several languages and has a worldwide (and very large) readership. Imagine my surprise when I found out the front cover of the magazine featured my story as well. So. Awesome. I may have bought 30 copies of this issue. That's not excessive, is it? ;)

Here's a link to the story online, and a neat feature there is you can listen to a recording...the reader makes the story sound much cooler than it is. :) If you have a copy of June 2013's The Friend magazine, open it up to "Stirling's Great Idea." You can see a picture of me and my family caricatures of course. :)

Monday, June 10, 2013

How to Date a Nerd: Cover Reveal!

Cassie Mae is here on the blog today with a cover reveal. Take it away, Cassie...

I know some of you have already seen the awesomeness that is my cover for HOW TO DATE A NERD, but this is the official reveal, so pretend it's the first time you're seeing it, ha!

And yes, I came off really braggy, but I love this cover so much. I couldn't have asked for a more perfect one.

Okay, and if you are reading my babbles here instead of just scrolling to the cover, I know most of you have followed my journey with HOW TO DATE A NERD and know just how big a deal this is for me to get it out there to everyone. It's scheduled right now for a September release, and here's to hoping I don't lose my mind waiting :) And I want to thank all of you for the support you've shown me in the past two years since I started blogging. Nerd wouldn't have been queried, wouldn't have even been written without my bloggy buddies and their support. So THANK YOU! This is the one that started it all :)

Here's the blurby thinger and my author stuff. :)

Zoe has a great pair of legs, perky boobs, and wears exactly what she needs to show it all off. She works hard for the easy sleazy ‘you only wish you were me’ reputation, burying who she really is—an all-out nerd.

The only time Zoe gets to be herself is when she hides under her comforter to read X-Men comics, sending jealousy stabs at everyone who attends Comic-Con. Keeping up her popular rep is too important, and she’s so damn insecure to care about the consequences. But when Zoe’s sister takes her car for a ‘crash and burn into a tree’ joyride, her parents get her a replacement. A manual. Something she doesn’t know how to operate, but her next door neighbor Zak sure as heck does.

Zak’s a geek to the core, shunned by everyone in school for playing Dungeons and Dragons at lunch and wearing “Use the Force” t-shirts. And Zoe’s got it bad for the boy. Only Zak doesn’t want Popular Zoe. He wants Geek Zoe.

She has to shove her insecurities and the fear of dropping a few rungs on the social ladder aside to prove to Zak who she really is and who she wants to be… if she can figure it out herself.

Cassie Mae is a nerd to the core from Utah, who likes to write about other nerds who find love. She’s the author of the Amazon Bestseller REASONS I FELL FOR THE FUNNY FAT FRIEND, and is the debut author for the Random House FLIRT line with her New Adult novels FRIDAY NIGHT ALIBI and PULLING THE SWITCH. She also has a three book deal with Swoon Romance Publishing, including her book HOW TO DATE A NERD. She spends her time with her angel children and perfect husband who fan her and feed her grapes while she clacks away on the keyboard. Then she wakes up from that dream world and manages to get a few words on the computer while the house explodes around her. When she’s not writing, she’s spending time with the youth in her community as a volleyball and basketball coach, or searching the house desperately for chocolate.

And now, the reveal. *plays dramatic music*

Spell for you guys today (because I'm just so happy!)


Thursday, June 6, 2013

A Change of Plans

I'm thrilled to participate in Donna's blog tour for her novel, A Change of Plans. You can check out the tour details here.

When twenty-five-year-old Lyn sets off on her cruise vacation, all she wants is to forget that her dead fiancé was a cheating scumbag. What she plans is a diversion uncomplicated by romance. What she gets is Braedon, an intriguing young surgeon. He's everything her fiancé wasn't, and against the backdrop of the ship's make-believe world, her emotions come alive.

Unaware of the sensitive waters he navigates, Braedon moves to take their relationship beyond friendship—on the very anniversary Lyn came on the cruise to forget. Lyn's painful memories are too powerful, and she runs off in a panic.

But it's hard to get away from someone when you're stuck on the same ship. Things are bad enough when the pair finds themselves on one of the cruise's snorkeling excursions. Then paradise turns to piracy when their party is kidnapped, and Lyn's fear of a fairy tale turns grim.

About Donna K. Weaver:

Donna K. Weaver is a Navy brat who joined the Army and has lived in Asia and Europe.

Because she sailed the Pacific three times as a child, she loves cruising and wishes she could accrue enough vacation time to do more of it with her husband.

Donna and her husband have six children and eight grandchildren who live all over the world.

At fifty, Donna decided to study karate and earned her black belt in Shorei Kempo. After recording city council minutes for twenty years, Donna decided to write something a little longer and with a lot more emotion--and kissing.

What people are saying about A CHANGE OF PLANS...

"A Change of Plans will keep readers up way too late in this fast-paced tale of love lost and found again." ~Melanie Jacobson, author of The ListNot My TypeTwitterpated, and Smart Move

"A Change of Plans is lots of romance sprinkled with pirates, shipwreck and adventure. Donna Weaver spins a tale that you will fall in love with, think about for days afterward, and then go back and read again. I laughed, I cried, and I couldn't put it down." ~Betsy Love author of Identity and Soulfire

"A captivating tale of love, grief, and hope that will tug at your heartstrings until the very end." ~Laura Josephson, author of the Rising series and Confessions from the Realm of the Underworld

"When someone says pirates and novel in the same sentence, I usually say, "Thanks, but no." Not in this case. Ms. Weaver brings a warm humor to her story of romance, travel and overcoming skeletons in one's past with her vivid characters and delightful scenes." ~Shaunna Gonzales, author of Dark Days of Promise

Don't forget to enter her e-book giveaway!

Wednesday, June 5, 2013


Sometimes, I just feel like at any moment my publisher is going to call and tell me they made a terrible mistake...

How do you deal with self-doubt?

It's time for us to lose our weary minds...

Monday, June 3, 2013


J.R. Johansson is here on the blog today! I'm kind of a chicken when it comes to scary stories, so I asked her why she loves to write them. Here's what she has to say:

People always seem a little surprised when I tell them I write scary books. I’m not exactly the wears-black-and-hangs-out-in-dark-alleys type of girl. For a long time I didn’t think I could write thrillers or horrors either, I resisted and didn’t think it was for me. But I’m so glad I write them now. There is a certain justice and balance to horror. You can’t truly see the light until you’ve seen the darkness. Laughter and joy coming through in dark situations feels stronger, more powerful. Plus, there is a certain catharsis that comes from experiencing fears and terrors of reading a good scary book and coming out the other side. It’s a thrill in a safe place. I love providing that and get the same excitement from writing it. That’s my favorite part about writing scary stories. 

"You can't truly see the light until you've seen the darkness." I love that! And it is so so true. Thanks for stopping by, J.R.!

Here are the details of her new release, INSOMNIA:

 Her eyes saved his life. Her dreams released his darkness.

After four years of sleeplessness, high school junior Parker Chipp can’t take much more. Every night, instead of sleeping, he enters the dreams of the last person he’s made eye contact with. If he doesn’t sleep soon, Parker will die.

Then he meets Mia. Her dreams, calm and beautifully uncomplicated, allow him blissful rest that’s utterly addictive. But what starts out as a chance meeting turns into an obsession; Parker’s furious desire for what he needs pushes him to extremes he never thought he’d go. And when someone begins terrorizing Mia with twisted death threats, Parker’s memory blackouts leave him doubting his own innocence.

J.R. JOHANSSON is a young adult thriller author published with Flux & FSG/Macmillan. Her debut, INSOMNIA is coming June 2013. She has a B.S. degree in public relations and a background in marketing. She credits her abnormal psychology minor with inspiring many of her characters. When she's not writing, she loves reading, playing board games, and sitting in her hot tub. Her dream is that someday she can do all three at the same time. She has two young sons and a wonderful husband. In fact, other than her cat, Cleo, she's nearly drowning in testosterone.

You can find her here:
Order Insomnia here:

And don't forget to enter her critique giveaway: