Monday, December 30, 2013


I've revamped my site for young readers, Holly Schindler's Middles.  The idea for Holly Schindler's Middles came from the fact that I loved being able to interact directly with my YA readers (usually via Facebook, Twitter, or the book blogging community).  Being able to interact with readers, actually, was my favorite part of becoming a published author.  But I didn't really have a place online where I could interact with MG I had to create one! 

Click to visit Holly Schindler's Middles

Parents, grandparents, teachers and librarians: Get your young readers ready!  I'm most excited about the page I'll be devoting to reader reviews...I can't wait to hear what they all have to say...

Saturday, December 21, 2013


Just in time for Christmas, I'm offering two new vids as "gifts" to readers.

The first is a new teaser trailer for THE JUNCTION OF SUNSHINE AND LUCKY:

In the second video, I discuss the importance and purpose of metaphor in developing a distinctive voice for my main character, Auggie.  I also highlight my favorite "Auggie-isms," or metaphorical passages, providing a sneak peek into the novel:

Friday, December 20, 2013


The fabulous Crissa-Jean Chappell's got a new book releasing January 8 (just two days before my birthday...what a good present, hint-hint).

Half native. Half white.
One hundred percent nothing.
My mom doesn’t want me. My dad just got out of jail. They want me to go live with him on the reservation, in the Everglades. Trouble is, everybody there just ignores me.
At least I get to work with Pippa on my film project at school. We used to be friends when we were like twelve. Now that we’re hanging out again it’s like old times—except she’s way cuter.
The thing is, I don’t belong anywhere. I don’t fit in on the rez, and I suck at school. My dad thinks I’m an idiot, but Pippa thinks I’m all good.
I don’t know what to think. Am I bad news or am I more than good enough?

“Powerful and satisfying.”—Geoff Herbach, author Nothing Special, winner of the 2013 Minnesota Book Award for Young People’s Literature
"[C]ompelling and emotionally nuanced."—Kirkus Reviews

Crissa's also doing a giveaway for the pub date.  Here's the 411:

Want to win a signed copy of the book? It's easy!  Double-click to like the final teaser trailer on Instagram:

Retweet the trailer (or tweet Crissa @crissachappell).

Use the hashtag #MoreThanGoodEnough

Add the title More Than Good Enough on Goodreads.

On the book's birthday (1/8/2014) Crissa will pick three winners.

Wednesday, December 18, 2013


The notoriously tough folks at Kirkus had this to say about THE JUNCTION:

"...a heartwarming and uplifting story...[that] shines...with vibrant themes of community, self-empowerment and artistic vision delivered with a satisfying verve."

How's that for an early Christmas present?

Friday, December 6, 2013


Purchase on Amazon.

I’m a sucker for a good setup.  So much of a novel, I think, hinges on the opening pages.  If you can haul readers in, make them invest in the beginning, I think they’re with you until the end.  (I rarely, as a reader, give up completely on a book; I do, however, quit reading hard and start skimming when I can’t connect personally.  If I’m really invested at the beginning, though, I continue to read hard—even if I feel the book begins to take a few unrealistic turns.)

Catherine Ryan Hyde’s WALK ME HOME has maybe one of the best setups of all time.  You can't help but care about young Jen and Carly as they attempt to hike across the Southwest to California.  Hyde puts in all the details that make you fear for the girls’ safety (without overkilling it on sensory description—a lesson I took to heart), and just enough backstory sprinkled in to propel you forward.  

WALK ME HOME is a compelling read from beginning to end.  (This is in no way a book you're going to want to skim.  This is a book you settle into for the long haul.  A book that makes you feel as though you're taking the journey alongside these sisters.)  But I always wind up feeling as though I’ve learned something new about writing each time I pick up a Catherine Ryan Hyde book.  And it’s the setup of WALK ME HOME that will stay with me, each time I start a new novel of my own…

Since their mother’s sudden death, sixteen-year-old Carly and her eleven-year-old sister, Jen, have been walking and hitchhiking across the Southwest trying to find Teddy, the closest thing they have to a family. Carly desperately hopes Teddy will take them in and save them from going into foster care—and forgive them for the lies told by their mother.

But when the starving girls get caught stealing food on a Native American reservation, their journey gets put on hold. While the girls work off their debt, Carly becomes determined to travel onward—until Jen confesses a terrible secret that leaves both sisters wondering if they can ever trust again.

Set against the backdrop of the American Southwest, Walk Me Home and its resilient heroines will inspire readers and renew their faith in recovery and redemption.
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