Fortunately I was able to find the same stock photography for the boys so the cover has a similar look as the e-book version.
As a member of Romance Writers of America, I like to support the individual chapters who accept digital-first and digital-only books in their published author contests. Earlier this year, I entered Take Me Home in the Oklahoma RWA’s International Digital Awards. It won first place in the Contemporary Novel category, and I recently received this awesome plaque in the mail.
Huge thanks to the contest coordinators and judges for their time and efforts in running and judging such a professional contest, their tweets and other mentions of my book’s win, and for the beautiful personalized award. I love it!
Last week I posted at Loose Ends (the Loose Id author blog) about Wordle, a neat web app that generates word clouds of any text.
I’ve created clouds using sample text from each of my books and added the Wordles to my website. Just a different way for readers to preview my stories.
I was surprised by some of the words that showed up in prominence. And some that didn’t.
And here’s one for a preview of my next book release, HOW TO SAVE A LIFE:
My books are now on the Kindlegraph website. You can request a personalized autograph with the cover for each book (MORE, BREATHE, and TAKE ME HOME), and it will be sent directly to your Kindle.
If you want the inscription personalized: When you send in your request, insert your name as you’d like it to appear into the comments box.
Get started here.
“Life can be like a roller coaster…
And just when you think you’ve had enough,
and you’re ready to get off the ride
and take the calm, easy merry-go round…
You change your mind, throw your hands in the air
and ride the roller coaster all over again.
That’s exhilaration…that’s living a bit on the edge…that’s being ALIVE.”
Here’s some news from my recent blogging hiatus:
The Good News
- Breathe was listed in RT Book Reviews magazine as a must-have from RT readers alongside some of my favorite authors and books. The mention (on page 3) was part of the very exciting feature article “It’s Raining Men: Tackling The Torrents Of Male/Male Romantic Fiction Flooding The Market.” Huge thanks to all who mentioned the book to RT!
- The Happily Ever After blog at USA TODAY featured the trailer for TAKE ME HOME. Thanks to author Robin Covington for the mention!
- TAKE ME HOME placed first in the Erotica category of the 2012 FTHRW Lories Best Published contest.
- TAKE ME HOME also won first place in the Contemporary category of the 2012 Oklahoma RWA’s International Digital Awards.
- For the first time, books from digital-first publishers won in the Romance Writers of America RITA awards.
- My friend and critique partner’s first book Fairyproof is out this week (print is out now). Congrats, Constance Phillips! So proud of you!
- I lost my writing buddy in July. He held on for almost a year since his bad crash the vet thought he wouldn’t make it through. For most of that year, he did really well, so it was hard to see him lose all his strength and energy in the very end. He definitely wasn’t ready to go, and I wasn’t ready to let him. It’s not quite the same in my writing room anymore. I kept plugging away on the final edits for How to Save a Life (and it was nice to have something else to focus on), but it also made the moment bittersweet without him there.
Good-bye, my bubby. You made every day special in so many ways. Writing sure is lonelier without you.
International Day Against Homophobia is May 17th. To help spread the word and get people thinking about what homophobia is, what kinds of damage it can cause, and how we can all help to combat such discrimination and hatred, I’m participating in the Blog Hop Against Homophobia.
To view links to all the blogs participating in the hop and how you can enter each giveaway, go to http://hopagainsthomophobia.blogspot.com.
Keep reading for details on how to enter to win a copy of my latest eBook TAKE ME HOME.
SLOAN’S MESSAGE ABOUT HOMOPHOBIA
There are many ways people discriminate. One I’d like to share about today is discrimination through the support of laws that continue to ban gay marriage, or more precisely the act of discriminating by not supporting marriage equality.
There are many people who do not consider themselves to be homophobic. They know (and often love) gay men and women. They’re family and friends and coworkers and neighbors of LGBT people. They say they have no issues with gay relationships. Yet, they do not believe we need a federal law for marriage equality. They do not understand or acknowledge that gay and lesbian couples need the same protections afforded heterosexual marriages. Perhaps they are in favor of civil unions or some other designation for gays and lesbians, but are opposed to calling it marriage.
The thing is…Separate is not equal. Unequal leaves a lot of room for discrimination to occur, leaves room for legal interpretations that are not the same as the rights automatically granted to married couples.
A scenario like the video I’ve included below, and even worse—not being allowed to say good-bye or to care for my partner in an emergency—is a fear I live with every day. Without going into a long history of our lives, I’ll just say situations similar to what you’ll hear about in this video are a very real possibility in my life.
And yeah, that scares the hell out of me. Even after 20+ years of living with my partner, and no matter how many legal documents we sign, we are not married.
I have a roommate.
If you’re unsure about the federal government stepping in to legalize gay marriage, to protect gay and lesbian couples under the same rights as heterosexual marriages, please watch this video to the very end, and give it some thought.
What if that was you? What if that was your child?
Here’s what Shane says on the video’s YouTube page:
“It has been said that sharing personal stories is one of the most effective ways to change people’s hearts and minds. This is my story and I hope you are inspired to share it with others.”
For more information on combating homophobia, to donate to a worthy cause, or learn about more ways you can help, check out these sites:
- Americans for Marriage Equality
- The Coalition for Equal Marriage (UK)
- The Trevor Project
- Stop The Hate
- Straight But Not Narrow
- GLBT National Help Center
I’m giving away an ebook copy of Take Me Home for the Blog Hop Against Homophobia. To enter, leave a comment on this blog post stating you’d like to enter the giveaway. If you are unable to leave a comment for any reason, shoot me an email and I’ll add your comment for you.
Be sure to include a valid email address in the email form field in order to be entered in the drawing. Your email address is for my use only (in order to contact the winner). It will NOT be published on the blog or used for marketing/promotional purposes.
This contest ends at 11:59 pm EST on May 20th.
The winner will be randomly selected on May 21st and contacted via email. I’ll also post the winning name in a new post on the blog.
Thanks for stopping by and checking out Shane’s video!!
Check it out…my critique partner’s daughter made me this awesome trailer for Take Me Home. Thank you so much, Katelynn! It’s perfect for this story.
(If you can’t see the video, you can watch at YouTube)
Thanks to everyone who picked up a copy so far, and all the reviewers who have taken the time to read the book and write up a review. I’m thrilled so many of you have enjoyed it.
Here are a few of the wonderful remarks for Take Me Home:
“I loved both of the heroes in this book, and found myself easily rallying for their relationship to grow from being best friends to developing a loving, romantic relationship together that lived long within my heart long after the story was over.” Night Owl Reviews
“I can assure you that you will LOVE Take Me Home. This is a book that you will want to read over and over. Ms. Parker is an incredible writer and I have enjoyed every one of her books. But let me warn you…once you read her books you’re hooked and will find yourself waiting impatiently for her next one.” Books and Porn
“This isn’t just a romance, it is filled with plenty of heartfelt moments, action of both the steamy kind and adventure kind, it had everything you could want from an m/m romance read with a little mystery and plenty of suspense.” Book Devotee Reviews
“Oh, this was such a sweet, yummy friends-to-lovers story! … Great dynamic between the two guys with just the right combination of tender, sweet moments and scorching hot scenes, something Parker does so well in her books.” Joyfully Jay
As a thank-you to my readers and all readers of the romance genre, I’m holding a giveaway for free gift certificates (winners’ choice between Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and All Romance eBooks).
Here’s how the giveaway works:
One random winner will be selected from all who comment on this post. Additionally, for every 50 entries another gift certificate will be given away (up to a maximum of 6 total winners). All winners will have their choice from the following options:
- Option 1: $25 gift certificate to amazon.com
- Option 2: $25 gift certificate to barnesandnoble.com
- Option 3: $25 gift certificate to allromanceebooks.com
Rules and instructions for the giveaway are listed below. Contest closes at 11:59 pm EST Sunday, January 1, 2012 or as soon as there are 250 entries (whichever comes first).
Instructions / Rules
- To enter, leave a comment on this blog post indicating that you’d like to enter and share what you love about reading romances.
- Be sure to include a valid email address in the email form field in order to be entered in the drawing. Your email address is for my use only (in order to contact the winners). It will NOT be published on the blog or used for marketing/promotional purposes.
- If for any reason you cannot leave a comment, email me and I’ll post your comment for you (that way everyone can see how many entries there are).
- Winners are randomly drawn from the total list of entries.
- One entry per person please.
- Contest closes at 11:59 pm EST Sunday, January 1, 2012 or as soon as there are 250 entries (whichever comes first).
- Winners will be announced on the blog and privately emailed within 48 hours after the giveaway ends.
- If I do not hear back from any winner with his or her selection within two weeks, I reserve the right to select another winner.
Feel free to share the link to this blog post. There’s also a direct link to the giveaway on my website.
Good luck to all who enter and thank you again for your love of reading!
Also, for those of you interested in my latest release, Take Me Home, a friends-to-lovers romance, check out Chris’s post at Stumbling Over Chaos for a chance to win an ebook of Take Me Home. (Thanks, Chris, for hosting the giveaway!)
Happy reading in 2012!
Much love and happiness to you all.
Reminder: To enter the gift certificate giveaway, leave a comment on this blog post indicating that you’d like to enter and share what you love about reading romances.
Thanks to everyone who commented on my blog hop giveaway for all your interest in reading Take Me Home. And for the wonderful comments about my writing and the rainbow awards. I have the best readers!!
The winner of my blog hop giveaway is Sylwia. Congratulations, Sylwia! I’ve sent you an email.
Thanks again, everyone! Hope you all have a wonderful holiday season.