Introduction by Melissa Amster
**Giveaway is now closed**
When we thought of Chick Lit Bloggers to invite to participate in International Chick Lit Month, Stephanie Elliot a.k.a. Manic Mommy was the first one who came to mind. She’s one of the first bloggers I met when I was just starting Chick Lit Central as a book review blog. Her posts about authors and books, as well as her amazing giveaways (which are still going on almost all the time) inspired me to do more with Chick Lit Central. She and I have stayed connected over the past couple of years, exchanging book recommendations and hooking each other up with authors to interview. She and Melissa P. have met in person and are now friends, as well. Stephanie is truly an awesome woman…not only does she have three kids, but she also has time and motivation to write novels! Here’s the story of her path from mommy blogger to published author! And since she’s writing about books more than parenting these days, she’s changed the name of her blog to “Booking with Manic.” Here’s how you can “book” with her, as she has a giveaway of her e-novella, “The Cell Phone Lot,” for FIVE lucky readers!
The first blog I ever read was Jennifer Weiner’s, after I discovered Good In Bed. She inspired me to start my blog, MaNiC MoMMy in 2004, in which I griped and bemoaned being a mommy of three young children very close in age.
My children are now 14, 13 and 10½. I can’t blog about them any longer. They don’t like when I share stories about their latest crushes, and I can’t upload videos of them dancing to Black Eyed Peas anymore. Their friends discovered the blog. The Mommy Blogging days are over.
I also discovered that during the Mommy Blogging days, I started to blog more and more about the books I had been reading and the authors I had been meeting. I was sharing hilariously fun stories about book signings, and telling readers about cool new books I discovered. It was a natural process. My kids got older and they stopped doing cute blog-worthy things; my life was freeing up and I was able to do more of what I loved – writing, reading and attending book signings.
At the time, I was living in the suburbs of Chicago – a mecca for writers! I was able to meet Julie Buxbaum, Emily Giffin, Jennifer Weiner, Stephanie Klein, Elizabeth Berg, Jen Lancaster, Heather Armstrong, Maureen Lipinski, Karen Doornebos, Dawn Meehan, Eileen Cook, Jess Riley, Amy Sprenger (wait for her books – they’ll be awesome!) Stacey Ballis, and so many more talented authors. I feel that was a time in my life that help mold me into the writer, reader and reviewer that I am today. I’m thankful that I’m still close friends with many of these authors and I consider them mentors.
Two years ago, our family relocated to Arizona, where even though we are abundantly blessed with sunshine and terrific weather, rarely do authors do book tours here. Yay for Jen Lancaster who knows the advantages of a great book signing here!
But MaNiC MoMMy, the blog, still prevails. Even though I don’t get to attend as many book signings as I would like to, I am still able to feature so many talented authors on the blog, and often! When I began connecting with the authors, and discovering their amazing books, I wanted to share their books with the MaNiC readers. So every week, you’ll discover at least one to three new authors and can enter to win that book the blog.
Recent authors on the blog have included: Seré Prince Halverson, Laura Dave, Allison Winn Scotch, Sarah Pekkanen, Sarah Jio, Meg Donohue, Lauren Fox, Rainbow Rowell, Hilary Winston, Ashley Ream, Amy Hatvany, Val Frankel, Catherine McKenzie to name just a few. If you like any of these authors, that’s what’s in store for you at MaNiC MoMMy!
Reading all these wonderful authors has also inspired the novelist in me. I’ve written three novels, and am working on the fourth one. Publishing is a hard business, but I’m not one to give up, and while I had an agent, I did some serious soul-searching and felt she was not the right one, so I’m on the search again. In the meantime, I’ve self-published an e-novella called “The Cell Phone Lot” (available for Kindle only) and I’d love to offer five copies to readers today. Here’s the blurb:
Grant and Bridge didn’t think their chance meeting at the cell phone lot would lead to anything, but after flight delays and a couple of beers, each starts to wonder if they were meant to find one another. But Grant’s supposed to pick up a girl he’s met online, and Bridge isn’t quite over her ex-boyfriend. Is the timing right, or might this possible relationship just never take off?
Just leave a comment telling me who your favorite author is and you’ll be entered to win one of five copies of “The Cell Phone Lot!”
Giveaway ends May 13th at midnight EST.