Archive | April, 2012

Virtual Book Tour for Random Acts April 30-May 11

30 Apr

***Updated May 16th with the names of winners. I will be contacting the winners through their e-mail. Thanks everyone for stopping by and making my first virtual book tour a big success!***

Morning everyone,

I am embarking on my first virtual book tour for Random Acts.  Oh, how I love technology! For 10 days I’ll be stopping at 10 different blogs. I’ll post updated locations each day on my blog. You can also see the full list if you click the image. Please stop by and leave a comment. A $25 Amazon gift card and other prizes will be awarded randomly, but you need to leave a comment with your e-mail address.

First stop:  Novel Reflections :  Winner of autographed bookmark is MomJane

Day (2): Bunnys Review : Winner of autographed bookmark is Stacy

Day (3):M.K. McClintock’s Blog : Winner of autographed bookmark is Peaches Ledwidge

Day (4): Live to Read : Winner of autographed bookmark is Taiyoutenshi

Day (5): The Life (and lies) of an inanimate flying object: Winner of autographed bookmark is Janet Kerr

Day (6): Novel Moments: Winner of autographed bookmark is bas1chs

Day (7): Me, My Muse and I : Winner of autographed bookmark is Susan Flett Swiderski

Day (8): A Chick Who Reads : Winner of autographed bookmark is Stacy S

Day (9): J. C. Martin, Fighter, Writer : Winner of autographed bookmark is Savannah Chase

Day (10:) Megan John Writes :Winner of autographed bookmark is Katy Lee

Okay, drum roll please…the winner of the $25 Amazon gift card selected via a random number generator across all 10 blogs is:

“Mary” from J.C. Martin, Fighter, Writer Blog. Congratulations!

The winner of the $10 Barnes and Noble gift card goes to my host Krystal at “Live to Read” for the most comments on her blog!

Thank you to all my wonderful hosts!

 

Cheers!

Alison

Random Acts Available Now!

Buy Links: 

Amazon       B&N       Kobo       Sony       iTunes       Amazon/UK

Thankful Thursday ~ Week 4

26 Apr

The week has flown by and I almost forgot it was Thursday! I am thankful for:

  • A successful book release. I’m not sure how you measure these things, but I had a great time on Tuesday when my book Random Acts first became available at most major online book retailers. I heard from family and friends, old and new. All in all, a great experience.
  • No snow. One shouldn’t have to be thankful for no snow at the end of April, but the weather forecasters had been predicting a damaging storm this past Monday. It turned out to be a dud. For my town anyway.
  • Dance costumes. I have two daughters in 11 dance performances. That means 11 costume adjustments. Picture day is this weekend. I’ll be tucking, tacking and taping the costumes to make them fit just right. This is what they call on Twitter a #FirstWorldProblem. I am truly blessed that I “get” to do this, even though I tend to grumble about it.

Cheers!

~Alison Stone

 

I’ve been tagged!

25 Apr
Morning everyone,
I’m adding an extra blog post this week because my Twitter friend, Rhonda Parrish tagged me in her post and now it’s my turn. I hope the writers I tagged don’t mind and play it forward. Have fun.
So here’s how it works:
Go to page 7 or 77 of your current MS/WIP
Go to line 7
Copy down the next 7 lines, sentences or paragraphs and post them as they are written.
Tag 7 authors and let them know.
This is from Too Close to Home, my August release from Samhain Publishing. I was working on final edits when I got tagged.

She shook her head. She wasn’t exactly a take-your-life-in-your-hands kind of girl. He slipped the helmet over her head.

“You only live once.” And hopefully my once isn’t up.

Benjamin threw a leg over the seat and grabbed the handlebars. He raised his eyebrows, beckoning her to get on the bike. An inviting smile lit his eyes.

She forced a tight smile despite the sheer terror pumping through her veins. The very real possibility of throwing up crossed her mind.

And I tag*:

1. Amanda Usen

2. Ann Montclair

3. Donna Alward

4. Leslie Tentler

5. Keli Gwyn

6. Gwen Hernandez

7. Bria Quinlan

*No bad karma will befall those who choose not to participate. Just thought it would be fun.

Cheers,

Alison

Random Acts Is Now Available

24 Apr

I am beyond excited my debut novel, Random Acts, is now available for download from your favorite eBook store. I’ve had the day circled on my calendar for months! My daughter wanted me to wake her up at midnight so she could be the first to read my book. I love that! And thanks to all my friends and family who have cheered me on along the way. I hope you enjoy the story.

Random Acts, a romantic suspense, has received some fantastic reviews.

This romance with a slightly inspirational flavor is recommended for readers who are looking for a sweet, “clean” romance that still packs an emotional punch. The suspense angle works, too. This reviewer caught the red-herring but didn’t uncover the real perpetrator until the very end. Well done, Stone. ~ Library Journal Reviews

Built with elements of suspense, emotion, a little bit of inspiration, and characters that are well worth reading about, Ms. Stone creates a heartwarming and intriguing tale in Random Acts. The pacing flows great, there’s not a moment that’s dull, and I was left guessing until the very end.  ~ Long and Short Reviews

Random Acts by Alison Stone is a sweet romance suspense story that had me from the start. I love it when a story grabs me in the first paragraph and puts me right there IN the story. I knew that I wanted to then try and figure out who was the Protector and why he was there hurting this woman. When an author can write a story and get their hook into me I want to believe it is going to be good. I would have to say that Ms Stone delivered. She developed her characters, saw plenty of trouble and had a mystery to solve, and a tug of war of feelings for both hero and heroine to decide if falling in love is worth the risk. ~ Guilty Pleasures Book Reviews

Blurb for Random Acts:

Second chances can have a terrible sense of timing.

As a child, watching her mother always pick the wrong man left Danielle Carson wary of opening her heart to anyone—except Patrick Kingsley. But circumstances came between them and left Danielle with a broken heart. Now she buries the pain of what might have been by channeling all her energy into her career. When a family crisis brings her back to her hometown, she is forced to face the past—and the disturbing fact that her sister’s car accident was staged to mask a brutal beating.

A police officer and widower, Patrick guards his heart as fiercely as he guards his beloved daughter. Seeing Danielle again unexpectedly reignites their old flame, but no way will he introduce a woman into his daughter’s life. Certainly not one whose values on faith and family are so different from his own.

Despite their best intentions, they are drawn together—until Danielle learns Patrick had a hand in putting her sister in harm’s way. Her fragile trust is crushed, but Patrick is the only man who can help her stop the villain before everything they both love is destroyed. Faith, family…and their second chance at forever.

Buy Links:

Samhain Publishing       Amazon        Barnes and Noble

Kobo       Sony       Amazon/UK

Cheers!

Alison

Thankful Thursday ~ Week 3

19 Apr
  • My family. I’m always grateful for my family, but this week I feel the need to put it in writing. I love you guys.
  • Butterflies. I was taking a walk the other  night with my daughter and we noticed butterflies everywhere. When we got home, I saw a story on the news about how we were being “invaded” by Red Admiral Butterflies due to the unusually warm weather. If you have to be invaded by something, I”ll take butterflies.
  • eBooks. I am going into my daughter’s second grade computer class later this morning. It’s day 2 of working on creating an eBook that the kids will be able to download to an eReader. I will resist the urge to wave my arms and announce that I have created an eBook.  And it’s available April 24th! Yes, to avoid embarrassing my sweet daughter, I will refrain. 🙂

~Alison

Available April 24th!!!!

Listening to “Books on Tape”

17 Apr

Anyone else like to listen to books on tape? (I suppose tape isn’t exactly the right word.) Anyone else like to listen to books on their ipod? About a year ago I subscribed to Audible.com and found I was more committed to exercising on my treadmill in my dreary basement if I could get lost in a good book. Now that the weather is getting nicer, I continue to listen to books while I power walk around the neighborhood. (I don’t really power walk. I’m much to self conscious. I just walk at a brisk pace. 🙂 )

Anyway, as much as I enjoy listening to books, I find it is truly a different experience from reading a book. For one, you can’t quickly flip back if you miss a detail. You really have to stay present in the story. Walking is a great activity for listening to books…so is housework. But, I can’t multitask with many other activities because I have to focus on the story. The narrator’s voice can also be distracting. I couldn’t finish one non-fiction book because the author’s voice grated on my nerves. Maybe it was just me.

If you subscribe to Audible, keep track of your tokens. They can add up quickly and expire if you don’t use them within a  certain time frame. I actually ended my subscription and still have a backlog of books to read. Some of my favorite “books on tape” include:

  • The Help by Kathryn Stockett : Narration was fantastic. I felt like I was sitting by an old time radio before TV was invented listening to a wonderful story.
  • Sarah’s Key by Tatiana de Rosney: Just enough French accent without distracting from this powerful story.
  • Late, Late at Night by Rick Springfield: Okay, don’t judge. I was a huge RS fan from the time of Jesse’s Girl. RS narrates the story and it was interesting to learn how he was successful despite his demons.
  • Steve Jobs by Walter Isaacson: I am currently listening to this audible book. I figure I’m bound to get some serious mileage out of this one. I heard the actress Kristen Bell (of Veronica Mars fame) mention she and her boyfriend were listening to this on a road trip and still hadn’t finished it. She said it took some serious commitment. Her words keep running through my head as I go yet into another hour of Steve Jobs’s story. I have to admit, his contribution to technology has changed the world. The one takeaway so far: confidence in your abilities can go a long way toward success. (Maybe that will be the topic of a future blog.)
Anyway, one of my favorite parts of the day, is to hook on my ipod and go for a walk. My current model (in the photo) is one of the original ipods. I call it the boombox of ipods. 🙂 But it still works as long as I remember to put it on the charging dock each night.

Do you like listening to books? Do you find it to be a much different experience than reading  a book? Do you have any audible books you’d recommend? I’d love to hear from you.

~Alison

Thankful Thursday ~ Week 2

12 Apr

Today I am thankful for:

  • Fancy dress-up shoes for my little girl purchased with her very own money. She’s wearing them right now with her PJs and practicing her dance movies. I see Dancing with the Stars in her future.
  • Spring Break. Even if I’m not spending it by the ocean under palm trees, it’s wonderful to have a week off from appointments, kids’ activities and school. I love to sleep in.
  • A wonderful review for my debut novel, Random Acts, by Long and Short Reviews. Thank you! In part it reads:

Built with elements of suspense, emotion, a little bit of inspiration, and characters that are well worth reading about, Ms. Stone creates a heartwarming and intriguing tale in Random Acts. The pacing flows great, there’s not a moment that’s dull, and I was left guessing until the very end. With a great cast of characters from the leading couple to the secondary, I enjoyed the feeling of being part of a family that though they’d suffered a loss, had a chance to find love again despite the odds. And through a little faith and love, Danielle and Patrick begin to see a new light at the end of the tunnel.

What are you thankful for today? I’d love to hear from you!

~Alison

A Public Service Announcement

10 Apr

Recently, an elderly loved one passed away leaving his grieving widow at a loss. The woman told me, “I don’t know what I’m going to do. My husband always made all the decisions. He paid all the bills.”

At first, I assumed this was typical of the older generation since often the wives deferred to their husbands. Surely, it couldn’t happen to me. Then, I really started to think about it. If something happened to either me or my husband, would we have all the information we needed to make end-of-life or burial decisions? Would we both know what bills needed to be paid? What about insurance policies? Well, we do have a will and I know about some of the “big stuff.” But sadly, if something happened, we’d be at a loss–in more ways than one.

A few years ago, I took over the bill paying because I wanted to know where the money was going. As a result, I moved everything online and guess what? My husband doesn’t have the passwords.  I starting asking my friends who paid the bills in their household and what would happen if they or their spouse died. Most laughed a little nervously and said their husbands wouldn’t have a clue. One even mentioned all her bill information and passwords were in her desk at work.

Today, there is even the issue of things like social media. There was an article in the Buffalo News recently about access to Facebook accounts of deceased loved ones. Hey, if something happened to me, wouldn’t I want my friends to know? Truly at that point, I probably wouldn’t care, but maybe my loved ones would want access to my accounts, even if just for a little while.

I am not a lawyer, but perhaps this short post will get you and your significant other to start a conversation. Gather up all your important papers, passwords,  bills and talk. Make sure you both know where everything is, how to access it, and if necessary, sit down with a lawyer to draft any other important documents.

You don’t want to have the double tragedy of losing a loved one and be wondering how your electricity bill gets paid.

~Alison Stone

Thankful Thursday ~ Week 1

5 Apr

Thankful Thursday is nothing new. Many people across the internet participate. I thought it was time I join in, after all,  there can never be enough gratitude in this world. I remember when I was in elementary school, a nun told our class the most simple prayer you can ever say is, “Thank You.” The message stuck with me.

Today I am thankful for

  • Early blossoms. The trees in my neighborhood are beautiful especially in the early morning when the sun streams through the dew-covered blossoms
  • Smiley little girls. My young daughter marched into my room this morning with a huge smile as she modeled her brand-new-to-her jeans. This is a huge deal. This is the same daughter who doesn’t like seams on her socks. She loves her new jeans!
  • Staff Sgt. William R. Wilson III.  Staff Sgt. “Billy” Wilson gave his life for our country on March 26, 2012 in Afghanistan. May he rest in peace. I am so grateful for men and women like Staff Sgt. Wilson who bravely serve our country. I didn’t know him, but he grew up in my community and graduated from my son’s high school. He touched many lives as reflected by the hundreds  of flags lining the streets of his hometown.  Praying for peace and comfort for his family.

What are you grateful for? I’d love to hear from you.

Alison Stone

Random Acts available April 24

Website:  www.AlisonStone.com

Twitter: @Alison_Stone

Facebook: AlisonStoneAuthor