Richelle Mead's Blog, page 11

December 14, 2012

Those on Facebook know I offered a challenge recently to help my pal Morgan Rhodes get to 1000 likes on FB. Morgan is the author of the amazing new book Falling Kingdoms and also wrote The Vampire Academy Ultimate Guide (under her code name Michelle Rowen). And sooo...you guys did! She crossed 1000, and as a reward, I give you this snippet from The Indigo Spell of Adrian offering Sydney some helpful advice about seduction.


From Chapter 15 of The Indigo Spell

Adrian looked over at me again. “Who knows more about male weakness: you or me?”

“Go on.” I refused to directly answer the question.

“Get a new dress. One that shows a lot of skin. Short. Strapless. Maybe a push-up bra too.” He actually had the audacity to do a quick assessment of my chest. “Eh, maybe not. But definitely some high heels.”

“Adrian,” I exclaimed. “You’ve seen how Alchemists dress. Do you think I can really wear something like that?”

He was unconcerned. “You’ll make it work. You’ll change clothes or something. But I’m telling you, if you want to get a guy to do something that might be difficult, then the best way is to distract him so that he can’t devote his full brainpower to the consequences.”

“You don’t have a lot of faith in your own gender.”

“Hey, I’m telling you the truth. I’ve been distracted by sexy dresses a lot.”

I didn’t really know if that was a valid argument, seeing as Adrian was distracted by a lot of things. Fondue. T-shirts. Kittens. “And so, what then? I show some skin, and the world is mine?”

“That’ll help.” Amazingly, I could tell he was dead serious. “And you’ve gotta act confident the whole time, like it’s already a done deal. Then make sure when you’re actually asking for what you want that you tell him you’d be ‘so, so grateful.’ But don’t elaborate. His imagination will do half the work for you. ”

I shook my head, glad we’d almost reached our destination. I didn’t know how much more I could listen to. “This is the most ridiculous advice I’ve ever heard. It’s also kind of sexist too, but I can’t decide who it offends more, men or women.”

“Look, Sage. I don’t know much about chemistry or computer hacking or photosynthery, but this is something I’ve got a lot of experience with.” I think he meant photosynthesis, but I didn’t correct him. “Use my knowledge. Don’t let it go to waste.”
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Published on December 14, 2012 21:44 • 2,236 views

December 5, 2012

It's that time of year again, and if you want to give autographed Richelle Mead books for the holidays, you can order them through University Books. They sell all of my titles. For your best odds of getting them by Christmas, here's what you need to know.

If you live in the U.S., orders should be placed BEFORE this Friday, December 7, because I may not make it into the store again before Christmas. University Bookstore has free shipping, but that shipping is media mail, which can sometimes take a while--especially this time of year, when the post office gets busy. So, if I were you, I would pay for a higher shipping option--like first class or priority mail--to help your books ship faster (though again, who can control the post office??). It's not that much more money. You can still certainly roll the dice on free media mail if you'd like to. Normally, two weeks would be plenty of time, but like I said, it's hard to say this time of year.

University Books does ship outside of the U.S., but you'll need to contact them to discuss cost and speed. For all of you, please direct any questions about shipping and sales to the bookstore. Their contact info is on the info page. I really don't know anything about the nitty gritty of how the behind-the-scenes stuff works. I just come in and sign the books. :)

Hope that helps you guys out! Thanks in advance for any orders!
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Published on December 05, 2012 12:04 • 1,049 views

November 26, 2012

If you were online for one brief hour a few weeks ago, you may have gotten in on a charity deal I ran, in which I matched Red Cross donations and also promised to send some goodies (a framed Indigo Spell proof page and a couple of bonus books) to donors as well. The offer is over, but the follow-up is still going on, largely due to some wacky website shenanigans that end up sending me 84 orders instead of the original 12 planned. But hey, it's all for a good cause, right?

Here's the status. They're currently being assembled and should ship at the end of this week or early next week. Thanks for your patients! This is a big process. Arcane Vault is boxing and shipping them, but all the rest is my doing. Those who ordered them will get a shipping notice from Arcane Vault/Lasermach when they go out. You'll have them in time for the holidays!

I spent a good part of my Thanksgiving weekend working on these and am still at it today. If you're wondering what it takes to assemble 84 charity packages, allow me to give you a tour of my exercise room. I mean, Craft Headquarters.

frames

1. Assembled Proofs in Glitter Frames
These are proofs that have been personalized or just signed for people that requested glitter frames. They're all put into frames and paired with Eugenie comics (one of the bonus books).

2. Proofs and Comics
This is a stack of unsigned proof pages, waiting to be framed, along with unsigned comic books.

3. Signed Proofs and Inventory List
Here are proofs that have been signed, as well as the master order sheet that tells me who ordered what, whether it's personalized, and whether glitter was requested. About half the orders are glittered, which is very brave of people since I have no artistic training.

4. Workspace
Here's where I assemble the signed proofs into the frames and pair them with comics. It's also where I put glitter on the decorated frames. FYI - I'm now an expert in glitter glues, by the way. Do NOT buy the Martha Stewart kind. They're overpriced, not as sparkly as others, and don't go on as well--though they do have great colors. Stickies brand has great sparkle and good precision, but after a few uses, they get hard to squeeze (at least for those of us with tendinitis). The best are actually the Crayola kids kind. Lots of sparkle, easy to use, and a $5 bargain at Target. Now you know.

5. Signed Books
This is the other bonus being included in each package. They're just plain autographed and will be paired with frames and comics during the final shipping and packaging.

6. Trash
This is all the packaging from the frames and glitter that I need to pick up. Right now my cats like to play in it.

7. Plain Framed Proofs
These are proofs assembled and framed, paired with comics, that didn't have glitter requested. They're separate because they can be stacked in a different way from the glitter ones.

8. Frames
These are frames still sealed in plastic, waiting to be opened and checked over.

9. Glitter Drying Station
The glitter glue needs a few hours to dry, so here's where my creations go during that process. Although I sometimes use the same design, the color schemes vary, so no two frames are alike.

10. Ready Glitter Frames
These are dry and waiting for proofs and homes! That glitter is pretty hardcore once it dries, but I've still got them separated by paper towels to prevent any of it rubbing off.

Not shown is my TV, to the left. I've been watching old episodes of the X-Files while doing this because I have them more or less memorized and don't have to look up very much. Good times.

Back to work!
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Published on November 26, 2012 13:42 • 1,101 views

November 21, 2012

Happy Thanksgiving! Word is getting around about my Goodreads Chat on Monday, November 26. I wanted to clear up a few things to help you out. The biggest one is that it's not technically a chat. Basically, there's a special group on GR that you can post questions anytime in--that day or even today. So, there's no real time it starts for you. That's why it's not like a live chat. On Monday, I will do my best to post answers! Please note: we're expecting a big turnout, and it may not be possible for me to get to all of them. Also, if there are a lot of duplicates, I may have to copy and paste some answers, so please don't take offense. I just want to answer as many as I can! The link to join is here.

Speaking of Goodreads...their annual awards are going on, and it's the final round! I've been lucky enough that you guys got me this far in a lot of categories. If you're interested in voting, here are my nominations:

Best Paranormal Fantasy - Shadow Heir

Best Young Adult Fantasy - The Golden Lily

Best Graphic Novel - Frostbite

Best Goodreads Author - Richelle Mead

Like always, though, there are lots and lots of good books and authors there, so I understand if you have a tough choice! :)
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Published on November 21, 2012 11:04 • 1,571 views

November 12, 2012

First up--a quick update about the proofs you kind Red Cross donors are getting. Slowly but surely, we are on our way! I cleaned out Michael's Crafts of all the frames on their shelves and then ordered fifty more that are coming in this week. Once we have those, I'll start printing and signing proof copies, and then...the glitter! Stay tuned.

Meanwhile, guess what? Today is my birthday, and I have a gift for you. Authors always have to work so far in advance when it comes to books that sometimes I forget you haven't read The Indigo Spell. Meanwhile, I'm already in the early planning stages of Bloodlines #4. Not sure if it's mean or awesome, but I thought I'd share a little of my progress: the title of #4. Are you ready?

Bloodlines #4 is called The Fiery Heart.

This'll make a lot more sense when you read Indigo, which I'm starting to get super impatient for. Come on, February! Lots of big things happen in Indigo, and you romance fans are going to pass out. You know what also might make you pass out? This:

The Fiery Heart is going to be told from both Sydney and Adrian's points of view. That's right. If you've ever wanted to get inside the crazy world of Adrian Ivashkov's head, this is it. It'll still be in first person, but the POV will alternate chapters. I'm so excited about this, it's not even funny. Well, actually...since it's Adrian, it'll be hilarious. I think you guys'll love it, and for those who still haven't made the transition to the Bloodlines series, now's your chance! #1 and #2 are out, and it's not too late to catch up before February.

Happy Richelle's Birthday!
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Published on November 12, 2012 10:19 • 1,409 views

November 7, 2012

So, if you were around earlier today, you saw my post go up that offered a very sweet deal of a matching donation, a framed Indigo Spell proof, and some mystery books if you donated $25 to the Red Cross through Arcane Vault. I mentioned in the post that we had a limited number of proofs. How many, you ask? Twelve.

Well, here's the thing. You guys made the website explode.

There was such a huge and overwhelming response that the website's shopping cart wasn't able to handle it all and processed many, many more than twelve orders before things shut down. Um, like, eighty or so more. Whoa. The folks at Arcane Vault and I have been huddled today trying to figure out how to handle this surprise. There was a fear we'd have to just issue refunds. In the end, however, two things became obvious:

1. The Red Cross getting all of those donations would be awesome
2. You guys are awesome for showing that much enthusiasm for the Red Cross and The Indigo Spell

So, it's official. If PayPal processed your payment, you are IN. We're going to make all of these orders happen. All the proofs, all the matching, all the books. The one issue to note is that I do not have eighty-something unique proof page copies to offer to the world. I have twelve, and we will have to use those twelve. That means, 5-6 other people may have a copy of the same page as you. If you're bummed at not having a unique one, you can get your money refunded, no problem at all, by emailing orders@arcanevault.com. We're super sorry about this, but it can't be helped. I have lots of glitter and books but only a finite number of pages to reveal. If you donated multiple times, all the proofs in your order will be different (unless you ordered more than twelve).

In the meantime, please be patient with us while we deal with this surprise. We're going to do our best to make this happen efficiently! I don't even have enough frames at the moment to fulfill these orders. So, it looks like a shopping trip for me! I originally hoped to have the twelve knocked out in a week, but it may take up to a month to assemble these and ship them out (hopefully sooner, though). If your payment went through, you should've gotten email from PayPal (it may say the sale was to Lasermach, Arcane Vault's parent company) that contains your invoice/order number. That's verification that your order is confirmed. You will also get email when your goods ship, including the delivery tracking number. If you forgot to enter who you want your proof and books autographed to, you can send that information now to orders@arcanevault.com. You can also email them if you forgot to ask for me to glitter up your frames. :) Include your order name and number.

Whew, what a crazy day! This was certainly unexpected, but I'm so excited at the amazing response we got. In the meantime, I ask two things. One: if you're a VA fan and haven't ever checked out Arcane Vault, please do so! They sell soooo much cool VA merchandise. Plus, they're a local family business that puts in so much work, and they're going to a huge amount of effort and cost to help me ship all these extra orders. The other thing I ask is that even if you missed getting a prize for it, consider donating to the Red Cross just for the good of it. Those that the Red Cross are helping on the East Coast and in other parts of the world will thank you.

And I thank you for all of your amazing support! We'll have more updates on these, including a video of me gluing glitter at our shipping party--because I'm still going to do all of that glitter MYSELF. :)
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Published on November 07, 2012 15:03 • 427 views
WE HAVE SOLD OUT! THIS OFFER IS NO LONGER AVAILABLE
Thank you so much to everyone who donated. You can of course still donate to the Red Cross anytime, but we have no more books and proofs. Thank you again

proofpage
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Published on November 07, 2012 11:20 • 782 views

October 29, 2012

So, my son's daycare had an Autumn Harvest party, in which parents were invited to come by and do all sorts of autumny things with the kids. I'm behind in work, but this still seemed like something I shouldn't miss. Plus, it was an opportunity to wear this super cute new winter coat I just got. It's a three-quarter faux leather creation with a fluffy faux fur collar--and all machine washable! It's also got these cool industrial metal hook closures, which eliminate my fear of losing buttons around toddlers.

I showed up, and it was pretty adorable. My little son ran over to me as soon as he saw me, hugged me, and said, "Mama." No one else's kid did that. Suckers. Someone else's kid came up to me and petted my coat's collar, verifying how cute it was. After some welcomes to all of us, the daycare ladies gave everyone these little tiny pumpkins and started setting out bowls of finger paint on the tables so that we could decorate. All of the other toddlers watched and waited respectfully--except my son. He got off my lap and immediately ran over and dunked his palms into dark purple paint. Then, he went running toward me--in my new coat. I sprang up and backed away as quickly as possible, not wanting to try out the machine washable feature yet. It took me forever to rip it off because those goddamned industrial hooks I was so proud of wouldn't come undone. Oh, vanity, thy name is Richelle! As I struggled and eluded him, my son went on a rampage, leaving purple handprints everywhere--furniture, floor, himself... The daycare ladies laughed it off since the paint was washable, and I finally managed to jettison the coat into the hall outside the room.

When I wrangled my son and cleaned off his palms, we returned to the group and found them all diligently decorating their pumpkins at little kid-sized tables. I settled my son down and showed him how to lightly dip just his fingertips into paint to make polka dots on the pumpkin. We made a pretty sweet pattern of orange and red dots and stopped there because less is more, not like those other paint-happy kids. I left the pumpkin there to dry and then took my son for a walk around the room to distract him. When we returned, we were met with a horrible sight:

Someone was stealing our pumpkin.

This other family who'd worked near us was holding up our pumpkin and grinning gleefully at their son, cooing over "his" amazing work. They didn't speak English, but I'm pretty sure they were heralding him as the next Picasso and making plans to sign him up for art lessons. Which left me in a bind. I don't like confrontation, and it seemed so bitchy to be like, "No, that's ours." And what if they denied it? Were we going to get into an altercation over a pumpkin in the middle of a toddler daycare? Would they understand the mix-up with the language barrier? As I stood there dumbfounded and distracted, my son took the opportunity to climb onto a chair and promptly keel over the back of it, landing face first and spread-eagle on the ground. He started shrieking, and the entire room came to a stop to stare at that awful mother who let her son get hurt while standing right beside him. I picked him up and hugged him, and we took another walk around the room. He didn't have any injuries, and in a less than a minute, everything was cool and he wanted to get down (and head right back to that chair).

As I returned to the others, I heard the daycare ladies say, "Let's write names on these pumpkins so they don't get lost!" That would've been a great idea 10 minutes ago! And before I could do anything, that other family had written their son's name on my son's pumpkin. It was lost to us forever.

I let the pumpkin go. I mean, I probably would've thrown it out after Halloween anyway. Still, I can't shake the weirdness of that pumpkin sitting at home on their dining room table, as they show it off to family and friends passing through. And all the while, they'll remain in ignorance that it's another child's work they're admiring. But hey, who am I to diss their happiness? I should be glad my son's superior art skills can bring them such joy, and maybe we really have set this kid up for art lessons. Will he ever be able to top my son's art talents?

smallartwork

Unlikely.
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Published on October 29, 2012 10:22 • 1,478 views

October 23, 2012

I got a nice surprise last night when I learned the cover of my next adult book, Gameboard of the Gods is up on Amazon! That means the cover is free to be publicized, something I'm very excited to do.

gameboardnew

Along with the cover, we have Dutton's official description:

Richelle Mead, the #1 New York Times, USA Today, and Wall Street Journal bestselling author of the Vampire Academy and Bloodlines YA series—whose books have sold more than one million copies in hardcover—debuts on the Dutton list with Gameboard of the Gods, the first novel in her Age of X series.

In a futuristic world nearly destroyed by religious extremists, Justin March lives in exile after failing in his job as an investigator of religious groups and supernatural claims. But Justin is given a second chance when Mae Koskinen comes to bring him back to the Republic of United North America (RUNA). Raised in an aristocratic caste, Mae is now a member of the military’s most elite and terrifying tier, a soldier with enhanced reflexes and skills.

When Justin and Mae are assigned to work together to solve a string of ritualistic murders, they soon realize that their discoveries have exposed them to terrible danger. As their investigation races forward, unknown enemies and powers greater than they can imagine are gathering in the shadows, ready to reclaim the world in which humans are merely game pieces on their board.

Gameboard of the Gods, the first installment of Richelle Mead’s Age of X series, will have all the elements that have made her YA Vampire Academy and Bloodlines series such megasuccesses: sexy, irresistible characters; romantic and mythological intrigue; and relentless action and suspense.


If you missed it, here's another description of it in my own words. And since we're all hanging out, I wanted to answer some questions that popped up when I flashed the cover around social networking sites last night:

When's the release date?
June 4, 2013

When will it be out in other countries?
I don't know yet, unfortunately. My dealings are always with my U.S. publishers, and releases in other countries are handled by individual publishers there. I'll let you know when I know.

Is this adult? Then why does the description mention Vampire Academy and Bloodlines?
It's a marketing thing. Gameboard of the Gods is indeed an adult novel, but VA and Bloodlines are by far and away my bestsellers. So, when trying to talk up another one of my books, those big ones are what get mentioned.

There's a guy and a girl lead! Who narrates this?
They both do, in third person POV. And there's also one more character whose POV the story occasionally flips to as well.

That's all the news for now! Back to work.
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Published on October 23, 2012 11:54 • 1,612 views

October 16, 2012

It's Tuesday, release day again! Sadly, my next release Tuesday is still four months away, but don't worry: there are still lots of other great books coming out in the meantime. One of the perks of my job is that people are always telling me about cool new books and even giving them to me. So, I was super excited when my Vampire Academy/Bloodlines publisher, Razorbill, offered to send me one of their newest titles, The Innocents by Lili Peloquin. Maybe I'm biased, but I think they have awesome taste. Anyway, here's what's on its way to me. It was just released today:

innocents

This is a contemporary book--no magic here--but it's still sexy, mysterious, and surprising . It's about two sisters who move to a posh new town when their mother remarries, and they find themselves caught up in all sorts of dark intrigue, dangerous guys, and challenges to their own ideas of family. When I did some research on Lili Peloquin, one of the first things I discovered is that she has a big following for her live tweeting of Revenge. That's when I decided we need to just go straight to the source to find out about this book. In what I believe is the first interview I've ever done on my blog (that's not with myself), I got the lovely Lili to come by and give us a bigger scoop on the book and her choices in entertainment.

I already gave it a shot, but I know you can do a lot better. In your own words, give us the lowdown on what The Innocents is about.
My own words, Richelle? You’re not going to let me use a cheat sheet? Mean! Okay, I see The Innocents as a combination of a teen soap opera and a gothic mystery: Prep meets Twin Peaks with a little bit of Revenge thrown in. It has--or at least I hope it has!--a twisty-turny plot and a mood that smolders and an atmosphere of mystery that’s both stealthy and seductive. My intention is to leave the reader with an unsettled, spooked feeling.

Your two heroines, Alice and Charlie, have very distinctive personalities. Can you describe the sisters for us?
Alice is the more reserved sister. She’s quiet and bookish—an observer. She senses menace, senses sinister forces under the lush, glittering surface of Serenity Point, the town she and Charlie have just moved to with their mother and new stepfather, and the possibility simultaneously horrifies and excites her. She’s drawn to the hidden and the mysterious.
Charlie is a much less guarded personality. She likes fun and boys and trouble. She’s the Id to Alice’s Superego.

What's something you think readers are really going to love about this?
Well, it’s a book with two girls for protagonists, but I think my readers are going to flip the hardest for the boys of The Innocents. These boys are beautiful and these boys are tormented. There’s Tommy. He’s smart and athletic and handsome in this straightforward, clean-cut way. He’s the last person you’d expect to be prone to Byronic fits of brooding. He is, though. When Alice meets him, he’s in a bad way, psychologically speaking. He’s still in love with Camilla, his dead ex-girlfriend, who also happens to be the daughter of Alice and Charlie’s stepfather, Richard. And he’s still guilt-ridden over her suicide. But against her better judgment, Alice finds herself falling for him, hard and fast
Then there’s Jude. Jude’s gorgeous and Jude’s trouble. He’s been kicked out of school after school and has clear a substance abuse problem. But Charlie takes one look and decides that she’s got to have him, that he’s the one for her.

What's one of your favorite things about this book?
There’s a sex scene on a tennis court that I’m especially fond of.

I'll skip the favorite sports question then. What's one of your all-time favorite books?
Lolita. It has fancy prose and lurid subject matter. What could be better?

Biggest guilty pleasure reality show?
The Real Housewives franchise, for sure. Beverly Hills is my favorite. I’m upset, though, that Camilla Grammer’s taken a powder. She was fun, that one.

I don't watch Revenge. Pitch me on what I'm missing. :)
Oh, Richelle, lots. You’re missing lots! Good-looking people doing bad-to-the-bone things, sexual tension in places it has no business being, aging-but-still-beautiful actresses trying valiantly to emote through multiple injections of Botox. Oh, and these weird Chinese proverbs at the beginning of each episode that don’t have that much to do with what follows. It’s great all around!


Thanks, Lili! Whether you guys watch Revenge or not, you can catch up with Lili on Twitter and Facebook. Lili's also one of the Breathless Reads authors (along with my pal Morgan Rhodes, whom I'll get here one of these days) who may or may not be touring near a town near you at some point. And in the meantime, you can find The Innocents at favorite bookstores and online retailers. Enjoy!
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Published on October 16, 2012 10:45 • 717 views