Posts Tagged With: disney

Stealth Giveaway + Vacation Photos

About a month ago, I did a free giveaway weekend for Imminent Danger. For that giveaway, I went all out, leveraging all my social media sites to promote the free giveaway as much as possible. The grand total was 2800+ downloads.

Last Sunday, I did a 1-day stealth giveaway. No social media mentions, no promoting the book anywhere. I didn’t even tell my own mother about it. The grand total was 118 downloads.

What does this tell us?

  1. Telling people about your giveaway is a good idea (duh)
  2. Two day giveaways are (probably) better than one day
  3. People will still stumble across and download your book by random chance

That’s pretty much all I’ve got to report. Stay warm, everyone!

Unrelated media of the day:

As you may know, I recently went on vacation with my mother and brother, and I thought I’d share a couple of pictures. View and enjoy!

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Jesse and I at the gates to the new Fantasyland addition in the Magic Kingdom. I believe I’m supposed to be flapping my arms like wings, although with us, it’s hard to be sure.

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Mom and Jesse inside the Beast’s castle. Note Jesse’s “Family Reunion” badge.

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Mother tries the “grey stuff”. It’s delicious.

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Mother attempts to stop the hose from unraveling while Jesse fills up the tires of our rental car.

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Jesse contemplates tire filling.


Myself on the cruise ship, attempting to schedule our days so we hit every single trivia game. Eating and sleeping be damned!


Mom and Jesse on their way to snorkeling off the coast of Cozumel.


A fisherman in Nassau showing us his catch of the day.


Selfie in Nassau!

Categories: Self Publishing | Tags: , , , , , | 7 Comments

Attack of the Were-Panda

I was going through my “Short Stories” folder on my hard drive and came across this beautiful little snippet of prose. It’s in the style of a newspaper clipping, and amuses me far more than it should. Read and enjoy!

TORONTO—In what the police are terming a “methamphetamine-induced psychotic break”, local gas station attendant Barry Yates terrorized Anime North convention-goers last night when he dressed up in a panda suit and ran around knocking over merchandise and screaming, “Flee, puny mortals! I am the were-panda!” There were no serious injuries, but several agitated parties have already filed lawsuits against Yates for aggravated assault, battery, and destruction of property.

Yates’s delusion of being a “were-panda” is likely a bastardization of the lycanthrope myth, in which a human transforms into a wolf during the full moon – known colloquially as a “were-wolf”. The reason behind Yates’s choice of panda over wolf has yet to be determined, although a police officer at the scene was overheard saying, “We think he chose panda over wolf because he just so happened to be near a panda suit when he flipped all the f***ing way out of his God damn mind.”

Yates’s life partner, a Japanese body pillow named Mitsuke, could not be reached for comment.


Unrelated media of the day:

John Smith and Kocoum as college students …

Check out more Disney college students here:

Categories: Writing | Tags: , , , , , , , | 14 Comments

Guest Post: My Journey as a New Author (Christina Channelle)

Continuing the guest post series, today I’m pleased to feature Miss Christina Channelle, who will ruminate with us on the wondrous journey of a self-published author. Read on!


My Journey as a New Author

 Hello! Christina Channelle here.

This is my first time doing a guest post so bear with me. Thanks, Michelle for allowing me to share my words today on your blog. 🙂

What I wanted to discuss was my journey since taking the plunge to self-publish my first book. I first discovered my love for reading one summer long, long ago. I was ten years old and bored out of my mind for some reason or another. I decided to open up a book stashed somewhere in my room, yet never had the urge to read until that very moment.

That single action of turning that first page changed my life forever. I realized that words thrown together could create another world unlike my own; with ghosts, vampires, and things that go bump in the night the main attraction. I read every book that I could get my hands on until I practically read every young adult novel in my public library. I was a fiend, let me tell you. Then as I fell asleep at night, or daydreamed while in class, stories would conjure up in my mind that I just had to write down. The first story that I wrote was back in high school and is now my first self-published book, Dahlia. Simply, it’s about a normal girl who realizes she’s not quite so normal.

Here’s the prologue below:

I was five when I knew something was different about me.

My first memory.

I had no recollection of who my parents were or what they even looked like. All I knew was that I was alone at the orphanage, disconnected from the outside world. I picture it even now, almost like an oil painting: the thick bristles of the paintbrush created the bright blue sky as it connected to the shockingly white snow. The snow blanketed everything around me, as if protecting me, the green forest displayed at every angle.

The orphanage was out of place in such a nature-infused environment. A large, two-story building, its windows seemed to cover almost every surface. I remembered the brightness of the sun as it hit my sleepy face through one of those many windows. It would instantly warm my body, greeting me to yet another day.

Vines covered old gray bricks as they coursed over the external surface of the orphanage. I had nightmares about those same vines making their way into my room as I slept. They’d appear ominously as their shadows pounded against the walls, taunting me as a storm brewed on outside. Venturing toward my bed, the vines would slither across my body, trapping me in place. One would wrap around my neck, squeezing tightly, as I struggled for air. Rendered frozen, the feeling of fear would take hold, bubbling up deep inside my chest. And as I felt the burning pain in my throat, a thought would flash through my mind of this moment being my last. It never was, though, as I would instantly wake up.

I always did have a wild imagination.

To chase away the terror, I would stand before my windowpane the morning after. Sighing in relief, my eyes would be drawn to the vast forest off in the distance. It surrounded the orphanage, like a gatekeeper, the leaves of the trees bristling in irritation. The wind blew right through those tall structures, whistling, as my ears picked up the all too familiar sound.

I somehow found myself standing directly in front of that very forest. My memory was hazy on exactly how I got there but I recalled waking up, after one of my many dreams, to the feeling of immense hunger as my body stirred in discomfort.

Then suddenly I was at the foot of the forest.

I would not describe the sensation as simple hunger. I would almost describe it as a feeling of starvation, like there was some essential component my body was missing. Whatever it was, this need was so powerful I was weak in the knees with the pain; my belly contracted and released, contracted and released, continually. Food provided temporary relief for me, but there was always this presence in the corner of my mind as my brain searched for the one thing my body craved.

I ignored that nagging voice in my head, the one whispering for the one thing I needed. It was something unfathomable yet inherent. I paid it no attention and just openly stared at the forest beckoning me. Taking shallow breaths, the cool air blew in and out between my cold, chapped lips.

It was at that exact moment I realized the forest isolated me from everything and everyone outside of its confines—almost like a hungry bird circling its prey. Even young, my instincts picked up on that, immediately telling me something.

Eyes were watching me.

Excerpt from Dahlia (Blood Crave Series, #1) Copyright © 2012

 Dahlia was supposed to be a standalone book, but then the character, Rowan, came to me and, poof, a series was born. More than ten years later, the first two books in the series (along with a novella) are complete. Although I love the story and characters of the Blood Crave Series, I find it difficult when I get other story ideas that I want to focus on instead. So here I am, juggling writing numerous stories at once, going through the editing process, formatting, figuring out marketing strategies … it does get quite overwhelming at times. And then I end up spending my time on everything except writing, the very thing that I love to do. It’s especially hard when, like many indie authors, you’re juggling work and/or school in the process.

Do I find self-publishing hard? Yes.

And no.

The hardest thing for me was learning everything on your own: formatting an ebook, formatting the print book, creating a book cover, marketing, etcetera, etcetera, etcetera. Once you do it the first time, creating a book is actually quite simple. I think the hardest thing about writing and self-publishing is making the time to write when you have to do everything on your own.

But I never regret taking this path, not for a second.

My journey as a new author? Well, I’m still travelling. It’s hard at times, there are bumps along the road, but I’m having a blast. I’ve met other great indie authors, discovered awesome reads, and essentially have grown as a writer. This is all a learning experience for me. I don’t know exactly where my journey will lead too but I might as well enjoy the ride. Because that, in itself, will make me happy.

And that’s all everyone wants to be, right?

If you wish to read up on my ramblings as a new author, check out my blog at You can also like me on Facebook at and/or follow me on Twitter @channellewrites.

Thanks for reading!



Unrelated media of the day:

What if Disney villains were young and beautiful?

Categories: Guest Post | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | 12 Comments

Happy Halloween!

I have seven minutes to write this post before I have to go watch Greek and then sleep, so we’ll keep this quick.

#1: 9-5 work is HARD

Oh. My. God. I am so tired, I cannot even describe how much I want to just fall over at my keyboard. I am not a morning person, and I do not function well without 8 hours of sleep. Ack.

Kudos to everyone out there who does 9-5 on a regular basis. I don’t think I would survive. That being said, I did manage such hours from grades 1-12, so I suppose I would survive after all. And now I’m not making any sense. SEE? SLEEP DEPRIVATION!

#2: Star Wars bought by Disney?

Many people are furious about this. I, personally, think it has great potential. Yes, Disney tends to make things a little more kid-friendly than one would hope — but only sometimes. They did amazingly with The Avengers, the first Pirates of the Caribbean was phenomenal, etc. If they get the right people heading Star Wars VII, it could revitalize the franchise. So yeah, I’m excited.

#3: Sandy

Up here in Ontario we managed to mostly avoid the storm (save for Toronto), which I’m super thankful for. The worst we got hit with where I live was a severe wind warning. It appears living in the frozen north has its advantages.

#4: Out of time

That’s all she wrote, folks. Just thought I should check in and … okay, I’m so tired I forgot why I wanted to write this post in the first place.

Oh yes!


Unrelated media of the day:

Not taking sides in the upcoming election, just sharing a funny video. Please don’t start a political debate in the comments!

Thanks to storiesbywilliams for introducing me to this video.

Categories: Random | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | 11 Comments

My Bizarre Inspirational Moment

Have you ever been doing something completely normal, like walking in the park, or watching an old Disney movie you haven’t seen in years, and then see/hear something that just reaches right down into your soul and makes you feel like anything’s possible?

This happened to me recently. I was playing Kingdom Hearts (if you own a PS2 and haven’t played this game, you need to go buy it right now), and one of the levels is set in “Deep Jungle”, which is based off Disney’s Tarzan. I realized that I hadn’t seen Tarzan in years (probably not since it came out), and I was like, “Heck, why not, I’ve got nothing better to do.”

So I downloaded it. Not going to lie, it’s not the best Disney movie out there – probably doesn’t even crack the top 5. But the Phil Collins musical montages are great, and Jane Porter is hysterically British. Then the third and final montage of the movie came on — “Strangers Like Me” by Phil Collins, in which Tarzan learns all about humans and their achievements, and all the wondrous things he’s missed while living in the jungle.

If you want to just watch the clip, click here. If not, here’s what happens. Basically, Jane fires up a slide projector and shows Tarzan various images – a gentleman in a suit, a city, etc. Then a dancing couple appears, and Tarzan and Jane start doing this really bad yet adorable dance … and then this happens:

The music has been crescendo-ing since the first note of the song, and now it reaches it’s peak as Phil Collins howls, “I just know there’s something bigger out there! I wanna know! Can you show me?”

And I got the most massive case of chills all up and down my spine. My skin is goosebump-ing right now, just thinking about it. Something about that combination of space imagery (man, I LOVE anything to do with space), music, and lyrics just makes me feel incredibly inspired, like I’ve just been a part of something special and unique that no one else has experienced. And that’s crazy, because hundreds of thousands of people have seen Tarzan … but I have to wonder if they were so impacted by it in the way that I was. Maybe I’m crazy. The evidence is as of yet inconclusive.

Does anyone else feel this way? You’re doing something totally innocuous, and then you see/hear something that staggers you, makes your whole world spin, makes you feel like you’ve just been privy to something unbelievably amazing, even if just for a brief moment? That’s what inspiration feels like, for me.

I’d love to hear about what inspires you. When I hear that Tarzan song, I just want to sit down at my keyboard and write until the sun rises. How do you get inspired to write? Are there certain things you do to get you in the writing mood? Or do you just get randomly hit by things that strike you as incredibly profound?

A #2 pencil and a dream can take you anywhere.

– Joyce A Myers

Awesome meme(s) of the day:

Categories: Writing | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , | 11 Comments

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