Monday, April 06, 2009

Bits and Pieces From A Very Scattered Brain

You know how you sometimes get into book ruts, where nothing really grabs your attention? I'm experiencing the opposite. I don't know what it's called, but I've got so many fun books right now that I'm trying to read 5 at a time just so I can get my nose into them faster! I've got library books, ARCs, and a good stack of novels for giveaways - if only I could get to everything. My baby has decided that sleeping is for the birds, so we've spent a lot of time cuddling on the couch together. I get a lot of reading done this way, but not much else. Needless to say, I'm behind on just about everything. So, this is a quick round-up post of bits and pieces that have been going through my very scattered brain:

Giveaway Books

I regret to inform you that I have not yet made it to the post office. I apologize to all of you who are waiting for mail from me. This includes recent winners of my giveaway, my sister, my grandma, a missionary in Germany, and a sweet kid in Chile whose baby is going to be 5 before he ever gets the cute little sleeper I've been meaning to send. The post office is never my favorite place to go, especially when I have to drag my kids, so I'm hoping to find some time to sneak away this week and mail all the packages that are piling up around my desk. Thanks for everyone's patience.

New Blog Features

You may or may not have noticed that I changed a few things on my layout. First off, I've been wanting a fun, unique blog header, but I didn't want to have to pay an arm and a leg for PhotoShop or pay a designer big bucks to do it for me. So, using a combination of Microsoft Publisher and Gimp, I made my own. I'm pretty proud of myself. I like it, even though it makes my layout look pretty busy. I don't know - what's your opinion? Too much work went into it to change it now, so you're stuck with it regardless, but I thought I'd ask ... I also worked on some of the sidebar and header text that seemed to be a little stale. Hopefully, I've perked things up a little around here. It's Spring, after all. Renewal, new life, and all that.

Oooh! I almost forgot - I'm also trying to figure out how to put tabs onto my layout so I can clean up my sidebars and make navigation a little easier. We'll see what happens.

The other feature is actually not my creation, but that of the genius behind Fyrefly's Book Blog. She made a Google search button that pulls information from over 600 book blogs. If, for instance, you can't believe that I would diss Maeve Binchy's newest, you can type in "Heart and Soul," and see what other reviewers had to say. Try it. It's fab. You can find it on my right sidebar under the giveaway sections. If you've got a book blog, make sure it's listed in the search. You can click here to read all about this awesome project. It's such a good solution for those of us book bloggers who are just too lazy to provide links to other people's reviews :)

Links of Love

I've been woefully negligent in reading and commenting on your blogs. I'm trying to catch up, but my feeder's still gasping under the weight of unread content. I have noted a few fun giveaways and such:

- Ricklibrarian posted a link to a list of "Feel Good Fiction With Substance," in other words, Books That Are NOT Depressing. I, for one, talk a lot about how doomy and gloomy novels seem to be lately. I loved the idea of this list. Check it out here.

- Amanda is hosting all kinds of giveaways on her blog this month. Right now, you can enter to win a copy of First Dog by J. Patrick Lewis and Beth Zappitello. The contest ends at midnight today, so hurry on over there. She's been posting like crazy this month, so keep an eye on A Patchwork of Books for lots of fun.

- Stephanie over at The Written Word is giving away copies of Therese Fowler's books Souvenir and Reunion. This contest ends tomorrow, so click on over there. Interestingly, I got an email to join her virtual tour a few hours ago, so look for reviews here soon.

- One of my favorite book bloggers, Shelley over at Chain Reading, just started another fun blog about giveaways and freebies. We could probably all use a little bit of that in this crap economy. Check it out!

- I'm sure there are lots more giveaways and such out in the vast book blogosphere. Do you have any to share?

Giveaways
Speaking of giveaways, stay tuned, I have several in the works. I have 3 books sitting on my desk RIGHT NOW that I will be giving away in the near future. So, don't be a stranger!
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Okay, Her Highness is calling for a cuddle (and some Tylenol - the poor baby's sick again), so I'm off. Since I'm abandoning Inkdeath for now (it was due at the library today, and I can't renew it because some other patron wants it - the nerve!), I'm reading the story of an alcoholic/drug addict who's been sober now for 5 years. I'll be interviewing him soon. Her Majesty is enjoying the read aloud, especially the part about the transvestite night club in Singapore.

8 comments:

  1. Hey, I love your brilliant site... I'm a bookworm just as you are.. - I've just wanted to say that I've joined the blogging community today and I'd like you to look at the blog and tell me what you think-
    http://passionforliterature.blogspot.com/

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  2. I love that you called your little one Her Highness. I was laughing so hard by the end of this post!

    And good news to you, you won a copy of First Dog! Details are over at my blog! Go ahead and email me your address when you get a chance!

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  3. I love the new header! You did a great job!:)

    I dropped a whole bunch of donation books off at the base library,and I swear they almost cried! :)

    Hopefully Juliana decides to sleep through the night again soon!

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  4. I like your header (and if you ever decide to switch it up a bit, I'm a graphic design student with Photoshop at home and would be happy to help)!

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  5. I love the new header and am also reading Inkdeath. I loved Inkheart, but Inkspell was just okay. It was clearly a filler book and I hate it when the middle book of a trilogy doesn't have a defined plot. I love series, but I like each book to also be able to be independent in and of itself... does that make sense? For that reason, I've put Inkdeath off for a while, but my "must read" list is getting long, so I want to get Inkdeath behind me once and for all. I hope I'm not dissappointed!

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  6. Allison - Welcome to the book blogosphere! It's a great community. I think your blog looks great - I can't wait to read your reviews.

    Amanda - Thanks! I call the baby "Her Highness" or "Your Majesty" often because she definitely rules our castle.

    P - Glad you like it. It's so simple, but it actually took me FOREVER. I'm really going to try to get you all some more books - I've just got to figure out the best way to go about it. I'll try to send you a box of books I'm done with.

    Stephanie - Thanks! I like the idea of this header. If you've got some spare time and want to play around with a new one, I'd love to see what you come up with.

    Christy - I actually had to abandon Inkdeath - it's overdue at the library. I definitely plan to read it, though. I agree with you on Inkspell and with your comment about series'. I hate "filler" books!

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  7. Thanks for the mention!
    I love the search engine! I put it on my sidebar too.

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  8. Thanks for plugging the search engine! I don't know that I'd call it genius, though... more procrastinatory! :)

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