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Thursday, December 12, 2013

Retro Thursday: 4/05

By request: April 2005

(A week late due to gremlins!)

George W. Bush was president of the United States

Paul Martin was prime minister of Canada

John Howard was prime minister of Australia

Elizabeth was queen of England (in case you were wondering.)

 

Singles from a few of the album releases:

Rob Thomas: "This Is How A Heart Breaks" from ...Something to Be

 

Better than Ezra: "Juicy" from Before the Robots

Hahaha...this video's so goofy. :)

 

Mariah Carey: "We Belong Together" from The Emancipation of Mimi

I'm not a huge Mariah fan - though I acknowledge her incredible voice - and I'm not at all a fan of these kinds of videos but oh my goodness...Wentworth Miller!

 

The New York Times Best Seller List--Fiction

April 17, 2005

1. THE DA VINCI CODE, by Dan Brown.

2. REVENGE OF THE SITH, by Matthew Stover.

3. YA-YAS IN BLOOM, by Rebecca Wells.

4. HONEYMOON, by James Patterson and Howard Roughan.

5. SATURDAY, by Ian McEwan.

6. THE RISING, by Tim LaHaye and Jerry B. Jenkins.

7. THE BROKER, by John Grisham.

8. WITH NO ONE AS WITNESS, by Elizabeth George.

9. IMPOSSIBLE, by Danielle Steel.

10. THE SERPENT ON THE CROWN, by Elizabeth Peters.

 

Video Games

Lego Star Wars

 

Jade Empire

I never did finish this game. I should do that....

 

Movies

Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy

Love this movie.

 

Kung Fu Hustle


Also a favorite. :)

 

The average price of gas:

California--$2.47

New York--$2.23

Hawaii--$2.47

Texas--$2.07

Nebraska--$2.21

UK--£1.32-1.42 litre

 

On the Charts

Apparently Elvis Presley broke the record for the most UK number one singles in 2005. Elvis had 4 songs in the top ten in the UK in April alone. How did he do that exactly? More to the point, who got all the money?

 

#3 in the UK the week of April 17th, Ciara featuring Missy Elliot. This one's for Jo.

 

#7 in the UK the week of April 24th, Nine Inch Nails (a family favorite). This one's for Mae.


 

Backstreet Boys released the single Incomplete which debuted at #1 in Australia (their first #1 hit there.)

 

Would you like to suggest a date for Retro Thursday? Just leave me a comment here or on Facebook or Twitter



Reviews for The Glister Journals: Bronze

More Glister Journals info and excerpts at the book's website here: theglisterjournals.com

The Glister Journals: Bronze can be purchased through any bookseller, or purchase now at Amazon.com

Note: All original text and materials by or commissioned by B. B. Shepherd are copyright 2012-2013 to China Blue Publishing.

Sunday, December 8, 2013

Cataclysmic Music Review: Bastille, Capital Cities, Matt Nathanson

I am long overdue for a music feature, so I'd like to share a few albums with you: Haunt (EP) by Bastille, In A Tidal Wave of Mystery by Capital Cities, and Last of the Great Pretenders by Matt Nathanson. It's a long time since I first heard these bands and many months since I bought the albums, but I originally heard them around the same time and the three radio-play songs have a similar theme. It must be a sign. Let's start with one you probably all know by now from Bastille.

So . . . you know how some songs you have to listen to a few times (sometimes many times) before you realize how good they are and then you really like it? That didn't happen with this song. I LOVED it the first time I heard it and had to find out who it was. Once I found out, I checked out my local record store but nobody there had heard of them (or Capitol Cities for that matter.) I finally found the EP (four songs) at Amoeba in San Francisco as well as the other two albums. Yay Amoeba! Boo Rasputin.

Now, if you are in England or Europe, you're probably thinking, "Silly person in America. Bastille has been around for quite a while." Yes it has, but whenever I mention them to people I know they say, "Who?" Even my daughter recognized the name of the group but couldn't name any songs. So forgive me if I state the obvious here. Bastille are fantastic. Pompeii is one of those songs I catch myself singing all the time. While Dan Smith (lead singer, songwriter) has a distinctive sound and style of his own, the band most closely reminds me of Coldplay (in a good way) especially on the track Overjoyed.

The full double album, All This Bad Blood (25 tracks), is out now which I ordered but haven't received yet, so I may do another feature on it.

The second band, Capital Cities from Los Angeles, released their debut album in June of this year. So it surprised me greatly to find out that the song Safe and Sound actually debuted in 2011. Considering I listen to alternative radio stations in the Bay Area, I'm amazed I hadn't heard it before. What's up with that? Anyway, I've already used this video once way back in April, but I'll use it again gladly!

Their second single, Kangaroo Court, is much less impressive to me. The Casio VL Tone (yes, we had one) is slightly nostalgic but ultimately annoying and the song has little more substance than that. In fact, a lot of the patches are evocative of the seventies and early eighties and most of the tracks on the album sound neo-disco (plus heavy use of vocaloid, of which I'm not really a fan). The tracks are great for working out or dancing to, but I get tired of the relentless poppiness. That's not to say I don't like them, but . . . small doses. I prefer Tell Me How To Live, it sounds like a mixture of The Bee Gees and Barry White (which is funny because they did a cover of Stayin' Alive). And I really love Chasing You (except for the unnecessary addition of the F word.) Unfortunately there are no official videos for those songs. Here's a static video of Tell Me How To Live.

Last of the Great Pretenders is Matt Nathanson's tenth album and is full of great songs, though with most including profanity or very provocative lyrics, they are definitely on the adult side. The track I heard first and, like Pompeii, loved it the first time I heard it, is Mission Bells. It's a mix of melancholy lyrics, a smooth shuffly rhythm, and a killer hooky chorus. The video is brilliant too, playing on the lyric, "At the end of a Hitchcock movie, a little dark and a lot confusing." It's done like a black and white Alfred Hitchcock style movie, with great San Francisco locations and representations of some of Hitchcock's best known movies. I counted four I'm sure about, but I'm also sure there are more. I'll list the ones I found at the end of this post. If you found more I'd love to know. And no, I didn't cheat!

So there you have it: a volcanic eruption, a vague, unnamed apocalyptic event, and a mysterious death. It's a little creepy how happy these songs make me.

The Hitchcock movies I recognize in the Mission Bells video: Psycho, Vertigo, The Birds, Rear Window. There are a couple of others I'm not sure of. Do you see any others?



Reviews for The Glister Journals: Bronze

More Glister Journals info and excerpts at the book's website here: theglisterjournals.com

The Glister Journals: Bronze can be purchased through any bookseller, or purchase now at Amazon.com

Note: All original text and materials by or commissioned by B. B. Shepherd are copyright 2012-2013 to China Blue Publishing.

Sunday, December 1, 2013

December Update and Soundtrack Clue

Congratulations to Sarah, the winner of my November "Thank You" giveaway. I have e-mailed you and contacted you via Twitter. I have other book giveaways planned soon and another cash giveaway later on for the second Glister Journals title and cover reveal. That is planned for the first part of 2014. It will probably mark the official opening of the soundtrack puzzle entries too, so stay in touch!

On to the new soundtrack clue for those who are reading or have already read the book. Remember, those of you working on the puzzle now have a head start. You're more likely to get correct answers and have a better chance of winning!

    CLUE #6 Two bands/artists are repeated once.
    In other words, out of 31 songs, 27 are by different bands/artists, and 2 bands/artists have 2 each.

Hopefully that helps with any question of whether an artist is repeated and how many times!

If you'd like to see a certain type of clue or have any questions about the soundtrack at all, please feel free to ask. I'm sure there are plenty I haven't thought of yet. I will answer anything reasonable that does not completely give away the answers!

Would you like some music? I thought you might! This is Hadouken!, a British band I first found on MySpace YEARS ago (you remember MySpace don't you?) Anyway, this is great. I bought Hadouken's first album (imported!) and now realize I have some catching up to do. Their sound has only improved (mellowed a little perhaps, but in a good way. Parental advisory on some songs). I love the video too. Enjoy!

AWESOME remix can be found here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_vaddnA7l9U

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Thankful

I've been working on several posts that I just don't seem to be able to finish, so they are going to wait. Today I will just be thankful. In no particular order:

I'm thankful for good health. I could take better care of myself, as I used to, but I can't complain. The minor things I can live with or try to improve through diet and exercise. And sleep. As much sleep as possible.

I'm thankful for family. I'm very close to my children and they are very close to and supportive of each other. I am immeasurably thankful for that. And I am very thankful for my friends too!

I'm thankful for a wonderful book blog tour this fall. I'm especially thankful for the wonderful people I met and hope to stay in touch with, and all the people who have shown interest in Bronze and The Glister Journals. Thank you!

I'm thankful for my job. My five-day-a-week daytime job that pays the bills and allows us to eat. I hope to be able to write full-time one day, but I will keep writing anyways. It has become a huge and necessary part of my life.

I'm thankful for fond memories. I focus on these. I have a lot of bad ones too--the kind that can keep you awake at night--but I choose to not think about those. I'll let them be buried in my subconscious and only pull them out and look at them if they can be useful.

I'm thankful that I live in a country that still allows freedom of faith. I sometimes wonder how much longer those freedoms will exist, but they're there at the moment. I think. I'll believe in my God anyway, come what may.

I'm thankful for my ridiculously silly and cute cat, Buu. He's such a sweet companion...except when he thinks I've forgotten his dinner or that I'm ignoring him. He complains loudly in the first case and "tags" me with claws out in the second!

Thankful for Buu

I'm thankful that I'm just as excited about my book series, The Glister Journals, as I was when I started it. Even if it's taking me FOREVER to finish the second book. It WILL get finished! And I'm also thankful for all the other story ideas I can tackle when the series is done. I can't wait!

I'm thankful for music. Pure and simple.

What are YOU thankful for?

And, according to my tradition, here is some Switchfoot for you. Happy Thanksgiving!


Posts coming soon:

    A Cataclysmic Music Review
    Bronze Soundtrack Update (December)
    Retro Thursday
    Chabot Space and Science Center



Reviews for The Glister Journals: Bronze

More Glister Journals info and excerpts at the book's website here: theglisterjournals.com

The Glister Journals: Bronze can be purchased through any bookseller, or purchase now at Amazon.com

Note: All original text and materials by or commissioned by B. B. Shepherd are copyright 2012-2013 to China Blue Publishing.

Thursday, November 7, 2013

Retro Thursday: 2/83

I usually concentrate on new music, but I thought it would be fun to look back to a specific time and see what was going on. So once a month I'm going to do a short retrospective: movies, books, odds and ends, just about anything I can find. And of course, music. I'm choosing the first one but would love to get requests.

February 1983 was an important time for me but I wasn't very aware of what was going on in the world, so I thought it would be a good place to start....

In February 1983:

Toto - Africa #1 US February 1-5. I loved this song, but can't for the life of me think of another song by them. Can you?

Ronald Reagan was president of the United States

Margaret Thatcher was prime minister of the United Kingdom

Pierre Trudeau was prime minister of Canada

Malcom Fraser was prime minister of Australia

Elizabeth II was queen . . . of course

Men At Work - Down Under #1 US February 5-12. LOL. Definitely one of my favorite songs. Let's not get into an argument of Vegemite vs. Marmite though.

Gas per gallon cost an average of:

    .88 in California

    .95 in Texas

    .93 in Illinois

    .96 in Florida

    .99 in New York

    £1.76 England

Kajagoogoo - Too Shy #1 UK February 13

Musical Youth - Pass the Dutchie #1 Canada, January 22-February 5. (I'd never heard of this one...interesting.)

NEW YORK TIMES Sunday Book review (February 20) (Look how much Sci-Fi there is!)

“Mistral’s Daughter,” by Judith Krantz.

“Master of the Game,” by Sidney Sheldon.

“Space,” by James A. Michener.

“2010: Odyssey Two,” by Arthur C. Clarke.

“The Valley of Horses,” by Jean M. Auel.

“Foundation’s Edge,” by Isaac Asimov.

“Floating Dragon,” by Peter Straub.

“Life, the Universe and Everything,” by Douglas Adams.

“E.T. The Extra-Terrestrial Storybook,” by William Kotzwinkle.

“Ellis Island,” by Fred Mustard Stewart.

Laura Branigan - Gloria #1 Australia, February 7-March 21

Michael Jackson - Billie Jean #1 US (seven weeks) & UK.

February 26 – Michael Jackson's Thriller album hits #1 on the US charts, the first of thirty-seven (non-consecutive) weeks it would spend there on its way to becoming the biggest-selling album of all time.

I couldn't find any movies worth referencing except The Pirates of Penzance which my whole family absolutely loves. Yes, we're very weird. It is a fairly faithful production of the Gilbert and Sullivan light opera (Premier in 1879). It stars Kevin Kline as the Pirate King and he's just amazing. Linda Ronstadt is Mabel. Such a fun but completely goofy movie. "With Catlike Tread" is my favorite part of the movie.


Do you remember February 1983? What is one of your favorite months and years? Leave me a message somewhere. Let me retro it!


a Rafflecopter giveaway

Open only to those who can legally enter, receive and use an Amazon.com Gift Code. Winning Entry will be verified prior to prize being awarded. No purchase necessary. You must be 18 or older to enter or have your parent enter for you. The winner will be chosen by rafflecopter and announced here as well as emailed and will have 48 hours to respond or a new winner will be chosen. This giveaway is in no way associated with Facebook, Twitter, Rafflecopter or any other entity unless otherwise specified. The number of eligible entries received determines the odds of winning. VOID WHERE PROHIBITED BY LAW.

This is like the extra at the end of the credits: I just found this and it's awesome. :)



The Glister Journals: Bronze can be purchased through any bookseller, or purchase now at Amazon.com

Reviews for The Glister Journals: Bronze

The Bronze Soundtrack and Contest

More Glister info and excerpts at the book's website here: theglisterjournals.com

All original text and materials by or commissioned by B. B. Shepherd are copyright 2012-2013 to China Blue Publishing.


Friday, November 1, 2013

November Glister Journals Giveaway and Soundtrack Clue

Congratulations to the winner of the Bronze Blog Tour giveaway and to Maureen, the winner of my Spooktacular giveaway.

There's a new giveaway! My way of saying thank you to those of you interested in The Glister Journals series and who are following here, there, and everywhere. This month I'm including another $25 Amazon gift card to help with your holiday shopping! And a paperback copy of Bronze, of course!

Do you know about the Bronze Soundtrack? It's a puzzle to solve with songs to uncover, and if the book were a movie, it would be the best soundtrack ever! (Well, I think so anyway.) The first clues can be found on the Bronze Soundtrack page of the series' website. Clues will be added every month until the contest officially opens--just to help you get a head start. The contest will close a month before the second Glister Journals book comes out. Thirty-one days before the release will be a video countdown of the chapters' songs. Sound like fun? I hope so!

I began planning and writing the series in November of 2008, so Bronze is actually set in the 2008/2009 school year. Clue #5: All Bronze soundtrack songs were released 2009 or before.

Of course there are prizes! The grand prize is starting off at $50 and will be increased--25% of book sales from now until the end of the contest will be added plus The Glister Journals #1 and #2, hardbound, signed, and personalized, and more. Other prizes will include signed copies of both Glister Journals books and fun Bronze swag. There might be ponies. Watch for updates!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Open only to those who can legally enter, receive and use an Amazon.com Gift Code. Winning Entry will be verified prior to prize being awarded. No purchase necessary. You must be 18 or older to enter or have your parent enter for you. The winner will be chosen by rafflecopter and announced here as well as emailed and will have 48 hours to respond or a new winner will be chosen. This giveaway is in no way associated with Facebook, Twitter, Rafflecopter or any other entity unless otherwise specified. The number of eligible entries received determines the odds of winning. VOID WHERE PROHIBITED BY LAW.



Reviews for The Glister Journals: Bronze

More Glister Journals info and excerpts at the book's website here: theglisterjournals.com

The Glister Journals: Bronze can be purchased through any bookseller, or purchase now at Amazon.com

Note: All original text and materials by or commissioned by B. B. Shepherd are copyright 2012-2013 to China Blue Publishing.

Thursday, October 31, 2013

Free Bronze on Kindle and Retro Thursday

Oh dear...so many things! I'm spreading everything over two blog posts (second for giveaways--coming soon) so hopefully nothing gets lost or overlooked. Bear with me!

Bronze print edition prices are lowered as far as we can go, at least through the holidays, so I hope you can pick up a copy. And Bronze will be FREE on Amazon Kindle on Friday, November 1st and Saturday, November 2nd. I hope you'll take the opportunity to read it. And if you like it, reviews are always greatly appreciated! And of course you can actually buy the book if you really want to. I wouldn't mind. Honestly.

I'm looking forward to concentrating on finishing The Glister Journals #2 and getting back to 'normal'--whatever that is. The blog tour and my regular job have kept me pretty busy. I will be catching up with some book and music reviews that I should have done months ago. I also want to post regularly here, but I don't always have that much to say.

Which brings me to Retro Thursday. I love music, media, and research--both scholarly and just 'looking stuff up.' So I thought it would be fun to do little weekly retrospectives of particular months in specific years--and you get to choose! Just leave a comment (here, on Facebook, Twitter, or wherever you find me) telling me what month and year a favorite memory took place--a special birthday, date, anniversary, event with friends, vacation, whatever!--and I'll explore what was going on, at least from a music and media perspective. I hope you'll enjoy it!



Reviews for The Glister Journals: Bronze

More Glister Journals info and excerpts at the book's website here: theglisterjournals.com

The Glister Journals: Bronze can be purchased through any bookseller, or purchase now at Amazon.com

Note: All original text and materials by or commissioned by B. B. Shepherd are copyright 2012-2013 to China Blue Publishing.

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

The Glister Journals: Bronze on Kindle--Free!

Just a head's up (especially for friends at Goodreads): The Glister Journals: Bronze will be FREE on Kindle November 1st and 2nd (this Friday and Saturday)!

November 1st there will also be a new giveaway and a new clue for the Soundtrack contest.



Note: All original text and materials by or commissioned by B. B. Shepherd are copyright 2012-2013 to China Blue Publishing.

Reviews for The Glister Journals: Bronze

More Glister Journals info and excerpts at the book's website here: theglisterjournals.com

The Glister Journals: Bronze can be purchased through any bookseller, or purchase now at Amazon.com

Saturday, October 26, 2013

Wonderful tour! So what's next? (Hint: includes more giveaways!)

Thank you, thank you, thank you to Kathy at I Am A Reader, Not A Writer for all her care and hard work in setting up and running the Bronze Blog Tour for me. I HIGHLY recommend her services if you are considering a book tour or blast. I have met some truly lovely people and am so excited that so many more people now know about Bronze and, especially, The Glister Journals series.

Also a huge thank you to all the people who have followed me on Twitter, Facebook, Goodreads, or one of my blogs, and to those who have tweeted and retweeted, shared posts on Facebook and Google, and added Bronze to their shelves on Goodreads and other book sites. Please know that I do appreciate you on an individual basis and, when possible, check out your blogs and pages. You're awesome!

Congratulations to the winner of the $100 Bronze Book Blast giveaway! And continued good luck to those entered in the remaining giveaways: the Bronze Blog Tour Giveaway (scroll down for the giveaway) and the Spooktacular Giveaway Hop. Both giveaways are open until October 31, 2013.

So what's next?

A lot of things!

First of all, as a thank you and acknowledgment to all of you I am going to have monthly giveaways so more of you have an opportunity to win cash or giftcards (for books or music, of course!) and copies of Bronze. These will be Rafflecopter giveaways posted here on my blog and announced on my other pages. My blog is posted on Goodreads on my author page so it's also a good place to check for updates. The first will begin on November 1st and end November 30th. The next will begin December 1st, etc.

Second, a MUCH bigger giveaway is in the works for the Bronze Soundtrack Contest. You can find details at The Glister Journals website. Prizes will be added as participation grows, so I hope you'll consider reading the book, (only $2.99 on Kindle and print prices dropping as low as possible!) There will be at least five winners with prizes including book store (of your choice) gift cards plus swag, and including a grand prize winner of at least $50 (this prize starts at $50 and will increase--a percentage of book sales will be added!), personalized copies of both Bronze and the second Glister Journals book, and more!

There are clues listed on the website and clues and prizes will be updated regularly. Is it easy? Not too easy, but probably not too hard for anyone who has actually read the book and is willing to do a little searching! I'll also notify everyone of updates by Twitter and Facebook. The songs will be revealed in a countdown starting thirty-one days before the second Glister Journals book is released. (And yes, there will be a new soundtrack for that book!) The contest will be open for submissions (your list of song titles) for a couple of months before the countdown. I hope you'll enter--it'll be fun and it's really a GREAT soundtrack!

Also in a spirit of appreciation, the Kindle edition of Bronze will be FREE on November 1st and 2nd!

What's next for me, personally? I will be concentrating on writing. I want to be able to release the second Glister Journals book in the first half of 2014, but it will mean concentrating on writing and nothing much else. So anything my readers and supporters can do to help get the word out is SO appreciated!

I will continue to update my blog when I can (music and book reviews, road trips, etc.), but to guarantee I have at least a weekly post, I'd like to start a regular feature: Retro Thursday. Every week I'll do a media overview of a specific month and year that readers submit. What is your favorite memory? Wedding day? Special birthday? Vacation? An event with friends? Tell me the month and year it happened and I'll do a blog post on what was going on--movies, TV, books, and of course especially MUSIC! Just leave a comment suggesting a date here on my blog, on The Glister Journals Facebook page, or in a tweet to me on Twitter. I'll choose one a week to explore--just be aware it will be from my point of view!

Thank you again to everybody and I hope you'll continue on this journey with me! Speaking of Journey.... (LOL. Sorry, couldn't resist!)



Note: All original text and materials by or commissioned by B. B. Shepherd are copyright 2012-2013 to China Blue Publishing.

Reviews for The Glister Journals: Bronze

More Glister Journals info and excerpts at the book's website here: theglisterjournals.com

The Glister Journals: Bronze can be purchased through any bookseller, or purchase now at Amazon.com

Monday, October 14, 2013

The Glister Journals: Bronze Tour

I'm so happy and excited to announce the start of the Bronze Kindle tour today. It will be on until October 25th with a new $25.00 giveaway too. Thank you so much to everyone who has followed me on Twitter, Facebook, and added Bronze to your shelves on Goodreads. I really do appreciate it and hope you get a chance to read it.

Make sure to stop by the tour kick-off at Kathy's site to learn about the Bronze soundtrack, a musical puzzle to solve. (And yes, there are prizes.) The following links will become active as the posts go live. I hope you'll come along and appreciate my gracious hosts by following their blogs. And I'd love to hear from you!

October 14th

I Am A Reader, Not A Writer – Tour Kick-Off: The Bronze Soundtrack

Kelly’s Lucky You – Bronze Spotlight

Christy’s Cozy Corners – Bronze Review

October 15th

Laurie’s Thoughts and Reviews – Excerpt (Snow Day) and Character Interview: Allison

fuonlyknew – Bronze Spotlight and Excerpt: First Encounters Part One

Bookmarks, Spoilers and Happily Ever After – Bronze Spotlight and Excerpt (Snow Day)

October 16th

Spellbindings – Guest Post: Assumptions, Titles, and Judging Books By Their Covers

My Devotional Thoughts – Guest Post: My Top Ten Re-watchable (PG-13 or under) Movies

From the Bootheel Cotton Patch – Bronze Spotlight

Sweeping Me – Bronze Spotlight

October 17th

The Write Game – Character Interview: Robin

Every Free Chance Book Reviews – Author Interview

Wondermom Wannabe – Bronze Review

A Blog Hop Place for Books – Bronze Spotlight

October 18th

Sarah’s Reviews – Guest Post: My Writing Journey

Pieces of Whimsy – Bronze Spotlight

Reviews by Karen – Bronze Spotlight

Gustosa Giveaways – Bronze Spotlight

October 19th

Victoria Simcox’s Blog – Bronze Spotlight

Mythical Books – Guest Post: The Difference

Cuzinlogic – Author Interview

October 20th

Books Are Love - Bronze Excerpts:

    Excerpts and Sketches: The Boys (Dave and Chris)

    Excerpts and Sketches: The Girls (Robin and Melanie)

    Excerpt: First Encounters Part Two (Gold)

October 21st

Books are Love – Bronze Review

Katie’s Clean Book Collection – Bronze Spotlight

3 Partner’s in Shopping – Bronze Spotlight

October 23rd

Simply Infatuated – Tens List: Riding Adventures

Peace from Pieces – Author Interview

Beck Valley Books – Bronze Spotlight

October 25th

Taking Time for Mommy – Author Interview

Rose & Beps Blog – Bronze Spotlight

Cici’s Theories – Bronze Spotlight



Note: All original text and materials by or commissioned by B. B. Shepherd are copyright 2012-2013 to China Blue Publishing.

Reviews for The Glister Journals: Bronze

More Glister Journals info and chapters at the book's website here: theglisterjournals.com

The Glister Journals: Bronze can be purchased through any bookseller, or purchase now at Amazon.com

Saturday, September 21, 2013

A Quick Question...

Bronze (Kindle) is all set to go on tour in October with a book blast starting around the 3rd to the 11th and the tour beginning on the 14th to the 25th and I need some excerpts this weekend! I know what my favorite scenes are and have some picked out, but I have foresight and inside knowledge, so they may not be the best choices. What are your favorite scenes? I'd appreciate any feedback. Thanks!

All stops will be posted here and on the website so you can find us easily. Please stop by and say hi!



Note: All original text and materials by or commissioned by B. B. Shepherd are copyright 2012-2013 to China Blue Publishing.

Reviews for The Glister Journals: Bronze

More Glister Journals info and chapters at the book's website here: theglisterjournals.com

The Glister Journals: Bronze can be purchased through any bookseller, or purchase now at Amazon.com

Monday, September 9, 2013

End of Summer Update

My goodness, I never meant to go this long without posting. I'll try to get back on track! I've been writing, writing, writing, but I've also been reading much more than I have for quite some time. I will be adding occasional mini-reviews of books I can recommend as well as my occasional music reviews.

First off, Glister Journals news. My original plan was to release the Kindle version of Bronze this summer but, as it hasn't been promoted or marketed much before, I want to really get it out there this time before the second book in The Glister Journals series is released. So the plan now is to do a book tour in October with the help of I Am A Reader, Not A Writer, one of my favorite book bloggers who also does tours (her button can be found in the sidebar). I'm feeling mighty blessed right now.(Edited--plans have changed slightly)

Details to follow!

Road Trip

Drayton Harbor

I was able to take a little trip north again this summer to visit my dear family. It was a mostly uneventful trip and I enjoyed my time there immensely, but came back with a major observation: next time, I need to figure in extra travel time to explore! Other observations:

    1. I've never seen Mt. Shasta so snow-less, even in the middle of summer. There are places I'd like to explore in the area, mines and caves and falls and such. :)

    Unsnowy Mt. Shasta

    2. On the way up on my second day of driving, I found myself quite a bit ahead of schedule and decided to drive through Olympia, Washington, just to see what was there. It's the capital after all. What I saw was charming (if there's a seedy side of town, don't disillusion me!), the section of town I saw reminding me strongly of downtown Santa Cruz, and the capital building shining in the distance across water which must have been Capital Lake. Clever name. I though of parking to walk around and take pictures, but I was expected by a certain time by family. I determined to make a stop on the way home instead.

    Unfortunately, on the trip back, although I was watching for off ramps as I drew near I never actually saw one and was way beyond the city by the time I realized I had passed it. So, sorry, no pictures this time. :(

    3. I'd also love to explore the Peninsula, but I figure that will require at least a day of its own.

    4. There are a wealth of national and state parks begging to be explored. I was determined to at least visit the Peach Arch Park, (Canada and us being such great pals and all) but guess what. Still no passport.

    5. Did you know that Linn County was the grass seed capital of the world? Neither did I, but apparently they're very proud of it.

    6. There is a town called Battle Ground in Washington. Surely this deserves some writerly investigation. Apparently "The city is ironically named for the absence of a battle." The reasons behind this lead me to number

    7. There are a lot of tribes in Washington. It would be interesting to plan a trip around visiting reservations or at least the visitor centers and doing some first person research. Just because.

I was able to get some writing done while there, though not as much as I would have liked. I even had a substitute editor. My substitute editor

After a nice restful week I started home, but soon ran into thick smoke. It began soon after I'd left Roseburg, Oregon and mile after mile it continued.

Smoke, not fog

I stopped for gas and asked the attendant about it. He said that he'd just heard over the radio that there were at least seven separate wild fires burning through Oregon and northern California. Sure enough the smoke continued well into California and I guess there have been many more since then. A bad fire year. :(

If you have any recommendations for western Washington trips or have a trip blog entry you can link to, I'd love to see it. It's a region I'll be passing through at least once a year.

Music

I have quite a few albums I plan to share with you soon, including the ones I listened to on this trip, but I'd like to cover one that I had on my trip last summer but never got around to highlighting. It's too good to not mention.

El Camino by The Black Keys is my second favorite album of 2011 (the first being Chevelle's Hats Off To The Bull). The first time I heard them was through the song "Tighten Up" in 2010 and I loved it, but didn't hear anything more until "Howlin For You" which I included in last year's road trip post.

Curious about their beginnings, I looked into their background a little to find that Dan Auerbach (vocals/guitar) and Patrick Carney (drums) had known each other since they were eight or nine and became friends in high school "though they were part of different crowds—Auerbach was captain of the high school soccer team, while Carney was a social outcast." (Wikipedia reference. A more interesting and possibly more reliable biography is here) I couldn't help LOVING that! If you've read Bronze, you know why.

I love this whole album, but my favorite is most definitely Little Black Submarines, the album version (NOT the radio version which is shorter and ruins the build-up).

I love blues based rock (though not so much straight up blues) and The Black Keys have a raw edgy sound that I adore. I listened again to the whole album trying to decide which other track to pull out for you, but seriously, I love this whole album. Great road trip music too! "Money Maker" is probably my other favorite but I couldn't find a video, so I'll leave you with the other hit off the album.



Note: All original text and materials by or commissioned by B. B. Shepherd are copyright 2012-2013 to China Blue Publishing.

Reviews for The Glister Journals: Bronze

More Glister Journals info and chapters at the book's website here: theglisterjournals.com

The Glister Journals: Bronze can be purchased through any bookseller, or purchase now at Amazon.com

Thursday, June 27, 2013

Rock On

I seem to have a problem with timing. No, not musically speaking. My sense of rhythm and tempo are rock steady. And not performance timing. I pride myself (what a weird expression, but you know what I mean) on being able to start on time and remain within a reasonable timeframe, both for myself or anything I've organized.

No, just general life timing. Putting things together on a daily basis timing. And especially this book business and promotion thing timing. It's a bit...confusing and frustrating. And the more time I spend trying to do the social networking thing, the more confused I get (not to mention the horrendous wasting of precious writing time!)

On a more encouraging note, I am thrilled to be able to say that Bronze won (tied) the Literary Fiction category of the IndieReader Discovery Awards. I'm glad of the exposure and extremely glad to know that my book was read by people actually in the publishing and media industries and was considered good enough to win an award. For someone like me who is still trying to figure out the best way of letting people know my book even exists, it's a BIG deal. So . . . YAY!

Also, I'm waiting to release (rather impatiently, but I'm trying!) the Kindle version of Bronze to maximize exposure for it. I'll tell you more about this as those efforts progress. There will be hidden information revealed concerning the book (yes, like a puzzle) and a real contest (yes, solving said puzzle) and there will definitely be giveaways and free Kindle days and special goodies. I'm extremely excited and anxious to get this going! Tick tock tick tock....

In the meantime, I'm trying to concentrate on actual writing and avoiding internet wandering. I'm saving a couple of blog posts I've already written for a future blog tour--as soon as I have that set up--so I won't be terribly active here, but I'll let you know where I can be found! I would love to respond to people and answer any specific questions you may have, but I'm going to avoid the internet otherwise. I'm too easily distracted! The best place to contact me personally (unless you have my e-mail) is here on this blog, on The Glister Journals Facebook page or @glisterjournals on Twitter.

I'd like to share a video with you though. This made my day and was a huge encouragement to me to block out self doubt and just stay true to my vision, my ideas, my voice, my characters, and the story I'm trying to tell with The Glister Journals. Adults can be so stifling and negative. Children often seem to be my greatest inspiration, and these boys are wonderful. Rock on!

(Click the right bottom corner for full screen.)



Note: All original text and materials by or commissioned by B. B. Shepherd are copyright 2012-2013 to China Blue Publishing.

Reviews for The Glister Journals: Bronze

More Glister Journals info and chapters at the book's website here: theglisterjournals.com

The Glister Journals: Bronze can be purchased through any bookseller, or purchase now at Amazon.com

Saturday, June 1, 2013

Bronze e-book . . . soon!

UPDATE (June 9, 2013):

I'm pleased to say the Kindle edition of my novel Bronze is ready and will be available soon pending some promotional efforts. Once those things are in place there will be more news and giveaways. Hang in there with me!

Well, I had hoped to have the Kindle edition of Bronze available today, but I confess I'm still working on the TOC. It will be available within the next few days though. When it is I'll update this post and announce the first 'free' day.

There will also be news--Bronze has won an award that we're quite excited about--and I can't wait to tell you about the Bronze soundtrack. "You mean 'play list'?" I hear you ask. No, soundtrack. Stay tuned!

Sunday, May 12, 2013

Allison, Wreck It Ralph and PDDs

First I'd like to share with you the second Glister Journals piece drawn by a friend, comic artist Jeff Stokely, before he became famous and notorious (okay he's not exactly famous nor notorious beyond certain circles but he's working on it!) I love this drawing. This is closest to how I picture Allison (from my novel Bronze) and I love the way he has portrayed Robin too, though I don't see her quite this way. (The drawing of Dave and Chris is here.) What do you think?:

The Glister Journals: Allison and Robin

Jeff has been extremely busy and is working on two comics coming out this year, a reimagining of a classic pulp, Six Gun Gorilla, and his own (with co-writer/creator Chris Northrop) The Reason for Dragons which I am personally very excited about.

So, I finally saw Wreck It Ralph last night. It's not a movie that I would normally choose to watch, but I had heard about it when it came out from many kids that loved it. My daughter and her boyfriend just watched it last night and left it for me to watch too so I figured I had better make an effort. I have to admit that I wasn't at all interested in it and for the first half of the movie was wishing I was watching something else. But I persevered and I'm glad I did.

Now, I'm not going to list the reasons that I found the movie less than captivating. People have different tastes and this didn't appeal to me to start with. It really bothers me when people write reviews on books, films, whatever, that they wouldn't normally have read/watched and can't really find fault with but give negative reviews because they assumed it was something else (don't even get me started on assumptions) or just didn't like it for reasons outside the scope of what it is. Why do people do that? So I'm not going to say what I didn't like. If you like this kind of movie, you will probably love it.

This is a tongue-in-cheek 'behind the screens' promo that does not divulge much of the actual movie, but if you haven't seen it, you'll get the idea:

I will say that, though I felt 'meh' about all the characters from the beginning, Ralph himself, though completely predictable, did grow on me. But what I really sat up and took notice of was the character Vanellope. At first I couldn't stand her and not because she was obnoxious, but because she was so obviously meant to be too obnoxious so that you would have to like her later. The anti-princess. Ugh. But as I continued to watch, it began to occur to me that this throw-away child was like the neuro-atypical people I see every day. How she was like my character Allison Anderson from Bronze. And, apparently, like me.

Now Allison is quiet and introspectiv--not in-your-face obnoxious like Vanellope--nor is she homeless and lacking in personal hygiene. But that 'glitch' that keeps Vanellope from being accepted by the other kids--along with having very different ideas of what is attractive, valuable, and funny (not to mention questionable powers of self-assessment and style sense)--is what sets kids diagnosed with PDDs (pervasive developmental disorders) apart. It is also often what gives them heightened sensory perception and out-of-the-box creativity which Vanellope displays beautifully (her ability to see what others cannot, creative approach to problems, etc.) She is not just a quirky character that marches to the beat of a different drummer. I think a lot of 'normal' people like to think of themselves that way too.

No, there is something different about her; something in her code, her genetic make up and neural programming. This is PDD. This is what is at work with people with autism spectrum disorders. It is not something they control or choose and it does not necessarily affect their intelligence or ability to take care of themselves and others. It does often make it very hard to interact with other people, react in socially accepted ways, and cope with sensory overload. I don't know if that's what the writers had in mind but if you've seen the movie or watch it now, I'd be interested to know what you think.

*Small Spoiler Alert* I think the thing I loved most about the character in the movie was at the end, when she becomes accepted by the others (the reasons which I'm not going to analyze too deeply right now.) At first she appears to become a princess, as if she has completely changed and is 'normal' like all the others. PSYCH! Nope, she's just the same as she was, glitch and all. I LOVE THAT! If you are a person with ASD/PDD, you cannot magically be changed. There's no 'cure'. Why should we want one? We aren't 'wrong' or broken, just different.

I will leave you with a song and video I would otherwise never subject you to, but I love it. (Metaphors aside, whether this song is appropriate in a children's movie is also beyond the scope of what I want to deal with here!):



Note: All original text and materials by or commissioned by B. B. Shepherd are copyright 2012-2013 to China Blue Publishing.

Reviews for The Glister Journals: Bronze

More Glister Journals info and chapters at the book's website here: theglisterjournals.com

The Glister Journals: Bronze can be purchased through any bookseller, or purchase now at Amazon.com

Happy Mother's Day

A short post to wish all you mums out there a lovely Mother's Day with a special Mother's Day song from a very special lady. Flo Paris is the talented daughter of a musical friend of mine, orignally from California and now residing in Nashville. I got to know her a little when she was still in high school--an extremely talented performer even then.

Every February Flo asks her friends and fans to send in their ideas for song titles. She picks fourteen and then writes songs to them! This song, Make your Own Way, was written last year but she made a little video to go along with it and just released it for Mother's Day. It's lovely and her daughters are adorable. Please share with your moms and sisters and friends!

Happy Mother's Day!



Note: All original text and materials by or commissioned by B. B. Shepherd are copyright 2012-2013 to China Blue Publishing.

Reviews for The Glister Journals: Bronze

More Glister Journals info and chapters at the book's website here: theglisterjournals.com

The Glister Journals: Bronze can be purchased through any bookseller, or purchase now at Amazon.com

Friday, May 3, 2013

An Interview with Asidefromwriting Blog

Hi everyone, I just wanted to let you know about a cool blog site called asidefromwriting. I am featured there today in an interview and later in the month there will be a feature of my novel Bronze. I'd love for people to stop by and say Hi! You can also enter to win books from all the authors involved!

It's a great blog with YA book reviews and features from authors. The bloggers themselves are also writers: Melanie Cusik-Jones (Hope's Daughter and Outlanders from The Ambrosia Sequence series),

Hope's Daughter

Tony Talbot (American Girl, Over the Mountain, many others)

Over the Mountain

Jade Varden (Justice, The Tower, two more in the Deck of Lies series)

Justice

and Stephanie who, I believe, is working on her debut novel.

So I hope you'll go on over and get to know me a little better! Have a great weekend everyone!



Note: All original text and materials by or commissioned by B. B. Shepherd (including music reviews) are copyright 2012-2013 to China Blue Publishing.

Reviews for The Glister Journals: Bronze

More Glister Journals info and chapters at the book's website here: theglisterjournals.com

The Glister Journals: Bronze can be purchased through any bookseller, or purchase now at Amazon.com

Saturday, April 13, 2013

Two Lovely Bronze Reviews . . .

. . . and a very flattering picture.

Ruth over at Reading...Dreaming, a book review blog in Uruguay (how cool is that?) did me the honor of requesting a book to review a few months ago. Unfortunately the first book went missing and I've imagined all kinds of interesting stories of where it might have gone and in whose hands it ended up! But she finally received the second book, liked it (yay!), and posted this lovely review.

One of the things I love most about being a writer is the connections I make to those people who like my book, write the reviews, and let me know who they are. I now have friends in Canada, Australia, and Uruguay, as well as several dotted around the United States. The thought of doing a real, physical book tour makes me shudder, except that I would love to get to meet these people. (I do plan on doing a virtual book tour when the e-book of Bronze is released and again when the second book is released, but this will not require airplanes, scratchy hotel sheets, or crowds!)

Then she posted this picture of the bookmark of another author's novel:

Kiss Me @KimberlyKinrade on Twitpic

It took me a moment to recognize my own book right behind the bookmark (you can just see the "n" and "z" of Bronze). Totally made my day! Though I'm not sure what that author thinks of it--it looks like she's kissing MY book! I will have to somehow return the favor!

Thursday (two days ago) I received e-mail notification that ForeWord Reviews had reviewed the copy of Bronze I had sent. This is huge for me. There are not many widely (editorially) accepted book review entities that review indie books. I have received a couple of other media reviews, but nothing on the scale of ForeWord. So I was, as the song says, noivous.

Yeah . . . you heard me. Bo Diddly.

Now, I've lived long enough to know myself pretty well. I had a rehearsal that night so I didn't want to have anything else on my mind. I also knew that one way or the other the results of the review might (and probably would) keep me awake, so I didn't look at the review until I got home after work on Friday (yesterday). I figured if it was negative and snarky at least I didn't have to get up early in the morning and act like a normal person.

Apart from a couple of comments about certain information the main character, Allison, didn't give soon enough (which, if you understand the concept of the book, was for a reason) and subjective opinion about formatting (if we had formatted over more pages the book would have been HUGE and cost more too!), the reviewer seemed to really like it and basically "got" it, as much as anybody can at this point anyway (bearing in mind, again, the concept of assumptions and how much information is still to be revealed!) The full review can be read here: ForeWord Review--The Glister Journals: Bronze

More music? Of course!!! I don't think I've mentioned it before, but I wake up with music playing in my head. Every. Single. Day. The really weird thing is that I don't wake up and the song then starts; I wake up and the song is in the middle somewhere. That's seems odd, but maybe everbody does that. It's usually something different every day, but this past week this song has been there several mornings. I love the trumpet part most, but after watching the video (just now) I love it even more and realize how appropriate it is for this post. This is what these lovely, confirming things make me feel like. (The dancing, the dancing! Not blowing things up! LOL)



Note: All original text and materials by or commissioned by B. B. Shepherd (including music reviews) are copyright 2012-2013 to China Blue Publishing.

Reviews for The Glister Journals: Bronze

More Glister Journals info and chapters at the book's website here: theglisterjournals.com

The Glister Journals: Bronze can be purchased through any bookseller, or purchase now at Amazon.com

Saturday, March 9, 2013

Artwork, Road Trip, Music (Part Four)

The Glister Journals: Chris and Merle

This is Chris and Merle from The Glister Journals as imagined by artist Katelynn Chambers, the last of four pieces commissioned from her to coincide with the release of the hardback edition of Bronze. I absolutely adore her style and her sense of color. All her work affects me quite deeply. I look forward to commissioning (and/or working with) her more in the future.

The Road Home (A continuation)

As usual for me, I didn't get on the road until much later than I had planned, but still wanted to try to make it to Roseburg, Oregon for the night. It began to rain steadily soon after I left my friends and Blaine behind. By the time I reached Mount Vernon, it was pouring so there wasn't much to see and I was preoccupied with just seeing the road ahead. But beyond Olympia the rain subsided, the sun came out, and all was green and beautiful.

Around Kalama, a large body of water to the west sparked my curiosity and I began looking for possible offramps to get closer and explore. Keeping in mind how far I wanted to get today (and how far I still had to go) I didn't want to get too far from the highway. Unfortunately nothing presented itself until Woodland. There, signs for the mysterious 'Port of Woodland' and the even more exotic sounding 'Dike Access' proved too alluring, and I had to strike off in search of whatever I could find.

Adding to the sense of adventure was what appeared to be a fair sized fire not too far distant.

Fire in the Distance

Considering how green everything was, and that it had been pouring all morning, I felt relatively safe and determined to find water, if not the source of the smoke.

What I didn't realize then (but see now that I am looking at a physical map) was that the river, the Columbia, is actually the border with Oregon, though it lay north to south (or vice versa, I don't remember which way the water was flowing) and that the other side of the river was in fact Oregon and had been for quite a while. Isn't geography wonderful. Anyway, it was very pretty, but I couldn't find any free river access so headed back the way I had come. I sorely wanted to stop and take pictures of all the emergency vehicles and the almost completely burned down house, but wasn't sure whether that would be okay. It was obviously a training exercise, but I wasn't sure how they'd feel about my taking pictures. Sometimes I don't mind risking a little trouble, but trouble takes time and I still had a long way to drive.

I finally found a place to take some decent pictures just before turning back onto the Dike Access Road.

Columbia River, Washington

Having quite a way to go before reaching Roseburg, I pulled over at a rest stop somewhere in Oregon to stretch my legs and snooze for a few minutes. It was an extremely pretty area and I wish I had written down the name of the place (if it had one).

Somewhere in Oregon Somewhere in Oregon

Music

For this leg of the journey I listened mostly to Keane's latest album, Strangeland. It wasn't until I had got it home from the store and ripped it onto my computer that I found that it was a Japanese release with bonus tracks. Goody. The bad part of that is that all the track information is in Japanese, which meant manually renaming everything. Luckily the song titles transferred just fine to my MP3 player so at least I could see what they were while I traveled.

Now, I have to say that, if you like Keane's sound, you will probably like this album, but I can't say there was anything that surprised me or bowled me over right away. The opening song, "You Are Young," is nice but the second track, "Silenced By The Night", jumps out as definitive Keane:

The following track has an even more distinctive sound. Keane utilizes very similar (sometimes exactly the same) interval patterns revolving around 2, 3, and 5. For example, "Disconnected" uses the pattern: 5-3-2-5-3-2-5-3.

This same pattern can be heard in "Day Will Come." Past Keane songs you may remember with distinctive 2, 3, 5 patterns are: "Is It Any Wonder" (2-2-3-3-5-5-3-2) "Nothing In My Way" (2-3-2-3-5 2-3-2-3-5 2-3-2-3) "Crystal Ball" 5 3-6-5 2-3-L7 2-3-L7 5-5-5-3-2-3-L7 There are other motifs Keane uses, but these are the ones that jump out at me and make the songs so darn catchy.

"Sovereign Light Cafe is another that took hold of me immediately but for a completely different reason. The opening melody is exactly like a song I wrote eons ago. No, you've never heard it and you never will, but it took me way back to days when I spent my time writing music instead of words. The lyrics grabbed me next; so evocative. It took me back to days and nights spent in Santa Monica, along the beach front, on the pier; it also took me back to England where I lived for several years, and time spent at Brighton, Southampton, other seaside towns. When I got home and saw the video, it resonated with me even more. It's now one of my favorites.

I enjoyed the whole album, some tracks standing out more than others, and even the bonus tracks are good. My favorite of these (also reminding me strongly of England) is "The Boys" but I couldn't find a video for it. I guess you'll just have to buy the album!

I will leave you with this, set to beautiful locations and subbed in Spanish, "Somewhere Only We Know" (3-2-3-5-3-2 LOL)



Note: All original text and materials by or commissioned by B. B. Shepherd (including music reviews) are copyright 2012-2013 to China Blue Publishing.

Reviews for The Glister Journals: Bronze

More Glister Journals info and chapters at the book's website here: theglisterjournals.com

The Glister Journals: Bronze can be purchased through any bookseller, or purchase now at Amazon.com

Thursday, February 21, 2013

Seven Line Blog Challenge

I was recently invited by a Goodreads friend, Hazel West, to participate in an author Seven/Seven blog challenge.

It sounded like a fun way to give a sneak peek into whatever book you are working on and increase exposure for others' work as well as your own.

These are the rules:

    1. Choose seven lines from page 7 or page 77 of your current work in progress.

    2. Invite seven other writers to post the same and link back to you.

    3. Mention and link back to the person who nominated you

Okay, here are my seven lines from page 7 of the next book in The Glister Journals series (rough draft). I am excited about introducing this new character. Background: On the first day of Allison's sophomore year, in a new class, a student has followed the teacher into the room, talking non-stop:

    “Take a seat Benjamin,” she said patiently. “We’ll have to talk another time.”

    He seemed about average height for a boy—probably about the same height as me—and very slim. His hair was mostly hidden under a cap but appeared to be straight, wispy, and dark auburn. His brows were very dark and straight, his eyes also dark and slightly almond-shaped. There was an attractive but foreign, almost other-worldly look about him.

    “Okay,” he said lightly and turned to find a seat. As he did so he looked straight at me, his expression open, and though his lips were closed his smile was wide. I found myself returning it.

I will add participants as I hear back from them.

Participating authors:

Hazel West's seven line entry is here on her blog, Hazel West's Character Purgatory. Thanks again Hazel!

I'm still waiting on answers, but would love to add a few more authors to the challenge. If you'd like to participate, please leave a comment!



Note: All original text and materials by or commissioned by B. B. Shepherd are copyright 2012 to China Blue Publishing.

Reviews for The Glister Journals: Bronze

More Glister Journals info and chapters at the book's website here: theglisterjournals.com

The Glister Journals: Bronze can be purchased through any bookseller, or purchase now at Amazon.com

Saturday, February 2, 2013

Valentine's Day Giveaway

First of all, thank you so much to the members of Goodreads who commented so kindly on my interview there and entered the giveaway. I loved hearing your thoughts. And congratulations to the winners. I hope you enjoy the books!

On to the current giveaway...

Why Valentine's Day? Because it's the anniversary of Bronze's first publication! It seems only right to recognize the day with something special, so I'm offering two paperback copies of Bronze. I am trying Rafflecopter for the first time with this giveaway, here:

(This giveaway is closed)

You can also enter on throughThe Glister Journals Facebook page or through Glistering:B's Blog on Wordpress.

Good luck!



Note: All original text and materials by or commissioned by B. B. Shepherd are copyright 2012-2013 to China Blue Publishing.

Reviews for The Glister Journals: Bronze

More Glister Journals info and chapters at the book's website here: theglisterjournals.com

The Glister Journals: Bronze can be purchased through any bookseller, or purchase now at Amazon.com

Saturday, January 19, 2013

YABC Interview and Giveaway

Hi all, I just wanted to tell you of a current giveaway! The Young Adult Book Club on Goodreads is hosting a giveaway of two hardbound copies of my novel, Bronze, to coincide with the interview. If you are a member of YABC, please stop by and leave a comment to be entered to win a copy!

Even if you're not a member, the interview can be read here: B B Shepherd Interview

If you're not a currently a member of Goodreads, consider joining. It's a great place to find and discuss books!



Note: All original text and materials by or commissioned by B. B. Shepherd are copyright 2012-2013 to China Blue Publishing.

Reviews for The Glister Journals: Bronze

More Glister Journals info and chapters at the book's website here: theglisterjournals.com

The Glister Journals: Bronze can be purchased through any bookseller, or purchase now at Amazon.com

Sunday, January 6, 2013

The End Has Come . . .

. . . and gone! The end of the year that is. Of course the anti-climactic non-apocalypse has absolutely ruined our plans for a post-apocalyptic tea, but all's well that ends well I suppose.

As far as life on this end of the computer goes, it goes well, though I'm feeling very much like Wonderland's White Rabbit, but instead of "I'm late, I'm late for a very important date!" it's more, "I know, I know, you a proper blog post I owe!" (Sorry, had to twist the gammar there.)

I normally don't make New Year's resolutions--I have a dismally bad record of keeping them--but this year I feel it's not only a good idea but positively necessary. That's right, I need to Make A List. And as I didn't update my Thanksgiving list last year, I will list my intentions for this new year here, mostly for myself; an easy place to look them up when I start to forget. Here we go (and yes, there will be music later):

1. I will WRITE every day. I tried to do it this last year but it didn't happen. This year, even if it is only a paragraph or two (though hopefully more--once I get started I can usually keep going for a few pages at least) I will put pen to paper, fingers to keyboard, one way or the other, and WRITE! Book Two of The Glister Journals is back on track and I'm hoping for a later this year or early 2014 release.
2. I will practice MUSIC every day. Not just listen to it or sing along (that goes without saying), but actively practice SKILZ! At least one instrument a day and guitar at least four times a week. Hold me to it!
3. I will READ FICTION every day. Although I am constantly reading something, either nonfiction books, articles, or researching things, I have gone for long periods without picking up a novel, and gosh darn it, I LOVE reading. It has already become my habit to read before falling asleep (although I read somewhere that it's not good for you for one reason or another--but I don't remember) and often if I have time before work in the morning too. So I just plan on keeping that going.

I will even go out on a limb and challenge myself to read 25 books this year. I know that probably seems like a wimpy number to a lot of you, but I really need to WRITE more than I need to READ, so I'm trying to be realistic. I have a lot of older works to catch up on as well as new books that have come out that I'm interested in. My personal library (and books I plan on reading in the future) is listed at LibraryThing and Goodreads, mostly at the latter because it's easier to add them, and any reviews I write will be there also. If you're a member, please stop by and say "Hi!"

4. I will DRAW at least three times a week: just sketching, not necessarily trying to make a finished product, but getting back into practice. It's the one area of my life that has been the most neglected for years now. I will also work toward creating complete pieces, but for now it seems more important to just flex those muscles.
5. (And the MOST IMPORTANT if I am to accomplish numbers 1-4) I will spend less time surfing, rabbit-trailing, digressing, and checking updates on my COMPUTER. It's such a jealous, selfish tyrant. It's time I put it in its place!
6. (Which I will allow myself to include in #1) I will endeavor to post to my BLOG at least twice a month, even if it's just a review Bronze has received, a giveaway that I've opened or interview I've done, or my opinion of music I've recently found or purchased. I hope to hit the road for some events (pictures!) and I have an idea for a regular "retro" category too that I think will be fun.

Exercise? Lose weight? Eat less chocolate? Pfft. As if resolutions have ever helped me with those!

So to start off the New Year, I'd like to share some music--not exactly mainstream or new, but great stuff--that has recently been brought to my attention and which I'd like to bring to yours!

The first band, Roll the Tanks are originally from Massachusetts (lately of L.A) and had their first release in 2008. I really like these guys and look forward to following them. Sound? Well, Elvis Costello was the first thing that jumped to mind (who I love), especially the lead singer's voice, but also The Killers and someone else I'm having a hard time putting my finger on . . . if I figure it out I'll come back and edit. This is off their 2012 release, Roll The Tanks. This is "Toeing The Line," my favorite of theirs right now:

Then there's Art of Dying. Wow. These guys are blowing me away. I wish I had more time in this post to really dig into the sound and substance, but I can't do them justice here. I could easily compare them to quite a few other edgy alternative bands (one of which is one of my favorite bands) with metal/hard rock overtones (yes, OVERtones, not undertones) but that wouldn't be doing them justice either. From Johnny Hetherington's heartfelt acoustic piano rendition of Sorry to the harder edges of the next song, Die Trying, these guys from Canada have my attention! I look forward to seeing them live somewhere, hopefully this year! (Any chance of a Bay Area show guys?)

Finally, a relative young band that is going to bear watching, Red Tide Rising (the link is to their Facebook page) has an Extra Cool factor in having a girl bass player. I'll admit the song reminds me of Staind and I hear a little James Hetfield in lead singer's voice, but it's a great start and I look forward to hearing more. Although they've had a couple of releases, I couldn't find links to other music (help me out guys?) and could only find an official video to one single at this time, but it's quite powerful, Finding Home:

If you like what you've heard from these bands, let them know! Please go to their sites, their Facebook pages, and their Twitters, Like them, Follow them, tell your friends, buy their stuff!

Hope 2013 is a stellar year for you!



Note: All original text and materials by or commissioned by B. B. Shepherd are copyright 2012 to China Blue Publishing.

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