Monday, April 23, 2012

Posie & Mosey Monday

On Mondays, I share word posies with my readers. Comments are disabled so you can enjoy this gift of poetry then mosey on along to your list of daily do's.*

*Hungry for more in-depth Monday posts? Visit any of the entertaining and insightful blogs on my sidebar.

~Lewis Carroll (1832-1898)

Lady Clara Vere de Vere
Was eight years old, she said:
Every ringlet, lightly shaken, ran itself in golden thread.
She took her little porringer:
Of me she shall not win renown:
For the baseness of its nature shall have strength to drag her down.

"Sisters and brothers, little Maid?
There stands the Inspector at thy door:
Like a dog, he hunts for boys who know not two and two are four."
"Kind words are more than coronets,"
She said, and wondering looked at me:
"It is the dead unhappy night, and I must hurry home to tea."

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

❤ Cover Love ❤

I'm swooning over some book covers today at ADR3NALIN3. Stop by if you'd like a glimpse at three YA covers that have caught my eye over the last couple of weeks.

But fair warning, I also posted my cover and book trailers, so if you're a little tired of seeing those, scroll down to the bottom of the post for my book picks. (◕‿-)

Have a great rest of the week!

Monday, April 16, 2012


Today my poetry post is preempted for a little house cleaning. Lately I've been tagged with a few memes and they're gathering dust on my shelves.  This one seems most pressing because three authors hit me with it. Two on twitter, and one on Facebook. So, first, to thank them.

Thank you, Gennifer Albin, Jessica Khoury, and Jessica Nelson!

And without further adieu, the Lucky 7 Meme...

Here are the rules:

1. Go to the seventh or 77th page of the WIP or latest book
2. Count down seven lines.
3. Copy the 7 sentences that follow and post them.
4. Tag 7 other authors.

Here are my 7 lines from page 77 in my Word doc of Splintered:

The girl—who looks to be five—wears a frilly red pajama top with long, puffy sleeves and matching pants that cover her ankles. She sits on a grassy knoll beside the boy, who can’t be more than eight. They both have their backs to me.

Black wings drape behind the boy like a cloak, matching his velvet pants and silky shirt. He tilts sideways, so I catch his profile, but his face stays hidden beneath a curtain of glowing blue hair as he uses a needle to thread dead moths along a string—making the gruesome equivalent of a popcorn garland.

His feet—snug inside black hiking boots—are propped on a set of sketches, the same ones glued inside Alison’s Wonderland book.

“There.” His young, soft voice rustles like feathers on the wind.

Since I've always been a slow runner, I'm not even going to attempt tagging you. If you'd like to play along and give me a glimpse of your latest WIP, snag that Lucky 7 icon, post your lines on your blog, and leave a comment below. I'd love to hop over and see it!

Have a great Monday, everyone!

Friday, April 13, 2012

Splintered Cover Reveal Giveaway Winners!!!

Thank you everyone for taking part in the giveaway and helping me celebrate my fabulously lovely and creepy cover for Splintered!!!  It's now sitting happily on my side bar. *le sigh* Every step closer to being on the shelves is sweeter than the one before, and it's even better because I have such wonderful friends to share it with! ♥˘˘♥
Without further adieu, here are the winners:

Kaylie Austen, you're the winner of the frabjous Alice pack + bookplate:

 And the eleven winners of the personalized signed bookplates are:

Laura Ellen Handy
Sarah Ebbith Cruz Aponte
Angela Cook
Beth Dilorio
Angie (@pinkindle)
Margie Mohamed
Ayliesha Harris
Shelley Coriell

If the winners could all please email me at anita(at)aghoward(dot)com and send me your addresses, I'll get those prizes mailed off to you! Also, be sure to let me know who you want the bookplate made out to.

Thank you again, and if you didn't win this time, take heart. I'll be having LOTS more contests/giveaways, especially now that I have an image I can use for some awesome Splintered swag! 

Have a great weekend, everyone!

Monday, April 9, 2012

Splintered Cover Reveal GIVEAWAY!!!

Sorry, no poetry today because...

IT'S HERE! My beautiful book cover has arrived! And I could not be any more beholding to my editor Maggie Lehrman, my cover designer Maria Middleton, and the mystical / melancholy artistry of the lovely Nathalia Suellen (aka Lady Symphonia) for creating a cover that not only captures Splintered's eerie yet sometimes kooky mood, but also highlights the bugs, flowers, and vines that play such a pivotal role in the storyline.

If you've found your way over from the fabulous Krazy Book Lady's blog, you've already had a glimpse of the cover. If you haven't been there yet, hop over and let me know what you think!

To celebrate this frabjous day, I'm giving away a gift package. (Soon I'll actually have Splintered books and bookmarks to put up for grabs, but it's a little early for that yet.)

Today, we'll stick with Lewis Carroll goodies. One lucky first place winner will get this Alice-themed bundle:

White Rabbit Jounal

Set of 5 White Rabbit Bookmarks/Gift Tags

Personalized / Autographed Bookplate for Splintered 

And eleven second-place winners will each get a personalized-signed bookplate like the one above.

That's a total of twelve winners. And yes, this giveaway is *INTERNATIONAL*, so spread the word...

Using the rafflecopter below, there are only two things you have to do:

1. Answer an easy question about the book cover (have to make sure you actually saw it, right?) (◕‿-)

2. Either tweet the cover reveal, or share it on Facebook.

Two points will get your name in the drawing.  The giveaway ends Friday morning at 12a.m. I'll be announcing the winners later that day right here.

Thanks so much for sharing this thrilling experience with me, and I hope you win some goodies! 

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Friday, April 6, 2012

Query Trackers Making Tracks, #18

Today is installment number eighteen of my "First Friday of the Month" series on successful authors from QueryTracker. Some of my guests have agents, others have found success in less conventional ways. But one thing they all have in common is the utilization of the QueryTracker website to help make their tracks in the publishing world.

My guest today, 
Rachel Harris, signed with her agent Lauren Hammond in August of last year, and by January she had signed a two-book contract with Entangled Publishing. And now her fabulous book has an equally FAB cover:

Available for pre-order now at Amazon
And deeply discounted at B&N for $5.70

 Wow, things are moving fast for Rachel! Let's get the inside scoop on her journey.

AGH: Rachel, could you give us a quick summary of the book which snagged your agent?

RH: Quick, huh? Why is that always so hard to do? J Here’s a one-liner: When a teen walks into a gypsy’s tent and steps out into Renaissance Italy, she learns the only thing worse than an unwanted Sweet Sixteen is an unwanted suitor full of creeptastic amore.

But that does leave out gorgeous, aspiring artist Lorenzo….and sweet and innocent Alessandra…. And protective Cipriano…and the host of hilarity that follows Cat during her time travel adventure.  This book was so much fun to write!

AGH: Before you signed with your agent, how many books had you tried to query? 

RH: I queried one book before this, which is now actually being considered by my editor (*fingers, toes, and eyes crossed*)

AGH: What were the responses to those queries (stat-wise: fulls, partials, etc.)?

RH: For my first book, I sent 24 queries. Of those twenty-four, four asked for partials, ten asked for fulls, five passed with very personalized letters explaining why and giving feedback (which as a newbie, I so appreciated!), and five closed with no response.

For MY SUPER SWEET SIXTEENTH CENTURY, I sent my query out in batches of ten, and ended up querying thirty-five agents. Of those thirty-five, four asked for partials, ten asked for fulls, twelve passed with personalized letters back, and nine closed with no response. Four months to the day that I sent my first query, my agent, Lauren Hammond, emailed saying she received my signed contract and we were diving into revisions.

AGH: What genre(s) do you write?

RH: Right now, I write YA, though I just plotted out a fun adult contemporary romance. Within YA, my first manuscript is a contemporary romance, Super Sweet is a magical realism/historical/romance, and I also have a partial out with my editor that is a contemporary romance with a paranormal twist. I kinda like to experiment J

AGH: What inspired your very first book idea?

RH: I was first inspired to write after being completely sucked into the Twilight series—I just have to say that to begin with. I think the influence Stephanie Meyer has had on young people reading again has been amazing, and it also helped me remember how much fun it can be. But when I decided I wanted to try writing myself, it wasn’t paranormal that I was drawn to. I wanted to write about real life, a situation that any teen reading could relate to. I did pull some plot points from my own life as a springboard but it completely took off and morphed from there.

AGH: How do you come up with titles?

RH: Ha, my husband helps A LOT! I came up with the title for my first manuscript, 2nd Type of Girl, on my own and it just came from writing…. It was a term that the characters used a lot. But My Super Sweet Sixteenth Century was a complete collaboration with my husband, and the companion novel, A Tale of Two Centuries was all him. He likes to remind me of that often J

AGH: What books / authors have most influenced your own style and concepts?

RH: I read so much—I’m kinda/a little bit/okay a lot obsessed with it—that it’s kind of a huge eclectic mix, but I would say if I had to pick the authors that most shaped the kind of author I wanted to be, I would have to say: Stephanie Perkins, Holly Schindler, Sarah McLean, Sarah Dessen, Simone Elkeles, Susane Colasanti, Mandy Hubbard, and Gayle Forman. J See, even that list is huge!

AGH: How did you find QueryTracker, and how did it help you in your effort to get inside the publishing doors?

RH: I learned about Query Tracker from Mary Lindsay (Shattered Souls) who is in my local RWA and YA writers group. They were having a contest with her agent and she encouraged me to submit. Though I didn’t win, I did get an email from her agent asking for the first ten pages, and then a partial. Being my first attempt to send my work out, it was an amazing start to my writing career. Then using QT going forward, I learned of so many agents I would’ve have otherwise, and the most special part was the relationships built with the other writers in the trenches. Cheering each other on, lifting each other up. It helped me to see just how supportive and welcoming the writing community is, and was a complete blessing.

AGH: Do you have any current news to announce?  

RH: My editor just sent me the digital ARC, which has had me petting my screen for a few days, and we hope to have a handful of ARCS for the RT Convention in Chicago. I’ll be there and looking forward to meeting everyone! Then it is all about getting ready for the release in September and completing the companion novel, A Tale of Two Centuries, which will be released June 2013!

**Five for fun**

1)      Which would you rather do: carry an umbrella or sing in the rain?

Sing in the rain. Definitely. Not only do umbrellas bother me—half the time I can’t figure the darn things out, and I get wet trying to open and close them anyway—but there is just something fun and childlike about dashing between the drops and splashing in the puddles J

2)      What’s your favorite breakfast?

I’ll eat anything—cereal, left over pizza, yogurt, cheeseburgers lol—but I HAVE to have caffeine! Sadly, I don’t do coffee much, but I can drink my weight in Dt. Mt. Dew.

3)      If I were at your house right now, what would I find in your refrigerator?

Lots and lots of Dt. Mt. Dew, water, lettuce, spinach, yogurt, left over salmon, strawberries, salsa, and jalapenos. Makes me sound a lot healthier than I am, trust me.

4)      When would you go to if you had a time machine, and why?

He he, I feel like I’m cheating since I kinda wrote about this, but yes, definitely Renaissance Italy. I’ve always loved that time, one of discovery, and art, and beauty. The clothes, the art, wonder. And come on, it’s Italy! But I would also love to go to Regency London (again with the clothes, the balls, the hot dukes and rakes), or 1950s America. Not totally sure why the last one but the music is so fun and innocent, the clothes interesting, and I’ve kinda got a crush on young Elvis. I blame my mother.  

5)   Drinking tea … pinky up, or heavy on the Long Island?

Ha! Heavy on the Long Island, but still pinky up….even with a cold long neck beer, my pinky remains up while I drink. Hey, I’m all about the classy.


Thank you for the interview, Rachel. Your book premise sounds amazing and FUN. I'm already crushing on Lorenzo (I have a thing for artists). I may not be a gypsy palm reader, but I see great things ahead in your future, lady!

To our readers, please feel free to offer support and kudos to Rachel in the comments. Also, you can follow her publishing star on the internet:
Facebook author page
Facebook friend page:
Amazon author page

Thanks for stopping by, and have a great weekend!

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Meet Splintered's Naughty Hotty...

Today I'm over at my YA group blog ADR3NALIN3 with Splintered's bad boy. It's a recap from a post I did here last year, so anyone new to the blog who wants a little peek at Morpheus, just hop right over. He'll make it worth your while. ;)

Also, Friday I'll be having the lovely Rachel Harris over for a successful QT author interview. We'll talk about her debut YA:

Pitched as MTV's Super Sweet Sixteen meets Ever After

Hope to see you then!

Sunday, April 1, 2012

Spring *Bling-Bling* Winners!

Today's Posie & Mosey Monday has been preempted by my Spring *Bling-Bling* contest announcement.

Thanks everyone who entered last week!

Here are the winners, as chosen by Mr.

1. Mary Frame--Alice in Wonderland Post Card package & bookplate
2. Ricki Marking--Adult Literary Novel package & bookplate
3. Gabi--YA Fantasy package & bookplate

Congrats! Please email me at: anita(at)aghoward(dot)com and give me your snail mail addy and who you would like the SPLINTERED bookplate made out to so I can get those goodies sent your way! Those who didn't win this time, don't worry. I'll be having lots more giveaways in the future!

Also, a quick announcement: 

A while back, I entered a contest for a $500 virtual book tour from TLC. I found out yesterday that I'm one of the five finalists!

If any of you feel up for voting for me, here's the link (no rush, you have until April 14th). I would really appreciate the help! This package could get a great buzz going for Splintered.

Thanks for stopping in today, and have a great week!