Gratitude Giveaway 2013! (closed)

Hello gentle reader,

today I’m taking part in the 4th Annual Gratitude Giveaway hosted by Kathy @ I am a reader, not a writer. It’s a giveaway to thank you, my lovely followers…

gratitude 2013

I’m giving away ALLEGIANT (Divergent #3) by Veronica Roth (UK Hardcover edition).

allegiant-uk-cover-veronica-roth

Told from a riveting dual perspective, Allegiant, by #1 New York Times best-selling author Veronica Roth, brings the Divergent series to a powerful conclusion while revealing the secrets of the dystopian world that has captivated millions of readers in Divergent and Insurgent (Goodreads).

Giveaway information:

The giveaway is open until Saturday 30th November 2013 at 9am (BST time).

To enter please fill in the contact form below with your name and email. If you follow my blog by email or WordPress, if you are a Twitter follower, if you like my page on Facebook, if you follow me on Pinterest or Tumblr, or if you tweet about the giveaway, this will grant you an extra entry. Mention it below.

Entrants must be at least 13 years of age.

This giveaway is open Internationally, as long as the Book Depository ships to your country.

The winner will be chosen randomly, notified by email and will have 72 hours to reply or a new winner will be chosen.

I hold the right to end the giveaway before its original deadline without any prior notice.

I hold the right to disqualify any entry as I see fit.

Privacy information: no information given for this giveaway will be used for other purpose than this giveaway. All information provided (names, emails and mail addresses) will be deleted after the giveaway.

This is a blog hop! Check out the other giveaways here.

Good luck and feel free to leave me a comment below!

Book of the Week – 22

Hello gentle reader,

this week I’m reading Masque of the Red Death, and its sequel Dance of the Red Death, by Bethany Griffin (Published in April 2012 and June 2013 by Greenwillow Book). I won both those books in a giveaway hosted by Hannah at Once Upon A Time

These books were inspired by a short story written by Edgar Allan Poe in 1842 and entitled “The Masque of the Red Death”. In this retelling, the story takes place in steampunk/post-apocalyptic world. It has a very gothic atmosphere, an interesting heroine and a compelling plot. I’m loving it!

Masque of the Red Death

From Goodreads:

Everything is in ruins.

A devastating plague has decimated the population, and those who are left live in fear of catching it as the city crumbles around them.

So what does Araby Worth have to live for?

Nights in the Debauchery Club, beautiful dresses, glittery makeup . . . and tantalizing ways to forget it all.

But in the depths of the club—in the depths of her own despair—Araby will find more than oblivion. She will find Will, the terribly handsome proprietor of the club, and Elliott, the wickedly smart aristocrat. Neither is what he seems. Both have secrets. Everyone does.

And Araby may find not just something to live for, but something to fight for—no matter what it costs her.

Have you read Masque of the Red Death? What did you think? And what are you reading this week? Feel free to leave me a comment below!

YA New Releases – September Edition

Hello gentle reader,

There are many books published this month, and I’ve highlighted below the ones I’m most looking forward to reading…

All Our Yesterdays

All Our Yesterdays (Cassandra Chronicles #1) by Cristin Terrill (YA Sci-Fi)

Expected publication: September 3rd 2013 by Disney Hyperion

Why I’m looking forward to it: time travel!

Antigoddess

Antigoddess (The Goddess War #1) by Kendare Blake (YA Myth retelling)

Expected publication: September 10th 2013 by Tor Teen

Why I’m looking forward to it: a retelling of Greek mythology!

ChaosOfStars

The Chaos of Stars by Kiersten White (YA Paranormal)

Expected publication: September 10th 2013 by HarperTeen

Why I’m looking forward to it: Egyptian gods and family issues…

Frozen

Frozen (Heart of Dread #1) by Melissa De La Cruz and Michael Johnston (YA Dystopia)

Expected publication: September 17th 2013 by Putnam Juvenile

Why I’m looking forward to it: snowed in Las Vegas!

What about you? Any books you’re eagerly waiting for this month? Let me know in the comments below!

Waiting On Wednesday – 26

Hello gentle reader,

this week I’m waiting on Shadowlark (Skylark #2) by Meagan Spooner (expected publication: October 1st 2013 by Carolrhoda Lab).

Shadowlark

Shadowlark will be the second book in the Skylark trilogy. I posted about Skylark in May 2012 (Waiting On Wednesday – 10) and interviewed Meagan Spooner in October 2012 (read the interview here). Now I’m really looking forward to Shadowlark, because Skylark was definitely the most original YA book I read in 2012 and because I really want to know how the story can go on after Book One’s surprising ending.

Below is the blurb for Skylark. If you want to read the blurb for Shadowlark, it’s here, but beware of spoilers if you haven’t read Book One.

Skylark

Vis in magia, in vita vi. In magic there is power, and in power, life. 

For fifteen years, Lark Ainsley waited for the day when her Resource would be harvested and she would finally be an adult. After the harvest she expected a small role in the regular, orderly operation of the City within the Wall. She expected to do her part to maintain the refuge for the last survivors of the Wars. She expected to be a tiny cog in the larger clockwork of the city. 

Lark did not expect to become the City’s power supply. 

For fifteen years, Lark Ainsley believed in a lie. Now she must escape the only world she’s ever known…or face a fate more unimaginable than death.

“Waiting On Wednesday” is a weekly event, hosted by book blogger Breaking The Spine, that spotlights upcoming releases that we’re eagerly anticipating.

What are you waiting on this week? Is Shadowlark on your TBR list? Feel free to leave me a comment below!

End of the World Giveaway! (closed)

Hello gentle reader,

This week I’m taking part in the

end of world button

Hosted by I Am A Reader, Not A WriterMy Life With Books

12/21/12 

The Mayan Calendar Ends!

Does it mean the end of the World? 

Probably not but just in case…

Which books would you save if the world was coming to an end?  

The giveaway runs from today until Friday, December 21st 2012 and it is a chance for me to share with you a book about the end of the world. I have chosen to give away A SIGNED COPY of Eve by Anna Carey (paperback, US edition). The giveaway is international. Assuming the worlds is still spinning the winner will have a new YA Dystopian book just in time to start off the new year right!

Signed-Eve-Anna Carey

Signed-Eve-Anna Carey 2

Giveaway is now closed – Thanks to all who entered!

The winner will be contacted by email.

Giveaway information:

The giveaway is open until Friday, December 21st 2012 at midnight (BST time)

To enter please fill in the contact form below with your name and email.

If you follow my blog by email, WordPress or RSS feed, if you are a Twitter follower , if you like my page on Facebook or if you tweet about the giveaway, this will grant you an extra entry. Mention it below.

Entrants must be at least 13 years of age.

This giveaway is open Internationally.

The winner will be chosen randomly, notified by email and will have 72 hours to reply or a new winner will be chosen.

I am not responsible for items lost in the mail.

I hold the right to end the giveaway before its original deadline without any prior notice.

I hold the right to disqualify any entry as I see fit.

Privacy information: no information given for this giveaway will be used for other purpose than this giveaway. All information provided (names, emails and mail addresses) will be deleted after the giveaway.

Good luck and feel free to leave me a comment below…

This is a blog hop! Visit the other giveaways here.

ROW80 Check-In 9: Marie Lu on dealing with Writer’s Insecurities

ROW80 Logo

Hello gentle reader,

I can’t believe it’s already time for another ROW80 check-in! My goals for this fourth round are as follows: Write or edit every day.

So this week was crazy. I think I wrote every day but I have been doing so many different things I can’t be sure. What I did do was launch a blog alongside some lovely ladies (Raewyn Hewitt, Jessica Montgomery, Mara Valderran, K.L. Schwengel and Rachel Horwitz). Our blog is called There And Draft Again: A Fellowship of Fantasy Writers and I hope you’ll be willing to hop over there and support us. There’s a giveaway for our first blog followers. Alternatively, you can follow us on Twitter.

Now, on to an inspiring story to keep us going this coming week. Today I’m sharing Marie Lu’s take on Insecurities. She published the following post on her blog in February 2011, back when her best-selling dystopian novel Legend was still unpublished. I found this post especially fitting this week because I’m querying The Last Queen and I’m not feeling very confident about my writing at this time…

 Marie Lu-Legend

“Artists and writers tend to be fragile creatures by nature. Our work is a piece of our passion cut out and put on public display for the world to see, and we wait with our hearts in our throats as others analyze that work. Sometimes we achieve the ultimate goal: entertaining our public by making them react in an emotional way (joy, sadness, anger, enlightenment, even disgust–depending on what we’re aiming for). More times than not, we’re greeted with our greatest fear: the public’s disappointment, the public’s accusations that our work is a ripoff of something else, or the worst of them all…..the public’s silence.

I have to admit: I’ve never been a very secure person. I wish I could say that I’m confident in the quality of what I do, that I don’t care what others think as long as I’m happy with what I’ve created. But I can’t. I care very much what others think of both my artwork and my writing, and when I’ve disappointed viewers and/or readers, I feel ashamed that I let them down. And as the clock ticks gradually down to Legend’s November launch, I’ve learned something else: a book deal does not cure insecurity. In some ways, it makes it worse. Am I capable of pulling off three consecutive books all featuring the same characters and the same world? Am I smart enough to create prodigiously intelligent characters? Will I be able to make my readers fall in love with my hero and heroine? Some days I can answer these questions with an upbeat “yes, like Obama, I can!”. Other days, I will re-read my words-in-progress and think, “This is trash. This is drivel. Reviewers are going to eat me alive when this comes out.”

In the end, all I can do is put everything into my writing/art and hope that what comes out is something that the public will like. I do know one thing: Legend is the best story I’ve ever written. Which is nerve-wracking. I remember telling myself as it first went out on submission that if Legend couldn’t make it, then there was a good chance that nothing I write would ever make it. It’s my best effort (up until this point, at least). Whether or not that effort is good enough will remain to be seen.”

How are other ROWers doing? Here is the Linky to support each other!

A Writer in the Spotlight – Anna Carey

This week again I was lucky enough to have a YA author give me an exclusive interview! The idea behind the “Writer in the Spotlight” feature is that published (and bestselling) authors are the best source of advice for us, would-be-published writers. Today’s interview is with the amazing Anna Carey. Between her busy schedule and emails lost in spam folders, there were times when I thought I would never get this interview, but Anna was SUPER kind and I’m very happy that you can read her answers to my questions today!

Author : Anna Carey

Genre : Young Adult, Dystopian, Contemporary

Location: Los Angeles, USA

Contact: Website, Goodreads, Twitter

Books : The Sloan Sisters series (2009), the Eve trilogy: Eve (2011), Once (2012), Rise (2013)

Bio: Anna Carey has been a gift wrapper, face painter, nanny, horrific cocktail waitress, sofa saleswoman and children’s book editor. She graduated from New York University and has an MFA in fiction from Brooklyn College. She currently lives in Los Angeles, where she can be found writing, reading, and doodling on the giant chalkboard in her kitchen.

My interview (08/11/2012)

On writing:

Did you always know you wanted to be a writer?

I always knew I wanted to be a writer, though it took me nearly a decade to say those words out loud. Growing up I didn’t know any authors, had never been to a book talk or had a writer visit my school. That life seemed like an impossible dream.

When and where do you write?

As much as I try to keep a set schedule, this changes from book to book. My preference is to write at home, on my couch, in yoga pants. It usually takes me eight hours to get five solid hours of work done. I’ve gone through periods where things are different, where I work predominantly in coffee shops or only at night, but the eight hour rule has always proved true.

What do you say to people who want to be writers?

First off, read as much as you can. You learn so much about characters, story, and plot just from reading well crafted books. We’re lucky that there are so many books on writing out there (On Writing by Stephen King, The Faith of a Writer by Joyce Carol Oates, Burning Down the House by Charles Baxter). Add these to your reading list.

Secondly, write as much as you can and finish whatever you start. Strangely, this is the hardest part. Try not to get discouraged by unwieldy first drafts. Try not to judge. Once you finish there will be time to cut, add, rewrite and perfect. Until then…it’s impossible to revise a blank page.

Lastly: Find a few readers you trust. Share your work and learn how to listen to criticism. A useful comment feels like an arrow hitting it’s mark.

On the “Eve” trilogy:

To write these books, where did you get your inspiration from? Were you aware of the coming dystopian trend in YA literature when you wrote “Eve”?

Eve started with a question: What happens when you discover everything you learned is a lie? Would you have the courage to relearn your life?

Publishing is a slow industry. It can take over a year (sometimes two) for a book to go from finished manuscript to published work. That said, once you’re aware of a trend it’s generally too late to write with it. I’m like most of the authors who are writing dystopian now. When I started Eve dystopian wasn’t a huge trend. The first book of The Hunger Games was out, but it wasn’t what it is now. I wrote the story I was interested in, and fortunately the timing was right.

On reading:

Which authors inspire you now?

I just read The Marbury Lens by Andrew Smith, which is creepy and magnificent. If I Stay by Gayle Forman is one of my favorite YA reads, my go-to “if you haven’t read this READ THIS”. Right now I’m on a bit of a Gillian Flynn kick. I finished Gone Girl and am now reading Sharp Objects, one of her earlier books.

Thanks, Anna, for an awesome interview!

Anna’s books are available from Amazon here.