And the Winner Is…

Okay! Here it is everyone! The winner of our first Few and Far Between! At first participation went by really slowly and then tonight it was BAM! Lots of action out and about! I am very excited for everyone’s participation in my first contest and I have to thank you all!

Most of all I have to thank the awesome Victoria Schwab, who probably thinks that I am a stalker by now based on the amount of times I tweet her. haha. But seriously you guys all I had got was a book and she was the one who gave the bookmarks for you guys to get.

I only have one book to give away so while I will say CONGRATS to the winner I have to say sorry for those of you who did not win.

And now what you all really want to know is who won. Well the winner of the BOOKMARKS are:

jcalvret719
and
shefboyarrdee

and the winner of the AUTOGRAPHED BOOK AND BOOKMARK is:

peachandblue

Congratulations to all the winners. I need you to direct message me on twitter with where I need to send the prizes =)

Hannah

Surviving a Zombie Apocolypse

Yallfest Part Four: How to Survive a Zombie Apocalypse

Here it is everyone! The final post about my trip to Yallfest, I am sorry it was so spaced out but I didn’t want to shove everything at you all at once. The final panel of the day (for my sister and I at least) was the one that my sister really came alive for. All I heard about the entire time was “OMG! THAT’S CARRIE RYAN!”
The panel was called “Putting the Ya’ll in Yallfest” and it was hilarious. I was able to see Beth Revis in August and she was absolutely hilarious then and she was super funny here too! Right at the start we were informed that all of the authors on the panel were from the south except for one and this is how that conversation went “We’re all southerners here except for one of us. Unfortunately she’s a yankee, but at least she’s not a damn yankee!” and as a previous northerner I found that the highlight of my day (or at least one of them.) So then the “yankee” got picked to go first for the whole rest of the time.
I was unfamiliar with The Magnolia League by Katie Crouch and The Vespertine by Saundra Mitchell, but both of their descriptions and what they said about the book were really interesting. One of the, The Vespertine, is a historical novel and I love reading about characters set in time. The other deals with something that, as a someone who grew up in Michigan, is completely unfamiliar to me. The world of a debutant. This book sounds really interesting to me because from the description the main character did not grow up in southern society and was instead thrust into it in her later teen years. So she is just as clueless about that world as I would be. Those two books are definitely on my list of things to read.
The other three authors that were there were Michelle Hodkin, Beth Revis, and CARRIE RYAN!!! (that’s Tessa screaming). For those who are unfamiliar Carrie Ryan wrote the book series The Forest of Hands and Teeth and I absolutely love them. The books deal with a reality set in the future where most of the population has been turned to…wait for it…ZOMBIES! So a lot of the talk turned to how would one survive a zombie apocalypse? Well everyone you can all rest easy tonight because I have the answer for you. You should all brace yourselves. Make sure there is always someone slower than you. There you have it. Always make sure that there is someone around you that can run slower than you do and the zombies can go after them first. It might also be helpful to have a few people slower than you are so that if the zombies get the person behind you, you are not next on their list.
I also found out that both Carrie Ryan and Michelle Hodkin went to law school before becoming authors. Thinking about going to law school now (although I will admit its more of a joke than seriously pondering, though I think my mom would be thrilled).
The opening storyline in Michelle Hodkins book The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer was inspired by something that she encountered in real life. While in New York working as a lawyer, she met a woman who asked her if she had a case. The woman’s daughter was in a building collapse and even though her daughter survived her two bests friends did not. Michelle Hodkin told her that she did not deal with that type of law but took her phone number. A year later she tried to call the women and the number was disconnected, then she tried to find her online and there was nothing online about it. That is where the start of the story came from. I love it when an author has a story like that!
The other author, Beth Revis, wrote a book called Across the Universe and it’s a murder mystery in space. I actually read it after we came home from yallfest and let me tell you all it was amazing! I loved it! There is another one coming out in the New Year and I am unbelievably excited to read the next book.
Tessa and I ran out of the panel as soon as it ended and headed over to the tent where Carrie Ryan was going to be signing books. I would have gotten Beth Revis and Michelle Hodkin but they were both unavailable. Carrie Ryan had the longest line that I had seen all day and all thoughts of going to the next panel were erased from my head as we waited, but it was worth it.
Carrie Ryan was super super sweet! We chatted a bit and she asked about the site, which by association means that she was asking about all of you! I told her that I loved her books and I describe them as a kickass version of the Village, and she told me she gets that a lot but that she wishes it were a comparison to a better movie. (But I did say it was a kickass version of it). Then she told me that Hannah is where she got Anna from, which is a character in her book. She asked me if I reviewed or talked about young adult books and I was kind of shocked (forgetting she didn’t know what the site was) and I told her that’s all I read.
All this time my sister was standing there starstruck and when it came time to take a picture I shoved her in front of the camera so Tessa actually got a picture with her favorite author! Which if ya’ll heard the conversation in line that was a hard thing to do!

Overall Yallfest was SO much FUN! I really hope they do it next year because I will be there. Thanks to all the authors who participated and who were all really awesome and nice to their fans!

Hannah

Cake Pop Exchange

Yallfest Part Three: Cake Pope Exchange

The next panel that I got to attend at Yallfest was the “Demons, Witches, and Casters oh my!” and it got off to a really awkward start. So my sister and I walked into the panel just as it was starting because we came from the tent where we got our books signed. There were no seats next to each other that we could sit in; the only ones were in the very front. So I snuck to the front of the room and sat in the front row, I turned around to see where my sister was and she disappeared. I know they most likely were not staring at me but I seriously felt the eyes of everyone in the room on me when I sat down. My sister texted me and she was in the back of the room, too afraid to walk in front of everyone to go to the front. Then we got into a text fight that went something like this:

ME: Get up here now!
TESSA: No! I am staying back here.
ME: Come on!
TESSA: I am not walking in front of everyone!
ME: YOU BETTER GET GOOD PICTURES!
TESSA: Okay

And then the text fight was over. So I was super excited for this panel because as you all know by now Mystery Author #1 was Victoria Schwab who was part of this panel. I was super excited to see her, even though I had already seen her in August. I later found out that this was one of her last appearances for The Near Witch promotion, which kind of made me feel like I had witnessed something special. I got to see her just a few days after her book was released and then I got to see her again at the end of her tour.
I really loved something that Victoria Schwab said during the panel. In The Near Witch there are two outsiders, one who just arrived, and one who has lived in Near her whole life. I really loved that! That simple sentence is something that I know most people can relate to.

I also thought that something that Kami Garcia said was really funny. She talked about how people in other countries think the things in her book Beautiful Creatures apply to everyone in the US, that we all eat grits and a bunch of other things that she and Margaret Stohl wrote in her book. She talked about how she had to send instant grits to someone in Australia to try and describe what they were. I for one had never heard of grits either until I moved to Tennessee.

There was also a book that I had not read or heard of before that sounds really good. Its called The Iron Thorn by Caitlin Kittredge. It is definitely on my list of things to read now. It’s a steampunk book, which is something that I had never heard of before but it really sounds so good!

So after the panel ending my sister and I ran to Blue Bicycle books to get in line for Victoria Schwab, and it was all for you guys! (Mostly, I admit I did want to see her again too). As many of you may know if you read Yallfest Part One: The Great Cake Pop Hunt, you will know that I went and hunted down cake pops for Victoria Schwab. In August when I began following her on twitter she talked about them all the time and then she posted a video of what they were because I had no idea.

So I am standing in line waiting patiently for my book to get signed and I struck up a conversation with a librarian about The Book Vortex which was kind of cool because she was one of the first person who I got to talk to about it.

So I finally get to go up and see Victoria Schwab and I felt really awkward because she asked me my name and I had to tell her not to personalize it (because I got it for YOU) and then I handed her the cake pops. This is how that conversation went:

Victoria: you have baked goods.
Me: Yeah…they are for you.
Victoria: Really?
Me: Yes they are cake pops.
Victoria: OMG can I give you a hug.
Me: * star struck * yes
Victoria: * gives hug *

Somewhere in there I told her that she was doing an interview for my site and the cake pops were to thank her and then she gave me two more book marks. So those bookmarks were all Victoria! If you win you should thank her!

In short this is what I learned from this panel. I still love The Near Witch, and I want to read Beautiful Creatures and The Iron Thorn.

Also we have the authors of Beautiful Creatures to thank for Yallfest because they helped bring it all together!

And don’t forget to enter to win the signed copy of The Near Witch. Contest goes through Friday!

Hannah
You can follow Victoria Schwab @veschwab
Kami Garcia @kamigarcia
Caitlin Kittridge @caitkitt
and always you can follow me @Hannah_TBV

As you can see these are the kinds of pics Tessa and I get when we are in a “text fight” because we have so many more of the other panels. lolw

Interview with Victoria Schwab!

I am very excited to bring to you all our very first interview! If you read the “Great Cake Pop Hunt” post the other day then you may recognize her name.

I first heard of Victoria Schwab at the Ash2Nash tour.

Victoria Schwab, Hannah, Erin, Rachel Hawkins, Nicole

I am super fortunate to be able to bring to you all an interview with Victoria Schwab =)

Questions:

1. When did you realize you wanted to be an author?

-I’ve always wanted to be a writer, I simply wasn’t sure what form it would take. In high school I wrote really angsty poetry, and then I got to college and wrote slightly less angsty poetry, then I tried screenwriting, then short fiction, and finally decided to try my hand at a novel-shaped thing. It took me a little while to get the hang of it, but here I am!

2. What were your early writing experiences?

–Positive. Writing has always been this thing. The act of writing quiets something in me. From an early age, it’s been a large part of my happiness and sanity.

3. What was your early experience like with getting an agent?

–The first time I started querying was as a sophomore, and while I got a lot of positive response, it was clear there was work to be done, so I shelved it for six months or so, then pulled it out and revised. I queried again and got very lucky, and signed with my first agent a week later. That book ended up not selling, though (which was agony, because it got so, so close) and eight months into submission hell, I wrote The Near Witch :) After NW sold but before it came out I changed agents (sometimes it just isn’t the right fit) and am now with the incredible Holly Root.

4. How much say as an author did you get in the final version of The Near Witch? We often hear about authors not being able to include everything they had wanted, was that the case for you?

–I was very lucky, in that I have a wonderful relationship with my editor. Sometimes compromise is necessary, but every time I felt very strongly about an element, we worked to make sure it stayed. My editor also had a “try it” policy, meaning that when she wanted a change, I had to try it, and if it didn’t work/I wasn’t happy, we would reassess.

5. What was your inspiration for the world and society of Near? Was it based on any other lore?

–Near was based on folklore and fairy tale, or rather, it was a reaction to both. Setting is usually so sparse in fairy tale, and I very much wanted to create a setting that felt like a character.

6. Do you think you will ever revisit the world of Near?

–I very much want to. My next book is the start of a new series (The Archived) but I would LOVE to come back to Near. Whether I can or not is really in the hands of the readers.

7. Your new book is called The Archived, is there anything that you can tell us as about it or is it still under wraps?

–It’s kind of like Buffy meets The Shining meets If I Stay with a library. That’s all I can say right now, other than the fact I’m terribly, terribly excited to share it.

8. Anything you can tell us about Vagabond Puppies?

–It’s my first book for adults. I’m frightened to admit how much I love it. There might be superheroes. Or supervillains. Or maybe just villains.

9. The Near Witch came out in August and it’s only been almost three months and you already have tons of fans, have you gotten used to it yet?

–Haha, I’m not used to the word “fan” so every time I hear it, I literally giggle. So I’m going to go with a “no.”

10. Who would you have a fan girl moment over?

–Neil Gaiman. And I totally did. I met him a couple weeks ago, and he hugged me, and I died.

11. Who are your inspirations?

–Neil Gaiman is one of my biggest inspirations. Which is probably why I died.

12. Any advice for aspiring authors?

–Yes. Be brave. This is a scary industry with lots of rejection, and you must always be sure that your want outweighs your fear, even by a small margin.

Thanks so much for having me!!
THE NEAR WITCH
Disney*Hyperion
August 2, 2011
www.victoriaschwab.com
www.veschwab.wordpress.com

Thank you so much Victoria! I also got to see her over the weekend at Yallfest! (Post about that is still coming later)
Victoria and I

I also have surprise for the rest of you! I’ve got SWAG for you all! I have three prizes to give away.

1) A signed copy of The Near Witch as well as a signed The Near Witch bookmark.

2) One signed bookmark

3) One signed bookmark.

So two people will be getting a signed bookmark and one person will be getting a signed book and signed bookmark.

This is what I want from you all. You can enter one of two ways.
1) Go on twitter and #thenearwitch tell me @Hannah_TBV how much you want the book.
2) If you do not have a twitter head over to the forums. You will see an area labeled Few and Far Between go into that area and do the same thing there. Just let me know how much you want the book.

Remember everyone its supposed to be fun, so have some fun! This is my first give away I will admit and so if you have never participated in one before we are all in the same boat. Depending on how this one goes I may change things around for next time.

The winner will be chosen at random from all of the people who entered. When the winners have been selected I will announce them both on here and on twitter.

You can follow Victoria Schwab here @veschwab
And as always you can follow me here @Hannah_TBV