All posts for the month January, 2014

Publication Date Change!

Published January 23, 2014 by christinenorris

I was just informed today that  they’ve decided to change the release date for A Curse of Ash and Iron. It will now be released in SEPTEMBER 2014. The publisher has a very good reason for the change, and though I know some of you were looking forward to July, it’s only two more months. Not so long.

I’m totally not upset by this. It allows me a bit of breathing room for promo and to set up book tours and gives me a summer to really make it special. Time for reviewers to really get a look at it. Two months is NOT long. Besides, the July date was right before a major American holiday, which would have made it tricky to set up a launch and stuff.

Hey, that’s publishing. No big deal. I originally was expecting something closer to September anyway.


Hallo and a BIG Thanks!

Published January 22, 2014 by christinenorris

I haven’t made a video blog in awhile. I thought though, with the BIG announcement, that it would be a good time to take them up again. So I made this one to just say HI! to all the new people and to give a big ‘in-person’ THANK YOU to all the people who made my press release day so special.

So here is is!

The BIG…HUGE…GINORMOUS Announcement!

Published January 20, 2014 by christinenorris

At long last I can FINALLY tell you. I’ve known about this for nearly TWO months, but because things needed to be coordinated, and the holidays happened, it’s had to wait until now.

Are you ready?


No, really.  Are you ready??

Wait, is that the phone I hear ringing…..


Oh, okay fine.


A Curse of Ash and Iron (the manuscript formerly known as Smoke & Mirrors)  has been bought by Strange Chemistry Books.

They are a UK publisher and the YA imprint of Angry Robot Books.  I spoke with the amazing and adorable Amanda Rutter, who is my editor, on the phone a few days ago, and I am SO VERY excited to be working with SCB. When it releases, the book will come out in the UK as well as North America (and I think Australia too, but I have to check on that).

It will be in print, ebook, and audio book! I’ve never had one of my books made into audio.

Thanks so much to my amazing, awesome, and alliterative agent, Jordy Albert. I couldn’t have done it without her!

A CURSE OF ASH AND IRON will be released in July 2014.

Yes, that says JULY. The book will be released into the world in JULY.

Wait?? JULY???

So much to do! Things to plan, things to make, things to buy. Dresses! I need Victorian clothing! Stat!


What’s different in the Second Edition?

Published January 17, 2014 by christinenorris

I realize that I said that the new edition of The Talisman of Zandria is REVISED! and EXPANDED!  But then I never really gave an example of what that means. So I decided to post a few snippets that compare the old version with the new one.

The opening, for instance, used to look like this:

Ivy Peterson was not ordinary. Nor was she extraordinary or unusual. Ivy Peterson was Less-than-Ordinary. At least she thought she was. With her mouse brown hair, plain brown eyes, and average height, she knew that she absolutely could not be picked out of a crowd of other eleven year olds. Even the small freckles sprinkled across her nose were Less-than-Ordinary. Ivy was so very Less-than-Ordinary that she sometimes felt invisible. 

It’s not bad, but it could be better. So now it is:

Ivy Peterson was not ordinary. She wasn’t extraor dinary or unusual, either. Ivy Peterson was, in her educated opinion, Less-than-Ordinary. If she were in a crowd of other eleven-year- olds, for example, she would not stand out. Her hair was not blond, or naturally curly, but the exact, boring shade of a field mouse. Her brown eyes were not the color of chocolate or brownies or cof fee, they were just brown. She was neither tall nor short. There were some small freckles sprinkled across her nose, but even they did nothing to pull her up to Ordinary status. Ivy was so very Less- than-Ordinary it made her invisible

Much more descriptive, I think. Draws a reader in and tells them exactly how Ivy feels about herself.  Here’s another example:

First edition:

While she lay there thinking – actually worrying about the next math test – she heard something strange. She popped her head out of the pile and looked around. She listened very carefully. After a moment, she heard the noise again. It was like a small bell ringing, but not quite, and it sounded close. The sound came from the woods that edged her backyard. Ivy stood up as quietly as possible, brushed the leaves off of her jeans, and tiptoed toward the woods. She stopped right at the edge; she heard it again, and thought that maybe her neighbors’ cat, Squiggles, had gotten loose again and she was hearing the bell on his collar. 

New edition:

She lay tucked inside the pile, breathing in the scent of moldy leaves and thinking. Actually, she was doing more worrying than thinking. She was worrying about her next math test, although math was her best subject. She was running numbers through her head when she heard a strange sound.

She sat straight up, destroying the leaf pile, and listened very carefully. Had she imagined it? Then, after a moment, she heard the noise again. It was like a tiny bell, but there was something odd about it. The sound, if her ears were working properly, had come from the woods that bordered her back yard. She stood, brushing the leaves from her jeans and picking them from her hair, and crept toward the woods. She stopped on the very edge, barely breathing so she could listen. She heard it again.

I’m being silly. It’s probably just Squiggles.

Her neighbor, Mrs. Horowitz, had a fat white cat who was always escaping. He wore a bell on his fluffy pink collar. No one had bothered to ask Ivy her opinion, but she thought maybe the reason Mr. Squiggles kept running away was because Mrs. Horowitz made him wear a fluffy pink collar and talked to him like a baby. But that wasn’t any of her business. 

Yes, a bit longer, but also a bit more interesting. These are just two tiny examples, the whole book is so much better now.  It’s a fun little adventure, so I hope you’ll give it a try. You can get it on Amazon, or B&N, or from Zumaya Publications.

A year ago…

Published January 16, 2014 by christinenorris

One year ago today,  there was a torrential rain. I chose a different way to work.  I ended up in a car accident. It wasn’t bad, except for my car.


But I ended up with a new car that I love.


Today I’m just thinking about how a simple 365 days can change A LOT of things.


A lot.

Ten Questions With…Tiffany Trent

Published January 10, 2014 by christinenorris

I have a teeny-weeny confession to make. I’ve had this interview for MONTHS. I’ve been hanging on to it, never seeming to find the time to get it up here. But that works out well, actually, since Tiffany’s new book, THE TINKER KING, comes out next month! I personally loved THE UNNATURALISTS, and I can’t wait to get my grubby paws on the next book 🙂

I also have a bit of a fan-girl squee here: Tiffany and I BOTH have stories in a Steampunk Fairy-Tale anthology, GASLIGHT AND GRIMM, coming from Dark Quest books later this Spring. *squee*

Welcome to the blog, Tiffany. Tell us a little about yourself, and about THE TINKER KING.

THE TINKER KING is a sequel to THE UNNATURALISTS and follows the adventures of Syrus Reed, Vespa Nyx, and their friends as they struggle with the consequences of their actions in the previous book. In addition to THE TINKER KING, I’m the author of THE UNNATURALISTS and the HALLOWMERE series. I’ve also published short stories, essay, and poems. When I’m not writing, I’m usually out playing with my bees, chickens, or garden.

How did you come up with the idea for this book? What kinds of things inspired you? 

We knew we wanted a sequel to UNNATURALISTS. So much was left unfinished and I felt that Fairyland naturally had a long history before the Victorians arrived that would certainly influence its future once magic was again free. I was very inspired by a trip I’d taken to the Forbidden City in Beijing in 2005. The older parts of the city of Scientia were definitely influenced by my time in Beijing and my longing to visit Xian.

Tell us something no one else knows about the book—a ‘behind the scenes’ moment.

There was a character in this book that I have tried to put in every UNNATURALISTS book, and once again, I ended up having to yank her out at the 11th hour.

If you could go anywhere with your main character, where would it be? What would you do?

Despite the dangers, I would love to sail the Winedark Sea with Vespa and friends to Newtonia and the deserts beyond which are the homeland of Piskel the sylph.

What are five things most readers don’t know about you?

I…don’t know what they don’t know. J

Pantser or plotter?

A little of both, frankly.
Favorite junk food?

Trying to abstain from junk food, but I do have an almost irresistible fondness for strawberry-flavored soft Australian licorice.

Camping or hotel with room service?

I can no longer camp with any degree of comfort, but a B&B or cabin with a supportive bed is great.

What’s next for you?

Working on a middle-grade novel.

Anything else you want readers to know about THE TINKER KING?

It has airships and a Kraken and…well, I guess they’ll see in February 2014!!