Thursday, September 27, 2012


Wanna know something super fun?? I KNOW SOMEONE WHO JUST PUBLISHED A REAL LIVE BOOK. Like a for real book that you can like...find in a bookstore! Or a library! Or Amazon!

Not gonna lie, it makes me feel pretty special. One degree of separation to a legit author! Woo!

My friend Colleen just released her first novel, Elly in Bloom!!!

Now seriously-- who else judges books by their covers? I know I'm not the only one. And the cover of this book? I mean, even if I didn't already know Colleen and want to read the book just 'cause she wrote it-- I would definitely pick this book by its cover. How pretty is it??! (Relatedly, back in June (months before the book was published) Colleen shared the inside scoop on just how the cover art came to be. It is so interesting!!)

So you can imagine how excited I was a few weeks ago when Colleen contacted me and was like "hey, I'm going to mail you my book!" Because I was planning on buying it anyway, so basically she just saved me a little wad of cash, which is always nice. Plus it meant I got something in the mail, which is also something I'm a fan of. And yesterday the book came!

Look!! I'm holding her book(s) in my VERY OWN HANDS!! Surreal, I tell you. She even wrote on the front page for me (which is my personal love language: book inscriptions. True story.)

Erika, Thank you for being the most wonderful internet discovery since Pinterest! I am so glad we found each other in the internet stratosphere, my skinny soulmate. I hope someday we can meet in person and sing Les Mis from beginning to end. Keep on blooming! Love, Colleen Oakes

If that doesn't prove we're BFFs, I don't know what would. She calls me the "best thing since Pinterest" (HIGH PRAISE), "skinny" (HIGHEST PRAISE), and wants to sing through my favorite musical ever with me? Soulmates indeed.

But wait! Did you catch something 2 pictures ago? There are TWO books there. Guess why?

'Cause I'm giving one away!!!!!

I know, I can barely contain my excitement! My very first giveaway!!

First, let me tell you a tiny bit about the book (if you need more info, you can check out the synopsis/reviews on Amazon). This summary is stolen directly from Colleen's blog, btw: 

Surrounded by lush flowers and neurotic brides, chubby 32-year old Elly Jordan has carved out a sweet little life for herself as the owner of Posies, a boutique wedding florist in St. Louis. It’s not bad for a woman who drove away from her entire life just two years ago when she found her husband entwined with a red-headed artist.

Sure, Elly has an embarrassingly beautiful best friend, a terribly behaved sheepdog and a sarcastic assistant who she simply calls “Snarky Teenager”, but overall her days are pleasantly uneventful. As a bonus, her new next door neighbor just happens to be an unnervingly handsome musician who has an eye for curvy Elly.

Just when she feels that she is finally moving on from her past, she discovers that an extravagant wedding contract, one that could change her financial future, is more than she bargained for.

With the help of her friends, staff and the occasional well-made sandwich, Elly bravely agrees to take on the event that threatens to merge her painful history with her bright new life, and finds herself blooming in a direction she never imagined.

I read the whole entire book yesterday and let me tell you-- it was fabulous. I actually laughed out loud (literally!) a few times. And I lusted over the descriptions of flowers (and sandwiches). Yall know I've been reading like crazy lately, and this book is definitely one of the most enjoyable I've come across. Elly is easy to relate to and impossible not to root for. I was very sad to see the book end.

And now YOU can have the pleasure of Elly in Bloom, too!! Because Colleen's going to give one of YOU your very own SIGNED BY THE AUTHOR copy! All you have to do is...

...basically nothing. I'm a newbie giveaway girl, okay? I can't see myself doing all that "follow me and friend me and look at my Etsy shop and do a backflip and some long division" stuff that Serious Giveaway Bloggers do. I'm makin my OWN rules here, okay? So if you WANT to do any of the above (especially a backflip, but be sure to record yourself trying!), feel free. Otherwise, just leave a comment on this post. Here are some suggestions for things you can say in the comment:

-"Erika, MAKE ME A WINNER!!!!!!!!!!"
-"Erika, you are so cool and awesome and I am so jealous you know a famous author." 
-tell me your favorite book
-tell me your favorite kind of cookie
-tell me about how poor and bored you are and how you really really need this book to get you through the weekend
-tell me what TV show you're loving right now

And so on and so forth. Just leave a comment (be sure to include your email address or some way I can get in touch with you if I don't have it already) and then I'll figure out how to do that random number picker thingy and pick a winner! I also might (if the Spirit leads me) decide to pick a non-random SECOND WINNER based on my personal favorite comment. So may that be your incentive. And may the Force be with you! And may the odds be ever in your favor!

Giveaway ends Monday-ish! So start commenting!!

And if you can't wait that long to read Elly, you can go buy it now on Amazon-- yes, it's released on Kindle as well!


  1. -"Erika, MAKE ME A WINNER!!!!!!!!!!"

    -"Erika, you are so cool and awesome and I am so jealous you know a famous author."

    -tell me your favorite book- I Know This Much is True by Wally Lamb. I read it once a year religiously. Just finished it last month for this year!

    -tell me your favorite kind of cookie- Chocolate chip. Or Oatmeal. Im boring like that.

    -tell me about how poor and bored you are and how you really really need this book to get you through the weekend--- this is 100% true. My husband travels for work and I am bored out of my mind. Please help a sister out!

    -tell me what TV show you're loving right now--- Revenge and Modern Family! :) Plus Grey's comes back tonight!!!

    There! I did them all- now can I pretty please win?!?! :)

  2. now that sounds like a book I`d actually stop trolling Pinterest for.
    you know such cool people... I met Michael Flatley once, who? Lord of the Dance yo oh and I met Ben Affleck while he filmed Reindeer Games in my hometown; never seen the movie? join the rest of the world. We did a `leaving on a jet plane`duet - it was pretty magical - until he hooked up with J.Lo later that year.
    Anyways back to Colleen`s book... yes please! I wonder if she`d be willing write something equally cool on my inside cover should I win.
    congratulations on being famous through friend osmosis.

  3. i found your blog while i was at my internship this summer trying to find something to entertain me and keep me awake. i had never ready any blogs before and yours was the first one i stumbled upon. you had me laughing out loud! i am a college student so "fun" reading for me is few and far between. your friend's book has an awesome cover and it sounds like a great read so i'd love to win!! :)

  4. This is a great way to bring blog lurkers out of the woodworks! Also, I should totally win bc you could bring me the book in the morning and I could read it in the car while you entertain my child and then we could talk about it all weekend. Doesn't that sound great?! But you'd need to close the giveaway like, um, now. Please and thank you.

  5. omg erika.

    you are so COOL.

    pretty please make me a winner.

    and THANK YOU for not making me jump through hoops to win this giveaway. ha!

  6. {What I REALLY want to know is: did her book arrive via UPS?!}

    But I would love to win a copy!

    Also, you are so cool and awesome and I am so jealous you know a famous author.

    Also, I am poor and bored and sad because I just had a miscarriage (too soon to play that card...?), so I should win.

    The end.

  7. My favorite cookie is oatmeal chocolate chip! Also, I agree with Allison... miscarriage card for the win!

  8. I wanna win!!!!!


  9. My favorite kind of cookies are A) ones I don't have to make, B) those sugar cookies with the frosting at the grocery store- I have eaten about six over the past two days, and C) pretty much any cookie.

    And I just moved and can tell you this- I would love a handsome musician as my neighbor. Cause mine are NOWHERE near handsome. Plus one stole $400 worth of water- true story.

    Anyway, you are cooler than sugar cookies from the grocery store. And that is saying a lot.

  10. Oooo, sounds like a fabulous book! Reminds me of Jennifer Weiner chick lit. Would love to win it!

  11. ERIKA! You are awesome!! And I love books! Pick me!!!

  12. I totally remember seeing this book on your Goodreads! So now I will go and put it on my bookshelf, so you have no choice but to pick me. Sweet!

  13. I only want to win if you ship my book UPS...I must hear that brown truck pull up and stop at my house! How exciting!!!

    What can brown do for you? He can deliver my fabulous new book!

  14. Erika, you light my rockets (see? you're the girl who was on fire already!). :)

  15. "Erika, MAKE ME A WINNER!!!!!!!!!!"

    "Erika, you are so cool and awesome and I am so jealous you know a famous author." (And if having something on Amazon makes you a "famous author" you can buy an article I wrote on which is something I discovered when I Googled myself! Which means you know two "famous authors" but Colleen is definitely cooler because she wrote a whole book which sounds AMAZING by the way.)

    Tell me your favorite book: I don't have a favourite because how would all the other books feel???

    Tell me your favorite kind of cookie: Store bought -- President's Choice Chocolate Chip Homemade -- Double Chocolate Chip. And I would make you a batch and UPS them to you if I win. Yes, that's a bribe :)

    Tell me about how poor and bored you are and how you really really need this book to get you through the weekend -- Next weekend I will be spending twenty-four hours on the trains with a three year old and a one year old and my husband and will REALLY need something to read.

    Tell me what TV show you're loving right now -- ummmmm... don't have one :S

    And Erika -- you are WAY better than Pinterest.

    (If bribery, flattery and an "almost famous" author doesn't get me the book then the winner obviously really needed it! Like Allison.)

  16. I go through reading phases, and I'm looking for a good book to get me back into reading so I stop repeatedly checking facebook all day. Please make me a winner so that my life is no longer pitiable.
    my email is

  17. Erika, I've always thought you were totally awesome and now you are awesomer!! And, actually, I am awesomer too since I'm only two degrees away from knowing a real published author now through you. I have lurked on your blog for a long time and now I'm coming out of the closet so I can win the book!!!!!

  18. I totally judge books by their cover and that one is BEAUTIFUL! If I had my very own copy, I would read it (of course! And then recommend it to all my friends) and then put it on display on my mantle because it's so pretty!
    I thought about doing a backflip, but stories that end in the emergency room are no bueno :)

  19. Okay, let's see, I can't actually remember the last time I read a book. It is VERY SAD! My reading skills may actually be on the decline. That's a pretty good reason to win the giveaway. My mind depends on it!! :)

  20. The book looked so good that I used my kindle to check it out on Amazon. Thanks to my Prime membership, I am borrowing it for free! I'm not very far into it, but so far, it is very good!

  21. I have been away for the internets for too long and have much blog catching up to do. A give away? Am I too late?
    Pick me! I will preview and perhaps make it a book club book?? Sounds like a cute read!


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