Tuesday, December 30, 2014


Okay, I'll admit I'm a bit late in posting my own bleary-eyed, it's-too-early-for-a-real-hairdo Christmas-morning photo (FB and Twitter were full of 'em last week)...

We've had our own ugly sweater contest at the Schindler abode for the past few Christmases; the winner is in possession of the trophy all year long. This year, we went for decorating sweaters (or in my case, a sweatshirt) in some way that represented a carol. Mine was silver bells; I didn't even come close to winning. But, hey, I got a book to write. ;)

Hope you're all in the midst of a fantastic holiday!

More soon...
My '14 Christmas tree; I'm done with traditional trees. Obviously.

Monday, December 22, 2014


I'm off to plunge into a holiday week full of people, projects, and activities that fill my heart with nothing but joy...And I'm wishing the same for all the readers and bloggers who've been the highlight of '14.

Happy holidays!

Monday, December 15, 2014


I struggle with the idea of the likable narrator all the time.  As I stated in this post at my YA group author blog, YA Outside the Lines, I feel like part of my job is to present a character's unvarnished truth.  (We're inside a character's head, after all--we should get a glimpse into all their thoughts, not just those of the more PC variety.) 

I recently got this incredible bit of advice on the subject from a fellow author and had to share...

This author insisted that the focus shouldn't be on creating simply a likable narrator, but in creating reader empathy.  To create empathy, a writer should pick two of the following:

1. Make the main character a victim of undeserved misfortune.
2. Put the main character in jeopardy.
3. Make the main character likable.
4. Make the main character funny.
5. Make the main character powerful or good at what they do.

This makes so much sense to me.  Right now, in my NA-in-progress, both of my main characters are actually 3, 4, and 5 (the female is more 4 than the male), with a little of 2 sprinkled in.  (Jackpot!)  But I love the idea of focusing on empathy rather than likability (likability is only one option in the list for creating empathy).

Any other additions you might put on this list to create empathy--or to get a reader invested in a character's journey?

Tuesday, December 9, 2014


For anyone who plans to give one of my books as a gift this holiday season, I'm sweetening the deal a bit:

Email your mailing address to: hollyschindlerbooks (at) gmail (dot) com, and I'll shoot you a signed bookplate to go with the gift.  (The earlier you send your address, the better chance you have of getting it in time to put it inside the book before wrapping.)

A Christmas card I drew years ago for my parents to send out.

Happy holidays!

Friday, December 5, 2014


I'm delighted to participate this year in the Holiday #Readathon, hosted by WhoRuBlog.  Technically, I'm up to my eyebrows in global edits for my first indie release (an NA rom com), and won't be able to hit my own TBR pile (man, that thing's getting enormous), but I am delighted to announce that I'll be hosting my own Holiday #Readathon giveaway.

My '14 releases (THE JUNCTION OF SUNSHINE AND LUCKY and FERAL) feature smart protagonists who don't see the world as it is, in a literal sense.  They're both wildly imaginative--they're out-of-the-box thinkers.  So for my giveaway, I'm asking readers to tell me:  

What's the most out-of-the-box, non-traditional thing you ever did that gave you a sense of the Christmas spirit or put you in a holiday mood?

Tweet your answer to @holly_schindler (or leave your response in the comments) to enter.  One winner will receive his or her choice of  a signed copy of THE JUNCTION OF SUNSHINE AND LUCKY or FERAL.

Giveaway runs through December 7; US only.

More on the books up for giveaway:


“Beasts of the Southern Wild” meets Because of Winn Dixie in this inspiring story of hope.

Auggie Jones lives with her grandpa Gus, a trash hauler, in a poor part of town.  So when her wealthy classmate’s father starts the House Beautification Committee, it’s homes like Auggie’s that are deemed “in violation.”  But Auggie is determined to prove that there’s more to her—and to her house—than meets the eye.

What starts out as a home renovation project quickly becomes much more as Auggie and her grandpa discover a talent they never knew they had—and redefine a whole town’s perception of beauty, one recycled sculpture at a time.

Holly Schindler’s feel-good story about the power one voice can have will inspire readers to speak from their hearts.

FERAL (YA Psychological Thriller)

The Lovely Bones meets Black Swan in this haunting psychological thriller with twists and turns that will make you question everything you think you know.

It’s too late for you. You’re dead. Those words continue to haunt Claire Cain months after she barely survived a brutal beating in Chicago. So when her father is offered a job in another state, Claire is hopeful that getting out will offer her a way to start anew.

But when she arrives in Peculiar, Missouri, Claire feels an overwhelming sense of danger, and her fears are confirmed when she discovers the body of a popular high school student in the icy woods behind the school, surrounded by the town’s feral cats. While everyone is quick to say it was an accident, Claire knows there’s more to it, and vows to learn the truth about what happened.

But the closer she gets to uncovering the mystery, the closer she also gets to realizing a frightening reality about herself and the damage she truly sustained in that Chicago alley….

Holly Schindler’s gripping story is filled with heart-stopping twists and turns that will keep readers guessing until the very last page. 
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