SACRED by Elana K. Arnold

SIGNED BOOK SUNDAY

Eileen Cook

THE HANGING GIRL Official Blog Tour

Geoffrey Girard

MARY ROSE

Joshua Palmatier

THE THRONE OF AMENKOR SERIES

Cornelia Maude Spelman

EVERYBODY'S SOMEWHERE

Margaret Peterson Haddix

CHILDREN OF REFUGE Official Nerd Blast

Matthew Swanson and Robbi Behr

THE REAL MCCOYS

Gregg Olsen

THE LAST THING SHE EVER DID Official Nerd Blast

Gerald Brandt

THE REBEL

Contemporary Romance Holiday Boxed Set

HOLIDAYS EVER AFTER Official Nerd Blast

Tuesday, November 21, 2017

Vlog Post with Robbi Behr and Matthew Swanson


Book Nerd Vlog Post
Photo Content from Matthew Swanson and Robbi Behr

WE LIVE AND WORK AND MAKE STUFF TOGETHER IN THE HAYLOFT OF AN OLD BARN ON THE EASTERN SHORE OF MARYLAND.

Combining Robbi’s illustrations and Matthew’s words, we run two small presses— Idiots’Books (illustrated picture books for adults) and Bobbledy Books, (a picture book and music club for kids). Together, we have published more than 60 volumes, including titles with MacmillanChronicle Books and LB Kids. We speak, teach, and run workshops on collaboration and creative entrepreneurship (with appearances at TEDx, Mom 2.0,Alt Summit, and ICON7). And we blog about our ongoing adventures in creative mishap.

ROBBI BEHR is an illustrator/print maker/commercial salmon fisherwoman who earned a BA from Williams College and an MFA from the Savannah College of Art and Design. When she is not drawing stuff or eating ice cream or watching sappy late-90s chick movies, she is, in all likelihood, fast asleep.

MATTHEW SWANSON is a writer/art director/blues harmonica player who has so far failed in every attempt to be swashbuckling. He managed to secure a BA from Williams but was summarily rejected from every MFA program to which he applied—thus emboldening Robbi to remind him almost daily that he is a master of nothing.



Age Range: 8 - 12 years
Grade Level: 3 - 7
Series: The Real McCoys (Book 1)
Hardcover: 336 pages
Publisher: Imprint (November 7, 2017)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1250098521
ISBN-13: 978-1250098528


Praise for THE REAL MCCOYS

"Readers will breeze through this ingenious combination of text and art, eager for Moxie and Milton’s next case." —School Library Journal, starred review

"Swanson’s witty text is enhanced exponentially by Behr’s bold, original artwork to create a uniquely told whodunit with wide appeal ... An exceptional book." —Booklist, starred review

"An exceptional middle-grade read packed with giggles for young sleuths who love to explore a little off the beaten path." —Kirkus Reviews

"This clever, funny, delightful book is just what this crazy world needs. The surprising and inventive interaction between text and illustration shows that two brains are, indeed, better than one--especially when they belong to Matthew Swanson and Robbi Behr." —Andrea Beaty, #1 New York Times bestselling author of Ada Twist Scientist




TEN FACTS ABOUT THE REAL MCCOYS

Matthew: Hello. I am Matthew Swanson. I wrote The Real McCoys.

Robbi: I am Robbi Behr. I did the illustrations.

Matthew: In full disclosure, we are married and have four kids.

Robbi: TMI! Why do they need to know that?

Matthew: It will give them context for the many jokes you will surely make at my expense.

Robbi: Hm. That’s a pretty good point, actually.

Matthew: Back to this post: We are here to tell these people ten facts about our book.

Robbi: To be clear, we have been ASKED to tell them ten facts. If it had been left it to us, we probably would have stopped at 3 or 5 or 7. But before we get to the facts, we should probably give you the basic background info about the book. The “elevator speech,” if you will.

Matthew: I can do that. I am the words guy, after all. The Real McCoys is a densely illustrated middle grade book about an exuberant fourth grade detective named Moxie McCoy and her cautious little brother Milton. The two are utter opposites who must join forces to catch the crook and save the day when the school’s beloved mascot is stolen.

Robbi: Well done. See, if you leave the elevator speeches to me, we would get stuck in the elevator for an hour, and everyone would get angry and dehydrated. Good work, Matthew.

Matthew: Onward to the TEN FACTS!

Robbi: That is so many. We’d better get started.

1) THE WORD MOXIE DOES NOT COME FROM WHERE YOU THINK IT COMES FROM

Matthew: The book’s protagonist, Moxie McCoy, is named after Moxie, one of the first mass-produced soft drinks in the US.

Robbi: It’s horrible.

Matthew: I think you mean delicious.

Robbi: No no. I’m pretty sure I meant horrible.

Matthew: It originated in 1876 as a patent medicine called “Moxie Nerve Food.”

Robbi: Anything called “Nerve Food” cannot be delicious.

Matthew: Moxie succeeded in spite of its interesting and delicious flavor because of a really great ad campaign.

Robbi: Which features a confident and dapper man with perfect hair.

Matthew: The campaign was so effective that eventually the name Moxie eventually became its own word that means “courage, daring, or spirit.”

Robbi: In our book, Moxie’s mom gives Moxie’s dad a sip of Moxie the drink as a test on their first date.

Matthew: Basically, Moxie’s mom knows that if he liked it, he would like her, because she (Moxie’s mom) was, like the drink, “a perfect blend of bitter and sweet.”

Robbi: Spoiler alert—against all odds, Moxie’s dad it. Thank goodness, because otherwise this book would have been over before it even started.

2) THE ART IN THIS BOOK IS 100 PERCENT DIGITAL

Robbi: This is true. There are about 1,000 illustrations in this book. If I had done them by hand, I’d still be working on chapter three. Instead, I use a tablet so I can draw directly into Photoshop, which makes things go much faster.

Matthew: But even though all the art is digitally rendered, every page contains elements that started as actual paintings.

Robbi: This is also true. I used scanned watercolor textures for all the solid shapes and fills, so it has a nice organic feel to it.

Matthew: Kind of like the produce aisle at Whole Foods.

3) ORIGINALLY THE PROTAGONIST WAS A BOY

Matthew: When I first sat down to write this book, it was narrated by an all-knowing, wise, and snappy adult who was telling the story of a fourth grade boy and his precocious little sister. But I didn’t get very far into the process before I realized that Daniel Handler had already done this—and way better than I would ever be able to—and that I’d have more luck coming up with my own approach. And so I shifted the voice so that the boy himself was the narrator, and something interesting started to emerge. I put together a few chapters and sent them to our agent.

Robbi: She told us that she loved the voice and the story but suggested that it might work better if the narrator were a girl and the precocious little sibling was a boy.

Matthew: I don’t know why, but that subtle shift made all the difference. I went home from that meeting and everything felt just right.

Robbi: I know exactly why. Deep down inside, Matthew is a ten-year old girl.

Matthew: I cannot deny it.

4) THE FIRST DRAFT WAS WRITTEN IN THREE WEEKS

Matthew: As soon as my narrator stopped being a he, she had SO MUCH to say. I kept waking up at 3:00am with her voice shouting in my head. She was shouting so loud, there was no way I could sleep, so I began staggering over to my desk at 3:00am each morning and writing it down. The conscious part of my brain was not yet awake at that hour, so I had the strange sensation of not really writing this book, but instead being the person who transcribed as well as he could while my narrator shouted.

Robbi: For those of you who (like me) are always annoyed when authors say that their characters “just spoke to them” as if they were real people and not just figments of their imaginations, I will vouch for the fact that Matthew would frequently jump up in the middle of the night and go start writing because he was “hearing another part of the story.” While I don’t generally support crazy, nocturnal, “listen-to-the-voices-in-your-head” behavior, it turns out it was a pretty effective way to write a book, so who am I to argue?

5) ORIGINALLY THE MAIN CHARACTERS WERE NAMED MAGGIE AND HERMAN

Matthew: Yes. In the first draft of this book, the narrator was named Maggie and her little brother was Herman. At the time, it seemed impossible that their names would ever be anything else. I also didn’t know what the character looked like because Robbi hadn’t done any sketches yet. In my head, the original Maggie didn’t look anything like the Moxie you created.

Robbi: Interesting. She always looked in my head like she looks on the page, whether she was named Maggie or Moxie. But I DO think that when we renamed her Moxie, she became a little bit more wild-eyed and goofy. Some of Moxie’s gestures (like fake-clawing at her cheeks in frustration while her eyes bug out) are definitely ones that came along with the sassy name.

6) ROBBI AND MATTHEW HAVE A DAUGTHER WHO IS THE SAME AGE AS MOXIE

Matthew: It’s true. It wasn’t the plan. Our daughter was only in first grade three years ago when my narrator started shouting at me in the night. But coincidence has it that our daughter is also a fourth grader.

Robbi: People are always asking if Moxie was modeled after Alden.

Matthew: But the answer is a hard no. If anyone, Moxie is me. Impetuous, headstrong, not terribly interested in details, and earnest as they come.

Robbi: Like I said, deep down, Matthew is a ten-year old girl.

Matthew: Right below the surface, actually.

7) THIS IS ROBBI AND MATTHEW’S 65th BOOK AND FIRST NOVEL

Robbi: Is that really true?

Matthew: It’s true. I counted.

Robbi: I’m actually kind of disappointed. I’ve been telling people we’ve made 70 books together.

Matthew: You have been lying.

Robbi: Not lying. Just bad at math!

Matthew: I’m not sure if basic counting qualifies as math, but okay.

Robbi: You’ve got me there. THE POINT IS: Matthew and I made our first illustrated book together back in 2003 when I was putting together an illustration portfolio for my grad school application. I needed something to draw, so I illustrated Matthew’s strange little stories.

Matthew: Almost by accident, a book happened. It was the most fun we’d ever had.

Robbi: So, fast forward a few years. We started a small press called Idiots’Books (www.idiotsbooks.com) that publishes what we like to call “odd, commercially nonviable picture books for adults.”

Matthew: They were all satire or social commentary. Over the course of a decade, we published 45 books in that series and twenty more through our second small press, Bobbledy Books (www.bobbledybooks.com), which puts out picture books and music for kids.

Robbi: Along the way, we met Erin Stein, an editor at Macmillan, who liked our stuff and asked if we might want to try making some books with her.

Matthew: So we did a couple of picture books, Babies Ruin Everything and Everywhere, Wonder and now are extremely excited to get the chance to make The Real McCoys.

Robbi: Matthew’s not kidding. He cried like a baby on the morning the book came out.

Matthew: A really happy baby.

8) THE REAL McCOYS WAS ORIGINALLY GOING TO BE 450 PAGES LONG

Robbi: Sigh. This is true. As jam-packed with illustrations as this book is, I wanted there to be EVEN MORE.

Matthew: We did a few sample illustrated layouts for the pitch to our editor. When we projected how many pages it would take to do the entire book in that style, it was going to be a 450-page book.

Robbi: I was very excited to make a delicious fat book with SO MANY ILLUSTRATIONS and SO MANY PAGES. It was going to be EPIC.

Matthew: But when we told our editor about the 450 pages, she laughed. And then when she realized weren’t kidding, she said no way.

Robbi: She said that a book that long would literally be too heavy for kids to pick up. In response, I wrote to her, “TELL THOSE PANTYWAISTS TO BUCK UP! NO ONE EVER GOT AHEAD IN THIS WORLD WITHOUT HAVING TO PICK UP A HEAVY BOOK!” Turns out, that was not a winning argument. I was disappointed, but I get it.

Matthew: I think the finished book is satisfyingly thick but not unwieldy.

Robbi: It is. But a girl can still dream.

Matthew: What else?

9) THIS BOOK WAS CREATED BY COMMERCIAL SALMON FISHERMEN

Robbi: This is actually true. Which is to say, we are commercial salmon fishermen. Not that we wrote and illustrated the book and then handed it off to a bunch of salmon fishermen to print and bind.

Matthew: Robbi’s family runs a commercial salmon fishing operation on the Alaskan tundra. She’s been going up there every summer since she was 18 months old. Be warned—one of the requirements for marrying Robbi is that once a year you strap on a pair of rubber waders and pull fish out of the ocean.

Robbi: Strangely enough, so far Matthew is the only person who has been interested in attempting to complete the requirements. So, if there are any other takers out there, please feel free to sign up. To be fair, Matthew is actually a decent fisherman, so your competition is, well, I won’t say “fierce” – but maybe slightly tougher than he might seem at first glance.

Matthew: In full disclosure, when the children came along, I was promoted from fisherman to tundra nanny. Someone has to watch the kids and make the meals and do the dishes and chase away the grizzly bears.

Robbi: Yes. Matthew is quite good at these things. In fact, “tundra nanny” is going to be added to the list of requirements for marrying Robbi, so please make note of that as well, future husbands.

Matthew: But back to the actual factoid: Robbi and I and all of our children fish commercially for salmon every summer in the cold waters of Bristol Bay.

Robbi: Wild Pacific sockeye. The best salmon in the world. High in omega-oils. Super healthy. Don’t fall for that fake farmed stuff that is full of steroids and hormones and antibiotics (I am obligated to say this as a card-carrying Bristol Bay Fisherman).

Matthew: Is your advertisement over?

Robbi: For now. Almost. If you’re interested, here is a blog post in which we detail the process of building a new 18x40-foot cabin in 16 days this past summer (http://robbiandmatthew.com/little-house-on-the-tundra/).

Matthew: NOW is it over?

Robbi: I suppose. Let’s move on.

10) THIS BOOK HAS A WEBSITE WITH MANY EXCITING FEATURES.

Robbi: To a certain extent, it depends on your definition of excitement, but there are many features.

Matthew: Kids can check out Moxie’s glossary, full of definitions of words from book 1—and they can also send us words for Moxie to define and add to the dictionary.

Robbi: They can read a companion novel about Moxie’s idol, the world famous detective Annabelle Adams.

Matthew: Librarians and teachers can download a study guide.

Robbi: Parents can buy signed copies of our books. Schools can arrange for us to visit.

Matthew: The address is www.realmccoysbook.com.

Robbi: Nice subtle plug there.

Matthew: I feel like your plug for wild sockeye salmon and a new husband were much less subtle.

Robbi: I don’t know. If I come out of this with a new husband and a bunch of people buying wild salmon, I feel like I might not need to illustrate your books anymore.

Matthew: You know you love illustrating our books.

Robbi: Alright, fine. I totally do. Thanks for keeping it real.

Matthew: Was that a Real McCoys reference?

Robbi: It absolutely wasn’t.

Matthew: That’s ten things. I think we’re done.

Robbi: That was exhausting. I think I will take a nap. Or else I will stay up all night working on the illustrations for book 2. Yes. I think I’ll do that instead.

Matthew: And I will feed our far too many children.

To learn more about Robbi and Matthew, check out their site (www.robbiandmatthew.com) or follow the Robbi and Matthew page on Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/robbiandmatthew/)



Her name’s Moxie. Moxie McCoy.

Bold, opinionated, and haplessly self-confident, the world’s greatest fourth-grade detective faces her biggest challenge! When someone kidnaps beloved school mascot Eddie the Owl, Moxie is on the case—but she’s forced to fly solo now that her best friend (and crime-solving partner) has moved away.

Moxie must interview her classmates—both as potential new best friends and as possible suspects. She finds clues and points fingers but can’t save the owl on her own. Enter Moxie’s little brother, Milton. Quiet, cautious, and boring as a butter knife, he’s a good listener.

Can the Real McCoys form an unlikely alliance and solve the crime of the century?

Bursting with interactive illustrations on every page, Matthew Swanson and Robbi Behr’s The Real McCoys delivers clever storytelling, laugh-out-loud humor, and heartwarming insight. This is the first book in a series.


You can purchase The Real McCoys at the following Retailers:
        


And now, The Giveaways.
Thank you Robbi, Matthew and Macmillan for making this giveaway possible.
20 Winners will receive a Copy of THE REAL MCCOYS by Matthew Swanson and Robbi Behr.


WEEK ONE:
November 13th Monday Wonder Struck REVIEW
November 13th Monday Crossroad Reviews REVIEW
November 14th Tuesday Books, Dreams, Life EXCERPT
November 14th Tuesday Reading for the Stars and Moon REVIEW
November 15th Wednesday CBY Book Club EXCERPT
November 15th Wednesday Insane About Books REVIEW
November 16th Thursday Sara is Reading and Listening to What REVIEW
November 16th Thursday Twirling Book Princess REVIEW
November 17th Friday The Avid Reader GUEST POST
November 17th Friday Mythical Books EXCERPT


WEEK TWO:
November 20th Monday A Dream Within a Dream EXCERPT
November 20th Monday Book Queen Reviews REVIEW
November 21st Tuesday JeanBookNerd VLOG & GUEST POST
November 22nd Wednesday Sabrina's Paranormal Palace REVIEW
November 23rd Thursday Ginger Mom & the Kindle Quest REVIEW
November 23rd Thursday BookHounds YA GUEST POST
November 24th Friday Life Within the Pages REVIEW
November 24th Friday TFaulc Book Reviews EXCERPT


*JBN is not responsible for Lost or Damaged Books in your Nerdy Mail Box*
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Monday, November 20, 2017

STEAL THE STARS: As Fierce, As Colossal, As All-Consuming Episode Fourteen


Book Nerd Spotlight

THE NOVEL BASED ON THE DEBUT SCIENCE FICTION PODCAST FROM TOR LABS

Dakota “Dak” Prentiss guards the biggest secret in the world.

They call it “Moss.” It’s your standard grey alien from innumerable abduction stories. Moss still sits at what looks like the controls of the spaceship it crash-landed twenty-five years ago. A secret military base was built around the crash site to study both Moss and the dangerous technology it brought to Earth.

The day Matt Salem joins her security team, Dak’s whole world changes.

It’s love at first sight—which is a problem, since they both signed ironclad contracts before joining the base security team, vowing not to fraternize with other military personnel. If they run away, they’ll be hunted for the secret they know. So Dak and Matt decide to escape to a better life on the wings of an incredibly dangerous plan: They’re going to steal the alien body they've been guarding and sell the secret of its existence.

And they can’t afford a single mistake.




EPISODE FOURTEEN: AS FIERCE, AS COLOSSAL, AS ALL-CONSUMING

In an epic final showdown in the Texas desert – as Sierra closes in from all sides – Dak and Matt finally learn the truth about Moss.
You can purchase Steal the Stars at the following Retailers:
  


Author Spotlight
Photo Content from TOR Labs

Nat Cassidy is an actor, director, musician, and playwright. He has appeared on shows such as The Following (Fox), The Affair (Showtime), Red Oaks (Amazon), High Maintenance (HBO), Law & Order: SVU (NBC), as well as on stage in numerous productions and workshops both Off- and Off-Off-Broadway. Nat’s plays have been nominated for a combined total of 17 New York Innovative Theatre Awards, including 3 times for Outstanding Full-Length Script (which he won in 2009, and in 2011 for Outstanding Solo Performance for his one man show about H.P. Lovecraft). In 2012 Nat was commissioned by The Kennedy Center to write the libretto for a world-premiere opera, and in 2014 his play Any Day Now was chosen to be part of Primary Stages’ ESPADrills (The Duke Theatre, directed by Tony-nominee Moritz von Stuelpnagel). He is also thrilled to be writing the novelization of Steal the Stars, which will be published by Tor Books in November 2017. 
TWITTER | FACEBOOK | GOODREADS | WEBSITE | 

Mac Rogers is an award-winning audio dramatist and playwright. His audio/podcasts dramas The Message and LifeAfter have been downloaded over eight million times. His stageplays include The Honeycomb Trilogy (winner of the New York Innovative Theatre Award for Outstanding Premiere Production), Frankenstein Upstairs, God of Obsidian, Ligature Marks, Asymmetric, Viral, Universal Robots, Hail Satan (Outstanding Playwriting Winner at FringeNYC 2007), and Fleet Week: The Musical (co-written with Sean Williams and Jordana Williams; winner of Outstanding Musical at FringeNYC 2005). He has earned acclaim from The New York Times, The Guardian, Backstage, The Wall Street Journal, Time Out New York, New York Post, Flavorpill, io9, Fangoria, Tor.com, Show Business Weekly, New York Press, and many others.
TWITTER | FACEBOOK | GOODREADS | WEBSITE |

MEET THE CAST HERE


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Friday, November 17, 2017

Stolen Secrets by L.B. Schulman



Age Range: 12 and up
Grade Level: 7th and up
Hardcover: 304 pages
Publisher: Boyds Mills Press (September 19, 2017)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1629797227
ISBN-13: 978-1629797229


Praise for STOLEN SECRETS

“The author captures the desperate uncertainty of life with an alcoholic and having to parent a parent. Whip-smart Franklin has a uniquely drawn personality and his dialogue with Livvy sparkles…VERDICT An engaging coming-of-age novel recommended for libraries looking to highlight issues of alcoholism, Alzheimer’s, and family estrangement.' ―School Library Journal

“Stolen Secrets is a solid mystery with family drama and teen angst. Livvy is a likable character who is smart and perceptive at times, yet, like most teens, naive and clueless at others. The novel is easy to read and would be a good companion read for students reading Anne Frank’s diary. Stolen Secrets will need some hand-selling to teens, but once they pick it up they will not be disappointed.” ―VOYA

“This is a well-written book that sympathetically examines the roles of Holocaust survivors on both sides of the war as well as guilt and forgiveness. The main and supporting characters are funny and engaging…a good addition to those who want to read more books with a Holocaust theme. Recommended.” ―School Library Connection

“A…contemporary story with a Holocaust secret at its core….a jam-packed narrative with a full complement of tropes and topical elements: new girl; friend issues; alcoholism; family secrets, neo-Nazis; predatory elder care; armed robbery—and a romance. The grandmother’s mysterious past intrigues…” ―Kirkus Reviews



After an abrupt move across the country to San Francisco, sixteen-year-old Livvy discovers a grandmother who she believed was dead. Suffering from Alzheimer’s, Adelle shouts out startling details, mistakes her own name, and seems to relive moments that may have taken place in a concentration camp. When Livvy and her new friend Franklin D. find journal entries from the Holocaust in Adelle’s home, Livvy begins to suspect that her grandmother may have a shocking link to a notable figure Anne Frank.

You can purchase Stolen Secrets at the following Retailers:
        


Book Nerd Spotlight
Photo Content from L.B. Schulman

STOLEN SECRETS is L.B. Schulman’s second young adult novel. Her debut, LEAGUE OF STRAYS, was published in 2012. She grew up in Maryland and now lives in the San Francisco Bay Area with her husband, two daughters, and a pair of loveable mutts. When she isn’t writing, she’s visiting genealogy sites, trying to find famous people she’s related to. You can visit her online at LBSchulman.com.

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Wednesday, November 15, 2017

Guest Post with Gerald Brandt


Book Nerd Vlog Post
Photo Content from Gerald Brandt

Gerald Brandt is an International Bestselling Author of Science Fiction and Fantasy. He is a member of the Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America. His current novel is The Operative – A San Angles Novel, published by DAW and his short story Storm appeared in the 2013 Prix Aurora Award winning anthology Blood & Water. His first novel, The Courier, also in the San Angeles series was list by the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation as one of the 10 Canadian science fiction books you need to read. By day, he’s an IT professional specialising in virtualisation. In his limited spare time, he enjoys riding his motorcycle, rock climbing, camping, and spending time with his family. He lives in Winnipeg with his wife Marnie, and their two sons Jared and Ryan. You can find Gerald online at http://www.geraldbrandt.com, on Facebook as Gerald Brandt – Author, and on Twitter @geraldbrandt.

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WRITING: BEHIND THE SCENES

I often get asked about my writing process: am I a panster (one who just sits down to write without any plan) or a plotter (one who plans everything in advance). The answer is a bit of both. Well, okay, maybe more of a plotter than a panster. I usually have the entire novel I'm working on plotted out scene-by-scene before I start writing the first page, but that doesn't mean it's written in stone. Every scene has the opportunity to take off on its own and change the outline in some way. At some point, usually halfway through the novel, I'll stop writing and redo the last half of the outline to match all the new stuff that has crept in.

My process for outlining starts with a giant 4 by 8 whiteboard and a stack of post-it notes. I'll have a different color post-it for every point of view character in the novel. Starting with my main character, I'll write something on the post-it; it could be a single sentence summary of what I want the scene to be, an emotion the character needs to feel, or a setting. The point is to make it brief. This individual post-it will become a scene in the novel.

I'll work with a single character at first. If I have four points of view, the main character will get roughly thirty-five post-its. Once I have a general arc for that character, I move on to the next. By the time I'm done, I'll have a little over eighty post-its on the whiteboard.

Then I start merging each character's story line to create a cohesive whole. While I'm doing this, I look at overall story arc and pacing. This is where I'll remove some post-its and add new ones. I'll also look at the color distribution. Do I have too many scenes from the same point of view back-to-back? If so, rearrange and rewrite as necessary. It's not until I have a nice color distribution and the pacing right before I move onto the next step.

This is where I fire up my computer and run the spreadsheet. I move the post-it notes into the spreadsheet, keeping the color coding for point of view character. As I'm doing this, I take the single sentence or word and expand it into a small paragraph. As the detail goes in, I may find some scenes are out of order, and I'll do more rearranging.

When the spreadsheet is complete, then and only then do I open up the word processor and start writing. Every time I sit down to write, I know what I'll be doing, and the day starts out strong. And just for the record, I keep my word processor simple and old school. I use Wordstar 7.0.

I also keep track of daily word count in another spreadsheet, but that's for a different article.



The third and final installment in the San Angeles trilogy, a thrilling near-future cyberpunk sci-fi series 

Kris Merrill has lost everything. Her family when she was thirteen, her identity when she joined the anti-corporate movement, and now the man she loved. Living in a small room the resistance gave her, she feels alone. Abandoned.
A year ago, Kris's life was torn apart when a delivery went wrong. The last year spent training with the anti-corporate movement had been the closest she'd ever gotten to normal.
Now, war has broken out between the corporations, and the lower levels of San Angeles are paying the price. Water and food are rationed. People are being ripped from their families in massive sweeps, drafted to fight. Those remaining live in a wasteland. The insurgents are trying to help, but Kris is being left out, given menial tasks instead of doing what she was trained for.
She is torn between working with the insurgents as they become more like the corporations they are fighting, and helping the people of the lower levels.
Caught in one of SoCal's draft sweeps and being hunted by an enemy who will stop at nothing to have revenge are just the tip of the iceberg. Kris is pregnant, and she might have to choose between bringing down the corporations that destroyed her family or saving the life of her unborn son.

Praise for the SAN ANGELES Series

"The Courier is lean and mean as Kris’s rugged ride, ripping through plot and world-building at a relentless pace... Brandt has created a darkly gripping vision of the future," ―B&N Sci-fi Fantasy Blog

“Brandt’s supercharged sequel to The Courier continues the cyberpunk fun of the San Angeles series.... Brandt fleshes out an all-too-possible future of crushing poverty and corporate control, and the complex heroine who will lead us through to a better future.” —Tor.com

“Brandt has created a fully-fleshed universe, filled with high tension, memorable villains, and plot twists by the dozen.” ―Barnes & Noble

“It felt a lot like the Bourne Identity movie except with a sci-fi setting and a relatable young girl as the protagonist. The Courier is a fast paced science fiction thriller, with a heroine you can really root for and a world you can’t wait to learn more about.” ―The Heroine Bookstore

“Gerald Brandt tells an impossible-to-put-down tale and introduces us to an exciting heroine I’d love to see more of.” ―University City Review

You can purchase The Rebel at the following Retailers:
        


And now, The Giveaways.
Thank you Gerald and Penguin Random House for making this giveaway possible.
1 Winner will receive a Copy of The Rebel by Gerald Brandt.

*JBN is not responsible for Lost or Damaged Books in your Nerdy Mail Box*
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{Nerd Blast} The Last Thing She Ever Did by Gregg Olsen



Paperback: 380 pages
Publisher: Thomas & Mercer (January 1, 2018)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1542046424
ISBN-13: 978-1542046428


Praise for THE LAST THING SHE EVER DID

“Gregg Olsen pens brilliant, creepy, page-turning, heart-pounding novels of suspense that always keep me up at night. In The Last Thing She Ever Did, he topped himself.” —Allison Brennan, New York Times bestselling author

“Beguiling, wicked, and taut with suspense and paranoia, The Last Thing She Ever Did delivers scenes as devastating as any I’ve ever read with a startling, pitch-perfect finale. A reminder that evil may reside in one’s actions, but tragedy often spawns from one’s inaction.” —Eric Rickstad, New York Times bestselling author of The Silent Girls

“Olsen's latest examines how a terrible, split-second decision has lingering effects, and the past echoes the present. Full of unexpected twists, The Last Thing She Ever Did will keep you guessing to the last line.” —J.T. Ellison, New York Times bestselling author of Lie To Me

“Master storyteller Gregg Olsen continues to take readers hostage with another spellbinding tale of relentless, pulse-pounding suspense.” —Rick Mofina, international bestselling author of Last Seen


Official Nerd Blast for The Last Thing She Ever Did by Gregg Olsen

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From the #1 New York Times bestselling author comes a psychological thriller exploring the things we dare to do when no one is looking . . .

The community along Oregon’s Deschutes River is one of successful careers and perfect families. For years, up-and-comers Liz and Owen have admired their good friends and neighbors, Carole and David. They appear to have it all—security, happiness, and a beautiful young son, Charlie.

Then Charlie vanishes without a trace, and all that seemed safe is shattered by a tragedy that is incomprehensible—except to Liz.

It took one fleeting moment for her to change the lives of everyone she loves—a heartrending accident that can’t be undone. Neither can the second-worst mistake of her life: concealing it. As two marriages crack and buckle in grief and fear, Liz retreats into her own dark place of guilt, escalating paranoia—and betrayals even she can’t imagine. Because there’s another good neighbor who has his own secrets, his own pain, and his own reasons for watching Liz’s every move.

And only he knows that the mystery of the missing boy on the Deschutes River is far from over.


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Book Nerd Spotlight
Photo Content from Gregg Olsen

Throughout his career, Gregg Olsen has demonstrated an ability to create a detailed narrative that offers readers fascinating insights into the lives of people caught in extraordinary circumstances.

New York TimesWall Street Journal and USA Today bestselling author, Olsen has written nine nonfiction books, nine novels, a novella, and contributed a short story to a collection edited by Lee Child.

The award-winning author has been a guest on dozens of national and local television shows, including educational programs for the History Channel, Learning Channel, and Discovery Channel. He has also appeared on Dateline NBC, William Shatner's Aftermath, Deadly Women on Investigation Discovery, Good Morning America, The Early Show, The Today Show, FOX News, CNN, Anderson Cooper 360, MSNBC, Entertainment Tonight, CBS 48 Hours, Oxygen's Snapped, Court TV's Crier Live, Inside Edition, Extra, Access Hollywood, and A&E's Biography.

In addition to television and radio appearances, he has been featured in Redbook, USA Today, People,Salon magazine, Seattle Times, Los Angeles Times and the New York Post.

The Deep Dark was named Idaho Book of the Year by the ILA and Starvation Heights was honored by Washington's Secretary of State for the book's contribution to Washington state history and culture. His Young Adult novel, Envy, was the official selection of Washington for the National Book Festival.

Olsen, a Seattle native, lives in Olalla, Washington with his wife, twin daughters, three chickens, Milo (an obedience school dropout cocker spaniel) and Suri (a mini dachshund so spoiled she wears a sweater).


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