Hallowe’en Extravaganza!


We only have to wait a week now! Next week I will post the first contest. Get ready for some crazy halloween fun!


Yea. So what if I start preparing for Hallowe’en in August. I still have a bride and groom skeleton set hanging from my window from last year. In my world, everyday is Hallowe’en.

We won’t start any of the festivities until Oct. 1st (whimper heard around the world). But I wanted everyone to be aware that there WILL be festivities. I had to take last year off, but I’ll more than make up for it this year!

I already have some amazing books from extremely generous publishers like Little, Brown, Walker, Quirk Books, and Abrams, lined up for giveaways. Ghosts, skeletons, murderers, maniacs, and good old spooky fun haunt these pages.

There will be contests to win books. And they are difficult contests. They involve writing, and reminiscing, maybe some old Hallowe’en pictures?! There will be plenty of books, thus plenty of creepy contests.

Get ready…


Wait a month and a half…


Three VERY important things…

One: Princess Prep: Fashion & Words Contest. Ends October 10th. (https://www.facebook.com/princessprep)

Two: Guys Read Thriller Contest. Ends October 13th.

Three: October Issue of Underneath The Juniper Tree!

This is such a fun time of the year, get into the spirit of the season by dressing up princess dolls, writing thrilling tales, and reading spooktacular stories!

A collaboration and contest that might just blow your mind. Nine days to enter!!

The wicked mind of D.M. Cunningham over at Literary Asylum has orchestrated a contest so amazing he had to bring in a few friends.

With Walden Pond Press and those tormented folks over at Underneath The Juniper Tree , D.M. is hosting a thrilling contest and celebration of the upcoming release of Walden Pond Press’ Guys Read: THRILLER (Aug 2011)

It’s easy and outrageously fun to enter. It involves writing up two opening paragraphs “of the most thrilling, terrifying, spooky, creepy, and crazy MG/YA story you can muster.” Be sure to follow the guidelines very carefully. Visit Literary Asylum for all the details. The contest ends on Oct. 13th and there are some AMAZING prizes so you don’t want to miss this one!

Keep being spooky!

Contest worthy of a Princess!

The girls at Princess Prep: The Royal Academy are beyond sugar and spice: they’re sassy, snarky, witty, and sometimes nice – but always, always stylish! Now YOU are cordially invited to style along with them, just like a real princess, in our Princess Prep Virtual Style Contest!



The co-authors and illustrator of Princess Prep, Jessica Elizabeth Cole & J. David McKenney, have designed three “virtual” paper dolls: Bennie (our story’s heroine), Simone (the bad girl leader of the “Parasol Mafia”), and Prissy (all-around-sweetheart member of the “Cupcake Club”).

With these three virtual paper dolls, YOU have the opportunity to create the most stylish Princess you can. Remember, at Princess Prep, style is everything!

Visit the fabulous world of Princess Prep: The Royal Academy and click on the “Contest” tab for information and guidelines! 

Contest ends October 10th!

Visit and “like” us on facebook for up-to-date information, and follow the girls on Twitter @itsprincessprep!

What Do You Have In Your Pocketses Challenge!

Over at Underneath The Juniper Tree, they are hosting a new weekly challenge. The What Do You Have in You Pocketses Challenge? I thought since I am always encouraging you all to take part in these challenges, I would give it a go. Make sure you challenge yourself with this one. It is such an entertaining writing exercise.

Blood for Ridicule

by Bree Ogden

The ridicule was expected.

I can handle this. Just let me out!

When you talk to the slight opening in your blouse pocket. The ridicule is expected. Expected, yes.

The little voice continues to berate and it’s almost as unbearable as the mockery coming from those around me.

“Sissy Loy has not a friend.

So Sissy Loy talks to her blouse.

Sissy Loy won’t even pretend.

So Sissy Loy isn’t even welcome in her own house!

Sissy Loy has not a friend.

And Sissy Loy won’t even pretend.

The children chant as they follow me, Sissy Loy, around the playground.

I feverishly try to ignore the voice coming from my blouse pocket.

I’ll slither so fast no one will see me. I’ll slice the cords that utter such vile words.

The thought of such an act sent me into a tizzy.

Panicked, I slapped my hand over my blouse pocket with such vehemence that it attracted the scornful looks of those around me who had not yet joined in on the chant.

And it started again.

“Sissy Loy has not a friend.

So Sissy Loy talks to her blouse.

Sissy Loy won’t even pretend.

So Sissy Loy isn’t even welcome in her own house!

Sissy Loy has not a friend.

And Sissy Loy won’t even pretend.

I’ll gladly slip inside their skin and create slits that will make them think twice about whom they scorn.

Lost in the grotesque thought of my schoolmates bleeding from the inside out, choking on their own words, I failed to notice that the contents of my pocket had sneakily disappeared.

So small. There was no way to find him. I could only track him by his damage.

The blood he left in his wake.

“Sissy Loy has not ::cough cough::”

Amelia started to choke as she began the familiar hurtful chant for the third time.

Blood began to slowly ooze out of her mouth and as the dark red liquid reached the tip of her chin, her nose became a peculiar sight.

Under the skin on the bridge of her nose—if one knew what one was looking for—slithered a long, skinny shape, making her nose look like a miniature version of a bed sheet with a snake underneath.

Before I could even check my pocket, Amelia started to bleed from her eye sockets. Her friends cowered in the corner of the playground by a cluster of trees; watching their ringleader come undone.

Amelia tried to scream but with each mouth movement, more blood spurted from her mouth. Showers of blood hit the ground and mixed with the dirty playground floor.

She looked at me in terror. I snapped my fingers and within moments my blouse pocket was again occupied and Amelia was curled up on the bloody, dusty ground with lunch aides running to her assistance.

I quickly spun around, for my blouse pocket was beginning to turn dark red from Amelia’s blood.

I leaned down to whisper into my pocket.

“A bit overboard with the eyes, don’t you think?”

He snuggled into a ball and whispered quietly.

Amelia had no heart with which to pump the blood, I truly did not think the damage would be so dramatic.

And he fell asleep with a smirk on his tiny little face and a snigger escaping out of his dreadful little mouth.

Challenge-a writer’s refiner’s fire

I love a good challenge. Especially as a writer. A writing challenge is such a fantastic way to keep the creative side of your brain vibrating with ideas and your heart pumping alive with innovation and artistry. And love. Because you have to love to write. #laboroflove

I’ve heard that feisty Marjorie and testy little Tex over at Underneath The Juniper Tree (see post below) know just how to challenge a great writer as yourself. Be sure to check out the ridiculously bizarre and fun weekly challenges as well as the larger contest going on right now, the Sinister Summer Stories Contest.

Also remember that this IS NOT JUST FOR WRITERS. Underneath The Juniper Tree wants artists. And everything I said above about challenging yourself goes for an artist as well. And I heard Tex goes a bit easier on artists because he really truly loves to eat words…and toes, but that’s for another conversation.

Challenge Yourself.