Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Another authorly first!

Most of the time, I like getting out of my office. I like meeting up with my writer friends, doing group events, attending signings. Let's face it, there are lots of fun things about being an author.

But I'm pretty sure, after my experience yesterday, I will *never* be excited about getting out of my office in order to do an interview for television. This was my first time, and I was nervous. Yes, I know, most people would be. And I did find some comfort in that. The whole way there, I told myself, just talk to Brooke like she's a friend, and forget about the camera. And for the most part, I think I did that. But it's hard to forget about it completely, you know?

Here is a picture of me and Brooke Carlson before the interview, taken by the very nice cameraman whose name escapes me now:

I wish I had gone shopping and gotten something new to wear. I think I would have felt more confident. But I hate shopping. And money is tight. So I made do with what I had. And then I had a bad hair day. And the wind and rain outside made it more so. And, and, and...

You know what? It's fine. It's fine!! I got to talk about my book on TV, and some people may learn about it that didn't know about it before. That's the important thing.

The owners of Cupcake Jones, Peter and Lisa, were super sweet and I got to walk around the kitchen and see the private staff bathroom that has stuff written on the walls I was "sworn to forget." I'd tell you what they said, but I can't seem to remember???

Oh, and they sent me home with these, which definitely helped soothe the pain of the experience.

Monday, March 29, 2010

Day at the beach

Last week was spring break here, except we didn't do much because my oldest son was really sick. On Friday, we went to see How to Train Your Dragon, which was EXCELLENT! Highly, highly recommend it! One of my sons said, "I liked that better than Avatar!"

On Saturday, the weather was nice, so we headed to the beach. It was beautiful!! Here are a few pics:

The tiny purple shell is REALLY tiny. I should have put my finger in the picture to give you an idea of just how tiny. Like, smaller than my pinky finger nail. It's quite a miracle I found it. I looked down, and there it was. It's such a pretty purple color - I've never found anything quite like it.

Today, the rain is back and the kids are heading back to school, counting the days until summer time! This morning, I head out in the pouring rain and wind for the TV interview. I'm thankful for the opportunity, but I cannot tell you how glad I'll be when it's over. I think I'll take myself out to lunch to celebrate!!

Happy Monday!

Friday, March 26, 2010

The Friday Five

1. Thanks to all of those who commented on my library loving blog challenge. I didn't quite make it to 120 comments to donate $60.00, but I'm going to donate that amount anyway. One of the coolest things was having BJ, a librarian from my childhood library, comment and tell me Linda has been designing the summer reading program gameboards for THIRTY FIVE YEARS and is still doing it. Do you know what this means? She designed the one I remember so fondly all those years ago!!

2. The winner of the advanced review copy of SHADE by Jeri Smith-Ready is Lisa B. Congratulations!! Please contact me through my web site and I'll get that out to you soon.

3. Yesterday I went to the Public Library Assoc conference here in Portland and signed books for an hour. Thanks to all the librarians who stopped by to say hi or buy books!! My editor and I went to Mother's Bistro for lunch, in downtown Portland, which is owned by Chef Lisa Schroeder. I'd never eaten there and it was good! I thought about asking our waitress if Lisa Schroeder gets her lunches for free, and then popping out my driver's license, but I behaved.

4. My next authorly event? A TV interview on Monday for Better Portland, which will air on April 1st here locally. ACK!! What should I WEAR????

5. A busy couple of months coming up with lots going on personally and professionally. I am vowing here to be good about diet and exercise for maximum productivity!!

Happy weekend all!

Monday, March 22, 2010

Library-loving Blog Challenge

When I was growing up, the Salem Public Library in Salem, Oregon was one of my favorite places to go. I have strong memories of my time spent in the children's area, hanging out with my best friends Betsy and Star, Encyclopedia Brown, Mrs. Piggle Wiggle, and many more. I also remember the summer reading programs. One year they had an elaborate map on a big platform someone built (this just in from BJ, a librarian at the Salem Library: that person is named Linda, and she has been building the summer reading program gameboards for 35 years!!!! Oh my gosh! She must have built that one I remember so vividly all those years ago!). It was one of the coolest things I'd ever seen. I remember sitting and looking at it one day for a LONG time, excited to travel around the various places as I read the necessary number of books.

This week, you'll see a bunch of bloggers participating in what is known as the library-loving blog challenge. Participants are asking you to comment and for each comment, a library will get a monetary gift.

A lot of libraries are really struggling right now. This is one way we can support the important work they do in our communities. I think sometimes we forget that we can help libraries directly, by donating books or money.

So, yes, I'm participating in the challenge, with my donation going to the Salem Public Library, as a way to say thank you for all those wonderful memories I have. I will specifically ask that the money be used for the youth services department. So, for every commenter on THIS post between now and midnight, March 24th, I will donate fifty cents (up to $60). I wish it could be more, but I'm guessing every little bit helps.

So, that's it. You comment, I send the library a gift. If you don't know what to say in your comment, "I love libraries" is just fine.

Please note that my pledge is “per commenter”—so if a single person leaves 50 comments, that still only counts once! But you can do more by spreading the word - feel fee to link to this post, tweet about it, and send your friends here so they can comment and raise more money.

If you’re moved to make a flat-fee donation to your library, or to start your own challenge, you are quite welcome, and please leave that information in the comments. For a complete list of participating bloggers (and to visit other sites where you can help libraries just by leaving a comment!) visit the writerjenn blog at http://writerjenn.livejournal.com/.

As a way of saying thanks for stopping by, I have an Advanced Reader's Copy of SHADE by Jeri Smith-Ready that I will give to one lucky commenter after the challenge ends. I'll draw a name and who knows, it could be yours!! SHADE (Simon Pulse) comes out May 4th and believe me, this is going to be a book you do NOT want to miss. It is the perfect combination of mystery, ghosts and romance. You know how much I love ghosts and romance!!

Thanks so much!!

Friday, March 19, 2010

Good News Friday

I wish I was talented in the graphics department, because I'd love to have a fun graphic with a cupcake on it or something. But alas, that is one of many areas where I don't have the talent I wish I did.

So, we'll use this one for today. I know, I know, it's meant for a different kind of good news, but that's okay.

Yes, I want to start a Good News Club. And ANYONE can join. Did you get good news this week? Or are you happy with how things are going, and would like to share? It doesn't have to be BIG good news. It can be the fact that you accomplished what you wanted to this week. Maybe you got a request for a manuscript. Maybe you had a helpful critique. Whatever it is, share with us, please!!!

I love hearing good news. It makes me happy. It fills me with hope. So, come one, come all and share the good news - ha!! And have a cupcake - you deserve one!!

I will start. My agent wrote this to me about the YA novel I just completed - "I LOVE this book." So now, we wait, hoping for more good news.

Happy Friday everyone!

Tuesday, March 16, 2010


Lindsey is a doll and I'm lucky to call her my friend.

I'm also lucky to have read the first couple of chapters a few years ago when there were only a couple of chapters written. I told her she HAD to write the book because it was so original, so clever and so funny!

I'm also really lucky my name is on the back of this book, because I think her Princess For Hire series is going to very successful: "I totally heart this book! Funny, witty, and magical, PRINCESS FOR HIRE is a must-read." --Lisa Schroeder

You will be the lucky one if you go and get yourself a copy. I promise, you will love it! So what are you waiting for?

I know some other authors are celebrating book babies today too!! So while you're shopping, here are a few more to add to your list:

THE BODY FINDER by Kimberly Derting is out today.

THE UNWRITTEN RULE by Elizabeth Scott is out today

And BORROWED NAMES by   is out today too!


Monday, March 15, 2010

My weekend in photos

Oregon SCBWI author/illustrator gala at Clackamas Barnes and Noble on Saturday. Three hours of awesomeness. Here were the authors for the hour of YA (left to right: Anne Osterland, L.K. Madigan, Suzanne Young, me, Emily Whitman, and Linda Zuckerman)

Me and Suzanne Young, who was a very good sport when I took the long, scenic route to the book store.

Reading and signing at Powell's on Sunday:

A couple of readers of my teen books even came to meet me. They were so sweet!!:

Whew - I'm tired! Going to curl up with a book today and chill.

Thanks to everyone who came out this weekend, and to EVERYONE who made my release week so wonderful!!! You rock!!

Sunday, March 14, 2010

Winner of Book and Notecards

I drew a name, and Mrs. F-B of West Orient Middle School in Gresham is the lucky winner!!

If you could please get in touch with me through my web site, http://lisaschroederbooks.com, with your address, I'll drop it in the mail to you.

Thank you to EVERYONE who entered!!

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Contest for Librarians and teachers!!

Check out these ADORABLE note cards (to see these and more, go to www.cakespy.com):

It's a library with a cupcake librarian, and wonderful cupcake patrons.

I want to give them away, along with a copy of my new middle-grade novel IT'S RAINING CUPCAKES, to a lucky librarian or teacher.

Enter here and tell me where you work!

I'd also love help spreading the word on twitter. Let me know here that you've tweeted it and I'll give you another entry. I'll even give you a tweet you can use:

It's Raining Cupcakes Contest for librarians & teachers from @lisa_schroeder here: http://bit.ly/bsu4BA Ends 3/13

Good luck, and thanks for ALL you do, wonderful librarians and teachers!!!

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Books, books, BOOKS!!!

Thanks to everyone for their happy book birthday wishes yesterday. There were others celebrating yesterday besides me, and although I tried to wish them all a happy day on Twitter, I want to give a shout out here.

Varian Johnson - SAVING MADDIE





Wow, I need to go shopping and get reading!! Since I'm on the subject of books, I want to sing the praises of some great books I've read recently as well. 

I LOVED these books. Although they are all very different from each other, each one touched my heart in some way, and they are books I know I will remember. Definitely a sign of a great book for me.


LEAVING GEE'S BEND by Irene Latham

SOME GIRLS ARE by Courtney Summers

BLUE PLATE SPECIAL by Michelle Kwansey


Tuesday, March 9, 2010

A sweet day

I made these applesauce cupcakes (the recipe is in the back of the book):

and received these from my family:

because today is the official release day of this:

For a delicious blog post with lots of beautiful cupcakes and a very sweet review, head over to Jama's blog and tell her your favorite kind of cupcake for a chance to win one of two copies!!!

This day is a dream come true for me. I've dreamt of having a middle-grade novel on the shelves for a VERY long time. And the ten-year-old Lisa who loved to bake and dreamt of traveling, like Isabel (the main character), is pretty darn happy today too.

Monday, March 8, 2010

Today I feel like...

I should be doing some kind of uplifting post.

I think lots of people are waiting for news. I think lots of people are looking around and thinking, why not me? I think lots of people are worried about what the future will bring.

I want to tell you not to worry, it will be okay, no matter what the outcome of that news.

I want to tell you it WILL happen to you if you keep working hard and don't give up.

I want to tell you your future is bright because YOU are bright and wonderful, and the world is a better place because of YOU.

There are so many things that can get us down, and rightly so. At every turn in this business, it seems like disappointment is there, waiting for us.

I don't know what the answer is, other than to greet the disappointment, send it on its merry way somewhere else, and then keep on going.

Maybe a pretty flower will help? I hope so.

(photo credit: Lisa Schroeder, 2008)

Saturday, March 6, 2010

Six things on a Saturday

1. Some of you may know the deep love I have for blackberry pie. Summer is not summer for me without at least one homemade blackberry pie. So when author and fellow Oregonian Heather Vogel Frederick asked me to be a part of her pie-of-the-month club, of course I was in!! You can read her questions and my answers HERE, and if you want to make your very own blackberry pie this summer, you'll definitely want to check it out because I share my recipe there!!

2. Back at the end of January, a writer for The Guardian, the UK newspaper, contacted me and asked me to give her my thoughts as to why the sudden rash of books for teens around death and dying, stating that my book I HEART YOU, YOU HAUNT ME was ahead of the curve. She asked, "does it stem from The Lovely Bones, or have teens always had a taste for the morbid? Is there anything which might have sparked it off - a gloomy world view in the recession, etc. What prompted you to take your angle? What sort of responses did you get from teen readers?"

So, I spent the afternoon drafting my response, sent it to her, and then immediately wondered if she would really use it. A couple of weeks later, I searched for the article, didn't find it, and thought, oh well, and because my brain only has so much capacity, I soon forgot about it.

Yesterday author April Henry ran across the article and tweeted the link to me. Yay twitter!!! It's an interesting article with authors Alice Sebold, Gayle Forman, and Jay Asher, among others, also weighing in on the topic. Read it for yourself!

3. Those of you who live in Oregon know I'm not the only Lisa Schroeder in town. There is also a famous chef by the name of Lisa Schroeder who owns a restaurant and came out with a cookbook last fall that got her on the Today show, among other things. Last week my publicist sent me an e-mail she had received from a radio station asking if I wanted to be interviewed next week, before my book signing at Powell's. At first I was like - wow, they really want me? And then it hit me. They didn't want me. They thought I was the other Lisa Schroeder. My publicist checked, and sure enough, wrong Lisa Schroeder. But when the DJ discovered I'm an Oregonian, he said, let's do it anyway. So, Wednesday I do the interview, with 1190 KEX, to be aired Saturday morning, with a piece in the news about my signing as well on Friday morning. SO thanks Chef Lisa - for once, the confusion worked in my favor!!

4. Book reading and signing for IT'S RAINING CUPCAKES next Sunday, March 14th, 2:00 at Powell's, Cedar Hills Crossing in Beaverton. If you are local, hope you can make it! If you aren't local and you'd still like a signed copy, you can pre-order your very own copy HERE.

5. I got this CD in the mail on Wed (I pre-ordered it months ago). I have been listening to it pretty much non-stop since then. Music inspires me when I'm writing verse novels, so I'm thrilled to have new music to write to as I work on my current WIP!

6. Speaking of writing, I best get to it. It's going to be a BEAUTIFUL day here and I want to get a few pages done so I can enjoy the rest of the day outside, taking in the sweet fragrance of SPRING. Yay, my 6 favorite months of the year are HERE!!!!

Happy weekend all!

Thursday, March 4, 2010

A party for Lisa!!

Not THIS Lisa.

No, my friend, Lisa Albert!!

Did you see it? PEEPS, DID YOU SEE IT!?!?

Lisa Albert's MERCY LILY, about an Oregon teenager faced with a heartbreaking choice about her ill mother, to Brian Farrey at Flux, for publication in Fall 2011, by Mary Kole at Andrea Brown Literary Agency.

You can read all about her long journey to this moment HERE. I hope you'll pop over and give her a big round of applause. (ha - I wrote applesauce first. Mmmm, that sounds good, but applause is probably more appropriate).

She worked on and off on this book for TEN YEARS, until finally, the moment she's dreamed about all that time, has arrived!!!

Lisa, I can't wait to read your BOOK!!! Thanks for reminding me that so much of this business is about persistence. About believing in the story you want to tell and not giving up. You are an inspiration to us all!!!

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Is there a right way or wrong way?

So, this is how it goes.

We write a book.

But it's more than just writing.
It's pouring
into that book.

And if the stars and planets are aligned JUST RIGHT we might actually sell that book and get it published.

So then, one day, we are happy, like this:

And for awhile, we are busy with revisions and line-edits and cover joy and first-pass pages until one day, it's all done.


But the reality hits. One part is over. And another part is just beginning. The marketing and selling part. And as the date our book will be out in the world gets closer, we start to look more like this:
Many people who haven't been through the process of making a book don't understand this part. Why would you be anything less than happy? You have a book coming out. Your dream is coming true!! But, we worry. We worry about letting our publisher down, looking like a failure to others, bad reviews, no reviews, low sales, and on and on. Not only that, but we look around and see the successful books and we want our book to be LIKE THAT. So, combine worry with envy and you have a bad combination. It's authorly angst at its worst!

This is all normal, I suppose. But I've been thinking lately about how I see authors *respond* to this part of the process.

Some authors deal by talking about their books pretty much non-stop.

Some authors deal by becoming a marketing machine. They add more and more and more things to their plate, spending every spare minute on marketing.

Some authors deal by unplugging and disappearing from the internet completely, wanting to live in the world of Ignorance is Bliss.

Some plunge into a new book, finding solace there.

And still others deal by talking with others in the business who understand and can offer some perspective. Here I'm reminded of Sara Zarr's wisdom, which she shared with Cynthia Leitich Smith in THIS interview. "A book is a wonderful, miraculous thing. But in some sense, it's also just a book." It's often others in the business who can remind us that it's not the end of the world if a book doesn't perform the way we want it to, or hope it will.

I'm sure there are other ways I'm not thinking of at this moment.

I think I deal by understanding that there will be disappointments in this business. And there will also be surprises. We can't control what we get. And I really don't want to live in a state of miserable angst all the time - it's NOT FUN!! So, I do what I can do promotion-wise with somewhat of a plan, try to let the worry go, and I start back at the beginning, with this:

I write a book.

But I'm curious. Do you think there's a right way? Is there a wrong way? Or is it just understanding that everyone's different and everyone simply has to figure out what works for them?

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Three things on a Tuesday

1. Look what arrived yesterday! It's still so exciting to open the package and see your baby as a real, live, beautiful book. I must say, S&S did a lovely job.

2. A very nice teacher got a copy of IT'S RAINING CUPCAKES to review and is giving away a copy on her blog. Hardly anyone has entered, so your chances are good!! Please, enter! Otherwise I will feel like a big, fat loser!

Go HERE to enter.

3. I'm working hard on my WIP. Thanks to author Denise Jaden over at Livejournal for doing the March Madness Writing Challenge. Hopefully it will keep me focused because I really want to finish this book by the end of the month!!!