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Sunday, May 30, 2010

Prom Nights from Hell Winner!

Congratulations, Twilights Dance!

You are the winner of a copy of the Prom Nights from Hell anthology, signed by Kim Harrison. Please e-mail me within the next 48 hours with your mailing address, and I will get the book out to you as soon as possible.

Thanks to everyone who entered! There were hundreds of entries for this contests, but do not despair. More contests are coming your way, so remember to stop by over the next few weeks.

Happy reading!

Back to Blogging

Wow was Book Expo America amazing! In case you didn't notice, I didn't blog last week because I was in New York City for BEA.  I got home in the wee hours of Saturday morning and crashed hard after five days of near constant walking, but let me tell you that it was well worth it. I got to spend a week hanging out in the city that never sleeps with lots of authors and tons of blogger buds, all of whom proved to be even cooler in person than they are online. I even saw the obligatory subway crazy while riding the train.

I'll give you all the play by play over the next few days. By the end of the week I pretty much felt like I had been hit by an 18-wheeler. I needed to take a day off to recover. Now that I have I'll be getting back to the daily grind. You'll hear all about BEA in the coming days and of course the Author Insight series will continue this Tuesday, so stay tuned...

Thursday, May 20, 2010

More Author Insight: The Path to Publication

What was the most challenging part of
your road to publication?

"The first major roadblock was finding an agent. I spent over two years researching agents and sending queries, and wasn’t offered representation until I had completed my third novel (The Tension of Opposites). The second major roadblock was revision. Once I landed my agent, I revised for eleven months before she pitched the book to editors. It all worked out well, though, as I had three offers in three weeks!" - Kristina McBride, author of The Tension of Opposites.

"Waiting to announce that we'd sold the series... it took nine long months to hammer out the contracts, and I am a terrible secret-keeper!" - Lisa Mantchev, author of the Theatre Illuminata series.

"Ignoring acquaintances who thought it should be easy." - Bonnie Doerr, author of Island Sting.

"The two toughest parts of The Secret Year’s road: first of all, while I was writing it, wondering whether it was a book anyone else would care about. I knew it was important to me, and I had a lot of faith in it, but was I just deluding myself? And then after that, the toughest part was waiting for it to come to the bookshelves." - Jennifer Hubbard, author of The Secret Year.

Tension of Opposites swag winners!

I have been remiss! This should have been posted days ago! Sorry folks. The winners of some awesome Tension of Opposites swag are...
Lisa R.
Allison (who apparently rocks :) )
Vampires and Tofu

Congrats ladies and gents! E-mail me with your address within 48 hours, and I will get that swag out to you. Thanks for entering.

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Virginia Festival of the Book & Contest

So I've had the great fortune lately to attend a lot of events and meet a lot of authors, and each and every one has been amazing. Trouble is that, between features and events, I've gotten a little behind on posting, so my apologies for the fact that this post is extremely, obscenely late. The honest truth is that life went crazy for a bit and this post got lost in the shuffle. (I'm ashamed enough without you shaking your heads at me. Give a girl a break.)

On March 20, I drove the hour to Charlottesville for the Virginia Festival of the Book. I met James from Book Chic Club, my cohort in crime, at the Barnes & Noble there to kick off the day. Kim Harrison's signing was the first order of business.

Unlike James, who arrived early and had the chance to eat breakfast, I was late. When I did arrive I got the skinny from him. He explained that they were handing out numbered bracelets, and that there was a "paparazzi line" for photos. We waited in line and finally had the opportunity to meet Kim, who was extremely nice. She even signed a book for one of you lucky readers!

We left there and drove circles around the city for about 15-20 minutes before finding a parking spot. I paid for parking without a problem, but James and the electronic "Pay for Parking" machine had a slight disagreement. (It was operator error.)

Once James worked things out with the cranky yellow box holding his parking pass hostage, we began our search for the Omni Hotel. That took another 15 minutes because GPS lies, and we were late to meet Amy Brecount White (Forget-Her-Nots) and head to the first panel discussion we planned to attend. (Thank you yarn store ladies who pointed us in the right direction!) On arriving to the hotel, we went to every room on the first floor except the one that held that particular panel.

Upside: We knew the layout of the hotel like the back of our hand. Downside: We were even later now. We got there in time to grab a seat on the floor and hear a bit about children's publishing.

Still Amy-less and on the hunt for lunch, we snuck out of the panel just before it ended. That put us in front of the elevators just in time to cross paths with Jennifer Hubbard (The Secret Year), who ushered us out into the shopping district. We chatted with her as we walked her to a lunch get together then broke off to find sustenance for ourselves. We wound up at Five Guys because the local joint we hoped to eat at was super-busy.

Burgers, beverages and much witty book banter kept us busy during lunch. James flaunted his shiny ARC of Will Grayson, and I'll openly admit that I touched it. I'll say it loud and proud. I am a shiny object floozy.

After sufficient grease intake, we found our way back to the hotel a into a panel on worldbuilding where Suzanne Morgan William (Bull Rider), Keri Mikuski (Screwball), P.J. Hoover (Forgotten Worlds) and Barrie Summy (I So Don't Do Spooky) talked about how they go able creating a world readers can believe. Shortly after the panel got going, Amy appeared.

We talked for a bit about books and writing then James headed off to find the table where P.J. Hoover and Barrie Summy were signing while I went to the car to grab all the books I planned to get signed later in the day. I returned in time to find one unchaperoned boy blogger still gabbing with the girls. Apparently James had been talking about me because I was asked if I  was the other half of we.

I told them I was a blogger too and that blogging was how James and I knew each other. Naturally, this prompted Barrie to ask, "What's your blog?"

I had like 100 followers at the time and was more than sure my blog royally sucked. Embarrassed, I looked down and sort of ground my toe into the ground. Then half-muttered, "Wastepaper Prose."  The  reaction that followed nearly gave me a heart attack.

Barrie Summy, author of three middle grade books, reeled back in her chair and squealed! Over me! She cried, "I READ YOU!"

I almost died. All James said was, "See? I told you your blog didn't suck." Smart aleck.

Finally, it was time for Amy and Jennifer's panel on hot teen literature. Along with their fellow panelists, Paula Chase (Flipping the Script) and David McInnis Gill (Soul Enchilada), they read from their latest works, discussed their writing, and talked about young adult literature today. The panel was fantastic and afterwards all four authors signed books and we had the opportunity to talk with them for a while. All in all, it was a great day!

U.S. Only
Ends 5/29 at midnight EST.

I'm giving away a copy of Prom Nights from Hell, signed by Kim Harrison. This anthology also features stories by Meg Cabot, Stephenie Meyer, Lauren Myracle and others. You must be a blog follower to enter. Here's how you rack up entries...

Extra Entries
+3 Blog Follower
+1 Comment on this post
+2 Add Wastepaper Prose to your blog roll
+2 Tweet or link to this contest
(Twitter, sidebar, facebook, etc. Max 2 links.)

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Author Insight: The Path to Publication

What was the most challenging part of
your road to publication?

"Writing Tell Me a Secret was not an easy task. It meant delving into the sad events that inspired it, and the pain of difficult relationships. There were many times when I thought I was wasting my time and babysitting money, that I would never be up to the task of finishing it. I learned a lot, fighting through those doubts – mostly that they were an Everest of my own making. After I realized it, they had much less power over me." - Holly Cupala, author of Tell Me a Secret.

"The highs and lows. I would get great feedback from someone, but then the lead would go nowhere. That happens a lot in publishing. Serious mood swings." - Amy Brecount White, author of Forget-Her-Nots.

"Well…the most challenging part for me has been staying published. It’s an illusion that once you get there, you have it made. There are so many things that can happen once you sneak past that velvet publishing curtain." - Tiffany Trent, author of the Hallowmere series.

"Waiting and seeing books that have some minor similarities with mine release before mine. Most authors can probably say this, too--If books were released as soon as they were written and edited more (and different) books would be praised as inventive. Remember that 13 to Life was written (and an award winner) in 2008 although it's out in June 2010." - Shannon Delany, author of 13 to Life: A Werewolf's Tale.

Monday, May 17, 2010

YA Rocks: Writers' Blok by Jackson Pearce

All I can say about this video is WOW! I mean, how could I not share this amazing musical debut from Jackson Pearce, author of Sisters Red (June 2010)? See for yourself...

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Maggie Stiefvater's Linger Trailer

In Maggie Stiefvater's Shiver, Grace and Sam found each other. Now, in Linger, they must fight to be together. For Grace, this means defying her parents and keeping a very dangerous secret about her own well-being. For Sam, this means grappling with his werewolf past...and figuring out a way to survive into the future. Add into the mix a new wolf named Cole, whose own past has the potential to destroy the whole pack. And Isabel, who already lost her brother to the wolves...and is nonetheless drawn to Cole. At turns harrowing and euphoric, Linger is a spellbinding love story that explores both sides of love--the light and the dark, the warm and the cold--in a way you will never forget.

Summary from Good Reads.

Now for the awesome stop motion book trailer for Linger, book two of The Wolves of Mercy Falls trilogy. It really is beautiful and I can't imagie the time and persistance it took to create it. Find out more about the making of the trailer on Maggie's livejournal - Part 1, Part 2, and Part 3.

In My Mailbox (3)

This stupid video fought me all day long. First the camera wouldn't record, then it would download, so I re-recorded the video and it was still unhappy so I changed SD cards. Finally, I thought it was done and I tried to upload it to YouTube and... They've stopped accepting videos over 10 minutes. Gah! It was a mere 30 seconds over so I had to rerecord it AGAIN! You get the idea. It's been rough.

Anyway, it's a little long, but that's because there is an astronomical amount of books. On with the show...

People & things mentioned in this vlog:
Julie Kagawa, author of The Iron King.
Jessica Leader, author of Nice and Mean.
Kelly Creagh, author of Nevermore.
Stacey at Page Turners Blog.
Monica at Bibliophilic Book Blog.
Green Valley Book Fair.
Tiffany Trent, author of the Hallowmere series.
Kristi at The Story Siren.
Suzanne Johnson, crit partner and author of Royal Street.
Sara at The Hiding Spot.
Traveling ARC Tours

Books for Review:
A Blue So Dark by Holly Schindler
Ascendant by Diana Peterfreund
Firelight by Sophie Jordan
Paranormalcy by Kiersten White
I So Don't Do Mysteries by Barrie Summy
I So Don't Do Spooky by Barrie Summy'
I So Don't Do Make-up by Barrie Summy

Books I bought, gifts, etc:
Soulless by Christopher Golden
Stealing Heaven by Elizabeth Scott
Angus, Thongs and Full-Frontal Snogging by Louise Rennison
On the Bright Side I Am Now the Girlfriend of a Sex God by Louise Rennison
Audrey, Wait! by Robin Benway
Token of Darkness by Amelia Atwater-Rhodes
Thirteenth Child by Patricia Wrede
Nobody's Princess by Esther Friesner
Nobody's Prize by Esther Friesner
Tuck Everlasting by Natalie Babbit
Confessions of a Serial Kisserby Wendelin van Draanen
Arch Enemy by Frank Beddor
Prom Dates from Hell by Rosemary Clement-Moore
Magic in the Mirrorstone by Various Authors
Bra & Broomsticks by Sarak Mlynowski
Spells & Sleeping Bags by Sarah Mlynowski
Frogs & French Kisses by Sarah Mlynowski
The School For Dangerous Girls by Eliot Schreiber
Saving Francesa by Melina Marchetta
The Eternal Kiss by Various Authors
The Vast Fields of Ordinary by Nick Burd
When You Reach Me by Rebecca Stead
Ballads of Suburbia by Stephanie Kuenert
Immortal by Gilliam Shields
The Everafter by Amy Huntley
Karma Club by Jessica Brody
Kiss in the Dark by Lauren Henderson
Stolen by Lucy Christopher
Gimme a Call by Sarah Mlynowski
The Mystery of Lewis Carroll by Jenny Woolf
Shade by Jeri Smith-Ready
Princess for Hire by Lindsay Leavitt
Spells by Aprilynne Pike
Lover Mine by J.R. Ward

Nice and Mean bookmarks
So Many Boys postcards and bookmarks
So Many Boys Galley

Friday, May 14, 2010

Meet me at the Book Expo?

Wow am I nervous! I've seen several people put up BEA meet-up posts, including The Story Siren and Sharon Loves Books & Cats, so I decided to throw in with the cool kids and do one too.

Here goes... My name is Susan. I like long walks on the beach, soft jazz (the closer it is to elevator music, the better), full-bodied red wines... Alright! You caught me! I like exactly none of those things. I'm a recovering sodaholic, avid reader and aspiring fiction writer who is pretty laid back and tends to go with the flow.

But seriously, as I type this post, I feel kind of like I'm making one of those awful videos for a dating service, all the while wondering if it will go unwatched. I hope that's not the case, but if no one responds, I have a dog, a computer, and a stack of books that don't judge. I'll be fine without you!

(Stay tuned for the best "dating service" video ever!)

Thursday, May 13, 2010

More Author Insight: Hooked on Books

Is there one book that has had an impact
on not only your writing, but on you personally?
What do you love about that book?

"Julia Cameron’s The Artist’s Way freed my creativity and helped me believe in my potential." - Bonnie Doerr, author of Island Sting.

"I remember my first ever literary crush: Morgan Leah from The Druid of Shannara by Terry Brooks. It showed me it was possible to actually love a fictional character to the point of desperately wishing he was real. It made me want to write characters like that; so vivid and alive and unforgettable, you almost forget that they aren’t flesh and blood." - Julie Kagawa, author of The Iron King.

"I would have to say Reaching for Sun by Tracie Vaughn Zimmer. It's a beautiful verse novel about a girl with cerebral palsy, and it's one of the few books I actually reread, because there is so much to learn within those pages about how to do verse well. And I often think about Josie and how she sees the world when I'm writing. It's just an amazing little book." - Lisa Schroeder, author of Chasing Brooklyn.

"Town by James Roy - a series of interconnected short stories about teenagers in a nameless town. I read it when I was fourteen, I think, and it really got me thinking about perspective (all the books I've written since have had multiple narrators)." - Steph Bowe, author of Girl Saves Boy.

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Author Insight: Hooked on Books

Is there one book that has had an impact
on not only your writing, but on you personally?
What do you love about that book?

"It's impossible to pick a single book that impacted my writing the most, because I think all the books you love become part of who you are as a writer--but certainly classic fantasy (Diana Wynne Jones, C.S. Lewis), science fiction (Ray Bradbury) and Southern/Southern Gothic lit (Harper Lee, Flannery O'Connnor/Anne Rice) have influenced me the most. The book that impacted me the most personally was The Outsiders by S.E. Hinton. The voice and the characters spoke to me, and I related to the idea that people are not always what they appear to be--that often people who appear to be the toughest are the ones who have been the most wounded by life." - Kami Garcia, co-author of Beautiful Creatures.

"Oh, hard question. It's a tie between The Graveyard Book, and Shel Silverstein. Silverstein shaped me as a writer, because my parents read him to me all growing up. His rhythm and rhyme scheme has worked its way into my bones. But Gaiman's Graveyard Book...Neil Gaiman is one of my favorite authors, and he's also the first author I was ever compared to, and I just loved that book so much. It had a wonderful apparent simplicity, the same as William Blake, that disguises something much richer, and that's something I aspire to in my writing." - Victoria Schwab, author of The Near Witch.

"I’m not sure it’s one book, but rather one writer. Around age 12, I started my all-things-Stephen King obsession...er…phase. Don’t we all go through this phase??? His books really hooked me on reading, and steered me toward horror/thriller/supernatural (anything creepy!)." - Kimberly Derting, author of The Body Finder. 

"I read Little Women and Little Men about fifty times each when I was a kid and they made me want to be a writer like Louisa May Alcott. I knew she based the character of Jo on herself and Jo wanted to be a writer...so I understood that it was a dream that was possible to attain." - Rhonda Hayter, author of The Witchy Worries of Abbie Adams.

Monday, May 10, 2010

The Rise of Renegade X Winners!!!

Apologies for not being my normal prompt self and posting these contest results a day or two after, but I was in Kentucky over the weekend and didn't have a chance to write a post. More on the Kentucky trip later. Right now, I have to announce the winners of a signed copy of this book and some pretty fabulous swag.

The swag packs go to...Misty, Laura, and Allison.

And the grand prize, a signed copy of The Rise of Renegade X,
 goes to....*drumroll*...Liz.

Congratulations ladies! I've sent your information to RRX author Chelsea Campbell, who will be sending your winnings to you soon. Thanks to everyone who entered!

Thursday, May 6, 2010

More Author Insight: Writerly Faults

What do you feel is your biggest writerly fault,
and how do you deal with it?

"My biggest writerly fault is probably my eagerness to finish the story that I am writing. I stick to a strict schedule, writing as much as I can every day because I’m so excited to get the story on paper. Sometimes, I rush through my writing, but I believe that that’s what the first draft is for. I’ve learned to write the first draft from the heart and the second, third, etc. from the head. As long as I get the story on the page, I can always edit it later." - Riley Carney, author of The Fire Stone.

"You're going to laugh after the past few questions, but it's lack of planning! LOL!" - Michelle Zink, author of Prophecy of Sisters.

"Distraction haunts me. Strangle it, but unfortunately, there are unlimited members in the family of Distraction." - Bonnie Doerr, author of Island Sting.

"I am a lazy, lazy procrastinator, and sometimes I need my husband to kick my but into gear in the morning with a firm shove and some strong coffee." - Lisa Mantchev, author of the Theater Illuminata series.

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Epic Contest Winners!!!

Is everyone ready?

It took forever to tally the thousands of entries, but Sherry at Flipping Pages for All Ages and I powered through and got it done in a pretty timely manner. (At least I think so.) Now, the results of the Contest of Epic Proportions are in and, as promised, we have 21 fabulous winners. So without further adieu...

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Author Insight: Writerly Faults

What do you feel is your biggest writerly fault,
and how do you deal with it?

"I think my biggest fault is rushing through my work because I desperately want to write that cherished climactic scene. I have to make myself slow down and give the details, think harder about the worldbuilding, etc." - Tiffany Trent, author of the Hallowmere series.

"My biggest writerly fault is having too many ideas and not enough time (and a messy desk--such a messy desk). Anyhow...I'm constantly jotting down ideas and filing them away for later." - Shannon Delany, author of 13 to Life: A Werewolf's Tale.

"My writing can be passive. I have a great critique partner to help point that out for me. Also, I'm fairly plot-challenged. I think having the right critique partner to balance out your weaknesses is key." - Denise Jaden, author of Losing Faith.

"Plot. There, I said it. I love words so much that I could write internal, meandering "pretty" moments all day, and never get out of the character's head and into the action. My editor has been kind enough to hit me with a stick when that happens. I'm getting better." - Victoria Schwab, author of The Near Witch.

Sunday, May 2, 2010

In My Mailbox (2)

*In My Mailbox is meem created by Kristi at The Story Siren and inspired by Alea at Pop Culture Junkie

I have no idea how I got so lucky, but I received a ridiculous amount of fantastic titles this week thanks to Penguin Group, my book fairy, kind blogger friends and the lightening of my wallet. Take a look...

People mentioned in this vlog:
Lynsey at Narratively Speaking

Books for Review:

Paisley Hanover Kisses & Tells by Cameron Tuttle
My Double Life by Janette Rallison
Faithful by Janet Fox
Plus by Veronica Chambers
Sea by Heidi Kling
A Love Story Starring My Dead Best Friend by Emily Horner
The Replacement by Brenna Yovanoff
Eternal Ones by Kirsten Miller
Nightshade by Andrea Cremer
Firelight by Sophie Jordan
Ascendant by Diana Peterfreund
Paranormalcy by Kiersten White

Bought/Won/Trade/Gift Books:

Shiver by Maggie Stiefvater (UK version)
Hunger by Michael Grant
Kiss of Death by Rachel Caine
Kiss in Time by Alex Flinn
Thief Eyes by Janni Lee Simner