For Readers & Writers

from Susan Dennard

June 13, 2014
It's the 13th issue and it's on Friday the 13th!! AAAAAAH! LOCK THE DOORS! HIDE YOUR KIDS!

Okay, I'm just kidding. I don't find this day scary. My husband and I actually buy lottery tickets on Friday the 13th (though we've never won clearly today isn't a lucky either).

Anyway, this week's newsletter is a short one thanks to loads of work piling up on my desk. QUICKLY, though, I must update you on our latest #YARunsA5K auction.


We have CRAZY AWESOMELY EPIC PRIZES this week!! And even if you don't want to bid, I hope you'll help us spread the word. (Click here to tweet about it!)

To bid: simply leave a comment OR reblog with your bid amount. Plus there's still the raffle (donate ANY amount <$39, and you're entered into the raffle!). 

Auction #1:
Auction #2:
Auction #3:
And don't forget, you can still bid for a:
Finally, thank you SO MUCH to everyone who has donated money or books! We've almosT PASSED OUR $2000 GOAL, and we have 30 people running with us in Philadelphia or in the Virtual Run. WOOHOO!!

For the Misfits:
Recent Reads I Loved
So the giveaway for a signed ARC of Strange & Ever After + signed paperbacks of Something Strange & Deadly and A Darkness Strange & Lovely is still running! To win the books, fill out the Rafflecopter form here! I'll pick a winner next week. (Sorry, US/Canada only.)

Also, there's a Twitter giveaway running until 12 PM ET. Just retweet this tweet to win! :D

Now here are some recent books I read that I think you Misfits might enjoy:
First off, I highly recommend The Emperor's Edge or Balanced on the Blade's Edge. Lindsey Buroker is my new favorite fantasy author. I'm obsessed with her style of storytelling, and I think fans of Something Strange & Deadly will really enjoy Buroker's books. Mystery + adventure + steampunk + epic fantasy stakes = story WIN!

Next, I devoured The Burning Skies by Sherry Thomas. Honestly, I wish I'd read this book ages ago (then again, now I don't have to wait as long for the sequel). This book reminds me of Dianna Wynne Jones (whom I ADORE), so if you're a fan of Howl's Moving Castle, then you'll definitely want to give this book a try.

On a totally different reading note, I dove headfirst into Brandon Sanderson's Elantris. I'll be honest: there aren't many epic fantasies that hook me from page one. I usually find epics take me a few chapters to really sink into. Not so with Elantris. He had me hooked right away with that giant mystery of WHAT HAPPENED?

Last but certainly not least, I picked up an old favorite from Lois McMaster Bujold: Paladin of Souls. If you all write fantasy and haven't read her books, then your education is sorely lacking. She is called a master for a reason. You won't find finer world-building, characterization, or prose anywhere else. Start with the The Curse of Chalion, though.

For the Daydreamers:
Pushing on Anyway

First off: THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR THE YA HIGHWAY AWARD!!!! You all are the ones who nominated me and voted for me and WOW, I am so honored. Thank you, thank you!

Moving on.

I won't lie to you guys: I'm feeling very frustrated with my writing. NOTHING is going like I'd planned, and the story just won't come. My fears are starting to take control of everything, and I am looking at the future with gut-clenching dread.

I thought I'd have at least half a first draft of Sightwitch (my prequel novella to Truthwitch) by now. I thought I'd be living on that high of creative flow and waking up each morning BURSTING with energy. HA! I have a gazillion false starts and a whole lot of terror.

I realize this is a super Debbie Downer update, but I wanted you all to know that EVERY WRITER FACES DOUBTS. We all hit walls and don't know how the heck we're going to summit them.

I'm at one of those walls right now, and it seems really tall. And, like, it's made of ice that's all slick and melting. And it's totally getting taller instead of smaller.

The only way to climb this wall, though, is to work everyday. To show up at the keyboard and try to create something. Eventually the words will come. Eventually the wall will crumble.

I just have to keep working and trying and climbing until that happens.

Now, to wrap up, here are the best writing-related links I discovered this week:
See you next week, my dears! And don't forget: if you have any questions about ANYTHING, drop by the forum to ask. Thank you so much for reading!

photo by Emily Rae Photography

Copyright © 2014
Susan Dennard
All rights reserved.

110 West 40th St., Suite 410
New York, NY 10018

I'm a misfit, a daydreamer, an animal-lover, and a (now gluten-free) cookie-eater.