Tuesday, 16 September 2014

The Sap is Rising (and North American release! And Inkys!)

Ahh, the start of Spring!  You may not feel it, if you’re reading this from north of the equator, but here at our place it’s like the first touches of the changing season are thrumming in your blood – the blossoms and leaves are bursting out, all green and pink and fresh, and you feel the nip of cold more keenly as your skin gets impatient to feel air and sun again.  And it’s still cold, of course: the fire still burns in our house every night, and sometimes during the day as well, and you still can’t hang washing outside.  I’m soo sick of wearing thermal underwear – I can’t wait for t-shirts and shorts and skirts again!  The house feels crowded as we all start stretching.  But jackets and warm socks and scarfs are still de rigeur come afternoon…

I’m emerging from self-imposed exile, after two weeks of knuckling down, finishing the edits/rewrites for Every Move.  And they’re done!  That is, the complicated narrative part is done.  Now comes the fine edit, when we prune away some of the excess verbiage, and make the book leaner and tougher and right handsome.  Someone asked me what that meant, to give a book a ‘trim’, and I said it’s like cutting the excess fat off a chunk of beef.  My only concern is that this book could be a complicated trim, as the fat is veined right through the meat, like a nice marbled steak.  But my editors, Eva and Sophie, are both experienced knife-wielders, so I’ve no doubt that it’ll work out okay!*

Every Move is due for release in March 2015 – it goes to the printers in November.  If you’re anticipating it, I can only say that it’s a wild ride, and takes Rachel back to places – and people – she thought she’d left behind…  The book has been a real labour of love (ie. it was bloody hard work), but I’m very happy with it, and I hope you will be too.

Now here’s some other cool news – Every Breath was awarded a Highly Commended in the Sisters in Crime Davitt Awards for Best YA Fiction, which is thrilling and amazing.  Here’s a little pic of me and the other winners on the night, as well as Lauren Beukes (The Shining Girls, Broken Monsters) who presented the awards.  A hearty congratulations to everyone!

While Every Breath didn’t make it past the shortlist for the Ned Kelly Awards (and congrats too to Candice Fox, who won the Best Debut category of that award with her excellent book Hades), there is another award that Every Breath is listed for – and which you can help out with.

Every Breath has been shortlisted for a Centre for Youth Literature award – the Gold Inky.  And now that the shortlist has been decided, YOU can be the one who chooses the winner.  If you’re between 12-20 years of age, GO HERE to vote in the Inky Awards (Gold for Australian, Silver for International), and whether you’re voting for Every Breath or not, I do encourage you to vote!  Because the Inkys are the only award in the country where teenaged readers can choose which – in their opinion – are the best books of that given year – that’s right, you choose.  I really want to see the Inkys continue strongly onward, so that teenagers themselves can exercise their right to vote on which books rock their world.

So go vote!  Vote for Every Breath, if you loved it, or vote for another book you loved – but definitely VOTE!

Finally, the most thrilling bit of all – Every Breath is about to be released by Tundra Books in North America and the Philippines!!  I am VERY EXCITED (I can’t really express how excited I am, except to use a lot of exclamation marks and say that I’m squeeing a lot) that the October 14 release date is drawing ever-closer, and even more excited that there will soon be a blog tour.  The blogs that are participating so far are listed below, and I’d like to say a massive welcome and thank you, to all participating bloggers!

Raindrops and Pages      Oct 20
Journey of A Bookseller                Oct 20
Sukasa Reads     Oct 21
Love is Not A Triangle     Oct 22
Michelle and Leslie’s Book Picks                Oct 23
Paperback Princesses    Oct 23
Nick’s Book Blog               Oct 23
Ann Towell         Oct 24
Love At First Page            Oct 24

It is quite incredible to think that – very soon – people in Canada, the US and the Philippines will be reading Rachel and Mycroft’s adventures, and checking out Melbourne in the pages of a book I wrote.  I find that staggering!  And I hope folks love it, and laugh, and I hope they crush on Rachel and James, and I hope…  Oh, so many things I hope!  But above all, I wish Every Breath luck on its travels, and the love of many new friends on the way.

So that’s all the news, but I’ll be updating again soon with more info about the blog tour and upcoming release.  Until then, I’m enjoying a well-earned break after the excitement of Melbourne Writers Festival, school visits, Adelaide Emerging Writers Festival, sick kids, sick husband, Davitt Awards, Book Week, CBCA events, edits, rewrites and blah blah etc – I’m actually LOVING being able to read again.  I sometimes have to take a break from reading while I’m deep in writing mode, as I find I get so absorbed in some books that I either a)can’t tear myself away, or b)find myself thinking about the characters and plot of someone else’s book all day, when I should be thinking about my own.

But now I can read again – and I’ve had a few books saved up in celebration.  Right now I’m totally sucked into 18th century Scotland with the Outlander series (Diane Gabaldon), and after that I’m going slightly crazy hanging out for Blood of My Blood, the finale of the Jasper Dent series (Barry Lyga).  I’m also a bit desperate to finally read This Shattered Earth (Amie Kaufman/Megan Spooner), We Were Liars (E. Lockheart), and The Incredible Adventures of Cinnamon Girl (Melissa Keil), and I’m pretty sure there’s other books on my TBR pile as well…

I hope you have a good book to read right now, to get you through the early weeks of the season, and a nice warm spot to read it in.  Have a great week – remember to go vote for the Inkys! – and see you on the blog tour J

Xx Ellie

* If I’m going to draw that analogy, I have to say too that sometimes cutting the fat makes you bleed, as if the meat comes from your own body.  So it stings a bit.  An experienced and gifted editor will make sure that the knife doesn’t knick an artery, and drain the lifeblood of the piece.  Both my editors are gifted, for which I ‘m enormously grateful.  I do have to keep the BandAids handy though, for minor wounds…

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