Thursday, July 30, 2015

Amazon giveaway of I WISH - 4 winners

{UPDATE: Amazon giveaway has ended but the Goodreads giveaway will continue until August 14.}

Amazon has started a new giveaway program and I thought I would give it a try.

So, every 19th eligible entry will win a book--until I give away 4. Amazon will ship the book to you; I'm not even sure that they will tell me your name.

You must have an amazon account. (No purchase necessary). You have to follow me on twitter, too.  It's that easy!

So click here and see if you win!

Giving away I WISH on goodreads in august

Wishing For You is the second book in the I Wish series--and it releases October 13th (only 10 weeks away!)

So be watching for giveaways, excerpts, and other ways to look forward to what happens next for Grant the genie and the people he serves.

From now through August 14, I'm giving away 2 signed copies of I Wish on Goodreads. (US only this time, but there will be other opportunities for my international readers!)

Goodreads Book Giveaway

I Wish by Elizabeth Langston

I Wish

by Elizabeth Langston

Giveaway ends August 14, 2015.
See the giveaway details at Goodreads.
Enter Giveaway

Monday, July 27, 2015

Career or money - Lies your high school may not know they told you

My plan was to write my next post about taking honors or advanced classes in high school (and I will get to that soon.) Then  it hit me that choosing a college-prep courseload depends on where you're going to college. And your targeted college(s) probably depends on what you want out of a career.

So I'm writing about that topic first. What do you want out of a career?

Some of you may already know. You might want to be a doctor, lawyer, engineer, actor, musician, teacher, scientist, or athlete. You're picking up skills now. You understand how many years it will take to get the credentials you need. This post is not for you.

I'm talking to those of you who have no idea what you want to do after college. Like me when I was your age. Which means you probably don't know what you want to major in. I didn't.

It's okay. Most college freshmen are just like you. It's estimated that half of first-year students have an undecided major. And once you've made up your mind, it probably won't stick. 75% of college students change their major at least once and as many as half will change it 3 times.
image of currency symbols

I didn't know what I wanted to do. My favorite subjects were math and history. There weren't a lot of jobs that combined those two. When the US Air Force offered to pay my way through college if I majored in Computer Science, I was fine with that. So, yeah, the military picked my career. Fortunately, I've liked it.

Here are a few questions to consider when thinking about your future and the education you'll need to get there.

  1. What are your interests, hobbies, and talents? Would you want to do any of them as a job, or are you okay with doing them after hours?
  2. Do you want to love your career? Is liking a job enough? 
  3. Is the salary important to you? Is money more important than the work?
When I was in high school, these were my answers.

  1. I liked to read, and I didn't see how that interest could turn into a job. But I was okay with reading for pleasure at night.
  2. I didn't have a particular need to love my job. Liking it was fine.
  3. Salary was very important to me. I wanted to afford the kind of life style where I could buy lots of book to read at night and eat out all of the time. Finding a job that paid well was definitely a higher priority than being passionate about my daily work.
There are four people in my family. We are evenly split on the "Career or Money" question. My husband and Daughter #2 love their majors and whatever money comes along is fine. Daughter #1 and I were more about the paycheck. As long as we're making enough money to pay for our hobbies, we could put up with a lot at work.

Bottom line: Don't worry if you're not sure what you want to do or where you want to go. You can postpone these decisions for a little while longer and still recover.

If you're already sure about your career or vocation, great. You might know exactly what kind of high school courses will get you into the college that will launch your career.

If you don't know, that's fine too. You have time to figure it out. But start thinking about what's important to you and what you enjoy. It will help you plan for the college(s) you want to attend and the high school courses you should take to be admitted.

By the way, my story has a happy ending. I got both a career that I enjoy (in software development) and a job that pays well. I've found a second career (writing) that I love even more. And it all started by being honest about what would make me happiest.

Other posts in this series:
Online school 

Work Experience 

Tuesday, July 21, 2015

I WISH giveaway through July 26

If you live in the US, here's a quick way to earn a chance at one signed copy of I Wish.

Now through Sunday the 26th, you can retweet this message and be entered to win.

Friday, July 17, 2015

New stage for this mom

I have a lot of roles to play in my life. Writer, facilitator, trainer, daughter, sister, friend, wife. One of my favorite roles is being a mother. I have two of the most amazing daughters ever born (and I say that with absolutely NO bias :)

baby in christening gown

Today marks a shift in my responsibilities as a mom, because my younger daughter turns 20. She has left her teenage years behind, which means I am parenting teens no more.

Both girls are twenty-something now. Will they need me less? Of course. They're adults, making their own way, discovering what life has to offer them.

Yet I can't help but take this chance to say how proud I am of my birthday girl. She has way more friends (of every size, shape, color, age, and creed) than I ever had. There is a higher purpose for her life, toward which she strides with grace and intelligence. She reaches out to the world around her with tolerance and curiosity. She belongs.

girl in St Marks Square, Venice

It is difficult in the modern era to raise kids. There are so many choices, temptations, obstacles, and dangers. Hubs and I were committed to being the best parents we could be. Each of our little girls arrived with a unique set of qualities. It was our job to celebrate their strengths, minimize their weaknesses--and otherwise, get out of the way.

I cannot begin to describe how thrilling it has been to see Baby Girl launch from the nest and soar. She is nothing like we imagined, and everything we could have hoped for. Happy birthday, sweetheart!

daughter at 10

I'll close with a quote from Anita Diamante in The Red Tent. I couldn't have said it better.

“Just as there is no warning for childbirth, there is no preparation for the [first] sight of a ... child.

There should be a song for women to sing at this moment, or a prayer to recite. But perhaps there is none because there are no words strong enough to name the moment.”

Monday, July 13, 2015

The Possibility of Somewhere - my next YA

My next book will be a YA contemporary romance. The Possibility of Somewhere will release in Fall 2016, from St Martin's Press.

The book is set in a small, fictional town in North Carolina, near the Atlantic coast. (This photo is from Emerald Isle, favorite beach. It shows up in many of my books.)

To borrow from the announcement that my agent put in a trade journal, The Possibility of Somewhere tells the story of a "trailer trash" girl and a boy from a wealthy immigrant family who are competing for a coveted academic scholarship. Along the way, they find themselves falling for each other. In the face of family and friends' disapproval, they're forced to choose how hard to fight to stay together.

I love this story and can't wait for it to release!

For the next few months, I'll have my hands on the keyboard all day long.  Wishing For You (I Wish #2) releases on 13 October. I'm nearly finished with the first draft of I Wish #3. And, naturally, I'll begin revisions soon on TPOS. (Plus, I have this YA supernatural/ historical about Nathan Hale that I'm co-authoring with a friend. Like I'm not busy enough :)

My supernatural/ magical realism books will be published under Elizabeth Langston. The YA romances will release under a pen name, Julia Day. But they're both me, and you'll be able to find out about both types of books on my one website.


From Publisher's Marketplace:

Thursday, July 9, 2015

Canada trip

I have just returned from a 10-day vacation in Canada. Here are a few photos of the beautiful places we visited.

Night Landing

We spent our first 2 days in Montreal.
Lunch on Rue St Denis
Basilica Notre Dame

Quebec City was next. Here is a view of the Chateau Frontenac. (That is a funicular that you see, and I rode it, eyes closed the whole way.)

Prince Edward Island was our destination on the fourth day. Here is St Dunstan Basilica in Charlottetown. And below is the front lawn of the house that helped to inspire Anne of Green Gables.

Cape Breton boasts the world's largest fiddle.

And lastly, here is my beautiful daughter contemplating the waves on a foggy day in Peggy's Cove, Nova Scotia.

Sunday, July 5, 2015

What the Hale? in Connecticut

I'm still in the process of co-authoring a novel that will feature Nathan Hale. It's going slowly. Historicals take a lot of research and writing time to get correct.

So I'm back in Connecticut again--for 2 of my favorite things. Conversation and research.

I'll be talking at the Richmond Memorial Library in Marlborough, CT on Tuesday, 7 July, at 6:30PM. Join me if you're nearby.

And if you happen to be at the Nathan Hale homestead or East Haddam schoolhouse over the Independence Day weekend, you might see me there, taking photos and asking lots of questions.