Writing

Writer in Residence – Glendale Library

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Bfile000980869751eginning March 1 and running through May, I will be the Writer in Residence for the Glendale Library. This means I’ll be doing a portion of my writing work at the library (main branch), be available to anyone with questions about writing, and be giving workshops on writing and publishing.

How cool is that?

Other authors, including Bill Konigsberg, Tom Leveen, Janni Lee Simner, Betty Webb, and Susan Pohlman, will also be writers in residence at other libraries around the state of Arizona. Be sure to check their websites and social media for info.

The Glendale Main Library is located at 5959 W. Brown St., Glendale, AZ 85302.

Check the library calendar for hours and event listings. I’ll also be posting workshop info on the events page at my website, www.amyknichols.com.

Have questions about writing? Want to chat about writing and publishing? Come see me at the library!

 

 

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Thank you, 2015.

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Dear 2015,

You were amazing. In so many ways.

Since this time last year, I’ve gone from unpublished to published author of two books. Now That You’re Here hit the shelves in December 2014. While You Were Gone was published just eight months later, in August 2015. In the lead-up to the first release and straight through to the second, I spent A LOT of time promoting the books online and in person at various events.

Some of the book promo highlights included:

  • The Holiday Party at Mysterious Galaxy in San Diego, CA
  • Tucson Festival of Books
  • YAllapalooza at Changing Hands, Tempe, AZ
  • Westercon in San Diego, CA
  • San Diego Comicon
  • Phoenix Comicon
  • The Schrodinger Sessions at the Joint Quantum Institute, University of Maryland
  • Tucson Comic-Con
  • A bunch of library events across Arizona

2015, you not only taught me the ins and outs of being a published author, you brought me a crash course in Quantum Physics. I mean, how cool is that?!

Best of all, you brought an amazing trip to London, which not only had my husband and I reminiscing about our previous adventures in the UK, but also jumpstarted my creativity, dropping new stories into my head.

Here are a few pics:

Being the fangirl I am, I can’t help but think of the fun celeb encounters I had this year: Peter Capaldi, Tom Hiddleston, Guillermo del Toro, Jessica Chasten, Greg Grunberg, Ciaran Hinds, Leo Bill, and of course, Benedict Cumberbatch.

I met The Doctor. And got to see Benedict Cumberbatch as Hamlet. Fourth row! *gasp*

And don’t even get me started on all the amazing authors I got to meet and hang out with this year.

2015, you were full of love and friendship and laughter. Yes, you had your sad times, your exhausting times, your difficulties. Some of those I’m still processing. Others I’m ready to leave behind and move on from. But I can’t look back on 2015 and not be filled with gratitude.

What will 2016 bring? Here’s what I know so far:

Hopefully there will be some cons in there. Fingers crossed for San Diego and Phoenix.

I’m also looking to migrate this blog over to my main website (www.amyknichols.com). I’ve avoided doing this for the sake of this post, which has made such a difference in so many people’s lives, and I don’t want it to become difficult to find. So the migration might not be right away. I have to make sure it’ll be seamless and I don’t lose people following that post. But I’ll let you all know when it happens.

Keep your eye out for some new creative ventures here and around the web. Aside from novels, I’m looking to get into some other…media…stuff. Vague, I know…

SDCCBookAtRH
Now That You’re Here and While You Were Gone

As always, my heartfelt thanks to everyone who has supported me this year by reading my books and telling others about them. So much of this business is word of mouth. I can’t tell you how amazing it has been to hear from those of you who wrote and told me how much you enjoyed the books. Thank you! And a special thanks to the librarians and booksellers out there. You totally rock.

For those who haven’t read the novels yet, I hope you’ll give them a go! You can purchase the hardback versions, of course, and the paperback — which is in a really cool, two-in-one, flip book layout–will hit shelves February 2! Pre-order your copy today!

Wishing you a joyful and blessed 2016! May this be the year your dreams come true.

Love,
Amy

 

How this writing thing works

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cake
The Cake of Voices
(It was delicious.)

I’m in the kitchen icing a cake.

This happens, like, never. I’m a notoriously bad cook. When my kids see me making dinner they cry and run away. Baking is better, but I do it so infrequently no one ever really remembers I can, including myself.

So I’m icing this cake. It’s a zucchini blueberry cake with lemon buttercream frosting. (Kinda weird, right? But also maybe yum.) My hair is a mess. So is my face. Not to mention the kitchen. In fifteen minutes a group of friends will show up at my door for book club (aka, wine club). The knife slides along the surface of the cake, forming tiny wakes of buttercream, when suddenly a voice says, “Most of the time I feel miserable and alone.”

The knife stops mid-swipe and I listen. Not with my ears, though, because the voice is in my head.

The call is coming from inside the house.

I don’t know who this character is talking to me (yet), but in my mind I can see her walking through a crowded high school hallway and in my chest I can feel what she’s feeling. It’s like I’m some kind of medium for fictional people.

I put down the knife, pick up a pen and start writing her down. The cake can wait. So can my hair and my face and the clock and my friends showing up at my door with wine. There’s a voice in my head with a story to tell.

And that’s how this writing thing works.

For me, at least.

Win an ARC of WHILE YOU WERE GONE!

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819VTwVeSVL._SL1500_While You Were Gone doesn’t hit shelves until August 4, but you can enter to win an advanced copy today. Just go to my shiny updated website and sign up for my author newsletter* to be entered to win. The winner will be announced on June 4.

Also, Phoenix Comicon starts today! If you’re going, don’t forget to come say hello!

-Amy

*Don’t worry. I hate spam as much as you do. I’ll only send a newsletter when there’s news to share.

NOW THAT YOU’RE HERE End of the Year Round Up

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Wow. It has been a crazy couple of weeks. Warning: I’m about to say thank you A LOT.

NowThatYoureHere_AmyKNichols_smBefore I say anything else, I have to say thank you to everyone who helped me celebrate the launch of NOW THAT YOU’RE HERE in person and online. It was an incredibly fun launch, and I’m so grateful to all of you for helping make it so.

If you haven’t purchased your copy yet, you can do so at any of these fine booksellers. Thank you!

If you enjoyed reading NOW THAT YOU’RE HERE, please tell your friends! A lot of this business comes down to word of mouth. Please also leave a review online to help spread word that this book is a great read. I really appreciate your support. Thank you!

Me, fellow YA author Shonna Slayton, and Shonna's daughter
Me, fellow YA author Shonna Slayton, and Shonna’s daughter

To celebrate the release of NOW THAT YOU’RE HERE, I held a party at the First Draft Book Bar inside the Changing Hands Bookstore’s Phoenix location. Soooooo many people showed up! The place was packed and the store ran out of books. They said it was their largest YA event to date at that location. So awesome!! Thank you!!

Then I zoomed over to San Diego to participate in the Mysterious Galaxy Bookstore holiday party, where I mingled with a dozen other authors and signed books. It was such a blast! I got to see fellow Class of 2k14 author Stephanie Diaz, and got to chat with the likes of Weston Ochse, Jonathan Maberry and Jeff Cohen. I also got to see the wonderful Maryelizabeth Hart, who I swear is a superhero whose mutant power is awesomeness. It was a dream come true to see NOW THAT YOU’RE HERE on the shelves there.

Chatting with James Sallis at The Poisoned Pen
Chatting with James Sallis at The Poisoned Pen

The next day I zipped back over to Arizona and met up with my mentor and friend James Sallis to have a conversation and book signing at The Poisoned Pen Bookstore in Scottsdale. Another full house, and another run on books. They sold out, too! It was a fun event with lots of Q&A’s with those in the audience. And again, so amazing to see NTYH included among so many books I’ve long admired. Dream come true. Thank you to everyone who came!

While I was running around to bookstores, things were happening online, too.

NOW THAT YOU’RE HERE was reviewed by the USA Today HEA blog and included in their Must-Read Romances.

It received a glowing review from the School Library Journal, and was included in their “What’s Hot in YA” winter list.

VOYA reviewed it, saying, “Think of the intrigue in Cassandra Clare’s Mortal Instruments series, softened by the romance of a Sarah Dessen novel.”

And Bustle included it in their December 2014’s Best YA Books: Stuff Your Own Christmas Stocking with These 9 Novels list.

In case you missed previous reviews, here’s what Kirkus and Publishers Weekly had to say about NOW THAT YOU’RE HERE. PW gave it a star!

My stops for the second week of my Rock Star Blog Tour included:
Page Turners Blog
Once Upon a Twilight
The Cover Contessa
The Best Books Ever
Me, My Shelf and I

I also did guest posts at Terribleminds, Adventures in YA PublishingAll the Write NotesYA HighwayWriter Writer Pants on Fire, and The Hiding Spot.

Finally, in case you missed it, here’s the very cool trailer for NOW THAT YOU’RE HERE:

Now, it’s Christmas and even though I’m ready for a nap, I’m lining up events and whatnot for the new year. It’s going to be exciting. I hope you’ll come along for the ride.

In the meantime, I have to say it again: thank you. This has been an amazing journey, and I couldn’t have done it without you. ❤