by Vanessa Di Gregorio
Hey all, it’s me again!
Today we’re going to do something different: we’re going to give away a signed copy of a book! Because every once in a while, it’s nice to take a little break from writing to read. After all, there is nothing better than reading to help inspire you.
Last Thursday, I attended an event called “The Supernatural Tour” in Toronto. There were author readings, a Q+A session, a pretty cool swag bag, an author signing session, and… oh, yes. Three authors!
Having multiple authors was great (because how often do you get to hear three individual authors read from their new books and talk about writing, all in the same night?). I had the pleasure of meeting three extraordinary ladies: fellow Torontonian Lesley Livingston, Aprilynn Pike, and Kim Harrison. They bounced around ideas and had such great chemistry together; it was really great seeing them joke around and voice their differences.
So, just who are these women?
Lesley Livingston is the author of the CLA award-winning, and Quill & Quire Best Book of the Year WONDROUS STRANGE. Lesley is a writer and actor living in Toronto, Canada, and her second novel, DARKLIGHT, is also out in stores. I had the wonderful opportunity to see the cover of the third novel in the Wondrous Strange trilogy!
Aprilynn Pike is the author of the #1 New York Times best-selling debut, WINGS. It is the first of four books about a seemingly ordinary girl with a not-so-ordinary destiny, and – get this! – the film rights to WINGS have been optioned to Disney! Not bad for a debut author!
Kim Harrison is the best-selling author of the adult series THE HOLLOWS, which is now on it’s eighth book! She is also the author of a new YA series, the first book being ONCE DEAD, TWICE SHY. She decided to write a YA series because she found her love of reading with YA fiction as a young girl.
So, with these three women in the room with me, I obviously had to jot down some of the things they talked about!
How They Plot:
Lesley Livingston’s WONDROUS STRANGE series was always a a three-act structure in her mind. But when she got her book deal, it was for a two-book deal. Since then, they’ve asked her to make it a trilogy, which works perfectly for Lesley: she had always imagined it as a trilogy! So for her, it was plotted out right from the beginning.
For Aprilynne Pike, she plotted by series – much like Lesley did. Her WINGS series has always been a close-ended four-book series, and she plotted out the entire series together. It seems she has always had it planned out entirely!
Kim Harrison, on the other hand, talked about how she plots one book at a time; she doesn’t plot out the entire series (such as her series THE HOLLOWS). She also said that THE HOLLOWS is the longest trilogy she has ever written! Her books just had a life of their own, it seems!
Best Job in the World?
Someone during the Q+A session asked all three ladies what it was like having writing as their day job.
Kim Harrison described it perfectly: “It’s a miserable, wonderful, fabulous job”. Her day starts with her doing an hour and a half to two hours doing PR work (maintaining her website, Facebook, blog, etc). And when she starts writing, she writes until 7:00 pm, with only a half hour lunch break. But she loves every minute of it, even though it isn’t an “easy” job.
Aprilynne shared Kim’s sentiments in many ways. For her, being a writer is the best job in the world. But she was quick to remind us all that just because one becomes published, it doesn’t mean it gets easier. For her second book, she whipped it out – and her husband had enough courage to tell her it needed work. But even with so much time devoted to writing and rewriting, being a published author is a dream come true. Having her first book in the hands of so many readers feels like she won the lottery.
For Lesley, being an author gave her the excuse to write down the voices in her head. She loves that people no longer think she’s a lunatic (although I doubt anyone ever thought she was!). Winning awards was one of the most exciting and wonderful things about becoming a published author. She also thinks that it’s wonderful hearing from people who’ve read her books and have her characters living in their heads too. And one of the amazing things about her journey to publication? When she was contracted for her WONDROUS STRANGE series, she had only sent 5 sample chapters with an 8 page synopsis. Which is incredibly rare in fiction, to be taken on with just a proposal!
So while at this event, I was able to pick up signed copies of one of each author’s books. This giveaway is for a signed copy of Kim Harrison’s YA novel ONCE DEAD, TWICE SHY. Here is the synopsis from Goodreads:
“My name is Madison Avery, and I’m here to tell you that there’s more out there than you can see, hear, or touch. Because I’m there. Seeing it. Touching it. Living it.”
Madison’s prom was killer—literally. For some reason she’s been targeted by a dark reaper—yeah, that kind of reaper—intent on getting rid of her, body and soul. But before the reaper could finish the job, Madison was able to snag his strange, glowing amulet and get away.
Now she’s stuck on Earth—dead but not gone. Somehow the amulet gives her the illusion of a body, allowing her to toe the line between life and death. She still doesn’t know why the dark reaper is after her, but she’s not about to just sit around and let fate take its course.
With a little ingenuity, some light-bending, and the help of a light reaper (one of the good guys! Maybe . . . ), her cute crush, and oh yeah, her guardian angel, Madison’s ready to take control of her own destiny once and for all, before it takes control of her.
Well, if she believed in that stuff.
How to enter:
This contest is open internationally. All you need to do is leave a comment to be entered in the contest. For extra entries, you can do any (or all!) of the following:
+1 for following LTWF on Twitter (add your twitter name to your comment so I know you’re following)
+2 for following this blog (RSS feed) – let us know if you do!
+1 for sharing this contest on Twitter – add @LTWF when you share it (again, let us know your twitter account name in the comments!)
+1 for sharing this contest on your blog – just be sure to leave a link/ your twitter name (so that we know who you are, and how you’re sharing it!)
The contest ends at noon EST on Friday, June 11th. The winner will be picked at random, and will be announced on Saturday, June 12th.
Good luck (and be on the lookout for future giveaways)!
Vanessa is a Sales Assistant at Kate Walker & Co., a book and gift sales agency located in Toronto. She is also enrolled in a publishing program. Currently, Vanessa is working on a YA fantasy novel and a Children’s non-fiction series.