Thursday, August 21, 2014

INTERVIEW: Alexa Land plus #Giveaway!

Today we're talking to one of my favorite people in the community, BEST-SELLING AUTHOR (I totally had to say that since she recently spent the week at #1!) Alexa Land. She comes to us with a very generous giveaway--so make sure you check out her interview for details!

Hello Alexa and welcome BACK to The Hat Party <3 Thank you so much for subjecting yourself (AGAIN!) to the RANDOMNESS that is a Raine O'Tierney interview! Please don your best hat, and let's get started!


Hi Raine, I’m thrilled to be back! Bring on the randomness! :)

What important thing would you give up in order to continue writing? 

Sleep! Actually, I give it up on a regular basis. Why is it that my best ideas happen between 10 p.m. and 2 a.m.?

What is your super-secret, wildest, most outlandish writing dream? 

To have one of my books made into a movie. I’m a huge film buff and that would just be epic! I’ve always thought my Firsts and Forever Series would lend itself well to an HBO or Showtime series, too. Anyone out there with Hollywood connections?! Nana is ready for her close-up! :)

Tell us about a time someone did you a great kindness.  

I set a really tight deadline for myself with Skye Blue and wrote the entire book, all 98,000 words, in just three months! In the week before I’d promised it to my readers, I was on a craptastic road trip with a broken down car, my child, and a half-edited manuscript, and I was stressed out! Two friends of mine knew I was panicked and said, “Just tell us what you need.” They both helped me so much by beta reading for me right before the book was set to go live, and reminded me what it means to be a true friend. Morgan and Denise, I love you guys! <3

You have 200 (MORE!) words—Make. Me. Swoon. (PLEASE!) 

This is from In Pieces, when Christopher Robin and Kieran find each other at Charlie and Dante’s New Year’s wedding, following a Christmas party kiss under the mistletoe:
I turned toward the voice behind me and my smile widened. Without another word, Reindeer Sweater stepped forward and scooped me into his arms, and delivered a New Year’s kiss to end all New Year’s kisses. I wrapped my arms around him, my eyes sliding shut, my lips parting for him. My God, this man could kiss! It was passionate, electric, and it made my heart race.
He pulled back long enough to ask, “What’s your name?” before kissing me again.
“Christopher,” I whispered against his lips. “What’s yours?”
“Kieran.” He pushed me against the wall and ran a series of kisses along my jaw, and licked my earlobe before saying, “I was worried that I’d only dreamt meeting you under the mistletoe, that you weren’t real.” His hands slid under my tuxedo jacket and he untucked my shirt, his big hands finding bare skin as he clutched me to him.
“You were really drunk.”
“I know.”
I slid my tongue into his mouth, and he sucked it gently before whispering, “Just in case you weren’t a dream and I ran into you again, I made sure I was ready.”
“What do you mean?”
He grinned at me, his beautiful blue eyes sparkling, and fished in his jacket pocket. Then he held up a little brown sprig of something. “I’ve been carrying this around every day since Christmas Eve.”
I laughed and asked, “Is that mistletoe?”
He dropped the crispy leaves back into his pocket and ran his fingers into my hair. “Yup.” He kissed me once more, then rested his forehead against mine.
“I think mistletoe’s magical properties expire after Christmas.”
“I was hoping if I saw you again, you’d grant the mistletoe an extension.”

If someone challenged you to a water-gun fight *to the death* how would you fare? 

I’d go medieval on their ass! Then I’d do a super obnoxious end-zone victory dance. LOL! :)

Do you have any special library memories

Yes! As a kid, going to the library was a highlight of my summer vacations. My mom would take me every Wednesday. I was only allowed to get five books at a time, because she was worried about losing track of them and ending up with late fees. It was impossible to make five books last a whole week! But I still remember the thrill of going home with a stack of new books, all that wonder just waiting to be discovered!

Give a shout-out to another author who may, or may not, know how much you appreciate them. 

When I was a brand new author, Kindle Alexander left a great review for one of my books on Amazon. Since she’s hugely successful and someone I look up to, I couldn’t believe she’d even heard of me! Then a couple months ago when I finally set up a Facebook page, she was so sweet. She posted to her readers, telling them I’d joined, and a couple hundred people friended me as a result. Readers have also told me she recommended my books to them. She’s just good people!

What is the hardest part of writing? 

Self-promotion! It’s an absolutely necessary part of the job as an indie author, but it’s just painful!

Do you dance in the rain? 

Every chance I get!

And finally, you’ve just inherited a dachshund farm. What do you do now

Throw a big party and get ‘em all adorable little hats! Because I’m thinking a bunch of dachshunds in party hats has got to be the cutest thing ever!

~ ~ ~ 

Sometimes, the road to happily ever after takes you where you least expect it.

Skye was only interested in finally losing his virginity, but he might have found much more than that. Two guys both feel so right to the twenty-one-year old art student, but maybe that means they cancel each other out. After all, if either was the one, Skye wouldn’t have feelings for both of them. Would he?

But what if he really did just meet the love of his life?


EXCERPT:

I glanced at the time on the stove and panicked all over again. It was five minutes to six. Holy crap! I ran for the shower and stripped myself as fast as I could, accidentally squirted about half a tube of toothpaste on my toothbrush, then jumped under the still-cold water and scrubbed my teeth with one hand while I quickly washed up with the other.
About a minute into this endeavor, my smoke alarm started shrieking. I cursed vividly and shut off the water, yanking back the shower curtain. Immediately, acrid smoke stung my eyes.
I grabbed a towel and fastened it around my waist as I dashed to the kitchen. The smoke’s source was immediately apparent. I turned off the broiler, then stuffed my hands into two big oven mitts that River had accidentally left behind. They were his favorites because they looked like giant, bright red lobster claws. I had no idea where he’d found them, or what would even possess a company to manufacture giant lobster claw oven mitts in the first place, but they were coming in handy right about now.
I coughed as I pulled the sheet of blackened bread slabs out of the oven and dumped it into the sink. The coughing made me think of my pets and I dashed to the bedroom. Draco wasn’t home, but I grabbed the Royal Rodent’s big cage between my lobster claws and ran for the front door. This mouse was not asphyxiating on my watch!
I swung my bare foot up to the door knob and managed to twist it open as I wrestled with the unwieldy cage. The mouse looked a bit alarmed, which was hard to do since his beady black eyes were permanently on the bulgy side. I got us out into the hall of my apartment building, where the (relatively) fresh air was a relief. The door swung shut behind me with a worrisome click and I turned to look at it before glancing up at someone coming down the hallway.
My date stopped a few feet away from me. He was holding a bouquet of blue flowers and a canvas grocery sack, and was dressed in the pink polo shirt he’d been wearing the day I met him. He ran his gaze from my damp hair to my bare feet, taking in everything in between, from the towel to the lobster claws to the pink mouse in the gold Taj Mahal cage with a plastic crown on top.
And then he burst out laughing. He laughed so hard that he doubled over, hands on his thighs, gasping for breath, and then he laughed some more. His reaction was so funny that I had to laugh too. I couldn’t even manage to be all that embarrassed, just because seeing him laughing like that made me happy.
When he finally got it under control, he wiped his eyes with an index finger and said, “What exactly is happening here?”
“I burned the toast.”
He was smiling ear to ear as he came up to me. “Ah.”
“I’d been kidding when I told you earlier that I was going to do that, but then that was exactly what happened. It led to a series of unfortunate events, the result of which you see before you.”
He reached up and ran a fingertip over my upper lip, his eyes bright with amusement, then held it up and showed it to me. It was covered in something white and foamy. “Bad news. I think you’re rabid.”
“Oh jeez. I was brushing my teeth in the shower when the smoke alarm went off. Is there a lot more?”
“Yup.”
I set the cage down, then wiped my mouth with the big lobster claw mitt. “Did I get it all?”
“Almost.” He ran his thumb over my upper lip, then kissed me gently before smiling again and saying, “Minty.”
I held up my lobster-claw-clad hands and said, “This wasn’t the impression I was aiming for on our first date.”

Skye Blue, 98K words. Ebook available for $3.99 at Amazon | Smashwords 


BONUS QUESTIONS:

What inspired you to write Skye Blue

As soon as Skye appeared on the pages of Salvation, I was so excited to write his story! Sometimes a character just takes on a life of his own, and that was definitely the case here.
                                                                            
Is there anything special you’d like us to know about it? 

I always try to include a lot of humor in my books, and I think this one has more laugh-out-loud moments than any of the others. I’m proud of that. :)


What are your hopes for this title? 

My hopes were realized! Skye spent a full week at number one in gay fiction, romance and erotica on Amazon. As an indie author, that’s just a dream come true!

About the Author: Alexa Land writes and independently publishes male/male romances, including the best-selling Firsts and Forever Series. She was born in Southern California and has been on a gradual northern migration ever since, having lived in Santa Cruz, San Francisco and now Oregon. Learn more about her books at: http://alexalandwrites.blogspot.com/

And on Twitter: @AlexaLandWrites

*~*~GIVEAWAY TIME~*~*~

Alexa is giving away away a $50 Amazon gift card and a pair of lobster claw oven mitts, drawn from people leaving comments on this interview :) Contest ends August 25th @ 11:59 CDT. Make sure to leave your email address!

80 comments:

  1. Love the hat and the interview! Thanks for a chance to win!

    jczlapin at gmail.com

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  2. You are new author to me it was nice to meet you, I enjoyed the interview. Please count me in for the Giveaway.

    ShirleyAnn(at)speakman40(dot)freeserve(dot)co(dot)uk

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  3. I love each and everyone of your books! Love the laugh out loud moments

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  4. Hi Alexa, I love your books and Skye Blue is on my TBR list. Love your awesome hat. Thanks you for your generous giveaway!

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  5. Love the hat. Great interview. I passed Skye Blue on and my mom read it. Nana is a hoot and she will give you those laugh out loud moments. I want to be her when I grow up. Can't wait for the next book in the First and Forever series. P.s. Hope your retreat was a success. Also hope you and your son enjoy the next week at your retreat. :)

    redmd@juno.com

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  6. The hat is just so you!! I love reading interviews I always learn something new about you and/or your writing, it is just so much fun for me. I never thought I would find the friend I have in you, you have come to very special to me. I will never be about to put it into words what you have done for me, or what your work has done for me. Your books mean the world to me, I can crawl in one and stay there when I need to feel safe.

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  7. Love the interview. Love Alexa Land, and am honored to call her my friend. And this book rocks! Buy it if you haven't!!! Seriously so funny!!!

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  8. Great interview Alexa! One of my favorite things about your books is the humor! You have a true gift!
    Maryjean_emerson@hotmail.com

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  9. Thanks for writing such wonderful characters! Love all the guys, and OMG, Nana. Skye Blue was a great add to the series. @;-)

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  10. I am always trilled to read your interviews Alexa, they are always fun and informative! Thank you for giving us fans such warm and honest answers!! Can't wait for the next one!

    broncobabe1975@gmail.com

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  11. Oohh I love the hat and the glasses! I want them too!! I read Way Off Plan last week and really really liked it. I have bought the second one too.
    the interview was great but following you on fb I knew it would be like this, soo fun (I admit I am your stalker!).
    thanks for the giveaway this is my email just in case cvale1@virgilio.it

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  12. I enjoy the interview, thank you! Can't wait for the next story! :)

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  13. Adding this comment for Yasmin Myrtveit whose comment didn't post, please enter her in the drawing! Good luck, Yasmin! :)

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  14. Adding this comment for Morgan Guthas whose comment didn't post, please enter her in the drawing! Good luck, Morgan! :)

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  15. Adding this comment for Kylee Shelton whose comment didn't post, please enter her in the drawing! Good luck, Kylee! :)

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  16. Fun interview, hat and glasses. Funny excerpt, some days are just like that one. LOL.
    strive4bst(AT) yahoo(Dot) com

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  17. Adding this comment for Lorraine Kay: "Oooooo Lobster oven mits, I'm there. I love these books, the only ones I've got on my Kindle that can have me laughing and crying all in one chapter" Good luck, Lorraine! :)

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  18. Great interview, love all your books!
    tnmiller12@gmail.com

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  19. Great interview and exerpt.
    rojoroaors@yahoo.com

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  20. Adding this comment for Hope Standifer: Fantastic interview and I love your books Alexa! Good luck, Hope! :)

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  21. That was wonderfully random interview. Still laughing for the crazy questions and Alexa's answers. =D
    eepa(dot)love(at)gmail(dot)com

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  22. Alexa, I don't have HBO, but if your First and Forever series were turned into made for HBO TV movies you can bet I'd be contacting my cable service stat.

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  23. I've read and enjoyed all of your books and cannot wait for the next Tinder Chronicles installment. tks!
    denajforavon@yahoo.com

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  24. I'm thrilled that Skye Blue is out! Somehow it's release slipped by me but I just bought it and plan to start reading it ASAP. I love these guys, Alexa, thank you for bringing them into our lives. :-)

    JPM6966@aol.com

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  25. Posting for Ashley Woodward-Kensinger, she said, "Alexa I would subscribe to HBO just to watch The First and Forever series!! Ashley_1613@yahoo.com Good luck Ashley!! :)

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  26. Thanks for the interview and the giveaway! This series sounds good, I have it in my TBR list.

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    1. Forgot the email: serena91291@gmail.com

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  27. Great interview and love the hat! I absolutely adore this series and Skye's book is my favorite! This is one of my favorite scenes from the book - I practically fell of the elliptical while reading it! I couldn't stop laughing. Love, love Skye & Dare was perfect for him. So happy to see River & Cole together. Nana is the best. Can't wait for Christian's story.
    lgrant1@san.rr.com

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  28. Posting for Sheila Vittitow: Great interview! Great series too! Good luck, Sheila!! :)

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  29. Posting for Laura Freeman, she said," Love all your books! I love books with witty banter and Skye Blue has tons of it." Good luck, Laura! :)

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  30. Ok, let's try this again. My first post didn't go through. I would go crazy over a television series of these books. I would buy them on DVD! I LOVE the whole series and Nana is hilarious. I can't wait for Christian's book and to see what his mystery is. Thanks Alexa for the chance at winning such a great gift. :) MelishaBonnette@hotmail.com

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  31. LOVE all of these books. I re-read them every time a new one comes out. Can't wait to read them again.
    Keep them coming, Kylah. :)

    therainisheavy@gmail.com

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  32. borninpr@gmail.com

    Skye Blue ... Excellent !

    Love all your books ...

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  33. Oh Alexa, a dachshund farm? You would have them drinking cocktails and wearing hats! New book...Christian...Can't wait!

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  34. Oh man, if 'Firsts and Forever' were ever made into a TV series, you'd have a very loyal watcher! I'd be one of those people that would shut out the world for an hour and just WATCH. I love every single book of the series and 'Skye Blue' was a perfect addition! I can't wait to read Christian's book next!

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  35. Posting for Myssie Barnes-Nunn, she says: I fully endorse your bribery attempt. Yes to cover reveal. Yes to getting to see Christian before I get him in my grubby little Kindle hands!! Good luck, Myssie! :)

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  36. Posting for Brenda Stevens, she says: Great interview. I love you and your books. And that hat...to.die.for. Good luck, Brenda! :)

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  37. Posting for Dionne Coker Tuttle: "I loved the mouse! Only Alexa Land could make me love the idea of a pet mouse." Good luck, Dionne! :)

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  38. Love this series! It is one of my go to series when I am in a book slump and nothing sounds good... Always makes me smile 😁

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  39. Loved the interview! Can hardly wait for Christian's book.

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  40. Posting for Jupiter Spot; "I'd love to have the First and Forever series made into an actual TV series on HBO, Showtime or even a Netflix original. I'd watch it. Hell I'd pay to watch it." Good luck, Jupiter! :)

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  41. Posting for Tara Stoffels Perkoski: "can't wait for the next book...after reading Skye's makes me wonder alittle about Christian" Good luck, Tara!

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  42. Posting for Natasha Griffin: "I love Alexa and really need new oven mitts. Mine have holes!" Good luck, Natasha!

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  43. Posting for Dani Fujikawa: "Next book cover reveal?? YEAH!! Me wants, me wants! After reading Skye's, Christian's book is necessary xD~~" Good luck, Dani!

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  44. Posting for Jennifer Guist: "Nana on TV would be epic!" Good luck Jennifer!

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  45. Posting for Amanda Richardson: "Excited for it!" Good luck, Amanda!

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  46. I love the whole series. Can't wait for more. A TV series would be awesome. Nana rules!!!

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  47. Posting for Beth Wages Mason: "Love you and your books!!!" Good luck, Beth!

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  48. Posting for Kelly Fuller Dodd: "I love that the excerpt you used was my favorite moment from the series!" Good luck, Kelly!

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  49. Thanks for this series, I wish nanna wad mine!

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  50. Posting for Melissa Mcentyre: "Thx Alexa--loved your answer to the water gun fight." Good luck, Melissa!

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  51. That hat is epic! Loved the "Make me Swoon" scene you shared.

    calila1988 (at) yahoo . com

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  52. Posting for Jenn Donald: "I wanted to say was that I love this series so much, I've read them all multiple times and holy moly the lobster mitts are a favorite part!!!" Good luck Jenn!

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  53. Thanks for the interview Alexa, love the Firsts & Forever series. I really like all the covers, but especially that of Christopher, he is just how I imagine him :-) Love carol

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  54. Love both Tinder and the Love & Forever series.
    Can't wait for the next book :)

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  55. Posting for Mary Danaciyan: "Wooo hoooo! I can't wait for Christian" Good luck, Mary!

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  56. Posting for Karie May: "Love your books and can't wait for the next one." Good luck Karie!

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  57. Posting for Lydia Sholtey: "CAN NOT WAIT for the next one!!! I love this series! It makes me laugh out loud! It makes me cry. And the guys just melt my heart! Thank you Alexa for sharing your incredible talent with us!!!" Good luck, Lydia!

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  58. Posting for Bridget Seelen "I just love the Firsts & Forever series and am looking forward to the next one I hope it is Christian." Good luck Bridget!

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  59. Posting for Melissa Vose: "Can't wait for Christian's book!" Good luck Melissa!

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  60. Posting for Kimberly Beaird Misevich: "First and Forever series is my favorite series! I bought them all in one day and then waited for Skye Blue with bated breath! LOL Can't wait for Christian!!!" Good luck, Kimberly!

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  61. Posting for Chibi Rin: "I wish to say I love your books and sky blue was awesome." Good luck, Chibi Rin!

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  62. I really enjoy all your books. I have laughed, cried, smiled and then laughed some more. I am looking forward to the next one. Thanks.

    aninew23@yahoo.com

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  63. Excellent hat, and excellent interview!

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  64. Loved the interview.

    alishead1@yahoo.com

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  65. Posting for Susan Montalbano: "sign me up!" Good luck, Susan!

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  66. Love the hat! Loved the interview! Loved Skye Blue!! I can indeed imagine that self-promotion is the hardest part but you do it with class!!

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  67. Hello hello! Great interview. Yup, that's our Kindle! :)
    nehalidancer@gmail.com

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  68. I think your books would make wonderful movies. The day will come soon for this genre.

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  69. Great interview, it would be awesome if your books turned into TV series!!

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  70. Great interview! I have been waiting for payday to buy this! Love the hat too.
    romanczukc@yahoo.com

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  71. Thank you for sharing and also thank you for the opportunity to win! Saralee1974 (at) wowway.com

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  72. Awesome interview! Thank you so much for sharing that :)

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  73. Loved Skye Blue!!! Nana is one of my all time fav characters!!!!

    Rstashley0615@aol.com

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  74. I love your books Alexa! Keep going!

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