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Tracy Bilen, young adult author

ARC GIVEAWAY OF HUNTLEY FITZPATRICK’S WHAT I THOUGHT WAS TRUE

Over at YA Fusion, we’re giving away an ARC of Huntley Fitzpatrick’s What I Thought Was True! Plus we have an interview with Huntley.

Here’s one of our questions and her answer:

Can you tell us a little about your path to publication?
It really does feel as though I followed the yellow brick road. I’d wanted to be a writer since I was five, but wound up becoming (and loving being) an editor for years. When we started having kids, I left my job and we moved from NYC to coastal Massachusetts. Then, a few years ago, I suddenly woke up and HAD to write a book. So I did—carrying the manuscript everywhere, writing on the beach and at playgrounds and school parking lots. I found an agent willing to look at what I turned out, and wrote two manuscripts that didn’t work. Then My Life Next Door, which was totally different than those two but somehow clicked with the agent, then with my publisher, Penguin-Dial for Young Readers. I am honestly still pinching myself that that happened…let alone that I’ve been able to keep writing since then. I don’t think I’ll get over the shock of having a lifelong dream come true, ever.

 

QUERY CRITIQUE GIVEAWAY

This week at YA Fusion, I interviewed the editors at Manuscript Critique Services. Check out the interview and see how you could win a query critique here.

And for a chance to win books by AC Gaughen, Tiffany Schmidt, and me, visit AC Gaughen’s blog!

 

Astronomy Lab, Waldorf Astoria Red Cake, and Worst Case Scenarios

Question: What do an astronomy lab, Waldorf Astoria red cake, and the Worst Case Scenario Survival Handbook all have in common?

Answer: They’re all mentioned on my newly updated FAQ page!

Other tidbits include:

Where I met my agent, my German cover, and the inspiration behind my debut novel.

To get you started, here’s one of the questions and its answer:

What advice would you pass along to those of us who haven’t gotten that first book published?

Try to stop writing. (I know, you’re ready to kill me now – how is that inspiring??!). But I’m serious, in a way. Throughout my writing journey, I tried to stop writing (why did I want to publish a book anyway?) But I couldn’t stop. I always came back to it. So if you try to stop writing and you just can’t, you’ll know that you were meant to do it (and that your mind won’t give you any peace if you don’t). If that’s the case, go with it. Keep writing. Keep querying. Write something new while you’re querying (I wrote What She Left Behind while I was querying a book that didn’t sell). Join the professional organizations for your genre. Find a critique group with people who write in the same genre or for the same age-group. And don’t give up. Think back to when you were looking for your first (serious) job. It may have seemed impossible at first. You kept trying different things until you hit upon something that worked. And now when you look back on in, it doesn’t seem that bad. The publishing process is probably going to take you way longer than it took you to find that first job. But it’s worth it. And you can do it!

For more questions and answers, visit my FAQ page!

And if you missed my interview with K.A. Barson, author of 45 POUNDS (MORE OR LESS), head on over to YA Fusion!

Butter, anyone?

Over at YA Fusion this week is my interview with Erin Jade Lange, author of Butter. And if you want to know What Happens Next, click here for my interview with author Colleen Clayton.

For teachers and book discussion leaders, here’s my Michigan Reading Association handout, with links to book discussion guides for nineteen 2012 YA titles. And with this video,Young Adult Books Central is hoping to get a YABC bookmobile to bring YA swag to book events throughout the country! In the past few months, I’ve had a great time talking to young people at Lapeer East and West High Schools and at Fenton High. I also enjoyed talking at the Troy Library. At the Michigan Reading Association author breakfast, Ruth McNally Barshaw drew caricatures of all of us as how she imagined us as kids. So sweet!  And then I listened to her talk about her incredible writer/artist journey. I’ll be part of the WNBA Detroit author panel at Novi Library on Wednesday April 24 at 6:30 and will be giving a workshop for teen writers at the Rochester Hills Public Library on June 8 at 2:30.

Super Scary YAmazing Race: Halloween Edition!

It’s time again for the YAmazing Race (Halloween Edition!) with the Apocalypsies. Please see the Apocalypsie website for all the rules and cool prizes (with a signed copy of What She Left Behind among them!) Be careful not to jump the gun: the contest runs from Monday October 22, 2012 at noon EST through Monday October 29, 2012 at noon EST. You can find the answer to the quiz question about What She Left Behind in both the synopsis and the book trailer (if you haven’t seen it yet you don’t want to miss it!)

BONUS CONTEST: I’m giving away one What She Left Behind tote bag and one T-shirt (medium and large sizes available) - if you want to enter, please leave your contact info in the comments section of this post OR send it to me through the “contact” button at the top of this page.

Here’s the synopsis of What She Left Behind:

“Don’t even think of leaving…I will find you,” he whispered. “Guaranteed.”

Sara and her mom have a plan to finally escape Sara’s abusive father. But when her mom doesn’t show up as expected, Sara’s terrified. Her father says that she’s on a business trip, but Sara knows he’s lying. Her mom is missing—and her dad had something to do with it.

With each day that passes, Sara’s more on edge. Her friends know that something’s wrong, but she won’t endanger anyone else with her secret. And with her dad growing increasingly violent, Sara must figure out what happened to her mom before it’s too late…for them both.

And now for the book trailer:

What She Left Behind


For the next stop on the YAmazing Race, please go to Lana Krumwiede’s website!

If you had to choose one song to portray What She Left Behind, what would it be?

The answer is in my interview at Born Bookish!

T-shirt winner!

The YAmazing race is now closed. The t-shirt winner is Jaime Rainwater!! Look for an e-mail from me, Jaime. Thanks to everyone for your comments and for participating!

YAmazing Race and MY BOOK BIRTHDAY!!!!!!!!!

Hooray!! Welcome to my stop on the YAmazing Race: a week long blog race with over 50 Apocalypsie debut authors!!!! If you need more info about how the race works, please go to the Apocalypies Page. THE CONTEST BEGINS AT NOON EST WEDNESDAY, MAY 2 AND ENDS AT NOON ON MAY 8.

Tuesday, May 1st was the book birthday for my YA novel, What She Left Behind. Be sure to watch the book trailer!

As a bonus contest, I’ll send a What She Left Behind T-shirt to one lucky person who comments below with an e-mail address and shirt size (either adult medium or large)!! (US entrants only please; same dates as the YAmazing Race)

Here’s the back cover copy of What She Left Behind (HINT: IT CONTAINS THE ANSWER TO A QUESTION ON THE BLOG HOP QUIZ!)

“Don’t even think of leaving…I will find you,” he whispered. “Guaranteed.”

Sara and her mom have a plan to finally escape Sara’s abusive father. But when her mom doesn’t show up as expected, Sara’s terrified. Her father says that she’s on a business trip, but Sara knows he’s lying. Her mom is missing—and her dad had something to do with it.

With each day that passes, Sara’s more on edge. Her friends know that something’s wrong, but she won’t endanger anyone else with her secret. And with her dad growing increasingly violent, Sara must figure out what happened to her mom before it’s too late…for them both.

GOOD LUCK TO ALL! Your next stop is Susanne Winnacker’s page (can’t wait to read her book!)

BOOK TRAILER!!! AND CHANCES TO WIN WHAT SHE LEFT BEHIND!

My book trailer has arrived!!!!!! I love it!!! Thanks so much, Madison!! You can watch it here

I also did some fun interviews today!

At Literary Rambles: YOU CAN WIN A COPY OF WHAT SHE LEFT BEHIND OVER THERE!

Also at YA Fusion: YET ONE MORE CHANCE TO WIN A COPY!!

Character word association

Today’s stop: character word association with Sara at I like these books