Sandi Shilhanek | Werewolves, Vampires, Shapeshifters Oh My!
Sundays with Sandi / October 24, 2010

With Halloween right around the corner I thought it would be time to discuss some authors who write paranormal romance. I know that there are tons of them out there, but I have to admit that I am not really a big paranormal reader….bad right? I am surely missing some really terrific stuff. I have read and really enjoyed Dakota Cassidy. I’ve had the chance to meet her personally and have to say that she writes just like she talks! I’ve been collecting Michele Bardsley and Jaye Wells because both these lovely ladies are authors who live in my area, and along with Dakota Cassidy are going to be appearing at Readers’n’ Ritas in November. I’ve also read Dark Lover by J. R. Ward because my friends insisted I was going to love it. I have to admit that I was hesitant, but did enjoy every page, and someday will move on to the rest of the series. I know that there aren’t many books dedicated to Halloween like there are books dedicated to Christmas, but with the vast array of paranormal romances available there surely has to be something to please everyone. What do you recommend for someone like…

SANDI SHILHANEK | Book Club and More
Sundays with Sandi / September 12, 2010

So yesterday Sara talked about the birthday party she attended. I was lucky enough to attend the same party, and while we didn’t talk books we did discuss our phones. We talked about the pros and cons of the latest ones available, and some nice man let me touch his Iphone4. (In case you don’t know I usually have a case of new tech gadget lust.) I did share with a coupe of my friends that for my birthday last month I bought a new generation Kindle. It arrived yesterday, but due to a Dr. appointment, the party, and my early to bed tendencies I could only get it unpacked and charging. I did manage to also sneak in some time to buy one book. I bought Just One Taste by Louisa Edwards because she’s going to be the guest at our book club dinner this week. Unfortunately I won’t get it read in time, but I did read and enjoy her debut book, Can’t Stand The Heat. Speaking of Louisa…did you realize you could meet her in person (along with me, and I just know that you’re dying to meet me!) at readers’n’ritas being held in the Dallas Ft….

Sandi Shilhanek | Reflections of the Summer of 2010
Author Guest , Sundays with Sandi / September 9, 2010

Now that Labor Day has passed, and for the majority of us summer has come to an official close it’s time to perhaps reflect back and see what was the best thing about the summer. I was lucky to have many special memories in the summer of 2010. I know there’s no way to tell anyone which one was more special than any other one. My oldest son announced his decision to elope with his fiancée, and then announced that early next year my husband and I would be embracing our first grandchild. No clue yet as to the sex of the child, but my daughter in law is convinced it’s a girl, and my son convinced it’s a boy. We shall see. Then I had the terrific opportunity to attend RWA in Orlando and meet so many of my favorite authors such as Robyn Carr, Tara Taylor Quinn, Christie Ridgway, and so many more. Then I had the chance to meet authors I’ve yet to read, but am now anxious to such as Carolyn Brown, Leigh Michaels, and Tessa Dare. Finally I spent Labor Day weekend with my family celebrating my sister’s oldest child’s wedding. It was the first…

Sandi Shilhanek | Catching up on my reading
Sundays with Sandi / August 15, 2010

All over the net I’m sure you’ve been reading what a great time was had by all at RWA. As I said last week I had a great time too, but unfortunately one souvenir I wasn’t planning on bringing home came with me. An illness that has taken me forever (at least in my mind) to get over! The good part of being sick…my doctor put me off work for this past week so I got to nap when I wanted and attempt to catch up on my reading. I also found out just how protective of the house my dogs, Oreo and Travis really are! I’ve included a picture of Travis protecting the house (well, maybe in his dreams). I read an entire book on my Iphone even though I dedicated ebook readers. It was so easy to grab my phone and move from room to room, and be able to do more than just read! I read Savor the Moment by Nora Roberts on my phone. My thoughts…I really didn’t mind reading on my phone, and have moved on to The Inn At Eagle Point by Sherryl Woods, and while I can read it on my Kindle I’m…

Sandi Shilhanek | Reliving RWA In My Dreams
Sundays with Sandi / August 8, 2010

When I thought about the blog post this week I really wanted to be bright-eyed, and bushy-tailed detailing the totally wonderful time I had in Orlando at RWA 2010. However, I am sick, and while I understand that it’s a side effect of being worn down from the fun I had, I’m really ready to be over the sick, so I can truly reflect on the fun! I had the chance to attend RWA due to the generosity of Sara Reyes, and Fresh Fiction. It truly was a wonderful experience, and I would suggest anyone and everyone take the opportunity to attend even if like me you don’t think you want to be an author. Being surrounded by the amazing people of the publishing industry is really inspiring, and I have to admit had me giving a fleeting thought to writing a book. For all you other aspiring authors…your chances are still safe, because I don’t see myself writing a book, and I’m beginning to believe if you can’t visualize it you can’t achieve it. There were so many highlights, but two that really stand out was the opportunity to meet Robyn Carr. If you’ve been reading me you know…

Becky Pena | A week on my own with a successful Kindle in my hands
Author Guest , Sundays with Sandi / July 25, 2010

It’s that time of year again. Stress levels are getting higher, interviews are being scheduled, road trip preparations are hectic, and yes, the intern has a whole lot more work to do. Haha, not that I’m complaining, just surprised about all the work that goes into preparing and attending an RWA (Romance Writers of America) conference for an online company like FreshFiction.com. But, you know what this means? While the staff is off having fun at Disney I get to sleep in, work from home, and dance in my living room in between breaks. It’s going to be a blast. I am writing today’s blog because Sandi is busy on that big road trip I mentioned above. I believe everyone left early this morning around 6am. Crazy; but then again, the early bird gets the worm. I’m just glad I get to sleep in. Working from home actually isn’t so bad. So far, I just have to make sure I’m not too distracted. Motivation definitely dwindles when the TV happens to be in the same room as me. It’s a good challenge, one that will help my future ventures at owning my own company. Yesterday was my first official “work…

SANDI SHILHANEK | Meet Tess Gerritsen and Lisa Gardner

Saturday I should have stayed home and cleaned my house especially since I’m leaving next Sunday for my first RWA (need I say how excited I am about this?). Did I play good domestic goddess and see to the needs of my family, no I didn’t! What did I do instead? I attended a book signing for Tess Gerritsen and Lisa Gardner. I arrived at the bookstore a tad later than I had really wanted to, and was worried about parking and how long the lines would be. I was pleasantly surprised to find easy parking, and shocked to see that the crowd was nowhere near what I had anticipated. Good for me, but what would the authors think? Both Tess and Lisa gave short speeches about their books in general and then their newest releases specifically. I don’t know about the other people in attendance, but it made me want to run home and read right away! I’m sure I say this a lot but both authors were really entertaining, and personable, and if I wasn’t already a fan I would be just from listening to them speak! After the signing those of us in attendance from the DFW…

Sandi Shilhanek | A Perfect Day
Sundays with Sandi / July 11, 2010

What a week it’s been! Tuesday I got together with a small group of people from the DFW Tea Readers group, and had a wonderful dinner of barbecued chicken, baked beans, deviled eggs, pasta salad, green salad, and not only one cake, but two! We also had a lively conversation with author Annette Blair, who writes, not only romance, but also mysteries. I didn’t realize that, so Wednesday sent me to Barnes and Nobel in an effort to attain one or two of her mysteries by using my gift card I won from author Michele Bardsley (who can be seen in November at Readers ‘n’ Ritas.) Saturday had me again meeting the DFW TeaReaders group for a fun and lively tea. Unfortunately we were not the only people in the tea room, and when I went to the restroom I got the impression that one of the elderly ladies from the other group wasn’t really happy about how much fun we were having. See when we start having fun we tend to forget that there are others around, and we tend to get a bit loud. We’re not rude loud, just fun loving loud, and if you’re ever in the…

Becky Pena | Meeting Alyson Noel … Tales from the Intern
Sundays with Sandi / June 27, 2010

I had an amazing adventure with the Fresh Fiction staff this past Thursday! I accompanied Gwen to my first ever author interview, with Alyson Noel, as Fresh Fiction’s official intern. I was so excited! After getting lost trying to find a Starbucks…Sara and Gwen found me on the way to the hotel that Alyson Noel was staying at. We had a 3 o’clock appointment for our video interview and were 10 minutes early to scout out different locations. We met Alyson in the lobby of the hotel and lucked out with conducting the interview in the hotel bar; Alyson was so fun, she joked about modeling against the table so we could get the mysterious atmosphere of the bar. Gwen forgot the camera tripod and luckily, she had me! This interview session I was “behind the scenes” on camera duty. The video interview was great; in my opinion, Alyson is really laid back and down to earth. She conversed with us as if she had known us for several days. What’s funny is that the video interview lasted a total of 7 minutes while the conversation we had afterwards lasted for more than an hour. We got sidetracked with talk…

Sandi Shilhanek | Musings including Father’s Day, Daddy and … Moms
Sundays with Sandi / June 20, 2010

I really wanted to write about my mom and the fact that she came to see me, and we were able to discuss books and our joint love of them in person, but it is Father’s Day, so I thought I should try to see what books I might have read that have the word Father or Daddy in the title. I did a search of the word Father here at Fresh Fiction, and found ninety one (91) books in the data base with the word father in them. Unfortunately I don’t appear to have read any of them, but there were several by authors I have read and loved! So while the search didn’t help me to recommend a great book about fathers to you it did add to my own backlist search! A search of the word Daddy yielded forty nine (49) titles to investigate, and one I’ve actually read. I have read SUGAR DADDY by Lisa Kleypas. While many of my friends rave about this book I didn’t enjoy it as much as they did. It does have a sequel called BLUE EYED DEVIL, which I have to admit I was hesitant to read, but I had…