Wednesday, August 29, 2018

2 Sandra Gulland on Teen Life Then and Now


I was thrilled when today’s guest agreed to do a post for us here at AYAP. I’ve spent a fair amount of time wondering about the teens of yesteryear and how their lives might compare to those of young people today. Who better than historical novelist Sandra Gulland to address this issue? Stay tuned after the post for more about Sandra and her latest book, the YA historical novel THE GAME OF HOPE. But now, here’s Sandra with “Teen Life Then and Now.”

Teen Life Then and Now
By Sandra Gulland

Many years ago, before becoming a writer, I was what was then called a "sponsoring book editor" for Methuen's school division in Toronto. One of my responsibilities was to think up projects and develop them (propose them to management, cost them out, find authors to write them, publish them).

For a time I was keen on developing a series of booklets showing what life had been like for teens at different periods in history. I began by going to the library and taking out a Young Adult biography, which just happened to be about Josephine Bonaparte. Captivated by her life story, I returned to the library the next day for more books about her. Over the following decade, my fascination with all-things-Josephine led to writing the Josephine B. Trilogy.

In 2000, the last of the trilogy was published. I sold my Napoleonic library in order to make room for books on the French court of the Sun King (specifically, on two of his mistresses). I figured that there were enough eccentrics and fascinating stories in this era to occupy me for the rest of my writing life. Two novels later and planning a third, I was once again blind-sided by Josephine — or rather, this time, by her daughter Hortense. This came by way of a proposal from Penguin for me to write a Young Adult novel about her.

After considerable deliberation, I agreed. My "Teens Through the Ages" series had come to naught, but I was still interested in what a teen's life might have been like in the past — especially a teen who had grown up during the horrors of the Terror and whose hero of a father had been guillotined. (Imagine!) And especiallyinterested in a teen whose widowed mother had married a scruffy, intense, and much-younger-man by the name of Napoleon.

Talk about complex issues ...

I began by reading YA fiction — a lotof it. I was already a fan of YA, but now I was reading with intention: Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell, Flat-out Love by Jessica Park, The Rest of Us Just Live Here by Patrick Ness, Simon vs. The Homo Sapien's Agenda by Becky Albertalli, Between Shades of Grey by Ruta Sepetys, The Gentleman's Guide to Vice and Virtue by Mackenzi Lee ... for starters.

I also dug out the diary I kept at 13, wincing at its tear-splotched pages, my heartfelt longings for first one boy and then another ... and then another and another and another, culminating with the memorable line: "I'm in love with so many boys I don't know what to do!"

At the same time, I began my research. I already had extensive notes on Josephine and her world, but I needed to find out a great deal more about Hortense, and especially more about her boarding school. Who were her teachers? What was their daily schedule? What did the girls study? Were they graded? What did their uniforms look like? And so forth ...

One of the first things I do when beginning to write a novel is assemble a team of people I can turn to for help with research. Once a second draft is written I will put together another team for editorial, and after the seventh or eighth, yet another team — this last one of beta readers (teen readers in this case). Thoughout this long process I will reach out to consultants for help on specific subjects — medical, music, botany, etc. — depending on the story.

To assemble my initial research team for a YA novel about Hortense, I posted "help needed" notes on the Net to a French history list and a Napoleonic chat group. Several historians generously responded. These contacts provided me with fantasticdetails, and bit by bit Hortense's school life began to feel real to me, vivid, dynamic, and entirely unique.

Only about a third of my research — if that — makes it into a book, but that doesn't mean it's wasted. What's important is for me to feel grounded in that world as I write — and only details can do that.

Details and actual experience, that is. This is where travel research becomes a delightful necessity. Through exhaustive Google searches, I finally located the remains of Hortense's school (now a gated condo complex), and tracked down someone who could unlock the gates and show me in. It was worth it. Walking on the cobble stones Hortense had walked on made her all the more real.

There is a common belief that teenagers are a modern phenomena, in part because the word itself is relatively new. (According to etymonline.com— a wonderful free site for checking the historical use of words — the word "teenager" was first used in 1922, in reference to Sunday School classes.) I don't hold to this view. There is a universal stage of life that can be described as frisky, ardent, explorative and passionate: in other words, the puberty years. What wasdifferent in centuries past was how teens were schooled and employed. Girls were expected to marry "in the bloom of youth," for example (hopefully before they got pregnant). In the upper classes, marriages were like a business merger, negotiated and arranged by all the parents involved. Even so, girls fell in love-lust then, just as they do now. Their friends were their tribe, then and now.

The big difference, of course, was that there was very little allowed by way of boys and girls touching, much less heavy petting. (That didn't mean all teens behaved, of course.) Here's an example from Rules of Courtship, a book Hortense consults, modelled by me on advice books of the time:

Five times touching is permitted —

1. He puts a shawl around your shoulders;

2. He helps you onto a horse;

3. He helps you into a carriage;

4. He helps you climb stairs;

5. He takes your arm through his, to support you out walking.

I suspect that such touches were as sensually-charged then as what teens experience today.

At readings, I'm often asked how writing for young adults differs from writing for adults. In general, I found the process to be surprisingly similar. YA fiction generally demands intense narrative drive, but this is important in my adult fiction as well. There were certain things that I needed to explain for younger readers. I couldn't assume that a teen would know about the French Revolution, for example, so a little explanation was required. But basically, writing biographical historical fiction — or even a contemporary biographical novel, for that matter — involves deep immersion in the main character, "walking in her shoes." It doesn't really matter if the protagonist is fifteen or fifty.



ABOUT SANDRA GULLAND
An American-Canadian, Sandra was born in Miami, Florida, and lived in Rio de Janeiro, Berkeley and Chicago before immigrating to Ontario, Canada, in 1970, where she and her husband cohabited with their two toddlers (now adults), two horses, a dog, three cats, twelve chickens and two pigs.

She is the author of six historical novels, including the JOSEPHINE B. TRILOGY, based on the life of Josephine Bonaparte, published in seventeen countries. Her latest novel, THE GAME OF HOPE, is a Young Adult novel about Josephine's daughter.

She and her husband now live half the year in Canada and half in Mexico. For more information about the author and her work, go to www.sandragulland.com.



ABOUT THE GAME OF HOPE
For Napoleon’s stepdaughter, nothing is simple — especially love.

Paris, 1798. Hortense de Beauharnais is engrossed in her studies at a boarding school for aristocratic girls, most of whom suffered tragic losses during the tumultuous days of the French Revolution. She loves to play and compose music, read and paint, and daydream about Christophe, her brother’s dashing fellow officer. But Hortense is not an ordinary girl. Her beautiful, charming mother Josephine has married Napoleon Bonaparte, soon to become the most powerful man in France, but viewed by Hortense as a coarse, unworthy successor to her elegant father, who was guillotined during the Terror.

Where will Hortense’s future lie?

Inspired by Hortense’s real-life autobiography with charming glimpses of teen life long ago, this is the story of a girl chosen by fate to play a role she didn’t choose.

Monday, August 27, 2018

8 New Releases this week 08/27 - 09/02 plus 3 Giveaways

Happy Monday! This week, we have 3 epic giveaways!! Don't forget to check out all the books below and enter to win.

Happy Reading,

Shelly, Halli, Jocelyn, Martina, Erin, Susan, Kelly, Laura, Emily, Anisaa, and Lori Ann


YA BOOK GIVEAWAYS THIS WEEK


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In Another Time
by Caroline Leech
Signed Hardcover plus Swag Giveaway
U.S. Only

HarperTeen
Released 8/28/2018

It’s 1942, and as the war rages in Europe, Maisie McCall is in the Scottish Highlands swinging an axe for the Women’s Timber Corps. Maisie relishes her newfound independence working alongside other lumberjacks—including the mysterious John Lindsay.

As Maisie and John work side by side felling trees together, Maisie can’t help but feel that their friendship has the spark of something more to it. And yet every time she gets close to him, John pulls away. It’s not until Maisie rescues John from a terrible logging accident that he begins to open up to her about the truth of his past, and the pain he’s been hiding.

Suddenly everything is more complicated than Maisie expected. And as she helps John untangle his shattered history, she must decide if she’s willing to risk her heart to help heal his. But in a world devastated by war, love might be the only thing left that can begin to heal what’s broken.

Author Question: What is your favorite thing about In Another Time?

What I love most about IN ANOTHER TIME is knowing that I based it on real women who were just as courageous and passionate and funny as the ones I created in the book. The story is set in the Highlands of Scotland during World War Two and follows Maisie McCall as she joins the Women’s Timber Corps – whose members were known as the lumberjills – to work in the forests chopping down trees to send timber to help the war effort. I read so many memories written down by the lumberjills after the war—of the work, the dances, the weather, the food and yes, the Canadian lumberjacks they worked alongside—and I tried to distill all their extraordinary spirit into one 17 year old girl and the friends she makes in the lumberjill camps. Their stories were so inspiring, I wanted other people to hear about them. These were very special women, and they deserve to be remembered.

Purchase In Another Time at Amazon
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The Soul Keepers
by Devon Taylor
Hardcover Giveaway
U.S. Only

Swoon Reads
Released 8/28/2018

Death is just the beginning.

After dying in a terrible car accident, Rhett awakens in the afterlife and is recruited to join the crew of the Harbinger, a colossal seafaring vessel tasked with ferrying the souls of the dead. To where exactly, no one knows. But the crew must get the souls there, and along the way protect them from vicious soul-eating monsters that will stop at nothing to take the ship and all of its occupants.

Rhett and his new friends have a hard enough time fighting back the monsters that grow bolder and more ferocious every day. But then a new threat emerges, a demon who wants something that Rhett has. And if she gets it, it could mean the end of everything... for both the living and the dead.

Author Question: What is your favorite thing about The Soul Keepers?

My favorite thing about the book has to be its emotional core. There are plenty of supernatural goings-on, terrifying monsters, and intense action sequences throughout the book, but it's all rooted in the emotional journey that the main character, Rhett, takes from the first page to the last. Over the course of the book, he loses one family and gains another, discovers a power within himself that's as miraculous as it is unsettling, and finds out what it means to fight for something bigger than just his own survival. Rhett has so much grief that fighting for any souls that aren't his family's seems impossible. But somehow he finds catharsis in the idea that death doesn't carry the finality he always thought it did. It might be paranormal fantasy, but THE SOUL KEEPERS is also about the very real tragedies that people can experience and how they can still find love and acceptance in the wake of those things.

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Mirage
by Somaiya Daud
Hardcover Giveaway (2 Copies)
U.S. Only

Flatiron Books
Released 8/28/2018

In a world dominated by the brutal Vathek empire, eighteen-year-old Amani is a dreamer. She dreams of what life was like before the occupation; she dreams of writing poetry like the old-world poems she adores; she dreams of receiving a sign from Dihya that one day, she, too, will have adventure, and travel beyond her isolated home.

But when adventure comes for Amani, it is not what she expects: she is kidnapped by the regime and taken in secret to the royal palace, where she discovers that she is nearly identical to the cruel half-Vathek Princess Maram. The princess is so hated by her conquered people that she requires a body double, someone to appear in public as Maram, ready to die in her place.

As Amani is forced into her new role, she can’t help but enjoy the palace’s beauty―and her time with the princess’ fiancé, Idris. But the glitter of the royal court belies a world of violence and fear. If Amani ever wishes to see her family again, she must play the princess to perfection...because one wrong move could lead to her death.

Purchase Mirage at Amazon
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YA BOOK GIVEAWAYS LAST WEEK: WINNERS


Nightblood by Elly Blake: Naikittia B.
The Truth Lies Here by Lindsey Klingele: Lysette L.

MORE YOUNG ADULT FICTION IN STORES NEXT WEEK WITH AUTHOR INTERVIEWS


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Hidden Pieces
by Paula Stokes
Hardcover
HarperTeen
Released 8/28/2018

Embry Woods has secrets. Some are small, like the ones about her complicated past. Others are bigger, like her growing feelings for best friend’s ex-boyfriend, Holden. But the biggest secret she carries is about what they did at the abandoned Sea Cliff Inn...and the resulting terrible fire.

Embry helps a homeless man escape from the flames and is immediately hailed as a hero, but she knows that couldn't be further from the truth. Though she’s wracked with guilt, Embry thinks she can take one last secret to her grave.

But then she receives an anonymous note—someone else was there that night. Now she must respond to a series of threatening messages asking her to make impossible choices.

Someone is playing a high-stakes game with her life. And their last move is murder.

Author Question: What is your favorite thing about Hidden Pieces?

My favorite thing about HIDDEN PIECES is that it's a character-driven mystery. A lot of mysteries are plot-driven, with characters who function like chess pieces, moving through the narrative and making choices that complicate the plot and advance the mystery without ever really letting the readers into their inner worlds. I enjoy those books--they have a compulsively readable quality to them because it's just one twist after another without much downtime. However, I prefer more layered mysteries, where readers get a chance to explore the characters' pasts and understand how their experiences have shaped their world views, which then makes it easier to understand their actions and motivations. When it comes to thrillers, I think it's easy to shock readers, but a lot harder to legitimately surprise them in ways where the outcome to the story also feels authentic and organic.

Purchase Hidden Pieces at Amazon
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MORE YOUNG ADULT NOVELS NEW IN STORES NEXT WEEK


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Access Restricted by
by Gregory Scott Katsoulis
Hardcover
Harlequin Teen
Released 8/28/2018

On the day she went silent, Speth never meant for anyone to follow her lead—or to start a rebellion of Silents. But after taking down the tyrant Silas Rog and freeing the city from his grasp, everyone is looking to Speth for answers she doesn’t have. All she wants is to find her parents, who are shackled to a lifetime of servitude in exchange for a debt they can never repay. But how can Speth leave her friends to fend for themselves when she’s the reason their city is in chaos?

When the government threatens to restore the WiFi and take back the city, Speth is forced to flee with a ragtag group of friends by her side. Together, they embark on a dangerous journey outside the dome they’ve lived in their entire lives, in search of a better future. Along the way, Speth will discover the shattering truth about their world…and the role she’ll need to play to save it.

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Darius the Great Is Not Okay
by Adib Khorram
Hardcover
Dial Books
Released 8/28/2018

Darius Kellner speaks better Klingon than Farsi, and he knows more about Hobbit social cues than Persian ones. He’s a Fractional Persian—half, his mom’s side—and his first-ever trip to Iran is about to change his life.

Darius has never really fit in at home, and he’s sure things are going to be the same in Iran. His clinical depression doesn’t exactly help matters, and trying to explain his medication to his grandparents only makes things harder. Then Darius meets Sohrab, the boy next door, and everything changes. Soon, they’re spending their days together, playing soccer, eating faludeh, and talking for hours on a secret rooftop overlooking the city’s skyline. Sohrab calls him Darioush—the original Persian version of his name—and Darius has never felt more like himself than he does now that he’s Darioush to Sohrab.

Purchase Darius the Great Is Not Okay at Amazon
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Harbor Me
by Jacqueline Woodson
Hardcover
Nancy Paulsen Books
Released 8/28/2018

Jacqueline Woodson's first middle-grade novel since National Book Award winner Brown Girl Dreaming celebrates the healing that can occur when a group of students share their stories.

It all starts when six kids have to meet for a weekly chat—by themselves, with no adults to listen in. There, in the room they soon dub the ARTT Room (short for "A Room to Talk"), they discover it's safe to talk about what's bothering them—everything from Esteban's father's deportation and Haley's father's incarceration to Amari's fears of racial profiling and Ashton's adjustment to his changing family fortunes. When the six are together, they can express the feelings and fears they have to hide from the rest of the world. And together, they can grow braver and more ready for the rest of their lives.

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Night Flights: A Mortal Engines Collection
by Philip Reeve
Paperback
Scholastic Press
Released 8/28/2018

Return to the world of Mortal Engines in this new book of short stories about the rebellious young aviatrix, Anna Fang, illustrated by Ian McQue. A key character in the Mortal Engines book and upcoming film produced by Peter Jackson (December 2018), this is your chance to learn more of Anna's thrilling past. Night Flights includes Traction City, Philip Reeve's 2011 World Book Day Book.

In a dangerous future world where gigantic, motorized cities attack and devour each other, London hunts where no other predator dares. But Anna Fang -- pilot, adventurer, spy -- isn't afraid.

The three stories show gripping, moving, exciting moments in Anna Fang's life: her childhood as a slave aboard the moving city Arkangel, a showdown against a robotic Stalker that is terrifyingly out of control, and her free life as an intelligence agent for the Anti-Traction league ...

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Seafire
by Natalie C. Parker
Hardcover
Razorbill
Released 8/28/2018

After her family is killed by corrupt warlord Aric Athair and his bloodthirsty army of Bullets, Caledonia Styx is left to chart her own course on the dangerous and deadly seas. She captains her ship, the Mors Navis, with a crew of girls and women just like her, who have lost their families and homes because of Aric and his men. The crew has one mission: stay alive, and take down Aric's armed and armored fleet.

But when Caledonia's best friend and second-in-command barely survives an attack thanks to help from a Bullet looking to defect, Caledonia finds herself questioning whether to let him join their crew. Is this boy the key to taking down Aric Athair once and for all...or will he threaten everything the women of the Mors Navis have worked for?

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That’s Not What Happened
by Kody Keplinger
Hardcover
Scholastic Press
Released 8/28/2018

It's been three years since the Virgil County High School Massacre. Three years since my best friend, Sarah, was killed in a bathroom stall during the mass shooting. Everyone knows Sarah's story--that she died proclaiming her faith. But it's not true. I know because I was with her when she died. I didn't say anything then, and people got hurt because of it. Now Sarah's parents are publishing a book about her, so this might be my last chance to set the record straight . . . but I'm not the only survivor with a story to tell about what did--and didn't--happen that day. Except Sarah's martyrdom is important to a lot of people, people who don't take kindly to what I'm trying to do. And the more I learn, the less certain I am about what's right. I don't know what will be worse: the guilt of staying silent or the consequences of speaking up . . .

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The Prodigy
by John Feinstein
Hardcover
Farrar, Straus and Giroux
Released 8/28/2018

Seventeen-year-old Frank Baker is a golfing sensation. He’s set to earn a full-ride scholarship to play at the university of his choice, but his single dad wants him to skip college and turn pro―golf has taken its toll on the family bank account, and his dad is eager to start cashing in on his son’s prowess. Frank knows he isn’t ready for life on the pro tour―regardless of the potential riches―so his swing coach enlists a professional golfer turned journalist to be Frank’s secret adviser.

Pressure mounts when, after reaching the final of the U.S. Amateur tournament, Frank wins an automatic invite to the Masters. And when the prodigy, against all odds, starts tearing up the course at Augusta National, sponsors are lined up to throw money at him―and his father. But Frank’s entry in the Masters hinges on maintaining his standing as an amateur. Can he and his secret adviser―who has his own conflicts―keep Frank’s dad at bay long enough to bring home the legendary green jacket?

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The Sacrifice Box
by Martin Stewart
Hardcover
Viking Books for Young Readers
Released 8/28/2018

In the summer of 1982, five friends discover an ancient stone box hidden deep in the woods. They seal inside of it treasured objects from their childhoods, and they make a vow:

Never come to the box alone.
Never open it after dark.
Never take back your sacrifice.

Four years later, a series of strange and terrifying events begin to unfold: mirrors inexplicably shattering, inanimate beings coming to life, otherworldly crows thirsting for blood. Someone broke the rules of the box, and now everyone has to pay.

But how much are they willing to sacrifice?

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The Second Life of Ava Rivers
by Faith Gardner
Hardcover
Razorbill
Released 8/28/2018

Vera Rivers' life is split in two: before her twin sister Ava disappeared twelve years ago and after.

Before was hot Junes and ice cream trucks, dancing in sprinklers, loud Christmas mornings and pancakes on Saturdays. The after is everything else: police officers, investigators, tips, theories, leads, but never any answers. The case made headlines, shocked Vera's Northern California community, and turned her family into tragic celebrities.

Now, at eighteen, Vera is counting down the days until she starts her new life at college in Portland, Oregon, far away from the dark cloud she and her family have lived under for twelve years. But all that changes when a girl shows up at the local hospital.

Her name is Ava Rivers and she wants to go home.

Ava's return begins to mend the fractures in the Rivers family. Vera and Ava's estranged older brother returns. Vera reconnects with Max, the sweet, artistic boy from her childhood. Their parents smile again. But the questions remain: Where was Ava all these years? And who is she now?

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The Towering Sky
by Katharine McGee
Hardcover
HarperCollins
Released 8/28/2018

Welcome back to New York, 2119. A skyscraper city, fueled by impossible dreams.

Leda just wants to move on from what happened in Dubai. Until a new investigation forces her to seek help—from the person she’s spent all year trying to forget.

Rylin is back in her old life, reunited with an old flame. But when she starts seeing Cord again, she finds herself torn: between two worlds, and two very different boys.

Calliope feels trapped, playing a long con that costs more than she bargained for. What happens when all her lies catch up with her?

Watt is still desperately in love with Leda. He’ll do anything to win her back—even dig up secrets that are better left buried.

And now that Avery is home from England—with a new boyfriend, Max—her life seems more picture-perfect than ever. So why does she feel like she would rather be anything but perfect?

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Saturday, August 25, 2018

0 Elly Blake, author of NIGHTBLOOD, on dealing with feelings of nameless worry and "not good enough"

NIGHTBLOOD is the last novel in the Frostblood Saga, and we're thrilled to have Elly Blake stop by and tell us more about it.

Elly, how long did you work on NIGHTBLOOD?

Too long! Ha. It was supposed to take me nine months to write and revise, but instead it took me over a year. I found it really difficult to tie up the loose ends, carry the story to the finish line, and weave the dark and light elements together so that it was neither too heavy, nor lacking in that visceral punch I try to deliver. I think maybe my unconscious mind didn’t want to say goodbye to these beloved characters!

What did this book teach you about writing or about yourself?

This book taught me about perseverance. Anxiety was a particular challenge while I wrote and edited NIGHTBLOOD, which meant that I was never as productive as I would have liked. It was perhaps ironic to write about Ruby struggling with this dark force in her heart as I grappled with my own issues—those feelings of nameless worry and “not good enough” that anyone with anxiety knows well. I was lucky enough to have a solid support system, from my editor to my agent to my husband and kids, who all helped me in numerous ways. In the end, the book is complete and I’m very happy with the final installment in the series!

How long or hard was your road to publication? How many books did you write before this one, and how many never got published?

I have about six or seven unfinished manuscripts that I wrote over a four-year period. Sometimes I would write as much as 80,000 words and then not know how to end the book, so I’d give up on it and move to a new idea. I was so frustrated with myself for not finishing, but I couldn’t get past the mental blocks I had around editing and revising. In retrospect, I think I needed to go through that process to inch my way toward the end. A book is a huge, intimidating mass of words when you’re still new and learning to write! I took more writing courses than anyone I know, and again, I think I needed to do that in order to have the confidence to keep writing. I admire people who finish and query their first book! I was definitely not one of those people. It took a long time for me to build my confidence slowly, and it’s something I still need to nurture and build.

Was there an AHA! moment along your road to publication where something suddenly sank in and you felt you had the key to writing a novel? What was it?

NaNoWriMo! I first participated in NaNoWriMo in 2012 and it taught me that I can, in fact, draft quickly! Up until that point, I was caught in an endless loop of drafting and fixing the first few chapters, but never moving forward. What I love about NaNo is that quantity is king. It really helps you shove the perfectionism out of your mind and just allow yourself to write. As I’ve learned with time, I need a terrible first draft before I can write the less-terrible second draft, and eventually, with many passes and changes, hone that into a book. If you don’t finish the first draft, you can’t move on!

What's your writing ritual like? Do you listen to music? Work at home or at a coffee shop or the library, etc?

I mostly work at home in my basement office, though I love to write outside if the weather is nice. I usually listen to music, though it can’t be any song with lyrics as I find that distracting. That’s why I tend to listen to a lot of soundtracks. Putting on the same music day after day helps to cue the brain that it’s writing time. (But eventually if I get tired of the same soundtrack, I switch to something new.)

What advice would you most like to pass along to other writers?

Don’t judge yourself by your firsts: your first draft, your first book, your first query, your first contest, etc. Or even your second or third. You have so much potential, and you won’t know what you’re capable of until you put in a hefty amount of work and produce lots of words. It takes time and patience and dedication, but you can do it! Let your love of words and characters push you forward. And take breaks without guilt! Everyone needs breaks.

What are you working on now?

I’m working on taking a break for the first time since 2014 when I started writing Frostblood. I hope that if I let my mind rest a bit, the ideas start coming again. I love my readers and I want to stay connected to them book after book!

ABOUT THE BOOK

Nightblood
by Elly Blake
Hardcover
Little, Brown Books for Young
Released 6/5/2018

Ruby's world has changed more than she ever could have imagined. She's in love with a powerful Frost King. She's the heir to the Fire Throne. And she may be a Nightblood--the spawn of a vengeful deity hellbent on releasing his wraithlike Minax from their prison. Once freed, these beasts will roam the earth, devouring every last person until he or she is nothing but an empty husk. But Ruby is able to control the Minax to a degree, and now she, her beloved Arcus, and her friend Kai must find a way to bring Frostbloods and Firebloods--sworn enemies--together to make a stand against a foe more deadly than any they've faced.

Purchase Nightblood at Amazon
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Elly Blake is the NYT bestselling author of FROSTBLOOD. After earning a BA in English literature, she held a series of seemingly random jobs, including project manager, customs clerk, graphic designer, reporter for a local business magazine, and library assistant. She lives in Southwestern Ontario with her husband, kids and a Siberian Husky mix who definitely shows Frostblood tendencies.

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Have you had a chance to read NIGHTBLOOD yet? Have you participated in NaNoWriMo and has it helped your writing? Are you able to take breaks without guilt? Share your thoughts about the interview in the comments!

Happy Reading,

Jocelyn, Halli, Martina, Charlotte, Anisaa, Erin, Susan, Shelly, Kelly, Laura, Emily, and Lori Ann

Thursday, August 23, 2018

0 Lindsey Klingele, author of THE TRUTH LIES HERE, on being inspired by her dad's stories

We're delighted to have Lindsey Klingele with us to chat about her latest novel, THE TRUTH LIES HERE.

Lindsey, what was your inspiration for writing THE TRUTH LIES HERE?

The book starts out with a young Penny on a sasquatch-hunting mission with her conspiracy-theorist father. My own dad didn’t write for a tabloid or have a conspiracy wall, but he did love telling me wild stories. More accurately, he liked scaring the crap out of me. When we were camping, he would tell me all sorts of terrifying tales about the monster in the depths of Lake Michigan or the headless horseman in the woods. I remember being scared out of my mind but also delighted, angry at my dad for frightening me but also proud of the way he could captivate a crowd. I think we all feel a mix of emotions when we think of our parents, and I wanted to write a book that captured that truth. Plus, I’ve always wanted to write my own monster-in-the-woods story, and this was my chance!

What book or books would most resonate with readers who love your book--or visa versa?

If you like mysteries, there’s a good chance you’ll like THE TRUTH LIES HERE. There are so many good mystery books in YA! Some of my recent faves include those by Caleb Roerhig (White Rabbit), Kara Thomas (The Darkest Corners), and Maureen Johnson (Truly Devious). And if you’re a fan of TV shows like The X-Files or Stranger Things, you’ll probably also like THE TRUTH LIES HERE.

What's your writing ritual like? Do you listen to music? Work at home or at a coffee shop or the library, etc?

I do most of my work at home, in the morning, with my pit bull, Bighead, snoring two feet away. I do like to work at coffee shops, too, especially ones with chocolate chip scones. But weirdly, I absolutely can’t write when I’m listening to music. Ambient noise is fine, but if I’m playing music while writing, I find that the song lyrics get stuck in my head and sometimes wind up on the page, which can be pretty unhelpful!

ABOUT THE BOOK

The Truth Lies Here
by Lindsey Klingele
Hardcover
HarperTeen
Released 8/21/2018

WHAT’S GOING ON IN BONE LAKE? THE TRUTH WILL SURPRISE YOU.

In small town Michigan, Penny Hardjoy, an aspiring journalist, teams up with the nerdy boy next door and the town’s star quarterback to find her conspiracy theorist father after he goes missing and several other people turn up dead in the woods.

The deeper she digs, the weirder things start to get. Townspeople repeat the same phrases—verbatim. Men in black suits stroll around Main Street. Chunks of Penny's memory go missing.

Pretty soon, her research leads her to the long-ago meteorite crash in Bone Lake’s woods, and she’s going to have to reconsider her definition of “real” if she wants answers. . . .

Purchase The Truth Lies Here at Amazon
Purchase The Truth Lies Here at IndieBound
View The Truth Lies Here on Goodreads

ABOUT THE AUTHOR  

Lindsey Klingele grew up in Western Michigan, where she read every book she could get her hands on. She eventually moved to Los Angeles (the real land of make believe) and worked as a writers' assistant for TV shows such as THE LYING GAME and TWISTED. She still loves living in LA, especially since it's home to great television shows, truly excellent cheeseburgers, and her pit bull, Bighead. You can visit her online at www.lindseyklingele.com.

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Have you had a chance to read THE TRUTH LIES HERE yet? Did one of your parents inspire your writing with their storytelling? Are you able to write with music playing? Share your thoughts about the interview in the comments!

Happy Reading,

Jocelyn, Halli, Martina, Erin, Susan, Shelly, Kelly, Laura, Emily, and Lori Ann

Monday, August 20, 2018

11 New Releases this week 08/20 - 08/26 Plus 2 Giveaways

Happy Monday! This week, we have a giveaway as well has a few copies of the first book! Don't forget to check out all the books below and enter to win.

Happy Reading,

Shelly, Halli, Jocelyn, Martina, Erin, Susan, Kelly, Laura, Emily, Anisaa, and Lori Ann


YA BOOK GIVEAWAYS THIS WEEK


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Nightblood
by Elly Blake
Fireblood Giveaway
U.S. & Canada
Little, Brown Books for Young
Released 8/21/2018

Ruby's world has changed more than she ever could have imagined. She's in love with a powerful Frost King. She's the heir to the Fire Throne. And she may be a Nightblood--the spawn of a vengeful deity hellbent on releasing his wraithlike Minax from their prison. Once freed, these beasts will roam the earth, devouring every last person until he or she is nothing but an empty husk. But Ruby is able to control the Minax to a degree, and now she, her beloved Arcus, and her friend Kai must find a way to bring Frostbloods and Firebloods--sworn enemies--together to make a stand against a foe more deadly than any they've faced.

Author Question: What is your favorite thing about Nightblood?

Aside from the romantic scenes (which are always the most fun for me to write) I so enjoyed getting the opportunity to explore more about the Minax and its effect on Ruby. She’s a character whose emotions are so strong they often spin out of her control, so I wanted to see how would it influence her to have an element that makes control even more difficult, and how that would ripple outward to the people around her. That was the part I was dying to dig into when I started writing NIGHTBLOOD. As it turned out, my first draft was a bit too heavy emotionally, so I ended up having to rewrite a lot of the book to bring Ruby’s fiery personality into play, even as she struggled to contain the shadow creature living in her heart. Then the editors said they actually missed a few key scenes from the first draft, so I brought those back in. When I wove the threads together (heavy elements and fun moments) it finally seemed to create a cohesive whole. I really hope readers find it to be fun and satisfying conclusion to the trilogy. I’m going to miss these characters so much, but I’m ever grateful to those dear readers who have embraced them and loved them too!

Purchase Nightblood at Amazon
Purchase Nightblood at IndieBound
View Nightblood on Goodreads

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The Truth Lies Here
by Lindsey Klingele
Hardcover Giveaway
U.S. Only

HarperTeen
Released 8/21/2018

WHAT’S GOING ON IN BONE LAKE? THE TRUTH WILL SURPRISE YOU.

In small town Michigan, Penny Hardjoy, an aspiring journalist, teams up with the nerdy boy next door and the town’s star quarterback to find her conspiracy theorist father after he goes missing and several other people turn up dead in the woods.

The deeper she digs, the weirder things start to get. Townspeople repeat the same phrases—verbatim. Men in black suits stroll around Main Street. Chunks of Penny's memory go missing.

Pretty soon, her research leads her to the long-ago meteorite crash in Bone Lake’s woods, and she’s going to have to reconsider her definition of “real” if she wants answers. . . .

Author Question: What is your favorite thing about The Truth Lies Here?

THE TRUTH LIES HERE is a mystery novel, and I absolutely love mysteries. The main character, Penny, has to figure out what’s going on in her small hometown in order to find her missing father, and she keeps stumbling onto strange and baffling clues. Writing those weird elements—the townspeople who repeat the same phrase over and over, the selective amnesia, the alien conspiracy theories—was a lot of fun. But my favorite part of the book is the father-daughter relationship.

I think there’s a monumental shift in all of our lives—one that usually happens when we’re teens—when we realize our parents have interior lives of which we are completely unaware. It’s a scary thing, to realize these people we’ve been around from birth are, in some ways, complete strangers to us. It’s not dead-bodies-in-the-woods scary, but it’s still scary. But I think it’s exciting, too, when we have the opportunity to learn who our parents truly are, flaws and all. We only have to be brave enough accept what we find.


Purchase The Truth Lies Here at Amazon
Purchase The Truth Lies Here at IndieBound
View The Truth Lies Here on Goodreads


YA BOOK GIVEAWAYS LAST WEEK: WINNERS


Julia Unbound by Catherine Egan
Prize Pack won by Nickole H and the hardcovers of the first book won by John S, Tiffany E and Thomas M.

MORE YOUNG ADULT NOVELS NEW IN STORES NEXT WEEK


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Losing the Field
by Abbi Glines
Hardcover
Simon Pulse
Released 8/21/2018

Tallulah Liddell had been defined by her appearance for as long as she could remember. Overweight and insecure, she preferred to fly under the radar, draw as little attention to herself so no one can hurt her. The only boy who did seem to ever notice her was her longtime crush, Nash Lee. But when he laughs at a joke aimed at Tallulah the summer before their senior year, Tallulah’s love dissipates, and she becomes determined to lose weight, to no longer be an object of her classmates’—and especially Nash’s—ridicule.

Nash Lee has it all—he’s the star running back of Lawton’s football team, being scouted by division one colleges, and on track to have a carefree senior year. But when an accident leaves him with a permanent limp, all of Nash’s present and future plans are destroyed, leaving him bitter, angry, and unrecognizable from the person he used to be.

Facing a new school year with her new body, Tallulah is out to seek revenge on Nash’s cruelty. All does not go according to plan, though, and Tallulah and Nash unexpectedly find themselves falling for each other. But with all the pain resting in each of their hearts, can their love survive?

Purchase Losing the Field at Amazon
Purchase Losing the Field at IndieBound
View Losing the Field on Goodreads

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The State of Grace
by Rachael Lucas
Hardcover
Feiwel & Friends
Released 8/21/2018

“Sometimes I feel like everyone else was handed a copy of the rules for life and mine got lost.”

Grace is autistic and has her own way of looking at the world. She's got a horse and a best friend who understand her, and that's pretty much all she needs. But when Grace kisses Gabe and things start to change at home, the world doesn't make much sense to her any more.

Suddenly everything threatens to fall apart, and it's up to Grace to fix it on her own.

Purchase The State of Grace at Amazon
Purchase The State of Grace at IndieBound
View The State of Grace on Goodreads

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To Be Honest
by Maggie Ann Martin
Hardcover
Swoon Reads
Released 8/21/2018

Savannah is dreading being home alone with her overbearing mother after her big sister―and best friend―goes off to college. But if she can just get through senior year, she'll be able to escape to college, too. What she doesn't count on is that her mother's obsession with weight has only grown deeper since her appearance on an extreme weight-loss show, and now Savvy's mom is pressuring her even harder to be constantly mindful of what she eats.

Between her mom's diet-helicoptering, missing her sister, and worrying about her collegiate future, Savvy has enough to worry about. And then she meets George, the cute new kid at school who has insecurities of his own. As Savvy and George grow closer, they help each other discover how to live in the moment and enjoy the here and now before it disappears.

To Be Honest is another sharp, witty novel from Maggie Ann Martin, about a spunky heroine who is dealing with very real issues―body image, parental pressure, loneliness, first love, and finding your way―with heart and humor.

Purchase To Be Honest at Amazon
Purchase To Be Honest at IndieBound
View To Be Honest on Goodreads

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We Regret to Inform You
by Ariel Kaplan
Hardcover
Knopf Books for Young Readers
Released 8/21/2018

Mischa Abramavicius is a walking, talking, top-scoring, perfectly well-rounded college application in human form. So when she's rejected not only by the Ivies, but her loathsome safety school, she is shocked and devastated. All the sacrifices her mother made to send her to prep school, the late nights cramming for tests, the blatantly résumé-padding extracurriculars (read: Students for Sober Driving) ... all that for nothing.
As Mischa grapples with the prospect of an increasingly uncertain future, she questions how this could have happened in the first place. Is it possible that her transcript was hacked? With the help of her best friend and sometimes crush, Nate, and a group of eccentric techies known as "The Ophelia Syndicate," Mischa launches an investigation that will shake the quiet community of Blanchard Prep to its stately brick foundations.

Purchase We Regret to Inform You at Amazon
Purchase We Regret to Inform You at IndieBound
View We Regret to Inform You on Goodreads


Saturday, August 18, 2018

0 Kit Frick, author of SEE ALL THE STARS, on putting her characters in tough situations

We're excited to have Kit Frick join us to share more about her debut novel, SEE ALL THE STARS.

Kit, what was your inspiration for writing SEE ALL THE STARS?

I’m drawn to complex characters, and my writer-brain delights in putting them in very tough situations and empowering them to dig their ways out. The idea for See All the Stars began with a “what if?” question: What if a girl lost all her friends and her boyfriend in one fell swoop—and what if she was partly responsible for what happened? Ellory’s story unfolded from there.

What book or books would most resonate with readers who love your book—or visa versa?

If you’re looking for rich, nuanced representations of friendships among teen girls, a few novels that really get at the heart of things are Always Forever Maybe by Anica Mrose Rissi, Underneath Everything by Marcy Beller Paul, and A Line in the Dark by Malinda Lo. One adult novel that absolutely knocked my socks off for its portrayal of a volatile teen girl friendship is Girls on Fire by Robin Wasserman. For atmospheric YA thrillers, I highly recommend Suicide Notes from Beautiful Girls by Lynn Weingarten and We'll Never Be Apart by Emiko Jean.

How long did you work on SEE ALL THE STARS?

I got the idea for See All the Stars in late 2014 and spent all of 2015 drafting and revising with the help of beta readers. Once I signed with my agent, we dove into further revisions before putting the manuscript on submission. See All the Stars sold to my editor Ruta Rimas at S&S/McElderry in October 2016, and from there, Ruta and I did two rounds of developmental edits before the book went into copyedits in its mostly final form in May of last year. So, the bulk of the writing and revising process took place during the course of about two and a half years. All told, it’s been three years and eight months from concept to finished book!

What advice would you most like to pass along to other writers?

Read widely in your age category and genre. Get to know the playing field. Seek out trusted readers for your work and listen to their feedback. Know that you don’t have to take every piece of feedback. Revise. Revise more. Remember that publishing is not a meritocracy. There’s a lot of luck and timing involved in getting a book published, and while both of those factors are beyond your control, understanding that they play a key role can help put your experience and others’ in perspective.

What are you working on now?

My next book is another stand-alone YA thriller, called All Eyes on Us. It’s about two girls under unbearable pressure from their families and communities—and what happens when an anonymous texter threatens to uproot their lives. All Eyes on Us is scheduled to release in May 2019, also from S&S/McElderry, and I’ll be able to share a lot more later this year!

ABOUT THE BOOK

See All the Stars
by Kit Frick
Hardcover
Margaret K. McElderry Books
Released 8/14/2018

It’s hard to find the truth beneath the lies you tell yourself.

Then: They were four—Bex, Jenni, Ellory, Ret. (Venus. Earth. Moon. Sun.) Electric, headstrong young women; Ellory’s whole solar system.

Now: Ellory is alone, her once inseparable group of friends torn apart by secrets, deception, and a shocking incident that changed their lives forever.

Then: Lazy summer days. A party. A beautiful boy. Ellory met Matthias and fell into the beginning of a spectacular, bright love.

Now: Ellory returns to Pine Brook to navigate senior year after a two-month suspension and summer away—no boyfriend, no friends. No going back. Tormented by some and sought out by others, troubled by a mysterious note-writer who won’t let Ellory forget, and consumed by guilt over her not entirely innocent role in everything and everyone she’s lost, Ellory finds that even in the present, the past is everywhere.

The path forward isn’t a straight line. And moving on will mean sorting the truth from the lies—the lies Ellory has been telling herself.

Purchase See All the Stars at Amazon
Purchase See All the Stars at IndieBound
View See All the Stars on Goodreads

ABOUT THE AUTHOR 

Kit Frick is a novelist, poet, and MacDowell Colony fellow. Originally from Pittsburgh, PA, she studied creative writing at Sarah Lawrence College and received her MFA from Syracuse University. When she isn’t putting complicated characters in impossible situations, Kit edits poetry and literary fiction for a small press, edits for private clients, and mentors emerging writers through Pitch Wars. Her debut young adult novel is See All the Stars (Simon & Schuster / Margaret K. McElderry Books, August 14, 2018), and her debut full-length poetry collection is A Small Rising Up in the Lungs (New American Press, fall 2018).

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Have you had a chance to read SEE ALL THE STARS yet? Do you empower your characters to dig themselves out of tough situations? Are you able to keep in mind that publishing is not a meritocracy? Share your thoughts about the interview in the comments!

Happy Reading,

Jocelyn, Halli, Martina, Erin, Susan, Shelly, Kelly, Laura, Emily, and Lori Ann

Thursday, August 16, 2018

0 Catherine Egan, author of JULIA UNBOUND, on writing through distraction

JULIA UNBOUND is the final book in the The Witch's Child series, and we're thrilled to have Catherine Egan here to tell us more about it.

Catherine, what scene was really hard for you to write and why, and is that the one of which you are most proud? Or is there another scene you particularly love?

The hardest scenes to write, for me, are the ones with lots of characters. I sometimes wonder if authors with film and theater backgrounds are better at this kind of thing, because they have some experience thinking about blocking. I have crucial, climactic scenes involving five or six characters at a time, I need everybody to be involved and have their moment, but bringing it all together just takes forever. Action scenes with a number of characters are particularly difficult because you also need to give the impression that it is all happening very quickly. I love my characters, but there are moments when I’m moving them around like chess pieces and grumblingly thinking, “I should have killed a few more of you off.”

I suppose that when I do finally get a scene like that right, I’m proud of it, but they are rarely the scenes I love the most. My favorite scenes are the Big Relationship Moments between two characters. In this book, my favorite scenes probably involve Julia and her brother Dek, and Julia with her sometimes-enemy-sometimes-sort-of-ally-or-is-she-really? Pia. A scene with a bath-tub, in particular. Also Julia piecing together a broken mud-woman with whom she has a fraught relationship. There are a bunch of scenes I really like and am proud of in this book, and they are all one-on-one scenes.

How long did you work on JULIA UNBOUND?

Technically, I worked on JULIA UNBOUND for about a year. But it’s hard to measure, because I never work on one thing straight through – I write a draft, and then I take a break from it to either revise the previous thing or start drafting the next thing. I always have at least two projects on the go and something else on the back-burner. Working on something completely different allows me to go back to my draft with fresh eyes. But if I add it all up I’d say it was somewhere between 8 and 12 months total.

What's your writing ritual like? Do you listen to music? Work at home or at a coffee shop or the library, etc?

My ideal writing situation involves first taking a walk to get my mind back in the story, and then silence, dark chocolate, and coffee. I work happily at home or in cafés. Silence and solitude were luxuries when my children were small; my “ritual” back then was just to grab whatever time I could get, type fast, and hope it didn’t suck. Then I’d look at it the next time I had half an hour to spare. If it sucked, I’d delete it and try again. If it didn’t suck, I’d tinker with it ‘til I liked it, and then I’d move on. It worked, sort of, but getting to the end of anything obviously took a very long time.

My kids got a bit older and I got spoiled, perfecting a ritual that made me very happy. Then we got pet rats. (They are great pets! Really!). Now, I write in what has become “the rat room” while our fuzzy critters climb all over me and try to get at my coffee. It isn’t ideal, I guess, but it’s taught me to work through distraction all over again.

ABOUT THE BOOK

Julia Unbound
by Catherine Egan
Hardcover
Knopf Books for Young Readers
Released 8/14/2018

Julia has been ensnared in so many different webs, it's hard to see how she'll ever break free. She must do Casimir's bidding in order to save the life of her brother. She must work against Casimir to save the lives of most everyone else she knows.

Casimir demands that Julia use her vanishing skills to act as a spy at court and ensure that a malleable prince is installed on the throne of Frayne. But Julia is secretly acting as a double agent, passing information to the revolutionaries and witches who want a rebel princess to rule.

Beyond these deadly entanglements, Julia is also desperately seeking the truth about herself: How is it she can vanish? Is she some form of monster? Is her life her own?

With every move she makes, Julia finds herself tangled ever tighter. Should she try to save her country? Her brother? A beloved child? Can she even save herself?

Purchase Julia Unbound at Amazon
Purchase Julia Unbound at IndieBound
View Julia Unbound on Goodreads

ABOUT THE AUTHOR 

Catherine Egan grew up in Vancouver, Canada. Since then, she has lived on a volcanic island in Japan (which erupted while she was there and sent her hurtling straight into the arms of her now husband), in Tokyo, Kyoto, and Beijing, on an oil rig in the middle of Bohai Bay, then in New Jersey, and now in New Haven, Connecticut. She is currently occupied with writing books and fighting dragon armies with her warrior children. You can read more about her at catherineegan.com and follow her on Twitter at @ByCatherineEgan.

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Have you had a chance to read JULIA UNBOUND yet? How do you handle the blocking of multiple characters? Do you work on multiple projects at one time? Share your thoughts about the interview in the comments!

Happy Reading,

Jocelyn, Halli, Martina, Erin, Susan, Shelly, Kelly, Laura, Emily, and Lori Ann

Wednesday, August 15, 2018

0 WoW Wednesdays: Monica Sanz on why you don't need to write everyday

Today, we're so excited to welcome the amazing Monica Sanz, a member of the Wattpad4 and a Wattpad contributor whose work has over six million views. She's here to talk about writing advice - more specifically that bit of advice we're all heard. You must write every day. In the guest post below, Monica discusses why that advice might not work for you and why that's okay. Stay tuned for info about Monica's book SEVENTH BORN, coming September 4th from Entangled Teen. But now, here's Monica:
YOU'RE STILL A WRITER EVEN IF YOU DON'T WRITE EVERYDAY

By Monica Sanz
As writers, we’re always looking for ways to improve our craft or techniques that will help us be more effective and successful. When I was starting out, I scoured the internet for tips on how to become a better writer, and when I discovered Twitter, I thought I’d stumbled upon a well of wisdom. That’s true, to a degree; you can make meaningful connections and learn a lot about the industry on Twitter and online. One thing I wish I would have kept in mind though was that a lot of the advice given were merely opinions and not things I had to accept as law in order to be a writer. One nugget of advice that fits into this category is the a writer must write every day tip that is constantly repeated by well-meaning folks. I’ve offered up the same advice in the past, but, well, we all learn from our mistakes.

I was in this write every daycamp for a long time. I wrote whenever I had the chance, on whatever I could get my hands on—my phone, tablet, a notebook I carry around, napkins—whatever. But then a few months ago, I went through the hardest time if my life. The "I would never wish this upon my worst enemy" type of painful experience. And as I sat there in the hospital with a million and one worries and my heart in a thousand pieces, there was this unnecessary added worry in the back of my mind… I was worried about not being able to write. Not because I wanted to, but because it was something I had to do. And as the days went by, that worry grew until I tried to push through my pain and get something down on paper.

But then something clicked. Why did I HAVE to write?

Why couldn’t I take this time to grieve? Where were my words going to go if I didn’t write them then and there? And if they did leave, wouldn’t more words come anyway? I’m a writer after all. Words are what fill my brain day and night, so where was this concern coming from? I realized then I had taken this piece of advice and made it law. I had fooled myself into thinking that I was a real writer because I wrote every single day, and if I didn’t keep it up, then I’d lose my seat at the writer’s table or get my writer’s card revoked. It was a jarring and dispiriting thought, because it wasn't that I wanted to write as some kind of outlet for what I was going through, but because I felt like a failure if I didn't.

There are so many of us with that belief hanging over us and it’s not true. I closed my computer that day and didn’t write anything new for two months. I had edits to wrap up, yeah, but new material? No way. I wasn’t ready and that was okay for me, and it’s okay for you too. I didn’t write for that time and here I am, still a writer, working on the second book of my new series, and countless new ideas brewing in the back of my head. My talent is still here. The ideas are still here. The words are still here. Words will always be here because the frequency with which we write is not what makes us writers. It’s our passion to put these words down on paper and give these stories life.

If you need to take a break, do it. If you want to chill and watch TV, read a book, or play with your babies (fur babies included), do it. I learned those months ago that life is way too short to bog ourselves down with unnecessary rules, especially those that suck the joy out of what we love doing.

We're human, living in a world full of unknowns and surprises. Things shift and spill and explode and we may not want to write because we’re hurt, fatigued, or simply don't want to, and if you feel better with another writer saying it's okay to be a writer and not write, then here I am, a writer, telling you, a writer: it’s okay.



ABOUT MONICA
Monica Sanz is a YA author who writes about brooding professors, cursed ringmasters, tortured soul collectors, and the girls they fall in love with. She has an established fan base on the social writing website, Wattpad where her works have over 6 million combined reads. She is a member of the Wattpad4, a group of writers who host weekly Twitter chats on the subjects of writing and publishing.

When not lost in one of her many made-up worlds, Monica can be found on the sunny beaches of South Florida where she resides with her husband and their three children or scouring YouTube for new bands to feed her music addiction.

www.monicasanzbooks.com

www.facebook.com/monicasanzauthor

www.twitter.com/monicabsanz

www.bookbub.com/monica-sanz

www.instagram.com/authormonicasanz



ABOUT SEVENTH BORN (9/4/18; Entangled Teen)
Abomination. Curse. Murderer. All names hurled at eighteen-year-old Seraphina Dovetail. As the seventh-born daughter to a witch, she's the cause of her mother losing her powers and, in turn, her life.

Abandoned as a child, Sera dreams of becoming an inspector and finding her family. To do that, she must be referred into the Advanced Studies Program at the Aetherium's Witchling Academy. Her birth order, quick temper, and tendency to set things on fire, however, have left her an outcast with failing marks…and just what Professor Nikolai Barrington is looking for.

The tall, brooding, yet exceedingly handsome young professor makes her a proposition: become his assistant and he'll give her the referral she needs. Sera is quickly thrust into a world where witches are being kidnapped, bodies are raised from the dead, and someone is burning seventhborns alive. As Sera and Barrington grow ever closer, she'll discover that some secrets are best left buried…and fire isn't the only thing that makes a witch burn.

Monday, August 13, 2018

4 New Releases this week 08/13 - 08/19 plus Giveaway of JULIA UNBOUND

Happy Monday! This week, we have a huge giveaway of the full A WITCH'S CHILD series as well has a few copies of the first book! Don't forget to check out all the books below and enter to win.

Happy Reading,

Shelly, Halli, Jocelyn, Martina, Erin, Susan, Kelly, Laura, Emily, Anisaa, and Lori Ann

YA BOOK GIVEAWAYS THIS WEEK


* * * *


Julia Unbound
by Catherine Egan
1 full series + 3 hardcovers of JULIA VANISHES Giveaway
U.S. Only

Knopf Books for Young Readers
Released 8/14/2018

Julia has been ensnared in so many different webs, it's hard to see how she'll ever break free. She must do Casimir's bidding in order to save the life of her brother. She must work against Casimir to save the lives of most everyone else she knows.

Casimir demands that Julia use her vanishing skills to act as a spy at court and ensure that a malleable prince is installed on the throne of Frayne. But Julia is secretly acting as a double agent, passing information to the revolutionaries and witches who want a rebel princess to rule.

Beyond these deadly entanglements, Julia is also desperately seeking the truth about herself: How is it she can vanish? Is she some form of monster? Is her life her own?

With every move she makes, Julia finds herself tangled ever tighter. Should she try to save her country? Her brother? A beloved child? Can she even save herself?

Author Question: What is your favorite thing about Julia Unbound?

JULIA UNBOUND is the final book in a trilogy I’ve spent years writing, and my favorite thing about both the process of writing it and the finished product is the immense satisfaction of tying up all the threads and answering all the questions from the previous two books.

I had an ending for the series in mind before I started drafting the first book. The outline of the book changed significantly a few times, but the broad strokes of the story have been in place from the beginning. There are scenes and big reveals in this book I have been waiting literally years to write. I didn’t know what to do with myself after writing the final scene in the book; I had to take a long walk just to settle my mind again. I’ve laid my clues and questions carefully, and I hope that the final book pays off for readers and is as much fun to read as it was to write.


Purchase Julia Unbound at Amazon
Purchase Julia Unbound at IndieBound
View Julia Unbound on Goodreads


YA BOOK GIVEAWAYS LAST WEEK: WINNERS


Girls Resist!: A Guide to Activism, Leadership, and Starting a Revolution by KaeLyn Rich: Megan D.
The Other Side of Lost by Jessi Kirby: Megan K.

MORE YOUNG ADULT FICTION IN STORES NEXT WEEK WITH AUTHOR INTERVIEWS


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Our Stories, Our Voices
by Amy Reed
Hardcover
Simon Pulse
Released 8/14/2018

From Amy Reed, Ellen Hopkins, Amber Smith, Sandhya Menon, and more of your favorite YA authors comes an anthology of essays that explore the diverse experiences of injustice, empowerment, and growing up female in America.

This collection of twenty-one essays from major YA authors—including award-winning and bestselling writers—touches on a powerful range of topics related to growing up female in today’s America, and the intersection with race, religion, and ethnicity. Sure to inspire hope and solidarity to anyone who reads it, Our Stories, Our Voices belongs on every young woman’s shelf.

This anthology features essays from Martha Brockenbrough, Jaye Robin Brown, Sona Charaipotra, Brandy Colbert, Somaiya Daud, Christine Day, Alexandra Duncan, Ilene Wong (I.W.) Gregorio, Maurene Goo. Ellen Hopkins, Stephanie Kuehnert, Nina LaCour, Anna-Marie LcLemore, Sandhya Menon, Hannah Moskowitz, Julie Murphy, Aisha Saeed, Jenny Torres Sanchez, Amber Smith, and Tracy Walker.

Author Question: What is your favorite thing about Our Stories, Our Voices?

My favorite thing about OUR STORIES, OUR VOICES is the hope it gives me at a time when hope can be really hard to find. Like so many Americans, I am terrified and enraged about what is happening to our country and to the people in it. It is easy for me to focus on all the bad news, to let my anxiety and fear win and immobilize me. But working on this book, reading the stories the authors have shared about their own experiences and how they have found strength, reminds me that I am not alone in my fear, that none of us are. There are people all across this country, people like us and people different than us, who care about our wellbeing and the integrity of our democracy. We are surrounded by allies who are fighting to protect the most vulnerable among us. We are surrounded by people who have our back. My fear makes me feel tiny, but my hope connects me to everyone else who wants a better world. This book reminds me of the power of our voices and the power of speaking truth, the power all of us have to be agents of change and add a little goodness to the world. It helps me have faith that, in the end, with all of us supporting each other and working hard in our own ways, justice and truth will win.

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See All the Stars
by Kit Frick
Hardcover
Margaret K. McElderry Books
Released 8/14/2018

It’s hard to find the truth beneath the lies you tell yourself.

Then: They were four—Bex, Jenni, Ellory, Ret. (Venus. Earth. Moon. Sun.) Electric, headstrong young women; Ellory’s whole solar system.

Now: Ellory is alone, her once inseparable group of friends torn apart by secrets, deception, and a shocking incident that changed their lives forever.

Then: Lazy summer days. A party. A beautiful boy. Ellory met Matthias and fell into the beginning of a spectacular, bright love.

Now: Ellory returns to Pine Brook to navigate senior year after a two-month suspension and summer away—no boyfriend, no friends. No going back. Tormented by some and sought out by others, troubled by a mysterious note-writer who won’t let Ellory forget, and consumed by guilt over her not entirely innocent role in everything and everyone she’s lost, Ellory finds that even in the present, the past is everywhere.

The path forward isn’t a straight line. And moving on will mean sorting the truth from the lies—the lies Ellory has been telling herself.

Author Question: What is your favorite thing about See All the Stars?

When I set out to write SEE ALL THE STARS, I knew I wanted to dig deep into friendships between teen girls. It’s been my experience—and the experience of many women in my life—that friendships between women in adolescence and early adulthood are rarely simple. They’re intense—intensely good, intensely close, intensely consuming, intensely critical, intensely imbued with meaning, intensely fraught with the trappings of personal identity formation and navigating an often unforgiving social world. Developing the best friendship between Ellory and Ret—the good, the bad, the ugly—was my favorite part about writing SEE ALL THE STARS, and I couldn’t be more excited to share it with readers.

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MORE YOUNG ADULT NOVELS NEW IN STORES NEXT WEEK


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Fresh Ink
by Lamar Giles
Hardcover
Crown Books for Young Readers
Released 8/14/2018

Careful--you are holding fresh ink. And not hot-off-the-press, still-drying-in-your-hands ink. Instead, you are holding twelve stories with endings that are still being written--whose next chapters are up to you.

Because these stories are meant to be read. And shared.

Thirteen of the most accomplished YA authors deliver a label-defying anthology that includes ten short stories, a graphic novel, and a one-act play about topics like gentrification, acceptance, untimely death, coming out, and poverty and ranging in genre from contemporary realistic fiction to adventure and romance. This collection will inspire you to break conventions, bend the rules, and color outside the lines. All you need is fresh ink.

AUTHORS INCLUDE: Schuyler Bailar, Melissa de la Cruz, Sara Farizan, Sharon G. Flake, Eric Gansworth, Malindo Lo, Walter Dean Myers, Daniel José Older, Thien Pham, Jason Reynolds, Aminah Mae Safi, Gene Luen Yang, Nicola Yoon

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How to Breathe Underwater
by Vicky Skinner
Hardcover
Swoon Reads
Released 8/14/2018

Kate’s father has been pressuring her to be perfect for her whole life, pushing her to be the best swimmer she can be. But when Kate finds her dad cheating on her mom, Kate’s perfect world comes crashing down, and Kate is forced to leave home and the swim team she's been a part of her whole life.

Now in a new home and new school, faced with the prospect of starting over, Kate isn't so sure that swimming is what she wants anymore. But when she decides to quit, her whole world seems to fall apart. But when Kate gets to know Michael, the cute boy that lives across the hall, she starts to think that starting over might not be so bad. There's only one problem: Michael has a girlfriend.

As the pressures of love, family, and success press down on her, can Kate keep her head above water?

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My Life Uploaded
by Rae Earl
Hardcover
Imprint
Released 8/14/2018

Hello! Millie Porter here. I’m posting this from a garden shed, because three so-called adults are in the house arguing over whether you can train penguins. You see, I moved in with my dad, granddad, and aunty to escape my mum’s neat freak boyfriend. (He follows me around with a vacuum cleaner, like that’s a normal thing to do. It’s not.)

The point is, this reality thing is HARD, so my BFF Lauren and I are taking it online to tell you how to handle it. We are going to make a difference with this vlog. That is, if I can just get Dave the cat’s tail OUT OF MY FACE.

Yes, we know it’s usually only übergeeks like Bradley Sanderson who do vlogs. Yes, we know that Instagram queen Erin Breeler will not like it ONE TINY BIT. But Lauren says she’ll be too obsessed with the hot new boy at school to notice us.

You get to see me juggling real life, online life, and a cat intent on my destruction as it happens―IRL.

This is my life. Uploaded.

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Surviving Adam Meade
by Shannon Klare
Hardcover
Swoon Reads
Released 8/14/2018

Seventeen-year-old Claire Collins has a plan: get into college and leave North Carolina behind. What she doesn’t have is an idea for how to get rid of the local football star and womanizer extraordinaire―Adam Meade, who she can’t even avoid (despite many efforts), because Claire’s dad is the high school football coach.

Seventeen-year-old Adam Meade never fails. He always gets what he wants . . . until he meets Claire, the new girl who leaves him unnerved, pissed off, and confused. But there’s something about her that he just can’t resist . . .

With the bite of lemon meringue pie and the sugar of sweet tea, Surviving Adam Meade is a sexy and compelling young adult novel about two strong-willed people who think they know what they want but have no idea what they need.


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The Looking Glass
by Janet McNally
Hardcover
HarperTeen
Released 8/14/2018

GIRLS IN TROUBLE. That’s what Sylvie Blake’s older sister Julia renamed their favorite fairy tale book, way back when they were just girls themselves. Now Julia has disappeared—and no one knows for sure if she wants to be away, or if she’s the one in trouble.

Then a copy of their old storybook arrives with a mysterious list inside, and Sylvie begins to see signs of her sister, and their favorite fairy tales, everywhere she goes.

With the help of her best friend’s enigmatic brother and his beat-up car, Sylvie sets out to follow the strange signs right to Julia and return to New York with her in tow. But trouble comes in lots of forms—and Sylvie soon learns that the damsel in distress is often the only one who can save herself.

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The Raging Ones
by Becca Ritchie and Krista Ritchie
Hardcover
Wednesday Books
Released 8/14/2018

An edge of your seat sci-fi romance with twists and turns that you will never see coming!

In a freezing world, where everyone knows the day they will die, three teens break all odds.

Franny Bluecastle, a tough city teen, dreams of dying in opulence, to see wealth she’s never known. Like the entire world, she believes it’s impossible to dodge a deathday.

Until the day she does.

Court Icecastle knows wealth. He also knows pain. Spending five years in Vorkter Prison, a fortress of ice and suffering, he dreams of life beyond the people that haunt him and the world that imprisoned him.

Mykal Kickfall fights for those he loves. The rugged Hinterlander shares a frustrating yet unbreakable connection with Court―which only grows more lawless and chaotic as their senses and emotions connect with Franny.

With the threat of people learning they’ve dodged their deathdays, they must flee their planet to survive. But to do so, all three will have to hide their shared bond as they vie for a highly sought after spot in the newest mission to space. Against thousands of people far smarter, who’ll live longer, and never fear death the way that they do.

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