Wednesday, December 31, 2008

New Year's Chica Lit Short Story Blog Tour

Start the new year off with some fun stories from some of your favorite authors, AND they're FREE and there's PRIZES. It's like getting a late Christmas present. Or wait, those Reyes are coming on the 6th...

If you haven't followed our blog tours before, here's what to do. Go to Misa Ramirez's blog tomorrow, January 1, to read her story. Answer her question by commenting on the blog, then follow her link to the next author's blog the following day for a fresh story, the name of the previous day's winner, and a new chance to win!

Here's the list:

Jan. 01: Misa Ramirez

Jan. 02: Jamie Martinez Wood

Jan. 03: Julia Amante

Jan. 04: Berta Platas

Jan. 05: Mary Castillo

Jan. 06: Alisa Valdes Rodriguez

Jan. 07: Margo Candela

Jan. 08: Caridad Ferrer

Jan. 09: Gabriella Hewitt

Jan. 10: Tracy Montoya

And if you haven't read the previous stories, you can probably still find them on their blogs!

Friday, December 26, 2008

The January Contest!

I've got TWO contests for January!

1. A drawing for an autographed copy of LUCKY CHICA. Comment here - what you would do with five million dollars. In the book Rosie wins $600 million. Holy cow, what couldn't you do with that? Five million is a little more restricted. For instance, you could make five people millionaires. Or rather, four others. You wouldn't want to exclude yourself, would you? I have five autographed copies of LUCKY CHICA to give away, and if you're outside of the continental US, I'll send it via Amazon gift certificate with a signed bookplate. Drawings will be held February 1.

2. A "grow my email list" contest. Ask friends to send their email address as well as yours (or who referred them) to, and both names will be entered to win a $10 Amazon gift certificate.

And if you include mailing addresses, I'll send an autographed bookplate to everyone who replies. One drawing for the contest will be held February 1. For security's sake, please do not post your email and mailing addresses here!

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Here's the LUCKY CHICA widget!

Check out the LUCKY CHICA widget!

St. Martins made this cool widget for LUCKY CHICA - go to the MacMillan site to check it out and get it for yourself.

Almost done updating my website, so you'll soon be able to enter my new contests. Besides books and other goodies, I'll be giving away a $10 gift certificate to online bookstores, starting in January with an Amazon gift certificate. Know of teachers and librarians who could use the $10 credit? Tell them to sign up at and - two chances a month to win!

Hope everyone is enjoying the holiday season. I've been baking cookies and mixing bath salts and sugar scrubs. It's so much fun! What do you do to make your Christmas special? With fewer gifts under the tree, spending family time together is more important to us than ever.

Sunday, December 21, 2008

On the rocks and kind of dry

I'm hoping that I'll be off martini punishment after Christmas. I broke two expensive martini glasses this fall, one after the other (it was Woody the Golden Retriever's fault, honest), and Gary started serving my weekend martinis in old-fashioned glasses, over ice. The good thing is that the melting ice stretches my drink, the bad thing is that it's not as tasty.  I wouldn't have mentioned it here except that I just got another icy martini, and it really doesn't go with the cheery fire in the fireplace.

Hope everyone is having a jolly holiday season. This morning our church was full of Advent music, and it was so beautiful!

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

$75,000 a year?

I'm hard at work on a short story for the New Year's Chica Lit Blog Tour. If you haven't joined the fun of skipping from blog to blog, reading fresh new stories from your favorite authors, you're in for a treat. If you've joined our past tours, you know that the stories are all different - long, short, romantic, shocking, tender, and all as varied as their writers. 

I'll be writing about Rosie Caballero, the protagonist of my new book, LUCKY CHICA (January 6th - squee!). Before Rosie wins $600 million dollars in the Mega Bucks lottery, she has a pretty tough life. Afterwards, her life is just plain crazy.

I've often wondered how much money it would take to make life easy, or easier, or bearable. For some, $145 is all that stands between sleeping at night and chewing yourself up with worry, wondering how to get the cash to keep the lights turned on. For others, $145 is a week's lunch money. Seriously.

When I was researching for LUCKY CHICA, I read lots of white papers and articles on finance, and was impressed by this factoid: $75,000 a year is what it takes to be happy. Based on living in an average-sized home in a place like Atlanta, or Harrisburg, PA, where home prices are not insane, and having no debt, that is the yearly amount that would allow a family to travel a little in the summer, have a decent holiday, and keep the bills paid. Frankly, I think the figure is a little random, but it makes you think, doesn't it?