Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Creepy Cake N Bake: My Heart Bleeds for You (plus winners!)

First of all, I just want to say THANK YOU to everyone who participated in my Betting on Yourself Contest. Each and every one of you are so brave, and you all have given me such strength and inspiration! This is a pretty courageous lot! That's why I've chosen two winners for the signed hardcover HEREAFTER and signed ARC of ARISE (when it's available this winter).

Poploli and Sara M, you both are incredibly brave - please send me your mailing addresses, via tara@tarahudson.com.

To celebrate you guys and this spooky season, I'm participating in something really awesome: the YA Authors Creepy Cake N' Bake-A-Thon! Be sure to check out the previous authors' posts, as well as the ones following mine, and comment on your favorite entry, below. You can comment on EVERY Cake N' Bake post, one entry per post, for a chance to win a $20 gift certificate to Barnes & Noble or an official Creepy Cake N' Bake doll! Please include your email in order to be entered to win.

Trophies will be awarded on Halloween for the top creeptastic creations. Winners will be chosen by our special celebrity judge, Adam Rex, author of such deliciously creepy creations as FAT VAMPIRE, FRANKENSTEIN TAKES THE CAKE, FRAKENSTEIN MAKES A SANDWICH and PSSST!

For the bake-a-thon, I decided to create a favorite of the guests as my annual Halloween party: the My Heart Bleeds for You Cake. But I also decided to make a few heart-babies to go along with the big momma heart. :)

You can find my inspiration (and the recipe) for the cake here, at Epicurious.com. Word to the wise: definitely use the cake recipe they provide, as cake mix is just too sticky/soft. I use their recipe for the overall pink frosting, but I like to cheat and buy tubes of grocery-store red and blue frosting for the veins. And just FYI, squeezable jelly makes the best blood! Here are my ghastly creations, pre- and post-surgery.

Check the list of the other contestants and their post dates so you don't miss any of the fun:

Wed Oct 5 Stacey Jay

Fri Oct 7 Erin Dionne

Sat Oct 8 Sydney Salter

Mon Oct 10 Brenda Yovanoff

Wed Oct 12 Tara Hudson (me!)

Fri Oct 14 Karen Healey

Sat Oct 15 Robin Bridges

Mon Oct 17 Michelle Zink

Wed Oct 19 Julia Karr

Fri Oct 21 Victoria Schwab

Sat Oct 22 C. Lee McKenzie

Mon Oct 24 Natalie Zaman

Wed Oct 26 Stephanie Burgis

Fri Oct 28 Dawn Metcalf

Friday, October 7, 2011

I Feel a Contest Coming On...

Today I took a major step in my life, a step that explains my long absence from blogging. Mostly because I spent so much time hemming and hawing over whether or not I was making the right decision for myself and my family. Ultimately, I answered: yes, I was.

Today, I finished my last day of full-time employment at a corporation. Today, I became a full-time writer.

Today is a big day.

Of course, I've been a writer for a long time. And I've been a published writer since the day HEREAFTER was released. But before today, I hadn't yet decided to dedicate my career to writing. I hadn't taken the risk.

Writing, as we all know, is scary. It is hard, mentally exhausting, creatively challenging work. The publication process, too, is a roller-coaster of praise and punishment, as is the life of a published author. These are things I know and have experienced on a very personal level.

But to build my entire career on writing - something I love and respect and fear and crave so much? Well, that's a whole other ball of wax. It took a lot to get here.

So I'm challenging you to tell me the riskiest thing you've done for yourself - the moment you bet biggest on yourself. I'll choose the most daring, and that person will win a signed copy of HEREAFTER and a signed ARC of ARISE (when ARC's become available)!