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Viewing: Blog Posts Tagged with: Epicness, Most Recent at Top [Help]
Results 1 - 25 of 31
1. The Sky is Officially Falling!!!

Wow--I can't believe this day is finally here!!!

I mean, I knew it was coming. I watched the numbers on my countdown widget slowly tick down to today. And I just did this five months ago with KEEPER, so you'd think I'd be more prepared for the nervous/excited/giddy/overwhelmed feeling that comes with launching a book into the world. But LET THE SKY FALL is ... special.

This was my "just for me" book. A project I started simply because I needed to fall back in love with writing. I had no plans to publish it. I didn't even tell anyone I was writing it. But the story kept growing, and the characters were so real, and the world became so vivid that I eventually reached the point where I felt like I HAD to share it--and amazingly enough, my agent and editor agreed.

Fast-forward to today, and suddenly the book I initially wrote "just for me" is now no longer mine.

That's the beautiful, magical, terrifying thing about this process. Once a book launches into the world it no longer belongs to the author. We had our time to play and explore and dream. Now it's time to hand it over to you. So... *sniffles* ... here you go...

I hope you love Vane and Audra as much as I do. And I hope their story lives up to the amazing support you all have given it.

There's no possible way to express my gratitude for everyone who's blogged / tweeted / tumbled / pinned / facebooked about their excitement for this book. Nor will I EVER be able to properly thank my amazing publisher, Simon Pulse, who have not only given it the most gorgeous cover ever (seriously, holy hotness, Batman!) but who have given so much love and energy to this project.

And to any of you who buy/read, or tell your friends that they need to buy/read, well... imagine this is me, hugging you:

A book is nothing without readers. Thank you so much for giving this story life! And if you're still on the fence about buying/reading, well... I give you THE PUPPY DOG EYES:

Also: if you're in SoCal, PLEASE come hang out tonight at the Launch Party. I will have prizes! And exclusive swag necklaces! And DESSERTS! 7pm at Mysterious Galaxy Books, San Diego. Full event details HERE.

28 Comments on The Sky is Officially Falling!!!, last added: 3/8/2013
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2. A Keepsake for your KEEPER! (and yes, there's a giveaway!)

Now that my launch parties/pre-order campaigns are over, I've been getting emails from some of you wondering if there's still a way to get your hands on signed copies of KEEPER. And the good news is, there is!

Mrs. Nelsons Toys and Books, one of my favorite Indie Bookstores, had me sign a BUNCH of books when I stopped by last week, and you can order them online by clicking HERE. (Just make sure you specify that you want a SIGNED COPY in the notes. I'm pretty sure I've signed every copy in their store, but just in case, it's good to be clear.)

BUT, I also know that some of you lovely souls already bought my book from your favorite place. Or maybe you haven't yet, but you're going to! Either way, I know some of you might wish there were a way to have that copy signed.

Sadly, I can't teleport to you to personally sign it. But I actually have something better, since you get my signature AND I keep my shenanigans safely in California: SHINY SIGNED BOOKPLATES--which I can personalize and everything!!!!

Aren't they pretty? (and this picture really doesn't do them justice)

And of course I'm giving some away!!!

I haven't decided how many, since it depends on how many people enter. But I will try to pick as many as I can. And because I want to make this as easy as possible for you, I've created a handy dandy form. That way if you win I'll already have your address and can ship it off straight away without the additional: waiting-for-you-to-email-me-your-address step. I'm also not going to require that you send me a receipt or any sort of proof of purchase or anything, since I can't really imagine why you'd want a signed KEEPER bookplate if you have no copy of KEEPER to put it in. So I think we can just go on the honor system here.

To enter, fill out the form below by 11:59 pm pacific on Sunday, October 14th. I'll choose as many winners as I can and send off their bookplates the following week. International entries welcome!

And thank you guys so much for all the love and support for KEEPER. I can't tell me how much it means to know you're reading something I wrote. I just... I can't even... *sniff*

Also, I promise I will have launch party pictures and updates as soon as I get my act together!!

Okay, here's the form. Don't forget to fill it out!

17 Comments on A Keepsake for your KEEPER! (and yes, there's a giveaway!), last added: 10/26/2012
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3. News! Photos! Updates! Oh my!

Wow, I am SO BEHIND on updating you guys about all the STUFF and THINGS that have turned the last few months / weeks / days (who can tell anymore--it all feels like one big never-ending blur--kind of like this sentence!) into a whirlwind of AIYEE!!!!!!!!

(and warning, there will be a lot of exclamation marks in this post!)

First up: LOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOK!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

This is me, at the SIBA Trade show in Naples, Florida last week, signing one of the most beautiful things I have ever seen--FINISHED COPIES OF KEEPER OF THE LOST CITIES!!!!!!!!!!!! 

I still don't really know how to process it. I had no idea that's what I'd be doing there, and then I got to the signing and they were unpacking all these beautiful, shiny hardcovers and it was like EXCUSE ME WHILE I HAVE A MOMENT HERE, PEOPLE! It's amazing I didn't cry! (and yeah, I totally did later in my hotel room when I got to really page through one)

While I was there I also got to do a super fun panel with Adam-Troy Castro, Ellis Weiner, and Irene Latham:

(Huge thanks to Irene for taking the picture, which I totally stole from her awesome blog)

AND, I got to have one of those, "wow--this two series at once thing is REAL" moments when I had to change badges to say "Shannon Messenger: Let the Sky Fall" and sign these:

*stares at the stack of ARCs, trying not to worry about people hating them...*

I've also been really bad about announcing the events I have coming up, so let's fix that right now! I have two events this weekend that I'm SUPER excited about:

Bridge to Books
September 15th, 10:30am
McKinley School, 325 S. Oak Knoll Ave., Pasadena, CA 91101
A middle grade event with Lisa McMann, Margaret Peterson Haddix, and Helen Stringer. Admission is free and books will be available to purchase on site from Once Upon a Time Bookstore. But you will need to register online. Info can be found at bridgetobooks.org.

SCIBA Children's Books and Literacy Brunch

September 16, 10:30 am
Hilton San Diego/Del Mar
I'm so honored to be a speaker, along with the amazing Jenny Han & Siobhan Vivian and Diane Lang. Full event details can be found HERE.

I've also updated my Appearances page, so you can find all the details about all the other things I have coming up HERE.

Another thing I've been TOTALLY remiss about is revealing EXCITING FOREIGN THINGS! 

In case you can't read that, the quick sum-up is: Germany, Spain, Italy, and Brazil! I seriously don't know how to wrap my head around the fact that my books are going to be published in languages I can't understand, but I am so honored and humbled and grateful at the warm welcome my characters have gotten. And should I have any more news on that front I promise to keep you guys posted.

Hm... I'm pretty sure that catches you up--and even *I'M* sick of me and all my giddiness by now--so I think that's enough for today.

But I will be revealing something else--something I am SO INSANELY EXCITED ABOUT on Friday so check back for that. And thank you for reading all of this and sharing in my excitement.

In fact I want to take a second to thank all of you for your amazing support and patience with me. I know I've been a bad blogger, and I know I've gotten really bad about replying to comments and emails and lost touch with so many of you. But I promise I'm still here and I'm still reading everything you guys say and I am hoping to get better about some of those things soon because I really miss interacting with you guys. In the meantime, THANK YOU for understanding and supporting me and generally just being there as I try to keep my head straight through all of this crazy chaos. (also: come hang with me on Twitter--that's the one place I'm pretty good about staying current with my replies).

I knew this year was going to be an adventure and I'm trying to keep up with it all as best as I can. But I really appreciate you all sticking by me as I muddle through. I know I'm not doing it all perfectly, but I'm trying my best. And I could not do this without you guys!

((BLOG HUG!!!!!!))

21 Comments on News! Photos! Updates! Oh my!, last added: 9/14/2012
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4. Limited Edition KEEPER Swag Packs for an Awesome Cause!!!

If you caught my post on Wed (and managed to wade through all the exclamation marks) you know I promised something exciting today--and I am a girl of my word!!!!!!

(FYI: if you can't already tell, this post will also be riddled with exclamation marks. 
You've been warned.)

But it's actually really funny that I'm so excited about this post. Honestly, a few months ago this was something I'd been dreading.

See ... the thing about being an author is, sooner or later you have to ask people to buy your book. And I know for some people that's an easy and natural thing to say. But for me? It feels so AWKWARD. Even though I know that you know that I know that not all of you will be able to buy or want to buy my books--which is TOTALLY fine, by the way--it still felt like ... really? Do I REALLY have to talk about this?

But it is kinda important, since, yanno, if no one buys my book that would not be a good thing...

So I'd been stressing. And panicking. And then I realized that a better way to handle it was to find a way to get excited about it. So I brainstormed and turned to friends for ideas and together we came up with something that I am seriously SO SUPER THRILLED to share with you!!!!!!!!

(*insert herald trumpet blast*)

I've teamed up with the amazing people at Changing Hands Bookstore and the awesome organization Kids Need To Read to put together a very special pre-order offer!!!!!!

Between now and October 5th, if you order a copy of KEEPER OF THE LOST CITIES from Changing Hands you'll get this amazing package:


*Four limited edition 4x6 art prints, hand signed and numbered (and yes, that is my own character concept art on there)

*Four "Team" stickers 

*One Mallowmelt recipe (arguably the sweetest, stickiest, gooiest dessert ever invented)

BUT WAIT--THERE'S MORE!!! (Hee--I love saying that!) And this is the part I'm MOST excited about.

For every copy of KEEPER OF THE LOST CITIES purchased at Changing Hands between now and October 5th, a copy will also be donated to Kids Need to Read (up to 150 books)!!!!!!!!  

(And if you don't know Kids Need to Read you should check them out. They're an amazing organization that gets books in the hands of kids and schools who wouldn't be able to afford them otherwise. I am so honored to have KEEPER be distributed by them.)

So just to recap, if you pre-order through Changing Hands, you'll get a signed book, exclusive swag, AND you'll put a book in the hands of an awesome kid reader who needs it!!!! I'm pretty sure that's what we call a Win - WIN situation.

If you would like to order your copy, you'll want to call Changing Hands at 480-730-0205. The lovely people will there will be able to get everything taken care of. And if you're wondering about price, I'm told it will be: $16.99 plus $6.50 for shipping. (Sales tax may apply, and yes they can give you a combined shipping rate if you order more than one.)  They will also have online ordering available, but web things take a wee bit longer to set up, so that won't be up and running until early next week--Tuesday morning at the latest. But if you want to wait for that you would go HERE next week.

Of course if you have a favorite bookseller or website you'd prefer to order through you are welcome to. I am thrilled and honored if you buy my book ANYWHERE. But I'm very excited to offer this and I really hope we can get some books to Kids Need to Read. Thank you guys in advance for any support you give!

(And again, I will still adore you if you don't buy it. Don't worry, I won't be paying attention to who does and does not buy. I love you ALL for stopping by my blog no matter what. GROUP HUG)

37 Comments on Limited Edition KEEPER Swag Packs for an Awesome Cause!!!, last added: 10/6/2012
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5. It just got real

There have been a lot of "wow, this is getting real" moments over the last few months, between BEA and ALA and Comic Con and SIBA (wow--no wonder I'm so tired!). But last weekend topped them all.

I did two amazing events, both so surreal and impossible to wrap my head around that I really don't know how to describe them. So I'm going to let the pictures do most of the speaking for me:

This is me with Margaret Peterson Haddix, Lisa McMann, and Helen Stringer at a Pasadena School Library for a Bridge to Books event. 



I can't tell you how amazing it was sitting next to Lisa McMann on an author panel after she's been such a huge inspiration and support to me. Which is why I couldn't resist doing a little gushing about her during my presentation:

Side note: looking through the other photos from this event has made me realize wow, I make rather interesting faces when I speak publicly. Lots of gestures too. For example:

If you're wondering, I have NO idea what I was talking about--or what that gesture is supposed to mean.... 

Anyway...since KEEPER isn't technically out yet, I wasn't able to sign copies. But I did sell pre-orders--which amazingly enough, people bought! And I gave away two early hardcovers

And signed them to the winners...

Along with a few ARCs people brought...

And despite how hot it was in there (dear A/C: I missed you. Please don't ever leave me again!) It was one of the most amazing days ever. Huge thanks to all the event organizers for inviting me, and my awesome panelists for treating me like I belonged.

(also, huge thanks to Katie Ferguson, who took all of the above photos)

I thought nothing could top Saturday's event. But... there was still Sunday. 

Sunday I had the honor of speaking at the SCIBA Children's Literacy Brunch--an event I've been going to for years as a slightly-out-of-place aspiring author. So to be on the other side, as a speaker, signing copies of my book and giving them to people who've been cheering me on long before I deserved their support, was ... well ... let's just say it's a miracle I made it through my presentation without crying.

I wish I had better pictures to show you, but so far I haven't been able to track many down. I did find this one of me during my presentation (again with the strange faces!)

(and in case you're wondering, that's me holding up what I lovingly call "The Email Of Doom", aka the revision letter my agent sent me during the hellish revision process)

And this is me with the lovely and talented Salina Yoon, who was my signing table buddy:

If I track down any others I promise I'll share them. In the meantime, if you were one of the people who took the time to come to either of these events, THANK YOU SO MUCH! It was so great to meet you, and you really know how to make a girl feel welcome. 

I tell ya, I have an AWESOME job. It's exhausting and sweaty and apparently causes me to contort my face into weird positions and flail my arms around. But it really is a dream come true.

So, that was MY weekend. How was yours?

21 Comments on It just got real, last added: 10/6/2012
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6. It's HERE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I've had more than a year to plan this post and find some meaningful, articulate way to express how it feels to watch my very first book launch into the world. But... I'm not sure the words exist. Either that or my brain is just far too loopy from all the craziness surrounding release.

Seriously though, it's a bizarre mix of emotions.

There's THE HAPPY that comes with seeing my book on store shelves, surrounded by so many other amazing books that I love and admire. There's THE HOPE that it will find its way into readers hands and hearts. And of course there's THE FEAR, which I am trying not to focus on.

But I think more than anything, there's THE GRATITUDE.

Not only does this book exist because of the help and guidance of MANY people (the KEEPER acknowledgements section is epic length!). But it also wouldn't exist without all of you. This blog was where the whole "trying to get published" thing became real. In fact, you guys were some of the first people who knew I'd gone back to writing. I met my Crit Partners here. And all of you have cheered me on through all the crazy ups and downs of this journey and kept me going.

I will never be able to thank you enough for all that you've done (and will do) to support me and my writing. So I will give you the only thing I can. KEEPER isn't *mine* anymore. From today on it's yours. And I really, REALLY hope you enjoy!

(and uh.... feel free to NOT tell me if you don't) :)


Since I can't hug all of you, I will hug the only thing I can!

Oh, and if you would like to read the first three chapters of KEEPER OF THE LOST CITIES, you can do so HERE. There's also still time to pre-order the signed copies with the special swag and help support Kids Need to read by going HERE. And if you live in SoCal I hope I will be at the Oceanside B&N at 6:30 tonight for the Launch Party. There will be prizes and cupcakes and rambling--and I will probably get a bit emotional. Hope to see you there!

44 Comments on It's HERE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!, last added: 10/9/2012
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7. On finishing...

For those of you who didn't see all my squealing and celebrating on Facebook and Twitter yesterday, I finally typed my two favorite words in Keeper book 2:

The end.
(Yes, I totally cried. Picture the end of Romancing the Stone)

Finishing a book is always an emotional experience--for me at least. This is my third time getting to that point, and once again I had that same sense of: I CAN'T BELIEVE I ACTUALLY DID THIS!!!! But this time was especially overwhelming.

Maybe it's because I had to push so hard to get there this time--cranking through a marathon writing weekend (almost 20,000 words in 3 days) and finally finishing after pulling an all-nighter.

Maybe it's because this is my first time writing a draft under contract--and my first sequel--and there was a whole other set of worries and stresses and complications that came with that.

Mostly, I think it's because this book kicked my butt. I know I've said that before, but I don't know if you guys really realize how much this story has broken my brain. It was a serious, serious struggle to get here and there were several times along the way where I worried it wouldn't happen.

So to get to this point and realize that I CAN do this--even when I have to work such long hours, under the extra pressure of a contract and a sequel, with a plot that refused to go the way I thought it needed to go and wouldn't cooperate until I surrendered--is an incredible, incredible thing.

It's NOT perfect. (oh, if you only knew how much work I still have ahead of me before I turn it into my editor next week.) But I did it.

I crossed that first and most important hurdle, and now it's all about polishing and refining (and fine, filling in the spots that say, "scene needed here"). And now that the bones are in place, *hopefully* the rest will go smoother. I guess we'll see as the week progresses.

In the meantime I happily say: take that, Book 2. I have officially ended you! *fist pump*

20 Comments on On finishing..., last added: 5/1/2012
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8. DONE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


In case you missed all my FB/Twitter celebrating, as of about noon yesterday Book 2 is now officially my editor's inbox!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Yes--happy dancing was done. 
Along with a few happy tears. 
It was a long, long, longlonglong road getting here, with so many twists and turns and ups and downs--plus some seriously INSANE hours. And the work has really only just begun since I have a feeling my editorial letter is going to be... intense. 


Huge impossible-feeling hurdle crossed!!!!!!

And I'd planned to write a much more meaningful post on some of the challenges/things I've learned but...

So... I'm giving my brain a chance to recover. Catch up on a few things. MAYBE even take a Shannon day or two. And THEN I will put together a proper post for you guys.

In the meantime, I hope everyone is having a lovely, wonderful week!

12 Comments on DONE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!, last added: 5/10/2012
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Okay, I'll confess--this post is both exciting AND terrifying. I've done a zillion ARC giveaways on my blog--but I've never done one for MY book!  There's a surreal sort of giddy panic that goes along with that!

I mean ... the winners will be able to READ MY BOOK!!!!! I don't even know how to wrap my head around that!

But Shannon-Panicking aside, I've been promising an Epic ARC contest for a while and you guys have been wonderfully patient with me. So it's time to be a girl of my word. And I promised the contest would be EPIC, so I'm giving away not one--not two--but THREE ARCs of KEEPER OF THE LOST CITIES.

Aren't they PRETTY?

I'll even sign and doodle in them if you want--'cause, yanno, that'll make them worth... well... nothing. BUT YOU CAN PRETEND THEY'RE WORTH SOMETHING. ;)

Here's how this works:

If you would like to enter, leave a comment on this post by 11:59 pm pacific time on Friday May 31st. I'll draw THREE random winners and post their names on Saturday, June 1st. Winners will then have one week to contact me, and if I haven't heard from them by Saturday, June 8th I'll pick replacement winners. International entries welcome.

(And sorry, I won't be able to email the winners to let them know they won. Not only do I not have time to do that anymore, but I'll be out of town for BEA that week and with limited access to internet. So I *highly* recommend you follow my blog in some way/form so that you won't miss the "winners" post and lose your prize--but its up to you! That's not a requirement!)

That's it--that's all you have to do. I wanted to make the contest simple and easy without a lot of hoop jumping and plastering my cover all over avatars and whatnot (though I'm certainly not going to stop you from doing that) ;)

HOWEVER, I realize that some of you might be fairly excited about this prize (and if you are, have I told you lately that I love you?). In which case those people *might* want a way to get some extra entries and improve their chances. SO, I'll give one extra entry for any of the following:

+ 1 if you add KEEPER OF THE LOST CITIES to your Goodreads lists
+ 1 if you add LET THE SKY FALL to your Goodreads lists
(poor LTSF gets sad when KEEPER gets all the attention, so you'd make it very happy)
+ 1 if you "like" KEEPER OF THE LOST CITIES on Facebook
+ if you "like" my new Shannon Messenger Author page on Facebook 
(even though that feels like a weird thing to ask people to do. Like me! Like me! *sigh*)
+ 1 if you tweet a link to this contest
+ 1 if you post a link on Facebook about this contest

136 Comments on FINALLY--A KEEPER OF THE LOST CITIES ARC CONTEST!!!, last added: 5/25/2012
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So... Blogger--in ALL of it's awesomeness--decided to make my post for this magically disappear. (*grumbles inappropriate words*) BUT DON'T WORRY!!!! It does have a record of all of your comments and I'll be pasting all of them in as soon as this post goest live. Basically I'm rebuilding what I lost so everything will be okay! 

But if you're worried, check back in about an hour and make sure your entry is there--and if not, enter again. SORRY!

**UPDATE**All comments SHOULD be in there now (and I was VERY careful to enter them in the same order.) So we should be back to where we started before blogger decided to be a pain. If you don't see yours, enter again. And if you haven't entered yet, new entries are totally still welcome!**

Okay, I'll confess--this post is both exciting AND terrifying. I've done a zillion ARC giveaways on my blog--but I've never done one for MY book!  There's a surreal sort of giddy panic that goes along with that!

I mean ... the winners will be able to READ MY BOOK!!!!! I don't even know how to wrap my head around that!

But Shannon-Panicking aside, I've been promising an Epic ARC contest for a while and you guys have been wonderfully patient with me. So it's time to be a girl of my word. And I promised the contest would be EPIC, so I'm giving away not one--not two--but THREE ARCs of KEEPER OF THE LOST CITIES.

Aren't they PRETTY?

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11. Where's Shannon: The BEA Edition!

Pretty sure you guys know this by now, but if you need me, I'm not here. 

I'M IN NEW YORK FOR BEA!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

(Hee. Can you tell I'm EXCITED????)

Not only have I never been to NY before, but thanks to my amazing publicity team at S&S I have a CRAZY-awesome schedule. If any of you are going to be there, here's some of the places where you can find me:
Sunday 6/3: I'll be on a panel with Lenore Appelhans, Jenny Han, Tonya Hurley, Carmen Rodrigues, and Siobhan Vivian at the S&S Teen Blogger party, talking about LET THE SKY FALL, among other things. (this event is invitation only, so you know who you are if you're going). 
Monday, 6/4, 5:00 pm NY Grand Central Library: I'll be on a panel with fellow middle grade authors Brandon Mull, John Stephens, and Rebecca Stead. (yeah, I'm as amazed as you.) Event information is HERE
Tuesday, June 5th, 10:30 am - 11:00 am: I'll be signing ARCs of KEEPER OF THE LOST CITIES in the Javits autographing area, booth 8. You can find details on that HERE.  
Tuesday, June 5th, 3:00 pm - 5:00 pm: The Apocalypsises: Meet the authors of 2012's Must Reads.  Javits Center: Room 1E02/1E03. Details on who will be there and why you want to stop by can be found HERE.   
Wednesday, June 6th, 5:00 pm - 8:00 pm: ABFFE's (Mostly) Silent Children's Art Auction. Details are HERE.
Thursday June 7th from 11am - 11:30 am: I'll be on a panel with Sharon Creech, Lauren Oliver, and Judith Viorst discussing "Writing Strong Female Characters in Middle Grade Fiction" in the Javits on the Uptown Stage. More details can be found  9 Comments on Where's Shannon: The BEA Edition!, last added: 6/4/2012
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12. BEA Shannon Style!

It's highly possible that I'm the last person in the blogosphere to do a BEA recap--but even a few days later I'm still trying to process the absolutely amazing experience.

I wish I had taken more pictures, but thanks to my hectic schedule I didn't have a lot of time. So here's a few of my favorites--some of which I've shamelessly stolen from Twitter/FB (so if one of these was taken by you, THANK YOU!), and I'm posting them in order, so you can sort of feel like you're reliving it all with me (and warning, I did a LOT, so this will be a LONG post! Brace yourself).

After an awesome afternoon of real NY pizza (SO GOOD) and a matinee of NEWSIES (EVEN BETTER) I headed to the Hudson Terrace for the S&S Teen Blogger Preview, a private YA-related event featuring me, Lenore Appelhans, Jenny Han, Tonya Hurley, Carmen Rodrigues, and Siobhan Vivian--all of whom were every bit as lovely, funny, and amazing as you'd expect them to be.

I wish we'd taken a group shot of all of us, but instead all I have is photos of me during my interview time:

Jenny asked the BEST questions and made the event so much fun--even if I did totally mishear her at one point and answer that I wanted to marry Nagini (the evil snake from Harry Potter) (yeah... don't ask--it was a total Shannonfail).

I've been to dozens and dozens of these kind of events, so it was SO SURREAL to be on the "author" side of the experience, waiting in the green room, being up on stage--oh, and this:

The GORGEOUS display S&S did behind the bar with all of our covers. I still have a hard time believing that one of those is MY COVER for MY BOOK with MY NAME. It's kind of amazing I didn't jump over the bar and hug it.

S&S also gave out goody bags with all of our ARCs, plus the coolest LET THE SKY FALL swag EVER:

It's a battery powered fan WITH A WIND PUN ON THE LABEL!!!! I <3 S&S so much.

The day started cold and rainy, so I spent the morning racing to Macys to find tights to go with my dress so I wouldn't freeze that night. Then it was off to the S&S Building to meet with Liesa Abrams, my editor--and to meet even

34 Comments on BEA Shannon Style!, last added: 6/14/2012
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13. ALA--Shannon Style (sorta)

Okay, so this will NOT be as awesome as my BEA recap, partially because my brain is still SUPER exhausted from the chaos of ALA, but mostly because I um... forgot to take pictures of almost everything. So... yeah. SORRY.


So... there's that. :)

(Somehow I'm betting you find that slightly less exciting than I do...)

Anyway, I keep trying to figure out how to sum up ALA--since the pictures I'm about to show you most definitely will NOT do that for me. But I'm struggling a bit.

In some ways it was much more relaxed than BEA, since I didn't have to get on a plane or switch time zones or do scary panels where all eyes were on me, expecting me to sound smart. Mostly I just hung out with friends:

With my crit partner Sara McClung and blogger extraordinaire Sasha

Walked around the booths seeing publishing friends, chatting with librarians, and snatching up amazing ARCs to read:

(a VERY small sampling. I have lots more--and yes, that definitely means I have some awesome giveaways coming up, both on the blog and on Twitter)

And went to various mixers/meet-ups:

With Kiersten White and the adorable Sophia Chang, and the YALSA Mix and Mingle.

S&S did some KEEPER promo (you already saw the display in the booth) and gave out another huge tower of ARCs--which was gone in 15 minutes. (I still don't know how to wrap my head around that) So sorry to those of you who'd been hoping to get one and didn't. There will still be some given away at Comic Con--and S&S still has some mailings to do (and I have some contests up my sleeve) so all hope is not lost! And THANK YOU for your amazing support and enthusiasm. You make me feel way cooler than I deserve to feel (especially those of you who stopped me at the booth and had me sign your ARCs. That was too surreal for words). 

And... that's pretty much it. I mean, I did LOTS more fun things and hung out with lots more amazing people--and went to the awesome S&S party on Saturday n

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14. Done!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Sorry I've been such a neglectful blogger lately. I've been under a crazy insane KEEPER 2 deadline (that book is a BEAST, people. Seriously, hardest thing I've ever written)

But last night, after a marathon 16-hour proofreading session (okay, fine, there was a 1/2 hour twitter shenanigan break in there) I reached that point where I'd officially done everything I could think of and it was time to send it off to my amazing editor. Which means I MADE MY DEADLINE!!!!

It was down to the wire (my deadline is actually today--SHE IS READING IT AS WE SPEAK) and I have no idea how many more rounds of revision I have left (like I said, hardest book I've ever written). But I did it. I made it. I'M DONE! For now.

So hopefully that means things will get a little more regular around here again. I have a ton of posts percolating and some contests and other awesome things. And if you've been waiting for an email (or a blog interview) from me I might actually get around to doing that. Oh, and then there's that whole crazy WRITEONCON THING happening next week (OMG how are we already to that point???) So lots of things going on. Can't wait!

In the meantime, I just wanted to thank you all for bearing with my bad blogging ways. I still have LOTS of deadlines ahead of me, so I'm sure things will get hectic again. But it's so great having your support and patience. THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU.

And now if you'll excuse me, I'm going to TRY and actually get some sleep. Maybe. At least a couple hours. :)


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It’s funny. I have dreamed of writing this post, pretty much every day for three years (THREE YEARS!) as I researched and plotted and wrote and revised my book, and revised again, and then revised a million more times. 

And I’ve drafted this post dozens and dozens of times over the last five months (FIVE MONTHS!) as I’ve sat silently on the news, waiting for the green light to announce. (hardest secret to keep, EVER!)

But now that the moment is finally here, I’ve come to realize that some things are so overwhelming and amazing and incredible and surreal, there just aren’t the right words—even for a writer.

So I’m going to let this do the announcing for me:

S&S Takes Messenger’s Middle-Grade Debut

Keeping up with the high-priced deals, Liesa Abrams, executive editor at Simon & Schuster, took North American rights to three books, in a six-figure pre-empt, by newcomer Shannon Messenger. Laura Rennert at Andrea Brown Literary brokered the deal for the middle-grade fantasy series, and the first book, Keeper of the Lost Cities, is scheduled for fall 2012. In Cities, a 12-year-old girl who can read minds, and is something of a social outcast, discovers the reason she has her abilities when she meets a mysterious boy. Rennert elaborated: “She’s never felt at home because she isn’t. There are secrets buried deep in her memory, secrets about her true identity and why she was hidden among humans, that others desperately want and would even kill for.” Messenger is in her 20s and is one of the founders of the free, online writer’s conference, WriteOnCon.

(from Publisher's Weekly. The full link is HERE)

So... yeah. Crazy, awesome, amazing, emotional, almost-impossible-to-wrap-my-head-around news. I thought I'd gotten used to it these last few months but seeing it like that? A real announcement with my name and my book's name? *eyes get misty* I don't even know what to say.

Except this: THANK YOU. For following me on this crazy journey, cheering me on, and supporting me every step of the way. It has been a long, stressful, hectic road (which is really only just beginning--eek!) and I truly, truly believe I wouldn’t have made it to this point without you guys.

And now that it’s FINALLY out in the open, I have so many things to tell you about--like meeting my amazing editor over the summer and the things I've learned from working on real Edits (yes--I've already gotten them. In fact, I'm done with them!) plus some more details about my book—WHICH I CAN FINALLY TALK ABOUT!!!!

I also have an epic contest planned, which I really think you guys are going to love. So make sure you check back--I will have that up and running as soon as I come out of this shocked/amazed stupor I'm in at the moment. *stares at name in print* *stares some more.*

And ... okay, I have to say it at least once (and then I will TRY to restrain myself);
166 Comments on FINALLY--I CAN SHARE MY SECRET NEWS!!!, last added: 10/13/2011
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16. Just when I think this week can't get any cooler...

I keep waiting for all of this to feel less surreal (and to stop talking about it CONSTANTLY and probably driving you all crazy!) but... stuff keeps happening that is just so overwhelming it's like... THIS IS THE COOLEST THING EVER HOW CAN I NOT GUSH ENDLESSLY ABOUT IT???????

So... sorry guys, you're welcome to ignore me if you've had enough. But I just. can't. help myself!

I mean, how can I not get all choked up/insanely excited when a PM announcement pops up in my inbox with MY BOOK DEAL IN THERE???????

From Publisher's Marketplace:

Children's: Fantasy
Shannon Messenger's debut middle-grade series KEEPER OF THE LOST CITIES, about a girl who discovers there are secrets buried in her memory that others would kill for, and has to figure out why she is the key to her brand-new world before the wrong person finds the answer first, to Liesa Abrams at Aladdin, in a six-figure deal, in a pre-empt, in a three-book deal, for publication starting in Fall 2012, by Laura Rennert at Andrea Brown Literary Agency (North America).

Obviously I knew it was coming. But still--when it finally

23 Comments on Just when I think this week can't get any cooler..., last added: 10/14/2011
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17. Wishes come true in the biggest blog contest I've ever organized!!!!

Whew--last week was officially one of the most surreal, crazy, amazing weeks of my life. I seriously can't thank you enough for all your comments, tweets, and emails congratulating me about my news. The response was so much more than I ever expected. THANK YOU!

But I don't think a simple thank you is enough for the many, many ways you guys have helped and supported me on this crazy journey toward publication, so I wanted to put together an extra-special contest to thank you all properly with some awesome prizes.

I went through a million and a half ideas, trying to figure out the PERFECT contest (I did have FIVE MONTHS to think about it, after all). And I gotta say, what I finally settled on is pretty freaking awesome. In fact, I dare say it’s frawesome.

The thing is, I love, love, LOVE that my publisher is Aladdin—not just because they’ve published SO MANY of my favorite books. But also, how cool is it that they have a magic lamp for a logo???? I just wasn't entirely sure what to do with that, until I turned to the brilliant team of Lisa and Laura Roecker, and they came up with the winning idea. Huge thanks also go to Simon & Schuster for donating a BUNCH of incredible books, and to the uber talented Christina Lee who made some awesome custom jewelry for me.

Okay, so... THE CONTEST.

I'm giving away six (yes, SIX!!!!) prize packages total (because I wanted to thank as many of you as I could). Three runners up, and three grand prize winners. EVERYONE will win awesome books and adorable necklaces (which I will explain in a second). But the three grand prize winners will win something EXTRA SPECIAL! (So special it might be a little bit crazy for me to give away--but I'm doing it anyway!!!)

Think about it. What does a magic lamp give you? 


So that’s what I’m giving away too! 

No really, I am.

For three lucky winners, consider me your own personal genie—minus the harem pants: 

and blue skin...
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18. AHHH--It's Getting Official!

So... THIS happened yesterday:

Ahhhhhhhhhhh--thats ME!!!!!!!!!!!!! 

ON AMAZON!!!!!!!!!!!!*

It only has the ebook version so far (don't worry, the hardcover WILL be added--these things just have a weird way of updating in their own inexplicable order)--but it's there!


And ... I know things like this are GOING to happen (if they didn't that would be kind of bad, I mean, I kinda need my book to become available to buy places).

But yeah, getting a google alert for my book and finding it on Amazon with my name as the author was one of those seriously surreal moments.

(and my author name is a link--you can click it and everything!!!) (*clicks*) (*clicks again*)

(I'm betting most of you don't find that nearly as exciting as I do!)

But... YOU GUYS--THIS IS REALLY HAPPENING!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

And it's happening soon. In fact, since Amazon has spilled the beans for me, I guess this means I can share my current, official release date. KEEPER OF THE LOST CITIES is scheduled to launch into the world on...



10 . 02 . 2012


I really <3 all those pretty 1s, 0s, and 2s in there


Oh, but I wouldn't go tattooing that anywhere if I were you guys (since I'm SURE you're all planning on doing that). Release dates are notorious for changing, so it's very possible that will not stay my release date. But, for the moment, that's the official date. And um... holy crap that's SOON!

*bites nails*

*stares at pre-order button*

*wonders if she should order one just to see if it works*

*realizes how lame that is*

*isn't sure she cares*

So... that's my week so far. How's yours going?????

*My mentioning this is NOT any sort of "buy it on amazon" kind of endorsement, btw. Obviously I am happy and honored if anyone decides to buy my book--anywhere, in any format. But... my heart will always truly belong to Indies.
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19. The Announcement you probably never saw coming...

So... remember that time I kept a BIG secret from you guys for five months???


I *kinda* did it again...

Messenger’s YA Novels Get Six Figures at S&S
Laura Rennert of Andrea Brown Literary Agency sold North American rights for Shannon Messenger’s debut young adult novel, Let the Sky Fall, and a sequel. The six-figure deal went to Liesa Abrams, executive editor at Simon & Schuster for the Simon Pulse imprint. Let the Sky Fall, slated for March 2013 publication, is about a 17-year-old boy who has no idea how he survived the category five tornado that killed his parents. Though his memory has been erased, he is haunted by dreams of a beautiful, dark-haired girl. Now, years later, he finds out the girl is real: she’s his guardian sylph, an air elemental, who harnesses the power of the wind.

(You can see the complete article HERE)

And from Publisher's Marketplace:
Children's: Young Adult
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20. So...THIS happened!


ITS A REAL BOOK!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


Nope--that's still not enough exclamation marks:



And of course I HAD to take a bunch of dorky pictures of myself, celebrating:

(oh, you'd do the same thing--you know it!)

(I have QUITE a lot more of these--but I think you guys get the idea)

(and yes--yes I AM wearing my: I am a SERIOUS ARTIST black turtleneck sweater, but... that's mainly because it was FREEZING yesterday)

(FREEZING to a Native SoCalian = anything overcast and below 65 degrees F--just FYI)

I honestly can't even begin to describe what it feels like to hold my book--MY BOOK--for the first time, and flip through the pages and see my words in print and my name on every page and the font they chose and the chapter headings and... *sniffles*
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21. KEEPER'S FIRST BLURB!!!!!!! (and a contest to celebrate!)

A few of you might have seen me tweet this picture from the SCIBA event I went to last weekend: 

This is me with Amber Benson (yes, Tara!) and Lisa McMann 
(otherwise known as: two super-cool S&S Aladdin authors--with a Shannon standing nervously in the middle!)

And you might notice that I do not have my arm around Lisa McMann in the photo--and there IS a reason for that. See, poor Lisa had already had to endure a couple of awkward Shannon-hugs that evening, so I decided it wasn't right to make her endure any more.

Which may make you wonder why I was hug-molesting poor Lisa McMann.

Well... there are many reasons:

- I'm ... kinda a HUGE Lisa McMann fangirl 
- She's arguably one of the nicest authors out there
- But mostly, it had to do with this:

“A delightful and dangerous adventure with complex characters and relationships you'll root for to the end of time.” 
-Lisa McMann

In case you can't tell--that is the first official blurb for KEEPER OF THE LOST CITIES!!!

Nope--that's not enough exclamation marks:


Though, mostly... I get a bit teary every time I read it.

I mean, having someone say something nice about my book will always be an AMAZING thing. But to have it be from an author I've been admiring and fangirl-ing for YEARS--an author who writes both middle grade and YA with the kind of ease and skill that I aspire to, is just...

There. Are. No. Words.  

(That does not mean I didn't ramble--mostly incoherently--to poor Lisa at the event, thanking her for taking the time to read KEEPER and giving such an amazing blurb. But I will spare you that because it's bad enough poor Lisa had to suffer through it. I'm just happy I didn't cry!)

And just so you guys can fully understand why this blurb means so much to me, I've decided to give away some of Lisa's amazing books to one luck

52 Comments on KEEPER'S FIRST BLURB!!!!!!! (and a contest to celebrate!), last added: 3/6/2012
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22. Shiny, epic things--you know you want them!

You guys! You guys!


(a whole week earlier than I expected them!)

Shiny bookmarks for KEEPER OF THE LOST CITIES!

Aren't they pretty????????

And really, the picture doesn't do them justice. (The flash + gloss = something Shannon didn't have time--or brain capacity--to figure out how to fix.) But these proofs give you a better idea of what they really look like:

(all credit for the prettiness goes to Keary, my incredibly talented designer)

So, in case you're wondering, there are two different bookmarks. They all have the same "front" (the design in the middle). But half of them have Sophie on the back, and half have Dex. That way my readers can pick which character they want.

OR, on very special occasions, I *might* be willing to give people one of each. LIKE TODAY!

Yes--that's right. Not only will the winners be the FIRST people to get their hands on my exclusive, limited edition, rare, collector's item bookmarks (that's what *I'm* calling them, at least)--but they will also be some of the only ones to have the complete pair! (I'm also happy to sign them if you want...)

So, if you want to be one of the cool people--and you KNOW you do--just leave a comment on this post by 11:59 pm PST on Saturday, March 10th (psst--that's tomorrow. It's a quick contest this time!) I'll draw TEN lucky winners and post their name on Sunday, March 11th. International entries welcome.

(FYI: If this contest turns out to be popular I CAN be swayed into adding extra winners... #justsayin')

And in OTHER epic news...

according to my google alert last night... um...



Which means ...

- Holy Crap--it's getting REAL!!!!

- I *may* have had to stop myself from buying a copy, just because I could!

- We've now entered that lovely,

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23. Another blurb--and another contest to celebrate!

Some of you may have seen this already--since apparently it's  up on amazon (I've been scooped--that's what I get for waiting to share!) But in case you haven't, I thought I'd still go ahead and share it here:


"Keeper of the Lost Cities is a little bit Alice's Adventures in Wonderland, a little bit Lord of the Rings, and a little bit Harry Potter. And it's all fun!"  
--New York Times bestselling author Michael Buckley
Every time I read that I have to remind myself that he's talking about MY book--and not just because of the incredible and humbling comparisons he makes. 

Mainly it's because I might be Michael's #1 Fan (AND I WILL TAKE ON ANYONE WHO TRIES TO CLAIM OTHERWISE).


All of his books are amazing. (Seriously, AMAZING!). But his Sisters Grimm books are not only some of my all time favorite middle grade books--they're also a big part of the reason I decided to write middle grade in the first place.  

When I'd first had the idea for KEEPER and was trying to decide if I wanted to try writing it, I went to the bookstore for research. And I walked out with three books: ELLA ENCHANTED, by Gail Carson Levine, THE LIGHTNING THIEF, by Rick Riordan, and THE FAIRY TALE DETECTIVES, by Michael Buckley. And after reading those three I knew I had to give middle grade writing a try. 

I loved each of those books for different reasons,. But what I loved about Michael's books (oh yes, I went straight back to B&N and bought all the rest of the Sisters Grimm series and devoured every word) was the way he melded humor and heart. He also has two strong, kick-butt girls as his main characters and yet tells the story in such a way that it will appeal to ALL kids. And his creativity and imagination absolutely blew me away. (Puck is also one of my favorite characters EVER!)

So years later, to have him read and blurb MY book is just the most incredible thing... 

Yes, it totally made me tear up. And yes, I wished I could reach through the screen and hug him (alas, I couldn't--but he's coming to Cali for an event soon and HE'D BETTER WATCH OUT. AN AWKWARD SHANNON HUG WILL BE HAPPENING!)

In the meantime, I just want to say, Michael, if you happen to see this, THANK YOU. Not just for your blurb, but for your fabulous books that have inspired me in more ways than you know. I can't wait for book 9, even if it also breaks my heart a little to see the series end. 

And to celebrate my blurb--and give you guys a chance to experience some of Michael's incredible work--I'm giving some of his books away! That's right--one lucky co

47 Comments on Another blurb--and another contest to celebrate!, last added: 3/31/2012
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24. Are you ready for some shenanigans????

I sure hope so, because I am packing them up and bringing them all over the place. (So if you can't handle my crazy you'd best consider fleeing).

It's going to be a CRAZY year with all kinds of events and things and places to find me--if you're so inclined. So I've gone ahead and added an Appearances page to this blog to help you all keep track, and I will be updating it regularly as things confirm / get added. But in case you don't feel like clicking over, here's some details on some upcoming events:

April 20th 6-9pm (hey--that's TONIGHT! OMG!)
Pomona College, Room SCC-217
The 5 Cs Out Loud is hosting a special dinner and workshop, where I will be giving a lecture on "Creating a Killer Plot!" (and *trying* to sound as smart as possible. If I can't pull that off I promise lots of Shannon Shame). The dinner is only for club members, but the workshop is open to anyone. Just email ahead of time so they know to have enough chairs.  For more details, or to let them know you're coming, contact christinabejjani (at) gmail (dot) com

April 21
LA Times Festival of Books
I am there as a fan, not officially--and I'm not sure which panels I'm hitting, but I'll be "around". So if you spot a giggling blonde girl feel free to come over and say Hi!

Saturday, May 19th 2-5 pm
Still getting all the details on exactly what I'll be doing, but I'll be there for sure and will update as soon as I know more. You're also welcome to contact the org

10 Comments on Are you ready for some shenanigans????, last added: 4/21/2012
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25. Another Epic Milestone

There are a lot of surreal, exciting, amazing, unbelievable moments on this crazy journey I'm on (and thank goodness because they help balance the hectic, sleepless-night-inducing, terrifying ones). But yesterday was a BIG one.

I wish I could show you the absolutely GORGEOUS ARCs for LTSF that my amazing publisher sent me--but alas, I'm not allowed to since we haven't revealed the cover (which I am ALSO dying to show you). But I can't stop staring at them. Nor can I stop staring at my bookshelf, where BOTH of my books are now on display, which is so incredible I am having a hard time wrapping my head around it.

And then, there was this inside the ARC:

I ... I can't believe I already qualify for an "also by Shannon Messenger."

I also can't believe that these crazy stories that filled my head and refused to leave until I wrote them down are slowly making their way into the world. I've already gotten some amazing, tear-inducing emails from some early readers telling me how much they enjoyed it. And after BEA a LOT more people will have them.

It's scary and stressful and half the time I feel like there's an avalanche coming for me and I'm going to be clobbered any second. But I also get to hug my book--MY BOOK--and dance around with it and take embarrassing pictures to send to my agent and editor (oh, you know you'll do exactly the same thing!). And that is worth every single second of the stress--and then some.

So if you need me, I'll be twirling with my ARCs like the biggest nerd on the planet. And then diving back into book 2!

(Also, I'll be at Mysterious Galaxy tonight for the YA or Bust signing with Stephanie Perkins, Gayle Forman, and Nina LaCour. If you're in the area I hope to meet you there!)

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