Six Months Out Giveaway

Six Months Out Giveaway

BOOK TWO: IT’S TIME. Um. In six months. Still: six months goes by so quickly! I can’t believe we’re already in June of this completely ludicrous year. So if the next six months go as quickly as the previous six did, well, it’s basically time for Freed by Flame and Storm, right? Or maybe I’m just eager to get it in everyone’s hands. Or maybe I’m terrified of that, actually. A fact that I realized when I saw that ARCs had begun to go out to reviewers. You’d think that, having done this once before, I’d be a little bit

The Free World of Francie Nelson’s Brooklyn

The Free World of Francie Nelson’s Brooklyn

I knew even less about A Tree Grows in Brooklyn when I started reading it than I had about Little Women. But it was, in a lot of a ways, a perfect answer to Little Women, right down to the moment, early on, where Francie mentions that she read and enjoyed Little Women. Liberty vs. Poverty and Education in Francie Nelson’s Brooklyn It’s a little hard to summary the plot of A Tree Grows in Brooklyn, because (again like Little Women) there isn’t much of one. It’s the story of Francie growing up, and of her family. Francie’s mother is

Little Women, Female Ambition, and Castles in the Air

Little Women, Female Ambition, and Castles in the Air

Hey everyone, have you read your Pilgrim’s Progress lately? Because it’s time to talk about what I got out of reading Little Women, in this first real installment of the YA Classics Catch Up. But first, one housekeeping note — as I experimented with formats, I found I had a pretty fun time capturing some of my thoughts on Instagram as I read. So if you’re an Instagrammy person, feel free to follow along that way! Okay. So. Little Women is a novel by Louisa May Alcott, originally published in two volumes, the first in 1868 and the second in

Assault, Consent, and Romance in Bound by Blood and Sand

Assault, Consent, and Romance in <I>Bound by Blood and Sand</i>

(Notes: This blog entry discusses rape culture, also, there are minor BBB&S spoilers.) It’s April, which is sexual assault awareness month. So I want to take a second to talk about sexual assault in Bound by Blood and Sand, because, well, it’s in there. Jae, the protagonist, is a survivor of rape before the book begins, and she’s assaulted about halfway through, on the page. Jae also has PTSD (from the assaults, and from a lifetime of slavery), something which is, of course, still part of her in Freed by Flame and Storm. I did not take the idea of

The YA Classics Catch Up Blogathon

The YA Classics Catch Up Blogathon

My name is Becky and I have a confession: I am a YA writer who is shamefully un-read in the classics of my own category. I’ve never read The Outsiders. I’ve never read A Separate Peace. And while I have read The Catcher in the Rye, it was only grudgingly for class, and I hated it. A little of this is because my school didn’t teach some of these. Mostly, though, it’s because I’ve always been drawn way more to genre books than contemporary (or books that were contemporary when they were written, decades ago). I like my pacing zippy

Introducing Book Two: FREED BY FLAME AND STORM

Introducing Book Two: FREED BY FLAME AND STORM

Book Two’s title and cover are finally revealed! They were shared at Hey Teen Books Hey last night – along with an interview about the books, libraries, and more. Click through to find it…but I’m gonna share the cover here, too. ISN’T IT BEAUTIFUL??? I love the new color scheme, and I looooove that Jae is now defiantly facing down the world instead of trudging off to save it. Here’s the cover copy: Revolution is nigh, and one girl stands at the head of it all. Jae used to be a slave, laboring with the rest of her people under

A Year in Writing: 2016

A Year in Writing: 2016

In early January, I usually take a minute to reflect and write a blog entry about the past year. I’m not doing that this year. To be honest, most of 2016 is kind of a blur to me, and the election overshadowed pretty much everything else — up to and including my book release. It all feels very raw, so I’ll do my reflection in my personal journal and spare the internet my angst. You’re welcome. Instead, I’m going to do a roundup like I did last year — here was my 2015 in writing. First, just for fun, here

Leia, Rey, and Me

Leia, Rey, and Me

I have always had this habit of mentally rewriting stories I love to be about the female lead. If you were to hear me describe the plot of Disney’s Aladdin, you’d be pretty sure it should have been titled Jasmine. When I started binge-reading fantasy novels in middle school, man, the Belgariad was tedious until Ce’Nedra showed up. Bumbling farmboys bored me, but a red-headed princess? Sign me up! But no story in my mind was more about the female lead than Star Wars. In fact, I think it’s safe to say that I do this whole thing because of

Post-Release Roundup

Post-Release Roundup

Hey hey hey! Today marks a full week that BBB&S has been out in the world — wow! I get a little thrill every time someone tells me their copy has arrived, and I hope if you pick it up, that you’ll dig it. A few reviews have come in. Aside from the Kirkus review over the summer, BBB&S has also gotten some praise from Publisher’s Weekly and Booklist online. You can hop over to the book page to see those — for example, BBB&S being described as “a tale of sacrifice, restoration, community, and magic that begs for a

Today

Today

It’s here. Wow. A little under two years ago I first posted on Facebook that my book had sold. I just snuck a glance back at that post (which involved a little bit of profanity and a lot of capslock) and a friend who’s known me pretty much my whole life commented, “I know this has always been something you’ve wanted!” And, you know, she was right. It’s hard to define always, but back when she and I were hanging during recess every day, we were playing pretend. I spent all of elementary school spinning up elaborate imaginary games and