Friday, July 3, 2009

Look! Up in the sky!...

Okay so. First things first: RUN, do NOT walk to your nearest fine fine retailer of books and BUY Tracy Madison's STROKE OF MAGIC. Don't just look at the pretty cover -- Buy it. Read it.


I'll wait.


There. Awesome, right? So now, on to Tracy's super-fun launch-week questions!!

1. If you could have any magical ability, what would it be and why?


Pure and simple.

The sheer, unadulterated exhiliration of free, under-your-own-power ability to go wherever, whenever without having to purchase a boarding pass. Awesome. It would be like bungee jumping without having to worry about the cord snapping. Not that I've ever bungee jumped because - y'know - I'm worried about the cord snapping.

Flight. Just... zowee.

Wind in your hair, clouds under your feet, er... bugs in your teeth - okay - forget that last part... can you imagine? I can. There is a scene in WONDROUS STRANGE where one of my characters acheives this and it was one of my favorite scenes to write - because I got to put myself into that situation.

2. What is the very first thing you would do with your new ability?

Er... fly?


No seriously. Moonlit night, slight scattered cloud-cover, spatter of stars sparkling in the indigo sky... throw your arms wide... annnd....... UP! Awesome. Soar, drift, loop-the-loop...

And then head I'd head straight for Hawaii.

Now. On to the important part of this post!! So. Tracy is giving away FIVE copies of TASTE OF MAGIC to five lucky blog-commenters (Comment! Comment!) along with a super-awesome coffee mug to one SUPER-lucky commenter (Comment! Comment!). So.... comment. And - because I'm late posting this (big surprise - hey gimme a break - I was on-set shooting a video all day!) I'm gonna accept comments on this post tomorrow (Saturday) too!


Thursday, July 2, 2009

A Money Tree

Let me start by saying that I got my copy of A STROKE OF MAGIC from Amazon today. It’s gorgeous and looks like such a fun read! I can’t wait to delve back into the magical and romantic world that Tracy created!! In fact, I’m going to get started as soon as I answer Tracy’s questions, so here goes:

1.) If you could have any magical ability, what would it be and why?

I’ve been contemplating this one all week, and there are a lot of magical powers I might like to try. But the thing about magic is, I’ve seen enough TV shows and movies to know that with magic there always comes the flipside – the consequences. Sure stop time, or rewind time, or jump back in time all sound great in theory, but – and maybe I’m the only one who thinks of this movie as a cautionary tale – the messing with time thing didn’t work out so well for Adam Sandler in Click or Hiro in Heroes. In fact, I’ve probably seen enough of Heroes to be scared of most magical powers, including flying, the inability to die/being able to regenerate, mind reading, enhanced hearing. . . I could go on.

So I’ve been trying to pick something that wouldn’t actually turn out having a flipside, which, as you might be able to guess is probably impossible. And maybe this also tells you a little something about the way my mind works: that I am stuck worrying about what the consequences of my power might be, rather than the fun I could have with it. Yes, that’s me. I’m a worrier.

But. . . since I don’t want to cop out and not answer Tracy’s question, I’m going to go with this: If I could have one magical power I’d like to be able to grow money. On trees.

2. What is the very first thing you would do with your new ability?

Plant a money tree in my backyard.

Yes, I know that money isn’t everything, and that this is the kind of power, that, in a movie, would make me become rich and greedy and have me take all my loved ones for granted. But being that I’m a step ahead of this power on the whole consequence thing, I’d only use my power to plant one small money tree in my backyard. And then I would only grow enough money to live on, thus freeing up my husband from his day job so he could concentrate on his music, and freeing me up to concentrate on my writing. And then I would promise the gods of magical powers that as soon as our artistic pursuits could support us, I’d cut down my money tree, and never ever use my power again. . .or would I?

I’ve also seen enough movies to know that the people who think they can harness their magic are almost always wrong!

So what magical power would you choose despite its consequences?

Tracy is giving away FIVE signed copies of A TASTE OF MAGIC, and out of those five winners, one will also receive a brand new, custom coffee mug. One winner will be selected each day (Monday through Friday), and if you comment today I'll use to pick the winner. Tracy will then pick one of the five winners to receive the coffee mug. All winners will be announced on Monday.

Good luck and hope you have a magical Thursday!

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

I'd Love To Go Back

I've been stirring this magic notion around in my mind for almost thirty minutes now. I've thought about how I grew up watching Samantha Stephens twitch her nose and wishing with all my heart that I could do the same thing. Bewtiched had such a mystifying impact on my girlfriends and me that even when we're together today someone might reach up and wiggle her nose as a wish that something could change. No doubt Bewitched had an iconic effect on the kids of my era. Samantha introduced us to her world of witchcraft and made it seem so harmless and fun, just as Tracy has so expertly done in A Taste of Magic. Now I can't wait to read about how Alice paints her way into her own magical world in A Stroke of Magic.

And so it goes. . .

1. If you could have any magical ability, what would it be and why?

I'm going to say that the magical power I would choose above all would be to have the ability to relive any moment I wished. Whether it was a special kiss or a highly romantic evening with a magical man, the first moment I held my babies, or the day I won the drama award in high school I'd love to be able to close my eyes and conjure up those magical memories. Then when I opened my eyes I'd be right back there again.

My college roommate is in town and last night we were reminiscing about the time we met these two nerdy guys in college at a Karla Bonhoff concert. They invited us over to their apartment after the concert for a beer. (I know what you're thinking but it was totally harmless.) After the first beer the guys told us to sit back and relax on the couch because they would be performing a little impromptu skit. Their idea of funny was our idea of capital T terrible. We couldn't kick each other since we were sitting on the couch so we used our eyes and foreheads to communicate just how terrible the skit really was. When we finally made it out of their apartment we collapsed down in the grass and howled for at least thirty minutes. When we looked up to see them peering out the window and watching us, that made us laugh even harder. With tears streaming down our cheeks, and holding our stomachs, we finally stumbled back to our car. I would give anything to relive that college memory. Anything.

2. What is the very first thing you would do with your new ability?

That's easy. I would experience the joy of holding my sleeping babies in my arms all over again. As my tiny little angels lay cradled inside the crook of my left arm, I'd bend down and kiss their tiny noses, cheeks, foreheads and angelic little lips. To hear that precious little newborn giggle would melt my heart all over again. To see them reach out for me once more, like I was their whole world, would balance out these crazy teen years when boys want little to do with mom.

Now it's your turn.

We want to know how YOU would answer the above questions! Tracy is giving away FIVE signed copies of her debut release, A TASTE OF MAGIC, and out of those five winners, one will also receive a a brand new, custom created magical coffee mug.

One winner will be selected each day (Monday through Friday), and if you post today I'll put all the entries in a hat and pick my winner randomly.

Tracy will then pick one of the five winners to receive the coffee mug. All winners will be announced on Monday. Good luck and please take just a second to conjure up your best magic.

Tuesday, June 30, 2009

I Will Freeze You All!

I honestly cannot believe that Tracy has another book out! As Jill said earlier, she's no longer a debut writer! The party just never seems to end around here, huh? I wonder if it's easier the second time around--less nerves, nausea and worry. Good God, I hope so. If every book launch is as stressful as the first, I'm going to be sitting in a white room with padded walls very, very soon.

Anyway, enough rambling about my own book launch nerves. Let's get down to business and talk about A STROKE OF MAGIC! I cannot wait to read this book and find out what happens to Alice. I love books that are set in the "real world" with magical elements, so I naturally loved A TASTE OF MAGIC! I think Tracy is such a talented, wonderful writer and can't wait to immerse myself in her second book.

So, without further adieu, here are my answers to this week's questions:

1. If you could have any magical ability, what would it be and why?

I had to think long and hard about this one. It took me forever to come up with something, but I finally did, thanks to an old television show that aired in the (what else?) '80s called Out of This World. It was about a girl who was half-alien and had the power to freeze time. Now, I don't wish for any alien-esque qualities, but I'd love the ability to stop time. How freaking cool would that be? You could freeze everything to get a few more hours of sleep, stop the clock right before that sippy full of grape juice hits the carpet and spend a few more days on your vacation. With my harried writer-mom lifestyle, I think a few more quiet moments would be sent from God himself. (Or, you know, aliens)

2. What is the very first thing you would do with your new ability?

As I said before, a few more hours of sleep would be divine. So, I'd freeze everyone and everything around me, lay in bed and SLEEP. My Blackberry wouldn't ping, my son couldn't scream and my cats wouldn't be headbutting my bedroom door. Just...silence. Ahhhhhhh...

Of course, I'd probably be unable to fall asleep and just lay there, thinking of my To-Do list before I finally gave up after ten minutes and unfroze everything.

I'd love to hear how our readers would answer the questions! The fabulous Tracy is giving away
FIVE signed copies of her debut release, A TASTE OF MAGIC, and out of those five winners, one will also receive a custom coffee mug! One winner will be selected each day (Monday through Friday), and that day's Novel Girl will select the winner based on any criteria they wish.

Today's winner will be the first person who comments that they remember the show Out of This World. If I'm the only person who remembers it, I'll have my son pick out the winner. (Which, in that case, the winner might be "No," seeing as how that's all he's interested in saying these days.)

Tracy will then draw one of the five names randomly, and that person will also win a custom coffee mug. All winners will be announced on Monday.

Monday, June 29, 2009

Celebration Week! Let's Party!

What would it be like to discover your boyfriend had been lying to you, stealing from you, and was actually married the entire time you dated? Yuck, right? Well, that’s exactly what happened to Alice Raymond in A TASTE OF MAGIC. Now, Alice gets her own story in A STROKE OF MAGIC, and wow—does she have a journey in front of her.

Naturally, she broke things off with the creep, but she’s also pregnant. Add in the fact that she has a ghostly woman appearing to her with dire warnings about finding her soul mate before her child is born, not to mention the chaotic wishes that are coming true at the most inappropriate moments, and Alice’s life is a bit of jumble. Finding her soul mate isn’t easy, especially when her heart is still bruised from her last romantic encounter, and if she’s supposed to use her newly found magic to find him—well, she can’t seem to figure out how.

Here’s a sneak peek into the pages of A STROKE OF MAGIC:

When I heard Chloe gasp, I realized I was finally drawing the form of a man. My attention switched to him, and I waited with baited breath as my hand continued to move, continued to shade, continued to draw. All my prior arguments flew out the window. Because, guess what? I wanted to see his face.

If this man was truly my soul mate, then hell yes, I wanted to see his face. My hand moved faster, so fast that my arm began to cramp. My fingers gripped the pencil tighter, sending another spasm through my arm. Ignoring the ache, I waited for the image to be finished.

And then, finally, it was. I dropped the pencil on the table. It landed with a soft clack before rolling off, soundlessly hitting the floor below.

“Oh, no,” Chloe whispered.

“What?” Grandma Verda stood and then walked over to us. “Well, that’s not good.”

“It can’t be that bad.” Elizabeth followed in Grandma Verda’s footsteps, stopping on the other side of me. She bent forward, the movement causing her hair to cover her eyes. Pushing it away, she sighed. “All right, that sucks.”

Disappointment I hadn’t expected brushed against me, drowning out my anticipation. I ran my fingers over the drawing I’d just completed, and let out a sigh of my own. Maybe this man in front of me, put on paper by my own hands, really was my soul mate, but…

That excerpt is from later in the book, but for an earlier excerpt, you can browse through A STROKE OF MAGIC right here:

I am so excited to be celebrating the release of A STROKE OF MAGIC! And this week marks another celebration: today is my birthday. How cool is it that my book releases one day after my birthday? Very, very cool! So, because of this, we’re having a weeklong birthday/book release celebration here at The Novel Girls! Assuming, of course, all you silent readers come out of hiding.

Here’s the deal: I’m giving away FIVE signed copies of my debut book, A TASTE OF MAGIC, and out of those five winners, one will also receive a custom A TASTE OF MAGIC/A STROKE OF MAGIC coffee mug. How do you win? By answering the same questions I’m asking the other Novel Girls this week:

1. If you could have any magical ability, what would it be and why?

2. What is the very first thing you would do with your new ability?

At the end of the week, each Novel Girl will select one winner from *their* day of posting—using any criteria they choose—which will give us the five folks who will receive a signed copy of A TASTE OF MAGIC. Out of those five, I’ll randomly draw one winner who will also receive one of my custom coffee mugs!

Do you want to be able to cast wishes into yummy baked goods like Elizabeth can in A TASTE OF MAGIC? Or maybe you like the idea of your magic coming through in your paintings and drawings, which is how Alice taps into her power in A STROKE OF MAGIC. Or maybe you have something entirely different in mind…let us know what it is, and you’ll automatically be entered to win!

I’m not answering the questions here, because I’ll choose my winner from today one of two ways. Either the first person who mentions the power I would wish for wins, or if no one does, then I’ll just choose at random.

Also, don’t forget to check out my month long release contests at my personal blog, or my Virtual Signing over at Night Owl Romance (which is happening tomorrow!).

So now it’s up to all of you normally silent readers…come on, we want to get to know you better! I'll post all the winners a week from today, on Monday July 6th!

Here’s hoping everyone has a magical week!