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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: July 25, 2011 –

Streaming live on Fate Radio starting on Wednesday July 27, at 12:30 p.m. Eastern time, on her show The Eclectic Artist Cave, writer and host Joann Hamann-Buchanan will be adding Stacey O’Neale as a weekly guest host for a new feature called, The YA Corner.

This portion of the show will discuss a variety of topics including but not limited to current trends in the young adult market, book recommendations, book related announcements, writing tips, social media for authors, and the publishing industry.

Stacey is the co-owner of the YA Fantasy Guide. Her website receives an average of thirty-five thousand hits per month and has a following of over ten thousand on twitter. The YAFG features interviews with NYT best-selling YA fantasy authors and literary agents, book reviews and recommendations, monthly contests, and articles for aspiring writers. In addition to her website, Stacey is a full-time writer. She’s had several articles and book reviews published, but spends most of her writing time on the revisions to her debut young adult fantasy novel. You can read excerpts from her novel and view her book trailer on her blog.

Join, Joann Hamann-Buchanan on The Eclectic Artist Cave via the internet or on the Tune In App on your smart phone. Joann’s love of the written word is apparent and she loves hosting The Eclectic Artist Cave.  Her show is the best showcase around for writers who love to talk about their work and the written word. The show starts with a half hour of music and then a live guest followed by more music. Guests have included writers like David B. Coe, Stephanie Osborn and Paul Levine. The Eclectic Artist Cave has also had up and comers like Lindsey Grey and Charlotte Blackwell. She has also had publishers and editors on to talk about some of the do’s and don’ts in the publishing world.

In addition, Joann has a novella coming out soon called Soulless Light about a young girl who is forced to watch her village burn to the ground then killed over rumor and speculation.  Her spirit then is given the chance to get revenge on those responsible for all the bloodshed, but will it cost her more than she is willing to risk? Tune in and find out who her next guests are going to be and keep a look out for her debut novella, Soulless Light.

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I’m very excited that we’ve added our website onto Facebook. Through Facebook, we plan to offer: additional contests, articles, author interviews, and interaction with readers. You’ll have the opportunity to write on the page and tell US what you’d like to see on the website.

We want to build up as many fans as we can get so we’ve decided to hold a special contest exclusively on our Facebook page.

To Enter:

All you need to do is “like” us on Facebook. We will pick a winner from that list. You can click onto the link on the right side of my blog or the link from the YA Fantasy Guide website.

Prize:

A SIGNED COPY of Bloodhound (Beka Cooper series, book 2) by Tamora Pierce. Anyone who follows fantasy knows that Tamora is legendary. This is a rare signature and perhaps a collectable in the years to come. Definitely not a contest you want to miss.

Date:

Contest will run through September 30th. Good Luck!

 

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This morning, I was a guest on The Eclectic Artist Cave. The show is hosted by YA author and publicist, Joann Buchanan. Each week, Joann discusses all aspects of publishing with various guests including writers, bloggers and industry insiders.  

My particular show discussed the importance of social media to aspiring or recently published authors. You can listen to the full thirty minute interview here.

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Thank you to everyone who helped me put this project together. It’s been a labor of love. It’s amazing what you can get done with a very small budget. This probably won’t be the trailer that I release with the book, but it’s a peek into the story. I would love to hear your opinions on the trailer. You can watch it here and there’s also a place for you to comment. If you like the trailer, I encourage you to tweet something to Megan. She’s growing her book trailer and editing business and this was one of the first trailers she produced. Her links are under the trailer.

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The end of the year has left me reflecting on my own writing journey. Like most, it’s still ongoing with plenty of bumps and bruises along the way. Some stops I expected and others had me turned completely around. I’ve learned a ton and I’d like to share my experience with you. At the very least you can get an idea of how things work and how they don’t.

In September 2009, I completed my first young adult fantasy novel. This was a major high for me. I’d never written a novel before so achieving this goal meant everything. Afterwards, I took a break from writing to query agents and learn about social media. This was about the time I started attending writing conferences and taking online courses.

January and February were two tough months for me because that’s when the rejections started to arrive in my email inbox. I’d say over the next several months I received around 35 total. I imagine taking a bullet would feel similar because you’ve invested so much of yourself into a project and it hurts when the response is negative. This was when I found myself at a crossroads. Do I self publish with hopes that the agents/publishers are wrong, shelve my manuscript and move on to another, or quit writing all together?

I went against all my choices and decided to research. I wanted to understand the agency’s decision to decline my novel. I also wanted to get a better understanding of the YA market. So, I went on Amazon and bought every young adult fantasy novel on the NYT bestsellers list. The next several weeks were all about reading the forty or so books I’d purchased. After my reading, I decided that the agents were right. My book wasn’t that interesting. I’d say I had peeks of interest, but not enough to stand out in the crowded YA fantasy market.

By May 2010, I decided to split my time between an idea I had for a book and a website. Through my research into social media, I found that I needed to create an audience for myself. But, how do you develop an audience if you don’t have a published book? I decided to create a website that catered to all the great books I’d been reading and to aspiring writers like me. I teamed up with my fantasy website Yoda, Will Kalif, to create the YA Fantasy Guide.

We decided the website would feature book reviews and recommendations, literary agents and author interviews, articles about writing, and contests. The biggest surprise of the year came from the popularity of the website which has surpassed even my expectations. We’ve been able to land some amazing interviews and really reach out to fans of our genre. Now I’m getting emails from publicist and agents hoping to get their clients featured on my site.

The end of 2010 left on a positive note. I’ve received interest from several agents regarding my second novel. Nothing’s happened yet, but I’m very encouraged. My message to all aspiring writers is to keep moving toward your dream. For most writers, it takes years. My journey started three years ago. Don’t get discouraged by rejections. Instead, focus on your writing and storytelling. Always strive to get better at your craft. Don’t forget to use the information that’s out there and take part in the writing community. If you take anything out of this post then let it be this: Never Give Up!

You can check out some of my other articles for writers here: Articles for Writers

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What drew you to writing fantasy?

I grew up reading fantasy. My father was a big fan of fantasy and science fiction, so those were the books we had in our house. Obviously there’s a large fantastic component to children’s literature anyway, and when I was a kid, my favorite books were those by Edward Eager, Susan Cooper and E. Nesbit. I was also big fan of fairy tales — the original grim ones — and folklore. So when I moved on from children’s books, I moved on to Tolkien and Terry pratchett instead of moving on to realistic contemporary fiction. (The one thing I made an exception for was historical fiction.) So when I decided I wanted to write, it was natural to write fantasy. You write what you love to read.

You’ve written about vampires, werewolves, shapeshifters, etc. Do you have a favorite fantasy character that you love to bring to life?

As in a favorite sort of creature? No, not really, though I find writing faeries difficult. They seem very removed and archaic and their doublespeak — they can’t lie, but they love to mislead — is a pain. I always have to run my faerie dialogue by Holly Black before I can send it out.

Who are your favorite young adult fantasy writers? Do you have any books you would recommend to your fans?

I don’t really believe in favorites. When I was a kid I did, and I was always rearranging my booksholf in order of what my favorite was down to my least favorite, until eventually I realized I was being silly because different books were my favorites in different ways, and appealed to me at different times. That said, I would recommend two books that haven’t come out yet as books to look for: The Replacement, by Brenna Yovanoff, and Bitterblue, the new Graceling book by Kristin Cashore.

What was the best writing advice anyone ever gave you?

I was once advised that once you’re done with a book, read the whole thing aloud to yourself. It takes a long time but it really lets you hear things like overused words, awkward sentence construction, and the like.

Read the rest of the interview here: http://www.yafantasyguide.com/author-interviews/cassandra-clare.htm

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1. What drew you to writing fantasy?

I grew up believing in faeries, ghosts, vampires, shapeshifters . . . and despite my career (teaching lit), that was what appeared on the page when I started trying to write. I started & rejected a few books, but they were all the result of that lifelong love of the “what if.” In 2005 when I started writing WL as a novel (it was a short story first in 2004), it wasn’t something I could set aside. The short story-that was rejected as “great but too adult” by children’s publishers and “great but too juvenile” by adult pubs-stuck with me, so in 2005, it became a novel.

2. Are any of the worlds you created places you’d actually like to live?

No. I’m perfectly happy in the real world, in my real life, with my loved ones.

3. We heard a rumor that your latest in the Wicked Lovely series is your last. Is that true? If not, how many books do you see in the series?

That’s true: the 5 th book, Darkest Mercy (Feb 22, 2011), is the final book in this series.

4. Do you have a favorite character that you enjoy bringing to life?
It all depends on which one I am writing that day. I am a little in love with all of them. My regular favourite from book one through the whole series has been Donia. Ani (in RADIANT SHADOWS) was great fun to write, and of course, Irial is fun to write too . . . and Niall . . . and . . . *grins* actually, I think I love them all.

5. If you could co-write a book with any author (living or not) who would it be and what would the book be about?

Oh, there are a few people with whom I think I’d enjoy co-writing a project. The topic would determine the writer. One of my personal goals is to try a two-person alternating pov (as David Levithan has done so beautifully in his co-authored books with Rachel Cohn & with John Green). Unfortunately, I’m not yet at a place where I’ve found the right topic and co-author to do a novel with someone else. I am currently working on a comic with someone, but I’m not ready to say anything else about it until we’re ready to decide if we want to shop it. For now, it’s a purely self-indulgent project-no deadline, no editor, just me & my partner writing.

Read the rest of the interview here…http://www.yafantasyguide.com/author-interviews/melissa-marr.htm

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