Welcome to the 2nd Edition of the Bloggiesta! Led by none other than our awesome mascot . . .
Plan. Edit. Develop. Review. Organize.
(How clever, I know!)
How to Party!
When you begin the Bloggiesta challenge, sign in with Mr. Linky (at the bottom of this post) and link directly to your introductory Bloggiesta post. That will let me and everybody else that you have officially begun and we can go share our mariachi tunes and cheer you on.
How many times (if any) you choose to update is up to you, but you should keep track of the hours spent on the challenge as well as the tasks that you have completed. You do not need to write a new post for each mini-challenge completed, but do give your awesome hosts some link love and link back to the challenge host on your final summary post.
On Sunday, I will post a finish line post where you will link up to your final summary post. Tell us how it went, what you liked, what you didn’t like, what you got accomplished, etc.
To connect with other Bloggiesta participants you can subscribe to the shared Bloggiesta RSS feed, follow @Bloggiesta on Twitter, and use the hashtag #bloggiesta to join the chatter. Miss Remmers’ was kind enough to put together a Twitter list of participants. Feel free to utilize the Blogging Tips forum as well.
What I loved last time about the Bloggiest were the awesome mini-challenges which helped us learn more about blogging and hopefully stretched us a bit. Because the skills that we learn build on each other, it would be remiss of me to not include the same mini-challenges again. Those who complete these old mini-challenges and leave their hosts a comment will be eligible for the giveaways. (Not sure how I’ll pick winners with the old mini-challenges but I’ll figure it out – but there will be less weight as opposed to this editions mini-challenge – if that makes sense.)
- Rebecca at The Book Lady’s Blog – Getting out from underneath the feed reader.
- Beth from Beth Fish Reads – Creating list and opinion posts.
- Jill at Fizzy Thoughts – Just when you thought the feed reader was halfway managed Jill asks you to visit other bloggers.
- Emily from Emily’s Reading Room – On vanity alerts.
- Deborah from Books, Movies, and Chinese Food – Do you have an elevator pitch? You should be able to talk about your blog easily.
- Lynn from Chronicle of an Infant Bibliophile – Getting your blog listed in several blog directories.
- Jen from Devourer of Books – Got some old material? Taking time to update key pages and posts.
- Amy from My Friend Amy – Blogging buddies! You should get one!
- Trish from Hey Lady! Watcha Readin’? – What the heck are favicons and gravatars and why you should have them.
- Michelle from GalleySmith – Anchor text. How to make the most out of your link love.
- Andrea from Book Blather – Learn from the authorities. Take time out to learn a new tip or two.
- Ruth from Bookish Ruth – Have you ever had your blog anaylzed? Now’s the chance!
Let’s take a look at the mini-challenges this go-round!!
Ten hosts are generously hosting mini-challenges. Each mini-challenge is geared to help you improve your blog, so they are well worth checking out. All the challenges will be up for the duration of the Bloggiesta, so you have the entire weekend to peruse and complete them. You don’t have to do them all, nor may they all appeal to you, but for each one that you do complete with a comment on their post, your name will be entered for a giveaway.
- Rebecca from The Book Lady’s Blog – 2010 Resolutions. You know you got them!
- Pam from MotherReader - Blogging is about community, so check out this Comment Challenge (watch for a Mr. Linky to be up on Saturday for you to complete this challenge).
- Danielle from There’s a Book – Blogging takes time & I’m sure we’d all love to blog faster. Using a cheat sheet is just one idea of how to save time.
- Pam from Bookalicio.us – There is nothing worse than seeing your post on somebody else’s blog. Talking about blog copyright and what you need to be doing to protect yourself.
- Beth from Beth Fish Reads – Using categories & labels to find what you’re looking for.
- Jackie from Farm Lane Books – Do not lose it all! How to back up your blog.
- Karin from Karin’s Book Nook – There is nothing worse than landing on 404 error pages. It’s time to go on a dead link hunt!
- Chelle from Tempting Persephone – You have some great content. But can people find it? Here’s showing off the best of the best.
- Kristen from Bookworming in the 21st Century - Introducing a new blogger mentoring program and forum.
- Jenn from Jenn’s Bookshelves – Got nothing to say (not likely – that’s why you’re blogging in the first place!) but here is an opportunity to brainstorm blogging topics.
I’d like to thank a fantastic lot of publishers and publicists who have generously donated titles to be given away during Bloggiesta! Not only will there be prizes for completing mini-challenges but also simply for participating, most hours spent on this challenge and by most number of comments left on participating blogs (so keep track & report!).
Scholastic (@scholastic on Twitter)
(U.S. only mailing)
- THE LONELY HEARTS CLUB by Elizabeth Eulberg. (YA) Jenny is sick of boys and sick of dating. So she vows: no more. It’s a personal choice… and, of course, soon everyone wants to know about it. And a few other girls are inspired. A movement is born: The Lonely Hearts Club (named after the band from Sgt. Pepper). Penny is suddenly known for her nondating ways — which is too bad, because there’s this certain boy she can’t help but like….
- WISH by Alexandra Bullen. (YA) For broken-hearted Olivia Larsen, nothing can change the fact that her twin sister, Violet, is gone… until a mysterious, beautiful gown arrives on her doorstep. The dress doesn’t just look magical; it is magical. It has the power to grant her one wish, and the only thing Olivia wants is her sister back. With Violet again by her side, both girls get a second chance at life. And as the sisters soon discover, they have two more dresses-and two more wishes left. But magic can’t solve everything, and Olivia is forced to confront her ghosts to learn how to laugh, love, and live again. In a breathtaking debut from Alexandra Bullen, WISH asks the question: If you could have anything, what would you wish for?
- DAWN by Kevin Brooks. (YA) Dawn’s dad is a recovering substance abuser, a one-time child molester, and…a born-again Christian. Religion: That’s his latest addiction. But as far as Dawn is concerned, the Man Upstairs has robbed her of the father she once loved — drugs, drinks, and all. Which is why Dawn’s gone shopping for Bibles. For research. To know her enemy. Because, to get her old dad back, she’s going to have to do away with this God guy. She’d just better pray that the fallout from her father’s past life of crime doesn’t catch up to her first. Magical realism and gritty mystery meet in Brooks’s provocative dissection of family, friendship, and faith.
- HOW TO SAY GOODBYE IN ROBOT by Natalie Standiford. (YA) The new girl in town, Beatrice is expecting her new best friend to be one of the girls she meets on the first day. But instead, the alphabet conspires to seat her next to Jonah, aka Ghost Boy, a quiet loner who hasn’t made a new friend since third grade. Something about him, though, gets to Bea, and soon they form an unexpected friendship. It’s not romance, exactly — but it’s definitely love. Still, Bea can’t quite dispel Jonah’s gloom and doom — and as she finds out his family history, she understands why. Can Bea help Jonah? Or is he destined to vanish?
- TESTING THE ICE by Sharon Robinson and Kadir Nelson. (Picture Book) When Jackie Robinson retires from baseball and moves his family to Connecticut, the beautiful lake on their property is the center of everyone’s fun. The neighborhood children join the Robinson kids for swimming and boating. But oddly, Jackie never goes near the water. In a dramatic episode that first winter, Jackie is called upon to test the ice on the lake, to make sure it’s safe for ice-skating. But why, Sharon wonders, is he always so afraid to go near the water? In a stunning metaphor for Jackie Robinson’s legendary breaking of the color barrier in Major League Baseball, Ms. Robinson honors her extraordinary father’s memory with her warm, graceful storytelling. Two-time Caldecott Honor Book artist Kadir Nelson has created richly rendered paintings that radiate with the beauty and spirit of one of America’s finest heroes.
- THE EXTRAORDINARY MARK TWAIN (ACCORDING TO SUSY) by Barbara Kerley, illustrated by Edwin Fotheringham. (Middle Grade) Susy Clemens thought the world was wrong about her papa. They saw Mark Twain as “a humorist joking at everything.” But he was so much more, and Susy was determined to set the record straight. In a journal she kept under her pillow, Susy documented her world-famous father — from his habits (good and bad!) to his writing routine to their family’s colorful home life. Her frank, funny, tender biography (which came to be one of Twain’s most prized possessions) gives rare insight and an unforgettable perspective on an American icon. Inserts with excerpts from Susy’s actual journal give added appeal.
(U.S. & Canada mailing, 5 copies each)
- THE UNNAMED by Joshua Ferris. A dazzling novel about a marriage and a family and the unseen forces of nature and desire that seem to threaten them both. It is the heartbreaking story of a life taken for granted and what happens when that life is abruptly and irrevocably taken away.
- THE SWAN THIEVES by Elizabeth Kostova. Kostova’s masterful new novel travels from American cities to the coast of Normandy, from the late 19th century to the late 20th, from young love to last love. THE SWAN THIEVES is a story of obsession, history’s losses, and the power of art to preserve human hope.
- ROSES by Leila Meacham. Roses is a classic novel in the best sense–a big, juicy read with a riveting plot and characters that leave a lasting impression. Spanning the 20th century, the story of ROSES takes place in a small East Texas town against the backdrop of the powerful timber and cotton industries, industries controlled by the scions of the town’s founding families.
- DAMAGED by Kia Dupree. In the style of urban literary greats Teri Woods and Vicky Stringer, Kia DuPree tells an engrossing and heart-wrenching story about a young woman living on the streets of Washington D.C.
- SEARCHING FOR TINA TURNER by Jacqueline E. Luckett. In this breathtaking debut novel reminiscent of early Terry McMillan, Lena Spencer is going through a mid-life crisis and looks to singer Tina Turner for strength.
Peachtree Publishers (@PeachtreePubs on Twitter)
(U.S. only mailing, ten copies available)
- WHERE IS CATKIN? by Janet Lord, illustrated by Julie Paschkis (Picture Book) A cat’s curiosity lands him in a tight spot in this simple but stunning book, featuring cheerful animal sounds and an entertaining seek-and-find element. Author Janet Lord’s simple, satisfying story of a mischievous cat is richly portrayed in Julie Paschkis’s gorgeous illustrations that celebrate the patterns and shapes founds in nature.
Lisa Roe, Publicist (@OnlinePublicist on Twitter)
(U.S. & Canada mailing)
- HUMPTY DUMPTY WAS PUSHED: A NOVEL by Marc Blatte. n this crackling fiction debut, Marc Blatte casts a cool eye on the gritty streets of New York City, and spins a mystery that is, in the words of “Law & Order” Executive Producer Fred Berner, as “elegantly twisted and satisfying as the best crime novels.” Ride shotgun with Detective Black Sallie Blue Eyes on his quest to solve a murder at a downtown hip-hop club, and encounter a host of characters that run the gamut of NYC high and lowlife society from the projects of Far Rockaway to the mansions and manicured lawns of Westchester and the Hamptons–rapstar wannabes, hipster tweakers, Wittgenstein-spouting impresarios, fetishists, billionaires, and one Eastern European refugee dead-set on revenge old-school style.
- BETWEEN ME AND THE RIVER by Carrie Host. (Non-Fiction) Carrie Host knows that the diagnosis of a life-threatening illness takes a split second to change your life, as well as the lives of your partner, parents, children and all who love you. Packed with inspiration, advice, comfort and hope, Between Me and the River is Host’s candid and uplifting memoir of how she found the strength and fortitude to triumph over a rare form of cancer, and craft a new and meaningful life.
Bloomsbury Publishing (@bloomsburyusa on Twitter)
(U.S. only mailing)
- MAGIC UNDER GLASS by Jaclyn Dolamore. (YA) Nimira is a foreign music-hall girl forced to dance for mere pennies. When wealthy sorcerer Hollin Parry hires her to sing with a piano-playing automaton, Nimira believes it is the start of a new and better life. In Parry’s world, however, buried secrets are beginning to stir. Unsettling below-stairs rumors swirl about ghosts, a madwoman roaming the halls, and Parry’s involvement with a league of sorcerers who torture fairies for sport. Then Nimira discovers the spirit of a fairy gentleman named Erris is trapped inside the clockwork automaton, waiting for someone to break his curse. The two fall into a love that seems hopeless, and breaking the curse becomes a race against time, as not just their love, but the fate of the entire magical world may be in peril.
- BREATHLESS by Jessica Warman (YA). When Katie Kitrell is shipped off to boarding school, it doesn’t take her long to become part of the It Crowd. She’s smart, she’s cute, and she’s a swimming prodigy who has a first-class ticket to any Ivy League school of her choice. But what her new friends, roommate, and boyfriend don’t know is that Katie is swimming away from the secrets of her past, and from the schizophrenic older brother, Will, who won’t let her go. As Katie’s star rises, Will descends deeper into insanity. And when he does the unthinkable, it’s all Katie can do to keep her head above water. Largely based on the author’s own experiences, Breathless is a stunning debut that explores illness and health, love and lust, friends and enemies, and the moneyed world of prep school with a deft, expert hand.
- GIRL IN THE ARENA by Lise Klein (YA). A powerful YA debut that combines the visceral storylines of movies like Fight Club and Gladiator, with the emotional tug of Romeo and Juliet. [ . . . ] Lise Haines’ debut novel, a dark satire for our time, is a mesmerizing look at a modern world addicted to violence, fame, and greed—a world eerily close to our own.
Thank you for all of the publishers support for this fun event! We can’t wait to give away these fantastic books to awesome Bloggiesta fiesta goers! Be sure to give them a thank you.
And for our international participants, I will be putting up two $15 gift certificates to any online bookstore of winners choice.
Let’s get this fiesta started!
Good luck! Here’s to three days of blog improvement.
Who’s got the chips? Somebody pass the chips . . .