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Let Me Give You a Christmas Present

Hello readers!

I hope those of you participating in NaNoWriMo are doing well and close to winning! I’ve had a lovely month of not participating.

I filled this month with striking the reading of Cold Mountain off my bucket list, watching 3 seasons of Dexter (which pales in comparison to Breaking Bad and American Horror Story, I am sorry to say), playing countless hours of Tropico 4, rewatching almost all the seasons of 30 Rock, crafting up a storm, and gaining back my writing energy.

I’m pleased to report all of this downtime has led to some rather excellent writing ideas, including the elusive new ending to Nameless, so I’m pretty pleased with myself.

But! I’ve been thinking about you a lot. Yes, you! I’m the sort of person that celebrates Christmas, and even if you’re not I would love to send you a holiday-type gift. So let’s have a little giveaway for my loyal readers, no advertising necessary.

Winners can choose from one of the following amazing, AMAZING books, and I will ship it to you in time for the holiday of your choice!

  1. The Night Circus, by Erin Morgenstern
  2. Any of the Daughter of Smoke and Bone books, by Laini Taylor (in case you have one or two of them and would like to own another in the series!), OR, alternately, Lips Touch Three Times.
  3. Either of the Raven Boys books, by Maggie Stiefvater
  4. Imaginary Girls, by Nova Ren Suma
  5. Any of the Graceling books by Kristin Cashore

I loved all of these and would love to share any one of them with you. On the off-chance you already own all of these we can renegotiate.

That’s it!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

I hope you have a lovely Thanksgiving, for all you Americans out there, and a wonderful holiday season! My theme for this year is low-stress, and I’m doing a pretty great job so far ;-) Now if you’ll excuse me, I’m off and writing!

<3, Savannah

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Let’s Have a Giveaway!

In honor of my post on the creative process, I want to give away my favorite brainstorming tool: The Most Awesome Notebook Ever!

Like most writers I love journals and notebooks, but the problem is I can’t use most of them! Either they’re way too lovely to write in, or they’re too small, or there’s no lines, or I can’t bend it any way I want. Then, about two years ago, I stumbled upon the perfect notebook: 

How do I love thee, Notebook? Let me count the ways:

Thick pages. These suckers are not gonna give you the same bleed-through action that a normal spiral notebook will. Which is awesome because I prefer the Pilot pens.

Speaking of spirals… spirals! Heavy-duty, will never bend or catch on anything spirals! I can flip this notebook any way I want and there’s no fighting or bunching. Totally rad!

Beautiful covers. And not just pretty, but thick and sturdy, too! These covers will never bend on you, and I’m not saying it’s impossible, but I’ve never seen mine get scuffed. WOW!

What did I tell you? THE PERFECT NOTEBOOK.

Here’s the thing: they are perpetually on sale at B&N, which indicates, to me, that B&N does not desire to keep stocking them. So whenever I see any I snap them up. The other week I found these beauties in miniature form! Here’s one in my favorite butterfly design next to a beautiful brown full-sized one:

Sooooooo because I love you and we’ve been talking about brainstorming lately, I want to give you the opportunity to win one of the above two notebooks.

Not only that! But I will write you a very inspirational note on the first page (so you can remove it if you don’t want my doodles in your precious notebook. How’s that for considerate?)

HOW TO ENTER

Use this handy-dandy Rafflecopter widget below! Please note that this is only open to US-residents only.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Have fun!

Edit: Winners!

Eleni Alexandraki won the large notebook, and McQuinn won the small one! If you guys can email me your addresses I’ll get those shipped off to you, hopefully this weekend!

Thank you so much to everyone who participated <3 This was my first giveaway operated solo and I think it was a success. We’ll definitely have more in the future!

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Writing Contest Entry

I entered the contest at boingboing.com to win a free laptop by rewriting part of one classic with the incongruous writing style of another.

I present to you an excerpt from Oliver Twist in the style of Chuck Palahniuk:

I’m supposed to be a docile, little animal. This is the workhouse, and I’m supposed to be a cog, a tiny man-slave. The thing is, today’s not going to work like that. Someone had the bright idea of standing up to the establishment, and once again I’m in the wrong place at the wrong time.

“You’re going to march up there, and you’re going to ask for more. Just one scoop more. And that’s it.”

Big insurrection from a nine-year-old. Anarchy. Armageddon. The earth snubbing its bulbous, greasy nose at an affronted God.

I am Oliver’s perpetual bad luck.

It’s not that I don’t belong here. I do. I’m a third-class, dirty, little orphan like the rest of them. But I’ve never been the rebel type. I am Oliver’s lily-white cowardice. I am Oliver’s eventual, raging resolve. The boys take their places, and I’m shaking in my rags, bones quivering inside my thin, damp skin. If I’m going down, I’m going to at least make my point.

Imagine: living off food the rats wouldn’t eat. Imagine: wondering why you’re not growing anymore, even though your belly is. You check yourself for the perpetual shakes, for the skin sores, for the softness in your teeth. You count the number of headaches, praying the same, tired prayers when you feel like you’re going to pass out.

Pestilence. Parasites. Prayer. The big three in this place.

I am Oliver slowly starving to death.

The cook, a large, stern man, stands at the pot and dishes out the meager portions of what constitutes life around here. When it’s all gone you won’t be able to tell we ate anything. A long, boring grace is being recited, but I can’t even hear it. A spoon clinks against my bowl but I can’t even feel it. The others are looking at me, waiting on me. The moment eclipses. I am their puppet, the physical incarnation of their misery and hope.

You get up from your chair. You approach the only deity you know; the man with the food. The entire hall is staring at you, the mouth of the cook is turned down in contempt. You are remembering every beating, every foul, pitiful groping from the men in charge. You are already feeling the chill of the icy streets outside, and grappling with the death that will surely come quickly when you’re cast out.

And you are Oliver not giving a damn.

“Please sir,” you say through gritted teeth. The entire hall is leaning closer, struggling to hear your low voice. “I want some more.”

The Cook’s spoon clatters to the ground. The master turns pale amidst his sweaty fatness. He stares at you, stupefied, astonished. He clings to the table for support. Everyone in the hall freezes, bracing for whatever’s coming next.

“What?” He whispers, barely audible. “What did you say?”

“I want,” you repeat, stomach growling audibly. “Some goddamned more.”