Friday, October 10, 2014

Scary October: The Stanley Hotel

In celebration of my favorite month, October, I'm featuring a different scary place every Friday. This week it's the hotel that everyone knows from this movie:

Which was, of course, based (loosely) on this phenomenal book:

Stephen King was inspired to write The Shining while staying at this Colorado hotel:

While searching for inspiration in 1974, King and his wife checked into the Stanley Hotel in Estes Park, Colorado, only to find they were the only two guests. The hotel was on the verge of closing for the winter. The two checked into Room 217, which was said to be haunted...

Inspired by the grand dining room and his experience with a bartender there, King began work on The Shining. Interestingly, his editor tried to talk King out of writing the book, saying he might be typecast as a horror writer. King considered that a compliment, not an insult.

Today, the Stanley Hotel is a popular tourist destination, with many guests requesting to stay in the "Stephen King room." The Stanley Hotel also honors requests to stay in Room 401, where the show Ghost Hunters had a particularly spooky experience that was caught on tape. 

Jim Carrey stayed in Room 217 while filming Dumb and Dumber there. He didn't stay long. The room spooked him so much he checked out within three hours...hotel staff say they still aren't sure what happened to scare him.

Would you dare to stay in Room 217?

Wednesday, October 08, 2014

What Do You Mean You Don't Carry My Book?

Okay, I admit it...I recently indulged in a six-season Real Housewives of New Jersey viewing binge. Hey, they're all on Hulu Plus. How can you resist?

There was one scene from Season 4 that I had to rewatch three times. It was that good. It was also something every published author can relate to...sort of. Soon-to-be inmate Teresa Giudice, who can't even say "I'm a New York Times bestselling author" correctly yet is one, walked into a Manhattan bookstore to find that her second cookbook wasn't on the shelves.

So she does what many of us have done in that situation. She walks up to the person behind the cash register--who, in this case, looks twelve--introduces herself, and tells him she's written an Italian cookbook.

The employee, having no idea that she's a "New York's Times bestseller's author," as she puts it, looks unimpressed. Apparently the camera crew that came to film her looking for her book didn't tip him off that she might be somebody people are interested in, since his exact response to her request that her cookbook be in the store was that they stock "by customer demand."

She persisted, but even after the guy found her cookbooks in the system, he showed no interest in ordering them (camera crew or not) because their store is a "really specialized bookstore." She graciously shook his hand and turned to leave as you should do...

Then told him, "I just have to go to a Barnes & Noble's so I can make the bestseller's." (Which you shouldn't do.) He informed her "We don't say the 'BN' word here."

It's just nice to know we aren't the only ones who go through this stuff.

Monday, October 06, 2014

Meet My Character Bloghop

The adorable Kelly Hashway tagged me in the Meet My Character Blog Hop. Here's Kelly:

Kelly is an extremely prolific author of books for teens and children. Check out her books here.

The mission of this blog hop is to introduce your character to the world. Today you'll meet Mia Hartley, the star of this book:

Mia is a spunky girl with a big heart. I chose her because the book isn't out yet so most of the world hasn't met her! Plus I just finished final revisions, so she's fresh in my mind.

1. What is the name of your character? Is he/she fictional or a historic person?
Mia Hartley is a fictional, modern-day girl.

2. When and where is the story set?
The story is set in the present at Stanton Middle School.

3. What should we know about him/her?
Mia has a big heart. She wants to make her parents proud, but she also genuinely wants to help others.

4. What is the main conflict? What messes up his/her life?
Every year Mia watches on Valentine's Day as all the popular kids get chocolate roses from admirers. This year she wants the students who never get roses to get them. So she secretly purchases some. She doesn't realize that by doing this, she'll end up playing Cupid long after Valentine's Day has passed.

5. What is the personal goal of the character?
Mostly she just wants her parents to be as proud of her as they are her older sister.

6. Is there a working title for this novel, and can we read more about it?
The book is 25 Roses and you can read more about it on Amazon or my website.

7. When can we expect the book to be published?
25 Roses comes out January 6th, 2015. You can pre-order a signed copy (put in notes what you want it to say) from Parnassus Books or (unsigned) from Amazon or add it to your to-read list on Goodreads.

Now it's time to tag two people. Feel free to ignore the tag if you want, but we'd love to get to know your characters!

Beth is a young adult author who interned for Conan O'Brien and Jimmy Fallon. She writes about writing and life! Check out her blog.

Queen Sheena is the author of the upcoming series The Sacrifice. She writes about life, books, book reviews, and more. Here's her blog.

Oh...and, by the way, if you're a reviewer and a member of Edelweiss, you can get a free digital ARC of 25 Roses for review. Check it out!