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Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Author Insight: Never say die

When you’re feeling defeated and are ready to quit, how do you convince yourself to keep going?

"I remind myself that I'm writing. Writing!!! And I'm lucky to be able to do it."- Elizabeth Scott, author of Grace.

"I don't. My husband, kids and friends do. Without my Circle of Trust I'd be nowhere without a paddle." - Heidi Kling, author of Sea.

"I have people around me who (sometimes literally) kick me in the butt and tell me to suck it up.  A support group that gives you exactly what you need when you need it is invaluable as a writer." - Scott Tracey, author of Witch Eyes.

"I have to stop and think, why am I doing this again? Because I love it, that’s why. Writing gives me joy and I just have remind myself that I’m doing what I love." - Danielle Joseph, author of Indigo Blues.

Thursday, November 25, 2010

More Author Insight: Inspirational Characters

What fictional character inspires you?
"Sal Paradise from On the Road by Jack Kerouac. Sal’s descriptions of his life and the people around him still amaze me to this day. I read it when I was about seventeen and I’ve loved travel ever since. There’s such magic in being on the road. Anything can happen." - Leah Clifford, author of A Touch Mortal.

"Frankie Landau-Banks from E Lockhart's Disreputable History of Frankie Landau-Banks is my favorite character ever. She is so fierce and strong and smart and she wants to change the world!" - Daisy Whitney, author of The Mockingbirds.

" Katniss Everdeen.  She’s a great combination of tough and vulnerable and sensitive and strong.  I’d be glad to be like her or just be able to write someone like her." - Jen Nadol, author of The Mark.


"I spent most of my high school life wanting to be Lestat from Anne Rice's Vampire Chronicles. I even had wavy blond hair. True story." - Jon Skovron, author of Struts & Frets.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Author Insight: Inspirational Characters (And an amazing giveaway!)

What fictional chracter inspires you?

"Damon Salvatore. ;-)" - Heidi Kling, author of Sea.

"Harry Dresden, from the Dresden Files series.  Sarcastic, witty, and possessing the kind of good nature that regularly gets him into one bad situation after another.  Any character who can start out so limited and damaged only to grow and become damaged in whole other ways is a fascinating creature.  And Harry Dresden is fresh with every new book, which I love." - Scott Tracey, author of Witch Eyes.

"Definitely strong characters that triumph over all odds. I just finished reading Between Shades of Gray by Ruta Sepetys. It was an amazing novel and doesn’t come out until next March. Lina, the main character, is very inspirational and has tremendous strength. I’d be happy to have half her will." - Danielle Joseph, author of Indigo Blues.

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Nevermore Winners!

I have this super-cool Nevermore prize pack, which includes a signed hardcover of Nevermore, signed bookmarks, purple pens, Cemetery Sighs tatoos, and an Edgar Allan Poe action figure, sitting here in a box in my office collecting dust, so I guess I should ship it out soon. Well, good thing I've picked a winner!

I also decided to go a little crazy since I saw the author of this wonderful book, Kelly Creagh, recently in  Baltimore where we hung out in a graveyard all night. (I'll be posting about that soon!) She slid me a giant stack of Nevermore bookmarks, which happen to be signed, so, in additon to a winner, I had Random.org pick a dozen more numbers. Each one of those lucky folks will receive a signed bookmark!

You say you want to know who all the winners are? Well, okay...
Nevermore prize pack. Signed bookmarks off to the right.
Congratulations, runners up!
Beverly S.

April X.
Alexandra T.
Alex B.
Darla G.
Morgyn J.
Andrea W.
Indigo R.
Megs Z.
Jennifer R.
Joli H.

... and to our grand prize winner!
Jessica S.

I think everyone put there address in the entry form, riiight? If I don't have it for some reason I will email you. Otherwise prizes will go in the mail shortly. Thanks to everyone who entered!

Thursday, November 18, 2010

More Author Insight: Story Secrets

Tell us a secret about your most recent book.
"A Touch Mortal started out as a short story I wrote nine years ago for a college class. The assignment was to write a story based around an overheard line.  Mine was “Skin and concrete do…not…mix.” The original short story is now part of Chapter 21." - Leah Clifford, author of A Touch Mortal.

"When I married my husband I walked down the aisle to the same piece of music that is The Mockingbirds' main character Alex's favorite piece of music - Beethoven's Ode to Joy from his Ninth Symphony" - Daisy Whitney, author of The Mockingbirds.

"Since The Mark came out, I’ve gotten at least six different emails asking if I have the same ability as the main character – knowing when it’s someone’s day to die – from people who say they do." - Jen Nadol, author of The Mark.


"There really was a great band in Columbus, Ohio called Monster Zero and they really were mentioned by a major entertainment magazine as a possible 'Next Seattle'. I was friends with the bassist, a beautiful redhead named Emily. They had these awesome t-shirts depicting them as the Fantastic Four, with Emily being the Human Touch (because of her hair and her temper). Sadly, the real Monster Zero broke up soon after that 'big break'." - Jon Skovron, author of Struts & Frets.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Night Star Release & Trailer

Night Star, the latest installment in Alyson Noel's Immortals series, hit shelves yesterday! In honor of its release St. Martin's Press has released a fabulous, new book trailer.

Here's a little about the fifth book in this series: Night Star continues the epic love story that has enchanted readers across the world. In this installment, Ever and Damen face down bitter rivals, jealous friends and their own worst fears—all in the hope of being together forever. Night Star is guaranteed to mesmerize fans and leave them breathlessly awaiting the sixth and final book!

Now take a look at the trailer...

Find out more about Alyson Noel's Immortals series at http://www.immortalsseries.com/ or become a fan on Facebook.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Author Insight: Story Secrets

Tell us a secret about your most recent book.

"The idea for my novel, Grace, came from a dream, as I mentioned, and once it came into shape, I knew there had to be part of one of my favorite poems in it. That's never happened to me before"- Elizabeth Scott, author of Grace.

"Spider's real name is Jesse. Someone asked about that on Twitter, and a big discussion followed. I thought they were going to break into Team Jesse vs. Team Spider and tear him apart like Elli did to the snapshot at the pesantren!" - Heidi Kling, author of Sea.

"The original beginning for Witch Eyes involved a dramatic chase scene in a cemetery.  After a spell goes wrong, Braden ends up running from all the girls on the Homecoming Court, heels and all.  The scene didn't make the cut because, while hysterical, it didn't fit the tone of the rest of the book." - Scott Tracey, author of Witch Eyes.

"Even though I wrote Indigo Blues because I love music, the novel was also inspired about how people don’t communicate properly. It deals with what happens when we don’t really let people know how we feel. Sometimes we dance around issues and then aren’t happy with the outcome. It’s about being forthright." - Danielle Joseph, author of Indigo Blues.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

More Author Insight: Draft Disruption

Does reading while you draft disrupt your writing process?

"Not at all. The more words that come out of my brain, the more words I need to put back in." - Leah Clifford, author of A Touch Mortal.

"When I am near the end of drafting a novel, I rarely read other books because I find it highly distracting. I like to binge read though as a reward for finishing!" - Daisy Whitney, author of The Mockingbirds.

"Only if I’m early in the process and my character’s voices are still developing." - Jen Nadol, author of The Mark.


"Yes! I'm a sponge for other writer's voices. There are several authors I actually won't allow myself to read any more (tragically, some of my favorites) because they just insinuate themselves in my writing way too much." - Jon Skovron, author of Struts & Frets.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Beautiful Darkness Swag Winners

Congratulations to the three lucky individuals who will be receiving Beautiful Darkness swag packs in their mailboxes very soon! They are...

Erica O.
Viki S.
Tammy B.

Thanks to Kami Garcia & Margie Stohl for donating the swag, and thanks to everyone who entered. More contests will be up shortly, so keep your eyes peeled.

Tweet News (16)

What did you miss on Twitter this week?

Egmont told you how to get Bree Despain's The Dark Divine for $2.99... TWEET.

Kathy Reichs young adult novel Virals hits the NYT Bestseller list... TWEET.

Author Christine Johnson revealed the new cover of Claire de Lune and the sequel, Nocturne... TWEET.

Harper Teen revealed the cover of the eighth novel in Ellen Schreiber's Vampire Kisses series... TWEET.

Author Lisa Schroeder unveiled the cover of her next book, The Day Before... TWEET.

Penguin Teen showed off the cover for Wolfsbane (Nightshade #2) by Andrea Cremer... TWEET.

Author Julie Kagawa finally reveals what she's been working on... TWEET.

Egmont showed you where you can read the first three chapters of Paul Crilley's Rise of the Darklings... TWEET.

Harper Teen shared the cover of Aprilynne Pike's third novel, Illusions... TWEET.

Penguin Teen showed you some rockin' Across the Universe accessories... TWEET.

Author Leah Cypess unveiled the copy of Nightspell, a companion to Mistwood... TWEET.

Author Saundra Mitchell showed off the final cover of The Vespertine... TWEET.

Did you see what highly anticipated winter release Harlequin Teen put up on Net Galley? TWEET

Author Inara Scott revealed the cover for The Watchers (Delcroix Academy #2)... TWEET.

Robyn Schneider unveiled the paperback cover of Knightley Academy by Violet Haberdasher... TWEET.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Author Insight: Draft Disruption

Does reading while you draft disrupt your writing process?

"Only if I read YA, which is sad because I adore YA. As a result, I tend to go on YA reading binges whenever I get a chance!"- Elizabeth Scott, author of Grace.

"No. It used to. Now I could probably juggle fire while writing and not be distracted." - Heidi Kling, author of Sea.

"Absolutely not, I'm always reading SOMETHING.  I try to keep reading a lot, so there's always a lot of words passing through my brain.  That way, I don't worry that something's going to stick.  Reading also helps because it reminds me that other people made it past where I am (if I'm stuck) or overcame obstacles (if I'm blocked)." - Scott Tracey, author of Witch Eyes.

"I do like to read what I’m writing as I’m working on a draft but sometimes I have to just stop myself and plow ahead without looking back." - Danielle Joseph, author of Indigo Blues.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

More Author Insight: Character Coercion

Have your characters every talked you out of doing something you were sure you would do?

" No, usually they’re the ones talking me INTO things!" - Leah Clifford, author of A Touch Mortal.

"I was dead set on having this snarky gal I'm writing bite another girl. My character reminded me she's not a vampire and would rather just yank the girl's hair instead, so I listened to her." - Daisy Whitney, author of The Mockingbirds.

"In my current WIP, I was sure one of the male characters was a potential love interest, but he wasn’t having any of it.  Now they’re just friends." - Jen Nadol, author of The Mark.


 "No, but they've talked me into quite a few things...generally I get into the art imitates life imitates art loop. For example, I meet someone who is Haitian, I become curious about Haitian culture, I read a little about it, a Haitian character happens to appear in the story i'm writing. But then I realize that in order to do the character justice, I need to know more about Haitian culture, so I read more books, and watch movies, and eat food, attend Voudon ceremonies, and become unrestrainedly obsessed with Haitian culture for the better part of a year to the point where I utterly burn out on it, put the story away, and write something totally different. But after a time, that character starts nagging me. He wants his story told. Eventually, I give in and write that story with the Haitian character in it because he just won't leave me alone." - Jon Skovron, author of Struts & Frets.

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Casting Call and Question Submittal for Author Insight III

It only takes one spark to light a fire. Or a wildfire. At least that's the way it was with Author Insight. I had no idea that it take off the way it did, and now here I am posting that the third round will start in a matter of weeks!

Things have been pretty hectic in my life lately, so I've been doing my best to prepare. What does it take to prepare for Author Insight, you ask? The answer is a few dozen emails, lots of coordination and organization, and countless hours of brain racking in order to come up with 16 questions that have nothing to with inspiration, favorite colors, or what kind of snack food a person would be.

But I've only had the chance to do about a third of that prep work for this upcoming round, so I've decided to enlist your help! I created this feature to promote authors and their books and provide readers with quick quotable wisdom about writing and publishing from those who know it best. It sounds cornny, but Author Insight really belongs to you and I want you to stay involved.

Authors, this is a casting call! If you're reading this, I'm still looking for more people to participate in the upcoming round of Author Insight. Check out the Author Insight page to see what the posts look like if you aren't familiar. I'd also like to start a list of authors who are interested in participating in the future along with your book release dates so I can get you into the right round. I want you to get the most exposure you can out of this. If you're interested in this round or a future one, please shoot me an email.

Readers, I want to know what you want to hear from the authors this go around. I have my questions in mind, but I'm always open to suggestions. It can be about reading, writing, the publishing industry, or anything else you might want to ask an author about. My only requests are that questions be substantive and something that any author could answer. So if you have a question, leave it in the comments and I may add it to the list.

The involvement of authors and readers is what has made this feature great, and I look forward to your continued support.

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Author Insight: Character Coercion

Have your characters every talked you out of doing something you were sure you would do?

"Of course! They know what they want far better than I do."- Elizabeth Scott, author of Grace.

"Not yet. But I'm sure they are planning on it. ;-)" - Heidi Kling, author of Sea.

"I give my characters a certain amount of freedom, so I never feel tied down to how a scene MUST play out.  That said, I've had a few surprises along the way - a character revealed a motivation I had never consciously considered before, and made an offer I had never thought of." - Scott Tracey, author of Witch Eyes.

"Sometimes my character stray from what I have planned for them and lead me down a different path. They get opinionated too!" - Danielle Joseph, author of Indigo Blues.