Welcome to Literary Rambles! While you’re rambling around and exploring the site enter for a chance to win:
Kristin Nelsen Query Critique and UNDER THE PAINTED SKY Giveaway through March 28th
FLUNKED FAIRY TALE REFORM SCHOOL through March 30th
BLACKBIRD FLY through April 4th
ASK THE EXPERT INTERVIEW AND GIVEAWAY OF CROSSED
The winner of THE WHITE ASSASSIN is:
And the winner of THE VISION is:
Congrats! E-mail me your addresses so I can send you your book.
Today I’m so excited to interview Wendy, a 9th grader who follows our blog and an aspiring author for my ASK THE EXPERT series.
Welcome Wendy. Thanks so much for agreeing to be interviewed.
1. Please tell us a little bit about yourself, your school, and what you like to read.
Hi, I'm Wendy. I live and go to school in Australia, and I love reading and writing. I mostly read fantasy, dystopian and realistic fiction. My favourite authors are Markus Zusak, Glenda Millard, Janice Hardy, Patrick Ness, Eva Ibbotson and J.K. Rowling.
2. I love how we’re able to meet each other from across the world through blogging. And I love Janice Hardy and J.K. Rowling too. I know you’re an aspiring author. Tell us a little bit about what you’re working on.
I'm in the middle of revising a middle-grade fantasy novel at the moment. Basically, it's set in a world where there are dangerous magical beings who can take the souls of people. When one takes a girl's friend's soul, she approaches them, and discovers she has powers and a connection with the beings, which she'll need to help her friend and prevent a war.
3. Ooh, your story sounds awesome. As you probably know, I’m a huge fan of fantasies. And yea for another middle grade author! Before you started writing, how did you find out about the books you read? What about new books coming out?
My school library has lists of books — for casual reading and on specific topics — that the librarians put together and I'd often find out about new books to read from there. I'd also look up books I'd heard a lot about from other people. I don't think I really paid attention to new books coming out before I started writing (well, except for Harry Potter).
4. That’s so interesting that you didn’t pay attention to new books before starting to write. How has writing changed what you read, if at all? What books are you waiting to be released?
I don't think it's really changed what kinds of books I read because I liked the same genres before I started writing, but now I read more books from different authors. Before, I mostly stuck with my favourite writers.
I'm waiting for Bridge of Clay from Markus Zusak, Clariel: The Lost Abhorsen from Garth Nix and Darkfall by Janice Hardy to be released.
5. I’m looking forward to THE LOST ABHORSEN too. There’s still a chance you could DARKFALL in my contest. (For everyone, the link to the contest is at the top of the blog.) Do you buy most of your books or get them at the library? How often do you go to a bookstore?
I mostly get books from the library. I only go to the bookstore once every few months, because the nearest one is over an hour away, so it's a bit inconvenient. I usually go to the library when I'm after a specific book, and I go to the bookstore when I just want to browse.
6. That’s too bad there’s no bookstore nearer. Do you read any teen book blogs, author blogs, or author or publisher websites? Become a fan of an author on Facebook? Why? Has this changed at all since you started writing?
Yup, I read Janice Hardy's and Steph Bowe's blogs. I don't have Facebook but I follow a lot of authors on Twitter. I sometimes go to author websites, when I've just read a book by them and search them up. I don't really look at teen book blogs or publisher websites.
I didn't have Twitter or subscribe to any blogs until I started writing, so that's changed quite a lot. I follow Steph Bowe's blog because I like reading her thoughts on things, and Janice Hardy's blog because the writing info there is really helpful.
7. I so agree about Janice’s website. Have any of your teachers recommended any blogs or websites to your class or to you?
Not that I can remember.
8. Are there things your favourite authors could do that would make you more likely to visit their website, their blog, or become a fan on Facebook?
Well, I love J.K. Rowling's website because there's extra information on the books and characters, she answers questions directly, it looks great and it's interactive. I'd definitely visit an author's website if it was something like that. For blogs, it would be nice if they were updated regularly; a lot of authors only update them with book news once every few months. I'm not really sure about Facebook or Twitter … maybe if they put a link on their website? I'm not too fussed about how active the people I follow are on there.
9. That’s a great point about blogs. I notice sometimes that bloggers just disappear for periods of time. It helps when they at least tell us in a blog post that they’ll be gone. And I really think disappearing hurts readership of a blog. Have any authors visited your school? Who? Is there anything you’d recommend that an author do to make their presentation more interesting to you and other kids at your school?
Yes, my school held a literary festival last year and a lot of authors visited. I got to listen to John Larkin, James Roy and J.C. Burke. I really like humour and anecdotes in presentations, usually that makes it more interesting. And this might sound a bit strange, but I like it better when the author moves around and looks at the audience more (if possible, of course); it was what James Roy and John Larkin did. When they're just standing still I kind of feel like I'm being 'lectured' to, but if they move around it somehow feels friendlier. Hope that makes sense.
Oh my gosh, I would so love if my daughter’s school would have a literary festival. That’s such a great way to get kids excited about books. Thanks so much Wendy for sharing your advice. And good luck with your book.
Today I’m giving away my ARC of CROSSED. See isn’t it a book you’re dying to read?
Here’s a blurb from Goodreads:
The hotly awaited second book in the dystopian Matched trilogy
In search of a future that may not exist and faced with the decision of who to share it with, Cassia journeys to the Outer Provinces in pursuit of Ky - taken by the Society to his certain death - only to find that he has escaped, leaving a series of clues in his wake.
Cassia's quest leads her to question much of what she holds dear, even as she finds glimmers of a different life across the border. But as Cassia nears resolve and certainty about her future with Ky, an invitation for rebellion, an unexpected betrayal, and a surprise visit from Xander - who may hold the key to the uprising and, still, to Cassia's heart - change the game once again. Nothing is as expected on the edge of Society, where crosses and double crosses make the path more twisted than ever.
This is an awesome sequel to MATCHED told from Cassia and Ky’s POV. I loved learning about the Outer Provinces as Cassia searches for Ky. And we get to meet new characters like Cassia’s travelling partner Indie who have their own hidden pasts and goals that drive them to face the dangers in the Outer Provinces. Both Cassia and Ky must confront hard inner decisions that raise the stakes and that I didn’t see coming. And of course we learn more about Xander.
So I’m giving away my ARC of CROSSED. All you need to do is be a follower (just click the follow button if you’re not a follower) and leave a comment on Wendy’s interview by midnight on October 29th. I’ll announce the winner on October 31st. If your e-mail is not on Blogger, please list it in your comment. International entries are welcome.
If you mention this contest on your blog, Twitter, or Facebook, please let me know in the comments and I’ll give you an extra entry.
Here’s what’s coming up the next few weeks. On Wednesday, there's going to be a guest post by someone who found her agent through Literary Rambles and has a book deal. She'll be sharing tips on agent hunting and the submission process. I don't want to miss it. Hope you'll come too.
Next Monday I’m interviewing debut author Stasia Ward Kehoe and giving away a copy of AUDITION. Then on October 31st, I’m interviewing another debut author Anna Staniszewski and giving away a copy of MY VERY UN FAIRY TAIL LIFE. On November 7th, I’ll be interviewing Adam Jay Epstein and Andrew Jacobson and giving away a copy of THE FAMILIARS SECRETS OF THE CROWN.
Hope to see you next Monday!
Posted by Natalie Aguirre on Monday, October 17, 2011