Thursday, May 31, 2012

Why I haven't posted (And another award!)

Okay, so I haven't posted since last Thursday.  There are a few reasons.  My dad surprised the family with a trip to his side of the fam.  Although this was fun it is a three hour trip and I didn't take my laptop.  We got back on Sunday, and Monday afternoon we picked up this:

Her name is Oreo and she's eight weeks old.

I love her a lot!
But that's not all for the blog post today.  On Sunday I received a little something from Lily over at Lily's Notes in the Margins.  Thanks Lily!  She gave me the Kreativ Blogger Award!

Okay, the rules:
I have to answer 10 questions about myself, share 10 random facts about myself, then award this to 7 kreativ bloggers.
Sounds fun!


What is your favorite song?  Welcome to Our World by Amy Grant

What is your favorite dessert? Chocolate Mousse maybe, but I love making all kinds of sweets.

What ticks you off? When I find mistakes in published things.  Lately I've especially noticed missing quotation marks.  Such as  "My kitten is so cute" she said.  I just love it!" 

When you're upset, what do you do? Sometimes I write, sometimes I compose long letters to my big sister, sometimes I cry.  A lot of times I pray and read my bible.

What is your favorite pet? Cats.  Or, more specifically, kittens.  I really love tiger colored ones a lot.

Which do you prefer: black or white? To wear?  Black.  Memorial day always makes me sad because I'm not supposed to wear black anymore, or at least not as much.  But white can also be a good thing.  Like a fresh page in my WiP.  White is full of possibilities.

What is your attitude? I'm not really sure.  Those of you who read this and know me personally, what do you think? 

What is perfection? Finishing a good clean books with a sad smile on my face.  Smile because I loved it, sad because it's over.

What is your guilty pleasure? Netfilx when I should be asleep..

1. I got a kitten!  (Have I mentioned that yet?)
2. I'm officially a sophomore!
3. My other cat (Marmalade, he's orange) seams really HUGE now that I have Oreo
4. I have three brothers and two sisters.
5. Out of all my sisters, I'm the only one in the USA right now.
6. I'm currently writing a Star Wars-ish Sci-Fi for my little brothers.
7. This year is my golden birthday, and it's going to be in about two weeks.
8. An author I asked for an interview got back to me this week and said yes!
9. My bedroom is blue.
10. This summer is going to be really busy.

Okay and the 7 awesome Kreativ Blogers are:

Hannah at Candy Apple Books
Molly at Odds & Ends Twins
Abby at Odds & Ends Twins
Jess at Jessica K. McKendry, Wirte. Skate. Dream
Nick at -Writing Fire-
Rosie at Writings of Rosie
Nairam at Nairam of Sherwood

Thursday, May 24, 2012

Interview with Anne Greenwood Brown and Giveaway

Happy Thursday!  As I hinted at yesterday, I'm very excited for today's post.  We're having an author interview with the lovely Anne Greenwood Brown and Inklined's first EVER giveaway!  Now, onto the interview.

When did you start writing? 
I started writing when I was about 5. I'd write little books and illustrate them, then my dad would print them out on his office copier, staple the binding, and I'd try to sell them to my neighbors for a dime.

When did you know you wanted to be an author?
 I can't remember a time when I didn't want to be an author. There were a lot of years though where I didn't pursue my writing because I didn't think that kind of awesome happened to "real people" like me.

How much did you write before you were published? Ah! Good one. I wrote a ton, but it took me awhile to break in, mainly because I wasn't writing what I should have been writing. Everyone has a unique voice and writing style. When I started out, I was writing serious adult fiction, and it just wasn't working with my style. My imagination kept going into places that didn't work in the stories I was writing. I always loved YA fiction. That's what I was reading. So (after 3 years of going nowhere with adult fiction), I tried writing MG and YA. Once I did, things started moving fast! 

What is your favorite part of writing? 
Naming characters, researching, and writing dialogue!

I love naming characters too, but I find dialogue really hard.  What's you least favorite part? 
Writing endings. I could write the whole book (minus the ending) in 5 months. The ending itself takes me another 2. Can you describe your debut book for us? 
Sure! My one line description of Lies Beneath is "Mermaid assassins on Lake Superior." Random House, however, has it characterized as "paranormal romance." As for me, I never thought I was writing a love story, and I think readers are a little unclear how Calder and Lily feel about each other at the end. That makes sense because I intended it as an "evolution story" (as in Darwin!). In my mind, I wrote the story of a cold-blooded animal, who learns how to forgive and how to love, and who evolves into a man. Now, if you want the actual story teaser, here you go:

Calder White lives in the cold, clear waters of Lake Superior, the only brother in a family of murderous mermaids. To survive, Calder and his sisters prey on humans, killing them to absorb their energy. But this summer the underwater clan targets Jason Hancock out of pure revenge. They blame Hancock for their mother's death and have been waiting a long time for him to return to his family's homestead on the lake. Hancock has a fear of water, so to lure him in, Calder sets out to seduce Hancock's daughter, Lily. Easy enough—especially as Calder has lots of practice using his irresistible good looks and charm on unsuspecting girls. Only this time Calder screws everything up: he falls for Lily—just as Lily starts to suspect that there's more to the monsters-in-the-lake legends than she ever imagined. And just as his sisters are losing patience with him.
Lies Beneath is told from the male point of view (Calder's); the sequel, Deep Betrayal, is a continuation of the story but told from Lily's point of view.

Wow!  The next book sounds really good too.  Are you planing on writing more in the years to come? 
Absolutely! I don't think I could stop if I tried.

What does your writing process look like? 
I outline a lot. But then I bounce around within the outline, writing whatever scene I feel like writing in the moment. If I'm crabby, I'll write the fight scene, etc.

I do that sometimes.  How did you get published?
 First, after several attempts, I got signed by a literary agent. Then that agent (her name is Jacqueline Flynn) submitted my manuscript to editors at publishing houses. Francoise Bui at Random House/ Delacorte bought Lies Beneath on February 1, 2011. It takes a long time (in my case 16 months) to go from the sale to seeing your book on a bookstore shelf.

Do you have any advice for writers looking to get published? 
Read a lot. Write a lot. Learn how to write a query letter. Getting agents and editors' attention is a huge hurdle.

Anything else you want to say? I hope you have an awesome summer, and that you have so many great books to read that you can't possibly get through them all by Labor Day!

But that's not all!  Leave a comment on today's post to get entered to win an hard cover copy of Lies Beneath.  If you leave a link to your blog post about this giveaway, you get an extra entry. The contest closes at 11:59 Eastern time Thursday, May 31!  Be sure to include your e-mail in the comment so I can contact you if you win.

(It would make me very happy if you shared this on Facebook or Twitted about it.  I would give you e-hugs.)

Have a great week!

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

What I'm Reading Wednesday

Wow!  We're already half way through the week.  I didn't post last Wednesday, so I'm a bit behind.  Get ready.

First up, Zeke Bartholomew:  Superspy! by Jason Pinter.  Great boy read or read aloud for younger sibs.  Who doesn't love spies, action, lava, and plots to overthrow the world?  The story follows Zeke Bartholomew (go figure) as he is accidentally mistaken for his evil spy kid neighbor.  From there he proceeds to fall off a bridge, burn a house down, grapple into a plane, jump out of a plane, and do some dirty work in the towns sewer system.  Meanwhile, losing two pairs of jeans.  All in all, a fun, lighthearted adventure novel.

Then I read Replication by Jill Williamson.   Amazing book.  It left me thinking, like all truly great books should.  After I finished the last page, I had all sorts of questions about what is right and wrong with human tests, stem cell research and cloning.  One thing I love about this book is that Mrs. Williamson doesn't force her opinion about these controversial topics onto all her readers.  Instead she shows God's love for all his creations and lets the readers draw their own conclusion.  Although this book covers some deep and controversial stuff, I really enjoyed Martyr and Abby's story, relationship and (especially) Martyr's introduction to God's love.

Then, I got my hands on a copy of The Selection by Kiera Cass.   Yippy!  This book has only been out for a few weeks and it's already zooming up the bestsellers list.   There's a reason for that.  My mom (who stole this book from me before I had a chance to read it) call The Selection "Hunger Games, Miss America style."  I don't now how she intended that to sound, but for me, I just wanted to read it all the more.  And I did read it.  In one particularly short Saturday.  You should read this book.

After that, I read the seventh Maximum Ride book, Angle by James Patterson.  This book wasn't my favorite, but it was still good.  I really can't wait read the next one!  I've already talked about the Max series in several posts, so if you want, you can read more here.

And last but not least, I read City of Lost Souls by Cassandra Clare.  Yes, that's two books off my to-read this  in just a few days.  This Mortal Interment book made me cry.  I've talked about how hard it is for a book to make me cry before.  The relationship between Claire and Jace was just as tangled as ever but when you bring in Sebastian, there is no end to the craziness.  No end.  So yes, this book was a great addition to the series and I can't wait for the next one!

What about you?  What books have you read this week?  I'd love to hear.
Also, be sure to stop by here again tomorrow for a special surprise!  I'm excited and you should be too!

Monday, May 21, 2012

I got an Award!

I got an award!  I got an award.   I don't mean to brag.  I'm just happy.  This is my first ever blog award, and I'm totally over the moon about it! I was given this award by Hannah, a friend of mine over at Candy Apple Books!

Here are the rules:

1: This award if for book blogs only! To receive this award the blog must be at least 50% about books (reading or writing is okay).

2: Along with receiving this award, you must also share your top five favorite books you have ever read in your life. (It can be more then five if you prefer)

3: You must give this award to five-ten other lucky book blogs that you adore.

Okay, so my top five favorite books (In order) are:
1. The King of Attolia by Megan Whalen Turner (The Queen's Thief Book 3)
2. Mara, Daughter of the Nile by Eloise Jarvis Mcgraw
3. Seven Daughters and Seven Sons by  Barbara Cohen
4. Artemis Fowl: The Eternity Code by Eion Colfer
5. Brain Jack by Brian Falkner

And the blogs tagged are:
Sienna North @ A Christian Fantasy Blog; Of Faerie &Faith
Gillian @ Of Battles, Dragons, and Swords of Adamant
Lily @ Lily's Notes in the Margins
Nairam @ Nairam of Sherwood
Rosie @ Writings of Rosie
Emily Russel @ Struggles of a (Maybe) Teen Author

To those authors, I would love to have the link to your post about this award!

Friday, May 18, 2012

Fridays with First Timers

It's Friday!  Yeah!  My school's graduation is tomorrow.  It should be fun but also sad.
Okay, enough of that.  Onto the book.
This one caught my eye when I was perusing the Goodreads Debut YA Novels of 2012.  It sounds really good.

About the author:
Anne Greenwood Brown
I am a Minnesota author, writing about mermaid assassins on Lake Superior. My debut YA series begins with LIES BENEATH, coming June 12, 2012 from Random House/Delacorte.

The sequel (currently titled WATER LILY) is anticipated for March 2013.

Besides writing and reading YA literature, I love all things Irish, romantic movies, beef stroganoff, and Nutella.

If I'm listening to music it's Violent Femmes, The Coronas (awesome band out of Dublin), and Great Big Sea (out of Newfoundland).

(Isn't she beautiful?)

And about the book:
Calder White lives in the cold, clear waters of Lake Superior, the only brother in a family of murderous mermaids. To survive, Calder and his sisters prey on humans, killing them to absorb their energy. But this summer the underwater clan targets Jason Hancock out of pure revenge. 

They blame Hancock for their mother's death and have been waiting a long time for him to return to his family's homestead on the lake. Hancock has a fear of water, so to lure him in, Calder sets out to seduce Hancock's daughter, Lily. Easy enough—especially as Calder has lots of practice using his irresistable good looks and charm on ususpecting girls. 

Only this time Calder screws everything up: he falls for Lily—just as Lily starts to suspect that there's more to the monsters-in-the-lake legends than she ever imagined. And just as his sisters are losing patience with him.

Be sure to cheek out Lies Beneath when it hits stores June 12th!  Have a great weekend.

Thursday, May 10, 2012

Teens can Write Too! Thursday and Winners

No, this isn't an author interview.  Sorry.  It is, however, a blog chain post, which should be loads of fun.  Today I'm taking my turn in the Teens Can Write Too May blog chain.  Check out the rest of this month's Teens can Write Too blog chain at their blog!
The topic for this month's blog chain is
Why do you write?

I know.  Can you believe they only give you one blog post?  I'll try to keep it short.

So, why do I write?  Well, for as long as I can remember, I've loved books.  My Mom, Dad and two older sisters all read to me when I couldn't read myself.  Now, I read close to 150 books a year.  And so, the next logical step was to make books of my own.  And so that's what I started to do.

     Also, when I was younger, I had lots of imaginary friends.  My older siblings always made fun of me for that.  They told me I was delusional.  I almost fell off my unicorn.  Then I figured out that as long as I wrote down my imaginary friends instead of just hanging out with them in the backyard, my siblings didn't make fun of me.  In fact, they could finally also imagine my friends.

     And once I started, I couldn't stop.  Sure, it was on and off for a while.  I would write three chapters and then put down the story.  But I was writing.  I continued to write on and off between the ages of six and thirteen and then I had a creative writing teacher who demanded that everyone in class had to write two chapters a month.  That's when I finally started to write seriously.  I finished a novel and started two more.  I began to read books on writing.  And now I don't think I could ever stop.
A funny thing about being in high school is, talking to invisible friends stops being cute and starts looking insane.  If you have any idea why, please clue me in.  Where as writing a book still seems to be cool.  Although I'm pretty sure adults still see publishing deals as cute but delusional.  Again, no clue why. . .
So, what about you?  Why do you write?  I'd love to hear.

Here, have a trophy!
Teen Ten Page Winner(s)

Emily Russell!

Congratulations, Emily.

We didn't get a lot of entries for this contest.  Maybe there'll be more next time.

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

What I'm Reading Wednesday!

Good news!  The week is half way over!  Bad news.  You still have the rest of the week.  Sorry.  But the weekend is on it's way!
I'm going to dive right into the books today.

First up is The Gray Wolf Throne by Cinda Williams Chima.  I had this book on hold for weeks before I got it, but it was worth the wait.  Now I just have to last until October until the next book.  I felt the character, Han Alister, changed quite a bit over the course of this book, which I didn't always like.  Also, this book did feel a bit more rushed then the rest of the books, that might be because I read it in one day. . .

Then I read the Christian Fiction book, DragonSpell by Donita K. Pual.  I don't normally read a lot of christian  fiction because I think they tend to be preachy, but I really liked this one.  The way it portrayed God an Jesus was an aspect of God that I'd never thought about before, and this book really challenged me to think about it. The book was also completely clean for any age, although there was some violence and one character represented the devil, which some people might not like.  But I did.  I'm just sad my library doesn't have the rest of this series.

The next book I finished was The Catcher in the Rye.  As you might be able to guess, I read this for school.  If any of my readers know why this book is a classic, please clue me in!  I don't see it.  The book is about a depressed teenage boy with a dirty mouth wandering around NYC while his parents think he's at school.  Instead he's drinking alcohol while under age and flirting with girls he doesn't really like.  Yes, this is the perfect book to force upon thousands of high schoolers.  Just perfect.  Holden Caulfield is such a great role model.

Thankfully, after that ordeal, I was able to pick up Magic Study by Maria V. Snyder.  I really love the main character in these books.  She is just such an awesome heroine.  It's like Mara from Mara Daughter of the Nile and  Emma from Emma.  But better.  Unfortunately, this series is sometimes a bit graphic, both violently and sexually.  Not a lot, you understand, just some.  Think Graceling.  If you're okay with that stuff, I would recommend the first book in the series, Potion Study and the book I read after Magic Study, Fire Study.  All good books in my opinion.

And that brings us to Hacking Timbuktu by Stephen Davies.  I already read his book, Outlaw, and although I liked it better, I thought they were both really good.  I mean, kids from England in the African Desert?  Who wouldn't love?  And a hacker kid who parkours?  I just don't see where you could go wrong.

And that wraps it up for today.  Stop by tomorrow to see a blog chain post and the winners from the Teen Ten Page contest.  I'd also like to point out that since my last post, Inklined has hit 100 page views and 30 followers!  I'm happy!  Although when we get to 50 followers, it will mean that I host another Teen Ten Page contest!
Have a great week!

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

What I'm Reading Wednesday

First of all, I want to remind you that the Ten Teen Page Entries are due tomorrow by Midnight.  I will send a confirmation e-mail when I receive your e-mail, so if you sent in an entry and haven't heard from me, then I didn't get your e-mail.  For the rest of the contest rules, click here.

And now onto the books.  There are a whole slew of them today, so I hope you're ready!

First up, Fang the 6th Maximum Ride book be James Patterson.  This one I just gotta say, this one is my favorite Max book so far.  Like a lot of long series, these books can get a little repetitive but Fang set up the next book to be a whole new experience.  I can't wait to get my hands on it!

Then I switched gears a little bit and read Wherever You Go by Heather Davis.  This book is about a girl and a boy. . . and a ghost.  It was a really sweet read.   The romance is good (Of course it has to be a romance.)  But it has a twist because that ghost I mentioned?  He's was the girl's boyfriend and the boy's best friend.  Sweet and soft book.

And then I switched back into thriller mode  for Outlaw by Stephen Davies.  This book reminded me a lot of Alex Rider, but with less spying and more awesome hard teens.  And terrorists.  Friendly terrorists.  And Stockholm Syndrome.  In a good way.  Yeah, it's that amazing!  This book is set in Africa and the author is a missionary there, so the setting really came alive.  Read it.

Then I switched back into the more paranormal feel with Fracture by debut author Megan Miranda.  This book follows the story of Delaney.  She falls through the ice on a lake in Maine and doesn't come up for eleven minutes.  The doctors say she will be in a coma for the rest of her life.  She wakes up six days later.  This book was a mix between Meg Cabot's Abandon and If I Stay by Gail Forman.  I liked this book as much as I liked those.  A lot.

And then I flounced over to mid-evil science fiction when I read The False Prince by Jennifer A. Neilsen.  I started this book at 9:00 pm and finished it at 12:00 am.  It was a really good book and a great addition to this genre.  I saw the big twist coming, but that might be because I write in this genre.  This book came out at the beginning of April and if you haven't read it yet, I would recommend it.

There are a few more, but I'm going to stop after this one.  Pandemonium by Lauren Oliver!  I was so excited when I got this book from the library.  I read it in a day.  Have you noticed I do that a lot?  Yeah, all the time.  This book wasn't as great as the first one in my opinion, but it was still good.  And there was a twist on the last page that left me desperate for the next book.  If you haven't read these books yet, you don't know what you're missing.

And that wraps it up for today.  Don't forget to enter Teen Ten Page.  Also, tons of books came out yesterday. Including The Invaders by John Flanagan, and Insurgent by Veronica Roth.  I'm excited for them!