Saturday, July 31, 2010

Actors Needed: Personal Demons Casting Call

I need to know who you would choose to play Frannie, Luc and Gabe in a Personal Demons movie. Keep in mind that they need to be teens.

If you haven't read the Personal Demons excerpts you can find them here.

I'm leaning toward Lucas Till for Gabe:

and Logan Lerman for Luc:

The FinePrint film guy is thinking Chloe Mortez for Frannie:

I like her or maybe Dakota Fanning.

What do you think????

Friday, July 30, 2010

July Debut Contest Winner!!

Here it is! The moment you’ve all been waiting for!

But first, I want to say hi *waves* to all you fabulous followers, both old and new! Thanks for all your support! I have the bestest followers evah! =)

And, for all of you lucky winners waiting patiently for ARCs, just to let you know, they have been mailed. You should have them in your hot little hands as we speak...or read...or whatever. Yay!

Ooo! And in other exciting news, in case you didn’t see, Personal Demons sold in Spain this month! Squee!!

Do you see what I'm doing here? Making you wait for it to build the suspense? Is it working? :p

And…our little contest has exploded!!! We had 869 points accumulated by 144 entrants this month! Holy cow!!! Thanks for spreading the word! You guys rock so hard!!

Okay, so here we go...

The winner of my July Debut Contest is…*clicks randomizer*


YAY!!! Congratulations!

*Throws virtual confetti* (cuz I don't want to clean the real stuff up)

MissHavoc has won the fabulous prize behind door number one! Which, actually, is her choice of one of the following:
A signed ARC of Personal Demons by moi (that’s me, in case you don’t speak French)
Other by Karen Kincy
The Ghost and the Goth by Stacey Kade
Crossing the Tracks by Barbara Stuber
Shadow Hills by Anastasia Hopcus

My August contest starts Monday. It's kind of exciting for me, because this is the last month I'm offering signed Personal Demons ARCs. The September winner will have the option of a signed Personal Demons finished copy! Only one and a half months to go! Squee!

Here’s a sneak peek at my August debut picks:
Freak Observer Blythe Woolston
Nevermore Kelly Creagh
Wildfire Run Dee Garretson
Paranormalcy Kiersten White

The contest will officially post Monday, August 2nd, so check back then to enter! Good luck!

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Personal Demons Countdown Widget

Many of you are asking about the Personal Demons countdown widget to the right. If you’d like to have the widget on your blog, you can go here to grab the code.

Thanks to all of you who stopped in Tuesday to read the second to the last Personal Demons sneak peek. I truly appreciate all your thoughtful comments. I have the bestest followers! =) If you missed it, or any of the others, you can read them here. (scroll to the bottom and work you way up)

I saved the best for last. Next week, Luc and Gabe go at it. (They don’t really like each other, in case you missed that.) We’ll see if they can avoid blasting each other into oblivion in the halls of Haden High.

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Sneak Peek #7: Personal Demons

Welcome back for more Personal Demons! I wanted to introduce the last key character in Frannie's life, her grandfather. I've jumped ahead again, and this is the end of chapter three, where we meet him for the first time.

Frannie has taken some serious knocks in life, one of which is the death of her twin brother, and she relies heavily on her grandfather to help her sort things out, which you will see from the conversation.

If you need to catch up, the previous Personal Demons excerpts can be found here. (scroll to the bottom and work your way up)


“Hand me the torque wrench, Frannie.”

I rifle through Grandpa’s tool chest and come out with it. Then I lie on the cement floor of his garage and slide in next to him under his restored ’65 Mustang convertible.

The smell of oil and exhaust means Sunday afternoon to me. From the time I could hold a screwdriver without putting my eye out, I’ve been under a car with my Grandpa every Sunday after church. My sisters think I’m weird, but I can’t imagine anything better than the feeling of accomplishment when you take something apart and then put it back together with no pieces left over—and it works. Some of my warmest memories are of being on the cold cement floor in this garage.

“It’s coming along,” I say, looking up at where he’s tightening the last clamp on the engine we spent all winter rebuilding.

“Not more than a week or two out. Can ya grab that wrench and hold this bolt while I tighten the clamp?” he says, and his deep sandpaper tone resonates to my bones.

“Sure. You’ll let me drive it?”

“You’ll be first—after me, course. Reward for all your hard work.” He turns and grins. His smiling blue eyes are warm and soft even in the harsh glow of the shop light hanging from the belly of the Mustang.

“Excellent!” I picture myself cruising down the street, top down, music blaring.

He runs his grease-covered hand over his balding head, leaving a large black smudge in the middle of the short gray fringe. “We’re almost ready for oil. There’s a case in the corner. Can ya pull four quarts?”

“Sure,” I say, sliding out from under the car.

“There’s a funnel over there too. I’ll tell ya when I’m ready.”

I grab the oil, bring it back, and twist the oil cap off the engine block. “Grandpa?”


“How did you meet Grandma?”

He laughs—a rich sound that fills the garage and my heart. “At a street race when we were in high school. She was a good girl. Barely been kissed.” He chuckles. “But I came along and fixed that.”

“When did you know you loved her?”

“The second I saw her.”

“How did you know she loved you?”

I can hear the smile in his voice. “She told me…and then she showed me, if ya catch my drift.”

I try to picture them young, like in some of the pictures I’ve seen: Grandpa, all strutting around in his jeans with a pack of cigarettes rolled into the sleeve of his T-shirt, and Grandma, the good girl with the mischievous gleam in her eye. And then I picture my grandma—how I loved to curl up with her on the couch while she read me the classics—and my heart aches. “Do you miss her?”

“Every day.”

“Do you believe in Heaven?”


“Do you think Grandma’s there?”

“If anyone is, it would be her. I don’t think God would hold lovin’ me against her.”

“Do you think Matt is there too?” I ask past the tight lump in the back of my throat.

“For sure. Sittin’ on his grandma’s knee.”

Even though I know it’s all a lie, it still feels good to hear him say it. Like a comfortable old fairytale. “Thanks, Grandpa.”

“I’m ready for that oil. Slow and easy.”

“You got it.”

Monday, July 26, 2010

I'm such a tease

I'm still in Singapore. I hope I'm having fun! Considering I'm posting this in my past, sitting on my couch in my family room, anything could be happening right now. Anyway, you guys had more questions, so here are your answers.

Maidenveil asks: Will the Personal Demons tease continue or stop at chapter one?
Was I teasing you? I'm so sorry! *maniacal chuckle* I promised you all eight weeks of excerpt. So far, all of chapter one is up and select snippets of other chapters. Tomorrow is number seven and next Tuesday will be the final teaser.

pirate penguin asks: I am dying for a copy of Personal Demons! Is it too soon to know if it's going to be translated into other languages?
One of the most fun parts of this whole publishing experience has been foreign rights sales. All the foreign sales so far are posted in the sidebar to the right, under "Where Personal Demons Will Be Published." We are currently in negotiations in two countries that aren’t yet listed there, and on submission in many more, so I will update the list as I'm able. (In a second questions she asks specifically about Spanish. PD sold in Spain, so yes.)

The Howell Family asks…actually, I doubt it’s the WHOLE Howell family, but, anyway…SOMEONE in the Howell Family asks: If you could go back and give your unpublished self advice, knowing what you know now, what would it be?
First, I guess would be that if you're truly writing the story you were meant to tell, it shouldn't feel hard. I'm not saying writing isn't hard work—it is. I just mean that the story itself should flow easily for the most part. Also, I'd say trust your gut and your voice. When you're writing "your story" don't try to imitate others. Keep it real and keep it yours. There were a few scenes in Personal Demons where I had forced things a little trying to introduce more conflict because I thought that's what I was supposed to do. In other words, I wrote those scenes for someone else. I shouldn't have been surprised when those were the scenes both my agent and editor asked me to change. (read “cut”) They were things that hadn't felt authentic while I was writing them.

I guess the theme of all of that is, write for the love of writing. Not for agents or editors. The road to publication can be rough, but it's rougher if you're not loving what you're doing. I wrote for my daughter and myself. That was it.

A few other things:
1) Find a writing group/partner that you trust and who will be brutally honest with you in a positive way. When I’ve doubted myself, my awesome critique partner (Andrea Cremer, Nightshade, Oct. 2010) has always encouraged me and told me what I need to hear to get back on track.
2) Research agents well before you query. It’s more than just going to their agency profile. Find out what they already rep and/or have sold. Be sure they’re a good fit for you.

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Friday, July 23, 2010

I'm in Singapore!

Here I am:
Do you see me? I'm the one in the black shirt. =)

I made it to Singapore, which is very exciting, but also very busy, so I'm coping out today and reminding you that there's only one week left to enter my July Debut contest.

More from Singapore when I have time to breath!

Thursday, July 22, 2010

How the heck to foreign rights sales work?--Repost

I'm still on an airplane to Singapore (no joke) so this is a "best of" post. I took you through all the machinations that a manuscript goes through between the book deal and the shelves on Monday. Today, I'll clue you in on something else I was clueless about until I went through the process: Foreign translation right sales. Here's my 3/25/10 post on the topic:

The Bologna Children’s Book Fair is this week in, you guessed it, Bologna. My stomach is there, even though my body isn’t. There’s no better food to be had anywhere on the planet, and the Bolognaise are some of the friendliest people I’ve ever met.

This week, publishers and agents descend on the lovely Bologna to hawk their wares—or, in other words, to sell foreign rights to their children’s books. We’ll be hearing about a lot of foreign rights deals on children’s, MG and YA books in the days/weeks following Bologna.

When my agency went on foreign rights submission with my book a few weeks back, the whole foreign rights thing had me completely baffled. I had no clue how that process worked. But since then, I’ve gained some insight, and, for those of you as clueless as me, I’d like to pass it along.

So, in honor of the Bologna Book Fair, and my growling stomach, here is the little bit of knowledge that I can impart to others in my position. Keep in mind that this is all wrapped up in a fairly simplistic nutshell.

First, who sells foreign rights to your book depends wholly on who owns them, and that’s determined at the time of your initial book deal with your US publisher.

World rights:
If your contract is for world rights, then your publisher owns ALL the rights to your book, including translation, so it’s up to them to submit to ALL foreign publishers. The portion of whatever advance on royalties they are able to negotiate that goes to you is dictated by your contract with them (usually on a percentage basis). If your US publisher has paid you an advance, your percentage of your foreign advances will be applied to earning out your advance with them. Any additional royalties will be paid to you at the negotiated percentage and disclosed in your normal royalty statement from your US publisher. In other words, the foreign publisher pays your US publisher and they pass along your percentage.

World English:
If your contract is for world English rights, then YOU own all translation rights, so it’s up to your agent to submit to foreign publishers for translation. Your publisher owns rights to English editions, which would include the UK and Australia, so they will submit to publishers there and the same terms apply to those sales as described above. Any translation sales your agent is able to make are totally separate from your US publisher, and any advance and royalties will come directly from the foreign publisher.

North American:
If your contract is for North American rights, then you own ALL foreign rights to your book and your agent will submit to ALL foreign publishers. In this instance, all advances and royalties will come directly from the foreign publishers and your US publisher is in no way involved.

Michael Stearns, from Upstart Crow, recently posted on the benefits of holding on to subsidiary rights. There are benefits to either scenario, really. It is often easier to negotiate a better deal with your US publisher if you concede to world rights, especially for a debut author, so you and your agent need to decide what’s in the best interest of your book.

Hope this helps some of you lost in the foreign rights jungle to see the light.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Beam me up Scotty!

I’m on an airplane to Singapore. Right now. And I will be for the next…I don’t know…rest of my life. I take off from California at 10 am today (Wednesday) and land in Singapore at midnight Friday morning. That just seems wrong.

So, I’ve been thinking about Scotty. You know, the Star Trek guy. It’s 2010. Weren’t we supposed to at least have hovercraft by now? And that whole particle mover, like the Star Trek transporters…those are supposed to be just around the corner, right? Cuz, I’m telling you, when you travel for a living, the whole traveling-for-a-living thing gets pretty old.

The up side: I get to go here:

And, hopefully, see stuff like this:

And, I hope I have internet so I can check in with all you guys while I’m gone and tell you all about it.

See you when I get there (I hope). =)

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Sneak Peak #6: Personal Demons

If you're new to the blog and missed the previous excerpts, you can find them here. (scroll down to the bottom and read up)

Okay, so, where there's a demon, there has to be an angel. Skipping ahead to chapter 3, this is where Frannie meets the angel Gabriel at a party. (Though, she doesn't know he's an angel.)

This scene needs a little set up. Frannie's ex-boyfriend is a cute dreadlocked kid that we meet in chapter 2 named Reefer. Another kid, Jackson, has been chasing her around since she made out with him in the closet at the last party when she was afraid she might cave and go back to Reefer. So, here we go...


Jackson is hovering. And I’m pretty sure from the way he’s looking at me that he’s already got me undressed in his pathetic imagination. I’ve spent the last half hour circling between the group and the bonfire that’s just crackling to life, trying to stay out of his reach. I reposition to the outside of the cluster and see Jackson circling the other way to intercept me.

Where is Reefer when I need him?

I kick myself mentally, lean against the porch rail hanging my head in defeat, and wait for the inevitable hand on my ass.

So the voice, smooth as music, scares the snot out of me. “Looks like you could use someone to run interference.”

I look up into these incredible sky-blue eyes and, if Heaven had a face, I swear this would be it. His tight white T-shirt shows off his tan and some pretty serious muscle definition. He’s leaning on the rail next to me like he’s been here all along—like he belongs in this godforsaken place rather than on a beach in San Diego with a surfboard under his arm.

“What?” It’s all I can manage.

He smiles and rakes a hand through chin-length platinum waves that seem to change from gold to red and back with the flicker of the flames. “Was I misreading the situation?” he says with a tip of his head toward Jackson.

I roll my eyes. “No, but I can take care of myself, thanks.” I push off the rail and head back over to the group.

Angel Boy doesn’t follow me. He just leans back and watches as Jackson resumes his stalk. After another lap of the circle I head back to the rail and slouch into it next to Angel Boy. I glare at the ground. “Don’t think this means I needed you to rescue me.”

He chuckles and I turn my glare on him. “You know what? Just forget it.” I push away from the porch rail, but something intense courses through me like a thousand tiny bolts of lightning when his hand touches my shoulder, stopping me dead in my tracks.

“Sorry, I really wasn’t laughing at you,” he says with a chuckle in his voice. “I was laughing at him.” He looks me over and a shiver races down my spine. “He never stood a chance.”

“Whatever,” I say, leaning back into the rail. Truth is, I came back as much to ogle Angel Boy as I did to get away from Jackson.

“I’m Gabe,” he says, turning to face me.

I’m staring at him. Oh, God. Stop! I shift my gaze to his chest, which turns out to be no less stareworthy. “Frannie.”

He glances at the beer cup in my hand and shrugs away from the rail.

And that’s when I hear Taylor’s “Oh. My. God.” I look over and the whole group is staring at us. Marty has managed to sidle up and slip his arm around Taylor’s waist, but she shifts away.

And we’re not the only ones to notice Gabe, because I see Angelique and her posse making their way over from the bonfire. She makes a beeline for Gabe as he lifts the lid on the ice chest next to the keg and she leans over it, pretending to inspect the contents of the cooler. What she’s really doing is pushing her double Ds right up in Gabe’s face. I look for Adam Martin—senior-class stud and Angelique’s boyfriend—but he’s nowhere in sight.

“Something else to drink? Water, soda?” Gabe says, staring at me.

And, mmm…those eyes. I feel my heart flutter for an instant, fighting to hold onto its normal rhythm. “I have a beer, thanks,” I say, but as I speak, I feel the cup being lifted from my hand.

“And I’ll just top it off for you.” Luc’s hot breath on the back of my neck sends a shiver through me, and my fluttering heart stops. I turn and his face is just an inch from mine. The silk wisps of his tousled mop brush my forehead and I breathe him in: cinnamon…mmm.

Taylor’s all but losing it. “Holy shit! Where’d you come from?”

Luc straightens up and refills my cup. “I’ve been around,” he says, gesturing to the crowd at the bonfire. But I was just there—and he wasn’t.

“Wow…okay. This party just got a whole hell of a lot cooler.” She looks from Luc to Gabe and back, then eases out of Marty’s grasp and meanders over to stand next to Luc. She looks at me with raised eyebrows. “So…are we sticking around?”

“Uh…well…” I look to Riley for backup. “I think we’re leaving?”

Riley is still staring at Gabe. “Not yet.”

Luc hands me my beer and glowers at Gabe, who’s moved closer. “Gabriel,” he says, his warm-honey voice suddenly cold enough to freeze hell.

“Hello, Lucifer.” And, though his smile doesn’t falter, Gabe’s musical voice just went flat.

“Wait…you know each other?” I stand between them, a little wobbly. The air around us seems charged with static electricity, making me tingle all over.

Gabe quirks a crooked smile and eyes Luc. “You could say that.”

“Unfortunately,” Luc adds. He’s sort of smiling, but under that calm demeanor he’s anything but calm. Even from a foot away, I can feel the tension in his body, coiled and ready to spring. His jaw clenches and his fists are balled at his side, dying to swing out at something—or someone. As I watch, I swear I see a tiny lick of red lightning flicker over the surface of his hand and disappear between his knuckles.

I just stand here, speechless, my whole body buzzing with the growing electric charge in the air, and try to figure out when I slipped into the Twilight Zone. ’Cause, as my gaze shifts between Luc and Gabe, what I know for sure is this can’t be real. And I start to wonder if maybe Jackson spiked my beer or something.

Angelique, realizing the attention isn’t on her, shoots me a glare before peeling off her jeans jacket to reveal a very low cut tank top. She wedges in front of me, between Luc and Gabe, and I’m actually relieved to be released from whatever that bizarre electric pull was. But immediately, Taylor shoulders her out of the way.

“Where’s Adam?” she asks Angelique in a slimy-sweet voice with a matching fake smile.

Angelique grinds her heel into Taylor’s foot. “Adam who?”

I start to feel a little dizzy and realize I’m not breathing. I back away from the group, close my eyes, and take a deep breath, trying to collect myself.

“So…” Luc’s voice, low in my ear, makes me jump. I open my eyes and feel my legs go soft. He quirks half a smile and twists a strand of hair out of my face, looping it behind my ear. “I was hoping you’d let me drive you home.”

It’s clear from my racing heart that leaving with Luc would be a mistake. I glance at Gabe, who’s still staring at me. A hot flush works its way up my neck into my face as I realize staying might be a bigger mistake.

I step up next to Riley. “Are you ready? Let’s go.” I sound completely desperate, which I guess I am.

She glances over at Trevor and smiles. “Sorry, Fee,” she says turning back to me with a shrug.

I feel Luc’s heat, too close behind me, but I don’t turn to look at him. “I’m ready,” he says.

Oh, God. Why can’t I breathe?

My eyes slide back to Gabe, which turns out to be a mistake ’cause he’s still staring at me, and those blue eyes are doing nothing to help the breathing situation.

I pull my eyes away and spin with my back to both him and Luc—and see Reefer and the band piling out of his black pickup.


I turn back to Luc, careful to avoid his eyes. Oxygen deprivation makes thinking a challenge, but I’m able to stammer out, “Um…okay. We can go, I guess…if you want.”

Riley is standing back from the catfight. I raise my voice slightly to be heard over the foray. “Riley.” She looks my way. “I’m going with Luc…’kay?”

The firelight flickers in her eyes as she smiles knowingly and nods.

I glance once more at Gabe, who holds my eyes with his and shoots me a glowing smile, and then I feel the tips of Luc’s fingers scorch through the shirt in the small of my back. I catch his cinnamon as he leans in from behind and whispers, “Let’s go.”

At his touch, a tingle starts low in my belly and works its way through me, growing in intensity till my whole body is humming—some parts more than others. I let him steer me and my Jell-O legs to his car.

Monday, July 19, 2010

How you find out all the ways you screwed your book up.

Thanks to all of you who stopped by Friday to tell me I'm not crazy. I appreciate it. (Even though I sorta am.)

I've been neck deep in Original Sin revisions for the past few weeks. And being neck deep in...well, you know, got me thinking about how much I've learned about the publishing process in the last seven months since my book deal. I belong to a really cool group of debut authors, The Elevensies, and we ask each other all kinds of stuff, because, for most of us, it's all a big mystery until it falls in our lap. And by it, I mean whatever the next step in the process is.

So, here's my rundown from book deal to shelves in a nutshell. Understand that there are variations between publishers and differences in nomenclature, but these are the basic steps in getting the actual manuscript ready to put out into the world.

Step one: Write a Book
You've gotta write something that someone wants to publish. Without that...well...

Step two: Revisions
Your editor reads your manuscript (usually more than once) and provides you with an editorial letter. I've heard other authors say they were shocked when they got their letter. One of the funniest stories I've heard is Margie Stohl's. She likes to tell the story of when they got their editorial letter for Beautiful Creatures and Kami was sure it was a mistake because their editor had told them how much she loved it. No matter how much your editor loves your manuscript, they WILL ask for some changes. Sometimes the changes are big and relate to pacing or plot. You may need to pull your manuscript apart and put it back together (aka: revising with a chainsaw). Other times it's smaller points such as character development or consistency. DO NOT BE SHOCKED when you get your letter. Average editorial letters, from what I've been able to glean, are usually between 5 and 10 pages, single-spaced. (My OS letter is 6) And that's when your editor LOVES your manuscript.

Step three: Line edits
Once you've turned your revised manuscript in to your editor, she/he will go through a line edit. Here, they'll ask you to clean up any lingering issues, fix smaller things like grammar and punctuation, and, if you're me, make you take out all your em dashes. Hi Melissa. =) *waves* Some editors do this hardcopy, others, electonically in Word using track changes. That all depends on their preference.

Step four: Copy edits
Once that's done, your manuscript "goes to production." That means it goes out to a copyeditor, who does a...well...copyedit. Copyedit is basically a more thorough line edit. This is when your manuscript becomes a study in red. Red ink EVERYWHERE. The copyeditor will pick out all the typos, make you fix your grammar, and also look for consistency throughout the manuscript. So if you spelled Marc Marc in chapter 1 and Mark in chapter 3, they're supposed to catch that, as well as any dangling subplots that need cleaning up after revisions. They will also mark spacing and punctuation for the typesetter. This is generally the last chance to make any major changes to the manuscript.

Step five: First pass pages
This is totally fun, but a little scary. It's when you get to see the typeset pages just as they will appear in your published book. It is also pretty final. You can fix typos or the occasional grammatical issue, but you can't add or cut a scene, or change the text significantly. So hopefully, between you, your editor and your copyeditor, you didn't drop the ball and majorly screw something up.

Step six: ARCs
You usually get these six-ish months pre-publication (for YA). This is basically your book. It usually has your cover art and everything. Usually there is still time to fix typos before the print run for your finished copies.

So, that's it in a very simplistic nutshell. Back to Original Sin revisions! Check back tomorrow for my Tuesday Personal Demons preview! =)

Friday, July 16, 2010

The subconscious is a strange animal

I’m going all Freud on you because I had THE MOST BIZZAR dream. It woke me up this morning, and, once I realized I was awake, I was LMAO.

We’ve all heard of some VERY famous writers who have turned their dreams into millions. There are those who think all dreams harbor some hidden meaning. So, I have one for you to decipher.

I was dreaming about something else altogether, having something to do with swimming. I’m sure Freud would tell me about all the underlying whatever, but, really, that was all fine. But then I was in my car, pulling into a curving dirt driveway. There was an Audi station wagon parked just ahead of me and, at the end of the short drive, there was a house that was still under construction. On the unfinished front porch stood two women. One of them, I didn’t recognize (and I can’t even picture her face now) but the other was a very professional looking Kristin Nelson.

You read that right. Kristin Nelson. The lovely literary agent—who I’ve never met—or queried—or anything—so I don't really KNOW that she's lovely, but she seems to be on her blog, which I do read occasionally.

Anyway, so here I am in the dream. I’m pulling into this driveway too fast, and I kind of catch the back corner of this Audi (hard) as I’m making the corner, because I don’t turn fast enough. And, in my dream, I’m all, “Oh Kristin!” like I’m supposed to know her or something. And she’s scowling at me as I pull up to the house (still speeding and out of control, like I never really learned to drive) and skid to a stop.

And then I wake up.

Any ideas? You think there’s a book in there anywhere?

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Buried alive!

Sorry for the lame post today, but this is pretty much how I feel this week--totally buried alive.

I wanted to take a second to send a HUGE shout out to the awesome bloggers who have included Personal Demons in their Waiting on Wednesday posts over the last month! You guys totally rock! Thanks for helping me spread the word =)

I'm taking today off from torturing patients to get my ARCs mailed to those who have been waiting...and waiting...and waiting...

Once my post office run is accomplished I'll be buried in Original Sin revisions for my seriously cool editor, so you may or may not hear from me tomorrow.

What are you guys working on?

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Holy demons from H, E, double hockey sticks, Batman!

Personal Demons hits shelves two months from today!


That's all I have to say.

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Sneak Peek #5: Personal Demons

If you're new to the blog and didn't catch the previous exerpts, you can find them here. (start at the bottom post and work your way up) Also, if you want to read more, I'll post two more previews, but you have to tell me you want them. And, next week, we meet Gabe =)

So...picking up where last weeks pages ended, Luc meets Taylor and Riley.


I’m working on those things I need to take care of during lunch, which mostly entail slinking around the parking lots, locker rooms, and loading docks on the prowl for anyone useful. But I’ve got to say I’m having a harder time focusing than I’d hoped. I’m imagining how a five-two, sandy-blonde would fit just perfectly against my body as I…

Okay…this is getting ridiculous. Focus.

But, for some reason, I find myself meandering past the cafeteria door—not once, or twice, but five times, until I finally give up and go inside. I walk up right behind Frannie, where she’s sitting near the door, in time to hear her say, “You know what, Tay? Go to hell,” and I smile, because I think it’s cute that she’s inviting her friends along.

“Hey,” I say. “This seat taken?” My smile pulls into a grin when she nearly jumps out of her skin. Mmm…what’s that? Grapefruit? Feeling a little afraid, are we? Smart girl. But then I catch a hint of ginger and my grin widens. She wants me. Excellent.

Her friends—a slender blonde with pink highlights, a gleam in her charcoal eyes, and a labret and a shyer-looking brown-haired beauty with intense brown eyes—are both staring at me. I’ll work on them later.

“No, I guess.” Frannie turns in her seat and her eyes flit to mine. “I thought you had things to do,” she says, the disappointment in her voice at odds with the ginger she’s giving off.

I scrutinize her as I answer. “Done.”

With a flash of her eyes, the blonde stands and presses her hands into the tabletop, enhancing her cleavage as she leans across the table toward me. “Ahemmmm…Fee, don’t you want to introduce us?” A suggestive half-smile quirks her glossy pink lips, and her eyes never leave mine.

Frannie shifts in her seat, turning away from me so I can’t read her face. But I’m sure I catch a hint of anise—licorice—sweet in the air. “Whatever…Luc, this is Taylor and Riley.”

I nod in their direction. “So why are you sending your friend to Hell? Not that it’s a bad thing. Just wondering…”

“’Cause that’s where she belongs.” She glowers across the table at the blonde—Taylor.

“You think?” Riley says with a grin.

“Well, I guess we’ll just have to wait and see.” I smile encouragingly at Taylor. She might be useful.

Taylor’s eyes spark as she says, “So, Luc…did you hear about that party at Gallaghers’ on Friday?”

And now I understand Frannie’s disappointment. Her anise almost knocks me over. Envy. Interesting. I should be able to use that to my advantage.

“Think I heard something about it.”

“You going?” Taylor asks.

I give Frannie my best Sensitive Guy Penetrating Gaze. “Depends. Are you?”

She stares for a heartbeat then says, “I guess.”

My mouth spreads into a grin. “Then I wouldn’t miss it.”

I don’t miss Taylor’s glare or the way Frannie blushes as she turns back toward the table and pulls her hair out of the knot, letting it fall around her shoulders and hiding her face. I slip into the chair next to her and pull it up to the table so our shoulders are nearly touching. I’m sure she can feel my heat, but I don’t mind getting Frannie all hot and bothered. All in a day’s work.

“Will you ladies be needing a ride to this party?”

Frannie looks up, wide-eyed, and shouts, “No!”

Riley and Taylor both laugh, then Riley smiles shyly across the table at me. “What she means is we always go to parties together.”

Taylor’s eyes are eating me alive. “But we don’t always leave together,” the blonde says, arching an eyebrow at me and elbowing Riley, who cracks a grin and elbows her back.

“Good to know.” I try to catch Frannie’s eye, but her face is hidden behind her hair again.

Monday, July 12, 2010

Whew! And more chances to win Personal Demons...

Last week nearly ate me alive. But don't throw me on that cart, cuz "I'm not dead yet!" (Sticking with my Monty Python theme from last week.)

I got my ARCs. (I did all kinds of ARC art. :p) I'm mailing them today and tomorrow, for those of you waiting! =)

And I got my cover.

And my editorial letter from my seriously cool editor on Original Sin. (but you really don't want to see that)

I also had my amazing crit partner, Andrea's, Nightshade #3 (Bloodrose) to critique. I finished it Saturday and, it's fabulous!

I got my marching orders from my designer for content on my new website (coming soon at

And I ran some awesome contests. Thanks to the hordes of you who entered my Twitter contest. If you missed it, the task was to look at the cover and tell me, in 140 characters or less, who Frannie should be with and why. Here are some of my favorite entries.

@thmafi: Frannie should pick @DanKrokos because otherwise he'll go after Gabe & Luc before she does. #PersonalDemons (Dan has already laid claim to Luc, actually :p)

@AminaBlack: don't be cruel she doesn't have to choose. She could have both and I know that I'm not the only one thinking it. #PersonalDemons

@angelgirl122193: Frannie should choose neither of them, become a nun, and let me have a love triangle of my own w/ luc and gabe =) #PersonalDemons

@ettrenas: LUC! Because any guy that makes you think twice about choosing hell over heaven is a total winner ;) #PersonalDemons

And my very favoritest entry:
@MireyahWolfe: Frannie should be with Luc, because...let's face it. With those eyes, she'll never lose him when the lights go out. #PersonalDemons

Dudes! I was ROFL!

But, the winner, as chosen by the randomizer was @sophisti_katied! *throws virtual confetti*

It was really fun! I hope to do another Twitter contest closer to release =)

If you didn't win, but you still want an ARC, visit my July Debut Contest and enter! You can also enter to win a finished copy of Personal Demons or five other amazing fall releases in A Good Addiction's Fall Release Six Title Contest. So go enter!! Yay!

So, even though I feel like I've been ravaged by a killer rabbit (you really have to see The Holy Grail) I have my holy hand grenade ready and I'll be back for more tomorrow with my Personal Demons Sneak Peek #5! :D

Friday, July 9, 2010


Dudes! The wait has nearly killed me, but *drum roll* Personal Demons has some rad new clothes!

I want to send a thanks to the totally amazing people who put together a SERIOUSLY HOT and TOTALLY COOL Personal Demons cover: Cliff Nielsen, the artist who did Cassie Clare's covers, and my awesome Tor Art guy, Seth, who came up with a truly fabulous ARC cover and pulled this one together with Cliff's incredible art.'ve all seen Gabe, my Hot Boy With Wings:

Here's Luc and his glowing red eyes. He's clearly on a mission. And he's smokin'! Literally!! And I don't mean a cigarette.

Now, picture Frannie caught in the middle and you have this:

What do you think? Hot? Cool?

Thursday, July 8, 2010


The ARC fairy came while I was on vacation! 

And, not just to my house, but to GoodReads too! Y'all know you can win an ARC every month here on my blog, but, until August 12th you can enter to win one of forty (yes, you read that right: 40) ARCs my publisher is giving away on Goodreads. So, go and vote for Personal Demons on this list (currently #25) and any other lists you can find, then click through (on the cover or title) to the Personal Demons GoodReads page and enter to win! I'll love you forever <3

So, what do you think? Aren’t they beautiful? Course, no one will ever tell you when your baby is really ugly, but…well...just look at them. *beams*

It makes me feel like doing this. (Pic from whale watching in Puget Sound on Friday.)

So, those of you who have been soooo patient with me, your ARCs will be on their way soon! Promise. =)

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

What is the air speed velocity of a laiden Hot Boy With Wings?

I've gotten some very interesting questions in the comment section of my July Debut contest. I'm alway happy to answer questions so, if you have one, stop by and ask away. Just for asking the question, you may win your very own signed Personal Demons ARC or one of four July YA debuts. =)

So here are your quesitons answered.

Rachel445 asks: Which character was your favorite to write about in Personal Demons?
Honestly, I loved them all. Gabe and Luc are both terribly conflicted, and that made both of them really interesting to write, and writing from inside a demon’s head is just plain fun, but Frannie is the most complex. She’s got a lot of stuff to work through and a really interesting support system, so she was my favorite to write.

Maidenveil asks: Will the Personal Demons tease continue or stop at chapter 1?
I’ve posted four previews so far which, together, make up all of chapter one and part of chapter two. If there's interest, I’ll post another preview every Tuesday for four more weeks. If I don't hear from you guys, I'll assume you're bored and stop. If you want more, be sure to comment on the preview posts so I know.

pirate penguin asks: I am dying for a copy of Personal Demons! Is it too soon to know if it's going to be translated into other languages yet?
One of the most fun parts of this whole publishing experience has been foreign rights sales. All the foreign sales so far are posted to the right, under "Where Personal Demons Will Be Published." We are currently in negotiations in two countries that aren’t yet listed there, and on submission in many more, so I will update the list as I'm able.

Leah Clifford asks: What is the air speed velocity of a laden Hot Boy With Wings?
That all depends on the size of his coconuts…

In case you don't get the reference, go watch Monty Python's Holy Grail.

And that's my Hot Boy With Wings -->

...and also a Personal Demons cover teaser because I CAN'T WAIT TO SHOW YOU!!! ;D

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Sneak Peek #4: Personal Demons

For this next preview, I've skipped ahead into the middle of chapter two, where we meet Frannie's best friends, Taylor and Riley. Although Taylor and Frannie are best friends, their relationship has always been a friendly rivalry. Frannie gets the grades and Taylor gets the guys. If you haven't read the first chaper, you can find it here. (Start from the bottom and work your way up.)


I’m washed through the door of the cafeteria by the human tide and find Taylor and Riley at our usual table, just inside the door for an easy getaway. The walls, floor, and tabletops in the cafeteria are all puke green so the real puke won’t leave stains. Just looking at it always leaves me feeling a little queasy.

Riley’s leaning over a book and picking through her salad with a bent fork. Taylor is bouncing in her seat, her spiky yellow-and-pink hair vibrating wildly. Between the bouncing and the lascivious gleam in her eye, I know there’s no keeping Luc to myself. She knows.

Despite everything, Taylor has always been exactly what I needed in a friend. ’Cause, really, we’re just alike in all the ways that matter. Neither of us is warm and fuzzy. We both have our boundaries to keep anyone from getting too close. And we’ve both respected those boundaries from the beginning. I don’t know what hers are about, and she’s never asked about mine. I’ve never had to be afraid of Taylor pushing me, trying to get through my defenses. And neither has she.

Riley and all her feelings, on the other hand, are dangerous. The first time I ever saw Riley’s face, Angelique Preston was grinding a mint chocolate chip ice cream cone into it. It was the summer after seventh grade, and Taylor and I had walked to the ice cream shop, where Angelique had Riley pressed up against the outside of the building. I could tell from the words coming out of Angelique’s mouth—something along the lines of “lard ass”—and the wounded and humiliated look in Riley’s eyes, that this was no harmless prank amongst friends. Without even stopping to think, I yanked Angelique’s arm off of Riley and twisted her into a headlock. And, in that instant, all in one fell swoop, I made an accidental friend and a mortal enemy.

Looking at Riley now, she’s a mere shadow of her former self. Still curvy, but in a way that turns guy’s heads. I would bet money it was in that moment, shoved up against the brick wall of the ice cream shop, dripping mint chocolate chip, that she’d resolved to lose weight.

“Dish!” they both say as I drop my book bag on the floor.


Taylor glares at me, which she’s very good at. “No holding out, Fee! We know about New Gorgeous Hunk Guy, so dish! Now!”

Great. News travels fast. I go all innocent. “Is he gorgeous? Who said that?”

Taylor’s still glaring. “You’re such a bitch.”

“You say that like it’s a bad thing.”

Spill it!" Riley screeches, slamming her book down on the table, and everyone in a three table radius is suddenly staring at us.

“All right. Chill. Let me get lunch,” I say looking at the unrecognizable glop on other peoples’ trays as they pass by. “What the hell is that?”

Riley’s face scrunches. “Probably some tofu thing. The district ran out of money again this week.”

“Great. Let me get up there before all the salad’s gone.” I glance to the door, hoping Luc might change his mind, and make my escape as Taylor simmers. I take my time in the line picking all the best pieces out of the wilty scraps of lettuce, spend at least five minutes choosing the biggest brownie, and sip and refill my Coke twice before making my way slowly back to the table. When I get there, I swear there’s steam coming out of Taylor’s ears.

“Dish, dammit!” she says as I slide into my chair.

“He’s just a new guy. Luc.” My eyes gravitate to the door, hoping he’ll appear there.

“Where’d he come from?”

“No clue.”

Taylor’s eyes press me. “How’d you meet him?”

“Essay partners, Mr. Snyder.”

“Did he ask you out yet?” Riley asks.

I glance at the door again then roll my eyes. “I couldn’t even get him to eat lunch with us.”

“Hmm…” I can see Taylor’s gears grinding. “He doesn’t really sound like your type.”

I just shrug.

Her eyes are eager. “So, maybe you can hook me up with him?”

And there’s the knot in the pit of my stomach. “Whatever.”

“What about that party Friday? The one at Gallaghers’. You think he’d go if I asked him?”

“You haven’t even met him.” The acid in my voice startles me. I knew this was coming. Why am I surprised?

Her expression shifts to planning mode. She taps her finger on her chin. “The party’s day after tomorrow. If you’re not going to ask him, he’s mine.” She grins at me.

I smile back, as fake and sweet as saccharin. “You know what, Tay? Go to hell.”

Monday, July 5, 2010

I have heard it from on high...

There will be a cover. Personal Demons will not remain naked for much longer. It's getting some really rad clothes very soon. Maybe even this week.

I got my first look at the new Personal Demons cover. It's totally hot and seriously cool. I can't wait to show you.

But, I can't yet.

What I can show you are some other really cool covers that my totally amazing cover artist, Cliff Nielsen, has done.

He did this:

And this:

What I'm also allowed to show you is this:

That's me when I saw my shiny new cover with my smokin' hot boys. (In Luc's case, that's quite literal.) They are totally yummy. =)

Friday, July 2, 2010

What could possibly be better than reading???

I’ve been on vacation for the last week. I brought all this awesome reading with me, including my fabulous critique partner’s Bloodrose, thinking I’d have all this time to read in the car. But when you’re here: (Crater Lake)

and here: (Multnomah Falls--my family is on that bridge)

and here: (Mount St. Helens)
it’s a little silly to keep your face buried in your computer.

Oregon and Washington are beautiful. We’ve spent the last few days in Olympic National Park, and, because there were a few Twilight fans in our car, we had to stop here:

and here:

and here: (First Beach in La Push--where Jacob told Bella about the "Cold Ones")
as well. (mostly because we had to drive right through Forks on our way to the Hoh Rainforest)

We’ve been in Port Townsend, Washington the last few days, which I’m convinced was named after my truly fabulous agent, Suzie Townsend, because it’s adorable, just like her. =)

Thursday, July 1, 2010

July Debut Contest

Once again, it’s time for another contest! Yay!

So, without further adieu…

Oh! Wait…just a little adieu, okay?

First, thanks to everyone who stopped by to read the Personal Demons sneak peeks! I love your comments! In case you missed it, the entire first chapter is up in 3 parts. Here are the links: part 1, part 2, part 3.

Second, I’ve added a new category for earning extra points: Follow me on Twitter. Yes, I am a twittering fool. I spend altogether too much time there. But I love being able to chat with seriously cool people like you. So, if you’re on Twitter, come follow me (@LisaDez) and earn two extra entries into this contest. =)

So now, without further adieu, here is the contest.

Below, I’ve listed my four YA debut picks for July. All you have to do to enter to win one of those, or a signed Personal Demons ARC, is comment on this post by noon (PST) on Friday July 30th. Nothing fancy, you can just say hi or ask a question. (I love to answer questions, especially about my books!) In addition to commenting (for which you get one point) you can accumulate extra points as follows:

Old blog follower: +3 points
New blog follower: +2 points
Follow me on Twitter (@LisaDez) +2 points
Link to my contest post on your blog or twitter: +1 point
Dedicated post with link to my contest on your website/blog: +3 points
Add me to your blogroll: +2 points

Also on your entry, please remember to tell me how to find you (email address). And remember, there will be no rollover points. Points start new every month.

The winner will be chosen by the randomizer and posted on the blog after noon on July 30th. (or possibly Monday, Aug 2nd because I'll be out of the country that Friday) The winner will then have their choice of one of the following:
a signed Personal Demons ARC by me =)
Other by Karen Kincy
The Ghost and the Goth by Stacey Kade
Crossing the Tracks by Barbara Stuber
Shadow Hills by Anastasia Hopcus

Good luck!