October #IWSG



I am a co-host today with these awesome members:



October 4 question Have you ever slipped any of your personal information into your characters, either by accident or on purpose?

Every single time I write a character I give them a bit of my twelve-year-old self. What can I say, I enjoyed my childhood. Okay, maybe not the red hair and glasses, but I loved spying on people and pretending to be a secret agent. 

My teenage boys always end up as main characters or quirky secondary characters. But I'm changing things up. In my new WIP, let me introduce my first girl protagonist! Loads of fun. But I must confess, the twin antagonists are turning out to be my favorite characters to write.

October is a time for change.

The weather (thank goodness!) chills, leaves turn, haunted houses pop up all over the Midwest. I just want to recognize my oldest son who redesigned my blog and website. He is a computer science major and quite talented. I've been wanting a complete overhaul for a long time and it's here!!!!

Take a look at my new website: www.jenniferlhawes.com  and tell me what you think!

I participated in two events this past month. On Monday, September 18th, I became a book fairie for the day for #Goodreadsturns10 and #Hideabookday world wide. You can read more on my website. I hid eighteen books in the downtown area of Hannibal, MO. 

Saturday, I was involved in my first ever author takeover event with a live chat on Facebook. My publisher Saguaro Books hosted the event. 

I hid books along Mark Twain's boyhood home
and even one in the paint bucket near the fence.















Now, get out there and enjoy the best month all year. Happy October!

Comments

  1. My daughter actually asked to be in a story recently, so I gave her a cameo role. My husband likes to think I use him as the template for my heroes ;)
    Thanks for hosting, hideabookday sounds fun :)

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    1. Ha! I think most kids love the idea of being in a book. It was a blast!

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  2. Thanks for co-hosting today! My husband is a twin, has a twin sister, and I swear they have telepathic abilities. You can not play sherades with them as a team. You'll lose. He'd dipped and less than 3 seconds, she yelled out "Three Men and a Baby." To this day I haven't figured out she got the answer from a dip.

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    1. That is awesome. SO much info out there on twins!! My make believe twins are a boy and a girl. One is evil and the other one will keep you guessing.

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  3. Sounds like you've been having fun. Author take-overs can be intimidating. lol

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    1. It was at first, but then there were so many questions and interactions, I ended up having a blast.

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  4. Thanks for being a co-host. I love how your son designed your website. Everything is so easy to find and the visuals are great. He's really talented.

    And awesome the author activities that you've been doing.

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    1. Thanks!! People are already trying to hire him. He's so amazingly talented. Plus he loves photography and graphic design...okay, I'll stop. ;-)

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  5. Your son did a great job!
    I bet your boys enjoy being part of your stories.
    Thanks for co-hosting this month.

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    1. Thanks! I'll tell him. Yes and no. Oldest son-not amused. Youngest boy-is that book about me? Is that new book about me? Hey, I'm gonna make you a million bucks.

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  6. I love the look of this blog page! Congrats to you and your son. I try not to put family members in my books because I'm sure they wouldn't like it. Terrible, awful things happen in my books.

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    1. Thanks! I tried to match my website and blog. Thanks for stopping by.

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  7. I loved to spy on people too! Sometimes I still do, but I call it people watching these days. Heh. So neat you hid books around like that. :) Thank you for co-hosting!

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    1. I always do even now. So much info gathered by this fun activity.

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  8. Your son did a fantastic job on the website! Love the graphics and it's so user friendly. Happy IWSG Day! And thanks for being a host today. Have fun to relive childhood (and be in control of it this time!).

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    1. I'll tell him! I love your last sentence. That is why I write middle grade fiction. IT makes total sense now.

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  9. Secret agent? Makes me think of one of my favorite childhood books, Harriet the Spy. :)

    I pretty much always enjoy writing the antagonists. :)

    Being a Goodreads Book Fairy sounds like fun!

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    1. LOVE THAT BOOK. I think it's the holy grail of my childhood.

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  10. Hi Jennifer, thanks for co-hosting IWSG. I love the new look of your blog, its simply awesome. You have a very talented son.
    btw..I'm sure you would have made a great secret agent ;)

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    1. Thanks! I'll tell him. Of course, I would. I'm thinking of changing careers. LOL.

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  11. Yay, October is great. I'm also in the Midwest. Love the cooler temps and all the glorious colors. Thanks for co-hosting the IWSG this month!
    Mary at Play off the Page

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    1. Yeah, Fellow Midwesterner! Our leaves are stubborn this fall. Still waiting for the color show.

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  12. Hehe. I can't even remember my 12yo self.

    I'm sure you already have, but tell your son good job with the website and blog design!

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  14. Hiding books sounds like such fun! October is my absolute favorite month. I just wish it would cool down here and we'd finally get some real fall weather!

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    1. Same here. Ninety degrees isn't fun right now! Okay, it's cooled down to 80 today. :)

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  15. Thanks for co-hosting!

    I work in things from my life all the time, though I've learnt how to give these things fictional lives of their own instead of copying real life too closely. Most people don't want to read a barely-fictionalized memoir. Either you're writing fiction with some elements drawn from real life, or you're writing a memoir.

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    1. Yeah, if I just wrote my life, it'd be BORING.

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  16. Kudos to you for co-hosting. It seems like so much work!

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  17. I really like your website's design. Nice and clean. ^_^

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  18. Great website! Hide a Book day sounds like fun and you had some clever ideas. People-watching is one of my favorite pastimes ;-)

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  19. Hide a book sounds like a fun time. I'll definitely check it out. Thanks for co-hosting, Jennifer. Enjoyed your post.

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  20. First, thanks for co-hosting! And I had so much fun watching the book fairy drops on Instagram for Goodreads anniversary. I wish I lived closer to where they drop! It's such a cool program.

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    1. It was world wide and it felt amazing to be a part of such a huge undertaking.

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  21. Thanks for visiting Journaling Woman. I love the hide a book idea. I live in southern MO. :)

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  22. I love the spooky vibes of your blog. Your son did a great job.

    Being a book fairy would be awesome. I've seen Emma Watson do that. I want to hide books in my city. :)

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    1. It was like hiding Easter eggs, only books!!

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  23. Thanks so much for co-hosting this month. Love the spooky Halloween background on your blog. What a wonderful idea to hide books for people to find it. Cheers - Ellen

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    1. The background coordinates with my latest story--spooky, creepy old haunted house with a murder mystery to solve!

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  24. I took a peek at the new website and it looks great. Kudos to your son. Thank you for co-hosting this month.

    Enjoy the rest of your week!
    Elsie

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  25. The new website is beautiful! Give that boy a big pat on the back. I'm always a little baffled by folks who say they don't write elements of themselves, their lives, or people they know into their characters. I mean, come on! What would Freud say? He'd be appalled! All joking aside, I'm secretly (not anymore, I guess) delighted that you're antagonists stole the show for you in your most recent work. I'm a gigantic fan of villains and antiheroes. Hmmm... what would the psychologists say about that, I wonder. Thanks for the post. Happy writing, and happy Halloween! :)

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    1. Thanks!!
      I am too!! In fact, my two MCs aren't as good as they appear. Muhahaha. So I've got lots of fun things up my sleeve for this new WIP.

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  26. Happy October to you! Yes indeed, change is in the air. Lovely website.

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    1. I LOVE this month. I wish we had a year of only Octobers.

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  27. First, the new website is awesome! Kudos to your son. And autumn is the perfect time to launch with the Halloween theme (or will it change with the seasons?). No red hair, but I spent a fair amount of my childhood pretending to be a spy, too. Thanks for co-hosting today.

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    1. Thanks! I agree. I love writing murder mysteries in the month of October.

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  28. Nice and clean new website. Your son did a good job!

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  29. Bet it is fun for them to be a part of your stories in some way. He did a great job with the site too.

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  30. Fantastic! You were busy this month and it sounds as if you were very happy and successful.
    I like the fact that you use personal experiences and blend them in your stories. It makes them real.
    All the best.
    Shalom aleichem,
    Pat G @ EverythingMustChange

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  31. Your new website is cute. It screams children's author, which is what you are.

    I'm glad somebody had a good childhood. LOL

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    1. Thanks! Well, good is a relative term. I made the best of every situation.

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  32. Love it! Hiding books is fun :)
    If I put my 12 year old self in the stories, it would be all about the shy & awkward! :)

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    1. I was awkward, too, but never shy. lol.

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  33. Great site! I hand sell a lot of middle grade books and am ordering you for Books Inc. in San Francisco. Great connecting, and thanks for co-hosting!

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    1. I'm glad you like it. Awesome. Thank you so much!!

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  34. Thanks for co-hosting this month. Love your new website. Perfect for the genre you write. Best wishes.

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  35. Hi Jennifer. How wonderful to have such a talented and helpful son! I will check it out shortly. I love October too and I wish you much luck on your writing endeavors :)

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    1. I wish every month could be October. Thanks!

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  36. Thanks for co-hosting this month.
    Pulling from your childhood sounds like fun.
    I love October weather.
    The website looks nice.

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    1. Thanks! Yes, there is so much writing fodder from my childhood.

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  37. October is one of my favorite months. I love to pull from my childhood as well.

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    1. The most beautiful month of the year! We should start a group.

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  38. Congrats on the new website. My daughter is taking website design this year in high school. Maybe I can coax her into moving my website from Blogger.

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    1. That would be great! My son keeps evolving into this great techie nerd.

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  39. Wow, I love your website! Just beautiful!

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  40. Congrats on the new look! I love fall, too. :D Thanks for co-hosting.

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  41. What an awesome place to hide a book in Mark Twain’s house! That’s so cool that your twelve year old self lives on having adventures.

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    1. It truly was a wonderful experience! I agree with your statement.

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  42. Love the blog redesign. Your son did a good job. Good for you for writing about yourself. I think that's cool.

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  43. Your blog background is fun! Antagonists are a blast to write--I hope they don't give your heroine too much of a hard time. Happy writing!

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  44. What fun. I've never been a book fairie before. I'm going to see if we have something similar here. Your son did a terrific job with this website. Lucky you! Thanks for co hosting this month.

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  45. Love the whole idea being a book fairy. How fun.

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  46. I LOVE your website. I've connected with you by social media. Lucky you to have a computer expert in the family. Wish I had one. I love this blog as well. Bravo to you and your son.

    Thanks for co-hosting the October question for IWSG. All best to you.

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  47. Your new site looks great! Congrats to your son. Hiding books, how fun. I have to disagree with your statement about the best month of the year. I am a summer person and I regret it is over already. Of course, it doesn't help that I am currently house sitting in the mountains of Colorado, where winter just jumped fall! :-) Thanks for co-hosting!

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    1. Thanks! My dead pale skin can't take summer. :)

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  48. Happy October! I agree real life characters can really bring a book to life.
    Anne from annehiga.com

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  49. Hey, too cool: I was also the little red-headed kid with glasses! Cool that your boys show up in all your books, in some form. I've left mine out of the books, mostly. But me? I'm all over :)
    —Rebecca
    My IWSG Post

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  50. I was going to say, I like the new Blog layout! Is that just seasonal or will it be a permanent change.

    Like the song says: "Every day is Halloween!"

    IWSG October

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    1. It matches my website, which is a reflection of the MG murder mystery I just finished. The blog might change--again. We'll see!

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  51. I love the look of your new website, by the way. I checked it out and it's wonderful. Clean and eye-catching. And, easy to navigate. I also like the way you answered the question about including personal attributes into your characters and also including your family members. Enjoy your writing! www.dianeweidenbenner.com

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  52. I had a toddler character that when I was writing him, I often thought of my nephew and the wacky things he'd say.

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  53. Is it possible to NOT include real-life elements in one’s fiction?
    I’m sure there’s always an overlap of sorts...whether deliberate or accidental...

    Thank you for co-hosting the IWSG this month!
    Happy October!
    Writer In Transit

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  54. Love the website's new look! Just in time for October too. Awesome. Thanks for co-hosting this month!

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  55. That's cute that you insert a bit of your child self, it makes sense too because we have to retain a bit of that childlike wonder to create great plots and stories. The blog looks great, and perfect timing for October! Your son is clearly talented.

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