Some happy news!
Book(dot)con is an online convention started by Diana Sousa where authors can talk about writing, characters, and stories, and conduct workshops! The first ever con will be held online from June 19-20. 2016, and all you need to do to attend is have internet access!
I’m going to be on two panels: “Blending Genres” on June 19th, where I’ll talk about mixing horror and action, American ghost stories and Japanese lore, and “Culture and Faith” on June 20th, both held on 11AM (EDT) / 4PM (GMT). If you can’t make it, they’ll be recording every panel for you to access later on!
For more information, check out http://booksdotcon.tumblr.com/ and https://twitter.com/booksdotcon for more updates!
Next up: Barnes and Noble will be giving away like a bazillion (okay, fifty) posters of THE BONE WITCH for their first National Teen Book festival, happening across all of their 350+ branches at once from June 10-12, 2016! Hop on over to your nearest Barnes and Noble branch for more information!
I feel like this post is necessary, mostly because I am being maligned by certain people who’ve been going about claiming that I am a murderer of at lest one of the YA Scream Queens. I take much offense at this remark and would like to stress most strenuously that I am innocent of these accusations.
I mean, I post kitten gifs on my blog! Would a murderer do that?
(You must admit that this is a very good point.)
(To make sense of this post, head on to the YA Scream Queens for the contest details!)
This week, we’re celebrating the debut of Emily Lloyd Jones’ YA novel, Illusive, pitched as X-Men meets Ocean’s Eleven ! Who can resist that? And to start, we’re talking about superpowers to which Emily asks us –
What kind of superpower would you like to have, and why?
There is a reason why people called me Wolv-Erin back in high school:
And no, it’s not because I was hairy or had huge thighs or was short and grouchy (okay, maybe because I was short and grouchy), but mostly because I was the resident geek, Wolverine is my favorite mutant of all time (edging out Namor only by this much), and because I had always thought having a healing factor was the coolest superpower ever. How can you not want the semi-immortality that comes with the ability? As a kid, I was always running into tables and getting knocked around from sports that I was fond of, like taekwondo and running and badminton and biking (I might also have been the only person ever to get scratched knees from bowling, of all things), and it would always took so long for any bruises to heal. The promise of any and all injuries magically disappearing within seconds was an appealing one to me.
If you could have any superpower, what would you choose?
When the MK virus swept across the planet, a vaccine was created to stop the epidemic, but it came with some unexpected side effects. A small percentage of the population developed superhero-like powers. Seventeen-year-old Ciere Giba has the handy ability to change her appearance at will. She’s what’s known as an illusionist…She’s also a thief.
After a robbery goes awry, Ciere must team up with a group of fellow super-powered criminals on another job that most would consider too reckless. The formula for the vaccine that gave them their abilities was supposedly destroyed years ago. But what if it wasn’t?
The lines between good and bad, us and them, and freedom and entrapment are blurred as Ciere and the rest of her crew become embroiled in a deadly race against he government that could cost them their lives.
Emily Lloyd-Jones grew up on a vineyard in rural Oregon, where she played in evergreen forests and learned to fear sheep. After graduating from Western Oregon University with an English degree, she enrolled in the publishing program at Rosemont College just outside of Philadelphia. She currently resides in Northern California, working in a bookstore by day and writing by night.
Due to a desperate need for more sleep, just a few short updates:
1.THE GIRL FROM THE WELL is now also available on NetGalley! You can now go and request your ARCs here!
2. The always amazing Rebecca Petruck has found a few more TGftW ARCs available at the American Booksellers’ Association WI9 this month!
3. Book #2 is doing pretty well, despite my sleepiness and pregnanciness and lameness. I am estimating I’ve got about 5k to go before I’m officially done with my first draft, and that should be done by early next week. And yes, it’s kindof a sequel, though I’m looking at this more as a companion piece to compliment THE GIRL FROM THE WELL, than anything else. The agents and editors have liked the first chapter I’d hammered out last year, so here’s hoping they like the rest of it.
4. Because there isn’t enough ‘real’ news in this entry, here is a gif of some of my favorite things in the world.
If the lovely Brenda Drake hasn’t given you the heads-up already, I’ll be one of many mentors taking part in the upcoming Pitch Wars contest, so excitement! Meander over to the link for all the pertinent information you need! As one of the coaches I am currently looking for YA authors with finished manuscripts to mentor – almost all sub-categories within YA are welcomed, as I’ve liked novels from genres I never thought I’d read.
What I am Looking For in a Manuscript:
- I love fantasy and sci-fi (light sci-fi only – hard sci-fi might be something of a hard sell in the YA field, though I do love it). World-building is important, as I want to know why things are happening! (Confession: I grew up with David Eddings books, and I’m a big fan of Brandon Sanderson and Ann Aguirre.)
- I love horror. Not the gory, chainsaw-wielding, William-Shatner-face-mask-wearing kind of demented, but the ones with the scary, relentless atmosphere. I want ghost stories that creep into your soul while you’re huddled in bed, the ones that whisper “boo” in your ear at the right moments.
- I also adore mysteries. I love Three Investigators, have all of Agatha Christie’s books, and my prize collection is a Nancy Drew hardbound series I’ve had since I was eight. I don’t want to know who the villain is until the very last chapter, but I want to keep guessing till then! I want something absolutely unexpected:
- Steampunk. I love a little bit of science thrown in to explain the technology. Don’t just add in something made of clockwork without a user’s manual, however short it is. Give me reason to believe in your universe’s logic.
- Romantic subplots are welcomed, but I’m not a fan of stories where said girl / boy is torn between his / her loves throughout most of the book while nothing much else happens. Love triangles are okay, but I’m afraid I have nearly zero tolerance for insta-loves.
- Whimsical. I love whimsical with beautiful prose. John Green novels and Graffiti Moon come to mind, as does Dr. Bird’s Advice for Sad Poets. (A note: beautiful prose doesn’t have to mean literary. Rick Yancey and Maggie Stiefvater do amazing things with beautiful prose.) I want something curious and strange and lovely.
- All kinds of retellings. Fairy tales, nursery rhymes, classics, mythology – gimme, gimme.
- I may not be the right choice for contemporary YA, unless they’re whimsical with beautiful prose (see above), or with a hilariously unique spin (like Liz Czukas’ Ask Again Later). I do like magical realism.
- I want a different kind of dystopian / urban fantasy / paranormal story. A dystopian where the government might actually be the good guys? A paranormal novel where the <insert mythological species here> is truly a vicious, hideous sonofagun and absolutely not a love interest? A zombie verse novel? I’m your girl.
Or something like that.
Feel free to submit even if your novel doesn’t fit any of those mentioned above – if you’ve written something I’ve never even thought of, then I’d want it even more!
Shameless reasons why you should pick me:
1. I am represented by two wonderful agents – Rebecca Podos and Nicole LaBombard of the Rees Literary Agency. I’ve been a freelance writer for numerous magazines, and have had short stories published in a few more. I live in the Philippines, home of a flourishing indie writer community, so opting for a U.S. agent makes me something of an oddity. It’s been trickier to look for an agent when you’re not living in the same continent, but it turned out to be a quicker process than I expected (don’t hurt me).
I finished my YA Psych Horror novel, The Unnatural States of Dead Girls in Wells (title now trimmed to a more straightforward The Girl from the Well) in February 2012, queried, had three offers of representation, and landed my agents by July. Several publishers (including a Big 5 house) offered for my book later that year, but in the end I decided Sourcebooks was the best fit for me.
The Girl from the Well is due out in August 2014. Curious about my writing style? An excerpt has been made available in a few places, but here it is again:
I am where dead children go.
With other kinds of dead it is different. Often their souls drift quietly away, like a leaf caught in the throes of a hidden whirlpool; slipping down without sound, away from sight. They roll and ebb gently with the tides until they sink beneath the waves and I no longer see where they go – like sputtering candlelight, like little embers that burn briefly and brightly for several drawn moments before all their light goes out.
But they are not my territory. They are not my hunt.
And then there are the murdered-dead. And they are peculiar, stranger things.
You may think me biased, being murdered myself. But my state of being has nothing to do with the curiosity toward my own species, if we can be called such. We do not go gently, as your poet encourages, into the good night.
2. I was weaned on pretty prose. I can tell the difference between poetic and purple, and nothing attracts me more than a well-turned phrase. I also have experience editing most genres of fiction, so you’ll be getting those services for free! I critique queries all the time, and often beta-read for fellow writers.
3. I’m not a big fan of telling you how the manuscript should be written, how characters should interact, how the plot should move, how much cream you should be putting in your coffee, and why Misha Collins is better than Jensen Ackles (it’s a close race, I grant you that). But I do love to question. In fact, I might have several questions for a particular plot point or character, and I want to help you find the answers because I want you to know your characters as thoroughly as humanly possible. I want to know what would happen if your protagonist did Action X instead of Action Y, and why they would choose one over the other, cause I want your story told in the most awesome way possible, and that means looking through all options. I also like to think that I’m very good at finding inconsistencies in a story and fleshing out the story’s overall theme / mood / arc – or help you spin it in a different, unique way.
The List of Agents!
- Louise Fury –Bent Agency
- Suzie Townsend – New Leaf Literary
- Nicole Resciniti – The Seymour Agency
- John M. Cusick – The Greenhouse Agency
- Sarah LaPolla – Bradford Literary Agency
- Victoria Marini – Gelfman Schneider Literary Agency
- Jessica Sinsheimer – Sarah Jane Freymann Literary Agency
- Pam van Hylckama Vlieg – Foreword Literary
- Quinlan Lee – Adams Literary
- Jen Udden – Donald Maass Literary Agency
- Emily Keyes – Foreword Literary
- Brianne Johnson – Writers House
- Carly Watters – P.S. Literary
- Lana Popovic and Natasha Alexis – Zachary Shuster Harmsworth
- Molly Jaffa – Folio Literary Management
- Evan Gregory – Ethan Ellenberg Literary Agency
- Stefanie Lieberman – Janklow & Nesbit Associates
- Rena Rossner – The Deborah Harris Agency
For more information regarding the agents’ preferences, go here! For additional information about this contest along with how to submit your manuscripts, go HERE. Check all the coaches’ posts in your category before deciding your top 4 picks. Just click on our pictures below!
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Guess who’s going to be a mentor for the upcoming Pitch Wars? If you’ve got a complete manuscript and would like to participate, click on the image for more details!