34 amazing first lines of famous books.

Read more: http://imgur.com/gallery/VNrye More »

ever wonder how to get your book reviewed?

Ever wonder “How to get my book reviewed”?

So you’ve published your book. Its been edited and published, and now you’re trying to figure out how to get to your potential readers. While starting your marketing campaign usually happens well More »

‘People are hungry for real bookstores’: Judy Blume on why US indie booksellers are growing

At 78, the multimillion-selling author has begun a new career, opening her own bookshop and joining a business sector thats flourishing again in the US   She might be a beloved and More »

Why Wales’ quietest station got busier

Image copyright Geograph / Jaggery
Image caption Sugar Loaf Station has been Wales’ quietest station for 20 years before this year

As London’s Waterloo is named the UK’s busiest station for the 15th successive year with 95m annual passengers, life is a little more sedate in deepest, darkest Wales.

Forget wifi, there’s not even a ticket machine, car park or even mobile phone signal at the remote Sugar Loaf station.

And no we’re not talking about the mountain overlooking Rio’s famous Copacabana beach – this one is miles from civilisation in rural Powys.

Blink and you’d miss the exposed 150-year-old single-track halt tucked away down a muddy track next to a field on the side of the A483, snuggled 820ft (250m) up in the Cledan Valley.

The railway hideaway, a few miles north of Llandovery, used to average one visitor every 36 hours – and that made it one of the quietest stations on the UK railway network.

That was until this year….

Image copyright Getty Images/BBC
Image caption More trains than passengers pass through Sugar Loaf Station each day

Its reputation as a deserted railway outpost has actually made it popular – and it’s seen the biggest hike of passenger numbers of all UK stations this year.

So much so that two lovebirds made the 10-hour round-trip from Didcot to Sugar Loaf in October so Mark could propose to Lindsey.

The retreat attracted as many visitors in the last 12 months than it had done in the previous 17 years – a rise of almost 710% on last year’s passenger numbers.

“People have come from all over the world to get a ticket to Sugar Loaf just to say they’ve been here,” said the person who looks after the station for Transport for Wales.

“We’ve had people from the USA coming here because they’ve seen Sugar Loaf station referenced in books because it so unused,” added retired fine art photographer Peter Joyce, 70, a volunteer who helps look after the station.

Media playback is unsupported on your device

Media captionSugar Loaf station: Wales’ quietest station draws more people

“The other day I popped down to the station to do a little gardening and there was a man waiting on the platform who had made the 12-hour round-trip from London, just to get a ticket that has the destination as Sugar Loaf.

“It’s turning into a bit of a tourist destination.”

Sugar Loaf’s visitor numbers shot up from 228 passengers last year to 1,824 this year, meaning it gives up the kudos as Wales’ quietest station after 20 years at the bottom.

Image copyright Peter Joyce
Image caption Sugar Loaf Station adopters Peter and Margaret Joyce appeared on a BBC programme with presenter Jamie Owen
Image copyright Office of Rail and Road
Image caption Cardiff once again boasts the two busiest stations in Wales

That dubious honour now falls to Dolgarrog on the Conwy Valley Line, whose 612 passengers last year was down almost 40%.

The Office of Rail and Road thinks Sugar Loaf’s spike in popularity may be because it was the “least used station in Wales in 2016-17 which may have attracted visitors.”

A tannoy announces the eight trains a day into Sugar Loaf – one of the 17 request stops on the picturesque Heart of Wales line between Swansea and Shrewsbury – to mostly no-one at all.

It was opened as part of the Central Wales Extension Railway in 1868 and built to serve the nearby railway worker cottages so their children could get the train to nearby Llanwrtyd Wells.

The rural branch line survived the infamous railway cuts of Beeching Axe as it passed through six marginal constituencies and politicians feared they’d lose their seats if the route shut.

Nowadays, the etiquette to stop the train is from a bygone age – basically wave furiously when the single carriage comes into view and flag it down.

If you’re on the train, you’ve just got to politely ask the conductor as it trundles towards the beautiful Cynghordy Viaduct and half-a-mile Sugar Loaf tunnel.

Image copyright Geograph / Nigel Thompson
Image caption Dolgarrog on the Conwy Valley Line is now the quietest station in Wales
Image copyright Geograph / Geoff White
Image caption Sugar Loaf Station introduced a big red visitor book in 2017 due to its low passenger use

Only a hardy few of the Heart of Wales’ 200,000 annual passengers get on or off at Sugar Loaf, below the natural landmark it honours.

“It’s mostly walkers or railway tourists who come here. There’s no regular user of the station as far as I know,” said Mr Joyce.

He should know as the railway enthusiast and his wife Margaret “adopted” Sugar Loaf in 2011 to tend to the garden and report any maintenance issues to Transport for Wales.

Four years ago they moved from Hay-on-Wye to be nearer their latest project so Peter could follow in the footsteps of his father who worked in the railway sheds in Derby after World War Two.

“It’s in my blood,” said Mr Joyce.

Image copyright ORR
Image caption Nine of the 10 busiest stations in the UK are in London

Read more: https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-wales-46209535

New Hot Toy Lists for 2018 from SproutScout.co

Looking for toys for kids both young and old? SproutScout.co has put together 30 guides for parents and grandparents to find the *perfect* gift this Christmas. Each list has ten options to help you find exactly what your child/grandchild will want to find under the tree.

The Top 10 Best Current Marvel Toys

The Top 10 Best Current Toy Cars And Trucks

The Top 10 Best Disney Toys

The Top 10 Best Dolls For Kids

The Top 10 Best Learning Toys For Toddlers And Young Children

The Top 10 Best Drones For Kids

The Top 10 Best Ride On Toys For Toddlers

The Top 10 Best Walkers For Babies

The Top 10 DC Comics Toys For Older Kids And Teens

The Top 10 Paw Patrol Toys For Big Fans

The Top Ten Best Baby Toys

The Top Ten Best Ball Pits For Home Use

The Top Ten Best Doll Houses For Children Of All Ages

The Top Ten Best Electronic Pets For Kids

The Top Ten Best Pretend Play Toys For Toddlers Who Love To Mimic

The Top Ten Best Robot Toys For The Family

The Top Ten Best Soft Toys For Babies, Toddlers, And Kids

The Top Ten Best Toy Car Kits, Tracks and Playsets

The Top Ten Best Water Guns For Kids

The Top Ten Building Toys

The Top Ten Coolest Nerf Guns

The Top Ten Fidget Spinner Designs

The Top 10 3D Doodle Pens

Top Ten Best Remote Control Cars

Top 10 Best Children’s Bath Toys

Top 10 Best Star Wars Toys For The Whole Family

Top 10 Slime Making Materials

Top 10 Toy Sports Sets For Teaching Toddlers Sports

Top Ten Best Melissa & Doug Toys For Toddlers

Top Ten Best Hoverboards For Beginners

In space first, China launches lunar rover to far side of the moon

Beijing (CNN)China is poised to become the first country to explore the far side of the moon with the launch of a lunar rover Saturday, another step to its goal of becoming a space superpower.

It’s expected to land in early January after 26 days of flight, said China’s Aerospace Science and Technology Corp.
The lander will conduct the first lunar low-frequency radio astronomy experiment, observe whether plants will grow in the low-gravity environment, and explore whether there is water or other resources at the poles.
    Another function of the mission is to study the interaction between solar winds and the moon surface using a new rover.
    “Since the far side of the moon is shielded from electromagnetic interference from the Earth, it’s an ideal place to research the space environment and solar bursts, and the probe can ‘listen’ to the deeper reaches of the cosmos,” said Tongjie Liu, deputy director of the Lunar Exploration and Space Program Center for the China National Space Administration.
    Because the far side of the moon is free from interference from radio frequencies, the mission requires a relay satellite to transmit signals that was launched into place this year. The Chang’e 4 rover is 1.5 meters (5 feet) long and about 1 meter (3.3 feet) wide and tall, with two foldable solar panels and six wheels.
    “China is anxious to get into the record books with its space achievements,” said Joan Johnson-Freese, a professor at the US Naval War College and an expert on China’s space program.
    “It is highly likely that with the success of Chang’e — and the concurrent success of the human spaceflight Shenzhou program — the two programs will eventually be combined toward a Chinese human spaceflight program to the Moon,” she added. “Odds of the next voice transmission from the Moon being in Mandarin are high.”
    China’s last lunar rover — named Yutu, or Jade Rabbit — ceased operation in August 2016 after 972 days of service on the moon’s surface as part of the Chang’e 3 mission. China was only the third nation to carry out a lunar landing, after the United States and Russia.
    The overall design of the new rover is inherited from Jade Rabbit, according to the chief designer of China’s lunar probe program.
    “We worked hard to improve its reliability, conducting thousands of experiments to ensure its long-term operation, especially taking into consideration rocks, ravines and frictions on the Moon,” Wu Weiren told state broadcaster CCTV in August.

      Pence: New military branch dubbed ‘Space Force’ by 2020

    Beijing plans to launch its first Mars probe around 2020 to carry out orbital and rover exploration, followed by a mission that would include collection of surface samples from the Red Planet.
    China is also aiming to have a fully operational permanent space station by 2022, as the future of the International Space Station remains in doubt due to uncertain funding and complicated politics.
    In comparison, despite its recent success in sending a robotic lander to Mars, the US space agency NASA has faced years of budgetary constraints.
    Although the Chinese government has long stressed its “peaceful motives” in space exploration, Washington increasingly views China — along with Russia — as a potential threat, accusing Beijing of working to bring new weapons into space and prompting President Donald Trump to announce the establishment of a US Space Force by 2020.
    The US Congress has barred NASA from working with China due to national security concerns.
      “A high percentage of space technology is (civilian-military) dual use,” Johnson-Freese said. “The US sees pretty much everything China does in space — including things the US has done in space — as threatening.”
      She suggested that combining military preparedness with diplomatic efforts would best deter perceived threats in space from all sides but added that “unfortunately, the US has not shown interest in diplomatic leadership regarding space security.”

      Read more: https://www.cnn.com/2018/12/07/asia/china-lunar-rover-far-moon-intl/index.html

      What To Get Him Based On How Long You’ve Been Dating Betches

      With the holidays (help) around the corner, it’s kind of time you start thinking about wtf to get the dude in your life for Christmas/Hannukah/Kwanzaa/Festivus. There are many possibilities, from flannel shirts to designer watches to apps that let you casually stalk him. All of these things, though, fall into categories of appropriateness (is that a word?) dependent upon how long you all have been boning or, like, dating. So here’s what to get him based on how long you’ve been dating.

      0-3 Months

      This is kind of more of a “fun” gift than a serious one; especially considering you all started dating right at the cusp of cuffing season. Considering you aren’t sure 100% on whether or not he’s a psycho yet, this isn’t the time to go above and beyond with hundred-dollar gifts. With great relationships come great responsibility, according to Spider-Man. Anyway, if you’ve passed the one month hurdle and are well into month two or three, you need to look at spending, like, $25-75, tops.

      Carhartt Unisex Multi Tool

      Carhartt Multi-Tool: It’s something he’ll use, it’s small, and you’ll only be out $10 when he ghosts you in two months. Praise be.
      “Night-In” Box: One brilliant idea is curating a “night-in” box with Cool Haus ice cream (or Ben & Jerry’s, whatever), cozy slippers, and a nice (but cheap) bottle of wine (or non-Jose tequila if that’s more his speed). It’s like you’re doing the date planning for him, plus you won’t be dropping major cash on this.
      Flannel Shirts from JCrew or Woolrich: Honestly, the guys I talked to wanted these any time anyway, and they’re not a “we’re super serious” gift. Flannel can be worn by just about any guy, regardless of style. Is he a hipster? Is he v ironic? Does he work construction? Does he like tying them around his waist when he feels like his ass looks fat? You probably haven’t even figured him out yet and this gift STILL works. See. Everyone could use a flannel. Plus, you can always steal it later.
      Beer: Yes, really. If he’s into craft beer, get a nice sampler and slap a bow on it. Just try to pay attention to what he drinks when you’re blackout at the bar.

      3-6 Months

      The three to six month time period is usually the time a dude wants to know you “get” him, so thoughtfulness counts more than dropping dollaz.

      Man Crates Exotic Meats Crate

      Man Crates: We recommend fun sh*t like a Man Crate, filled with meat snacks, tools, and other “he-man” items. It’ll give him an excuse to pry open a literal wooden crate with the included crow bar (yes, rly) and then indulge in exotic meat snacks so he can brag to his idiot friends that he ate ostrich and alligator. Aside from jerky items, you can also get “project” crates, so he can learn how to carve his own wooden pipe and be an all new kind of asshole.
      V Specific Gift Cards: If he’s hugely into outdoor sh*t from R.E.I., get a gift card. If he goes from six to midnight whenever he thinks about leather bound books, maybe a gift card to Barnes & Noble is in order. It isn’t a cop-out, it’s showing you know he digs certain things. This is allowing him to get whatever he wants from a place you know he enjoys. Don’t let the gift card be the ONLY thing you get, obviously, but make it enough that he can get something worthwhile.
      Concert Tickets: In keeping with the whole you “get” him thing, get tickets to his favorite band (within reason) that won’t cost you an entire paycheck.

      6-12 Months

      Hooray, you made it more than six months and haven’t ghosted each other. If your relationship was the size of a in-utero child, it’d be an eggplant. That made me gag a little, how about you? Anyway, we’re getting into almost serious territory here, so you should be spending a decent amount of money on and putting thoughtfulness into his gift.

      Amazon Echo Dot

      Amazon Echo or Alexa or Google Thing: I refuse to acknowledge whatever the Google thing’s name is, but you catch my drift. Chances are your dude (and most dudes) need a robot woman to tell them if it’s raining or how many cups are in a quart or whether or not the NASDAQ is crashing. Robots are the future, so investing in one of these know-it-all glorified Bluetooth speakers is a nice gesture.
      A Nice Watch: If you’re in the 6-12 month range, a nice watch (especially if he doesn’t have one) is a great gift. We’re not saying you need to go out and fetch a Rolex; there are tons of brands that are well-made and don’t carry an insane price tag. If your dude is outdoorsy, Luminox is a great option. If he’s into flannel and wood, grab a Filson. And if he has no discernible style, like, whatsoever, but enjoys nice things, Citizen is a great choice.
      Couples Massages: Lay naked next to each other awkwardly while strangers touch you! Honestly, less guys than ladies tend to treat themselves to massages, so getting one with him may put him at ease about the whole thing. Plus, if he’s never ventured into daiye day spa territory, he’s in for a pleasant surprise.

      More Than One Year

      Y’all are practically married. If you’ve been dating more than one year and have never been “on a break” or “seeing other people,” you can go p serious on the gift front.

      Holy Stone HS700 FPV Drone

      Drone: Do you want to encourage his habit of disturbing wildlife or spying on neighbors? Get him a drone. He’ll definitely be entertained for at least a month.
      MasterClass: These include cooking taught and screamed about by Gordon Ramsey, photography by Annie Leibovitz, and creative writing by Margaret Atwell. Give him the gift that keeps on giving: a literal life skill.
      Weekend Getaway: Your guy not into learning? That’s cool. Book a weekend getaway somewhere he’d like. Look into the Baseball/Rock N Roll/Football/Country/IDFK Hall of Fame. Take him to a sports outing that you normally wouldn’t be caught dead attending. Go to a concert or get sushi at that place you hate. This is kind of about him, and you can definitely plan something nice-ish for under $500 if you think ahead of time.
      That Thing He Won’t Buy For Himself: Does he have a set of satin pajamas you know he loves but won’t buy? A massage chair? A pedicure? Once you’re in for the long(ish) haul, you should know him well enough to get him the thing he would not go out and buy on his own. Maybe its boudoir pictures of yourself, or a year-long subscription to a dog-centered magazine. Whatever.

      Images: Kira auf der Heide /Unsplash; Amazon (2); Man Crates; Carhartt

      Read more: https://betches.com/?p=42216

      Best gifts for Lord of the Rings fans that aren’t a gold ring

      One gift to rule them all.
      Image: New Line/Saul Zaentz/Wing Nut/Kobal/REX/Shutterstock

      What will you give your loved ones, precious?

      Everyone knows at least one Lord of the Rings fan, nay, fiend. They’ve smashed through J. R. R. Tolkien’s books and appendices. They’ve sat through the extended editions of Peter Jackson’s original trilogy, turned up for The Hobbit trilogy, and are sitting on the edge of their Shadowfaxes for the upcoming Amazon TV series.

      So, you want to get them a gift they’ll truly love. But what part of Middle Earth would they shop in? Ask them slyly first, then meet us back here for the perfect gift. And for brevity, these are just locations from the Lord of the Rings series. 

      Note: None of these are a golden ring. That is pure folly and will lead us all to ruin. 

      The Shire: A wizard-level pipe

      Scrounge up some Shire weed.

      Image: WETa shop

      Smoke the finest weed in the Southfarthing with a nice little pipe, so you can frolic through the woods, the fields, the little rivers of Hobbiton, Bree, and the rest with a little buzz. You can buy a non-functional replica of Gandalf’s film pipe from the Weta Workshop in Wellington, New Zealand, but if you’re after something you can actually smoke from, there are makers on Etsy selling pipes inspired by the series. Pair it with a Prancing Pony magnet and you’ll have the Shire covered.

      Price: $32 to $136

      Rivendell: This adorable little Fellowship pin

      Declare your love in theme.

      Image: the grumpy unicorn co/etsy

      Pledge allegiance to your loved one with a little pin emblazoned with Aragorn’s pledge to Frodo and the Fellowship. “You have my sword,” is scrolled across this piece from Etsy maker The Grumpy Unicorn Co. and it’s bold enough a statement to prompt the nearest blonde elven dreamboat to declare the same with his bow, and, similarly, a gruff bearded fellow with his axe.

      Price: $12.96

      Moria: Balrog t-shirt


      Image: weta shop

      This t-shirt is as metal as Middle Earth gets outside of Mordor. Designed by Weta Workshop concept designer Rebekah Tisch, the tee depicts the formidable Balrog and your ol’ pal Gandalf battling on the Bridge of Khazad-dûm.

      Price: $29.99

      Rohan: This kickass shieldmaiden pendant

      All kickass shieldmaidens of Rohan need their own pendant, and Utah-based Etsy maker Badali Jewelry has crafted a fitting ode to the biggest boss of them all, Eowyn. Sporting two of Rohan’s signature horses, this Shieldmaiden Medallion is inspired by the shield Eowyn carried into the Battle of the Pelennor Fields. On the back you’ll find an engraving of her strong words to the Witch-King, “No living man am I, You look upon a woman.” Yeah, badass.

      Price: $55.59

      Gondor: This not-so-ugly Christmas sweater

      Pretty subtle.

      Image: stationjack/etsy

      What better way to spend time with your messed up family in Minas Tirith than wearing a Christmas sweater emblazoned with Gondor’s iconic White Tree? It’s not even that obvious, so you could wear it to a dinner in Rohan without having to address where Gondor was when the Westfold fell and their enemies closed in around them. Awks.

      If you want something more brazenly on-brand, try this Horn of Gondor for your bike.

      Price: $48.75

      Isengard: A rather lovely print

      Where are they taking the hobbits?

      Image: Pixelnoise studio/etsy

      Let’s forget all the terrible treachery, Enticide, and terrifying army-growing that occurred at Sauruman’s joint in Sindarin, and enjoy this nice print. Can’t do it? Get a Fangorn Forest one.

      Price: $20.27

      Lothlorien: Elven leaf brooch

      Not idly do the leaves of Lothlorien fall.

      Image: weta shop

      Every member of the Fellowship needs one of these, and while you might not be able to hop over to the woods of Lothlorien to pick one up, the Weta Workshop makes their own. They’re not cheap, as they’re sterling silver, but they’re legit.

      Price: $274.49

      Mordor: The Eye of Sauron desk lamp

      Always watching…

      Image: thinkgeek

      So, your friend has chosen to live their life on the dark plains of Mordor? That’s cool, there’s plenty to do here, probably. But just know everything they do will be watched by the Eye of Sauron, which you can equip them with for their very own bedroom — in lamp form. Artist David Tremont and his team scaled down Weta designer Richard Taylor’s nine-foot film model of Barad-dûr, the fortress of Sauron, and it makes one heck of a desk lamp.

      Price: $299.99

      Read more: https://mashable.com/article/best-gifts-lord-of-the-rings-fan/

      Stan Lee’s Company Calls Out Bill Maher’s ‘Frankly Disgusting’ Comments

      POW! Entertainment, the media production company founded by Stan Lee, has joined the backlash against comedian Bill Maher for questioning the late Marvel pioneer’s legacy.

      Maher, host of HBO’s “Real Time,” faced widespread criticism Saturday for a blog post in which he mocked those mourning Lee who “pretended” that comic books are “sophisticated literature.”

      Lee’s Nov. 12 death at age 95 inspired hundreds of heartfelt social media tributes, and caused a 1968 column he wrote denouncing racism to go viral again.

      But Maher had a different take. “The guy who created Spider-Man and the Hulk has died, and America is in mourning,” he wrote. “Deep, deep mourning for a man who inspired millions to, I don’t know, watch a movie, I guess.”

      POW! hit back Monday with an open letter, in which it called Maher’s opinion “frankly disgusting.”

      Countless people can attest to how Stan inspired them to read, taught them that the world is not made up of absolutes, that heroes can have flaws and even villains can show humanity within their souls,” the company’s letter added.

      It also repeated one of Lee’s most iconic lines — “With great power there must also come — great responsibility!” — to urge Maher to use his platform wisely. Maher hasn’t responded.

      Here is the open letter in full:

      Mr. Maher: Comic books, like all literature, are storytelling devices. When written well by great creators such as Stan Lee, they make us feel, make us think and teach us lessons that hopefully make us better human beings. One lesson Stan taught so many of us was tolerance and respect, and thanks to that message, we are grateful that we can say you have a right to your opinion that comics are childish and unsophisticated. Many said the same about Dickens, Steinbeck, Melville and even Shakespeare.

      But to say that Stan merely inspired people to “watch a movie” is in our opinion frankly disgusting. Countless people can attest to how Stan inspired them to read, taught them that the world is not made up of absolutes, that heroes can have flaws and even villains can show humanity within their souls. He gave us the X-Men, Black Panther, Spider-Man and many other heroes and stories that offered hope to those who felt different and bullied while inspiring countless to be creative and dream of great things to come.

      These are but a few of the things we the fans of Stan Lee also consider “adulting,” because life both as a child and grown-up can indeed be a struggle. Stan is the author of millions of happy childhood memories and the provider of so many of the positive tools of adulthood.

      Our shock at your comments makes us want to say “’Nuff said, Bill,” but instead we will rely on another of Stan’s lessons to remind you that you have a powerful platform, so please remember: “With great power there must also come ― great responsibility!”

      – Team Stan

      Read more: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/stan-lee-company-bill-maher-disgusting-comments_us_5bf3d26ee4b0376c9e6860bd

      ‘When’s Happy Hour?’ Is Out Now, And We’re Celebrating With A Huge Giveaway Betches

      The day you’ve all been waiting for has finally arrived: our third book, When’s Happy Hour?is out now! You read our general life advice on how to win at everything in Nice Is Just A Place In France, you followed our dating advice in I Had A Nice Time And Other Lies, so now it’s time to read our career advice in When’s Happy Hour? (I know, we decided not to go with the “nice” title this time around. What can we say, we’re growing up.)

      Now that the book is here, we’re celebrating by giving you all three days of gifting. You’re welcome. Today’s gift is: MATTE GOLD BEATS HEADPHONES!!! You know you’ve been wanting them. Here’s how you can win: Buy our new book, screenshot your order and email it to whh@betches.com (with proof of purchase & today’s date to enter). That’s it. You’re entered. All winners will be announced Sunday. May the odds be ever in your favor.

      So where can you buy When’s Happy Hour? Here’s all the info you need, so you can order and start reading ASAP:



      Barnes & Noble


      Now back to the book. For those of you doubters out there, wondering, “Why should I take career advice from self-proclaimed ‘betches’ who curse all the time?” Um, it’s because we’re really f*cking smart, that’s why. The Betches founders, Aleen Kuperman, Samantha Fishbein, and Jordana Abraham, took a viral blog and turned it into a full-fledged media company that pulls in over $5 million in revenue. And they’ve done it all without outside investors. So they know a thing or two about starting a business and how to be successful.

      In When’s Happy Hour?  we cover everything from how not to format your resume to what to wear to the office to navigating workplace hookups (I’ll save you that section and say you should probably not do it unless you’re positive he’s the Jim Halpert to your Pam Beesly). And that’s not all we cover, obvi. If you’re in serious need of career advice, and your career center isn’t helping, we got you. Think of it like, all the career advice you could ever want to ask your friends, if your friends also happened to be successful entrepreneurs. Yeah, it’s going to be really f*cking good.

      Official Contest Rules (If You Care):


      Eligibility. This Betches 3 Day Giveaway (the “Sweepstakes”) is open to all legal U.S. residents who have reached the age of eighteen (18) by October 25, 2018.   This Sweepstakes is void where prohibited by law. This Sweepstakes is subject to all applicable federal, state, local rules and laws and regulations.

      Agreement to Official Rules and Decisions. By participating in this Sweepstakes, the entrant (“You”) fully and unconditionally agree to be bound by and accept these Official Rules and the decisions of Betches Media LLC (“Betches”) (including, without limitation, decisions regarding eligibility of entries, the selection of entrants and the winners, and the awarding of prizes), which are final and binding in all respects. You also represent and warrant that You meet the eligibility requirements.

      Timing. This Sweepstakes will run for 3 days, beginning October 25, 2018, at 1 pm EST through October 27, 2018, at 11:59 pm EST. There will be one (1) winner chosen each day (one on October 25, one on October 26, and one on October 27) on Instagram Story at the conclusion of the Sweepstakes.

      How to Enter. The Betches Instagram Story will post a picture of the gift on each day. To enter this Sweepstakes, you must screenshot your book sales confirmation or any other social media post from your account regarding the launch of When’s Happy Hour: Work Hard So You Can Hardly Work. As explained above, the Sweepstakes will run for 3 days from October 25, 2018, at 1:00 pm EST through October 27, 2018, at 11:59 pm EST, and from and after 12:00 am EST on October 28, 2018, no further entries will be accepted.

      Prize. One winner (“Winner”) will be chosen randomly each day as the Winner of this Sweepstakes. The Winner will receive one (1) gift, prize and value can vary depending on date of entry and date of win. The prize will be awarded to an individual who is eligible and meeting all prize conditions. If an initial awardee is deemed ineligible, a new drawing for that prize will occur and the prize will be awarded to the individual meeting all conditions. The prize is nontransferable. Any and all prize-related expenses, including without limitation any and all federal, state, and/or local taxes, shall be the sole responsibility of Winner. No substitution of prize or transfer/assignment of prize to others or request for the cash equivalent by Winner is permitted. Acceptance of prize constitutes permission for Betches to use Your Instagram handle for purposes of advertising, promotion, and other business purposes without further compensation, unless prohibited by law.

      Odds of Winning; Drawing; Notification. The odds of winning depend on the number of eligible entries received. The Winner of the Sweepstakes will be selected by a random drawing within 24 hours of closing. Winner will be notified by use of Instagram Direct Messaging only, and asked for their U.S. address so that the prize can be mailed to Winner, postage pre-paid. Winner may be required to complete a publicity release first, prior to receiving the prize, unless prohibited by law. Any Winner notified by Instagram Direct Messaging that fails to acknowledge receipt, complete any required publicity release, or provide a U.S. mailing address within 48 hours of notification will be deemed ineligible and forfeit their prize. An alternate winner will be selected by random drawing. Betches will not be responsible for any failure of transmittal of winning notification, for any reason.

      General Conditions. Betches reserves the right, in its sole discretion, to cancel, terminate, modify or suspend the Sweepstakes if, in Betches’ opinion, there is any suspected or actual evidence of electronic or non-electronic tampering with any portion of the Sweepstakes, or if viruses, bugs, unauthorized intervention, widespread automated entries, fraud, technical difficulties or failures or any other factor beyond Betches’ reasonable control corrupt or affect the administration, security, fairness, integrity, or proper conduct of the Sweepstakes. Betches reserves the right in its sole discretion to disqualify any individual it finds or believes to be tampering with the entry process or the operation of the Sweepstakes or to be acting in violation of these Official Rules or in an unsportsmanlike or disruptive manner, including through automated entries. Any attempt by any person to deliberately damage any website or undermine the legitimate operation of this Sweepstakes is a violation of criminal and civil laws, and, should such an attempt be made, Betches reserves the right to seek damages and other remedies from any such person to the fullest extent permitted by law. Betches’ failure to enforce any term of these Official Rules shall not constitute a waiver of that provision or any other provision of these Official Rules.

      Release. By entering, You forever and irrevocably release and hold harmless Betches and its respective parents, subsidiaries, affiliates, advertising and promotion agencies, partners, representatives, agents, successors, assigns, employees, officers, and directors, as well as Instagram, from any liability, illness, injury, death, loss, litigation, claim, or damages arising in whole or in part, directly or indirectly, whether caused by negligence or not, from Your participation in the Sweepstakes and/or Your acceptance, possession, use, or misuse of any prize or any portion thereof.

      Limitation of Liability. Betches and Instagram are not responsible for: (i) late, lost, unintelligible, illegible, damaged, altered, or incomplete entries, or entries received through impermissible or illegitimate channels, all of which will be disqualified; (ii) technical failures of any kind, including but not limited to the malfunction of any computer, cable, network, hardware, or software, or other mechanical equipment; (iii) the unavailability or inaccessibility of any transmissions, telephone, or Internet service; (iv) unauthorized human intervention in any part of the entry process or the Sweepstakes; (v) electronic or human error in the administration of the Sweepstakes or the processing of entries. You hereby waive all rights to, and under no circumstances shall You be permitted to obtain awards for, punitive, incidental, or consequential damages, including reasonable attorney’s fees, other than Your actual out-of-pocket expenses (i.e. costs associated with entering this Sweepstakes). You further waive all rights to have damages multiplied or increased. SOME JURISDICTIONS DO NOT ALLOW THE LIMITATION OR EXCLUSION OF LIABILITY FOR INCIDENTAL OR CONSEQUENTIAL DAMAGES, SO THE ABOVE MAY NOT APPLY TO YOU.

      Disputes. This Sweepstakes IS GOVERNED BY THE LAWS OF NEW YORK. As a condition of participating in this Sweepstakes, You agree that any and all disputes, claims, and causes of action arising out of or connected with this Sweepstakes or any prizes awarded, shall be resolved individually, without resort to any form of class action, solely and exclusively before a court located in New York, New York; You submit to sole and exclusive personal jurisdiction in said courts for any such dispute and irrevocably waive any and all rights to object to such jurisdiction.

      Sponsor. The Sponsor of this Sweepstakes and the address at which Sponsor may be contacted is: Betches Media, 54 W 21st Street, Suite 401, New York, NY 10010.

      This Sweepstakes is in no way sponsored, endorsed or administered by, or associated with, Instagram.

      Winner’s List. To request a list of winners, send a self-addressed postage-stamped envelope to: Betches Media, 54 W 21st Street, Suite 401, New York, NY 10010.

      Requests must be received by November 28, 2018.

      Read more: https://betches.com/?p=40222

      Illustrator Documents Her Daily Struggles And Life With Her Boyfriend In 25+ Adorable Comics

      26-year-old Luxembourger Valérie Minelli, AKA Mrs. Frollein, has been making her sweet, simple-yet-funny comics for around 5 years, with the noble mission to cheer people up and make them smile.

      “I think most of the time I just want to make people happy and leave them with a warm and fuzzy feeling, so I try to make my comics really wholesome from time to time,” Valérie told Bored Panda. “I‘m a pretty rough person in real life, I curse a lot. But I don’t like that kind of humor in comics.”

      Describing her style as “rather simple and kinda inspired by the Japanese ‘Chibi‘ characters,” she explains that she’s not a fan of the big, expressive eyes and prefers the challenge of creating as much expression as she can with just two dots and a mouth. “I mostly use an IPad and Procreate to draw the comics and some Photoshop,” she told us. “When I began drawing them, I used some fineliners and paper, which worked too!”

      “I am still a student, so I don’t do comics for a living (I study comics though, which is amazing!). I work as an illustrator for children’s books and try to manage to do all of it. For now, webcomics are just a hobby, but I have some amazing followers who buy my prints or buy me some ko-fi to support me, so I can at least make a little money by drawing comics. Hopefully I can someday make a living from just comics.”

      Most of Valérie’s comics are inspired by everyday life, and her relationship with her boyfriend. “I always hated most of the couple comics out there, so I decided to draw some myself, she said. “Some of them are just my own thoughts, almost like a writing a diary. I mostly read webcomics, but I try to get more into German graphic novels.”

      “I really enjoy comics by jakelikesonions, nathanwpyle, natemorebikes, lizclimo and War and Peas. (One half of War and Peas is my comic teacher so I‘ll get in trouble if I don‘t name them!)” Valérie told us with a laugh.

      Scroll down to check out Valérie’s work for yourself, and let us know what you think in the comments!























































      Read more: http://www.boredpanda.com/funny-comics-mrs-frollein-valerie-minelli/

      5 Self-Help Books That Aren’t Corny Betches

      I know what you’re thinking, and no, self-help books that aren’t corny is not an oxymoron. They’re not all, like, “breathe in and harness the power of the universe and believe in yourself and everything you’ve ever wanted will be yours” or whatever B.S. The Secret espouses. There are actually a lot of books that can actually help you that also won’t bore you to death. I want to say here that my definition of “self-help” is pretty loose here. Is the book nonfiction? Does it teach some sort of lesson or aim to help people in some way? If yes, I’m calling it a self-help book. So here are some self-help books that aren’t corny.

      ‘The Spiritual Vixen’s Guide To An Unapologetic Life’ by Maureen Muldoon

      I know the title is cheesey. I KNOW it sounds like something your mom might write when she’s a couple of glasses of wine in and feeling a little frisky. But stay with me here. There’s a reason this is on a list of self-help books that aren’t corny. This true story is about a woman whose husband leaves her for Miss Universe. Miss f*cking Universe. And I thought I had trust issues. Muldoon details her feelings of loss, anger, and denial in a funny and candid way, and her journey towards liberation is one you’ll be rooting for.


      ‘Making It In Manhattan’ by Caroline Vazzana

      This is a quick must-read for anyone who’s trying to make it in fashion. Caroline Vazzana went from wannabe designer to intern to a fashion influencer, stylist, and editor. She’s legit been called the real-life Carrie Bradshaw. In her first book book, she’ll tell you how she did it, everything she wishes she did, plus how you too can reach your goals in the social media age.


      ‘When’s Happy Hour?’: Work Hard So You Can Hardly Work by The Betches

      F*cking duhhhh. You know we couldn’t leave our own HILARIOUS career advice book off the list. If you’ve ever wondered if you can wear a crop top to the office, or if it’s okay to hook up with that hot guy in another department, you need to read our book. We’ll help you format your resume, not completely f*ck up your interview, and then not get fired once you do get the job. We’re like, such good friends. You should pre-order it, betch.


      ‘Everything’s Trash But It’s Okay’ by Phoebe Robinson

      Um, wow, not cool that Phoebe literally stole my Hinge bio, but whatever. In all seriousness, Everything’s Trash is a series of essays on topics ranging from gender to dating to race and more. This dope queen tackles why feminism needs to be more intersectional and why dating in general is a dumpster fire (I paraphrase), but she also talks about personal sh*t like how she hid a ton of debt from her parents.


      ‘Belong: Find Your People, Create Community, and Live a More Connected Life’ by Radha Agrawal

      Ever heard of Daybreaker? It’s a huge morning party—no alcohol—that takes place in 25 cities and a dozen college campuses around the world. You’ve probably seen it on Instagram. Anyway, the founder of Daybreaker wrote a book that’s all about finding yourself. With prompts, charts, quizzes, and more, you’ll discover what values are important to you and how to find people who share those values. If you can get past the unnecessarily long title, you’ll learn a lot from this book. 

      Images: Lucrezia Carnelos / Unsplash; Amazon (5)

      Read more: https://betches.com/?p=39229

      Jimmy Kimmel Drags Trump With His ‘Tell-All Book Of The Month’ Club

      Books that dish the dirt on President Donald Trump’s administration are currently a dime a dozen.

      So on Tuesday night, Jimmy Kimmel launched a spoof Trump-themed “Tell-All Book Of The Month” club to capitalize on the trend.

      “Turn your library into a lie-brary,” promises the fake ad’s voiceover. 

      Check out the books on offer in the clip above.

      Read more: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/jimmy-kimmel-donald-trump-book-club_us_5bd02f6ce4b0a8f17ef22b6f

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