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Welcome Debut Author Kristina McMorris!!!


Kristina McMorris

On the road to publication, I can’t tell you how many times—simply because the number’s too high to count—that I’ve hovered over the “New in Trade Paperback” table at my local Barnes & Noble, hoping for the day my own novel would take up residence on that lush display.

You know the table. The one that essentially screams, “If you’re a book club member, look no further!”

A week ago today, I had the pleasure of seeing that dream materialize. My debut novel, LETTERS FROM HOME, was officially released in the U.S. and Canada. Nearly two years after selling the book to my publishing house, the moment had arrived. And I’m happy to report it was every bit the thrill I had imagined. Then again, how could it not be, considering what it took to get here?

My literary journey has, I admit, been smoother than some, but it certainly hasn’t been vacant of bumps. You see, stating that my debut novel was indeed the first book I wrote doesn’t give the slightest hint to challenges overcome along the way, including yet not limited to: three agents, a tall stack of rejections, countless “there’s no market for this era” remarks, half-a-dozen manuscript versions, and ten-times-as-many bottles of vino. (Okay, so the vino was more of a consolation than a challenge, but can you blame me?)

Perhaps largely due to the fact that the story was inspired by my grandparents’ courtship, I wasn’t about to give up easily. So, I forged onward. And suddenly, lo and behold, the market shifted and the planets aligned. The right agent read it on the right day in the right mood, then submitted it to the right acquisitions editor on the right day in the right mood, and poof—there was a contract. But then the wait began.

And now, at long last, I’ve experienced the utter joy of holding my very own book (a non-Kinko’s version, that is), and with a textured cover so beautiful, my urge to pet it recurs daily.

Best of all, however, I’ve been able to provide my children with tangible proof of what determination and hard work can achieve. For this, my gratitude overflows.

Kristina stopped by here today as part of her larger blog tour with Wow! Women on Writing. You can find her blogging around the web all month promoting her fabulous debut title “Letters from Home.”

Bonus Giveaway Announcement: leave a comment for a chance to win your very own copy of “Letters From Home.”

Tour Dates: February 21, 2011 – March 15, 2011

Title: Letters from Home by: Kristina McMorris


In the midst of World War II, a Midwestern infantryman falls deeply in love through a yearlong letter exchange, unaware that the girl he’s writing to isn’t the one replying. Woven around this tenuous thread are three female friends whose journeys toward independence take unexpected turns as a result of romance, tragedy, and deception, their repercussions heightened by an era of the unknown. “Ambitious and compelling…[a] sweeping debut” (Publishers Weekly), LETTERS FROM HOME is a story of hope and connection, of sacrifices made in love and war – and the chance encounters that change us forever.”

Letters from Home includes both a book club reader’s guide and World War II recipes featured in the book.

Kristina made a fabulous trailer too! Hope you love it!

About the Author:

Over the years Kristina has been the emcee on a children’s TV program, a movie actress(unfortunately she was sadly overlooked for an Oscar but she did get a huge dressing room at the Jay Leno Show!), wedding planner, magazine writer, and director of public relations. A graduate of Pepperdine University, her claim to fame is that she created a new major: International Marketing. Of course, it was had less to do with expanding educational opportunities and more to do with avoiding taking a Stats class.

After living in Florence, Italy, Kristina dedicated her life to finding the perfect tiramisu. Strangely enough, she ranks Olive Garden and California Pizza Kitchen as the top tiramisu spots. But that works out well because Kristina and her husband are often accompanied on tiramisu treks by their two young and energetic sons who fit in with the Olive Garden/California Pizza Kitchen crowd.

When gathering family recipes to compile a cookbook as a holiday gift one year, Kristina got a peek at her grandfather’s letters to his sweetheart(a.k.a. Grandma Jean)while he was serving in the Navy during World War II. Those letters were the nugget that became her debut novel.

Kristina’s now working on her next novel…wrapped in her favorite invention the Snuggie…and listening to Broadway musicals…with occasional breaks to eat tiramisu and do a little swing dancing with her sweet husband.

Just Thought You Should Know:

In honor of her grandparents, and all the other families kept apart by military service, Kristina is donating a portion of her book’s profits to United Through Reading, a nonprofit organization that video records deployed U.S. military personnel reading bedtime stories to their children. You can learn more about the program at

Author’s Websites:

Kristina’s website:

Letters from Home Book Trailer:

Letters from Home excerpt:

IMM In My Mailbox & Mailbox Monday 2/27/11

This week has been full of everything but reading. You know those weeks? I’m struggling to finish what I thought would’ve already been done. That’s the way it goes. On the bright side, I’ve got some fun reads waiting on me to get to them. This week I picked up:

Need by Carrie Jones

Zara collects phobias the way other high school girls collect lipsticks. Little wonder, since life’s been pretty rough so far. Her father left, her stepfather just died, and her mother’s pretty much checked out. Now Zara’s living with her grandmother in sleepy, cold Maine so that she stays “safe.” Zara doesn’t think she’s in danger; she thinks her mother can’t deal.

Wrong. Turns out that guy she sees everywhere, the one leaving trails of gold glitter, isn’t a figment of her imagination. He’s a pixie—and not the cute, lovable kind with wings. He’s the kind who has dreadful, uncontrollable needs. And he’s trailing Zara.

Need is the first of three so far. If I love it the way I expect I will, you’ll be seeing the next two titles in my mailbox soon, Captivate and Entice.

All Just Glass by Amelia Atwater Rhodes

Sarah Vida has given up everything for love. From a legendary family of vampire-hunting witches, Sarah was raised to never trust a vampire, to never let her guard down, and to avoid all tricky attachments of the heart. But now Sarah IS a vampire—changed by the boy she thought she loved. Her family has forsaken her, and Sarah herself is disgusted by her appetite for blood. Aida Vida is Sarah’s older sister, the good, reliable sibling who always does her family proud. But when Aida’s mother insists that Sarah be found and killed, Aida is given the one assignment that she may not be able to carry out.

Taking place over just twenty-four hours, ALL JUST GLASS tells the story of a game-changing battle that will forever change the world of the Den of Shadows. And at its center is the story of two sisters who must choose between love and duty. Dark, fully-imagined, and hard to put down, ALL JUST GLASS will thrill Amelia’s fans—old and new.

In My Mailbox is a meme from the Story Siren designed to help book lovers unite, meet, greet and follow one another in our quests to find the next most awe inspiring, tear jerking, mesmerizing or just entertaining new tome.

Mailbox Monday is a meme hosted this month at Library of Clean Reads. This is one more incredible way to get to know one another, build your following and find great new sites to add to your dashboard.

What was in your mailbox this week?

Bloggers! Be sure to follow me if you like what you see. I always follow back!!  & I love making new bookish friends!

Bloggers: I Love You Guys.

Most people, myself included, don’t put much thought into websites. We visit hundreds of blogs every week set up by our peers, and we enter new blog posts into our own precious. Blogs have lost their awe.

Until you have to create a new one.

Yesterday I told hubster, “I need to set up a new site.” I want a site in addition to the blog. We already own the domain name and have hosting, so no probs, right? Wrong. While my blog has only been up since June 2010, I feel like its been here forever and I’d forgotten the hours and days of time that went into creating a personal representation. Every line, literally every line was put there by us. It’s the exact shade and thickness we programmed. (I keep saying we because I watched and made requests).

Then, last night I activated the new domain, chose the template from thousands of Worpress possibilities, and it didn’t work. So I tried a few more and realized that I want what I want and I’m going to have to make it what I want. This means starting from scratch and that means time.

I think I’ll need to stop sleeping to fit this additional task into my life. But, life goes on whether I get to do all the things I want to do or not, and I don’t like to miss anything. So, I will sleep when I’m dead or too sick to want to do anything. For now, I will march on. I have much to do!

To all my fellow bloggers, I love you. I appreciate you, and you are doing an amazing job out there! You make it look so easy that we readers don’t even think of all the time, love , sweat and tears that went into making it so fabulous.


Follw Me Friday!!! There’s Blog Hoppin’ Goin’ On ‘Round Here!

It’s time for the Blog Hop & Follow Friday again! I love this part of the week because  I’m meeting so many awesome bloggers, writers, readers *sigh*. So to all of you hopping with me I’m smiling widely like a doofus and waving frantically as always!!

Blog Hop is hosted over at Crazy-for-Books and Follow Friday is hosted at Parajunkee. These memes were created to help make the web smaller, and introduce us bloggers to one another. We can find sites and meet people and follow those we love! We increase our followers and we get some fun new sites to add to our dashboards too. Its a big win-win and I am thrilled to be taking part again this week.

So the question this week at Crazy for Books is: Do You Ever Wish You’d Named Your Blog Something Different?

This question is totally cosmic. I think about this ALLL the time, and actually, since you asked, I will be changing the name of my blog very soon. More about the deets on that later. The addy will remain the same:, cause, you know, it’s my name, BUT the title will change to reflect my growth and progression since I began blogging this little journey last year.

Having said that, Musings From the Slush Pile was perfect for me when I set it up. I was winging my way into the unknown, floundering to get a clue, find my place, and which way was up in the publishing industry. It’s been an information and experience filled time until now and the site has grown beyond my wildest dreams. So, changes are coming. Stay tuned. and THANK YOU!!!

Parajunkee’s question was: Share your current favorite television show. Tell us a little bit about it.

Alrighty. You asked for it. My current favorite television show is The Vampire Diaries. It’s a series in its second season and is based on the Vampire Diaries books by L.J. Smith. The show revolves around one seemingly ordinary girl, Elena, and her friends and family. She meets the love of her life Stephen Salvatore in episode one and is smitten.  – Stephen’s actually a vampire who eats bunnies, not people, don’t worry. – They fall in love, overcome otherworldly drama plus the yoosh High school stuff too. Stephen’s smokin hot brother also loves Elena. Drama. Elena’s constantly in danger. She’s also a doppelganger. <– Right. Her friend Tyler becomes a werewolf. Her bestie’s a witch. Yada yada yada. The people are all delicious eye candy and I need a drool bib every single Thursday night at eight.

Far fetched plot aside, I love this show because a minimum of two or three times PER episode, I grab my hubs and scream “No way!” or “Wahhhh???” It never-ever-never fails to boggle my mind, please my eyes, and keep me thirsty for more. <–pun. total pun.

If you’ve never seen it and are a fan of YA, or paranormal, or beautiful people, definitely tune in.

Thanks everyone for stopping by! Leave a comment and tell me if you follow! I always follow back!!!

Headshots? I’d Rather BE Shot.

If you’re like me you don’t own and have never seen a decent picture of yourself, except the one from far away taken fifteen years ago. Well, the time has come for me to get a headshot. This is as scary as bathingsuit season. No. Wait. It’s worse. Who really sees you in a bathing suit? At the beach, everyone’s self absorbed. Unless you’re twenty-two, no one’s staring like they used to, which is fine because at twenty-two I liked it. Nowadays, I’m covered in sand, sticky popsicles and a few chips…probably chasing my toddler out of the surf and rubbing lotion frantically on my pale white body. No one wants to look at that.

However, who sees your headshot? E.v.e.r.y-F.r.e.a.k.i.n.g-B.o.d.y. It goes on your site, all social medias, author pages, local guild pamphlets. Once you’re published it goes on ads, flyers, for book signings, sites where you guest blog. Right. I’m terrified. I’ve been avoiding, but it’s time. My little pic is everywhere I look online lately and its not so good. LOL. So, I’m here to say, I earn a button for bravery.

It’s decided. I’m calling someone and having a couple headshots taken by people unrelated to me and older than seven-and-a-half.  Hopefully they don’t charge extra for airbrushing and eyebag removal LOL.

We shall see.

Anyone have a headshot story to share?

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