Monday, September 30, 2013

Launch Party Mayhem! With Pics.

So I've learned two things: 

1. Having a launch party is one of the funnest things to do, EVER.
2. People are awesome.

Guys, I can't even. The amount of support that came from so many different directions is mind boggling. Looking at all the pictures from the launch party brings back the overwhelming gratitude I felt standing in front of everyone, touched at all the people who came. :'o)

We started out the night with me talking about some insider secrets with the book. And then I got emotional thanking my husband and kids, my parents, and my writing group. (There was a photographer from a newspaper there to catch it all. The part where I turned to look back at my husband, all emotional and teary-eyed, is the photo they decided to use in their newspaper article. Now I know what I look like when I'm about to cry. When I saw the picture, I laughed and laughed and laughed for like half an hour! It's seriously the funniest picture ever. How do people not generally burst out laughing every time they see me about to cry?)

Here's a pic from the side you couldn't really see in the first pic.

And here's a pic of people filing in from the back, where you can kind of see the screen at the front where I did my presentation. When I was done speaking, we partied. :) For the kids, we had three stations set up-- one where they could make a necklace / key chain out of Shrinky Dinks, one where they could invent a creation out of toothpicks and mini marshmallows, and one where they could slingshot foam apples at bad guys (based off a scene in the book, and arguably the activity the kids had the most fun at). While the kids were going wild, the parents got in line, and I signed books like crazy. For over two hours. It was an incredible feeling.

About an hour and a half into the signing, the crowd cleared and I could see my line for the first time! Up until that point, my "line" mostly consisted of the wall of people in front of me.

At best count, about 500 people came. Once the room was filled, people watched from outside, just crowding around the open doors. I am so so so sorry to those of you who couldn't make it to the doors, and just had to leave. I wish I could've seen you! I really wish I could've seen everyone who came. But I'm not a big fan of standing in long lines, either. Also, I'm sorry we didn't bring several hundred more cookies. It's so hard to guess how many people will come. Or how skilled kids can be at making 500 cookies disappear in less than 10 minutes' time.

Oh! And I gave out raffle prizes! My five favorite chocolate bars for the adults, and five prize bags for the kidlets. I kind of love how they turned out. Here's the finished product:

Inside each one was a Sky Jumpers t-shirt...

A Sky Jumpers button....

Instead of a Dove bar, a Cliff Dive bar.... :)

Air Heads Xtremes, since Sky Jumping is pretty much an xtreme sport....

And my favorite: Bomb's Breath Mints. Get it? Hahaha! These crack me up every single time.

All in all? A pretty dang awesome night. Huge thanks to everyone who came and to everyone who helped!

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Release Day!!! Sky Jumpers By the Numbers

Sky Jumpers releases today.

That's so strange to say! Sky Jumpers releases today. Sky Jumpers releases today. Sky Jumpers releases today.You know how sometimes, you're in one state for so long that it feels like you're going to always be in that state? (Like how I'm always going to be 27. ;)) I've felt like I'm always going to be in the "I have a book coming out.... eventually" state and never the "I have a book out" state.

But guys. The day is here. And I am so thrilled! I'm excited for my baby to be out in the world, where she can be read! I'm excited that she's real and this story and these characters that have been such a part of my life are out there. Almost like they exist now in some non-corporeal yet still somehow real way.

I thought it might be fun to share some numbers, if for no other reason than I love numbers. (And pictures of numbers.)(Obviously.) Here we go!

Months to draft Sky Jumpers

Months to edit Sky Jumpers before getting an agent

 Months to edit Sky Jumpers after getting an editor

Days from book deal to book release

Days Sky Jumpers was on sub before being bought by Random House

Rounds of edits Sky Jumpers went through in total

In regards to the packages that have landed on my doorstep in the last few weeks in preparation for my launch party and school visits....

Sky Jumpers t-shirts

Sky Jumpers bookmarks

Sky Jumpers buttons

Sling shots

Foam apples

Sky Jumpers postcards

Pair of gigantic gloves

School kids I'm speaking to TODAY

School kids I'll be speaking to tomorrow and Thursday

Months from Sky Jumpers' inception to being in print

The amount of gratitude I have for you all and your incredible support, your wise words, your shared laughs, your helping hands, your shoulders to cry on, your kind words, your comments, your tweets, your encouragement, and your friendship. I love you all.

photo credit: Leo Reynolds via photopin cc photo credit: Leo Reynolds via photopin cc photo credit: Leo Reynolds via photopin cc photo credit: Leo Reynolds via photopin cc photo credit: TheAlieness GiselaGiardino²³ via photopin cc photo credit: Leo Reynolds via photopin cc photo credit: El Negro Magnifico via photopin cc photo credit: Leo Reynolds via photopin cc photo credit: Eva the Weaver via photopin cc photo credit: mag3737 via photopin cc photo credit: Larry Miller via photopin cc photo credit: oskay via photopin cc photo credit: Leo Reynolds via photopin cc

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Website! Launch Party! Signed Copies! Events!

I swear that I will get time to do non-Sky Jumpers posts soon! But that day isn't today. ;) Today, it's time for updates!


I realized recently that I never told anyone about my website! (Perhaps because there's still a "Coming Soon" section that I had hoped to have time to finished before now, and I was waiting for extra time to come along. :))

 But anyway, here it is! It's chock full of good stuff, even some fun Sky Jumpers extras. Just click on the image, or go to

Launch Party

I am lucky enough to live near a library filled with the most incredible, supportive librarians ever. I love it there. So that's where I am having my launch party! If you live in Utah, it's at the Pleasant Grove Library on Thursday, September 26, at 6:30 pm. I'm going to speak for a bit then start signing books, while activities are going on all around. And cookies! Yes! There will be cookies galore! I think it's going to be a ton of fun, and I'd love to have you there! The King's English Bookshop (an amazing indie bookstore) will be on hand with a truckload of books to sell. Speaking of The King's English....

Signed Copies

If you can't come to the launch party, but want a signed book, you can order it directly through The King's English. I'll sign it (and personalize it however you'd like), and then they'll mail it out to you! You can order by calling (801) 484-9100, or email them at I'm also doing a signing at their bookstore (1511 South 1500 East Salt Lake City, UT) on Friday, October 4 at 6:00 pm.

Professional Writers Series

Tomorrow night (Thursday, Sept. 19) at 7:00 pm, I'll be speaking at the Pleasant Grove Library Professional Writers Series on the topic 10 Things You Should Do if You Want to Get Published. If you're in the area, come join us!

School Visits

There's a LOT of things to worry about around a launch. I've got to say that school assemblies take home the trophy. Guys, I am visiting 9 schools in 5 days (three days right before my launch and two days right before my SLC signing), giving presentations to auditoriums full of 3rd-6th graders. All I have to say is that if you have any extra good vibes hanging around and want to send them my way, I won't protest. :) :)

And if you haven't gotten a chance to check it out, my blog tour is going steady, with lots of interviews with creative questions, and several giveaways! You can find the blog tour stops here.

Whew! That's more than enough about me. What's been going on with you? Anything new?

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

My blog tour is up and running! And there are giveaways galore.

I don't know if I've mentioned this before, by my publicist, Nicole, is incredible. She hooked me up with some incredible sites for my blog tour, and most of them are hosting GIVEAWAYS! (Like the one from Monday at the Mixed-up Files where a simple comment gets you entered, or the one from today at Taffy's Candy.) A lot of them include interviews, and they asked some really fun and unique questions.

Here's the lineup with links:

September 9th: The Mixed-up Files of Middle Grade Authors *Giveaway!*
September 10th: David Powers King
September 11th: Taffy’s Candy *Giveaway!*
September 12th: Smack Dab in the Middle
September 13th: Once Upon a Story *Giveaway!*
September 14th: Inky Elbows
September 15th: Society of Young Inklings
September 16th: Me, My Shelf and I
September 17th: Kayla’s Reads and Reviews
September 18th: The Haunting of Orchid Forsythia
September 19th: Kid Lit Frenzy *Giveaway!*
September 19th: Word Spelunking *Giveaway!*
September 21st: The Mod Podge Bookshelf
September 22nd: The Write Soil *Giveaway!*
September 23rd: The Hiding Spot *Giveaway!*
September 23rd: Literary Rambles *Giveaway!*  
September 23rd: Nerdy Book Club
September 24th: OneFourKidLit

I just figured out that from book deal to release date, it will be 678 days. 678 days, and only 13 of them are left! I feel like I should be making a paper chain or something to count down the remaining days.

photo credit: joellybaby via photopin

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

The book trailer for SKY JUMPERS is live today!

I have been dying to show you my book trailer. DYING. We filmed this baby clear back in June of 2012. So yes, a full 15 months ago. It was all cut and edited by the amazing filmographer Isaac Nordlund last August. Then the incredible Phoebe North took the footage and added the titles and title effects earlier this year. Put it all together, and it made something I'm absolutely in love with. I hope you love it, too.

Just for fun-- some pics from the filming:

Brock (left), Hope (middle), and Aaren (right), filming the sky jumping.

Me, aiming the wind (and having a thoroughly good time).

Hope, solo jumping.

Filming the blizzard scene, with tons and tons of baby food oatmeal being blown at them. This scene looks amazing in the finished product. I can't wait until you see it.

Hope, with her injured dad. This scene makes me cry every time I wrote/rewrote/edited it, and it made me cry to see it acted out.
So are you ready to watch it? The trailer is being revealed exclusively at School Library Journal here. Go check it out!

P.S. Ever been curious about the story behind my book cover? I share the Insiders Cover Scoop on the Lucky 13s blog.