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You are now entering the world of my thoughts.

This blog is my diary of works in progress. The only way a writer can improve upon her skill is to practice, practice and practice some more. Here, in this place of quiet peace, I pen to paper my thoughts and creativity. Welcome to my world.

Copyright © 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013 SN Taylor, All Rights Reserved

Monday, September 30, 2013

Book Blast: Little Red Writing by Joan Holub

Little Red Reading Little Red Writing by Joan Holub Acclaimed writer Joan Holub and Caldecott Honoree Melissa Sweet team up in this hilarious and exuberant retelling of Little Red Riding Hood, in which a brave, little red pencil finds her way through the many perils of writing a story, faces a ravenous pencil sharpener (the Wolf 3000)... and saves the day. Joan Holub has hundreds of pencils. Some are red. Others are glittery, sporty, or full of holiday cheer. They are all super sharp and good at writing books. They’ve helped Joan write more than 130 books, including Zero the Hero and Knuckleheads. She lives in Raleigh, North Carolina. Melissa Sweet has illustrated nearly 100 children’s books, including the Caldecott Honor–winning River of Words and the Sibert Medal–winning Balloons Over Broadway. When not in her studio, Melissa loves to ride her bicycle and hike with her two dogs, Rufus and Nellie. She lives in Rockport, Maine.

  Praise for Little Red Writing

 "A very funny picture book that, I guarantee you, lots of savvy teachers will be eagerly sharing with students as part of the process of teaching creative writing." -- Richie Partington MLIS, Richie's Picks

"What a CLEVER, CLEVER story!" -- I Love to Read and Write Reviews

"This clever adaptation of Little Red Riding Hood has so many levels of creativity and learning... Every elementary teacher should have this book to begin their writing units." -- Play on Words

"Style, humor, and solid writing advice." --Publishers Weekly, starred review

 "So rich in words and wry humor-written and visual-that one reading just isn't enough." --School Library Journal, starred review

"Every writers' group should start with this story." --Kirkus Reviews, starred review

"Every elementary teacher should have this book to begin their writing units." -- Play on Words

"An easy, winning prompt for beginning writers to abandon their fears and take up pencils of their own." --Booklist    

Author Joan Holub I graduated from college in Texas with a fine arts degree, and then freelanced as an art director at a graphic design firm for eight years. I dreamed of working in children’s books, so I moved to New York City and became associate art director in Scholastic trade books, where I designed books for children and worked with editors and illustrators. It was a great job. I illustrated my first published children’s book in 1992 and soon began illustrating full time. I began completing manuscripts and mailing them out to publishers in the early 1990s. In 1996, I sold my first two manuscripts — Boo Who? A Spooky Lift-the-Flap Book (Scholastic) and Pen Pals (Grosset & Dunlap). Yippee! Now I write full time and have written and/or illustrated over 130 children’s books. Creating books that entertain, inform, and interest children (and me) is a fabulous job that I truly love.  


BookBlast Giveaway $50 Amazon Gift Card or Paypal Cash Ends 10/15/13   Open only to those who can legally enter, receive and use an Gift Code or Paypal Cash. Winning Entry will be verified prior to prize being awarded. No purchase necessary. You must be 18 or older to enter or have your parent enter for you. The winner will be chosen by rafflecopter and announced here as well as emailed and will have 48 hours to respond or a new winner will be chosen. This giveaway is in no way associated with Facebook, Twitter, Rafflecopter or any other entity unless otherwise specified. The number of eligible entries received determines the odds of winning. Giveaway was organized by Kathy from I Am A Reader, Not A Writer and sponsored by the author. VOID WHERE PROHIBITED BY LAW.

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Monday, September 23, 2013

Book Review: Orleans by Sherri L Smith

OrleansOrleans by Sherri L. Smith
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Orleans is the best read yet for 2013! I loved the voice of the main character, Fen. It is so nice to see a strong female character that has not been turned into some overly sexy 'laura croft' weapon wielding type of heroine. Fen was a real hero. She was a fighter, protector and most of all she was a woman of her word. Everything she did was to protect her tribe, her leader and Baby Girl. When Fen's tribe is attacked and her leader killed, she vows to get Baby Girl, Lydia's newborn baby, over the wall that separates the quarantined city of Orleans from the rest of the United States. A scientist named Daniel is close to creating a virus that will attack the Delta Fever virus that caused the quarantining of New Orleans. He enters the city to find a research lab in the hopes of completing the cure using any research the scientists who stayed behind after the walls were sealed. He thinks the city is long dead but finds a thriving albeit struggling to survive city divided not by race but blood type. Fen meets Daniel and they work together to get Daniel the information he needs as well as get Baby Girl to safety beyond the walls before her blood becomes tainted with the Delta Fever virus.

View all my reviews

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Book Tour: From A to Z Poetry by Fida Islaih

From A to Z is 100 poems about being Muslim, handling emotions and the beauty of nature. There is a bit of sadness and humor in the collection. From doodling to any kind of sport to colors. In a way the poems may help you improve yourself and your outlook on life.
the poems may help you improve yourself and your outlook on life. ~from the author, Fida Islaih
My review:
From A to Z Poetry is a collection of short poems written by a talented young artist with great potential and a bright future ahead of her.
Fida's poems are sincere, candid, genuine and down to earth because she writes from her heart. Because her poems reflect life, love and living, readers will relate to her earnest expressions and impressions as she writes about life, school, relationships, emotions and faith. Get to know this poet through her writings and learn a little something about yourself along the way.
I really enjoyed the following poems as they gave me a sense of who Fida, the poet, is. Cannot Lie tells me so much of her character. Certain or Not, her faith. Life and I Come To You, her beliefs. Brokenhearted, her strength. Emotions, her passion. And, If You Give A Pen, her aspirations. 
Learn more about the author and her debut boo by visiting her website:
Fida Islaih
Blogger, Poet, Author
A TO Z POETRY (Sept, 2013)

Monday, September 16, 2013

Book Tour: CassaStorm by Alex J. Cavanaugh

Alex J Cavanaugh, author of the best-selling Cassa series, is here today as part of his book tour to answer a buring question of mine :) Alex's lastest book, Cassa Storm, will release on September 17, 2013.
Question: If you could change and re-do one aspect of your writing career, what would it be and why?
I would’ve planned beyond that first book and been working on both sequels much, much sooner. Although it’s still difficult for me to work on more than one project at a time, I know that would’ve placed me in a better spot.

By Alex J Cavanaugh From the Amazon Best Selling Series! A storm gathers across the galaxy… Commanding the Cassan base on Tgren, Byron thought he’d put the days of battle behind him. As a galaxy-wide war encroaches upon the desert planet, Byron’s ideal life is threatened and he’s caught between the Tgrens and the Cassans. After enemy ships attack the desert planet, Byron discovers another battle within his own family. The declaration of war between all ten races triggers nightmares in his son, threatening to destroy the boy’s mind. Meanwhile the ancient alien ship is transmitting a code that might signal the end of all life in the galaxy. And the mysterious probe that almost destroyed Tgren twenty years ago could return. As his world begins to crumble, Byron suspects a connection. The storm is about to break, and Byron is caught in the middle…

“…mesmerizing story of survival, personal sacrifice, tolerance, and compassion. It’s a rare jewel that successfully utilizes both character and plot to tell a story of such immense scope and intimate passion…” - Nancy S. Thompson, author of The Mistaken

“CassaStorM is a touching and mesmerizing space opera full of action and emotion with strong characters and a cosmic mystery.” – Edi’s Book Lighhouse

  "Cavanaugh makes world building on the galactic scale look easy. The stakes affect the entire known universe and yet Cavanaugh makes it intensely personal for our hero. The final installment of this series will break your heart and put it back together." - Charity Bradford, science fantasy author of The Magic Wakes

$16.95 USA, 6x9 Trade paperback, 268 pages, Dancing Lemur Press, L.L.C. Science fiction/adventure and science fiction/space opera Print ISBN 9781939844002 eBook ISBN 9781939844019 $4.99 EBook available in all formats

Find CassaStorm:

Barnes and Noble -
Amazon -
Amazon Kindle -
Goodreads -
Book trailer -

Alex J. Cavanaugh has a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree and works in web design and graphics. He is experienced in technical editing and worked with an adult literacy program for several years. A fan of all things science fiction, his interests range from books and movies to music and games. Online he is the Ninja Captain and founder of the Insecure Writer’s Support Group. The author of the Amazon bestsellers, CassaStar and CassaFire, he lives in the Carolinas with his wife.

Website – 
Goodreads -

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Off to Oz Giveaway Hop 9/10 - 9/17


It has been a long time since I partook in a giveaway hop! Thanks to I Am A Reader, Not A Writer and Angela's Anxious Life for hosting the Off to Oz Giveaway Hop.

I loved the Wizard of Oz as a kid (and still do as an adult!) My favorite character was the cowardly lion :D If they were to make another movie, I would love to see Dorothy go back to Oz or maybe her granddaughter to find the cowardly lion, scare crow and tin man :)
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Friday, September 6, 2013

Cover Reveal: A to Z Poetry by Fida Islaih

Book Description: 
From A to Z is 100 poems about being Muslim, handling emotions and the beauty of nature. There is a bit of sadness and humor in the collection. From doodling to any kind of sport to colors. In a way the poems may help you improve yourself and your outlook on life.

Buy on Smashwords: link will be available later on. 

The book will be published September 19, 2013. 

About the author:
Fida Islaij is a multicultural Muslim who enjoys reading, writing and eating chocolate. 

Find out more about Fida and her debut release on her blog.

Fida Islaih
Blogger, Poet, Author
A TO Z POETRY (Sept, 2013)

Blog Tour: Review & Giveaway: Assured Destruction: Script Kiddie

Assured Destruction: Script Kiddie

Jan Rose no longer steals data from the old computers she recycles. She doesn't need to. As the newest member of the police department’s High Tech Crime Unit, the laptop of a murderer has landed on her desk. Her job: to profile and expose a killer.

But that’s not all.

A creep lurks in the shadows, stalking a friend, and Jan must stop him before the hunt turns deadly. The clock counts down for Jan to save her friend, her job, her boyfriend—maybe even her life.


“A fun, fast-paced thriller guaranteed to distract teens from Facebook ...”
Kirkus Reviews, on Assured Destruction, book #1

Michael F. Stewart's Bio:
After crewing ships in the Antarctic and the Baltic Sea and some fun in venture capital, Michael anchored himself (happily) to a marriage and a boatload of kids. Now he injects his adventurous spirit into his writing with brief respites for research into the jungles of Sumatra and Guatemala, the ruins of Egypt and Tik’al, paddling the Zambezi and diving whatever cave or ocean reef will have him. He is a member of the International Thriller Writers and SF Canada, and the author of the Assured Destruction series, 24 Bones, The Sand Dragon, Hurakan, Ruination and several award winning graphic novels for young adults.

My Review + Giveaway:

Script Kiddie is the second book of the series, Assured Destruction. And like the book before it, I really enjoyed it. It was fast paced, hair-raising, heart-pumping fun. And the story development kept me turning the page even at 1 in the morning! However, I give Script kiddie 3 stars on Goodreads where the first book had four. Here is why:

Jan is a great girl, driven to help and protect her friends and family, even if it costs her life. I admire that in this character. I really felt for her. But she is only 16 and sometimes the situations she gets herself into or the unreasonable things that is expected of her is just too much to take in. And her relationship with Jonny is unrealistic to me, more like forced. Theirs border on being mad at each other and awkward make out sessions. I mean really, what does she see in a boy that she feels the only way to pacify him is to make out with him once in a while. Sure he is useful for driving her around now that she is sort of disabled but what else is there......and why the heck does he put up with her putting everyone first and leaving him for whenever she has the time or need. To be honest, I like him, he is a great friend but I just don't think they are right for each other. BTW, I was team Karl in Assured Destruction :D

But it was such a good story! I can't help feel a little disappointed book #3 is not out yet. The author leaves some burning questions and now all I want to know is, where and what happened to Jan's father? Really, just who is Peter, her mother's boyfriend, why IS he so interested in her mom and Assured Destruction? And what has Jan gone and gotten herself into (again)?

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Member of the Society of Children's Book Writers and Illustrators