Wednesday, October 26, 2011

I want you to know about Awesomechutney


So I tried to get it published at Urban Dictionary. And for the second time in a year, it was rejected.

My fight will continue! We will not rest until Awesomechutney is recognized for its extra-chunky awesome.

Monday, October 24, 2011

Part Two: Ohio & NYC in Pictures. (And Some Words.)

I'm completely about to start a week's hardcore work on the tinfoil hat book so I wanted to blog now before the awesome begins. Before I do...TWO groovy events this week:
TOMORROW---> TUESDAY, October 25th at Alvernia University at 1pm. Details on website!


FRIDAY October 28th at the Keystone State Reading Association's conference in Lancaster, PA. I'll be chilling all day at the Aaron's Books stand signing copies of EVERYBODY SEES THE ANTS and dancing randomly alongside Josh Berk, awesome author of The Dark Days of Hamburger Halpin and the upcoming Guy Langman: Crime Scene Procrastinator.
OHIO & NYC ROCKED.
It started here at Philly airport on a blue, gorgeous day.
Then the actual Ohio business started here, very early:

Where I talked to Meghan on the Morning News for about 3 minutes about Lucky Linderman.

This was the Noon News studio at WDTN
[Imagine a picture here of the cool students of Beavercreek High School who totally rocked and asked awesome questions like: Who was your role model? The answer, eventually: Aside from my parents and other family members, etc. my role model was Hawkeye Pierce from M*A*S*H.]
After Beavercreek HS, I went directly to Books and Co...

Dayton's Awesome Books & Co. What a great store!
But before I read at Books an Co. something AWESOMECHUTNEY happened. I got to see my best friend from growing up for the first time in 20 years. Since my wedding, actually. How awesome was that? Answer: pretty awesome. We spent almost every day together until I was 14 and she moved away. So, we spent 3 hours catching up before my event and I will treasure it until I get to do it again! Make it soon, Cincinnati!
Me and Tara, BFFs since birth, pretty much.
View from my awesome hotel room in Cleveland.
So, the next day was so busy, I didn't get any pictures. But trust me--it was great. The elements of this awesome Tuesday were:
  • CJ Bott. This is the link to her website. I'm giving it to you because it's an amazing resource, as are her books. CJ is an amazing woman and I need to spend more than a day with her next time. She cares so much about students and about our society's silence about bullying that she's inspired me to do as much as I can to get to schools during the next year to talk about this and spread her passion for the subject of bullying education. If you want me to come to your high school and talk about this, contact lbvisits@aol.com
  • Normandy High School (shout outs to the students, and also the librarians and teachers who made this happen. Was SO STOKED to come to Normandy! Great to meet you all and thank you for having us!) (True story: I even saved my visitor sticker and stuck it on my favorite filing cabinet to remember you by.)
  • Independence High School (shout outs to the same people as last time--students, librarians and teachers and to those who came up to us afterward and chatted. That's my favorite part, you know? Meeting awesome people.)
  • And then the totally killer The Learned Owl Bookshop.Where I not only met Rollie, one of the two missing Printz committee members from last year's ALA (I am so incredibly grateful for that Printz Honor and I was so glad to say so in person.) But I also got to meet awesome bloggers Lizzie, Brynne and Sarah...and librarian/supporter, Laura. Had a great time and thanks to Kate and Co. at The Learned Owl.
I had Wednesday off except for a mid afternoon flight...so when I got back to my hotel with the waterfall on Tuesday night, I did simple math for the final element to the perfect day.

SIMPLE MATH:




Simple math says: 1 jacuzzi + 1 copy of Lisa McMann's DEAD TO YOU + one Viklets ginger ale = A really relaxing night after a few hectic days.
Also: YOU WILL LOVE DEAD TO YOU. IT IS THE PERFECT READ.
Trust me. (You have to wait though. Doesn't come out until February.)

Then, a delayed flight to New York. Found huge paper airplanes in Cleveland airport while wandering...these are for Charlie and Vera:
This picture probably doesn't do them justice, really.

I had the kind of flight where you think you're going to die. And I've flown a lot. It was white knuckles all the way to NYC, man. I nearly kissed the ground when I got off the plane except that it was pouring...which was made evident by the soaked suitcase I opened in my hotel to find all my clothing wet. Rock on.

I also found mystery powder on the radiator. I'm thinking it's Ajax. But the dork in me had to take a picture. And the even bigger dork in me is going to share it.

This is a writing prompt picture if I ever saw one. Go write about what you think this is and how it got there.
[Insert a picture of me reading at the gorgeous and awesome Brooklyn Library and me FINALLY getting to meet the Book Muncher AND the bonus meeting of Kody Keplinger.]

[Insert another picture of me having an amazing dinner with Victoria Stapleton and her merry band of awesome NYC librarians and teachers. I had such a great night that I'm still kinda pinching myself.]

[Insert picture of me pinching myself.]

Pic thanks to @doseofsnark/awesome Chris at HFPL.
 The last stop on my trip was the Hamilton Fish Park Library where I got to talk to a class of fifth graders. My work isn't for fifth graders, but this group of fifth graders makes me want to write for fifth graders. As I say in a COOL INTERVIEW with awesome indie bookseller Joanne Fritz that will go live on Friday October 28th:

The first question I got this week from a room full of 5th graders at the New York Public Library was, “Are you rich?"
I shook my head no and said, “I am not even close to rich.”
To which they answered, “How old are you?”
And I said “How old do you think I am?”
And they all called out numbers that started with twenty to make me feel better about not being rich. Anyway, it played well for me 30 minutes later when I asked them, “So, since you know I’m not rich, then why do you think I do this?”
All of them got the answer on the first try. “You must like it.”

Have I mentioned how much I love fifth graders?

And so, the tour is over until my next local-ish stops which I will tell you later this week in a blog about quilting and being badass at the same time.

RANDOM GROOVY REVIEW STUFF IN CASE YOU STILL AREN'T CONVINCED THAT YOU REALLY SHOULD READ EVERYBODY SEES THE ANTS:

The Compulsive Reader wrote a smashing review HERE. I love this quote: "Everybody should read this book."

Stacked had an amazing review that Mr. King made me read twice (because he has to make me read the good stuff sometimes.) Thank you! Favorite line: "It’s literary fiction with popular appeal." Rock on!

IF YOU GOT THIS FAR YOU GET A BONUS VIDEO:

The ALA Banned Books Week Video! I didn't see it until today.



Friday, October 14, 2011

A HUGE Thank You & Finally. . . Some Pictures

Dear Bloggers from my blog tour,

Thank you so much for being part of our launch week fun and for taking the time to have me around to your blogs. Your support means the world to me and the busier I get, the less I tell you this. But I know you understand and you want me to use my time to write more books, so consider this thank you a huge thank you for all you do for all of us authors. You rock to the maximum and I am sending you all a herd of cyber goats. Cyber goats look like this.


Now...for Launch week in PICTURES.

The east coast launch party at Exeter Community Library was AWESOME. I have to thank the ECL a trillion times for the amazing launch party. (Laura & Sandy--you know I'm looking at you.) And I need to thank The Friends of the ECL and I need to thank Aaron's Books who came up to the ECL to sell books and ROCK HARD LIKE INDIES DO.

Todd & Sam of Aaron's Books and the awesome Nic Dufort

Cakes! Rocking and seriously yummy cakes.
Ditto above. Seriously yummy. Maximum respect to Cake maker Kristen.
That's me and my completely awesome HS English teacher Rosemary.
It was a long line and I thank everyone who stood in it! YOU ROCK.

So then I nearly missed my flight to Arizona. Almost. I was two hours later than I'd expected and I met really really nice people in the Philly airport who let me through security and got me to Changing Hands Bookstore in Tempe. Before I got there, I made prize packs in my hotel room.

Ah, the glamor. Can you stand it?
Changing Hands was awesome as always. Thank you to all the awesome people who came out to see me and to Robyn and Brandi who set up the great event. Hope to see you again next year.

This is me and Amy Nichols at Changing Hands. Amy ROCKS.
Palomino Library TOTALLY ROCKED THE PLANET. Not just saying that, either.
On Friday, I had a few great school visits at Chaparral HS and then a killer event at Palomino Library in Scottsdale where I had such fun and was treated so wonderfully by everyone (I'm looking at YOU Jess & Co.) that I didn't want to leave. See that A.S. King collection they have up there? Woot!

Saturday, I hit the usual Barnes & Noble at Chandler where I met my blood sister Melissa and the completely cool CRM Sibley. No pics this time except for this smokin' endcap. They spoil me at Chandler B&N. I am so lucky.

I did secret things on Sunday. I will only reveal that it involved kicking Lisa McMann's butt in ping pong. (Or her letting me because she is a sweet host.) Other than that, it's top secret. Not even I know what I did on Sunday.

MONDAY: Awesome day with 80 awesome librarians at Chandler Library Staff Development Day. They made awesome bookworm cupcakes. Check it out.


Before I flew out on that red-eye, I did something I never even though I'd do. I had a girls day which was all about my first ever pedicure. I know. Totally not what you expected from the lady with the chainsaw.

Blue for my new roller derby team. Yes. I plan on embracing that forevah.

This is me with a baby I now love who belongs to two awesome people. Could have hugged him all day.

The entire girls day crew. They made me feel so welcome in AZ that I want to move there.
So! Now I have you caught up.
Tonight was a crazy bad driving night, so those of you who came out to Chester Co. Books & Music rocked for doing so. I had a great night and Joanne you are so awesome, I can't wait to come back already...and I just left.

Next up: OHIO! Check my tour page...Dayton's Books & Co. on Monday and Cleavland's Learned Owl on Tuesday. I'll be stopping at many schools--many with the hugely amazing CJ Bott--so I hope to see you then.

For now, I get to go to a wedding and dance with Mr. King this weekend, chill with my kids and, uh...pack.

Oh yeah. And pants. I have to shop for pants.

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Last Stop on the ANTS Blog Tour: Presenting Lenore's love of Embarrassing Pictures of A.S. King

Today's final stop on the EVERYBODY SEES THE ANTS Blog Tour is Lenore at Presenting Lenore where she interviews me about EVERYBODY SES THE ANTS and as always, asks for an embarrassing picture. Since I last hung out over at Lenore's blog, she sold her debut  in an astounding deal and her YA novel LEVEL TWO will be published by Simon & Schuster BFYR in Fall 2012.

CLICK HERE TO TAKE SOME R&R AT THIS LOCATION.

UPDATE:
A new stop open to the public has been added to my tour schedule:

Thursday, October 20, 4PM
Central Library,10 Grand Army Plaza, Trustees Room
Brooklyn, NY 11238

TONIGHT!!
Chester County Books and Music Company at 7pm. 
Reading, signing and Random Giveaways! 


I planned on catching you up with some pictures from Arizona, but I still can't do it today. Yesterday I finished the final edit on ASK THE PASSENGERS and today I'm prepping for my trip to Ohio and NYC next week. I hope to get to it on Friday or Saturday...which is the same time I need to buy pants.

Yes. I still need to buy pants.
Wish me luck. This could get ugly.

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

OMG. I am so tired.

So that whole red-eye thing...it made my eyes red.
I am home. I am alive! I slept all day. I will work all night.
Have I told you lately how much I love my job? I love my job. I love that I get to write books that my brain makes up. I love that I get to go and hang with teenagers and teachers and awesome librarians.
I have to give a very loud shout out to the Chandler, AZ librarians who were kind enough to have me as their speaker on Columbus Day and who were then kind enough to tell me how much I rocked after I told them my deepest secrets. You guys totally made my day. And you, Tim Loge, rock the universe for hooking me up with your fellow Chandler librarians.

The other thing about the red-eye. Made me crazy emotional. Or maybe it was the star treatment I got from the Arizona crew and our pedicure fun yesterday...and having to leave them behind. Or maybe it's the really nostalgic Police album that Mr. King is playing in the kitchen right now as he makes my favorite meal as a coming-home present. But when I read this review of EVERYBODY SEES THE ANTS, I cried.

The ladies at Forever YA are awesometastic anyway and I'd have thought that if they didn't dig my book...but dude, that's some review. Dude, THAT IS SOME REVIEW.
Every once in a while, I meet a book, and it changes my life.  It might be in little ways, or it might be a mind-bomb that completely blows my whole perspective wide open.  Either way, it changes me forever.  This book did that.  It reminded me not only of who I am, but who I want to be.
Look, as authors we have to be all professional and pretend like we don't love the creations we make. We have to deal with those ugly comments people will make because they didn't like or get our books...or even personal attacks based on their own weird ideas of what our books should have been...if they had written them instead of us. But seriously, part of writing books is heart. Our hearts go in there. And when someone writes a review that gets the book (like many I've posted here this week) and then has their own personal connection with it because they care deeply about similar issues as I do? I'm sorry, but the Vulcan act stops and I cry.
Because it means I did my job well.
Then I checked my email and...
When two high school V-warriors write to me to tell me that I'm a hero because I wrote a book about teenage feminism? That's tears, folks. (Especially when somewhere else in the world, misguided people might think that feminism is only for middle-aged women from the 70s and not them.)

RANDOM MEMO: Feminism is for all of us. All it means is that we value our girls and we teach our girls to value themselves. And it means we help other girls who can't do this for themselves. Anyone who tells you different needs to Google, okay?

Lori from Pure Imagination wrote a great review today also...more tears. (Seriously...I have to avoid red-eye flights. My rep is going to fall with all these tears.)
King has a style that is completely different than any other YA author out there. It's strange and quirky. It's poignant and heartbreaking.
I will be back later tonight or this week with more Arizona thoughts and some pictures. For now, I have to eat APPLE SAUSAGE, YO. But I just had to link you and admit that the Vulcan cried.

Monday, October 10, 2011

ANTS Tour Stop #8: YA Bibliophile Interview

Today's stop on the EVERYBODY SEES THE ANTS Blog Tour is with YA Bibliophile, where I talk about a few of my favorite YA reads.


CLICK HERE TO NINJA TOWARD THIS AWESOME INTERVIEW.


Some GREAT reviews from over the weekend:

In Sunday's Buffalo News.
The author of Michael Printz Honor book “Please Ignore Vera Dietz” offers another powerful and original coming-of-age novel of the teen experience, examining issues of war, family dysfunction, bullying and survival with humor, wisdom and heart.


At Not on the Shelf.
Once again, King doesn't disappoint with yet another beautifully written novel that is painfully honest and achingly real. You don't watch Lucky grow up. You grow with him with the ants leading the way.

Tonight I red-eye it out of Phoenix and head home for a few days before heading toward Ohio from the 17th-19th! Dayton & Cleavland, are you ready for next week?

Books & Co.
350 East Stroop Rd., Dayton, OH, 45429
October 17, 2011
7pm


Learned Owl

204 N. Main St, Hudson, OH 44236
Tuesday, October 18
7pm


Once I'm back in PA, I will recap my awesome Arizona trip (Damn. I didn't take nearly enough pictures) and clue you in to my New York appearances which are solidifying as we speak. Then, our last stop on the blog tour is later this week at Presenting Lenore. See you back on the east coast!

Sunday, October 9, 2011

ANTS Tour Stop #7: Being Compulsive with Compulsive Reader

Today's stop on the EVERYBODY SEES THE ANTS Blog Tour is where I'm compulsive with the Compulsive Reader.


CLICK HERE TO STORM THIS STRONGHOLD.

It's Sunday! I'm chilling in a secret location with someone who has impeccable hair before Monday's final event for the Chandler library's training day.

Also! Here's a great review from Mundie Moms. Rock on Mundie Moms! Thank you for the kind words. So glad you dug it!

Saturday, October 8, 2011

ANTS Tour Stop #6: Mundie Moms Interview

Today's stop on the EVERYBODY SEES THE ANTS Blog Tour is at the awesome Mundie Moms! They asked me some really awesome questions.


CLICK HERE TO AMBUSH THIS LINK.
Also: bonus of my trip west this year...the BookBabe AKA Faith and her completely awesome roller derby team The Shotgun Shirleys of the Desert Dolls Roller Derby made me an honorary member. They even gave me a derby name. ASKing 4 Trouble. This made my heart soar like a hawk. Between the swimming pool, the library, small kids and that whole 12-14 hours of writing work every day I haven't been able to find time to get skates and actually join the local derby. This way I get to be badass and have less bruises. Thank you Shotgun Shirleys! Next time I'm in the desert I'm coming to a bout and will wear blue and scream the loudest!

Don't forget TODAY I'm at the Chandler Fashion Mall's Barnes and Noble at 12 (Still can't wait to see Missy & Sibley!) and then the Scottsdale Barnes and Noble at 3:30. Check my tour page for details and addresses. 

Friday, October 7, 2011

Completely AWESOMETASTIC podcast!

Check out this AWESOME podcast about EVERYBODY SEES THE ANTS with the generous Jennifer Buehler of ReadWriteThink.org Thank you Jennifer, for having me to Text Messages!

ANTS Tour Stop #5: Chilling with Booking Mama

Today's stop on the EVERYBODY SEES THE ANTS Blog Tour is Julie at Booking Mama, who makes me blush and asks some great questions about how I write books.


CLICK HERE TO PARACHUTE INTO THIS LOCATION.

She wrote a really great review yesterday and you can CLICK HERE TO READ IT. 

Julie, YOU ROCK. You're such a positive person and a positive blogger and I really love that about you. Some blogs go down that rabbit hole of snark and it's just not as classy. I am so glad you loved ANTS and I can't thank you enough for the great review and interview!

Speaking of ROCKING, last night was the Changing Hands event that ROCKED LIKE CRAZY! Brandi and Robyn were wonderful hosts and I am so grateful that Changing Hands has me back every year because not only are they wonderful people at a wonderful indie bookstore, but they are my good luck charm. Thank you Changing Hands for being my good luck charm! See you again soon. Picture to come, readers. At the moment, I am pictureless.

Today's in-person tour stops are in the Scottsdale area. See you later Chaparral High School! And don't forget me, Palomino Library: 3:30-5:30pm. We'll have some fun!

Don't forget tomorrow's (Saturday's) stops at the Chandler Fashion Mall's Barnes and Noble at 12 (Can't wait to see Missy & Sibley!) and then the Scottsdale Barnes and Noble at 3:30.

Thursday, October 6, 2011

ANTS Tour Stop #4: Completely Random with The Book Muncher

Today's stop on the EVERYBODY SEES THE ANTS Blog Tour is The Book Muncher where I go totally random with The Book Muncher.


CLICK HERE TO MEANDER AIMLESSLY TOWARD THIS RANDOM POST.

Other News: TONIGHT IS THE NIGHT. Can I tell you how much I love Changing Hands bookstore in Tempe, Arizona? The people there have always gone out of their way for me, and my Phoenix fans are just the sweetest, most supportive group of people I've ever met. So my Changing Hands events are a little like bowling a 300--a buzz like no other. Can't wait to see you all there tonight! As you read this, I am beaming to your destination armed with prize packs, a GPS and frizzy hair. I hear I might be bringing the rain again. Sorry about that.

Random: I AM ON AN AIRPLANE POSTING THIS! Woot! So I'd add more, but my battery is low and I'll have a minute in my hotel before the Changing Hands event, I hope...

Until then!

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

ANTS Tour Stop #3: An Interview with Lucky Linderman

Today's stop on the EVERYBODY SEES THE ANTS Blog Tour is the GreenBeanTeenQueen blog where Lucky answers a few questions. There's also an amazing review of the book there--Thank you Sarah! I'm so glad you enjoyed the book!


CLICK HERE TO DEPLOY TO THIS BLOG TOUR DESTINATION.

Reminder: If you're in the Phoenix/Tempe area consider coming to the launch party at Changing Hands and getting a free prize pack with your purchase of a copy of EVERYBODY SEES THE ANTS.

Also: Let me tell you about Rule #4.

Rule #4 was born from a completely unrelated joke between myself and a friend. But what it turned into was a great message that relates to a lot of things...including EVERYBODY SEES THE ANTS.

READ ABOUT IT HERE.

ALSO:
Last night's launch party ROCKED SO MUCH.
Thanks to everyone who came out to see me, to Aaron's books, who are AMAZING AND AWESOMECHUTNEY and to the Exeter Community Library and the Friends of the Exeter Community Library who allowed me to use their space and who set the entire party up, got me two of the loveliest cakes EVER (And yummy too) and who support me so so much.

I will have pictures and a proper blog when I'm not packing for Arizona...for now go read those blogs!

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

ANTS Tour Stop #2: 10 Questions

Today's stop on the EVERYBODY SEES THE ANTS Blog Tour is with Lori at Pure Imagination where I answer ten fabulous questions, including my favorite album.

CLICK HERE TO BEAM TO THIS DESTINATION.

Can you tell I've been watching a lot of Star Trek?
Thank you Lori, for having me to the blog, and for the kind words about ANTS. I'm glad you enjoyed it!

Other cool links: Here's a great review by The Gallivanting Girl Scout. I tried to find a favorite part of this review, but it was hard to pick just one.

My trusty internet filter (AKA Mr. King) told me that today, he found EVERYBODY SEES THE ANTS on the nomination list for Capitol Choices, the notable book list for Washington D.C. Thank you Capitol Choices committee!

Things I'm nervous about: TONIGHT is the east coast launch party for EVERYBODY SEES THE ANTS. Why I'm nervous, I don't know. There will be so many varied home town people in one room--all coming together to support me. So maybe I'm nervous because the mere thought of that makes me want to cry! (Vulcan tears--they burn.)

I'm having my launch party at the library that would have been my library had it been there when I was growing up. Did you follow that? See--when I was a kid, we'd have to drive all the way into town to go to a library. It was a 15+ minute drive and it was, frankly, a pain. (Would be more of a pain now, I think, considering this recent NYT article.) But now, there's a library less than a mile from where I grew up. I could have walked there from my house. That library, the Exeter Community Library, is there (like most libraries) because a bunch of people got together and made it happen. No one paid them. They just did it because they wanted to better their community.

If you use a library, or have ever benefited from one, now is the time to think about giving back somehow. These amazing places don't run themselves. A while ago, I overheard a really disturbing conversation at a restaurant. The man was complaining about how lately, people were asking him for more help--his library, his local community organizations, his PTO, etc. He turned it into a political thing and said this was a result of the president, ultimately. But here's the thing. All of those things in your community that serve you and your family? They've been there all along...and have been run by volunteers all along and supported by willing community members all along. This idea that volunteering is a new government coup to make you help out in your own community is crazy.  These organizations have always asked for donations. But these days, maybe we're all too strapped for cash and time that we notice it more. I don't know. All I know is: if you've ever benefited from your local library, then I hope you consider supporting your local library volunteers so others can get the same benefits you did. An hour, a dollar--it all goes a long way.

Okay! SEE YOU TONIGHT! I'll be the one who still has no idea what she should wear!

Monday, October 3, 2011

The ANTS Blog Tour Begins. (Happy Birthday Lucky Linderman!)


A huge happy birthday to Lucky Linderman and EVERYBODY SEES THE ANTS! (Keep reading to win a FREE COPY!)

You have no idea how hard this book fought to get into your hands. It started as a seed in July 2008 with a file called The Pool Book. Thinking back, this would have been during the second draft of PLEASE IGNORE VERA DIETZ. Then, I spent all of 2008 writing VERA DIETZ and after I sold her early in 2009, I started on ANTS. Like VERA, I wrote most of the first draft in one insane month. Then I spent the rest of 2009 revising both ANTS and VERA for two different purposes. VERA to get to publication, ANTS to find an agent.
ANTS did its job and found me an agent by October, 2009, but then it turned out it had to find us a new publishing house, too. Which turned out really well, I think. The people at Little, Brown are completely fantastic and have loved the book from the very beginning. Now, three and a quarter years since the book sprouted, we are looking at a really awesome tree.
All of you who helped this happen (and there are so many) thank you very much.

The ANTS Blog Tour begins today with and interview with the awesome Sarah at Y.A. Love. You can also enter to WIN a free copy, so get thee to her blog and enter!

CLICK HERE TO MAGICALLY BEAM TO THE INTERVIEW.

If you're planning to attend the east coast launch party at the Exeter Library on Tuesday Oct. 4th at 7pm, please call 610-406-9431 or email: sxtchild@berks.lib.pa.us to register.


You can also come to BookBalloon.com and ask me your own questions later today and tomorrow!
Click on this groovy balloon!

 

THANK YOU for all of your support and for BEING AWESOME. See you tomorrow for the next leg of the tour!