Thursday, December 8, 2011

My Six Month Blogversary + Giveaway!

Well hello there! How nice of you to drop by. Sit. Have some tea. Have some sweets. We're celebrating today!

Why?

Today is my six month blogversary here at I Write, I Read, I Review. From it's humble origins as "Okay. Everyone else on Absolute Write has a blog. I need one too." to the book blog that it is today, running my blog has certainly been an adventure.

I've made some wonderful friends, taken part in some really fun events and, oh yeah, I've read some great books too. Some that I might have read anyway, and others that I might never have crossed paths with had I not went down the road that I did with my blog. That's my favorite part: discovering new characters, new worlds and new authors that I have never heard of before. How else am I going to find things to add to the mountain that is my TBR pile?

Please join me for a few minutes as I take a look at my blog's past, present and future. (It's so close to Christmas I can't help setting the post up that way!) And be sure to stick around for what I hope is a totally epic giveaway at the end.

Looking Back...

How It All Started

This was my first post. Pretty different from my content now, huh? When I started blogging, I had no clue what I was doing. I didn't grasp the need to break content down into visually appealing chunks. I didn't realize how valuable links, lists, polls or asking good questions was. In short, I was a total noob. For anyone who might be just starting, take heart. I have been there, too.

How My Blog Became A Book Blog

When I won Summer on Fire by Kevin Craig I had two thoughts. One: OMG! OMG! I won something! *and* Two: Okay, wait. What is this book about again? I had actually entered Kevin's giveaway over on Absolute Write and completely forgotten about it. (I figured I was being nice and showing support by entering. It actually never occurred to me that I could win.)

I had just finished writing Moon Dance, and then reading and reviewing The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins. I noticed that people would actually leave a comment and maybe even join via GFC if I did that. So when I got Summer on Fire I decided to review it, too.

Yet again, people responded. I got some great blog comments from readers. I was also asked if my review could be featured in the Readers Choice Lounge. I had signed up with GoodReads by this point and I got authored by Patti Roberts, who liked my reviews over there.

Since I was trying to let Moon Dance cool before I read it again and began revisions, I decided that the best thing I could do for myself if I wanted to write YA was to sit down and start reading it. Since I was going to do that anyway, continuing to blog about it and review what I read just seemed to make total sense. And that's how this became a book blog. (And where I got the name I Write, I Read, I Review from when I finally give my blog a name other then "Kathy Ann Coleman").

My First NetGalley Book

I got some fantastic suggestions when I asked for books that I should read if I want to write YA romance. One of the distinctions that I quickly noticed, both among readers and writers, is that some people have a high level of disdain for what they consider "insta-love". As a writer of paranormal and fantasy, I am apparently part of the general category that makes this kind of love story.

I was curious how someone might write something different, and in asking about this in discussions was directed to read a lot of contemporary YA. I've certainly had the pleasure to read some gems: The Sky Is Everywhere by Jandy Nelson, Perfect Chemistry by Simone Eskeles and Shut Out by Kody Keplinger all spring instantly to mind.

But there was one recommendation that kept popping up that I was going to have to wait until February for and the wait was bad. Graffiti Moon by Cath Crowley is not being released here in North America until February 14th, 2012. I had no idea how I was going to wait that long. Then someone else who had reviewed it sent me a comment suggesting that I request it on NetGalley.

I did not think I was going to get a yes for that. I was way too new, had nowhere near the traffic a huge company would want in order to review a book. Then I got an e-mail saying yes. I jumped around like a crazy person when I got that. Oh, and the book is absolutely fabulous, too.

Zompacolypse!

I took part in three Halloween Hops and they were all super fun. But the one that I originally signed up for, and one that lead to a totally awesome friendship that continues to this day, was Zompacolypse.

I had a great time with the event. It was great to get to share my love of Daniel Waters' Generation Dead and to find out I'm not the only person on earth who has read it. But the friendship with DarkFallen & Greta has far outlasted the event. They were my first guests for Saturday Spotlight (which will be continuing in the new year -- I'm so busy with Christmas right now that I honestly don't have time!), I'm currently taking part in Bloggerhood of the Traveling Book for The Key (which was totally fabulous, by the way!) and I'm going to be taking part in a book tour with them this February. (I'll talk about that a little further down.)

My First Time As Part Of A Blog Tour

Getting to be part of the Mortal Obligation blog tour is the last thing I'll highlight here. This was my first time taking part in a blog tour and I totally loved it. I had a lot of fun interviewing Nichole Chase, her book was an excellent read and she is definitely an author that I hope to have visit here again. Thanks (again) to Bree from The Magic Attic for having me as part of the tour. I had a lot of fun.

Right Here, Right Now... 

Moon Dance Revisions

Temporary Cover
I bet some of you have noticed that the December post count is way lower then normal. Sorry 'bout that. But I've been extremely busy because I am finally working on my round one revisions for Moon Dance. (Plus there is this wee little thing called Christmas just around the corner, too.)

It's absolutely vital that I work on my revisions right now. Why? Because this is the time of year my book actually takes place and one of my goals in writing it is to capture the essence of the holiday season since it is such an important part of the story.

If you are interested in learning more about Moon Dance, feel free to check out it's page and read the Moon Dance Mondays posts that I do talking about various aspects of it and giving samples. I love hearing what people think about my work, especially right now when everything is still in flux. Thanks! :)

Earth Angel Review Needs Rescheduling

I feel a lot like the white rabbit right now. "I'm late! I'm late! I'm late!"

I really wanted to have a review of this up on Tuesday, but being truthful I haven't even had time to open the file and start it yet. Why? Well, my turn for reading The Key ended up starting on Friday so I juggled my schedule for that. I've also been reading The Mephisto Covenant along with the above listed Christmas planning and novel revisions. Fortunately this was not a book with a formal due date. I will be doing my best to get to this a.s.a.p. because I do want to read it. I absolutely loved Boyfriend From Hell. I've just not had time.

I bet some of you are sitting there scratching your heads and wondering why I don't have my blog booked and organized three months ahead. Quite simply, it never occured to me to do anything like that when I started it, and now that it is in full swing and full speed forward getting organized like that seems like the sort of thing that I'd need to find a magic lamp and ask a genie for. We all have weaknesses and I'm not afraid to tell you all that organization is one of mine.

Top Ten of 2011

This is an event I'll be doing in a few weeks and it's going to be so much fun. I did a Holiday Gift Guide last month and it got a lot of feedback, so I am even more excited to part in an event celebrating all of the best things that 2011 brought book-wise. You will definitely want to mark your calenders and drop by between December 26th through December 30th to hear all of my thoughts on the best books, best covers, best book boyfriends, best heroines (my character post) and books I'm most anxious for in 2012. It's going to be a blast and I'm really excited!

Ringing In The New Year...

Blue Sky Days Blog Tour

What a great way to start the new year! My friend Marie Landry is releasing her first book Blue Sky Days and I get to be part of the blog tour. I am really excited about this. I mentioned earlier that I love contemporary YA romances and Blue Sky Days definitely fits the bill. You can look for my review on February 10th. (And no, I won't be late for that one. I've already started the book.)

Miss World Blog Tour

Earlier I mentioned that I was involved in something else with Paranormal Wastelands and here it is. I get to be part of the Miss World blog tour. I will be doing a lot more coverage of this book in the coming weeks but I just found this out a few hours ago and I totally cannot resist sharing it with you all here. This book sounds great and I am very excited!

Let's Talk About Love

This is my "baby". The event that I am organizing for the month of February to celebrate everything romance within YA. I need to get my butt in gear and get an official post up, e-mails out and (*hopes and prays*) answers coming back in.

In short, it's a celebration of romance in YA. I'm hoping to have guest posts, author interviews, giveaways and more. Look for another post about this by the end of the week. I know I really need to get moving on this if I want it to succeed.

And now, what you've all been waiting for... 


There are going to be SIX winners from this giveaway. Please read all of the instructions and make sure you understand what is going on. Thanks!

The first TWO winners are going to be receiving their choice of *one* of the following books below, delivered via the Book Depository. This means that the books here are available anywhere that The Book Depository ships.

Shut Out
by Kody Keplinger
Read My Review!
Carrier of the Mark
by Leigh Fallon
Read My Review!
Dearly, Departed
by Lia Habel
Read My Review!
Obsidian
by Jennifer L. Armentrout
Read My Review!
The Iron King
by Julie Kagawa
Read My Review!
Divergent
by Veronica Roth
Read My Review!

Please note that if a book is part of a series and you already have the first one, you are totally welcome to request one of the latter books to add to your collection instead. 


The other FOUR winners are going to each win a new ebook of their choice from the options available below. I have never gifted an ebook before so depending on the format you need, etc. you may need to be a little patient with me as I sort this out.

Boyfriend From Hell
by E. Van Lowe
Read My Review!
The Key
by Felicia Rogers
Read My Review!
Mortal Obligation
by Nichole Chase
Read My Review!

Remembrance
by Michelle Madow
Read My Review!
The Scarlet Dagger
by Krystle Jones
Read My Review!


As with the books that I am giving away as physical copies, if there is a sequel to one of the books about and you would prefer to win that I'm more then happy to work with you and make that happen.

How To Enter...

The basic entry for the giveaway is really simple. All you need to do is leave your name and e-mail.

This giveaway is international, provided that The Book Depository delivers to you and / or that you are able to receive the ebook you select.

This giveaway will run from  December 8th until Monday January 2nd, 2012.

Extra Entries:

If you do the following things you can gain bonus entries that will up your chances to win.

-- +1: Please Subscribe via Feedburner. See that little orange icon up there with my GoodReads, Twitter, etc? Please click that one and subscribe to my blog. With the GFC changes that are happening in the new year making sure that people will still be all signed up is important to me, even though my blog is hosted by blogger. Thanks!

-- +1 Tweet about the giveaway. Everybody deserves a chance to win! Message: I want to win one of six books in @Katallina's six month blogversary giveaway! http://www.katreads.com/2011/12/my-six-month-blogversary-giveaway.html

-- +1 Click here to visit my TBR pile of doom. Leave a comment and suggest what I should read next. (Feeling extra energetic or really want something on there reviewed? Tell me *why* I should read it next.)

-- +2 Click here to read a special Christmas scene in Moon Dance between Sarena and Kyden. Leave a comment. (I normally don't mix my writing into my giveaways but since my book takes place around the holidays and I love this scene I'm making an exception.)

That's it! I hope it wasn't too painful. ;) Thanks so much for visiting my blog and taking part in my 6 month blogversary. Have a great day!

55 comments:

  1. Happy Blogversary!!!
    I just finished reading The Sky is Everywhere and yes, this book is amazing!
    Thanks a lot for the chance.

    Evie
    by.evie at yahoo dot com dot br

    ReplyDelete
  2. You have done great in 6 months--congrats to you and your success!! I am also taking place in the top 10 of 2011 and the Miss World Blog Hop..cant wait to see your posts on both!!

    Teri
    dirtybrit(at)ymail(dot)com

    and how much did you love Lola and the Boy Next Door???

    ReplyDelete
  3. Happy anniversary!

    Sarah
    booklove at sawcatsverse dot com

    +added to Google Reader

    ReplyDelete
  4. Nice giveaway! Happy blogoversary. :)

    Kristilyn
    readinginwinter AT gmail DOT com

    ReplyDelete
  5. Aww, I can't wait for my six month blogaversary ! I love how you did a retrospective thing and how you just kind of fell into book blogging.

    booksandsensibility@gmail.com

    + I tweeted : http://twitter.com/#!/Books_Sense/status/144838077876142081

    + Feedburner

    + Suggested Night Circus and Delirium on TBR post

    +Left a comment about snowmen in your Moon Dance Christmas scene.

    ReplyDelete
  6. Congrats and thanks for the giveaway!
    probablyreading(at)gmail(dot)com

    ReplyDelete
  7. congrats on your achievement.
    WTG just love your wall paper too.
    thanks for the great book giveaway.
    D. Butler
    dayleb at telus dot net

    ReplyDelete
  8. confirmed email sub. as
    dayle b at telus dot net

    ReplyDelete
  9. Dec 8
    vinci777 DAYLE
    I Write, I Read, I Review: My Six Month Blogversary + Giveaway! goo.gl/T17f8
    3 minutes ago Favorite Reply
    dayleb at telus dot net

    ReplyDelete
  10. Aww, I can't wait for my six month blogaversary
    Congrats and thanks for the giveaway!

    rogcaprino[at]hotmail[com]
    + I tweeted : https://twitter.com/#!/rocapri/status/144948114833408004
    + Feedburner

    + Suggested eve on TBR post

    ReplyDelete
  11. Congrats on 6 months!
    Thanks for the giveaway :)

    monagargATyahooDOTcom

    ReplyDelete
  12. Tweeted
    https://mobile.twitter.com/#!/Kulmona/status/144951175962312706

    monagargATyahooDOTcom

    ReplyDelete
  13. Please review The Night Circus. I've been seeing this book around the blogosphere and am very curious.

    ReplyDelete
  14. Thanks for the giveaway!

    +1 Suggested Across the Universe, Die for Me and Nightshade on TBR pile post

    klamber1 at unca dot edu

    ReplyDelete
  15. Congrats on your six month anniversary. Thanks for the giveaway!

    (+1) TBR Pile and commented
    (+2) Read Christmas Scene and left comment

    Rebecca
    readingwishes@hotmail.com

    ReplyDelete
  16. AWWWWWWWW your so sweet! Seriously you rock and happy six months of crazy blogging!

    I tweeted for ya: http://twitter.com/#!/paranormalwaste/status/144963970762153986

    And I'm sure you don't need this but...

    paranormalwasteland(at)gmail(com)

    ReplyDelete
  17. Great giveaway! Got my fingers crossed!

    TarraAnn85@aol.com

    I subscribed to your newsletter
    I commented on both your TBR list/ and your christmas story
    Tweeted: http://twitter.com/#!/TarraAnn85/status/144965865803223040

    ReplyDelete
  18. Congrats on the Blogoversary! :)

    i Tweeted (+1) and follow (+1)

    https://twitter.com/#!/okmommy0306/status/144977502811598848

    Terri M
    oklahomamommy0306@gmail.com

    ReplyDelete
  19. Congratulations!!

    Mary P.

    marypres(AT)gmail(DOT)com

    ReplyDelete
  20. I'm a subscriber.

    marypres(AT)gmail(DOT)com

    ReplyDelete
  21. Thanks for the giveaway! Have a wonderful day!

    Elizabeth L.
    etrabelsie[AT]gmail[DOT]com

    ReplyDelete
  22. Happy blogversary!!! My blog is around 2 months old and I feel like i have accomplished so much! I hope when I'm 6 months old ;) ill have done so many awesome things too!!

    mc.jay.jay(at)hotmail(dot)com
    GFC: Maji Bookshelf
    - juhina

    ReplyDelete
  23. Happy blogaversery!
    prettyhaydengurl@yahoo.com

    ReplyDelete
  24. Happy blogversary! Thanks so much for the giveaway!
    Confirmed e-mail through RSS!
    Tweet:http://twitter.com/#!/iheartmykindle/status/145185383062315009
    Commneted on TBR pile!
    Commented on story! Awesome by the way!
    e(dot)baker219(at)gmail(dot)com

    ReplyDelete
  25. Happy blogversary and thanks for this giveaway
    gfc micia
    +1 https://twitter.com/#!/micia18/status/145195250418335744
    blogmicia(at)yahoo(dot)it

    ReplyDelete
  26. Thank you for the giveaway
    Donna
    Ljldml@gmail.com

    ReplyDelete
  27. I subscribe via email
    Donna ljldml@gmail.com

    ReplyDelete
  28. Congrats on getting this far and all that you've accomplished! ^_^ Thanks for the giveaway!

    +1 I tweeted- https://twitter.com/#!/ohaiitschey/status/145250566833053696

    -Cheyenne T.
    mcrs_venin(at)hotmail(dot)com

    ReplyDelete
  29. Congrats on 6 months!
    Jenny
    tea4my3 at gmail dot com

    +1: Tweeted: http://twitter.com/#!/tea4my3/status/145257400109252608

    +1: Commeted on TBR pile (rec'd Die for Me or City of Bones)

    ReplyDelete
  30. Thank you for this. Im a follower and email subscriber +1

    chelle2006 @ aol.com

    ReplyDelete
  31. Happy Blogversary!

    +1 I suggested The Scorpio Races on your TBR post.

    throuthehaze at gmail dot com

    ReplyDelete
  32. Happy Blogversery!!

    Kylie1403 AT gmail DOT com

    +1 Feedburner (RSS)
    +1 Tweet - http://twitter.com/#!/Miss_Kylie1403/status/145484626142572544

    +1 TBR

    ReplyDelete
  33. Happy Blogversary!

    +1 Feedburner (RSS)

    +1 Tweet: https://twitter.com/#!/annafriday11/status/145652425624260608

    +1 TBR comment

    +1 Christmas scene comment

    Anna
    annafriday11 (@) gmail (dot) com

    ReplyDelete
  34. Happy Blogversary!

    unforgetable_dreamer_always (at) hotmail (dot) com

    ReplyDelete
  35. Happy Blogversry! I'm a follower - Aik. :)

    +1 Subscribed via Feedburner.

    +1 Tweet about the giveaway
    https://twitter.com/#!/aikchien/status/145711917586059265

    +1 I suggest you to read Delirium by Lauren Oliver.

    aikychien at yahoo dot com

    ReplyDelete
  36. Congrats and thanks for the awesome giveaway!
    Tweeted https://twitter.com/v97_/status/145769824272920576

    Vivian M
    vivianmah8(AT)hotmail(DOT)com

    ReplyDelete
  37. Thank you so much for the chance to win!
    tweet: https://twitter.com/#!/JanaRathouska/status/145880446918598657

    Jeanne
    Rathouska(dot)jana(at)gmail(dot)com

    ReplyDelete
  38. Great giveaway! Congrats!
    + subscribed via feedburner

    Ruthm.girl at yahoo dot com

    ReplyDelete
  39. Thanks for the giveaway!

    +1 I tweeted: http://twitter.com/#!/ravenamo/status/145948187256037376

    +1 I suggested a book (The Night Circus)

    +1 I read the snip from Moon Dance

    +1 I suscribed to your blog!

    Email: raven.ashley187@yahoo.com

    ReplyDelete
  40. This comment has been removed by the author.

    ReplyDelete
  41. Congrats for the 6-month blogversary!! we're all very happy for you! And awesome giveaways! We all appreciate them!!

    +1 Tweeted: https://twitter.com/#!/shaine_c/status/145876484895154177

    +1 I suggested Clockwork Prince in your TBR

    +2 I made a comment on Moon Dance (Btw, we would all love it if your story gets published! :D)

    Email: me_winy@yahoo.com.ph

    ReplyDelete
  42. Congratulations for the 6month blogovesery

    +1 tweeted https://twitter.com/#!/FWhispers/status/146175576040943616

    +1 suggested book

    +1 read special Christmas scene in Moon Dance

    regards,

    maidenhealer@hotmail.com

    ReplyDelete
  43. Congrats on your blogoversary and thanks for the giveaway!
    juliecookies(at)gmail.com

    +1 Feedburner subscriber

    +1 Tweeted http://twitter.com/#!/juliecookies/status/146255338012811265

    ReplyDelete
  44. Happy Blogoversary! Thank you for the awesome giveaway to celebrate!

    RSS subscriber

    Tweeted: https://twitter.com/#!/enterthedrew/status/146277640968482816

    Tiffany
    jaidahsmommy(at)comcast(dot)net

    ReplyDelete
  45. Happy 6 month blogoversary!! What an awesome milestone! I'm so glad to be here for it:)

    I subscribe via RSS subscription

    I tweeted: http://twitter.com/#!/jwitt33/status/146328236287209472

    jwitt33 at live dot com

    ReplyDelete
  46. Happy blogoversary :D
    Leoni
    leoni_4 at hotmail dot co dot uk

    ReplyDelete
  47. Happy Blogoversary and I like your blog u have some really good reviews.
    Commented on TBR Pile http://www.katreads.com/2011/11/dreaded-tbr-pile.html?showComment=1323893045241#c6925227966230105073

    Tweeted https://twitter.com/#!/amdase/status/147043593679421440

    Commented On Scene http://www.katreads.com/2011/12/moon-dance-sample-christmas-scene.html?showComment=1323893267938#c3561461375617868829

    and I would love to win Divergent or Boyfriend From Hell

    berrylicious_cutie(at)hotmail(.)com

    ReplyDelete
  48. So exciting! Great blog! And it's wonderful that you are working on a book!
    ladyofnarnia(at)yahoo(dot)com

    ReplyDelete
  49. Happy Holidays! Thanks for the chance!

    tweet - http://twitter.com/#!/DonnaS1/status/148265986070548481

    bacchus76 at myself dot com

    ReplyDelete
  50. Congrats on your six month blogoversary and thanks for the giveaway!

    - A Canadian Girl
    ayareader@hotmail.com

    ReplyDelete
  51. happy blogversary. rockprincess_85@yahoo.com

    ReplyDelete
  52. Congrats! Am I too late to enter?

    April
    rebelaessedai at gmail dot com

    ReplyDelete
  53. yay! Congrats on your blogoversary!!

    Dea Sauva
    sauvadeavelle @ yahoo dot com

    ReplyDelete
  54. Congrats on your six month blogoversary!

    +1 Tweet: http://twitter.com/#!/Sparima/status/152543843424808961

    spav05(AT)gmail(DOT)com

    ReplyDelete

Thanks for visiting my blog. I love comments! Please feel free to tell me what you think about my blog and the things I am posting. I enjoy hearing what others think. :)

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