Sweet Deal

We are a Kindle family.

For a limited time, the e-book of Birthmarked is available for $2.99 on Amazon.  I don’t think I can take credit for this idea, but I am all for it.  It’s almost as good as going to the library to take it out for free!  
Do I have a Kindle?  I do.  
Do I prefer to read paper books?  I do. Except when I’m traveling, or when it’s the middle of the night and I need a book now.

Novels in Schools

Scholastic Book Fairs and its parallel in France, France Loisirs, have both picked up Birthmarked.  I was a devoted fan of the Arrow Book Club when I was in middle school, and vividly recall how excited I was whenever an order of new books came in for me, so I’m delighted the same company is now bringing my novel to readers in schools.

On the Prized blog tour today, I’m visiting The Book Pixie, where Briana asks me some out-of-the-box questions, like which color I’d eliminate from… Continue reading

Walled Cities

Certaldo, Italy, is my favorite walled city because of its peaceful scale and its position on a lovely hillside.  I spent a day there when my family was living in Ferrara, a larger walled city, for several months.  Standing on ramparts at dusk, with swallows flying against the fading sky like bats, but prettier, takes me through a portal.

On the blog tour today at The Book Monsters, Kristen asks me to say what’s hardest and easiest about writing, and she gets me thinking.

Chat with Nan

Nancy Mercado at Girls Write Now

Two weeks from now, when Prized is released, I’ll be having a live chat on Goodreads, and my editor Nancy Mercado will be there, too!  I’m so pleased.  Here’s a photo of Nan I swiped from a Girls Write Now mailing in February 2011 (she’s a mentor with the program) because it seems to capture a bit of who she is—focused, intense, and nice.  Look: she’s all about the editing, but she also has her punch glass in hand.  Rumor… Continue reading


Sometimes, when my brain is crawling around between my ears, it’s best to take a walk.  Sometimes, like yesterday evening, that includes a visit to the swings.

Katie will be posting a review of Prized and asking me a few question on Mundie Moms today if you’d care to drop by.

Codes, Making and Breaking

A Letter from Dad

When I was a kid, my family routinely played with codes.  My dad had been a cryptanalyst in the U.S. Army, and when I was at summer camp, he often wrote letters to me in code, with a key along one edge so I could decipher his message, letter by letter.  During the summer, when my family spent weeks in the northern woods of Minnesota in a log cabin with minimal plumbing and no TV, any rainy day could find us kids writing secret… Continue reading