Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Free at Last!

All three of my kids started school this morning. Yippeeeeee!
I mean, *sniff* they grow up so fast and *giggle* I'm going to miss them. *guffaw*

Okay, I couldn't write that with a straight face. I am living proof that you can absolutely love your kids and still be delighted to have them out of the house a couple of hours each week.  I got another 1000 words written on my WIP (Ganzfield Book 5) and the house was so blissfully, blissfully quiet. *sigh*

They're back now, so I need to go be mommy again. TTFN!


Monday, August 30, 2010

Writing Advice

Hi folks,

Check out this classic piece of writing advice discussing what Elmore Leonard once called the kind of writing that pays the best (hee hee):

Stop on by the Facebook fan site to win a copy of one of the Ganzfield books for your high school library.

Happy Monday!

Friday, August 27, 2010

Quote of the Day

Image courtesy of DNAInfo:

"Whether you like a mosque or don't like a mosque--you don't have to go. There's already another mosque down there within four blocks of the World Trade Center. There's porno places; there's fast food places. I mean, it's a vibrant community--it's New York!"
-- Mayor Michael Bloomberg on the Daily Show August 26th, 2010

See complete story and episode link here: http://www.dnainfo.com/20100827/downtown/michael-bloomberg-defends-ground-zero-mosque-on-daily-show

Oh, and there's another anti-Jersey semi-rant here that made me laugh and think: http://www.laughoutloudmom.com/chuckle_418/River_Outing_Outs_American_Education.aspx

I'll try to be less political next week. In fact, I can start out by linking over to the Ganzfield fan site, where I'm giving away copies of Minder or Adversary to the high school library of the winners' choice:  http://www.facebook.com/pages/Ganzfield/116604475016600?v=wall

Happy Weekend!

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Post-Mockingjay (no spoilers)

And the winner of the Adversary launch party giveaway is...Kristina! Congrats!

I'm not the only person who went a little, um, overboard for Mockingjay's release--but it's just so much fun to get into things like this! Cari at Cari's book blog dedicated a blog post to her morning adventure to get her copy.  I started reading as soon as my copy arrived and read straight through.  I think I fed my kids in there somewhere.  It's as gripping as the first two in the trilogy. 

Now that I've got the book (mostly) out of my system, I took a look at the wider world.  As a member of a family from multiple religious backgrounds, I'm SHOCKED at the ignorance on display in New York over the so-called "Ground-Zero Mosque." First, it's blocks away on the site of an old Burlington Coat Factory and not visible from any part of the Ground-Zero site. Second (and more importantly), what part of "religious freedom" do the protesters of the Muslim cultural center not understand?

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Where's My Copy?

I've been obsessively tracking my copy of Mockingjay as it makes its way here to rural New Hampshire.  Given the themes of the Hunger Games series, I'm aware of the irony of using technology to track a low-tech item like a book. 

Tough--now I know it's here in town.  It should arrive in my mailbox this morning. 

I'll have to physically put it down to drive, I think, but it's going to be tough. However, I've got a good reason: I have my Adversary book event at Borders in Concord (on Fort Eddy Rd.--exit 14 off Rt. 93) at 7:30 tonight.  If you're in Southern New Hampshire, please stop by.  Mention that you read the Disgruntled Bear and I'll give you extra chocolate or something. 

Did I mention there will be chocolate?  Books and chocolate.

And last night, Ganzfield and Hunger Games fused in my dreams, *tiny spoiler* centering around the term "avox."

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Ridiculous Porn Names

Copyright law allows people to use very little of other people's work--except in parody.  So, while "fair use" may only allow someone to use the name of a song in their book without paying for the privilege, parodies can use much, much more.

This is the reason that many porn movies parody actual movies.  I have never seen a porn movie, although I have seen PG-porn:

"For people who like everything about porn...except the sex."

But, I must admit, I find the names of some of these movies hilarious. 

So, I have a contest for you.

1.  Come up with a parody porn movie and log-line. Keep it clean enough to be read on network TV.*

* Examples:
On the show Friends, Phoebe's sister starred in "Buffay the Vampire Layer."
Every movie that Barney on How I Met Your Mother mentions. Pretty much without exception.

2.  Post it below by midnight (EDT) August 31st, 2010.

3.  Use the Ganzfield contact form to send me your mailing address and I will send you something.  It might be a book.  It might be a sticker.  It might be a cookie.  But you're a winner--unless you violate the rules and post something too dirty.

4.  If I have to remove the post, no cookie for you.

Enter as often as you like.

On a completely different note that defies segue, I also want to link some new reviews that came out in the past couple of days:

"I don't think I've read such an intense opening to a novel...ever. It was nail biting...Kaynak may be the queen of intense chapter ones!" – Confessions of a Book Addict

"Minder is fast paced,unique, and is addicting...Kaynak surprised me! She created a great plot (full of suspense and mystery) and characters that kept me hooked...I wish for more books like Minder." – Ramblings of a Teenage Bookworm

Bookish in a Box just posted, as well:
"I really enjoyed Minder. It was a fun read, fast-paced and left me wishing I had time to finish it all in one sitting. I'll definitely be getting my hands on Adversary and Legacy to find out what happens."

Remember that tomorrow's the last day to enter to win at the virtual launch party. Sign up and make me send you more stuff! 

Happy Tuesday!

Monday, August 23, 2010

It's Not Easy Being Weird

As a recovering nerd, I fell off the wagon this weekend--BIG-TIME. I went to Pi-Con, "An event for Geeks, Nerds, and Dorks." Personally, I prefer to call it "A Celebration of the Nerdly Arts."
Snapshot impressions of Pi-Con:
  • "I know where my towel is."
  • "I haven't thought about Babylon-5 this much in years." 
  • "Tom Smith is an underrated genius."
  • "We need to put up signs for Ninja-con...and have them lead to an empty room."
  • "I want a Unipegikitty:"
Art by Jeff Zugale. Source: http://whatever.scalzi.com/2010/05/30/fanfic-contest/
I came home to discover that Damsel in a Dirty Dress has given me the Strange Blog Award:

Stop on over and feed her fish (lower left)--it's hypnotic.Thanks, Nicole!

Be sure and post a comment for Adversary's Virtual Launch Party by Wednesday of you'd like to win a signed copy. I'll also have a t-shirt giveaway at the upcoming reading and signing at Border's Books in Concord.

Friday, August 20, 2010

Virtual Launch Party!

Poor Adversary.  As my second-born book, it has to wear hand-me-down cover protectors and never feels like it's getting enough attention.

And Minder pinches it when I'm not looking.

But today is Adversary's day!   Happy launch day, Adversary!

In honor of today's release date, I'm having a giveaway.  Comment below by midnight (EDT) Wednesday, August 25th. I'll randomly select someone and send him or her a signed copy of Adversary.  Tell your friends on your blog, Facebook, etc., and send me the link. I'll enter you for an additional chance to win for every link you post. I'll also give you an extra chance if you're a follower, and an additional chance if you're a new follower (as of today, August 20th). Woohoo!  Free stuff!

And now, everyone gather 'round as little Adversary gazes in wonder at the tiny flame on top of the candle, then digs its little hands into the frosting.

"...Happy Launch Day to you!" 
Adversary's baby picture courtesy of Auntie Amazon.  

UPDATE: Oooh--check out today's interview on Cari's Book Blog! +1 chance for posting there, too, and another +1 if you become one of her followers. 

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Bad Romance

I'm fighting a bad case of cliche-itis. I keep thinking in stock phrases, like...

Okay, ironically, there's no stock phrase for thinking in stock phrases. I usually don't get writer's block, but I do get this.  It makes me madder than a wet hen. 


I think it's related to having a song stuck in my head. Lady Gaga has been singing Bad Romance between my ears for the past four days. 

So, what's your writing illness?  Or...is writing the sickness itself?

Adversary comes out tomorrow!  I'll be signing copies at Pi-Con--we're having a signing party on Saturday night after the Broad Universe reading.  Just the thought of it makes me happier than a pig in slop.


Wednesday, August 18, 2010


C'mon, fellow YA readers, you know what's coming next week. Chant it with me...

I'm re-reading Hunger Games and Catching Fire this week. I love getting the next installment of a new series.  But, with Mockingjay coming out just four days after Adversary, I got to thinking about a problem with book series...

How do you keep the reader's knowledge of specifics--characters, relationships, past plot developments, and/or alternate history? If you write paranormal stuff, readers also need to know about special abilities or twists on cannon. Do your vampires sparkle in sunlight rather than bursting into flames? Do your werewolves change form with ambient temperature rather than moon-cycle?

If you don't refresh their memories, readers will be confused by some of the new plot ("Who's that guy, and what on earth is he doing?").  If you give them too much of a refresher as everything starts up again, your first chapters drag. 

In Adversary, I wrote a "Dear Reader" letter for the opening which gave a quick overview of the main characters, their abilities, Ganzfield, G-positives, and dodecamine. In Legacy, I've done the same, but also added a bit of information about the plot developments from the last book.  I've been making final revisions this week--it goes to the editor in the first week of September. I keep wondering which way to err. Too little info might confuse people, but too much might bore them or at least make them say, "I know this already!"  So, now I'm asking you:

When you read a series, do you prefer to have a lot of reminders in the opening chapters, or do you prefer to have the story pick up immediately and assume you know the details from the previous books?  

Thanks again to Lea at YA Book Queen for hosting my guest post yesterday, and thanks to all of you who clicked over and said hi!   

* Image copyright Jennifer Larson, http://www.an-architecture.com/2010/04/couch-cushion-architecture.html 
* Wine not included. No, this isn't my living room; I found the picture on an architecture website.  Really.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Field Trip!

Hi folks,

Lea over at YA Book Queen has made up the guest room, put out the fancy towels, stocked up on little soaps shaped like seashells, and I've moved into her blog for the day.  Stop by and become a fan!

Monday, August 16, 2010

I'm Back!

I live in New Hampshire--a beautiful state of scenic mountains, idyllic lakes, and quiet woods.

But I went to New Jersey for my summer vacation. 

Sadly, several members of my family still reside in the Garden State. The Muthuhland. 'Joisey.

As in, "Oh my Gawd!  Did you get that at the Mawll?"


So, I came home from my vacation to find the Adversary ARCs sitting in a box in my hall.  Yes, they were supposed to have gone out WEEKS ago. I got them all into the mail today, and I'm chanelling my frustration into conquering Mt. Laundry, the scenic peak that currently dominates the floor of my kitchen. 

*double sigh*

On the good side, though, I have an upcoming book signing right here in scenic New Hampshire next week.

76 Fort Eddy Rd., Concord, NH 03301  
Wednesday, August 25th, 2010 at 7:30 p.m. 

They've got Minder in-stock now. I'll be reading from both Minder and Adversary, as well as signing both.  We'll have Zener cards and a t-shirt giveaway; it should be fun.

I'll also be doing a reading at Pi-Con in Connecticut at 5p.m. on Saturday, August 21st (Ellington Room).

Finally, two new Minder reviews came out in the past 24 hours:
Thanks Lea at YA Book Queen and Amanda at YA Highway!

Friday, August 13, 2010

Fun with Twilight

More vacation fun, and it's pretty clean, soundwise. Enjoy!

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Barnes and Noble

Like Amazon, Barnes and Noble have their good points and bad points.

Right now, I LOVE the fact that their pre-order price for Legacy is only $8.76.

I'm NOT so thrilled with the fact that they've listed Spencer Hill Press as the AUTHOR of Adversary, which explains why I haven't seen it on my author page. I've got an email in to the corrections people, so we'll see what happens.

UPDATE: they've listed me as the author now (yay!), but it hasn't made its way through the system to my author page.

Finally, I came across this quote a few weeks ago, then saw it somewhere else, and now can't recall either source (although that lack of recall may be partially due to the fact that I'm writing this at 2:47 a.m.).

"Writing is a socially acceptable form of schizophrenia."
– E.L. Doctorow

I'm considering embroidering it on a pillow--in my copious spare time.

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

On the Road

Quick post today--I'm traveling again.

I have a request.  

If you've read Minder, please post a review.  It can be on Amazon (Amazon Canada, Amazon UK, etc.), Barnes & Noble, Goodreads, Shelfari, your blog. If you've already posted a review somewhere, copy the text and paste it on another site--there's a list of them at www.Ganzfield.com

Put the link below by midnight (EDT) on Sunday, August 15th.  I'll pick a winner and send him or her the choice of: a signed copy of a book (Ganzfield 1, 2, OR 3 when it comes out) or a Minder t-shirt (S, M, L, and XL when the backorder comes in).

Monday, August 9, 2010

Oh, Amazon

Yay!  The pre-order is up for book three at Amazon!

Amazon's also shipping book two already, despite the fact that MY copies still haven't arrived from the printer, and I don't think any of the ARCs have gone out. *sigh* Has anyone received them yet?

BTW, the Kindle version of Adversary should show up in a week or so. 

So, that book three link's what's blowing my skirt up today.  I also recommend that anyone who writes or publishes should try the E-books Article Drinking Game (thanks to Nathan Bransford for the link).

Finally, I'd like to make a political statement.  How cool is it that a Jewish woman is appointed to the Supreme Court...and it's not a "first" anything? 

Happy Monday!

Friday, August 6, 2010

Now with...Squirrels!

I'm trying to secure the rights to use a Hemingway quote in Legacy.  It'll be in the public domain by the end of the decade, but it's not there yet.  It reminded me of this video:

This is clean enough to show to my grandmother, so don't worry about the audio offending anyone.

Happy Weekend!

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Win a Signed Copy

Hi folks,

Books Complete Me has the very first blog giveaway of a signed copy of Adversary.  Pop over and comment for a chance to win!


I think I need a vacation.  I fell asleep doing revisions of book 4 today, just at the point when the attack--

but I've said too much. 

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

A Book in the Hand

...is worth two on the shelf, or something.

Anyhoo, I got a box of cool stuff in the mail this morning:

Yay!  I love having my book in actual book form.

So, if you want one, too, just click on this thing:

Tuesday, August 3, 2010


Leah has a Minder review and interview up on her blog today that fills me with simultaneous humility and giddiness.  Her imagery of the brightly-colored quilt was wonderful. Check it out here:

Reading, Writing, Raisin' Boys

Thanks so much, Leah! BTW, you're going to meet Leah in a cameo in Adversary.  The line between reality and fiction in my life keeps getting smudged.

Monday, August 2, 2010

Apparently I'm an Abomination

Thanks to Suzanne for the link
A few days ago, a friend posted this link on Facebook: http://gizmodo.com/5588219/god-hates-nerds

BTW, given the context, I keep reading "Rom." as short for "Romulans," rather than "Romans."

The story of this group has been on my mind ever since. At first, I was sure it was a Onion-like fake article. I have a character in my WIP who truly believes that God likes and dislikes the same things he does.   I used to worry that he was a bit unrealistic in this regard.

Now I wish he was a bit unrealistic. *sigh*

On the plus side, the counter-protest gave me hope.  There may always be ignorant hate-mongers among us, but thankfully, we still have people willing to make fun of them.