BOY BAND Fun Facts and Chapter 1!

Hello, all!

It is officially April 1.  I hope everyone has avoided being pranked and fooled and whatnot.  I’m not really even trying this year, because I feel like everyone is expecting it.  However, as it is the beginning of the month that my new Young Adult novel, Boy Band will be released, I figured I should celebrate with some useless trivia and a Chapter 1 download!

So, in no particular order, here we go!

BOY BAND TRIVIA:

Boy Band started out as a NaNoWriMo project.  I’d never participated in NaNo before and I really had no intention to.  I didn’t like the idea of being timed or of writing a novel just because it was a certain month.  But a friend of mine, Savannah (http://savannahrohleder.blogspot.com), persuaded me.  I had no idea if I would publish the story, or if I would even finish it.  But I ended up loving it.  It just goes to show that you never know until you take a chance on something.

* My sister and I both LOVE boy bands, all boy bands, and countless hours spent watching music videos on YouTube inspired me to write about them.

*You can find the music that inspired Boy Band here: https://jackiesmith114.wordpress.com/2015/03/19/boy-band-soundtrack/

* Sam Morneau is named after Sam Claflin.

* Jesse Scott is named after Jesse McCartney (Yes, I really love Jesse McCartney).

* My sister and I wrote all the “songs” in the book.  I’m not sure if they’re good or not.  The one she wrote is, but the rest… Well, I guess you’ll just have to let me know.

* This is the first book for which I’ve designed the cover, and I loved it!

* My sister took the picture of New York that I used for the cover image.

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* Oliver Berkley is based on our cute tour guide from Scotland.  That might be a little creepy.  Oh well.

* The cute Irish singer that Mel refers to throughout the book was inspired by Niall Horan.

* I mention Zac Hanson in the book because he was my very first musician crush.  I was 9 years old and I was obsessed with Hanson.

* I mention Meg Cabot because she is my ultimate writing inspiration.  I kind of want to be her.

* Both of my editors got really mad at me for the way the book ended.  Yes, okay, it ends on a bit of a cliff-hanger.  THERE WILL BE A SECOND BOOK!  In fact, there’s going to be a third book too.

* Mel’s middle name, Kearney, is a family name.

* The group is from the Bay Area because I think San Francisco is really cool.

* I wrote Mel to look like my sister.  Really, this book is for her.  She’s my best friend in the world and without her, the book wouldn’t exist.

* Here’s Chapter 1.  Enjoy!

CHAPTER 1 Boy Band

Boy Band will be available April 21, 2015!

Please remember to enter my GoodReads Giveaway: https://www.goodreads.com/giveaway/show/129034-boy-band

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Cover Reveal: Boy Band

I know it’s late, but I worked really hard last night on designing the back cover of my new YA novel, Boy Band! I have never designed a book cover before, so I had no idea how it was going to turn out.  Keep in mind, it still needs a little tweaking, but I wanted to share it with you so far!

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I’ve actually really enjoyed creating my own book covers.  Who knows?  Maybe cover-design is one more thing I can add to my resume!

Remember, you can enter to win one of five signed copies of Boy Band here: https://www.goodreads.com/giveaway/show/129034-boy-band

Please enter and spread the word!

Also, please check out https://danielleelisemiller.wordpress.com for a chance to win eBook copies of BOTH Cemetery Tours and Between Worlds.  There will be three winners and you can choose either Nook or Kindle.

Characterization Exploration

I’m in the middle of writing the first draft of the third installment of the Cemetery Tours series.  I’ve come to really love these characters.  I’ve been with them for a while now, and they feel like friends to me.  In the past few years, I’ve probably spent more time with them than with my living, breathing friends.

Characters have always been the absolute most important element of any story for me.  If I don’t like the characters, I’m not going to like the book.  It’s that simple.  I read one book last year (I will not mention it because I don’t want to trash another author’s work on my blog) with such horrible, selfish, whiny characters, I could hardly stand it.  None of the characters had any redeeming qualities whatsoever.  If I succeed at nothing else, I want my characters to be likable.  Well, except for the ones that you’re not supposed to like.  They’re actually a LOT of fun to write, but I digress.

As the first book in the series, Cemetery Tours served as sort of an introductory book.  We met the characters, learned their names, the basics.  Between Worlds delved more into developing relationships and adjustments after the events of the first book.

This third book, however, takes place five months after Between Worlds, and the characters have developed a lot since then.  They’ve had more time to get to know each other and I’ve had more time to get to know them as well.  Now, instead of watching them react to certain situations, I’m exploring what exactly makes them that way.

Of my three main characters, Michael, Kate, and Luke, Michael remains the most stubborn.  Kate and Luke are a lot alike in that they’re both happy characters.  They’re both easily amused and easily fascinated.  Michael is more reserved, which stems from a lifetime of trying to remain unnoticed by ghosts and spirits.  Since he met Kate and Luke, he’s become more outgoing, but those twenty-eight years of hiding within himself I think really took a toll, and I think he’s always going to be a little reserved, and that’s okay.  That’s why Kate likes him, and that’s why I like him.

Last night, I tried to imagine what Michael what be like, what he might have done, if he didn’t have the ghosts.  I realized I feel a little sorry for him, because being surrounded by the spirits and trying at all costs to avoid them and not draw attention to himself really inhibited him from developing a real sense of self.  Unlike Kate and Luke, who have real interests that they discovered by themselves, Michael’s entire character evolved from a desire to be something he’s not.  He didn’t have time for self discovery because he was too obsessed with self denial, if that makes any sense at all.  That’s why I’m glad he has Kate, Brink, and even Luke.  I think they really bring out the best in him.

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Friendly Reminder that you only have ONE WEEK LEFT to enter my GoodReads Giveaway! Win signed copies of BOTH Cemetery Tours and Between Worlds just in time for Halloween!

https://www.goodreads.com/giveaway/show/109579-between-worlds