Posts in the Young Adult genre

Q&A

Q&A with Amber Garza! | YA

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Amber Garza, author of the new YA novel I’M NOT IN THE BAND, stops by EverAfter to answer some of our most pressing questions! Read on!

What was your favorite aspect of pulling all of this story together? I always like the resolution, when the couple finally ends up together.

Most frustrating? I struggled a little with adding enough conflict in this story. I had to rewrite a lot of those scenes and add in more angst and problems.


FIVE BOOKS

If you could only read five books for the rest of your life, what five books would they be, and why?

Blue Diary by Alice Hoffman – Alice Hoffman is my favorite author of all time. Her writing is gorgeous. It’s poetic and beautiful, and I’m in awe of it. And I love this book. I’ve read it multiple times. It’s such an interesting story that delves into the idea that we never really know those around us.

The Time Traveler’s Wife by Audrey Niffenegger – This is my favorite love story! It drew me in from the first time I read it and I could read it again and again. Such a powerful romance. It’s a book I think about often. I love how it ended the way it began. I still sometimes take it off the bookshelf and simply re-read that last paragraph. It makes me cry every time.

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Essential Beginnings Kennedy Layne
Giveaway, Q&A

GIVEAWAY and Q&A with Larissa Hardesty!

Emmy Duivel believes in true love: heart-stopping kisses, candlelight dinners, and a connection that lasts forever. But not the kind of kisses that land your date in the hospital. Emmy always knew she was different, but not in the supernatural sense. Not in the succubus sense.

Paul Andinn had only one job: watch over Emmy and make sure she doesn’t expose the supernatural world. It should have been easy, but the moment he looked away, she kissed that boy, and everything changed. 

He should be more upset. But he can’t. Not when he’s falling hard for her.

Now onto the Q&A with the author of KISS ME, KILL YOU, Larissa C. Hardesty! 


What was your favorite aspect of writing this story?

I loved writing KISS ME KILL YOU for so many reasons. But if I had to pick just one, I’d say creating my own book boyfriend. I LOVE Paul. I loved writing him and writing from his POV. Getting into his head was so easy. I hope my readers enjoy him as much as I enjoyed writing him.

Most frustrating?

The most frustrating part of this process has to be finishing the book right when the paranormal YA market flooded. I had so many rejections that said, “Love this, but I can’t sell it right now.” headdesk But persistence paid off, and the book is so much better now, under my editor’s guidance.


FIVE BOOKS

If you could only read five books for the rest of your life, what five books would they be, and why?

I’m going to go with the five books I reread regularly.

  1. Dragonsong by Anne McCaffrey. I love all the books in the Pern universe, but this one was my first, and the protagonist is a musician.
  2. The Magic’s Pawn trilogy by Mercedes Lackey. I’m cheating a bit here, but not really, because they have been compiled into a single volume. LOL. This book kept me up until all hours in high school. It’s got magic, and Companions (like psychic magical horses), and a love story that rips out your heart and stomps on it before putting it back in your chest. Which sounds horrible (and it is), but it is also amazing.
  3. One Foot in the Grave by Jeaniene Frost. This is the HOTTEST couple in romance. Bones is so open with his feelings, and Cat just keeps pushing him away. I read this whole series every year. LOL.
  4. Stone Cold Touch by Jennifer L. Armentrout. I love all of Jennifer’s books, but this is the first time I’d read a love triangle where I really thought the protagonist could go either way. I finished reading this book not sure which way I wanted her to go, which was kind of fun!
  5. I have so many books I could put here, but I’ll put another I reread a lot for two reasons. First, I reread it a lot, so I know it holds up. But second, it is really long. Like, REALLY LONG. By the time I finish rereading this one, the others will seem fresh. LOL. It’s To Light a Candle by Mercedes Lackey. This is an epic high fantasy with elves and magic and snarky unicorns, but most importantly, a reluctant hero who is also accidentally a badass.

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Guest Post

Keeping Love Interests Separated by Wendy Laine

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Hollywood has made a fortune capitalizing on the will they/won’t they? scenario in both movies and on TV. How many seasons did Kate push off Castle? What about Rachel and Ross? Then, there was Team Edward and Team Jacob and many reiterations since then. Fictional couples are drawn to each other and their creators, because we’re cruel and heartless, immediately begin throwing obstacles between them. “Oh, you like each other? Ha! Take this! And that! And this!”

If you don’t believe we take a perverse joy in keeping our characters climbing out of ugly pits, you haven’t hung out with enough authors. We’re the evil queens or callous warlocks of fairytales fiendishly rubbing our hands together because we know something our characters don’t know: the stakes need to be high in order to engage a reader’s heart.

References to the “stakes” of a story are also an author’s worst nightmare when it comes up in an editorial letters. Raising stakes in romance can be tricky. There’s no gang of thugs to arrive, no cliff to roll off, and no jump scare in romance. In romances, there can be physical, mental, or emotional barriers…and, okay, sometimes mortal peril, but beyond the story arc to build, there’s their relationship arc. When crafting a romance, you have to simultaneously illustrate why your characters must be together, while also preventing the culmination of them finding lasting happiness.

There’s no story in: they meet and fall in love—the end.

There’s no angst and, thus, no passion. Your reader isn’t invested in their relationship.

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Sisters in Love Melissa Foster
Uncategorized

Top 5 Reasons Emma and Julian Need To Be Together

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  1. They have a secret language.They trace letters on each other’s skin and can actually communicate. Have you ever tried that in real life? When I was a kid, my friends and I would try to write messages on each other’s backs and, let me tell you, it is

    H
    I or wait is it an A

    H
    A
    P actually make than an R

    H
    A
    R
    D.
  2. They’re already parabatai.

    The Clave’s got it all wrong here that the fact they’re already bound together as parabatai is a curse. (Even though the reason why romantic love between parabatai is forbidden is still a secret at the time of this post so I really don’t know what I’m talking about.)

    Of course, parabatai should be together. They know they can make a serious commitment to each other, because they’ve already done it.

    Somebody make me a member of the Clave, already. I need some voting power. *Bangs gavel* 
  3. They already know that they would be good parents. At this point, Julian is less of an older brother and more of a father figure to his siblings. Emma already fits into Julian’s family perfectly. Bringing someone else into the mix would just be weird. 
  4. Their names sound nice together. (Is anyone else really hung up on names? Let me know in the comments!)
  5. Because of quotes like these:

    LOS_banner“We are bound together, Emma, bound together—I breathe when you breathe, I bleed when you bleed, I’m yours and you’re mine, you’ve always been mine, and I have always, always belonged to you!”

    “You’ll fix me, because we’re parabatai. We’re forever.”

    “How long have you been drawing me?”
    He sighed. A moment later his hand came to rest in her hair. His fingers twined in the strands. “My whole life.”
Autumn Thorns Yasmine Galenorn
Guest Post

Getting to Know Oneself as a Contemporary YA Romance Writer by Lizzy Charles

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I have a confession to make: I’m that author who is writing outside of the genre she originally intended to dominate. Some may call me a quitter, but I prefer to think I’m quick to know myself.

Before writing, my reading tastes gravitate toward fantasy and dystopian novels. Just let me escape this world, you know? So when I decided to write my first book, obviously it’d be a bout a troll, a pirate, and a cursed princess (yes the story was as horrible as it sounds). It’s funny how you think you are made for something but then when you really sit down and give it a go, you realize you were so wrong. Pretty sure I only made it through four or five paragraphs before I realized I’d die of boredom from my own world building before I’d ever type “the end.”

So I scratched that approach and revisited an old, favorite novel of mine, Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen, and found exactly what I was looking for. The conversations she wrote drove the story. I opened my laptop and plopped myself in the middle of a conversation between two kids and it felt like I was a wild horse running along the coast. I was made to write conversation driven contemporary romance!

The more I learned while writing contemporary romance, the more addicted I became to the genre. Rainbow Rowell’s novel Eleanor and Park became my cornerstone for the genre and the ultimate level I hope to aspire to.  That woman knows how to write like no one else I know! Anytime I’m feeling stuck or discourage, I’ll open her book up and breathe in the authenticity of her characters and their relationship. It’s that exact authenticity I knew I had to capture while writing my newest novel, It had to be You.

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Q&A

Q&A: Kelley York on Veronica Mars, Howl’s Moving Castle and Other Good Things in Life

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What are your five favorite movies with romance or romantic elements?

  1. Veronica Mars is one of my favorite TV series, so when they managed to kickstart a movie to kind of “wrap up” the series, I was stoked. Especially because it meant—FINALLY—Logan and Veronica getting their happily ever after.
  2. Romeo + Juliet (1996 version). Because, wow, what an amazing interpretation.
  3. Everafter: A Cinderella Story. This movie. Just…THIS MOVIE. Perfect in all the ways.
  4. What Dreams May Come is a movie that absolutely wrecks me on so many levels.
  5. Do animated movies count? Please tell me they do. Tangled is my fave Disney movie. Eugene and Rapunzel, all the way.

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Guest Post

Guest Post: Cindi Madsen on Her Very First OTP

Operation Prom Date Cindi Madsen

In my new release, Operation Prom Date, my heroine Kate is all about fandoms and shipping and OTPs (One True Pairing, if you’re not sure what that is). It’s basically the couple that you read about or watch on TV, and you start yelling at the characters to kiss already. The couple that makes you a little crazy, to the point where if someone disagrees with you or tries to say they should be with someone else, it might get ugly.

Here’s a small excerpt from when they first talk about ships:

“I ship Olicity the hardest.”

“‘Ship’ them?”

“I want them in a relationship. Like I’d put them in a ship together so they’d be forced to see they’re perfect for each other, bribe the writers to get them together, ship them. Partnership, friendship, please-God-put-them-in-a-relationship-already ship them.”

“Oh-kay.”

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Guest Post

Guest Post: “Nice Guys Shouldn’t Finish Last” by Amber Mitchell

Garden of Thorns Amber Mitchell

There’s something undeniably steamy about a bad boy in fiction. He’s aloof, always keeps you on your toes, but usually deep down, he’s got a heart of gold. And while I love me some bad boys in books, today I want to talk about another archetype because while the hero in my debut YA fantasy Garden of Thorns is definitely steamy, he is not a bad boy. In fact, he’s actually a good guy and sadly, nice guys usually finish last, even in fiction.

Good guys tend to get pushed to the side in narratives. True, there are plenty of novels with the friends-to-lovers trope but oftentimes, when that mysterious new guy strolls onto the page, the reliable guy friend gets shelved because predictability doesn’t always make for great tension. But I was determined.

When I sat down to create Rayce, I wanted him to be a good guy. While I love the romantic tension of opposites attracting, I wanted him to be undeniably likable and knew he would have to be in order for my heroine, Rose, to give him a chance. Since she had spent so many years as a slave in a burlesque show, under the tyrannical rule of a man, Rayce had to be kind, caring, and unwavering in his belief that he can help the world. What I needed was a healer.

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Q&A

Q&A: Merrie Destefano of LOST GIRLS

Lost Girls Merrie Destefano

Guys, we’re not sure what to do with ourselves! This Q&A with Merrie Destefano has left us absolutely charmed! Treat yourself before you run off for President’s Day weekend.


FIVE MOVIES

What are your five favorite movies with romance or romantic elements?

While You Were Sleeping, The Time Machine, Romancing The Stone, The Last of the Mohicans, Pride and Prejudice

Describe your favorite scene from each one (you can include a Youtube clip if you want as well).

While You Were Sleeping: The scene where Bill Pullman demonstrates what leaning is to Sandra Bullock. So adorable!

The Time Machine: When Samantha Mumba takes Guy Pearce to read the Stone Language. During their conversation, he gives her a vulnerable, heart-broken look and she instantly knows that he has lost a woman he loved. My heart melts every time I watch that scene.

Romancing The Stone: When Kathleen Turner finally comes out of her shy shell and starts cutting the way through the jungle, ultimately leading Michael Douglas and herself to safety. A beautiful analogy of a how a writer comes to life while digging into the complicated plot of her story.

The Last of the Mohicans: When Daniel Day-Lewis takes Madeleine Stowe by the hand and leads her through the fort. All around them a war is exploding. Inside them is another kind of explosion—that of falling in love. Sigh.

Pride and Prejudice: The dance scene. The look on Colin Firth’s face. The music. The realization that he does care about her, but has put his foot in his mouth and she isn’t going to forget it. I could watch that dance scene ALL DAY LONG.

You’ve Got Mail: The end, where Meg Ryan goes to meet her secret email pal, hoping it’s Tom Hanks. And then Tom comes walking over the bridge. It’s a heart-warming conclusion to what began as a bitter work-related feud.

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Guest Post

Guest Post: “Five Romantic Dates to Go On in The Mystik World” by Brenda Drake

Going on dates is the fun part of a budding relationship. But going on dates in the Library Jumpers’ Mystik world holds so much wonder and beauty, I thought it would be fun to give Arik some ideas on where to take Gia on their first date.

The Spanish haven of Santara with its lush, green grounds and beautiful flowers and sweet fruits is my first pick for Arik and Gia’s date. The castle was built into the side of a mountain. Arik and Gia could hike the long, winding trail that leads to the top of the mountain. At the crest, they could view all of Santara while enjoy a picnic of empanadas filled with meats and fruits. Afterward, they could fly down the mountain

Mantello Haven in Italy is where Gia’s great-grandfather is from. The castle is stately and the village is quaint with winding roads and many shops. There are festivals, wine making, and a unique bookstore. Arik and Gia could have fun eating bake goods while strolling through the many shops. They could sit at one of the outdoor cafes to eat and watch the many plays and puppet shows performed on the street.

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