Advice & Giveaway with Holly Schindler

Please welcome guest blogger Holly Schindler today! 

What is your best advice for fellow writers?

For writers just starting out, I’d suggest you write every day. I know not all professional writers do. Some actually feel stymied by the pressure of putting something down on paper every single day, or meeting specific word count goals. But when you’re starting out, you don’t really know for sure what works for you. And because you’re also still trying to figure out who you are as a writer, the more time you get with your computer (or spiral notebook, etc.), the better off you are. Writing is like playing a sport or an instrument—the more you do it, the better you get at it. It takes practice.

For those who have gotten their toe in the door of the industry, my advice is the same I’m trying to heed myself right now: stay true to yourself. It’s pretty easy to do when you haven’t sold anything and it’s just you and your pages. But then you sell some work, and you get all these industry pros telling you who you are (and aren’t)…It gets hard to weed out the productive voices from those who are leading you down a path you shouldn’t necessarily take.  Remember who you are. Stick to it. Don’t let anyone else convince you otherwise.

What popular writing advice do you never follow?
“Write what you know.” Bah! If I only wrote about the places and things I was an expert in, those would be seriously dull books. I’d write about the same things over and over again…
Over the last few years, I’ve also noticed these sort of panicky rumors floating online among would-be published authors. Most of them are reasons why your work isn’t getting accepted: you’re adding two spaces at the end of your periods instead of one; you’re saving your work as a .docx file instead of .doc file. It’s just silly. If an agent or editor has trouble opening a file, they’ll ask you to resend. They don’t immediately reject it while laughing maniacally. 

Be you. Write good stuff. YOUR stuff. Your work will find the appropriate home.

Where do you do most of your writing?
I really love to work outside—either with my laptop on my back deck, or under a tree with my Alphasmart and my dog. But I live in Missouri, so this is really a weather-permitting kind of thing.  Through the hot and cold seasons, I spend quite a bit of time in my office. But staring at the same four walls can get really tiresome, so I also wind up moving throughout the house for a change of scenery.  Sometimes I find I can write to the TV, but often, it’s just too distracting. Most times, my dog Jake and I are working in some corner without any outside noise to bug us.



What’s the best book you’ve read lately on the craft of writing?
WIRED FOR STORY by Lisa Cron. Loved it so much I wrote a thank-you letter to the author. 

What’s the best book you’ve read for fun?
Usually it’s the last book I read. I got in the habit, when I was starting out, of picking out the one good thing I thought each author had to offer. Maybe it was good dialogue, or great scenic writing, or poetic phrases. And I’d think about how I could implement some of those things in my own work, in my own way. I still find myself doing that. Each book I read then becomes a way for me to become a better writer. And that always adds a new dimension of fun to reading…

FERAL jacket copy:

The Lovely Bones meets Black Swan in this haunting psychological thriller with twists and turns that will make you question everything you think you know.

It’s too late for you. You’re dead. Those words continue to haunt Claire Cain months after she barely survived a brutal beating in Chicago. So when her father is offered a job in another state, Claire is hopeful that getting out will offer her a way to start anew.

But when she arrives in Peculiar, Missouri, Claire feels an overwhelming sense of danger, and her fears are confirmed when she discovers the body of a popular high school student in the icy woods behind the school, surrounded by the town’s feral cats. While everyone is quick to say it was an accident, Claire knows there’s more to it, and vows to learn the truth about what happened.

But the closer she gets to uncovering the mystery, the closer she also gets to realizing a frightening reality about herself and the damage she truly sustained in that Chicago alley….

Holly Schindler’s gripping story is filled with heart-stopping twists and turns that will keep readers guessing until the very last page.


FERAL AND THE PSYCHOLOGICAL THRILLER:
FERAL falls squarely into the realm of the classic psychological thriller.  While the book features mystery, horror, and paranormal elements, the emphasis is on the “psychological” rather than thriller / action.  The novel features a Hitchcockian pace and focus on character development (here, we’re exploring the inner workings of the main character, Claire Cain). 
Essentially, every aspect of FERAL is used to explore Claire’s inner workings—that even includes the wintry Ozarks setting.  The water metaphor is employed frequently in psychological thrillers to represent the subconscious, and in this instance is incorporated in the form of a brutal ice storm (that represents Claire’s “frozen” inner state).  The attempt to untangle what is real from what is unreal (another frequently-used aspect of the psychological thriller) also begins to highlight the extent to which Claire was hurt in that Chicago alley.  Even the explanation of the odd occurrences in the town of Peculiar offers an exploration into and portrait of Claire’s psyche. 
Ultimately, FERAL is a book about recovering from violence—that’s not just a lengthy or hard process; it’s a terrifying process, too.  The classic psychological thriller allowed me to explore that frightening process in detail. 
Holly Schindler Bio:
Holly Schindler is the author of the critically acclaimed A BLUE SO DARK (Booklist starred review, ForeWord Reviews Book of the Year silver medal recipient, IPPY Awards gold medal recipient) as well as PLAYING HURT (both YAs). 
Her debut MG, THE JUNCTION OF SUNSHINE AND LUCKY, also released in ’14, and became a favorite of teachers and librarians, who used the book as a read-aloud.  Kirkus Reviews called THE JUNCTION “…a heartwarming and uplifting story…[that] shines…with vibrant themes of community, self-empowerment and artistic vision delivered with a satisfying verve.” 
FERAL is Schindler’s third YA and first psychological thriller.  Publishers Weekly gave FERAL a starred review, stating, “Opening with back-to-back scenes of exquisitely imagined yet very real horror, Schindler’s third YA novel hearkens to the uncompromising demands of her debut, A BLUE SO DARK…This time, the focus is on women’s voices and the consequences they suffer for speaking…This is a story about reclaiming and healing, a process that is scary, imperfect, and carries no guarantees.”
Schindler encourages readers to get in touch.  Booksellers, librarians, and teachers can also contact her directly regarding Skype visits.  She can be reached at hollyschindlerbooks (at) gmail (dot) com, and can also be found at hollyschindler.com, hollyschindler.blogspot.com, @holly_schindler, Facebook.com/HollySchindlerAuthor, and hollyschindler.tumblr.com


Please leave a comment to win a copy of Feral by Holly Schindler! Anywhere in the world!!!

Happy Book Birthday!

Please welcome Not A Doctor Logan’s Divorce Book to the shelves! 

Writing this book came easy. I guess I’d been waiting all of my childhood to write this story. A few months later, the manuscript won first prize in the Utah Arts Council Original Writing Competition. But finding a home for an issue-driven book proved a lot more difficult. It’s not the next Big Thing, but now this book can find the readers who need it, thanks to Character Publishing.

About The Book:

Until 107 days ago, eleven year old Logan had never heard of Dr. Donna’s Divorce Book. Now Mom has Dr. Donna quotes stuck all over the house. It’s up to Logan to put an end to all this nonsense and reunite her parents. In the meantime, she’s writing her own self-help book called, “Not-A-Dr.-Logan’s Divorce Book.”

As time passes, Logan’s attempts to make her parents fall back in love become more and more desperate. When acting out in school, calling a prayer hotline, and doing magic in the desert don’t force her parents back together, Logan begins to accept that her family may never be the same. Learning to dive on a team and making a new best friend help her to cope with her parent’s divorce, but will she ever truly be happy again? 

You can find it at:

Amazon

Barnes & Noble

Book Depository

Indiebound

Leave a comment to win one of five copies–open to anyone in the world! 

Advice & Giveaway with Kristina Springer

It’s here, it’s here! I’ve been waiting for Kristina Springer’s My Fake Boyfriend Is Better Than Yours for a long time. I’m sure you’d like it too. Leave a comment & you might win a copy! 

What’s your best advice for fellow writers?
Don’t get discouraged and don’t quit. If you’re persistent and always believe in yourself you’ll eventually get there.
 
What popular writing advice do you never follow?
Write every day, write anything it doesn’t matter just as long as you’re writing. I have 4 kids with busy schedules so any time I have to write I’m working on a book. I don’t just “write anything.”
 
Where do you do most of your writing? 
Home or coffee shops.

What’s the best book you’ve read lately on the craft of writing? 

I just started Save the Cat by Blake Snyder. It’s been recommended to me so many times as THE best book for plotting so I had to get it.

 
Find out more about Kristina Springer at www.kristinaspringer.com  Adorable website, by the way.

To win a copy of My Fake Boyfriend Is Better Than Yours leave a comment!

Advice & Giveaway with Debbie Rigaud

Another fun short story collection! Here’s contributor Debbie Rigaud’s writing advice. Leave a comment to win a copy of Open Mic.

What’s your best advice for fellow writers?

I’m still learning the ropes myself, but I’d advise fellow writers to not only continue developing their creative side, but to sharpen their business sense as well. What we do is creative, yes, but it’s also profession. Even though it may not come naturally to some of us (*raising my hand*), we have to learn to use both sides of our brains and have a healthy understanding about things like publishing contracts, e-book vs. print royalties, agent fees, and other small print information in the book of industry dealings.

What popular writing advice do you never follow?
I’ve heard of many writers who write reams and reams of very detailed back stories and character profiles before they start working on their manuscripts. Writers say it adds more layers to their writing and gives characters more depth. I can definitely see how developing back story can achieve all this, but it’s not something I incorporate in my writing process. Instead, I write a detailed plot summary and I work through the back stories while I’m working on my manuscript.
Where do you do most of your writing?
Over the past five-plus years while living in Bermuda, I did most of my writing on my dining room table. I regularly got together with Sylvia May, another author on the island and we’d host writing sessions at each other’s homes. I miss those days now that I’ve just moved back to the States, but I’m glad here I can work at local coffee shops. I’m at my most productive in these public settings.

What is the best book you’ve read lately on the craft of writing?
I always go back to the same popular writer’s guide, Anne Lamott’s “Bird by Bird.” It’s like Anne knows all of my creative struggles and understands what kind of tough love I need to stop procrastinating and start writing.

About OPEN MIC
Listen in as ten YA authors use their own brand of humor to share their stories about growing up between cultures. Edited by acclaimed author and speaker Mitali Perkins, this collection of fiction and nonfiction embraces a mix of styles as diverse as their authors, from laugh-out-loud funny to wry, ironic, or poignant, in prose, poetry and comic form.

About “Voila”
Thanks to overprotective parenting, Simone’s elderly great aunt Ma Tante has more of a social life than she does. But one afternoon, Ma Tante’s social scene awkwardly intersects with Simone’s in the unlikeliest of places.

About Debbie Rigaud
Debbie Rigaud began her writing career covering news and entertainment for popular magazines. Her YA fiction debut, HALLWAY DIARIES/Kimani Tru was followed by the fish-out-of-water romantic comedy PERFECT SHOT/Simon Pulse. Since then, Debbie’s non-fiction essays have been published in anthologies IT’S ALL LOVE/Broadway Books and DEAR BULLY/HarperTeen. Her short story “Voila!” is featured in OPEN MIC/Candlewick Press, and TURFQUAKE, her first YA e-book will be released late 2013. 
 www.debbierigaud.com

Leave a comment to win a copy! 


Advice & Giveaway with Diana Rodriguez Wallach

I’ve been reading a lot of short stories lately, so I’m excited to host Diana Rodriguez Wallach author of a collection of stories based on mythology. Leave a comment to win a copy!

What’s your best advice for fellow writers?
The road to publication is a long one. If you want to be an author—I mean, really want it—then you need to be prepared to settle in for the long haul. Everyone gets rejected—some spend years trying to find an agent, others years trying to find an editor, other years trying to create a fan base. Love the acting of writing so much that it makes everything worth it.
 
What popular writing advice do you never follow?
Not to write sentence fragments. See what I did there? I love sentence fragments, and I use them often.
 
Where do you do most of your writing? 
I live in a new construction development in Center City, Philadelphia, and the community has a shared space with books, TVs, a pool table, etc. It’s usually empty, and quiet, on weekdays, so that’s where I work. I’ve attached a photo. Incidentally, I also hosted my daughter’s first birthday party there. It’s a very versatile “office.”
However, I wrote Reflecting Emmy, the first short story in the Mirror, Mirror trilogyin less than two hours while sitting in a coffee shop in Philly listening to ‘80s music. So, you never know. Inspiration can hit anywhere.
 


What’s the best book you’ve read lately on the craft of writing? 
I’m a fan of Steven King’s On Writing. It’s an oldie, but a goodie, and it helped me a lot when I was writing my first novel.

About The Book

Diana Rodriguez Wallach, author of the award-winning YA series Amor and Summer Secrets, has created a modern take on the myths of Narcissus and Nemesis in a contemporary teen setting.
Her Mirror, Mirror trilogy debuts September 3rd with “Reflecting Emmy,” followed by “Nara Gazing” in October, and “Shattering GiGi” in November. Each title will be a $0.99 short story sold in digital ebook format for Kindle, nook, and kobo. The titles will be combined to create the complete Mirror, Mirror trilogy, along with bonus materials and a prequel short story, in December 2013.
In early 2014, Diana’s Mirror, Mirror trilogy will be combined with the works of YA authors Jammie Kern and Magda Knight to create the Mythology High anthology, available in ebook and paperback through Buzz Books.
Cover Copy
Eighteen-year-old Emmy is in the family business-trapping vapid narcissistic souls into her silver compact mirror for all eternity. It’s what the Rhamnusia family has been doing for thousands of years, all under the direction of Great Grandmother. Only Emmy’s latest assignment, Nara, is about to prove more challenging than she ever expected.
Gorgeous and self-absorbed, Nara is unflinchingly cruel to her classmates. Even her boyfriend, Luke, can no longer tolerate her actions–much to Emmy’s relief since she finds Luke a little more than intriguing. But when Emmy tricks Nara into gazing into her mystical mirror, what she finds there is not what she’s expecting.

About The Author
Diana Rodriguez Wallach is the author of Mirror, Mirror, a short-story collection based on the Narcissus myth, that includes Reflecting Emmy, Nara Gazing, and Shattering GiGi (Buzz Books 2013). She is also the author of three award-winning YA novels: Amor and Summer Secrets, Amigas and School Scandals, and Adios to All The Drama (Kensington Books).
In 2011, she published a highly regarded essay in Dear Bully: 70 Authors Tell Their Stories (HarperCollins), and in 2013, she will be featured in the anthology Latina Authors and Their Muses (Twilight Times Books). In 2010 Diana was named one of the Top Ten New Latino Authors to Watch by LatinoStories.com, and she placed second in the International Latino Book Awards. She hold a B.S. in Journalism from Boston University, and currently lives in Philadelphia with her husband and daughter. Website: www.dianarodriguezwallach.com
Please leave a comment to win a copy! 

Advice & Giveaway with Amanda Ashby

Please welcome Amanda Ashby & leave a comment to win a copy of her new book, Demonosity.

What’s your best advice for fellow writers?

My best advice is to not listen to me. I don’t have a clue what I’m doing it and just make it up as I go along! Plus, everyone’s publishing experience is so different that the best thing they can do is trust their own instincts.
 
What popular writing advice do you never follow?
 
I think if you ask my copyeditor they will assure that I don’t follow any writing advice, especially when it comes to grammar! I also adore prologues (I have one in Demonosity) and am absolutely, completely in love with adjectives. In fact, the only advice that I ever follow is that I try and write a great story and I would rather break a hundred rules than something that bores me.
 
Where do you do most of your writing? 
 
I have a study! I say that with glee because for years I spent all of my time at the kitchen table or chasing the sun around the house like a cat. However, I can now leave things in the knowledge that they will be there when I come back the following day!
 
What’s the best book you’ve read lately on the craft of writing? 
 
Given my lack of rule following it’s probably no surprise that my favorite craft books are by screenwriters because their advice is normally about the story rather than what words we use to create the story! I love The Writer’s Journey by Christopher Vogler and Screenwriting Tricks for Authors by Alexandra Sokoloff (which is a very reasonably priced Kindle book) and my all time favorite is Save the Cat by Blake Snyder because he used language that made total sense to me.



About The Book


The Black Rose–a powerful ancient force–has been let loose and has taken up residence in Celeste Gibson, popular girl at Cassidy Carter-Lewis’ high school. Thomas Delacroix is the spirit of a fourteenth-century knight who is devoted to protecting the Black Rose, but he needs a contemporary living being to take on the challenge. That’s where Cassidy comes in.
She’s a quirky high school junior who just wants to dress in her vintage clothes, hang out with her best friend, and take care of her father, who is recovering from surgery. She’s the last person who would ever volunteer for such a task, but no one actually asked her.  Now, like it or not, she finds herself training before dawn and battling demons at parties, the mall, and even at school. But hey, no one ever said high school was going to be easy.

About The Author


Amanda Ashby was born in Australia and after spending the last sixteen years dividing her time between England and New Zealand, she’s finally returned home for some sunshine. When she’s not moving country, she likes to write books (okay, she also likes to eat chocolate, watch television and sit around doing not much, but let’s just keep that amongst ourselves, shall we?)

She has a degree in English and Journalism from the University of Queensland and is married with two children. Her debut book, You Had Me at Halo was nominated for a Romantic Times Reviewer’s Choice award. Zombie Queen of Newbury High was listed by the New York Public Library’s Stuff for the Teen Age 2010. Fairy Bad Day was selected by Voya as one of their Top Shelf Fiction for Middle School Readers 2012 and was a SCBWI Crystal Kite Award finalist for the Australia/NZ region.

Please leave a comment to win a copy of the book! 


Advice & Giveaway with Jessica Brody

Please welcome Jessica Brody! I’ll be giving away a copy of her new release UnRemembered to one lucky blog commenter. 
What’s your best advice for fellow writers?
Don’t be afraid to write badly. Every first draft is crappy. But you can’t know what needs to be revised until you finish that crappy first draft. So don’t let “fear of being bad” stop you from writing. Just write. You can always fix it up and make it pretty later.
What popular writing advice do you never follow?
The other day I saw a piece of writing advice from Stephen King that said, “Any word you have to hunt for in a thesaurus is the wrong word. There are no exceptions to this rule.”
Well, apparently there are exceptions to this rule because I use the thesaurus all the time. It’s my very best friend when I write. Mostly because my brain is mush and I can never remember the word I’m trying to think of. So I think of a similar word and thesaurus search until I find it.
Where do you do most of your writing? 
I find that I have a really hard time writing at home (too many distractions!) so I have a few coffee shops/tea houses that I rotate through and I write there.
What’s the best book you’ve read lately on the craft of writing? 
It wasn’t recently that I read it but it’s by far my favorite book: Save the Cat by Blake Snyder. It saved my career! I actually teach the method now to fellow novelists.
About The Book
The only thing worse than forgetting her past…is remembering it.
When Freedom Airlines flight 121 went down over the Pacific Ocean, no one ever expected to find a single survivor; which is why the sixteen-year-old girl discovered floating amid the wreckage—alive—is making headlines across the globe. She has no memories of boarding the plane. She has no memories of her life before the crash. She has no memories…period. As she struggles to piece together her forgotten past and discover who she really is, every clue raises more questions. Her only hope is a strangely alluring boy who claims to know her. Who claims they were in love. But can she really trust him? And will he be able to protect her from the people who have been making her forget?
Set in a world where science knows no boundaries and memories are manipulated UNREMEMBEREDby Jessica Brody is the first novel in a compelling, romantic, and suspenseful new sci-fi trilogy for teens.


About The Author
Jessica Brody knew from a young age that she wanted to be a writer. She started self “publishing” her own books when she was seven years old, binding the pages together with cardboard, wallpaper samples and electrical tape. She is the author of 52 Reasons to Hate My Father, My Life Undecided, The Karma Club, and now, Unremembered. Her books have been translated and published in over 15 countries. She currently splits her time between California and Colorado. www.jessicabrody.com
Please leave a comment to win a copy of the book! 

Advice & Giveaway with Lauren Bjorkman

Please welcome Lauren Bjorkman, author of My Invented Life and Miss Fortune Cookie. Leave a comment to win a copy of her new book! 

What’s your best advice for fellow writers?
Write all the time. The more you write the better you get. Which brings me to the obvious follow up question: How does a person keep one’s butt in the chair (without resorting to adhesives)?
  • Write what you want to write. Forget about the market.
  • Think about your story while doing other things—driving the car, cleaning the kitchen, showering, etc. When you finally get to sit down to write, you’ll be ready to go.
  • Describe your story to others. When I try to summarize my WIP, it gets me excited about the story, again, and often gives me new ideas.
  • Set goals. Give yourself rewards for reaching them. Whenever Franz Kafka reached his writing goal, he would treat himself to a pineapple upside down cake. Be like Franz.
  • Join a critique group.
  • Read a truly amazing book (Jealousy is an awesome motivator).

What popular writing advice do you never follow?
Write what you know. It is much more interesting to write about things I’m ignorant about. Research is fun and inspiring.
Where do you do most of your writing? 
I used to write in bed on a laptop. My cats would keep me company. It all started with living on a sailboat and having to complete 3rd, 5th, and 6th grade from my bunk. I continued working in bed through HS and college.
Unfortunately, for the past two years a tweak in my upper back has forced me to sit in an ergonomic chair at a desk. My office measures almost 7 by 9 feet, which sounds spacious until you shoehorn in a desk with drawers, a filing cabinet, a dresser, two bookcases, and an exercise machine. The door is my favorite feature. I surround myself with inspiring photos and objects while I work. I have a special cushion for my bare feet, plus a radiant heater under my desk to stay cozy in the winter.
What’s the best book you’ve read lately on the craft of writing? 
Anatomy of Story: 22 Steps to Becoming a Master Storyteller by John Truby. When I applied his exercises to a half-finished novel, they helped me organize the plot, clarify the role of my characters, and expand conflict to make key scenes more powerful. I spent two weeks revamping taking notes, which made writing the second half easier. Note: Easier easy.
Find out more about Lauren & her books at: http://laurenbjorkman.com
Please leave a comment to win a copy of Miss Fortune Cookie by Lauren Bjorkman!


Advice & Giveaway with Lucienne Diver

Today Lucienne Diver is back with writing advice–plus you can win a copy of her new book Fangtabulous! Just leave a comment.

What’s your best advice for fellow writers?

Keep the faith. Seriously, it can be very difficult to keep writing in the face of rejections or a bad review. The important thing to remember is that nothing, not even the cutest kitten or puppy dog in the world, is universally loved. There will be detractors. That won’t change no matter how successful you become. You just have to stay true to yourself and your ambitions and, as Dory from Finding Nemo would say, “Just keep swimming.”

If anyone’s interested in reading about a particular subject, here’s a full list of articles and blogs I’ve done that address various aspects of writing and publishing http://luciennediver.wordpress.com/articles-guest-blogs/with a cut-out leading to this list of blogs for Magical Words http://varkat.livejournal.com/218703.html.

What popular writing advice do you never follow?

I don’t know that I listen to popular advice or “truisms.”  There’s too much misdirection out there, like the suggestion that you have to do things this wayor you’re wrong, wrong, wrong. The truth is that there’s no one-size fits all in publishing, no “one true path.” You have to find your way, and the path you choose will depend a lot on your end goals. 

Where do you do most of your writing?

In the warm weather, I like to take a pen and notebook (I freehand everything before typing it onto the computer) up to the pool or dock at our lodge. In the cooler weather lately though I’ve been writing in our Florida room. Our dogs like to keep me company, one laying on each side of my lap while I attempt to write over them.  For example, here’s a picture of them in our papasan chair with Ginger, the littler one, occupying my spot. The other is Micky-doodle.



What’s the best book you’ve read lately on the craft of writing? 

I actually don’t read books on the writing craft. I’ve learned through reading fiction and analyzing what works and doesn’t work in the books I’ve loved and how authors do what they do. I’ve also learned a lot through trial and error—writing, workshopping and learning about my strengths and weaknesses from people who can see them more clearly.

About The Book:

Gina Covello and her band of federal fugitives are on the run after taking down a secret (and sinister) government facility. Strapped without cash or credit cards—a fate worse than death for Gina—the rebels must find a place to lay low. They roll into Salem, Massachusetts, the most haunted town in America and the only place they have friends flying under the radar. But within a day, Gina and her gang are embroiled in a murder mystery of the supernatural kind.

Someone—or something—is strangling young women, and it’s rumored to be the ghost of Sheriff Corwin, late of the Salem Witch trials.  Is it the ghostly Sheriff or is someone on this side of the veil using the famous story as a cover up? Gina is determined to get to the bottom of this mystery, and she needs to do it before a paranormal reporter on the scene exposes them for what they are…fanged federal fugitives.  


About The Author:

Lucienne Diver writes the humorous, suspenseful Vamped series of young adult vampire novels for Flux Books, including Vamped, Revamped, Fangtastic and the most recent, Fangtabulous.  Her short stories have been included in the Strip-Mauledand Fangs for the Mammaries anthologies edited by Esther Friesner (Baen Books), and her essay on abuse is included in the anthology Dear Bully: 70 Authors Tell Their Stories (HarperTeen).  She also writes the Latter-Day Olympians urban fantasy series for Samhain (Bad Blood, Crazy in the Blood and the forthcoming Rise of the Blood). www.luciennediver.com


Please leave a comment to win your own copy!



Writing Advice & Giveaway with Eileen Cook

Here’s some great writing advice from Eileen Cook. Leave a comment to win a copy of her new book, The Almost Truth

What’s your best advice for fellow writers? 

Read! Books are the best teacher.
What popular writing advice do you never follow?  

Write what you know. For me part of the fun is learning something I don’t already know.
Where do you do most of your writing?   

My office is the old sun porch on our house. I do a fair bit of work in there, but I also like to lounge on our sofa and write. My dogs prefer when I sit on the sofa because then they can snuggle in.



What’s the best book you’ve read lately on the craft of writing? 
I love books about writing!  I have stacks and stacks of them, which makes picking a favorite hard.  I love SAVE THE CAT by Blake Snyder. It’s a screenwriting book, but the structure works great for novels and it’s full of practical examples. I also really like Stephen King’s ON WRITING for a kick of motivation. 

About The Book

From the author of Unraveling Isobel and The Education of Hailey Kendrick, a smart, romantic novel about a teenage con artist who might be in over her head.
Sadie can’t wait to get away from her backwards small town, her delusional mom, her jailbird dad, and the tiny trailer where she was raised…even though leaving those things behind also means leaving Brendan. Sadie wants a better life, and she has been working steadily toward it, one con at a time.
But when Sadie’s mother wipes out Sadie’s savings, her escape plan is suddenly gone. She needs to come up with a lot of cash—and fast—or she’ll be stuck in this town forever.
With Brendan’s help, she devises a plan—the ultimate con—to get the money. But the more lies Sadie spins, the more she starts falling for her own hoax…and perhaps for the wrong boy. Sadie wanted to change her life, but she wasn’t prepared to have it flipped upside down by her own deception. With her future at stake and her heart on the line, suddenly it seems like she has a lot more than just money to lose….
About The Author

Eileen Cook is a multi-published author with her novels appearing in eight different languages. She spent most of her teen years wishing she were someone else or somewhere else, which is great training for a writer.  Her latest release, Unraveling Isobel came out in Jan 2012
You can read more about Eileen, her books, and the things that strike her as funny at www.eileencook.com.  Eileen lives in Vancouver with her husband and two dogs and no longer wishes to be anyone or anywhere else.

Leave a comment to win a copy!