Applying to College? I’ll Critique Your Essay.

Applying to College? I’ll Critique Your Essay.

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Are you a high school senior working on a your Common App essay?  Got a university-specific essay you want a fresh set of eyes on?  Sometimes authors like to offer query help for authors looking for agents, which I do on occasion, and I thought I’d pay it forward with college apps as well.  How am I qualified to do this?  I’ve been a high school counselor for 11 years and have read hundreds of essays.

Here’s the deal:

  1. You must be a high school senior graduating in 2018.
  2.  You must have a completed draft of an essay to share – doesn’t have to be polished, but it does need to be finished.
  3.  Essays should be in Google doc format and ready for my comments.
  4. I’ll take the first 10 responders via this post.  Just leave a comment and I’ll give you the green light when I’m ready for you to send.  Do not send until you’ve heard from me.
  5. I’ll turn them around within a week.

Sound good?  Feel free to share with any senior who might be interested.  Happy writing!

My Preorder Chapter is Ready!

My Preorder Chapter is Ready!

Hello friends!

Just a quick note to let you know that Blink has been busy sending out my preorder bonus chapter for anyone who has emailed them a receipt for IT STARTED WITH GOODBYE.  It doesn’t matter which retailer you purchase from, as long as you send the receipt, they’ll send you the bonus chapter.

You can send your receipt to: ISWGBook@harpercollins.com

The bonus chapter features a funny (well, I think so) episode in the life of Tatum and her best friend, Ashlyn, before the worst summer ever recorded.  It includes the Homecoming Dance (kind of) and Chipotle.

I hope you’ll consider preordering and sending in your receipt!  Thank you!

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2016 Wrap-Up

2016 Wrap-Up

Well, we’ve made it to the end of 2016.

Maybe not quite in the same shape as when we started the year, but if you’re reading this, you’ve survived.

As we put 2016 to bed, I thought I’d share some of the things that were good in my world this year.

1.  I sold a second book!  It was a dream come true to see one book become real, but to be given the chance to do it again is overwhelming.
2.  I went to Las Vegas for the first time and celebrated 10 years of marriage.
3.  I retreated with some inspiring authors in the fall.

4.  I gave my first professional (not writing related) conference presentation.
5.  I held my words in my hands–it’s almost a real book!

I was also very entertained by the following books:

1.  Girl Mans Up by M-E Girard
2.  My Sister Rosa by Justine Larbalestier
3.  Great Small Things by Jodi Picoult
4.  Big Little Lies by Liane Moriarty
5.  Exit, Pursued By A Bear by E.K. Johnston
6.  Wild Swans by Jessica Spotswood
7.  Defending Taylor by Miranda Kenneally
8.  Frannie & Tru by Karen Hattrup
9.  Liars And Losers Like Us by Ami Allen-Vath
10.  Unhooked by Lisa Maxwell

2017 debuts to look forward to (these are the ones I’ve been privileged to read already):

1.  Kissing Max Holden by Katy Upperman
2.  It’s Not Like It’s A Secret by Misa Suguira
3.  The Love Interest by Cale Dietrich
4.  The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas
5.  After The Fall by Kate Hart
6.  How To Break A Boy by Laurie Devore
7.  In 27 Days by Alison Gervais
8.  Allegedly by Tiffany D. Jackson
9.  The Girl With The Red Balloon by Katherine Locke

I’ll share more 2017 debuts as I make my way through them.

Favorite movies this year:  Moana, Ghostbusters, Sing Street, Love & Friendship, The Edge of Seventeen, How To Be Single, and Rogue One.

Things to look forward to in 2017:

1.  I feel like this goes without saying, but May 9, 2017 is going to be a pretty momentous day.  My debut novel IT STARTED WITH GOODBYE will officially be published and available for public consumption.
2.  My launch party will be May 13, 2017 at One More Page in Arlington, VA–I’d love to see you there!
3.  I’m signing copies of my ARC at the American Library Association’ Midwinter Conference AND I’m on a panel with some fabulous authors.

4.  I’m appearing at YABBAFest in Warrenton, VA in October.
5.  I’ve got a few more signings/readings ideas in the works, so stay tuned.

Whether you’re celebrating this time of year or not, I hope you’re ushering in the new year with loved ones and doing something that brings you joy.

Interested in preordering my book?  Here’s all the info.  AND!  There’s a bonus chapter in it for you.

Feel like asking your library to add my book to their collection?  Here’s how.

This post was originally sent to my newsletter subscribers.  Miss a previous newsletter?  Catch up HERE.

Library Preorders!

Library Preorders!

 

I’m humbling requesting  you to consider asking your local public library, or perhaps your school library, if they would think about adding IT STARTED WITH GOODBYE to their collection.  Not everyone can afford to buy all the books they want to read, so in a way, this is a gift for them too.  Libraries are such important community resources and librarians are super heroes for getting the right books in the hands of readers who will cherish them.

So, how do you do it?

  1.  Access your library’s website.  OR stop by in person.
  2. Locate how to suggest a title.  It may say “purchase request,” “books on order,” “suggest a title,” or something similar.  You may find a form online, you may be asked to call the library, or you might have to fill out a form in person.

 

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Here’s what it looks like for my local library

3.  Use the following information to make your request:

It Started With Goodbye by Christina June

Paperback –

  • Series: Blink
  • Paperback: 272 pages
  • Publisher: Blink (May 9, 2017)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0310758661
  • ISBN-13: 978-0310758662

E-book –

  • Publisher: Blink (May 9, 2017)
  • Publication Date: May 9, 2017
  • Sold by: HarperCollins Publishing
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B01HAKH5LY

And that’s it!  If there’s enough interest, hopefully this baby will be coming to a library near you next year.

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Thank you!

 

Preordering IT STARTED WITH GOODBYE

Preordering IT STARTED WITH GOODBYE

Did you know you can preorder IT STARTED WITH GOODBYE and have it delivered right to your mailbox on release day?  Scroll down and find out how.

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On sale at bookstores everywhere 5-9-17

Preorder Here:

One More Page Books (signed copy!)

Barnes & Noble

Target

Walmart

Amazon

Kobo

Book Depository

Indigo

Book Summary:

Sixteen-year-old Tatum Elsea is bracing for the worst summer of her life. After being falsely accused of a crime, she’s stuck under stepmother-imposed house arrest and her BFF’s gone ghost. Tatum fills her newfound free time with community service by day and working at her covert graphic design business at night (which includes trading emails with a cute cello-playing client). When Tatum discovers she’s not the only one in the house keeping secrets, she finds she has the chance to make amends with her family and friends. Equipped with a new perspective, and assisted by her feisty step-abuela-slash-fairy-godmother, Tatum is ready to start fresh and maybe even get her happy ending along the way.

A modern play on the Cinderella story arc, Christina June’s IT STARTED WITH GOODBYE shows us that sometimes going after what you want means breaking the rules.

Check out the book on Goodreads.

Anyone who is so kind to preorder can send me a picture of your receipt and I’ll add you to my super secret list to receive bonus content.  Hit me up here:  Contact

Other fun stuff coming down the road:

  • a graphic design contest!  Want to be like Tatum and create a band poster?  Blink is generously hosting a a little competition and I can’t wait to see what you come up with.  Watch this space for more info.
  • a playlist of the songs Tatum listens to in the book, as well as what I listened to while writing ISWG.
  • a local launch party!  I’m already starting to think about what kind of cupcakes we’ll have, so if you’re in the DC metro area (or feel like taking a road trip), stay tuned for the details.

For more information, visit BlinkYABooks.com.

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In a Year….

In a Year….

….my book will be available.  In a year, the words I have worked on since December 2013 will be released for public consumption.  Sometimes people say that once a book is published, it no longer belongs to the author, but instead to the reader.  That is, of course, the goal, but it doesn’t make it any less terrifying.

My editor and I are starting to have conversations about promotion and book events, about my launch party (!!!) and bonus content.  We’re discussing preorders and buy links and all the things that happen as a publisher prepares to turn that word document into a book you can buy and hold in your hand.

A lot can happen in a year

Looking back on where I was a year ago, a lot has definitely changed.  I was on submission and was feeling like this book just wasn’t going to find a home.  I was working on a new book I loved and trying to convince myself that second books have a better track record with sales….no idea if that’s true, but it sounded good at the time.

And then, the book sold!  After a really long time, the very wise “it only takes one” came true.

With one year to prepare and make sure everything is just right, I know there will be many more things to learn.  More changes are coming.  But I’m ready.   I think.

Only 365 days to go!

#TBT – Throwback Thursday 1

#TBT – Throwback Thursday 1

My parents moved recently and unearthed a huge box full of poems, short stories, school projects, and art work from my elementary and middle school days.  So of course I’m sharing it with you!  I’m hoping to make this a regular blog feature.

Throwback Thursday 1:  a fine specimen containing two poems, circa 4th grade.  Please note the old-school font and take a moment to appreciate that this was printed on a dot-matrix printer.

 

TBT 1

What’s Been Happening

What’s Been Happening

Long time, no blog.  I’m quickly learning that working on a contracted book plus day-jobbing plus parenting plus adulting plus having any kind of down time is hard.

That said, it’s been a really great, productive couple of months!

Where are you with IT STARTED WITH GOODBYE?

Well, I’ve just turned in the second round of developmental edits (plot and character changes) and the next step will hopefully be copy edits.

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Me and the esteemed Lisa Maxwell, working hard.

Have you seen your cover yet?

YES!  And it is beautiful, gorgeous, perfect, etc etc etc.  The designers at Blink REALLY paid attention to my preferences and those of my editor, while also finding a way to work in some key elements from the story.  It is a thousand times better than I ever imagined it could be and I’m so very grateful for it.

Well, when can we see it??

My cover reveal will be June 14 on YA Highway, so set your calendar!

Will there be ARCs?

Sometime over the summer!  My editor is working on getting endorsements right now, which is both awesome and terrifying.

In fact, you can win a signed ARC if you make a donation to #YARunsA5k.

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What are you working on now?

A bunch of things.  BUT I’ve found that when I’m making revisions, it is very very difficult for me to get in the head space of another character, so writing new words has been sporadic.  I’ve definitely been doing some plotting though.

What else have you been up to?

I’ve done a pitiful amount of reading in the last few months.  This is in part due to revision brain and part because my husband and I binge-watched all 6 seasons of THE WALKING DEAD.  I was pretty dead set against watching, even though he’s been a fan for a long time, but then we went to a panel with the show runners, plus also Andrew Lincoln, and I decided it was time to give it a try.

TWD

It was a solid life choice, except that now I have to wait months to find out who got Lucille’d.

I went to the Walter Award Ceremony at the Library of Congress with We Need Diverse Books.

I’ve done some fun beta reading for Heather Van Fleet and Kelly DeVos.

I read WILD SWANS by Jessica Spotswood, DEFENDING TAYLOR by Miranda Kenneally, ME BEFORE YOU by Jojo Moyes, and THE SERPENT KING by Jeff Zentner.

I listened to the audio of SOMEDAY, SOMEDAY MAYBE by Lauren Graham, BITTERSWEET by Sarah Ockler, and finally, FINALLY, I cracked and listened to PRIDE & PREJUDICE by Jane Austen.

I’ve also been vacation planning.  My husband and I are celebrating our 10 anniversary this summer and we’re going to Las Vegas, the first trip for both of us.  (Any and all tips and recommendations are appreciated)

 

Annnnnnd, that’s about it for now.  Hopefully I’ll have things to share before another 3 months passes!

 

Latest Great Reads

Latest Great Reads

I’ve gotten a lot of reading done lately, which is always awesome.  If you’re looking for something to read, or to add to your TBR list, here have been my recent favorites:

 

 

I’ve also been flying through some audiobooks and have discovered a fantastic narrator – Clare Corbett.  I will now auto-download anything she reads.