A Giveaway a Day: Happy Birthday Hippo!

books for hippocampus' giveaway

Just a few of this month's prizes that arrived before press time!

We’re giving away a prize a day in honor of our first birthday!

Our wonderful literary friends and business-owner pals donated an assortment of goodies to help us celebrate our birthday! Please visit our donors’ websites to learn more about their work and/or publications and products. We’re still looking to fill a few more days – email us if interested in contributing a gift.

How to Win:

A winner will be selected at random each day this month to win that day’s prize. To win, do one of the following:

  • Comment on a story from this month’s issue at HippocampusMagazine.com
  • Share a post from this month’s issue on Twitter; be sure to use @hippocampusmag or Hippocampus Magazine in the post so we can find it
  • Comment or like one of our Facebook posts pertaining to this month’s issue

The more you interact, the better your chances of winning! Have fun!

Winners will be listed on Facebook, Twitter and on this page each evening or the next morning. Winners must contact info@hippocampusmagazine.com to claim prize within 10 days of winning and must include full name and physical mailing address so gift can be mailed. Prizes will be sent by the end of May; some will be sent directly from that day’s sponsor.


Tuesday, May 1
Custom Candy Box — 24-pack of candy bars from Blair Candy Company’s online store, www.blaircandy.com.

candy bar box from blair candyKeep your writing going by feeding your sweet tooth with this assortment of two dozen candy bars — we’ve already customized the box for you! Blair Candy Company has been a family owned and operated business for over 71 years. BlairCandy.com offers a huge selection of bulk candy, nostalgic and retro candy and lots more.


Winner: Jessie Carty – she retweeted this very post.


Wednesday, May 2
The Low-Residency MFA Handbook: A Guide for Prospective Creative Writing Students (Continuum, 2011) by Lori A. May – signed, courtesy the author

low residency mfa handbook coverThe Low-Residency MFA Handbook: A Guide for Prospective Creative Writing Students offers prospective graduate students an in-depth preview of low-residency creative writing MFA programs and includes interviews with program directors, faculty, alumni and current students. May is a novelist, poet and freelance writer; her writing has been published in various journals. >>More on the book and Lori A. May.

Winner: Roberta F. King, who retweeted about this giveaway.

Thursday, May 3
The Mindful Writer: Noble Truths of the Writing Life by Dinty W. Moore – signed (personalized to winner), courtesy the author

mindful writing cover dinty mooreIn The Mindful Writer: Noble Truths of the Writing Life, Dinty W. Moore shares practical strategies to help writers cultivate peace of mind and write better prose. Moore’s light, insightful commentary is a potent antidote for writer’s angst and a welcome companion for an otherwise lonely activity. Mary Pipher, author of Reviving Ophelia, says , “I’ve read a hundred writing books, but this one is fresh.” Visit: The Mindful Writer: Noble Truths of the Writing Life.

Winner: Lisa Romeo, who retweeted one of our posts.

Friday, May 4
The Rebel Wife by Taylor M. Polites – signed, courtesy the author

taylor polites the rebel wife coverBrimming with atmosphere and edgy suspense, The Rebel Wife (Simon & Schuster 2012) presents a young widow trying to survive in the violent world of Reconstruction Alabama, where the old gentility masks a continuing war fueled by hatred, treachery, and still-powerful secrets. O Magazine — yes, Oprah– in their February 2012 issue picks The Rebel Wife as one of “Ten Titles to Pick Up Now.” Polites is a novelist living in Providence, Rhode Island with his small Chihuahua, Clovis. He has an MFA in Creative Writing from Wilkes University. >>More about the novel and Polites.

Winner: Kwamee, who commented on a few stories yesterday.

Saturday, May 5
Zarathustra Must Die by Dorian Alexander, courtesy of Etruscan Press

Zarathustra Must Die (Etruscan Press, April 2012) is a fictional memoir of a graduate student’s odyssey through the thought of Friedrich Nietzsche. Experiencing many states of consciousness, Dorian Alexander finally comes to realize the nature of time and its role in human existence. >>More about the book and Etruscan Press.
Winner: Christi Craig; she retweeted us and also like a Facebook post.


Sunday, May 6
North of Hollywood by Rick Lenz, an advanced reader’s copy courtesy JKS Communications

NorthofHollywood_bookcoverRick Lenz is an actor who has made it in New York and Hollywood. Yet his book is more than just an ordinary Hollywood insider story. Also a gifted artist and widely produced playwright, he uses his extraordinary storytelling skills to take you into his personal experiences with actors and entertainers we normally only hear about through the rumor mills, and to reveal real-life experiences of heartbreak, suspense, discovery and joy. >>More about the book and Lenz.

Winner: Randy Brzoska, who retweeted about the giveaway.

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Monday, May 7
Calamity Joe by Brendan Constantine, courtesy Red Hen Press

Calamity Joe is the pen name of a mysterious narrator in a new kind of poetry collection. Spending his days in a lab, talking to mice & microbes, he will soon be the last living member of his family. More and more life seems to hint at its syntax and Joe feels that he can just make out the page he inhabits. Drastic measures are called for, but for what? >>More about the author and book.

Winner: Terry L. Kennedy who retweeted some of our tweets.


Tuesday, May 8
The Burning House by Paul Lisicky, courtesy Estruscan Press

When Isidore Mirsky’s sister-in-law, Joan, loses her apartment, she moves in. Mirsky’s world is already in flux – his job lost, his bayside town under siege by developers – and now he must struggle with his bewildering attraction to Joan, who evokes for him all the qualities that once drew him to his wife. How can a warm, unpredictable man remain true to himself and to the woman he loves? Desire, and the renewal it brings, might just be the thing that causes damage. Outrageous, tender, and alive with the sound of Isidore’s voice, The Burning House captures a man at his most vulnerable moment, on the brink of something new. >>More about the book.

Winner: Nadia Ibrishi who liked the status on Facebook.

Wednesday, May 9
Becky: The Life and Loves of Becky Thatcher by Lenore Hart – signed, courtesy the author

It’s 1910, and the renowned novelist Mark Twain has passed away — “gone with Halley’s comet”– just the time he always said he’d pass away. Now Becky Thatcher would like to set the record straight: she was never the weeping little ninny that Twain made her out to be in his famous popular novel. Yes, she was Tom Sawyer’s childhood sweetheart, but the real story of their love for each other, and the terrible secret that finally tore them apart, never quite made it into Twain’s books. Becky had her own reasons for rejecting Tom, and marrying his cousin Sid . . . as all women have their reasons. >>More about the book.

Winner: Nichole Reber who retweeted several stories.

Thursday, May 10
“Write like a Mother Fuc*er” coffee mug – courtesy The Rumpus

The Rumpus.net is an online magazine focused on culture, as opposed to “pop culture.” Pop culture can be hard to define and the term means different things to different people. Basically, we’re not opposed to things that are popular, but we have no interest in “art” created by marketing executives…The Rumpus is not worried about being the first to break the news. We care about good writing, and we’ll publish essays just because the writing is good.   >>Get your own mug.

Winner: Sabrina Nemis aka @mousecrackers – retweeted and commented on FB.

Friday, May 11
social studies by Jim Warner, plus a custom poem written for winner, courtesy of the author

social studies poem book cover by jim warnerMy second book explores record stores, relationships, and recreational disaster.  I will also write a poem for you, the winner, on whatever topic–Need a love poem for wooing?  How about some verses for a retiring co-worker?  Maybe a jaunty lyric to tattoo and regret after an extended happy hour?  You ask, I’ll write it. >>Learn more about Warner and his book.

Winner: Nina Badzin who retweeted a few tweets.


Saturday, May 12
Through Eyes Like Mine by Noriko Nakada, courtesy the author

through eyes like mine cover snow capped mountains and treesThrough Eyes Like Mine is the story of a childhood told through the present-tense voice of Nori Nakada. Born to a Japanese American father and German-Irish mother in rural Oregon, Nori’s family becomes increasingly diverse when they adopt a six-year-old boy from Korea. She struggles to find comfort within a family, a community and a world that is both simple and complex.  By examining her family’s silences, she begins to understand life, death and her own identity.  The joys and challenges of growing up invite the reader to recall the world through eyes like mine. >>More on Nori and the book.

Winner: Amy Sprague who liked our Facebook status.

Sunday, May 13
My Two Mothers by Pat Florio

cover of my two mothers woman looking out windowOne woman’s loving memories of the two women who made her who she is. Patricia Florio is a travel writer for www.stripedpot.com, an online magazine: “the place to go to be in the know.” She graduated with an M.F.A. in Creative Writing from Wilkes University, concentrating in creative nonfiction.  >>More info on Pat and the book.

Winner: Twitter user ThunderCat_5 who retweeted our post.



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Monday, May 14
The Body of a Dancer by Renee E. D’Aoust, courtesy the author

body of a dancer coverIn a memoir Lance Olsen calls “fascinating, horrifying, unfalteringly honest,” award-winning writer Renee E. D’Aoust draws from her experiences as a modern dancer in New York City during the nineties. Trained at the prestigious Martha Graham Center, D’Aoust intertwines accounts of her own and other dancers’ lives with essays on modern dance history. >>More about the book and D’Aoust

Winner: Congrats to Amanda Alley who commented and tweeted.



Tuesday, May 15
Waterwoman by Lenore Hart, signed, courtesy the author

waterwoman cover lenore hartBy early childhood, Annie Revels had everyone’s role in life figured out but her own. She understood that her mother was ill and needed to be taken care of. That her father was a waterman, a life she envied. And she understood that her little sister, Rebecca, was unabashedly beautiful. And she was not. When Annie’s father suddenly dies, no one questions which sister will take his place aboard the family oyster boat. And for the first time, Annie falls comfortably and easily into the only place in life she thought she could ever fit in-as a waterwoman. And then she meets Nathan… >>More on Waterwoman

Winner: Helen Gallagher, who commented on a story.

Wednesday, May 16
The Memoir Project: A Thoroughly Non-Standardized Text for Writing & Life by Marion Roach

Central Publishing, 2011. An impertinent, utterly useful book on how to write memoir, and see your life for what it really is.

Winner: Alisha Sommer who reteweted a post.





Thursday, May 17
Truth or Something Like it by Curtis Smith (signed), courtesy of author

cover of truth or something like itGlen Tate didn’t ask to be thrust into the heart of political upheaval. He has enough problems of his own–a love life adrift, his crew of disturbed schoolchildren, the lingering ghost of his dead brother… Yet these immediate worries are overshadowed when he survives a horrific accident which claims the son of Arthur Lyndon, the billionaire firebrand determined to forge a new America defined by his vision of the truth. Millions hail Lyndon as a modern messiah, and only Glen and his handful of misfit friends know the real truth. In Truth or Something Like It, Curtis Smith examines friendship and love, society’s penchant for cultish hysteria, and the power of one man to make a difference. >>More on Curtis Smith.

Winner: Kelly Caldwell

Friday, May 18
Mini Journal Two-Pack, courtesy of Hippocampus Magazine

Winner: Patricia Caspers

Saturday, May 19
Book-of-Choice up to $10 – courtesy Hippocampus Magazine

Select the book of your choice from Amazon.com and we’ll ship it to you!

Winner: Steve Goldberg who retweeted us.

Sunday, May 20
Book-of-Choice up to $10 – courtesy Hippocampus Magazine

Select the book of your choice from Amazon.com and we’ll ship it to you!

Winner: Andi Cumbo who retweeted us.

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Monday, May 21
Fast Animal by Tim Seibles, courtesy Etruscan Press

fast animal coverThe newest collection from one of America’s foremost African-American poets threads the journey from youthful innocence to the whittled-hard awareness of adulthood. Along the way it immerses the reader in palpable moments – the importance of remembering, the burden of race, and the meaning of true wakefulness. >>More on the book and Seibles.

Winner: Nichole Moschberger who liked a Facebook status.



Tuesday, May 22
The Raven’s Bride by Lenore Hart – signed, courtesy the author

the-ravens-bride-coverWhen eight-year-old Virginia “Sissy” Clemm meets her handsome cousin, Eddy, she sees the perfect husband she’s conjured up in childhood games. Thirteen years her elder, he’s soft-spoken, brooding, and handsome. Eddy fails his way through West Point and the army yet each time he returns to Baltimore, their friendship grows. As Sissy trains for a musical career, her childhood crush turns to love. When she’s thirteen, Eddy proposes. But as their happy life darkens, Sissy endures Poe’s abrupt disappearances, self-destructive moods, and alcoholic binges. When she falls ill, his greatest fear– that he’ll lose the woman he loves– drives him both madness, and to his greatest literary achievement.>>More about the book.

Winner: Wanda Riggle who commented on a story.

Wednesday, May 23
Mini Journal Two-Pack, courtesy of Hippocampus Magazine

Winner: Lisa Ahn who shared a few stories via Twitter.

Thursday, May 24
Overdue Apologies by Noriko Nakada

cover of overdue apologies with words in folded notesIn Overdue Apologies, the follow-up to her early childhood memoir, Through Eyes Like Mine, Noriko Nakada explores the world of middle school where an adolescent Nori continues the story of her evolving family. She enters a new world where teenage friendships and coming-of-age shift her developing sense of identity. Nori’s sharp perspective captures universal teen moments and takes the reader back to the excitement and challenges of growing up. >>More on Nori and the book.

Winner: Alicia Hendley who gave Hippo a RT.


Friday, May 25
They Hover Over Us: Stories by Rick Fellinger, courtesy the author

cover of they hover over us by rick fellingerThey Hover Over Us, winner of the 2011 Serena McDonald Kennedy Fiction Award, is a collection of 13 short stories about people from Pennsylvania’s Rust Belt. The collection was published this spring by Snake Nation Press, the award sponsor. Richard Fellinger is a writing teacher at Elizabethtown College and a former journalist, and he’s currently at work on his first novel. >>More about the book on Facebook.

Winner: Bree Chittum, who shared a story via Twitter.


Saturday, May 26
$10 Amazon gift card.

Buy the item of your choice!

Winner: Christie Bailey, who liked a Facebook post

Sunday, May 27
$10 Amazon gift card.

Buy the item of your choice!

Winner: Chris G. Nguyen, who RT’d us.

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Monday, May 28
Don Juan in Hankey, PA by Gale Martin, courtesy the author

don juan in hankey pa coverWhen a smalltown opera guild mounts Don Giovanni to save their company from financial ruin, they encounter ghostly mayhem, seduction, and murder, strangely mirroring characters from the Mozart opera they are struggling to produce.

>>More on Don Juan.

Winner: Susan Donato, who commented on Facebook.


Tuesday, May 29
The Memoir Project: A Thoroughly Non-Standardized Text for Writing & Life by Marion Roach

Central Publishing, 2011. An impertinent, utterly useful book on how to write memoir, and see your life for what it really is.

Winner: Sabrina Nemis





Wednesday, May 30
The Autobiography of Mark Twain: Reader’s Edition, courtesy of Newman PR

The year 2010 marked the 100th anniversary of Mark Twain’s death. In celebration of this important milestone and in honor of the cherished tradition of publishing Mark Twain’s works, UC Press published Autobiography of Mark Twain, Volume 1, the first of a projected three-volume edition of the complete, uncensored autobiography. The book became an immediate bestseller and was hailed as the capstone of the life’s work of America’s favorite author. This Reader’s Edition, a portable paperback in larger type, republishes the text of the hardcover Autobiography in a form that is convenient for the general reader, without the editorial explanatory notes.

Winner: Joseph Bednarz who liked a Facebook status.


Thursday, May 31
$15 Amazon gift card

Winner: Carol Bodensteiner who retweeted us.

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