Monday, September 9, 2013

TWO Awesome Topics in ONE post:

Remember this time last year when there was a mysterious fest that ended up being the blogfest of all blogfests? How we all surprised Alex and launched the Cheers Cavanaugh Blogfest?


That was fun...

Oh wait... (I think I hear Madman Mark saying something. What's that? Oh? We're doing it again? Except this time there's going to be a NEW person who's roasted? Sweeeet.)

The hosts:

Mark "Madman" Koopmans

Alex "Clone me a" Cavanaugh

Morg "the Borg" Shamy  (Really, Mark? That's my nickname?)

Stephen "Wormhole" Tremp

David "Don't Mess with the" King

Here's the catch:

YOU get to vote. For the next seven days, you can vote in my comments (or any of the host's) who you think should be the face for CheersFest 2013. (They will have a blogfest just for them!) This should be someone who is a constant presence, is positive, possesses integrity, is involved in the online community, is supportive of others and is a major force in the blogging community.

The Roastee will be announced at least three weeks out (Fest will take place DECEMBER 9th) Linky list will be posted later for the roasting posting. ;)

I'm excited for this. I think it's a neat thing to be able to give back to those people in the community who do so much to uplift and support. I can think of a dozen people right now I'd love to highlight. So go vote!


And next...

I'm SO excited to have Lisa Cresswell here today. She is one of my FAVORITE writer friends and extremely talented. She's here to talk about her newly released book, HUSH PUPPY (Which I've read and LOVED). Here she is:

Hi everyone!

I’m so excited Morgan’s letting me guest blog today about my new young adult novel, Hush Puppy.  She and I met at a 2010 Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators retreat in Ashton, Idaho, and she was one of the first people to ever read Hush Puppy. Our little critique group branded itself the Wildcats and kept in touch ever since. Morgan is a brilliant writer and I feel lucky to know her.  Just a bit about the book to orient you~

Corrine Lamb is a studious black girl living in a rural North Carolina town with her grandmother because her mama can’t seem to stick around long enough to raise her. Corrine wishes more than anything to go to college so she can travel the world and get away from her small town life.  She meets and falls in love with Jamie the summer before her senior year.

Jamie is a white boy who’s dropped off to stay with his redneck dad until his mom can find a new job. Jamie loves to read and keeps a notebook which he fills with poems, lists of books and journal entries. His dad insists he try out for football and pushes him to play. He’s good at football, but he’d rather just be left alone with a book. He asks Corrine to keep his notebook hidden for the summer to avoid complications with his dad finding out. The two become secret friends.

When Jamie is involved in the accidental death a wealthy white girl and is terrified his abusive father will kill him if the cops don’t. Corrine devises a plan to report the body found while leaving Jamie out of it, but rumors start that Corrine murdered the girl and her life becomes a living hell when even Jamie seems to abandon her.

The characters in Hush Puppy are absolutely based on people I knew growing up in North Carolina in the 1980’s. Jamie is based, in part, on a boyfriend I had when I was fifteen. I was crazy about him, but he was terribly, utterly flawed. That was a real heartbreaker to realize the person I thought was the bees knees is really just a human being, and maybe not even a very good human being at that. But I made Jamie better than that guy. I made him my ideal boyfriend, but with a huge flaw, because we all have flaws. 

A lot of Corrine is based on me at that age. I had the map with the push pins in the places I wanted to
Isn't Lisa beautiful?
go. I was the world traveler wanna-be. I still am. I think a lot of teenagers can identify with that, of wanting to grow up and do something special with your life.  Everybody’s “special” is a little different, but it doesn’t mean we don’t want something more for ourselves.

I do want to point out that none of these characters is based 100% on any one person I knew, but they do represent the gambit of experiences I had growing up in North Carolina. I didn’t necessarily set out to write a book about race, but you can’t write a story about black and white kids and not have it come up.  That wouldn’t be true to life if I ignored that.  But I wrote it more to explore that issue of falling in love with the “wrong” person, or who society says is the wrong person, and how you can be hurt or saved by that person. Shakespeare made it tragic, but I prefer to be more optimistic.

I had a lot of fun writing about the people and places I grew up.  I even made a pin board, just for fun. You can see it here: and if you’re interested in reading Hush Puppy, hop on over to my website for links  

Thanks Red. Head. Wildcat!


Thanks, Lisa! I hope you guys will all go check out Lisa's work. She is wonderful. Also, don't forget to DROP A VOTE (!) who you think should be the official face for CheersFest 2013!

Red. Head. Out. :D


  1. Congratulations, Lisa.
    And that's right - we're roasting someone else this year!
    Live with the nickname, Morgan. I have to live with mine...

  2. Hee hee, the Cheersfest is cool! After giving it some thought, I'd like to nominate Cassie Mae!

  3. One of these days I am finally going to take part in one of these blog fests :)

  4. I'd nominate Arlee Bird, founder of the A to Z Challenge.

  5. Morgana the Borgana—congrats to Lisa, and I'm looking forward to this year's fest. My roaster is already on preheat.

    M.L. Swift, Writer

  6. haha the cat will just sit back and watch the roast he enjoys them so.

  7. That synopsis just makes me so sad for the character! I already feel for her!

  8. Congratulations to Lisa! That sounds like a very interesting story for a book.

    I'll have to think awhile on whom I should nominate for the Cheerfest.

  9. Congratulations to Lisa. You have become the official Comedy Central center of all things roasting.

  10. Glad to be a part of this 2nd roasting, and congrats to Lisa! :)

  11. I'll have to give the Cheerfest some thought, sounds like fun!

  12. I loved reading Cheerfest posts last year and congratulations to Lisa!

  13. Sounds like a great read, Lisa! And the Cheerfest sounds awesome :)

  14. Thanks for all your kind words! And thanks to Morg the Borg for having me :)

  15. Hard to believe it's been a year already since we roasted Alex.

    Lisa's book sounds wonderful!

  16. Wildcats UNITE!!! Lisa, congrats on the book!! The cover looks fabulous, I'm so excited for you!!! Go Wildcats!!!!

    Cute idea for the Cheerfest, Morg!!

  17. I think my favorite books are ones where authors pull from their own experiences. It just seems to add depth to the settings and characters. Sounds like a great read.

    The fest sounds fun-- so many great bloggers to choose from!

  18. I wish you well with your book Lisa!

    I've been campaigning for Jeremy Retro-zombie Hawkins, but my date is save for whomever the candidate may be.

    Wrote By Rote

  19. Hey Morgan and hi Lisa,

    Lisa, I'm wishing you much fulfilment with "Hush Puppy". Heck, come to think of it, our dog could write a book titled, "Penny Loafer." Sorry, ignore me and yes, best of luck :)

    Now then, Morgan! One moment, please....Arggggghhhhhh!!!!! blogfests! Somebody make them STOP! Excuse me, but I feel slightly better. I wish you well with the roasty toasty blogfest or whatever it's called.

    I'm going to be doing the blogfest to end all blogfests, hopefully, starting January 1, 2014. Alphabet challenge, your days are literally numbered!

    Oh, I suppose I should check this out and vote. Oh, before I go, the ninja dude would be my bestest friend if he sent me a clone. Thank you.

    Gary :)

    1. Hahahaha!!!! Sounds like we need to hold another anti-blogfest for you, Gary. :P

      Laughing. And now I'm WAY intrigued to see what will happen Jan 1st...

    2. NO! Not another anti-blogfest for my shy, humble self! :) I'm begging you!

      Ah yes, January 1, the ultimate in satire and cynicism! Yay and LOL!


    3. Heh, I've seen some votes for you, Gary!

      And oh dear... I'm scared for January :-)

  20. I hope to buy Hush Puppy when I get another amazon giftcard. Cheerfest 2.o sounds like it will rock the house. Nominate Mark K.

  21. I would vote for you hosts!!! I don't know who to vote for :( It sounds like tons of fun, though :)

  22. Congrats to Lisa, of course, and *my* vote is for Julie Luek - she of the awesome saucefulness :)

  23. Bless you, Sheena-kay! I'd love to know what you think of the book once you've read it. I hope you like it :)

  24. Your book sounds amazing, Lisa.Good Luck.

  25. Congratulations, Lisa! Your book sounds like a powerful read.

    My vote? Martina from Adventures in YA Publishing. She's awesome!

  26. All the best, Lisa!!!!

    How cool... another cheerfest!!!

  27. What an awesome idea about the Cheersfest! You guys rock! And HUSH PUPPY looks great!

  28. Already nominated the person I think deserves to be roasted. :-)

    Hush Puppy sounds like a big story. Adding it to my TBR list.

  29. Congrats to Lisa.Great cover. I don't have a vote yet- will have to think on that one.

  30. Cool post about Lisa, great to learn about another awesome author:)

  31. Great to learn about Lisa.

    I vote for EJ Wesley for the Cheersfest. :)

  32. Yay for Cheersfest! I voted on Alex's site for Mary Pax.

    Congrats to Lisa!

  33. Hush Puppy sounds awesome! I love the synopsis. Congratulations to Lisa!
    Can't wait to see who will be roasted...
    Writer In Transit

  34. oohh...Hush Puppy looks interesting, esp. since I grew up in NC in the '80s and '90s. So glad you had Lisa on the blog!

  35. Hi Morgan .. I'd vote for Tina of Life is Good .. she is a constant around the blogosphere .. I like the way Lisa has constructed her characters .. and I wish her well with Hush Puppy ..

    Cheers to you - co-hosting ... Hilary

  36. I really love the cheerfest idea, I think it is so great that we will have a chance to thank someone who has been such an encouragement to us! I am going to join in the voting for sure!

    Hush Puppy sounds really good! I will have to put it on my list and get a copy.



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