Beth Revis's Blog, page 9

September 5, 2014

There's about 100 copies left of the Limited Edition of THE BODY ELECTRIC available from my local indie bookstore, Malaprops, and to help convince you to buy one of these awesome limited editions, I thought I'd show you guys some of the awesome that's going to be included :)

Designed by the brilliant Hafsah at IceyDesigns, the Limited Edition cover is matte--it has a smooth, velvet finish that makes me want to pet it. That's weird. I shouldn't say that. AND YET.

Notice also the special ribbon there at the bottom--this book is definitely a Limited Edition.

And while we're speaking of Hafsah's design--take a look at the beautiful interior design of the book!

This book also has a special signing page, that's just for this edition, and every book will be signed and numbered. Of course, you can still get it personalized--just let Malaprops know when you order it!

 And I want to take a moment and say that this really, truly is a limited edition. Only 350 books are going to be made in this edition, and only 300 will be for sale. Of course, you can get the regular book--but it won't have all the content, and it won't be signed and numbered.

So get yours now while it's still available!

There are about twenty extra pages of content in this book, including a map and lots of extra features. I've reprinted my story, "The Turing Test," in this edition, along with a page explaining how this short story (which I thought of after a conversation in Subway of all places) sparked the idea that eventually turned into a whole novel.

But I definitely wanted more content for you guys--you deserve it! So, in addition to the short story, I also have...

An article about how the book came to be, and...

...and exclusive interview about writing, sci fi, and more, plus...

...A brief history of the future of the world, which was a trip to write!
The Limited Edition includes a special packet full of swag and exclusive things! The boring stuff first: every limited edition will include a coupon code for a free copy of the e-book; I believe e-books should be included with print books, so I'm putting my money where my mouth is and including a free copy with each limited edition. It will be available in multiple formats, and will work with Kindles, Nooks, Kobos, and most other e-reading devices.

Swag will include a beautiful bookmark, a fun sticker, an extra print copy of the map of the world, and a series of amazing, stunning, and beautiful art cards--featuring art not just from The Body Electric, but also from Across the Universe!

You've seen some of them before:

The Mucha-style illustrations are by Christine Tyler, and every Limited Edition comes with a set. BUT THERE'S MORE! You'll also get a set of cards designed by the extremely artist Hizome, an extraordinarily talented design student.

Her first illustration features Elder watching over a sleeping Amy underneath a tree on Centauri-Earth. I love the look in Elder's eyes, and the cute way Amy's sleeping!

And here's Hizome's illustration of Jack and Ella, the main characters of The Body Electric. She's chosen to show them on the rooftop garden in Ella's Maltese home, and there are so many perfect details to the illustration. I love the way she gave Jack such a long face, and the silver locket is exactly like I envisioned it. And if you look closely, there's a tiny bee flying...a deeply symbolic image in the book.

 AND THAT'S NOT ALL. OMG you guys, there's so much awesome here. Because I have one last set of art cards to show you--by Marion Bordeyne, of Petra Pan fame on tumblr! Her cards are themed couples.

First there's Amy and Elder sharing a sweet kiss. Amy's hair is perfect, and Elder's stance-- *romantic sigh*

And here we have Jack and Ella. I love the way she's sort of pushing him away just as he reaches for her. Their dynamic is so difficult to capture, but I think Marion did it perfectly here.

AND OMG THAT'S NOT ALL. I had some special swag made for you guys. Lesley at SweetGeek has a brilliant idea to make a necklace with interchangeable plates. Each of the designs is a small magnet (so if you're not a necklace-wearing person, feel free to use the magnets on whatever you want). Each necklace pack comes with three designs--although I'm sure you could order more from her Etsy store if you're so inclined!

Here I am modeling my necklace at DragonCon! 

I'll be including one of these necklace sets randomly in FIVE of the limited edition packets. It'll be totally random--I'm not even the person packaging the books that are pre-ordered--but five of you will be getting this extra in your packages! And if you come to my live event on October 7, you can get pin buttons in the same design--plus lots more swag. :)

There's only 100 of these Limited Edition books left-- Make sure to grab yours from Malaprops here!
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Published on September 05, 2014 20:59 • 95 views

September 3, 2014

Last week, I attended DragonCon, a huge convention with over 60,000 people in attendance. It was full of exactly the kind of people who I know (I hope!) would like my book--this is my audience, and my challenge this weekend was to find the most effective ways to reach them.

Now, to a lot of people, I seem like an extrovert. I'm not that shy, and I'm okay in front of audiences. But I'm actually very introverted. My friend Andrea Cremer summed it up perfectly: an extrovert gets energy from being around other people; an introvert recharges by being alone. And in those terms, I'm extraordinarily introverted. I can be in a crowd or in front of audiences, but it drains me. Being social is as draining for me as working out. Even being on Skype--this is why I limit the number of events and I do. Doing an event for an hour takes me all day to hype myself up and then to recover after. In very stressful, very big events, I will often just sit in silence in a room by myself to recover.

So DragonCon, packed to the brim with people, is like an Iron Man Triathlon to me.

As a fan, DragonCon was just solid fun. Seeing panels that were hugely interesting, people watching the cosplay, geeking out over fun things. As an introverted author who wanted to promo and maybe even sell her books, it was a bit more complicated.

Here's how I tackled the weekend not as a fan, but as an introverted author.

Be organized. Get your schedule and study it. Figure out where you have on time and where you have down time, and make sure you have the down time you need. And when you can't get downtime, come up with a plan. Don't have time to go back to your hotel room? Go to the green room, ask for a quiet room, or even just locate the nearest bathroom to catch five minutes alone. Get help. This was the biggest boon for me. I drafted my husband to be my helper for the weekend. He was in charge of the details: handing out the promo stuff while I started my panels, carting books around, taking care of the money during sales. It also enabled me to make him the salesperson and me the author, which reduced my stress considerably.Use social media at live events. It's so simple, but so easy to forget. Here's how I approached social media in terms of DragonCon:A few weeks before the con: tweeted and tumbld that I'd be there. The schedule wasn't final yet, but I wanted people to know I'd be there. I also let people know I'd be signing and selling books. The week of the con: tumbld and tweeted my schedule, and posted my schedule on the blog. I also made sure to keep my schedule as the top post on my blog throughout the event. Fifteen minutes before a panel or signing: tweeted, using the hashtag, about the event, and saying that I hoped to see people there. During my signing, I tweeted fifteen minutes or so before, and then I tweeted every fifteen minutes during the signing to tell people about it. I followed the rule of four--it was an hour long event, so I tweeted at every quarter. I obviously didn't tweet when readers were around--I tweeted at the lulls, when the table was empty.Remember: don't harass your social media followers, especially the ones not there. Tell the people about your stuff, but don't go overboard.Make your stuff do the talking so you don't have to. This was my biggest take-away from the event. Before panels, I asked the husband to pass out cards that had my book info and newsletter subscription on it. Everyone got the stuff, so I know they had my book info and I didn't feel the pressure to talk so much about it--my cards did my talking for me. And during the big signing I designed my table so passers-by could see what I was about without me having to leave the table and do a hard sell, and I used social media to call others over. I know some people are really in favor of what I call the "car salesman approach." They stand up at their table, they literally pull people over and pitch their books. They're charismatic and they draw people in and they sell their books with everything they have. At RT two years ago, I sat next to a person who did this, and I saw him sell a dozen books this way. It works. But it doesn't work for me. I can't do that. I can't be that person. 
But after two signings at DragonCon with only about ten people--or less!--showing up, I knew I had to try something different. 
And that's where my table design came in. 

This is what the table looks like when you get there. Just a table, a water pitcher, and two chairs. And for the past two years at Dragon Con, I left it like that. The only thing I added was a single copy of my book, propped up for display, and a Sharpie. And, to be honest, when I looked around me at DragonCon this year, the other authors were doing the exact same thing.
This year, I added more things:

And this year, by no coincidence, I also sold around 40 books. Here's a list:Sign in the front of the table. It is a braggy sign--I have the NY Times list, a Kirkus Star, and a pull quote. And it labels me as author--sometimes people don't always realize the person sitting behind the books is actually the author. I made it colorful and chatty (using a template from Staples), and the poster is laminated and reusable. People are curious about what you're doing at the table, but they also know that if they approach to find out, they might be pulled into a hard sales pitch they're not interested in. So I made the sign to tell them who I am and what I have to offer, so they can walk on by if they're not interested. And I know for a fact that the sign sold at least two books--two strangers walked by, saw the sign, and stopped because it was interesting to them. Book display set up. It's hard to see in this picture, but I actually have stacks of books behind each of the AtU books, and anyone walking by could see I had stock. The husband sat in the chair beside me, behind the books, with a bag of change and a card reader, so there was no doubt that books were on sale. Most people didn't bring their own books to sign; having the stock there and readily available (and visible) signaled to people that it was available.Freebies that I was very free with. I had post cards, pin buttons, and more sitting on the table, and one of the first things I said to anyone who approached was to take something for free. People are interested in free. It gives them something to talk about, something to have in their hands, and it takes the pressure off me to be the salesman. The husband handled the money and sold the books--I gave out the free stuff. Sign up forms. I used two: one for pre-orders of my new book, and one for sign ups to my newsletter. Even if people didn't want to buy things, they could stay up to date on future things, and several people took this opportunity. Listen. I put the table on the offensive--it did my introductions for me. Which let me be in the position where I could bypass my introduction and listen to my readers as they approached. It gave them the chance to set the stage for our conversation. It gave them the opportunity to talk first, which let me listen. Introverts are much better at listening than talking, and as a writer, I would much rather listen to my readers than talk at them.I've had a similar table set-up at the RT Convention, and I do feel that doing something like this, where your table can do the selling and talking for you, is the perfect solution for the introvert. What about you? What ideas do you have to help introverts reach readers?
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Published on September 03, 2014 08:58 • 77 views

September 2, 2014

WHEW. Well, despite being a touch under the weather (and thus not being able to hang out with people nearly as much as I wanted to), I survived DragonCon 2014, and it was AMAZING!

I'm going to be doing a separate post later about the advantages of doing DragonCon as an author (namely: book exposure and book sales) and some of what I've learned in the past. I'm still something of a newb; I've been three years in a row, but am still learning all the time from the true veterans who have DragonCon down to a science.

A science of FUN, I mean--DC isn't all work and no play! It's a lot of fun, full of amazing people and amazing cosplay and amazing stuff. But today I want to talk about a few serious points that really should be mentioned.

Here's some of what DragonCon did exceptionally well:

DCTV: DragonCon TV. In all the host hotels, there's a station called DCTV that plays panels and highlights from the con. Interspersed between shows are fun parody commercials, cute skits, music, and "bumps"--funny anecdotes similar to what's on Adult Swim on Cartoon Network. This year, I noticed two important commercials: one warning people that service animals are workers and you should treat people with service animals with respect, and two separate commercials about how cosplay is not consent. Good on you, DCTV, for making sure that your audience is reminded of these important facts. And speaking of consent, another good point for DragonCon: an established system to handle pervs. There were over 60,000 people at this year's con, and of course some of them were douche canoes. My husband noticed one guy hanging around at the top of a staircase, using his iPad to sneak down-the-shirt shots of girls. We went straight to a DragonCon volunteer and reported him. In seconds, she handled the situation like a pro. It was clear that (a) the staff and volunteers were trained to handle such a situation, (b) there was a system in place that they were all aware of, and (c) that behavior was not going to be tolerated. It's worth mentioning that this is no new thing--DragonCon is huge, but takes the safety of its attendees seriously. When I casually mentioned that a drunk guy was behaving inappropriately to a friend and me last year, DragonCon staff bent over backwards to help me (although we got rid of him ourselves by the time I mentioned it). 
This all makes it sound like there's a huge issue with creepers or something, which is not at all my intent--I just think that there's been a lot of flack in the past for Cons that didn't handle this sort of situation correctly, and I want to point out that DragonCon did. You can't control bad people from doing bad things, but you can control how you attempt to prevent it and how you respond when it happens, and DragonCon is clearly working to the good on that.

Tomorrow: a fun post!
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Published on September 02, 2014 11:38 • 56 views

August 28, 2014

Come see me during DragonCon! I shall attempt to be amusing, and my husband shall attempt to sell you one of my books, and I shall sign them with flourish, much like Gilderoy Lockhart.

Seriously, though, these panels all look amazing. Don't make me hangout at my signing tables by myself. And I will bribe you with cool swag to be my friend.

4:30 PM
Location tbd
SFWA Signing Table : hang out with me and get shizz signed

5:30 PM
Hyatt Hanover CE
Morally Ambiguous Characters of the Potterverse

Snape, Draco, Dumbledore, Percy, Xenophilius Lovegood…who’s your favorite (and least favorite) morally ambiguous character in Harry Potter?

Panelists: Susan Fichtelberg, Beth Revis, L. M. Davis, Meagan Spooner, Alexa Donne, Mel Pichetto, Jenn Clack

11:30 AM
Marriott A707
Writing Smart YA Sci Fi- Getting the Science Right!

Clones, viral outbreaks, spaceships, time travel… putting the “science” in science-fiction.

Panelists: Jonathan Maberry, Beth Revis, Kat Zhang, Meagan Spooner, Liz Lee Heinecke

2:30 PM
International Hall South - Marriott
Signing Session with Author Beth Revis
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Published on August 28, 2014 03:05 • 102 views

August 26, 2014

Writing is a lonely gig. It's very internal by nature; we spend all our time working inside our own heads. But while writing is lonely by very definition, publishing is not.

I always knew it took a village to make a book: editors, publishers, marketing, and so much more. But now that I'm self publishing a project, I thought it would be a little different. I still hired an editor and a book cover designer and formatter and I'm working with others to market, but it's a far different process.

Fortunately, there's one thing that stayed the same.

My agent.

An agent is among the very most important working relationships that an author can have. Writing is solitary, but the business side of writing doesn't have to be.

I'm still with my publisher, Razorbill Books, and my editor, who I worked with throughout the entire Across the Universe trilogy. I'm currently wrapping up a first draft of a novel I'll be sending to her. But I'm self publishing The Body Electric . Two extraordinarily different processes and projects. But the thing that's stayed the same?

My agent.

Having an agent--having the right agent--is one of the most important things an author can do. Self pub, tradition pub--it doesn't matter. An agent will help you to make these decisions, guide you to the path right for your career. An agent is a business partner whose sole concern is to make sure you make the right business decisions. And more than that--an agent (at at least my agent) is my friend.

There are a lot of things up in the air about publishing these days. There are a lot of paths. Don't leave without your guide.

My agent, Merrilee Heifetz of Writers House, is one of the best in the business, and I know with absolute, 100% certainty, that I would have never had any success at all without her help.

Self publication implies "self." Alone. Solitary. But the success of The Body Electric has been anything but.
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Published on August 26, 2014 07:57 • 95 views

August 12, 2014

Picture by Mariamichelle, used under Creative Commons. Link
Thank you so much to everyone who entered my contest to guess the location of the setting of The Body Electric! The response was awesome and it was so cool to see you guesses--especially as so many of you were correct!

Without further ado, the correct location of the setting for The Body Electric is...

For the purposes of the contest, I accepted Malta, Gozo, or any Maltese/Gozan city--as long as you were anywhere on the map above, I counted it as an entry :) 
So, from all the winning guesses, the winning entry is...
I've contacted the winner directly--and if you didn't win, stick around. I'll have another contest up soon!
Thanks again for playing, everyone!
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Published on August 12, 2014 12:19 • 152 views

August 5, 2014

I've been hinting at this rather a lot, but The Body Electric does not take place in fact, it takes place in a part of the world that is rarely written about. And if you figure out the location, you could win a signed, limited edition copy of the book before it's released!
All you have to do is guess the location. I've been leaving lots of clues. 
You can read the first chapter of the book here at Wattpad--there are two major clues as to the setting of the book there.Read the extra content I have on my tumblr site--there are definitely clues hidden there.And, I have a collection of pics for you to take your guesses from. I happened to visit this country when I was in college, and all of these pics were taken by my little non-digital camera before the trip.


And here's one of the best pictures of me ever in the world. This is me, standing next to a knight in shining a brown velvet mock turtleneck. Man, I knew how to dress.

Once you know what country the story takes place in--or have a pretty good guess--ENTER HERE or by the form below for a chance to win a signed, limited edition of the novel. Only 350 copies of this limited edition will be made, and one person who enters here will get one--early.

Tweeting, Facebooking, Tumblring and otherwise sharing the contest and/or subscribing to my newsletter gets you extra entries! I may have to make up an additional prize for whoever best mocks that mock turtleneck. I mean honestly.

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Published on August 05, 2014 08:42 • 176 views

July 5, 2014

Subscribers to my newsletter were the first to hear: I've got a new book coming!

And the good news is that it's coming out sooner rather than later. This is a book I wrote between contracted books, and it's going to be self-published. I don't know exactly when it'll be on sale, but it'll be before the end of the year. There will be both print and e-editions available.

This book came from a lot of things I love, and a lot of questions. What makes people, people? Where does one draw the line of humanity? And...what was happening on Earth while Amy and Elder were space?

And that's where THE BODY ELECTRIC came from. Here's what the story's about:

Blade Runner meets Total Recall in this exciting new sci fi adventure!

Ella Shepherd can slip into other people’s minds. Using technology invented by her parents, Ella has the ability to experience–and influence–the memories of others. She’s used this ability to help ensure the safety of the world from a dangerous terrorist group, but not all is as it seems…because someone’s been inside Ella’s head, too.

Want to meet Ella and Jack, the two main characters?

Remember the brilliant illustrations of Amy and Elder that Christine Tyler did for me? She also did two more--one for each of the characters in the new book.

I'll be revealing the full illustrations soon...when I debut my brand-new website. Just as with the illustrations of Amy and Elder, there are a TON of clues hidden in the images about the story and the characters. And personally? Ella's my favorite illustration of the whole bunch. Just you wait until you see the way they look in a larger format!

Five Fun Facts about The Body Electric

It does not take place in America.Ella Shepherd's name comes from the title of my favorite Philip K. Dick (and her father's name is Philip in homage to him).Amy and Elder are not in this book, but if you look closely, you'll see some hints of their story.Jack was named after Captain Jack Harkness on Doctor Who.This book is a stand-alone--there are no sequels or cliffhangers. You'll get the whole story in this book.
You can add the book to your GoodReads here.
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Published on July 05, 2014 11:42 • 498 views

June 30, 2014

Eep! I'm running late in publishing my newsletter, which usually comes out on the first of every month. So, to apologize for being late and to encourage new people to sign up, I'm holding a quick, 48-hour giveaway!

A little about the newsletter: It's not spam! It contains links to fun articles across the internet on science, art, and more, plus upcoming news, book news, etc. Things tend to get revealed first in the newsletter. Sign up here!

To enter: Just sign up for my newsletter--by July 2 at 11:50pm. One subscriber of the newsletter will get all six books, signed by the author, shipped straight to their door. Simple as that!

Gilded by Christina Farley
Fever by Lauren DeStefanoSalvage by Alexa Duncan
Origin by Jessica Khoury
These Broken Stars by Amie Kaufman and Meagan Spooner
Soothe the Savage Beast Anthology by Silence in the Library Publishing

Subscribe to our mailing list* indicates requiredEmail Address *

First Name

Email Format

If you're under 18, please make sure that you have parental permission to sign up for the newsletter. If you can't sign up for the newsletter, contact me for an alternate entry.

*Keen-eyed observers will notice that this is the same prize pack I used for a recent giveaway. After trying to contact three different winners over nearly two months, I decided to just roll over the prize into a new giveaway, per my already established giveaway policy. 
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Published on June 30, 2014 13:00 • 156 views

June 21, 2014

I have four events all scheduled in the near-ish future, and I hope I can see you at at least one!

Who: Me, Megan Shepherd, Jessica Khoury, and Meagan Spooner
What: Panel and Book Signing
Where: Highland Books in Brevard, NC
When: JUNE 28 at 1pm
More info: Here

I am so stoked about this one--I love any excuse to go even further into the mountain of NC, and this bookstore seems absolutely charming and amazing. Also? My fellow panelists are charming and amazing, and I can't wait talk about books and writing with them!

Who: Me, Jessica Khoury, Meagan Spooner, and Alexa Duncan
What: "Spark a Reaction--the Spark Behind the Story" YA book talk panel for the Cleveland County Library System's summer reading program
Where: Don Gibson Theatre in Shelby, NC
When: JULY 24 at 2pm
More info: Here

I am so happy to return to the county library system where I used to work as a school teacher. We're going to be a part of the summer reading program to talk to kids about reading, writing, and so much more! The event is open to everyone, so please come by!

Who: Me, Ann Aguirre, Alexa Duncan, Meagan Spooner
What: Mortal Danger Book Launch & Tour Stop
Where: Malaprops in Asheville, NC
When: AUGUST 5 at 7pm
More info: About the tour; about this event

GUYS. GUYS. Have you seen Ann's latest book, Mortal Danger? IT LOOKS SO GOOD GUYS. I can't wait to read it--and luckily for me, her very first stop in her book tour is on her launch day, at Malaprops! 

You can read more about Mortal Danger here, but it's a book about revenge, devil's deals, beautiful people, a private academy, bullies, and trust. 

Who: Me, Jessica Brody, Jessica Khoury, Megan Shepherd
What: Girls Gone Sci Fi Tour Stop
Where: Fiction Addiction in Greenville, SC
When: AUGUST 7 at 7pm
More info: Here

If you've never been to a Girls Gone Sci Fi stop, you absolutely must check it out. These girls have organized the perfect formula for fun events, with games, prizes, hilarious stories and q&a. This promises to be a lot of fun, and Greenville is a beautiful city with an idyllic downtown, so make sure you stop by!
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Published on June 21, 2014 05:49 • 120 views