Wednesday, December 29, 2010

My own "best of" list

one of my "power" places
Tanzer has a hard life forced to hike every day
Been out snowshoeing lately. Not much snow, but glorious weather. Unfortunately, I don't have my camera when the sun shines through the hoarfrost on the branches turning the whole world into awesome.

Shannon had a great idea on her blog listing her most popular posts for 2010. Personally, I tend to blog in sporadic fits. I read and catch up on what's going on for a couple days, then I get busy and miss lots.

So, in case you missed them, I'm listing my favourite posts this year.

1. On Passion
2. What Fills Your Soul Up?
3. Ever Wanted to Mush a Dog Team?
4. Wildlife Shots
5. End of Summer Adventure Photo Collage

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

A few random things before Christmas

photo credit pets

1. We had our Christmas last week - step families get to have TWO Christmases. And I'm in love with my new Kobo Reader.

2. I plan to finally get some snowshoe adventuring in during the Christmas break. Photos to come.

3. Don't forget the DOGSLED DREAMS giveaway here. Merry Christmas to all!

4. I don't think I'm going to make the 100 book reading challenge, but I did read 75 books. Check out my list here.

5. I've been up to my eyeballs in promotion prep for DOGSLED DREAMS. My amazing publicist has made a snazzy little booklet that includes the first chapter, reviews, and info about a secret junior musher video contest that I'll be announcing shortly. If anyone wants booklets they could use to help me with promotion, please contact me.

6. The Book Dads have reviewed Dogsled Dreams. Check it out here.

Sunday, December 19, 2010

DOGSLED DREAMS book giveaway

It's finally here - the contest you've been waiting for!  I'm giving away a signed copy of DOGSLED DREAMS. Here's the deets:

Fill out the form
Contest ends December 31
Open to everyone
Two random draws

I'm asking for you to do at least ONE of the following to help out with promotion of my debut novel. You are most welcome to do more than one - they are all simple and cost nothing but a tiny bit of time. There are no points involved here, just goodwill between bloggers.

1. Add DOGSLED DREAMS to your Goodreads list

2. Post the cover anywhere on your blog

3. Ask your local library to order a copy of DOGSLED DREAMS,
     ISBN-10: 0982642342 
     ISBN-13: 9780982642344

4. Post a link to the Dogsled Dreams page on Facebook

5. Tweet about this contest


Sunday, December 12, 2010

Junior musher inspirational video

I had to share this video by The FilmDailies about 15-year-old Krista Halnses and her sled dog racing career. It's longer than I usually post - five minutes, but just watching her with her dogs for a few seconds will mesmerize you.

Friday, December 10, 2010

Giving back for December

It's been a little chilly around here lately - minus twenty Celcius. But this morning, it's much warmer - which usually means SNOW!

first day of freeze-up

settling in for a long winter's rest
 Here's a little GIVING BACK post to warm your heart.
The New York Lit.World is accepting donations for children's picture books in partnership with The International Book Bank. The books will be shipped to Liberia and Sierra Leone to find children who may never have had a book of their own - some never have seen a picture book before.

Ambassador Kimmie Weeks reading aloud from book donations
About LitWorld: LitWorld is a non-profit organisation that advocates for global literacy. LitWorld believes stories are life-changing and sharing stories will create connections that have the power to change the world.
About The International Book Bank: An organisation that has been delivering free books and educational materials to developing countries since 1987, with the goal of increasing literacy and advancing education.


LitWorld and The International Book Bank would like new or gently used favorite books to be mailed to:
LitWorld Holiday Book Drive C/O
Deacon Sharon Brennen
Christian Pre-School
Dobbs Ferry Lutheran Church
43 Ashford Ave
Dobbs Ferry, New York 10522


Monday, December 6, 2010

Kate Messner in the house

Welcome to the blog the fabulous KATE MESSNER as my first ever guest! Kate is the author of a little book you may have heard of - THE BRILLIANT FALL OF GIANNA Z. Yeah, that's right. I've got a famous author on my blog!

Today she's here to talk about winter! And her latest book, SUGAR and ICE, a middle grade novel about a girl athlete with a dream about a winter sport. And who doesn't love books like that?

By Kate Messner:
When you live where I do, outdoor winter sports are a part of life in a way that’s hard to explain. It’s not that we don’t feel those –30 degree wind chill temperatures; it’s just that most of us know how to bundle up and appreciate the brighter side of bitter cold.
My new figure skating novel for young readers, SUGAR AND ICE, takes place in Northern New York State and is about a girl from a small-town maple farm who earns a scholarship to train with the elite at Lake Placid’s Olympic Center. Before the action turns to drama on the ice, though, there’s a scene set on the family’s maple farm, where Claire has grown up skating on the cow pond with her cousin.

Some people who have read early copies of SUGAR AND ICE have asked if we really skate on the frozen ponds and lakes in the winter time, and the answer is… well, a picture is worth a thousand words.

Not only do we venture outside on some of the coldest winter days; we long for those temperatures to drop when winter arrives. It takes the perfect mix of bitter cold overnight temperatures, still winds, and a few days without much snow to turn Lake Champlain into a giant skating rink.

Sometimes, it’s a rink that needs shoveling, but it’s well worth the effort! Later on, when the snow is too well packed to be swept away, we turn to cross country skiing past the ice fishermen, a scene that Claire would appreciate, I’m sure.

Readers of my blog shiver, I know, when I share some of these pictures. “How can you go outside in that?” my California friends write. But take a look…

If winter looked like this where you live, wouldn’t it be hard for you to watch it pass by from inside? I feel like Claire and I are kindred spirits in a lot of ways…waiting and waiting for that first good freeze so our seasonal rinks can open for business.

Want a personalized, signed copy of SUGAR AND ICE?
The Bookstore Plus in Lake Placid is hosting a SUGAR AND ICE launch party from 3-5 pm on Saturday, December 11th, so please consider this your invitation if you live in the area! If you can’t make it but would still like a signed, personalized copy, just give the bookstore a call at (518) 523-2950 by December 10th. They’ll take your order, have Kate sign your book after the event, and ship it out to you in plenty of time for the holidays.


Junior Library Guild Selection

For Claire Boucher, life is all about skating on the frozen cow pond and in the annual Maple Show right before the big pancake breakfast on her family's maple farm. But all that changes when Claire is offered a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity-a scholarship to train with the elite skaters in Lake Placid. Tossed into a world of mean girls on ice, where competition is everything, Claire soon realizes that her sweet dream-come-true has sharper edges than she could have imagined. Can she find the strength to stand up to the people who want her to fail and the courage to decide which dream she wants to follow?

Thank you, Kate, for your great photos and post!

Check out Kate Messner website HERE

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

celebrating snow, reviews, and 200 followers!

our deck - gateway to winter wonderland
We finally got our snow, the lake is making ice as I write this, I've got 200 followers! And Dogsled Dreams continues to get good reviews! So much to celebrate! What should we do?

First, let's make fun of my step-daughter's little Remmington, and his snow ball plight.

little dog likes to tromp through drifts like the big dog but doesn't have the fur for it!

Now, let's announce that NEXT WEEK, author Kate Messner will be stopping by to talk about winter, and her latest book SUGAR AND ICE.

Next, I'd like to share a review Dogsled Dreams received from a famous musher and author.

Dogsled Dreams by Terry Lynn Johnson is a story that demonstrates the bond between mushers and their dogs, the devotion mushers feel for their dogs, and the lengths to which they will go to ensure their dog’s health and well-being.

The most important lesson in this book is that it shows a young person being responsible and treating animals humanely and that this behavior is admired by their peers.
This story also truly shows that mushing is a family sport that enhances family connections and one that bring joy to humans and canines. People of all ages will enjoy reading Dogsled Dreams.
--Pam Flowers, Author of Alone Across the Arctic: One Woman's Epic Journey by Dog Team

All this great news - makes me feel like giving away signed copies of DOGSLED DREAMS! Any cool ideas out there on how to make it fun?