Top 16 List: Sixteen Author Outlaws

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Feeling shackled by what authors are told we MUST and MUST NOT do? Things like “never respond to reviews”, or “maintain a constant online presence” or “sell a million books all by yourself prior to the release date or your career is doomed” ?  Then feast your eyes on a rogues gallery of Author Outlaws…the ones who dared to defy the rules!

Outlaw #1:  Not on Twitter. Not on Pinterest. Doesn’t care.

Outlaw #2:  Called her copyeditor anonymously at 2 a.m. to demonstrate that you can, indeed, “breathe” dialogue.

Outlaw#3:  Freely admits he wrote his runaway bestselling picture book Look at the Pretty, Pretty Flowers on his iPhone at his sister’s wedding after his second bottle of champagne.

Outlaw #4: Plans to argue online with anyone who gives her book a bad review.

Outlaw #5: Her book opens with a prologue where the main character wakes up and looks in the mirror.

Outlaw #6: Writes children’s books; is actually terrified of children.

Outlaw #7: Surprise! The whole book was a dream!

Outlaw #8: Don’t tell her agent, but her secret WIP is: #$*?&@: A Preschooler’s Dictionary of Swear Words.

Outlaw #9: Ever since his divorce, puts his phone number next to his name at book signings.

Outlaw #10: Her latest book, The Squashing of the Vermin, features characters whose names are suspiciously the same as boys from her past.

Outlaw #11: Wrote a book about learning to respect your elders, and her grandchildren illustrated it. When it sells, she’ll use the advance to build a new library.

Outlaw #12: Exclusively writes main characters and love interests with bluish-purplish-green-gray eyes.

Outlaw #13: Has decided to spend 99% of her advance on attending one writers’ conference, staying in the penthouse suite at the conference hotel and ordering the in-room chef dining service every night by herself.

Outlaw #14: Writes numerous blog posts and tweets shouting “always be writing the next book!” but has been working on the second book forEVER yet always has time to watch the latest hyped series on Netflix.

Outlaw #15: In downtime, works on a filthy, profanity-filled picture book, and sends it to his agent with a ten-point missive explaining exactly why he believes this will sell.  Never admits to it being a joke.

Outlaw #16: Googles the latest-selling trends to ensure a quick sale for book two. Can’t decide on which trend to write, so he decides to make book two a fanfic of a fanfic he read about on someone’s fanfic blog.

Contributors:  Bridget Hodder, Sarah Ahlers, Ami Allen-Vath, Amy Allgeyer, Brooks Benjamin, Victoria Coe, Kurt Dinan, Emily Henry, and Lee Gjertsen Malone

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16th Day Update: All the News that’s Fit to Blow Your Mind!

MY SEVENTH-GRADE LIFE IN TIGHTS cover for JenMY SEVENTH GRADE LIFE IN TIGHTS

Brooks Benjamin held his cover reveal over at Pop! Goes the Reader on May 4th to dizzee-ing acclaim!

LIVE IT. All Dillon wants is to be a real dancer. And if he wins a summer scholarship at Dance-Splosion, he’s on his way. The problem? His dad wants him to play football. And Dillon’s freestyle crew, the Dizzee Freekz, says that dance studios are for sellouts. His friends want Dillon to kill it at the audition—so he can turn around and tell the studio just how wrong their rules and creativity-strangling ways are.

WORK IT. At first, Dillon’s willing to go along with his crew’s plan, even convincing one of the snobbiest girls at school to work with him on his technique. But as Dillon’s dancing improves, he wonders: what if studios aren’t the enemy? And what if he actually has a shot at winning the scholarship?

BRING IT. Dillon’s life is about to get crazy . . . on and off the dance floor.

The AbyssTHE ABYSS SURROUNDS US

The action-packed cover for Emily Skrutskie ‘s debut was revealed on May 7th on YA Books Central.

For Cassandra Leung, bossing around sea monsters is just the family business. She’s been a Reckoner trainer-in-training ever since she could walk, raising the genetically-engineered beasts to defend ships as they cross the pirate-infested NeoPacific. But when the pirate queen Santa Elena swoops in on Cas’s first solo mission and snatches her from the bloodstained decks, Cas’s dream of being a full-time trainer seems dead in the water.

There’s no time to mourn. Waiting for her on the pirate ship is an unhatched Reckoner pup. Santa Elena wants to take back the seas with a monster of her own, and she needs a proper trainer to do it. She orders Cas to raise the pup, make sure he imprints on her ship, and, when the time comes, teach him to fight for the pirates. If Cas fails, her blood will be the next to paint the sea.

But Cas has fought pirates her entire life. And she’s not about to stop.

 

ThisIsWhereItEnds1THIS IS WHERE IT ENDS

Marieke Nijkamp’s intensely powerful cover was revealed on B&N Teen Blog on May 11th.

10:00 a.m. The principal of Opportunity, Alabama’s high school finishes her speech, welcoming the entire student body to a new semester and encouraging them to excel and achieve.

10:02 a.m. The students get up to leave the auditorium for their next class.

10:03 The auditorium doors won’t open.

10:05 Someone starts shooting.

Told over the span of 54 harrowing minutes from four different perspectives, terror reigns as one student’s calculated revenge turns into the ultimate game of survival.

Marieke will be signing copies of THIS IS WHERE IT ENDS at Book Expo America! Find her in the Sourcebooks booth, Friday, May 29, at 2PM.

On May 13th, THIS IS WHERE IT ENDS was announced as one of the Publishers Lunch buzz books!

New Titles

Michelle Andreani’s YA contemporary is now THE WAY BACK TO YOU and is due out Summer 2016 from Kaherine Tegen Books/HarperCollins.

Erin L. Schneider’s YA contemporary is now SUMMER OF SLOANE and is due out on May 3, 2016 from Disney-Hyperion.

Audio & Rights

Listening Library will release audio editions of Traci Chee’s YA fantasy THE READER. Audio will be available simultaneous with the hardcover. THE READER is due out in Spring 2016 from Penguin Putnam.

Foreign rights to Kathleen Glasgow’s THE TENDER KIT have been sold to  UK (Oneworld), Australia/New Zealand (HarperCollins), Spain (Penguin/Montena) and Poland (Jaguar). THE TENDER KIT is a YA contemporary releasing Fall 2016 from Random House/Delacorte.

Foreign rights to SUMMER OF SUPERNOVAS by Darcy Woods have sold to Fischer in a preempt. Spanish rights (with distribution in Latin America) have sold to Urano’s Puck Imprint. Release date is scheduled for April 5, 2016 by Crown.

A STUDY IN CHARLOTTE and its two sequels by Brittany Cavallaro have sold to Take Shobo in Japan. Brittany’s first poetry collection GIRL-KING is out and available for pre-order. It made a list on Refinery 29 of 30 of The Best Books Written By Millennials.

Pre-order, anyone?

SWORD AND VERSE by Kathy MacMillan will be available in hardcover and e-book on January 19, 2016.  Set in a land where writing is the sacred privilege of a few, it is the story of a slave girl who gets the extraordinary chance to learn the language of the gods when she becomes a royal tutor. But her dreams are threatened by her forbidden love for the prince, and her loyalty is tested by the Resistance, who dare her to join in the fight for her people’s freedom. National Book Award finalist Franny Billingsley says of SWORD AND VERSE: “Fascinating and unique. I couldn’t turn the pages fast enough.” SWORD AND VERSE is available for pre-order at HarperCollins, Amazon and Indigo.

Other Awesomeness:

Kali Wallace will be doing a reading at WisCon 39, the feminist SFF convention in Madison, Wisconsin that’s happening May 22-25. The reading will be at 10:30pm on Saturday, May 23 in Conference 1. Also reading are Gregory Norman Bossert, John Chu, Jessica Hilt, Jennifer C. Hsyu, Leah Thomas and Tom Underberg. Kali’s short story, “The Proper Motion of Extraordinary Stars” has been published in Shimmer Magazine. An author interview to go with the ebook version of the issue is available for purchase.

Music by SYMPTOMS OF BEING HUMAN author Jeff Garvin’s former band was featured in an April episode of the CBS crime drama PERSON OF INTEREST.

Laura Shovan, author of THE LAST FIFTH GRADE OF EMERSON ELEMENTARY, is a poet-in-residence at Northfield Elementary  School in Howard County, Maryland. This is an annual series of poetry workshops for the school’s 3rd grade. It’s paid for in part by a grant from the Maryland State Arts Council. Laura posts the 3rd graders’ writing on her blog. The students LOVE comments from fellow authors so stop by and check out their work!

Kate Hart, author of AFTER THE FALL, has profiled several YA/MG authors recently on her Badass Ladies You Should Know series, including Kirsten Hubbard, Aisha Saeed, I. W. Gregorio, Courtney Summers, Maya Rock, and Ellen Oh. Next week she’ll have newly minted NYT bestseller Sabaa Tahir.
 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

16th Day Update: Covers, Conferences and Congrats!

thegirlwhofell_comps_006COVER REVEALS

April saw two more cover reveals from 2016 debuts authors. One YA and one MG! 2016 debuts are coming, people!!

THE GIRL WHO FELL: YA Contemporary

HIS OBSESSION. HER FALL. Zephyr Doyle is focused. Focused on leading her team to the field hockey state championship and leaving her small town for her dream school, Boston College.

But love has a way of changing things… (read more at Shannon’s website)

 

BOUNDERS: SciFi Middle GradeBounders_cvr_LR-2

Thirteen years ago, Earth Force, a space-military agency, discovered a connection between brain structure and space travel. Now EarthBound Academy has recruited the first group of cadets, Bounders, to be trained as aeronauts and experts in quantum ship bounding—traveling anywhere in the universe in a split second.

Twelve-year-old Jasper is in the first group sent out to space. After being bullied back on Earth, Jasper is excited to serve in Earth Force and connect with the other cadets. (read more at Monica’s website)

Next Cover Reveal? Brooks Benjamin My Seventh-Grade Life in Tights on Pop! Goes the Reader on MAY 4th!

Meet-ups!

YALLwest

YALLwest!

So many Sweet Sixteens were able to attend YALLwest  on April 11th and 12th on the sunny Cali coast. Among attendees were Sweet Sixteen members (L-R): Marisa Reichardt, Audrey Crass, Shea Olsen, Janet Taylor and Kerry Kletter.

 

 

 

Sweet Sixteen New England Retreat And on the opposite coast? A New England Retreat!

On Saturday, April 11th, Sweet Sixteens gathered at the home of Bridget Hodder for a productive and inspirational retreat by the sea. Highlights included reading the first pages from our debut novels, eating amazing food, and enjoying the long-awaited sunshine on a walk along the ocean. Pictured (L-R): Kim Savage, Monica Tesler, Jenn Biship, Emily Martin, Bridget Hodder, Victoria J. Coe and Ruth Lehrer.

 

Publications

Patrick Samphire’s short story “Five Things of Beauty” has been podcast on Toasted Cake.

Kali Wallace’s short story “Water in Springtime” will be included in The Year’s Best Dark Fantasy & Horror 2015, to be published by Prime Books in July. And her short story “No Portraits on the Sky” is in the Clarkesworld Year 7 collection, now available in print and ebook formats.

Ruth Lehrer’s poem Sweetheart is a Lilly Press pocket poem for National Poetry Month.

Two of Laura Shovan’s poems are on display in Baltimore. (aka Charm City). Here’s a photo of “Daddy Long Legs Speaks”. As part of the Baltimore Ekphrastic Project, Laura partnered with local artist Sanzi. Sanzi created a spirit mask in response to Laura’s poem “Symmetry” and Laura wrote a poem in response to Sanzi’s sculpture named Daddy Long Legs.

What? Pre-Order?… Yeppers!

Sweet Sixteen books are on Amazon for pre-order, people!!

Marieke Nijkamp’s YA  THIS IS WHERE IT ENDS  Told over the span of 54 harrowing minutes from four different perspectives, terror reigns as one student’s calculated revenge turns into the ultimate game of survival.

Marisa Reichardt’s UNDERWATER  Morgan is an agoraphobic trapped in the apartment she shares with her mother and brother; when surfer boy Evan moves in next door, she has to face the life she’s been missing.

Rights: Sweet Sixteen debuts will travel the globe!

Foreign rights to SUMMER OF SUPERNOVAS by Darcy Woods have sold to Mondadori in Italy & Brazil.

Russian rights to Laurie Elizabeth Flynn’s FIRSTS were sold, making this the second territory for FIRSTS, which previously sold in Italy as well.

Patrick Samphire novel, SECRETS OF THE DRAGON TOMB, and its sequel, THE EMPEROR OF MARS, have both been resold to Germany.

Turkish rights to Meg Leder’s THE MUSEUM OF HEARTBREAK, to Pegasus Yayinlari, by Fusun Kayi at Kayi Literary Agency on behalf of Lauren Abramo at Dystel & Goderich Literary Management.

Shea Olsen’s FLOWER has sold Polish rights.

 

 

 

Sweet Deal! Win A Query Letter Crit by Ellen Goodlett

valentine-day-images (4)Because we love you, it’s the February giveaway!

Be the first to correctly match the 16th line to the 2016 debut novel and win a FREE critique of your Query Letter by Ellen Goodlett (THE QUIET ONES, Egmont, Fall 2016)!

Read on:

 

I stand in front of my open closet, casting a flat, even shadow on the clothes inside, as though I’m the thing obscuring my own identity from view.”

Great line, right? But which novel is it from?

A. Brooks Benjamin’s MY 7TH GRADE LIFE IN TIGHTS (Random House/Delacorte, Spring 2016)

B. Jeff Garvin’s SYMPTOMS OF BEING HUMAN (HarperCollins/Balzer + Bray, Winter 2016)

C. Ruth Lehrer’s BEING FISHKILL (Candlewick, Fall 2016)

D. Sarah Alexander’s THE ART OF NOT BREATHING (Usborne/Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, Spring 2016)

Know it? Want it? Send your answer to kimsavageauthor@icloud.com. And good luck!

The Debut Club: An interview with Gail Nall, author of BREAKING THE ICE

Sweet Sixteener Brooks Benjamin recently spoke to Fearless Fifteener Gail Nall about her MG contemporary debut novel, BREAKING THE ICE (January 13, 2015 from Aladdin/Simon & Schuster).

Gail Nall

About the Author:

Gail Nall lives in Louisville, Kentucky with her family and more cats than necessary. When she’s not writing books, she manages grants for a homeless shelter and chases her toddler. She once drove a Zamboni, has camped in the snow in June, and almost got trampled in Paris. Gail’s middle grade debut, BREAKING THE ICE, will be out from Aladdin/S&S on January 13, 2015. She is also the co-author of the upcoming YOU’RE INVITED books with Jen Malone (Aladdin/S&S, May 2015 and Spring 2016).

Find Gail on her websiteFacebook, Twitter, and Goodreads.

Continue reading

Meet the Author: Brooks Benjamin

 

Brooks Benjamin HeadshotBrooks Benjamin is a filmmaker, teacher, husband, SCBWI member, and father to a 75-pound demented German Shepherd mix named LeeLoo. He is represented by the fantabulous Uwe Stender of TriadaUS Literary.

In his middle grade debut, MY 7TH GRADE LIFE IN TIGHTS (Delacorte/Random House, Spring 2016), a 12-year-old boy has the chance to compete for a summer dance scholarship, and must decide what’s more important: sticking with his crew or freestyling his way into solo greatness.

Brooks is the Sweet Sixteens YouTube Coordinator. He coordinates video contests, interviews, giveaways, and other video-related goodies that will be uploaded onto the group’s YouTube channel.

Fun facts:

  • Favorite books growing up: Any Roald Dahl book. Also BUNNICULA.
  • Childhood aspiration: A magician. Then a ninja. Then a ninja magician. Then a mathematician. Then eventually back to a ninja to use powers to vanquish long division.
  • Favorite time of day/place to write: As soon as he wakes up and right before going to bed. Without a desk to write on, he just sits at the kitchen table.
  • Book currently reading/most recently read: 100 SIDEWAYS MILES by Andrew Smith. (Obsessed with his work and every character he’s ever created.)
  • Favorite things to do (other than reading): Video games (maybe he loves them too much but doesn’t think that’s possible), going to the movies, and getting lost on long road trips.
  • Favorite sports teams: Um…do the Bad News Bears count?
  • Surprising personal fact: pointy ears.
  • Greatest thing about being a 2016 debut author: Getting to know all of the other amazing Sixteeners and sharing stories, experiences, laughs, tears, and the entire experience of knowing our books are going to be read by kids, teens, and adults someday.

Where to find him:

Website | Twitter | Facebook | Goodreads | Add Book