Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Sunday, March 28, 2010

How To Make Your Own Book Trailers Using Window’s Movie Maker
In Less Than 10 easy steps

For those of you who are techno challenged like myself but want to make a trailer for your book or make a trailer just for fun on Movie Maker, let me walk you through it.

1. You’ll find your Window’s moviemaker under programs. Read the movie making tips.
2. Development your story line.
3. Now that you’ve developed your storyline, it’s time to get to work.
Decide what pictures you want to use in your trailer.
On the drop box at the top go to collections. This will take you to the area you are going to store the pictures you plan on using in your trailer.
To the right, under capture video, click on import pictures then import the pictures you plan on using to make your video.
There are a number of royalty free sites including i-stock.com, photobucket, stock.xchng,

4. Try to keep your trailer to around a minute to a minute and a half so that your audience doesn’t lose interest.

5. At the bottom of the page click on the film icon to ‘show timeline’. Then drag your pictures in the order you want them to the boxes at the bottom of the page.

6. Now go to: 2. edit movies. This will take you to the page with the heading Text for Title.
Here you will add your titles.
Near the bottom of the page it will give you options for changing your font, color and animations.
After you make your decisions for these, click on add make title or credits.
Decide whether you want your title before, on, or after the pictures on the storyboard, then click on your choice.
This will add to the film boxes at the bottom.
Then add your credits at the end.

7. Now its time to add your music.
You can add royalty free music. You can do a search. You can also go to: Podsafe Music Network, Free Play Music, or Pacdv.

Then import it.
Click on film icon to ‘show storyboard.’
Go to 1. Capture video
Import audio or music.

8. If you’ve got your video the way you want it go to Finish Movie and save it however you wish.

Congratulations. You’ve just made a trailer.
If you haven't entered the contest, its not too late. Just send an email to sandracox1@gmail.com with Grounded Contest in the header and leave a comment at downtownya.blogspot.com.

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Looking for Jimmy Stewart

Keep a lookout, while I run down to the bookstore and pick up that new book.

Please welcome a dear friend of mine, Jeane Daly. Jeane’s first book, LOOKING FOR JIMMY STEWART has just been released. Since I was one of her critique partners, I know it’s a good one.

Welcome, Jeane. Tell us about your new release.

My heroine, Andi Temperly, has everything she ever wanted: the perfect job, a loving fiance, and loyal friends-until misfortune rips it all away. Andi has little choice but to give up her life in New York and head back home tothe small town of Fairport where she struggles to get her life back on track.

What will I as a reader like best about your hero?

My choice of hero came about after reading Jimmy Stewart's biography. My hero had to have character traits my heroine desired in a man and Jimmy Stewart's personality exemplified all of these traits: kind, loving, compassionate, and the list goes on.

How will women identify with your heroine?

Beiing out of work is a huge issue with a lot of women trying to get back into the work force and finding their skills are lacking or out of date, they're too old, not computer savvy, or whatever the problem is. Cheating boyfriends, broken engagements, dating services, that special friend who is there for you when you need her, are all rolled up in Looking for Jimmy Stewart.

Is your muse currently sitting on your shoulder or is she illusive?

LOL. She's been illusive for sometime now.

Who is your favorite author?


What’s your preference, doing dishes by hand for a week or writing a synopsis?

I'd have to say doing dishes by hand for the rest of my life.

Now that your first book is under your belt, what are you working on?

I have a few ideas spinning around in my head ...as yet not sure.

We look forward to the next one. Thanks for joining us, Jeane.

An excerpt of Jimmy is below. To purchase go to http://www.wings-press.com/

Jack flattened his hands on the wall, one on each side of her head, leaned in and smiled down at her. "This may sound strange, but the last part of this evening was the most enjoyable." His mouth soft and warm, caught hers in an all too brief sweet kiss. Nothing passionate about it, but it reached every part of her body like an explosion.
Swimming through a haze of of feelings and mixed emotions, she pushed him away.
"Why did you do that?" She struggled to catch her breath.
"I hadn't planned on kissing you. It just happened." He turned and opened the door.
She thought of Kimmie. "Let's pretend it never happened, okay? I just want us to be friends, nothing more."
"Friends it is. And I'm sorry if I made you feel uncomfortable."
She smiled, hoping she made herself clear. "Have a nice flight."

Sunday, March 21, 2010

The Trouble with Genies

Have you ever noticed on a Make a Wish list nothing is ever clear cut? Somehow the wishes go awry. You wish for a new home. Poof, you've got a million dollar mansion but can't afford the taxes. You wish for a Jaguar. Poof, you get this sexy car, then you get grounded or lose your license and can't drive it. You wish to be the prettiest girl at the promo. Poof, you're beautiful, but your date bales and you have to go alone.
I think genies one and all are believers in the adage 'nothings free' and 'you can't get something for nothing'. Just because they have to grant wishes doesn't mean they have to like it. And since they don't like it, they include nasty little codicils. And when you think about it, who’d want to be someone’s beck and call genie and have their own wishes completely disregarded.
I believe when the genie explained to Gillian's great, great, great grams that a) she would be stuck in a marble statue from dawn to dusk. b) As soon as she had her first girl child she would die and her daughter would inherit the wish spell that he either muttered it under his breath where she couldn't hear or the poor thing was so caught up in the fantasy of unimaginable wealth and beauty she totally ignored the warning. Personally, I think he whispered. Whatever the reason, Gillian--through no fault of her own--got the short end of the stick. But you play the hand you’re dealt.
So what's your thoughts? Why aren't the wishes genies grant straightforward and simple?
Gillian’s best friend is a cat, that’s also caught up in her wish spell. If you’re in touch with your feline side and like to help your four legged friends, there is a rescue group devoted solely to blind kitties. If you’d like more info on a very worthwhile cause visit their site at http://blindcatrescue.org/ Kudos to this group.
Just a reminder...for a chance to win Gillian's story and a bauble just leave a comment at downtownya.blogspot.com and send an email to sandracox1@gmail.com with GROUNDED CONTEST in header.

Thursday, March 18, 2010


Gillian Stone, heroine of Grounded, picked up a bauble then decided it didn’t go with her designer blouse, so she asked that it go to a reader.
For a chance to win a bracelet in earth tones and a signed autographed copy of GROUNDED just leave a comment at downtownya.blogspot.com and send an email to sandracox1@gmail.com with Grounded Contest in the subject line.
The contest runs from March 15 through April 10. The drawing will be held April 11.
Julie won the vampire red earrings and copy of Vampire Island. Congratulations, Julie.

Sunday, March 14, 2010

Fantasy and Genies

GROUNDED available at Class Act Books in e or paper March 15, 2010

Be careful what you wish for.

While I’m dropping pearls of wisdom let me add, read the fine print.

Why am I wasting my time offering warnings that no one is going to listen to? Because as humans we have this unconquerable urge to try to help others learn from our mistakes. Or in this case my great, great, great, great grandmother’s mistakes.

She came from a very poor background and consequently wanted it all, riches beyond measure, beauty. Need I say more?

Great-great-plus Grams stumbled onto a genie’s lamp and made her wish.

You don’t believe in genies?

Trust me. They’re real all right. Unfortunately, when my ancient relative made her wish she didn’t bother to listen to the genie’s warning of strings attached. This lack of foresight has a direct bearing on the first born daughter of each generation, i.e. me.

To put it mildly, my life is complicated. I am literally grounded forever.

I live on a lavish estate in the mountains of North Carolina. Between sunset and dawn, my life is my own. But during the day I’m grounded in several hundred pounds of marble. If you happen to wander by the Stone estate and peep through the fence, you’ll hear the rippling sounds of water from a lovely man made pool surrounded by lush fragrant flowers. Beside it stands a life size statue of a young woman, with long flowing hair and classic bone structure, draped in a Greek toga a cat at her feet.

The cat is Merrick.

The young woman is me.

I'm blogging this week at Moonlight, Lace and Mayhem. If you have an opportunity, please stop by.

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Foreclosure Pet Rescues

Did you see that?

The economy has taken a toll not only on the livelyhood and self respect of adults, it has often in many cases caused folks to have to give up their beloved pets. There is a group out there trying to make a difference. If you or someone you know is in this precarious situation, you might want to check out this group at:

Also next time you're looking for that special gift for a friend or family member why not try the Greater Good Stores. You can either help:

Breast Cancer

Child Health



The Rain Forest