Cabbages' There Goes the Galaxy Book Giveaway Winners

Ah, the excitement! The drama! The... er... two small, furry creatures butting in front of the camera trying to get involved in every aspect of the event whether I want their help or not...

Such was the Of Cabbages and Kings blog drawing for copies of my new humorous sci-fi novel, There Goes the Galaxy!

Now, this was a highly-technical process. First I wrote the names of everyone who left a comment on the giveaway post on small slips of paper and placed them in a bowl. Then my whiskered companion, Harry, got in the way while I went to take a photo to prove I had done this. So I moved him out of the way. (Repeat ten times and ultimately give up, leaving the following...)
Lovely plumage.

And then we closed our eyes and drew the following two names:

Yes, congratulations to John and Shirley! You have each won a copy of There Goes the Galaxy. Please email me at jennthorson [at] earthlink [dot] net with your addresses and I will send you your book.

If the books remain unclaimed by noon of October 5, I'll redraw a new name, so someone else can receive the copy of the book.

Also note: the separate GoodReads giveaway has closed, too! I have to pop off and see who the winners are there. GoodReads notifies those winners directly and I will be shipping off those book copies today.

Lastly, for anyone still interested in purchasing a copy of the book for their very own selves-- either in paperback or ebook versions-- that can be done on Amazon by clicking here:

Thanks to everyone for participating. Honestly, you all-- with your kind support and enthusiasm-- have helped make the whole publishing process so much fun.

The "There Goes the Galaxy" Book Giveaway

It's got humor... fantasy... science fictioniness... and all the other things you want in a good book like, um, pages that turn and a spine that holds it all together! And best of all, if you leave a comment answering the question below, I'll put you in a drawing for one of two free copies of my novel, There Goes the Galaxy.

So, think about it... pages that turn, a spine, and I'll even throw in a totally cosmic cover attached to it, designed by my friend Dave, all for FREE if you're the lucky commentor chosen from the drawing!

Okay, I know: you're saying, "Get on with it. What's the fragging question already?"

And the question is: "What's the last book you read that you'd gladly recommend to a friend?"

(See, that was virtually pain-free, wasn't it?)

Commenting will be open until midnight next Tuesday-- that's September 27th. Then I'll do the drawing and will let you know on Wednesday the 28th who the lucky winners are.

If you want more info on the novel, you can check out my book site here:

And if you don't want to go through all the hassle of a drawing, but think you might want a copy of the book in either softback or ebook form, you can order it on Amazon here. (It's also in ebook form on for my UK friends.)

Thanks for playing along!

Henry the Eighth for Kids: Count Along with Henry Tudor!

This was prompted by a Google search that came to my blog the other day. Someone was looking for "Henry the Eighth for Kids." Once I stopped snickering over the image of The Tudors filmed for a pre-school crowd--- ("you see, Timmy, when a King and his courtier love each other very, very much. Or, well, y'know, they dance together for five seconds at the Royal Ball and find they both don't have plans for afterwards...") --anyway, it really got my creative mind a-turning. So today I give you the Please-Don't-Read-This-To-Your-Children version of 'Henry the Eighth for Kids'":

Count Along with Henry Tudor!

Henry Tudor was a king, 
In England long ago
Seven Henrys ruled before
This Henry had his go.

Now, Henry Eight, he had six wives
Though not at the same time
For that, dear kids, is "bigamy"
With no place in this rhyme

So count to One and we will meet
Queen Catherine Aragon
She was the One who bore no son
So Henry said, "So long."

See, boys back then were very prized
But girls were not so blessed.
Today each child is loved the same.
(Still, Dad likes Junior best.)

So Catherine was sent away
And now we count to Two
It's Anne Boleyn, the courtesan
Who Henry sought to woo

This Anne, she had a daughter Liz
But still no bouncing boy
Two children now King Henry had
Yet no heir brought him joy

And in these days was no divorce
So Mommy stayed with Dad
And Dad with Mommy, even if
She had a new friend Chad.

So Henry said good-bye to Anne
In his medieval way
Without divorce, he saw no course.
She lost her head one day

The word "decapitation" means
"To leave without your cap."
Mention it to mommy once
When she asks you to nap.

No, nevermind-- let's move along
Quick now to Number Three
Jane Seymour stepped upon the stage
(Without Kay Jewelry).

Jane had the son of Henry's dreams
The apple of his eye
But birth was rough and times were tough
And Jane, she sadly died.

So let's count Four to Anne of Cleves
That's two queens now named Anne
Since this blind date won't turn out great
Annulment's Henry's plan

"Annulment" means to marry and
to say it doesn't count
Like "cooties, no takebacksies" does.
It gave the King an out.

This brings the count to Five, you see
Miss Howard-- Cathy Two.
But Henry learned the darkly news
That Cathy wasn't true

Our Henry was a little miffed
It was his pride, you see
So soon, as with dear Anne Boleyn,
Her wig flipped-- permanently

So here we come to number Six,
Last wife, and none too soon
This Catherine Parr she got so far
Outlived the Royal goon.

Three Cathys and Two Annes, he wed
And don't forget One Jane.
The moral? Keep above the Parr
When playing numbers games.

The Devil Drives Firestone

"Knock, knock," came the sound on my passenger window at the grocery store parking lot. An elderly man with a cane was standing there, motioning. I rolled down the window with 68% certainty this wasn't a clever new snatch-and-grab ploy for car-jacking or, oh, for stealing the thrifted Oasis CD off my passenger seat.

(I can just see it now, as they sit around the retirement home common area with a stack of their lifted CD booty: "Is he saying 'wonderwall'? What in dadgum tarnation is a 'wonderwall', Elsie?"...  And no, I don't know, either. It is catchy, but it confounds my days.)

(Then again, I don't know where Tarnation is. I think it might be out west near Perfection and Desperation.)

But I digress. A lot. Because, see, the nice man who was the complete opposite of a carjacker or CD thief in his do-gooderness had simply stopped to inform me that my right front tire was almost flat.

This was not unlike the situation two months ago where kind-hearted guys in a sports car waved at me at a red light to tell me that... my right front tire was almost flat.

Or my awesomely cool coworker, two months before that, who called me in my office to tell me that... yes, you guessed it. My tire was of the non-airfilled variety.

Three things we learn from this:

1.) People in Pittsburgh are caring and wonderful to strangers in a way that is almost mind-blowing. (Thank you, Pittsburgh!)

2.) I am too lazy and distracted to make time for regular car maintenance.

And 3.) This stupid tire had a breathing problem and I needed to have it examined.

Because this tire-- this brand new frigging tire-- had been slowly losing air week by week from the time I bought it. I would pump up, but then it would deflate again and just need more attention.

So it was more like a big name film star, than a tire, really. Or Meryl Streep's character in The Devil Wears Prada. You could never attend to it enough. Just when you'd think it had everything it needed, it would deflate, demand, and you'd have to blow air into its ego once more.

Thankfully, since we're in Pittsburgh, we have the solution to driving divas like this. Places like Duke's Tire, one of those old timey mom-and-pop (mostly pop) places which almost don't exist anymore, where the service is quick, efficient and, most importantly, they don't take guff from uppity rubber spheres with a need for regular adulation.

I was expecting them to find a nail, a tack, or water buffalo, or like the one time I had tire issues, the better part of a metal file. But it turns out there was a leak around the gasket. And in minutes, the good ol' Duke boys replaced it and sealed it for $15-- and a look of apology as if they feared they charged too much.

It warms the cockles of the heart, I tell you. All of them, those cockles. Not that I know what cockles are.

I imagine you pick them up on the way to the wonderwall in Tarnation.