Category Archives: Publishing

INSOMNIA cover reveal!

so this past week my very good friend and fellow YA author j.r. johannson got to reveal the cover for her debut novel INSOMNIA! the cover is creepy and sinister and absolutely perfect for her book. i love the use of colour–the pallidness of the model’s skin against the black background, the bright blue of the eye and jenn’s name, the blood red of the title and series title.

while cover reveals are always exciting because it finally means being able to put a face to a name, they’re especially wonderful when it’s an author you admire and whose work you love. jenn’s also a fellow lucky 13 as well as a thirteener, so this is a big day for all of us! congratulations on your awesome new cover, jenn! INSOMNIA will be published spring/summer of 2013 by flux, so keep an eye out for it!

a couple of links to finish off this post. i was over at writer, writer, pants on fire with friend and fellow YA author mindy mcginnis a few days ago. it was my SHIT post for her blog. and that’s not a typo. SHIT=submission hell–it’s true. thank you for having me, mindy!

and then there’s the oatmeal. the man is comedic genius, anyway, but this particular comic had me in tears. every word of it is so very true, and i really appreciate his being able to perfectly nail the truly crazy thoughts writers really do have all the time. you guys must read it: some thoughts and musings about making things for the web.

thanks for reading!

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DUALED ARCs at new york comic con!

so this past weekend was new york comic con!
comic. con. in new york city.
and DUALED ARCs were there.
unbelievable.

some super cool blogger friends were able to attend, and not only were they able to snag a copy for themselves, but were also really thoughtful and managed to take some pics, too! comic con’s an utter madhouse, so i appreciate the time it took for them to break from schedule and share them with me! thanks so much, traci and nicole!

and then there’s this pic of the random house booth! the poster in the back came as a huge surprise, and i’m pretty sure parts of my mind were blown with how fantastic that was to see. i’m so very flattered and lucky to be a part of that and to be sharing space with some incredibly talented authors. there’s also a teeny corner of DUALED visible, there in the bottom left hand corner!

now if only someone managed to save that poster, because it would make a hell of a souvenir.

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DUALED: a new tagline and audio book update

so, about that tagline for DUALED. if you’ve seen pics of the cover or actually have a physical ARC, you’ll note the tagline on the front cover is this:

you or your alt?
only one will survive.

there’s been a lot of love for this tagline; i love it, my publisher loves it, bloggers and readers thus far seem to love it, too.

but sometimes that’s not enough. especially when it comes to book buyers–the guys who decide what to buy to sell in their stores. and while the word “alt” makes perfect sense within the context of DUALED’s plot, for someone who doesn’t know the plot, it’s been decided the word falls on the vague side.

to be honest, i was a bit disappointed at the idea of losing the tagline. but the thing is, just like the guys in charge of cover art know what works and doesn’t work for a jacket, buyers know a helluva a lot more than me when it comes to stuff like this. and taglines? it’s incredibly hard to come up with one that’s succinct, memorable, fitting–and having to fit within tight space constraints at the same time, too. so to the team at random house children’s books who came up with not only one great tagline but two? you guys are brilliant. the new tagline that will be on the covers of the finished copies:

two of you exist.
only one will survive.

i think it’s absolutely perfect. thanks so very much to those who worked on coming up with it!

also, i found out that voice actress alicyn packard will be narrating DUALED for the audio edition! we’ve talked on twitter and she’s just lovely and talented and i cannot wait to hear the finished product. i know there was an audition process to find the perfect voice for west, and i think she is going to be fantastic!

randomness: oh, this band. so where have i been that i’ve missed ONE OK ROCK this whole time? discovering a band whose music i instantly fall in love with is, for me, the same as picking up a book by an author i’ve never read before and being unable to stop myself from getting sucked into the world within its pages. my heart actually beats a little faster, i get all giddy, and i just want to leave real life for a bit and explore whatever crazy goodness they’ve created. and these single-take videos will always amaze me!

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manga pics from tokyo, part 2

so because i had quite a few manga pics leftover from my previous post covering our multiple trips to bookstores in tokyo, i hope you guys don’t mind seeing some more.

i already miss visiting the bookstores. i miss how freaking huge some of them were, and the sheer volume of books able to be packed under one roof. i miss the amazing array of manga available, from shonen to shoujo, josei to seinen. i miss being able to simply walk into a bookstore and then discovering yet another mangaka whose story in the form of artwork simply blows me away.


the latest weekly manga anthologies. that one right in the middle, the one with the cover with the red-haired dude on it? it’s the september issue of jump SQ magazine featuring new KENSHIN material from original mangaka nobuhiro watsuki. am very, very much wishing i’d picked that issue up while i had the chance.


YOTSUBA! yay! one of my kids’ favourite manga. after seeing it move from publisher to publisher here (from adv to yen press), it’s good to see it still getting lots of love in japan.


a set of ai yazawa’s TENSHI NANKA JA NAI in novel form.


we’ve been collecting BAKUMAN, the latest series by the same author of DEATH NOTE. it’s meta manga, in that the manga series is about mangaka writing manga. a lot of it applies to the publishing industry over here, in terms of author and editor relationships, how ideas come about, writing for the market vs writing for the heart…it’s an interesting manga to read just for that.


because manga is usually sold wrapped and sealed, sample chapters are provided for browsing.


ONE PIECE is huge in japan. i think it’s at volume 67 so far and still going. these side books–PHILOSOPHY OF ONE PIECE, THE HEART OF ONE PIECE, etc–are awesome additions for hardcore fans.


i think these are reissues of osamu tezuka’s original ASTRO BOY manga, all boxed up and nicely packaged.


PANDORA HEARTS by jun mochizuki is another huge shonen manga in japan, published in tankubon form by square enix, the same folks who brought us KINGDOM HEARTS (!!!). it’s licensed in north america and published here by yen press.


yorindo bookstore in the yodabashi building in akihabara.


lots of framed artwork to go along with the manga displays.


more popular ongoing series. most of the newest volumes of currently running series are shelved flat, while older volumes are stacked vertically.


a floor display featuring miyazaki’s NAUSICAA OF THE VALLEY OF THE WIND.


tsutaya in shibuya. the whole seventh floor is dedicated to manga.


a wall of “staff recommended picks” at tsutaya.


this is just one wall of the three dedicated to shoujo. it was amazing.


TIGER & BUNNY is everywhere in japan, with anime and films and manga. in this case, the manga is actually based on the original anime.


with walls dedicated to boy love manga, it’s only fair that some shelf space be dedicated to yuri–girl on girl.


a pic of hiro kiyohara’s manga adaptation of ANOTHER, the horror novel by yukito ayatsuji. it’s been licensed by yen press for north america.


the tagline is A CHINESE WIFE AND AN OTAKU HUSBAND. you guys, this is our life in manga form! we both laughed pretty hard at seeing this.


some more KENSHIN manga on display to promote the release of the live action movie back on the 25th of august. this is the aizoban edition, the collector’s edition. the spines line up to form an image of kenshin’s sakabato.


bunkoban editions of the KENSHIN manga. these editions of the manga make up the new boxed set.


i had to pick up volume 1 of the collector’s edition of KENSHIN. after this trip, we have four different editions of this one volume, in two different languages.


colour pages inside!


yep, gorgeous, gorgeous colour pages.

because i’m already fangirling hard enough over a movie that i won’t be able to watch for many, many months (that it’s been licensed in over 60 countries is good news for a north american deal, but a theatrical release here would most likely still take a long time to be finalized), i have to share this KENSHIN tumblr site. it’s terribly addicting. and ONE OK ROCK‘s the beginning–the lead single written just for the movie–has been happily playing on repeat.

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link round up! and KENSHIN!

it’s link round up time as i play catch up on general life stuff while waiting on edits, which should hit my inbox by the end of the week.

so some reading (how come it’s taken me this long to discover the monstrumologist series by rick yancey? it’s bloody fantastic!), setting up posts, responding to interviews for future dates. um, not much cleaning. at all. we are neat people, but even i’m surprised how quickly we’ve gotten used to living in a constant state of disarray.

and school’s back on in a week. i’m excited because it means a return to a normal work day. when your kids are going to bed at about the same time your husband wakes up to go to work, the hours just feel off…

ya writer john hansen featured me on his blog, incessant droning of a bored author. read it here. thanks so much for hosting me, john!

i previewed DUALED for fellow lucky and YA author lenore appelhans (LEVEL TWO, simon & schuster, jan 2013) over at her blog, presenting lenore. thank you so much for featuring me, lenore!

fellow lucky and YA author miriam forster (CITY OF A THOUSAND DOLLS, harperteen, feb 2013) read an ARC of DUALED when her bookstore received a copy. she wrote up a blog post about the importance of world building for her blog, dancing with dragons is hard on your shoes. i was really blown away when she referred to DUALED in her write up. thanks so much, miriam!

so. i made the decision a while ago to not link to reviews here on the blog. (editing to add that fellow canadian, author, and AWer peggy blair (THE BEGGAR’S OPERA, penguin, february 2012) recommends a tab linking to good reviews, which is a great idea. thanks peggy!) there’s going to be lots, good and bad. why i’m not going to link to bad ones is kind of self-explanatory; going on and on about good ones will get very tiresome, very fast. but i might make some exceptions here and there. like this one from kenny brechner, book buyer and store manager for indie DDG books in maine. it’s my first review outside of the blogosphere, and it very much made my day. thank you so much, kenny! come february, i’ll also be doing an interview with kenny for his column, which i’m very excited about.


also, you’ve probably caught me bemoaning the fact that we missed the premiere of the kenshin live-action movie by a matter of days when we were in japan. ads were everywhere. trailers were playing on a loop in every record and bookstore. it was torture. there’s talk of an international release. someone, please make this happen! in the meantime, here are the trailers, subbed in english.

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bookstores in japan, japanese editions of popular YA titles, and manga!

so i’m here on vacation in japan, and i’d forgotten how absolutely amazing the bookstores are in tokyo. the mass amounts of what they have in stock, the sheer number of volumes and editions, the lovely covers and artwork…give me some take out sushi and bottles of royal milk tea from the vending machine and i could happily stay in one all day.

apart from food, i’m finding myself taking tons of pictures of books here. manga, in particular; never mind that i’ve long forgotten my hiragana and katakana–the artwork alone is awesome. for a while, i read nothing but manga, to the point where i found myself running out of translated manga to read. i miss that time, and seeing so much of it all over the place here makes me want to try harder to find time for it again. also, i took lots of pics of what japanese editions i could find of popular YA books back home!

needless to say, this post is SUPER pic heavy! most of them were taken at maruzen, yurindo, and book-off stores in tokyo and sendai.



japanese editions of THE HUNGER GAMES trilogy by suzanne collins.



j.k. rowling’s HARRY POTTER series. i don’t know why all the different covers. the chess inspired ones are very TWILIGHT-esque.


really excited to see one of my favourite series, CHAOS WALKING by patrick ness, on the shelf!


the INHERITANCE series by christopher paolini.


i’m guessing this is a children’s novel based on the pixar movie BRAVE.


lots of studio ghibli art books!


hayao miyazaki adapted MAJO NO TAKKYUBIN by eiko kadono into his film KIKI’S DELIVERY SERVICE. being big fans of miyazaki, we picked up the novel for a great souvenir.


FROM UP ON POPPY HILL is studio ghibli’s latest film, and it’s based on the comic of the same name, written by tetsuro sayama and drawn by chizuru takahashi. already a hit here in japan, it comes to theatres in north america in march, 2013!


39 CLUES! this is more middle grade than YA.


THE PRINCESS DIARIES by meg cabot, GOSSIP GIRL by cecily von zeigesar, PRETTY LITTLE LIARS by sara shepard.



found these really interesting editions of stephenie meyer’s TWILIGHT series. it’s been broken down into 13 novels; pictured here are books 1 and 13. cool how bella’s eyes change colour from one to the other.

AND OH THE MANGA.


the newest volumes are kept at the end of the aisles, or along the front.


before manga is collected into volumes, they’re released weekly or monthly in magazines.


KODANSHA BOXED is a new (or relatively new) line of boxed manga!


boys love manga, or yaoi.



BAKUMAN, NARUTO, and KENSHIN are some of the series we’ve collected, or are still collecting, back home.


vol. 12 of HIKARU NO GO. i haven’t read the manga, but the anime is awesome!


NANA’s up to vol. 21 over here! and over at a book-off in tokyo, i found a fan book of the series which has been labelled vol. 7.8. here are some pics of the artwork inside!




i’ve always loved the artwork of VAMPIRE KNIGHT (up to vol. 16 here), and here’s some pics of the artwork inside the fan book! this was 105 yen from book-off–so about $1.25 with the exchange rate.


and this is the infamous BOKU WA IMOUTO NI KOI WO SURU, which lightly translates into “i love my little sister”. it’s a manga about incest between twins and was a bestseller here in japan. when cuddlebuggery’s kat kennedy referenced twincest in a blurb about DUALED, this manga was the first thing that came to mind!


i’ve been trying to find vols. 9 and 10 of IMMORTAL RAIN (published in japan as METEOR METHUSELAH) by kaori ozaki. now that tokyopop’s US operations have shut down and it’s not likely i’ll be able to finish collecting the series in english, i thought the original japanese editions would be cool to have. no luck so far, but i did buy this related MM work. also, the hubs finally found kaoru mori’s EMMA vol. 5 to fill in for the now-out-print english edition!

in all honesty, i don’t think i’ll have the time or dedication to learn enough japanese to read any manga in its original format. but i do think i’ll be looking into picking up some new translated series back when i get home! hope you guys all enjoyed the pics!

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so can i have a DUALED floor display for myself, please?

because it’s me and i’m lazy with fine print, i had no clue DUALED was going to be sold in australia as part of the deal for north america. so that was incredibly exciting to find out! but i think the best way was how i found out.

i came across this listing for a 9 copy floor display at angus & robertson, an australian bookstore! come february i don’t know if it can actually be ordered as it says, or even actually made, but if so i’ll most definitely try. because how fun would this be to have in the house? i’d rotate the book selection on a regular basis!

a brief link round up this week! DUALED was mentioned in Publisher’s Weekly Spring 2013 Sneak Previews, which was amazing! i was floored to be included with such talented authors. also, an interview i did was translated into romanian at i’m wide awake and fantasy books. english is here! thanks so much sabrina, laura, and ramona!

i only have a few days left until my first set of edits come in for DIVIDED, but since turning in the first draft to my editor, i’ve been madly working through my to-be-read pile (it’s still huge). i’m pretty careful with the books i choose just because of how little time i seem to have left for reading nowadays. this is what i’ve read recently and enjoyed:

ellen oh PROPHECY
april tucholke BETWEEN THE DEVIL AND THE DEEP BLUE SEA
shannon messenger LET THE SKY FALL
daniel marks VELVETEEN
kendare blake ANNA DRESSED IN BLOOD
ransom riggs MISS PEREGRINE’S HOME FOR PECULIAR CHILDREN
patrick ness THE KNIFE OF NEVER LETTING GO
patrick ness THE ASK AND THE ANSWER
patrick ness MONSTERS OF MEN
joshua c. cohen LEVERAGE
moira young BLOOD RED ROAD
laini taylor DAUGHTER OF SMOKE AND BONE
lauren destefano WITHER
emma donoghue ROOM
patrick ness A MONSTER CALLS
rj palacio WONDER
huntley fitzpatrick MY LIFE NEXT DOOR
jandy nelson THE SKY IS EVERYWHERE

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