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Hello, Hallmark! National Cookie Month Giveaway #1

Well, I've got a bit of exciting news - for me and for you! Admittedly, this announcement feels a little anticlimactic, as I've been privy to this information for close to a year. Around about January, my book Cookie Swap, first published in 2009, was licensed to Hallmark for a bit of re-gifting, if you will. Basically, a second crack at sitting on bookstore shelves - which can be a very good thing for starving authors like me. (If you don't know the premise behind the original book, it basically advocates for cookie swaps not just at Christmas, but every time of year! More here.)

 

As for the licensing idea: Condense the chapters a touch, put a Christmassy spin on the cover and packaging (i.e., red bow, pine sprig, and tag), and feature it as the perfect holiday hostess gift in Hallmark store across the US and Canada!

 

Well, all that's been done, I've received my advance copies, and October 4 - about a week ago today - was the official launch date in stores! (To find the Hallmark store closest to you, check out this handy Hallmark store locator. Also to note: many Hallmark stores are independent retailers and it's up to them whether to carry a certain Hallmark product or not. So it's best to call first to check availability.)

 

COOKIESWAP_COV

Revamped Hallmark edition book jacket, featuring vintage-2009 cookie box by moi, sans red bow, pine sprig, and tag. Image by Steve Adams.

 

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All tied up with ribbon and pine sprig. Plus, a fab Cookie Connection tote bag! Image by Julia M Usher.

 

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The Hallmark team really did a nice job with the packaging. There's even a special bookplate page inside where you can inscribe the book. Image by Julia M Usher.

 

Enough about me! Here's where you come in!

 

To celebrate National Cookie Month and the book launch (or re-launch, as is really more accurate), I'll be giving away a copy of the book and an exclusive Cookie Connection canvas tote (pictured above) to each of two winners ($40 retail value each, with shipping anywhere included).

 

All you have to do to enter is:

  1. Share this post (using the links at the very bottom of the post) on as many social networks as possible! (Pssst . . . I'll never be able to verify that you did this, but I'll deeply appreciate any and all spreading of the word.)
  2. In the comments area below, tell me to whom you will give this book, and why, if you should win it. (Note: You must be a Cookie Connection member to comment here. To join, simply go to the home page of this site, click on "Join Community" in the upper left, and follow the prompts.)
  3. Do all of the above no later than October 18, 2014 (5 pm central).

At that time, the giveaway will close, and I'll randomly draw two people from among the commenters to receive the prizes. If you don't win this time, there should be an ample stash of books at your neighborhood Hallmark store* (hint, hint ) and maybe - just maybe - I'll be doing another giveaway. (Note the #1 in the giveaway title!)

 

Best of luck!

 

* Again, it's best to call your local store first to check availability, as not all stores may carry it.

 

P.S. Interested in other new cookie books hitting bookstore shelves during National Cookie Month? Check out this related post.

 

******* GIVEAWAY NOW CLOSED/WINNERS ANNOUNCED! ********

 

Thanks, everyone, for participating and helping to spread the word about my new book. It looks like three very young bakers will be the recipients of these books judging from the two winning comments (#12 and #34 from Jan Mac and Kelcy Workman, respectively) below. Aspiring bakers are my favorite kinds of winners!

 

JanMac - Comment 12

Kelcy Workman - Comment 34

 

Congrats, ladies (and daughters)! I'll be contacting you in few to get your mailing addresses!

Attachments

Images (5)
  • Cookie Swap Book Jacket for Hallmark Edition: Cookies by Julia M Usher; Image by Steve Adams
  • Book, All Tied Up with Ribbon and Pine Sprig, Plus Cookie Connection Tote!: Image by Julia M Usher
  • Close-up of Tag and Ribbon: Image by Julia M Usher
  • Jan Mac - Winning Comment # 12
  • Kelcy Workman - Winning Comment #34

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Comments (84)

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******* GIVEAWAY NOW CLOSED/WINNERS ANNOUNCED! ********

 

Thanks, everyone, for participating and helping to spread the word about my new book. It looks like three very young bakers will be the recipients of these books judging from the two winning comments (#12 and #34 from Jan Mac and Kelcy Workman, respectively) below. Aspiring bakers are my favorite kinds of winners!

 

JanMac - Comment 12

Kelcy Workman - Comment 34

 

Congrats, ladies (and daughters)! I'll be contacting you in few to get your mailing addresses!

Attachments

Images (2)
  • Jan Mac - Winning Comment #12
  • Kelcy Workman - Winning Comment #34

If I won your book I would keep it for myself...well, to use with my little baker boy!! I am coming up on the three year anniversary of the loss of my father next month who was a wonderful baker and taught me a lot that I hope to share and pass on to my son Theo!! They are why I started a baking business (and Theo is named after his father-my grandfather) and are the reason I did not give up when few were showing support or belief in me!! Those few (who know who they are) are cherished beyond words!! <3 After taking a break to tend to critical family needs and then relaunching my company with support of some amazing cookiers (and cakesters ) and talking to Rebecca Weld and her pointing me in your direction Julia and to cookie connection, I have found much more support, encouragement, love, and like of my talents as a baker and have formed some most valuable friendships I will cherish forever!! <3 I cannot thank you two ladies enough (and the rest of you lovelies that know who they are) for this amazing site and for joining me for the ride on my sweet journey!! <3 <3 

Originally Posted by Julia M. Usher:
Originally Posted by Cheryl Silas:

Congratulations...Will it be in Canada as well or just the US?

Not sure, Cheryl. I've asked them a few times and am waiting on an answer. Will let you know.

Cheryl - update! Yes, it will be carried in those Canadian stores that have opted to carry it. About 75% of their stores in the US and Canada are carrying it, though some are just unpacking their Christmas inventory now. Best to call your local store first to check availability. Thanks!

The extra book would go to my niece, I gave her a KitchenAid Mixer for her to start doing cookies and cakes. She would be so amazed at the cookie decorations you do! Just like I'm amazed. I can only hope to be half as good as you Julia. Thank you for your creativeness. 

Beautiful book! If I won I would give to my dear friend Zsuzsanna Castells. She has the biggest heart I know. I am the person who started her cookieing addiction, and I know she would love this book!

I would give it to my 10 year old Granddaughter who is just starting out baking. She is very talented already and loves baking and decorating cakes and cookies. Thanks for a chance to win.

If I won your book I would definitely give it to my daughter, my mini-me.  She loves to bake and decorate cookies as much as I do.  My granddaughter is following in her footsteps as they bake and decorate together.  It's a great tradition.  I'll buy my own copy.

Hi Julia. After trying to make all your cookies I will most likely share it with my sister in law who also enjoys making cookies like me! Your cookies are so great! thanks for sharing!

Honestly this might sound greedy but I would keep it for myself, as you are the one that inspired me to make these amazing creations. I have your other books and would love that book to add to my collection, with out sounding like a suck up or cheesy but your my inspiration and when people ask me where did I get the idea to start these project, I mention you Julia Usher. So even if I don't win it I will still go searching to buy it.