Monday, January 31, 2011

27 In Stores This Week (with Interviews & Giveaways)

We're rubbing our eyes this morning- partially because we're dead tired from SCBWI-NY, and partially because we can't believe our eyes at the amazing books out this week. Read on to see for yourself. Be sure to scroll all the way down to enter to win 6 fantastic prizes!

This Week's Interviews

The Trust (Secret Society #2) by Tom Dolby
  • From Goodreads: Who can you trust when everything is secrets and lies? It's a new semester at the Chadwick School, and even with the ankh tattoos that brand them, Phoebe, Nick, Lauren, and Patch are hoping for a fresh start. Each day, however, they are reminded of their membership as new Conscripts in the Society. The secret group that promised to help them achieve their every dream has instead turned their lives into a nightmare. Exclusive membership lost its luster as the Society revealed its agenda to them and two of their classmates were found dead. Now they can't help but wonder: Who's next? While they search for the elusive truth about the Society, the Conscripts are forced to face their darkest fear—that they truly can't get out. Will Nick and Phoebe's new relationship endure this strain? Can Patch and Nick's longtime friendship survive the truth that will come to light? The deceptions of the group's leaders, once trusted friends, and family will test these four as they fight to leave the Society behind.
How long did you work on this book?
THE TRUST took about a year to finish. It is a continuation of the first book in the series, SECRET SOCIETY, and the two work together to create a complete arc for the characters.

How was your journey to publication? Long, short, how many rejections?
On this book, it was a relatively short journey -- I wrote up a proposal for my agent, and after a handful of revisions with her, the two books sold several weeks after being submitted.

What advice would you most like to pass along to other writers?
Write every day, and don't give up. Check out Julia Cameron's ARTIST'S WAY series if you find yourself stuck.

What has surprised you most about becoming a published author?
I think the thing that has surprised me most is how once a book is out in the world, it's no longer my own book. Everyone has their own relationship to it.

Jenna and Jonah's Fauxmance by Emily Franklin and Brendan Halpin
  • From Goodreads: Fans of romance don't need to look any further than the fauxmance brewing between teen idols Charlie Tracker and Fielding Withers—known on their hit TV show as Jenna and Jonah, next-door neighbors flush with the excitement of first love. But it's their off-screen relationship that has helped cement their fame, as passionate fans follow their every PDA. They grace the covers of magazines week after week. Their fan club has chapters all over the country. The only problem is their off-screen romance is one big publicity stunt, and Charlie and Fielding can't stand to be in the same room. Still, it's a great gig, so even when the cameras stop rolling, the show must go on, and on, and on. . . . Until the pesky paparazzi blow their cover, and Charlie and Fielding must disappear to weather the media storm. It's not until they're far off the grid of the Hollywood circuit that they realize that there's more to each of them than shiny hair and a winning smile.
How long did you work on this book?
I think it was about six months to do the first draft, and then another month or so on the edits. We work pretty quickly.

How was your journey to publication? Long, short, how many rejections?
Well, our previous novel, THE HALF LIFE OF PLANETS, had already sold, so that definitely made it easier to place this one. But we did have a few rejections that surprised us along the way. We're very happy with where the book ended up.

What advice would you most like to pass along to other writers?
I've said this before, but you have to be fearless about writing crap. If you're always editing in your head, you'll never get anything onto the page. Just write it, and you can always fix it later. When you make yourself write, you'll sometimes write great stuff and sometimes write crap. And a lot of times you have to write some crap in order to get to the good stuff. So I guess that's just it--write it first and worry about whether it's any good later.

What has surprised you most about becoming a published author?
Well, not to be too much of a bummer, but how hard it is to make a living at it. One of my students asked me last week, "you wrote all those books! Why aren't you rich?" I think a lot of people think that once you've got a book on the shelves, you've punched your ticket to fame and fortune, or at least fortune. The truth is that for most published authors, writing is a second job--a great, fun, and sometimes thrilling job, but not one you can really count on to pay the bills.

You Killed Wesley Payne by Sean Beaudoin
  • From Goodreads: He's come to do a job. A job that involves a body. A body wrapped in duct tape found hanging from the goal posts at the end of the football field. You Killed Wesley Payne is a truly original and darkly hilarious update of classic pulp-noir, in which hard-boiled seventeen year-old Dalton Rev transfers to the mean hallways of Salt River High to take on the toughest case of his life. The question isn't whether Dalton's going to get paid. He always gets paid. Or whether he's gonna get the girl. He always (sometimes) gets the girl. The real question is whether Dalton Rev can outwit crooked cops and killer cliques in time to solve the mystery of "The Body" before it solves him.
How long did you work on this book?
Well, I’ve said in other interviews that I’ve sort of been working on it--at least subconsciously—since I was fourteen. So that’s a pretty impressive gestation period. But in terms of direct action, I started preliminary sketches about three years ago.

How was your journey to publication? Long, short, how many rejections?
Fortunately, You Killed Wesley Payne didn’t get any rejections. This is my third book with Little, Brown after Going Nowhere Faster and Fade to Blue. We already had a great relationship, so when I sent them sample chapters, and they said they were interested, it was a go.

Or do you mean just in general? Yes, in reflection, it’s clear that you do, but I’ll just leave the above comment. At any rate, my very first published work was a short story in a very tiny lit journal with a circulation of maybe a hundred copies. It was a lousy story. By the time I’d had about ten stories published, I racked up an ungodly stack of rejections. Enough to make you want to quit writing and get a job at Sears. By then I had a thick skin, though. And Going Nowhere Faster ended up selling pretty quickly.

What advice would you most like to pass along to other writers?
I get asked this question a lot. And my answer is always a variation of this: figure out if you really want to write. Like, so badly that it’s all you think about. To the point that you’re willing to sacrifice a lot of other things to make it happen, and push yourself without stopping until it does. If not, that’s fine. But if you’re not entirely committed to an arduous solitary pursuit, it’s a pretty long way to go to make girls think you’re cool.

What has surprised you most about becoming a published author?
How many other published authors there are. And how much you have to put into a book aside from actual writing in order for it to be successful. And, also, how much fun it is.

Delirium by Lauren Oliver
  • From Goodreads: Before scientists found the cure, people thought love was a good thing. They didn’t understand that once love - the deliria - blooms in your blood, there is no escaping its hold. Things are different now. Scientists are able to eradicate love, and the governments demands that all citizens receive the cure upon turning eighteen. Lena Holoway has always looked forward to the day when she’ll be cured. A life without love is a life without pain: safe, measured, predictable, and happy. But with ninety-five days left until her treatment, Lena does the unthinkable: She falls in love.
How long did you work on this book?
The first draft of DELIRIUM took me about nine months, but then of course, I did several rounds of edits. From conception to publication, the process was about two and a half years.

How was your journey to publication? Long, short, how many rejections?
Well, I was lucky in that DELIRIUM is my second book; my first book, Before I Fall, was purchased by HarperCollins as part of a two-book deal (which is fairly standard in the industry), and so I was able to essentially propose my idea for DELIRIUM to them, and have it approved, without having to go through the submission process. But for my first novel, Before I Fall, I had to suffer through the agonies of sending it out. I was lucky that the process was relatively short. Brenda Bowen, who at the time had an imprint at Harper, kind of jumped on it. I did get several rejections, though. I didn’t count them. I’m not that masochistic! And before publishing Before I Fall, I had completed and sent out two manuscripts that never went anywhere. So I feel I’ve earned my dues!

What advice would you most like to pass along to other writers?
My advice to other writers is always the same: get into the habit of writing every day, no excuses.

What has surprised you most about becoming a published author?
That’s an excellent question. I guess what has surprised me most is how difficult writing still is—I mean, I love it and I need it, but it still feels every bit as agonizing and hard as it always has. I still feel consumed with anxieties about running out of ideas, or turning out schlock. I guess I thought that being published might somewhat assuage those fears, but it has probably just compounded them!


Mystify (Mystyx #2) by Artist Arthur
  • From Goodreads: Sasha Carrington has grown up feeling like an outsider, and her parents are too concerned with scaling the Lincoln, Connecticut, social ladder to even notice her. They’d be really horrified to know about the supernatural abilities Sasha and her friends Krystal and Jake possess. But as part of the Mystyx, Sasha has found her place. Now her parents have suddenly taken an interest in everything she does, and their timing couldn’t be worse. Sasha’s father wants her to become BFFs with snooty Alyssa Turner, who hates Krystal for stealing her boyfriend. Then there’s Antoine Watson, the boy Sasha has liked forever, the boy her parents would never approve of. But with the dark side getting more dangerous by the day, and the Mystyx’s own powers growing in unexpected ways, Sasha is facing choices that could affect her friends, her love life—and even her destiny…
How long did you work on this book?
The planning and initial research stage took about four weeks then another three months for the actual writing.

How was your journey to publication? Long, short, how many rejections?
I’ve been published in adult romance for eight years. The decision to write young adult paranormal came at the suggestion of some close friends, a few people in the industry whom I highly respect and my sixteen-year-old daughter. Luckily, the series was only rejected once before being picked up by Harelquin. Since then I’ve had a few projects rejected so I never get comfortable in my writing, you never know what can happen.

What advice would you most like to pass along to other writers?
To take a serious and professional approach to this business because it can be tedious and petty and very rewarding. Writing professionally is definitely not for the faint of heart. Sometimes I think coming up with the idea and writing the book is the easy part. LOL But I wouldn’t give it up for anything.

What has surprised you most about becoming a published author?
No matter how many books I have in whatever genre, I’m always surprised and so grateful when I receive emails from readers. Seeing my book on a shelf in a book store then realizing that someone actually brought it, read it then thought enough of it to write to me is mind-blowing.

Consumed (Possessed #2) by Kate Cann
  • From Goodreads: The thrilling sequel to POSSESSED finds 16-year-old Rayne still entwined in the creepy history of Morton's Keep -- and about to discover that she's the only one who can stop the evil lurking there. Rayne's countryside escape has proven to be anything but -- the remote mansion house where she lives and works holds terrible secrets, and she feels trapped there. And when a new manager shows up, things take an even more sinister turn. Rayne doesn't know who to trust -- even the ghosts of Morton's Keep seem to be warning her. It's up to Rayne to overcome the ancient evil lurking here -- but how?
How long did you work on this book?
When I finished POSSESSED I went straight into the sequel, CONSUMED. I had so much more to say about the legends and mystery surrounding Morton's Keep. I wasn't so much moving the story on, as delving deeper into it …uncovering all the dark layers. I found it very exciting and it seemed like it was already half written in my head. It took six months to write whereas most of my other books have taken me about nine.

How was your journey to publication? Long, short, how many rejections?
I've been very lucky. The first book I wrote, DIVING IN, was accepted for publication after about a six-month wait and yes - my fair share of rejection slips! DIVING IN is part of a trilogy and they're still in print despite having no mobile phones in the book - they were written 15 years ago!

What advice would you most like to pass along to other writers?
a) Get out and live first! You can't write anything real tucked away in an ivory tower. b) If it doesn't excite you, it will bore the reader - write about something you have passion for. c) Don't underestimate the need for a good edit. Go back the next day and rework what you've done. d) Knowing what to delete is almost as important as knowing what to write. e) I'm sounding too bossy now so I'll shut up!

What has surprised you most about becoming a published author?
The absolute delight of the lifestyle. You're allowed to do something you love for about four hours a day ( I can't be creative for longer) and still call it work!

Anya's War by Andrea Alban
  • From Goodreads: ANYA'S WAR is set on the eve of World War II and is about a Jewish girl from Odessa living in the French Quarter of Shanghai. At first Anya Rosen's life in Shanghai is privileged and relatively carefree: she has crushes on boys, fights with her mother, and longs to defy expectations just like her hero, Amelia Earhart. Then Anya finds a baby, a newborn abandoned on the street. Amelia Earhart goes missing. And it becomes dangerously clear that no place is safe-not for Jewish families like the Rosens, not for Shanghai's poor, not for adventurous women pilots. Based on my family's past, ANYA'S WAR is about finding strength within, when the world spins out of control. This is a litle known passage in Jewish Holocaust history.
How long did you work on this book?
Most of my life! I grew up listening to my Jewish father's account of his childhood in Shanghai and spent hours imagining characters and scenes that would one day form the basic plot of Anya's War. I took a leave from my senior year in college to write the novel but became a natural food store owner, an event producer, then a wife and mother. Twenty-six years later, with a contract in hand for ANYA's War, I returned to SFSU to finish my Creative Writing degree and the final draft of the novel.

How was your journey to publication? Long, short, how many rejections?
My first book contract was for an inspirational parenting book entitled, Mother's Nature. This was a sidetrack from my dream of publishing a children's picture book. My manuscripts were rejected 49 times (between 1995-1998) before I decided to jump on a chance to create a gift book for Mother's Day 1999. Several parenting books later, my agent opened a door for my children's work at both Scholastic Press and HarperCollins. My first two books, January's Child and Ten Little Wishes published within months of each other in 2007. The Happiness Tree, book #3 published in 2008, and now three years later my debut novel. I find that if I focus on the moments of writing and the joy a writing day brings, the publication process becomes timeless.

What advice would you most like to pass along to other writers?
Realize that the art and craft of writing lies in the revision process. Read as a writer every book in your genre. Copy by hand into a journal, as you read aloud, every sentence that moves you, every character description that evokes knowingness and emotion. Study how your favorite writers handle snappy dialogue, dramatic story settings, crowd scenes, pacing, death, birth, love.

What has surprised you most about becoming a published author?
The zing of accomplishment I feel when my author copies arrive hot off the press. Anya's War is my ninth book and the thrill never dissipates.

Additional Releases

Dark Moon (Wereling #2) by Steve Feasey
  • From Goodreads: A few short months ago, Trey Laporte learned the news that would change him forever: He is a werewolf, and the evil vampire Caliban wants him dead. The threat becomes real when Caliban attacks Trey’s mentor, Lucien Charron, and leaves him fighting for his life. Gwendolin, a wicked sorceress, holds the only key to saving Lucien. Together, Trey and Lucien’s beautiful daughter, Alexa, must enter the Netherworld to defeat her. The pressure for Trey is great—Alexa is counting on him to save her father. But when Trey and Alexa find themselves trapped and surrounded by demons, can Trey use his werewolf strength to save them both?
Fallen Grace by Mary Hooper
  • From Goodreads: Grace Parkes has just had to do a terrible thing. Having given birth to an illegitimate child, she has travelled to the famed Brookwood Cemetery to place her small infant's body in a rich lady's coffin. Following the advice of a kindly midwife, this is the only way that Grace can think of to give something at least to the little baby who died at birth, and to avoid the ignominy of a pauper's grave. Distraught and weeping, Grace meets two people at the cemetery: Mrs Emmeline Unwin and Mr James Solent. These two characters will have a profound affect upon Grace's life. But Grace doesn't know that yet. For now, she has to suppress her grief and get on with the business of living: scraping together enough pennies selling watercress for rent and food; looking after her older sister, who is incapable of caring for herself; thwarting the manipulative and conscience-free Unwin family, who are as capable of running a lucrative funeral business as they are of defrauding a young woman of her fortune. A stunning evocation of life in Victorian London, with vivid and accurate depictions, ranging from the deprivation that the truly poor suffered to the unthinking luxuries enjoyed by the rich: all bound up with a pacy and thrilling plot, as Grace races to unravel the fraud about to be perpetrated against her and her sister.
Kick by Walter Dean Meyers and Ross Workman
  • From Amazon: Kevin Johnson is thirteen years old. And heading for juvie. He's a good kid, a great friend, and a star striker for his Highland, New Jersey, soccer team. His team is competing for the State Cup, and he wants to prove he has more than just star-player potential. Kevin's never been in any serious trouble . . . until the night he ends up in jail. Enter Sergeant Brown, a cop assigned to be Kevin's mentor. If Kevin and Brown can learn to trust each other, they might be able to turn things around before it's too late.
Giveaways

We're happy to announce giveaways of ANYA'S WAR, JENNA & JONAH'S FAUXMANCE, and FADE TO BLUE, as well as two copies of CONSUMED! Artist Arthur is offering up a fun MYSTIFY t-shirt for one lucky reader. You must leave a comment on this post and fill out the form below to enter to win one of these prizes. The contest is open to US residents and we'll announce winners on Thursday morning. Good luck!

Happy reading,
The Ladies of ACP

27 comments:

  1. Lots of great releases this week. I know everyone's going to go gaga for Delerium, but I've got to say I'm most excited for You Killed Wesley Payne. Pulp makes me happy.

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  2. Great interviews and lots of Awesome new books! I'll have to add all of these to my to-read list. Thanks for the awesome giveaways! :-)

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  3. Wow! Lots of great books. And I wish I could write as fast as some of these authors.

    Hope you get some rest and then share what you learned at the conference.

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  4. Wow. I haven't heard of most of these, so that's awesome! Lots of great new releases. :-)

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  5. So many I want, especially Delerium!

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  6. I loved The Trust and Jenna and Jonah's Fauxmance. I'm looking forward to reading Delirium and Mystify. The others look great as well.

    Thanks for the giveaway!

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  7. Great books this week! Thanks for the chance.

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  8. oh man! Great giveaway and releases! Thanks for keeping us all up to date!

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  9. Awesome contest as always! I am REALLY glad tht Delirium is almost out! These other books sound very interesting, too. Thanks for hosting another cool contest! :)

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  10. So many good books this week! I really wish my full-time job just consisted of reading books all day. :)

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  11. So many awesome books! Thanks for the super contest. ^_^

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  12. I look forward to this post every week. I know I can get my "fix" on all the latest books in one place. Thanks for the chance to win!

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  13. So sorry I missed meeting you two this weekend. I kept squinting at people's name tags as they walked by.

    This is an awesome giveaway! I'd love to win Anya's War especially. Thanks, as always!

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  14. Thanks for an AMAZING giveaway!! Thanks so much!!

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  15. Great interview Q&A's. It's always nice to get insight from the authors. Thanks for hosting this fabulous giveaway too.

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  16. I heart Brendan Halpin and I loved Half life of plants. I"m super excited for Fauxmance. There's SO many great books coming out this week. The blog world is BLOWING UP about Delirium.

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  17. Oh that is a sweet set to aid in melting the wintery weather!

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  18. I cannot wait! These book all look so great. THank You!

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  19. This is great! I am especially excited you introduced me to Artist's book. I didn't know there was a black heroine paranormal YA series out there. So I'm gonna put that on my tbh pile right now. All the other interviews were killer too. Loved the guy authors!

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  20. Great giveaway. I would like to win Delirium. I would actually like to win them all lol. Tore923@aol.com

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  21. Those are all excellent books. I can't wait to read Delirium.

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  22. This is an awesome giveaway,all these books seem good.

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Tell us what you think. We'd love to hear from you! :)