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Thursday, December 30, 2010

New Year, New Me? (Maybe.)

It's the end of the year as we know it, and it's time for everyone's favorite self-imposed (and easily broken) resolutions!! I have to admit, I tend to stay away from resolutions like "go to the gym more!" (although I am resolving to go to the gym more--but only because my new gym offers massages and yummy snacks!) in favor of resolutions like: "Drink more champagne!" and "See more movies!" What can I say? Resolutions are so much easier to honor if they're fun...and I'm nothing if not a woman of my word.

So without further ado, here are my resolutions for '11:

1. Get more sleep.
2. Drink more water! (Okay, this is kind of a chore, but since it makes my skin look oh-so-pretty, the underlying motivation is self-serving.)
3. Make more time for my family, friends, and boyfriend. (Corollary: have more dinner parties.)
4. See more movies! (I actually resolve this every year, and have so far never managed to do it.)
5. Host more theme parties.
6. Make my bed in the morning! (My mom is appalled that I still can't manage to do this, at 28.)
7. Make more time for pleasure-reading.
8. Go to Greece.

Phew. Okay, I think that's sufficient. What about you guys?? What's on your resolutions for '11?

Happy New Year, all--and may the 2011 bring health and happiness to you and yours!


Friday, December 24, 2010

Merry Xmas!!

Guess what, guess what?? I am writing you from my BRAND NEW IPAD! (courtesy of my adorable boyfriend). This, plus the fact that my sister came back from England for the holidays, PLUS the fact that we're off to Hawaii tomorrow, means that all my Christmas wishes have pretty much been granted.

So what's on your wish list this year, people?? I want to know!

Merry xmas and happy holidays...I hope you're all stuffing yourself full of family, friends, and yummy goodness.



Tuesday, December 21, 2010

I wish you a British Christmas...

...and a Delirious New Year!

I am so, so excited--I received an early xmas gift today of a bunch of beautiful British ARCs of Delirium! Here's a pic. You know how you can tell it's British? Because it's drinking tea, silly!!

Anyway, this means I can give some galleys away. So please respond to this post BY USING THE WORD "DELIRIUM" IN A SENTENCE. Don't forget to include your email address! And you will be entered to win one signed copy of the UK ARC.

Additionally, I will be sending you a nifty bottle of Delirium essential oil from the Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab. I'm not sure what you're supposed to do with it but it comes in a cool bottle. See?

(On a side note, the picture above is an excellent example of artistic perspective, and might be used to practice drawing. Look how gigantic my hand looks!)

Please reply by 1/1/11. (OMG--best number ever!) And good luck!


Monday, December 13, 2010

A Special Holiday(ish) Message

Hey lovelies--

It's the end of the year as we know it!!! And that means it's award season. I just found out today that Before I Fall was the recipient of the silver prize in the German Audience Bookaward “Leserpreis – die besten B├╝cher 2010”, in the category "Bester Buchtitel" (Best Title). More than 2500 different books had been nominated, 35 titles made it to the shortlist of each category, and my book reached the Top 3!

As we say in America: Hells Yeah!!!

Now my book will wear this nifty little sticker over there:

And don't forget to cast your votes for the Goodreads choice awards! Before I Fall was nominated in the following three categories:

Goodreads Author

Favorite Heroine
Young Adult:

Still don't want to vote?? WHAT IF I ASK YOU REALLY NICELY IN THIS VIDEO??

Friday, December 10, 2010

Want to hear me speak about DELIRIUM??

You know you do!

As you probably all know by now, I am SO EXCITED about the release of DELIRIUM--it feels like I've had to wait FOREVER for this book to hit the shelves!! (Okay, forever is a bit of an exaggeration...but waiting two years is no picnic, let me tell you.)

In this video I explain the origination of the idea for Delirium, and also disclose secrets of my gym habits (i.e., that I often write in my head!) while gesticulating wildly. I mean, I knew I was a hand-talker but jeez.

Anyway, check it out, and let me know what you think!

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Figment Fiction Contest!!!

Hey all you lovely writers...

Have you heard about the awesome new website Figment? It's like a mash-up of youtube and facebook--but for writing only! You can create a profile, upload your work from ANYWHERE (as you should all know by now, I'm a huge fan of writing on the fly!), and surf around to see what other young creatives are working on.

Plus, Figment is having A FICTION CONTEST JUDGED BY YOURS TRULY!! Check out the details here. The winner gets a signed copy of Delirium...so what are you waiting for?? Get cracking (er, writing) and enter already!

Sunday, December 5, 2010

Weekly Writing Challenge Submissions: The Yum Edition

In celebration of thanksgiving, my latest writing challenge (check it out here), asked that you submit writing samples to me that all focused centrally around food. I have to say, I got incredible submissions this time--each submission was unexpected, and subverted the expectation of "coziness" or homeliness usually attached to descriptions of meal-time.
All of the submissions deserved to be winners, but I've picked only two below out of the pot...because, well, because otherwise I would go broke trying to buy prizes for everyone! I'll be sending Elizabeth and Zoe copies of Like Water for Chocolate, the seminal book of magical realism in which food and story are seamlessly intertwined.
Incidentally, both writing samples below could also be used to teach an MFA course in the importance of cliff-hangers/great first pages. I mean, for real!

Eating for Two, by Elizabeth Parker (check out her blog here.)

She let her eyes wander lustfully over the Thanksgiving dinner. The table was stocked with all sorts of goodies: pecan pie, turkey with all the trimmings, mashed potatoes with gravy, and some sort of Jello-covered substance that Tom’s infamous
Aunt Myrtle had brought. She was so, so hungry, and the food all looked delicious.
Tom took her hand as he and his family bowed their heads to say the prayer over the meal. They had been dating for a little over six months now, and although she trusted him with her life, she still hadn’t told him all of her secrets.
The prayer finished, and the family was finally able to eat. With a tremulous glance down at her pants which were already too tight, she took heaping portions of each of the plates stacked on the table, and started to cram food into her mouth. Slow down, she told herself, but her brain didn’t listen. Soon enough, she was completely stuffed; yet, when another pie, this time apple, was offered, she was the first to accept a piece.
When everyone was done eating, she excused herself to go to the bathroom.
She was a pro at this by now: she turned the water on first to mask the sound of her retching. After she finished, she sat on the toilet, ashamed of herself; she had been trying to stop for the past few months, but it hadn’t been working. She loved food too much.
Before she even noticed, the door was opening. It was Tom. He slowly looked at her, sitting on the floor covering her knees, and then at the vomit-encrusted toilet.
“Are you okay?” he asked.
Her mind raced. She couldn’t tell him the truth. Not now.
“I’m pregnant,” she said.

Apple Pie, by Zoe MacDonald

There are few things in this world that I remember. Laundry, homework, lyrics or where I left my license are just examples. The one thing I’ll never forget is my mom’s apple pie.
My mom’s apple pie was just the way it should be – not like the stuff people think they can just get from the grocery store and still pass it off as ‘wonderful’.
It was always the first indication that maybe, just maybe, things were going to get better, the smell of cinnamon throughout the entire house. Even before the pie was started, the house smelt like warm pie-ish cinnamon.
Then would come the peeling of apples. My mom worked hard to make sure that the peels stayed attached – in one piece. Snakes, she called them and if I was home, I would get to eat them as she sliced the apples up into tiny slivers.
She was so particular with this that by the time she was done, I would run away, my attention needed for something far more important.
When it was done, usually by the time I got home school when I was older, the pie would be sitting on the pie rack, cooling down. It was practically picture perfect, a little cut out in the center, steam rising up, the whole house smelling like a scented candle.
My mom would serve it when it was ready in her eyes -not before then - and it would just be exactly how an apple pie should be soft apples and sweet, flaky crust – perfect.
The pie always meant something good, that she was getting better, getting what was making her happy.
I guess it makes sense then that the day she killed herself, the pie was sitting on the pie rack, waiting to be served.

Okay, so neither submission actually makes you want to eat, but...sheesh! They sure make you want to read on. I should also say, as someone who has gotten a lot of flak from parents about the "content" of my books (Before I Fall references drinking, sex, suicide, and bulimia, among other issues), it is actually somewhat nice to know that I am not the only one interested in honestly exploring some of the darker and more problematic issues out there! Take that, censorship!

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Rock the Vote (for yours truly)...

'Tis the season...for book awards! I recently found out that Before I Fall has been nominated in some pretty cool awards.

First up, The Goodreads Choice Awards. Before I Fall has been nominated in three different categories, including Best YA fiction, Goodreads Author Award, and Favorite Heroine (actually, I guess just Sam Kingston gets that last honor). PLEASE VOTE HERE (even if you don't vote for me. This is America, after all--you have a right to your opinion!).

Second of all, my book has been nominated for Der Leserpreis – die besten Buecher 2010, a fiction award in (you guessed it) Germany!! So, okay, I know the website (here) is in German, but look for my name and click "voten"...unless you're compelled to voten for one of the other German titles...

I'm so thrilled and excited by these nominations home and abroad, and honored to be included among so many other great titles. So vote once, vote often, and spread the good word!


Content by Lauren Oliver - Copyright 2011. Blog designed by Ella Press Studio - 2011.

Author Photo by Jonathan Alpeyrie - Copyright 2010. Original Font Idea by Erin Fitzsimmons - 2010.