Tuesday, March 26, 2013

What I'm Reading: Safe Haven

Safe Haven, by Nicholas Sparks


I generally think of Chick Lit authors as being female, but Nicholas Sparks has written several "Chick Lit-ish" books that I've loved.  I'd categorize them as love stories or romance.  Amazon lists Safe Haven in the romantic suspense and contemporary literature and fiction categories--then again, they don't have an option for Chick Lit!

I had a tough time putting this one down.  I guess there is a reason Amazon put Safe Haven in the romantic suspense category!  Katie shows up in the small town of Southport, NC to start over.  She's determined to escape from her past and avoid making any personal connections.  Then she meets Alex.  Will he change her mind?

Not only was it a sweet love story, but it kept me guessing until the inevitable was bound to happen and Katie's past finally catches up with her.  There was a surprising twist at the end that I never saw coming.

Nicholas Sparks's books have been hit-or-miss with me.  However, I absolutely loved Safe Haven!  If you enjoyed Dear John then I recommend reading this as well.

Monday, March 25, 2013

First Sight is 99 cents this week!

I hope everyone had a terrific weekend!  We had a surprise snowstorm this morning.  Instead of pulling out Easter decorations today we made a snowman and went sledding!  I'm dreaming of a white...Easter?  Hopefully the snow will melt before the Easter Egg hunts we have scheduled for later in the week.

Thanks to Ereader News Today (ENT) for featuring First Sight this morning!  It is available for 99 cents this week!  If you're looking for great deals on Kindle books, check out ENT's Facebook page: EreaderNewsToday

While you're at it, please stop by and "like" my Facebook page as well!  LoveChickLit

And don't forget, purchase First Sight on Amazon for only 99 cents this week!

Friday, March 15, 2013

Happy St. Patrick's Day!

What are your St. Patrick's Day plans?  We're celebrating with traditional pizza and wings.  ;)
This was going to be a four-leaf cover made of four separate handprints, but this was easier for a toddler.
Shamrock Handprints


Have a great weekend and St. Patrick's Day!

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Revisiting Reviews

As I mentioned in an earlier post (Obtaining More Reviews), it's crucial for a new author to get lots of reviews in order to help promote their book.  When you're just starting out, each review can impact your overall rating.  I think it's safe to assume that the more reviews you accumulate, the less importance each review holds. 

I was curious about the types of reviews for some of my favorite books.  I decided to take a peek at the reviews on Amazon for The Devil Wears Prada.  People who aren't even fans of chick lit probably have heard of this book simply because it was made into a wildly-successful movie staring Meryl Streep.  I was surprised to find the reviews evenly distributed across all five ratings:

2.9 out of 5 stars (1,072)
5 stars: 183
4 stars: 229
3 stars: 210
2 stars: 216
1 star: 234

Having 234 1-star reviews sounds terrible to me in general, but this book has more 1-star reviews on Amazon than any other rating! 

This example just goes to show that authors shouldn't dwell too much on negative reviews.  The Devil Wears Prada spent over one year on the New York Times Bestseller List and was made into a movie.  Although as authors we place great importance on reviews that come in, they certainly don't mean everything.

Thursday, March 7, 2013

First Sight is Available for Nook!

Great news! 

First Sight is now available for Nook users.

Order now from Barnes and Noble:  FIRST SIGHT

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Chocolate Chip Cookies It Is!

Chocolate chip cookies won out.  However, toddler helper + distracted mom = baking-soda-less cookies.  Fortunately, no one seems to care but me. ;)

Ready for the KitchenAid to do its thing!

Cookie-Baking Must-Have!

 Perfect for a snowy day!

They are a little flatter than usual but still good without the baking soda. 

The recipe for snow-dusted mint chocolate chip cookies is coming soon!

Snow Day!

What are you up to today?

I'm formatting First Sight for Nook!  My enrollment in Amazon's KDP Select has ended, so soon all of you Nook users can read it, too!  (Of course, you can always download Amazon's Kindle software for FREE and read First Sight on any computer, tablet, or smart phone.)

I'm also planning some cookie baking with my toddler.  Chocolate Chip or Snow-Dusted Mint Chocolate Chip cookies?  Decisions, decisions. 

I hope you're having a great snow day as well!

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Stitch Fix #3!

I absolutely love the personal styling service, Stitch Fix.  I found some great items in my first and second fix (Love Stitch Fix).   I received my third fix in December, and it was the best yet!   

How does it work?
Every month, your stylist sends you 5 new pieces.  You can ask for specific items (cardigans, spring dresses, etc.) or just wait and see what your stylist finds for you.  You try on everything at home and send back what you don't want.  Simple as that!  There is a $20 styling fee, which you deduct from your purchase.  If you choose to get all 5 items, you get a 25% discount plus the deduction of the $20 styling fee.

Here's what was in fix #3!

My favorites in the bunch!

Evolution Zig Zag Peplum Top

Styling suggestions included with every item!

The Evolution top is my favorite item to date!  I mentioned in my feedback that I love black and white prints, and they picked this one out for me.  I also love the chevron stripe trend, and this is a great play on that!  I don't have any other peplum tops and didn't think I even liked that style until I tried it on.  I love how flattering it is! 

I didn't get a separate shot of the cream cardigan.  I've actually been looking for a new white or cream cardigan to replace something I already own, and this fits the bill perfectly!

Kona print scarf
I love the colors in this scarf.  I have a top in similar colors from Banana Republic, but I love it so much that this was a definite keeper.  It's big enough that it can also be used as a wrap or sarong, so I plan to style it all 3 ways.
Everly Blouse and Daniel Rainn Printed Blouse

Upon first glance I didn't think I'd like the black blouse.  I have plenty of solid color shirts left over from my office days but no solid, flowy blouses.  I tried this on and amazingly loved it.  It looks great to dress up jeans or can be worn with nicer pants or a pencil skirt.

The last blouse was the only item I liked but didn't love.  The print doesn't really jump out at me.  However, because you get a 25% discount if you purchase all 5 items, and I wanted to buy the first 4, it was cheaper to get the blouse than not.  I haven't decided if I'll keep or sell it. 

What do you think of my selection this time?  Third time was the charm for me!

Want to try Stitch Fix yourself? 

Sign up here: Stitch Fix

Friday, March 1, 2013

Welcome New Readers!

Welcome to all my new readers!  I'm happy that you've stopped by.  This started out as a blog about writing but is evolving to also include Fashion, Food, Kid Stuff, and more!
In case you haven't been here from the beginning, I also wanted to share that my Chick Lit novel First Sight is on sale for $2.99 on Amazon!
Maddy Smith writes for a trendy website in Washington DC, has two fabulous best friends, and her own apartment. When her handsome new colleague Travis Emerson moves to town, Maddy soon finds herself wishing for something more. After a misunderstanding between them occurs, not only is her hope for a relationship ruined, but their friendship is in jeopardy as well.

Is any chance that Maddy had with Travis over? Or could he possibly be what she’s been looking for all along?
First Sight is now available on Amazon's Kindle Store!
Don't have a Kindle?  You can download the software for free on Amazon.  First Sight is also coming soon to Nook and paperback.