Sunday, May 1, 2011

Marvelous May Masterminds: Kim Culbertson + Giveaway

Three days before her drama club's trip to Italy, Jessa Gardner discovers her boyfriend in the costume barn with another girl. Jessa is left with a care package from her best friend titled "Top Twenty Reasons He's a Slimy Jerk Bastard," instructing her to do one un-Jessa-like thing each day of the trip. At turns hilarious and heartwrenching, Instructions for a Broken Heart paints a magical Italy in which Jessa learns she must figure out life-and romance-for herself. Published today, May 1, 2011.

Top Five Things I Take When I Travel
by Kim Culbertson, author of Instructions for a Broken Heart

1. My journal: Ever since I was young, I write when I travel. I write poems, descriptions of things I notice, snippets of overheard conversation. I keep little candy wrappers and train ticket stubs and I stuff everything into my journal. When I get home, I sometimes organize the journal and sometimes things just remain stuffed inside it for me to discover years later.

2. My camera: Only I rarely use it. I always take it. But then I forget to use it. Probably because I’m writing in my journal. I’m lucky my husband loves to take pictures. When I get home, I often only have six or eight pictures on my camera. Still, they make for a random little tribute to our trip. Lately, they are almost always of my daughter. Or of food.

3. Sunglasses: I am so squinty without my sunglasses, even in the winter. And I get huge headaches when I get squinty so my sunglasses must always come along on my trips. Or I’m miserable.

4. Book: My suitcase always ends up weighing a ton because I bring so many books on my trips and I always run out. Last summer in Whistler, Canada, I ran out of books and ended up walking about a half hour to find a bookstore. Which was its own fun little adventure. For Christmas this year, my husband bought me a Kindle. Just in case we’re on a trip and I can’t walk to a store.

5. Wide Open Mind: The single most important thing I take. Because travel is all about what you don’t expect to happen. You can plan, you can organize, you can have it all mapped out, but the fabulous part of travel is all the surprises along the way – the train that doesn’t come, the odd little restaurant tucked back in an alley that ends up being amazing, the last minute boat ride across a lake. This is what I love about travel – the unexpected.

What do you take with you?

Thank you so much for sharing with us, Kim! Now it's giveaway time. Kim will give one lucky reader a copy of her book, along with a travel journal of their own! All you have to do is comment answering her question "What is something you always have to take with you while traveling?" and by filling out the form with your contact info and optional extra entries.

Open to the USA only. Ends on May 14.
Extra entries for being a wonderful blog follower
and advertising about this giveaway.
One winner will be randomly chosen and emailed;
they will have 5 days to claim the prize.
Fill out the form to enter, but remember to leave a comment, too!

Click here to fill out the form!

FIND KIM ONLINE: Website | Goodreads | Twitter
ORDER THIS BOOK ONLINE: Amazon | Barnes & Noble | IndieBound


  1. Mu camera.. but I actually use it :)

  2. My camera. I need to document my traveling with pictures.

  3. Books, definitely tons and tons of books! (My camera is a given, of course but I would take more pictures of the scenery than I would of myself. ;)

  4. I always have to take a book or books. Now that I have a Nook, it is going to be a lot lighter of a load.

  5. Definitely my camera. I take it everywhere with me. You never know when a good photo opp may come :)

  6. I always take my hair dryer with me. The ones at the hotels aren't powerful enough for me.

    lizzi0915 at aol dot com

  7. Camera, definitely! Although, when I travel I'm always so busy doing things that I never take photos.

  8. Music! Either ipod, cds, or both.

  9. my rebel xti (I'm so in love with it!) and my ipod. That's all I usually take (other than clothes and such haha).

  10. I definitely always have to have my camera. I love taking pictures :)

  11. I would take my camera. Like they say a picture is worth a thousand words and I would like to be able to show my kids and there kids the trips I have been on and the places I have seen.

  12. The only thing I really want to take with me is my awesome family <3

  13. Just wanted to stop by and thank you all for these great answers! And special thanks to Books Obsession for hosting this fabulous event. :)

  14. Depends on where I'm going, but I think I'd like to take my ereader now that I have one. :)

  15. My cell phone and money of course.

    lkish77123 at gmail dot com

  16. Books of course! And my ipod :)



  17. What a fab guest post! I am SO looking forward to reading this book because I'm obsessed with all things Italy.

    When I travel, I always bring a little notebook to capture moments and thoughts. And of course my camera!

  18. I take with me atleast 2-3 books, laptop/ipod, phone, camera, money (duh!) =), my purse filled w/ a lot of survival stuff you can't even tell from looking at it, and food. haha

    Tezza V.
    Bayayrea_munkie @ hotmail [dot] com
    GFC: SpadesHighReads

  19. I always, always, always take something good to read! :) Also, some good munchies!

  20. My camera, my computer, and a few books to read.

    GFC follower

    meredithfl at gmail dot com

  21. We have the same list. I bring drawing pencils along, as well.

    The book sounds lovely!

  22. I always bring at least 4 books so I have a selection to choose from depending on my mood!

    TaraTagli at gmail dot com


Thanks, I love what you have to say!