Sunday, May 21, 2017

Girl Against the Universe: Seven Days Seven Giveaways Blog Tour

Hi everyone! Girl Against the Universe releases in paperback on June 6, 2017 and I’m so excited about that I decided to do an entire blog tour of giveaways to celebrate! In the story, main character Maguire creates a list of seven challenges to help her overcome her fears. This week, I posted seven fun challenges for you around the blogosphere, which are also seven chances to win a shiny GATU paperback :D

Some of the contests require you to have a Twitter or Instagram account, but others just require you to leave a blog comment. These contests are all international, but due to shipping costs, US winners will receive signed copies sent by me and INT winners will receive their books from Wordery or The Book Depository, with signed bookplates mailed separately.

All contests will end on May 31, 2017. All winners will be contacted via Instagram, Twitter, or email as well as posted on my blog in early June. If you’re going to enter a Twitter or Instagram challenge, be sure your account is set to public during the contest period so I will be able to see your entries and contact you if you win. 

My editor and I updated the sales copy for the book to help it better reflect the mental health and therapy components, as opposed to making it sound romance-centric. Here's the new description:

From the author of The Art of Lainey and Liars, Inc. comes a fresh, contemporary story about a girl coping with PTSD and the boy who wants to help her move on from the past. Perfect for fans of Sarah Dessen or Jenny Han.

Sixteen-year-old Maguire knows the universe is against her. No matter how many charms she buys off the internet or good luck rituals she performs each morning, horrible things happen when she's around. Like that time the roller coaster jumped off its tracks. Or the time her brother, father, and uncle were all killed in a car crash--and Maguire walked away with barely a scratch. 

Despite what her therapist tells her, Maguire thinks it's best to hide out in her room, far away from anyone she might accidentally hurt. But then she meets Jordy, an aspiring tennis star who wants to help her break her unlucky streak. Maguire knows that the best thing she can do for him is to stay away, but it turns out staying away may be harder than she thought.

If GATU were a gif, it would be this one :)

Ready to start winning? I tried to create challenges that not only promoted GATU's paperback release, but were also fun to complete and benefited the literary community. After all, who doesn't need recommendations for thoughtfully written mental health novels? Who couldn't use an inspirational quote or a fun haiku to brighten their day? You can enter one contest or all seven. I'm not expecting more than ten entries for most of these, so if you want a free signed copy of the novel, this is an excellent chance to score one. Note: if you already have a copy, these make great gifts :D

Challenge #1:
Bookstagram a mental health novel you felt was well done.
Requires Instagram. Read blog post for full details.

Challenge #2:
Tweet or Instagram one of your favorite inspirational quotes
Requires Twitter or Instagram (but not both.) Read blog post for full details.

Challenge #3:
Write a haiku about luck, tennis, dolphins, or burritos :)
Requires a blog comment or Twitter (but not both.) Read blog post for full details.

Challenge #4: 
Share a book that made you feel happy or empowered after reading.
Requires Instagram or Twitter (but not both.) Read blog post for full details.

Challenge #5: 
Make like Maguire and share one of your own fears, plus two strategies for working on it. Requires blog comment. Read blog post for full details.

Challenge #6:
Share the luck! Or your lucky charms anyway :)
Requires Instagram or Twitter (but not both.) Read blog post for full details.

Here's one of my good luck charms with my next release :)

Which brings us to:

Challenge #7:
Share the first six challenges.
Today's challenge is an easy-breezy Rafflecopter, with points for tweeting and retweeting.

Below it is a bonus Rafflecopter because I promised a bonus giveaway with this tour. Remember, all challenges go until the end of the month, so there's still plenty of time to enter as many times as you want :) 

Questions? Put 'em in the comments.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

DOUBLE BONUS GIVEAWAY: Don't miss a chance to win a copy of The Art of Lainey too :)

Wednesday, May 10, 2017

The Art of Lainey Three-Year Bookaversary

That's right, The Art of Lainey, my little paperback novel that could, the first book I wrote where I have the copyright, is turning three-years-old soon. Sounds like a good excuse to do a giveaway! :D

Soccer star Lainey Mitchell is gearing up to spend an epic summer with her amazing boyfriend, Jason, when he suddenly breaks up with her—no reasons, no warning, and in public no less! Lainey is more than crushed, but with help from her friend Bianca, she resolves to do whatever it takes to win Jason back.

And that’s when the girls stumble across a copy of The Art of War. With just one glance, they're sure they can use the book to lure Jason back into Lainey’s arms. So Lainey channels her inner warlord, recruiting spies to gather intel and persuading her coworker Micah to pose as her new boyfriend to make Jason jealous. After a few "dates", it looks like her plan is going to work! But now her relationship with Micah is starting to feel like more than just a game.

What's a girl to do when what she wants is totally different from what she needs? How do you figure out the person you're meant to be with, if you're still figuring out the person you're meant to be?

Here are my top ten reasons you might want to check out The Art of Lainey:

10. It might help you understand The Art of War (or make you want to read it, if you haven't read it yet.) Note: once you read The Art of War, you will start applying it to everything.

 9. The character of Trinity. That is my favorite name out of ALL the names, so you can bet she's made of win. Also, Trinity's cat shoes, which I own :)

 8. Sporty girls! Warning: this book might make you want to kick around a soccer ball or go for a run.

 7. Ms. Creant's House of Torture (and Pancakes.) I think that name speaks for itself.

 6. Book-boy Micah is a punk-rock baker with a tattoos and a mohawk. So basically, imagine if Peeta were actually hot. Heheheh I am so #TeamGale! :D #SorryNotSorry

 5. The strong female friendship between Lainey and Bianca.

 4. Lainey's wonderfully wacky parents who are present throughout and do parental things like talk about birth control and give their daughter a curfew.

 3. Laugh out loud moments. When you mix a preppy jock with a rocker boy and fold in a cast full of coffee shop misfits, hilarity is bound to ensue. 

 2. Girl power. This is not the story of Lainey picking a boyfriend. This is the story of Lainey picking a Lainey. There might be two boys, but this is not a love triangle book.

 1. Character development. Yes, Lainey is flawed and yes, trying to scheme warlord-style to win back your boyfriend is probably a bad plan. But sometimes you have to do the wrong thing before you can even figure out what the right thing is.

 0. Bonus! Once you're finished reading LAINEY, you'll want to read the 100-page, Micah-flavored prequel novella called INFINITE REPEAT and the totally free and so adorable you might spontaneously explode into glitter short story/epilogue NEW MUSIC. [Note: that should be a direct link to New Music so you can read it without a Wattpad account, but remember, it's like an extended epilogue, so reading it will spoil parts of the novel.]

Need more convincing? 
Here's what some other smart people think of the novel:

“Refreshingly honest, sweet and romantic. The love story is everything readers want—perfect for fans of Stephanie Perkins, but with an edge.” --Romantic Times Book Reviews

"Stokes does a good job with the sports subplots as well as the familial relationships. Lainey is a driven athlete who focuses on her passion, which is a refreshing change of pace." --School Library Journal

“A mesmerizing journey of discovery, navigating that slippery line between what one wants and what one really needs. Romance, wit, and highly relatable characters join forces to create one addictive story.” --Rachel Harris, New York Times bestselling author

You can even read the first couple of chapters here if you want a preview.

The Amazing Jaye Robin Brown drew this doodle in my ARC.
It's Lainey and Micah at the Arachne's Revenge concert :D

If you like fake-dating, enemies-to-lovers stories, squishy adorableness, soccer, pancakes, coffee shops, best friends, punk-rock boys, and/or ancient military strategy, you will (probably, I mean almost definitely, I mean there is a solid chance) L-O-V-E The Art of Lainey.

Enter below for a chance to win. US winner scores signed paperback. INT winner scores order from Wordery or TBD with signed bookplate mailed separately.

Remember, like Sun Tzu used to say, the only way to win is to recruit all of your friends and frenemies into battle alongside you and go on as many outrageous dates as possible along the way ;)

Good luck, and keep an eye out around the interwebz next week because I'm giving away seven--yes, seven!--lucky copies of Girl Against the Universe :)