Thursday, September 30, 2010

I Finished INSOMNIA + *Giveaway*!

This week I got to type those beloved letters of all writerdom: The End

Before I start my favorite part of the writing process, edits and revisions, I wanted to take a day to celebrate (Also because it's my birthday on Saturday!! Yay!! It's a good week for Jenn!!).

So, I'm giving away a copy of a book my sons and I read together this summer: "Percy Jackson & The Olympians: The Lightning Thief" + another book that I haven't decided on yet. It's almost October, we'll call it the "Mystery Book" ooh!

I'm going to keep this simple. All you have to do to enter is:

1 - comment and be a follower (1 point)

Simple, right?! Now, if you want extra points, you can advertise this contest somewhere: twitter, facebook, your blog, your kids t-shirt, wherever. Just make sure you let me know you did it.

Now, just for fun, I'm posting the current first page of INSOMNIA. Keep in mind, it's still a little rough, but let me know if it intrigues you. Most of the questions are answered in the first chapter, but not the first page. So having questions is a good thing. :) This contest ends next Monday at midnight PST and I'll announce the winner on Tuesday, October 5th.

Okay so, here is the excerpt.

Chapter 1: Dreamlife

I was thirteen when I learned about rage. When I first felt the hatred and adrenaline that can trump fear just enough to turn a normal man into a murderer; the thrill that comes from ending my enemy’s ability to hurt me, and the sickness that follows after. The transformation that insures you will never be the same person again.

I was no murderer, but one night in March, my Dreamer was.

For a week after, I stayed home from school sick. Faking it was unnecessary, turns out that throwing up constantly is pretty convincing. Even awake, the visions from the dream haunted me: a blood-stained knife, red slices through her white shirt that formed a perfect triangle, the girl’s screams.

The emotions of the killer bothered me the most—fury, triumph, and then despair. I didn’t want to feel it. I hated my ability.

I consoled myself with the knowledge that it wasn’t real. It was only a dream. People could dream anything and it was all over when they woke up. It worked, I felt better for a while—until I saw the picture of the victim on the news. Most dreams stay in the mind, but some refuse to remain in that prison.

Since then, I’ve gotten much better at telling the difference.


That's where the first page ends. What do you think? Intrigued or totally confused? Do tell.

Monday, September 27, 2010

Mr. Monster Review

Tomorrow is the release day for "Mr. Monster", the sequel to "I Am Not a Serial Killer" by Dan Wells so I thought I'd take today and do a quick review for you guys.

If you haven't read the first book, "I Am Not a Serial Killer", then you should. It is fascinating and the character development is flawless.

The series is about John Wayne Cleaver, a teenage sociopath who has made rules for himself to avoid becoming a serial killer. I loved the first one so much that I couldn't wait for the second one. I bought the U.K. version at a writers conference I attended with Dan Wells in the spring. When he signed it he wrote, "Jenn, I apologize in advance for the cat. Dan Wells."

I was forewarned.

This was an incredibly difficult book (emotionally) for me to read. It explores darkness of both situation and character as John struggles with keeping his sociopathic tendencies in check and searches for a murderer at the same time.

Dan made me care about the characters so intensely that there were times I was afraid to turn the page and keep reading. John's conflicts are so real and devastating that it was painful. Dan writes John with such power that it is impossible not to empathize with this character even though I know for a fact that he would be incapable of empathizing with me.

This is the first book I've ever read that I considered putting down simply because I was afraid of where the main character was heading. I'm glad I didn't. If I hadn't felt such despair in the middle then the triumph at the end would have been feeble in comparison. On top of that, the ending managed to fulfill all promises I was hoping for as well as add a few more surprises that I didn't know I wanted.

I'm into dark books and this is one of the darkest, but I loved it and I plan to read it again.

As this is an official review, I feel I must give it stars--13 out of 13 and cat lovers beware.

Friday, September 24, 2010

Anyone Else Feeling Stalked?

At first, I thought it was flattering to have people pay so much attention to me. They seemed to be interested in everything about me. I tried not to blush and answered some of their questions--not all, of course, a girl has to maintain some of her mystery.

Then it became constant. My e-mail barraged by an assault of every kind. The questions got more personal, more invasive.

Am I happy with my local service provider? Do I feel I have a right to inheritance money from a distant duke relative I was perviously unaware of? Am I in need of legal assistance? Do I have a drinking problem?

Now it's downright offensive. No! I don't need hot girls now or Viagra. I don't even need Vicodin, (although my supply is admittedly running low).

It's gotten to the point I've had to relegate these stalkers to an entirely different part of my computer. Their own virtual prison, if you will. I've hired security from a little country called SPAM. You may not have heard of it. It's so top secret they don't even put themselves on the map.

Are they perfect? No. Just today I had to call them to pick up some loser who dared to question if I made enough money (I'm a writer, is there really any question?). But, do they make my life so much better? Absolutely.

In honor of Friday. I wanted to take a minute to honor my SPAM filter. It makes trudging through e-mail considerably less daunting.

Anyone else have some every day convenience we should be grateful for today? Have a happy weekend my bloggies!

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

What I Did This Summer...

I'm sure we've all heard the rumors. I've died, I'm in rehab, I've run off with Josh Duhamel. I'm here to assure you, all are false. Even (sadly) the last one.

It may come as a surprise to you, but the truth is much more exciting. This summer, I've been lying on the beach in a tropical resort (a.k.a. digging sprinkler trenches in my back yard), having lotion rubbed on my back by cabana boys (a.k.a. getting licked in the ear by my dog when I passed out from sunstroke), and arranging tropical flowers in a butterfly garden to help focus my Chi (a.k.a. attempting to landscape my own yard with 42 tons of topsoil and 10 tons of rocks).

My summer was swank.

Needless to say, I'm feeling refreshed and focused (a.k.a. frazzled and hysterical).

During my time to reflect, I've made some changes in my life. I've updated my look (a.k.a dyed half of my hair purple--no, I'm not kidding. It seemed like a good idea at the time). Spent more time getting to know myself and those I love (learned an inordinate amount of information about my children's video games). And spent more time exploring my interests (Bachelor Pad, where have you been all my life?).

In short, it was a fantastic summer--but I missed all of you, my writing peeps. How do I love thee, let me count the ways... except not, because math isn't my strong suit. Let's just call it a lot, shall we?

I've also decided that all my creative juices are flowing into my WIP (Insomnia) at the moment. Yes, you can see from the word count on the right that it's getting all kinds of juicy.

So, I have decided to take a cue from the '60's and go for free and easy on my blog for the rest of the year. I'll be posting around 2-3 times per week, but I have no schedule and it won't necessarily be about writing. I know it is shocking, but I have other interests *pause for gasp*. For example: movies, games, t.v. shows, books, martial arts, unagi, experimental surgery, etc. See, I have an interest in most of those things. I'll probably be incorporating my interests into my blog posts regularly. Stay tuned, and also... HI! I MISSED YOU!!