Mae Clair: I Have a Winner!

I’m pleased to announce the winner of my $10 gift card to Amazon or Barnes and Noble: Veronika

Congrats, Veronika! Consider yourself showered with confetti. I will be contacting you by email to see which you prefer (Amazon or B&N).

The overall winners for the hop are:
Kindle Fire Winner:
Angela Heart
$75 Amazon Gift Card:
Emma D.
Swag Pack:
Kim Brooks

Thanks to everyone who dropped by and made the hop such a success and special thanks to Carrie Ann Ryan for organizing it. I also truly appreciate the new “likes” and follows given my Facebook page and blog. You guys rock! :D What an amazingly fun hop!

~ooOOoo~

I don’t usually blog on the weekend, but I’ve got to share what happened yesterday, given the whole concept of the hop was to share thoughts about Black Friday shopping.

Yesterday (THE day of retail chaos) I ended up with some time to kill, so I decided to venture into the melee. It was around 1PM when I suffered this appalling lack of sanity. I reasoned the bulk of the crowds would be gone given most shoppers were up before sunrise. WRONG! Oh, how pathetically, dreadfully wrong! I shudder even now thinking about it.

But in my moment of bravery lunacy, I hit the local Kohl’s. The parking lot was packed (warning flag #1), but I managed to find a spot at the end. I told myself I’d driven that far, so why not go inside?  It was crowded – – okay, bustling (warning flag #2) – – but I thought “I can do this.”

Oblivious to the throngs around me, I picked up several items, then headed to the register. That’s when reality kicked in (“Danger, danger, Will Robinson!”).

I couldn’t see the end of the line. It was like one of those diminishing winding snake-things you see in a cartoon, wrapping from the front of the store to the back. On, and on, and on. I never did see where it ended. And the people waiting had CARTLOADS of merchandise. That’s when “I can do this” became “forget it.” I put everything back and left.

The good news is that I returned at 6:30 AM this morning and got everything I wanted for the same Black Friday prices. Best of all, there were only a handful of people in the store. Much more my speed.

Added bonus: I was able to drag my husband with me given he wanted to go out for breakfast (bribery works! :)) . So we hit Kohl’s, had breakfast, then hit Boscov’s. I can’t tell you the deals I came home with. Turns out I’m still a Black Friday shopper, after all – as long as it’s on Saturday!

I hope however you spent your Black Friday, you had fun!

Mae Clair: The Black Friday H0P is Here!

It’s here! The Black Friday Blog Hop has arrived!  If you’re reading this post, you’re probably not out among the throngs of shoppers competing for door-buster goodies offered at gargantuan discounts. Yes, it’s Black Friday, the day of retail chaos.

There was a time I used to enjoy Black Friday shopping. A friend and I would go every year. There was a camaraderie among shoppers as we all stood huddled outside store doors at 5AM, bundled into coats (I live in the northeast), armed with our colorful flyers, chatting about the items we intended to snatch up.

I bought my first laptop from a Black Friday sale many years ago, and got the last one in the store. It should have made me feel good (okay, it did) but I couldn’t help thinking about the people queued-up behind me who’d lucked out. If I’d arrived five, three, or even two minutes later that morning, I would have been hiking back to my car without a Toshiba.

It wasn’t long after that when I dropped the Black Friday routine. Maybe it was because the early-bird sale hours kept creeping earlier in the morning, defying sanity or, maybe, it was because the crowds didn’t feel as festive. Maybe I’ve just gotten older and can’t marathon shop like I used to, especially when I can do it online. Well, let me correct that:  I can still marathon shop, just not with crowds :D

So to celebrate all those not wanting to fight the chaos of Black Friday (and for those of you who’ve already braved it and need a break), please join us in the second annual Black Friday Blog Hop! It’s a ONE DAY hop taking place today, November 23.

We’re giving away prizes, talking about books we love, and most likely eating leftover turkey. :-) And while we do that, EACH blogger is doing a giveaway. Yep! There will be over 200 giveaways on each blog hosted by that Author or Blogger.

But that’s not all….

We have THREE grand prizes. You as a reader can go to EACH blog and comment with your email address and be entered to win. Yep, you can enter over 200 times!

Now what are those prizes?

1st Grand Prize: A Kindle Fire or Nook Tablet
2nd Grand Prize: A $75 Amazon or B&N Gift Card
3rd Grand Prize: A Swag Pack that contains paperbacks, ebooks, 50+ bookmarks, cover flats, magnets, pens, coffee cozies, and more! 

You can find the complete list of participating authors HERE

Pretty impressive, huh?  If you’d like to be entered in my blog drawing to win a $10 Amazon or Barnes & Noble gift card (winner’s choice), please comment below WITH YOUR EMAIL ADDRESS. The winner will be announced tomorrow on my blog so be sure to check back.

And while you’re here although it’s not mandatory, please consider “Liking” my Facebook Author Page. I’ve made it easy by giving you the link and also posting it in the sidebar. Aren’t I thoughtful? :D

I’d also LOVE if you would sign up to follow my blog my email (top of the sidebar). I enjoy blogging and interacting with my readers. Hang around and get to know me and my writing. :)

Finally . . . (Yes, there’s more. Consider this the fine print disclaimer, LOL) . . . while you’re here please take a peek at the book trailer for my time travel / paranormal romance, WEATHERING ROCK.

Caleb DeCardian, colonel for the Union Army during America’s Civil War, is transported to the present where he meets Arianna Hart. With her modern-day opinions and streak of stubborness, Arianna is unlike any woman Caleb has met before. And did I mention he’s also a super-hot, hunky werewolf?

WEATHERING ROCK is available on Amazon and Barnes & Noble (among other sites) so that $10 gift card more than covers it. :D

Okay, pathetic author book plug is now over. Whether you’re shopping or chilling, I hope you have a blissful Black Friday!