Monday, November 21, 2011

The Wizard of Oz Party

Hi!

Remember when I said I was going to post something other than pictures of my kids or notifications about book signings...?

Yeah, well, I lied.

I didn't mean to lie, but my work took an unexpected turn and I've therefore been allowed some unexpected play time and now I will be unexpectedly taking my family to Disneyland. Because that's what happens when Mama gets money from France. (I'd like to take a moment to thank my French publishers, Editions Milan, for acquiring Juliet Immortal and Romeo Redeemed. So excited to be translated into a language I can read!)

But this isn't just a drive by post with cute kid pictures. It's also Thanksgiving appropriate. Because what am I more thankful for than these people? Nothing. Not a thing.

Brace yourself for the onslaught of cute...



Cute!



Also cute.



Cuddly and cute.



Flat out adorable.



"Adorable? Did I hear someone say adorable? I've got your adorable right here."



And the cake.



And the home made decorations (which are still on my wall).



And the blow out!

May everyone celebrating have a magical Thanksgiving.

See you soon,

Stacey

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Join me on Friday!

NOVEMBER 18TH AT HICKLEBEE'S IN SAN JOSE!

Friday, November 18th 6:30-8:00

Hicklebee's Book Store

I'll be signing with Suzanne Young (who is the awesome sauce. We're the two in the middle in the picture below. She's on the right with the devious smile. I'm on the left with the exploding frizz hair from dancing like a maniac at the SCBWI pajama party. Don't we look like fun? We are. Come. Have fun with us in San Jose.)



But if you can't come have fun in San Jose, you can still get a signed copy of JULIET IMMORTAL (by me) or A NEED SO BEAUTIFUL (by Suz). Just head on over to Hicklebee's website and enter the code JAYYOUNG10 at checkout (you can include who you want the books signed to there, as well):

http://hicklebees.com/


And yes, I realize this poor blog is due for a post that's not about a signing or my children, but my muse is in the middle of a creative purging and I'm busy holding the bucket while she barfs out ideas. (Ew. So gross. But the ideas aren't gross. Very excited about several of them, actually. Especially the one I started yesterday.)

So I'm off to work. May your day be lovely and hope to see some of you on Friday!

Stacey Jay

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Baby Lo Turns Three. As Always, This Calls for a Montage

Dear Baby Lo,

You are three.

*deep breath*

First of all, I would like to gently chide you for growing up so quickly. Where your brother lingered in his sweet baby-ness well into his fours and fives, you turned two and charged ahead into the sweaty boy yonder without a glance back. I miss your baby snuggles and your chubby thighs and sweet baby smell, but oh how I love the delightful, nutty, fearless, joyful, fierce little manchild you are now.

Let me tell you a few things about the year between the time you turned two and today, the third anniversary of your birth, Lo.

1. You were a master of pretend. You acted out full scenes from How to Train Your Dragon (the near stabbing of Toothless was your favorite, you violent little thing), you were a dinosaur, a unicorn, a tiger, a ninja, a bad guy, Thor, the wicked witch of the west, and a kitten in the mornings when you were sleepy and rolling from your bed. You were often in costume. Because you wanted to be. You really like to get what you want. We all try to appease you whenever we can. When that comes to costumes, that's easy, because you know we love them as much as you do.

2. You were fearless. You climbed, you roller skated, you ice skated, you learned to rule the road in your tricycle and demanded a two-wheeler. You ran faster than the wind, you grew out your hair and were fully committed to being The Boy With Hair (the male version of Rapunzel) for several months. You sang and danced and rolled on the grass and the ground and in the mud. You were often dirty. I gave up on keeping anything you own stain-free. You helped me relax about a lot of things. You are a good teacher, the no mercy kind that I prefer.

3. You were full of joy and pain. You laughed. Oh, how you laughed. You laugh like a maniac. You laugh with no shame. You are loud and wild and your giggles are the definition of infectious. You also cried and hit and kicked and ran away from your parents. You figured out the lock on the door and were halfway to the street by the time we caught you. You refuse to ride in buggies at the store and you do your best to lose whoever is tracking you in the aisles. You don't understand separation anxiety. I think perhaps you have the opposite... Connection anxiety? You are your own man. You must forge your own path, and heaven help anyone standing in your way.

All in all, you remind me too much of myself, my boy. It makes me worry for you sometimes. It makes me giddy at others. I feel so lucky to be your mama. We are going to have so much fun together. I just know it. I promise I will evolve as you do. I will give you as much freedom as I possibly can. And maybe you will grant me a little mercy. Just a little...

Much love to you on your birthday, Lo. You are my precious, magical boy and I feel lucky to have your free-spirit on loan for the guiding. At least for a few more years.

And now I give you, the annual montage, music courtesy of IZ (We're having a Wizard of Oz birthday party so it seemed appropriate.)

Monday, November 7, 2011

Over At Random Buzzers This Week/Questions Answered

Good Monday!

I'm over at Random House's Random Buzzers site this week answering all your burning questions about JULIET IMMORTAL. So if you have a burning question (or even a mildly chafing question, those are good, too) come see me and post: http://www.randombuzzers.com/the-buzz/boards/topic/1166/126609/

I'll be answering most of the questions there on the site, but after even a casual scroll through the 91 already posted (91. Eep! My fingers are going to be plenty busy this week!) I can see that one question is coming up more than any other. So I thought I'd answer that question here on the blog. If that many people are curious over at the Buzzers, surely some of you are curious, as well.

I've done a longer form answer of this question before, but here's the official version:

Question: Why did you make Romeo the bad guy?

Answer:
When we first meet Romeo in Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet, he is madly in love with a girl. Her name isn't Juliet. It's Rosaline. He goes on and on and on about how miserable he is now that he's fallen out of favor with Rosaline. He even goes so far as to give this speech at the end of one of the early scenes:

I fear, too early: for my mind misgives
Some consequence yet hanging in the stars
Shall bitterly begin his fearful date
With this night's revels and expire the term
Of a despised life closed in my breast
By some vile forfeit of untimely death.
But He, that hath the steerage of my course,
Direct my sail! On, lusty gentlemen. (1.4.104-113)


He speaks of his "despised life." Not despised because he's lost Juliet, but because he'll never be with Rosaline (who has taken a vow of chastity).

And then, all of a sudden--BAM!--he meets Juliet and falls in love at first sight and everything is right with the world...until it isn't. Until he's once again sunk in the depths of despair and contemplating an early death.

Because of these factors--his tendency to crush too hard, his changeable nature, his obsession with death when he's down in the dumps over love--I've always found Romeo an untrustworthy character at best, and a dangerous one at worst. We don't know much about Juliet's life prior to the start of the play, but it seems she's a very sheltered, innocent girl, a girl without a death wish. She's totally unprepared for the seductive force that is Romeo, ill protected from this boy whose "love" eventually leads to her death.

It wasn't hard for me to imagine Romeo a villain, a seductive villain whose charm is part of his arsenal of weapons in the struggle to bring about the end times and the rule of the Mercenaries of the Apocalypse. What was difficult was writing book two, ROMEO REDEEMED, and finding a way to redeem a character who has been so very bad. (Reeeeaaaally bad. Those of you who've read the book know what Romeo has been up to for the past seven hundred years.)

But I turned in the final manuscript for ROMEO REDEEMED about a month ago and I'm really, really pleased with Romeo's story. As much as I've loved giving Juliet her second chance at love, I enjoyed Romeo's story just as much. (It's so nice to see a "bad boy" change his ways. Or...mostly change his ways...)

END OF ANSWER PORTION OF BLOG

All right! I'm off to answer as many questions as I can before the Mom portion of my life takes hold for the day. I'll be back at the Random Buzzers site this afternoon, however, answering more questions. I'll also be doing some giveaways over there, so if you post, be sure to keep checking back for more fun and games.

Have a great one,

Stacey Jay

Thursday, November 3, 2011

The First Time Anthology out now! And OTHER news! And a contest!

Hello my pretties,

(I'm planning a Wizard of Oz party for Baby Lo's third birthday. Look for many Wiz-inspired references ahead. Also craziness, because I get crazy when I'm doing the birthday thing. Anyone who's hung around the blog the past few years and seen the montages and the theme cakes knows this well. And yes, three is getting a montage, and I've already cried twice while making it. I'd be even more sappy about my last baby growing up if I weren't so darn sick of changing diapers. Only I could so perfectly space my children apart that I would be changing diapers almost nonstop for 7 years. I win! Not really. Not at all. So sick of other people's poop.)

Anyway! Diapers--not made of win. This anthology--lots of win!! This is my first time to write a young adult short story and I am so excited and nervous and hoping readers enjoy it.

Go forth and read all about it.
(Be sure to read all the way to the end for the prize winning part...)




You never forget your first...

In THE FIRST TIME, 25 young adult authors contribute 25 stories all about firsts: first loves, first kisses, first zombie slayings, and more. Featuring New York Times bestselling authors Carrie Ryan and Jessica Verday, plus a host of others. From humor to horror, and everything in between, these stories will make you laugh, cry, cheer, (and maybe even scream) as you experience something brand new from the authors that you love.

Contributing authors include: Cyn Balog, Lauren Bjorkman, Leigh Brescia, Jennifer Brown, Kirstin Cronn-Mills, Janet Gurtler, Teri Hall, Cheryl Renee Herbsman, Stacey Jay, Heidi R. Kling, C. Lee McKenzie, Saundra Mitchell, Jenny Moss, Jackson Pearce, Shani Petroff, Carrie Ryan, Sydney Salter, Kurtis Scaletta, Jon Skovron, Kristina Springer, Rhonda Stapleton, Charity Tahmaseb, Jessica Verday, J. A. Yang, and Lara Zielin

Get it from Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/The-First-Time-ebook/dp/B006151SD6/ref=sr_1_7?ie=UTF8&qid=1320174664&sr=8-7

Get it from Barnes & Noble: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/the-first-time-jessica-verday/1107030973?ean=2940013227989&itm=4&usri=jessica%2bverday

If you don't have a Kindle, you can still read this eBook on your phone, computer, iPad, e-reader, etc. Just grab the Amazon Kindle app here: http://www.amazon.com/gp/feature.html/ref=sa_menu_karl3?ie=UTF8&docId=1000493771

If you prefer the Barnes & Noble Nook app, get it here: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/u/free-nook-apps/379002321/?cds2Pid=34593

Now how and what do you win?

Here's the how: Be the first person reading this blog to download, read, and review "The First Time" on either Amazon or Barnes and Noble. Then email me via the contact page on my website: http://www.staceyjay.com/contact/

The first lovely reader to do all that will win their choice of a signed copy of Juliet Immortal or a signed copy of Dead on the Delta (U.S. and Canadians only for this one. Not to be a jerk, but I've had bad experiences with paying tons of money to mail internationally and then things getting lost. I'll get you internationals in on the next contest. I promise.)

And now for...

OTHER IMPORTANT ANNOUNCEMENTS!!!!

1. I will be at the Kepler's bookstore in Menlo Park TOMORROW at 7 p.m. Please come see me!

NOVEMBER 4TH AT KEPLER'S IN MENLO PARK, CA!

Friday, November 4th at 7 p.m.

Kepler's Books 1010 El Camino Real Menlo Park, CA

94025 650-324-4321

2. I will be at HICKLEBEE'S IN SAN JOSE on November 18th!

Friday, November 18th 6:30-8:00

Hicklebee's Book Store
*signing with Suzanne Young (Who is the awesome sauce. Come. Have fun with us in San Jose.)

3. I just found out that Juliet Immortal will release in France in January 2012 under the title JULIET FOREVER. Whee! Very exciting. Can't wait to see Juliet in a foreign language I can read...sort of.

Peace.

Off to prep for my late entrance into the Nano Madness! Anyone else Nano-ing?

Stacey Jay