Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Vegging on the Internet? Add a starch...

Hi Everyone,

My name is Kay Thomas and I’m a new author with Intrigue. My debut novel is being released next month and I’m very excited to be here. I hope everyone’s December is going well and that in the crazy, frenetic pace of the season you are able to slow down and relax a bit. In the interest of giving you a little break, I thought I’d introduce you to my favorite online game. I like it because it’s one with a worthy purpose and actually donates food to others as you play. It’s called Free Rice.

You may have seen this on the news a while back. It's a vocabulary game developed by an engineer helping his son study for the SAT. The UN receives donations of rice from site sponsors to feed the hungry for every word you define correctly. (20 grains of rice for every right answer) So…grab a cup of coffee, put your feet up and come play Free Rice with me. Let’s feed the world while improving our vocabulary.

Just click here:

Yes, it’s addictive. But you’re doing something positive with your down time, plus you’re improving your mind and….your heart! You can link to the Free Rice game on your website, blog, myspace or facebook page, too. Get other folks playing as well. The more people who play, the more rice that’s donated and the more people who are fed.

So come play and let’s see how much rice we can donate by the end of the month. It’s more challenging than it looks! You can set various options at the site that keep you building on the work you’ve done before. It also will pronounce the words for you. Very cool for a girl originally from Mississippi.

And for the rest of December, I thought we could have a little friendly competition. If you like, put your Free Rice total in your comments each day between now and the end of the month. (ex. FR 300) Let’s see how much rice we can donate in our…um…down time on the Internet. I’m blogging here on the 29th – so be sure to comment that day for another chance at a copy of BETTER THAN BULLETPROOF & post your final Free Rice totals.

Now for today I’m giving away the first copy of my debut release, BETTER THAN BULLETPROOF. Just tell me about your favorite guilty pleasure while you surf the Internet…Is it browsing eBay, playing on Facebook, spider solitaire? What do you do on the Internet when you need a break from work? Comeon, tell. No one else has to know…just us!

Tonight, I’ll randomly pick from the comments and post the winner.

Happy defining and Merry Christmas, y’all!

P.S. In the interest of giving you one more place to unwind from all the holiday busyness—We’re having a party! Tomorrow evening, December 11th, several Intrigue Authors are chatting live at’s Open House Holiday Chat from 9-10 pm EST. I’ve never been before, but I hear it is one wild time with door prizes and giveaways. So if you’re out and about Thursday night, drop by and say hello. We’re gonna have a blast. The address is:

posted by
Kay Thomas (FR 300)


  1. Good morning Kay!

    I am SO waiting on pins and needles for your release!

    I'm afraid there's a shopping gene in my family that has proven dominant through the generations - when I'm on my laptop I find myself off perusing Craigslist. I seem to have a thing about antique chairs!! lol.

    I think the free rice game is a great idea and spreading the word is ...well nice. lol.

    have a great day- I'm off for my first cup of caffeine.

  2. Congratulations on your first book, Kay! That's an exciting time--enjoy it!

    I'm a gamer. I love to play Mah Jong Quest, Backgammon, Solitaire, etc.--right now I'm on a Crazy Quilt Solitaire kick. But I could play and procrastinate so long that I don't keep them on my writing computer. But when I do take a break...

    Oh, and I check almost every day. I like to hang out on the Intrigue and Blaze boards there. Right now I'm also reading Debra Webb's free online read there--Trace of Desire--they post a new chapter every day (M-F)in December.

    Julie Miller

  3. Oops, the title of that online read is Evidence of Desire. I just read today's new chapter. My bad.

    Julie Miller

  4. Good morning Kay,
    Congratulations on the release of Better Than Bulletproof! I love the rice game - great cause. My favorite guilty please on-line is Merriam-Webster's on-line word games:

    My sincere best to you this holiday season, and may your sales of Better Than Bulletproof be amazing! ^5

    Diana Cosby
    His Captive/Alexander MacGruder
    His Woman/Duncan MacGruder - 4 star Romantic Times review!

  5. Hi chris k,

    Thanks for stopping by. Its great to see you here! I'm getting very excited about the release of BETTER THAN BULLETPROOF, too! I can't believe it's almost here.

    I've never been to Craigslist before, but I hear people rave about it all the time. Hmm...And I sort of have this thing for antique chairs myself.
    This could be the beginning of a bad habit. : )

  6. Hey Julie

    I'm so new at the eHarlequin boards...I didn't know there were free online reads there! That's very cool!

    I hear you about not having the games on your writing computer...I've read articles about increasing writing productivity by having a "writing only" computer that doesn't have Internet access. I can't decide if that would work for me and make me more productive or if I would just feel like my cable tv was broken.

    I really like being able to take that quick break and then get back to work..of course..that's the problem with this...getting back to work. I get distracted and play too long!

  7. Hi Kay! Congrats on the new book! How very exciting. I promise to rush right out the first day and buy it. I am looking forward it.

    The Rice Game - IS SO ADDICTIVE! LOL

  8. Hey Diana,

    Thanks for coming! I don't know this Merriam-Webster game. It sounds like fun.

    Y'all, Diana is a DARA chapter buddy of mine. Her latest book, His Captive, was just released last week and it's getting fabulous reviews. Check it out!

  9. Cyndi

    Hi! I'm so glad you're here. Thanks for the congrats...I'm fired up, too. It's starting to seem very real!

    Yes, filling that little bowl does get addictive. And I get to where I don't want to quit until I've gotten an entire row done! I see it as "guilt free" time wasted! It's for a very worthy cause!

  10. Hello Kay,
    I look forward to reading your debut novel.
    I've been doing the Free Rice for weeks! It is very addictive.
    My favorite guilty pleasure while I surf the internet is MySpace or visiting sites and entering contests. Trouble is I get so many newsletters it leaves me little time to visit sites. I noticed a couple of years ago every author wanted to you to sign up for their newsletter in order to win something. Now I'm seeing "Stumble, Twitter, share, put it in your MySpace, print it on a t-shirt" for extra entries. Crazy! Anyway, cant wait for your book and I'm going to visit your site now. Happy Holidays!

    Mel K.
    Meljprincess AT aol DOT com

  11. Kay Thomas said...
    Hey Diana,

    Thanks for coming! I don't know this Merriam-Webster game. It sounds like fun.

    ~Caution, go to the website at your own risk. *G* You were warned.

    Y'all, Diana is a DARA chapter buddy of mine. Her latest book, His Woman, was just released last week and it's getting fabulous reviews. Check it out!

    ~Thank you SO much for the mention of His Woman, Kay. I look forward to reading Better Than Bulletproof!

    Diana Cosby
    His Captive/Alexander MacGruder
    His Woman/Duncan MacGruder - 4 star Romantic Times review!

  12. Kay;

    I can't wait to read BETTER THAN BULLETPROOF!!!

    And - sigh - there are SO many addictive things on the web, I'm not sure I can pick just one. Facebook, Free Rice, the various games in Facebook like Word's endless. And now, I must go find the Mah Jong game Julie referenced. And of course, Deb Webb's free read is a must....

    Addison Fox

  13. Congratulations on your first Intrigue "Better than Bulletproof". I'll look forward to reading it.
    I had Free Rice on my previous computer and when it crashed I lost everything on it. Thanks for the address. Now I can play again. I spend most of my computer time on eHarlequin Community website. And visiting a few other sites I enjoy like this one.

  14. Hi Kay, congrats on your first book. I bet you are just thrilled, I would be.

    My guilty pleasures on the internet is blogging. I visit so many and it takes a lot of time, but I do so enjoy it. It helps me keep up with things. Its almost like a book newspaper.

  15. Hi Mel,

    I hope you like my site. I haven't taken the plunge into Twitter yet. I'm afraid I won't get a thing done if I do! I hear lots of folks buzzing about it though.

    I'm not familiar with "Stumble?" Okay....I just googled "Stumble Upon." Looks like I could be in danger of losing all my free time. : )

  16. Addison! Hi!

    You are a Word Twist demon! She's great at Facebook scrabble too! I'm not so good at that particular game...and have the very low scores to prove it.

    Folks, my friend Addison Fox just sold her debut novel, Warrior Ascended, to NAL in a two-book deal! YAY!

  17. Hi Ellen
    Crashing computers...oh, wow, that makes my heart hurt to think about it. A writer's biggest fear. I'm sorry you lost all your information. I was having some computer troubles a couple of weeks ago. Frustrating doesn't begin to cover it.
    But I'm so glad you've found Free Rice, again. It's great to see you here. Thanks for stopping by.

  18. Thanks, Viriginia,

    Yes, I like visiting blogs too. I have a special bookmark tab just for keeping up with all the blogs I like to visit. I've got so many I enjoy now, I think I need a new way to organize them. But, um...that's another!

  19. Hi Kay! I'm also eager for your debut release -- it's soooo exciting!

    My thing to do in the Internet when I have time is the FR and UTube. Both are addictive!

    Nancy Haddock
    La Vida Vampire

  20. I have a really hard time staying away from Free Rice and getting any work done. Really, I'm not one for playing games on the internet, but I can't leave that one alone.

    Looking forward to your debut, Kay!

  21. Hey Nancy!!!

    Thanks for stopping in...Oh, I'd forgotten about UTube! Hours can be frittered away there, can't they? The things that people will video and put on the internet are just flat amazing— charming sometimes, horrifying at others and sometimes, just disgusting.

    My favorite for it's sheer creativity is the mentos & diet coke. Have you seen that one?

    The guys put on googles and drop 500 mentos (the candies) into about 100 bottles of diet coke..It's quite a production.

    Y'all, Nancy's next book, LAST VAMPIRE STANDING, comes out in May. It's a follow-up to her wonderful debut LA VIDA VAMPIRE that's in stores now.


  22. Thanks, Ann!

    It does take discipline doesn't it? And then there's the fun stuff folks send you in email! I no longer have to wonder why I'm behind on my Christmas shopping.

  23. I'm an addict of playing the game Mahjong and also enjoy playing online poker!

  24. Hi tetewa,

    Thanks for stopping by. I must go check out Mahjong. I've never played in real life either. But I think online poker would be deadly for me. Time would slip away entirely too fast!

  25. Hey there Ms. Kay! I simply love the cover of your book! And I have to apologize for all the things I've addicted you to on the net, Myspace, facebook....Bandit blog...hehehe

    Love this book and can't wait to see it do great things once it hits the shelves

  26. Congratulations on your first book!! I'm looking forward to it's release.

  27. Kay, I'm counting the days until Better Than Bulletproof hits the shelves. Congrats again!

    I play far too many games of Spider Solitaire, and I've gotten hooked on Mahjong, too. Now I'll have to check out the Merriam-Webster game.

    Tracy Garrett
    Touched by Love

  28. Hi Kay,
    Congrats on your upcoming Intrigue debut. Free Rice is very addictive. I love browsing on eBay and shopping on Overstock. I also love Urban Dictionary, where you can go find out the meaning of slang.

  29. Hey Suz,

    Yes, you've led me astray to many fun (and addictive) places on the Internet. : )

    Y'all, Suz invited me to join Facebook and introduced me to myspace. I've been wondering where my free time went ever since!

    Suz, I'm glad you're my friend or I would be in deep trouble by now! And I'm so glad you liked the book! Looking forward to seeing you and the Romance Bandits in January.

  30. Thanks, Estella-
    I am too. Thanks for stopping by today. It's great to have you here.

  31. Hey Tracy!

    I'm glad you're here. And I'm so excited to have TOUCHED BY LOVE on top of my TBR pile. I can't wait to dive in to Jaret and Isabel's story. That cover is awesome!

    Doesn't that Merriam-Webtser game sound fun? Diana said we better be careful though, it's an "enter at our risk" kind of addiction. : )

  32. Hi Jane,

    Yes, Ebay, I've just had to wean myself away from that site completely. It's a sad tale.
    Last year I got hooked on Department 56 Dickens Christmas Village pieces. I followed the auctions determined to get a Globe Theatre. But I couldn't stand the time I was spending online following and researching the auctions, so I finally gave in and did 'buy it now.'

    That's a habit that truly takes discipline. You have to be able to walk away...or stop clicking.

    I used the experience as research for the heroine in my up-coming April release, BULLETPROOF TEXAS. My character learns to use eBay for the first time and finds herself getting a bit addicted to the eBay site as well.

    And Urban Dictionary is awesome! You learn all kinds of things there.

  33. My guilty oleasures are finding books to put on shelfs, wishlist, tag over at Shelfari and Fictiondb. I can also spend hours ebook browsing at Fictionwise and Books on Board and finding songs at Utube and through it all I IM
    I love eharequin. Have visited the chats two years now. Took a nap this afternoon so was all rested up tonight and start visiting threads at midnight.
    Freerice can get so addictive.

  34. Hi Christa

    It's great to meet you. I'm just learning to use Shelfari but I don't know Books on Board. I've haven't done much IM-ing...Hmm...that looks funny as I type it. : ) I guess I've thought of it as texting and I'm not too speedy at that with the abbreviations and such. But it's more like regular typing isn't it?

    I'll see tomorrow at the eHarlequin chats, I hope. Thanks for stopping by.

  35. depending on how many people you are talking to it isn't fast. I usually only talk to 1 person very rarely 2

  36. Christa

    That sounds easier than I was imagining and fun, too.

    And speaking of fun. I've had a blast today. I'm going to sign off now as we're on Central Time here and our blog is on Pacific Time. Feel free to keep posting to be eligible for the drawing for a free copy of BETTER THAN BULLETPROOF. I'll wait until the morning to draw a winner's name and I'll post it here. Thanks again for a great day.

  37. Congratulations, Arkansas Cyndi!
    You're our Blog Blitz winner today. Please email me and we'll arrange to get a copy of the book in your hands!

    Thanks everyone for your comments and gaming suggestions. I don't know how I'll get all my shopping done before Christmas with all these wonderful distractions!

    I'll be back here blogging on December 29th. Please stop by for another chance to win a free copy of BETTER THAN BULLETPROOF.

    Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays!

    Kay Thomas