Tuesday, March 30, 2010


I could read articles about what’s “hot” for today’s teen readership until my eyes fall out…or I could just go straight to the source! Sarah, a teen and tween librarian located here in Springfield, Missouri, was kind enough to share her thoughts on daily life at the library, how the YA genre has changed over the years, and what teens (and tweens) are grabbing off the shelves…

* Give us a little background—how did you come to be a teen / tween librarian?

I've always been a reader and library goer, but never thought about becoming a librarian. Then one day after college, I was in a job I didn't enjoy and trying to figure out what I wanted to do and I came across a site from the American Library Association called "So You Want to be a Librarian?" I thought "yes I do!" and when I moved to Springfield, looked for a job at the library.

* Describe a typical day at the library—if there is such a thing! What's your favorite (or the most rewarding) aspect of the job?

No day is typical-you never know what the day will bring!:) But I spend my day assisting patrons of all ages, helping with homework, finding books to read, and generally answering any reference question that's thrown my way. When I'm working off desk in the YA area, I'm working on planning programs then running programs, reading up on what books are being released, making an order wishlist and submitting it to our collection development team, updating the teen blog, updating the teen facebook, organizing the YA department, writing up booklists and booktalks, and meeting and talking to the teens that are there that day.

* You come across as a lifelong book junkie (like myself)! What are the main differences between teen bookaholics today and teen boookaholics when (I hate to use this phrase) we were that age? 

I think the biggest difference is the amount of materials they have targeted just for teens. And libraries have become more aware of how important services to teens are and changing. When I was a teen, we had one shelf that was the "teen shelf" at the library-now there's an entire department dedicated to YA. It's a growing genre and there are so many more books to choose from now. More authors are realizing how fun it is to write for teens and more publishers are realizing what a great market it is.

* What are the biggest challenges you face as a teen librarian?

Advocacy!! There are many times I feel like I'm the only one who is passionate about teen services, so it feels like a daily fight at times. It's especially hard when I encounter patrons who don't understand or don't care that we have a space for teens and argue about why they can't hang out and have a meeting there. But I love what I do and I think teens need a space just for them, so I put up with the grumps just for them!

* What timeless themes do you find consistently requested by readers?

I think books about growing up, discovering who you are and navigating life never go out of style. I think YA is popular with teens and adults because there's more hope in the story-adult books tend to be more bleak and depressing and whine about how the world is terrible and life is terrible. That's still there in YA, but there's often more hope in the story. Also, romance never seems to get old.:)

* How do teen readers react to slightly older books? (When I was in junior high, I gobbled Christopher Pike. But now, I look at books like Chain Letter, which is about teens receiving threats in the snail-mail, and I wonder if it doesn't just seem archaic to tech-savvy young adults.)

It really depends on the cover. I have some older books on the shelves that teens will snub, even though it's a great book-the cover is just awful. Publishers are smart though, and they know we often are drawn to a cover first-so they've been re-releasing older books with new titles and covers. And when they've got the updated covers, the teens will check them out. Some books will get an update in the text too and update the language, technology. But I think as long as it's a great story and draws them in, it doesn't matter about the age.

*What type of book do teens seem to be gravitating toward right now? Tweens? What's the attraction?

Romance, adventure and humor seem to be the biggest thing my teens and tweens are wanting. The Wimpy Kid series is popular with tween readers and we can't keep them on our shelves. Same with the Percy Jackson series, which has more of tween and teen fanbase. And paranormal romance still is going strong, although more and more of my teens have moved on from Twilight and are now going for other paranormal books-Shiver, Hush Hush, and Evermore have all been popular.

* How does blogging influence you / help your job?

I read a lot anyway, but with my blog, I can have ready reviews to booktalk to my teens-which is great and very helpful when I have school visits. It also helps when I draw a blank on what I've been reading! I've also noticed that I analyze books more-I think about what it is I like about them, what I think my teens will like about them, who I can give it to, etc. I still read for fun, but there's always a layer of reviewing going through my head.

* What's been the biggest surprise since you became a teen librarian?

I'm always a little surprised about how little people know about the library! I guess I shouldn't be, and maybe I'm different because I grew up going to the library and am from a family of readers. But it always shocks me a little when people are surprised the library has movies and downloadable audiobooks. And they laugh at me or look shocked when I say I'm a librarian-they think I'm too young (I'm 27)! It makes me laugh and gives me a chance to hopefully breakdown the library stereotypes they're thinking of.

Thanks to Sarah—and to all the tireless librarians who spread the love of literature! You can find Sarah’s incredible book blog at GreenBeanTeenQueen, and you can check out the latest for area teens at the Springfield-Greene County Library District’s TeenThing page.

Sunday, March 28, 2010


You know the one. The author you idolized for years—years—the same author you had to actually work up the guts to email…the author who actually responded to your email. The author who maybe even promised to do an interview or write a guest post for your blog.

And then...

And then…


You were heartbroken—admit it. Felt like somebody had just stood you up. What happened? you wondered. Were some of my interview questions inappropriate or—offensive? Did the author decide they didn’t like my blog? Do they think I’m some giant loser because of where I live or what I said in my last review or what books I’ve got on my wish-list on Goodreads or…

Yeah. None of that.

Here’s the deal—writing is a 24/7 job. I’m not being cute, and I’m not trying to justify bad or rude behavior. But I know cardiologists who don’t keep any longer hours than I do (that’s no hyperbole). And the writers I’ve met this past year are no different. Writing is not leisurely. It’s hard. It’s something you’ve got to work at. Every. Single. Day. And the work load doesn’t get any lighter once you sell a book. It explodes.

(This is just a portion of my stack of yet-to-be-revised manuscripts.)

…So…next time you think a writer’s giving you the cold shoulder, please assume that the writer’s just plain busy. Send them a sweet, funny email reminding them of your previous correspondence. I guarantee they’ll delight in getting a thoughtful and understanding message from one of their biggest fans…

Sunday, March 21, 2010


Christy Raedeke's debut novel, PROPHECY OF DAYS, is set to be released by Flux Books on May 1, 2010...the same day A BLUE SO DARK hits store shelves!

As a couple of first-timers, we sat down to discuss our books: the initial spark of inspiration, how we found Flux, and where we're headed next...

Raedeke: Hi Holly, do you remember the very day the idea for A BLUE SO DARK came to you?

Schindler: I remember it coming to me in pieces over a few weeks, actually. When I was young, I imagined that authors would get this fantastic "ah-ha" moment in which their characters, (and their characters' struggles and growths) came to them all at once. Maybe some do...But what happens for me is that I get a sliver of an idea--a kind of what-if. From there, I'll write this really general, broad-strokes outline. And I'll start adding to it...

When I got the biggie pieces jotted down for A BLUE SO DARK (creativity and madness, Aura's mentally ill mother, Aura's fear of allowing art to bring "madness" out in herself), the first draft came super-fast...I'd get twenty-plus pages written in a day. And the next morning, I couldn't wait to get up and get back to it. I had to go through about four manuscript overhauls, and honestly, each one wrote just as quickly.

I love a book that's layered--and I think the way books GET layered is that an author kind of stacks dimensions on top of each other with successive rewrites...every time an author goes back, she (or he) adds a new element to the plot, or maybe a new secondary character who interacts with the protagonist in such a way that it illuminates new dimensions of that protagonist...

How about you? Did you get one of those "ah-ha" moments for PROPHECY OF DAYS? Did everything come to you all at once?

Raedeke: The idea for my book came not long after leaving my child for the first time. My husband and I were meeting friends at a University of Oregon football game (Go Ducks!) and had just dropped off our daughter at my Mom's. I know I should have cried or felt guilty or something, but as we drove away the sense of freedom was overwhelming—close to when I bought my first car and drove it home with the top down and Soft Cell blaring. Disclaimer: it was the eighties.

Anyway, something about knowing I was free for the next 30 hours opened up my imagination. On the three-hour drive to Eugene I told Scott the story and we talked it through. The seed was planted. Because I eventually had to go back and claim that child, it took awhile to write. And agent. And sell. And publish. (That child is now 9!) I'm still convinced that good ideas come when you make space for them.

Schindler: Now I'm going to have "Tainted Love" in my head the rest of the day! So true, though, about how long the entire process takes. A BLUE SO DARK was drafted in late 2006, and the offer from Flux came in 2009...But this was NOT the first manuscript I attempted to sell! (I'd been attempting to publish my novels since I got my master's in '01!) Looking back, what kept you motivated to keep working on PROPHECY OF DAYS? What was the initial submission process like? Did you ever hit a wall, feel like publication was never going to happen?

Raedeke: To be honest, curiosity kept me going. This book took a lot of research, which is one of my favorite pastimes. I love following a random thought for an hour or two on the internet; it’s amazing where one fact can lead you. I was also used to working in marketing and business development, so when my kids were little and I was trapped at home during naptime, it felt good to have something to work on. I felt a sense of accomplishment as the page count grew.

My wall came after I got my agent. Fortunately, I only had to endure one query rejection before signing with Laura Rennert of Andrea Brown Literary. I received an email from her late at night saying she had not yet finished the manuscript but she loved it so far and wanted to offer representation. I was ecstatic, of course. The bad news came when she had actually finished reading and thought the ending was week. She was right, of course, so I went through a huge revision process before it even went out. That was Wall One.

Wall Two came at submission time. PROPHECY OF DAYS went out on submission to several big NYC editors, but this was back in late 2007/early 2008 before the whole 2012 thing was really in the mainstream zeitgeist (especially on the East Coast) and they just didn’t get it. The funny thing is, last year one of the editors who rejected the submission announced at an SCBWI conference that she was actively looking for any books on 2012. What a difference a couple of years can make!

Meanwhile, I had read some great Flux books and had followed and respected Editor Andrew Karre’s blog. I just sensed he’d “get” the book so I suggested to Laura that we send it to him. She'd recently signed Maggie Stiefvater as a client and had just negotiated Maggie's second book at Flux, so she knew Andrew was awesome. As I suspected, he got it. I was fortunate to get one great revision letter from him before he left for Lerner, and then the fabulous Brian Farrey took the reins.

How about you—what kept you going between when you first started writing novels on 2001 and when you sold A BLUE SO DARK in 2009? Did you hit many walls? Did they come pre- or post-agent?

Schindler: Writing was this absolute have-to thing with me. I was ALWAYS writing—even when I was a little girl. I remember, I was in, oh, junior high, I think—I was over at a friend’s house when ROMANCING THE STONE came on TV…You know how it starts, right? With Kathleen Turner bawling as she wraps up her latest novel? My friend started laughing, elbowed me and said, “That’s going to be YOU!”

Writing was just all-encompassing. And it got WORSE as I got older. Seriously. My family offered some incredible financial support so that I could devote full-time effort to writing after I got out of grad school. (They probably thought I was going to explode if I didn’t write…)

Can’t lie—I got pretty frustrated at times, but never to the point of wanting to quit. It CONSTANTLY seemed like I was getting closer to an acceptance. I stopped getting form rejections and started getting “good” rejections—you know, where editors will actually give you feedback, encourage you to keep at it.

I actually sold A BLUE SO DARK myself, without the help of an agent, soon after Brian Farrey got the acquisitions gig at Flux…And talk about an editor “getting” it—I remember hanging up the phone after talking to him the first time and going, “Him. I want to work with HIM.” I could hardly eat that Thanksgiving, because I was sort of tied up in knots, hoping that Flux would acquire the book.

Raedeke: I love that you did it on your own! Flux is amazing about finding great new voices, and I agree Brian is great to work with. He’s been very, uh, patient with me and deadlines. Your family sounds amazing—I have always wanted to live at the time when there were “Art Patrons” who would support artists. Looks like I’ll have to time travel back to Renaissance Europe or feudal Japan; the current economy will definitely not support this trend. Sigh.

Have you always written YA or have you written in other genres?

Schindler: Yeah, I’m incredibly lucky…it’s been very ROOM OF ONE’S OWN around here! I didn’t go 100% completely jobless, though—to help with the bills, I taught piano and guitar lessons out of the house in the afternoons. Up until that time, I’d been writing adult work. My students inspired me to try my hand at YA!

My reading is kind of all over the place…the classics, literary fiction, thrillers, romance, clever cereal boxes, catchy billboards…so my WRITING tends to be a little all over the place, too, in terms of genre. Already, I’ve sold a literary novel and a romance to Flux and an adult romantic comedy to Blooming Tree Press. And what I’m working on now is night-and-day different from what I’ve already sold.

How did you come to YA? Did you write PROPHECY OF DAYS thinking it was YA, or (as it seems like it often happens with first-time authors) did your agent tell you it was YA?

Raedeke: I was journalism major and had taken lots of writing classes though the years, but had always focused on general fiction and narrative nonfiction. This was my first try at a Young Adult book, and basically I was writing the perfect book for myself at that age. I’ve always been intrigued by esoteric, ancient mysteries, and the idea of a collective consciousness, so it was a natural fit for both research and writing. I finished another manuscript while PROPHECY was on sub, and hopefully someday I’ll go back and polish that one up.

You have so many manuscripts in the pipeline! It must be incredibly exciting to finally realize the dream of having several books out, of being a “real” author. However, you’ll only be a Debut Author once. What are you most looking forward to as we head into May, our release month?

Schindler: Wow…I think just the feeling of knowing that A BLUE SO DARK is on actual SHELVES in actual BOOKSTORES. I got these all-over tingly moments when I saw the novel on Amazon…and again when I found it on the Borders and Barnes and Noble websites. (I think it must be kind of the same feeling musicians get when they hear their songs on the radio for the first time…)

But I’m always looking ahead. I’ve honestly, seriously got a stack of manuscripts that stretches from the floor to the ceiling in the corner of my office. And I have piles of notebooks that are filled with ideas and outlines for novels that I haven’t yet drafted. If I lived to be 150, I’d never have enough time to put every idea on paper…Sometimes, I think the coolest part of selling A BLUE SO DARK is that it kind of opened doors so that I can start selling the REST of my work, too.

How ‘bout you? Are you going to celebrate on May 1st? Have you ALREADY celebrated? (Could you really take the moment in when you signed the contract? Did it seem real? I think for me, in all honesty, things started to get REAL when I held an ARC in my hands.)

Raedeke: The ARC definitely made it real! Seeing my name on the spine was kind of a wow moment! Honestly, I have been so busy trying to finish book two that I haven’t taken the time to really soak in what’s going on. I’m finishing this weekend and sending the full manuscript off to Brian, so I’ll be able to breath and enjoy this week—which is perfect timing since I’ll be signing ARCs in the Flux booth at PLA convention on Thursday!

Holly, it’s been an absolute delight to have this back-and-forth with you. I wish you a lifetime of success with your pillar of manuscripts—if I could be one tenth as productive as you I could die happy! We’re in a unique position, both of us with our debut books releasing from the same house the same week. I’m thrilled to be there with you and I can’t wait to get my hands on A BLUE SO DARK.

Schindler: Same to you, Christy! PROPHECY OF DAYS is on my must-have list…Have an absolutely fantastic time at the PLA convention…Take a deep breath during the signing and let it all soak in. Congratulations on PROPHECY, and on finishing book #2!

...You can find Christy Raedeke on the web at christyraedeke.com and raedeke.blogspot.com.

Saturday, March 13, 2010


A fun new interview has just been posted this morning at YA Addict!

…Favorite question: “Tell us a little bit about the main character, Aura.”

I really love it when readers see characters as people…makes me think of all those characters I adored as a teen, that I wished I went to school with. Really. Wouldn’t high school have been much more enjoyable if it was populated with you all-time favorite characters?

Monday, March 8, 2010


Ever wonder what thoughtful teen readers really think about what’s being published in YA? I recently had a chance to chat with Sam, a local reader, writer, and blogger, about the genre.

* To start us off, could you tell us a little about yourself?

When I was eight, I wrote a story for Halloween. In it, the rivers turned to blood and eyeballs grew on trees. Instead of sending me to the school counselor, as maybe she should have, my teacher laughed. She thought it was awesome. I have a particularly clear image of her in that moment; she held up the story to the class, pointed at me with one hand and said, “Someday, she’s going to be an author.”

Yeah, well, not quite.

I’m fifteen, though, so I guess that’s okay. I’ve been writing stories since that day in third grade. Only recently have I actually started to write anything worth reading. I’ve sent a few queries out and have gotten partials/full requests. Part of my story is on a website called inkpop.com—it’s ranked number in the top five right now, which means Harper Collins will review it at the end of the month. [Sam’s submission can be found here.] For now, though, my life revolves around school and my friends. Oh, and books. Lots and lots of books.

* As an author whose first book will hit store shelves in May, I’m dying to know—how do you choose the books you read? Recommendations from friends? Blog reviews? Covers / titles? Publishing house?

It depends. If I'm online, then it's usually through blogs. I see a book, or an author, and go look it up on Amazon. If I like it, I go and hound my mom to buy it. I like that method more on some level because I usually know what I'm getting into.

If I'm in a store, I kind of fall into that horrible 'judging-book-by-cover' category. Right now, there are so many books in YA. It's an overload of pretty and awesome books, but the cover and the title will actually get me to pick them up.

Friend recommendations actually play the biggest role, though. I mean, I find more on my own, but if someone tells me how much they liked a book, I'm more likely to read it quickly. My mom and I trade books a lot of the time, too—if she tells me to read something, then I'll almost always.

* What KEEPS you reading—what grips you, keeps you turning the pages?

Hah, that's kind of hard to answer! I think it's emotion. If I care about the character, I'll keep reading. It doesn't even really matter whether I like or dislike them—I've just got to feel something. For instance, in Gone With The Wind, the main character really annoyed me. However, I could empathize with her, and in a sick way, I kind of admired her. I cared about what happened to her. The books I put down are the ones that have flat characters.

Oh, and humor helps too. :D If I can laugh at a book, I will keep reading. It doesn't matter how twisted or dark the story is, if there is some sort of weirdness to laugh at, the pages will keep turning.

* How do feel about reading books that contain characters who are younger than you?

Oh, gosh. .... Hah, this sounds bad, but.... I don't usually like to read them.

I'm getting better about that as I get older, but it kind of bothers me sometimes. Of course, I'm fifteen, so that rarely happens in YA—it's usually the middle grade novels, and I try to keep away from middle grade in general. Still, though, if the book is good enough, it doesn't matter. Just look at Harry Potter. I grew up with the books—I was in the first grade when I read Sorcerer's Stone—but I can still reread them and not be bothered.

* Do you enjoy reading books about or from the perspective of the opposite sex (a male narrator)? How about a narrator of a different race / cultural background? Do you feel that YA stacks the deck with white females?

Yeah, I think YA does seem to be filled with white girls. It isn’t overloaded, though; I can think of several that are multi racial or from guys point of view that have done pretty well. I actually like reading those more sometimes, just because there are less of them. I mean, teenage girls with a love for a sexy, smoldering vampire tend to blur together. A guy is rare in YA books, so I can actually probably name more; same with other cultures.

Guy point of view in particular is kind of enjoyable to read. The Percy Jackson books, for instance, by Rick Riordan, are awesome. As for books with different races or backgrounds, well, those tend to be pretty interesting. If I can actually learn something when I’m reading, then I like the book more.

* What do YOU write—and how does that influence what you choose to read?

Hah, I feel pretentious talking about my stories, mostly because what I write is just random. I mean, the ‘novel’ (I hate calling it that; it sounds like I’m trying to make something out of it that it isn’t) that I’ve actually shown people and even sent to several agents is a dystopian novel. However, I’ve got another about demons and another that is realistic fiction. I write whatever pops into my head, and I kind of read the same way. Some of my favorite books are about dystopian societies (Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins, for example) and some are about vampires, as much as it kind of hurts to admit (Richelle Mead’s Vampire Academy comes to mind.)

It influences it on a very base level, though, because I read books and think 'Well, good. I guess I'm on the right track.' However, I read so much that usually I just stumble across books. If they correspond to what I'm writing, awesome, but I don't really require it.

* How does blogging influence what you choose to read?

A ton. There are a couple of author’s blogs that I religiously check out, and I’m on Amazon a lot.
If Meg Cabot recommends a book, I will check it out. If Maureen Johnson rambles about a story, I’ll go and look it up. It’s like I said; I take recommendations pretty seriously. From published authors, though, I know it has to be good because they’re tacking their names onto someone else’s work. If that work is bad, then they look bad.

As for my own blogging, well, that really isn’t affected. I only talk about books I really like; I don’t see the point in giving mean reviews. I read a ton, though, so that really isn’t an issue. Chances are I will find a book I love in under a week, just because I do read so much. Reading is kind of my hobby; while some kids spend their internet time on Facebook, or their free time watching tv, I’m either with a book or on the internet looking them up.

* How does your interaction with an author change how you feel about what they write?

I’ll love it twelve zillion times more. :D

I know it probably shouldn’t, but it really will change my opinion. I mean, come on; I’m fifteen. How many adults would give me the time of day regardless? (The answer is ‘not many’, by the way. No, I’m not griping; it’s just how it goes.) When an author takes the time to email me back, I think it shows that they really care about what they’re doing. Plus, when I read their books, I have the almost unholy satisfaction of 'Haha, I got to talk to the author.' For instance, Maggie Stiefvater did a video chat with a group of kids at my local library. Now, whenever I read her book, Shiver, I do a happy dance because I actually got to talk to the author, and I know what was going through her head when she was writing.

* What have you read that made you roll your eyes and say, "That's SO not the way it is now"?

Bad dialogue. That’s the number one thing that will annoy me in a story. Kids don’t talk that differently than adults. Kids who read really don’t talk that differently at all. I feel condescended too when the dialogue sounds like it came straight from a bad cliché. Yes, I use slang. Sure, when I text ‘OMG’ will occasionally pop up. The majority of the time, though, I tend to speak the same as most adults. Plus, slang changes too fast. I have never heard someone say ‘Man, that was a friggin’ dope party’ but I’ve read it dozens of times. That’s fine every once in a while, but sometimes it just feels as if the book is trying too hard to be cool.

* How relevant is your assigned classroom reading? Does it bore you? Excite you? Do you wish contemporary writing could be more like the classics? In what way?

I’m probably a bad kid to ask about this, because I love reading, and I love my English class. I trust my teacher to have good taste in books; I take Honors, so it’s especially nice. I have liked every book I’ve read this year in my English class. We read A Separate Peace by John Knowles, and I liked it enough to have my mom go buy it. It’s beautiful written. We just finished Animal Farm by George Orwell. I’ve never had a book inspire so much annoyance in me; no, not because I didn’t like it, but because the societal parallels are astounding. For our independent book project, I read A Long Way Gone; Memoirs of a Boy Soldier by Ishmael Beah. It was gruesome and gritty, and I enjoyed it immensely. I don’t like nonfiction, but that’s one particular story that really affected me.

I don’t wish contemporary was more like the classics, though. I think the classics are remarkably similar to today’s writing; they go after the same issues in many ways but the writing is just vastly different. I think that’s cool. I can learn about a time period just by the way the author wrote. I like classic novels and novels that come out today, but I wouldn’t wish either to change.

* What role does technology play in your life and reading? Do you cringe when you read a slightly older book that has out-of-date technology?

Nope! There is no cringing. Actually, it doesn’t affect my reading at all. Again, I think it’s cool. Look at Ender’s Game by Orson Scott Card. He’s got a ton of technology in there that he made up; it isn’t the same today, but it’s still cool to read about. And as for out-of-date novels, they don’t bug me. However, I do tend to read more fantasy than anything, and those will always be in style.

As for how it affects my life, that’s different. I don’t think there’s a part of my life that isn’t touched by technology. My cell phone is always in my pocket, I spend more time texting than talking on the phone, and I actually don’t think I’ve ever written a letter by hand. (Well, I did in Elementary school for an assignment, but I don’t think that counts.) I’ve been typing since I was eight—in eighth grade, I averaged roughly 115 words a minute—and my camera lives in my purse. It affects how I write, I think, even if it doesn’t affect how I read; I mean, it would be hard for me to write a story without technology in it, just because it is such a huge part of my life.

* What do you think YA writers, as a whole, do well?

Oh, goodness. What don’t they do well? Hmm. They keep us teenagers entertained. They have good characters. I’ve never really read an adult book that makes me care as much about the characters as I have in YA. (I’m biased, though; I’m fifteen, so I’m bound to like my own age better.) Still, overall, the characters in YA books are awesome. I mean, come on—Edward never would have been so famous if people didn’t care about him. I never would have consented to putting a Hunger Games pin on my backpack if I didn’t love Katniss and Peeta so much. YA writers rock at making us care/love their characters.

* In what ways do you think YA writers miss the mark?

Oh, goodness again. That’s hard to say, especially on such a wide range. Hmm.

Okay, I’ve got one. It’s the curse of trilogies. So many YA books come in sets of three. Now, that’s awesome. I mean, seriously, I get three books to read about my favorite characters instead of one. However. I think YA writers are bad sometimes about making each book stand by itself. Instead, it’s just like three parts to one giant novel. That can be kind of annoying. Every story needs a start, middle, and end, even if it will eventually plug into a bigger picture. YA authors seem to be particularly bad about this.

* Finish the following sentence: "More than anything, I wish that YA authors would___"

Do signings close to my town.

-sigh- If only.

...You can always catch up with Sam by checking in at her own blog: One Sparkling Star.

In the meantime, thanks, Sam, for your insight!

Tuesday, March 2, 2010


I can’t help it—I’m so incredibly proud of the blurbs I received for A BLUE SO DARK. (And so incredibly proud to be part of such a welcoming community…writers are every bit as cool as the fan in me always imagined they’d be…)

Here’s what bestselling author Carrie Jones had to say about the book:

“A Blue So Dark is a raw, compelling and eloquent portrayal of art and madness, and the freeing, healing gift of creativity. Schindler’s voice is brilliant and true.”

Love Carrie Jones—and the fact that she hit NYT bestseller status! Kudos to her…
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