Nov25, 2013 |
This year, I have a lot to be thankful for. Let’s face it, EVERY year I have a lot to be thankful for!
To celebrate Thanksgiving, the members of the The Class of 2k14 decided to have a mini-blogfest. You can find out what the rest of my classmates are thankful for this year at the class website!
As for me, I can’t contain myself to just one thing. So, I’m going with a list! (You might be seeing a lot of lists out of me in the coming months. The main character of next book, TOP TEN CLUES YOU’RE CLUELESS, has a habit of making lists and after spending so much time with her, I just can’t seem to stop myself!!)
I’m Thankful For…
- The opportunity to be part of the Class of 2k14! So far, we’re shaping up to be a pretty fantastic class, if I do say so myself. From glowing Kirkus reviews to Most Anticipated Book Lists, these amazing ladies have created an outstanding group of books and I am so proud to be in such great company!
- The team at Harper Collins who has made the process leading up to my debut as painless as possible. I feel like I won the publishing lottery!
- My agent, Laura Bradford, who continues to work her butt off for me! I wish her tasty treats and pleasure reading for the holiday.
- The friends and family who keep me excited about my upcoming book birthday even when I’m deep in the No-One-Is-Going-To-Read-This-and-Those-That-Do-Will-Hate-It-and-I-Will-Die-in-an-Internet-Flame-War-by-April zone.
- The YA Community both on-line and in-person who make me laugh, send encouragement when needed, and keep writing the most amazing books on earth!!
- Cheese. I’m deeply grateful for cheese. It’s the Wisconsinite in me.
You know those quotes from other authors that are on the covers of some books? Well guess what–I am the luckiest little writer in the world because I got AWESOME ONES!
Maybe you’ve heard of Huntley Fitzpatrick? You know, the author of the fantastic, MY LIFE NEXT DOOR, and the upcoming WHAT I THOUGHT WAS TRUE?
Well, she is as lovely and kind as you might expect if you’ve read her book. And she was generous enough to read an advanced copy of ASK AGAIN LATER and let us put her thoughts on the cover. Thanks Huntley! You should totally read her book, by the way. And pre-order her new book, WHAT I THOUGHT WAS TRUE while you’re at it. Because Huntley knows how to write the swoon-worthy romance, I assure you!
And perhaps you’ve also heard of Shaun David Hutchinson? Author of THE DEATHDAY LETTER and FML?
Well Shaun has been so delightful to this newbie. I started by fangirling him on Twitter, then sent him an email that literally had “OMG I’m terrified to send this!!” in the subject line. But he’s super nice and so funny–what a shock if you’ve read his books, right? He is also gracing us with a new book soon and you should probably put it on your to-read list. It’s called The Five Stages of Andrew Brawley. I know! You want to read it based on the title alone, right? I do.
Anyway, to celebrate my good fortune to have these two amazing authors give my book their seal of approval, I’m holding a BIG OL’ GIVEAWAY!!
GRAND PRIZE: Choose one book by each of my blurbers, PLUS get an ARC of ASK AGAIN LATER–there aren’t many left!!
FIRST PRIZE: Choose any book by ONE of my blurbers.
SECOND PRIZE: A $5 gift card to the bookseller of your choice and an autographed ASK AGAIN LATER bookmark.
THIRD PRIZE: An autographed ASK AGAIN LATER bookmark.
Easy to enter. All you have to do is share one of these images below on the social media of your choice! There are some optimized for Facebook, others are square for Twitter or Instagram. Any should work on Tumblr. I’ll have them all up on my own social media if you prefer to go the easy route and “Share” from mine.
(Glitter background images courtesy of AssassinM)
Unfortunately, since I have to ship a few of these things myself, I can’t offer this contest internationally. But that still leaves a whole lotta peeps in the US! The contest will run for 2 weeks, so get your social media engines revved!
Nov04, 2013 |
Good morning! It’s been a LONG time since I last blogged, but fear not, because today I come bearing gifts!
First of all, I’m super excited to share with you guys that my critique partner, BFF, and all-around swell gal, J.A. Souders, is about to unleash the second installment of her RENEGADE series on the world! That’s right, tomorrow is the big deal when REVELATIONS hits shelves. Have you found yourself wondering what happened to the anmesiac Evie once she got to the surface world? I bet you have! And now you get to find out!!
To celebrate her book birthday, Jessie is on a blog tour right now and she’s giving away fabulous goodies. You can find today’s stop on the tour here, or check out the whole schedule at Rockstar Booktours.
Second, the Class of 2k14 is still busily giving away all the books from the Class of 2k13. This week, my awesome mentor K.A. Barson is up. We’re giving away a copy of her book, 45 POUNDS (MORE OR LESS) to anyone in the whole world. Yes, that’s right, it’s an international giveaway and I can’t wait to ship it off to the lucky winner.
45 POUNDS (MORE OR LESS) is the delightful story of Ann who sets a goal of dropping 45 pounds before her aunt’s wedding. It’s a fantastic, fun, and funny read about some very serious subjects but K.A. handles it all deftly. You’ll love Ann from the start. If you’re a fan of contemporary, you’ll want to add this to your to-read pile, for sure! And if you enter now, you could win a copy for free! Just follow the link or click the image to enter!
Finally, for those of you keeping track, we are now only 5 months and 1 week away from my own book birthday! I’ve got preorder buttons at all your favorite booksellers, and stay tuned for giveaways. Thanks to everyone who has already added ASK AGAIN LATER to their Goodreads lists! I can’t believe how quick the debut is coming!
Also, I’m about to turn in copy edits on TOP TEN CLUES YOU’RE CLUELESS. I can’t wait to tell you guys more about this story!
Good luck in the giveaways and happy reading!
Sep03, 2013 |
I spend most of my time talking about my debut novel, Ask Again Later, these days. But I’m also lucky enough to have a second book coming out, too! Did you know that?
At this point, it’s expected to come out at the end of 2014–I know, two books in one year? I’m either super lucky or just plain crazy. (Don’t hold me to that release date either. If there’s one thing you can be sure of in publishing, it’s that a release date isn’t set in stone for quite a while!)
And now I can share the title with you!
Top Ten Clues You’re Clueless
There’s no official jacket flap copy yet, but I’ve got a little something cooked up for you in the meantime. Stay tuned for the official one, and eventually a fabulous cover to go with it!
Ten Things That Could Happen in this Book
1. Someone commits an act of accidental vandalism
2. A large amount of money goes missing.
3. Someone assaults a Salvation Army bell ringer.
4. A foot race passes through the meat department.
5. A lock is picked.
6. Someone steals a pregnancy test.
7. The police are called.
8. A ham goes on an unexpected journey.
9. Someone gets kissed.
10. Six teens are accused of a crime they didn’t commit (probably).
It’s Christmas Eve, and Chloe Novak and her friends are about to face the strangest shift at GoodFoods Market ever.
Huzzah! I’m so happy I get to start sharing tidbits about this story at last!
Aug21, 2013 |
If you’re not already familiar with Chuck Wendig‘s blog, Terrible Minds, I don’t even know if we can be friends anymore. At least not until you get over there and start reading. Well, maybe not if you’re easily offended by naughty words. And maybe not if you don’t want to be a writer. And okay, if your parents would be mad that you were reading something with a lot of naughty words.
But the rest of you–NO EXCUSES!
Chuck had a few guest posters recently, and one of them is the talented and hilarious Delilah S. Dawson, who you should probably be following on Twitter if you enjoy that sort of thing. If not, please see paragraph one.
Anyway, Ms. Dawson put down one of the best blogs I’ve ever seen. It’s called 25 Steps to Being a Traditionally Published Author: Lazy Bastard Edition. I won’t do the Bad Internet Etiquette Thing of reproducing the entire piece here, but I will give you a couple choice quotes, then wait patiently while you go read the rest. Warning: NSFW. Caveat: Make time outside of work, it’s worth it.
This is a pretty darn good account of what my own journey was like, so at least you know it’s the “normal” experience for 2 published authors. Which is nice.
On with the quotes!
2. THE FIRST RULE OF WRITE CLUB IS WRITE
This is no secret. Writing is a hugely complicated casserole of grammar, rhythm, vocabulary, pacing, plot, character, word choice, and time spent on task. You can’t edit, revise, or rewrite a blank page. So no matter how good you are, no matter how much you doubt yourself, no matter how elusive your saucy minx of a muse might be, sit your ass in that Ikea Poang chair and write like a mofo. Whether you go by Malcolm Gladwell and Macklemore’s proclamation of 10,000 hours or Stephen King’s avowed 1,000,000 words, you have to put in the time and effort to learn how to write with any skill. You must squeeze out one complete book before most of this advice applies at all. See rule 1.
13. DON’T LET QUERYING MAKE YOU CRAZY. BECAUSE IT WILL
No one watches an inbox as creepily as a querying writer. Every ping, every refresh could be the answer to your wildest dream. Or a soul-crushing form response that subtly indicates your general suckitude. If you just sit there, waiting, you’re doing yourself a disservice. Go out in the world and do something worth writing about. Start writing your next book. Read something so engrossing that you don’t even hear that adorable whistling sound my phone makes when I get an email. Go hang out on Twitter and yap it up with other writers, never ever mentioning that you’re querying or that you just got a rejection and can’t stop chewing on your beard.
Okay, now quit hanging around here and go read the rest!
Aug20, 2013 |
Yes, that’s right, the Class of 2k14 is giving away teachers and librarians!
Oh wait, we’re giving away prizes TO teachers and librarians? Oh. Well that’s very different.
But still awesome.
We’ve got 16–count them SIXTEEN!–prizes on offer. A Skype visit with one of our 20 authors to your classroom, library, or reading group. Why? Because we ADORE them, that’s why.
You can get all the details at the class website.
Aug12, 2013 |
So I have this Facebook page, right? And it’s supposed to link to my blogs, but the links are always broken (*side-eyes WordPress*) and a lot of times I forget that I can interact with other humans there so a lot of time it just sits. I suppose the same could be said of my blog, but I digress.
A while ago, I saw this post about how to make your Facebook page look more custom, and I was like “Ooh, the pretty!” and then I let it sit for a while on my Pinterest board with all the other reminders of things I am likely never to accomplish in the realm of crafting, organization, and cooking.
Then, the Great and Powerful Muse of Procrastination came to visit me and I decided it was clearly time to tackle the prettification of my Facebook page rather than work on my next book. Brilliant, right?
Turns out the first post I looked at made things kind of super hard for the only-semi-tech-savvy like me. I can do a little html coding, but that’s about it. And I can’t even do the hard stuff. So I poked around for a while (Bless you, St. Google) and found this much more user friendly post by SillyGrrl. I only ended up using the last tool in her arsenal since I don’t have an Etsy store–wait, just a second.
Okay, I’m back. I was dying of laughter over the idea of me with a craft store.
So, I added 3 static html buttons to link to my website, my Tumblr, and my Twitter page.
Then–ooh la la–I decided to get super fancy and make the buttons look pretty. This is actually the easy peasy part, tech-wise. You click the down arrow to show all yours apps, like this:
Then click the little pencil in the upper right corner of the app. Then you select Edit Settings and follow the link to Change the image. Like this:
There are some kind and generous bloggers out there who have made custom buttons you can download for free. Like at this site. Again, I was out of luck since I don’t have an Etsy store.
So, since I am pretty much of an idiot when it comes to graphic design, I decided to do it old school. I used chalk and the kiddo’s easel to draw me some buttons. Then the handy-dandy iPhone took some close-ups and bam–I had pretty .jpgs. One warning, however. If you don’t have them exactly 111px by 74px, they won’t work. I’m sure there are easy ways of making sure your pics are the right size. My particular method was to make my husband do it. I would highly recommend this method.
Anyhoodle, now I have pretty pretty buttons on my Facebook page that make my poor little neglected page look so much more inviting! Yay for me! And thank you, Great and Powerful Muse of Procrastination for visiting me in my time of need.
Aug07, 2013 |
What’s the goal of publishing? To have someone–hopefully a lot of people–read your book, right?
Absolutely. End goal. The whole reason I got into this business.
Then my Advanced Reader Copies arrived in a lovely box with the HarperCollins logo on the side. And that’s about the point my heart exploded with joy. Trust me when I say there is very little in this world as surreal as holding your own very book in your hands.
And at first I la-la-la’d around the house, dancing with it. Seriously, I was like Belle in the bookshop during the opening number of Beauty and the Beast.
It took a few days for reality to set in: the arrival of these beauties meant that they were most likely arriving in other people’s mailboxes as well. Like, reviewer type people.
Yeah, so it turns out Harper didn’t just send me this lovely box to make my day/week/month/year.
People are reading my book. Strangers. People not even related to me. I’m getting tweets from bloggers who got it.
Cue sweaty palms.
I’ve even given a couple away myself. One went to my best friend, which seemed fitting considering there’s a character named after her in it–Hi Lisa! One is making the rounds in my family (yes, they’re reading it for the first time, too, because I’m a nutjob who doesn’t show my stuff to anyone in my family). One was part of the giveaway for my cover reveal–it’s coming, Kennedy, I promise!
So I guess this is where we begin the true roller coaster ride that is being a published author.
So, if you need me..I’ll be the one hiding under the covers with my big bag of M&Ms. You’re welcome to join me there.
*pokes head out from under covers*
By the way, there’s a chance to win one along with a bunch of other amazing prizes as part of YA Highway’s anniversary giveaway. You can enter to win until August 23, so go!
Jul01, 2013 |
Remember last week, when I said I was excited about the Class of 2k14‘s website launch? Well, today’s the day and we are starting off with a bang! Who doesn’t want $100 to spend on books? Nobody, that’s who.
So how do you get in on the giveaway action? Well, it couldn’t be easier. All you have to do is check out our website and enter the giveaway in the handy little form. And if you want to increase you chances of winning, you can give us all the Internet loving with your trusty Like and Follow fingers.
What’s the Class of 2k14 business, you ask? It’s a group of 20 authors debuting in Young Adult and Middle Grade fiction in 2014. Our goal is to bring the best books we can to the reading public–to feed your Fiction Addiction. As our books get closer to the shelves, you’ll also find resources for teachers, librarians, and booksellers–like readers’ guides, bookclub questions, and more. And there will be tons of giveaways all year long. Including all the books from the Class of 2k13, so stay tuned.
I’m here to tell you there are some really tremendous authors in this group and some books you are not going to want to miss. I’m so proud to be a member of the class!
Please, check us out. You won’t regret it!
Jun24, 2013 |
I’ve been so busy spreading my cover around that I never got it posted here! Bad author! *slaps own wrist*
In case you’re keeping track, there’s still a week to go in the giveaway at IceyBooks. You could be the lucky winner of an Advanced Reader Copy of Ask Again Later, as soon as they become available. That’s right, you don’t have to wait until March 11, 2014–you can be a total hipster and read it before anyone else discovers it. Then, when it comes you, you can totally scoff and say how commercial it’s become. Would that be awesome or what?!
Other things to share:
1. Today you can find me at Beth Fred’s blog talking about the things I’ve learned about marketing so far (spoiler alert: I’m still learning!)
2. If you haven’t added Ask Again Later to your Goodreads To-Read list, you can do it through this link, or using that handy little button on the sidebar over there ————->
3. Ask Again Later is also now on Amazon! What?! It’s wicked early, and there’s no cover art or even a description of the book, but it’s already got a preorder button, which is pretty darn cool.
4. I’ve just gotten editorial notes on my next book, and A: Erica Sussman rocks my stripey socks, and B: We have a title! But I’m not telling you yet, because I’m cheeky like that.
5. Next week, the Class of 2k14 will finally be launching our website! This is a group of debut authors whose books are coming out in 2014. We all write books for young people, from Middle Grade to Young Adult. This is a very cool group of writers and I’m so proud to be a part of it. I’ll alert you all when the site goes live. In the meantime, you can follow us on Twitter, or you can check out all our books on Goodreads.
6. Have a great Monday!
And, at last, here’s the cover!!