Monday, October 31, 2011

AMPLIFIED by Tara Kelly

YA Contemporary
304 pages
Available now (Oct. 2011)
Publisher: Henry Holt and Co.
Review copy purchased

When privileged 17-year-old Jasmine gets kicked out of her house, she takes what is left of her savings and flees to Santa Cruz to pursue her dream of becoming a musician. Jasmine finds the ideal room in an oceanfront house, but she needs to convince the three guys living there that she's the perfect roommate and lead guitarist for their band, C-Side. Too bad she has major stage fright and the cute bassist doesn't think a spoiled girl from over the hill can hack it. . . 

Positive: Jasmine. She's a great character, filled with strength and determination tempered by some very real fears and vulnerability. After playing the role of the perfect daughter and student her entire life, she finally tells her dad that she's putting off college to pursue her dream. Dad's not so supportive and kicks her to the curb. Despite this huge set-back, she forges ahead and finds ways over the obstacles in her path.
Positive: The music. You can tell this is written by someone who not only knows how to play a guitar but who also absolutely loves music. That passion oozes from the pages, infusing every word.

Positive: This story made me cry! "And that's a good thing?" you ask. Most definitely. I don't cry very often (okay, there's that one commercial with the dad who writes emails to his baby daughter but it's rare that I tear up) and, when a book touches me enough to start the waterworks, it's definitely a good thing. I really got attached to Jasmine!

Wish: A bit more depth to the secondary characters. While important to the overall plot, they felt a bit flat to me. For example, I really wanted to get to know Jasmine's bandmates, especially Bryn. I learned just enough to be intrigued but not enough to satisfy.

Overall: Resonating with the passion and pain of forging your own path, Amplified strikes just the right note.

Purchase on Amazon | IndieBound

Sunday, October 30, 2011

In My Mailbox (21): The Halloween Edition

Hosted by Kristi The Story Siren, In My Mailbox is a great way to add to your TBR list and drool over some fabulous books.

I have never gotten so many fabulous books ever in one week -- not sure how it happened or if it will ever happen again but happy dances abounded!

And, because there was so much fabulosity, Fiona couldn't decided on just one book to feature. Plus, she just had to show off her bee costume (yes, I realize that I'm a mean pet parent but she's a BEE on The Book Swarm...I just couldn't pass it up.).

Fiona's Picks of the Week:
For review:
INCARNATE by Jodi Meadows
UNDER THE NEVER SKY by Veronica Rossi
SHATTER ME by Tahereh Mafi
ARCADIA AWAKENS by Kai Meyer
EVERNEATH by Brodi Ashton
UNLEASHED by Nancy Holder and Debbie Viguie
Thank you so much HarperCollins, Balzer + Bray,  Delacorte, and Amazon Vine
Purchased:
AMPLIFIED by Tara Kelly
ANGEL TOWN by Lilith Saintcrow
(I already blew through these two awesome books -- reviews to come!)

So, what did you get in your mailbox this week?

Saturday, October 29, 2011

The Crossroads Presents: Rachel Vincent

It's the last day of The Crossroad Blog Tour and I'm lucky enough to have Rachel Vincent stopping by for a little chat. Rachel is the author of three fabulous series: a YA paranormal series, SOUL SCREAMERS, including the newest novel, IF I DIE; an urban fantasy series, SHIFTERS, including ALPHA; and her newest urban fantasy series, UNBOUND, including BLOOD BOUND and SHADOW BOUND (releases June 2012). She also stories in a variety of anthologies including ENTHRALLED: PARANORMAL DIVERSIONS and CHICKS KICK BUTT. Welcome!

Purchase HERE
Kaylee Cavanaugh, the main character of your popular young adult Soul Screamers series, is a bean sidhe -- a banshee. What drew you to banshees?
I hadn't seen much done with them before, and I though I had something to add to the existing lore. It's been a lot of fun!

With many gearing up for National Novel Writing Month, any advice for teen writers?
I'm a pretty quick writer, but since this is my day job, I have to be. To meet my deadlines, depending on the project, I write anywhere between 3,000 and 5,000 words a day, which is well ahead of NaNo page. I know that teens have full lives, thus much less time to write than a full time writer has, but I think that the NaNo pace is doable, if you can do two things.

Purchase HERE
First, plot your story in advance. In detail. Know your characters, know their relationships, and know what needs to happen in the story before you even sit down to write. If you know what needs to be written when you sit down, the words will come quickly because you don't have to stop and think about the next "what if."


Second, write in dedicated, no-internet blocks. I do this in one hour/1,000 word sessions. But you don't have to be that fast. Two 600-word sessions a day will accomplish the NaNo goal (if my math is right) in two hours a day, with a break between. So dive in! Put everything else out of your head and live in your fictional world for two hours a day. Before you know it, you'll have those 50,000 words under your belt, and all the experience that it brings with it. :)

Purchase HERE
Where do you do the majority of your writing?
I used to do all my writing in my recliner, on my laptop. But when I developed carpal tunnel in both wrists, that had to change. Now, I use a desktop with an ergonomic keyboard and massive computer screen, so I can zoom in on the words. I'm still faster on my flat laptop keyboard, but I can only use it for short periods at a time, or my arms hurt too badly to work.


Favorite fuel for writing?
Coffee. Sonic's diet vanilla Coke. Blueberries and smoked almonds.


Thank you so much for stopping by! 
Rachel revealed the cover and back cover blurb for the second novel in her Unbound series, SHADOW BOUND (link to the post HERE). Here it is:
If you live in the dark long enough, you begin to forget the light…

KORI DANIELS is a shadow-walker, able to travel instantly from one shadow to another. After weeks of confinement for betraying her boss, she's ready to break free of the Tower syndicate for good. But Jake Tower has one final job for Kori, one chance to secure freedom for herself and her sister, Kenley, even if that means taking it from someone else…

The job? Recruit Ian Holt—or kill him.

Ian's ability to manipulate the dark has drawn interest from every syndicate in the world, most notably an invitation from Jake Tower. Though he has no interest in organized crime, Ian accepts the invite, because he's on a mission of his own. Ian has come to kill Tower's top Binder: Kori's little sister.

Amid the tangle of lies, an unexpected thread of truth connecting Ian and Kori comes to light. But with opposing goals, they'll have to choose between love and liberty….

The Book Swarm's Crossroads Giveaways
 
Giveaway #1 (International): 
 
Fill out THIS FORM and enter to win one of 
 
TWO GRAND PRIZES:
 
A book by Judith Graves (author's choice)
A book by Amanda Ashby (author's choice)
 
Giveaway #2 (US/Canada):
 
SWAG PACKS: 
Leave a comment on this post (along with your email address) 
for a chance to win one of several fabulous swag packs from 
The Crossroads Authors of Awesome.
 
The Crossroads Blog Tour Giveaway
Each day of The Crossroads Blog Tour, a new research question will be revealed on The Crossroad Blog Tour main page here, and each day the answer to that question will be found within one of the different blog posts by Crossroads Tour authors.
  • Your job is to get the question, read the blog posts, and collect all answers by the end of the tour, on Halloween.
  • Answers are to be emailed to bridgesocialmedia@gmail.com by October 31st at MIDNIGHT.
  • Winner of the grand prize will be announced on November 1st, the DAY OF THE DEAD.
  • Follow the tour on Twitter: @TheCrossroadsBT and Facebook.
BRIDGE Social Media is holding a special promotion for public libraries. Libraries that actively promote the Crossroads tour (post a link on their website, mention it in their newsletters, etc) can email us proof of their promotional activities by midnight on OCTOBER 31st to be entered in a draw to win a FREE SKYPE AUTHOR VISIT FOR THEIR LIBRARIES – WITH BEST-SELLING YA AUTHOR, RACHEL VINCENT.

Friday, October 28, 2011

The Crossroads Presents: Jackie Morse Kessler

I'm very excited to welcome Jackie Morse Kessler to The Book Swarm today! She's the author of the young adult series, Riders of the Apocalypse, which includes HUNGER, RAGE, LOSS (out March 2012), and BREATH (out in 2013). Welcome!

Purchase HERE
The main characters in your Riders of the Apocalypse series deal with some serious issues (including anorexia, cutting, and bullying). What kind of response have you gotten from your teen readers?
It's been phenomenal! I've been getting email from readers who tell me that they understood what the characters went through, that they themselves have been going through it or are still struggling with it. Some readers have told me that my books have helped them better understand what they or a friend/girlfriend/boyfriend have been going through. One reader recent told me that after reading RAGE, she realized that she wants to take control of her life and stop cutting. To my readers: YOU ROCK OUT LOUD, each and every one of you!!!

Purchase HERE
What are some of your favorite reads from 2011 (so far)?
The two that stole my breath (so far; the year isn't over yet): EVERYBODY SEES THE ANTS by A.S. King and GHOST STORY by Jim Butcher. And I read the Tiffany Aching series from Sir Terry Pratchett this year, which I loved.

As many gear up for National Novel Writing Month, any advice for teen writers?
Lots of people say they're going to write a book, but few people actually start the writing. Even fewer finish. Don't psych yourself out of the process. You can't fix what you don't write! The best piece of advice I ever received was from author Martha O'Connor. She said, "Write like there's no one watching." Do it for yourself. Do it for the story. And do it without worrying if it's good enough. YOU CAN DO IT!!!

Purchase HERE
How do you refill your creative well?
Sometimes, I have to walk away from writing. LOSS, for example, took me 22 drafts before I though ti was right -- and then my editor had me do a revision. I needed a break after that! Now, before I start writing BREATH, I'm taking notes -- basically, one idea per page -- and leaving it at that while I start to figure out how I'm going to connect all those ideas.

But my big go-to in terms of stirring the soup? Listening. Seriously, just listening. Sometimes, the idea is already there, just trying to come out, but we drown it out with What We Should Be Writing. Feh on that!!!! The best ideas come to me when I'm in the shower or when I'm driving. Listen to those ideas! Write them down! (And celebrate new ideas with quality chocolate!)

Amen! And thank you so much for stopping by!

The Book Swarm's Crossroads Giveaways
Giveaway #1 (International):
Fill out THIS FORM and enter to win one of 
TWO GRAND PRIZES:
A book by Judith Graves (author's choice)
A book by Amanda Ashby (author's choice)
Giveaway #2 (US/Canada):
SWAG PACKS: 
Leave a comment on this post (along with your email address) 
for a chance to win one of several fabulous swag packs from 
The Crossroads Authors of Awesome.
 
The Crossroads Blog Tour Giveaway
Each day of The Crossroads Blog Tour, a new research question will be revealed on The Crossroad Blog Tour main page here, and each day the answer to that question will be found within one of the different blog posts by Crossroads Tour authors.
  • Your job is to get the question, read the blog posts, and collect all answers by the end of the tour, on Halloween.
  • Answers are to be emailed to bridgesocialmedia@gmail.com by October 31st at MIDNIGHT.
  • Winner of the grand prize will be announced on November 1st, the DAY OF THE DEAD.
  • Follow the tour on Twitter: @TheCrossroadsBT and Facebook.
BRIDGE Social Media is holding a special promotion for public libraries. Libraries that actively promote the Crossroads tour (post a link on their website, mention it in their newsletters, etc) can email us proof of their promotional activities by midnight on OCTOBER 31st to be entered in a draw to win a FREE SKYPE AUTHOR VISIT FOR THEIR LIBRARIES – WITH BEST-SELLING YA AUTHOR, RACHEL VINCENT.

The Crossroads Presents: Lucienne Diver

Oh, how exciting! It's the seventh day of The Crossroads Blog Tour and Lucienne Diver's visiting The Book Swarm. Besides being a kick-butt literary agent, Lucienne is also the author of the young adult series Vamped, which includes VAMPED, REVAMPED, FANGTASTIC (out Jan. 2012), and FANGTABULOUS (releasing in 2012), and a new urban fantasy series, Latter-Day Olympians, which starts with BAD BLOOD (Just downloaded this -- sooo excited about it!). She's also in a ton of anthologies including DEAR BULLY. Welcome!
Purchase HERE
Gina, the main character of your VAMPED series, has been a busy girl, adjusting to her vamp lifestyle. What's up next for her?
Well, in the first book she becomes a Vamped-out version of herself. In the second, an undercover assignment has her going goth. In the third (FANGTASTIC, coming January 2012), she's again reconsidering her wardrobe options. Does she lean more toward the steampunk style? Is she an adventuress or aviatrix, or really more of a gangst-her, part of the femme fatale lifestyler clan who looks like Al Capone merged with Catherine Zeta Jones in Chicago? These are important questions, since she's asked to infiltrate the lifestylers and the true vamps who run their clubs to see who's behind the Manson-esque murders rocking the Sunshine State.
Purchase HERE

What's your biggest distraction when writing?
My Family. Every minute I spend closeted with my manuscript in a minute I don't have to spend with them, so I have to make every second count with them and and with my writing. It's been really great for telling my writers blog "I don't have time for you" and just working through it. This means that I take some wrong turns, but rewriting comes to me so much faster than the first draft. I think because once the novel is finished and the big picture becomes clear, I can trim out what doesn't belong and redirect the flow. But I can't revise what isn't there. It means I make time with my family really count as well. I don't listen with half an ear, but try to give my all, whatever I do.
Purchase HERE

Since you've been published, what's the coolest thing that's happened to you?
Meeting my fans. Seeing your books in print is exciting, of course, but it's only a small part of the journey. You haven't really succeed until you've made a connection with the readers, until someone writes to say how much they've enjoyed your work and what it means to them. Then you know you've made it.

Finish this sentence: When I'm not writing, I...
Purchase HERE
When I'm not writing, I'm plotting. Or catching up on all the house cleaning that falls by the wayside when I'm in the zone. Or going slowly made, because every day that goes by without forward progress on a novel or story feels like opportunity lost. I'm such a Type-A personality!

Thank you so much for stopping by!

The Book Swarm's Crossroads Giveaways
Giveaway #1 (International):
Fill out THIS FORM and enter to win one of 
TWO GRAND PRIZES:
A book by Judith Graves (author's choice)
A book by Amanda Ashby (author's choice)
Giveaway #2 (US/Canada):
SWAG PACKS: 
Leave a comment on this post (along with your email address) 
for a chance to win one of several fabulous swag packs from 
The Crossroads Authors of Awesome.
 
The Crossroads Blog Tour Giveaway
Each day of The Crossroads Blog Tour, a new research question will be revealed on The Crossroad Blog Tour main page here, and each day the answer to that question will be found within one of the different blog posts by Crossroads Tour authors.
  • Your job is to get the question, read the blog posts, and collect all answers by the end of the tour, on Halloween.
  • Answers are to be emailed to bridgesocialmedia@gmail.com by October 31st at MIDNIGHT.
  • Winner of the grand prize will be announced on November 1st, the DAY OF THE DEAD.
  • Follow the tour on Twitter: @TheCrossroadsBT and Facebook.
BRIDGE Social Media is holding a special promotion for public libraries. Libraries that actively promote the Crossroads tour (post a link on their website, mention it in their newsletters, etc) can email us proof of their promotional activities by midnight on OCTOBER 31st to be entered in a draw to win a FREE SKYPE AUTHOR VISIT FOR THEIR LIBRARIES – WITH BEST-SELLING YA AUTHOR, RACHEL VINCENT.


Thursday, October 27, 2011

The Crossroads Presents: Kiki Hamilton

On the sixth day of The Crossroads Blog Tour, Kiki Hamilton visits The Book Swarm. Kiki Hamilton is the author of young adult debut, THE FAERIE RING (read my review HERE). And how cool is it that Goodreads already has THREE more books listed in her Faerie Ring series including THE TORN WING (2012), THE TARA STONE (2013), and THE ENDGAME (2014). Welcome!

Your new series, THE FAERIE RING, is set in Victorian England. What drew you to that time period and how did it influence your story?
I love the mystery of Victorian London. The dichotomy of knowledge between great technological advances and deep belief in mysticism. I also love the idea of not knowing all the 'facts' of history -- of the untold stories that have either slipped through the cracks or not been told because, if they were, everything would change...
Any advice for teen writers?
My advice for another writer would be the same, no matter what age they are: Tell the story you want to read. Write for the love of the story you're telling. Always be open to revising and seek out critiques of your work. Nobody writes in a vacuum. Nobody writes the perfect story on the first draft. We all have to work hard at our writing and revise, revise, revise! Take classes, read books in the genre you're writing in and study what works in the books you love. Find critique partners to read your work, attend writing conferences if you can and never give up!!!

What's your writing process (are you a plotter or pantster or a little of both)?
Sadly, I am a pantster, though I would love to be a plotter because it would make everything so much easier!! But for me, I have to write to the end to know the story. I'll know certain plot points that are going to occur, general parts of the story arc, but most times, my characters will do unexpected things along the way. Plus, that unresolved plot thread that I left dangling back in chapter three suddenly makes sense in chapter twenty-three, and I know why it was there.

How to you refill your creative well?
Usually reading inspires me to want to write more. To be honest, it's hard to find time to do all the things I want to. When I have free time, I usually write, but for creative outlets, I listen to music a lot. I also like to play the guitar, the piano (poorly, I must admit), and I occasionally paint. I like sports as well: tennis, golf, skiing, and I love card games and Scrabble.

Thanks so much for your great questions and inviting me over! xo Kiki

The Book Swarm's Crossroads Giveaways
Giveaway #1 (International):
Fill out THIS FORM and enter to win one of 
TWO GRAND PRIZES:
A book by Judith Graves (author's choice)
A book by Amanda Ashby (author's choice)
Giveaway #2 (US/Canada):
SWAG PACKS: 
Leave a comment on this post (along with your email address) 
for a chance to win one of several fabulous swag packs from 
The Crossroads Authors of Awesome.
 
 
The Crossroads Blog Tour Giveaway
Each day of The Crossroads Blog Tour, a new research question will be revealed on The Crossroad Blog Tour main page here, and each day the answer to that question will be found within one of the different blog posts by Crossroads Tour authors.
  • Your job is to get the question, read the blog posts, and collect all answers by the end of the tour, on Halloween.
  • Answers are to be emailed to bridgesocialmedia@gmail.com by October 31st at MIDNIGHT.
  • Winner of the grand prize will be announced on November 1st, the DAY OF THE DEAD.
  • Follow the tour on Twitter: @TheCrossroadsBT and Facebook.
BRIDGE Social Media is holding a special promotion for public libraries. Libraries that actively promote the Crossroads tour (post a link on their website, mention it in their newsletters, etc) can email us proof of their promotional activities by midnight on OCTOBER 31st to be entered in a draw to win a FREE SKYPE AUTHOR VISIT FOR THEIR LIBRARIES – WITH BEST-SELLING YA AUTHOR, RACHEL VINCENT.

The Crossroads Presents: Angie Frazier

And on the sixth day...Angie Frazier dropped by for a visit! Angie's the author of the young adult series, Everlasting, (EVERLASTING and THE ETERNAL SEA) and the middle grade mystery series, Suzanna Snow, (THE MIDNIGHT TUNNEL and THE MASTERMIND PLOT, which comes out in March 2012). Welcome!

Purchase HERE
Your Everlasting series is historical (beginning in 1855) and takes place in a variety of fantastic locations. What drew you to that time period and those locations?
Whenever I read, I want to be transported to different places and times. There's something rich and intriguing about historical settings. It makes the story and the characters all the more interesting to me. Usually, the time period and locations for my books have a lot to do with the plot, or it's a time or place my characters would fit well in. 1855 was a time that would really test Camille's modern sensibilities, and Australia, mostly unexplored at the time, fit the adventure element I really wanted.

Purchase HERE
Any advice for teen writers, especially now that it's almost National Novel Writing Month?
I've done NaNoWriMO (actually, I completed The Midnight Tunnel, Suzanna Snow's first mystery during NaNo) and the best advice I can give is to Just Keep Writing. Don't go back and edit yourself. Get through to the end of the story, even if you know the story needs massive changes during revision. Just get to the end. It's a thrill to finish a novel, even if it's a mess.

When's your biggest distraction when writing?
Purchase HERE
Right now, my children are my biggest distractions. When I didn't have children, my biggest distraction was TV. So, I cut TV out completely. I only watch shows on Netflix, and then only on the weekend. The kids, though, are here to stay! I constantly have to find ways to work around them.

How to you refill your creative well?
Reading is generally my favorite way to recharge. I also love visiting museums, or traveling to new places. It's important to take a break every now and again, even from something you love. It helps remind me how lucky I am to be doing what I love.


Purchase HERE
The Book Swarm's Crossroads Giveaways
Giveaway #1 (International):
Fill out THIS FORM and enter to win one of 
TWO GRAND PRIZES:
A book by Judith Graves (author's choice)
A book by Amanda Ashby (author's choice)
Giveaway #2 (US/Canada):
SWAG PACKS: 
Leave a comment on this post (along with your email address) 
for a chance to win one of several fabulous swag packs from 
The Crossroads Authors of Awesome.
 
 
The Crossroads Blog Tour Giveaway
Each day of The Crossroads Blog Tour, a new research question will be revealed on The Crossroad Blog Tour main page here, and each day the answer to that question will be found within one of the different blog posts by Crossroads Tour authors.
  • Your job is to get the question, read the blog posts, and collect all answers by the end of the tour, on Halloween.
  • Answers are to be emailed to bridgesocialmedia@gmail.com by October 31st at MIDNIGHT.
  • Winner of the grand prize will be announced on November 1st, the DAY OF THE DEAD.
  • Follow the tour on Twitter: @TheCrossroadsBT and Facebook.
BRIDGE Social Media is holding a special promotion for public libraries. Libraries that actively promote the Crossroads tour (post a link on their website, mention it in their newsletters, etc) can email us proof of their promotional activities by midnight on OCTOBER 31st to be entered in a draw to win a FREE SKYPE AUTHOR VISIT FOR THEIR LIBRARIES – WITH BEST-SELLING YA AUTHOR, RACHEL VINCENT.

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

The Crossroads Presents: Judith Graves

Judith Graves, author and tour organizer extraordinaire (girl put this whole thing together -- she's awesome!), joins us on The Book Swarm today. Judith writes the Skinned series, which includes UNDER MY SKIN, SECOND SKIN, and SKIN OF MY TEETH. She also collaborates with Dawn Dalton and contributed to the SPIRITED anthology. Welcome!

Purchase HERE
Eryn, the main character of your Skinned series, is "dynamic, strong, and a little fragile." Did you set out to purposely write her that way or did she evolve into that person?
Eryn's got a pretty complex life as a half-human/half-shapeshifting teen with missing parents. Her tough-girl facade hides a lot of hurt and abandonment issues. I always intended for her to be a strong female character, but it's her vulnerability that makes Eryn one of my favourites to write. Some of that was intentional. However, she often surprises me -- providing layers to her personality that I didn't see coming.

PreOrder HERE
Any advice for teen writers?
Thrilled to hear your students participate in NaNo! I do as well, although I've never officially completed the 50k requirement. If you're like me and don't make it to the finish line within the month of November -- who cares? You'll have more words written than usual and the extra motivation - aka - taking time to write is what's important. Best advice I could give? DO NOT give up on your manuscript--keep writing until you get to the end. Then go back and make it shine.
What's your writing process -- how do you go from the idea to writing that final draft?
Releases 2013
I'm a plotter, which can be a bit of a curse. I don't need to know exactly how my characters are going to accomplish the near-impossible tasks I plunk in front of them, but I can't start writing until I have the key scenes figured out.

Generally, I start with a character, situation, or setting. I build the world, establish the rules, choose the supporting cast and conflicts, plot the big showdown and a few major points of action that will get me to the end of the story. Then, I sit down and write. I think of the story as a series of scenes with actors and sets that need designing. My first draft is dialogue-heavy and sparse -- very script-like. As soon as I take the story to a logical conclusion, I go back and flesh it out, adding description, cranking up the emotion, etc.
PreOrder HERE

How do you refill your creative well?
Talking about projects or ideas ALWAYS spark additional ideas or tangents, so does watching a great movie, reading a book, hearing a funky tune, or even sitting outside a cafe watching the world go by. Life offers an endless supply of material. The challenge is sorting through those tiny sparks of inspiration for the one that's going to burn the brightest.

The Book Swarm's Crossroads Giveaways
Giveaway #1 (International):
Fill out THIS FORM and enter to win one of 
TWO GRAND PRIZES:
A book by Judith Graves (author's choice)
A book by Amanda Ashby (author's choice)
Giveaway #2 (US/Canada):
SWAG PACKS: 
Leave a comment on this post (along with your email address) 
for a chance to win one of several fabulous swag packs from 
The Crossroads Authors of Awesome.

The Crossroads Blog Tour Giveaway
Each day of The Crossroads Blog Tour, a new research question will be revealed on The Crossroad Blog Tour main page here, and each day the answer to that question will be found within one of the different blog posts by Crossroads Tour authors.
  • Your job is to get the question, read the blog posts, and collect all answers by the end of the tour, on Halloween.
  • Answers are to be emailed to bridgesocialmedia@gmail.com by October 31st at MIDNIGHT.
  • Winner of the grand prize will be announced on November 1st, the DAY OF THE DEAD.
  • Follow the tour on Twitter: @TheCrossroadsBT and Facebook.
BRIDGE Social Media is holding a special promotion for public libraries. Libraries that actively promote the Crossroads tour (post a link on their website, mention it in their newsletters, etc) can email us proof of their promotional activities by midnight on OCTOBER 31st to be entered in a draw to win a FREE SKYPE AUTHOR VISIT FOR THEIR LIBRARIES – WITH BEST-SELLING YA AUTHOR, RACHEL VINCENT.

The Crossroads Presents: Stacey Kade

Today's the fifth day of The Crossroads Blog Tour and that brings Stacey Kade to The Book Swarm! Stacey is the author of The Ghost and the Goth series, which includes THE GHOST AND THE GOTH, THE QUEEN OF THE DEAD, and BODY AND SOUL (which releases in May 2012. Pre-order HERE).  She's also got a brand new book called THE RULES, coming out in 2013 (oooh, and this one sounds so intriguing! Already added this to my TBR!)

Buy it HERE
There was such a twist for Alona and Will at the end of QUEEN OF THE DEAD! Without giving too much away, what's up next for them?
Hummm. Well, some tough choices are coming up for both of them. It's the last book in the series, so it's really make it or break it time for them. And they're not on the same page (ha!) with acknowledging their feelings for each other and what that might mean in their unique situation.

But they're working on it. And, on a story level, they're dealing with Alona's former best friend, Misty, who claims she's being haunted...by Alona. Which, if you've read QUEEN OF THE DEAD, you know why that's not currently possible!

Buy it HERE
What does your basic writing process look like -- are you a plotter or pantser or a little of each?
Left to my own devices, I'm totally a pantser. I just need to have a rough idea of the end before I can start writing. However, with deadlines being an important part of my writing life now, I tend to use a combination approach. I figure out the first three chapters, write them, then figure out the next three, and so on.

What's your biggest distraction when writing?
Twitter. Oh, yes, definitely Twitter. There's something new to read popping up literally every second. It's the mortal enemy of concentration.

How do you refill your creative well?
I read, watch TV (Supernatural!) and movies, anything to focus on stories other than my own. Eat chocolate. And nap. A lot.


The Book Swarm's Crossroads Giveaways
Giveaway #1 (International):
Fill out THIS FORM and enter to win one of 
TWO GRAND PRIZES:
A book by Judith Graves (author's choice)
A book by Amanda Ashby (author's choice)
Giveaway #2 (US/Canada):
SWAG PACKS: 
Leave a comment on this post (along with your email address) 
for a chance to win one of several fabulous swag packs from 
The Crossroads Authors of Awesome.
 
 
The Crossroads Blog Tour Giveaway
Each day of The Crossroads Blog Tour, a new research question will be revealed on The Crossroad Blog Tour main page here, and each day the answer to that question will be found within one of the different blog posts by Crossroads Tour authors.
  • Your job is to get the question, read the blog posts, and collect all answers by the end of the tour, on Halloween.
  • Answers are to be emailed to bridgesocialmedia@gmail.com by October 31st at MIDNIGHT.
  • Winner of the grand prize will be announced on November 1st, the DAY OF THE DEAD.
  • Follow the tour on Twitter: @TheCrossroadsBT and Facebook.
BRIDGE Social Media is holding a special promotion for public libraries. Libraries that actively promote the Crossroads tour (post a link on their website, mention it in their newsletters, etc) can email us proof of their promotional activities by midnight on OCTOBER 31st to be entered in a draw to win a FREE SKYPE AUTHOR VISIT FOR THEIR LIBRARIES – WITH BEST-SELLING YA AUTHOR, RACHEL VINCENT.