Talk to the Shoe One-Year Blogiversary ~ Celebration and Giveaway

Hello, my friends.

{tosses confetti and streamers}

Shutterstock Celebration with Champagne and Confetti

Happy Blogiversary
Talk to the Shoe!

Has it been an entire year already? So many incredible events happened over the course of these first 52 weeks, it feels like my first blog post went up only yesterday.

To commemorate a bustling year for a blog meant to chronicle my adventures in writing and publishing, I’ve decided to highlight memorable and favorite moments.

{sips champagne with you all and starts the slide show}

My First Blog Post

I was recently asked an interview question by Debra on her blog Words from Across Oceania:
“What do you think about social media as an avenue for getting independent writers out there?”
My answer: ” I think it’s unparalleled.”

On July 20, 2012, I penned my very first blog post:
The Twitter Trap – Social Media: Blessing and Curse.

It’s wonderful to look back at the thoughts and suggestions I gave after being on Twitter for a short six weeks. I’m forever grateful for learning the ropes while trusting my instincts.

Twitter is an unrivaled virtual coffee shop filled with friends just waiting to meet us and chat over a coffee and zero-calorie online danish about the latest web happenings and favorite book boyfriends
. . . or Highlanders . . . or shoes.

And let’s not forget the #StilettoSports discussions!

I’ve made wonderful friends on Twitter in the past year, lasting connections with kindhearted, generous, and supportive people who are there to interact, laugh, and share love.

The Most Popular Blog Post

On August 29, 2012,  something seismic happened . . .
I posted The Lure of the Great Alpha Male.

Wow.

That would be the post that had over 170 hits on my fledgling blog in one day. It also had 46 comments and a fun debate that spilled into Twitter over which of our alpha males was the hottest, resulting in a dead heat between Jericho Z. Barrons and one Gabriel O. Emerson, The Professor. And I still had yet to meet The Professor . . . {laughs}

It was my first post to be reblogged on a fabulous new-to-me back then blog Bookish Temptations. The Lure of the Great Alpha Male is still the most popular daily and weekly post on my blog. It has multiple daily views, and is often the first or second in views for the week. It seems the Lure of the Great Alpha Male is quite undeniable indeed.

Aftershocks from those great alpha males still occurring daily . . . ;)

My First Poem and Utterly Loved

September 12, 2012 brought to the blog and the world a most unexpected development. I created and shared my first poem Heaven… Found. Surprised to have poetry flow from my heart onto the page, I was thrilled when it was reblogged, liked, and shared on Twitter with everyone raving about the sensual poetry.

A burst of poetic creativity followed, which led to the publication of Utterly Loved, a book of romantic poetry for charity which includes a brilliant foreword written by the inspiring humanitarian and New York Times Bestselling Author Sylvain Reynard. Several other poems not included in Utterly Loved can be found in the poetry category on my blog.

A Most Uplifting Post 

On October 17, 2012, I gave a glimpse into who I am and how I live my life along with suggestions on how to increase your optimism in the post Adventures of an Optimist.

Throughout that day and the next, people contacted me on the blog and social media to let me know how my post brightened their day. To know that I helped others by sharing how I strive to be and stay positive made my day . . . and then some.

My First Guest Blog Post

By October of 2012, I’d posted just over dozen blog posts when I received my first invitation to write a guest post on another blog. The guest post, Embracing Sensuality, appeared Tamie’s blog Bookish Temptations for her one-year blogiversary celebration. I was and still am deeply honored to have been included.

A Glimpse of Heroes

In April 2013, in the wake of the devasting bombing at the Boston Marathon, I was invited by Jenn at Argyle Empire to participate in their fundraising efforts for the Red Cross in support of the bombing victims. As a part of those efforts, I shared an experience from my past with the American Red Cross. I revisited that heart-wrenching night and made a plea for donations to the American Red Cross and the Boston One Fund to support those charties in A Glimpse of Heroes. Jenn and Argyle Empire, thank you for wanting me to be a part of such a worthwhile cause.

Charity Support and Awareness Pages

In June of 2013, I became more involved in using my author platform to benefit charities, especially those that fight against human trafficking, by launching the Charity Support and Awareness pages on my blog and website. The page shares my thoughts and feelings, ways we can all help, and links to their various pages.

Highland Legends: Forged in Dreams and Magick

Throughout the entire year, hints and teasers have been posted about my upcoming release, from the series and book names, to the book description, and ultimately to the Cover Reveal on July 9th through AToMR Tours.

Take a peek at the cover described as “lush” and “stunning” and the description one said “hooked me immediately” for my debut Highlander, time-travel, paranormal romance novel Forged in Dreams and Magick.

~ ~ ~

And . . . there’s one more post I’d like to share as we step off memory lane into the future . . .

Teaser for Forged in Dreams and Magick

I’m thrilled to announce that an exclusive teaser for Forged in Dreams and Magick will be posted on Bookish Temptations on Monday, July 22, 2013. In just two days, that teaser post will mark the two month countdown to the release of Forged in Dreams and Magick on September 23, 2013.

Blogiversary Giveaway

I’m giving away a few party favors to commemorate my Blogiversary. Four winners will be chosen by Random.org. Each of the four winners will win a $25 Amazon gift card AND a signed copy of Utterly Loved!

It’s easy to enter. All you have to do is leave a comment on this Blogiversary post OR leave a comment on the Bookish Temptations’ Forged in Dreams and Magick teaser post. That’s it!
And if you leave a comment on each post? You’ll be entered twice! (Only two entries allowed per person.)

Comments until midnight EST on Thursday July 25, 2013 will qualify for entry to win the giveaway.

~ ~ ~

So leave those comments! I’d love to hear about your favorite moments from my blog over the year.

An enormous thank you to all my friends and followers. Your excitement, support, and love along my adventures on the road to published are deeply heartfelt and tremendously appreciated.

Your humble shoe,

~ Kat

© 2013 by Kat Bastion

World Poetry Day ~ On Highland Time

In celebration of World Poetry Day (Thursday, March 21st, 2013), I created a poem that’s a teaser of my upcoming series.

It also happens to coincide with how I wake up every morning…

 

On Highland Time

A clock can’t hold the sands of time
The world hides vast dimensions
When mist burns off the heathered hills
Revealed are Highland Legends

 

Tricky how I worked the name of my upcoming series in there, don’t you think? {grins}

Actually, it’s a bit of a poetic synopsis.  Has anyone ever done a synopsis by poem?  I’m not sure, so there you have it, my friends.  Perhaps we just made history together.  And all for World Poetry Day.

Which brings me to my next thought…

Have you bought your copy of Utterly Loved yet?  Have you bought copies for friends and family? Celebrate poetry and share your gift with the world through the charities Utterly Loved supports, World Vision and Covenant House.  Be inspired by the brilliant foreword written by the New York Times and USA Today Bestselling Author Sylvain Reynard.

Below are a few links where you can purchase copies of Utterly Loved.

Utterly Loved for Nook
Utterly Loved for Kindle
Utterly Loved in paperback on Amazon

Thank you for your continued support with Utterly Loved and the charities that each purchase supports.

As far as the Highland Legends series goes, stay tuned for an announcement of the names of all four book titles in the series…

Thank you for sharing in the love of poetry and romance, my friends.

Your humble shoe,

~ Kat

© 2013 by Kat Bastion

Happy Valentine’s Day and Congratulations to the Giveaway Winner

Happy Valentine’s Day!

In celebration of romance, I wish you all a day filled with love.

A Valentine’s Day Prayer

  May you give and receive love
  If you seek it, may you find love
  May the lost in this world feel
  … Utterly Loved

Utterly Loved Valentine’s Day Giveaway Winner

The grand prize winner of a Kindle Fire chosen by Random.org is:

     Robert Zimmerman

Congratulations, Robert!

Thank you again to our anonymous supporter for donating the Kindle Fire to the winner.

Thank you to everyone who entered the giveaways. 

Special appreciation to the participating blogs who hosted the three new poems created just for the occasion:

    THESUBCLUBbooks who shared Transformed
    Literati Literature Lovers who shared Indescribable Love
    Bookish Temptations who shared Temptation by Valentine

Be sure to visit their blogs for more Valentine’s Day excitement happening today and through the week.

Thank you to Goodreads, whose fabulous giveaway feature resulted in 1000 entries for 10 signed copies of Utterly Loved and almost half that number adding Utterly Loved to their “to be read” shelf.

Please be sure to share with everyone you know that Utterly Loved, with brilliant foreword by New York Times and USA Today Bestselling Author Sylvain Reynard, is now available for Nook!

Utterly Loved for Nook
Utterly Loved for Kindle
Utterly Loved in paperback

Have a wonderful rest of your holiday, everyone!

Your humble shoe,

~ Kat Bastion

© 2013 by Kat Bastion

Utterly Loved Valentine’s Day Giveaway

Rose Petal Heart

Valentine’s Day

Some subscribe to the notion that Valentine’s Day has been commercialized. They hold fast to the belief that love should be celebrated every day.

I’m in complete agreement.

Valentine’s Day to me, however, is a celebration of that daily love we each harbor in our hearts. Like an anniversary, it’s a milestone of sorts…a special holiday to rejoice in the existence of love of every kind.

For some, it will prompt a moment of courage mustered in the face of new love. 

Others will remember and appreciate decades of cherished love together.

In celebration of romantic love, we often gift:

Sinful chocolates
Fragrant roses
Heartfelt cards
Romantic dinners
Lace-trimmed satin

Might I also suggest…

Utterly Loved ~ The romantic book of poetry shared with the world for charity with an inspiring foreword graciously written by the New York Times and USA Today Bestselling Author Sylvain Reynard.

Purchase Utterly Loved on Amazon 

Utterly Loved Book Cover

 

Utterly Loved Valentine’s Day Giveway

The Utterly Loved Valentine’s Day Giveaway is being held on three supportive blogs, on Goodreads, and in my @’s and emails. That’s right. There are multiple places to enter.

Giveaway Prizes

Signed copies of Utterly Loved
Signed poems by Kat Bastion
Grand Giveaway Prize ~ A Kindle Fire

How To Enter

1. Visit each of the three blogs each posting a new romantic poem:

February 3, 2013 ~  Transformed on THESUBCLUBbooks
February 6, 2013 ~  Indescribable Love on Literati Literature Lovers
February 11, 2013 ~ Temptation by Valentine Bookish Temptations

Entrants have the chance to win either a signed copy of Utterly Loved or a signed poem of their choice from any of my poems. All winners gain entry into the grand prize drawing on Valentine’s Day.

2.  Visit Goodreads.  Each entrant has a chance to win a signed copy of Utterly Loved. All winners gain entry into the grand prize drawing on Valentine’s Day.

Click on the link for the Goodreads Giveway

3.  In my Twitter @’s and website email, send me a picture of a paid receipt for Utterly Loved dated between 1/30/13 and 2/13/13 by midnight EST on February 13, 2013. Each book purchased in any format gains one entry into the grand prize drawing.

The Prize Donations

A generous supporter of Utterly Loved has donated the grand prize of the Kindle Fire. The winner for the Kindle Fire will be selected by Random.org from among all the entrants.

“I appreciate the domino effect of kindness and giving that you are a part of. It is through movements like this that people can show the rest of the world people do care. It is through this domino effect that I would like to join you. I would like to donate a Kindle Fire for you to promote and give away.”

Mr. Bastion and I are donating the cost of the other prizes.

For details about Utterly Loved, and the charities it supports, please see the Utterly Loved page

Thank you for being a part of Utterly Loved. By sharing our love with the world, we are transforming children’s lives with love, one book at a time. You are making the lost feel… Utterly Loved.

May everyone celebrate love of all kinds this Valentine’s Day and every day.

Your humble shoe,

~ Kat

 

© 2013 by Kat Bastion

Christmas Wish

Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays, everyone!

Christmastime is my favorite time of year and holiday for so many reasons, but this year is a rare and special one for several more.  Those who’ve been a part of Utterly Loved know why. 

Thank you all for the support you’ve shown and for sharing your amazing generous hearts with the world.

Starting midday tomorrow, I’ll be off Twitter and the blog for a week.  I hope you all have a relaxing and loving time with friends and family.

For now, I wanted to share with you my…

Christmas Wish

In a rush I burst outside, spinning
Whirling wonders dance bright in the night
Soft lacy white treasure from above
Incandescent in the pale moonlight

From without I spy our festiveness
Frosted pane frames most romantic scene
Glittering baubles hang from the tree
Ribbon topped gifts, cocoa topped with cream

Cold seeps in, the bitter night chilling
I stand defiant, slippered and robed
Something’s missing from my holiday
A silent vow from within takes hold

Hushed snow falls from skies round the planet
Gazes drift up to same brightest star
Many cast dreams of warm loving homes
Some will pray for rescue from afar

A wish drifts forth strengthened by its mass
More prized than any gleaming present
To the lost, those who long to be found
May their hearts warm from gifts heaven sent

Let hope ignite around the world
Miracles for those who dare to want
All under the same star-blazoned sky
Power as one shone magnificent

 

Your humble shoe,

~ Kat

© 2012 by Kat Bastion

Utterly Loved on Kindle and A Kindle Fire Winner!

In true Utterly Loved fashion, everything happens poetically.

Utterly Loved released in Kindle version… on the very day someone wins a Kindle Fire.

The support for Utterly Loved has been huge and heartfelt.  Your efforts have helped Utterly Loved stay at the top of the charts, bringing awareness to two wonderful charities, World Vision and Covenant House.  Please join me with continued support for Utterly Loved and these deserving charities throughout the year.

As a thank you for your participation, signed copies and Amazon gift cards have been won by randomly selected supporters.  The prizes were donated to the cause by the Bastion family.  Mr. Bastion and I are tremendously grateful for all you do for Utterly Loved.

Now is the time for a big thank you to one lucky winner…

The Kindle Fire Winner, chosen by Random.org from 12 Daily Winners:
{hears a tiny drum roll in my head}

Congratulations, katrinalowe77!
You’ve won the Grand Prize of a Kindle Fire!

Thank you to everyone who participated in the promotional events of Utterly Loved.  In small steps, we are igniting a wildfire of hope that will make a difference in children’s lives worldwide. 

Can you feel it?  {smiles huge} …  I do.

We have only just begun…

23 inspirational quotes, 21 romantic poems, 5 star reviews, 1 brilliant foreword by Sylvain Reynard.  Infinite Hope… Utterly Loved.

Buy Utterly Loved in paperback
Buy Utterly Loved on Kindle

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year, my friends.

Your humble shoe,

~ Kat

© 2012 by Kat Bastion

Hold On In The Night

Hello, everyone.

Utterly Loved, the book of romantic poetry for charity, with a brilliant foreword by Sylvain Reynard on humanitarianism, has been out almost three weeks.  It’s doing well in paperback sales, but we need to do more.  Within days, it will also be out in a Kindle version.  I hope you buy both and encourage everyone you know to do the same.

Not long ago, I mentioned that after I completed the romantic poems of Utterly Loved, two more poems of a different sort flowed hot and furious onto the page.  The additional heartfelt words were not love poems.

They were a battle cry.

They are about those lost.
They are about the fight.

 

Hold On In The Night

Can you remember?
Unencumbered fresh air into your lungs
Racing barefoot on cool grass in the park
Blue-sky days before a bright world turned stark

Do you still have dreams?
Fearsome warriors destroy stone prison walls
Alone stand beautiful forgotten
Disbelieving flee heart’s desolation

Will you hear the cry?
Across the globe on every continent
Invincible gather armed for righteous
Fury flows deep at human injustice

Have you seen our light?
Fiery rising sun scorching harsh landscape
A million wild horses charge unbridled
Dark captors meet their maker reconciled

Are you ready to fight?
Blind faith fiercely grasps boldly outstretched hand
Devastation laid to rest from plunder
Frightening history ripped asunder

Hold on in the night.
In every shallow ragged breath you take
With each hard swallow, eyes pinched in mourning
Never lose hope… a new dawn is coming

 

Please join me in the fight. There are millions of lost children who need our help, need us to care, need our love.  Buy Utterly Loved

Tell two friends.  Tell twenty. 

Only through awareness, donation, and activism will we make a better place in this world for those who, without the actions of those like us, would never have a chance.

Buy Utterly Loved on Amazon

With 23 inspirational quotes, 21 love poems, incredible 5 star reviews, an amazing foreword by New York Times and USA Today Bestselling Author Sylvain Reynard, and the endeavor all about supporting the very worthwhile charities, World Vision and Covenant House, there is something in Utterly Loved for everyone.

Contact me if you need links to European Channels for Amazon, as it’s also available now through Amazon in Great Britain, Spain, Deutschland, France and Italy.

Thank you for all your support, my friends.  Together, we are making a difference in lives.  We are making the lost feel… Utterly Loved.

Your humble shoe,

Kat Bastion

 

© 2012 by Kat Bastion

Winners List for 12 Days of Utterly Loved Giveaway

In an effort to consolidate blog posts and spare those who get every post by email, I’m creating this master list for winners of the 12 Days of Utterly Loved Event and Giveaway. Please check here daily for updates on the winners chosen by Random.org.

Thank you, everyone, for continuing to purchase copies of Utterly Loved with Foreword by New York Times & USA Today Bestselling Author Sylvain Reynard for yourself, for friends, for the charities the project helps promote.  Together, we can make a world of difference.  Thank you for being a part of the difference.

The Daily Winner

The winner of Day 12 of the 12 Days of Utterly Loved Giveaway as chosen by Random.org, receiving a signed copy, a $25 Amazon gift card and a 1-in-12 chance to win a Kindle Fire is:

SimpleBrandy

Congratulations, SimpleBrandy.  Please email me through my blog contact form with how you’d like your signed copy addressed. :)

Daily winners who now have a 1-in-12 chance to win a Kindle Fire:

SimpleBrandy
kitkat1192
decelle2
katrinalowe77
TwiArcady90
AmeliaOesmani
ElyseB_17
daisypinay
Iam_meee_
Iam_mee_
daisypinay
katrinalowe77

Shortly, have Random.org select a name from the list of 12 Daily Winners for the Grand Prize Giveaway… A Kindle Fire.  A separate blog post will announce the winner of the Kindle Fire.

Enjoy poetry, share awareness, and help those in need to feel … Utterly Loved.

Buy Utterly Loved on Amazon

Happy Holidays, my friends.

Your humble shoe,

~ Kat

© 2012 by Kat Bastion

12 Days of Utterly Loved In Time For Christmas Delivery Event & Giveaway

Hello, everyone.

Thank you for helping make the Release Week of Utterly Loved with Foreword by Sylvain Reynard a success.  Due to your purchases for yourself and gifts for others, Utterly Loved remained a #1 Amazon Best Seller in New Releases Love Poems almost the entire week.

We have only just begun, my friends.

The mission of Utterly Loved is…

To share love with those who read it…
To inspire those to feel it…
To help those who desperately need it.

Join me in igniting a wildfire of purchases for Utterly Loved and donations for the charities Utterly Loved supports, World Vision and Covenant House.

The 12 Days of Utterly Loved in Time For Christmas Delivery Event & Giveaway

The 12 Days of Utterly Loved In Time For Christmas Delivery Event & Giveaway begins at 12:01am EST Saturday, December 8th and runs for 12 consecutive days.  Each day, a winner will be selected from the eligible entries by Random.org.

The Prizes…

Each day one lucky winner will receive two items:
~ A signed copy of Utterly Loved for which Sylvain Reynard has also offered to send signed bookplates.
~ A $25 Amazon Gift Card, large enough to buy copies of both Gabriel’s Inferno & Gabriel’s Rapture, for instance. ;)

Grand Prize Drawing (one winner from the 12 winners):
One very lucky winner will receive the Grand Prize ~ A Kindle Fire

11 Daily Ways To Enter, Rules & Requirements…

Each day is a separate contest and there are several ways to enter:
~ Buying a copy of Utterly Loved that day earns an entry
~ Donating to World Vision or Covenant House that day earns an entry (Donate to both that day? You get two entries.)
~ Tweet that day asking followers to buy Utterly Loved earns an entry (Tweet again every four hours for separate entries-6 total)
~ Facebook post asking friends to buy Utterly Loved earns an entry
~ Blog post asking others to purchase Utterly Loved earns an entry

11 possible entries each day. Please purchase and donate responsibly:  Give only what you can and share news of Utterly Loved to inspire others to do the same.  Together we will help those in need.

Help me count your entry. @ me on Twitter or comment below with:
~ A photo of that day’s purchase receipt of Utterly Loved
~ A photo of that day’s donation receipt to either charity
~ Tweet your promotion to buy Utterly Loved with my @ AND Amazon’s Utterly Loved Page
~ If your FB posts go to your Twitter timeline, @ me so I can see it.  If not, get creative…like screen shot and send me the pic… ;)
~ If you blog about Utterly Loved,  link this page and comment below so I know about it.

The requirements:
~ You must provide evidence of purchase, donation, Tweeting or FB posting to be eligible for that entry (see above.)
~ When you Tweet, FB or blog post, you must ask others to buy Utterly Loved and provide a link to the Amazon Purchase Page of Utterly Loved << (like this one)

Disclaimers:  Each daily giveaway runs for 24 hours beginning at 12:01am EST until midnight EST that day. The first day of the giveaway is Saturday, December 8, 2012 and the last day is December 19th, 2012.  Giveaway is international where allowed.  Winners of the 12 daily giveaways and the Grand Prize drawing will be chosen by Random.org. (All giveaway prizes, for this giveaway, and all the Release Week giveaways, are being donated by myself and Mr. Bastion.)

The bottom line? 

You help with every purchase.  You help by spreading the news of Utterly Loved so others purchase.   You help by donating to World Vision and Covenant House.  Your small acts of kindness make a world of difference.  Thank you for being a part of the difference.

Thank you for helping make the lost in this world feel… Utterly Loved.

Your humble shoe,

~ Kat

Buy Utterly Loved on Amazon

© 2012 by Kat Bastion

talktotheshoe:

What an amazing review. I’m thrilled my emotions in writing the poetry flow into the hearts of those reading Utterly Loved. Thank you so much, LLL, I am deeply humbled.
~ Kat

Originally posted on Literati Literature Lovers:

20121119-181240.jpgTitle:Utterly Loved
Author: Kat Bastion
Genre: Poetry
Grade/Rating: 5 out of 5

In an exclusive interview, Kat Bastion revealed to us what inspired her to write poetry. New York Times Bestselling author Sylvain Reynard wrote a guest post for us, here on the Literati Literatures Lovers blog, titled: The Art and Poetry of Desire and it was that entry that inspired Bastion to write.

To say that I am devoted to poetry would be an understatement. I grew up on poetry and some of the first reading I ever did were poems. Most of the rhythms we all learn as children are just little poems. Each Wednesday on our blog we feature poetry, which we label as Poetry Wednesday, because we believe that poetry of all types should be read and enjoyed. I have often thought that poets don’t bleed blood, but ink; because they express every emotion they…

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