Tuesday, September 25, 2012

One. More. Week.(!!!!!)

You guys. 


KEEPER OF THE LOST CITIES comes out one week from today. 


*jumps up and down*




So naturally that means I have ALL KINDS OF things going on this week--number one of which is this:

The absolutely amazing Mundie Mom's have arranged an AWESOME tour, including all kinds of fun things. AND, S&S has been INCREDIBLY generous, and are giving away TEN shiny finished copies of KEEPER and TEN shiny ARCs of LET THE SKY FALL throughout the tour. Details on all of that can be found HERE

Also, if you missed it when I posted this info, I have three exciting events coming up and I'm really hoping I'll see some of you there. Here's all the details:

West Hollywood Book Fair
Sunday, September 30, 10 a.m. -- 6 p.m.
West Hollywood Library and West Hollywood Park
625 North San Vicente Boulevard, West Hollywood, CA
I'll be on the Toddlers, Tweens, and Teens Stage for the Writing for InbeTWEEN Readers panel, from 12:00-12:40, with Dan Santat, Kirk Scroggs, and Eugene Yelchin. There will be a signing immediately afterward and yes, they WILL be selling copies of KEEPER OF THE LOST CITIES. So if you're in SoCal and you're dying to get your hands on a copy a few days early please come hang out. Full event details HERE.

Tuesday, October 2, 6:30 pm
Barnes & Noble 
2615 Vista Way Oceanside, CA 92054
There will be rambling. And awkward hugs. And nervous giggling. And prizes! (And *whispers* some of those prizes will be ARCs of LTSF). Also: Cupcakes (because uh, this is me). So lots of reasons to come, besides just, yanno, making me love you forever!

Changing Hands signing and official launch party
Saturday, October 6, 5pm
Changing Hands Bookstore,
6428 S McClintock Dr. Tempe, AZ 85283 
*NOTE: Seating for this event will be ticketed (I know--I'm shocked too!)
2 free tickets come with every pre-order, so you might want to order your copy early. Go HERE for instructions.  And the lovely people at Changing Hands have helped me put together an amazing pre-order offer. Limited edition exclusive swag packs will come with every copy of KEEPER (while supplies last) AND for every copy purchased, an additional copy will also be donated to the amazing charity, Kids Need to Read. You can find more info about that HERE

And I have a feeling I'm going to be saying this a lot over the next couple weeks (get ready for it) but... I just want to say a big giant sparkly THANK YOU to all of you for all the love and support. 

 thank-you Glitter graphics
Myspace Hi5 comments

(Say it with me: Awwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwww)

I won't ever be able to fully explain how much I appreciate all of the amazing things you guys are doing to support me, whether it be blogging / tweeting about KEEPER, emailing me your thoughts, posting reviews, telling your friends, pre-ordering, coming to my events, or simply just stopping by to cheer me on. ALL of that means SO MUCH. You have no idea.

This debuting thing is super scary, but all of the love and support you guys keep giving is making it so much less stressful. So THANK YOU. I would be a puddle of panic without you! (hows that for a lovely mental image to end on? Maybe scroll back up and look at the cuddly bear)

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

It just got real

There have been a lot of "wow, this is getting real" moments over the last few months, between BEA and ALA and Comic Con and SIBA (wow--no wonder I'm so tired!). But last weekend topped them all.

I did two amazing events, both so surreal and impossible to wrap my head around that I really don't know how to describe them. So I'm going to let the pictures do most of the speaking for me:

This is me with Margaret Peterson Haddix, Lisa McMann, and Helen Stringer at a Pasadena School Library for a Bridge to Books event. 



I can't tell you how amazing it was sitting next to Lisa McMann on an author panel after she's been such a huge inspiration and support to me. Which is why I couldn't resist doing a little gushing about her during my presentation:

Side note: looking through the other photos from this event has made me realize wow, I make rather interesting faces when I speak publicly. Lots of gestures too. For example:

If you're wondering, I have NO idea what I was talking about--or what that gesture is supposed to mean.... 

Anyway...since KEEPER isn't technically out yet, I wasn't able to sign copies. But I did sell pre-orders--which amazingly enough, people bought! And I gave away two early hardcovers

And signed them to the winners...

Along with a few ARCs people brought...

And despite how hot it was in there (dear A/C: I missed you. Please don't ever leave me again!) It was one of the most amazing days ever. Huge thanks to all the event organizers for inviting me, and my awesome panelists for treating me like I belonged.

(also, huge thanks to Katie Ferguson, who took all of the above photos)

I thought nothing could top Saturday's event. But... there was still Sunday. 

Sunday I had the honor of speaking at the SCIBA Children's Literacy Brunch--an event I've been going to for years as a slightly-out-of-place aspiring author. So to be on the other side, as a speaker, signing copies of my book and giving them to people who've been cheering me on long before I deserved their support, was ... well ... let's just say it's a miracle I made it through my presentation without crying.

I wish I had better pictures to show you, but so far I haven't been able to track many down. I did find this one of me during my presentation (again with the strange faces!)

(and in case you're wondering, that's me holding up what I lovingly call "The Email Of Doom", aka the revision letter my agent sent me during the hellish revision process)

And this is me with the lovely and talented Salina Yoon, who was my signing table buddy:

If I track down any others I promise I'll share them. In the meantime, if you were one of the people who took the time to come to either of these events, THANK YOU SO MUCH! It was so great to meet you, and you really know how to make a girl feel welcome. 

I tell ya, I have an AWESOME job. It's exhausting and sweaty and apparently causes me to contort my face into weird positions and flail my arms around. But it really is a dream come true.

So, that was MY weekend. How was yours?

Friday, September 14, 2012

Limited Edition KEEPER Swag Packs for an Awesome Cause!!!

If you caught my post on Wed (and managed to wade through all the exclamation marks) you know I promised something exciting today--and I am a girl of my word!!!!!!

(FYI: if you can't already tell, this post will also be riddled with exclamation marks. 
You've been warned.)

But it's actually really funny that I'm so excited about this post. Honestly, a few months ago this was something I'd been dreading.

See ... the thing about being an author is, sooner or later you have to ask people to buy your book. And I know for some people that's an easy and natural thing to say. But for me? It feels so AWKWARD. Even though I know that you know that I know that not all of you will be able to buy or want to buy my books--which is TOTALLY fine, by the way--it still felt like ... really? Do I REALLY have to talk about this?

But it is kinda important, since, yanno, if no one buys my book that would not be a good thing...

So I'd been stressing. And panicking. And then I realized that a better way to handle it was to find a way to get excited about it. So I brainstormed and turned to friends for ideas and together we came up with something that I am seriously SO SUPER THRILLED to share with you!!!!!!!!

(*insert herald trumpet blast*)

I've teamed up with the amazing people at Changing Hands Bookstore and the awesome organization Kids Need To Read to put together a very special pre-order offer!!!!!!

Between now and October 5th, if you order a copy of KEEPER OF THE LOST CITIES from Changing Hands you'll get this amazing package:


*Four limited edition 4x6 art prints, hand signed and numbered (and yes, that is my own character concept art on there)

*Four "Team" stickers 

*One Mallowmelt recipe (arguably the sweetest, stickiest, gooiest dessert ever invented)

BUT WAIT--THERE'S MORE!!! (Hee--I love saying that!) And this is the part I'm MOST excited about.

For every copy of KEEPER OF THE LOST CITIES purchased at Changing Hands between now and October 5th, a copy will also be donated to Kids Need to Read (up to 150 books)!!!!!!!!  

(And if you don't know Kids Need to Read you should check them out. They're an amazing organization that gets books in the hands of kids and schools who wouldn't be able to afford them otherwise. I am so honored to have KEEPER be distributed by them.)

So just to recap, if you pre-order through Changing Hands, you'll get a signed book, exclusive swag, AND you'll put a book in the hands of an awesome kid reader who needs it!!!! I'm pretty sure that's what we call a Win - WIN situation.

If you would like to order your copy, you'll want to call Changing Hands at 480-730-0205. The lovely people there will be able to get everything taken care of. And if you're wondering about price, I'm told it will be: $16.99 plus $6.50 for US shipping. (Sales tax may apply, and yes they can give you a combined shipping rate if you order more than one. International shipping is also available--though you'll need to call for an estimate)  Online ordering is available! Go HERE for info and instructions (and make sure in the comments section you mention who you want the book signed to, etc.)

Of course if you have a favorite bookseller or website you'd prefer to order through you are welcome to. I am thrilled and honored if you buy my book ANYWHERE. But I'm very excited to offer this and I really hope we can get some books to Kids Need to Read. Thank you guys in advance for any support you give!

(And again, I will still adore you if you don't buy it. Don't worry, I won't be paying attention to who does and does not buy. I love you ALL for stopping by my blog no matter what. GROUP HUG)

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

News! Photos! Updates! Oh my!

Wow, I am SO BEHIND on updating you guys about all the STUFF and THINGS that have turned the last few months / weeks / days (who can tell anymore--it all feels like one big never-ending blur--kind of like this sentence!) into a whirlwind of AIYEE!!!!!!!!

(and warning, there will be a lot of exclamation marks in this post!)

First up: LOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOK!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

This is me, at the SIBA Trade show in Naples, Florida last week, signing one of the most beautiful things I have ever seen--FINISHED COPIES OF KEEPER OF THE LOST CITIES!!!!!!!!!!!! 

I still don't really know how to process it. I had no idea that's what I'd be doing there, and then I got to the signing and they were unpacking all these beautiful, shiny hardcovers and it was like EXCUSE ME WHILE I HAVE A MOMENT HERE, PEOPLE! It's amazing I didn't cry! (and yeah, I totally did later in my hotel room when I got to really page through one)

While I was there I also got to do a super fun panel with Adam-Troy Castro, Ellis Weiner, and Irene Latham:

(Huge thanks to Irene for taking the picture, which I totally stole from her awesome blog)

AND, I got to have one of those, "wow--this two series at once thing is REAL" moments when I had to change badges to say "Shannon Messenger: Let the Sky Fall" and sign these:

*stares at the stack of ARCs, trying not to worry about people hating them...*

I've also been really bad about announcing the events I have coming up, so let's fix that right now! I have two events this weekend that I'm SUPER excited about:

Bridge to Books
September 15th, 10:30am
McKinley School, 325 S. Oak Knoll Ave., Pasadena, CA 91101
A middle grade event with Lisa McMann, Margaret Peterson Haddix, and Helen Stringer. Admission is free and books will be available to purchase on site from Once Upon a Time Bookstore. But you will need to register online. Info can be found at bridgetobooks.org.

SCIBA Children's Books and Literacy Brunch

September 16, 10:30 am
Hilton San Diego/Del Mar
I'm so honored to be a speaker, along with the amazing Jenny Han & Siobhan Vivian and Diane Lang. Full event details can be found HERE.

I've also updated my Appearances page, so you can find all the details about all the other things I have coming up HERE.

Another thing I've been TOTALLY remiss about is revealing EXCITING FOREIGN THINGS! 

In case you can't read that, the quick sum-up is: Germany, Spain, Italy, and Brazil! I seriously don't know how to wrap my head around the fact that my books are going to be published in languages I can't understand, but I am so honored and humbled and grateful at the warm welcome my characters have gotten. And should I have any more news on that front I promise to keep you guys posted.

Hm... I'm pretty sure that catches you up--and even *I'M* sick of me and all my giddiness by now--so I think that's enough for today.

But I will be revealing something else--something I am SO INSANELY EXCITED ABOUT on Friday so check back for that. And thank you for reading all of this and sharing in my excitement.

In fact I want to take a second to thank all of you for your amazing support and patience with me. I know I've been a bad blogger, and I know I've gotten really bad about replying to comments and emails and lost touch with so many of you. But I promise I'm still here and I'm still reading everything you guys say and I am hoping to get better about some of those things soon because I really miss interacting with you guys. In the meantime, THANK YOU for understanding and supporting me and generally just being there as I try to keep my head straight through all of this crazy chaos. (also: come hang with me on Twitter--that's the one place I'm pretty good about staying current with my replies).

I knew this year was going to be an adventure and I'm trying to keep up with it all as best as I can. But I really appreciate you all sticking by me as I muddle through. I know I'm not doing it all perfectly, but I'm trying my best. And I could not do this without you guys!

((BLOG HUG!!!!!!))

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

KEEPER Launch Party Details!

Yes--the time has finally come for me to freak out tell you about some of the exciting things I have planned for the release of KEEPER OF THE LOST CITIES. Specifically the terrifying Launch Parties!

And yes--I mean parties plural. I figured, I was already worrying that no one would come to one launch party, so why not double the stress????? :)

No, really, what it came down to is that there's one Indie Book Store that not only holds a very special place in my heart, but is a large part of the reason KEEPER exists. So I couldn't imagine not doing my launch there. BUT, when I started telling SoCal friends and family that the launch would be in Arizona, well... lets just say they were less than happy with me (I'm now very glad I didn't have a destination wedding--it would not have gone over well).

SO, I'm doing TWO launches in TWO different states in ONE action packed week---and then probably collapsing or fleeing to Mexico.  Should be good times!

Here are the details for both events:

SoCal Launch Party
When: Tuesday, October 2
Time: 6:30 pm
Where: Barnes & Noble Oceanside
2615 Vista Way
Oceanside, CA 92054

Changing Hands Launch Party
When: Saturday, October 6
Time: 5:00 pm
Where: Changing Hands Bookstore
6428 S McClintock Dr
Tempe, AZ 85283 

I really hope some of you guys can come. In fact, I will love you forever. Like, SERIOUSLY. You have no idea how many sleepless nights I've had about this:

SO, if you live in or near any of those areas I am begging hoping you'll decide to make me the happiest person ever (seriously, EVER) and come hang out. 

There will be rambling! And nervous giggling! And awkward moments where I can't decide if I should hug or handshake so we do that sort of clumsy half step-dancy thing!

Who DOESN'T want to be there for all of that????????

And since I am not above bribing you because I love you guys, there will also be exclusive swag and prizes! (Some pretty awesome things, if I do say so myself.) I'm also working on getting food and other yummy things. I'm not sure what the stores will allow, but I'll do what I can to have a few treats.

So mark those calendars! I'll update with any additional details as I figure them out and do my best to remind you guys (warning: I will probably be a bit obnoxious about this--I am SO SCARED no one will come). You can also find info on all my upcoming events on my Appearances Page.

Hope to see some of you there!

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

DONE! (Like, for realz this time!)

I feel like I've written a post like this a billion times already as I've reached my various deadlines for (the still untiled) KEEPER 2--BUT I'VE NEVER DONE IT WITH DANCING SMILEY FACES!!!!!

So see, it's like a whole new experience! 

And I brought out the big guns this time because I think I might actually be done this time. Like DONE done (though this is publishing so there will still be copyedits and first pass and proofreader queries and...) Which is especially miraculous because guys, I swear, there were so many points along the way where I thought I would never get here--and not just the frustrated sense of "I am so behind I will never get there." The terrifying OMG-I-do-not-know-if-I-can-make-this-plot-work-AHHHHHHH kind of panic. 

It was seriously, seriously bleak. And I have a post percolating on why this book broke my brain--plus a ton of other super exciting things to tell you guys about.

But dude, I am exhausted. 

So the dancing happy faces will have to do for today and I promise I will be back tomorrow with something more useful.

Thank you so much for all your support and cheering me on and bearing with me. 

You guys = AWESOME!