Thursday, August 20, 2015

The wonders of the world are all here on display

10 Science Collaboration Points if you can name that band ^^^

Also, I'm slightly worried that in my attempt to smush the spam out of my life I may have disabled comments on my blog... so if it says you can't post a comment, just shoot me a Facebook message or something. Because knowing me, I would do something like that.

Anyway! On to books news galore!

2015 SLC Comic Con


I will be there! And I will be on panels. And it will be awkward. I tend to turn into a super hyper person when I get around tons of people (which is weird because I'm the world's biggest introvert) so my panels are usually all over the dang place. I don't have my panel schedule yet, but I should in the next few weeks and I'll post it for everyone!



I just know I'll be dressed as Rocket Raccoon.



And I'll be looking like a fool on panels, and I'm going to meet Felicia Freaking Day.

Felicia.

Day.

In case you missed that.



And of course, I'm going to give her a copy of Pwned since she helped inspire it with all of her girl gamer power. And it'll probably be a really awkward exchange, but I'm okay with that. Because even she says you're never weird on the internet (almost). And Comic Con is basically the internet.




Authorpalooza at Barnes and Noble!


I'll be signing books at Authorpalooza at Barnes and Noble on September 19th in Sandy! So come out and say hi and bask in the total and utter chaos that is Authorpalooza!



My second Authorpalooza is actually where I ended up meeting my critique group, and how can you not love a group of writers who wear wedding dresses to critique each other's pages?




Parrish release date!


Parrish... you know... the ghost story I've been telling you guys about for two years now? Yeah. That one. It'll be out September 28th! September is apparently a very busy month for me book-wise! I'm SO flippin excited for you guys to read this one. And I know I say that about every book, but this one especially, because I LOVE Jefferson Parrish and his totally creepy ghost hunter vibe. These books are the best because October is my favorite month and Halloween is my favorite holiday, and The Husband and I watch scary movies all month long, and creepy is the new cute. So read it and be creeped out with me :)




Keeping June release date and cover!


Keeping June (the last book in my June series) will be coming out December 19th. And I'm really sad about that. I mean, I'm happy you guys will get to read it, but I'm also super sad to not be writing anymore June books. June was my second book published and I've been working on these stories for years. It'll be really weird to not be writing or plotting a June book. And it sort of breaks my heart. Plus this last book is SO full of feels. So just be ready for that. So. Many. Feels.

I've got the beautiful cover from Jackie Hicken and will be doing a cover reveal soon! So stay tuned for that!




Beyond Lyra!


Beyond Lyra (the sequel to Under Zenith) will be coming out in February! Not sure of the actual day yet and I may move the date if some crazy thing comes up. But I already have the cover, which I will not be revealing for a while :) And I'll just tell you it's full of CRAZY stuff. But what else would you expect from these books?

And since I'm not showing you the cover yet, here's Hayla :)




Erasing Emily!


Erasing Emily is a book I've thought about writing for a long time. And I didn't mean to write it. But I sat down and it sort of wrote itself in record timing. SO it's done :)

It's no secret that Blake Sennett is sort of my music idol.



The Elected is my favorite band of all time, and every time I've met poor Blake Sennett I've gone total fangirl on him about how beautiful and profound his lyrics are and how much they mean to me. This poor guy is probably two seconds from getting a restraining order.



But that being said, because I listen to his music so much, I started to feel like all of his songs were linked, and they started coming together in this story in my head. So, thinking I'd never in a million years get permission, I asked Blake Sennett if I could write a book where I used his song lyrics as chapter titles because his songs are what had inspired this story. And by some miracle, HE SAID YES! I basically took the story I imagined from his songs and wrote a book about it. And I really love it. It's very different from what I normally write because it's a bit more... how do I put it... normal. It doesn't have ghosts or robots or otherworldly places. It has a boy and his doomed relationship with his childhood sweetheart. And I love it. I'm currently shopping it around to agents, but one way or another you guys will read it. And then you'll need to listen to The Elected and figure out which chapters belong to which songs :)




If you don't know Blake Sennett from The Elected, you might recognize him from his first band Rilo Kiley :)



That's about it for now. I'll  keep you guys updated on PVP as the time gets closer!

Until next time,

Shannen

Monday, July 13, 2015

Because I love ghost stories

So, for the past year you may or may not have heard me obsessively talking about Jefferson Parrish and Sadie, and ghosts and all things creepy. I mean... for the most part that's just me. If I'm not talking about ghosts you might want to make sure a body snatcher hasn't come along and stolen me. But there's actually a reason for all of this.

This year, I'll be finishing up two different series. In April I finished off the Sugar Coated Trilogy (which I'll silently shed a tear for since those characters are now gone from my writing agenda).



And in December I'll finish up the June Series when the fourth and final book comes out. (Another silent tear because it's JUNE! How can I not write her anymore?)



But it's okay. Because what better way to fill that void, than with a new series? And a series that lets me pretend it's the best month of the year (October) all year long? So at long last, I am VERY excited to finally announce that September 28th I'll be releasing the first book in my Parrish Chronicles (because "Chronicles" sounds way more ghost-y and hardcore than series)! I have absolutely no idea how many books will be in the series because I intend to write it so that you can pick up any book in the series and not be lost. Of course there's an overarching story throughout the books, and character development that means it's best to start at the beginning. But each story has it's own unique plot. So this thing can go on for as long as I love ghost stories (so forever... probably). At the moment I have 4 books planned out, but let's be honest, it'll probably go way beyond that.

So let's tell you a bit about the book AND show you the eerie cover!

My little gang of misfits are twenty-somethings out of college who all just happen to be ghost hunters... because that's totally normal. Right? They're tight on cash and live in Portland and REALLY need to find a way to not be evicted from their adjacent apartments.






This is Sadie Smith. Sister of Michigan Smith (who will have her own non-related book one of these days).


Sadie lives in Oregon with the rest of the gang. She's Cuban and feisty and tomboy-ish with her cute little pixie cut and loves the paranormal but has a huge problem.

This boy.

Jefferson Parrish. He's the self-proclaimed leader of  this little ghost hunting group. He's basically a Tim Burton character come to life. He and his cousin Deacon Parrish (below) are British... and cousins... and tall... but that's about where the similarities end. Jefferson is passionate about ghost hunting. Unfortunately he's also passionate about Sadie. And he's not really the subtle type. In fact he likes to walk a fine line between romantic and just plain creepy. But it's not his fault. The boy loves ghosts. How could he be normal? Oh and did I mention? Jefferson is Hayden Temple's cousin... and he sort of HATES Hayden because he thinks he's a perfect Golden Boy.



So there's some nice family conflict for you. But it also means Hayden and Isla will be popping in and out of the series :)

And then, of course, we have Jefferson's cousin, Deacon Parrish.


He's scared of women, socially awkward, and never serious. His default is to either talk about video games or try to make everything into a joke. And he just happens to be in love with...

This girl.

Brighton Gilbert. She's a bit of a walking contradiction. She looks like a cheerleader turned super model. But she has asthma, anxiety, panic attacks, and about every phobia and social disorder you could ever possibly imagine. It's sort of amazing she even functions like a normal human being on most days. And being part of a ghost hunting group would seem like a really bad idea, except for the fact that she's the technology genius in the group. So she doesn't investigate. She just manages the equipment from the safety of the van. She also happens to be cousins with the rest of the blondes. You know... Amelia, Reagan, and Isla.



So these little weirdos who have stolen my heart, will take us on our ghost hunting adventures, but each of them have a little something more to them than meets the eye. None of these things will actually be stated outright in the first book. But if you can figure out what each of them are before I tell you in the following books, you'll get 100 Science Collaboration Points!


Anyway, enough novel-length reading. Let's see the cover!

...........





Like now.




........................................

Or maybe now!




Bam!

Cover.

I sort of love it. Which might be conceited because I made it. But I don't care. I'm a little Jefferson-level-obsessive when it comes to this series. And that's Sadie on the cover... in case anyone cares... which maybe you don't because you haven't read it yet. But I do :) Every cover will feature a different character, and they'll all follow the creepy watercolor motif.

Seriously guys. This is the series I write when I want to make sure writing is fun for me. I mean... it's always fun. But nothing makes it more fun than these characters.

I'll be posting the first few chapters up on Wattpad in the coming weeks, so if you're interested, you can find it there!

So there you have it. I'm in LOVE with this series and I can't wait for you to meet them. Because I love them and I think you might too... hopefully. And even though Jefferson sounds crazy... just wait. I promise he's not.

Also, I definitely modeled Jefferson Parrish after Mika. Who just happens to have a creepy Tim-Burton-esqu music video. So enjoy a singing version of Jefferson Parrish :)



Here's the official blurb-y thing.

Sadie Smith was absolutely certain of three things: (1) ghosts were indisputably real; (2) she and her three friends were some of the best (if not the most . . . conventional) ghost hunters in Oregon; (3) her teammate Jefferson Parrish was always the scariest thing in the room—even during a paranormal investigation. In a face-off between supernatural beings and Jefferson's lack of social skills and Tim Burton-esque vibe, there really was no contest.


But ghosts—unsurprisingly—aren't great at helping to pay the rent, so when Sadie and her friends receive an anonymous letter from a mysterious client offering an undisclosed sum of money in return for finding the link between four haunted locations, it's an easy sell. Going on blind faith and a few vague instructions on how to reach their first location, the ghost hunters set out only to see clue after clue falling into place. As they piece together a sinister mystery reaching back to the 1800s, the group starts to wonder if they're in over their heads, or if they're on the path to unraveling a love story that was buried long ago—and one that should stay buried.

And here's where you can add it to your shelf on Goodreads!

Until next time!

Shannen

*This probably doesn't need to be stated because who's going to sue me for my two laser turret action figures and a bowl of cereal? But The pictures I posted are my dream cast... not... you know... affiliated in any way with Parrish.

Sunday, May 17, 2015

Things I learned from #Storymakers15

I'm going to just come right out and say it. I've never been to a writing conference. I wrote my first book "The Breakup Artist" thinking it would never see the light of day and until it was published by Cedar Fort and Jolene Perry wrote me an e-mail where she introduced herself, I didn't have any idea there was such a thing as a writing community.

Even after writing more and more books and even after meeting more authors in Utah and making more friends, I still didn't quite understand what a writing community was. Once I joined a critique group I heard a lot about the Utah writing community, but I don't know that I really understood it.

It wasn't until these past three days that I spent at the LDS Storymakers Conference that I realized that this place doesn't have a writing community, it has a WRITING COMMUNITY.

Holy.

Cow.

So here's what I learned in those three glorious days.


Don't go into a Publication Primer group you're supposed to lead telling yourself "I'm SO not qualified to do this", because your group will inevitably be awesome.

Authors can get DOWN


Everyone needs that one friend who will sit at the back of the class with them and make Pretty Little Liars references.


Critique groups might be even more awesome/weird than X-Men




 Always watch your back, because Charlie Pulsipher might suddenly run at you like a dinosaur

 Don't bother trying to look fancy. You'll just be an exhausted, psychotic mess by the end of all of this




Always keep your cool when you're about to meet James Dashner, and try not to say things like, "I've now touched someone who's touched Dylan O'Brien" because that just comes off as creepy 

 If you're going to take a group picture, make sure you treat it like a Pitch Perfect poster


Read other people's books. Because they're fantastic


Don't creepily take a picture of someone you spot buying your book... because you'll find out later that they were in your Pub Primer group and you'll have to come clean.

 Always listen to Mindy Holt. She is the Oracle of all awesomeness


Weasel your way into the boys club if you can (I'm looking at you Frank Cole, Tyler Whitesides, James Dashner, Charlie Pulsipher, and others)


Sign someone's arm, because it'll make you feel like a rockstar

Take epic pictures, just because you can


And track down agents you thought looked like a certain character from a TV show and take pictures with them, because there's no faster way to kill your career :)


Although I mostly pranced around and took pictures, I actually did learn valuable things that I probably should have learned before releasing 9 books into the world. Mostly querying and pitching.... things.... But I did learn that I can describe Parrish as:

What would happen if Tim Burton turned Scooby Doo into a twisted love story.

Oh how I love that story. Can't wait until October when you guys can love that little weirdo as much as I do.



So there you have it.

Storymakers firmly has my vote.

Until next time,

<3 p="">
Shannen

Friday, April 17, 2015

Welcoming book baby # 9 into the world

Happy launch day to Silver Lined!



This is sort of significant for me because this book marks my first time ever wrapping up a series, which is good because it'll be happening again shortly in December when I release the last June book!

(Insert my eternal sadness here)

I've been excited/terrified to release this book because... how do I say this without sounding like an idiot? The whole series has been leading up to this book? I know that's an obvious thing to say about the last book in a trilogy, but I've had things planned since the beginning of this series that finally come to fruition in this book and I'm sort of dying to see what everyone thinks of all the things that happen. And if you all hate me or love me.



Because there are A LOT of things.

So good luck traversing them. And once you come out on the other side, we can have a choffy (they're brewed cocoa beans and they're AMAZING) together and talk about all the little reasons you should have seen all the secrets coming :)

Enjoy!

Until next time,

Shannen

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Dear Publisher, I'm sorry for the things I did while on deadline

Now that I'm basically out of the woods (as T-Swift would say) with my deadline for "Silver Lined" I feel like this open letter of apology to my publisher is safe to post. I mean... don't get me wrong, I had to kill myself to get this book written and edited in time for its release... but when I wasn't killing myself, I was procrastinating. Big time. And so, without further adieu, a letter to my publisher.

Dear Publisher,

I'm sorry for the things I did while I was on a deadline to get "Silver Lined" written. Things like:

Rearranging my closet to look like "The Paradise".


Actually WATCHING "The Paradise" and shipping Denise and Moray, hardcore.




Watching an entire season of Pretty Little Liars.


Then proceeding to make my own Stiles-esque clue board about who "A" is. (PS, I totally cracked that nut!).



Trying to learn Spanish (again).


And then giving up and admitting I really want to learn French but probably never will because seriously? Why is nothing said the way it's written? Come on France, get your crap together.




Teaching myself to learn a few songs on my new Ukulele (his name is Yonezy, by the way. See video for details).



Taking almost two hours out of my day to complete the AWFUL SilverWastes jumping puzzle with my trusty guildmates Dan, Monica, and Hope.



Completing nearly 80 levels worth of personal story in Guild Wars 2 (PS, Trahearne and I are totally tight (even though he's not a real person or whatever). We basically saved the world together. NDB).

(Epic dragon thing I killed)

(Trahearne saying I'm the best ever)

Designing book covers for my other books, Parrish and Beyond Lyra.

You totally thought I was going to post a picture of them, didn't you? Nice try. I promise to reveal them soon!



Writing about 5,000 #CreepyJeffersonTexts with Ashlee to further delve into the weird inner workings of Jefferson Parrish's mind so I can write him properly.


Writing basically ALL of Beyond Lyra (okay more like 3/4 of the book) when I should have been working on Silver Lined (BL is SO much easier to write. It's not my fault Dystopian requires so much attention!).



And just generally having panic attacks when I sat down to write this book because I wanted so badly to do it justice and I was terrified I'd mess it all up. But I think we're good, people. I was able to actually write the things I meant to write and I'm really going to miss writing these characters. Now I'll just have to write my own personal side-stories for them whenever I miss them :) I don't know that I'll ever have another character as messed up and fantastically fun to write as Eris.



So please accept this former apology, Publisher. I promise that 'bidness' actually got done by the time it needed to!

Until next time,

Shannen