Monday, January 31, 2011

Re-Release and Preview: Trouble and Her Friends ~ by Melissa Scott


Trouble and Her Friends

Tomorrow is re-release day for this award winning Science Fiction re-print by Orb (a subsidiary of Macmillan):    Trouble and Her Friends ~ by Melissa Scott

This book was originally published in 1994, and will be available in paperback  in the US and Canada –tomorrow, February 1st. It is currently available in the UK now. They all have this great cover.

Here’s a bit about the book: 

India Carless, alias Trouble, managed to stay one step ahead of the feds until she retired from life as a hacker and settled down to run a small network for an artist’s co-op.

Now someone has stolen her pseudonym and begun to use it for criminal hacking. So Trouble returns. Once the fastest gun on the electronic frontier, she has been called out of retirement for one last fight. And it’s a killer.

Less than a hundred years from now, the forces of law and order crack down on the world of the internet. It is the closing of the frontier. The hip, noir adventurers who got by on wit, bravado, and drugs, who haunt the virtual worlds of the shadows of cyberspace are up against the edges of civilization. It’s time to adapt or die.220px-Lambda_award_2008

Author Bio:   Melissa Scott lives in Portsmouth, New Hampshire. She won the John Campbell Award at the start of her career, and is twice winner of the Lambda Award for SF, which Trouble and Her Friends won in 1994. For a listing of her books see ISFDBInternet Speculative Fiction Data Base.

Amazon links US|UK|Canada.


(Lambda Literary Awards 2008 badge via Wikipedia) – love those guys!

I am very excited about this book since there are so few LGBT award winning Science Fiction works. A big thank you to the hard working people at Orb/Tor for sending Layers of Thought a copy of this book!  Its going to the top o’ the teetering pile.  I just need to hide it from John.

Thanks for reading.

Saturday, January 29, 2011

E-Book Giveaway: The Ghost Hunter ~ by Lori Brighton (a little romance for Valentine's Day)



Today we have an excerpt and giveaway for two copies in ebook format for The Ghost Hunter ~  by Lori Brighton

This is paranormal romance in the fluffiest sort of way… and look at that cover. Wow!

Here’s a bit about the book:  Ashley Hunter is intent on uncovering the truth about her father's disappearance. But Ashley realizes she's in for more than she bargained. Not only has she inherited a decrepit pub, she's also inherited ghosts and demons. Then Cristian arrives, a mysterious man who insists he only needs a room to rent. She believes him, until one by one her ghosts start disappearing...

Here’s a short taste:

She watched, wide-eyed as his silver blade came toward her….

It stopped only an inch from her throat.

For one long moment she merely stared at the sword, while he stared at her, waiting to see how she’d react. She recovered well enough, Cristian was glad to see. She didn’t waste any time in jumping back.

“Damn you!” She let her sword fall from her grasp, the metal clanging to the wooden floor. Tears shimmered in her eyes, bringing forth unwanted feelings of guilt. “This isn’t some joke.”

As if to prove her point, she shoved him in the chest. He didn’t budge. He hardened his heart, refusing to be swayed by her tears.

“No, it’s not. And it’s about time ye realized that.” He lifted his sword again, his anger mounting. “Pick up yer weapon.”

“Are you insane?” she demanded. “Cristian, please, listen to reason.”

Reason? She had no clue what was out there. If he accomplished anything, he had to make her realize the danger she was in. He dropped his arms to his side and stepped closer to her, so close, her breath was hot on his face. He should have been angry, instead he wanted to pull her to his chest and protect her. He wanted to shake her and make her listen to reason.

“I’m being reasonable. Ye have no idea what’s out there, what ye must guard yerself from.”

She pressed her hands to his chest, a pathetic barrier. At the contact, heat seeped into his body, tingling his skin and making him think of nothing more than touching her completely, having her fully.

“What happened to you?” she asked softly, her voice full of emotion, full of empathy and he wanted no part in it.

He dropped his sword to the ground with a clang. Before she could escape, he pushed her up against the wall with his body. “Ye happened to me.”

His mouth crushed to hers in a stunning kiss. Ashley didn’t react, merely stood there while his lips pressed to hers and his body held her against the wall. His mouth was hard, demanding she respond. Sleepless nights, dreams of passion and last night’s taste of what could be all taunted him. With a groan, he slipped his tongue between her lips. He knew he should stop, should pull back, but then her hands crept up his bare chest and an unidentifiable emotion bloomed deep within him, an animalistic need to have her.


Bio: Lori has a degree in Anthropology and worked as a museum curator. Deciding the people in her imagination were slightly more exciting than the dead things in a museum basement,  she set out to become an author. Her first book, a historical romance, was published by Kensington in November of 2009 it is called Wild Heart, the second in the series Wild Desire will be published in March or 2011. Both are from your classic romance collections. The Ghost Hunter is her self published work. For more information please see her website:  and her blog: 

Amazon Kindle purchasing links ~ The Ghost Hunger US|UK| – and Smashwords.

Lori’s other books ~ historical romance:


Wild Heart ~ US|UK|Canada          Wild Desire (pre-order)  ~ US|UK|Canada

Not our usual choice for books but its sure fun for Valentines day!

Contest Info:

We have two ecopies for give away, so the contest is international. Please fill out the form below. You do not need to be a reader/follower to enter.

Please leave your email in the form below. 

For optional extra points  ~ you can do any, all or none of the below for 1 entry point each:

  1. Be a subscriber of Layers of Thought – google or facebook. (I need to be able to see you! For face book to get updates in its feed - add me as a friend otherwise it does not count.)
  2. Friend on Twitter
  3. Friend on Goodreads

Contest ends Sunday February 27th, 2011 at 12 pm US Pacific time. Winner will be posted and notified on Wednesday March 2nd, 2011. 

Like our new form?  I am very excited, since now my life is that much easier for our giveaways. Find out how to do yours from this post… which I found via Bloggiesta!

We use to determine our winners. If you have a question or concern (like a typo or bad link or a problem with our new form) please email me via my profile – Shellie.

Thanks for entering and good luck! 

Friday, January 28, 2011

Challenge List ~ 2011



2011 Challenge List ~ is a page to keep track of current challenges. It will also include links to our book reviews which will be updated periodically.

Clicking on the challenge host badges will lead you to our original challenge announcement page, where you can find a bit more info then link to the host site.

2011 Challenges


Read A Myth Challenge  ~  January 1, 2011 to December 31, 2011.  Challenge site review page link

Level 4 Ogma: The God of all Myths. 8 books to cover more than 3 different countries, and at least 1 non-fiction book.

  1. Delirium ~ by Lauren Oliver (Shellie)

(links up to date)


LGBT Book Challenge 2011 ~ from January, 1st  to December, 31st 2011.

Goal ~ We read so many different types of books that many will over lap into this category, so as many as we can!


  1. Possession ~ A. S. Byatt
  2. Willy ~ Robert Dunbar




Haruki Murakami Reading Challenge 2011Hajime - Read one book. Shellie - hope to read more.



2011 Eastern-Europe Reading Challenge ~ Regions:  Choose titles about or by an author from any of the following regions:  Croatia, Ukraine, Bosnia, Serbia, Montenegro, Hungary, Belarus, Estonia, Albania, Bulgaria, Georgia, Slovakia, Slovenia, Poland, Czech Rep., Latvia, Lithuania, Russia, Romania, Moldova, and Kosovo.

Goal ~ tourist:  4 books over 12 months

The Oracle of Stamboul ~ Michael David Lukas (?)

gn2 button

Graphics Novel Challenge 2011 ~ January 1, 2011 and ends December 31, 2011.

Goal ~  We will be doing the beginner level 3 books each.

book bucket

2011 Book Bucket Reading Challenge ~ Make a list of any number of books that are in your bucket - books from on your shelf. 

Goal ~  10 books currently sitting on my shelves to read by the end of December 31, 2011.

The Afflicted Girls – Suzy Witten  (links needed)


War Through The Generations ~ US Civil War 2011 is from January 1, 2011, through December 31, 2011. 

Goal ~ Dip: Read 3-5 books

  1. The Killer Angels ~ by Michael Shaara (JD)
  2. The March ~ EL Doctorow (JD)

(links up to date)

Chivalorous Deeds


Chivalrous Deeds: Historical Fiction Challenge 2011 ~ from 1 January 2011 and finish on 31 December 2011. 

You can visit any court from any point in history as long as the book you are reading is Historical Fiction.  Review post link.

The Oracle of Stamboul ~ Michael David Lukas (Shellie)

(links up to date)


Historical Tour de Genre Reading Challenge ~  January 1, 2011 to December 31, 2011. Goals:  Read 6 books with at least one book from each category or sub 2 with Alternatives:  GLBT – Fantasy  - Western – Paranormal - True Crime. 


  1. Historical ~ Mystery, Whodunnit, Gas-Lit Century, Victorian
  2. Historical Horror
  3. Historical Romance/Regency: England or European continent
  4. Historical Young Adult ~ ages 14 to 21 yrs
  5. Historical Plantation ~ life on a plantation/setting
  6. Historical Thriller

Alternatives: GLBT – Fantasy - Western – Paranormal - True Crime.




(need to add link updated on Goodreads group)

2011 Global Reading Easy


2011 Global Reading Challenge: The Easy Challenge: (8 books) ~ Read one novel from each of these continents in the course of 2011.


  1. Africa
  2. Asia ~ (Tibet/China, Japan, Middle East, India/Pakistan) – finished by JD and Shellie
  3. Australasia ~ Australia/New Zealand/Pacific Islands – finished by JD 
  4. Europe ~ (Eastern, Western, UK/Ire, Nordic, Mediterranean) - finished by JD x 3 and Shellie
  5. North America ~ (Canada, Native American, CA – the United States) - finished by JD x 2 and Shellie x 3
  6. South America ~ includes Mexico and Central America 
  7. The Seventh Continent ~ Antarctica or a ´seventh´ setting, eg the sea, the space, a supernatural/paranormal world, history, the future (Arctic)  - finished by JD and Shellie
  8. From your own continent ~  John (UK/Ire) and Shellie (CA and North America) finished by JD x 3 and Shellie x 2


  1. Seven Years in Tibet ~ by Heinrich Harrer (Asia #2)
  2. The Healers ~ by Thomas Heric (Australasia #3)
  3. Beware of the Dog ~ by Brian Moore (Europe #4; #8)
  4. Mr. Toppit ~ by Charles Elton (Europe #4; #8)
  5. Life ~ by Keith Richards (Europe #4; #8)
  6. The Killer Angels ~ by Michael Shaara (North America #5)
  7. The March ~ EL Doctorow (North America #5)


  1. The Oracle of Stamboul ~ Michael David Lukas ( Asia #2)
  2. Enough About Love ~ by Hervé Le Tellier (Europe #4)
  3. Wuthering Heights ~ Emily Bronte (#4)
  4. Possession ~ A. S. Byatt (#4)
  5. Bury Your Dead ~ Louise Penny (#5; #8)
  6. Willy ~ Robert Dunbar (#5; #8)
  7. The Girl Who Circumnavigated Fairyland in a Ship of Her Own Making ~ by Catherynne M. Valente (#7)

Both need Africa and South America – Shellie needs Australasia



Get Steampunked! We have chosen the level Geared ~ 5 books to read.  review page, completion page


Dystopia Challenge ~ 2011:  Asocial with  5 books to read. review page, completion page

  1. Wither ~ Lauren DeStefano (Shellie)
  2. Delirium ~ by Lauren Oliver (Shellie)
  3. The Healers  ~ by Thomas Heric (JD)

(links up to date)


42 Challenge 2011 ~ (January 1, 2011 till  December 3, 2011)  read, watch, listen, and (possibly) review 42 sci-fi related items.

  1. Wither ~ Lauren DeStefano (Shellie)
  2. Delirium ~ by Lauren Oliver (Shellie)
  3. Home Fires ~ Gene Wolfe (JD)
  4. WWW: Wake ~ by Robert J. Sawyer (JD)
  5. The Healers ~ by Thomas Heric (JD)

  (links needed)

blog widget mind voyages tripping through the nebulae


Mind Voyages 2011 ~  From January 1, 2011 through December 31, 2011

Pluto Voyage:   Mix it up, choose the number of books you want to read from each voyage, include some new books you pick up along the way and enjoy the ride.

WWW: Wake ~ by Robert J. Sawyer (JD)

(links needed)

Continuing Challenges from 2010


Understand My Sorrow: Rules - Four (4) books, one nonfiction,  with one each for Depression, Schizophrenia, Bipolar Disorder,  and OCD


  1. The Handbook for Lightening Strike Survivors ~ by Michele Young Stone (depression)
  2. Then Came Evening ~  Brian Hart (ptsd/drepression)
  3. Our Tragic Universe ~ Scarlett Thomas (depression/ocd)
  4. In the Wake of the Boatman ~ by Jonathon Scott Fuqua (depression)
  5. The Principles of Uncertainty ~ Maira Kalman (depression)

(links needed)

Five books down ~ more to come  - Mr. Linky review link – (not working 3/24)


Steampunk Challenge ~ October 2010 to October 2011. Link for Steampunk reviews.


  1. Voltaire’s Calligrapher ~ by Pablo De Santis
  2. “Sun of Suns”: From Virga: Cities of the Air ~ by Karl Schroeder
  3. Hawkmoon: The Sword of the Dawn ~ by Michael Moorcock
  4. The Half-Made World ~ by Felix Gilman

(links up to date)

Continuing Perpetual Five Year Challenges (Shellie only)


The Basics Challenge – Exploring Speculative Fiction: A personal project located at The Basics Challenge site. It is a 100 book challenge (with a 25% forgiveness rate.)


  1. The Oracle of Stamboul ~ Michael David Lukas (magical realism)
  2. Wither ~ Lauren DeStefano (Shellie)
  3. Blue ~ Lou Aronica
  4. Delirium ~ by Lauren Oliver (dystopian)

2009 ~ 2010

  1. The Things That Keep Us Here - Carla Buckley (adult apocalyptic)
  2. The Magic Warble – Victoria Simcox (children’s fantasy)
  3. RELEASE by Nicole Hadaway – (horror, vampire)
  4. Tender Morsels by Margo Lanagan – (dark fantasy, fairytale retelling )
  5. Soulless by Gail Carrigan – (urban fantasy, steam punk, vampire, werewolf)
  6. The Metamorphosis by Frank Kafka (horror, classic, literature)
  7. The Stupidest Angel - by Christopher Moore (horror, humor, zombie)
  8. Life As We Knew It
  9. The Dead and The Gone
  10. This World We Live In (all linked here in one post) – (apocalyptic, young adult)
  11. Inside Out by Maria Snyder (young adult – girls science fiction)
  12. Cursed by Jeremy Shipp (horror- bizarro)
  13. Keeper by Kathi Appelt (young adult/tween, mythic - slipstream)
  14. The Russian Dreambook of Color and Flight by Gina Ochsner (slip stream, literary)
  15. The Song of The Whale by Uri Orlev (fant/myth)
  16. Post-Human by David Simpson (sci fi)
  17. The Passage by Justin Cronin (horror)
  18. Alone by Marissa Farrar (vamp horror/uf)
  19. One Bloody Thing After Another by Joey Comeau (lgbt horror)
  20. The Reincarnationist by MJ Rose (all three are in one post) - (paranormal)
  21. The Memorist
  22. The Hypnostist
  23. The Unit by Ninni Holmqvist (dystopian sci fi)
  24. Hothouse Flower by Margot Berwin (magical realism)
  25. The Handbook for Lightening Strike Survivors ~ by Michele Young Stone
  26. Haunted Legends ~ edited by Datlow and Mamatas
  27. Dracula by Bram Stoker
  28. My Name is Memory ~ Ann Brashares
  29. Our Tragic Universe ~ Scarlett Thomas
  30. The Arrival ~ (a wordless novel) by Shaun Tan
  31. The Tempest ~ rewritten by Ann Keay Beneduce
  32. Buddha’s Orphans: a novel ~  by Samrat Upadhyay 
  33. The Healer's War ~ by Elizabeth Ann Scarborough
  34. Pathfinder ~ by Orson Scott Card

38 completed, 64 more to go 


Fill in the Gaps - This is a 100 book challenge which includes classics or books that already exist on your shelves.

  1. Fahrenheit 451 - Ray Bradbury (read - review link)
  2. Something Wicked this way Comes - Ray Bradbury (complete - review link)
  3. The Road - Cormac McCarthy (complete - review link)
  4. Frankenstein - Mary Shelley 
  5. The Metamorphosis - by Frank Kafka
  6. Dracula by Bram Stoker
  7. The Woman in White by Wilkie Collins
  8. Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen (abandoned)
  9. Lolita ~ by Vladimir Nabokov
  10. The Sweetness at the Bottom of the Pie ~ by Alan Bradley

10 completed, 1 abandoned - 64 to go (reviews coming on two)

Links to review site.

Yes, I do admit I am a bit of a nut, which is why I created the different sort of nut badge on the top of the post. I am sure we will be adding a few more just to complicate things a bit. Ah the tangled webs we weave…. who is that by?

If your not a book blogger and are surprised by this list you should see the real nuts. And if you are a book blogger you know who you are!  lol….. Let the reading begin!

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Switching Gears Again: with our latest seasonal header ~ at Layers of Thought



Oh my Gods……love is in the air….… now the question is - “is this nice woman trying to swat that little horned guy and the annoying flying baby in the nicest sort of way or not…..looks like the sole of a shoe?”  Goodness!  Do you know the feeling? I do since I have two cats.. thank goodness they don’t have wings.

With tmedusahe Read~A~Myth Reading Challenge and Valentines Day coming up very very soon….we thought it was a perfect seasonal addition to our blog. We also thought we could extend its use a bit if we did not do the lettering in red or pink, but with blues and browns instead. What do you think?  I do have so so much fun with these and with John as my consultant it can get quite hilarious here at our house.  You know those Brits and their dry follower lovequirky humor.

Beyond my mumblings let’s get excited since we have some amazing giveaways coming up for the month of February. They will all be linked in the Follower Love Giveaway Hop  from Feb 8th till the 13th which will include two books and one incredible set for offer from us via our lovely authors and publishers. We love them to bits! (Badges link to hosting sites for more information on the events).

Here they are:

Riverworld (the complete series of 4 books; this is the live link to our preview for the series) ~ by Jose Philip Farmer; It will include the soon to be released last in the series. Gods of Riverworld from Tor.

Enough About Love ~ Herve Le Tellier; This is a literary fiction novel translated from French and is of course a love story; but from reading the first 50 pages I do know that it is not the fluffy sort. It is from another publishing favorite - Other Press.

The Ghost Hunter ~ by Lori Brighton; Now this is the fluffy sort of paranormal romance that is very girly, and look at the cover of this ebook. Wow!  We have two copies of this self published book and an excerpt from it to share by this recently published romance author.


The bad news is that we will be “spamming” you with these offers since we need to get them live by the 8th. *big smile*

It has taken me a few days of mad catch up to get this all planned and I think we are almost ready to go. I am so excited since there are few other things in the works that many of you will be interested in, especially the unpublished writers who read this blog. *bigger smile*

So please stay tuned and thanks for reading!

Monday, January 24, 2011

Review: The Killer Angels ~ by Michael Shaara


The Killer Angels - Shaara

The first review for the year 2011!

The Killer Angels ~ by Michael Shaara (Reviewed by John/JD)

An excellent historical fiction novel about the greatest battle of the American Civil War, told from the perspective of several of the main protagonists.

About:  This novel covers four fateful days in the summer of 1863 – the three days of the battle of Gettysburg and the day leading up to it. A highly successful Confederate army led by the beloved Robert E. Lee has invaded the Northern States and threatens to turn the course of the war, while a Union army that has been plagued by poor leaders is scrambling to intercept and stop them. They convene on the small Pennsylvanian town of Gettysburg. While this was just one battle in a long war, it involved no less than 160,000 soldiers and was destined to have a major influence on the outcome of the war and, consequently, the very nature of the United States.

John’s Thought’s: Unusually for a work of historic fiction, this book closely follows real-life events but you experience them via several of the leading people who were actually involved, rather than via fictional characters. This gives it the feeling of several intertwining autobiographies, a device which Shaara uses very successfully. Of course, it is still a work of fiction as Shaara has to imagine and create the motivations and feelings of the characters, and has to fill in many details which are either unknown or debated by historians. While some have taken issue with these details, it is very clear that Shaara has done an awful lot of homework to support his novel. Whether correct or not, this feels like an important historical document and is also a very entertaining read.

UK The Killer Angels

You get to experience the events gradually unfolding, the actions or inactions that would influence the outcome, the impact that individuals’ personalities and mental states would have on events, the fog of war, and the total horror of a major battle where many thousands of soldiers were slaughtered (after three days almost 50,000 men were either killed, wounded or missing). Shaara also takes you deep inside the personalities of the main characters, and while some have debated his interpretations of them, this makes for a fascinating read.

As a Brit who is not particularly in tune with American history, I learned a lot from the book and it also caused me to do some extra Googling and reading to find out more – about the Civil War, its causes, Gettysburg and some of the main characters. So was this the decisive battle of the war and who won the day? Those questions too are debated by historians. The Confederates most certainly did not win the battle, and they might have; the Union army most certainly did not lose the battle, yet they so very nearly did. While the outcome may not be clear cut, it does seem that Gettysburg forever damaged the psyche of the Confederate army, led to a more conservative strategy, and ultimately played a substantial part in its defeat.

An excellent book – educational, enlightening, thought-provoking and entertaining. I’d rate it 4.5 stars. I’d highly recommend it to anyone who enjoys historical fiction or who wants to find out more about the Civil War. I also found out that a movie was made that was based on the book, which I’ll now be seeking out (it’s simply called “Gettysburg”).

The Killer Angels, by Michael Shaara 1974 ~ US|UK|Canada. (Top cover copy is US and Canada the lower is for UK).

This book was given to John as a Christmas gift to read for The War Through the Generations – US Civil War Challenge and a few other challenges yet to be determined (Historical Fiction and World Lit). Funny thing is that I had to pry it out of his hands and hide it till after the first of the year since he dove right in. He was a bit discombobulated until after I gave it back to him, then he devoured it in short order.

Thanks for reading and hope you’re all achieving your 2011 resolutions. Darn it’s good to be home!

Friday, January 21, 2011

We have Winners! ~ four of them (yep, finally)



We have Winners ~ Yeah!  

Wonder why this guy looks so fun and happy, even in the rain?  I think its because he has a bag of books in his hand and he won them all from Layers of Thought.

Since we love to win books, its even better to give them away!  Which is the point since we finally have winners to our belated contest, and three others which are not quite so behind schedule. I hope you will all forgive me *wink*.  I am a very bad blog host.

Well enough of that and lets hear it for our winners ~ with a great round of applause, drum rolls, four gun salute… and all that……

Our first winner is for the Glen Cook epic fantasy trilogy, published by one of our favorite speculative fiction publisher ~ Tor!

our winner is:


from her cute blog ~ see scoot read

Yeah Scoot!


For more information on the trilogy please see the giveaway and preview post for the series: The Instrumentalities of the Night ~ by Glen Cook. And just in case you didn’t win here are purchasing links:

  • The Tyranny of the Night (book one) US|UK|Canada.
  • Lord of the Silent Kingdom (book two) US|UK|Canada.
  • Surrender to the Will of the Night (book three) US|UK|Canada


And the winner for the young adult vampire novel Dayling ~ by Gabriel Madison. (Cover also links to giveaway post.)

our winner is:


from Buried in Books

Yeah Heather!

And for those who wished to win but did not, here are links for US[Kindle] ~ UK[Kindle] ~ Canada and Smashwords (for other e-formats and to print).


Our two winners for Pirate Sun (the third in the series)  ~ by Karl Schroeder US|UK|Canada – book cover links to the giveaway post and a review of the first book in this steampunk sci-fi series. It is also from Tor. We love Tor!

our two winners are:



Suzanne from Chick with Book


Yeah Meredith and Suzanne!

And just in case your interested in the first part of the series Virga: Cities of the Air ~ by Karl Schroeder  (this is an omnibus of two books, “Sun of Suns” and “Queen of Candesce”) US|UK|Canada

(Cover of Pirate Sun links to giveaway post and review of first book in the series.)

Yeah ~ Congrats to our winners!

Life is so much better when you win a book! I will be contacting each of you by email. Please respond to this post and to my email within 72 hours, so that I can forward your info onto the author and publisher. Thanks!

Better yet, we have more coming very very soon, and there are some really good ones ~ or at least we think so. So stay tuned!

Bloggiesta Ole! ~ Let the fun and blog improvements begin



“No hay lugar como casa". ~ translated to English "There's no place like home."   L. Frank Baum (Dorothy - The Wizard in Oz)

We are back home and if feels wonderful!  To celebrate I have created our Bloggiesta start post. (Badge above links to the host’s start up post).

What is Bloggiesta? It is a 72 hour challenge to improve your blog. You can join in at any time and spend as much or as little time as you wish and you do not need to be a book blogger to join.

With many things I would like to do to update and improve Layers of Thought, and only a limited time to get them done I have chosen only four for this Bloggiesta #4 (I do tend to go overboard so I have really cut back this time.)  

Challenge Plan:

  1. Announce (overdue) winners for current contests
  2. Contact winners of contests
  3. Update ~ Review Policy
  4. Create ~ 2011 Reading Challenge Post (started)
  5. Check out the list of new challenges for this event

In an effort not to bore or spam you I will be updating this post as the challenge progresses. So if interested check back by since a number of readers, whom are bloggers (and not), have benefited from the hilarity of my fumbles and frustrations of my revelations - which I am particularly good at.



Friday evening ~ One down but added another, I truly am a slug. Although a happy slug and such a nice orange color. (It matched the Bloggiesta badge.)

I am off to order some Mexican food. Do you like Carnitas? Delish crispy yet tender pork which we consider “food of the gods”, but not for those on diets. Yum!

Saturday morning ~

  1. Started # 5 which is to check out mini challenges for the event.  My Friend Amy (blogging goals) ~ mine are to have more fun and to simplify the process.
  2. Started challenge link list.
  3. Mailed contest winners.

Sunday morning ~

Went onto twitter for the first time this year and checked out some of the great links for #bloggiesta

Completed - 10 Things Bloggers Should Not Do’: Bloggiesta mini-challenge (everyone needs to do this challenge!)

  • Read the post, 10 Things Bloggers Should Not Do.
  • Rate yourself (on a scale of 1 to 5, 5 being muy excellente) on each point. How are you doing?
  • Brainstorm examples of what you can/will do to improve your ratings in those areas that could use improvement. And/or:
  • If you feel you’re doing particularly great in one area, share examples of how you’ve reached such excellence.

Rate Layers of Thought: I would have to say that I rate fairly well – so I would say a 4 considering the age of my blog and my experience level, as well as our philosophy of no bad reviews and kindness. I have been working on cleaning up and making the blog readable and clear. A white or light background has a greater retention and readability rating…

Improvements Needed:

  • Do need to find out more about SEO (what the heck is that?)
  • Do need to get into my reader and find out more about all our new readers and update that area… blog roll and visiting these new blogs. A bit behind since Christmas and traveling…

Checked out all new mini-challenges some that I really need

Entered a recipe for veggie quesadillas on Maw Books

Taking a break since John is cleaning his side of the closet… oh dear! This is boredom.

Late fiddlings:

How to do a Google document for a survey or contest! ~ from Devourer of Books. You will now be seeing these documents on my giveaways.

A big thanks to Natasha at Maws Book Blog for hosting this event, our motto Pedro Plan, Edit, Develop, Review, and Organize, as well as the other experienced bloggers hosting mini challenges to help us learn more about this challenging and fun medium.

Badge links to the site’s start up page for this challenge. It has a ton of very very useful links for improving your blog. For further information - a link to Layers of Thought’s announcement post for the event.  Come and join, or just lurk – that works too. It’s a perfect excuse for some Mexican food, music, and drinks!

Let the Fiesta Begin!

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...