Monday, November 18, 2013

Mini-Alex on Vacation, Upcoming Events, Ninja News, and the Big News – CheersFest 2.0 Roastee!!!

Vacation and Mini Alex Photo

I’m back!!!

The wife and I had a great time seeing the sights and consuming food. (Don’t worry – we were go-go-go all week and I worked off all of my indulgences.) Actually had a couple chilly days – should’ve gone farther south!

Mini-Alex went along although he spent most of the time chilling in the hotel room. (Probably watched Sports Center and drank beer all day while we were gone.) He did slip out one day and posed by the river, but otherwise he preferred to stay indoors.

I missed everyone and tried to check in every day, although thirty minutes isn’t enough time to visit more than a few blogs and my email. However, I did work more on my outline and will pull back a day or two from blogging to start writing again.

Upcoming Events!

Tuesday, I am visiting Jessica Bell at the Alliterative Allomorph. I talk about the journey beyond your book’s release and how the stories in Indiestructible can help you down that path.

Wednesday I have the honor of participating in the Science Fiction & Fantasy Writer’s Chat on Twitter! These weekly chats with authors, publishers, editors and others discuss relevant topics for SFF writing. They are hosted by author-editor, SFWA affiliate member, and SF Signal contributor Bryan Thomas Schmidt and reposted at the SFFW Chat Website. The chat is one hour and begins at 9:00 pm EST. Follow along with hashtag #sffwrtcht and @sffwrtcht or @BryanThomasS.

Ninja News

I’m sorry I missed most of the Realms Faire last week, but it appeared to be another successful and fun time this year. (And I believe the winning knight will be announced today.) Congratulations Mary – you’ve started an incredible event that will only continue to grow.

Rachel Schieffelbein’s Run for the Roses comes out Tuesday. The tour kicks off this week, so visit her site for details. Congratulations, Rachel!

Angela Orlowski-Peart’s latest, Almost Matched, is out now! She’s offering a great giveaway including books from other authors, so see her site for more information. Congratulations, Angela!

Crystal Collier’s latest is out, Moonless. Her blog tour for this historical paranormal YA story goes through the end of the month, so check it out. Congratulations, Crystal!


Last week I left you with some deep questions. (Not really!) The one I need to clarify was my question about people who don’t return comments. What I mean were those who don’t visit your blog after you comment on theirs. Not just one random comment, because I know those are easy to miss, but those who don’t return multiple comments. (And these can be seasoned bloggers, not just newbies.)
Hope that makes the question clearer.
And it really only takes three licks to get to the center of a Tootsie Roll Pop.

Friday was amazing – so many balloons were released in Andrew’s honor! Kyra made a video for Nick Wilford’s family and Andrew, and it’s very touching:



CheersFest 2.0



“Ever attended a Christmas party where you bump into the one person who was always there for you during the past year. You’d thank them for being such a RockStar, right?”

So began the inaugural CheersFest (aka AlexFest) when our Ninja Captain, Alex J. Cavanaugh, was roasted and toasted in December 2012.

Everyone, including A-Cav had such a great time that we’ve decided to do it again.

(Tears really big envelope with a flourish…)

“Ladies and gentlemen, the 2013 recipient of CheersFest is none other than Arlee “Lee” Bird.

On his main blog, “Tossing It Out,” Lee describes himself, in part, “as a writer, speaker, entertainer, music lover, collector, husband, father, grandfather, friend, traveler, seeker of truth and wisdom.” He majored in English while at the University of Tennessee, has blogged since 2008, and currently has six blogs that delve into his diverse mind.

The original brains behind the annual A to Z Challenge, Lee can be counted on to pay it forward and is a well-respected member of the blogging community.

Hosted again by Mark Koopmans, Morgan Shamy, David Powers King, Stephen Tremp and The Ninja Captain himself, CheersFest 2.0 will go LIVE! Dec. 9, 2013.

In order to proper cheer (or roast) Lee:

Here are four questions for you to answer on CheersFest Day, but please keep the retorts short – (no longer than 20 words each):

·                     Why did Lee come up with the A-Z Challenge?
·                     If someone dreams about being a juggler, what does it mean?
·                     Is a post by Mr. Bird worth two in the bush?
·                     Who could play Lee in a documentary? (Living or dead.)

In +/- 100 words, (excluding the title) write flash fiction using all these prompts:
·                     Bird
·                     Juggler
·                     Challenge
·                     Brown Jacket
·                     Tossing

For Bonus Points:
·                     In +/- 40 words, can you come up with a caption for Lee’s Facebook picture? 



As usual, the Very Demanding Rules of CheersFest include:

·                     Join the Linky List *below*
·                     Have fun
·                     Post your 200 (total) word contribution ON Monday, Dec. 9, 2013.
·                     No, seriously. Have Fun!

Two winners – chosen by Lee – will each win a prize:
·                     An autographed color photo of Arlee Bird appearing as the Court Wizard in the World of Fantasy Players. Also included in the first prize pack are an assortment of promotional materials from Lee’s show biz days with a personal letter and a brief history of his entertainment career.
·                     A personalized graphics design from Jeremy at Being Retro for the winner’s blog. (Jeremy will design a header, badge, button, banner, or whatever might appeal to the winner.)
·                      
Excited to roast and toast our blogger buddy, Lee?
If so, the Linky is now open. Sign up and we’ll see you on Dec. 9th






Did you miss me? Ready for a vacation? (I think I need another one.) Excited about the new books? Did you release a balloon for Andrew? Know why some people don’t comment? And are you ready to roast Lee this year for CheersFest? I’m ready to be on the other side of the roasting this year…

Don’t forget to visit Jessica Bell on Tuesday and follow the #sffwrtcht chat on Twitter Wednesday evening from 9-10:00 pm EST!

151 comments:

Cynthia said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Mark Koopmans said...

(Whistles blow...)

"Ten hut... Captain on the deck."

Welcome back, sir.

Captain's got the conn.


(Ha!) Looking forward to seeing Lee's reaction :)



PS... Wow... thanks to Kyra for stepping up to the plate and how nice to see so many from so far away celebrate Andrew's life.

Cynthia said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Rhonda Albom said...

Welcome back, yes, you were missed. Glad you enjoyed your vacation. Thanks for sharing that touching video by Kyra, I hadn't seen it.

Cynthia said...

Apologies for the comment delete...I just didn't feel right about commenting on the other stuff right now when I'd just learned about the passing of Andrew, who I know was a big part of Nick's life. (I was away from the blogosphere and hadn't read your previous post.)

This is indeed very sad and unfortunate news. =(
I'm glad that Kyra took the time to put together that uplifting video.

Sheena-kay Graham said...

Like I would miss Cheerfest. Yes you were missed Alex, like always. Happy that you plan to write more and will miss you while you're not blogging but still happy. Bought my copy of Moonless on Saturday. The power of giveaways and events that win you Amazon Gift Cards. Whoo! Glad you and wife enjoyed the vacay and Mini Alex has vacation fun down pat. Enjoy your twitter chat and you have a nice little online visiting schedule this week sir. Too bad Rachel's book wasn't out Saturday but I'll get a copy as soon as I can. Congrats to all the authors featured today and Kyra is truly a sweet soul. She has helped Nick and his family over and over. Wonderful.

Carolyn Brown said...

Glad to hear you had a good time away and that you will continue writing.
Good choice for the Cheers Fest, Arlee deserves a good roasting!

Kyra Lennon said...

Welcome back, Alex!

Thanks for sharing Andrew's video, and thanks to all who donated and released balloons etc. :)

Can't wait for Rachel's book release!

Huntress, aka CD Coffelt said...

As usual an overwhelming post. Congrats (!?)to Arlee for receiving the honor (!?) of roastee.

Terri Rochenski said...

Welcome back, Alex. Glad you had a good vacation & mini-alex didn't get too carried away. hehehe

I could use a vacation. That's really all I got this morning.

Sean McLachlan said...

Glad you had a great vacation! Yeah, I'm sometimes guilty of not returning comments. I try to get to them all but other things get in the way, plus sometimes I'll read and enjoy recent posts but not have anything to say.
Back in my Amateur Press Association days we used to say RAEBNC, which means "Read and enjoyed but no comment". Perhaps we should revive this? :-)

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Mark, at ease, and hope your excitement for this roasting doesn't fry your remaining four hairs...

Cynthia, sorry you missed the news. This community really came together for Nick's family.

Sheena-kay, you'll just have to win another card!

Kyra, thanks for making the video.

Sean, but I like comments...

Brinda said...

It's always great to see the new releases from so many authors I know in the blogosphere. I'm glad you had a good time on your trip. Sounds like you let Mini-Alex run a little wild, but...hey...we all need to let our hair down. ;)

Li said...

Welcome back! I miss a lot of Twitter groups/chats because of my schedule, glad to see this one is at 9pm, so I should be able to catch it.

Brian Miller said...

nice....glad you had a great time....i was traveling this weekend as well with the wife...its so refreshing to get away like that....good stuff on the outline too....

Natalie Aguirre said...

Glad you had a great vacation. And awesome you're starting to write again. I am hoping to cut back on my blogging next year to squeeze in more writing too.

On the comment question, I do have some people who don't comment on my blog as much as I go to theirs. If they come by some, I will continue to follow them though may not stop by as much. But I am following your advice and am stopping to follow the smaller bloggers who never stop by. I do follow some published authors and book review bloggers that I don't expect to stop by but like and will continue to follow them. But bloggers with small followings and comments that don't follow back I don't have time to follow anymore.

M.L. Swift said...

Alex (and mini Ninja Alex),

Welcome back! Sounds like you had a good time, and I loved the pic of the ninja. Cracked me up, like the Travelocity gnome getting his pic taken all over the globe.

So glad you're writing another book! And I'll try to catch the interview over at Jessica's tomorrow.

M.L. Swift, Writer

Rusty Webb said...

Welcome back! You know, I've had it done to me - not been visited back after spending weeks reading and commenting on every post by someone - and honestly, I've done it to others. But part of the reason I haven't been posting much over the last year is because I have been trying to visit back everyone that visits me now. Which means it can take a week or more for me to get to everyone, if I happen to get very many comments. I find the whole thing very stressful. The truth is that in order to do it right, I'd have to manage my blog better AND spend at least 3 times as much time working on it. No, more than 3 times.

Anyway, instead of calling it quits, I do what I can.

Sandra Almazan said...

Nice to have you back! I don't think I'll see much of the chat, since I'll be getting my son ready for bed around that time, so I hope there will be a transcript available later.

Old Kitty said...

Yay!! You're back! And so is mini-Alex!! He does look like he's had a great holiday - he really should get out more! Hah!

Yay for Arlee!!And your outlining too!!

p.s. Awww the tribute to Andrew is really lovely btw, thanks for sharing.

Take care
x

Elizabeth Spann Craig/Riley Adams said...

It was pretty chilly last week, for sure! And now it's warm. :) Crazy weather. Glad you had a nice break!

Jemi Fraser said...

I hadn't heard of Andew's passing - so very sad.

Donna K. Weaver said...

Aren't breaks the best? I've been working so hard this year--both at work and at writing (like that isn't work) that I'm really looking forward to the Christmas break. 11 days on Kaua'i with family. Finally!

Madeline Mora-Summonte said...

Glad you had a good time, Alex! I'm in need of a few days off myself. Maybe after NaNo…. :)

Marta Szemik said...

Sounds like you had a great time off and that photo really suits you.

Melanie Schulz said...

Glad to have you back Alex!

DAVID WALSTON said...

Glad you got to get away.
Great pic of Mini-Alex!
He probably felt like the third wheel, so I don't blame him for chilling in the hotel room!

Southpaw said...

Welcome back. I hope mini-Alex didn't have parties in the room while you were out!

Jo said...

Welcome back Captain. Glad you had a good vacation and didn't gain weight through overeating.

That tribute was lovely. I am sorry I didn't know about Andrew or I too would have released a red balloon.

Cheers to Lee, but not sure about Cheers Fest. Not a writer after all.

The Happy Whisk said...

Welcome back. Glad you had fun.

Laura said...

Glad you enjoyed your vacation. I always feel like I need another vacation, too.
It was so touching to see all of the red balloons going up all over the blogosphere, that's why I love the blogging community.

A Beer For The Shower said...

Yes, I'm ready for another vacation. You saw how the last one went...

A roast sounds like fun, as long as Arlee doesn't go home in tears. (Well, unless it's tears of laughter)

Let us think on this one. The wheels are in motion. Just know that we're not big on following rules (but we do love Arlee so that has to count for something).

Lexa Cain said...

Welcome back from vacay! I'm glad you, your wife, and Mini-Alex enjoyed yourselves. And yes, I so need a vacation.

Kyra is awesome to make the video. I'm sure Nick's family is so touched.

Congrats to Crystal, Rachel, and Angela for their releases! And YAY for May Pax and all the Fair participants!

I sure don't know why peeps don't return comments. Maybe they're too busy. Maybe they think virtual friends aren't as important as real life ones. After I've commented 5-10 times and get no (or almost no) response, I take them off my blog roll.

Gossip_Grl said...

Welcome back and Glad you had a great vacation! On the question of commenting and not getting comments back I have probably been guilty of that on a couple of occasions. I posted something and had a few comments and was trying to comment in between my own housework and time got away. I thought I will get to the rest tomorrow and found that those tomorrows never came.

The Happy Whisk said...

Betty will be the new dryer. Fred is the old cranky broken down stove, but named after Fred and Ethel.

No Wilma's Fred in the house.

Jay Noel said...

Looks like you had a great vacation.

Congrats to Arlee, and I'm all signed up.

So many new books, so little time. Even though its not my normal faire, I'm going to check out Moonless.

Prayers to Nick and his family. I was out of town for work, but I did put a red balloon on my blog.

Jay Noel said...

Oh, and you commented on what you're thankful about, but forgot to enter yourself in my Rafflecopter!

Heather M. Gardner said...

You sound busier now than before your vacation!

Glad you had some time to yourself.

I'm workin' for 'The Man' this week so I'll be scarce.

Welcome back and have fun on Wed. night!

Heather

Patricia Lynne said...

Glad to see you back, Alex. I hope you have loads of fun on your vacation. =)

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Lisa, that would be great if you could catch it!

Brian, sometimes we just need to grab the wife and get away.

Natalie, smart plan. There are only so many hours in the day and I would rather spend time visiting someone who wanted to interact.

Mike, I need to take him out more often...

Rusty, sometimes commenting back can consume a lot of time. I couldn't do it last week with my very limited Internet time.

Sandra, I will let you know when the transcript is posted!

Elizabeth, and tomorrow it will be chilly again.

Donna, now that sounds like fun!

David, it would've been awkward taking him everywhere!

Holly, I think he did!

Jo, you don't have to be a writer - join us!

Brandon and Bryan, whatever you come up with will be awesome. And hilarious. Do it anyway.

Lexa, that's how I do it.

Cindy, sometimes it happens.

Ivy, Betty was my second guess!

Jay - crap! Will go back and do that.

Juliana Haygert said...

Welcome back!

Vanessa Morgan said...

Lots of great new books coming out. I'd love to read all of them, actually.

Pat Hatt said...

You were gone? The cat didn't even notice lol glad mini alex finally escaped the litterbox.

Knew what you meant by non comment returners too, still stick to my answers

Al Diaz said...

Welcome back! Okay, I'll take my chance and answer your question from my candid dragon point of view. Hopefully it doesn't result counter productive.

1. One comment takes the time to read the post and the time to type, about 15, 20 minutes per post. If one gets five comments in our posts, then it is not that taxing, but if one got 30 or 40 or more, well...that's serious amount of time spent doing nothing but returning a gesture.

2. Short comments like "Nice post" are frowned upon. Often there is not much to say about whatever one read because it is not that deep, you know absolutely nothing of the matter or you simply are not interested. Yet the comment is expected (nearly demanded) to have substance. Thinking also takes more time.

3. It seems that returning a comment is an obligation that if not complied to, one gets labeled as a "self-conceited jerk who understands nothing about what blogging is about and who thinks one's time is the only time that matters and one's words the only ones worth reading". I would hope people think that it may also be that one is a person with multiple things to do, that is also free to choose what to do with his time and where to spend it. That the fact there are many who gladly spend endless hours in visiting all bloggers who comment in their sites, it is not the case for everyone. That there are goals that need more time than others, that there are duties that need more time than others and that there is also life.

4. It is not specifically written and established that is an obligation to return the comments but it's kind of assumed. This conditions people to what I called Busy Blogger Permanent Guilt Syndrome. One actually feels like a criminal or a jerk because one doesn't have the many hours needed to go all around the blogverse and return every single comment. That results in this horrible need to constantly apologize if you actually are working on your goals, books, dreams or whatever your priorities are. I came to apologize in every single post for about two weeks until I said "I quit." What kind of mental torture is this? Is this the price for blogging? It's too high and I don't think I want to pay it anymore.

5. I thought blogging was about making friends, and I did all I could to make such friends. I also realized my friends were not those who would only visit me because I exchange comments with, but those who are truly interested on me, on what I write, on what happens to me. Accordingly, I am interested on who they are, what is happening to them, and I try to support them whether they left a comment on my site or not. It's just when I miss them and have a minute to drop by and leave Dragon hugs if nothing else. I know they, my friends, will not scowl at me if all I had time to write on their blog was "You're great. I leave you dragon hugs."

I really wish there wouldn't be this pressure to return the comment or else.... you'll be taken for a selfish one who thinks too much of himself and that his time is the only time that matters or his words the only ones worth reading. I wish people wouldn't feel the need to apologize for daring to blog without returning each and every comment on their blogs. I don't see how this is beneficial to anyone. You don't even know if they are there because they really like you or because they're just trading visits but have no interest whatsoever on what you're saying.

Yes, I did that too. I read posts to return the visit but I absolutely had no interest on what I was reading. And in meantime, things that had to be done, didn't get done.

On other subject, Kyra did an amazing work with that video. :) Again glad you're back.

Karen Lange said...

We did miss you, but glad you got to go away. It's always good to take a break. :)

Crystal Collier said...

You got outlining down? How awesome. I'm glad you were able to get away and run your legs off in the real world. =) --But I'm even glader (yup, glader,) you're back. =)

Karen Walker said...

Welcome back, Alex. And yes, you were missed. There is so much happening here in your post. Congrats to Lee on the Cheerfest. I love mini-Alex on the beach. So sweet of you to take him along.

Christine Rains said...

Glad to hear you had a good vacation. :) I wore red for Andrew on Friday. It was wonderful see all the tributes and support for him. Have an awesome week!

Julie Dao said...

Welcome back, Alex! Glad you and Mrs. Alex had some time to relax and enjoy your vacation (and that mini-Alex gorged himself in the hotel room and found time for a photo shoot).

L.G. Smith said...

Glad mini-Alex got to tag along. Swilling beer and watching sports center is absolutely an admirable vacation goal for a paper doll.

And also happy to hear you are working on an outline for another story. :))

Charles Gramlich said...

Welcome back. Glad you had a good time.

Sarah Foster said...

Glad to hear you had a nice vacation and you're back to writing!

I think it's common courtesy to return blog comments. Sometimes I'll feel like I don't have anything meaningful to say after reading someone's post, but I'll usually try to come up with some kind of response just so they know I read it and enjoyed it.

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Pat, he did escape the litter!

Al, you really thought out your answer! I think once a friendship is established, missing a few comments is fine. But when it's someone new that you're visiting, and you follow and comment a few times, trying to strike up a conversation, only to be met with silence, that's different. One comment just to say hello would be nice.

Crystal, glader is a word! Or it is now...

Karen, poor guy doesn't get out much. Come to think of it, neither do I...

Julie, he's better in front of the camera than I.

Susan Gourley/Kelley said...

Glad you have a good vacation. My husband and our sons are in the Carolina's this week playing golf. They've been checking the weather for weeks, hoping for nice.
I think some people don't return comments because they're just ignorant of blog etiquette or don't understand how to make real friends in the blog world.

P V Ariel said...

OMG!!
You Are Back with lot of story to tell!!! LOL
You were miserably missing this time even in my space!!! LOL
Great Intro of our grand master Arlee!!! :-) Good to know that Arlee is selected as this years "Cheersfest" Recipient. Congrats Arlee. c u on December 9th 2013
I just joined in
Wish you all a Happy and blessed time ahead!!!
Keep Inform.
Thanks Alex for this info.
Best
Phil

Lydia Kang said...

Hey Alex! Thanks for letting me know about the SF chat. And hooray for Arlee--he's a great guy and a great blogger. :)

M. J. Joachim said...

Keeping my balloon for Andrew in my sidebar and looking forward to the Cheersfest! Glad you had a nice vacation, Alex.

David P. King said...

Glad you have a pleasant reprieve, and I look forward to co-hosting the cheerfest with you! And that tribute video ... absolutely beautiful. :)

Maurice Mitchell said...

Ssounds like it was a fantastic time Alex. Statistically 10 percent of readers comment so it's not unusual.

Sarah Ahiers said...

YAY! Glad to see you back and I hope you had a rockin time on your vacay!

Bish Denham said...

Glad you had a nice time while you were away. That was a lovely tribute to Andrew... sigh.

And I'm hyped about participating in this year's Cheerfest!

Al Diaz said...

Take it for all those I've missed ;). Seriously though, sorry it was too long. You have a point there, though. There must be a starting point for any type of friendship to happen. Agreed.

Ink in the Book said...

Welcome home and I'm glad you enjoyed your vacation. We all need a rest from time to time.I'm making my rounds to all my kid's houses for early Thanksgiving celebrations, then it's home for some turkey with the rest of the family. I'll be stuffed by the time that comes...:)

Arlee Bird said...

Very lovely video tribute to Andrew.

Support from our community of bloggers is wonderful.

And thanks to all for supporting me and my blog as Cheersfest honoree for 2013. Go on--dish it out! I can take it. I'm Blogman!

Lee
Wrote By Rote

Michael Offutt, Phantom Reader said...

Lovely tribute to Andrew. Sounds like the rest of 2013 is going to be extremely busy for you. Good luck in managing your time.

Morgan said...

You WERE missed! Such an emptiness in blogosphere while you were gone. :)

Welcome back, and now you need a vacation from your vacation!

Stoked for Lee. This will be so much fun.

Clarissa Snepplin said...

Consuming food and working it off is the BEST THING EVER!! I'm obviously ready for the holidays. --I'm glad you got some time away and worked on your outline. Knowing that a successful published author is working on a new outline while I am as well sorta inspires me, lol. I wish I could fast forward the process but hey...despise not small beginnings I keep telling myself.
--Beautiful tribute.

Roland D. Yeomans said...

I am grieved for Nick. May his healing from the loss be helped by happy memories. Welcome back, Alex. You were missed.

SA Larsenッ said...

Nice to have you back! Glad to hear you and your wife had a relaxing time, even if it was a mini-vaca. Thanks for keeping us up-to-date with so much writing news!

Angela Orlowski-Peart said...

Thank you, Lexa! I'm very excited about my new adult series :)

Angela Orlowski-Peart said...

Welcome back, Alex! I'm happy to hear that you had fun, food-and-sightseeing-filled vacation. Sounds like Little Alex had a great time too ;)

Thank you so much for giving Almost Matched a shoutout. You're the best.

This is such a heartwarming tribute to Andrew.

Rachna Chhabria said...

Ofcourse, I missed you loads. I did wonder whether you were missing all of us. Knowing you (remember we are cyber siblings) even if you indulged in a lot of eating you would have burned off the calories. And thrilled that you worked on your outline.

Stephen Tremp said...

Uncle Lee is certainly deserving of this award. I have a few ideas on how to honor and roast him at the same time.

And its great to see such a supportive outpouring for Andrew. I see a lot of people on Facebook are changing their profile image in memory of Andrew.

S.K. Anthony said...

What a lovely tribute for Andrew, Nick and his family continue to be in my thoughts & prayers.

Glad you had a nice vacation and that you've started working on your outline ;)

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

Hi Alex - thank you for visiting me during your break away .. I'm just glad to read you had a lovely time.

So much going on .. and then Andrew - the video is amazing and I know I missed many blogger's posts and the release of so many balloons - which I only found out about too late .

Lee will be well and truly roasted .. he deserves the recognition .. cheers - Hilary

Tina said...

Yup, you were definitely missed! Glad you had a vacation, though. Much deserved!
I'm so excited about the Cheersfest! I already read about it at Mark's Aloha and signed up. Button already on blog - good to go!
I got the three right! Ha!
Tina @ Life is Good

LD Masterson said...

Welcome back. Glad your vacation went well, although I sounds like Mini-Alex got gypped. If he preferred to stay inside, you probably needed to visit more mini-ninja friendly places.

I can't think of a better choice for the CheersFest than Lee.

Suzanne Furness said...

Welcome back, Alex glad you had a good break.

It was touching to see so many red balloons on blogs on Friday. My thoughts remain with the family.

Karen Jones Gowen said...

So glad you enjoyed your vacation! Vacations are the best, such a great opportunity to recharge the ol batteries. Welcome back!

Suze said...

:) Really happy for Lee. An excellent choice!

Robin said...

If I leave what I believe are good, thoughtful comments on someone's blog repeatedly and they simply refuse to visit my blog it tells me that they aren't interested in a dialogue of any kind. They are there to write posts for others to read. Period. I then have to decide if there stuff is enticing enough for me to keep reading. If it is, I often just read and don't comment... not out of anger, but commenting is part of a dialogue that the person simply isn't interested in sharing in.

Yay Lee!!!

Robyn Campbell said...

Hey Alex! Glad you had a great trip. I am also glad you took Mini with you.

I found out about the balloons to late. :( I've been so busy with Christopher. I wonder if I can do that today. I would really love to.

Praying.

So excited about Crystal's book. It is AWESOME! She's such a great writer.

I don't know why some bloggers don't comment back. Maybe they forget the code? Sometimes I'm late, but I always try.

Stay safe, pal!

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Sarah, I try as well.

Susan, where in North Carolina? Pinehurst?

Phil, thanks!

Maurice, one out of ten - on my blog, that is a scary number.

Ink, that's a lot of turkey...

All right Blogman, you asked for it!

Clarissa, thanks! Bet you will be even more successful though.

Angela, you're welcome!

Stephen, Uncle Lee - I like that!

Hilary, I tried to visit as many as I could while away...

Cherie Reich said...

Glad to see you back, Alex!

Congrats to the authors with the new releases!

Andrew Leon said...

You know, I actually could really go for another trip to the mountains. I just want that time in the morning on the deck to write. >sigh<

Mark Noce said...

It's good to unplug, even if only for a few days:) Also, Mini-Alex sounds cool;)

Johanna Garth said...

Welcome back. Vacation sounds like it was fun and look forward to catching some of the Cheers fest posts.

Pat Tillett said...

You sure did hit the floor running! Zero to sixty in four seconds flat. If anybody deserves a vacation, it is you my friend!

Pat Tillett said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Sherry Ellis said...

Glad you had a nice break! That was a lovely tribute to Nick and his family!

Kathe W. said...

Oh yes- vacations! we'll be in Mexico in March! woo hoo!
I should look for a mascot to take pics of while on vacations! Cheers!

M Pax said...

Great to see all the balloons. I would love a vacation. Not in the cards any time soon.

I assume people don't comment because they hate wordpress. After a point, I quit visiting. The point is to develop a relationship and network. I shall go network elsewhere...

Rachel Schieffelbein said...

Glad you enjoyed your trip! And thanks for including my news, Alex. :)

mooderino said...

Welcome back!

And nice to see Lee being recognised for his contributions.

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Robin, exactly!!!

Robyn, you should release a balloon anyway.

Pat, it's Warp Nine or full stop in my world.

Kathe, that sounds like fun.

Rachel, you're welcome!

Rawknrobyn.blogspot.com said...

I didn't have to miss you, because you're so loyal about visiting. I did miss Mini-Alex, though. I'm glad he had a good time too.

The Arlee roast looks like a lot of fun.

Have a great week, Alex.
xoRobyn

Mina Burrows said...

That beer-drinking Mini Alex! What are you going to do with him? LOL!
Glad you're back.

The chat sounds super cool!

Go Rachel, Angela & Crystal!!!

Amazing video. Beautiful.

I'll have to check back on Tues for Jessica.

I saw Thor this weekend by the way. You were right. It was good. :)

Beverly Fox said...

Of course we missed you! You're the Ninja Capatain!

I'm all signed up to roast Lee- looking forward to it!

Yay for vacation and writing! great news all around.

And thank god for people like Kyra and everyone who supported and continues to support Nick and his family.

Patsy said...

Of course I missed you! Glad you both (and little Alex) had a good time.

JJ said...

Happy to hear you had a great vacation. Everyone needs that occasionally.

Julie Luek said...

So glad you had a good get-away. Does a heart and soul good!

Karen Elizabeth Brown said...

Alex, although you were on vacation I saw that you popped in at the Realm's Fair. Or was I just dreaming?
Anyway, hope you vacation gave you enough rest so you can write, write, write!

Leovi said...

Welcome back! Glad you had a good holiday!

River Fairchild said...

Yay for Lee! He deserves a roast. And A-Cav? The Ninja has a tag name now? ;)
Glad you had a good time on vacation. Mini Alex doesn't look too worse for wear for all the beer consumed...but he is burping a lot. Might have picked up some bad habits from Al's dwarves...
The Realms Faire was a blast!

Elise Fallson said...

Glad you're back, looks like Mini-Alex had a great time chillaxing. (: Congratulations to Lee, he's perfect to roast. Wait, that didn't sound right... :P

Hugs to Kyra for the beautiful tribute. <3

klahanie said...

Have you been away? I'm excited by new books. The red balloons, symbolic of a united peace for Andrew and for Nick and his family.

Arlee Alphabet Bird deserves a good roasting. Nothing like roasting a bird. Another blogfest...make them STOP!!! That is all with the exception I'm glad you and your family had a good holiday.

Spacerguy said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
jamieayres.com said...

We missed you, Alex, but so glad you took some time away with the wife :-) I'm about as far south as you can get--Southwest Florida! If you guys ever want to visit the Gulf of Mexico, I'd be willing to let you stay rent free just so I can see what the real Alex looks like! hahaha--plus my daughters would love to jam out on guitar with you!

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Robyn, I will try to get more Mini-Alex photos for you.

Mina, glad you enjoyed Thor!

Beverly, it's been awesome how everyone came together for Nick.

Karen, I tried to visit at least once! I felt bad for missing it...

River, darn those dwarves. And Mark has his own tag now - M-Koo.

Gary, roast bird is good!

Spacerguy, friendships are awesome rewards. And Google+ comment boxes are tough for those not on Google+.

Jamie, I am always up for guitar jamming!! Thank you.

mshatch said...

Glad you had a fun vacation :)

And yes, I do seem to recall reading and commenting on someone's blog on numerous occasions but never even got a single comment back. Eventually, I quit commenting.

Toinette Thomas said...

Glad to hear your vacation went well that you didn't over eat. I'm still working on my self-control. I'm glad that your back to writing again. I look forward to checking out your guest spot tomorrow. The new book look good especially Moonless. The Cheerfest sounds crazy. I'll be watching to see how that plays out.

Helena said...

I'm so glad you had a great vacation, even though I missed you 'cause you're such a positive force and just fun. Me, I need a vacation desperately, preferably one far, far away on a hot sandy beach with no worries... Sigh. Not gonna happen this year.

I'm always so impressed with the new books you announce. So many talented writers out there! As for Lee's photo -- what a good sense of humor the man has!

Melissa said...

Glad you had a good time on your trip. I wish you'd taken me with you. I could have missed out on getting the flu. Whole family is either down with it or getting over it. ugh.

Ha! You really hit a nerve with Al. :D But I feel his pain. Blogging sometimes seems like an all or nothing proposition. I'm still trying to find my happy medium.

T.F. Walsh said...

Welcome back and glad you enjoyed your holiday... I am feeling like I might take the month of December off from writing.... November is turning in a beast. Half way there:)

Kimberly said...

Glad you had a nice vacation. :) The Science Fiction & Fantasy chat sounds cool. And Arlee Bird's roast sounds like a lot of fun!

Saumya said...

Welcome back, my inspiring blogger buddy! By the way, I've been meaning to tell you that your wife sounds awesome. Glad you both had fun on your trip!! And haha, mini Alex, I'm loving him. Does he have many talents as well?!!

J E Oneil said...

Welcome back! We all missed you terribly. I'm glad you had a good time. Have fun with the roast. That should be hilarious.

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Marcy, been there, done that.

Toinette, it's a lot of fun!

Helena, thank you!! That means a lot.

Melissa, sorry you've been sick.

Saumya, she is awesome!!

SC Author said...

Oooh hope you had an awesome vacation!!!! Good luck in the chat and the roasting!

Rebecca Bradley said...

Glad you had a good vacation Alex. Some you time definitely needs prioritising.

Ella said...

I am happy you and Mrs. Cool had such a great time! Mini Alex looks pleased, too.

I am ready for a vacation-somewhere cold where chiggers do not survive~

I was touched by Andrew's red balloon video-so sad n' beautiful~

I am guilty sometimes of not commenting back. I live with a 6'4 ogre he gets mad if I am online too much and starts to storm the castle-you know the fe, fi fo fum stuff, My muse is tired of his tantrums. Next time it happens I am glittering him and adding the golden's goose feathers. You think I am joking-how many people have wild rabbits on their deck?!

Empty Nest Insider said...

Very touching tribute to Andrew. Congrats to all of the authors! Glad you enjoyed your vacation Alex! I'm excited for Arlee's roast!

Julie

Lynda R Young said...

I'm super glad to hear you're writing again, Alex. Good also to see that mini-Alex had a great time on vacation. (giggle--and you too of course). Welcome back!

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Ella, I don't think you are joking! I can picture your husband showing up on your blog as one of your art projects.

Lynda, I bet Mini-Alex had an even better time.

Optimistic Existentialist said...

I'm not sure why some people do not return comments after repeated visits. I have encountered this at times as well. I figure maybe they just don't like my sappy musings :)

ediFanoB said...

Welcome back Alex.
Thanks for visitng my blog.
Of course I missed your posts.

Laura Pauling said...

Welcome back! And I see your outlining....I assume that means another novel? :)

Jeremy [Retro] said...

I will be needing a TARDIS to catch up... welcome back ninja-man!

Elsie Amata said...

So glad you had a good vacation with your wife, Alex. You deserve it! Wonderful to hear you are working on your outline. Good luck!

Angela Brown said...

Your vacation sounds like it was an awesome time. Good on you and the wife to take that time away...along with Mini-Alex :-)

So many great things happening, as well as still a bit of sadness for the recent loss of Andrew. The various tributes have been heartening.

Lee Bird to be roasted (hmmm...not sure if that came out the right way lol!!)

J. A. Bennett said...

Your absence was noticeable, but I'm glad you're back! Sounds like you had a great time :) So many new books out too, super exciting!

Chris Fries said...

Welcome back!

I'm glad that mini-Alex got to get some fresh air outside of the hotel room. :)

Hope that he, you, and Mrs. Ninja has a fabulous time!

Cheerfest looks like a fun blog hop/event/contest! Arlee definitely deserves recognition -- he's a huge blogging force!

Julie Flanders said...

Glad you and your wife had a great time, Alex! And that mini-Alex did too even if he was lazy. :)

Congrats to Lee, what a great choice as a recipient of the fest.

Christine Monson said...

Congrats to all the authors and their new books. Lee's an excellent pick for CheersFest. Can't wait!

E.J. Wesley said...

Welcome back from vacay! Much deserved. :)

And speaking of much deserved, glad to see Arlee getting some love!

Julie Musil said...

Welcome back, Alex! So glad you and your wife had a nice time relaxing and eating :)

msmariah said...

Welcome back! Glad everything went well. I may have missed it, but where did you go on vacation?

Leovi said...

Yes, interesting and fun CheersFest!

Michelle Wallace said...

Welcome back Alex!
Kyra did an amazing job last week. It was a very emotional time...
Great post over at Jessica's place!
And I'm ready to partake of a roasting... Lee is the perfect recipient!

Nicki Elson said...

Arlee - a perfect, perfect choice. :)

Glad to hear you and the missus had a great time. Nice to have you back.

Susan Oloier said...

I haven't blogged in a few weeks (a sort-of hiatus, I guess), so I missed that you went on vacation. Hope it was wonderful! I'll have to backtrack and take a look. Mini-Alex is pretty sweet, I must say!

Jeff Hargett said...

That video is so touching. Kyra did an excellent job on it. And I'm so glad to learn that you're writing again.

Katherines Corner said...

welcome back my friend. Looks like mini Alex had a good time too. So sorry to learn of Andrews passing. what a lovely tribute. xo

Julia King said...

Welcome back, Alex! I could sure use a vaca right about now. :)

That video and everything that was done for Nick, his family and to remember Andrew was amazing. How brilliant is the writing community to band together to support a fellow writer. Good job everyone. I hope Andrew's loved ones are doing well. Hugs to them from me.

Donna Hole said...

Were you gone? I thought it was just me :)

Congrats to Lee, well deserved award. He is simply awesome.

Lovely tribute to Andrew; the blogverse can be awesomely supportive.

Ah, so you have decided to write another novel! I knew the bug bit deep, lol.

..........dhole

DMS said...

Definitely missed you! Glad you had fun being away- and Mini-Alex too! ;)

I agree with you about the comments. Even if someone doesn't come back right away (because I know sometimes my job gets in the way of my timeliness), they should come back and comment. I think it helps communication, but also I love to go back and visit bloggers who have commented on my blog and see what they are up to. :)
~Jess

Michael Pierce said...

Glad you had a good time away and Mini Alex had a chance to explore. Kyra made such a touching and beautiful video. Thank you for sharing it.

Shah Wharton said...

Welcome back. Chuffed you and your wife had fun. And yes, I'm away 26th-3rd Dec in the UK to see family . (YEY!)

Kyra 's video: a wonderful gesture. I'm sure Nick's family appreciated it.

Hip-Hurrah! to Crystal, Rachel, and Angela for new releases! And YAY for May Pax - my first year and I had fun. (although next time I'll pan it better - I had to go away in the middle of it).

I thought I'd answered the 'no commenting' question here already? Did I dream that? I don't know how you rely to all your commenters Alex. It must take hours/days even. I don't get anywhere near this amount so have zero excuse in not repaying the gesture.

I'd assume those who do not simply have no time. Or don't like what I blog about. Or don't like me? (crying in the corner) I do know I visit everyone who visits me (who enables my visit - some peeps don't leave me their links, which is tiresome) and more. Many more, who never visit me back. It's sad, but I try not to think about it too much.

There are far worse things in the world. Kyra's video brings perspective.

Shah X

shahwharton.com

Susanne Drazic said...

Looks like Mini-Alex enjoyed his day out. thanks for sharing about the 50 States of Prayer event.

Medeia Sharif said...

I think my comment disappeared...

That was a beautiful video and a wonderful tribute. That was sad news.

I look forward to the blogfest.

Deniz Bevan said...

Glad you had a great vacation!

And that's awesome news about Lee. Can't wait to read all the tributes!