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Posted on Sep 12, 2013 in Blogging | 12 comments

#HLS13

By this time tomorrow, I’ll be on my way to sunny (?) Minneapolis for the 2013 Healthy Living Summit! This year marks my third year at the Summit, and my second year speaking.

Some of you might remember that last year I gave a presentation on Blog Photography 101, and this year I’m teaming up with my gals Lauren from Me and the Mountains and Cassie from Back to Her Roots for a panel on how blogging has helped lead to our dream jobs (without having to blog full time AS our jobs).

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I’m super excited, not only for the panel, but getting to reunite with Lauren, who moved from this area a few months ago, and to finally MEET Cassie, who I feel like I’ve already known forever. Cassie designed an absolutely epic presentation and I know it’ll be amazing.

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(I mean, seriously, it is the most beautiful set of slides I’ve ever seen in my life. Do you SEE why I asked her to design my book cover now? :D)

Here’s the official blurb for our panel in case you’re interested in exactly what we’ll be speaking about:

From Blog to Job: Utilizing Your Personal Blog to Elevate Your Career

Unfortunately, it is a small (itty bitty, teeny weeny) percentage of us that will be able to turn our blogs into a full-time career on their own. But that doesn’t mean that blogging can’t help lead to great things for our careers! Join Cassie from Back to her Roots and Lauren from Me and the Mountains for a panel led by Gretchen of Honey, I Shrunk the Gretchen, on the ways that blogging has helped these different women find their dream jobs.

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In addition to leading the panel, I’ll also be front and center at the HLB Book Club meeting which is on… my book, TERRA! Yay! Hopefully this will be the final push I need to finish out Book 2! Hehe.

If you’re at HLS this year, PLEASE make sure to say hi! I like to think I’m fairly easy to spot now that my hair is purple. Purple and pink. Kekeke.

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Posted on Feb 6, 2013 in Giveaway | 4 comments

Two Good Things

Good thing #1: I’m almost done being sick! Almost. I actually have my voice semi-back to normal, and my temperature has been down in the normal range for over 24 hours. THANK GOODNESS. I am so over being sick. Donezo. Bright side? This flu has been the most effective diet ever. Down 6 pounds in 5 days! Now, if only I could make it stay that way… sigh. Too bad I, you know, am actually excited to have an actual appetite again. C’est la vie.

Good thing #2: The giveaway winners for signed copies of my book, Terra, have been drawn! If you are one of them, email me at gretchen@honeyishrunkthegretchen.com with your address. Oh, and if you’d like me to sign the book for someone other than yourself, just let me know in the email!

So, without further adieu, the winners!

1) Megan @ Love, Literature, Art, and Reason

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2) Sam Dailey

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3) Jasveen

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4) Allison W.

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5) Janice

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Congrats, guys! Again, be sure to email me with your deets!

And if you didn’t win, don’t lose heart. Terra is only $4.99 on Kindle, Nook, iTunes (YES, NOW IN THE iBOOSKTORE!!), and Kobo, or $9.99 for a paperback on Amazon!

Thanks to everyone for participating, this was my most-entered giveaway to-date! Which feels awesome, because it means you guys want to actually read my book. (Or, at least you do if it’s free, hahahaha.) For those of you till on the fence, definitely check out all the awesome reviews Terra has been getting on Amazon and Goodreads and decide if it’s something you’d like to take a $5-chance on. πŸ˜‰ (End shameless plug here.)

‘Til next time, friends! <3

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Posted on Jan 31, 2013 in Dear Diary, Giveaway | 248 comments

Terra (Giveaway!)

UPDATE: This giveaway is now closed. Thanks to everyone who entered! See if you’re one of the winners here.

Hi friends! Happy Thursday — we’ve almost made it to the end of the week! And in order to make this NOT-Friday just a little more bearable, I’ve got something really (in my opinon) pretty great.

I don’t know how many of you follow the bodacious blog (yeah, I’m bringing back “bodacious”) Back to Her Roots, but my homegirl Cassie is hosting a book club today featuring none other than…

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My book, Terra!

If you’re interested in reading about Cassie’s thoughts on the book (she asks some great questions!) or leaving commentary of your own, definitely head on over there! And in order to celebrate not only the book club feature, but a pretty epic sales milestone (details on my writing blog), I’m giving away FIVE SIGNED HARDCOPIES of Terra!

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Yep, five smooth, glossy, trade paperbacks of my baby, personally signed and mailed from my house to yours. And if you’re good and promise not to stalk me via return address, maybe I’ll include a little something-something extra in the package. πŸ˜‰

To enter, simply leave a comment on this post telling me what one of your all-time favorite books is!

Additional entries will be granted for the following (remember to leave separate comments on this post for each thing you do!)

– Following me on Twitter
– Liking my Author Page on Facebook
– Blogging about, retweeting, or posting on Facebook about this giveaway! (Sample tweet: Love YA dystopian lit? @gretchenpowell is giving away FIVE SIGNED COPIES of her book #Terra! Check it out: http://bit.ly/Vw2J1J)

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The FIVE random winners will be drawn on Wednesday, February 6th (also my mama’s birthday!) — good luck! And thank you so much for all your support throughout all of this, seriously. I love you guys.

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Posted on Jan 25, 2013 in Food | 14 comments

Taco, Taco, Taco!

Well, I think Gir pretty much says it all. But in case you guys needed some real life proof of why tacos are so amazing (or in case you don’t get the Invader Zim reference… in which case FOR SHAME) I shall explain further.

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See, last night the loverly Aileen graced me with her presence so I could give her some ridiculous camouflage UnderArmour accessories that I got from my sister. (It’s a long story as to WHY she finds this so exciting, but I think the above picture is pretty self-explanatory as to HOW excited she was about it.)

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So, to celebrate our ridiculousness and also because, you know, we gotta eat, Sean and I (but mostly Sean) made fish tacos and homemade salsa. (Okay, fine, it was pretty much ALL Sean.)

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But I did my part by whipping up a batch of cilantro-lime rice and freaking out about the salsa being too spicy. (Spoiler alert: It wasn’t. It was perfect.) I also weighed in on the cabbage-to-onion ratio in the slaw. Important work, I know.

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There may or may not have also been beer.

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And, needless to say, it was all INSANELY delicious. Ben and Taylor ate with us too, so they can confirm. Sean made tilapia two ways and they were both scrum-diddly-umptious. True story.

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Also, since Aileen has the handy duel role of both friend (remember her flippin’ awesome guest post?) AND editor, we talked about Underground-related things (that’s the working title of the sequel to Terra, for those of you who don’t know) quite a bit. I think it’s safe to say you should get excited… πŸ˜€

In related news, this morning I’m going to talk to a few dozen high school students about my book, writing, publishing, and all that jazz. Please refer back to the picture of me above if you would like a visual as to how prepared I am for that. I feel like I am juuuuust old enough to be thoroughly out of the loop when it comes to things that high schoolers like. (What?! Today’s youth doesn’t care if Backstreet’s Back?? And what do you mean, “What’s a mood ring?” Let me hobble back into my cave, log onto http://www.cheekybingo.com, and revel in my outdatedness.)

At any rate, I’m hopeful that my undying love for Harry Potter and The Hunger Games will work in my favor.

At any rate, think positive thoughts for me between 9:53 and 11:37 AM!

Oh yeah, and have an awesome weekend, too. πŸ™‚

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Posted on Jan 14, 2013 in Dear Diary, Fashion, Food | 23 comments

Runway & Heartbreak

Haaaaappy Monday! Well, you know, not really. But it’s the thought that counts, right? I hope you all had amazing weekends! Mine started off with a bang and then eased into glorious lazydom. It was very nice, and super fun. And also a little bit heartbreaking. Which, granted, are things that don’t generally seem like they should be plausibly connected, but you will see what I mean in just a bit, I pwomise.

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So Friday night kicked off with me meeting the loverly Anne P. in downtown DC! Anne invited me to go with her to this LivingSocial/Rent the Runway mash up event. I love fashion, and I love Anne (uh, duh), so I was totally down!

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For those of you who are unfamiliar, Rent the Runway is an online service where you can rent expensive designer gowns for a fraction of the price they actually cost. So, for someone who didn’t want to shell out hundreds on a new dress for your second cousin Delia’s wedding, you can shell out like, $50 instead and get the dress for 4 days (there’s also an 8-day option). This particular event was a kind of pop-up Rent the Runway studio, where you could go and try on an offering of the dresses that the company offers on their website. Very cool, actually, since ordering things sight unseen is always kind of a risk.

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Since Anne had gotten invited as “press” (heh, a term I use loosely as a blogger, admittedly) we also got access to the press room where we were served adorable miniature pies, as well as champagne (win!). We chatted with some of the Rent the Runway folks for a little while, and then it was time to go get our dress-up on!

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I had a lot of fun fawning over and pawing at the various dresses that were there. They had dresses of all lengths and fanciness there–from long, floor-sweeping ballgowns to cute cocktail attire. I tried on a super cute Kate Spade number that I would easily have bought then and there, had it been for sale (thank goodness they only do rentals, haha!) as well as an absolutely GORGEOUS Rebecca Taylor strapless evening gown. I mean when else am I going to get the opportunity to try on a ballgown for funsies, eh?

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Just pretend my bra is part of the dress, mmkay? But seriously, if I had an extra $925 laying around, I would buy that dress in a heartbeat and just keep it hidden in my closet until someday I had an opportunity to wear it (you know, when I’m accepting my Oscar or something). It was soooo beautiful, and it skimmed over my curves in all the right ways and a bunch of complete strangers even told me how amazing it looked on me. *Sigh*

Somewhat disappointingly, the largest size that I came across was 12 (that I saw, at any rate), which luckily happens to be my size now. But considering me wearing this size is only a relatively recent occurrence, I do wish they had offered larger sizes than that. I mean, I don’t know if maybe they specified what the sample sizes were on the LivingSocial deal or something, but I just hate to think of someone buying a ticket to go to that event and then not even being able to try anything on. I know that a lot of high-end designers only make up to a certain size anyway (and a lot of times they’re not even gracious enough to go up to 12!), but still. Ah well, at least there were a zillion things for gorgeous Anne to try on! πŸ™‚

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Anne and I did manage to get one blurry picture together at the event, haha. They were offering a 20% discount if you rented something at the event, but since I, sadly, do not have any debutante balls or inaugural dinners to attend in the next week, I didn’t end up renting anything. But I actually think I have a Rent the Runway credit thing I got in one of my Birchboxes (or maybe my sister gave it to me, I can’t remember), so now that I know the quality of the dresses, I absolutely think I’ll give it a try! Maybe for a wedding or something? Man, what I wouldn’t give to have a long evening gown-appropriate event to attend…

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So after we left the event, the two of us headed deeper into Chinatown and ended up at Matchbox for dinner. I was super excited, because I’d actually never been before, and had always heard such wonderful things about it. It did not disappoint!

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I’d had two little pies (one was this, like, pico de gallo-filled pie, and the other was chocolate pecan, haha. Balanced?) at the event, so I wasn’t crazy hungry. I ended up opting for a soup & salad combo–definitely one of my more brilliant ideas.

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The salad had mixed greens, pears, blue cheese, and candied pecans. Droooool. The soup was a cream of crab with soooo much crabmeat I was in Heaven. Om nom nom. Anne got a different salad that looked equally scrumptious, and a tuna tartare dish to go with it. I hear Matchbox is particularly famous for their pizzas though, so I definitely need to go back!

Obviously, a very fun (and girly, heeee) way to kick off the weekend. The rest of the weekend was pretty much made up of somewhat lazy hangouttery (Sean and I saw Django Unchained, which was AWESOME) and tears. Lemme ‘splain.

While I was writing Terra I put myself on a bit of a self-imposed reading ban. At least insofar as young adult novels went. But now that I’ve actually gone ahead and written a book of my own, I’m finally allowing myself to go through the giant pile of books I had been purposefully putting aside. And I’m not kidding when I say it’s a big pile.

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Plus add three four seven more books that I have loaded onto my Kindle. (Also, publishers, STOP PRICING KINDLE BOOKS AS HIGH AS HARDCOVERS. Seriously. My bookshelves are already too full.

I didn’t want to be unduly influenced by other works, and since the books I love to read tend to fall into a similar (if not the same) genre as the book I wrote, I figured it was better to be safe than sorry. So I’ve been plowing through my ridiculous to-read pile at a pretty good rate (already crossed Delirium off my list and am like 25% of the way through Uglies), and my latest accomplishment was…

THIS BOOK OF UTTER AND EPIC BEAUTY. The Fault in Our Stars by John Green. God, I loved it so much, I just, I just, I just…

AUUUUGH IT WAS SO GOOD AND HEARTBREAKING. (Sidenote: Community comes back next month! HUZZAH!)

I mean, right off the bat (from the blurb on the inside cover, mind you, so no blaming me for spoilers) you know it’s a book about teenagers with cancer, so the fact that it’s a tearjerker should come as a surprise to no one. But, my God, is it beautiful. I loved everything about it: the writing, the teenaged characters who talk more like they’re forty and are so ridiculously witty and well-read it’s, well, ridiculous… even the I-can’t-even-call-this-bittersweet-it’s-too-sad storyline. I hate myself for waiting so long to read it. I finished it in 10 hours. Actually it was more like 6, since 4 of the hours in the middle were spent sleeping, but I swear, I was THISCLOSE to taping my eyelids open so I could keep reading straight through the night. As it was, I gave up just before 3 and started reading again around 7. Hours 8 and 9 were pretty much just spent sobbing.

Sooooo anyway, yes, I spent a good deal of yesterday morning in tears, but they were the good kind, even though they’re also the sad kind. Surely you must know what I mean.

And, thus, my weekend was.

I know, most profound ending to a blog post ever. You are welcome.

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