Sunday, May 31, 2015
Just a quick post to let you know about my new book blog! This is the official site for Cold Snap Books and it is online at MyBestFriendsBrother.com!
Hint: You can also get there by clicking the Cold Snap Books / Ya / My Best Friend's Brother tab above!
My Best Friend's Brother is the title of my second novel—and the first in a series—but all of my novels will be featured there, because it is a common theme in many of my books.
In Life with Jesse Daniels, Anna Devlin finds herself in love with her best friend—and boyfriend Derek's brother—Jesse Daniels. And Derek is, well, her best friend's brother, so there you go! My what a tangled web we weave!
I am currently completing Book of Luke, and am getting excited! Keep an eye on my book blog for updates!
Posted by Chrissy Fanslau at 2:28 PM
Saturday, May 9, 2015
I've been kind of absent lately. And by that I don't mean I'm off vacationing in exotic places or spending thousands at the mall. Though that would be nice... It essentially means I'm chasing two toddlers around, homeschooling, assembling signs, shipping orders and writing. And marketing my books.
Although mainly, I've been writing. Every chance I get.
I was supposed to finish Spirit Guide (officially my third book) but I was pleasantly—very pleasantly—surprised by how successful the book launch for My Best Friend's Brother was. It hit several bestseller lists. It was downloaded more times than ParaNorman. It actually got as high as #224 in Kindle Store. Out of so many books, that's pretty damn high.
I got lots of great feedback, and I made a lot of people laugh. Which is the point. So I decided to write a sequel, while it's still in my head.
Speaking of my head—if you've read my novels, you know there's some weird stuff going on in there. They are both quite witty, and My Best Friend's Brother is more so.
My mind is an interesting place. I can take just about any situation and turn it funny. I get ideas 24/7, and I don't even write most of them down. I'm not afraid of forgetting them, because if I do, I know I'll get plenty of new ones.
I can't turn them off, and sometimes they'll come at a bad time. Like I'll be in a store, I'll think up something bizarre and start laughing to myself like a moron. Sure, I get weird looks from people, but it's okay, because I'm a writer.
The sequel to My Best Friend's Brother is titled Book of Luke. Yes, it's technically a working title, but I love it and will almost definitely use it! Yes, I said "almost definitely", because I need the wiggle room. lol
I am having so much freaking fun writing this, and I can't wait until the world has so much freaking fun reading it! I plan to release the book this coming fall!
So, you know, GO ME!
|MY BEST FRIEND'S BROTHER, Book One|
Tuesday, April 21, 2015
Dad was at the kitchen table, sipping his coffee and flipping through his beloved Writer’s Digest.
“Good morning,” he said, without looking at me.
“Morning, Dad.” I fell into my seat and practically inhaled the golden brown omelet, plump with melted cheddar and overflowing with mushrooms. “I’m going to the mall today,” I announced, silently hoping he’d let me. Sometimes Dad’s just in a stay-at-home kind of mood, but today he seemed passive. I think I’ve earned it, spending all of Saturday doing homework.
He chewed his food, his eyes glued to the magazine. “Sure, sweetie,” he mumbled.
I smiled and finished my breakfast.
“Don’t you have homework, Adonia?” Sullivan mocked in Dad’s direction.
I rolled my eyes.
Sullivan has brown hair that hangs halfway down his neck, which he parts down the middle and tucks behind his ears. His eyes are hazel and his mouth is too big for his face—no surprise! He teases me about everything, and even became friends with Jake after the break up. The little pest invited him over to play video games and kept me cornered in my room.
I shot him a look. Luckily, Dad hadn’t even looked up.
“Jake’s coming by today,” Sullivan informed me, looking for a reaction.
“So? I’ll be at the mall all day.” I took a sip of orange juice. “You know, I can hear your music all the way over here,” I said loudly, hoping Dad would lecture him again. But Dad still didn’t look up, and Sullivan pointed at me and laughed noiselessly.
“What do you two want for dinner?” Dad asked lamely, still reading.
Sullivan slammed his fists on the table. “Lasagna!”
Dad looked bewildered. “Lasagna? For the third time this week?”
I shook my head and rinsed off my plate.
“Be back by nine,” Dad said. I turned and looked at him. “It’s a school night!” he briefed. Then he buried his head back in his magazine.
I sighed, walked to the front door and put on my sneakers.
“And keep that cell phone on!” he insisted from the kitchen.
I stepped into the chilly Alaskan air, headed for Mom’s silver Jeep Grand Cherokee. She lets me drive it while she’s away. She’s in Australia until late November, doing research on the Aborigines.
I cranked the engine and sat waiting in my seat. The car reeked of vanilla. I adjusted the automatic leather seat and carefully backed out of the long driveway. It was overcast out, like it’s going to snow. I’m not a fan of driving in snow, but it’s better than not driving at all. I haven’t crashed a car yet, and I’ve been driving since sixteen.
For a Sunday, the mall was pretty dead. It’s not a huge mall by any means. It has a pet store, a book store, a food court, a couple clothing stores, a Halloween shop, a music store, a movie theater, and an arcade. If you have lots of interests, you can spend a good day there. I’m particularly fond of the book and pet stores, though I couldn’t buy any pets there anyway, because pets are big no-no’s with my parents, especially Dad. When I get my own place, I’m buying a puppy before I even fill the fridge.
Upon entering the bookstore, I was greeted by a tall, nerdy clerk. He knows me. I’m one of the regulars.
I usually spend a while in there, browsing the young adult novels.
Classical music played over the loudspeaker, and the place smelled incredible—there’s nothing like the smell of ink and paper! At least, not for bookworms like me there isn’t!
I seated myself at the base of a bookshelf in the back of the store and looked through some books. I know you shouldn’t judge a book by its cover, but I’m one of those people that do—I like to see what the guys portrayed inside look like, and read through the book briefly. I’m not into naughty books, but I’ll have to admit, I am seventeen, and I am curious.
I spent a good hour reading, ignoring all the passersby and the loud giggly girls—as I call them—who walked in and headed straight for the adult romance novels. You know, the books with the half-naked men and extremely content women on the cover? Those novels.
The girls gathered around in a circle, whispered loudly, read and pointed and giggled, and this would—on some days—go on for about thirty minutes straight. This time, though, they went on for nearly an hour, about twenty or so feet from me, laughing wildly. It annoyed the hell out of me.
I skimmed through a book titled Love at the End of the Day, which seemed like another I’m-going-away-to-college-and-I’ll-miss-you kind of book. The kind that depressed me in more ways than one, because I too was facing the uncertainty of college. And—what’s worse—I had no one to say goodbye to, because I was single.
I closed the book and sighed uneasily. My focus turned suddenly to a guy dressed in loose black jeans and a white muscle shirt. He wore a silver chain around his neck, held a black leather jacket, and strolled through the aisles in search of something. His hair was golden blond, split down the middle like Sullivan’s, but far shorter, leveling off at the top of his ears. He stopped in an aisle in the center section of the store, between me and the giggly girls. I thought he stopped in the travel section, but I wasn’t sure. Not until he picked up an atlas of Alaska.
I watched him curiously for some time. I hoped he wouldn’t look my way, because I stared like he’s a Greek god or something.
This guy is seriously hot! Too hot to even live here!
He eagerly skimmed the atlas. After some time, he bent over, put it back on the shelf and picked up another. He stood back up and looked through it, and when he tilted his head my way I got a glimpse of his eyes. His eyes are a light crystal blue, unlike any I’ve ever seen before! They’re incredible! Too hot for words!
I jumped and practically juggled my cell phone when it rang. Looking around sheepishly, I hit the green talk button.
“Hi!” It was Lilly.
“Hi,” I breathed softly. And I nearly choked on my spit when I saw him eyeing me! His head was slightly turned my way.
“We need to get together. I’m leaving in the morning,” Lilly said, preoccupied in the background. “Do you want to meet at the ice rink? It’s been a week and I won’t have any practice for another three.” Chatterbox Lilly has a tendency to go off on tangents. This time I couldn’t catch it all because a Greek god distracted me.
His eyes alternated between me and his book, though each time our eyes met, he looked away. “Lilly,” I hissed so he couldn’t hear me, “there’s a seriously hot guy in here.”
She stopped talking to her mother in the background. “What? I didn’t hear you.”
I turned my head toward the bookshelf so he couldn’t read my lips. “There’s this guy in here, and he’s really, really HOT.” I turned my head in time to see him stick his nose back in the atlas. “Did you hear me?” I asked in my normal voice.
“Yeah,” she uttered, “something about a hot guy. So go talk to him!”
“I don’t know...” I was always the shy type.
“No, you should. Where are you?’
“At the mall,” I replied. Then I remembered. “Hey, how’s your brother?” Please mention his name!
“Oh, he’s good,” she breathed. “He met Burke this morning, because Burke was on a business trip much of the weekend,” she said, going off on another tangent.
The giggly girls grew noisy, so I pressed the phone hard against my ear to try to make out what she was saying. I couldn’t catch most of it.
“Are you there?” is the next thing I heard.
“Yeah,” I breathed. “Can you come by the mall?”
“I’d like to, but I’m packing. Can you come by here? When I finish, maybe we can go skate?”
I was about to say yes when a smile formed on his lips. He was still looking at the atlas, but it felt like it was directed at me. I bit my lip, trying to decide—best friend or drop-dead gorgeous hot guy? Ugh, decisions! But what kind of a friend would I be if I refused to see her before she left on vacation? “I’ll be right—”
She cut me off. “Someone’s on the other line, how about I call you in a few hours, okay? I think it may be my brother, probably lost already. He’s been out all weekend in some cheesy rental! I just hope it’s not that dumb jock again!”
“Um, okay.” I was going to ask if she wanted me to drop by, but she hung up.
I put my phone away and looked at the giggly girls. They’re all pretty short—not that I’m tall or anything—two brunettes and three blondes. All between fourteen and sixteen. One of them pointed to him, the others checked him out and whispered back and forth like sixth-graders.
Annoyed, I stuck my nose back in the book. When my eyes wandered a few seconds later, he was looking at me, plain as day!
He gestured to the giggly girls with his head, made a bit of a face and smiled.
My shoulders sunk toward my feet and my mouth formed a grin. He’s looking at me! Naturally, I tried to contain myself—I’ve imagined things like this before. Yes, I’ve imagined gorgeous, literate guys checking me out, when they’re merely zit-faced losers with braces, dirty hair and the inability to formulate a sentence.
Need I remind you, the guys at school are not much to look at?
His attention shifted away from me. He put the atlas back on the shelf and pulled out another. Yup, I’d imagined it! But I found pleasure in watching him anyway, so I did.
There’s a term for that—it’s called stalking, right?
Before I could stalk much longer, he put the atlas down and very coolly strolled my way.
I pretended not to notice. I didn’t want to look dumb when he’d pass by me. That’s happened before, too, and not with a guy this hot.
My eyes fixed to page sixteen. I waited in suspense.
No one passed by. My breath stopped when I looked up: There he was.
“Good book?” he asked with a half-smile.
“Uh-huh,” I uttered, unable to find my voice.
He cocked his head and looked at the cover. “Love at the End of the Day,” he read, straightening his head and nodding as if that answered his question. “Going to buy that?”
I glanced toward the front of the store, where the clerk sat in a rotating chair, blowing a bubble and lost in a book. My eyes met the Greek god’s. “I don’t know. Should I?”
He shrugged. The giggly girls laughed loudly, but he blocked my view of them. “You could buy it and have lunch with me. Or you can leave it and have lunch with me…” The corners of his mouth rose into a seductive smile. “Or, you can bash me over the head with it for asking.” He grinned.
Excerpt from "My Best Friend's Brother".
Copyright © 2015 by Chrissy Fanslau. All rights reserved.
|MY BEST FRIEND'S BROTHER, Book One|
Tuesday, April 7, 2015
|The Seacats: We Should Be Free|
I wrote a new SEACATS book about killer whales, and since it is for such an important cause for me, maybe I should explain why.
What's one of the saddest things I see on social media every now and then? A picture of someone's kid posing with a poor, imprisoned "smiling" dolphin or orca in a tank in the background. They're kids and they don't know any better — what is taking them to marine parks to watch orcas do tricks for food really teaching them?
Whales and dolphins are highly intelligent animals — they are self-aware, and their brains are more complex than our own. Unlike us humans, they have a part of the brain dedicated solely to emotions. Is it fair to keep them essentially as slaves so kids can see one up-close? Why not take the kids whale-watching instead? In Maine or Hawaii or Prince William Sound? Or anyplace other than a place where you're paying for tickets to see an animal that's medicated, has chipped teeth and is so fed up it's probably contemplating killing its trainer? We all know that's happened before — watch Blackfish.
If you can't afford a whale-watching trip, The Whale (an amazing movie) is far cheaper than tickets to a marine park; it's more entertaining and more educational by far!
As a parent I can tell you there is nothing educational about these marine parks. The only thing you're really teaching your kid about the animal, is that it's okay to keep it in a swimming pool.
Some say they're already in the tanks and would die in the wild. Some say Keiko (the Free Willy whale) died after being released, and use that as an argument to keep more whales in captivity. But that's nonsense — Keiko was freed because the vet at the marine park he lived at gave him six months to live. He would have died in Mexico. But they freed him, and he lived free for five years. He fed himself just fine.
I'm not sure what the answer is, but I know kids should not be raised thinking this practice is okay. These intelligent animals should not be slaves to entertainment. They have a social structure, dialects and culture, and they are being denied these things in a tank. We, as parents and as humans, need to change that ... because what kind of people will we raise if we teach kids that taking advantage of others is okay? These whales and dolphins are essentially slaves. And nowadays — knowing what we do about these animals — that's really, really sad.
By the way, you can read We Will Be Free for ... well, free ... on Kindle Unlimited!
Friday, March 27, 2015
I did a promotion for my debut Young Adult novel, Life with Jesse Daniels, and the response has been overwhelming! Nearly one thousand copies were downloaded in the first 24 hours!
As I write this, my book is still at the top of the Teen and Young Adult Fiction list, and I am so extremely thrilled!
I will be sending the final draft of my new novel, My Best Friend's Brother, to my editor next week, so this could not have happened at a better time for me!
Thanks for dropping by today! Enjoy your weekend and happy reading!
Saturday, February 28, 2015
Someone who read my book, Life with Jesse Daniels, emailed me and asked if I put my giant malamute Max in my book under the name "Manny." My book, of course, is pure fiction; but if you've read it, you may be wondering this as well, so I'm going to attempt to explain. The short answer is: No.
But it's complicated.
I wrote Life with Jesse Daniels in 2006, during my last semester in college. My Max is only 3 years old today. When I got him, I was not actively looking for a giant malamute just because I wrote about one in my book. I stumbled across an ad for him. His first owner had a stroke and could no longer handle him due to his large size, and the fact that he was expected to get bigger. My husband always wanted a large dog, and — being taller than your average Great Dane — this one was perfect. So we brought him home.
He was ten months old and had zero training. He was hyper and could not even sit on command. He could not fit in the largest kennel at Petco, so we had to order a jumbo for $200+.
He was taller than our couch.
His original owners kept him outside so he wouldn't destroy their house. They told us he'd terrorized his neighbor's ducks. To us, he had to be an indoor dog.
He could not fit in the tub. The first bath was a disaster because, well, he's stronger than me, and he could barely even fit in the bathroom.
And ever since, he grew taller. He is actually the tallest malamute our vet has ever seen. Even taking him to the vet is a task, because it's nearly impossible to get him in the Jeep. His head comes up past our extra-tall baby gate, making him about 42" tall.
But oddly enough, he acts just like Manny in my book. He is mischievous. He loves his treats. He loves his ball (he's destroyed several). He sticks his nose in everyone's business, and — Max, at least — thinks he's a lapdog.
He also gets excited about, plays with, and chases nothing — every once in a while.
I'm sure it's just a coincidence that I stumbled upon him, but he's just like I imagined him. Well, aside from the obvious coat and color difference. lol (For the record, Max was born all-white; now he's cinnamon and white.)
So now you know — Max and I were just meant to be.
Thursday, February 19, 2015
Well, it's official! I'm once again chained to my desk, a slave to a novel, this one titled My Best Friend's Brother. Wanna guess what it's about?
I've revised, edited, revised, and am now editing it again. I don't feel completely nuts yet, which is quite odd, because my word processor is crashing every 3-5 minutes; I'm literally to the point where I'm saving work every 15 seconds. I would wish this on my worst enemy, but not on anybody else.
In the meantime, my debut novel—Life with Jesse Daniels—is now on Amazon Kindle! Check it out here!
Sunday, February 8, 2015
|Siberian Husky Remove Your Shoes WELCOME Signs|
So you shouldn't be shocked at my new Remove Your Shoes WELCOME signs. They're funny, They're furry. They're quick and to the point!
|Weimaraner Remove Your Shoes WELCOME Sign|
|Old English Sheepdog Remove Your Shoes WELCOME Sign|
Friday, January 16, 2015
Really excited to announce that select Don't Touch the Baby, Wash Your Hands, CHD, Home Signs and bookmarks are now available on Amazon!
Click here to see our Amazon.com storefront!
Pretty cool, right? The largest selection is still on our website, but this helps more parents find us! =)
Posted by Chrissy Fanslau at 11:46 PM
Sunday, January 11, 2015
Here's the cover for a book I will be illustrating this spring, I'll See You In My Dreams. As you can plainly see, it's a cute & cuddly bedtime story!
More to come!
Wednesday, December 31, 2014
Saturday, November 22, 2014
Sharing Black Friday Sale Coupons for DontTouchBaby.com and our Etsy shop! These codes are good through Sunday, November 30th, on most of our books, bookmarks, baby signs and other baby shower gifts!
Note that the DontTouchBaby.com Bonus Coupon can be used in addition to our Thanksgiving coupon, now through 11/30 only.
TOP SELLERS this week:
- Life with Jesse Daniels
- Brown Boot Don't Touch the Baby Sign
Posted by Chrissy Fanslau at 7:24 AM