Tag Archives: Awesomeness

CRUSHING IT Launch Party!

Even if you’ve already bought (and hopefully loved) CRUSHING IT, if you’re in the Hamilton, Ontario area, why don’t you come out to help me celebrate the book? I’ll be reading from the book and answering questions AND will be signing while you mingle and consume snacks.

There will be giveaways, too! Bring the book you’ve already purchased for me to sign or there will be copies there to buy.

Please join the official Facebook event so I know you’re coming.

Hope to see you!

 

I’m CRUSHING IT Today!

See what I did there? I made a corny pun with my book title! Well, you know what? It’s my blog, so it’s my prerogative to make corny puns!

Back to the business at hand – it’s they day we’ve all been waiting for – CRUSHING IT release day!

***Throws confetti***

To celebrate, I’m chatting with my excellent friend, Debbie Ohi, over on her site today and I’m also talking about writing funny at the Nerdy Book Club.

If you haven’t pre-ordered your copy, you can get yours from Bryan Prince Bookseller, or at one of these fine retailers:

Chapters/Indigo

IndieBound

Barnes & Noble

Amazon.com

Amazon.ca

If you’re local, I’d love to see you at the LAUNCH PARTY on January 28 at the Westdale Libary (2pm).

Don’t forget to please review CRUSHING IT (unless you hated it) at review sites like Goodreads and at retailers. That is the kindest, and cheapest way you can help authors get the word out about their books.

So this happened!

“As always, Levy’s refreshing tween voice is spot on in CRUSHING IT. It’s the perfect laugh-out-loud read for middle graders.”

Lisa McMann
NYT bestselling author of the Unwanteds series

 

!!!!!! How cool, right? Here’s me doing my happy dance. You know, if I wore skirts. Which is almost…no, not almost, it’s never.gdance_e0

Thank you, Lisa!

Don’t forget, you can read the first three chapters of CRUSHING IT here.

 

Book News!

Apparently it’s been months since my last blog (September? How did that much time slide by?) but I guess that goes along with the theme that I’m not a very good blogger and really only crawl out of the woodwork when I have something to tell you. Well guess what? I HAVE SOMETHING TO TELL YOU!

While Small Medium at Large is out in the world and people still seem to be reading it (thank you!) I’ve been working on some other things and one of those things will be published by Simon and Schuster’s Aladdin M!X imprint in 2017  December 2016! If you’re not familiar with the M!X books, check out the website (see, those exclamation points were intentional).

The book is called Crushing It and is a tween version of Cyrano de Bergerac – see the official deal notice at Publishers Weekly. I can’t tell you too much about the story yet, but it will be fun and funny and will likely include some awkward moments and maybe a cat. You’ll just have to wait and see.

And if you believe it, some kind soul has already put it up on Goodreads (which means you can add it to your TBR list, you know, because you’re already worried about what you’re going to need to read two years from now).

This isn’t the Oscars, so I’ll keep this short, but I would like to extend a HUGE thank you to my agent, Caryn Wiseman for facilitating this. She has been tirelessly working toward getting my books out there and I so appreciate having her on my team.

And now, just because this is how I feel today:

dancing_bird

Writing Process Blog Tour

Yes, I know, I haven’t blogged in a while and I probably wouldn’t have even written this post if not for the wonderfully awesome Philippa Dowding! I have to tell you how I met PhilipGwendolynpa, because meeting her was just one part in the amazing Forest of Reading experience I had last spring! When I did the ‘near north’ tour, Philippa and I traveled together (through some crazy terrain and a heck of a storm, I might add) from North Bay to Parry Sound and we got to know each other and had great chats, as writers often do. I can’t tell you what we talked about (what happens on tour, stays on tour) but by the end of the trip, I was so glad to have met her!

2014-09-09 09.34.50AND we exchanged books, which I love, because the one thing I cherish and collect more than anything (because it’s hard to collect cheese, though I do love it so) is signed books.

Please check out Philippa’s post and her books and make sure you tell her I sent you. Make sure you watch the trailer for The Strange Gift of GwendolynGolden (Philippa even did the music for the video—could she be any more talented?).

Now, to the questions!

1. What are you working on?

Oh, okay, so let’s start this with the hardest question to answer! I hate talking about projects I’m working on, because inevitably, they don’t freaking sell and then people are all like, “Remember you were working on that story about the purple alien that fell in love with a crocodile who ate beets? When is that coming out?” and I have to tell them that the book will come out on the fifteenth of never. So I think I’ll play it safe here and tell you I’m working on a wickedly funny Facebook post.

2. How does your work differ from others of its genre?

Well, I wrote it, so that’s the most notable difference. Plus, my writing tends to be funny and honest. I try to mine the most embarrassing moments from my own youth (real or imagined) and project them onto my characters. Then, I manipulate those scenes to make them even funnier and work them into a plot. So yeah, there’s a good chance if you’re reading my work, you will laugh. I keep hearing there’s not enough funny books, so I’m trying to help fill the niche.

3. Why do you write what you do?

2014-05-14 13.14.06I have always looked up to authors who honestly portray the lives of tweens/teens and who write the books that everyone relates to. There are so many experiences that we all go through in some way or another and sharing those experiences is one of the great parts of being human. Dogs can’t share the story of a great romp at the leash-free park or describe the taste of a really delicious steak bone found at the bottom of a garbage can. The stories we share bond us to each other with no reciprocal hind-end sniffing required. So I write to share stories like that. ALSO, and maybe more importantly, I love to make people laugh and if I can do that with strangers I’ve never met, well, that’s the most amazing feeling ever. No, the second most amazing feeling—having a kid come up to me wearing a shirt with my book on it, that’s pretty much THE most amazing feeling.

4. How does your writing process work?

This is a very wide-open question, which I’m guessing is by design… Uh, I come up with an idea, and then I have four or five plot points in my head before I start actually writing. Then I sit down (or, actually these days, I go to my treadmill desk) and start writing. I don’t normally write to outline, so I make up the story and characters as I go. This means I need to do more editing/layering of details later as I learn more about my book and what/who it’s actually about, but it’s hoTend a Gravew I work. I’ve tried outlining and it just doesn’t work for me. If I need an outline or synopsis for a proposal, I pretty much have to write the book (or most of it) first.

Thanks again for tagging me, Philippa! And of course, one good turn deserves another, so I tag: Jocelyn Shipley! I know Jocelyn from #TorKidLit, a social group of writers from the GTA (Greater Toronto Area) that gets together monthly. I’m a big fan of Jocelyn and her work (particularly her HOW TO TEND A GRAVE that I couldn’t stop raving about when I read it) and I’m looking forward to her post next week.

Thanks so much for stopping by and feel free to leave a comment about your process.

Trees and Tours and News, Oh My!

First, let me start with the Oh, My! Has it really been this long since my last blog post? Wow. Yeah, I guess it has. I’d like to blame my lack of communication on being really busy and that’s part of it, but mostly I didn’t have enough cool stuff to share. Until now.

So. Where to start.

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Cool Thing #1 – SMALL MEDIUM AT LARGE has been named an Honour* Book by the fine kids of Manitoba in their Manitoba Young Readers’ Choice Awards. Cool, right? MAKING BOMBS FOR HITLER by Marsha Forchuk Skrypuch won, which is awesome and so well deserved, but my book was one of two honour books (with UNGIFTED by Gordon Korman). I can’t begin to tell you how amazing this is.

redmaple
Cool Thing #2 – As you may know, SMALL MEDIUM AT LARGE is a Red Maple nominee in the Ontario Forest of Reading program. Another huge honour for me and my little book about ghosts, boys and bras. So I was afforded the opportunity to do a little bit of touring last week up to North Bay and Parry Sound to celebrate at their Festival of Trees. I didn’t take near enough pictures, but here are a few. I always have a great time hanging out with book-lovers of all kinds and I have to say that this event made me feel like quite the rock star. Look at all those fans! Thank you to the Near North School District for making this happen. What a great couple of days!

 

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And this isn’t even the whole crowd. I was told there were about 1600 kids there. Amazing!

Here’s a smaller crowd of SMALL MEDIUM AT LARGE fans who came to my presentation and sat in the front row (check out their cool SMALL MEDIUM AT LARGE buttons!). <3!

2014-04-29 12.40.04

 

Here I am with fellow Red Maple nominees, K.L. Armstrong and M. A. Marr (LOKI’S WOLVES: THE BLACKWELL PAGES)

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And a group photo with the rest of the authors (K.L. and M. A. had to leave early) and some of the event organizers. Thank you Near North!

2014-04-30 14.22.38

 

Also, I was fortunate enough to do some school visits in Sudbury on my trip. Check out the cool artwork some kids did to tie in with my book:

2014-04-28 08.16.15

 

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Here I am with Ms. Vigna’s ASD class. These kids were so great and engaged and asked some of the best questions. I loved meeting you!

St Benedict ASD

AMAZING! Thank you so much to these great kids. I loved meeting you all and chatting about books.

There will be more Forest of Reading events next week and I’ll update again once I have more pictures.

Until then, thanks for making it to the bottom of my post. Here’s your reward, a dancing chicken:

 

Chicken_dances

 

*These cool things are happening in Canada, so I’ll be using my Canadian spelling here.

The Arizona Road Trip of Awesome Giveaway!

Hi. I hope you’re doing great! I’m heading out for a ROAD TRIP OF AWESOME this week. What makes a road trip awesome, you ask? Well, let me share some cool stuff I’ll be doing:

  1. Going to A.S. King‘s event at Changing Hands in Tempe Arizona on Thursday (if you’re in the area, you should absolutely come!)
  2. Meeting my online friend, Amy Dominy
  3. School visits with the amazing Jennifer Nielsen* (meep! I’ve never done school visits before – hold me!)
  4. Going to the Tucson Festival of Books on Saturday – have you been to this? It’s AMAZING and while I’m there, I’m on panels with Lisa McMann, Heather Brewer, Jennifer Nielsen (hopefully she’s not sick of me by then) and my other online friend, Linda Urban. If you’re in Tucson and coming to the festival, make sure you find me and say hello – here’s the schedule.
  5. This is just the busy, writer related stuff – I’ll also be doing some serious R&R and of course, book buying.

THIS CONTEST IS NOW CLOSED – Congrats to Melissa Roske!

But before I go, I have to pack for the trip. Of course I only have so much room, but I have like a zillion Sharpies! How to choose? YOU are going to help me. Pick from the colors below and tell me why I should take that color of Sharpie to sign books with. Just leave a comment below and you’re entered to win a copy of YOUR CHOICE of SIGNED/PERSONALIZED book by one of any of the authors listed above (or you could get some extra brownie points and pick a signed personalized copy of my book, but if you don’t I understand. I mean, look at those other authors!).

Sound like the easiest thing ever? Yeah, pretty much. And if you tweet, Facebook or otherwise tell your friends about it, I’ll give you an extra entry, just make sure you let me know in your comment what you’ve done. Because I’m not rich, this will have to be a North America only contest (sorry friends from Norway and other lovely places abroad!). AND you only have until this Wednesday, March 6 at 23:59 EST to enter so I can pick a winner and organize the prize.

Here’s what you’re choosing from?

Left to right: bronze, Kermit green, black, teal, sky blue, purple, red, orange, indigo, pink, forest green. Don’t forget to tell me WHY you picked that color.

Sharpies

Okay, ready? GO!

*Jennifer also has an event at Changing Hands on Wednesday, which I will unfortunately not be able to attend, but if you’re in the area, go and say hi for me. Tell her I’ll see her Thursday.

Auction #81 – MEGA Signed Copy of Eye of the Storm by Kate Messner and Small Medium at Large by Joanne Levy

Welcome to KidLit Cares, an online talent auction to benefit the Red Cross relief effort to help communities recover from Superstorm Sandy. KidLit Cares was started by the very awesome Kate Messner, but I’m taking over Round 2. Agents, editors, authors, illustrators and other generous people have donated various services to be auctioned off to the highest bidder, with donations being made directly to the Red Cross disaster relief fund. You can read more about KidLit Cares here.

Now, on to the auction!

Kate Messner started these auctions, but I have the honor of closing them, so for this, the final auction, I wanted to do something a little special. Okay, a lot special.  So I got a copy of her Eye of the Storm and got as many authors as I could to sign it.

I kind of want to keep this myself, but I will do the right thing and give it up as originally intended. And then I thought, what’s better than 1 mega signed book. Yep, 2 mega signed books. So I’m throwing in a copy of Small Medium at Large, too and it’s also signed.

Awesome people who signed these books (besides Kate & myself):

R.J. Palacio, David Levithan, Lisa McMann, Eileen Cook, Libba Bray, Marla Frazee, Shannon Hale, Terry Trueman, Maggie Stiefvater, Megan Miranda, Matt de la Pena  and others (books will come with a full listing of signatures).

Opening Bid: $30

This auction closes at 10pm Eastern Standard Time on November 28. Any bids placed after that time will be void.

If you’d like to bid on this auction, check the current high bid and place a higher bid by leaving your name and bid amount in the comments, along with some way to contact you (email, FB or Twitter…I’m not fussy.) Winners will be notified when the auction ends and should be prepared to make an online donation to the Red Cross Disaster Relief fund in the amount of the high bid at that time.  After you’ve made your donation, you’ll forward your receipt to me, and I’ll put you in touch with the person who donated the service you won so that the two of you can work out the details about how and when.   All services will be provided at the convenience of both the person making the donation and the auction winner, but this should happen within three months of the auction’s end unless something else is agreed upon by both parties.

Good luck and thanks for your help!

Tip: if you’re bidding, you may want to subscribe to the follow-up comments, so you can get notice of future bids. Subscribe via RSS on the right. —>

Small Medium at Large Book Birthday Two Weekstravaganza!

Hi and welcome to the Book Birthday of SMALL MEDIUM AT LARGE!

It’s finally here! SMALL MEDIUM AT LARGE releases June 26 in Canada and July 3 in the U.S.!  To celebrate, I’m all over the internet this week and next, talking about my brand new book baby.

Want to join in the celebration? Sure you do!

Check back, as I’m going to be adding links to new posts for the next two weeks as they pop up. And stay tuned as I get ready for THE BIG FINALE, when I’ll be giving away LOTS OF STUFF! Like books, and swag and maybe a t-shirt and sock monkey. You’ll just have to wait to see, but, yes, that’s right – there will be a Prize Pack of Awesomeness!

Until then, if you’re itching to win something, I’ve just posted the July Street Team check in.

And there are lots of giveaway opportunities below.

IMPORTANT: If you happen to buy a copy of SMALL MEDIUM AT LARGE (thank you!), save your receipt for the big finale–I’ll tell you why soon!

Blogs I’m visiting – thank you so much to everyone who has hosted me! I have had a lot of fun doing interviews and posts:

Class of 2k12 – Talking about my release day(s)

Red House Books – Book memories

Get Lost In a Story – Interview

Cari’s Book Blog – Interview

The Nerdy Book Club (Giveaway!) – Guest post

Watch. Connect. Read. (Giveaway!) – Interview and dorky video

Sharpread – Review

Ex Libris (Giveaway) – Interview

Project Mahem – where I talk about writing funny

Reading Away The Days (Giveaway!)

Moonlight Gleams – Lilah’s guest post

InkyGirl Interview

Lavender Lines Q&A

Sarvenaz Tash’s Blog (Giveaway!)

A Thousand Wrongs (Giveaway!)

Sometimes Cool Stuff Happens To Me

Some cool stuff happened that I’d like to tell you about.

First, blogger extraordinaire, Evie from Bookish surprised me on Twitter with this tweet: Book Thong I made for @JoanneLevy and am planning to trade it for some extra cupcakes at her awesome Launch:

HOW COOL IS THIS? Right? Evie, thank you – you’re getting a big hug AND extra cupcakes for this. I can’t wait to see the real thing (AND YOU) at my launch.

So that’s one cool thing, how about another? Yep. So here’s the review from Kirkus, those people who even call themselves “The world’s toughest book critics.” You know I bit my nails to the quick when I was waiting for this one, don’t you?

But I needn’t have worried!

Yadda, yadda, yadda…stuff happens (I’m paraphrasing) and then… “In a fresh, frank and funny first-person voice, Lilah tells of her ghostly encounters from the perspective of a normal Jewish girl coping with abnormal powers. Droll middle school drama.

Amazing, right? FRESH, FRANK and, most importantly, FUNNY! I’m over the moon at this good stuff.

Thank you Evie, Kirkus and the Universe for this awesomeness, and for you, who I can share it with.