Smoothies and Book Club – A Summer Update

{Photo of one of my first smoothies on a bookshelf with some of the books I’ve bought recently}

Well I started this post before summer vacation started and look – it’s almost the middle of July!

In Glister news, I’ve been waiting on getting my laptop fixed, the one with all my heavy-duty programs on. I wasn’t able to use my USBs and for various reasons don’t have internet on it, so transferring work to upload on this computer was impossible. It’s apparently working okay now, so first up will be the new edition of Bronze in paperback and then I’ll be looking into releasing it as e-book again. I have mixed feelings about this as book theft is such a problem, but with Copper coming out as soon as I can manage it, I really want that e-book out there. I’ll also be doing Goodreads giveaways and might post chapters of both books at Wattpad and Smashwords. I’ll keep you posted.

I’m staying close to home for most of the summer, doing curriculum planning for graduate credit as well as doing my best to finish the second Glister Journals novel, Copper. So I’m very busy. I admit that I’ve been stuck for a while on the last chapters, not because I don’t know what happens at the end, but I’m not sure in what order those things happen, which affects what ties them together, which has made it difficult to focus on just writing. Earlier this year, there was a lot happening at work that adversely affected me and possible changes to my job on the horizon, both of which had me very stressed out for the last six months or so. Nothing of my doing, but I was deeply affected none the less. So that also made writing difficult to focus on. I’m not making excuses, just saying the way it is. I am making good progress now though, and all chapters are going out for final critiques.

I have no road trips planned this summer, which I’m a little sad about, but my poor little car has seen better days. I think I’m going to play it safe until I can buy a newer one. I plan on doing that next spring, if my car lasts that long without needing major repair. Poor thing’s over ten years old and has over 200,000 miles – almost all mine! It’s been a little trooper to be sure.

The one trip I made this summer was to see my son and his family in Iowa. I had mixed feelings about the trip, but I couldn’t wait to see my son – I hadn’t seen him in two years! I hugged him tightly twice a day to make up for lost time and try to stock up a bit for the future. And I hadn’t seen my little grandson since last summer. I’m not sure whether he actually remembered me, but he seemed happy enough to have me around. But I’m not a fan of flying and Iowa and I have a little history together. They’re not the best memories. The trip was nice though – just relaxing most of the time. They live in a very nice small north Iowa town where there’s not much to do, but the time seemed to fly anyway.

I was interested in exploring SE Minnesota and loved the area around Rochester and especially Chatfield, but didn’t have an opportunity to really investigate. Chatfield seems like exactly the kind of small town I’d like to eventually live near. Is anyone from around those areas? I’d love to hear your thoughts or experience concerning them. I’m thinking about retirement within the next ten years and certainly can’t afford to retire here in the Bay Area. So I’m looking for alternatives. Somewhere I can buy a decent home in a quiet neighborhood with a low mortgage, maybe even a small farm – for horses, of course. It’ll be the first (and probably last) home I’ve ever owned, so I’m rather looking forward to it!

{a picture of Chatfield, Minnesota, an old fashioned-looking small town. Not my photo.}

The other things I’m working on (in the sense of actually employing them in daily life) are life hacks. It seems like most things should be easier now at my age, but I still struggle with a lot of things, many because I’m autistic, but also just because I’m me! My two favorite discoveries so far this summer are making my own smoothies, which I’ll mention again in a future post, and joining a book club, which I’ve never done before. I have a slow processing speed for some things, including reading, and know I can’t keep up with most other people, but thought I’d give it a go for the summer weeks.

Is anyone else in the Modern Mrs. Darcy Summer Reading Club? I’ve been following her book posts for a few years. This is her first club (I think), and I’ve really been enjoying it. She chose five books for the summer weeks that I’d never heard of and probably never would have read otherwise. Since I have a very eclectic taste in books, it’s been a real treat. Each book’s reading time is culminated with a webinar and live feed, but conversation is ongoing on a Facebook group. The first webinar was really interesting. So far we’ve read One In A Million Boy and The Nest, both of which I enjoyed for different reasons. We’re reading Everyone Brave Is Forgiven right now, which I’m not sold on yet. It’s hanging in the balance. I may ditch it and sneak in a book of my own choice until we’re on to the next one.

One In A Million Boy – From the acclaimed author of When We Were the Kennedys and Any Bitter Thing, the incandescent story of a 104-year-old woman and the sweet, strange young boy assigned to help her around the house—a friendship with unexpected reverberations for the boy’s unmoored family.

I LOVE this book. It’s difficult to describe and not like anything I’ve read before, but it’s beautifully written with many quote-worthy passages and very memorable characters. I admit I got behind in reading this one and still need to finish it, but it’s definitely one to enjoy the journey, not race to the end, so I know I’ll be able to pick it back up and finish at my leisure.

The Nest – A warm, funny and acutely perceptive debut novel about four adult siblings and the fate of the shared inheritance that has shaped their choices and their lives.

Every family has its problems. But even among the most troubled, the Plumb family stands out as spectacularly dysfunctional. Years of simmering tensions finally reach a breaking point on an unseasonably cold afternoon in New York City as Melody, Beatrice, and Jack Plumb gather to confront their charismatic and reckless older brother, Leo, freshly released from rehab. Months earlier, an inebriated Leo got behind the wheel of a car with a nineteen-year-old waitress as his passenger. The ensuing accident has endangered the Plumbs joint trust fund, “The Nest,” which they are months away from finally receiving. Meant by their deceased father to be a modest mid-life supplement, the Plumb siblings have watched The Nest’s value soar along with the stock market and have been counting on the money to solve a number of self-inflicted problems.

This is a story about the power of family, the possibilities of friendship, the ways we depend upon one another and the ways we let one another down. In this tender, entertaining, and deftly written debut, Sweeney brings a remarkable cast of characters to life to illuminate what money does to relationships, what happens to our ambitions over the course of time, and the fraught yet unbreakable ties we share with those we love.

This one really surprised me. From the description (which I didn’t read before starting) and the conversation of others in the club, I didn’t think I would like this at all. Indeed, the characters are not very likable, but they are certainly very human and it’s a fascinating study. It was an extremely easy read and I finished way before the deadline. Woot!

I’ll have a giveaway for these books later. What are your favorite reads so far this summer?



Reviews for The Glister Journals: Bronze
New website coming!
The Glister Journals: Bronze can be purchased through any bookseller or purchase now at Amazon.com
Note: All original text and materials by or commissioned by B. B. Shepherd are copyright 2012-2016 to B B Shepherd.

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Freedom to Read Giveaway

I am currently on vacation and working very hard to finish up my current novel. So far, so good! For those of you who have read and loved Bronze, I hope you will love the second book even more. I can’t wait to release it!

In the meantime, let’s have another giveaway! This hop is hosted by I Am A Reader, Not A Writer and Bookhounds. Please enter and follow the linky on my blogger. I am giving away a $15 gift card to the book store of your choice, and a paperback copy of my novel Bronze (The Glister Journals #1).

I have tried to make this easy for people already following me or The Glister Journals series in various places. If you’re already a follower, you shouldn’t have to do much except enter on the rafflecopter. I will verify winning entries, so no need to add again on Goodreads, etc. If you have any insight on how I can make this even easier for current followers, please let me know! Follow the links (on my Blogger) to the other participating blogs.

Good luck!



The Glister Journals: Bronze can be purchased through any bookseller, or purchase now at Amazon.com

Reviews for The Glister Journals: Bronze

More Glister info and excerpts at the book’s website here: theglisterjournals.com

All original text and materials by or commissioned by B. B. Shepherd are copyright 2012-2014 to China Blue Publishing.

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Midsummer’s Eve Giveaway Hop

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Welcome to the Midsummer Eve’s Giveaway Hop! This hop is hosted by I Am A Reader, Not A Writer and may be followed on my blogger. I am giving away a $15 gift card to the book store of your choice, and a paperback copy of my novel Bronze (The Glister Journals #1). Good luck!



The Glister Journals: Bronze can be purchased through any bookseller, or purchase now at Amazon.com

Reviews for The Glister Journals: Bronze

More Glister info and excerpts at the book’s website here: theglisterjournals.com

All original text and materials by or commissioned by B. B. Shepherd are copyright 2012-2014 to China Blue Publishing.

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A Quick Word of Thanks and Future Giveaways

A huge Thank You to Goodreads members who have added my book to their “to-read” lists. Thank you also to everyone who entered the Bronze giveaway there and congratulations to the winners! Your books will be on the way soon. The response was wonderful. I wish I could just give away copies to everybody. I hope you will visit the website where you can read the first chapters to see if you like my style, the characters, etc. The chapters can also be read here on my blog. Please be aware that it is a realistic novel, not paranormal, is character driven, and is long.

I have posted a new giveaway on Goodreads specifically for those outside the United States, United kingdom, Canada, and Australia. A full list of the countries involved can be found on the giveaway page. If you are interested in participating in the giveaway and your country is NOT listed, please let me know on my Goodreads page and I will add it!

There will be more giveaways through the book’s website which will be announced there, theglisterjournals.com, through The Glister Journals Facebook page and here through my blog. I will also list any giveaways through other bloggers at these sites, so keep in touch!

I am very intersted in doing giveaways, interviews, etc. through individual book blogs, so if you have an established blog and are interested, please contact me!

Again, thank you so much for the interest and support. It means a lot!



All original text and materials by or commissioned by B. B. Shepherd are copyright 2012 to China Blue Publishing.

The Glister Journals: Bronze can be purchased through any bookseller, or purchase now at Amazon.com

Reviews for The Glister Journals: Bronze

More Glister info and chapters at the book’s website here: theglisterjournals.com

The chapters can also be read here at the top of my blog. (and also in a menu in the sidebar!)

And please “Like” us on Facebook!

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Glister Journals Art

I’m VERY excited to be able to introduce you to artwork created in conjunction with my fiction series, The Glister Journals. If you’re like me, when you read a book, you imagine the characters very clearly. That’s the main reason I like to read a book before I see a movie made from it. I like to have my own mental picture of characters and places in my head before seeing someone elses. I have plans to get some of my own sketches out this summer too, but still haven’t had much time to concentrate on art. But I also love seeing what other people think characters look like, or think they might look like.

Which was my idea behind finding artists to help render my Glister Journals characters. I commissioned two amazing artists to do character sketches for me, a couple of which were actually finished a couple of years ago, but I have been waiting for the right time to share them. And that time is now!

For the next few weeks I’ll be posting one piece each weekend beginning with this lovely picture by Katelynn Chambers:

Allison and Gold from The Glister Journals
(c) 2012 Katelynn Chambers and China Blue Publishing

I love the sense of movement and the color palettes she uses in her pieces; they are all unique and wonderful. You can see more of her work at her portfolio site, Nettlebeast Studio.

I’d also like to show you the updated cover for the revised editions of Bronze. Both pictures make very nice wallpapers and you are very welcome to use them for personal use, but please respect the copyrights. 🙂


(c) 2012 B B Shepherd and China Blue Publishing

Click on the pictures to see them full size. All artwork can also be found at my new Tumbler account. And I’m going to throw a giveaway in here: the first person to comment on this post telling me the name of the horse on the cover of Bronze wins a free hardbound copy. I’ll even sign it if you like. More about giveaways and locations next week.

Now I think we need to finish with a little music, don’t you? I haven’t got back to finish my Cinco de Mayo post, so I’ll borrow some music I might otherwise have posted there (don’t worry, there’s plenty more for that post, and I will finish it!) This is “Fire Escape” from Civil Twilight, definitely one of my favorite bands right now, but I’ll get back to them on a previous post (Yes! Time travel!)



Have a great week!

Note: All original text and materials by or commissioned by B. B. Shepherd are copyright 2012 to China Blue Publishing.

The Glister Journals: Bronze can be purchased through any bookseller, or purchase now at Amazon.com

Reviews for The Glister Journals: Bronze

More Glister info and chapters at the book’s website here: theglisterjournals.com

The chapters can also be read here at the top of my blog. (and also in a menu in the sidebar!)

And please “Like” us on Facebook!

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Happy Anniversary . . .

. . . to me!

One year ago today my first novel was published (paperback). It will be coming out this June in a hardbound edition with much more nurturing than it’s original paperback had. But that doesn’t matter today. And yes, it is also Valentine’s Day, and YES, that was on purpose.

Unfortunately very few people know about it (my YA novel, Bronze), but hopefully Dave, Allison, Chris, and Robin will make many more friends this summer. I love having Valentine’s day as my little romance’s birthday though.

And to celebrate, I’d like to share this sweet animated short (hijacked from PBS Books). It’s apparently up for an Oscar this year and it’s easy to see why.

Enjoy! (And Happy Valentine’s Day!)

http://youtu.be/hreZuyZ5NYM

All original text and materials by or commissioned by B. B. Shepherd are copyright 2012 to China Blue Publishing.

The Glister Journals: Bronze can be purchased through any bookseller, or purchase now at Amazon.com

Reviews for The Glister Journals: Bronze

More Glister info and chapters at the book’s website here: theglisterjournals.com

The chapters can also be read here at the top of my blog. (and also in a menu in the sidebar!)

And please “Like” us on Facebook!

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August Book Giveaway

More Glister info and chapters at the book’s website here: theglisterjournals.com

Congratulations to Elizabeth C. and Sang S. for winning copies of Bronze for the July Book Giveaway. I hope you enjoy them!

The rules of the book giveaway for August are the same:

I am giving away two copies of Bronze. All you have to do is sign up here on my WordPress blog (or on my blog on Blogspot) or “like” The Glister Journals Facebook page, LEAVE A COMMENT stating that you’d like to be entered in the giveaway, and you will be! As simple as that! If you don’t win, your name will be added into the drawing for the next month. Good luck!

If you have questions (or comments) about the book or series, I would love to respond, so ask away!

The Glister Journals: Bronze
Book cover


Summer Book Giveaway

Glister Journals chapters on WordPress . . . (Chapters Three and Four will be added soon – really!)

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Summer Giveaway (update)

We’re still giving away two books each month in July and August, and now September too! No one took advantage of June, so I’m extending it to September. Just ‘like’ us at our Facebook page, or follow here, leave a comment saying you’d like to be entered in the book giveaway, and you are!

Have a fun and SAFE 4th of July!

Comments and questions will be exuberantly responded to.

The first few chapters of Bronze can be read at theglisterjournals.com

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Summer Giveaway

I know summer is when a lot of people get some serious reading time in (like me), so let me help you fill in that time! For the months of June, July, and August I will be giving away 2 copies of Bronze for each month.

The Glister Journals: Bronze
Book cover

Just sign in, follow me, and leave a comment here, and/or “like” my book page on Face Book The Glister Journals: Bronze, leave a comment, and you’ll be entered in the drawing for them. If you don’t win, your name will be carried over into the next month’s drawing. The first winners will be drawn and announced on Thursday, June 30.


The Glister Journals website will be getting a facelift soon, and provision made to get update notifications and be able to comment directly there. In the meantime, I hope you’ll read the book and, if you like it, that you will leave a comment telling others. Better yet, if you have an Amazon and/or B&N account, please leave a review! The first four chapters are available to read on the site. Word of mouth and internet reviews are Bronze‘s main exposure and marketing. Thanks for your help!


There will be future giveaways and contests too. The contests will require that you’ve read the book, however, so until enough people have, the contests are on hold.

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