Monday, July 9, 2012

Author Barbara Conelli Visits With A Giveaway And Contests

I’m delighted to be a part of author Barbara Conelli’s
WOW Blog Tour featuring her latest release, CHIQUE SECRETS OF DOLCE AMORE.

Today and throughout Barbara’s tour (which ends Aug. 24) there will be contests (ready to learn Italian?), cool giveaways, a couple of audio Q & As, and more! Barbara is all about having fun, which is evident both in her book and on her website. She loves taking new friends by the hand and taking them on a private stroll through the Milan that she calls home.

Everyone who comments on today’s post by 8 p.m. Monday, July 16, will receive a downloadable gift bag (be sure to include your e-mail address with your comment if it’s not in your profile). The gift bag consists of:
* Chique Virtual Tour: The Secret Gems of Italy Every Woman Must Know.
* First five chapters of Chique Secrets of Dolce Vita.
* First five chapters of Chique Secrets of Dolce Amore.
* Chique Blog Tour Special Gift (Only for the tour!): E-Book: The Most Romantic Chique Places to Fall in Love in (and with) Milan.
Barbara is hosting several other contests that are explained near the end of this post.

When we talk about "the city of love", most of us immediately think of Paris, Venice, Rome or another famous metropolis whose romantic stories we know from movies and novels. But to Barbara Conelli, none of them are the real city of love. To her, love doesn’t mean passionate gestures, big promises of eternal devotion, ardent embraces, torrid kisses, or stormy arguments followed by even stormier reconciliations. To her, love means something completely different and much simpler… 
Dolce Amore Cover_SmallJPGThe smell of morning cappuccino and fresh pannetone at Pasticceria Marchesi. A brisk stroll through the awakening city and sensual curves of gold shadows on the wet paving of Via della Spiga. Joyful shouts of bohemian artists and their graceful muses at Fornace Curti. A crispy panzerotto savored in the company of cantankerous pigeons on the piazzetta of San Fedele. Old furniture stores in narrow streets and adorable trinkets she can never resist. Remote nooks and crannies whose secrets have been revealed only to her and the few ghosts with aristocratic hearts who appear in them from time to time. Visionary dreams, inextinguishable hopes, the desire to live, the courage to create, the strength to grow.  

Join Barbara Conelli and submerge yourself in the secrets of this magical city that has been breathing love for centuries. Love that is dignified, childish, creative, treacherous, passionate, painful, forgiving, crazy, insane, unbridled, endless, fleeting, unfaithful, platonic, carnal, hateful, desperate, volatile, conceited, and divine. The kind of love whose chalice you quickly drain, so that on the next corner, you can reach for another one, even more delicious and intoxicating.
Barbara joins us today to talk about, “ Failure And Mistakes: The Best Thing That Can Happen To You.”

I believe every woman has a book in her heart. Maybe it’s her life story, her wisdom, her experience, her understanding of certain situations, obstacles she has overcome, or maybe just the world of fantasy, imagination, dreams and restless ideas.

When you start feeling the urge to write a book and share a piece of your soul with the world, the calling is so strong that you cannot deny it. Or at least not for long. The idea turns into passion and your inner flame keeps growing stronger and stronger. If you refuse to give it the attention it deserves, it will burn your soul to ashes. If you choose to grow with the flame instead, you will find yourself in the most wonderful creative flow I’ve ever experienced: The process of birthing a book.

Although the process is truly miraculous, it’s far from easy and it will give you many important lessons – in patience, perseverance, faith and strength. It will challenge your core believes and force you to look at your life through completely different eyes. It will make you rethink your priorities, turn your life upside down and understand that when you say yes to writing, there are many things you need to say no to. There are many things you need to drop. And lots of baggage to lose along the way.

clip_image002There will be people who will not believe in your dream, and maybe they will even try to discourage you. They will say words that hurt, words that make you doubt, words that make you worry. You will say goodbye to some old friends and welcome new ones. You will get to know yourself much better, understand and embrace your weaknesses and encourage your strengths.

You will make many mistakes and fail many times. But with each mistake and each step gone wrong you will become stronger, you will have more clarity and your focus will be sharper. You will know what works, what doesn’t work, what you love and what you hate. You will make better decisions and choose more reliable people to work with.

You will cultivate courage. You need a very brave heart to share your work with the world. You will discover that you can’t be everything to everybody. You will realize that not everybody will necessarily love your book and applaud you for having written it. Some people will support you and turn into your loving and encouraging fans. Some people will judge you. However, soon you will learn to be grateful for the love and support, and you will allow others to judge you without letting their opinions upset you.

And one day you will hold a printed book in your hands. You will be a published author. You will leave a legacy in this world. The feeling cannot be described with words. It’s priceless, unique and memorable. And you will know that, maybe for the first time in your life, you are you and you are not afraid to share your true essence with those who are meant to enjoy the fruits of your labor. You will look back and understand that every single roadblock, challenge, obstacle, mistake, failure, pain and tear was well worth it. Without them, this moment would never have come.

Barbara, thanks for guest blogging today and sharing your outlook on overcoming obstacles. You’re so right about failures and mistakes, without them there can’t be achievement.

Here’s a bit of background on Barbara. The author of Chique Books filled with Italian passion, Barbara is an internationally published bestselling author, seasoned travel writer specializing in Italy, and Chiquenist on the mission to bring Fantastic Fearless Feminine Fun into women's lives. In her charming, delightful and humorous Chique Books filled with Italian passion, Barb invites women to explore Italy from the comfort of their home with elegance, grace and style, encouraging them to live their own Dolce Vita no matter where they are in the world.

An entertaining storyteller, Barb has a unique ability to capture the magical atmosphere of the places she writes about. Through the pages of her books, Barb takes your hand and guides you through the irresistible beauty, captivating secrets, unrepeatable spell and fugitive moments of Italy. She makes them come alive easily and spontaneously, and her writing is like a magic carpet that carries you to Italy and back in the blink of an eye. She introduces you to fascinating women who have created the face of Italy, lifts the shroud of their mysteries, and reveals adorable places off the beaten track where the authentic Italian heart hasn't stopped beating.

Barb lives between New York and Milan, and as a real globetrotter, she's always on the move, accompanied by her adorable and very spoiled beagle. To her, writing is like breathing, and she's currently working on her new book. For more on Barb and her writing, visit her websites: and

Now for Barbara two exciting WOW-Summer in Italy contests. The first is an Italian Phrase contest.

Learn Italian and win a prize! Every Tuesday and Thursday from now through August 23 Barbara will be posting a new Italian word (+ audio) on her blog - Visit every Tuesday and Thursday to see and hear a new Italian word. At the end of the tour put all the words together into a phrase and enter it at Barbara’s blog site - One winner will be drawn from those with the correct phrase. Prize is a chique leather wallet! The contest is open internationally. Words will be posted along with audio link. Winner will be announced Thursday, August 23. 
The second contest is an essay contest. If I Lived in Italy I Would…  

What would you do if you lived in Italy? Dream big and start writing! Your essay should be as long as you need it to be to express yourself! Submit your essays at the Essay Contest page at Barbara’s blog -
. One winner will be chosen to receive a Chique Kindle Sleeve! 

Barbara will also be hosting her own Q & A on her radio show. Here are the links to pages where you can submit your own questions for Barbara. 

For questions on writing and publishing  that will be answered on July 20, go to
. For questions about Italy and travel that will be answered on August 17, go to
. Then tune in to the Chique Show - - on July 20th and August 17th for the pre-recorded sessions. 
In addition, CHIQUE SECRETS OF DOLCE AMORE will be specially priced for only 99 cents at Amazon through Aug. 24.
Here is a book tour trailer for your enjoyment:

Have you ever been to Italy? What did you enjoy most? Would you like to go, if you haven’t been? Thanks so much for stopping by. Remember to comment for a downloadable gift bag!

1 comment:

  1. Barbara, thanks again for guest blogging. You have some exciting contests going on with your tour. Wishing you continued success with your writing.


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