Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Final Cover

Hello all! Confession: I have become an obsessive self-googler. Yes, it is so bad that at times I have resorted to self-googling even though I have a google alert set up (I was rewarded once for doing this which has only hurt my efforts to reduce said self-googling). But one thing that I've realized in this madness is that I haven't posted the most recent version of my cover!! Granted, there aren't HUGE differences between the first cover I posted and the most recent, but enough that I cringe just a little when I see the old one and feel remiss about not posting the new one :)

So, without further ado, the final (I hope) cover of The Forest of Hands and Teeth (which is scheduled to come out March 24, 2009, btw if I haven't mentioned already :).

Monday, August 25, 2008

I think I missed zombie day

You know how the SciFi network on the weekends tends to have themes? Well, I'm pretty sure yesterday was all about zombies. I can't verify this (read: am too lazy to look up their schedule online) but seeing as how the remake of Dawn of the Dead was on last night followed by Resident Evil: Apocalypse... well... seems zombie theme-ish to me.

We tuned in right for the end of Dawn of the Dead. And once we saw the commercial for Resident Evil: Apocalypse there was much groaning and gnashing of teeth and JP saying "and I almost checked to see what was on SciFi like three times today!!" But it's a good thing we didn't realize it was zombie day because then I would have gotten nothing accomplished. Even though it looks like I have to delete much of what I wrote anyways. Sigh.
So we're really into the big final scene of Dawn of the Dead... the zombies are everywhere, the blonde chick loses a limb, etc etc etc and then BAM: Honey Nut Cheerios commercial. I kid you not, the movie was sponsored by Honey Nut Cheerios. Doesn't that seem odd to you? Also, does it not seem odd you to that we sat there and watched the commercials even though we OWNED the movie? I think it was even in the DVD player at the time!
Many of you know that the remake of Dawn of the Dead is what started me on the whole zombie business. So it was nice getting back to my roots. We also got turned on to Richard Cheese via the movie. I can't recommend him enough -- he does lounge versions of songs (he did the lounge version of Down with the Sickness in the movie while they're playing around in the mall). Hilarious - totally worth downloading for your next party!
Anyway, Dawn of the Dead segued nicely into Resident Evil: Apocalypse (which was sponsored by eHaromony...) and a lovely zombie night was had by all!

Saturday, August 23, 2008

Chasing your tail

Well, it's almost 11am on Saturday morning which means I've been daydreaming up what to write today, I've combed through the news and fun blogs, I've checked message boards and now there's nothing else to do but work on Book 2. And so I blog :)

Not much to report. Although I have had the phrase "Just keep swimming" as said/sung by Dori in Finding Nemo in my head since my last post. "Just keep swimming.... just keep swimming..." It's so cheery though that I don't mind :)

As I was sitting here this morning I heard a terrible cat-fight on the next couch over. It was clearly JP's cat screaming so I figured it must be my cat being a bully. Nope. She'd gotten her own claw stuck in her own tail and was furious about the audacity of having a claw in her tail! She spun around a few times, and then fell off the couch, running away from her vile tormentor. Of course my cat ran in to see the commotion, as did the dog. Which led to both cats ganging up on the dog. I don't think he realizes that he's 70 pounds and a DOG. He just puts his head down and takes his lickings. The whole scene, hardest I've laughed in quite a while!

I'd like to say that I'm loving Book 2 right now (because I am), but I'm superstitious so I won't. I've heard from the publicist I'll be working with at RHCB and I think we're talking next week (which I'm super super excited about!!). I'm trying to come up with questions other than "tell me everything you know that I need to know."

I don't think I ever really paid attention to the publicity/marketing side of things before I sold. From being involved in RWA I knew that a lot of authors made bookmarks and magnets and pens, etc. But I don't think I ever paid attention to all the other behind the scenes stuff -- the stuff the publisher can do.

It's interesting because I know some authors who are leery of just how much of an impact an author can have in their own sales and I know other authors who are firm believers that the author can really impact sales. It's hard to figure out where to stand in that spectrum. Generally, when I don't know where to stand I do lots of research so if y'all have any thoughts, bring 'em on! In the end, I'll probably take the same approach as I did to revising -- wanting to know that at the end of the day I did everything in my power to give my little book the best chance I could.

Congrats to Diana Peterfreund on the new addition to the family! Speaking of puppies, mine is trying to crawl into my lap right now.... off to work!

Tuesday, August 19, 2008


I feel like my life has been a series of "justs" recently. ... Just sit down and write a thousand words a day, only a thousand. If you want to do more you can, but just worry about the thousand. ... Just get dressed in your workout clothes and start the walk... just run 60 seconds before you can walk again. ... Just make around the lake one more time. ... Just get through the next urgent item on the "to-list"... just what you need to do to keep ahead of the deadlines. ...Just make it through today and then it will be closer to the weekend. ... Just be patient about FHT... it's making it's way out into the world, just wait and you'll start getting more feedback, more news, more indicators.

Sometimes I totally feel like balance in life narrows down to these justs... just keep moving forward. That's not to say there aren't things that egg me on and get me excited, making the process and journey more fun like little rewards along the way. Loving the book I'm writing makes me excited to sit down and write, excited when I get through another scene. Getting through a training session makes me proud, makes me want to keep going. Seeing mentions of my book online (like as a "Kids' Galleys to Grab" in Publishers Weekly) keeps me floating for days!

And I take the time to savor these moments, to pull myself out of the perpetual forward motion and say "Hey, that's pretty cool! Great job on getting your run in today! Yay for finishing those 1k words! And w00t for zombies!" I do think that when things get hectic (like two jobs, a wedding to plan, a family to talk to (hi family!! I'll call, I promise!!)), that it's easy to head down, just make it through. But sometimes you forget to raise your head and suddenly it's August -- almost the end of August -- and you go, "What the.... what happened to my year!?!"

This time a year ago I just started sending out query letters. I'd just quit my job at my old firm. JP and I were looking for a home for our brain damaged dog, Daphne. I'm shocked at how much can change in a year! And let me tell you, the past year? A total and utter dream come true. I just need to relax, to just let time be what it's going to be. To just sit back and enjoy the ride because I have a feeling that the next year is going to be pretty cool too :)

I just have to go write 1k words real quick first :)

Friday, August 15, 2008

More zombies than usual...

Thanks for all the ideas for FAQs!!! I can't wait to show off my new site!

A while back I posted a little lol about my book. I mean for real, what can be better than kittens+zombies+lolspeak? (feel free to answer that in the comments).

So imagine my delight when my friend, and amazing author, Saundra Mitchell, sent me this!

Yes, it is a good day!

Monday, August 11, 2008

It's Content Time, Baby!

So my fabulous web designer has sent the prelim design for my website and I love it! I love all her sites (which is one reason I begged her to take me on right after I sold even though she was booked solid), but still - I was so afraid to send her my thoughts when it came time to start the design because I was afraid I wouldn't be able to ever articulate what I like in a website and what I don't like. Hence the delay in getting it done... me not pulling the trigger.

Anyways, all that aside, we're getting closer! So now it's time for me to write content! And what's funny about this is that while I've been happily typing away on Book 2, ideas flowing wonderfully around me, when I sit down to write a FAQ page (notwithstanding the irony of never having been asked any questions much less frequently) I stare at a blank page... no ideas to be found.

So that's where y'all come in! Do you have any questions for me? Even if you don't, are there things you like to know about your authors in general? Questions that you love to see asked and answered? Ideas for what I can put on the FAQ?

Any other content ideas, throw em at me :) Thanks!!

Friday, August 08, 2008

Back Cover Copy (and other book ods and ends)

So it occurred to me that I haven't ever shared the back cover copy for The Forest of Hands and Teeth. In fact, it feels like I haven't talked about The Forest of Hands and Teeth in a bit. I am here to remedy that.

First, here is the back cover copy (this is what I have on the jacket proof which is different from what's on Amazon... I don't know which trumps but I'm assuming the dust jacket).

In Mary's world, there are simple truths.

The Sisterhood always knows best.

The Guardians will protect and serve.

The Unconsecrated will never relent.

And you must always mind the fence that surrounds the village. The fence that protects the village from the Forest of Hands and Teeth.

But slowly, Mary's truths are failing her. She's learning things she never wanted to know about the Sisterhood and its secrets, and the Guardians and their power. And, when the fence is breached and her world is thrown into chaos, about the Unconsecrated and their relentlessness.

Now she must choose between her village and her future, between the one she loves and the one who loves her. And she must face the truth about the Forest of Hands and Teeth. Could there be life outside a world surrounded by so much death?

Very exciting! Technically, that's on the inside flap of the dust jacket. On the back in a beautiful glossy red box (the image of the forest wraps around the spine and across the back as well) is a blurb from Melissa Marr (I can't remember if I shared it before so I'll share it now) that says:

Opening The Forest of Hands and Teeth is like cracking Pandora's box; a blur of darkness and a precious bit of hope pour out. This is a beautifully crafted, page-turning, powerful novel. I thoroughly enjoyed it!"
- Melissa Marr, bestselling author of Wicked Lovely and Ink Exchange.

Thanks Melissa!!! Also exciting is that FHT is up for pre-order (or at least listed) in a few places!
Barnes & Noble (not for pre-order yet)

The book also got a shout out on A Fuse #8 Production! And hopefully, I'll be able to share some other fun news soon as well!

I have to admit, it's been very cool and surreal to see mentions of FHT popping up on the internet. I mean, for so long, the only people who have known anything about it are somehow connected with me -- message boards, LJ, related, etc. But to see random mentions... it's like, wow, this book is out there now and totally out of my hands. I get little bursts of joy when I see it mentioned and actually seeing someone like it is really an amazing feeling.

In other news, I bought a new toy for our house: an Apple Time Capsule. This sucker is a router, a print server, and a 500G hard drive. We named it Tardis. It only took a little wrestling to get it installed. For real, the sticking point is that rather than unplugging the cable modem for 30 full seconds when I was installing everything, I unplugged it for 25 seconds. Picky little sucker. But now we have all sorts of back-up for our computers! Yay!