CONFESSIONS OF A PANDEMIC LIFE: The New Home

Just in case you didn’t get a chance to check out part one, The Old House, in my post about life during the pandemic, you can click on this link to see how I had to live in my home last year.

In late November 2020, work FINALLY began! Huge truckloads of materials were delivered to my house…although I did have to fight with one company who was determined to ship a box truck of material to my P O BOX!!

I found out last week that after being on a waiting list for FIVE YEARS, I was finally approved for a city grant for a partial weatherization of my house. This new heat pump was installed as well as much needed insulation which hopefully lowers my HUGE monthly electric bill. Fingers crossed…lol.

My contractor sealed up my chimneys both outside and inside so I never have to worry about another soot implosion. I have touches of coastal living EVERYWHERE! Can you see some of the ocean reminders in my living room? One of my students had a special beach-themed tumbler made with my name on it and it fits perfectly with my “beach” house.

In another corner of my living room is this special driftwood looking piece I found while treasuring hunting at one of my local thrift stores. I bought quite a few things over the months while my house was being repaired and now I get to place them in their forever spots! The tray of shells is one of my many DIY projects around the house.

In another corner of the living room is one of my desks. I love the wall decals, and if you look real close, you will see one of my mermaid figurines watching over me while I work. I also have a rolling desk that I am actually using as I type this blog post. I can roll it into any room of the house if I’m working on a project and want to take it with me.

Remember that bathroom from Monday’s post? My bathroom is extremely small, so the contractor had a wonderful idea to pull the regular door and install a sliding barn door. Not only does it modernize the room’s look, visually the room appears HUGE.

I LOVE my new shower! I almost can’t remember what that hideous old bathroom looked like!

I found this lovely shower curtain to help continue the beach theme in the bathroom.

Gone are the leaky sink and toilet. I found that beautiful mirror for $10 through a local online marketplace.

I’m keeping everything minimalistic and simple. I found the seahorse through Wish.com and that cute little plant is another DIY project of mine.

Moving into my study/writing room, one wall will be for author visit supplied, the craft of writing books and supplies, and other items I need to tuck away for later. Did you catch my pirate parrot friend sitting up high? He just might end up in one of the planned HISTORY’S MYSTERIES titles I’m working on for the future.

On one wall in the study is this cool credenza I found with an old world map design on it. Another touch of beach decor and it ties right into the rest of the room.

On the other wall, that cabinet holds extra copies of my books as well as the marketing props I use for my author events. I still have some organizing to do but after a year of living like a nomad, just looking at these pictures warms my heart.

Right next to it is my roll top desk. When I bought my house 23 years ago, I told myself if NOTHING else gets bought, I will have my rolltop desk I’ve dreamed of having all my adult life. Now, it sits in front of a window facing my back yard in a freshly painted room. Oh, the stories I hope to write at that desk!

This chimney also imploded, but not nearly as badly as the one in my living room. Now it’s sealed off ad my SEAL family chills out under another DIY project I did for this room. Literally every single shell was strategically placed on that mantle and I even put actual SAND under them. The fabric angel I found at a thrift store and it inspired me to write a poem about it.

Here’s the sea inspired poem that hangs next to that fabric angel.

Next, take a look at my kitchen sink. Remember that old, rusted metal one from Monday’s post? Now I have a new sink/counter top combo that I love as well as beautiful curtains and a shell rug to carry my beach theme throughout the house.

I know it’s silly to be giddy about a counter top but THIS counter top does two things for me. It tucks my new hot water heater out of sight behind a false front under that counter and it provides extra food prep space I’ve NEVER had before in this house! Silly I know, but I also love my hanging hooks under that corner cabinet for my cooking utensils.

I found a distressed book case at a local furniture store and converted it into a baker’s rack for storing pots, pans, and small appliances.

Those grey curtains blend in with the wall color and hide the built in pantry behind it. The new bathroom tower that I found on Walmart.com offers a little more organizational storage in the kitchen.

The last room in my house is my bedroom. My sanctuary. One of the first things I bought for the bedroom was this cool sea turtle clock from Wish.com.

Here’s another one of my DIY projects. I found this unusual shaped, blown glass bowl on a piece of driftwood in a local home decor store and instantly imagined myself at the beach. What do you think?

If you look closely, you will see my beach terrarium on my chest of drawers, my arrangement of seashells and my sea turtle I found hidden away at a local second hand furniture store.

I can not express how happy my spirit feels when I see my redecorated bedroom. My new bedcover and pillows carry the beach theme and gone is the bland dirty, beige walls with drab, boring wall art. I found that headboard for $20 at another local thrift store and it helps brighten up the room.

Across from my bed is my lovely reading nook. Isn’t that egg-shaped chair so cute? I was so excited to find that tapestry and it REALLY sets the tone of the room. That toy chest is holding extra blankets and that wire plant tower is now a modern book case. And in case you didn’t notice, that adorable wire lighthouse is another thrift store treasure.

Here’s my new baby. My old Kia had 241,000 miles on it and had served me well for seven years. This is my new-to-me car…a Nissan Versa.

Another view of my new car.

One last look at my new baby…

There were a few good things that came out of 2020 where my writing was concerned. One was book three of my HISTORY’S MYSTERIES historical fiction chapter book series came out. Hunting Gris-gris takes place during World War II and tells the story of the mysterious bayou monster I grew up with down on the bayou in southern Louisiana.

Book one, Ship of Dreams, and book two, The Chocolate Train Wreck, also did great last year!

Both of those books won five star ratings from the READERS’ FAVORITE organization! It makes a writer happy to have their hard work recognized and it encourages me to keep sharing my stories with the world!

My house is about 90% back in place and hopefully by next month I will be able to get back in my writing study and focus on book four, President Lincoln’s Balloons!

So tell me, dear readers, what do you think of my repaired, remodeled, new-to-me home now?

****************

Hybrid published author, Donna L Martin, has been writing since she was eight years old. She is a 4th Degree Black Belt in TaeKwonDo by day and a ‘ninja’ writer of flash fiction, children’s picture books, chapter books, young adult novels and inspirational essays by night. Donna offers occasional BOOK NOOK REVIEWS of great children’s books and offers WRITERLY WISDOM to new and established writers. She is a member of the Society of Children’s Book Writers & Illustrators and Children’s Book Insider. Donna loves dark chocolate, going to the beach and adding to her growing book collection.

Want to connect?

Pick your favorite…

Email: www.donasdays@gmail.com

Facebook: www.facebook.com/donasdays

Twitter: www.twitter.com/donasdays

LinkedIn: Donna L Martin/Story Catcher Publishing

Goodreads: Donna L Martin

Mail: Donna L Martin

c/o Story Catcher Publishing

P O Box 27788

Knoxville, Tn 37927

CONFESSIONS OF A PANDEMIC LIFE: The Old Home

***Warning! Some of these pictures are disturbing!***

Or at least they are to me because they are the result of my 98 year-old house trying to fall down around me while I was still living in it. It all started around 2012 when a major ice storm came through town. My 50 foot oak tree that used to stand in my front yard fell on my house, striking the chimney and causing more than $35,000 worth of damage.

What no one knew at the time was that the insides of my chimney were about to come outside! A build up of decades of greasy soot had been loosened by that falling tree and about a year after my house was repaired, that unstable chimney imploded. Fifty years of greasy soot roared through my house like a mushroom cloud, settling on every inch of the house and destroying just about everything in it’s path.

What has that unfortunate incident have to do with the pandemic you ask?

Everything.

The insurance company refused to pay any more on the claim so I lived the next eight years in a home desperately needing repair with no money to do it.

A LOT of bad happened in my life last year. A small fire in the kitchen. The kitchen sink shearing in half and flooding the room before I could stop it. The initial public reaction to the virus threatening to rock my 20 year martial arts career. My fledgling publishing company nearly drowning in the backlash of school visits and other writer events being canceled. Ten of them to be exact that were cancelled almost overnight before I could even catch my breath. The pandemic closed down many contractors and it took almost a year to find one willing to work on my house. At a price I could afford.

But some good came out of last year. A stimulus check to start repairs. A pension plan I could cash out without penalty to be able to finish the work.

At last there was light at the end of that greasy, sooty tunnel that my house would one day look like new again.

What I hadn’t planned on is it taking the contractor six month of hard work to bring my dream of having my own beach themed house to life.

I lived like a refugee for months, dragging buckets of water from an outside faucet into the house because the interior pipes had begun to leak and the water inside the house had to be shut off.

This year has started out pretty rough as well. My old car with it’s 241,000 miles finally had a fatal breakdown and I had to get another car. A family member suddenly died. My writing had dried up like the Sahara Desert and I worried I wouldn’t be able to find the creative will to write again.

But this past month has showered many blessings on my life…on my home…and my writing. Come back on Wednesday to take a peek at my new “beachy” sanctuary and learn about all the good that has come out of living this pandemic life. You will be amazed!!

************

Hybrid published author, Donna L Martin, has been writing since she was eight years old. She is a 4th Degree Black Belt in TaeKwonDo by day and a ‘ninja’ writer of flash fiction, children’s picture books, chapter books, young adult novels and inspirational essays by night. Donna offers occasional BOOK NOOK REVIEWS of great children’s books and offers WRITERLY WISDOM to new and established writers. She is a member of the Society of Children’s Book Writers & Illustrators and Children’s Book Insider. Donna loves dark chocolate, going to the beach and adding to her growing book collection.

Want to connect?

Pick your favorite…

Email: www.donasdays@gmail.com

Facebook: www.facebook.com/donasdays

Twitter: www.twitter.com/donasdays

LinkedIn: Donna L Martin/Story Catcher Publishing

Goodreads: Donna L Martin

Mail: Donna L Martin

c/o Story Catcher Publishing

P O Box 27788

Knoxville, Tn 37927

WE HAVE AN APRIL WINNER…Woot! Woot!

I’m so glad to be able to announce we have a winner for the April PAY A BOOK FORWARD book bundle giveaway! Woot! Woot!

Word continues to get out about the hundreds of books I will be giving away for FREE throughout 2021 which makes THIS book lover very happy!

Put your hands together for April’s PAY A BOOK FORWARD winner…

APRIL WILKERSON!

I’ll be sending April a FB message so I can get her books in the mail to her hopefully this upcoming week.

Thanks to everyone who participated in this month’s PAY A BOOK FORWARD event! Make sure to come back on May 10th to see what’s in store for the next big giveaway!

In the meantime, share a little book love with a child in your world. Give them the first step into a magical, life-long love of reading!

**************

Hybrid published author, Donna L Martin, has been writing since she was eight years old. She is a 4th Degree Black Belt in TaeKwonDo by day and a ‘ninja’ writer of flash fiction, children’s picture books, chapter books, young adult novels and inspirational essays by night. Donna offers occasional BOOK NOOK REVIEWS of great children’s books and offers WRITERLY WISDOM to new and established writers. She is a member of the Society of Children’s Book Writers & Illustrators and Children’s Book Insider. Donna loves dark chocolate, going to the beach and adding to her growing book collection.

Want to connect?

Pick your favorite…

Email: www.donasdays@gmail.com

Facebook: www.facebook.com/donasdays

Twitter: www.twitter.com/donasdays

LinkedIn: Donna L Martin/Story Catcher Publishing

Goodreads: Donna L Martin

Mail: Donna L Martin

c/o Story Catcher Publishing

P O Box 27788

Knoxville, Tn 37927

April PAY A BOOK FORWARD Book Bundle Is Here!!

Spring time is reading time! Beginning today, April 10th and continuing until Tuesday, April 20th, anyone who comments on this post, or the Facebook post, or Twitter tweet will have a chance to win this book bundle for their favorite school, local or home library! If you’ve already posted on previous months, keep posting for a chance to win! And the best part?

IT’S ALL FREE!!

Every month during 2021, I am giving away a bundle of newly purchased and gently-loved books to one lucky winner.

There is also a chance to win BONUS PRIZES, like this month’s special delivery of award winning picture books from Asia! To have a chance to win the BONUS PRIZE, all you have to do is to share in the comments a story about a book YOU have shared with someone else during this PAY A BOOK FORWARD year-long event!

This month’s book bundle includes:

SHIN-CHI’S CANOE by Nocola I. Campbell with illustrations by Kim LaFave.

ONE VOTE, TWO VOTES. I VOTE, YOU VOTE by Bonnie Worth with illustrations by Aristides Ruiz and Joe Mathieu.

THE GHOST KEEPER’S JOURNAL AND FIELD GUIDE by Japhet Asher

MELANIE MOUSE’S MOVING DAY by Cyndy SzeKeres

BIGGEST, STRONGEST, FASTEST by Steve Jenkins

J. ROOKER, MANATEE by Jan Haley with illustrations by Paul Brent

ON THE NIGHT YOU WERE BORN by Nancy Tillman

HARVESTING HOPE: The Story of Cesar Chavez by Kathleen Krull with illustrations by Yuyi Morales

LLAMA LLAMA HOME WITH MAMA by Anna Dewdney

THE STORM by Marc Harshman with illustrations by Mark Mohr

BEAR SNORES ON by Karma Wilson with illustrations by Jane Chapman

I WENT WALKING by Sue Williams with illustrations by Julie Vivas

Help me get the word out about these FREE books! Tell your favorite teacher! Tell you favorite librarian! Let all your book-loving friends know to check out this month’s book bundle and leave a comment for a chance to win this book bundle or even the BONUS PRIZE!!

****************

KidLit Author, Donna L Martin, has been writing since she was eight years old. She is a 4th Degree Black Belt in TaeKwonDo by day and a ‘ninja’ writer of flash fiction, children’s picture books, chapter books, young adult novels and inspirational essays by night. Donna offers occasional BOOK NOOK REVIEWS of great children’s books and offers WRITERLY WISDOM to new and established writers. She is a member of the Society of Children’s Book Writers & Illustrators and Children’s Book Insider. Donna loves dark chocolate, going to the beach and adding to her growing book collection.

www.storycatcherpublishing.com

www.twitter.com/donasdays

www.facebook.com/donasdays

www.amazon.com/author/donnalmartin

www.goodreads.com/author/show/18279692.Donna_L_Martin

WE HAVE A MARCH WINNER…Woot! Woot!

I’m so glad to be able to announce we have a winner for the March PAY A BOOK FORWARD book bundle giveaway! Woot! Woot!

This month’s event saw a 200% jump in participants which makes this book lover’s heart very happy! Word is getting out about the hundreds of books I will be giving away for FREE throughout 2021.

But there is still one area that need’s work.

No one is loading a picture of a book THEY are sharing with someone else so they can be entered in the monthly BONUS PRIZE giveaway. Most of the time it will be an autographed book from one of my published author friends, but sometimes it will be a collection of interesting books or other prizes. I’m mulling around what I will do with those wonderful BONUS PRIZES not being given away each month and might do one MEGA PRIZE GIVEAWAY at the end of the year. I’ll figure something out.

For now, put your hands together for March’s PAY A BOOK FORWARD winner…

MICHAEL RAMSEY of JOPPA ELEMENTARY!

I’ll be sending Michael a FB message so I can get his books in the mail to him hopefully this upcoming week.

Thanks to everyone who participated in this month’s PAY A BOOK FORWARD event! Make sure to come back on April 10th to see what’s in store for the next big giveaway!

In the meantime, share a little book love with a child in your world. Give them the first step into a magical, life-long love of reading!

**************

Hybrid published author, Donna L Martin, has been writing since she was eight years old. She is a 4th Degree Black Belt in TaeKwonDo by day and a ‘ninja’ writer of flash fiction, children’s picture books, chapter books, young adult novels and inspirational essays by night. Donna offers occasional BOOK NOOK REVIEWS of great children’s books and offers WRITERLY WISDOM to new and established writers. She is a member of the Society of Children’s Book Writers & Illustrators and Children’s Book Insider. Donna loves dark chocolate, going to the beach and adding to her growing book collection.

Want to connect?

Pick your favorite…

Email: www.donasdays@gmail.com

Facebook: www.facebook.com/donasdays

Twitter: www.twitter.com/donasdays

LinkedIn: Donna L Martin/Story Catcher Publishing

Goodreads: Donna L Martin

Mail: Donna L Martin

c/o Story Catcher Publishing

P O Box 27788

Knoxville, Tn 37927

ReFoReMo…Weeks Two and Three Results

I’m sure some of you are thinking…”What do you mean week three results? We’re just beginning week three!”

Well, I’m on vacation this week, so I actually read week three required reading for ReFoReMo this past weekend because I’ll be doing other things during my time off. I will be reading the daily posts, but wanted to go ahead and share my thoughts on this fabulous collection of picture books shown above.

For those of you who don’t know what ReFoReMo stands for, it’s READING FOR RESEARCH MONTH. It’s a month long challenge to read tons of great picture books as mentor texts and really study the different components of what makes up great writing.

I’m going to be reading over 100 books during the month of March for this challenge, and reading the blog posts like this one…http://www.reforemo.com/2021/03/reforemo-day-11-literary-agentauthor.html…to determine how things like tension, character arc, point of view, etc. helps a writer create a stronger story.

My local library still couldn’t get me all the books required for this challenge, but I’m getting enough to understand and appreciate some of the really special books out there just waiting for someone to take them home for a little read time. Here are my favorites from this past week…

GIANT SQUID by Candace Fleming…such a magical integration of fluid, flowing descriptions with innovative, captivating illustrations to pull readers into the dark, underwater world of the giant squid. I’m drawn to the ocean and all the creatures who live there, so of course I had high hopes for this book and it did not disappoint! I think I may have to add this one to my growing picture book collection…

OUTSIDE IN by Deborah Underwood…on my first read through my friend Deborah’s story, I felt like it was a very quiet story. And I like quiet stories. When I read it the second time, I felt the beautiful watercolor illustrations draw me “outside” where perfectly chosen words reminded me of all the reasons why I love being out in nature. And with a year like we’ve had in 2020, I’m all for the “quiet” books that touch our souls and calms our spirits…

THE UNDEFEATED by Kwame Alexander…I enjoyed reading all of the books this past weekend, but THIS book impressed me the most. It wasn’t the story, although I thought the way each person’s contribution to our collective history was well written, it was the illustrations that stopped me in my tracks!

I opened this picture book and was stunned by the rich textures of layered colors I found on each page. It was like each person was leaping off the page to draw my attention to what they had to offer. Such expressive drawing is beauty in motion that I don’t always get to see in books these days. Kadir Nelson is a true artist and I spent a long time studying each page so I wouldn’t miss out on anything!

My local library can only get five more books from the reading list. A part of me is disappointed I didn’t have access to all the book selections suggested. But I will always be grateful to Carrie Charley Brown and Kristi Call for sharing ReFoReMo with the world each year and exposing me to another world of books I might have otherwise overlooked…

I can’t wait to see what week four will bring!

****************

KidLit Author, Donna L Martin, has been writing since she was eight years old. She is a 4th Degree Black Belt in TaeKwonDo by day and a ‘ninja’ writer of flash fiction, children’s picture books, chapter books, young adult novels and inspirational essays by night. Donna offers occasional BOOK NOOK REVIEWS of great children’s books and offers WRITERLY WISDOM to new and established writers. She is a member of the Society of Children’s Book Writers & Illustrators and Children’s Book Insider. Donna loves dark chocolate, going to the beach and adding to her growing book collection.

www.storycatcherpublishing.com

www.twitter.com/donasdays

www.facebook.com/donasdays

www.amazon.com/author/donnalmartin

www.goodreads.com/author/show/18279692.Donna_L_Martin

March PAY A BOOK FORWARD Book Bundle Is Here!!

Just in time for Easter giving! Beginning Wednesday, March 10th and continuing until Saturday, March 20th, anyone who comments on this post, or the Facebook post, or Twitter tweet will have a chance to win this book bundle for their favorite school, local or home library! And the best part?

IT’S ALL FREE!!

Every month during 2021, I am giving away a bundle of newly purchased and gently-loved books to one lucky winner.

There is also a chance to win BONUS PRIZES, like this month’s “Mystic”, autographed by K. D. Rausin! To have a chance to win the BONUS PRIZE, all you have to do is take a picture of one book YOU are planning on sharing with someone else during this PAY A BOOK FORWARD year-long event and then share in the comments here, on the Facebook post or in a tweet on the Twitter post!

This month’s book bundle includes:

“Happy Easter, Mouse!” by Laura Numeroff

“Forever Sisters” by Madeline Grey

“Owly” by Mike Thaler

“Plants vs Zombies” by Paul Tobin & Jacob Chabot

“100 Things You Should Know About Dinosaurs” by Steve Parker

“Lullaby Moon” by Rosie Reeve

“Do You Want to Build a Snowman?” by Calliope Glass

“Extraordinary Jane” by Hannah E Harrison

“Lotsa de Casha” by Madonna

“Big Chickens” by Leslie Helakoski

“5-Minute Star Wars Villain Stories by Disney

“The Pout-Pout Fish in the Big-Big Dark” by Deborah Diesen

Help me get the word out about FREE books! Tell your favorite teacher! Tell you favorite librarian! Let all your book-loving friends know to check out this month’s book bundle and leave a comment or share a picture for a chance to win this book bundle or even the BONUS PRIZE!!

****************

KidLit Author, Donna L Martin, has been writing since she was eight years old. She is a 4th Degree Black Belt in TaeKwonDo by day and a ‘ninja’ writer of flash fiction, children’s picture books, chapter books, young adult novels and inspirational essays by night. Donna offers occasional BOOK NOOK REVIEWS of great children’s books and offers WRITERLY WISDOM to new and established writers. She is a member of the Society of Children’s Book Writers & Illustrators and Children’s Book Insider. Donna loves dark chocolate, going to the beach and adding to her growing book collection.

www.storycatcherpublishing.com

www.twitter.com/donasdays

www.facebook.com/donasdays

www.amazon.com/author/donnalmartin

www.goodreads.com/author/show/18279692.Donna_L_Martin

ReFoReMo…Week One Results

For those of you who don’t know what ReFoReMo stands for, it’s READING FOR RESEARCH MONTH. It’s a month long challenge to read tons of great picture books as mentor texts and really study the different components of what makes up great writing.

I’m going to be reading over 100 books during the month of March for this challenge, and reading the blog posts like this one…http://www.reforemo.com/2021/03/reforemo-day-5-literary-advocate.html…to determine how things like tension, character arc, point of view, etc. helps a writer create a stronger story.

My local library couldn’t get me all the books required for this challenge, but I’m getting enough to understand and appreciate some of the really special books out there just waiting for someone to take them home for a little read time. Here are my favorites from this past week…

  1. SWASHBY AND THE SEA by Beth Ferry, illustrated by JuanaMartinez-Neal…This one is my FAVORITE book of week one. The drawings are lovely and I really enjoyed the heartwarming way Swashby’s neighbors took the time to connect with him.
  2. MABEL: A Mermaid Fable by Rowboat Watkins. It’s adorable how Mabel deals with being “different” and how she changes her mindset by the end of the story.
  3. FRY BREAD by Kevin Nobel Maillard, illustrated by Juana Martinez Neal…I just realized this is the same illustrator as the one for SWASHBY which is why I probably enjoyed the artwork of this book. I’m also part Cherokee, so learning more about Native American traditions interest me.
  4. I AM DARN TOUGH by Licia Morelli, illustrated by Maine Diaz…I work with kids every day and love how the main character in this book finds the inner strength to overcome the obstacles in the story.
  5. LIFT by Minh Le, illustrated by Dan Santat…this book comes in a very close second to SWASHBY as my favorite mentor text for week one. I adore the illustrations by my KidLit colleague, Dan Santat, and the story is such a lovely tribute to a child’s imagination. The almost graphic novel style doesn’t hurt either…
  6. DO I HAVE TO WEAR A COAT? by Rachel Isadora…Picture books celebrating the seasons will almost always capture my attention and this one is no different. The artwork is whimsical and all the different options for the seasons evoke fun adventures.
  7. PARKER LOOKS UP by Parker & Jessica Curry, illustrated by Brittany Jackson…There are many things I admire about Michelle Obama, and I found this book both a lovely tribute to the strong woman Michelle is as well as all the wonderful possibilities to be found for one special little girl.
  8. NO SMALL POTATOES: Junius G Groves and His Kingdom in Kansas by Tonya Bolden, illustrated by Don Tate…This book’s artwork is created by another Kidlit colleague favorite of mine. And I absolutely love the “rag to riches” story of this fabulous, hard-working man who created his own destiny through hard work. This one is technically for week two, but it came in early and I couldn’t wait to read it!
  9. THE NEXT PRESIDENT by Kate Messner & Adam Rex…I LOVE how my KidLit colleague, Kate Messner presents an angle on our presidents I’ve never seen before! The artwork is beautiful and the story is captivating!

I can’t wait to see what week two brings!

**********

KidLit author, Donna L Martin, has been writing since she was eight years old. She is a 4th Degree Black Belt in TaeKwonDo by day and a ‘ninja’ writer of flash fiction, children’s picture books, chapter books, young adult novels and inspirational essays by night. Donna offers occasional BOOK NOOK REVIEWS of great children’s books and offers WRITERLY WISDOM to new and established writers. She is a member of the Society of Children’s Book Writers & Illustrators, Children’s Book Insider and AWAI. Donna loves dark chocolate, going to the beach and adding to her growing book collection.

Facebook: www.facebook.com/donasdays

Twitter: www.twitter.com/donasdays

Amazon: www.amazon.com/author/donnalmartin

LinkedIn: Donna L Martin/Story Catcher Publishing

Goodreads: Donna L Martin

We Have A Winner…and An Apology

I’m so excited to announce we have a winner for our February #PayABookForward FREE book bundle.

To have a chance to win the FREE bundle of children’s books, all people had to do was leave a comment on the original blog post, Facebook post, or Twitter tweet. People did that, and a winner was randomly drawn.

The winner of February’s book bundle is:

CAROLYN B FRAISER!

Carolyn, you will have until the 25th to accept your prize by providing a valid mailing address so I can send you your books. You can send your mailing address to my email, donasdays@gmail.com. Congratulations and I hope you continue to share the love of books with others!

Now for the apology…

It seems I’m somehow not getting across how easy it is to add your name to the hat for a chance to win a signed book from one of my author friends. I’m sincerely sorry for any confusion. All you need to do is use your smart phone and take a picture of a book…ANY BOOK…you want to share with someone else.

A child.

A librarian.

A teacher.

Then post that picture to one of my blog, Facebook, or Twitter post during the PAY A BOOK FORWARD monthly event that I’m running every 10th through the 20th of each month.

It’s that easy!

Just take a picture of the book you want to pay forward and share the book love for a chance to win a signed book. This month’s book by the fabulous Lori Degman won’t be able to be given away, but will be held over for another month or giveaway.

I also need to clarify EXACTLY what I’m trying to do with this #PayABookForward year-long event. It seems some people didn’t understand all I want to do is give away books.

Many, many books.

Not to get more followers.

Not to add to my email list.

Not even to sell my OWN books.

I’ve been a voracious reader since I was four years old.

I LOVE BOOKS!

All books.

And my heart tells me I need to share that love of books with others. This isn’t the first time I’ve done it. I’ve given away over $175,000 worth of books to many, many people over the years.

Sometimes boldly.

Sometimes anonimously.

But NEVER for any other reason than to put GREAT STORIES in the hands of young readers.

So, hopefully, that clears up the confusion some people had. On February 10th, there will be another chance to win a different bundle of books for your school elementary library, local library, free libraries, homeschool group, or even your own home library. It’s my wish and prayer that word of mouth will help me get the word out about this #PayABookForward year-long event. Those free books are starting to pile up at my house and I want to shower the world with great stories all year long!!

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Best-selling, award-winning author, Donna L Martin, has been writing since she was eight years old. She is a 4th Degree Black Belt in TaeKwonDo by day and a ‘ninja’ writer of flash fiction, children’s picture books, chapter books, young adult novels and inspirational essays by night. Donna offers occasional BOOK NOOK REVIEWS of great children’s books and offers WRITERLY WISDOM to new and established writers. She is a member of the Society of Children’s Book Writers & Illustrators and Children’s Book Insider. Donna loves dark chocolate, going to the beach and adding to her growing book collection.

Facebook: www.facebook.com/donasdays

Twitter: www.twitter.com/donasdays

Amazon: www.amazon.com/author/donnalmartin

LinkedIn: Donna L Martin/Story Catcher Publishing

Goodreads: Donna L Martin

February PAY A BOOK FORWARD Book Bundle Is Here!!

Beginning Wednesday, February 10th and continuing until Saturday, February 20th, anyone who comments on this post, or the Facebook post, or Twitter tweet will have a chance to win this book bundle for their favorite school, local or home library! And the best part?

IT’S ALL FREE!!

Every month during 2021, I am giving away a bundle of newly purchased and gently-loved books to one lucky winner.

There is also a chance to win BONUS PRIZES, like this month’s “Travel Guide For Monsters”, autographed by my friend Lori Degman! To have a chance to win the BONUS PRIZE, all you have to do is take a picture of one book YOU are planning on sharing with someone else during this PAY A BOOK FORWARD year-long event and then share in the comments here, on the Facebook post or in a tweet on the Twitter post!

This month’s book bundle includes:

“Poptropica: Lunar Colony”…adapted by Patrick Kinney

“The Critter Club” (3 books in 1)…by Callie Barkley

“I’ve Seen Santa!”…by David Bedford

“I’m A Little Teapot”…by Iza Trapani

“Tanks”…by Geoff Cornish

“Inside a House That Is Haunted”…by Alyssa Satin Capucilli

“You Are My I Love You”…by Maryann Cusimano Love

“Panda Bear, Panda Bear, What Do You See?”…by Bill Martin Jr

“Alladin”…by Disney

“Skippyjon Jones”…by Judy Schachner

“Shark Lady: The True Story of How Eugenie Clar Became the Ocean’s Most Fearless Scientist…by Jess Keating

“The Pout-Pout Fish”…by Deborah Diesen

“Wild Animals!…illustrated by Michael Steward

Tell your favorite teacher! Tell you favorite librarian! Let all your book-loving friends know to check out this month’s book bundle and leave a comment or share a picture for a chance to win this book bundle or even the BONUS PRIZE!!

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Best-selling, award-winning author, Donna L Martin, has been writing since she was eight years old. She is a 4th Degree Black Belt in TaeKwonDo by day and a ‘ninja’ writer of flash fiction, children’s picture books, chapter books, young adult novels and inspirational essays by night. Donna offers occasional BOOK NOOK REVIEWS of great children’s books and offers WRITERLY WISDOM to new and established writers. She is a member of the Society of Children’s Book Writers & Illustrators and Children’s Book Insider. Donna loves dark chocolate, going to the beach and adding to her growing book collection.

www.storycatcherpublishing.com

www.twitter.com/donasdays

www.facebook.com/donasdays

www.amazon.com/author/donnalmartin

www.goodreads.com/author/show/18279692.Donna_L_Martin