Monday, December 30, 2013

DiSaW is Currently FREE for Kindles

Yep, yep, yep, if you haven't seen on the Tumblog, Dance in Shadow and Whisper has been remastered and is up as a free Kindle ebook! Go grab it.

Thanks to a ton of support from the Tumblog writing community, we're number SEVEN in the Paranormal/ Urban fantasy free books page on Amazon, which puts us on the very front page of that section. We're totally floored by this, like wow, I don't even know what to do with myself. My brain can basically only think in forms of "!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!?"

Also, for anyone who has a Goodreads account, a remastered paperback (now with a super rad matte cover) copy, which is also SIGNED, is up for a giveaway. Wowowowow.

More updates to come!

Friday, December 27, 2013

Book 3 Taste a Thousand Deaths is (finally) Available!

WELL, it’s certainly been a while. A lot of chaotic life things happened that caused us to postpone our original release date — seriously, I can’t believe we managed to even hit a December release after all that happened. I might talk about that later on, because whew.

I’ve still got a million things to catch up on, but I also want to mention that if you haven’t gotten your digital copy of DiSaW yet (or if you have the first edition originally published in June), we’ll be holding free DiSaW days through Amazon this weekend in celebration of book three’s release!!!!!! I’ll post when the book is officially free.

I’ll talk more about the newly released second edition of DiSaW later, so until then, get your Kindle copy of book 3, Taste a Thousand Deaths! I hear word that it’s a pretty darn okay book. Idle gossip and such.


Wednesday, October 30, 2013

A Tip On Making a Self-Published Cover

My Favorite Cover Tip: Textures

I love covers. I love making covers. I especially love that moment in creating a cover where everything just suddenly comes together and the clouds part and angels sing. I'm absolutely no expert, but the cover for my first book in the Marionettes series got some really positive attention for standing out amongst a slew of professionally made Young Adult fiction covers. That's some pretty solid cred right there.

So, in this little image-heavy article, I'll explain how I used the above textures to take my image and make it into a cover.

Monday, October 28, 2013

Yep, we used to work at a haunt

Is that something I could put on a resume?

Okay, albeit it was a small-scale haunt held every Halloween by my old boss, a family friend, but he's a serious Halloween haunt hobbyist. Each year, he and his family would build their house into a walk-through haunt for the heckuvit. They'd start planning in August just to have it ready for one day at the end of October, and each year had a new theme.

(Got some minor makeup gore in this post down below, so bewaaaaaaare.)

I'm not really a haunt-type person. Little me, I'm an introvert. But, despite that, I also participated in stage plays and musicals every year of my high school career. Kinda odd, I guess.

But scaring people is a whole lot different than speaking onstage in front of an audience. If anything, it's actually harder. It's a lot more intimate, and the audience is expecting a whole lot more out of the performance from every actor.

It's pretty demanding, even physically. My bossman has worked plenty of professional haunts, and he'd wake up the next morning sore and beat -- and got the worst cold of his life one time (misssserable). The first time I participated in his haunt, I bruised my hand up to my arm just to create the perfect slap-of-flesh-against-hard-surface tune. Those were some wicked bruises. Ah, good times.

Victoria's first go at the haunt utilized her vocal chords to the utmost capacity. As in, she screamed. Shattered glass with those screams. And every time my boss has his birthday bash with the whole family present, everyone always remembers her by that scream.

I mean, the makeup's convincing enough. I'm rubbing my neck even as I try very hard not to look at that picture. (I'm not a big gore person either. Yikes. Give me a psychological horror film, okay, but blood and guts? I'll make some embarrassing noises I'd rather not talk about.)

Just to give an idea of how intense her scream was, as soon as people entered her "chamber", so to speak, and she let loose that deadly shriek, people would fall over themselves and create some awesome fire hazards. Ah, yes. Memories.

After my first couple haunts, I got to be one of the walkers, antagonizing the line and perusing the haunt at my own will. At least then I could chose the people I wanted to approach, and I mean, a good and proper doll-like role was perfect.

Yo, also, that's totally my real hair. That's 100% my own hair attached to my head, and that was the end of the night after it had deflated from the elements.

I'd walk around barefoot just like that. All I had to worry about was dodging out of the way of shoes when kids went screaming.

And when I say "kids", I mean grown adults, as well as adult men. The guys were the most satisfying to get to wet their pants, I have to say. They come in with the most swagger, and then leave with the least.

But, this picture doesn't really show my face. So let's take A CLOSER LOOK.

Ah, yes. There we are, still getting ready. I hadn't emptied a can of hairspray into my hair just yet, but don't I look like just a dear? Almost as inviting as he looks. That's a guy you'd introduce to your parents, for sure.


But, if there was one thing I learned through these haunts, it was how to effectively scare people. There's "shocked scared", but there's also "buildup scared". When I write, the buildup scared is my favorite. I love some good tension, the "ohshit ohshit ohshit" moment before the explosive "OHSHIT".

I mean, "Interlude" is a perfect Halloween story, and we constructed it with my typical breakneck pacing style. Mmm, sweet, suspenseful tension.

Maybe next year we'll be able to market Interlude as a perfect Halloween story. For now, we're focusing on our marketing plan for November and December to get some momentum going -- and, as I've mentioned on the writing tumblog and blog, I'll be doing NaNoWriMo this year to get a head start on writing book 4.

Awesome times ahead.

Everyone stay safe this year!

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

INTERLUDE is now available!

SO, as you can see, INTERLUDE is now available! You can get your digital copy through the Amazon or B&N store. Formatting the paperback will take a little bit longer as I take care of some other priorities first.

Also, we DID mention that we were going to make the novella free — but we’re not sure if that’s breaching the Amazon contract. I understand it a little better now and have a better idea of how Amazon’s price-matching system works. Seems to be a rather fuzzy conflict there.

Instead, what what we’ll be doing is giving away free digital editions from now until October 31st. All you have to do is go to our contact page and send us an email, and make sure to put “Interlude ebook request” in the subject line. Let us know if you need either a Mobi (Kindle) or Epub (Nook) version or any instructions on how to transfer the ebook from your computer to your e-reader.

We’ll only be doing this through the last days of October, so make sure you get your email into us!

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Book 3 Cover Reveal + New Updates!

Yo, I meant to update about seven times already, but I kept getting distracted by -- shockingly -- the novella and book 3! But since intros are boring and totally skippable (shh, it's a word), let me just jump into the most exciting part:

WOO! Look at that cover -- aw, yisss. I'll be updating Goodreads with the new entry soon. With how things are going, we're right on track for a December release, and we've got much more room to stretch than we did with book 2 (which we finished just days before September 1st).

I'm not supposed to play favorites, but if I were to play favorites, then I would say book three is my absolute favorite so far. Don't ask me why or else I'll start gushing spoilers.

The manuscript is currently sitting with betas, who are very nearly complete with the novella. Once the novella's back with us, we have one last run-through before it's all set to go.

After all these months revising, it'll be a relief to actually start writing book four. My fingers are itching for some day-long, 10k marathons that finished the original 120k words of book 3 in about a month's time. Those were the days where I wrote until my fingers hurt. Aw, yes. Good times.

(Tip: if you're going to write until your fingers hurt, make sure your hands, wrists, and forearms are level so you don't get carpal tunnel, okay? Carpal tunnel is bad.)

On a final note, I've finally put together all the songs for the first book's soundtrack. I'll make a little banner and try to figure out the mystery that is 8Track and post it soon! Also, since this cover involved some more intricate changes than the others, and nine variations, I'll of course have another cover process post in the future!

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Holy Freaking Curse Words in YA

I'm not really a heavy subscriber on the profound language of the curse word. I throw out the occasional bomb when I get angry, but it stays fairly PG13 (perhaps a little less so on the internet). I've always been like this, despite how my mother cursed (and still curses) like a sailor. It's just my personal decision, and I don't condemn anyone for making their own decision.

I'd be out of a girlfriend if I did.

So, in the spirit of banned book week -- someone told me the other day, "Cursing is a sign of lower intelligence and a lack of a command of the English language."

I got puffy. Super puffy.

I said, "I can curse all I want and still be fucking eloquent."

He didn't expect me to say that. Let's just put it that way.

To me, cursing is simply another way of communication, but the words themselves mean little after societal context is taken away. "Kill" is a dangerous word, and it's dangerous by its neutral definition alone. A child can read the definition of "kill" and know it's a bad thing. "Shit" is, well, poop. An angry word for poop. And it's the "angry" part that people generally don't like, even if a child reads the neutral definition and only giggles because poop is funny.

Because of this, there are appropriate times and places for this type of expression. But "appropriate" is sort of subjective, isn't it? Who gets to decide what language is "appropriate" for young adults?

My characters curse. They do. Well, not all of them do as frequently as others. Some of them throw out the occasional bomb as I do: when under excruciatingly uncomfortable situations where "shoot" just simply won't suffice. Other characters get a thousand times more creative.

(Seriously, sometimes I sit and stare out the window, brainstorming some of these curses because, wow, they're crazy.)

But the fact is simple: for me to censor or reduce a character's cursing is painfully out of character for them. It's in their character to curse the way they do, and my responsibility as a writer is to write honestly and truthfully. They curse. Some more than others. Some a lot more than others. But this is them. Good young adult fiction should always be honest to teens and never hold back, just because they're teens.

I've always considered Marionettes to be Upper YA for its edgier themes and language. I know I might have been a bit surprised if I'd picked up a book like this when I was a teen, but to be perfectly honest, the teens of today are not the teens of my day. Seriously. My teen section in Barnes and Noble was an itty-bitty thing. Now, it's growing at a rate that bookstores don't even know what to do with.

Also, teens are tougher now. They're more independent and, holy cow, they're a whole lot more aware of the world than I'd been. And just like with anything else, teens will decide for themselves if the language of the curse word is something they want to practice. Censoring it in fiction doesn't keep it from them -- it just makes them ask, "Why is this character saying 'shoot' instead of 'shit'?"

Sunday, September 22, 2013

The Paperback of Book 2 is Available on Amazon!

The paperback of Fracture the Spider's Web is all up and available in the Amazon store! It looks nice, right? All bright and shiny and freaking awesome.

So far, for some reason, Amazon has the digital and the paperback as separate listings. You can search by title or series name and you should get both listings, so make sure to scroll a little bit down and the paperback listing should show up.

The first round of revisions for book 3 are done -- all I need to do is go back, tweak a few more things, and then it's off to the betas! There's also, of course, Interlude, the novella that I've just started revising. Compared to these massive manuscripts I'm used to, the novella will be easy-peasy.

That's all for now. Stay awesome.

Friday, September 13, 2013

Some Updates and Another Announcement!

WHEW. It's been a while since our last update, and even longer since we talked about anything fun. It isn't for lack of fun things -- noooo way. In fact, we have a ton of new things. Let's start with the most exciting:

Yep, the Marionettes series is going to have its very own little novella set after the events of Fracture the Spider's Web and before book 3, and we'll have more details about the story later on. Here's some of the things we CAN tell you about it:

  • The release date is tentatively set for this upcoming October. We're chugging along on it and we REALLY want to have it out by then. Why? Well...let's juts say it's perfect for October. 
  • Just like the Dance in Shadow and Whisper & Fracture the Spider's Web, the novella will feature multiple character viewpoints. The best part? Everyone will be in FIRST PERSON, just like Kali.
  • The digital editions will be only 99 cents, but for a small window at the end of October, we'll be giving away digital copies for free
Writing this story happened spontaneously, but we've been having so much fun and laughing and crying our faces off. We're so excited to share this piece of the world and let you all get closer to the characters you've already gotten to know.

We'll update again when we have the synopsis, release date, and Goodreads page! Make sure you follow the Tumblog for piece-by-piece updates.

Next up --

The proof for Fracture the Spider's Web finally arrived!

It looks pretty awesome, but I'm going to make it look a tad awesomer before we officially make the paperback available. I'm even really proud of how the back cover came out?? It's pretty slick.

Now, I have to go through each page and make sure everything's beautiful. Once that's finished, I'll announce on the Tumblog that it's finally available!

If you haven't yet, you can add FtSW on Goodreads. Still gotta update the sidebar with new links herpaderp.

Added two new sprites!

Ave and Elliot are official additions to the Adoptables page in celebration of the second book. Geez, so many of the boys are just so unamused at being a sprite. Perk up, guys.

Revisions of book three have begun!

We took a brief vacation and now we're back to work. This book is my FAVORITE -- it's a secret I can't really keep. Events came together so naturally and the pacing was thrilling to work. Seriously, even I wrote myself into nervousness and anxiety of, "Holycow, what's going to happen next?!???" The characters are fantastic in this book, and they came out in ways I didn't expect them to. I'm really excited just to READ it again.

The tentative release date for book 3 is December, and if we finish with time to spare this time, hopefully we can send out actual digital arcs. Luckily, I don't think we'll be making the types of changes to book 3 that we had to make for book 2 to be as brilliant and complete as it is, which is super exciting.

I just really love the third book, okay. Don't judge me.

Anyway, that's it for now! More fun stuff later!

Sunday, September 1, 2013

Fracture the Spider's Web Release Day!

Carmi is really just the go-to guy for adding a splash of excitement to anything.

ANYWAY! SO, HERE'S THE DAY! I'm posting this into the future, so, as a head's up, I hit the "publish" button on both Kindle and Nook, but it can take anywhere from 12-48 hours for it to become active.

If it doesn't show up in your Amazon/B&N search, check back again later. When I see both links live, I'll make another little update on the tumblog.

So, in short, I hope you guys enjoy! As soon as I can, I'll submit the book to Goodreads and announce when that's live as well! Thanks SO much for everyone's support -- it really makes us feel just all warm and fuzzy inside.

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Cover Talk pt. II

So, I've finally finished the fourth draft of Fracture the Spider's Web (AH, I can finally use the whole title now instead of the ambiguous "book two"), and now Victoria's in the process of copy edits, which means we're on schedule for the super exciting September 1st release date.

Since I talked about the cover of Dance in Shadow and Whisper, I thought it'd be fun to go into the process of this cover. The process was actually a bit different from how I though together the first cover, because now I had to think about how to carry the same theme of the first to the second.

An important part of covers for series is that they have to look cohesive. There's got to be some visually unifying devices that clearly identifies this cover as definitely part of the series.

I mean, that's totally daunting. Let me tell you.

When Victoria and I took our trip to Pittsburgh, I photographed everything. I got every angle of different buildings and cityscapes so that I had a wide range of pictures to choose from. Here's what the original base image of the cover looks like:

On its own, it's painfully ordinary, right? But, by the end, I had transformed the base image to look like this:

Up close, the building basically looks like a vector, but for Pittsburghians, the PPG building is easily recognizable. The building is such an awesome design, so how could I resist using it for this particular cover?

What I ended up doing was making a "sketch" of the second and third covers to make sure I could manage some key similar characteristics (yes, that means I've thrown the first draft of the third cover together already too!), so here's what the sketch looks like:

Welllll, I got the basic idea down, and that was the point. One of the first noticeable differences, of course, is that "web" was originally sketched out. I ended up scrapping that halfway through drawing out the letters because "web" was just hogging way too much of the composition. The letters were very heavy, stealing so much of the spotlight that the other letters seemed almost out of place.

So I decided to use regular Georgia for "web", and in the end it worked out well because I was able to place the series name much better-like.

This time around, I also decided to use an image for the back cover, since Fracture the Spider's Web has two sides. Here's the image I took out in the middle of Nowheresville:

I took a bunch of pictures of these trees, but the clouds were moving so fast that each snap is different from the next. I loved this one in particular (the first one I took, actually) because the cloud shapes mimic the shape of the trees, forming a lovely composition on its own. Here's how I transformed it:

It's TOTALLY distorted  by this point -- and also flipped. I did this so that the colors matched the front cover as closely as possible, and I flipped the whole image in its final form to get the right kind of symmetry.

Like this, the picture doesn't look very cool. At all. Looks like novice Photoshop farting around. BUT, with all the other layers on top of it, here's what the final product looks like without text:

Textures really make a difference! And the sunburst? Well, you'll have to read and find out!

(And, for the record, I loved being out in the middle of Nowheresville. It's so different from the smoggy California I'm used to!)

Saturday, August 24, 2013

Book 2: Fracture the Spider's Web - COVER REVEAL

So, as we mentioned, today's the big day for the cover reveal of BOOK TWO. I've been SO EXCITED to show this to you all since I finished it last month, I only hope it meets the expectations that the first book set!

And since you probably skipped right over this, here, just take it already:

Fracture the Spider's Web is the sequel to Dance in Shadow and Whisper and will be out in Kindle and Nook formats September 1st (barring no setbacks from a higher power, since we definitely can't plan ahead for that).

And, if you haven't yet gotten your copy of Dance in Shadow and Whisper yet, we'll be discounting the digital versions to 99 cents. We set the price to change, but it can take up to 24 hrs for it to set in, so make sure you check first!

Like, holy cow, 99 cents, that's pretty sweet. BUT, we'll only have the discount until 11:59 p.m. on the 30th of August, a day before the release of the second book. So, if you've been waffling on getting your copy, now's a darn good time to do it.

Here's what the paperback will look like:

Eeeee I can't wait to put this up on the sidebar! We'll have the official release date of the paperback later. Updates to come!

Also, if you've read the first book, you can find the summary of the second book in the "read more". If you HAVEN'T read the first book, ohmygosh, don't read the summary. It'll be spoiler CITY!

Sunday, August 11, 2013

New Tumblog!

So, now that I've finished the third draft of book 2, I decided to finally put together a Tumblog for the series! I made a fancy header for it and everything. Go check out how beautiful it is.

Geez, am I going to make a twitter or a facebook page for it? Maybe. We'll see. So much to keep up with!

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

The Importance of Gender in the Marionettes Saga

My friend and I were once walking down the Great Hill of Despair (AKA, our high school was built into the hills, and her mother parked down at the bottom because traffic was always atrocious -- which often meant a long walk in unbearable chaparral heat). She had been reading the first iteration of the Marionettes Saga, and she asked me in her signature forthcoming way, "Is Yuuhi gay?"

I was all a-stutter then, because he wasn't gay. He had tendencies that weren't the norm for traditional masculinity, but I didn't know how to argue this when I was only seventeen and Tumblr didn't exist yet. How could I defend something I didn't yet understand?

The second iteration provided a more profound Yuuhi, and I say "profound" because he was twice as much himself, freer about his interests and what he liked. He still wasn't gay. I still couldn't explain it.

Even as I was writing the current iteration of the first book, I still didn't quite understand it, and I had pretty much given up trying. But after Tumblr happened in my life, I finally understood. A friend of ours, and now one of our critique partners, read the near-final draft of Dance in Shadow and Whisper, and she was also just as frank when she asked, "Is Yuuhi gay?"

By this point, I could finally explain him. FINALLY. Not once had I ever tried to change him (he certainly wouldn't let me), but now I was in the right place to say, "No. He's gender fluid."

In traditional YA, especially of the urban fantasy and paranormal romance kind, the love interest(s) tend to hit the usual tropes when it comes to masculinity and sexuality. Yuuhi doesn't. He dresses nicely and could predict for you what will be "in style" for the upcoming season, and he knows how to balance a silhouette in his fashion doodles. He enjoys shopping and he could put on a mean dress and rock some mascara.

But that doesn't make him gay.

(Yes, he's bisexual -- he knows what he likes and he's 100% open about it, but it's safer to say that he likes everything.)

It took me a long time to understand that gender identification does not equal sexual orientation. Once I finally got to this point, I could confidently explain why he is the way he is. He knew it all along, which was why he never let me change him -- he just had to wait for me to catch up.

Most of the characters in both the Marionettes and Monsters series don't have rigid sexual orientation, that part was easy to figure out. The harder part was finding out how they saw themselves when it came to the signs on public bathrooms that marked the women's and the men's.

Kali was my guide in the first book in helping me understand how she identified her gender. Her sister acts as her sole feminine role model throughout her life, and while Kali emulates her, she's also self-conscious about how she doesn't look quite like her sister, and she gets it into her head that dresses don't look the way dresses should on her body.

Kali does a lot of physical training and toning, and it shows on her body. Her sister, however, is slender and more like what Kali thinks is supposed to be feminine. So, when she dons a dress, she feels like she's playing dress-up. That doesn't mean she doesn't like to wear dresses, but it does mean that she isn't confident in the way she looks in dresses.

I love this part of Kali, and it gets tackled throughout the later books. She has to find out that there is more than one kind of beautiful. It's definitely a message that I needed to hear in high school. I wished I'd had.

I'm stoked that the inclusiveness of gay characters is starting to gain traction, what with gay characters getting less side treatment and also dying less, but the theme of gender is often largely ignored in mainstream YA fiction. I can't tell you how many times I picked up an UF/PR book hoping to find a gay main character, but I can tell you I haven't yet picked up an UF/PR book thinking I might find a gender fluid main character.

At least I get to write about them.

Friday, August 2, 2013

Preparing for Shipping & Book 2 Stuff!

We've got a PILE of things to ship out after the giveaways. Unfortunately, two of our winners did not reply within 48 hours, so I had to draw two new names. Hopefully I'll hear back so we can finally announce the official winners on Rafflecopter and then take our load of envelopes and drop some serious cash getting these into the mailosphere.

At least then we're done on spending money for marketing this book (especially since we don't have much!), but then we're going to repeat the process all over again when book two comes out. Sigh!

Speaking of which, some updates.

Revision Two of Book 2

I'm already a third of the way through the second revision and working out all the issues Victoria and I pulled out of the initial draft. I've also been adding new scenes while cutting down on fat -- and the new scenes add that little extra dimension to this book that I've always thought was missing. I'm soooo glad for that. It's a big boost to the story.

It'll probably take me another week or so before I finish the second draft, and then it's off to beta readers, which is also, indeed, very exciting. Then, depending on the feedback we get, I may have to do another revision and an edit or just a half revision along with the edit.

Which brings me to my next point!

Book Two Cover Reveal and Release Date

THIS is going to be soon. Very soon. The cover is completely finished, and I'm thinking of setting the release date at a more comfortable time so we're not racing and struggling to get everything finished. I want us to be able to take our time -- and also to get the paperback out at the same time as the digital versions.

Hopefully I'll also be able to contact more book review bloggers in that time, too! And also be able to send digital ARCs to the lovely bloggers who've already read and reviewed and loved the first book.

Then, it's onward to book 3! Holy cow *sweats*.

Sales of DiSaW

We've been very lucky so far to have sales at all, and even a few superfans. It's been such an honor and we get so awkward but happy but also awkward. But, like we've said before, we also know this is going to be a marathon, and it's going to take time to build up some momentum!

So here's approximately how it's all been going down:

Nook: 5
Kindle: 13
Total -  18

Nook: 4
Kindle: 9
Paperback: 5
Total - 18

Grand Total: 36

Seriously, we're super privileged to have had this many sales in our first two months. When I did my indie pub research, I found a large majority of authors who only sold in the single digits, pretty much just to friends and family. We'll see how August goes! STAYING OPTIMISTIC!


Oh, I also forgot to mention that I added an adoptables page! That way you can add your favorite characters to your blog or what have you. I mean, how cute are they??

How could you not want to have these guys on your page? There's other icons as well, so go check out the page!


Thanks x's 9000 to Kristen for the awesome shout-out on her blog! She's a long-time friend of ours and we've been a follower of her blog since it was a little baby thing. She also gave us a sweet review on goodreads!

That's been what's up recently. We'll have a cover reveal and release date SOON! (Really, I'm just excited to have the little cover icon on my sidebar. Eheheheh.) Until then, stay awesome.

Thursday, July 25, 2013

Some Awesome New Reviews

And by awesome, I mean awesome. We now have five ratings and five reviews on Goodreads for a joint score of 4.4, which is pretty damn stellar.

We've been so lucky to have so many great reviews this far, it's a total honor to hear all these positive things from such fantastic bloggers, and you guys should all go check out our awesome reviewers and their blogs! Spread the love.

Dabin of So Many Books, So Little Time

Rating: 4 stars

Our favorite line: "I found Kali's lack of social skills hilarious at moments, it was adorable to watch her blunder around :)" [via Dance in Shadow and Whisper Book Review]

Reena of Starlight Book Reviews

Rating: 5 stars

Our favorite line: "Dance in Shadow and Whisper is easily the best book I have been asked to review so far. I can't wait for the release of the next book" [via Dance in Shadow and Whisper by Sarah Godfrey & Victoria DeRubeis]

Reena also interviewed us!

Ana of Chibi Reader

Rating: 4 stars

Our favorite line: "Dance in Shadow and Whisper is a great book that will leave you laughing hysterically  or crying your heart out." (Although, a close second was definitely, "By the end I was bawling like a baby. Yeah… I’m not proud of that.") [via Book Review: Dance in Shadow and Whisper]

Ana also hosted an interview with us!

Kristin of My Life as a Teacup

Rating: 4 stars

Our favorite line: "Dance in Shadows and Whisper revolves around such an intricate and imaginative world that you can't help but get sucked into the quirky characters, and adventurous situations." [Via Goodreads]

Some other awesome blogs have helped us out as well, both with interviews and featuring the contest, such as Jackie from No Bent Spines. Hopefully we'll get to post her and other reviews soon!

As as second update, the cover for the second book is finished. Victoria finished her read-through of the second draft, and now I need to do another round of revisions and send the third draft to critique partners. After we get word back from them, we'll have a better idea of when we can debut the second book -- maybe an actual date. So excited!

Saturday, July 20, 2013

The Giveaway Has Ended!

Hey, kids! Remember how we talked about having a giveaway? Well, here's one of them! The giveaway begins super early Wednesday, July 24th at 12 am and continues until the 31st. It's open to residents in the US and Canada. The giveaway is open to anyone 13+. If you are under 13, please have a parent enter for you.

We'll also be having a second giveaway for our followers at Keyboard Smash Writers, and if you follow us there, you can also enter in that one! Two chances to win is pretty cool, right?

So, what's up for grabs?

This contest opens on Wednesday, July 24th at 12 am!
a Rafflecopter giveaway
(And if you'd like to share this contest widget, click here!)

Good luck! 

Friday, July 19, 2013

Lots of Awesome Things

Definitely been needing an update for a while now. Lots of things got in the way the past couple of weeks, including someone stealing our wallet and phone -- including my driver's license, our debit cards, and even my social security card, which is really scary. We've been picking up the pieces one at a time, and today we were finally able to get some pens for signing!

Here's all the updates for the past few weeks!

The paperbacks arrived

This means we can put together the contest really soon. We'll have signed paperbacks, bookmarks, and even a couple posters. You can see us trying to practice our signatures and totally failing. Why is signing stuff so hard?

Also, the paperbacks are available for purchase via the Amazon store. The one thing I love about using Createspace was how low I could make the price -- definitely couldn't do that with Lulu. The downside? The shipping quality is just as expected of Amazon: sucky. One of the books we received looked like someone had dropped it. Dented the corner in, creased the cover. This one won't be going into the contest, maybe into the hands of a book review blogger that only takes physical books. We'll see what happens.

The first revision of book two is finished

And it took me almost two weeks thanks to all the things that happened here. It seems like, with every book, whether I'm writing or revising, I'm going to hit the same four stages:

First quarter: YEAH, this rocks, this is going to be good, I'm so stoked.
Second quarter: Okay, well, things are moving, I guess.
Third quarter: This sucks.
Final quarter: ...

I wouldn't have gotten through it without Kesha's accoustic Harold Song, Fall Out Boy's The Mighty Fall, or The Wright Brothers' Blood on My Name. Those songs kept me pumped up and I guess slightly delusional in a way?

From here, it's Victoria's turn to read through and help me with the problem area's I need to fix, plus whatever else she can find or wants to change. Once I make those changes, it's off to our betas!

The goal is to have the second book out by August. I'm thinking it's probably likely we'll have it available halfway through August at this rate, but ideally sooner. We'll see how crazy I'm willing to work myself.

Dance in Shadow and Whisper has a 4.67 on Goodreads

Which is SUPER exciting. One of our lovely book review bloggers is Dabin from So Many Books, So Little Time. She gave us a very nice four stars, which we are definitely glad to have. It was sort of affirming for us, that there's a realm beyond our friends that can enjoy this book and these characters, too!

Our second five star rating comes from Reena of Starlight Book Reviews, and she'll have a full review up soon! We're so excited, ahhhh.

We're waiting on a couple more bloggers and we check about a hundred times every day for news. It's no wonder I've been running low on sanity points recently.

New author pictures

Which isn't anything special, really. Just makes us feel more official. We set aside a day to do stuff with our hair and faces that look good in picture form and these were the results.

It was unreasonably hot that day (not even as hot as it WILL get by the end of summer). I'm just glad it didn't show in our faces!

So, hopefully I can throw together an official "about the authors" page soon instead of the one that redirects to the page on KSW. But that's low on the priority list right now.

Anyway, that's it for now (as far as I can remember, which is never very far, because "remember" and "I" are two words that never go together with me). More updates and random rambles as they come to my brain. Until then, I'll be working on KSW and finishing the cover of the second book. I can't wait to reveal both the cover and the title!

Oh, and I should probably eat something, preferably adult-like. Kraft mac and cheese. Yeah.