Welcome!

I write young adult novels whenever I'm not taking care of children, making meals, and tackling the Mount Everest of laundry piles.

Tuesday, August 25, 2015

ASTRAY Releases In Paperback Today!!





Today's the day. ASTRAY, the sequel and conclusion to GATED is out in paperback. Time to get my dance on.




Okay, so no dancing because this is actually what it would look like. But I am over the moon that now both books are out in soft cover. If you haven't read either, now's the perfect time. Go here to find out more.

Also, I am guest blogging a few places today.

On Janice Hardy's blog I'm talking about Sleeping With the Enemy--you'll have to read it to figure out if I'm confessing something or giving out advice!

I am also over on my agent Lucienne Diver's blog talking about The Ultimate Author High.

And yes, I do realize how dirty my blog titles sound, but trust me, they are relevant, I swear...and very PG!




Friday, May 22, 2015

Read or Write Anywhere Giveaway!




It's finally here!!!!

#ReadorWriteAnywhere is here and I'm so stoked! Just because it’s summer doesn’t mean we should stop reading and writing. My fellow YA Chicks and I are working with other amazing authors and writers on a global campaign to encourage readers, writers, students, and teachers to share pictures of all the places—both ordinary and extraordinary—where they are reading and writing. This is open to all readers/writers/lovers of both middle grade and young adult books. 

Look what you  can take part in…A MONSTER GIVEAWAY!  Every author participating in this campaign is giving away one of their books AND some are also giving up critiques, swag and/or Skype visits. Contest runs May 22nd, 2015-May 31st, 2015.So are you ready?Dun, dun, DUN!!!!Can you guess where I am?
That's me in the black and white stripes!



Here are my 5 clues:


1. I'm not South of the Border

2. But I am in the land of sombreros and maracas.

3. I am with the YA Chicks, but here we could be the Three Caballeros.

4. When I'm here, I love to be “goofy”?

5. This is the only place where Norway and Mexico are next door neighbors.


Once you’ve figured out where I am, head over to the YA Chicks site and:
Officially enter the giveaway by inputting each author’s name and your guesses about our locations. Every author location you guess correctly increases your chances to win. For even more chances, post a picture of yourself reading or writing on Twitter or Instagram with the hashtag#ReadOrWriteAnywhere (must have the hashtag!).


For writer prize packs:
Post pictures of yourself writing in a fun location on Twitter or Instagram using the hashtag #ReadOrWriteAnywhere. Then follow the directions on the Rafflecopter giveaway to let us know you did it. For even more chances, gather your writer friends together and post a group shot with the hashtag #ReadOrWriteAnywhere. And hey, since you’re already together, why not host a write-a-thon?


For teacher prize packs:
Post pictures of your class reading or writing on Twitter or Instagram using the hashtag#ReadOrWriteAnywhere. Then let us know you did it when you enter the Rafflecopter. If you don’t have a Twitter or Instagram, you can email (yachicks@gmail.com) your picture directly with the picture pasted directly into the email (no attachments–we won’t open them) AND the subject, “Read or Write Anywhere.” You can also check out the YA Chicks Read or Write Anywhere lesson plan, available on our site.

Good luck!!! 


***Contest runs May 22nd, 2015, 9am EST until May 31st, 2015, Midnight EST. Winners will be posted on YA Chicks June 1st, 2015. Thanks for taking part in Read or Write Anywhere!









Monday, May 4, 2015

Read or Write Anywhere





Summer is about to begin! 







But just because it's summer doesn't mean we should stop reading and writing. The YA Chicks ViviBarnesChristina Farley, and Amy Christine Parker—along with guest co-creators Lucienne DiverPeggy Jackson, and Tara Gallina , are excited to share with you a global campaign that we are launching on May 22, 2015, to encourage readers, writers, students, and teachers to share pictures all of the places—both ordinary and extraordinary—where they are reading and writing. This is open to all readers/writers of both middle grade and young adult books!




as well as take part in...

A MONSTER GIVEAWAY! 


We have THREE separate prize packs in the works:

·       The Reader's Pack: Includes one book from every participating author (just wait until you hear who we've got lined up!): US and Canada only

·       The Writer's Pack: Includes query critiques, writing swag from authors, and more! International


·       The Classroom PackIncludes free Skype visits w/YA Chicks and other participating authors, a signed YA Chicks poster, and other swag! International

***A more detailed listing of prizes will be posted closer to the event date, so check back often!


So, how can you participate? 
It's easy! Simply choose which prize pack you'd like to win and find the directions for it below under the headings: READERSWRITERS, or STUDENTS & TEACHERS (you can participate in multiple giveaways). Then visit the YA Chicks site on May 22, 2015, beginning at 9 a.m. EST, and enter your chosen giveaway(s).

We can't wait to see where you're reading and writing! 

READERS:
At 9 a.m. EST on May 22, 2015, we will be posting pictures of middle grade and young adult authors writing or reading in mysterious locations. It will be your job to figure out exactly where they are. We will link each picture to that author's website where you will find 5 clues to help you figure it out. Once you've got all the authors locations, come back to the YA Chicks site and:
·       Officially enter the giveaway by telling us the authors' names and your guesses about their locations. Every author location you guess correctly increases your chances to win.  

·       For even more chances, post a picture of yourself reading or writing on Twitter or Instagram with the hashtag #ReadOrWriteAnywhere (must have the hashtag). 

WRITERS:
Starting at 9 a.m. EST on May 22, 2015, we'd like you to:
·       Post pictures of yourself writing in a fun location on Twitter or Instagram using the hashtag #ReadOrWriteAnywhere. Then let us know you did it when you enter the giveaway.
·       For even more chances, gather your writer friends together and post a group shot with the hashtag #ReadOrWriteAnywhere (must have the hashtag). And hey, since you're already together, why not host a write-a-thon?

TEACHERS & STUDENTS:
Starting at 9 a.m. EST on May 22, 2015, we'd like you to:
·       Post pictures of your class reading or writing on Twitter or Instagram using the hashtag #ReadOrWriteAnywhere (must have the hashtag).
·       Then let us know you did it when you enter the giveaway. If you don't have a Twitter or Instagram, you can email your picture directly to us with the picture pasted directly into the email (no attachments--we won't open them) AND the subject, “Read or Write Anywhere.”
·       You can also check out our YA Chicks Read or Write Anywhere lesson plan, available on our site
  

***ATTENTION AUTHORS******
If you are reading this and we haven't contacted you directly, but you'd like to take part in this event, please visit our Read or Write Author Page and fill out the application here.

  
That's it! We hope you're as excited as we are about this campaign and trio of giveaways. Now, what are you waiting for? Get out there and READ OR WRITE ANYWHERE!

#ReadOrWriteAnywhere

Wednesday, February 18, 2015

More Upcoming Events!!!!




I've been in the writing cave a lot the past year and so I don't post here often--hopefully sometime soon I'll be able to rectify that. In the meantime, here's where you can find me this spring. If you're anywhere near any of these events. please come find me, I'd love to meet you!


February 19, 2015: Cypress Creek High School Visit

February 20, 2015: Amelia Island Book Festival--I'm teaching a writing workshop with fellow YA Chick, Christina Farley from 2:30-3:15. 

February 25, 2015: Gulf Middle School Visit




March 17, 2015: Wordier Than Thou Event at Studio 620, St. Petersburg, Florida (Details to come--check my website/twitter closer to the event)


April 29-May 3, 2015: Indiana Author Visit w/Reading For Life--events and details to come.

May 16, 2015: St. Leo University Sandhill Writer's Retreat--I will be giving a presentation on writing for YA and essential elements for compelling fiction. Registration is now open.

July 7-11, 2015: ThrillerFest w/International Thriller Writers




Monday, November 10, 2014

Events and Interviews and Updates

It's November already. Where did the time go? I feel like this whole fall was one big blur, probably because lots of stuff went down! Here's a rundown of all of it as well as an update on what events I'll be doing very soon. As well as a pic of my front yard decorated out for Halloween.



October

I turned in a very rough draft of my next novel, Smash & Grab! So excited about this one--bank heists and romance and adventure! 

I did 4 library visits in 4 days and this happened:


I'm fine, the car wasn't, but she's all fixed up now and running great!
  

I went to the Tampa Bay Festival of Reading and met these two authors--still can't quiet believe it.

Yep, that's right, RL Stine and Debbie Macomber!




I went to Gatlinburg, Tennessee for a ginormous writer's retreat with so many talented ladies, my head's still swimming (plus one surprise guest: Maggie Stiefvater!!!). 


Maggie's awesome car. 


It is weird and awesome to eat dinner and hang in the hot tub with authors I fan girl over myself! Here's the down low on what happens at this sort of thing--since I know when I heard about authors going on these that's all I wanted to know! 





  • You share a room with another author(s)--sometimes you already know them, sometimes you don't. Last time I did my sleepover time with the amazing EK Johnston, and this retreat I was with my buddy, Amy Tintera--so both times I won the roommate jackpot!  

  • Lots of writing happens during the day, but nighttime is CRAZY time. There is dancing (not me though 'cause you know I can't dance), hot tubbing, laughing, talking, and general hilarity. 
  • We share our goals, hopes, fears, and dreams. This is the part I love the best, the moments when I remember that I'm not the only one who's scared/elated/worried/excited about various stages of this whole publishing thing.

  • Everyone pitches in. We share meal time prep and clean up duties. The food is always good and the company even better.
  • You spend a lot of time hoping everyone will think you are cool/smart/fun because everyone else is so cool/smart/funny. 
  • You realize that all these people you look up to feel the exact same way about their careers and their writing as you do, that you are just an earlier, less well known version of them which is inspiring because if they can do it maybe you can too!
The back of our huge retreat house!


It was a twelve hour drive there and back, one I made with Christina Farley and Vivi Barnes. Still patting ourselves on the back for multitasking and making these two school visit videos while we drove.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Cw0QWBnNK6Y&list=UUjFfy7vYdnnN7w7jX25r24g

Our "we are so overtired we're giddy" video:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cj22kaFoOe8&list=UUjFfy7vYdnnN7w7jX25r24g


November

This month things are going to slow down some, but not right away. Here's what's happening:

1. I will be in the Pasco section of the Tampa Tribune this Friday. I was interviewed by the very witty and wonderful Ernest Hooper about my writing and my journey to getting published.

2. I'll be heading over to New Orleans this weekend for the Nola Book Festival where I get to do a presentation at 4 pm with Lauren Kate, yep that Lauren Kate, author of the Fallen series and more recently Teardrop and Waterfall! So excited about this (and the possibility of sneaking away at some point for some beignets and bananas foster. Sugar high? YES PLEASE). Find out more about the festival herehttp://nolabookfest.org/

3. I'll fly from New Orleans directly to Orlando to do a library event at the Alafaya Branch with the YA Chicks, Christina Farley and Vivi Barnes as well as Jenny Sanchez. We'll be there talking writing from 2-4 pm.

4. I'll be at the Barnes and Noble at Wiregrass Mall on November 22, from 3-5 pm signing books and hanging out.

5. On a personal note, I'll be headed to the Space Coast Marathon with the family at the end of the month to watch my husband run....while I watch...and eat a bagel. But I will be doing my first 5k in a while on Thanksgiving Day. Gotta try to combat the writer twenty (pounds that come with deadline stress and general angst). Wish me luck! I'm actually out of breath just thinking about it.

That's all for now. Hope to see some of you at one or more of the events above.



Monday, November 3, 2014

International Thriller Writers 1000 Thriller Giveaway!!!




Have you heard about the completely awesome giveaway going on courtesy of the International Thriller Writers and The Big Thrill? It has to be one of the coolest, biggest, and most thrilling giveaways I've ever seen (see what I did right there?)! Anyway, if you like thrillers you should hot foot it over here and enter to win. Each winner will receive a new thriller every week for an entire year. Yep,  you heard me right AN ENTIRE YEAR'S WORTH OF THRILLERS!!!

The contest is going on now, so what are you waiting for? ENTER!

Monday, September 29, 2014

Young Adult Book Bash--Tonight!!



Hey there Orlando peeps and all those living remotely close: I'll be at Bookmarkit tonight for the Young Adult Book Bash from 7-9 pm. Join me, Christina Farley, Christina Benjamin, and Jaimie Engle as we talk about our books, publishing, and everything in between. And did I mention that there would be giveaways? Well, there will be! For more information or to register for this event, head here. Hope to see you there!