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Viewing: Blog Posts Tagged with: Marley Gibson, Most Recent at Top [Help]
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1. YA Scavenger Hunt on August 1st!

A few of us Buzz Girls are participating in the YA Scavenger Hunt organized by YA author Colleen Houck.  Our own Marley, Tera, and Heather will be part of the event, which will be one day only -- August 1st.

There are thirty YA authors participating, all of whom will post bonus chapters, news on upcoming books, cover reveals, and much much more on their individual sites.  To play, you just start at one of our sites and follow the links to complete the hunt -- enjoying all this cool insider content along the way.

At many of the author sites, you can enter individual giveaways.  To enter the grand prize drawing for a multi-author book bonanza, you'll collect the clue word in red on each author's post to complete the YA Scavenger Hunt Puzzle.  Once you've got the puzzle completed, you'll email it in to enter the grand prize drawing.  Rules and a puzzle form will be on each author's blog in the hunt.

It's one day only - August 1st, 2011 -- so get ready to go on the hunt!

Hugs,

Heather

3 Comments on YA Scavenger Hunt on August 1st!, last added: 8/1/2011
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2. The final countdown...

I hope everyone had a wonderful, firework-filled Fourth of July! My fiance, his boys, and I are in Florida awaiting the launch of the space shuttle Atlantis. Not just any launch, but the final one. Not just the final one for Atlantis, but the final launch for the entire program.



After thirty years and over 135 launches, America's space shuttle program will come to an end. Atlantis is scheduled to lift off for the last time on Friday morning, July 8th at 11:26 a.m. And we're here to see it!



Officials here at Cape Canaveral are expecting a million people to pour into the neighboring towns to watch Atlantis soar into the sky one last time. We've already staked out our viewing location--12 miles away--and plan to get there wicked early to set up our lawn chairs, cooler of ice water, still cameras, and video recorders. If you've got deep pockets, you can pay for a ticket to watch the launch from the causeway--about 5 miles away. If you're one of the lucky ones who won tickets, you can view the launch from the area with the astronaut's families--3 miles away. This is the closest you can get to the orbiter.


The Crew of Atlantis

...or so we thought.

Patrick and I were at the Canaveral National Seashore to swim and hang out when we noticed something toward the end of Playalinda Beach. We walked and walked and walked...probably for a mile...until we reached a security fence protruding into the ocean. A man in a guard tower held up his hand to keep us from getting closer. But we were allowed to stand there with others and stare in awe...Atlantis in all of her glory sitting on Launch Pad 39A only ONE MILE away!

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Truly a moment to cherish!

Have you ever seen a shuttle launch? It's got to be a magical experience...which we'll find out soon. We'll see if the weather holds off and Atlantis and her crew speed away on Friday morning! Keep your fingers crossed!

Godspeed the crew of Atlantis!

5 Comments on The final countdown..., last added: 7/6/2011
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3. A Natural Wonder!

So excited to be celebrating the release of Tera's new book, Fins Are Forever. I do apologize that my crazy travel schedule kept me from posting last week on Heather's good news...so a belated "whoohoo!" to Heather, as well.



We're talking about memories that involve water...and I created one just last week. And boy, was it a wonder. One of the wonders of the world, in fact: Niagara Falls.

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My fiance, Patrick Burns, and I have his two boys with us this summer and we're always looking for things to do to keep them entertained. Well, we were scheduled for a conference in Illinois one weekend and Auburn, New York the next week, so we took the time to drive to Niagara Falls and take in the spendor and beauty of the natural wonder.

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This was my fourth visit, but it never fails to take my breath away. This time was especially memorable because we had the kidlets with us and they had never been there. Also, I have always wanted to ride on the Maid of the Mist, the boat that takes you literally right up underneath the horseshoe falls. We did it! We were on the front of the boat and got completely soaked, but I'd do it again in a heartbeat.

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And, you can't take a bad picture of the Falls. The sheer power and beauty of it is overwhelming. It was an extraordinary day--albeit, a wet one--and following a warm cup of tea and reminiscing already, I know it was a day to remember for all of us. A real "family" moment...and that's what counts.

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Have you been to Niagara Falls? What did you think? Share your thoughts and memories. Remember, three lucky commenters this week will win a Fins pack from Tera Lynn Childs. Click HERE for all the exciting details. And congrat's, TLC! You are truly blessed by the cover gods! LOL!!

Hugs,
Marley = )

www.marleygibson.com
www.ghosthuntress.com

The next installment of the popular Ghost Huntress series
is out and everything's not as it seems...
GHOST HUNTRESS: THE DISCOVERY

23 Comments on A Natural Wonder!, last added: 6/25/2011
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4. In case you need a moment of zen today...

...thought I'd share some sweet little faces with you to oooh and ahhhh over.


Bath time always leads to nap time.


But Mommy, I want to wear the sunglasses!


The orange side of Madison.


Driver's assistant, Boo Bear!


One of Madi's favorite napping spots.

Hugs,
Marley = )

www.marleygibson.com
www.ghosthuntress.com

Ghosts don't hang up their sheets after Halloween!
GHOST HUNTRESS series - The Awakening, The Guidance,
The Reason, The Counseling - available now!

2 Comments on In case you need a moment of zen today..., last added: 3/4/2011
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5. Winner + RT or Bust!

Last Wednesday, I offered up an advanced copy of the next GHOST HUNTRESS book, THE DISCOVERY. And the winner is...

Amanda Mora!

Congrats Amanda! Please e-mail me at marley_gibson AT yahoo dot com with your contact information so I can get it in the mail to you. A really cool thing...I'm blogging from 35,000 feet. Thanks to a nice $5 connection from Southwest, I'm able to wave down at you from the friendly skies as I'm headed out to Los Angeles for the RT Booklovers Conference. I'm really excited to see fellow Buzz girls, Tina, Tera, Heather, and Dona, and our former Buzz girl, Simone Elkeles and so many others. My agent, Deidre Knight, and I are doing a panel on how agents sell film rights to books. I'm participating in CLUB RT, giving away a fun ghost hunting basket, and, of course, I'll be participating in Teen Day!

As Tina and Tera mentioned in their posts, I'll be among the teen authors appearing at Teen Day at the Romantic Times Booklovers Convention on Saturday. Something cool is the teen authors will have their own rows, all together, for easy access. Then all of the YA gang will move into various activities like meets-and-greets, interesting talks, author readings, one-on-one "speed dates," and then all followed by a teen party. This is my first RT conference and I can't wait!


Come by and say hello!


Hugs, Marley = )


www.marleygibson.com www.ghosthuntress.com Ghosts don't come out only at Halloween! THE DISCOVERY, available May 2nd!

3 Comments on Winner + RT or Bust!, last added: 4/7/2011
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6. Happy Happy...a winner...and another giveaway!

To all of our Buzz fans, I want to wish you a Happy Passover and Happy Easter! Wow...is spring really upon us? I sure do hope so. We've been in Gettysburg for the last month...or as I call it, Wettysburg. I know April showers bring May flowers...those need to be some pretty stupendous flowers! LOL!

Some good news to share is the WINNER of my Meg Cabot book giveaway. A copy of AVALON HIGH CORONATION goes to...




************1110cg************


Congrats! Please e-mail me at marley_gibson AT yahoo DOT com with your name and mailing address.

Now...to this week's giveaway. (Isn't this fun?) I'm giving away a copy of my fellow St. Martin's Press author, C. C. Hunter's book BORN AT MIDNIGHT. The cover is reallllly dark and cool.



To enter the book giveaway, please leave a comment letting us know what you and yours are planning for the Passover/Easter holidays. Anything yummy to eat? Family traditions?

Hugs,
Marley = )

www.marleygibson.com
www.ghosthuntress.com

The next installment of the popular Ghost Huntress series
Coming May 2nd! Everything's not as it seems...
GHOST HUNTRESS: THE DISCOVERY

18 Comments on Happy Happy...a winner...and another giveaway!, last added: 4/21/2011
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7. A Continued Celebration of GHOST HUNTRESS: THE DISCOVERY




We are so excited to be celebrating the release of Marley Gibson's Ghost Huntress: The Discovery this week, and in doing so, each of the Buzz Girls is writing about discoveries. As for me, I like discovering new things about where I live: new things to do, new sights to see, new people to meet. I have a good friend named Meredith who lives in AZ but has a second home about 10 minutes away from where I live, here in UT. So every time she's here, we go to fun places for dinner, hit the lake in the summer or go skiing in the winter. As you can see in the photo, we accidentally showed up at Snowbasin with the same ski clothes. (People wondered if we were on the Swiss Ski Team!) She likes to go snow mobiling, but as you can read HERE I am banned from that particular sport so I have yet to join her. I really love it when she's in town because I get to vacation right here at home!



This summer marks the second time my family is having a big reunion in my town. We rent out a B&B and in addition to boating, hiking, biking, and fishing, we go to a petting farm and a crazy store called Smith & Edward's (where we took this photo), explore the a couple of hot pots at the base of the canyon, dip our toes in the Great Salt Lake, and do other random/silly/cool things together. I'm really excited to discover new things to do when they're all here come July.



For a chance to win Marley's fabulous prize package: a signed copy of THE DISCOVERY (Yay!), a dowsing pendulum, incense and an incense burner, and two awesome bracelets, leave a comment telling something you've discovered about where you live.


Good luck!

12 Comments on A Continued Celebration of GHOST HUNTRESS: THE DISCOVERY, last added: 5/6/2011
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8. Naming Characters

I get emails a lot asking me where I come up with the names for my characters. Is there a specific formula or a particular way to do it? Absolutely not! LOL! Most of the time, I come up with my character names in the most peculiar ways. You want to make sure that your characters' names fit their role in the story...as well as fitting the overall theme of the story.



Here are some tips for naming characters:

1. Choose something that mirror's your character's personality. If your character is a science geek (like Celia Nichols in GHOST HUNTRESS), give them a name that fits their interests. My first manuscript was about a naive twenty-something working her first job in the tech industry, traveling to tradeshows, and unfortunately giving away a company trade secret. Her name was Vanessa Virtue. It was perfect for her. Could you imagine Thor with any other name? If he was Irving, it just wouldn't work.



2. The character's name should be pronouncable and easy for the reader to understand. Think of how the name sounds if you say it out loud. Is there a harmony or a ring to it? Avoid names that no one knows how to say. I respect all of the urban fantasy out there these days, but some of the names are just...unrecognizable. Being creative with a name is great, but not if you reader has no clue how to say it in their head.

3. Make sure the character's name fits the time period. You wouldn't want to write a contemporary YA and name the heroine...Ethel. (My grandma was Ethel...so apologies if I offend anyone.) If you're writing steampunk or historical YA, make sure to use names from the time period. I don't think anyone back then would be named Brittney. LOL!



4. Use the names of people you know...friends, family, colleagues. When I first sold my SORORITY 101 series, all of the guys at my sales office wanted to be in the book. So I put them in as random fraternity guys, teachers, and fellow students. I carried this tradition on with my GHOST HUNTRESS books. The character of Rebecca is one of my best friends (see below.) She's not a goth chick at all, so she loves reading her "alter ego." Be careful with this technique as you don't want to make anyone look bad or make the character reflect something you can get sued over. Always get the person's permission to use their name. Funny enough, the name Kendall Moorehead, the heroine of the GHOST HUNTRESS series came from an offensive lineman that played for the University of Alabama when I was in school. I always loved the name and wanted to use it. So I did.

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5. Obituaries are a great place to find unique and personality-filled names. Now, before you throw rotten tomatoes at me, a LOT of authors do this. It's a tribute to the person in that their name carries on and, you can read a lot of about who they were in their obituary, and pay tribute to their life.

6. There are numerous online sources you can use for naming characters. If you're writing about someone that was born in a particular year, why not visit the Social Security website that ranks the popular names by year. Or, you can use any "name your baby" website. There are also name generator websites you can use, as well. Use a surname generator for your family's history

2 Comments on Naming Characters, last added: 5/13/2011
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9. Hats off to the Class of 2011!

Congratulations to all of the graduates in the Class of 2011! I bet you thought you'd never get here. Hats off to you for your accomplishment and best wishes in your future endeavors where ever they may lead you.



I remember being in middle school and counting ahead to the year when I would graduate. It seemed so far in the future. Now, I look back and it seems so far in the past. Why, when I graduated in 1885...errrr, I mean 1985, the members of the class of 2011 weren't even a twinkle in their parents' eyes.



Even though Tera already posted a link to old photos of me, I'll go ahead and toss some up.

Here I am last year when I visited "the hill," where Pike Liberal Art School sits in Troy, Alabama. The campus has changed quite a bit, but there was still the same familiar feel on the soil that I walked for twelve years.

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Here's my senior portrait. Keep in mind, this was back in the days when thick eyebrows and girl mullets were the fashion. LOL!

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I had twenty-eight (28) people in my senior class. We were a really tight-knit group through our years together from first grade until twelth. It seemed as if our world would end being "busted up," but so many people have gone on to wonderful lives. Careers that include, the military, lawyer, policeman, several school teachers, nurses, and even a district judge! Then there's little old me...the published author. Who'd a thunk it? LOL!

Here's our senior portfolio. I'm on the top line because I was a class officer. This is hanging in the hallway at my alma mater, along with all of the other classes. (Check out the big hair on everyone!) Sadly, there's a prayer hand notation on one of my classmates who passed away.

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Actually, when I left high school for The University of Alabama, I had planned on getting a degree in psychology and then going forward into medical school. That all changed after my freshman year at Bama when I my creative juices took over in my communication and writing classes and I longed to go into marketing/advertising/public relations. Now *that's* a switch!

That's the great thing about this time in your life. You can change your mind. You can try on dreams and ideas and see what fit. The only thing that matters is that you discover who you are...and who you want to be...and don't let anyone or anything hold you back from your dream, whatever it may be.

So...congrats to the class of 2011! I wish you success and happiness!

Hugs,
Marley = )

8 Comments on Hats off to the Class of 2011!, last added: 5/26/2011
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10. A week's worth of winners!

Thanks to everyone who stopped by for the release party of GHOST HUNTRESS: THE REASON and entering the book giveaways! I hope if you're not one of the lucky winners that you'll pick up the book anyway. = )

And the winners are...

Cara King
chelleyreads
Momma Bookworm
RagDollVampGirl
Liviania
DeNiSeMaDnEsS
Bee

Thanks soooooo much for entering! Please e-mail me your snail mail address to marley_gibson AT yahoo DOT com and I'll get the signed books in the mail to you.

Thanks again!

Hugs,
Marley = )

7 Comments on A week's worth of winners!, last added: 5/11/2010
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11. Travel Log - Back in the East from the West

Hi everyone!

Sorry I missed posting last week. Life is a whirlwind; what can I say? I have been in California since the end of April and just got back to Boston yesterday morning on a red eye flight. It was so hard to leave the sunshine and blue skies of SoCal to return to the gloomy rain of the east coast. But there's so much to do!

While I was in SoCal, I attended a conference, premiered GHOST HUNTRESS: THE REASON, went body boarding, cooked out a lot, hung out with my left coast friends...and I learned to surf! Here's proof...



We also made a trip out to the desert and...wow...was that incredible! I'd never been to the desert, so it was breathtakingly beautiful...



Also had the BEST tamale I've ever had...and it was at a place in Borrego Springs called Kendall's Cafe! How cool!



I also made some new friends...

This is Speedy, my friend Kathy's papillon...



And his brothers, Precious and Scooter Boy (who are 16 years old!)...



I also visited some famous graves in the Hollywood Forever cemetery...



All and all an amazing trip! Loves me some California. I have a lot of travel planned for the summer - Chicago, Wisconsin, Indy, Louisville and Orlando, to name a few. What are your summer travel plans? Where do you like to go?

Hugs,
Marley = )

Ghost don't hang up their sheets November 1st!
GHOST HUNTRESS: THE REASON - available now!

3 Comments on Travel Log - Back in the East from the West, last added: 5/21/2010
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12. Something to cheer about!

A huuuuuuuuge congrats to Tera for the release of her new book, Forgive my Fins. What an awesome concept and I can't wait for my Amazon delivery to catch up with me.



As the others have said, we're talking about childhood dreams. Mine...were a bit warped, I must admit.

First...I dreamed of being a travel agent. I turned my father's shelf of tax forms into homemade travel brochures of "exotic" places like Atlanta and Panama City Beach and Birmingham. LOL! I would book my stuffed animals on trips and make tickets and such for them.



Ironically, my professional career has been as a meeting planner...so I guess that dream helped me out some, eh?

Then, I wanted to be a doctor. Most kids want that at some point, eh? But not just any doctor. I wanted to be an anesthesiologist. My grandfather had surgery and he told me all about it and I was fascinated by the fact that there was a doctor that could literally just put you asleep.



But the dream that was biggest for me...I wanted to be a cheerleader! I love sports and especially football and I have an extremely big mouth. LOL! What better person to be a cheerleader, right?

I started off as a pee wee cheerleader. This wasn't a big deal as anyone who would buy the uniform and show up for games could be one. I was in band my junior high years, so I wasn't a JV cheerleader. But, in 9th grade, I tried out for the varsity and made it! Fortunately, because of being so physical as a cheerleader, I discovered a lump in my left leg which turned out to be cancer. Had I not been a cheerleader, I might not have found it so quickly. So, that was definitely something to cheer about.

Marley's pic2 copy Marley's pic3 copy

How have your childhood dreams morphed and changed and helped you? Share your story in the comment section and you'll be entered in this week's contest to win a copy of Tera's book. Also, there are more chances to win over at Tera's website web-site and she's making donations to an ocean charity, as well. Please help out!

Congrats again to Tera!

Hugs,
Marley = )

Ghosts don't hang up their sheets November 1st
GHOST HUNTRESS: THE REASON - Available Now!

22 Comments on Something to cheer about!, last added: 6/4/2010
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13. Who Should Play Kendall?

So, as you may know, I sold the film rights to the first three GHOST HUNTRESS books to the fabulous folks at Shoulderhill Films. They are hard at work trying to find the perfect screenwriter for the project, as well as the right movie company. They've started a GHOST HUNTRESS fan page on Facebook (please join!) and are asking fans who you think should play Kendall?

So...who do you think should play here?

Here are some of the top suggestions so far...

Victoria Justice



Miley Cyrus



Miranda Cosgrove



Demi Lovato



Emma Watson



Or do you have another suggestion? Let me know!

Hugs,
Marley = )

Ghost don't hang up their sheets November 1st
GHOST HUNTRESS: THE REASON - available now!

15 Comments on Who Should Play Kendall?, last added: 6/20/2010
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14. More Pictures from National

Thanks to Stephanie Hale for opening our discussion yesterday about the Romance Writers of America conference in Orlando, Florida, attended by five of the seven Buzz Girls. (Next year we're hoping for a full house!)

Here are Steph and Tera flanking me in a picture Tera somehow managed to be in AND take (I am always inspired by multi-taskers):



Here stands me, Marley, Wendy and Tera, in a photo perhaps worthy of one of Marley's Ghost Huntress books:


And now replace Wendy with Steph, and add in the middle...oh...um...what's her name...(choke, sputter, gasp)... MEG CABOT.


Yes, *the* Meg Cabot. Looking every bit as warm, friendly--and gorgeous--as she is in real life. It was a thrill and delight for us to meet her!

That's it from me. Maybe some of the other Buzz Girls have pictures to share?

Tina

Tina Ferraro
The ABC’s of Kissing Boys, 2010 Rita® Finalist
How to Hook a Hottie, 2009 Rita® Finalist
Top Ten Uses for an Unworn Prom Dress
www.tinaferraro.com

7 Comments on More Pictures from National, last added: 8/6/2010
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15. There is Thankfulness...and a Contest!

As I write this from the passenger seat of my RV, we are about two hours east of Santa Monica which will conclude our coast-to-coast trip that began in Baltimore on November 5th. We're pulling into SoCal just in time to be included in a wonderful Thanksgiving dinner and celebration with our friends The Wilsons.



Having just come cross-country, over 3,000 miles, there is much thankfulness. I'm thankful for the love and support of my sweetheart, Patrick, who not only did his share of driving us out here, he also took care of pumping the gas, dumping the water tanks (don't make me go into too much detail! LOL!), and taking care of any needed repairs here and there.



I'm also very thankful to the many friends and family we stayed with (called "boondocking" in RV vernacular) along the way from Baltimore to Chicago to St. Louis to Joplin, across Oklahoma, Texas, and New Mexico, to Arizona and finally to California.

And I'm thankful for this beautiful country that we live in. I am truly in awe of her beauty...literally, from the mountains, to the prairies, to the oceans. We watched the leaves turn colors on the east coast and then saw the flat plains of the midwest change into the deserts of the southwest and into the mountains. I'm a writer, yet I have no words to describe the things we've seen except...wow.


The beautiful mountains of western Arizona along Old Route 66


The Petrified Forest in eastern Arizona


The Painted Desert in eastern Arizona


The world's largest rocking chair in Cuba, MO

I will be most thankful on Thursday when I sit down to a wonderful dinner with friends who were kind enough to bring us into their fold for the holiday. And, I will be most thankful on Saturday if my beloved Crimson Tide and completely mess up the Auburn Tigers' "perfect" record with a win in the Iron Bowl. LOL! What...I can't be grateful for my football team?



Shout out and thanks to the wonderful people at RTBookReview.com for their amazing support of the Buzz Blog Girls and featuring us to give advice to aspiring writers of young adult fiction. If you haven't already done it, check out the article here.

And in celebration of the Thanksgiving holiday and the upcoming Christmas holiday season, I am giving away a copy of my book, CHRISTMAS MIRACLES. To be eligible to win, please post in the comment trail what you're most grateful and thankful for...from the most sincere and heartfelt...to the most quirky. One (1) winner* will receive an autographed copy fo CHRISTMAS MIRACLES.



Happy Thanksgiving and Roll Tide!

Hugs,
Marley = )

Ghosts don't hang up their sheets after Halloween!
GHOST HUNTRESS series - The Awakening, The Guidance,
The Reason, The Counseling - available now!

*Contest is open to US and Canadian residents.

16. Holiday Movies I Can't Miss

I love Christmas movies, cartoons, specials. Can't get enough of them. And every year, even though I've seen the same things over and over again, I still crave the seasonal viewing of my beloved holiday favorites.

Here are my faves...

Of course, I adore "Rudolph the Red-nosed Reindeer," who doesn't? But one of my favorite, less shown, Rankin-Bass production is called "Nestor the Long-Earred Christmas Donkey." Nestor was born with abnormally long ears and was taunted by the other animals in the stable until he was banished. Through hardship and loss, Nestor triumphs and grows and is in the right place at the right time when a poor carpenter, Joseph, and his pregnant wife, Mary, need a donkey for her to ride to Bethlehem.



Most people will cite "It's a Wonderful Life" or "Miracle on 34th Street" as their favorite movies, but my two favorites are a little more obscure.

First, there's "Christmas in Connecticut." Barbara Stanwyck stars as a Martha Stewart-ish magazine feature writer who talks about her farm in Connecticut and cooking. However, her being the perfect housewife is all a lie. Now, she must try to cover her deception when her boss and a returning WWII hero invite themselves to her home for a traditional family Christmas. I can't say enough how much I adore this movie.



And my other movie that I have to watch not just on Christmas, but seriously...any holiday. It's called "Holiday Inn" and it stars Bing Crosby and Fred Astaire and it's just a barrel of fun from beginning to end. Crosby and Astaire are performance partners who have always fallen for the same girl. Crosby's character decides to hang up his crooning and buy a farm in Connecticut. When it turns out to be boring, he decides to open it up every holiday for dinner, dancing, and music. Once again, they compete for the love of the same lady. You'll recognize the origin of such traditional Irving Berlin hits as "White Christmas," and "Easter Parade." If you've never seen this movie, it's a must.



So...what are you favorite holiday picks? What movie, special, or cartoon can you not go through the holidays not seeing?

Hugs,
Marley = )

CHRISTMAS MIRACLES, available this holiday as an ebook download!

3 Comments on Holiday Movies I Can't Miss, last added: 12/9/2010
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17. A California Christmas

My sweetie and I are on the road this Christmas, calling Southern California "home" for the holidays. It's hard to be traveling over the holidays, which includes Christmas, my birthday, and New Year's Eve, but so many people have opened their homes and hearts to us that it's overwhelming.

Our friends Kathy and Malcolm let us stay with them for a couple of weeks while our RV was getting regular maintenance. They made us feel right at home, letting us take over their dining room table with our computers and cameras. Their pets, Speedy (the dog), Precious and Scooter Boy (the two cats) treated us like we were part of the family. And, the UPS guy was even starting to recognize me from all the packages he delivered for us!

My sweetie's kidlets are with us for Christmas. They're 11 and 9 (almost 12 and 10) and they are thrilled to be in California. On the agenda is a touristy bus tour of Hollywood and the stars' homes, Grauman's Chinese Theatre, La Brea tar pits, and maybe a drive up to Big Bear, weather permitting.

Speaking of...I have NEVER seen this much rain in my life. And I've been in several tornados, two hurricanes, and a flood. I'm told this is the "Pineapple Express" weather system from Hawaii that brings such dumps of rain. Let's just say that the RV is squeaky clean from all of nature's washing.

People wonder what we'll do Christmas day...well, no worries...we have a small tree that we're going to decorate with the kidlets, stockings for them, and we'll await Santa's visit Friday night just like everyone else. Our friend Kathy has invited us to her parents' house in Escondido for Christmas dinner, which we're really looking forward to.

All in all, not you're usual Christmas. No snow or cold weather clothes. But we're together and we're blessed with wonderful friends and family.

What are you doing this holiday season?

Hugs,
Marley = )

P.S. Prayer request goes out for my missing fur-niece, Leeny, who escaped from my sister's house in Florida yesterday. Please pray that she returns home safely in time for Christmas.

3 Comments on A California Christmas, last added: 12/23/2010
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18. Attacking the never-ending "to do" list

I'm a "to-do" list person. I have lists on my computer sticky notes. I have lists in my notebook. I have lists in my BlackBerry. Do this. Do that. Don't forget that. Don't forget this. And, of course, I shuffle and hussle and most things don't get done.



To me, everything is a "to-do" item. I learned once that if you put things on your "to-do" list that you know you'll actually do and can cross off, it'll make you feel like you accomplish things during the course of the day. Like blogging today. I know I'm going to do it, so "blog" goes on the list because I know I'll cross it off. But where's the prioritization?



That's the problem with me...I'm a reactionist, if that's even a word. I react to what I need to do at that moment, or where my monkey mind (a Buddhist term meaning "unsettled") thoughts take me. You know, those random thoughts that come to you during the day that you have to stop everything to Google the information before you lose the train of thought.

Okay...maybe that's a 44 year old thing. LOL!!

In my attempt to become more organized, less reactionist, and less of a do-it-at-the-last-minute person, I read a fantastic book called THE WAR OF ART: Break Through the Blocks and Win Your Inner Creative Battles by Steven Pressfield. It's a brilliant book that's changed my life.



It talks about what keeps us from our art is Resistance. Resistance is anything that keeps us from our art. Resistance comes in many forms. Resistance is there to keep us from reaching our potential and seeing our dreams fulfilled. Resistance is self-doubt, procrastination, focusing on the wrong things, getting involved in television shows, online games, Facebooking, or anything else that keeps your attention away from your art. It takes the form of your relationship, your friendships, your job, your chores, anything. It's evil and you have to overcome it. Resistance keeps you from your artistic potential.

So, for me, my goal in 2011 is to beat the crap to of Resistance. For me, that includes not wasting time, not getting sucked into online dramas on Facebook, or spending way too much time trying to beat my high score in Bejeweled Blitz. I will stick to the "to-do" lists...doing what is IMPORTANT and not what is URGENT (as the book recommends) and focusing on my art. Manuscripts, proposals, new ideas, new characters, new words. That's what matters.



What is keeping you from your art? What is your Resistance?

Hugs,
Marley = )

www.marleygibson.com
www.ghosthuntress.com

Ghosts don't hang up their sheets after Halloween!
GHOST HUNTRESS series - The Awakening, The Guidance,
The Reason, The Counseling - available now!

4 Comments on Attacking the never-ending "to do" list, last added: 1/6/2011
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19. Beautiful word: commitment

I'm busy, busy, busy working on my Spring 2012 book, RADIATE, and wanted to do a fly-by post. As I posted earlier, my sweetie proposed and we're getting married this year...that's an amazing commitment. And it gets even stronger as we just committed to a huge undertaking: kitty parents.

Meet Madison Leeny (Madi in back) and Smokey Farquar Booreguard IV (Boo in front), the newest additions to our family. We rescued them from Polly's Pet Shelter in Los Angeles, CA, after I read of their heartbreaking story online.



Madi and Boo were born to a feral mommy on Thanksgiving. A lady was watching out for the small family and leaving food out for them. She was going to wait until the kittens (three of them) were eight weeks old before taking them to the shelter. Sadly, when the babies were five weeks old, a stray dog attacked and killed the mommy and their sibling. Madi and Boo escaped unharmed, but were left orphaned. Fortunately, Polly's Pet Rescue took them in and simply by a pure miracle, I decided to look for kittens for adoption while we were staying in Los Angeles. It only took three days after the initial e-mail for the transaction to be completed.



Now Madi and Boo live very happily in the RV with us, playing and running, chasing each other, batting the balls around, and sleeping any time they want. They are an amazing addition to our family and we have fully committed to their health and well-being. They are vaccinated, spayed/neutered, and microchipped.



Commitment comes in many forms...and I'm pleased to dedicate myself to these two little bundly puffs of love in my life. Well...as I write RADIATE!



Do you have a new kitten or puppy in your life? Tell us about the joys of your pets.

Hugs,
Marley = )

Ghosts don't hang up their sheets after Halloween!
GHOST HUNTRESS series - The Awakening, The Guidance,
The Reason, The Counseling - available now!

7 Comments on Beautiful word: commitment, last added: 1/13/2011
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20. New Crock Pot Saves the Day

For those of you who religiously read our blog here, you know that I'm a foodie, through and through, and adore cooking. But, when I'm on deadline for a new book (25 days to be exact!) and lock myself into the writing cave, how do people get fed?

In fact, a friend on Facebook asked me, "how in the world do you write and cook?"

The answer is simple: Crock Pot.


(My carnitas that was muy excellente!)

Okay, I'll admit that I was slow to jump on the crock pot wagon. My ex never wanted me to get one because 1) he didn't want something plugged in and on all day while we were away, and, 2) he didn't believe it actually cooked the meat to a proper temperature. While I agree mostly with the first point, the second point couldn't be more incorrect. Crock pots totally cook the meat to a proper temperature. It just takes...time.



And when I'm in the blood fever of writing my book, time isn't necessarily on my side. I'm the world's biggest procrastinator, so I'm always working my tailfeathers off to get the book done...always on time. Writing RADIATE is no different.

With the crock pot, I can toss something together in the late morning or early afternoon and then when us night owls are ready to eat around 9-10-ish, voila...a complete meal. LIke last night's beef stew!



So...if you're working hard on a book and don't think you can get a decent, nutritional, hot meal on the table for your family? Think again. Try a crock pot...it's no...crock. LOL!

Leaves me more time to write...with the help of my two new muses, Madi and Boo.



Would love any recipes anyone would like to share! This is a whole new world for me.

Hugs,
Marley = )
www.marleygibson.com
www.ghosthuntress.com

Ghosts don't hang up their sheets after Halloween!
GHOST HUNTRESS series - The Awakening, The Guidance,
The Reason, The Counseling - available now!

2 Comments on New Crock Pot Saves the Day, last added: 1/20/2011
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21. Watch what you say!

I ran across an interesting article online from the Wall Street Journal regarding things that are said in social media circles and how it can effect one's employment status. Check it out.

My dear old dad always told me growing up, "Don't put in writing what you wouldn't want the whole world to see." He's right. I've always tried to operate this way in my life. However, Facebook, Twitter, and blogging changed everything.



We are a society of immediacy. We drive through to get our food. We Red Box our movies. We file our income tax online. We don't like to think things over too long or wait for results. Has this resulted in stifling our own internal sensor as to what is and isn't appropriate to say?


(This teacher said she was fired because of a Facebook photo of her on her European vacation holding alcohol. Let's remember...she's of age and it's legal to drink. So why was she fired for that?)

My friend, Pam, is an executive recruiter and she tells me that not only do employers look people up online (website, blog, Twitter, FB) before interviewing them, but schools also look at potential students' sites to see what kind of addition they'll be to campus life.



Is this right? Is Freedom of Speech gone wild? Or is it an infrigement of your rights to have to be accountable for everything you say online.

Just because we CAN say whatever we want, does that mean we SHOULD?

Sure, we've all encountered the school beyotch who made life unbearable at times. We've all had the fat cat of a boss who manages you with a heavy hand. Is it appropriate to Tweet or FB every emotion related to dealing with these people?



It's a slippery slope and one that it seems the courts will start hashing out.

What do you think? What does your "digital" or "virtual social footstep" say about you?

Would love to hear your thoughts!

Hugs,
Marley = )

www.marleygibson.com
www.ghosthuntress.com

Ghosts don't hang up their sheets after Halloween!
GHOST HUNTRESS series - The Awakening, The Guidance,
The Reason, The Counseling - available now!

4 Comments on Watch what you say!, last added: 1/29/2011
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22. TV Secrets!

In celebration of Marley Gibson’s latest release, Ghost Huntress: The Reason”, we are talking this week about secrets. For in this third book of the series, an important secret is revealed...

Marley is giving away signed copies of this book all week here at the Buzz Girls blog, so be sure to drop by every day, and to leave a comment to be entered.


When my mind turns to secrets, right now, it skyrockets to the TV program, LOST, which is, of course, in its final few countdown weeks of the sixth season--and forever. It seems secrets are being revealed around every corner, with some being total surprises to me, some head-thunks (“I should have thought of that!”) and some more like confirmations of what I’d long suspected.


But while much of the water cooler buzz involves what has now been revealed, just as much is focused on what is still to come, and whether the writers will manage/remember to reveal every last secret, or viewers will have to then go for time and eternity on an issue or two, still wondering...

In order to be entered to win a copy of Ghost Huntress: The Reason, leave a comment telling us about a final TV episode of a TV (sit-com, drama, reality show) that left you completely satisfied. Whether it was in the revealing of all the secrets, or you just like the way it ended.

And be sure to check back next Sunday to see if your name is on the winner’s list!

Tina

Tina Ferraro
The ABC’s of Kissing Boys, 2010 Rita® Finalist
How to Hook a Hottie, 2009 Rita® Finalist
Top Ten Uses for an Unworn Prom Dress
www.tinaferraro.com

24 Comments on TV Secrets!, last added: 5/6/2010
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23. Writers Keeping Secrets

This week on the Buzz blog we've been celebrating Marley’s latest release, Ghost Huntress: The Reason. Last week we all dished about lies in our pasts, and this week we're spilling secrets.


While I can't exactly spill any of my secrets (because then they wouldn't be secrets, would they?) I want to talk about keeping secrets in writing. I don't remember where I heard it, but there's an adage in writing that goes something like this:
Secrets from the character are good, secrets from the reader aren't.
Basically it means that if the character doesn't know something that the reader knows, that's fine. It's even okay if the character doesn't know something and neither does the reader. But if your character knows something (like that she's secretly a mermaid or a princess or in love with a particular boy) then the reader should know, too.

Let's take a classic example: Romeo and Juliet. Think about the end, when Juliet has taken the special "poison" that will make her appear to be dead, so she can go be with Romeo forever. Enter Romeo, who has no idea that she isn't really dead. The reader knows. We're practically screaming at Romeo to just wait a few minutes before stabbing himself in the gut. As sad as it is, we love that, because we know something Romeo doesn't.

Imagine if it were reversed. Imagine if we thought Juliet were really dead. Imagine Romeo knew the truth, so he just walks into her crypt, whistling a happy tune, and has a seat next to her seemingly-dead body. We'd hate him in the moment because it looks like he doesn't care at all for this girl who risked everything to be with him. When she woke up a moments later and we discovered the truth, we would be so annoyed that we (or at least I) would throw the book across the room.

It's all about balance, about making sure the reader never knows less than the characters. As readers, we either want to share the big reveal with the character or we want to know what's coming and anticipate their reaction when they find out, too.

Okay, enough of my little rant about secrets in books and onto the fun stuff. The giveaway! Marley is giving away signed copies of her new book all week here at the Buzz blog. To enter today's contest, leave a comment the following:
Share an example (good or bad) of a book in which the writer keeps a secret from the character.
Besides Romeo and Juliet, I would have to say Catching Fire by Suzanne Collins. I won't share what, because it would be spoilers, but she's brilliant at hinting to the reader about a really huge secret that Katniss really has no clue about. Brilliant, really.

Your turn to share. Check back every day to comment on the other Buzz girl posts for more chances to win and then tune in this weekend to find out who won.

Hugs,
TLC

OH. MY. GODS. and GODDESS BOOT CAMP (out now)
FORGIVE MY FINS (coming June 1, 2010)

19 Comments on Writers Keeping Secrets, last added: 5/8/2010
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24. Anonymous Secrets

This week the Buzz Girls are celebrating the release of Ghost Huntress: The Reason by our very own Marley Gibson. You can enter to win a signed copy of this awesome book by leaving comments each day. Since the main character, Kendall Moorehead, discovers a BIG secret, Marley thought it would be fun to discuss secrets this week, and I can't agree more!

Today I'm writing about anonymous secrets. I remember an episode of an old TV show called Cashmere Mafia, where people were invited to a NY art show and given invisible paint to write their secret on a wall. Then the lights went out and everybody's secrets glowed in the dark. Something else that comes to mind is PostSecret. Have you ever heard of it? According to their web-site, "PostSecret is an ongoing community art project where people mail in their secrets anonymously on one side of a postcard." I remember reading something about about it in a fashion magazine a loooong time ago, and when I read some of the postcards people had sent in, I remember being impressed about the quality of the artwork, and as I started reading the secrets, I felt kind of weird, like a voyeur. I experienced a wide spectrum of emotions as I read each secret. Sure, there were weird and gross confessions like "I pee in the shower," but ones to the tune of "I truly think I'm ugly" made me so depressed! Then again, some are inspiring, like this one I read today: "My anxiety is not the boss of me" or snippets of would-be suicides stopped by a stranger's kind words.

For a chance to win a copy of Ghost Huntress: The Reason and find out what big secret Kendall is going to discover, leave a comment about a secret of yours, a friend's, or a stranger's that lifted your spirits. But do not tell us whose secret it is! Keep it anonymous. Okay, I'll go first: Uplifting secret: I went out with him because I felt sorry for him and ended up falling in love.


15 Comments on Anonymous Secrets, last added: 5/8/2010
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25. What's your most embarassing secret?

We are having a blast celebrating the release of Marley's third installment in her Ghost Huntress series. THE REASON is in stores now so make sure you get yourself a copy! You can also leave a comment below for a chance to win a copy.
Okay, now to the embarassing stuff. I. SUCKED. MY. THUMB. Big deal, right? UNTIL. I. WAS. LIKE. TEN. I know, right? In my defense, I was a child of divorced parents and I was constantly going back and forth between my mom and dad's houses. These households couldn't have been more different if they would have tried. At one house, it was perfectly acceptable to suck to my hearts content. But if I broke the thumb out at the other house, it was not good. Sometimes when I was tired I would forget and sneak a lick before I realized what I was doing.
Of course my habit led to years of head gear, braces, retainers, and other orthodontia-related torture devices. But the worst part was the sheer embarassment of realizing that I was doing something that my friends had all outgrown. I was nervous about sleepovers because I knew my slurping in the middle of the night would wake the dead. My parents tried everything. Tabasco sauce, a metal cage installed in my mouth (not kidding about this one), even making me wear mittens. I'd suck through all of it. I realize now that I was just trying to deal with things that were scary to me in the only way I knew possible.



But I lived through it. Although my husband does enjoy teasing me by saying that I still suck my thumb at night sometimes. I'm not sure what finally made me stop. I think I was just ready.


Did you have something you were attached to when you were little? Leave a comment for a chance to win Marley's new book!


Stephanie

13 Comments on What's your most embarassing secret?, last added: 5/9/2010
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