Stitchie loves the beach #labslife

My boy knows how to live life. Nothing phases him. He just goes with the flow and enjoys every minute. This morning he was very happy to see his brother Tug. They played like lunatics on the lawn. Then of course they had to get into the car for work. We went past the place we normally work at. Stitch actually grumbled at me, as if I had taken the wrong turn. Well excuse me Mr Stitch, but as the driver of the car I actually know where we are going!

Of course he was pretty happy once we got there. Today we worked at the beach. Stitch’s favourite place in the world. As a normally well-behaved obedient dog he is completely different once there is sand and surf!

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He’s still well-behaved, but his enthusiasm for life comes out big time! He bounces, barks, runs, swims and generally enjoys playing in the sand. Just as any self-respecting Labrador should!

Stitch’s brother Tug (AKA Tugboat) also had a great time!

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Clearly the boys enjoyed themselves because they are currently snoring up a storm. Until next time – have fun!

Book Review: Journey to Jazzland #amreading

Journey to Jazzland
By Gia Volterra de Saulnier

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Music students will love this cute book about musical instruments who want to play freely. It is a cute way of introducing children to music and different instruments. The activities at the end of the book would also be fun.
Stitch Says gives it 3 and half woofs!

Plenty more reviews to come, watch this space and as always keep reading, keep writing!

Author Interview: Gia Volterrs de Saulnier

Today we get to chat with Gia Volterrs de Saulnier, the author of Journey to Jazzland. Let’s see what she has to say:
Gia headshot for J2J
When did you decide to become an author and what impact has this had on your life?
I actually wrote this book for a class in 1999 at Bunker Hill Community College – the book has been sitting on my shelf for 13 years before I had the guts to send it off to a small publisher (after I got rejected so many years ago) and they said YES. I’ve been extremely lucky to get published, even if it is with a smaller publisher, they have been nothing but supportive of this endeavour and I find that it’s been impacting children and bringing the idea of music back to kids!

Awesome effort, sometimes it’s that first step that is the hardest!

Tell us about your latest work and what motivated you to write it:
My book is called “Journey to Jazzland” – it’s about a Flute named Windy who gets bored in Orchestra one day and wants to learn more about jazz. I was a jazz flute player that started out in College (University of Lowell, now University of Massachusetts Lowell) – the story is basically about me, since the head of Woodwinds informed me that flutes don’t play jazz. I was out to set him wrong, and boy did I prove that point and well.

As an ex try hard Saxophone and clarinet player I must say flutes play pretty cool jazz!

What are your future aspirations as an author?
I’m hoping eventually to do a series, but I wanted to see how this book did first since I’m such a new author and an unknown one at that. I think the book is doing rather well and has gone global! I’m thinking “Journey to Dixieland” and possibly “Boogie on Down to Bluestown” are good titles in my head to work with.

Sounds like fun!

Where do your ideas come from? What experiences or aspects of your life influence your writing?
I am first and foremost a musician. I’ve been a performer pretty much my whole life. I suppose I took that to another level when I wrote this book (that I never thought was going to be published, and here I am). I think nature, kids, music, life itself has so many opportunities to be written about. It’s just what folks are craving to read is the issue. What do people want to read? I think there are a lot of fantastic writers out there, and others, well, they do try, but sometimes their writing is just well, not so great…

Life experience is certainly important for a writer.

What do you do to improve yourself as a writer?
To improve myself, well, I suppose eating better and exercising helps. I’ve been walking around a beautiful lake once a week and so far I’ve lost some weight. As for my writing, well, I’m still new to that, but I do like to get grammar techniques corrected. I found that LiveJournal (http://www.livejournal.com ) helped with that a lot!

What are the names of your books?
“Journey to Jazzland”

Did you publish with a traditional publishing house or did you go the indie route?
I went to a very small publisher in Indiana so I guess that is considered Indie route 😀

Do you read the reviews of your work and how do they affect your writing?
Yes, I do read them. I am curious to find out what people really think of my book. I hope that they enjoy it. I’m now just waiting for the shoe to drop on the other foot for that one review that will not make me feel so great, but I know that it’s not everyone’s cup of tea, not everyone loves jazz…I get that. But I’m trying to get kids to learn about music again and to bring back the idea of this great music history that we really shouldn’t forget. I’m also hoping that it brings back the idea of music back into Elementary schools again.

It’s always good to get constructive feedback. Stitch Says has read Journey to Jazzland and will be posting a review shortly, so watch this space. Thanks for dropping by Gia, love having different authors here.

As always keep reading, keep writing!

Book Review: Tale of the Messed Up Talent Show #amreading

Okay so it’s time to review!

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Kids, guardian angels, friendships, a talent show and a whole lot of chaos. You’ll find it all here in The Tale of the Messed up Talent Show. Madison and her guardian angel GA take us through a story filled with ups and downs. It is fast paced and shares some great lessons that Madison learns along the way. This is a fun book that children will relate to and enjoy.
Stitch Says gives it 4 woofs!

The author would also like to add:
a percentage of my children’s books proceeds goes to type 1 diabetes. This disease has inspired me to help kids through writing humorous stories that promote self-awareness and confidence! Every book is written with the family in mind!

Don’t forget to join in the fun at the giveaway:

* $100 Book Blast Giveaway *

Prize: $100 Amazon Gift Card or PayPal cash (winner’s choice)

Contest runs: November 25 to December 24, 11:59 pm, 2013

Open: Internationally

How to enter: Please enter using the Rafflecopter widget below.

Terms and Conditions: NO PURCHASE NECESSARY TO ENTER OR WIN. VOID WHERE PROHIBITED BY LAW. A winner will be randomly drawn through the Rafflecopter widget and will be contacted by email within 48 hours after the giveaway ends. The winner will then have 72 hours to respond. If the winner does not respond within 72 hours, a new draw will take place for a new winner. Odds of winning will vary depending on the number of eligible entries received. This contest is in no way sponsored, endorsed or administered by, or associated with Facebook. This giveaway is sponsored by the author, Melissa Perry Moraja and is hosted and managed by Renee from Mother Daughter Book Reviews. If you have any additional questions – feel free to send and email to Renee(at)MotherDaughterBookReviews(dot)com.
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As always – keep reading, keep writing!

Planning ahead #amwriting #amediting

The year is quickly coming to an end. I have so many plans, but also so many things to do before I get there. The problem is I need to be editing. Of course this is always when the new ideas come.

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I just started writing my chapter book the other night, but I can’t get stuck on it. I know one thing next year I will be doing this!

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Back to the grindstone!!! Until next time -have fun!

Author Interview: Melissa Perry Moraja #childrensauthor

About the Book

The Tale of the Messed Up Talent ShowTitle: Tale of the Messed Up Talent Show (Madison and GA – My Guardian Angel)

Author: Melissa Perry Moraja

Publication Date: November 15, 2013

Publisher: Independent – Melissa Productions Inc.

Number of pages: 156

Recommended age: 6-12

 

 

Summary

Madison Wunderkind is a sweet, honest girl, who always seems to find herself in trouble with the principal. But this time she’s not alone. It all started three days earlier, when Sophia, the most popular fifth-grade girl at Gator Elementary, asked Madison to hang out and plan this year’s talent show. Instantly, Madison had become Little Miss Popular. But what Madison soon discovered was that being Little Miss Popular wasn’t all it was cracked up to be. Her best friends were ignoring her. Her brothers were angry at her. And her guardian angel, GA, was irritated by her snobbish attitude. And if things couldn’t get more messed up for Madison, everything that could go wrong at the talent show did, sparking Principal Dimples to find out why! Find out what happens at Gator Elementary’s Talent Show. Will GA be able to help Madison? Or will Madison become Little Miss Lonely? Also, try and find one of GA’s feathers in each picture!

 

Purchase

Amazon | Barnes and Noble | iTunes

You can purchase the first book of the series (e-copy), Tale of the Slimy Spitball for only 99 cents until Christmas, December 25, 2013 from Amazon. Just click on the cover below!

Madison and GA The Tale of the Slimy Spitball by Melissa Perry Moraja

 

About the Author: Melissa Perry Moraja

Melissa Perry Moraja, Author
Melissa Perry Moraja

Melissa Perry Moraja, Founder of Melissa Productions, Inc., is an entrepreneurial mom, a multifaceted business woman, a creative producer, and an author/illustrator of numerous modern-fantasy children’s books and self-help books. Melissa also has published articles, appeared on television, been interviewed on radio, has spoken in front of hundreds of people, and held workshops at local schools, discussing creative learning, publishing and parenting. Her desire to make a difference in her four young children’s lives inspired her to leave her six-salary career at IBM in 2007 to become a full-time mom and children’s author. Melissa spends her personal time coaching soccer and softball, painting, and coming up with fun art projects for her kids. She also blogs for Working Mother blog, has guest blogged for Charlotte Observer Mom’s Charlotte, and has her own personal blog at Not Your Ordinary Psychic Mom. Melissa is also committed to building awareness and support for Type 1 Diabetes. Her twin daughter was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes November 4, 2011. To learn more about Madison’s type 1 diabetes disease please read Madison’s Story.

Website | Blog | Facebook (Author Fan Page)

Let’s meet Melissa:
When did you decide to become an author and what impact has this had on your life?

It was in 2006 when I decided to become an author, but it took me another three years before I published my first book, which was a self-help book. And then in 2010, I published my first children’s book. My entire career has changed, since I’ve started writing children’s books. I went from managing Global projects at IBM to creating stories that promote self-awareness and confidence in children.

Tell us about your latest work and what motivated you to write it:
My fourth Wunderkind Family modern-fantasy children’s chapter book titled Madison and GA (My Guardian Angel) Tale of the Messed Up Talent Show is about a ten year old girl who discovers that being Little Miss Popular isn’t all it’s cracked up to be. Her best friends were ignoring her. Her brothers were angry at her. And her klutzy, curious guardian angel, GA, was irritated by her snobbish attitude. And if things couldn’t get more messed up for Madison, everything that could go wrong at the talent show did, sparking Principal Dimples to find out why!
My older son who is 10 years old inspired me to write about popularity. He came home from school one day bummed that one popular kid wasn’t paying much attention to him. We talked about what being popular was and why it was so important to him. I wanted to help other children learn that they just have to be themselves and being popular doesn’t make you any better.

What are your future aspirations as an author?
I’ve already written a fifth Wunderkind Family story. It’s in editing mode right now with plans to release it Spring of 2014. I also have created animated television script for Splatter and Friends. My next step is to start pitching it to animation studios.

Wow that sounds awesome – good luck!

Where do your ideas come from? What experiences or aspects of your life influence your writing?
Most of my ideas come from my children’s experiences. I’ve also incorporated some of my personal childhood experiences and beliefs.

What do you do to improve yourself and a writer?
I participate in online Webinars and children’s book conventions. I also read children’s books, especially the best sellers.

What are the names of your books?
Madison and GA (My Guardian Angel) The Tale of the Slimy Spitball (The Wunderkind Family series)
Jakes Adventures: The Secret of the Shark Tooth Crab Claw (The Wunderkind Family series)
Goodnight Goodnight Goodnight Baby Blue (Splatter and Friends)

What inspires you to write?
Children! I want to make a difference in not only my children’s lives, but also others. Growing up is not easy in this day and age. And I hope to help children discover how wonderfully extraordinary each and every one of us are.

Sounds like a great reason to write!

Where can people contact you?
They can reach me at http://www.melissaproductions.com or become a fan on Facebook http://www.facebook.com/melissaproductions and Twitter http://www.twitter.com/melissaprod.

Do you read the reviews of your work and how do they affect your writing?
I do read reviews and I take each thought out review seriously. But I also realize that it’s one person’s opinion. That is one of the most important tips I can share. We all like and enjoy different things. Some peoples writing style will resonate with certain people, while other’s resonate with other peoples. My overall goal is to truly make kids laugh and grow in the process.
Stitch Says will be posting a review later!

What works best for you when writing? Meaning do you outline or write freely when you feel inspired to do so?
I freely write and then I go back and start creating chapter titles.

For other authors who may be struggling what advice can you give on handling rejection?
Like I mentioned earlier, everyone has their own personal opinion. We live in a world of millions of people. Some people will love your story and some won’t. Let that be okay and move on, improve what you feel needs to be improved, and try again! If you love writing and creating, don’t give up. Oh, I also highly recommend to anyone who is getting frustrated to find a writers support group to help them keep their morale and motivation up.

Writer’s support groups are fantastic – thanks for sharing your thoughts here on Stitch Says!
Don’t forget to enter the giveaway!

Facebook (Book Fan Page) | Twitter | Pinterest

 

* $100 Book Blast Giveaway *

Prize: $100 Amazon Gift Card or PayPal cash (winner’s choice)

Contest runs: November 25 to December 24, 11:59 pm, 2013

Open: Internationally

How to enter: Please enter using the Rafflecopter widget below.

Terms and Conditions: NO PURCHASE NECESSARY TO ENTER OR WIN. VOID WHERE PROHIBITED BY LAW. A winner will be randomly drawn through the Rafflecopter widget and will be contacted by email within 48 hours after the giveaway ends. The winner will then have 72 hours to respond. If the winner does not respond within 72 hours, a new draw will take place for a new winner. Odds of winning will vary depending on the number of eligible entries received. This contest is in no way sponsored, endorsed or administered by, or associated with Facebook. This giveaway is sponsored by the author, Melissa Perry Moraja and is hosted and managed by Renee from Mother Daughter Book Reviews. If you have any additional questions – feel free to send and email to Renee(at)MotherDaughterBookReviews(dot)com.
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Watch out for the Stitch Says Review – in the meantime keep reading, keep writing!

New Addition #labrador #puppy

Okay I know I blog about the dogs a lot, but you know you love it. They are a big part of our lives and my writing. I have missed my sweet boy Obi as has my Little Man Stitch.
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They were quite a pair. Anyway it is time to make this family whole again. Tonight we went and met our new Little Guy. He will bring a whole new dimension to our lives and plenty of writing material. I would like to introduce you to Chewbacca (Chewie).
Chewie
I look forward to seeing what he will bring to our lives.
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Stitch had a good sniff of me when I got home, then he lay down on Chewie’s new blanket and went to sleep. Hopefully that means they will be friends from the start. Whatever happens it won’t take long.
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Chewie will be joining Stitch over on my Stitch Says blog – think I’ll add a Chewie’s news section or something. It’s going to be a lot of fun. We have four weeks until he comes home, that will go fast! I am looking forward to having him home. Until next time – have fun!

Book Review: Zoe & Zac and the Ghost Leopard #amreading #bookreview

Ghost Leopard - Blog Tour Button

About the Book

Title: Ghost Leopard (Zoe and Zak Series, Book #1)

Authors: Lars Guignard

Publication Date: July 21, 2012

Publisher: Fantastic Press

Pages: 338

Recommended Age: 8+

Summary (Amazon):

Zoe and Zak are lost in exotic India, where gods and magic still exist. Before they can find their way home, they just have to do one little thing… …Save a mythical creature from an ancient evil that wants to rule the world. When Zoe Guire goes along on her mom’s business trip to India, things get very weird, very quickly. An elephant god speaks to her from the bottom of a swimming pool… She and her classmate Zak get locked in a trunk and shipped off to a strange city near the foothills of the Himalayas… and a crazy snake charmer tells them they’ve been chosen to protect a mythical creature called the Ghost Leopard from an ancient evil that wants to take over the world. As they travel deeper into the majestic mountains known as the Realm of the Gods, things get even weirder. If she and Zak want to make it back to their parents, they’re going to have to tap into powers they never knew existed. Because if they don’t, things will never be the same for any of us ever again.

 

* Here is what Stitch has to Say about Zoe & Zac:
Zoe and Zac are trapped together in India while their parents work. Told to stay in the hotel, they end up on an amazing adventure. Together they must save the mythical Ghost Leopard. Along the way they uncover an age long mystery and must work together to succeed. This is a fast adventure story that is filled with fantasy. The main characters Zoe and Zac are engaging and easy to relate to. Children will enjoy the never ending excitement. I look forward to reading the next Zoe and Zac adventure.
Stitch Says gives it 4 woofs!

*

 

Purchase

Ghost Leopard - Zoe and Zak by Lars Guignard

Amazon (Print) | Amazon (Kindle) | Amazon (Audiobook) | iTunes (Audiobook)

 

The Buzz

“Awesome! ~ I am 11 and I liked the book because I love adventures. It was a different kind of adventure from what I usually read and it was funny too. ” ~ 5-Star Review from J. Olsen, Amazon

“This was a fun read. This book was like a kid’s version of Indiana Jones. It’s also very educational as Zoe tells you real facts about what she sees and the history. I enjoyed it immensely. If you have a 10-12 year old child that loves adventure books, this is definitely a must read. ” ~ 5-Star review from Simone Lilly-Egerter, Amazon

“I’m sure this book was written for children who are around the age of the two children in the book, 11 or so. But, this 35 year old loved this book! It had action, adventure and imagination galore! It was exactly the kind of adventure that a lot of kids that age dream of.” ~ 5-Star review from The Novice Christian, Amazon

 

About The Author: Lars Guignard

Lars Guignard
Lars Guignard

Prior to writing novels, Lars Guignard wrote for film and television. As a teenager he attended boarding school in the Indian Himalayas and his experiences there provided the inspiration for the Zoe and Zak series which now include: Zoe & Zak and the Ghost Leopard, Zoe & Zak and the Yogi’s Curse, and Zoe & Zak and the Tiger Temple.

He lives in the Pacific Northwest where he dodges bears and cougars while hiking & skiing the magnificent Coast Mountain Range.

For news about new releases, please join his email list here: http://www.larsguignard.com/contact/

 

Blog | Twitter | Facebook | Goodreads

 

Ask Lars Guignard a Question on Goodreads

Fantastic Press is pleased to announce that Lars Guignard will be answering questions about Zoe & Zak and the Ghost Leopard throughout the day on Monday, December 16th, 2013 on Goodreads. If you have any questions for Lars or just want to introduce yourself, you can head on over to Goodreads and say hello now. Also, everyone who joins the Forum will earn an entry into the Ghost Leopard Blog Tour giveaway (see below for more details).

Click on the Goodreads Button below to go to the Mon, Dec 16 – “Ask Lars Guignard about Zoe & Zak and the Ghost Leopard” event and leave a question for the author anytime from now until December 16th, 2013.

Goodreads

 

The Ghost Leopard Blog Tour Schedule (2013)

November 15

Mother Daughter Book Reviews (Launch & Review)

Jump Into a Book (Review)

November 16

Brooke Blogs (Author Interview)

November 18

Giveaway Breaking News for Indonesia (Review)

November 19

Black Words – White Pages Kids (Review)

Fantasy Fun With Kirsten Pulioff (Review)

November 20

For the Love of Books (Review)

Mary-andering Among the Pages (Review)

November 21

Fiona Ingram (Author Interview & Review)

November 22

Stitch Says (Review)

November 24

When I Grow Up, I Wanna Write a Kid’s Book (Review)

November 25

Bibliothecary Prescriptions (Review)

November 26

Bound 4 Escape (Review)

Victoria Simcox (Review)

November 27

We are the DinoFamily (Review)

Sher A. Hart: Written Art (Review)

November 28

The World of ContestPatti (Review)

November 29

Best Kids’ Reads (Review)

December 1

Every Free Chance Book Reviews (Review)

December 2

The Owl’s Skull (Review)

December 3

InkSpired: A Blog (Review)

December 4

BeachBoundBooks (Review)

December 5

Geo Librarian (Author Interview)

December 7

Generation iKid (Review)

December 10

That Girl Reads (Spotlight)

December 11

Bookworm for Kids (Review)

Cheryl Carpinello’s Writing Pages (Author Interview)

December 12

Books, Reviews, Etc. (Review)

December 14

Dalene’s Book Reviews (Review)

** Be sure to look for the upcoming Blog Tour for Book 2 in the Zoe and Zak Series, “Yogi’s Curse” coming December 15, 2013. **

 

* Ghost Leopard Blog Tour Giveaway *

Ghost Leopard - Zoe and Zak by Lars Guignard
Prize: Three winners will receive a print (U.S. & Canada) or electronic (international winners) copy of Ghost Leopard by Lars Guignard.

Contest runs: November 15 to December 17, 11:59 pm, 2013

Open: Worldwide

How to enter: Enter using the Rafflecopter widget below.

Terms and Conditions: NO PURCHASE NECESSARY TO ENTER OR WIN. VOID WHERE PROHIBITED BY LAW. The winners will be randomly drawn through the Rafflecopter widget and will be contacted by email within 48 hours after the giveaway ends. The winners will then have 72 hours to respond. If a winner does not respond within 72 hours, a new draw will take place for a new winner. Odds of winning will vary depending on the number of eligible entries received. This contest is in no way sponsored, endorsed or administered by, or associated with Facebook. This giveaway is sponsored by the author Lars Guignard and Fantastic Press and is hosted and managed by Renee from Mother Daughter Book Reviews. If you have any additional questions – feel free to send and email to Renee(at)MotherDaughterBookReviews(dot)com.

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Super Start #amwriting #ChaBooCha1

I decided to put the editing aside for a moment because the writing bug has hit me again. A while ago I wrote a super hero story for SuperHERos which is due out soon. I spent time with my little super heroes and developed Lightning Lilly, Princess Seea, Captain Obi and Super Stitch. The crime fighting team of the century. These characters also had a Christmas adventure for the Jingle Bells anthology. Still I love these characters so much that they have their own series in my head. I was going to leave adventure one until the Chapter Book Challenge in March. Yet last night I just had to write.
Captain Obi
Princess Seea and Super Stitch
Lightning Lilly<
My girls did an awesome job developing these characters and they have given me too many ideas for their adventures. I could fill up all of next year so I am sure I will have a chapter book to write come March. In the meantime it's good to take a break from editing. Although I still promise to get two of the three manuscripts editing by the end if the year.
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So excited I think I’ll get back to it now – more about these characters later! Until then have fun!

My brain hurts #ideas #writing

I love having lots of ideas to write about. New characters are buzzing, plots are spinning and settings are developing. I would normally be very happy about this (I am very happy). It’s just with Christmas I have so much to do! Still better the have all the ideas and little time to write than all the time, but no ideas. Well that’s what I am telling myself anyway. Would love to hear how other authors record their ideas when this happens?

I love this quote!
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If I had some pixie dust I would ask for some more time – will get it soon, holidays are coming. Funnily enough that probably doesn’t help me write because the kids are around. Still will no doubt provide me with more material. It will all happen, or it won’t. Either way I know I will get the better ideas down, because I’m getting that writing buzz again. Just need to finish some editing first.

I am also beginning to organise 2014 – if there are any blog topics you would like me to write about let me know. Would love your suggestions!

Until next time – have fun!