Archive for the ‘Miscellaneous’ Category
December 6th, 2012 Posted 4:36 pm
If you’ve read my book, you pretty much know I think a little scary is perfectly fine for kids. This month, I wrote an essay for Hunger Mountain where I expand on that a bit.
I’d love for you to check it out and let me know what you think! I know many folks will disagree with me, but I wonder how many?
Oh, and if you’re interested, I also have an interview up at the Montgomery County Book Festival blog. I’m so excited for this festival – I’ll get to meet some AMAZING writers – and readers, too! Fun fun fun!
November 27th, 2012 Posted 2:14 pm
Hi, y’all! I’m busy working on my new novel these days (so not blogging as much), but I DO have a bit of news today! My book is being featured at the website First Page Panda – and you can win a free, signed copy. So, go on. Enter now!
November 16th, 2012 Posted 8:01 am
What an interesting week! Aside from personal ickiness (like getting my car broken into), it’s been pretty amazing.
I was invited to speak to two undergraduate classes in the College of Education at Texas State University by Professor Dianne Pape. Her classes were attentive, curious, and willing to believe almost anything I told them about fairy tales
and how best to brainwash kids with them. I mean, how best to keep the cultural tradition alive.
(On a side note, Dianne introduced me as an “expert in fairy tales.” Which made me laugh so hard! And then, about twenty questions into the Q&A, I realized – I may not be an expert yet… but I’m getting there.)
It was fun to have a soapbox so readily provided, in such an amazing forum, to share my (extremely fervently held) beliefs that fairy tales – especially the original, un-sanitized ones- are truly valuable for children.
And then, today, the illustrious Association for Library Service to Children handed me another soapbox, on an even larger stage, to say some of those same things. So, what do you think? Have you noticed kids are less and less exposed to fairy tales? Why do you think that might be?
I’d love to hear from you, in their comments section or mine.
And – while you’re at it – what is your favorite obscure fairy tale? I’m trying to become an expert, you see, and I’d love to see which classic tales resonated with my writer friends/blog readers. And if you can tell me WHY you love a fairy tale, I’ll send you a bookmark and stickers in the mail!
October 19th, 2012 Posted 6:19 pm
Friends! Are you a teacher, librarian, or book club leader? If you are, you can win TEN copies of my book, plus a Skype visit from me, plus bookmarks, stickers, and other assorted swag AND learn awkward facts about my personal hygiene and shoddy parenting skills.
So really, why aren’t you reading my guest blog up at Cynsations NOW? And entering to win?
October 14th, 2012 Posted 5:59 pm
What a weekend!
I have to admit, my life is so incredibly cool right now. Exhausting, but cool.
On Friday, I had the great pleasure of presenting a workshop to a SRO group of talented writers at the Houston Writer’s Guild fall conference. It was four hours of working on pitches, queries, first pages, and sharing secrets.
Well-known secrets, like where to find the best query information online. (I’ll be posting a page with links soon – this is a common question!) And less-well-known secrets like this amazing Save the Cat beat sheet for novelists. (You’re welcome, Houston writers!)
I loved listening to people read their first sentences, give their pitches, and wrestle with queries. We could have gone on for days – but the brownies I baked for the group (why, yes, I AM the best presenter in the universe haha) ran out, and we had to break for more chocolate.
Then, the very next day, I came home to lead THIS:
Yes, the very first flash mob (Zumba style) at Whole Foods. It was amazingly fun!
Tomorrow, I have a school visit at Brentwood Elementary.
I wonder if I can get them to flash mob with me, Gangnam Style?(JK)
What’s your favorite thing to do at a school visit, writer friends?And have any of you ever been in a flash mob? Or do you just stick to flash fiction?
October 8th, 2012 Posted 12:38 pm
October is starting out amazingly well, and looks like it’s just going to get better.
That is, if I don’t get overloaded from all the awesomeness, and eat myself into a chocolate coma.
Today’s happiness is this: an amazing review of Sinister Sweetness by the lovely folks at Seattle Mystery Bookshop! “Dr. Who meets Grimm?” It made me want to read my own book again.
Friday, I will be teaching a half-day workshop for the Houston Writer’s Guild on queries, pitches, synopses, first pages – you name it! It’s going to be fun, funny, and useful as all get out. Spread the word! Walk-ins are welcome. (And, um, Janet Reid is going to be there, too. The Query Shark herself! You should ALL go.)
Next Monday, I’ll be doing a school visit for some wonderful elementary kids in Austin.That Wednesday (10/17), I’m doing a fundraiser/signing/party for the Dripping Springs Community Library at 4:30 p.m.
On October 20 at 11:00 a.m., I’ll be at the Book Spot in my hometown of Round Rock, Texas, for another appearance – this one with cupcakes, donuts, and marzipan!
A few days later, I’ll be in New York, doing this:
Yes, a costume party/reading/signing in New York. How cool is THAT?
I’m not even going to mention the Texas Book Festival on October 27-28. No, I won’t even think about it.
PS – Lizzy, thank you so much for your kind fan letter! I tried to email you back, but the address wouldn’t work. You made my day!
October 2nd, 2012 Posted 2:24 pm
The interesting thing about book-related interviews is the diversity of questions. I mean, who other than another author would even think to ask what’s in your closet? (Authors are notoriously nosy.) My husband reads my interviews to find out things about me he hasn’t learned in our over fifteen years of marriage. (He’s all, “Seriously, hon? You want to go to Nepal? Were you really that young when you got your first kiss?” etc., etc. LOL)
This week, I have three very different interviews up at three very lovely websites! Go and read them if you like. And if you have any awkward questions for me, leave them below! I will answer them if I can.
This Week in Nikki News:
Lenore Appelhans, author of the forthcoming Level 2 (oh, I can’t WAIT!!!), has the down low on my favorite things about my own book at her excellent site, Presenting Lenore. This was a hard one, like picking my favorite child. Which might not actually be as hard some days. I mean, come on – one of my kids is a teenager now. Batten down the hatches and all, right?
And Lisa Rizzo interviewed me for the AROHO (A Room of Her Own) conference blog! Check out AROHO Speaks: Writer to Writer. And for that matter, check out their conference! It was a life-changer for me last year – and they even have a local conference in Austin this weekend! Totally worth going to.
Now I must dash off and try to get another five hundred words or so on the WIP done. I’m back to new writing! It feels divine. It’s a YA this time, for a change, and it’s got KISSING IN IT.
With ACTUAL LIPS.
I hope I can pull it off.
September 15th, 2012 Posted 8:03 pm
Well, wow! I just had another amazing week, so full of cool stuff I don’t know where to begin! So, how about… a list!
I do love my lists.
The 5 Coolest Things About Being an Author This Week
1. Fan Mail
I got my very first piece of real live fan mail this week, from a girl named Seeley, who called my book “extravagant” and who “instantly fell in love with it.” Best part of the fan letter? The different colored inks and the artwork. I have this letter taped up on my writing desk now, to keep me inspired through my next round of revisions.
2. Fan Fiction
No, not the Twilight kind. THIS kind:
I don’t know about you, but I think “Best Friend Magic” has Newbery written all over it.Thanks, Emma!
3. Fan Art
I was a featured author today for the H-E-B Read 3 early literacy program. I went to San Marcos, Texas to read, sign, and OH MY GOSH is that my cover done in dry-erase marker on a white board???
This made my heart so happy. I am also very glad I didn’t have to be there for The Erasing. That would have made me cry.
4. Fan Paparazzi Pics
Check out my amazing readers! Are they not talented, gorgeous, suave, sophisticated, and brilliant? Yes, they are.
5. Gift Baskets Full of Chocolate
You people know how I feel about chocolate. Well, apparently, the folks at H-E-B (Paul Mejia, in particular, the mastermind behind this AMAZING event), know as well. So they sent me home with this:
Honestly, I can’t say enough good things about the people who put on this event, or the reason for it - to get books into the hands of disadvantaged kids, and to encourage parents to read with their kids three times a week – or more.
Thank you to H-E-B, Paul Mejia, Helia, and all the friends and San Marcos ISD folks who came out!
August 15th, 2012 Posted 5:28 pm
We have a winner! The winner of the gorgeously illustrated book, Baba Yaga and Vasilisa the Brave, is Shelley Moore Thomas! Who happens to be the author of an upcoming Middle Grade masterpiece, The Seven Tales of Trinket. Oh my goodness, if you love fairy tales, you MUST read this book. So amazing.
Yay, Shelley! Now send me your address and I’ll ship the precious off to you.
In other news… supposedly The Sinister Sweetness of Splendid Academy is one of Apple ibooks’ Best of August! Which is so cool, and I believe it since my editor sent me a screen shot of the page that says so… only I can’t seem to find it on my ibooks page. I’ll just show you all the cool screen shot. See? Isn’t that nifty? I’m very excited!
Now, it’s back to the kitchen for me – I’m halfway through the first 300 cupcakes. Did I ever mention I bake when I’m stressed? Um, yeah. Sort of jittery down here in Texas…
August 12th, 2012 Posted 7:55 pm
I’m going to get real here, friends: It’s not all that fun right now.
I mean, sure, it’s fun, everyone’s excited about the book coming out, I’m baking a million cupcakes for the launch party at Bookpeople on the 25th… and I’m happily excited, I swear! But, the past few days, that excitement has been seasoned with a healthy dose of nerves.
It’s sort of like when you finally get on the big roller coaster you’ve been dying to be on for so long, after waiting in line for hours, and you’re going up that enormous first hill, with the clackity-whirr of gears grinding underneath you… and the “happy excited” flips ever-so-slightly into the “oh-crud” kind?
No, I have no idea why. Except that it’s not every day that your Life’s Dream comes true, is it? And mine is about to hit. And if I learned one thing from having a super-colicky Screamer Devil Baby almost 13 years ago, it’s that Glorious Life Changing Events never turn out exactly the way you’d think.
So, think about me this final week. And, if you still want to win a book by/from a Nervous Nellie debut author, you can enter here:
1. Vonna Carter’s blog has a guest post by moi, with a link to my new Splendid Academy website! Win an ARC, and instant fame/notoriety as a meal-planner for the school.
2. Mod Podge Books has a few days to run on a contest for a SIGNED coy of the FINAL BOOK! Seriously, you want this one.
3. I’m giving away a copy of Baba Yaga and Vasilisa the Brave in honor of Joy Preble’s launch of Anastasia Forever. Extended until Wednesday!
Now, I’ll just go eat a few more squares of chocolate until these nerves pass. They will pass, right?