Sunday, December 30, 2012

Random Thoughts: 2012 Resolutions Revisited

Since it is now the last few days of December 2012, I thought It would be fun for once to see if I managed to do the things I said I'd do (or try doing).

The following was copied from my post in January.

1) To AGAIN be more loyal to my blog and post more frequently and regularly, and to get it redesigned and nice and tidy 
    Unbelievably, I actually did WORSE than the past 2 years! Less posts...I wonder how THAT happened. Craziness I say. I WILL DO BETTER in 2013!

2) To finish up the rest of my college degree, to the best of my abilities
    Since graduating uni, I've started a new program and am halfway through the first year. *fingers crossed I pass!*

3) To lose 5kg
    What is it about 2012?? I ate MORE than I think I have ever eaten! Damn those Groupons. Lol.
4) To take up photography seriously
    Bah! Still pretty much untouched.

5) To make new blog buddies
    Made some good ones this year. I hope our friendship will continue to grow.

6) To save more money for my future travels and spending wisely on books!
    I think I overdid my book buying this year. Will "try" to cut back next year. "yeah right"

7) To attend more events and workshops
     Am dropping this one for awhile, STILL don't have the time.

8) To travel more and read more 
     Didn't get to do much travelling this year sadly. Lots of family issues came up.

9) To get a part-time job AND learn to drive!
     Worked quite a few months AND did not learn how to

10) To be a better person (calmer and more patient)
       Yet again, people still test my patience but I will continue trying to progress.

11) To clear the clutter that’s in my house

Reading Goals

1. To Read More YA & Dystopian Books
           Read quite a few and LOVED THEM! Will blog soon! I hope.
      2. To Read The Odyssey, Complete Works of Sherlock Holmes (have had it for years) & Shakespeare (all of which I already possess)
           TBR is freakishly getting longer....I'll pass on this for now.

3. To Read Books before Watching the Movie Versions
     Failed when it came to Hunger Games. Loved the movie though.

4. Blog About Books Read
    Read below.
          I like to read and sometimes it comes in a marathon, yet I can never find the time to blog about  them, this is the year to change that habit!

Blogging Goals

      1. Blog more! 
          Getting worse strangely.

      2. Learn to Comment More
          Been trying this a bit. Getting better!

3. Get My Blog Button & Bar And Reorganize My Whole Blog
          Still waiting on my blog designer to deliver the goodies. SIGH...

Other Goals

     1. Continue (and PASS) My Studies
     2. Learn To Drive
     3. To Lose 10kg
     4. To Improve On My Photography Skills
     5. To Clear the Clutter That’s in My House
     6. To Be A Better Person 

2012 has been especially trying for us all. What with the horrific random shootings, freakish natural disasters, and all the other nasties like the economy and such.

Just remember that we (at least) managed to survive an "apocalypse"! Put THAT on your resume next time. That could be fun.

Keep on living your lives everyone! To the fullest!

Goodbye 2012!!

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Giveaway Goodies: AND THE WINNER IS: Gift Card Giveaway Hop

I took awhile picking a winner as the first few did not meet all the requirements. So I had to keep on rolling for a new one and checking the entries. Blah know all that.

Loved reading all the present ideas you're all getting for others this year. Very cool. I myself have not finished my Christmas shopping and it's NEXT WEEK! *runs*

ANYWAY....the winner is:


Pic taken from
And Megan has just replied so that's it for this giveaway.

But do stick around. I'll be planning something for next month, which is not only the start of a BRAND NEW YEAR (since we'd have survived the Mayan prediction and all) but also my birth month. Woo hoo!!

Happy Holidays & A Very Merry Wonderful Christmas (if we're still here lol) and a Better New Year!

Friday, December 14, 2012

The Bookworm: Book Blast - A Hard Act to Follow by Henry Bushkin

A Hard Act to Follow by Henry Bushkin

"A Hard Act to Follow," is a non-fiction literary account of Henry Bushkin's tenure as Johnny Carson's lawyer, business partner, and friend. The book gives genuine insight into the 'Carson behind Johnny' with candid personal vignettes about the two, during the rollicking years when Johnny was the undisputed king of television. This is an engaging, eye-opening, anecdote-packed story about a young lawyer and his client, one of the biggest celebrities in the country. This funny, unfiltered account gives readers a look at the Johnny Carson that none but a select few really knew.

"A Hard Act to Follow” by Henry Bushkin provides a stirring account into Johnny Carson’s world—as told by Carson’s closest confidant.

The New Yorker article by Kenneth Tynan from 1978, included the following question and answer:

Tynan: When you’re at home, whom do you entertain?

Carson: My lawyer, Henry Bushkin, who’s probably my best friend.

Praise for the Book

"I loved the book." ~Wayne Newton

"Henry was Johnny's closest friend for many years which becomes clear through many of the wonderful
chapters of the book." ~Bob Trapenberg

"The book is full of tough love, humor, cultural history, sadness, humor, love, loss, well I guess I am saying it is full of life." ~Rupert Garcia

" Henry's portrayal of Johnny was spot on. I highly recommend this book which is the closest the reader
will ever get to know the real Carson." ~ Ed Weinberger, former Tonight Show writer and Producer for Carson Productions

"A beautifully easy read that pulls you in to an effortless journey through Johnny Carson’s effortful life. The glamour  the fellow celebrities behind the curtain, the loyalties, and the betrayals. It certainly provides new insight on decisions and the lives that are behind the scenes." ~Kathy Davis, Kathy Takes on Books

"I have read this book and it is FAB! If you love reading about celebrities, this is awesome. It is also a great memoir as well. I am a huge memoir fan so this one was a real treat and one of the best I have read in this genre in a long time" ~Mary, Bookhounds Blog

"Bushkin's easy, unpretentious style allows the reader to be a fly on the wall as this inside story plays out in the rarified air on which Johnny thrived. "A HARD ACT TO FOLLOW" is a must read whether you grew up on Johnny or never heard of him. And then there are the supporting characters -- from the Rat Pack to Johnny's Ice Queen mother ranging around the pages disturbing the peace. I read it straight through in 90 minutes and was left wanting more."  ~Sandy Ignon, Screenwriter (RANSOM).

"The tales are epic in nature and stretch from the first page to the last. “A Hard Act to Follow” is an honest appraisal of Carson and shows his dark side. In this, Bushkin strikes the right blend of salacious detail with an appropriate dose of discretion. Sure, you’ll learn more detail about Carson’s marriages--in a tasteful way. Bushkin will leave you wanting more. Great books will do that." ~Barry Mordis, Senior VP at Merryl-Lynch

"No one would describe Johnny as easy going-there was an edge to him that Bushkin always managed to soften. He continues to do that in this book. There was that challenging side of Johnny which is also captured in the book. Henry was Johnny's closest friend for many years which becomes clear through many of the wonderful chapters of the book. All in all a great book to read." ~Bob Trapenberg, Johnny's former Tennis Pro.

Author Henry Bushkin

Henry Bushkin is an experienced lawyer who practices in both California and New York. He currently lives in Los Angeles where his children also reside.

Blog Tour Now Through January 11th

Tour Schedule

Book Blast Giveaway

$50 Amazon Gift Card or Paypal Cash

Ends 12/26/12

Open only to those who can legally enter, receive and use an Gift Code or Paypal Cash. 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.

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The Bookworm: Book Blast - Blood Oath by T.L. Clarke

The battle against pure evil begins. Friendships are betrayed. Rivals bond...and powers collide.

Before I discovered that I was born into a secret society called the Eternals, blood-oath Warriors sworn to track and slay the dark and evil creatures that walk the shadows of the earth, the only major thing that I, I mean we--that's me, Jessica, Rosalinda, and Zora--cared about was starting our freshman year at Vineswell Academy, the prestigious boarding school for girls.

But that was way before the blinders were cruelly ripped from our eyes and cold reality slapped us on the back of our heads with a chain of not-so-nice realities, like the fact that everything we knew about our mothers was all lies, essentially smoke and mirrors designed to hide their very secretive lives as Circles, women Warriors inside the very deadly world of the Eternal Warriors.


            “Your wicked magic will not work on me, Eternal. The choice is simple. Break the curse.” His voice was smooth like honey, coaxing and very mesmerizing.

            I laughed bitterly. “Using the enthrall spell will not ease the pain of my final decision.” Part of me was quaking in my shoes, but the other part was irrationally calm. The conflicting emotions were tearing me apart. I looked at him with more calm than I was actually feeling as I continued, “I cannot give you what you want. The curse remains until sacrifices are made.”

            What in the world was I saying? I was practically sealing my death by telling him no. The Gabrielle side of my brain was screaming to just tell him what he wanted to hear to save my life, but the soul that was currently possessing me was saying quite the opposite.

            Tears slipped down my cheeks. “What shall your sacrifice be?”

            “You,” he responded in a voice laced with pure venom.

            I watched unflinchingly as his swords roared with flames, slicing smoothly into my body. Fire encircled me; wicked flames licked my skin without mercy, burning me from the outside in. I gasped with pain, banging against the shell of my body with all my might, but I was unwillingly trapped inside of the fiery tomb of pain. I silently begged for escape as the heat smothered me, until the rational part of my brain screamed furiously that this was just a dream; just wake up, and it would be over. Or would it?


            I heard my name being called, but it was distorted and warped, like it was being called through a wind tunnel.

            “Gabi, wake up.”


Author T.L. Clarke

I write Preteen/Teen Fiction. I also write Adult Fiction (Paranormal Romance) as my alter-ego Sedona Venez. I'm a  lifelong reader with a fascination with mythology and anything paranormal. When I'm not writing, I can be found watching bad movies, listening to music, and traveling.

I Am A Reader, Not A Writer

Book Blast Giveaway

$50 Amazon Gift Card or Paypal Cash

Ends 12/27/12

Open only to those who can legally enter, receive and use an Gift Code or Paypal Cash. 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. Giveaway was organized by Kathy from I Am A Reader, Not A Writer and sponsored by the author. VOID WHERE PROHIBITED BY LAW.

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Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Giveaway Goodies: Gift Card Giveaway Hop

Firstly, a big thank you to Kathy from I Am A Reader, Now A Writer and Mary from Sweeping Me for hosting this great hop!

This Giveaway Hop, probably my last for 2012, will run from December 11th to 17th so you have ample time to join all the great blogs hosting their own giveaways along the Hop.

I think this is an awesome Giveaway Hop just because I'm sure we all could use an extra push to help out with the holiday gift buying! I know I do!

So not to dilly dally, here's my little offering! A $15 GC to Samhain Publishing! Isn't that cool? You get to pick anything you want! And I will be sending you an e-card so please check your email address carefully!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Thanks for entering my little giveaway here. Why not hop over to the other great blogs on the list and score some more wonderful GC! It IS a Gift Card Giveaway Hop after all! Lots of luck and fun!

Monday, December 3, 2012

Random Thoughts: November RAK Wrap-Up & December RAK Sign-Up

November slipped past so quickly! Christmas and New Year's is now just around the corner. And now December is a time of giving so let's call on the Random Acts of Kindness (RAK) and spread some Christmas joy to others no matter where they are in the world!
November was a little different for me. I didn't send out a book but instead, an Amazon GC which was wonderfully utilized by the receiver to get a book she really wanted off her wishlist! The recipient of my little November RAK was:
miki @ Lecture toute une Aventure from Belgium

And from the same miki, I got:

her lovely handmade bookmark! JUST FOR ME! plus some cute Smurfy stickers!

Yet again, a BIG thanks to the gals over at Book Soulmates for continually hosting this great monthly event! A lot of bookish joy has been spread around the world because of them.

Here's what you need to know to sign up for December!
Please read carefully &  follow all rules!  Thank you!

  • Please sign-up each month that you can participate (and by participate, we mean give as well as receive).
  • Show off your participation by grabbing our RAK button (code is in the right sidebar).
  • Create a wish list (on Amazon, Goodreads, or your blog, etc) and post it in the Google Doc located in each R.A.K post for the month.
  • If you choose to do a R.A.K for someone, check out their wish list and contact that blogger directly for their information.
  • Once you receive a RAK, send an email to [rakbybooksoulmates @ gmail . com] so that they can update the Google Doc. IT IS VERY IMPORTANT THAT YOU SEND EMAILS TO THIS ADDRESS!
  • E-book participation is limited to files being gifted directly to a person from the e-book store. Amazon's Kindle Store is set up to allow this, as well as the Kobo store and we believe Barnes & Noble with Nook as well.
  • At the end of the month, SHOW US YOUR R.A.K by making a "RAK Wrap-Up" post.  This post should include who you SENT gifts to as well who you RECEIVED gifts from :)
OPEN TO EVERYONE including all our International brethren!
Remember, there's always the Book Depository and they offer FREE shipping!

Easy peezy!!

Here's my Wishlist if you'd like to share the book love with me! THANKS.

Here are a few of my top wishlist books for this month:
Breathe by Sarah Crossan
*I'd love anything from my wishlist really*
Links you will need:
  • Sign up for December [HERE]
  • See who else is participating [HERE]
  • If you have any questions regarding RAK, please contact them via the following: rakbybooksoulmates @ gmail . com