Thursday, March 29, 2012

Spring YA Scavenger Hunt!


Welcome to the Spring 2012 YA Scavenger Hunt! I'm so excited to be doing this for the third time, because each Hunt gets better and better.

This event was first organized by author Colleen Houck to give readers advance peeks at exclusive bonus material from their favorite authors. (During the winter hunt, I posted the gut-wrenching first chapter of SHINE, provoking tears and screams all across the internetz. Sorry! If it helps, my bonus content for this Scavenger Hunt is sort of a sequel to the first chapter. It may ease your fears for Zachary...or not.)

In the Scavenger Hunt, not only will you get exclusive content and hopefully learn about some great new (or new-to-you) authors, but you can also win some amazing prizes. At each stop, pick up a clue for the hunt. Add up the clues, then enter to win--one lucky winner will receive 20 signed books, one book from each author on each of three teams: Red, Yellow, and Blue. But play fast: this contest (and all the exclusive bonus material) will only be online for 72 hours!

That's right, there are 3 contests going on simultaneously, and you can enter all three for a total prize bucket of SIXTY signed books! I am a part of the RED TEAM (which makes me think of the scrumptious Dolvett from Biggest Loser, but I digress).

Check out the YA Scavenger Hunt homepage for links to all the authors participating and a list of the prizes up for grabs. If you get stuck at any point during the hunt, visit the I'm stuck! page to find out what to do next.

SCAVENGER HUNT PUZZLE

Directions: Hidden within my post is a single letter colored red. Make a note of that letter, because it's a part of a scrambled phrase. When you go to all the author sites of the Red Team, you'll have all the letters you need to enter the contest. Each post should have a link at the bottom leading to another member of the Red Team.

Entry Form: Once you piece together all the clues to the hunt, fill out the form for the grand prize. Only entries that have the completed phrase will qualify.

Rules: Open internationally. Readers under 18 should have a parent or guardian's permission to enter. To be eligible for the grand prize, you must submit the completed entry form by April 1st, at noon Pacific Time. Entries sent without the correct puzzle code or without contact information will not be considered.

So that's the deal. Are you ready for another dose of bonus awesome? Keep reading!

I am delighted to host Elana Johnson, author of POSSESSION and the upcoming SURRENDER (June 5, Simon Pulse).

About the Author: Elana wishes she could experience her first kiss again, tell the mean girl where to shove it, and have cool superpowers like reading minds and controlling fire. Using her boring human powers, she graduated from Southern Utah University with Summa Cum Laude honors in Elementary Education with a minor in Mathematics.

In her world, Oreos and bacon would be the only food groups. Everyone would drive 10 over the speed limit, and winter would be eliminated as a season.

Find out more at elanajohnson.com.

About SURRENDER:

The thrilling and seductive sequel to POSSESSION puts love on the line in a dystopian struggle for independent thought. Forbidden love, intoxicating power, and the terror of control…

Raine has always been a good girl. She lives by the rules in Freedom. After all, they are her father’s rules: He’s the Director. It’s because of him that Raine is willing to use her talent—a power so dangerous, no one else is allowed to know about it. Not even her roommate, Vi.

All of that changes when Raine falls for Gunner. Raine’s got every reason in the world to stay away from Gunn, but she just can’t. Especially when she discovers his connection to Vi’s boyfriend, Zenn.

Raine has never known anyone as heavily brainwashed as Vi. Raine’s father expects her to spy on Vi and report back to him. But Raine is beginning to wonder what Vi knows that her father is so anxious to keep hidden, and what might happen if she helps Vi remember it. She’s even starting to suspect Vi’s secrets might involve Freedom’s newest prisoner, the rebel Jag Barque….


Elana's exclusive content is a character readers will see in SURRENDER, the sequel to POSSESSION, which is coming on June 5, 2012. His name is Cannon Lichen, and he's matched to the narrating main character, Raine Hightower.



Illustration by Dustin Hansen (click the image for a larger version)

Both Raine and Cannon are part of The Insider's Case Files, a booklet of exclusive art and character facts you can enter to win at Elana's blog. There will only be 50 of these printed, and the content will never be released online, so you definitely want to check it out. Find out more about the booklet here and read the rules for entry here.

And that's not all! You can enter to win a signed hardcover or an e-copy (Kindle or Nook) of POSSESSION by tweeting that you've seen this exclusive content on the Red loop of the YA Scavenger Hunt. Click here. Then click "Tweet." (Note: you might need to log in to Twitter after the first click if you're not already logged in.)

(EDITED TO ADD: some have commented that their Twitter accounts won't let them post pre-composed tweets. Feel free to simply copy and paste Elana's tweet:

I saw @ElanaJ's exclusive content for the #YAScavengerHunt on @jsmithready's blog http://bit.ly/a3vO0Z and entered to win #Possession!

into your twitter thingie and tweet it that way.)


MEGA-SHADE GIVEAWAY

Though I'm giving away a signed copy of SHINE (SHADE trilogy Book 3) as part of the Red Team Grand Prize, for my own hosted giveaway I'd like to give new readers who may not have heard of me a chance to start the SHADE trilogy from the beginning.

So I'm giving away TEN copies of SHADE (Book One). Because why not? They are perched on my shelf, hoping someone will give them a loving home. Sometimes late at night, I think I hear them sigh.

Giveaway is open to international entries.

(EDITED TO ADD: This contest is now closed. Winners have been notified by email using the address left on the form. Thanks to everyone who stopped by and entered!)

To continue the Scavenger Hunt, go to the next stop at the home of author S.L. Naeole. Again, for more information, you can always check out the YA Scavenger Hunt homepage for links to all the authors participating and a list of the prizes up for grabs. If you get stuck at any point during the hunt, visit the I'm stuck! page to find out what to do next.

Happy Hunting!

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Saturday, March 17, 2012

Team Kilt St. Patrick's Day party & SHINE ARC giveaway begins!

It's St. Patrick's Day, and that means...another Team Kilt party! The Burns Night party in honor of Zachary was such fun, we had to give Logan his due and celebrate the Irish side of Shade. Because we are all Team Kilt, even Logan.

My blogging co-host for this event is the fabulous Shade fansite, KiltandKeeley.com, which just had a bee-yoo-tiful redesign. They're hosting a St. Patrick's Day giveaway hop (and doing a giveaway themselves), so check it out and visit each of the blogs linked at the bottom of their post. Be sure to check back throughout the day to see if any new ones have been added. The winner of each blogger's giveaway gets entered into the drawing for the FINAL SHINE ARC. Woo-hoo!

And don't forget our special events. All times are Eastern Daylight, Saturday, March 17. (Europeans, please note the time change since the US starts daylight savings time a couple weeks before you do. We'll be only 4 hours behind the UK, for instance, instead of 5 hours.)

CHATS (use hashtag #SHADEboys. Easiest way to follow is at Tweetchat):

10-11:30am: #SHADEboys + Aura chat. Come ask Logan, Zachary, and Aura anything!

Each question earns one entry into the SHINE ARC drawing, even if I don't have time to answer all of them.

I'll also give away 5 signed TeamKilt SHADE series bookplates, which are exclusively available at TeamKilt events (i.e., they can't be requested like regular bookplates). There are a total of 9 different designs, so you can collect a bunch by coming to the different events.

7-8:30pm: #SHADEboys music party! This one'll have an Irish theme, naturally. Share your own videos and earn an entry into the SHINE ARC drawing. I'll also give away 5 TeamKilt SHADE bookplates.

#SHADEboys chat giveaways are open internationally.

------


So for the "Kiss Me I'm Irish" giveaway, I asked each blogger to either discuss their favorite thing(s) about Ireland, or tell their favorite kiss story (and it's not too late to add your own post if you like).

Since my husband and my mom read my blog, I'm gonna skip the kissing and go with the Irish thing. I am part Irish, O'Donnell on my Nana's side (and that's pronounced NEH-neh, not NAN-uh like short for banana, no way), so one day I would love to visit County Donegal and see our castle.


Not bad, yeah? Though it's part of the Republic of Ireland, Co. Donegal is even farther north than most of Northern Ireland. The slogan is "It's different up here." Many Donegal folks still speak Gaelic, the Ulster variety that is similar to Scots Gaelic, and they have a lot of ties to Scotland, especially the city of Glasgow.

Basically what I'm saying is I WANT TO GO TO THERE.

But that's not what I'm here to talk about and give away. (What? Did you think I was giving away a castle? Ha! It's not even ours anymore, since the Flight of the Earls.) I'm here to talk about one of my favorite bands, a band that inspired Shade in its earliest days:




The Keeley Brothers, (the up-and-coming band in Shade, if you haven't read it), were largely modeled after Flogging Molly. I watched hours of their videos again and again, in an attempt to capture their amazing energy and reproduce it on the page.

Frontman Logan Keeley worships Flogging Molly. When he dies and becomes a ghost, he begs his parents to scatter his ashes at the Hill of Tara and at Molly Malone’s, the Los Angeles bar where Flogging Molly first played. His fiercest hope when he was alive was to continue the tradition of Irish-American punk rock and lend it his own skate-punk flavor.

Even after Logan’s death, Flogging Molly remains a big part of his musical awareness. He sings Aura to sleep with the painfully appropriate “If I Ever Leave This World Alive.”





I saw them in concert last year, and when this song came on I started to cry, just like I always did at home. I mean, look at this first verse:

If I ever leave this world alive
I'll thank you for the things you did in my life
If I ever leave this world alive
I'll come back down and sit beside your feet tonight.

Wherever I am you'll always be
More than just a memory
If I ever leave this world alive

It's Logan and Aura in Shade, comforting each other after his death. I remembered how raw those feelings were when I wrote that book, especially at the beginning when I was discovering the characters and their story. I felt it all again, over three years later.

But then when the band got to that last part, where it goes:

She says, I'm okay
I'm all right.
Though you have gone from my life.
You said that it would
Now everything should
be all right.

My tears dried up, and I started screaming the lyrics with the rest of the crowd. For me, for Aura, it was finally the song of strength it was meant to be.

Because eventually, everything is all right.

---

Wanna find out exactly how it becomes all right in Shine? Enter my giveaway here and all the other giveaways on the hop, for your chance to win the final ARC.

My prize is

1) a copy of the Flogging Molly Live at the Greek Theatre DVD/double-CD set. I have it and I love it!

AND

2) a Keeley Brothers tote bag, signed sticker, and signed button (the button with the black background, currently only available to Street Team members)

AND

3) A signed paperback of Shade.

To enter, leave a comment below telling me something you love about Ireland or the Irish. Double entries to those who name Irish bands, because I'm always looking for new ones.

Deadline: 11:59pm Eastern Daylight Time, Tuesday, March 20. International entries welcome.

EDITED TO ADD: And the winner of this giveaway is...Julie W! The drawing for the final SHINE ARC will take place after 12:01am Friday, March 23. EEP!

Hope to see you at the chats, and if not, have a fantastic St. Patrick's Day weekend!

GO TEAM KILT!

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Thursday, March 08, 2012

Team Kilt St. Patrick's Day party


Time for another Team Kilt party! The last one on Burns Day/Night was a ton of fun, and we'd like to do something similar for Logan's heritage (not to mention mine), too.

And we wanna give away the very last ARC of SHINE. I'm mailing all the rest tomorrow--eep!

Speaking of which, the winner of the Burns Night SHINE ARC is...Kimberly Callegan at Living Fictitiously! Woo-hoo! Kim entered in about every way possible, but it was her entry for the Aura in Scotland contest that got drawn from the enormous virtual hat. Thanks to everyone who participated in the chats and giveaways!

Now, for St. Patrick's Day, things'll be a little simpler. There'll be two SHADEboys Twitter chats plus a giveaway blog hop.

All events are Eastern Daylight Time, Saturday, March 17. (Europeans, please note the time change since the US starts daylight savings time a couple weeks before you do. We'll be only 4 hours behind the UK, for instance, instead of 5 hours.)


CHATS (use hashtag #SHADEboys. Easiest way to follow is at Tweetchat):

10-11:30am: #SHADEboys + Aura chat. Come ask Logan, Zachary, and Aura anything!

Each question earns one entry into the SHINE ARC drawing, even if I don't have time to answer all of them.

I'll also give away 5 signed TeamKilt SHADE series bookplates, which are exclusively available at TeamKilt events (i.e., they can't be requested like regular bookplates). There are a total of 9 different designs, so you can collect a bunch by coming to the different events.

7-8:30pm: #SHADEboys music party! This one'll have an Irish theme, naturally. Share your own videos and earn an entry into the SHINE ARC drawing. I'll also give away 5 TeamKilt SHADE bookplates.

#SHADEboys chat giveaways are open internationally.


"KISS ME I'M IRISH" GIVEAWAY HOP

Like the one we did for Burns Night, the giveaway hop will offer bloggers a chance to to win a SHINE ARC, celebrate Ireland, and offer something awesome to their readers.

On Saturday, March 17, write a blog post about your favorite thing about Ireland OR your favorite kiss story and hold a giveaway.

Your favorite thing about Ireland could be:
  • a movie
  • a book
  • music
  • food
  • a painting/photograph of a site or landscape
Your kiss story could be:
  • your own
  • a friend's (or a "friend's" if it's really you and you're embarrassed to admit it)
  • your favorite kissing scene from a book or movie
Each blogger sets her or his own rules for the giveaway (i.e., international eligibility, time limits, what people have to do to enter). All I ask is that you draw a winner and send their name to me by Thursday, March 22. I'll put each of your winners into my grand prize drawing.

Here's where it gets fun. Each blogger who hosts a giveaway also gets 2 ENTRIES into the grand prize drawing (for an ARC of SHINE).

The "Kiss Me I'm Irish" giveaway hop will be hosted at KiltandKeeley.com, the fabulous SHADE fan site. EDITED TO ADD: The post is up now for your linking pleasure!

Official hashtag for the day's events: #TKStPats. Follow it to get all the latest updates.

I think that's it. Any questions?


GO TEAM KILT!




PS: Thanks to Brooke at Brooke Reports for designing the logo up top, based on the official Keeley Brothers logo designed by Stephanie Smith, featured on all the lovely swag at the SHADE CafePress shop, some of which will definitely be given away on St. Patrick's Day.

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NEW RELEASE!

This Side of Salvation

This Side of Salvation, Jeri's new contemporary YA novel!

Now available in hardcover and ebook.

“A smart, well-rounded, and unpredictable tale...bringing to light issues of belief versus free will, spirit versus body, and family versus self.” —Booklist, **Starred Review**

More about THIS SIDE OF SALVATION

Order from Indie Bound, Barnes & Noble, or Amazon.com.

NOW AVAILABLE!

Shattered

"Shattered," a Shade novella!

Available here on this website as a free download in all major ebook formats, as well as a printable PDF (now with photos!).

More about "Shattered"

About the author

Jeri Smith-Ready

Jeri Smith-Ready is a Maryland author of books for teens and adults.

Learn more about Jeri...

Photo © Geoffrey C. Baker

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