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Announcing the YA Runs a 5K Fundraiser!

A month ago, Melody Simpson reached out to me and asked if I’d be interested in setting up a 5K fundraiser. I think I terrified her with my response of “OMG YES LET’S DO THIS” (especially since I answered her, like, 5 seconds after she messaged me).

Neither of us really had any idea what we were doing, but after a bit of research and fumbling, we finally managed to put together something that we’re proud of–and SUPER excited for. So allow me to introduce the…

YA Runs a 5K

On July 19 Melody and I are running a 5K! (Though I might just be walking because I’m SO OUT OF SHAPE. Thus far my attempts at jogging have been…pitiful…at best. ;)) Our goal is to not only improve our fitness (and maybe yours too!) but—more importantly—to help children without access to books (more on that below or read more here).

The 5K we’re running is the Color Run in Philadelphia. Why the Color Run? Because it looks AWESOME. Why Philly? Because that’s where Eleanor Fitt is from (duh!)!! We’d love for you all to join us if you can, or if you can’t reach Philly on 7/19 (we totally understand!), then you can enter the Virtual Run instead! 🙂

That’s right–in addition to a physical 5K meet-up for the Color Run, we’re also hosting a Virtual Run! Virtual runners will get a virtual bib (that you can tweet, Facebook, Pin, whatever!) and can share their running progress with the #YARunsA5K hashtag! Learn more about the Virtual Run here.

Now, a little about what this donation/fundraiser thing is all about. Essentially, we’re trying to raise money for First Book. This organization provides access to new books for children in need. To date, First Book has distributed more than 100 million books and educational resources to programs and schools serving children from low-income families throughout the United States and Canada. First Book is transforming the lives of children in need and elevating the quality of education by making new, high-quality books available on an ongoing basis.

To donate to our First Book fundraiserclick here. If you donate $39 or less, you can enter a giant raffle! See the raffle prizes here!

If you donate $40 or more, you automatically get a free book! (Yep, you read that right!) Once you’ve donated, scan the list of available titles and choose what you want. Then fill out this form or email us (yarunsa5k@gmail.com) to select your book. By donating financially to First Book, you can help us reach hundreds of children without access to books!

We’re also auctioning off books and critiques. Half of each auction will go into funding our team t-shirts (until we cover that cost, of course!), and all extra proceeds will go to First Book. 🙂

Additionally, if you can’t donate financially (we TOTALLY understand), you can donate books, ARCs, or critiques! By donating physical items to our fundraiser, you can help us increase our donations! We’re shooting for $2000 raised, and every item donated helps us get closer to that goal!

Finally, if you run with us and BRING books, you can help us expand the collection at the Free Library of Philadelphia. We’ll gather up all books brought to the Color Run on 7/19, and then we’ll donate them to the Free Library after the race.

So let’s do it, guys!! Let’s come together and RUN for healthiness, fun, and books! And help us spread the word using the #YARunsA5K hashtag and the link http://yarunsa5k.tumblr.com/about!! Thank you SOOOOO MUCH!

P.S. We have to extend a HUGE THANK YOU to all the agents, authors, and bloggers who have donated! We are beyond overwhelmed with the amount of support thus far! We can only imagine what’s ahead! Thank you, thank you, THANK YOU!

P.P.S. Melody will be attending BEA as well as the Teen Author Carnival in NYC, so if you’re an author and would like to donate a book or if you’re a reader with too many ARCs lying around, feel free to reach out via twitter or email (yarunsa5k@gmail.com). Melody will gladly receive your donations. 🙂

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Book Club Recap & Final Winner!

I am at Dragon*Con right now–probably wondering the booths for a new Star Wars t-shirt–so I’ll keep this brief.

Thank you again to everyone who participated in the Something Strange & Deadly book club, both here and on Epic Reads.

You all are truly quite amazing and I love you for it.

On that note, the winner of last week’s giveaway (for a SIGNED copy of Sarah J. Maas’s Throne of Glass + signed copies of SS&D or ADS&L) is…

Sara of the Page Sage!

Thank you so much, Sara! And everyone else who joined in and was generally AWESOME throughout August. There are not enough ♥s to express how much I appreciate your interactions.

To everyone who signed up for the participation prize: Because I am out of town for the next two weeks, it will probably take me a bit of time to get you your prizes (A Dawn Most Wicked or an extra scene from A Darkness Strange & Lovely). Please bear with me–I haven’t forgotten you!!

If you still need to sign up for a participation prize, you can do that here. 🙂

And, in case you signed up but didn’t have a chance to participate, here’s a recap of all the month’s posts, discussions, and extra content.

Week 1

Discussion questions + historical extras

Listen/watch me read chapter in Something Strange & Deadly

List of discussions across the web

Week 2

Discussion questions + historical extras

Musical playlist that goes along with chapter 19 from Something Strange & Deadly

List of discussions across the web

Week 3

Discussion questions + fun extras

My dream cast for Something Strange & Deadly: the movie (that does not exist…yet)

List of discussions across the web

Week 4

Discussion questions + fun extras

Musical playlist that goes along with the opening scenes in A Darkness Strange & Lovely

List of final discussions across the web

Enjoy! And again, thank you. I’ll be back to the blogosphere in 2 weeks. À bientôt!

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Something Strange & Deadly, Final Discussions!

First off, let me start this post by sharing my Dragon*Con schedule (since that’s where I’ll be all of Labor Day weekend). Sarah J. Maas and I will be chillin’ like villains–and IN COSTUME, no less–while planning out more of our Starkillers Cycle during every free second we get.

Friday:

    • Find me at the SFWA Booth at ~3 PM (near the Artists’ & Comics’ Alley)

    Saturday:

      • 11:30 AM: Advice for Young Writers; Location: A707 – Marriott
      • 8:30 PM: Historical Fiction and Steampunk Themes; Location: A707 – Marriott 

      Sunday:

        • 1:00 PM: Reading with Sarah J. Maas; Location: Vinings – Hyatt
        • 2:30 PM: Autograph Sessions; Location: International Hall South – Marriott

        Now then: ON TO THE BOOK CLUB! (Read more…)

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        A Darkness Strange & Lovely, Opening Playlist

        First off, if you haven’t yet participated in the Epic Reads discussions, I urge you to! They have lots of awesome conversations going on about Something Strange & Deadly. 🙂

        Second, if you missed our FINAL DISCUSSION QUESTIONS (plus the chance to win a signed copy of Throne of Glass by Sarah J. Maas), head here.

        As hard as this might be to believe, Chapter 19 happens to be my favorite chapter in A Darkness Strange & Lovely. Yep, that’s right–it’s the EXACT same chapter number as my favorite in Something Strange & Deadly. And it’s not that I don’t love all the other chapters in book 2, but I had a massive case of writer’s block right before Chapter 19 in ADS&L. After days of pulling out my hair, the light finally burst through the clouds…and chapter 19 all the way to the end just poured out of me.

        So, if you’ve read A Darkness Strange & Lovely or are reading it now, be sure to remember that when you read chapter 19. 😉

        BUT, since I know many of you wonderful readers haven’t yet read A Darkness Strange & Lovely, much less read Chapter 19, I didn’t want to spoil those scenes with a playlist breakdown. Instead, I thought I’d share a playlist that goes with the opening scenes of A Darkness Strange & Lovely.

        Nothing to spoilery here. 😉

        First, I’ll share the actual playlist so you can listen, and then I’ll break down which piece I associate with which pages. AND, I’ve got the first 85 pages of the book embedded below that so you can listen and read along. 🙂 Enjoy!

        (Read more…)

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        Something Strange & Deadly Book Club FINAL WEEK!

        Welcome to the final week in the Something Strange & Deadly book club!

        If you missed the wonderful discussions last week, be sure to check them out here. I’ve listed all the people who shared their responses with me via the participation prize form and week 3 giveaway form. 🙂

        Now, to choose the winner of the third week’s prizes–a signed copy of Goddess Test by Aimée Carter, a signed copy of SS&D or ADS&L, and signed swag…

        Caitlin & Laura!

        Thank you to everyone who participated, and look below for THE FINAL WEEK’S AWESOME PRIZES! 😉

        Oh, and–whether you participate in this book club or not–you’ll definitely want to stop by the Epic Reads discussion board!

        In fact, if you join in (or have already) the Epic Reads discussions, you get an extra entry in this week’s giveaway!! (Read more…)

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        SS&D Book Club, Week 3 Discussions!

        I can’t believe the third awesome week in our book club is already over! Waah! Only one more week to go! And, as you all have every week, you’ve totally impressed me with your answers.

        If you’d still like to join in on the discussions, then that’s TOTALLY cool and I’d love to have you! Just be sure you sign up for it on this form. 🙂

        If you missed my movie casting on Wednesday, make sure to drop by. I’d love to hear who YOU envision playing the various characters.

        This could totally be a movie still from Something Strange & Deadly, the Movie (coming to a theater near you when pigs fly).

        (Read more…)

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        Something Strange & Deadly Movie Cast…if a movie actually existed

        I know I’ve shared my various desired actresses/actors for Something Strange & Deadly, the Movie (coming to a theater near you in the summer of never), but I’m not sure I’ve ever shared my ideal movie cast on my website.

        So, as part of the Something Strange & Deadly Book Club, I thought I’d lay out all the faces I see in my one day award-winning film. 😉

        Something Strange & Deadly, the Movie

        Eleanor Fitt

        "I could keep quiet. But that didn't mean I would." (p. 89 in Something Strange & Deadly)

        Played by Rachel Hurd-Wood. When she has blond hair, of course. But seriously, I love the way this actress can look so feminine and yet so feisty. (Read more…)

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        Something Strange & Deadly Book Club Week 3

        Welcome to week 3 in the Something Strange & Deadly book club!

        If you missed the awesome discussions last week, be sure to check them all out here. I’ve got the full list of people who’ve shared their responses with me via the participation prize form and week 2 giveaway form.

        Now, to choose the winner of the second week’s prizes–a signed copy of Angelfire by Courtney Moulton, Angelfire swag, a signed copy of SS&D or ADS&L, and signed swag…

        Fran at Bella’s Shelf!

        Thank you to everyone who participated, and look below for THIS week’s prizes. 😉

        Oh, and–whether you participate in this book club or not–you’ll definitely want to stop by the Epic Reads discussion board! So far they’ve…

        For those of you just joining this, here’s how the book club works: I have the week’s discussion questions (one for book 1 and one for book 2) below. You have the rest of August to answer these, and you can answer them anywhere on the web (that’s publicly visible, of course).

        If you don’t want to answer this week’s discussion question, that’s fine! You can chime in next week (the final week). One discussion qualifies you for the participation prize. 🙂 What is the prize? A copy of the e-novella A Dawn Most Wicked or an exclusive cut scene from A Darkness Strange and Lovely.

        Of course, if you want to be eligible for this week’s AWESOME giveaway, you’ll want to be sure you answer this week’s discussion question somewhere on the web (publicly visible, of course) before Monday of next week (8/26), when I choose a winner! (Read more…)

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        SS&D Book Club, Week 2 Discussions!

        Happy Friday, world!! Thank you for another  FUN week in our book club discussion! Your answers are all so insightful–I’m honestly thoroughly impressed.

        If you’d still like to join in on the discussions, then that’s TOTALLY cool and I’d love to have you! Just be sure you sign up for it on this form. 🙂

        If you missed my playlist on Wednesday, be sure to check out the music I imagine with the Dynamite Factory scene–assuming your there in the book. If not, you can save the explanation of the playlist for later. 😉

        (Read more…)

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        Something Strange & Deadly, Dynamite Factory Playlist

        I know I’ve said before that Chapter 19 is my favorite in Something Strange & Deadly. It’s not that I don’t love all the other chapters, but I actually wrote chapter 19 first.

        Yep–it’s true! It was originally the opening scene in Something Strange & Deadly, and then the story jumped back to Eleanor waiting on her brother at the train station. OBVIOUSLY, that was a terrible way to open the book, and a wise critique partner quickly pointed out just how terrible.

        But the fact remains that once-upon-a-time, Chapter 19 came first. So it’s special to me.

        And because it’s special to me, I thought I’d share with YOU a playlist that goes along with the entire dynamite factory kerfuffle.

        First, I’ll share the actual playlist so you can listen (and possibly be inspired to write your own stuff…?), and then I’ll break down which piece I associate with which pages. Happy listening!

        (Read more…)

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