"All we have to decide is what to do with the time that is given to us." —J. R. R. Tolkien

Thursday, April 29, 2010

Five on a Friday

Hey, everyone! I hope you all had a great week and have fun plans for the weekend ahead!

1) I'm signing at Barnes & Noble in the Arboretum in Austin on Saturday, May 1st at 2:00 pm. If you happen to live in the area, I'd love to see some familiar faces! Please come by. I'll even tell you where the bathroom is and where the TWILIGHT books are shelved.

I was so psyched to walk into said Barnes & Noble on Wednesday and see this amazing display of my books front and center. Like first thing when you walk into the store. Everyone would see them.


And yes, I even took the obligatory picture of me standing by the display :)


2) I had a fantastic birthday! Thank you all so much for the birthday wishes. I managed to write for a good chunk of the day with some writer pals and was even granted this awesome crown by Jessica Lee Anderson. I totally felt like a queen for the day!

Jessica Lee Anderson, Me, K. A. Holt, and E. Kristin Anderson


3) For those of you who didn't watch my video or who just love Smurfs, here's a close up of my latest ones added to the collection. These are the Zodiac Smurfs. Do you see your sign?


4) An update on reading...

This week I read
DEMON PRINCESS: REIGN OR SHINE by Michelle Rowan
It was such a fun novel with a great voice. I'm already looking forward to the sequel
DEMON PRINCESS: REIGN CHECK when it comes out in May.

I just started
PROPHECY OF DAYS - Book One: THE DAYKEEPER'S GRIMOIRE by Christy Raedeke
which so far I love!


5) I'm off to make Corn Husk dolls at my son's elementary school tomorrow to celebrate Pioneer Day. I got my refresher lesson this afternoon, so I am ready to go!


You can check out the Texas Sweethearts Friday roundup here!

Have a great weekend!

Monday, April 26, 2010

Happy Birthday to Me!

Hey, it's my special day! And in honor of my special day, I hope everyone out there has a special day, also! Let's make it a day full of lucky pennies and good clearance prices and book deals.

So it's a big birthday for me, and anytime we hit milestone moments in our lives, it's worthwhile to take a step back and acknowledge the things that make us happy. In the spirit of that, I leave you with my "Happy Birthday to Me" video. I'm hoping someone besides just my mom and my dad and my Aunt Helen enjoys it!



Hope everyone is having a great week!

Quick Happy Monday Post

I'll be back tomorrow with a special post! In the meantime, I'll leave you guys with a photo of Lego Land right here at home...

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

My Favorite Poem

Just a couple quick links:

Over on The Spectacle blog, I've listed some of the speculative ARCs I got at TLA. Are there any in particular you're looking forward to? (And rumor has it I'll be giving some of these away on my blog later this month and in months to come.)

Also, this week on The Texas Sweethearts blog, we're featuring Sara Kelly Johns who is running for ALA president! We were thrilled to meet Sara at TLA and are so happy to featured her!

*****

Okay, here's what I did in my spare time this morning—at least the actual filming part of it. When I memorized this, it took me about a month.
Enjoy!




Hope you're all having a great week!

Sunday, April 18, 2010

My TLA 2010 Wrap Up

First...

Without further ado, the winner of BORDER CROSSING by Jessica Lee Anderson is


Hey, this means BORDER CROSSING is headed to Korea!

Christina, please email me your shipping info!

*****

I had a blast at this year's TLA! I drove down Thursday and Friday with Jo Whittemore, E. Kristen Anderson, and K. A. Holt. The gals kept me chatting the whole time, and we were there in no time.

E. Kristen Anderson and Me

So we checked out all the booths, saw tons of amazing authors, and then headed for our Texas Sweethearts reception. We had such a great turnout that we didn't get a single sweet treat for ourselves. Not to worry as I have tons of Hershey's Kisses left over. But the cookies and brownies and lemon drops flew off the trays.
And Then There Were None.

After the reception, we headed to the publisher/author party a few blocks away. I didn't even mind walking through the rain since I had Sweetheart Jessica Lee Anderson on my arm :)

Walking through the rain with Jessica

Okay, at the party I talked to tons of way cool authors including Jay Asher, Ellen Hopkins, Mary Pearson, Kathleen Duey and Lisa Schroeder.

Bethany Hegedus, E. Kristen Anderson, Lisa Schroeder, K. A. Holt, and Jessica Lee Anderson

Jessica, Lisa, and Me

And, you know, I'm totally cool with talking to all these people. That said, I found out what my fandom limit was when I turned into a total fangirl.

Yes, I had a conversation with Rick Riordan and I totally gushed and oohed and aahed. I didn't have the guts to ask for a picture with him, but here he is after our conversation.

Yay Rick Riordan!

Friday turned up more books and more awesome cool people to talk to. I signed books for a couple hours and then we headed back to Austin.

Me getting SACRED SCARS signed by Kathleen Duey.

For a Texas Sweethearts wrap up and more pictures, check out our Texas Sweethearts blog post!

And have a great week!

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Bats and Camaraderie

Quick note before the post: I'm so excited that our Texas Sweethearts panel was accepted for NCTE this November!
NCTE is a fantastic conference, and this year it's also in the best place in the world. Yes, you guessed it:

Disneyworld!

Whoot Whoot!

Tower of Terror, here I come!

*****

Last night, I had the pleasure of hanging out with R. L. LaFevers of both THEODOSIA fame and Shrinking Violets fame. Robin (R. L.) is a fantastic person, and when I found out she'd be in Austin for the night, I took the opportunity to get a little face time*.

She was staying downtown right next to the famous Austin Congress Street Bridge (of bat fame). Millions of bats fly out each night during the spring and summer months, so we headed over to check them out. We heard them plenty and did see a few, but the crowds of people gathered didn't get much of a show. So after about an hour we headed back to the hotel for a beverage of choice.

*But let's talk about face time for a bit. I've been pretty active online meeting people, reading and talking about books, yet there is nothing like actually getting that face to face interaction. This cannot be replaced via email or even Skype. There are no internet delays. There are no frozen facial expressions. And there are certain messages that can get passed back and forth almost telepathically when two people are together and communicating. (that's kind of deep, isn't it?)

The Iinternet is amazing, but it also creates a bit of an introverted experience. So get out there and do things like going to conferences, scheduling lunch with friends, looking for common interests. Meet authors you respect. Have coffee with your agent. Go to book signings. Look for ways to get that face time, and then do it!

(but don't forget about all your Internet friends in the doing!)

****

On a side note, we're featuring agent Jenn Laughran over on the Texas Sweethearts blog today, so head over and show Jenn some love if you get a chance.


And I hope you're all having a great week! I'm off to TLA tomorrow and Friday!

Monday, April 12, 2010

Revisions


Happy Monday! For an awesome, inside look at revisions and the joy of receiving an editorial letter (seriously), head over to The Texas Sweethearts blog and check out what Sweetheart Jo Whittemore has to say about the whole thing!

And have a great week!

Thursday, April 08, 2010

Five on a Friday

Happy Friday! I've cranked out some serious words this week. I'm telling you...it's the egg timer.

Okay, enough on that. Here are my five for the week:

1) You have to indulge me just a tad. I almost never post artwork done by my kids. But in this case, it has to be done...

Here is your reminder that you don't have to listen when you are told to color in the lines. Make that alligator however the heck you want. And come to think of it, why stick with an alligator? Make the second thing that comes to mind. Or the third.

(No, I have no idea what the red thing is. I think it's a spike.)

Note:
This lesson can be applied to your writing, too, if you didn't pick up on that.


2) And when it's time to sign your name in a book, really put some personality into your signature. From now on, My PJ Hoover signature will have eyeballs and resemble monsters.

(I'm hoping she'll make me an entire alphabet.)


3) Okay, that's it for art.
I'm headed to BookPeople Friday night to see John Greene and David Levithan for the release of their book WILL GRAYSON, WILL GRAYSON. Anyone else going? I'll see you there!


4) I'm reading THIS WORLD WE LIVE IN by Susan Beth Pfeffer and just adoring it. It's book three in her LAST SURVIVORS series, and if you haven't read the first two and you enjoy apocalypse stories, then I can't recommend them enough. Her world is created so well, it has me hanging on every word and every page. And her characters draw so much empathy, I know I'm going to start buying the canned food again once I finish. Love!

5) We're camping at NASA this weekend!
(Did I mention Cub Scouts can get you in anywhere?)

Have a great weekend!

Wednesday, April 07, 2010

Sweetheart Jessica Lee Anderson - Interview and Giveaway!

I couldn't be more excited to introduce today's interviewee:

The pretty,
funny,
awesome-friend,
creative,
and thoughtful
Jessica Lee Anderson


Jessica is the author of TRUDY, a touching story about a young girl dealing with her father getting Alzheimer's, and her brand new novel BORDER CROSSING! I can vouch and say both books are fantastic. In addition, Jessica's third novel, Calli, will be published in 2011.

**Stick around because I'm giving away a copy of BORDER CROSSING!

Not only is Jessica a friend, she's also a fellow Texas Sweetheart (along with Jo Whittemore ). And without further ado, here is Jessica...

*****

PJH: Congratulations of the release of BORDER CROSSING! BORDER CROSSING is YA, but you’ve also written TRUDY which is for younger readers. How do you feel about authors writing for a variety of ages as opposed to creating their own niche in the market?

JLA: Thank you! There is something to be said about author branding though authors must write what they’re passionate about though. Writing for a variety of ages has its advantages like being able to provide alternatives and options. Plus, the versatility is a benefit when it comes to speaking at events.


PJH: Tell us five things you collect.

JLA:
1. BOOKS!
2. pictures
3. letters from friends, family, and fans
4. quotes
5. recipes


PJH: I love the setting for BORDER CROSSING. What inspired your ideas for location, and what did you do in the name of research?

JLA:
I studied at Sul Ross State University in Alpine, Texas for a couple of years. This town, plus surrounding towns like Marfa and Fort Davis are colorful and unique. I used many of my memories from these places, plus trips to Big Bend National Park to create the fictitious town of Rockhill, Texas.



PJH: What are three books you are looking forward to the release of in the next year (not including mine)?

JLA:
There are so many books I can’t wait to read, so I’ll pick three from local authors that will be released around the same times as yours, Tricia—

Truth with a Capital T by Bethany Hegedus
Alien Invasion and Other Inconveniences by Brian Yansky
Brains for Lunch by K.A. Holt


PJH: If an apocalypse came, would you still find a way to write (even if this meant paper and pen)? And if yes, then how and why?

JLA:
I’d write on whatever I could because writing helps me deal with things. And if I got severely maimed in the apocalypse, I’d create stories in my mind for escape.

*****

OK, now the fun, fast part. Keep your answers as short as possible!

PJH: Fantasy Island or Love Boat?


JLA: Fantasy Island

PJH: Guilty Pleasure?

JLA: Pizza Buffet

PJH: Favorite Scooby Doo character?

JLA:
Scooby Doo of course!

PJH: Computer or hand written

JLA:
Computer

PJH: First Draft: Revise as you go or just get it down?

JLA:
Just get it down with some revising as I go

PJH: Favorite natural wonder?

JLA: Grand Canyon

PJH: Favorite myth?

JLA:
Psyche and Eros


PJH: Thank you so much, Jessica! I loved having you here!

*****

And now for your chance to win a copy of BORDER CROSSING, simply leave a comment before the end of day Sunday 4/18/2010!

Monday, April 05, 2010

Vlog on a Monday

Hey guys! Hope you all had a great weekend! We hid about a gazillion eggs for the kids to find. So many eggs in fact not a single argument broke out the entire time. Sadly it rained, but the good news is that means we can save our cascarones for a different day! (I love me some cascarones.)

Curious what my two tips for time management are? Watch to find out!



And have a great week!

Friday, April 02, 2010

Five on a Friday

Happy Friday! I hope you all have fun weekend plans ahead.

My five for the week:

1) I am totally in love with the Egg Timer. I've been setting it and closing all other Internet stuff and writing, and it's working great. The one I use is here.
(no, I don't have a Lego Egg Timer, but we've got a strong Lego focus around the house. I may have to invest in this cutie!)

2) I adore watching my kids Easter Egg hunt! But, yikes! I can't find Cadbury Creme Eggs at our HEB. They seriously need to order more. This, aside from the kids, is a highlight of Easter.


3) I'm really looking forward to TLA! I'll be signing on Thursday, April 15th, and the same day is our Texas Sweethearts reception at 3:00.

4) I'm doing some script writing for our elementary school television station. How fun! About one minutes skits which will run for the next two weeks. I think I may even do a guest appearance :)

5) Good reading done lately. Good writing done lately. I managed to get 9000 words written in the last week (it's the egg timer). Also, I've critiqued some awesome pieces recently and am looking forward to two months full of critiques ahead.


Have a great weekend!