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A Life of Gratitude: Free Kindle Book & Giveaway February 27, 2013

Filed under: Books — itsrebekahlyn @ 7:22 AM
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By Shelley Hitz

About the Book:

A Life of Gratitude: How to Overcome Self-Pity and Negativity

During a season of transition in my life, I found myself overwhelmed with negative emotions like self-pity and a complaining spirit. It was as if a dark cloud had descended over me. I prayed and asked God for wisdom on how to overcome these negative emotions. As I did, I sensed Him leading me to do a 21 day gratitude challenge.

Over the course of the 21 days, God began to change me as I spent intentional time being grateful for all I had been given. I did this through writing in my journal each day and also sending a hand-written thank you note to someone different each day. This also led me to writing out 21 prayers of gratitude and compiling 21 stories of gratitude.

I want to share what I learned with you in the pages of this book which includes:

  • 21 Days of Gratitude Challenge
  • 21 Prayers of Gratitude
  • 21 Stories of Gratitude

What to Expect On Each Day:

  • Read my personal stories, struggles and reflections.
  • Read one scripture and one quote about gratitude.
  • Apply one personal application step from the challenge.
  • Read one prayer of gratitude
  • Read one story of gratitude

Get Accountability and Encouragement

Along with the 21 day challenge, I also started a private Facebook group to provide accountability and encouragement for myself but also for others who decide to join me in the challenge. You will get access to this group as well. It has been amazing to see God at work in each of our lives.

Will you join me on this journey to gratitude?

 

Download on Kindle

FREE on Kindle 2/27/13 & 2/28/13)

Purchase Paperback | Purchase Large Print Paperback | Purchase Audiobook

 

Shelley Hitz

Shelley HItzShelley Hitz is an award-winning and international best-selling author. Her openness and vulnerability as she shares her own story of hope and healing through her books will inspire and encourage you.

Shelley has been ministering alongside her husband, CJ, since 1998. They currently travel and speak to teens and adults around the country. Shelley’s main passion is to share God’s truth and the freedom in Christ she has found with others. She does this through her books, websites and speaking engagements.

Follow Shelley Hitz
Website | Facebook | Twitter

Enter to Win a Paperback Copy and Coffee!

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Love is in the Air February 14, 2013

An excerpt from Winter’s End

When they reached a small alley with white lights crisscrossing overhead, Lizzie followed as Ian turned and they walked toward a small courtyard. Snow crunched under their feet, not having been cleared after yesterday’s shower. The narrow walls of the alley made it impossible to see anything in the courtyard other than a fountain, now silent, with icicles hanging from the three levels. When they emerged into the courtyard, Lizzie was surprised to find an elegant bistro at the far end. Topiaries stood on either side of the large plate glass window in the shape of hearts, with red silk roses woven into the greenery. Bistro Amore was written in black letters across the front door.

“I hope you’re hungry,” Ian said, stopping in front of the bistro.

“Famished actually,” Lizzie replied, stepping through the door he held open for her. Inside, the restaurant was dimly lit with hundreds of white, votive candles in small glass vases scattered on the tables and tall pillar candles perched in sconces along the walls, but only one table, in the center of the room, was set, ready for service.

“It doesn’t look like they are open yet,” Lizzie whispered, turning back to Ian.

“I don’t know, maybe you should ask the hostess.” Ian pointed.

Lizzie turned back around to find a young woman with long black hair, wearing a red velvet skirt that flowed to her ankles coupled with a white blouse standing before her, holding two menus.

“Good evening, Ms. Reynolds, Mr. Cavanaugh. Your table is ready for you.” The hostess led them to the center table and pulled the chair out for Lizzie, waiting until Ian was seated to hand out the menus. When she did, Lizzie gasped.

The front of the menu had Lizzie and Ian’s names on it, with the date, and a photo from their first date at the Samba Room.

“Happy Valentine’s Day, Lizzie,” Ian said.

“But Valentine’s Day isn’t until Monday.” Lizzie gave him a confused look.

Ian reached across the table and took her hand. “I know you aren’t the biggest fan of this Hallmark holiday, but I wanted to do something special for you. I thought maybe if it wasn’t on the actual day, you wouldn’t think it was just part of the commercialism.”

Lizzie felt walls built up over years of disappointment crumble in her heart. She wrapped his hand in both of hers and gazed into his eyes, hoping he understood how much his words meant to her.

“Do you want to look at the menu?” Ian asked

“I don’t know if I can take my eyes off you,” Lizzie whispered.

“Maybe I should read it to you then. There aren’t many choices, though. To start, a butternut squash soup, followed by a Caesar salad, then maple glazed salmon, mashed potatoes, and asparagus, and for dessert, well, I’ll let that be a surprise.”

“My favorites,” Lizzie said, her heart racing.

“I’m happy to hear that,” Ian replied with a laugh.

“How did you do this?” Lizzie asked.

“I just made a reservation,” Ian replied innocently. ”Isn’t that something you do all day at work?”

Lizzie looked around the restaurant and laughed. “Hardly. I don’t think I have enough pull to get an entire restaurant for one guest.”

“I guess you just don’t know all the right people then.”

“Come on, you have to tell me.”

“I went to school with the owner, and I have to be honest, they will open to everyone else at eight. He agreed to open early for me as a favor.”

“Very impressive favor.”

“A high compliment coming from the queen of making the impossible happen,” Ian replied.

A waiter approached with a tray containing their soup and a bottle of wine. Lizzie leaned over the bowl of soup and breathed in the warm aroma, feeling any lingering chill in her bones fade away. The server poured a taste of wine into Ian’s glass. He swirled it around, gave it a good smell, swished a bit in his mouth, and gave his approval. When their glasses were filled, the waiter retreated. Ian raised his glass.

“A toast. To the first of many Valentine’s Days together.” They clinked their glasses and took a sip of the chilled Riesling.

Lizzie slurped at the hot soup, her taste buds going wild as the liquid slid over them. She closed her eyes, allowing her sense of taste to take over as she picked out the flavors of saffron, nutmeg, and cinnamon. 

“You can never repeat this, but this soup is so good, I may have to suggest Chef Gustave visit your friend for some pointers.” Lizzie opened her eyes to find Ian watching her with pleasure.

“I’m glad you like it,” Ian said, dipping his own spoon into the creamy yellow soup.

The salad and then the main course were served, each bite seemingly better than the last. Lizzie cleaned each of her plates and sat back with a sigh of contentment as the waiter removed the empty dishes.

“I know you said there was dessert, but I don’t think I could eat another bite,” Lizzie said and dabbed at the corners of her mouth with her napkin.

A look of disappointment clouded Ian’s face and Lizzie regretted her words.

“But, I could probably share with you,” she quickly added.

“I understand if you are too full. We can always have something later. The night is still young.” Ian pushed his chair back. “Wait here a minute.” He turned toward the kitchen and slipped through the door.

Lizzie rubbed her stomach as if that would speed along her digestion, and glanced around the restaurant. She could see twenty other tables, each covered in a black cloth. She could hear more voices from the kitchen as they prepared to open to the rest of their patrons. Without warning, the hostess appeared at Lizzie’s side.

“How was everything?” the hostess asked.

“It was perfect. Please send my compliments to the chef. I can’t remember a better meal.” Lizzie smiled and extended her hand. “Thank you all for making this such a memorable evening.”

“It has been our pleasure. Ian has been such a good friend to my husband. When he called us, we were happy to help him.”

“You and your husband are the owners?” Lizzie jumped up from her chair and pulled the woman into a hug that nearly knocked them both over. “This truly has been the best night of my life.”

The woman’s eyes sparkled. “Ian is always full of surprises.” With that, she faded into the darkness.

Lizzie sat down again and pulled her phone from her purse. As she was typing a text message to Emma, Ian returned and pulled her to her feet, wrapping her in his arms and holding her close to his chest. She rested her ear over his heart and listened to the steady thump.

“Where to next?” she murmured.

“That would ruin the surprise wouldn’t it? Let’s just see where our feet take us.” Ian led her out of the restaurant back to Main Street.

To read more buy your copy for only .99 cents through February 16 Kindle  Nook Kobo Diesel Sony iBooks

 

Book Blast By the Numbers February 13, 2013

The cover for Winter's End compliments of Laura Wright LaRoache at LLPix.

The cover for Winter’s End compliments of Laura Wright LaRoache at LLPix.

February 3, as America sat down to watch the Super Bowl, I was anxiously watching my Twitter feed, Facebook account, and Bing searches as I monitored the progress of a book blast for my newest novel Winter’s End.

Crossreads is a new website, recently founded by some lovely ladies that I had previously met through Body & Soul Publishing. One of the services they offer is a book blast to help get more exposure for your books. I was quick to jump on this opportunity, especially since they were offering it at reduced price for a limited time. When the date rolled around I found a comfy spot on the couch and started surfing the net looking for the blogs that were participating in the blast. I was excited to find 15, but I have learned that there were actually 25. These bloggers promote your book for one week and visitors to their sites have the chance to enter to win an Amazon gift card. For this promotion the gift card was $25, but anyone who purchases the full price package will be giving away a $50 gift card.

I was overwhelmed by the number of tweets and new followers I saw rolling in through the day. Since this was the first book blast for Crossreads there were some learning curves for both of us, but overall, I’m very happy with the experience. While I don’t have final, official numbers yet, I wanted to share with you a general idea of the exposure and growth I saw, in case you are thinking about participating in a book blast yourself.

Page views on the main Crossreads site- 2,193
Number of blogs participating- 25
Number of contest entries- 8,159
Number of times blogs were shared on Facebook- 84
Number of times blogs were shared on Twitter- 418
New followers on Facebook gained- 150
New followers on Twitter gained- 205

I wasn’t able to gather shares on Facebook & Twitter from several of the blogs, but I do know that I kept seeing at least 20 mentions of the contest in my Twitter connections every day. There were also tweets that didn’t include my Twitter handle that I found using the search option & keywords book blast.

I wish I had kept a notebook next to me to log the exact number of tweets I found, but I will be better prepared in the future. To keep the momentum going and in honor of the Valentines weekend setting of Winter’s End, I am running Sweetheart $.99 sale. Get your copy February 13-16 on Kindle, Nook, or Smashwords for all your reading needs.

But that’s not all. This week is the official launch of the Crossreads website and there are giving away all kinds of great treats, including a copy of my book, Julianne.

“Encourage each other daily”

Introducing

a new place to meet, read, and fellowship… CrossReads Logo
Find books that uplift, authors that inspire, and a whole community of
fellow Christians who are looking to encourage and be encouraged.
Join the Community today, and
be entered to win one of 169 prizes!

Click here to ENTER the CrossReads Giveaway

 

 
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