Thursday, January 31, 2013

Radiant FUN FACT #6: Mary's Mom


My latest YA novel, Radiant, releases on February 12! Until then, I'm posting one fun fact a day about the book.

Today's fun fact is about Mary's mom. Unlike my other two books, Seranfyll and Eligere, I based about a third of the characters on real people I know. Mary's mom, or just "Mom," is a good example of that.

Photo from Flickr. And no,  if you were wondering, this is not me and my mom.
Readers of the book know that Mom has quite a history. In fact, her character reflects a few women that I know personally. The fact that she's an oncology nurse is from one a girl I knew in college, and her first rotation out of nursing school was the night shift in a cancer ward. The part about herself that she tells "Carter" later in the hospital is the stitched together pieces of stories from a few very brave women I've encountered through the years. The overprotective bit is actually some of me. I don't have children, but if I do have them some day, I'd probably be a mama tiger about them (the good kind! Not the crazy "battle hymn" kind).

That's it for today! Until next time!

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Radiant FUN FACT #5: Mary's Saturn Painting

My latest YA novel, Radiant, releases on February 12! Until then, I'm posting one fun fact a day about the book.

Today's fun fact is about Mary's Saturn painting that Carter asks her about. In Radiant, Mary had found a picture on the NASA website that she liked and wanted to make a painting from. This is the image that inspired that section:

Photo courtesy of nasa.gov (aka my tax dollars).

Tres magnifique, n'est pas? That's it for today. Stay tuned for tomorrow!

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Radiant EXCERPT #2


My latest YA novel, Radiant, releases on February 12! Until then, I'm posting one fun fact a day about the book.

Today's post is not a fun fact, but just a note that more chapters are available to read on WattPad. Enjoy!

*UPDATE* Now that the full digital book is on sale, I've taken the Wattpad excerpts down. Chapter samples are available at most ebook retailers.

Monday, January 28, 2013

Radiant FUN FACT #4: The Crash

My latest YA novel, Radiant, releases on February 12! Until then, I'm posting one fun fact a day about the book.

Today's fun fact is about the crash in Chapter 1, which sets everything else in story off. While I wasn't hit quite like Mary was, I've been in three major car crashes between 2006 and 2011. Twice my car was totaled, but thank God that in all three no one was hurt enough to go to the hospital.

Here's what was left of my car after that first crash in 2006:

Ouch.

Sucks huh? I don't doubt for a second that I'd still be driving that ol' boy had that not happened. My other two cars looked pretty much like this, too.

I guess that wasn't really a fun fact. It's kind of a sucky fact. But when you think about it, I've been in three crashes and the worse thing that happened was that I lost my cars. And that's the mindset I had when I wrote what Carter tells Mary in Chapter 6 about his car.

That's it for today! Stay tuned for tomorrow!

Saturday, January 26, 2013

Radiant FUN FACT #3: The Car

My latest YA novel, Radiant, releases on February 12! Until then, I'm posting one fun fact a day about the book.

Today's fun fact is about the car that Carter picks Mary up with on their first date. I'm a bit of a car enthusiast, and I wanted it to be something special. So, I had him drive an Aston Martin. I didn't write which model Aston it was, but I was pretty much thinking the DB9.

Cheers chaps.

The one in Radiant is black, though, not silver like in this picture. There was nothing really scientific about why I chose this car. I pretty much just went on looks, although I hear it's a brilliant car to drive.

Other cars that were in the running included the Maserati Gran Turismo...

Do these exhaust pipes make my butt look big?

...the Lamborghini Murcielago...

Buon giorno!

...the Audi R8...

I'm the only sensible one of the lot.


...and the Ford GT.

Made in DETROIT baby.

I didn't include photo credits because I was distracted by the automotive awesomeness and forgot. Obviously, I don't own these images.

Tomorrow's Sunday, so I won't post anything. We'll pick it back up on Monday. Until then!

Friday, January 25, 2013

Radiant EXCERPT #1

My latest YA novel, Radiant, releases on February 12! Until then, I'm posting one fun fact a day about the book.

Today's post is not a fun fact, actually, but Chapter One of the book, which you can read on Wattpad. Check it out!

*UPDATE* Now that the full digital book is on sale, I've taken the Wattpad excerpts down. Chapter samples are available at most ebook retailers.

Thursday, January 24, 2013

Radiant FUN FACT #2: The áo dài

My latest YA novel, Radiant, releases on February 12! Until then, I'm posting one fun fact a day about the book.

Today's fun fact is about áo dài, the traditional Vietnamese attire. In Radiant, Mary's grandmother fled Saigon in 1975, and one of the few items she brought with her was a pink áo dài.

My mother had a few áo dài, but when her family fled the country, they couldn't take much with them, so she left them behind.

Photo courtesy of asiafinest.com.
I have the same outfit that these girls are wearing.
Including a rice hat!
An áo dài (pronounced ow-zaee in the northern dialect and ow-yaee in the southern) consists of a pair of wide-legged trousers and a long tunic/dress. They're most commonly worn by women, although there are versions for men and children.

While western influences have changed some of the fashion today, áo dài used to look different depending on the region you were from. The length of the tunic, the cut of the sleeves and collar, and many other little things were unique to either the northern, central, or southern parts of the country.

I own one that is white, made by a Vietnamese dressmaker in Houston, which has a very large Vietnamese population. It's silk, and I wear it very rarely.

And that's it for today! Stay tuned for more Radiant facts!

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Radiant FUN FACT #1: Drew's T-shirts and TBBT Homage

My latest YA novel, Radiant, releases on February 12! Until then, I'm posting one fun fact a day about the book.

Today's fun fact is about Drew and his t-shirts. Drew is a secondary character with whom Mary has a few meetings and email exchanges. Each time she sees him, he's always wearing a t-shirt with something quirky on the front.

The Big Bang Theory fans will ge a kick out of what one of Drew's shirts say. I'll give you a hint:

Photo courtesy of ThinkGeek.com

I hope CBS doesn't come after me for paying homage to a pretty fabulous TV show. Speaking of which, I think this is still my favorite clip:




Okay, I'm done. Stay tuned for more fun Radiant facts leading up to launch day!

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

RADIANT COVER REVEAL!



Coming February 12, 2013

(Ages 13+) Mary is part Vietnamese. Carter is a complete jerk. Normally, they don't talk much.

But when Mary's in an accident on the way to school one morning, Carter nearly dies saving her life. The doctors say his chances of living are slim, and Mary's feeling the full weight of survivor's guilt.

However, Carter's back at school in a matter of days, as if nothing had happened. Although, he is a little "glitchy," and he's developed a sudden and intense interest in Mary. She thinks he's suffering from major brain trauma from the accident. Or that he's been possessed.

As it so happens, Carter really is possessed. And the thing controlling him is having the time of its life learning to be human.

Featuring a diverse cast of characters, Radiant is a funny and heartfelt story about being human, being in love, and being healed.

(~70,000 words or roughly equal to 300 print pages)

---

Woohoo! The cover is here! And that means of course the book isn't far behind. Here is a list of the awesome bloggers participating in the cover reveal today! Go check them out. Some of them are hosting giveaways :)


Word Spelunking

Books: The Cheapest Vacation You Can Buy

Pretty in Fiction

YA Book Season

Me, My shelf, and I

The Soul Sisters

Teen Readers' Diary

Reviewing Shelf

Reviews of Young Adult Literature

The Reading Geek

A Simple Love of Reading


Also, some of these and more awesome bloggers will be hosting more fun Radiant-related things when the book releases on February 12. I'll also be posting fun facts about the book leading up to the launch!

Keep up to date with everything by giving the Facebook page a like and/or following me on Twitter.

Until then!

Monday, January 21, 2013

Cover reveal tomorrow!

The cover reveal for Radiant is tomorrow! I'm pretty excited about it. And some awesome book bloggers are participating in it as well. Almost everyone's doing something a little different, including some giveaways :)

I'll have a list here with links to their blogs on Tuesday. Of course, they're most likely going to get more traffic because they're WAY better at blogging than I am!

Saturday, January 12, 2013

New Year, New Book

Wow, it's been a while since I last blogged. Holidays have a way of sneaking up on me :) But also if I'm not blogging, then chances are I'm writing. Or in this case, finishing with revisions and getting my new book ready to launch.

This one will be a little different from what I've done before. It's a YA romance called Radiant and is set in contemporary times with a touch of sci-fi. I actually wrote the first draft for Radiant in between writing Seranfyll.

A few years ago, when I had drafted the first 20 pages or so of Seranfyll, I ran out of ideas, so I set those pages aside. In the meantime, I had come across some different science articles that weren't really related at all, and somehow the concept for the story began to grow in my mind. After I got Radiant out of my system, I went back to Seranfyll and finished that manuscript as well. So, though they are not in the same universe and are completely different types of stories with completely different sets of characters, Seranfyll and Radiant are quite intertwined.

Radiant goes live as an ebook on February 12, 2013. I'm in the process of finalizing the cover and sending out e-ARCs to early reviewers and arranging a bunch of other stuff. Cover reveal on January 22. I actually did the cover myself this time, so I hope people like it :)

Until then...