Along with many wonderful experiences, from seeing the second book in my first trilogy published to returning to Japan to hanging out with so many awesome writer friends on three different retreats, 2013 brought one large and rather visible change into my life…
(Taken just a few minutes ago)
And 2014 is shaping up to be the most exciting year yet. Not only is our little boy going to be joining us sometime in the next few weeks, but this will also be the first year I have not one, but two books going out into the world (the final book in the Fallen World trilogy and the first book in the Earth & Sky trilogy). So in a way I’ll have three new children.
I hope you all enjoyed your year as much as I have mine, and wish you the best going into the next!
The husband and I recently watched the first season of the excellent BBC show The Hour. There’s an exchange in one of the early episodes that’s stuck with me, so I thought it worth sharing.
The set-up: A reporter and a presenter for a fledgling news program are meeting with a foreign diplomat on the other side of a major political conflict, hoping to convince him to be interviewed on the show. The presenter, as is his style, tries to reassure and charm the diplomat. The reporter, as is his style, cuts right to the chase with the sort of pointed remarks they all know the British public is wondering. The presenter tries to quiet him, but the diplomat ultimately agrees to come on the show because of the reporter’s honesty.
Afterward, the presenter says to the reporter, “How do you know exactly the right question to ask?”
The reporter replies, “Because I’m not afraid of the answers.”
And isn’t that the essence of getting at the truth (not facts, but truth, which every good work of fiction has) in all art forms? To write a powerful story, one that grabs people and doesn’t let them go, you need the courage to ask the right questions and hear out the answers.
Something I hope to remember as long as I’m in this business.
Are there any quotes relating to the creative process that have stuck with you lately?
The Worlds We Make is out in just a couple months now, and I haven’t been able to offer advance copies so far because Hyperion likes to keep their final trilogy books closely under wraps. But I’ve just gotten the go-ahead to offer a very special giveaway! One reader will get an e-galley of The Worlds We Make, to read before just about anyone else gets their hands on the book.
How to enter
Do any (and as many as you want) of the activities in the Rafflecopter giveaway below. Please read the instructions for each! And keep in mind that posts to Twitter, blog, and other social media accounts set up only for contest entries do not qualify.
The giveaway is open to everyone in the world. Yay! But you will need to sign up for a (free!) NetGalley account to access the e-galley if you win, and be able to read e-book files on your computer or an e-book device.
a Rafflecopter giveaway
Any questions? Just ask in the comments.
Want to get your hands on the paperback edition of The Lives We Lost? My publisher is contributing 15 copies to a GoodReads giveaway! Open to US and Canada, just use the widget below to enter. Happy holidays!
To my great delight, the Fallen World trilogy has picked up new fans this year. So I wanted to give you all a heads up, in case you hadn’t come across this earlier, about the Fallen World Street Team. My street teamers carried out various activities to spread the word about the books around the release of The Lives We Lost, and in doing so earned street team packs and a chance at a big prize pack including signed books, swag, gift cards, etc.
We’re going to be doing it again for the release of The Worlds We Make, and newcomers are welcome to join in! Even a little participation earns you a Fallen World swag pack. You can read more about the street team here, and sign up by entering your email there or below:
Important Note for new and existing street team members: Some email providers (e.g., Gmail) have started sorting mailing list emails into a separate folder that you may not see. If you’re an existing street team member and think you may be missing the emails (you should have gotten one in September and one in October), or if you’re a new member and you want to make sure you don’t miss any, adding the address firstname.lastname@example.org to your contacts list should help.
If you have any questions, feel free to comment here or e-mail me. Hope to see a few new names when we get started up again!
I still have some author copies of The Lives We Lost on hand, which I’d love to see find happy homes. And I’ve gotten so much enthusiasm and support from librarians this year that I want to give something back, especially since I know many of you are dealing with cutbacks.
So! Library professionals, this giveaway is specifically for you. If your patrons have read The Way We Fall and would like to get their hands on the sequel, or you have it but want to add an extra copy to your collection, or you’re just getting started with the series, it’s all good. I have five hardcover copies up for grabs:
1. The giveaway is open to anyone who works for a library–public, private, or school–and can add the book to the library’s collection. Library patrons and students, if you’d like one of those books to go to your library, just pass this post on and encourage them to enter!
2. I will happily sign the books (either a general signature, or personalized to your library), or not, as you prefer.
3. To enter, just fill out the form below, including the name of your school or library (I will only mail winning copies to the school or library address to ensure they’re going to a library).
4. Librarians from anywhere in the world welcome! Though the copies I have are all the English version.
5. Five copies in this case means five libraries get one each, not one library getting five. In case there was any confusion.
a Rafflecopter giveaway
The giveaway is open until the end of next week (Nov 1st). Good luck!
One of the questions I get asked most often about The Way We Fall is why I decided to write it in journal format. My answer is that I was trying to get across the tension of the situation in an immediate way, hoping that readers would feel they were there with Kaelyn day by day as her world fell apart.
My husband and I went to see Gravity today, and afterward I thought of that. Because Gravity manages to do in film format what I was attempting to in my book: the power of the movie is that it immerses you in the experience so well you can feel what it might be like to be adrift in space yourself. (At least, I found it worked very well — I highly suggest seeing it in IMAX 3D if you can.) I left the theater feeling rather breathless.
So if you like stories that have that effect, go check it out! And I’d be interested to hear any other books, movies, etc. you’ve come across that gave you that immersive experience.
As a follow-up to my last post, I now have a time and place for the impromptu Chicago reader meet-up! If you’d like to visit while I’m in the city, stop by the Argo Tea at 1 N. Dearborn St (at Madison) in the Loop on Sunday Oct 13th at 3pm. I expect to be hanging out there for about an hour, and am happy to chat will all and any readers. Just look for a noticeably pregnant lady who resembles my author photo.
Hey Chicagoans! I’m going to be visiting your fine city for the first time this Columbus Day weekend. I don’t have any official events lined up (it’s mainly a mini writing retreat trip), but I am planning on taking some time away from work to explore the city, and would love to arrange a meet-up with any readers and Fallen World fans in the area, to chat, sign books for those who’d like, share some swag, and other fun things.
If you’d be up for that, comment here or email me!
Since finishing my last scheduled author appearance of the year last week, I realized I still have a significant number of Fallen World bookmarks on my hands, and for next year I’ll have new bookmarks with the whole trilogy on them. So I wanted to offer my remaining bookmarks to any librarians, booksellers, book bloggers, or other bookish folk who’d like to hand them out to their patrons/shoppers/followers/etc.
I’ve already gotten a couple requests, but still have enough for a few more. The bookmarks are the same as the one you see in the photo below (bookplates and magnets not included):
If you’d like a bunch to spread around, please comment below or email me!