Miscellany + Local Event

A few more Lois-y things:

Hmm, what else? I have an event this weekend at the Woodford County Library. These are always fun, not least because our PENS ARE ON FIRE (not really, that would be dangerous). The details:

  • Pens on Fire – Young Adult Authors: Come hear popular Young Adult authors talk about their work, writing tips, and paths to publication. Authors include Gwenda Bond, Sarah Combs, C.C. Marks, Katie McGarry, and Heather Sunseri. Free – Sign up today! 9/6/14, 2-4pm, Main Library.

And last but not least:

You can still enter to win the fancy Paperwhite with the custom Goawfinalcover featuring the gorgeous Girl on a Wire cover illustrated and designed by Neil Swaab: just sign up for the newsletter or comment on that post with something you love or hate about the circus. Contest ends Friday at noon.

If you snagged the book on special, read it and like it, please consider dropping a review on Amazon and/or Goodreads or spreading the word wherever you like best. And if you haven't snagged it, well, what are you waiting for? Lee Child totally edged me down in the rankings. *wink* I kid! Feel free to wait and buy a hard copy. Or ask your library to order it. Basically: please to buy or otherwise legally procure wherever you like, read, and let me or the world know what you think. Without you lovely readers, I don't get to do this. And I like doing this.

Now it's our tenth wedding anniversary, so there must be a little celebrating, and there's another book to finish. So *poof*.

Surprise! GIRL ON A WIRE Is E-arly!

GoaWfinalBy which I mean it's a Kindle First pick this month, in advance of its official release October 1. What does that mean? Besides the fact I did some chair-dancing?

It means it's one of four books that you can read in e-book a month early, if you have a Kindle or use the Kindle app on one of your devices. Prime members can pick one free, and anyone with a Kindle or app can snag one for $1.99. It's that simple.

If your book is chosen for this program, obviously it means that more people are likely to see your book. But it also means that your editor writes something about it. And in my case, Courtney Miller wrote something so gorgeous and beautiful, I hardly feel worthy of it. It's truly been a gift to work with Courtney, Kate Chynoweth, Deborah Bass, Timoney Korbar and the whole Skyscape team, who have believed in this oddball book of mine since the start. And, of course, thanks always to my agent, Jenn Laughran, ringmaster of my career. So, do you like daredevils? Do you like feeling like the normal world is hiding secrets?

Go here to get your copy and read what Courtney wrote (or get one of the others — I'm sure they are all fabulous!).

Don't have a Kindle? Well, this week I'll be giving away this Kindle Paperwhite the publisher had made with an awesome custom cover *and* which is pre-loaded with the book. (I'll give away a couple more later on.)

Photo(3)

Champagne Not Included

What do you have to do to win? You can get up to two entries:

1) Sign up for my newsletter here by Friday, Sept. 5 at noon midnight. (If you're already signed up for the newsletter, you are already entered for this one.)

2) Drop a comment below with something you love (or hate — if you're some sort of deviant!) about circuses or daredevils.

U.S. only (as Steph reminded me to clarify in the comments). And if you'd rather have the print or audio edition (why not collect the whole set? ;-), then October 1 will be here before you know it.

p.s. *waves* to any lovely people I met at DragonCon — which was such a treat. More on that later.

ETA: Number four! Um, wow. That is a thing that happened. If you enjoy the book, I'd love it if you left a review at Amazon or Goodreads or otherwise help spread the word. <3

Screenshot

DragonCon Schedule + Media Round-Up + Lois Teaser

I'll be at DragonCon this weekend participating in the YA track — I'll happily sign books for anyone after the panels or my reading. I'll be reading from Girl on a Wire (out so soon!), but I also just might give a little sneak preview of Lois too. *whistles innocently* Come so I'm not reading to an empty room + my mom (who's tagging along to Atlanta for some R&R).

My schedule:

Title: Urban Fantasy in YA
Description: We love a little magic, monsters, super powers—but rooted in the real world. What makes a compelling urban fantasy, and what are your faves?
Time: Fri 02:30 pm Location: A707 – Marriott
Panelists: Delilah S. Dawson, Gwenda Bond, Cinda Williams Chima, Bonnie Kunzel, Mari Mancusi

Title: Reading: Gwenda Bond
Time: Sat 1:00 pm Location: University – Hyatt

Title: Beyond Genre: Behind the Boom of Realistic YA Fiction
Description: The Fault is Our Stars is just the tip of the iceberg—realistic YA fiction is booming, and there’s a lot to love beyond genre.
Time: Sun 11:30 am Location: A707 – Marriott
Panelists: Stephanie Perkins, Gwenda Bond, Debbie Viguié, Michelle Hodkin

And now the news…

I continue to be overwhelmed by everyone's enthusiasm and congratulations about Fallout — and it is that much more fun to now be sharing it with you. It brings a tear to my cold dark-hearted eyeballs (um, might need more sleep, or more coffee) to be proven right about how much love exists for Lois. To those of you who've gone out of your way to tell me you trust me with this, I'm so very grateful. And, of course, I hope you still feel that way once you've read the book. *insert winking emoji here* Yesterday's post with more details, in case you missed it.

So, what are people saying? A little media round-up:

I'm sure I missed a couple. It's refreshing that there hasn't been much smack-talking about YA.

Now also feels like a good time to remind everyone that you should sign up for my newsletter if you want to make sure you don't miss any news. I try to keep them to quarterly, and I'll be sending out an issue next week.

Without further ado, today's teaser. This one might be my favorite. Chills.

The Secret Is Out… (!!!)

…thanks to some breaking reporting from DC Women Kicking Ass last night.  

I have two words for you:

LOIS LANE.

Oh, wait, and another one: FALLOUT.

But there is still more fun news to come. And more of the great teasers Switch/Capstone have designed. Here's today's — voila!

I am completely overwhelmed — in the best possible way — by the reaction to the news. Because Lois deserves that reaction!

Lois is an icon, of course, a superhero without any superpowers . . . except her unmatched bravery and smarts. Not to mention her sense of humor and her commitment to truth and justice. She's also one of my all-time favorite characters — which is why I jumped at the chance to write a novel featuring a teen Lois, moving to Metropolis and becoming a reporter for the first time. As I said yesterday, it's been an incredible honor to do this project and work with the fantastic teams at Capstone/Switch Press and DC. And, most of all, to get to put Lois front and center in the starring role, obviously. (Plus fun to write lots of banter with her maybe-more-than-a-friend from Kansas, screen name SmallvilleGuy.)

Also from last night:

Now for a geeky photo

Me and a compendium of some of Lois's greatest moments + a T-shirt Christopher got me for x-mas + in the background a Daily Planet toy with lego Lois and a monkey finger puppet perched on top:

Me+Loisstuff
*dances a little*

Super-excited to have this secret out in the world so I can share it with all of you fellow Lois fans.

Now back to trying to finish a different book entirely and prepare for Dragon Con. Another teaser tomorrow!

Secret Project, Clue The First (!)

This week the fabulous team at Switch Press/Capstone will be posting some visual teasers for what I have been obnoxiously referring to as Secret Project for months, leading up to the cover reveal. I can tell you this is an iconic character–definitely someone you know. Here's the first hint!

TeaserOne

I think it's probably clear why it was secret (psst, look around the edges) — and why I'm so excited about it that I couldn't help but be obnoxious. I'll bet some of you — especially comics fans — can figure it out just from this.

Also: yes, it's a young adult novel(!). And the entire project has been so much fun, particularly working with my editor, the divine Beth Brezenoff, and DC.

Follow the Switch Press accounts to be sure and get the rest of the skinny and I'll be updating here as well. Extra points for sharing:

Yay! Because keeping secrets is hard.

ETA: I love you guys. Truly. How quickly you sleuthed the facts.

New Girl Reviews

GoaWI dropped these elsewhere already, but I like to keep things where they're easier to find (aka here). So! A couple of nice new reviews of Girl on a Wire that made me happy and also have a little swoon at how soon this book will be out and y'all can read it. I can't wait to find out what you think. 

Booklist Online sayeth:

"With a skillful blend of modern-day circus tales, classically ill-fated love, and mystery, Bond gives readers scenes from the wire that will make them sweat alongside Jules as she steps out with no net, and teens will thrill to Jules’ adventures as the Princess of the Air."

And Publishers Weekly:

"The circus and its theatrical characters provide a fresh, vibrant backdrop as author and PW contributor Bond (Blackwood) impressively describes a range of circus performances, while threading enticing slivers of magic and romance into her story. It’s a fascinating and enjoyable foray into circus life as seen through the eyes of an ambitious and talented performer."

Plots and plans are happening for the fall and the words "sideshow performers" may have been uttered in relation to launch party: nothing set yet, but developing.

On Magicians, Books About

The result of one of the deadlines that was part of the recent swarm; I reviewed Lev Grossman's The Magician's Land (and the entire trilogy, really) for this weekend's Los Angeles Times' books section. Snippet:

This trilogy is not, as it is so often described, "Harry Potter for adults." But it is a meditation on whether magic cake can be eaten happily or whether it would go stale when exposed to the bitter air of a more realistic treatment. Maybe, this masterful close suggests, both real and fantasy worlds have space for heroes and magic.

One of the reasons I think this is not “Harry Potter for adults,” by the by, is because Harry Potter is already Harry Potter for anyone who reads it. Ahem.

Be advised, of course, that there are some spoilers in the review, particularly for the first two books. Also: I’d forgotten how hard reviewing can be. I could say much more about these books. Read them.

Three Things: Clown Noses, Girls on Wires + Schedulizing

Home again, home again. With three things to report.

Thing The First:

The Virginia Highlands Festival was a complete delight; such a warm welcome from the creative writing day committee, and a series of truly fun events with fabulous writers and great, engaged audiences. Plus, I got to see the Greenman Press studio, and hang out with Karen and Charles Vess, and see the giant, gorgeous statue and fountain "Midsummer Play" that Charles designed and constructed across from the Barter Theater. It doesn't get better than that. I shared these photos elsewhere, but doing so here for kicks (and to begin the chronicle of the season of Girl on a Wire promoting).

These were my first readings from the circus book as a finished thing, and so it was a mega-relief that people seemed into it. I did the prologue for our first reading event, but for the joint workshop Charles and I did — me reading, while he drew projected on the screen behind me — I read from chapter eight, and Jules' first big outdoor stunt walk. The result:

 

GoaWsketch

 

(He says now after thinking more about it, he'd draw her face on, instead of heading into the relative safety of the bridge tower. But I all-but-gasped when I turned around and got a look at this, the tilt of the perspective makes me feel the nerves for her.)

And this sketch from before we started, which is totally getting framed and hung in the office:

 

JulessketchbyCVess

 

Oh, and then there was the nice older lady who carries a stockpile of clown noses (she once toured Russia as part of a clown troupe — with Patch Adams, apparently, so ack). She gave me, Charles, and Rita Quillen ones after our reading the first afternoon, and then helped direct the camera for a selfie, which came out a little skewed.

 

Clownnoses

 

And yesterday I got to talk at the local library to a room packed with young writers, who asked smart questions. It was an honor and a blast to be a part of all these events.

GoaWThing The Second:

Galleys — e- and print — of said circus book are limited, but if you need an early copy because you're a reviewer or a librarian, etc., then please to let me know, preferably in the next few days. I can make it happen. And for everyone else, it'll be here before you know it. Definitely before I do.

So. Soon. Where has this year gone? ACK.

Kirkus says: “The mystery is tense and nerve-wracking, and the acrobatics are gorgeously hair-raising.”

And the publisher made a teensy tweak to the shading on my name and "a novel," which gives me an excuse to post the cover again. *pets*

Thing The Third:

Here's my preliminary Dragon Con schedule (subject to change), with two panels and a reading. I hope to see a bunch of y'all there later this month.

Title: Urban Fantasy in YA
Description: We love a little magic, monsters, super powers—but rooted in the real world. What makes a compelling urban fantasy, and what are your faves?
Time: Fri 02:30 pm Location: A707 – Marriott
(Tentative Panelists: Delilah S. Dawson, Gwenda M Bond, Cinda Williams Chima, Bonnie Kunzel, Mari Mancusi)

Title: Reading: Gwenda M Bond
Time: Sat 1:00 pm Location: University – Hyatt

Title: Beyond Genre: Behind the Boom of Realistic YA Fiction
Description: The Fault is Our Stars is just the tip of the iceberg—realistic YA fiction is booming, and there’s a lot to love beyond genre.
Time: Sun 11:30 am Location: A707 – Marriott
(Tentative Panelists: Stephanie Perkins, Gwenda M Bond, Debbie Viguié, Michelle Hodkin)

And that's the three things. Now back to work!

Upcoming Events – Highlands Festival

VHF-2014ThemeI've been experiencing a minor swarm of deadlines since we got back from Lisbon (oh, what a gorgeous city–it was fabulous), and so scarce around these parts. But I did want to drop a post to say if you're in or around the Abingdon, Virginia, area, well, I will be too Sunday through Tuesday, Aug. 3-5, for the Virginia Highlands Festival's Creative Writing Days. You should come out to some events and say hi.

I've never been to the festival before, and I can't wait. Whee!

Here's where you can catch me there:

  • Sunday, 3-4:30 p.m. – "Words and Music: Classical Music Sunday": Readings by three of the Writers’ Day participants: poet Rita Quillen and fantasy writers Charles Vess and Gwenda Bond will alternate with classical music performed by Keith Hungate, violinist, and James Spraker, pianist. (Books will be available and so will we to sign afterward.)
  • Monday, 8 a.m.-5 pm. – Writers' Day (follow the link to see the full schedule of fab stuff, get locale info, and register):

    – 1:15-2:45 p.m. workshop with me, "How Do We Change the World?" Capturing reality can seem challenging enough, so let’s discuss some ways to approach work that departs from it. Whether you’re a beginning writer or just looking to try out something new, we’ll talk about how to get started writing fiction and fantasy stories. (This will be fun: promise.)

    – 3 p.m. Gwenda Bond and Charles Vess, combined workshop: Our combined workshop will be a continuation of what Charles is exploring in his previous session, “What Does That Word Look Like Anyway?” Only this time, the audience will experience Gwenda reading from one of her stories as Charles draws what he sees there.  Before and after we can discuss the effect that a vivid descriptive passage can have on the reader, and how just a few well-chosen words can pull the reader into a writer’s world and keep them wanting more. (Ed. note: How excited am I about this particular session? Charles is basically my hero, and so that's how excited.)

  • Tuesday, 11 a.m.-noon – Creative Writing Youth/Teen Workshop with me, at the Washington County, Va., public library: As always, the public library wants to get readers excited about books and provide an opportunity to encourage young writers. This program is for middle and high school students, but all ages are welcome. Refreshments will be provided. (Refreshments, y'all. Just saying.)

And, yes, I'll definitely be giving a preview of Girl on a Wire (aka the circus book) in my readings. So…y'all come! If not for me, then for Charles Vess. Because HE IS AMAZING, as we all know.

More soon — including, oh *whistles innocently* about Secret Project. SOON.

Hello From Here

My workspace here

So far all I’ve managed is to edit down a prologue (openings are delicate and tricksy!) — but having a great time in Lisbon. And loving my little workspace.

More photos of this glorious city and our adventures here can be found in this flickr album I'm updating daily. Far too many, admittedly. Shoot now, curate later, I say.

Thanks, everyone, for the generous reaction and comments here and there on the last post. Happy it resonated. Now time for one of those decadent vacation lunches, with a little copo of wine.