More Giveaways, How-Tos, and Special Features

So many links! So little time! Want writing advice? We've got it. Want free books? I can hook you up. Want silly HAMMER OF WITCHES special features? Just you wait. Plus we've got a blog post by my mom. MY MOM. Hold your hats, kids. This is a link roundup for the ages.

For Writers

On Read My Breath Away, the blog of the lovely Jessica R., I talk about how to write different kinds of historical fiction.

For People Who Love Writers

On the Diversity in YA blog (one of my favorite blogs ever, by the way), my mother (yes, really) gives y'all five tips for dealing with a loved one who writes fiction. Wine is featured. Prominently.

For Readers Who Haven't Read Hammer of Witches Yet

You can win a copy here! For free! Wowzers!

If you're still not sure about whether or not you should read it, check out what the wonderful Laura Biagi has to say about it.

For Readers Who Have Read Hammer of Witches

Over at my new friend Elie's blog, I take part in her new special Friday Night Movie feature, where I tell everyone about my dream cast for the HAMMER OF WITCHES that is certainly never going to be made. But a girl can dream! A girl can dream.

For Those of You Who Prefer Watching to Reading

Our recaps of Game of Thrones and Mad Men continue on This week, we talked about Jon Snow's posterior and Joan Holloway's anterior.

For Those of You Who For Some Reason Want to Know More About Me and My Feelings About Batman

I, along with a bunch of other amazing YA debut authors, got to answer a bunch of fun personal questions for the April Debut Author Bash over at Hobbitsies. We play "Kiss Marry Kill" with the cast of The Vampire Diaries (for the record: Damon, Alaric, Stefan), as well as "Never Have I Ever." Don't forget to sign up for Hobbitsies' YA Debut Author Challenge if you haven't yet!

That's it for now, folks. Happy reading.

Your Inspiration Comes From Where?!

Authors are so frequently asked where they get their ideas from that I sometimes think they might flip out like Geoffrey Tennant on Slings & Arrows: Yes, I was inspired by my parents—and my teachers and every play I ever seen and every book I've ever read and everything ever! And it wouldn't be untrue. Inspiration comes from everywhere, and teasing out exactly where you got each idea and character from is an exercise in not-gonna-happen-ery.

That said, sometimes you realize long after you've written something that the ideas you thought were so clever and original were actually unintentional ripoffs of other, usually greater, works of art. Or, in my case, cartoons. I'm an avowed animation fan—I spent this beautiful weekend hidden inside BAM so I could watch Princess Mononoke for the millionth time—so this is not surprising. But it is a little amazing how neatly the characters from Hammer of Witches line up with the 'toons I watched as a kid.

Amazing, and slightly disturbing:


Baltasar, Uncle Diego, & Aunt Serena = Tony Toponi and Papa and Mama Mousekewitz from An American Tail


Although Baltasar + Jinni = Van and Merle from Vision of Escaflowne


And (as mentioned on the Lee & Low blog) Baltasar + Catalina = Taran and Eilonwy from The Black Cauldron


(Although if we include video games in this analysis, then perhaps Baltasar + Catalina more closely = Locke and Celes from Final Fantasy VI)


Martin Pinzon = Frollo from Disney's Hunchback of Notre Dame


Rodrigo = Wiggins from Pocahontas


Speaking of Princess Mononoke, High Priestess Anacaona = Lady Eboshi (and I love them both so very much)


Antonio = Haggis McMutton from The Curse of Monkey Island (but, like, less Scottish)

And I'm sure there are more cartoon connections I haven't thought of yet. If you think of one, let me know!

Hmm, it now occurs to me that some of you might be more willing to pick up a copy of Hammer of Witches if I make a comparison to some super-hot bishonen-type character that all the girls swoon over. Like I could say that Baltasar is exactly the same as Avatar: The Last Airbender's Prince Zuko, except he's even hotter and more brooding and...


...and actually this is the far more realistic Avatar comparison. Sorry, Zuko fans. Maybe next time?

[PS - The Hammer of Witches hardcover is out NOW! Go buy a copy of the book Kirkus calls "an engaging, magical adventure." You can get the audiobook here. E-book coming soon.]