Friday, January 30, 2015

Finally Friday: What's Going On

Jessie’s Bullets: Cock It and Pull It.

Friday, January 30, 2014
  • __3__ Gratitudes (rainy days, busy days, productive days)
  • __3__ Units of Caffeinated (or otherwise non-water) Beverages (I'm having a Starbucks addiction lately)
  • __0 hrs  Spent Writing (I haven't been writing much lately...:/)
  • _1__  Culinary Delights/Disasters Created With Own Hands (sweet potato hash with sautéed veggies and poached new fave.)
Lots going on:

  • Killing Ruby Rose (The Ruby Rose Series Book 1) and Resisting Ruby Rose (The Ruby Rose Series Book 2) was included in a special 50 Kindle Book Deals for ONLY $2 Each in the US Kindle Store for the month of January. I probably should have pointed this out sooner, but if you haven't bought one or both of the books, now would be a good time to do so: HERE Two days left to buy at only two bucks.

  • I'm running the Surf City Half Marathon this Super Bowl Sunday in Huntington Beach. Training has been a bit rocky so please send me all the positive vibes you can that I don't get tired, lose my mind, collapse in a pile of sweat and tears, and pick a fight with a little old lady who scoffs at me as she runs by. 

  • I'm doing an awesome event in Salt Lake City on February 10th, at Weller Book Works at Trolley Square with some pretty awesome/famous/infamous authors, including Dan Wells, who wrote the I AM NOT A SERIAL KILLER series, which was a huge influence on me when I was writing my Ruby Rose Series. This is going to be the coolest night ever. All my SLC family & friends, please come and I'll kiss all your faces! (Or just hug you, if you are opposed to your face being kissed).

  • Then I'm going on a writing retreat to Park City to sit in a hot tub, work on Ruby Rose 3, sit in a hot tub some more, and then work on some other projects. Followed by hot tubbing.

What's going on with you?


Monday, January 12, 2015

The Sky's The Limit Writing Contest Winners

First of all, a HUGE thanks to all the students, teachers, and schools who participated in this contest. It was an honor for us, SkYAuthors, to read the amazing work of the next generation's writers. You guys are so talented! Thank you for putting yourselves out there. 

From Christina Farley, Jessie Humphries, Lori M. Lee, Meredith McCardle, Rysa Walker, Chuck Wendig (and Ryan Gosling) here's a super sexy slow clap for all of you...

Now, as a refresher, here are the winning categories and prizes:

  • One winning school with the most entries (which will win a pack of thirty (30) Kindle Paperwhites). 
  • One winner for each grade 6-12, which makes 7 total grade winners (who will each receive: One (1) Kindle Paperwhite; One ($20 Amazon Gift Card); and all six (6) of the participating Skyscape’s authors books.
  • Two Overall runners up for all grades (who each win One (1) Kindle Paperwhite; One $20 Amazon Gift Card; and all six (6) of the participating Skyscape’s authors books).
  • One Overall First Place Winner (prizes listed below)

Without further ado, here are the winners:

School With The Most Entries: Northwest Technical And Career Academy
(Which is extra super exciting because a few of us SkYAuthors were able to visit this school!) Way to go, NWTCA students and teachers!

6th grade winnerMia Ottaviano
School: Woodstown Middle School
Teacher/Mentor: Mrs. Collins

7th grade winnerEmmeline Song

School: The Avery Coonley School
Teacher/Mentor: Michelle Schaub 
8th grade winnerJuliana Morell
School: Woodstown Middle School
Teacher/Mentor: Mrs. Jennifer Kelly

9th grade winnerKayla Stuhlmann
School: Basic High School
Teacher/Mentor: Mauseth

10th grade winnerMadison Matthews
School: Panther Creek High School
Teacher/Mentor: Daria Johnson

11th grade winnerKelly Litts
School: St Thomas Aquinas High School
Teacher/Mentor: Amy Schaak

12th grade winnerEmily Espanol
School: Northwest Career and Technical Academy
Teacher/Mentor: Debbie Olsen/Josh Symmonds

Overall Runners Up

Kai Garrison
School: Coronado High School
Teacher/Mentor: Mr. J. Watkins

Emilee Resop
School: Northwest Career and Technical Academy
Teacher/Mentor: Debra Olsen

And for the OVERALL FIRST PLACE WINNER ... drumroll please....

Juliana Gessner
School: Ronald Reagan IB High School
Teacher/Mentor: Ms. Weinfurter
Juliana, come on down...

You have won Two (2) Kindle Fires HDX 
(One for yourself and one for your nominated teacher-mentor, Ms. Weinfurter).  
Also if you choose to complete your story/short story, the SkYAuthors will assist in getting the story published. 

Congratulations, Juliana! Your entry totally blew us away. The odds of you winning this contest were less than .01%...and you did it! This is how...

There were four of us in that dank little cell: the doctor, the nurse, the dead man, and myself. The doctor was etching an escape plan in the dust while the nurse looked on with eyes full of practiced admiration. The dead man sat slumped in the corner, his chains rattling ominously. Beneath us the floor rocked and swayed with the swell of the waves, obeying the commands of the never-ending storm. It had been raining for days now. It was like the sky was trying to drown the ocean, and succeeding.

        “Those nasty brutes may look tough,” said the doctor, his voice hoarse and strained, “but they’re poorly organized, and the storm should’ve worn ‘em out by now. If we could just break that lock--” his plan was interrupted by a bone chilling scream from above deck. There was a frantic scramble of stomping boots, followed by shouts, screams, begs for mercy. The ship rocked back and forth with more force than ever before, throwing us around like rag dolls, until--

        Deathly silence.

        I opened my mouth to speak, but it like my words had been stolen. We waited for a sound, any sound to indicate the survival of the pirates who’d captured us.

        Tick... Tick... Tick... Tick...

        My eyes slid to the watch on the dead mans wrist. Its face was shattered and the minute hand was missing. It was the only clock in the room.

Again, thank you to all who participated and remember, 
The Sky's the Limit!
***All winners must contact Jessie Humphries at jessiehump(at)gmail(dot)com within thirty (30) days, to claim their prize and provide mailing information.***

Monday, January 5, 2015

Killer Monday: 2014, Please Don't Leave Me

Jessie’s Bullets: Cock It and Pull It.

Monday, January 5, 2014
  • __3__ Gratitudes (January sunshine, flip flops in the sand, friends who come to stay)
  • __2__ Units of Caffeinated (or otherwise non-water) Beverages (I love Pero! 5 points to anyone who knows what that is!)
  • __2 hrs  Spent Writing (revising doesn't ever feel as productive as drafting to me :/)
  • _3__  Culinary Delights/Disasters Created With Own Hands (German pancakes, BBQ chicken & steak, feta salad, and Nutella crepes for dessert...yes, it felt like I was in the kitchen most of the day.)
Bummer alert: So I'm actually really sad that 2014 is over. It was so awesome in so many ways that I am having a hard time letting go. 2014 was kind of like a beautiful relationship in high school for me:
  • Landed my first kiss (i.e. published my debut book)
  • Partied like freshman rockstar at Homecoming (i.e. threw a launch party)
  • Rounded to second base (i.e. published the sequel)
  • Partied like a sophomore rockstar at Prom (i.e. threw another launch party)
  • Had a whirlwind romance (i.e. travelled, attended writing conferences, book festivals/signings, etc.)
  • Fell desperately in love (i.e. basked in the glow when my books became Amazon Bestsellers)
And then it all ended before I was ready, before I wanted to let go, before I knew it... (because he ran off with another girl...thanks a lot Josh Hunter!) Anywayz, what was I talking about? Oh yeah, books and stuff...

So excuse me while I reminisce about how great a year 2014 was not only for me, but others around me. 
  • My writing partner Erin Summerill wrote a fabulous YA Fantasy which landed the literary agent of her dreams, Josh Adams of Adams Literary, in 2014. She waited long and worked hard for her moment in the sun and I'm so happy for her. If there's one nugget of gold to be learned from watching her journey to becoming agented, it's that it never hurts to be nice to agents you meet in person. Erin attended writing conferences for years and made friends with dozens of agents, all of whom remembered her. In the end, agents were fighting for the chance to work with her
  • My friend and Mentee from PitchWars, Mara Rutherford, also landed her dream agent, John Cusick of Greenhouse Literary, with her YA Russian Fairytale Retelling. The way this happened is actually miraculous. Through the online PitchWars contest opportunity, she garnered over ten requests and several offers from the participating agents. Although John Cusick wasn't participating in PitchWars this year, I wondered if he'd like to take a peek. (I know John because he is an agent at my literary agency). Here's the miracle part: John majored in Russian Literature in college! And he'd been looking for a Russian story like this for years! Just so freaking ridiculously awesome. 
I know that 2015 will be amazing. It will be full of adventure, fresh ideas, new experiences, and all that crap. But right now, please allow me this break up period with my first love, 2014, who touched me in all the right ways in all the right places. I will always love you 2014.