Wednesday, April 13, 2016

It's about damn time!


hamster running photo: running hamster 20070515.gif

For those who don't know, Melvin is the hamster who lives inside my brain. He's been on vacation for the last couple of months; doing little more than sleeping, slugging back beers and trying to determine which of the Clintons Underwoods would make a better president. (If you don't know the reference, you're a disappointment to me and Netflix and must leave my blog right this second)  But, it seems that my fat, furry friend has decided it's time to get back on the wheel and create again, because there's a new story idea running rampant through my head.

The seed of inspiration was planted well over a year ago, when I came up with a title I knew I had to use someday (weirdly, that's how all my stories start out: title first), but it's remained dormant until just this weekend. Now, the roots are sprouting and the idea is beginning to take shape. Their voices aren't distinct yet, but I can hear the characters calling to me. They sound frustrated and amused, confused and...broken. They're eager to introduce themselves to me, and I am desperate to meet them, too.

If I squint hard enough, I'm able to see a plot line or two out in the distance. They're a knotted-up, tangly mess right now, hardly even forming a path, but soon they'll unwind into a dusty road, then a cobble stoned street, and before long a freeway that leads straight back to those characters and the stories they're so desperate to share. 

That's how it works, you see. A single idea becomes a web of events that tell one (hopefully) amazing story...and it all started when that fat, lazy hamster finally climbed back on his wheel. It's about damn time!

Thursday, February 25, 2016


(in case you didn't the first time, go back and read that in your best James Earl Jones, Darth Vader-y voice)

Yes, friends, I am oh-so-happy to report that my new book is done! 

exhausted photo:  funny-gifs-another-day-is-over.gif

No book is easy to write, but this one was particularly challenging. Not only did it leave me for dead miles outside of my comfort zone, but it also made me cry, scream, punch the pillows, and swear like nothing I've ever written. A writer pal told me that passion like that means you're up to something good. I sure hope he was right, because I am TIRED and my kids need to eat something other than cereal for dinner.

At some point I'll give you more insight on the book, but for now all you need to know is that I love it. And at the end of the day, that's all any writer can ask for.

HUGE thanks to my brilliant critique partners AG Howard and Angela V. Cook for their insight, wisdom, and talk-downs as we worked our way through this story. You guys are the BEST and I owe you all the cocktails.

To celebrate this momentous occasion, I will be drinking all the craft beer San Diego offers... and giving away a signed copy of SUMMER ON THE SHORT BUS.  

This is a US only giveaway that runs through April 1, 2016. 
(The SHORT BUS' 2 year book birthday!)

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Sunday, January 10, 2016

I made a resolution??

Apparently I resolved not to blog in 2016, because here it is January 10 and I still have my recycled Christmas post up. *shrugs* Not sure what to say  except that I'm working my a** off on this new WiP and every moment I could be blogging, I'd rather be writing so...that's what I'm doing. I'm writing.

Hope you all are having a fantastic 2016, and I promise to be back soon with more ridiculous and stupid enlightening posts soon!!

Tuesday, December 8, 2015

A Christmas Tradition

It was about this time last year, when Stacee (@book_junkee), over at Adventures of a Book Junkie, invited me over to share one of my favorite holiday traditions with her readers...You guys, it was great fun! So much fun that I thought I'd share the post here with you all this year. (And no, I'm not just sharing because I'm busy writing and have shoved blogging to the back burner. Nope. Not at all. *shakes head defiantly.*)

Hope you enjoy....

A Christmas tale of tradition, by Bethany Crandell

June 22, 1985.

The Slip ‘n Slide was in place; staked at the corners with the hose secured to the plastic ring up top, and a little dishwashing soap added for extra speed. Eight prize bags were lined up on the basement ping pong table, each one bursting with Smarties, cinnamon gummy bears and more worthless trinkets than a garage sale. After much pleading, Mom agreed to order Domino’s (delivery pizza, such an exciting new concept!) and buy soda that, for once, didn’t say SHASTA on the side of the can. All the makings for a great tenth birthday party were in place…especially when you considered my movie of choice for the big event.

Though it was the first day of summer, my friends were about to be introduced to what I consider one of the greatest films of all time: A CHRISTMAS STORY. I fell in love with this quirky and relatively unknown (at the time) flick the first time I saw it. Obviously, Ralphie’s unrelenting determination to own a gun that would shoot his eye out was entertaining, but it was the off-beat performances delivered by his supporting cast members that left the biggest impression on me. Little brother who’s bundled up in so many layers that he looks like a tick about to pop? Yes! Turkey-obsessed father who drops F-bombs at the drop of a hat? DOUBLE YES!  Triple Dog Dares?! YES, YES, YES! This movie has some of the best characterization caught on film, which is why my little heart broke into a thousand pieces when I slid the tape into the VCR and my so-called friends pulled up their snoots, promptly stating they’d rather jump on the trampoline than watch this weird, fifties movie.

Despite my friends’ obvious stupidity and my very vulnerable emotional state, I continued to profess my love for this film. On occasion I would encounter someone who appreciated it the way I did, but mostly I was met with judgmental scowls and confused expressions followed by, “I’ve never heard of that.”  By the time I reached my mid-twenties, I’d determined that A CHRISTMAS STORY was destined to be my first cult-classic mistress. The secret lover I’d visit when I needed a pick-me up, or a reminder of how charming a mundane life could be. It was just me and my movie…until 1997 when TBS came along and exposed the truth.

I probably should have been grateful for the outing but I wasn’t. I was mad. And resentful. For years I’d been proclaiming this film’s awesomeness to the world, only to have my words fall on deaf ears. But after one, twenty-four hour Ted Turner endorsed marathon suddenly it was a holiday classic that everyone loved…

My secret lover had become a rent-by-the-hour street walker for all to enjoy.


It took years of grumbles, TBS protests, and gallons of eggnog, but I’ve finally come to the point in my life where I can accept 24 Hours of A CHRISTMAS STORY as a Christmas tradition I’m willing to embrace. Not because I don’t love it as passionately as I did thirty years ago, I do!, but because I can remind my children for twenty-four hours straight that for a while I was a lot cooler than the rest of the world.

Merry Christmas, Everyone!
And, please, leave the leg lamp on so I can find my way home.

A Christmas Story photo: A Christmas Story tumblr_lvcelenpGA1qb9pa3o1_500.gif

Sunday, November 22, 2015


*starts timer and....GO!*

keyboards that have the ! key on them
Austin and Alley to entertain my children while I do this blog post
vacuum cleaners
someone else to vacuum the rug
clean windows, which I do not have
candles that smell good, but that aren't overpowering
scented pine cones
Subway turkey sandwich with avocado
cranberry dressing!!
sleeping dogs

Time is short but life is full of blessings, folks. Take sixty seconds out of your busy day to stop and think about all the wonderful things you have to be thankful for.

Happy Thanksgiving to all, and to all a good night.

Wednesday, October 14, 2015


If you've been hanging around my blog for a while, you know that when I'm writing all my creative energy goes straight into my WiP, which means my poor ole blog takes a hit. *hands you a hanky*

It is on these occasions, that I default to creating blog posts made entirely of images that will keep you smiling and entertained until I can return with something more creatively substantial (and probably John Hughes inspired) at a later date.

So, it is with all humility I present another round of...


To my knowledge, no animals were harmed during the taking of these photos. 
Unless you count their egos. Those were severely bruised.

Friday, September 4, 2015



You guys must be hard-up for good books because there 
were over NINE THOUSAND entries in the BADASS giveaway. 
That's freaking amazing!

Give yourselves a round of applause,
 then go out and find a job 'cause clearly you have 
too much time on your hands.

And now...the winners.

*waits for drumroll*

Congratulations to... ASHLEY LAWRENCE

Congratulations to... JENNIFER BUI

Congratulations to... JINA SHAREE BURCHETT

Congratulations to... MEGAN JOHNSON

Congratulations to... KALANI GRACE 

Congratulations to... SAMANTHA HILL!
Congratulations to... JULIA HILL

 Not a winner this time???
Don't cry.
Keep stalking following these badass authors as
they're bound to have more opportunities 
to win their books!

Thanks to all for entering!
Winners will be emailed soon with more information.