Pretty Good Week


Two awesome things happened on Monday:

1) I finished and printed my thesis! Huzzah!! Here is one of the copies, on the nice heavy paper.

The quality of these pictures is not great. That's what I get for taking them at 10 at night, after spending the whole day writing.

After printing them out at Mr. Atkins’ office, we went to dinner to celebrate. Sicilian sushi, thin-crust margherita pizza, and pistachio cannoli. Deeeelish.

2) And right before bed, I reached 1,500 views! Huzzah x2!! And you know what that means, right? It’s giveaway time!

What am I going to give, you ask? Well, remember that post where I talked about loving the writing community, and I mentioned getting two copies of Daughter of Smoke and Bone signed by Laini Taylor? Wellll, one of those copies is up for grabs!

And this is a famous copy! There’s a picture of it on her blog:

I was hurriedly buying my books as she walked to the front of the store. I’d informed the Mr. that he might need to detain Laini from leaving, but she paused to snap a picture of the clerk in his Karou wig just as he finished ringing me up. So you get a famous book. What!

It’s legit and everything! So how to enter? Just comment on this post with your name and email. I thought about doing something fun, like a picture caption contest as well, but since it’s NaNo I decided to go easy on y’all. So! In honor of my thesis, what’s your favorite contemporary YA book? I don’t know if I can pick just one, but I lurved Cures for Heartbreak by Margo Rabb. You should seriously check it out (especially if you love smart, funny books).

The giveaway is open till the day I get back from St. Louis on Wednesday 11/16. So we’ll say Wednesday at midnight EST, or 10 pm Denver time. ^_^

(Also, I’m going to be somewhat scarce while here in St. Louis. I’m here to help my brother and sister-in-law. They had a baby girl two weeks ago, so I’m going to do whatever I can to help them get some sleep. They have two rambunctious boys, 3 and 5 years old, who will keep me plenty busy!)

Good luck!

(Oh, and yeah, this contest is totally open to the whole world. Even if you live on the moon, if you win, I’ll figure a way to get the book to you.)

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I write speculative fiction inspired by mythos from around the world, complex family dynamics, and my own experiences living with mental illness. After earning my BA in Linguistics from Brigham Young University in 2008, I received my MFA in Creative Writing from Converse College in 2012. I live in Denver, where my husband and I spend countless hours chasing our three young sons (and sometimes catching them!). I collect tarot decks, dye my hair mermaid colors, and procrastinate by decorating my home. My debut novel, Feathers Sharp as Knives, releases on May 2, 2023.

13 thoughts on “Pretty Good Week

    1. Congrats on the thesis. I don’t tend to read Contemporary YA (I tend to read fantasy and non fiction). If I squint I see blurry shapes and fonts way back from my high school days, but honestly I think one of the last ‘contemporary’ novels I read was Born Confused by Tanuja Desai–which I remember to be pretty good.

      email: laparker2010(at)

  1. I LOVE Contemporary YA. Contemporary is my very favorite! But my most favorite of all books is Jellicoe Road by Melina Marchetta. I don’t think I’ve ever read a more perfect book.

  2. Congrats!! I’m currently in a Masters program, and the dreaded thesis awaits! *shudders*

    And YES to your contemporary YA love! My fave is a three-way tie between Looking for Alaska by John Green, Speak by Laurie Halse Anderson, and The Truth About Forever by Sarah Dessen. And Ashley, I’m reading Jellicoe Road right now! I am LOVING it.

    Thanks so much for the awesome contest! Here’s my email: aortizzle (at) gmail (dot) com

  3. Thanks for going easier on the NaNoers. ;)
    That picture is awesome. My life’s dream (as of thirty seconds ago) is to own a famous book.

  4. Thesis completion: happy happy joy joy! (Ren & Stimpy wasn’t THAT long ago . . . was it?)

    You’re such a helpful auntie! My 3-year-old nephew would run around 24/7 if adults let him.

    My fave contemp YA novel is If I Stay by Gayle Forman.

  5. I adore contemporary. I was lucky enough to read an ARC of Fracture by Megan Miranda which was excellent. Also, Like Mandarin by Kirsten Hubbard is fantastic.

    deadtossedwaves at gmail dot com

  6. Congrats on finishing your thesis! That’s awesome (and a huge relief, I’m sure).
    My favorite contemporary as of right now is one I just read: Stephanie Perkins’ Lola and the Boy Next Door. I also love John Green and Maureen Johnson.

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