Monday, March 30, 2015

Almost to the finish line!

After a long few months, the finish line is near. Only a few hours left until the Scavenger Hunt ends.  Get those last minute entries in before 11:59 pm tonight to get that Kindle. Go Go Go!!

Sunday, March 29, 2015

27 hours left for the Scavenger Hunt

There's only 27 hours left until the Masquerade Crew's Scavenger Hunt Contest closes. Make sure to get those entries in if you want to win that Kindle Fire!!!

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Beautiful Curse by Jen McConnel- Book Review Plus Giveaway!!

Swoon Romance YA Wednesdays: Beautiful Curse by Jen McConnel Book Blitz with Giveaway #ReadSwoonRepeat 


Welcome to this week’s 
Swoon Romance YA Wednesdays! 
This week features 
Beautiful Curse by Jen McConnel 

Be sure to enter the giveaway found at the end of the post! 

Sixteen-year-old Mya Jones is cursed. 

She is, hands down, the most beautiful creature on earth. But beauty can wound, and Mya finds herself reviled and shunned by her peers. If there is even a chance that she could start over, Mya longs to take it, no matter the risks. 

So when the strange Mr. Merk offers her a new life away from home, Mya is hesitant but hopeful. Only she didn’t count on the mysterious Ross, or her feelings for him. 

BEAUTIFUL CURSE is a contemporary retelling of the myth of Psyche and Cupid. 

“Beautiful Curse is the perfect balance of mysterious and romantic. You’ll swoon over this imaginative retelling of Cupid and Psyche.” – Robin Constantine, author of THE PROMISE OF AMAZING 

“A fun and fresh twist on a well-loved story! The Cupid and Psyche romance is my favorite myth and McConnel’s whimsical take did not disappoint. An absolute delight, I loved every moment of this love story and instantly wanted more.” – Rachel Harris, author of THE FINE ART OF PRETENDING 

My Review (also posted on Amazon): 

***I was given a copy of this book for my honest feedback***

Beautiful Curse is a retelling of the mythological story of Psyche and Cupid. Being a lover of all mythological romances, I was excited to read this book. I thought it was written very beautifully. The fact that I was able to finish the book in two days despite my obnoxiously busy schedule can attest to that.  The romance between Ross and Mya was so cute that I was grinning from ear to ear as I flipped the pages. And I loved the presence of each Greek god…even Aphrodite despite her being cruel to Mya. This book gets 5 stars from me as I thought it was a great read with a powerful message: Beauty can be a curse and to not let it define you. You are beautiful as long as you are comfortable with yourself. My only complaint for this book was that it ended. I thank the author for recreating such a story and look forward to their future works. 

Available for Purchase: Image  Image 


Jen McConnel first began writing poetry as a child. Since then, her words have appeared in a variety of magazines and journals, including Sagewoman, PanGaia, and The Storyteller (where she won the people’s choice 3rd place award for her poem, “Luna”). 

She is also a former reviewer for Voices of Youth Advocates (VOYA), and a proud member of SCBWI, NCWN, and SCWW. 

A Michigander by birth, she now lives and writes in the beautiful state of North Carolina. She’s a graduate of Western Michigan University, and she also earned her MS in Library Science at Clarion University of Pennsylvania. 

When she isn’t crafting worlds of fiction, she teaches writing composition at a community college. Once upon a time, she was a middle school teacher, a librarian, and a bookseller, but those are stories for another time. 

Follow Jen on Twitter @Jen_McConnel, and visit to learn more. 
Author Links: Website | Twitter | Facebook | Goodreads 


  • Complete the Rafflecopter below for a chance to win! 

    Giveaway Information: – Winner will be drawn April 1, 2015 

    • One (1) winner will receive 2 eBooks of any previously published Swoon Romance books of their choice (INT)
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Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Countdown to the end of the Masquerade Crew's Scavenger Hunt

Hey everyone...

Then play the Kindle Fire HD Scavenger Hunt! 

So, here are the rules on how to play:
Go to this page and then this page. Each page has a series of magnifying glasses like the one on the right.

Click a magnifying glass, which will lead you to either a page on Amazon or a page on this blog. Find the answer to the question or statement associated with that magnifying glass, and the letter in the box will be your clue letter.

Once you have all the clue letters, click the button at the top of the page which says "Transfer clue letters from below." That will give you a clue phrase. (Or you can manually keep track of the clue letters. This website will not remember your work if you choose to play the hunt in more than one sitting, so you may want to keep a pen and pad handy in either case.)

There are two clue phrases. Once you have the two phrases (from the two links I gave you above), you'll have everything you need to guess the 5-letter word, which you will turn in via the Rafflecopter widget below.

The two clue phrases make up a riddle. Try and guess the 5-letter secret word yourself, but if you can't do it, just remember: Google is your friend.

Only 13 days remain. Good luck and happy hunting!!

Monday, March 9, 2015

My Sun Versus Snow Contest Journey

I mentioned in a previous post about talking about Michelle Hauck and Amy Trueblood's Sun Vs. Snow (SVS) contest. Well for those of you who don't know about it, you can read up all about how the contest works here, although it's a little different now but you'll get the gist of it.

After finding out about the contest last year, I knew it was coming. I debated whether I was ready to let people see my work. It wasn't easy for a person with a borderline spy personality to expose my hidden secret pleasures. I mean I've entered flash fiction contests and people have read a chapter of mine every once in a while (and even then I was freaking out) but this was different. Everyone, could see it. Agents could read it and hate it. Or worse, ask for more and then reject it. It was scary. I went back and forth and then back and forth some more agonizing over it. I debated whether to just give up or take the plunge. Mustering up courage, I either found people willing to read my query and 250 words or won the critiques and read their advice. Some were the same. Other's conflicting, but with the help of those few people (Marty Mayberry and Emily G. Moore) and their encouragement, I fixed my work. 

And so on Sunday afternoon, I scheduled my email to send the next day at 3:05 pm (since the contest opened at 4 pm EST and I would be at work). Then I had a few psychotic moments where I sent them to myself to make sure it was formatted right, that the site I was using would send out the scheduled email on time before I walked away. Only to walk back and debate whether I should set the time later to ensure that it would go in. I didn't know how much time differences varied but I freaked that maybe if I sent it at 3:05 it would have sent it too early so the contest hadn't opened yet and my entry would be disqualified. But I left it alone and this time I walked away for good. As you can see it was a very exhausting Sunday.

On Monday January 26, 2015, Sun vs. Snow opened up and stayed open until it accepted the first 200 entries. Well, guess what? That lasted a good, old SIX MINUTES! At the time, I was busy with work so I almost forgot what was going on but I managed to hop on the computer real quick to check out Twitter and my email. Finding out that it closed in 6 minutes was shocking. I'd never seen anything like that happen before but that goes to show you what a great contest this is. I checked my email and saw that my entry was received. Thankfully, I hadn't listened to myself and changed the time. I had made it with one minute to spare! Relieved I happily skipped back to work.

Later on I learned I had won a query critique by Michelle Hauck, the very co-creator of this contest. It felt like fate. The stars aligning, shining down on me. I felt empowered. Even if I didn't get into SVS, I would still get a critique from Michelle which was a pretty good alternative. Of course, I got an email from Michelle telling me since I'm a participate for SVS she'd do my critique later, which was fine with me. I was already a winner. 

Then the fateful day arrived a week later. The revealing of Michelle's and Amy's team members. I was sitting on the train on my way to work, practically breaking my refresh button as I waited for the post to show up. When it did, I quickly went to Michelle's blog post and scanned the list not bothering to look at any other genre than Adult (sorry other categories). 

When I saw it, I couldn't believe it. My entry "Birthday Disaster" was chosen to be on Michelle's TEAM SNOW!!!! 

I know! I couldn't believe it had happened. I actually refreshed the page multiple times to make sure I wasn't hallucinating. Out of the 200 entries accepted, I was one of the 16 chosen for Michelle's team. My work was good enough to be chosen. I was soaring. Smiling idiotically. From the corner of my eyes, the woman next to me on the train kept glancing my way worried. I probably looked a little nutty but I didn't care. I was in SVS and that's all that mattered. I got off the train, made it to work and was smiling at everyone along the way. I literally danced in the elevator all the way to my floor (a good old nine flights). Thankfully I was alone because let's face it. I doubt anyone would have wanted to see that.

With the help of my amazing mentor Laura Heffernan, my query and first 250 words were now on fire! (Oh wait, I'm Team Snow so I should reference everything to cold. Then they froze you in your tracks, lol) 

On Monday February 9, 2015 the agent round began. These agents read everyone's entry and decided whether they were interested enough to request it. I am happy to announce that I did get a request from the wonderful Sara Megibow from the KT Literary agency. Though she eventually passed on it, it was still such an amazing opportunity and I feel so grateful to be apart of it. Again, thank you so much @michelle4laughs and @trueblood for hosting such an awesome contest.