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Shadow in the Sea

Readers will return to Windwaithe Island once again. When sixteen-year-old Sadelyn Hanson washes up on the shores of Windwaithe Island, her beauty and the strange marks on her wrist make superstitious locals suspect she is a mermaid. Feigning amnesia, Sade hides a far worse secret: she was sailing to her own murder trial when she was thrown overboard by the real killer, the cunning and cruel Captain Westwood.

Sade's quiet effort to rebuild her life on the island is threatened when she meets an actual young merman. Unable to speak his language, Sade still longs for the warm companionship he offers, despite the locals' dire legends about merfolk and their dark magic. But her confused feelings for the impossible boy become the least of her problems when Captain Westwood's ship docks at Windwaithe. With nowhere to escape, Sade must trust in the one person who doesn't fear the merfolk. A woman who had dealings with them herself—years ago

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Amazingly Talented Young Fans

I received the most wonderful Christmas gift from a young fan named Anastasia who read and loved Forbidden Sea this year. Pictured above is the front and back view of a necklace she made for me. Isn't it stunning? Now I can carry Adrianne with me everywhere I go. Thank you so much, Anastasia, for such a beautiful and rare gift!

S0 many of Forbidden Sea's young readers are overflowing with talent. Another gift I received this year was a book of poems written by the Pickwick Society, a group of talented young writers ages 7 to 12. They read Forbidden Sea together and then decided to each write a poem about it. Afterward they presented me with a beautifully finished scrapbook of their work. I've scanned each poem and included them here so the rest of you can read and enjoy them as well.

*SPOILER WARNING* The poems are about the Forbidden Sea and sometimes give away small parts of the plot. Read at you own risk. : )

Thanks for all your hard work, Pickwick Society. I will never forget you!
And if there are any other young fans out there who have been inspired by Forbidden Sea--send me a scan of your fan art or pictures of your unique creations and I'll post some of them on this blog for everyone to enjoy.

Saturday, December 11, 2010

Storybook Nook Book Signing

I had so much fun at my book signing today! The Storybook Nook is a darling little independent bookstore full of fun books and toys. I was introduced to screaming flying monkey toys and let me tell you--I so want one for Christmas now. I also got to meet lots of readers and book lovers while I was there. One teenage girl had not only read Forbidden Sea and loved it, but she had created the most beautiful necklace featuring Adrianne, the main character. She offered to make one for me. If she does I'll post a picture of it on this blog. It was just amazing. The Storybook Nook had only one copy of Forbidden Sea left by the end. I'd say the event was a huge success. A big thank you to all of you who came out to meet me today.

Friday, December 3, 2010

Forbidden Sea Book Signing

For those who might be interested, I will be visiting the Storybook Nook at Gardener Village to have a book signing on December 11th. I will be there 1:00pm - 3:00pm. Those who visit with me can get their name in a drawing to win a one-of-a-kind handmade miniature mermaid necklace. I will also be handing out adorable sea creature shaped lollipops to anyone brave enough to come up and talk to me while I'm out there. Books will be available for purchase, but even if you don't buy the book, come on by and just say hello.

The Storybook Nook's address is:

100 W. 7800 S.
Jordan, UT 84088

Hope to see you all there.

Friday, November 19, 2010

This is for All You Scott Westerfeld Fans!

I was invited as an author to attend the Teen Book Fest for Provo City Library this year. The keynote speaker was Scott Westerfeld.

(Can I just say here how much I LOVED his Leviathan series!)

His speech was not just informative but it was hilarious as well. For those of you who love Scott Westerfeld and his books as much as I do, click the link below to see a video of his keynote speech that day. The introduction at the beginning has her introducing the other authors at the event. Listen carefully and you will hear my name called out!

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Dixon Middle School Visit

I was invited to attend a Fall Reading Festival at a local middle school on Wednesday. Three other authors besides myself were invited to participate and I must say, it was SO much fun!

We started off the day with two school assemblies. The students had written down some questions and we authors had to give our answers before an auditorium that was filled with students. We then were invited to eat lunch with a select group of students, all of whom were interested in becoming writers themselves someday. Cafe Rio was served--yummy! Each table was dedicated to the author who was eating there and was decorated accordingly.

The mermaid table was for Forbidden Sea.

The tennis shoe and money table was for Kristen Landon, author of The Limit.

The wolf table was for Kristen Chandler, author of Wolves, Boys, and Other Things that Might Kill Me.

The dragon table was for Clint Johnson, author of the Dragon Codex series.

After lunch we broke out into four smaller groups and discussed with the kids our writing process and how you go about getting published. The kids were then allowed to ask us authors questions one on one. The picture below is of one of these sessions.

Below is a picture of the lovely lady, Leann Moody, who put this whole event together and three of the authors who attended this year. (left to right: Kristen Chandler, Kristen Landon, Leann Moody, and Sheila Nielson.)

Just in case you were wondering why our fourth author is not in the picture, Clint Johnson doesn't like to have his photograph taken. Photographs of him are rare. The kids were starting to speculate that maybe he was a vampire and he just doesn't show up in photographs if they are taken of him. : )

This is a picture of one of the two assemblies. The auditorium was packed!

Sunday, October 31, 2010

Teen Book Fest 2010

Yesterday my library put on its first annual Teen Book Festival. Scott Westerfeld was the keynote speaker. If you haven't heard Mr. Westerfeld speak in public before--he is a RIOT! I especially loved hearing about how he came up with the idea for writing his Levianthan trilogy (which I love) and how he and the artist, Keith Thompson worked together to create such an interesting world. There were many local authors invited to speak and do book signings as well. I was one of them. Some of the other authors that came to present were: Ally Condie, Brandon Sanderson, Carol Lynch Williams, Brandon Mull (who I sat next to during Mr. Westerfeld's speech), Sara Zarr, Jessica Day George, Bree Despain, Kristin Chandler, and many more than I could possibly list here. Hundreds and hundreds of teens and their parents came to the Teen Book Fest. You should have seen some of the lines for the author book signings. Scott Westerfeld's line went on forever. The building was so packed you could barely get around from place to place. My favorite part of the evening was getting to talk to the teens in the question and answer sessions. My favorite question was "Don't you get rich when you get a book published?" I quickly explained that unless you are J. K. Rowling or Stephanie Meyer--most authors definitely have to keep their day job. They seemed a little disappointed by my answer. : ) Because it was the day before Halloween, all the kids and authors came dressed in costumes so they could take part in the costume contest and win some prizes. I was a steampunk Victorian lady in honor of Scott Westerfeld's visit. (See picture above) The whole event was such a success I think the library will be putting on another one next year.
Hope I'm invited again!

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Cybil Awards Nomination for Forbidden Sea!

Forbidden Sea has been nominated for the Cybil awards! This is an award given out each year by book bloggers for the best books of the year. Click the link below to see all the nominations for this year. A special thank you to Rebecca since she was the blogger who liked my book enough to nominate it. I don't know Rebecca personally, but I do know her fantastic blog--check it out by clicking here.

Here is the list of Cybils where you will find Forbidden Sea:

A lot of those titles I haven't read yet. Guess I'd better get cracking.

Sunday, October 3, 2010

New Update! Forbidden Sea Deleted Scenes and Changes

Now that many of you out there have actually read Forbidden Sea, I thought it might be fun to post a few behind the scenes facts and deleted scenes that were changed or taken out of the book during the revisions process.

*Spoiler Warning* Do not click the links below unless you have read the book!

Click here to learn more about changes that were made to Forbidden Sea during the revisions process.

Click here to read deleted scene Part I.

Click here to read deleted scene Part II

Click here to read deleted scene Part III

Click here to read deleted scene Part IV

Click here to read deleted scene Part V

Keep your eye on this post--I will be adding more links to deleted scenes from Forbidden Sea as the weeks pass.

Sunday, September 26, 2010

Fantastic Book Review Guest Post

I was invited to do a guest post for Tina over at the Fantastic Book Review. For those who haven't had a chance to check out Tina's fabulous blog click the link below and take a peek. I was asked to write about why we find mermaids so fascinating.

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Daily Herald News Article

Just taking a quick moment away from my exciting vacation to post this news article about Forbidden Sea that was run today in the Daily Herald. Click here to read the article. I'll write more when I return from London!

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Taking a Much Deserved Vacation

I'm off to London for the next few weeks! I can't tell you how much I am looking forward to this trip. Things have been pretty crazy for the last couple months as I've been working like crazy to promote Forbidden Sea. It has been a long time since I've taken a REAL vacation where I can just enjoy myself. Unfortunately, I will have only limited access to the Internet while out of the country and I will not be able to update this blog or answer my emails regularly until I return. So if I'm slow to answer you in the next few weeks, please be patient. I'll catch up when I get back.

Wish me luck!

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

School Library Journal Review!

I just got my first peek at School Library Journal's review of Forbidden Sea in their September issue. They loved it! School Library Journal is one of the biggest tools youth services librarians use when purchasing materials for their libraries. It means a lot to an author to get a good review in their magazine. I've read SLJ's reviews for years as a librarian myself, but I never imagined that one day MY book would receive such a great review there! Click here if you'd like to read the review for yourself. There are quite a few reviews so you'll have to scroll down the page a bit to the find the Forbidden Sea review. The list is in alphabetical order by last name of the author. Look under "Nielson" to find it.

Saturday, August 21, 2010

Book Signing At Mockingjay Midnight Release

I will be one of several authors who will be hanging out and signing copies of their books at the Borders Store in Riverwoods mall in Provo this Monday, August the 23rd. Borders is going to have a midnight release of Mockingjay for all those who are dying to get their hands on a copy of Suzanne Collins third novel in the Hunger Games series. So if your going to be out that way, come on in and stop by my table to say hello. I'll be there from 9:00pm to midnight.

See you there!

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

The Mysterious Blog

Someone else found the Mysterious Blog today. What is the Mysterious Blog, you ask? Don't you wish you knew? It's not hard to find if you know where to look.

Good luck!

Saturday, August 14, 2010

Mother Daughter Book Club

I was invited to come as a guest speaker to a local mother daughter book club last week. They chose Forbidden Sea to be their book this month. It was one of the loveliest experiences of my life. When I came into the hostess’ house, her daughter was in the living room playing Under the Sea from the little mermaid on her very own harp. It was beautiful! What a talented young lady. My favorite part of the evening was when the moms and their daughters went around and told me their favorite part of the story. This was my first chance to really talk to actual readers in my target audience and find out what they felt as they read my book. The girls were adorable and the mom’s were amazing. I got much more out of the experience than they did, I’m sure. What an honor.

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Interview Over at 21 Pages

I was asked to do an interview over on the 21 Pages YA Review Blog. They have a Beach Read Summer Reading Challenge going on over there that sounds like a lot of fun. It will continue until August 30th, so it isn't too late to start if you'd like to join in. If you would like to read my interview click here to check it out.

Thanks for letting me be a part of your challenge, Ladies! Love the blog, by the way, and those fabulous questions were lots of fun to answer. You made me miss Califorina and the beaches of my youth. Now I'm going to have to read a beach read to make myself feel better. : )

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Reviews Abound

Rebecca's over at Rebecca's Book Blog has posted her review of Forbidden Sea. Click here to read it. Rebecca is the first blogger to contact me about Forbidden Sea. Its publication hadn't even been officially announced when she emailed me to find out more about the book. Talk about doing your homework. If you have never visited Rebecca's Book Blog before, you should head over and take a peek right away. This is one woman who is on top of all the newest titles as well as a few hidden gems you might have missed. Thanks for the great review, Rebecca. So glad you liked Forbidden Sea. If they ever decided to publish the sequel, you'll be one of the first ones I send out an ARC to!

Monday, July 19, 2010

Rock Canyon Writing for Charity Event in Utah

If you live in Utah and love to write children's books, this post is for you.

Every year all the children's authors and illustrators who call Utah home get together and put on a charity event. This is my first year participating! The event is being held at the Waterford School in Sandy on August 21st. There will be LOTS of authors and illustrators there to present workshops, speak on panels and answer all your questions, as well as critique your manuscripts. Lunch is included in the price of registration. All proceeds from registration costs go toward buying books for underprivileged children.

If you are a children's writer or illustrator, do not miss this unforgettable event! Click the button located in the right column of this page to find out more.

Friday, July 16, 2010

This is One for All You Teachers Out There

A friend (who is a teacher back in my old neighborhood in San Jose) recently wrote to me, asking if I remembered any of my elementary school teachers encouraging me in my drawing and writing when I was young. The answer to this question is most certainly a yes. In fact, I still remember that one special teacher's name.

Mrs. Corbett, my first grade teacher, was more than just a teacher, she was my friend and champion. This woman had the patience of a saint. I was not an easy child for a teacher to have in her class. I couldn't sit still two seconds together, I couldn't stop talking, and half of the time my mind was off wandering through the many worlds of my own creating. Getting me to focus was like like trying to hold down a bank of fog. As for getting me to remember to bring back my homework from the day before--forget it. And when I did manage to finish a paper, it was usually covered with so many doodles and sketches it couldn't be read without great difficulty.

Mrs. Corbett not only liked me, she liked having me in her class. This angelic woman actually arranged for me to be put into her class for second grade the following year. And when I moved on to third grade she sat my new teacher down ahead of time and explained to them how to get the best performance out of me. She told them that if they were patient with me I would work my heart out for them in time.

And she was right.

Mrs. Corbett took the time to get to know me. She would ask to see my drawings, even when she'd just caught me doodling one in class when I should have been studying. Instead of getting mad, she would hold the picture in her hands, looking down at it as if it were a fantastic treasure. She'd put up my work and praise it in front of others. She would listen to my stories and ask me questions about them, sincerely interested. She never tired of my childish rambling. She made me feel like my creative side was something wonderful and special--not something that was useless and annoying. She used to tell me that someday I would do amazing things with my talents.

I wish with all my heart that could meet Mrs. Corbett again now that I am grown. I wish I could hug her tight and thank her, with tears in my eyes, for all she did for me. For making me believe I could do anything if I put my mind to it. She will probably never know how much of an influence she made on one small doodler in the back of the room. Or that this doodler now has a book published which is dedicated to all those who encouraged this author in her starry-eyed dreams. Mrs. Corbett, wherever you are, you are definitely one of those most important people.

Forbidden Sea is lovingly dedicated to you.

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

A Couple Wild Weeks!

Wow! What a couple of amazing weeks this has been. I've been doing a flurry of promotional visits and book signings around Utah and it has been so much fun. The pictures above were taken at my very first book launch at the King's English Bookshop. They had starfish cookies with teal green icing. Too bad I didn't have a chance to taste one. I was too busy signing and they went real fast. Last night I had another book event at the Provo City Library. I loved meeting all the wonderful people who came to support me. The seats were full to capacity and some people even stood up in the back to listen. I loved sharing Forbidden Sea and talking about how it was created. Afterward I got to sign books and talk to each visitor first hand. To me that was the best part of the whole evening. They sold out of copies of Forbidden Sea there were so many people there. The Mayor of Provo came. He even bought a copy of my book! Talk about an honor!
And it's not over yet. I've got more events scheduled for this month and I can't wait.

Saturday, July 10, 2010

Today is Forbidden Sea's official Book Launch!

For all those who live in Utah, today King's English Bookshop is holding a book launch to celebrate Forbidden Sea's release. I will be doing a reading from Forbidden Sea, answering questions, and signing books for all those who are interested in attending. The launch starts at 2:00 pm. Click here for more info and a map of how to get to the bookshop. See you there!

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Samples of the Forbidden Sea Soundtrack

This post is especially for Alex over at Tales of a Teenage Book Lover who wanted me to put together a list of some of the songs I listened to while writing Forbidden Sea in order to create the right mood for the story.

SPOILER WARNING: There are some spoilers involved with the explanation of each song so just click the links and listen to the music by itself if you have not yet read the book.

A lot of the songs I listened to while writing Forbidden Sea came from the movie, The Time Machine. (Hated the movie, but LOVED the soundtrack.) Here are just a couple examples:

Eloi from The Time Machine soundtrack was the song I played as I wrote about Adrianne seeing the mercity for the first time. I felt it caught the magic and wonder of a new and alien world.

Click here to listen.

Godspeed from Time Machine soundtrack was the song I would often listened to while writing about Adrianne herself. I felt it captured the sweet sadness of her life and the hidden strength inside her.

Click here to listen.

I felt Reflections by Tim Janis spoke of Windwaithe's Island's endless ocean and untamed beauty.

Click here to listen.

The Promise by Tim Janis was how I pictured the moment when Adrianne enters into the great hall of the underwater palace.

Click here to listen.

Return to Innocence by Enigma was Jendayi's theme song. The irresistible call and primitive power fit her perfectly. You can even hear the whale if you listen closely.

Click here to listen.

Denn and Adrianne's theme song was Teardrops on my Guitar by Taylor Swift. Though it is a modern song, I felt it spoke of Adrianne's feelings for her dearest best friend perfectly. Replace the name Drew with Denn in your mind and you've got the idea.

Click here to listen.

This is only a small sample of some of the many songs I used. So now I'm curious. If you were to create a soundtrack for Forbidden Sea--what songs would you include?

Forbidden Sea is Out in Stores Today!

Forbidden Sea was officially released today. In the spirit of celebration, I have two links to brand new reviews of Forbidden Sea.

Alex over at Tales of a Teenage Book Lover has his review of the book up now. Click here to view it. I was stunned and amazed when I discovered Alex is fourteen years old. He writes so well, I would not be surprised if he becomes an author one day himself someday. He even has a a video of himself reviewing Forbidden Sea on YouTube. Click here to see it.

And Juju at Tales of Whimsy has her review up as well. Click here to see it. I adore Juju's blog. It just has a cozy feeling about it. The same feeling you get when you curl up on a rainy day with your favorite Jane Austen book.

In the months to come, I will be posting some fun inside information about Forbidden Sea--including deleted scenes and fun facts that never made it into the final write up of the story. An author always knows so much more about her characters and their backgrounds then can ever be told in just one book. I also know what happens to Adrianne and the gang in the future.

But that is another book entirely! : )

Now everybody run down to your nearest library or bookstore and request they buy Forbidden Sea as soon as possible! : )

The Winner is!

The Forbidden Sea ARC contest is now CLOSED.

I wanted to thank all of you who responded to this contest! Especially those of you who took the time to post, tweet and otherwise help to pass the word along. All those who did got their names in the drawing twice. One thing having a book published has taught me is that the book blogging community on line is filled with warm and friendly people who all share a deep love of books. It has been wonderful getting to know some of you. Even though I have never met you in person--I consider you to be my friends. Because of this, I have a hard time just wanting to pick one of you to win whenever I have a contest. I wish I had enough ARCs to share one with everyone. But Alas, it is not to be.

So without further ado, the winner of the Forbidden Sea signed ARC is:


Looks like that second entree paid off for you this time, Bookaholic. : ) Congratulations and I hope you like Forbidden Sea!

And for those who didn't win this time around, it is your lucky day. Juju of Tales of Whimsy is now holding a contest to give away one gently used ARC copy of Forbidden Sea on her blog. Click here to find out more.

Thanks Juju for your lovely review! I knew you had to be a kindred spirit the minute I saw your gorgeous blog.

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Sneak Preview

Amazon has now posted pictures of the first few pages of Forbidden Sea on their website. If you want to read just a little bit of the prologue and first chapter, you can go there now by clicking here.Make sure to click on the "Look Inside" tab above the picture of the cover.

Friday, June 25, 2010

Forbidden Sea Signed ARC Giveaway!

Now Closed.

With less than a week left before Forbidden Sea hits the store shelves, I thought it was time for me to hold one last ARC giveaway. By hook and by crook I've managed to get my hands on one more advanced reader copy and I'm now going to give it away here on this blog. I will be holding a random drawing on July 1st, the day Forbidden Sea comes out. This ARC will be a signed copy. Because this is a special giveaway to commemorate the coming out of my book, I've decided to open this drawing internationally. My pocket book may hate me, but I want everyone who wants to enter to get a chance. So how do you enter? Just leave your name and an email contact in the comments below.

Good luck to all!

P.S. If you have a blog, I'd really appreciate your posting this contest on it to help get the word out and get everyone excited for Forbidden Sea's release! For those who are willing to do so, I will put your name in the drawing for the signed ARC twice. Just make sure to post a link to your blog in comments along with your email so I will know who to enter twice. Thanks in advance!

Thursday, June 24, 2010

I Guess It Must Be Good

Today I was working on my newest story on my lunch break and one of my coworkers sat down and wanted to hear some of what I was writing. I read just one little part of my ghost story (a rather creepy part actually) to her. This was the first time I let anyone see this story so I was a little worried what she would think. While I was reading, one of my other co-workers came over and started to listen. Before I knew what was happening, they had set up an appointment to come over to my house on Saturday so they could hear more of the story. I warned them that it doesn't have an ending yet--but that doesn't seem to matter much to them. So I guess the story must be half way decent after all if two library employees can't get enough of it. It not like they don't have access to real published books or anything! : ) It was rather satisfying all the same.

Thursday, June 17, 2010

And Even More Buzz Around the Internet

Liyana at Liyanaland has posted her review of Forbidden Sea. Since Liyana has never read a mermaid book before, I feel this positive review is a particular triumph for my novel. : ) Thanks for the great review Liyana!

Click here to read her review in full.

Friday, June 11, 2010

Two Book Signings in the Future

Only two and a half weeks to go before the release of Forbidden Sea. I've got two book signings already lined up. If you happen to live in the Utah area, feel free to stop by for an evening to fun. I'll be meeting with the public, talking about my inspiration for Forbidden Sea, and answering questions. There will be a book signing afterward for those who are interested. Books will be available for purchase both days while supplies last.

Click here for more information on the Provo City Library book signing on July 12th 7:00pm-8:00pm.

Or if you live closer to Orem Public Library, click here for more information about the book signing that will take place there on July 20th at 2:00pm. Make sure to click on the "authors" link to get the information.

Mark your calendars and I hope to see you there!

Saturday, June 5, 2010

I've Been a Busy Girl

Click on the pictures to get a closer look.

I finally finished the sculpture of the mermaid in my story.

First off, I have to say that she photographs funny because of her unusual skin color. The dark green skin looks a lot cooler in real life than it does in these photos and I can't figure out why. You can't see her makeup too well in these pictures. (The clay has a sort of shimmer to it that reflects the light weird, I think.)

Every one of those green braids was hand braided by myself. Each and every one has a gold bead attached to the end of it. It took me longer to do the hair than all the rest of her combine. You can't see it in the photo, but she has gorgeous variations of color threaded subtly through the braids.

She is currently on display at the Orem Public Library. If you live in the area, feel free to pop by and take a look in person.

You might have noticed that the way she looks doesn't exactly match the cover of the book. All I can say is, she looks the way I described her in the story. Authors don't get a say in what their book's cover looks like. They don't even get to talk to the artist. If you like the way the mermaid looks on the cover better, feel free to imagine her any way you want when reading the book.

I won't be the least bit offended. : )

Sunday, May 30, 2010

I Love A Good Challenge

A debut author's best friend is "google alerts". That is how I know when ever someone writes anything about Forbidden Sea on the internet. Without it I couldn't keep on top of who is saying what about my book.

Today I found this fun Summer reading challenge on the Life After Jane book blog. The one thing I miss most about living in California (where I grew up) is not having the beaches around, especially during the Summer. When you read Forbidden Sea you will find my life long love affair with the ocean in my discriptions of the sea. The wonder and beauty of the ocean lingers in my heart even though I live far away from it now. The beach always held a magic and romance for me that has never left. So here is a Summer reading challenge that takes after my own heart. You have to read ten books that have a water theme before the end of the Summer! Since I will not be able to get down and visit California's beaches this year--I guess this is the next best thing. If you are feeling up for a challenge, feel free to click on the link above and join in the fun!

P.S. Forbidden Sea counts!

Thursday, May 27, 2010

More Reviews

Only one month left until Forbidden Sea is released to the public. It's getting down to the line and more and more reviews are surfacing. I've been pleasantly surprised by the good buzz surrounding Forbidden Sea. Here are a few new reviews I discovered online lately:

SWON Library Review - To read this review click here.

Kids World Review - To read this review click here.

Random Buzzers - To read this review click here.

Thanks to all you great reviewers out there! For those heading down to BEA this week, don't forget to drop by the Scholastic booth and ask for an ARC of Forbidden Sea. As for those who are still waiting to get your chance to read Forbidden Sea, it won't be long now.

Friday, May 14, 2010

UK Cover--Let's Take a Vote

The final UK Cover for Forbidden Sea can now be seen on Amazon UK. Click here to see what it looks like! So let's take a vote. Which one do you like best? The US cover (the one showing on this page) or the UK cover? Make sure to list where you are from with your vote--I'm curious if where a person lives really does affect what style of cover they like. Let me know what you think. Be honest now. You won't hurt my feelings. I had no say what so ever on either cover.

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

They Way it SHOULD Have Ended

Have you ever read a book that after finishing it, you wished you could rewrite the ending? I have. More times than I can count. I’ve often wondered if this is because I’m a writer or if this is something that happens to a lot of people when they read books.

Take the Wren series by Sherwood Smith for instance. I loved this fabulous series when I was younger, but I always felt that Wren and Prince Conner would have been a perfect match. I read the whole series just waiting for the moment when they would finally “discover” each other. It never happened, and I was left feeling just a little bit cheated because of it. Still loved the series though.

Then there was the Emily of New Moon series--my absolute favorite series of books when I was young. However, you wait so long through that series to see Teddy and Emily fall in love and get together that when they finally do--the story ends so fast you don't even get to see the wedding. Come on, we readers should at least get the pay off of attending the wedding and basking in the glow for one chapter! After all, Teddy had put so much time and effort into his engagement with Ilse before it was broken, he should have done even more for Emily, his true love. Am I right? What can I say, I'm a die hard, hopeless romantic.

The Girl with the Silver Eyes by Willo Davis Roberts was another book I loved growing up. I wanted that book to have a sequel so bad, as a kid, I could almost taste it. What happened to the four kids after they went away to school to learn how to use their powers? What adventures did the four of them have growing up together? The world will never know.

So what about all of you? What are the books you wish had ended differently? How would you have liked them to end instead? I want to hear all about it in comments.

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

And Even More Reviews

Another review has turned up, this one from Kiss the book. The reviewer this time is a middle school student. It's extra fun to see what my target audience has to say about Forbidden Sea. Check it out by clicking the link above.

Scholastic must be handing out the ARCs left and right these days because reviews of Forbidden Sea are popping up all over the internet. Here is one from Ellie over at Ellz Readz. Thanks for your kind words Ellie--so glad you liked it. And if anyone else liked the book and is planning to write a review in the near future, send me an email when you do and I'll be sure to put a link to it here.

The mermaid sculpture doll I've been working on is almost complete. She has turned out beautifully, even if I do say so myself. : ) I'll post pictures of her as soon as she is finished.

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Dreaming of Books ARC Giveaway

Jenny over at Dreaming of Books is currently hosting a giveaway of a Forbidden Sea ARC! If you’ve been dying to get your hands on a copy of Forbidden Sea before the release date in July, this is your chance! Jenny has also posted an in depth review of Forbidden Sea as well as an interview with me. Click here to head on over to Dreaming of Books to enter the ARC contest and read her review. By the way, Jenny, love your new blog layout!

Monday, April 12, 2010

I Need Some Title Suggestions for Great Middle Grade Novels

I'm going to be putting on a library program for middle grade girls in the near future and I need some suggestions for titles of GREAT girl books. These can't just be good books, these have to be the best! Something that any girl in 4th to 5th grade would absolutely adore. The titles have to be found in the children's section of the library not the teen section, so things like Twilight are out this time around. If any of you fantastic book bloggers and readers out there have any suggestions for me--I'd love to have you add them to comments below. And list as many as you want, I'm desperate here. : )

Thanks in advance for all your help.

Friday, April 9, 2010

Library Patrons and Book Buyers Rule the World!

Novelist's recent comment about going in and requesting her library to purchase Forbidden Sea got me thinking. As a librarian, I have seen first hand the power library patrons have if they take the time to actually go into their local library and put in a formal request for a book to be purchased. When someone takes the time to ask for a book, the librarians in my library do everything they can to try and fulfill the person's request. Heaven and earth moves and the book is bought. It's like magic.

I'll tell you a library secret, I've often wished more people would place requests for books, that way we librarians would know what it is that people in our city are interested in reading. The other reason I wish they would is because we often don't have a certain book I want to read--but when I put in a request as a librarian--they tend to ignore it. After all, I'm just one of their coworkers. What do I know about what people really want to read? :) But if a patron puts in a request for the same book, we usually have it within a few weeks! So here is your chance to stand up and use your library patron power--go into your local library and put in a request for that book you've really been wanting to read! What can they do but say no? And odds are real good they will buy the book if they possibly can. Then you finally get to read that fantastic, to-die-for book you've been wanting to read for months.

Sounds good to me.

Saturday, March 20, 2010

Reviews of Forbidden Sea

There is nothing more exciting (and frightening) to an author than reviews of their book. Reviews are the feedback you've been waiting for--a sign that someone has actually read your book and that all your hard work has finally paid off. Not all reviews are good, of course. Some are down right vicious at times, but then you can't please everyone. (One of my all time favorite books is To Kill a Mockingbird, and it is one of the most banned books around.) I've included some links to reviews of Forbidden Sea below. I'm only going to link to the good reviews, because, hey, this is my blog and I choose to focus on the good not the bad. : )

Most of these reviews do not have spoilers, but a few do--so read at your own risk.

Ossining Public Library - My first real teenage reviewer! How exciting!

Goodreads Reviews - Thank you to all the readers who took time to write down what they thought of my book on Goodreads. You guys actually brought tears to my eyes as I read these awesome reviews. Being a librarian I've often used Goodreads for my work, but I never thought that I'd be reading reviews of my own book on there someday!

Cinjoella's Review - Librarian's are the best! Not that I'm prejudice or anything. : )

Two and a Half Book Lovers - Raspberry and Trackgeek of Two and a Half Book Lovers also asked me to do an interview which you can read about here.

La Femme Reader Review - Thanks Eleni, the book may not have been your cup of tea, but your review of it was completely honest and fair, which makes me value your opinion all the more.

More coming soon . . .

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Great News! Gotta Share

I have exciting news I've been wanting to share here on this blog, and now I officially can. Forbidden Sea is about to go international. Scholastic UK has picked up the book and it will be published in the UK in August 2010. They even made a new cover. I'm not allowed to post it on this blog yet, but when I can, we'll all have to take a vote and see which cover everyone likes the most. The best part of all is that I was already planning my very first trip to London for later this year. Talk about fantastic coincidences. I could not have planned it better if I tried.

Monday, February 22, 2010

Mermaid Sightings (Believe it or Not)

Looks like the real mermaids are stirring in Israel. I wonder if one of them is the mermaid from my story? Click the link below to learn more about this bizarre phenomena.

A one million dollar reward is nothing to sneeze at. Quick, everyone grab your best mermaid costumes and cameras and head to the beach! It's mermaid season.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

How Do You Buy Books?

It has finally happened. Forbidden Sea is offically featured in the summer 2010 Scholastic catalog our library just recieved. It makes it seem more real, somehow, seeing my book in a catalog.

As the day of my book's release draws ever near, I find myself very interested in how people purchase their books. Recently a friend of mine took the time to explain the strange mystery that is Amazon rankings and I discovered that they pretty much don't tell you a whole lot when it comes right down to it. So I've decided to ask all of you expert book purchasers out there how do you buy your books? Online? Which sites? Or do you like going into a bookstore personally to pick up your copies? Which stores do you prefer? At the library I work for, most of our books are ordered from Baker and Taylor. But we do use other providers as well. The other thing I'd like to know is how early in advance do you like to purchase your books? Really early or right after they come out? Or do you like to wait and see reviews of books or check them out of a library first before making a purchase?

Inquiring minds want to know.

(c) 2010 Sheila A. Nielson

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