The lovely Colby Marshall, who you met last month, invited me over to her neck of the internet. Pop on by to learn a few of my favorites, what I’d rescue in a fire, and something you might be surprised to learn about me.
Because who doesn’t love shenanigans?
You guys! I have an honest-to-goodness review and giveaway over on JeanBookNerd.com!
This is my favorite part of the review:
The decision to place this gift onto teenage Biz is brilliant. She is in the prime of her teenage years where discovery is a major part. What better way to tell this story as Biz discovers and learns her talent.
That’s EXACTLY what I wanted people to take from the story! It’s like that meme on Facebook about literature teachers completely misinterpreting the author’s intention, except she got it right.
So, if you STILL haven’t read FLICKER (really?) go check out the interview and enter to win a copy lovingly signed by me!
I’d like you to meet my friend Colby Marshall. (isn’t she adorable?) We first met blogging when I still lived in Mexico and Colby was in the middle of a challenge to blog every day for one year. I was immediately entranced with her obsession with hippopotami and spitting llamas, and I’m thrilled to feature her on Hoosblog!
Without further ado, here’s Colby!
Google for Writers
Google is probably both the best and the worst thing that ever happened to writers. Particularly mystery and thriller writers. Let me tell you why.
When William March wrote The Bad Seed, his classic thriller about a mother who begins to suspect her child of sinister tendencies, in 1954, he couldn’t simply pull out his iphone and call up the latest research on nature versus nurture. He couldn’t run an online search for the hallmark signs of psychopathy to “write into” Rhoda Penmark. Granted, he needn’t use the word ‘psychopath’ for everyone who picked up the novel to know that little girl was one conscienceless piece of work. On the one hand, this is an ugly thought. What would I do any time I needed to find the answer to how to poison someone without any investigator or M.E. being the wiser? How would I figure out the best angle of a gunshot wound to make blood spatter in a certain direction? And how would I know what sorts of criteria for these internet searches lands me on government watch lists?
And yet, one can’t help but feel sorry for March. Why? Because I know exactly how I would learn these answers if not for Google: the time consuming, tedious, and often frightening world of real-life interviews and experience. If that’s the case, to have gotten so many of the chilling details of Rhoda’s personality right, he had to have either interviewed some creepy humans, or worse, been unfortunate enough to know a psychopath himself. Then again, Google searches didn’t keep me from knowing one in person, but I digress…
That said, while Google has some amazing perks for writers, it might be the worst thing to happen to writers since liquor stores started closing on Sundays in most states. After all, if agents, editors, critics, and fans can’t readily double-check whether or not your details about the Bigfoot sighting of Australia in 1914 are accurate or not, chances are, they will simply either trust that the author’s facts are correct or suspend any disbelief they might have for the sake of a good story.
Now, with the rise of search engines more powerful than Joan Rivers’ botox, novels like The Da Vinci Code that are set in the real world could never exist unless the settings and details used to forward the novel have been researched to a fault. It’s a beautiful and terrible thing. When authors can turn out a product that nails every detail and the Da Vinci Codes of the world are born, the difficulty level of the constraints skyrockets the quality of the thriller. However, the majority of books fall somewhere short of that level of research perfection, so otherwise wonderful stories are put down, shunned by critics, and sometimes never read at all because of that little devil in the details. I personally love research, since I feel it takes my work to a new level, but even so, I have my moments when I wish I were in the days of no Google or smartphones where I could imagine what I think I’d wear in sub-arctic temperatures, and most people wouldn’t be the wiser.
What do you think: do the benefits of being able to Google almost anything outweigh the problems with it?
Thanks Colby! Now, everyone run off and buy her book!
What can I say, I’m popular…
This time my dear friend June “Bug” Kramin had me answer a whole different set of questions than Richard. So if you’re concerned there are still things you don’t know about me, click away!
As part of my slow-motion effort to get the word out about FLICKER, I’ve done a couple interviews with my friends. The first to hit the intertubes is courtesy of my Novia Scotia buddy Richard Levangie.
Be sure to note how he got all clever in #8…
I still can’t quite believe it. FLICKER is REAL.
I was home eating lunch when the UPS man plopped a box full ‘o books on my front porch–a week before I expected them. I’m so thrilled with how they turned out!
Here’s the buying info:
I’m still working on making it available on iTunes (they have a few extra hoops to jump through) and I’m putting the final touches on a few interviews. Soon the entire world will get their Flicker on. Bwahahahaha!
I have two separate but exciting things to share today. First the reaction:
I saw this idea on Pinterest and put it to use! I punched a hole in all my store member cards and put them on a key ring. Now I can keep them in nether regions of my purse, rather than in my wallet.
Now the action!
Right now you can enter to win one of three copies of FLICKER on Goodreads.
It’s set to be released next week Tuesday (November 13, 2012) and that’s the day the winners will be chosen. Go forth, enter, and share por favor!
Not me, but I’m so excited you’d think I was the one who sold my first book.
My dear friend Stacey Graham announced Monday that Sourcebooks has bought The Girls’ Ghost Hunting Guide! This is the same Stacey who lured me to Seattle to play with zombies (and convinced me to photograph myself doing yoga dressed as a zombie) but ghosts are nestled deeper in her heart.
(This is also the same Stacey who’s the other half of Slaps & Waggles, our yodeling duo, but that’s another story…)
She’s the mother of FIVE daughters and has hunted ghosts for years, so this book is a natural for her. I’m so proud of her! Everyone swing by her blog to congratulate her!
(Look Stacey! I tagged this post “publishing industry”!)
You know me, I live my back cover blurbs:
Best friends don’t send emails once they’re dead.
With her dead best friend’s pearls and skirts tiny enough to make Nancy Drew blush, Kate’s on the trail to prove once and for all that Grace’s death was more than just a tragic accident. But secrets haunt the halls of her elite private school. Secrets people will do anything to protect. Even if it means getting rid of the girl trying to solve a murder…
What the blurb doesn’t tell you is how AWESOME this book is. I bought it at the signing on Saturday and figured I’d have to save my review for next week, but I finished it Monday night. Considering I didn’t get home from Cleveland until 9:30 Sunday night, that means it took me one work day to read this sucker.
Kate is a instantly likable character whose entire world changed when her best friend died. She’s snarky and sarcastic, but doesn’t push things so far that you don’t care what happens to her (like has happened in a couple other books I’ve read). The love interest, Liam, is HOT, and there’s enough humor to balance out the non-stop sleuthing.
I admit I couldn’t help but wonder who wrote which parts, but really, it doesn’t matter. The Liar Society is a fast-paced, enjoyable ride that will leave you wanting more.
Monday Lisa and Laura celebrated with a virtual book launch party by posting bits from the Saturday signing and giving away a book every two hours. Guess who managed to dominate one of the posts? I swear I didn’t mean to monopolize their video.
You can learn more about Lisa and Laura on their website.
The rest of the weekend has been described as a comedy of errors (pouring rain mixed with intense fog for the four+ hour drive, a dead skunk, a broken toll booth, and a broken cell phone — just on the way there) but Erica and I had a blast. I haven’t laughed that much in a long time and we’re already looking forward to our next adventure (hopefully to a writing conference).
Finally, it wouldn’t be a road trip without a picture in front of a giant FREE stamp.
My aunt’s second book is out!
Boiling Point, the sequel to Freezing Point, is now available in print and digitally. Here’s the blurb.
As Chaitén sleeps…
Two microbiologists monitor the effects of global warming in the shadow of the long-dormant volcano.
A celebrity scientist and his film crew arrive at the caldera to capture Chaitén’s spectacular scenery for a television audience.
And a Nobel Prize-winning scientist sits in his apartment in Paris, monitoring data on fifty-six volcanoes around the world—waiting for the one sign that his diabolical plan is about to be put into motion.
Soon, their destinies will converge. For the Earth has become a pawn in the biggest gamble ever played with humanity’s future…
And Chaitén is about to blow.
Praise for Boiling Point:
“Fans of the late Michael Crichton will enjoy Dionne’s exciting second ecothriller . . . Crisp writing keeps the pace fast, and the tight interweaving of story lines bodes well for this author’s future efforts.” — Publishers Weekly
“Dionne hits her stride with BOILING POINT, a heart-thumping, timely thriller, one that rings with surreal authenticity. All of the right elements — action, suspense, secrets, conspiracies — meld together, the plot built skillfully, like a master craftsman, one layer at a time. Put simply, it’s a non-stop delight of a read.” — New York Times bestselling author Steve Berry
Learn more about Karen Dionne and her journey to the actual volcano featured in her book at her website. We’re lucky enough to have a piece of the volcano here in our house AND I’m mentioned in the acknowledgements. My name is in print! (Granted it’s my married name, but I’ll take it.)
AND, you can buy it here!