Monday, November 5, 2012

Swell Blog Tour: Guest Post + Giveaway


Today kicks off the second week of the promotional blog tour for Swell, a contemporary young adult novel by Julie Rieman Duck. Julie is joining me on the blog today to talk a little bit about what life was like for her as a teenager, and how those experiences influenced her writing. Welcome to Supernatural Snark Julie!

People ask me where I come up with the ideas for my books. The first place I look – and have always looked – is my heart. See, in there you will find the secrets of my past when I was a young adult.

It was a magical time, because I had autonomy and was allowed to decide things for myself to some extent. While my parents weren’t strict with me (in fact, I was never grounded, restricted, or held back in any way and I know you’re jealous), I did have a few rules, like come home by midnight.

Looking back, I think that was about it, which would have been enough if I hadn’t had my heart shattered like ice crystal glass by the guy Christian Rusch is based on.

There is something about heartbreak and rebellion with teenage girls. We are so full of hope for the perfect love, the perfect look, the acceptance of our peers and ability to be grown-up. When these things are shot to hell by that cute guy who flirts with you, gets whatever he wants from you, and then leaves you, you can bet it matches the worst case of PMS devastation known to mankind. I think girls go nuts. We either cover our hearts with a shield and hide from the world, or we do what I did – pretend we were tough and covered our fears with something. In my case, it was alcohol.

Oh, I drank when I could. Pimping beer wasn’t always easy, but looking back it gave me great and truthful insight into what Beck does in SWELL. I wanted to hide so bad from my pain, and I am sorry to say I used alcohol to do it. Not everyone went my route, though. A girlfriend who went through something similar decided to sleep with every guy she met, which is on par with drinking as being dangerous for a young girl’s health. In any case, turning to something destructive usually results in destruction of the individual.

What were the consequences of drinking to hide my teenage heartbreak? Bad grades, bad decisions (like being all alone on the beach in the middle of the night, drunk and being followed by a strange man), and a loss of self. Who was I? Doing what I did certainly wasn’t the way to find out. But because I had a solid foundation before I messed up, I found my way out of the darkness eventually and went to college (and toward good grades, Dean’s List, decent boyfriend, et cetera).

The meaning of all this prattling (and I do love the word prattle) is that if you are young and life deals you a majorly big lemon, you might not have lemonade right away. Just stick a few of the seeds in the ground and sooner or later they’ll grow for you. One of them might even produce a book!

Thanks so much for stopping by Julie! More information on Julie and Swell can be found here:

Website
Blog
Goodreads
Amazon Buy Link

SWELL

 

When Christian Rusch plucks Beck Ionesco from the freshman ranks for himself, she’s tempted with parties, popularity, and love. But as the free-flowing booze that soaks his world seeps into her own, Beck begins using liquid courage as a way to ignore Christian’s dark moods… and cover her anxiety about his flirtatious friend Hillman.

However, when Christian breaks up with Beck, and Hillman makes a dangerous move, no amount of alcohol can stop the pain or keep her out of trouble. And just when it seems like she’s lost everything, Beck is partnered with Jesse Leary for an art project. After spending time with him, Beck realizes it’s more than a study date… and Christian’s not happy about it. Then again, Beck’s not sure she’s happy with him, either.

But only after plowing through a bottle of wine, a wild fight, and one guardrail that becomes Christian’s last call, does Beck admit to her problem and ask for help from the one whose life secretly parallels her own.

GIVEAWAY
Thanks to CBB Book Promotions, I have a very cool giveaway to share with you today, see all the details below, and don't forget to check out the full blog tour schedule HERE so you can check out all the fun upcoming reviews, interviews, and guest posts still to come. Good luck everyone!

This is a tour wide giveaway and ends 12/18/12.
 One person will win:
 (Open to US only)

- Paperback of Swell by Julie Rieman Duck
- Paperback of A Place in This Life by Julie Rieman Duck

 One other winner will win:
 (Open Worldwide)

- 1 ebook of Swell by Julie Rieman Duck
- 1 ebook of A Place in This Life by Julie Rieman Duck
- 1 ebook of The Joy and Torture of Joshua James
- 1 ebook of Earrings of Ixtumea by Kim Baccellia
- 1 ebook of Cornerstone by Misty Provencher
- 1 ebook (kindle) of There Comes a Prophet by David Litwack

a Rafflecopter giveaway

29 comments:

  1. Ahh this book sounds awesome and great! I love what you said about heartbreak ... everyone deals with it differently and yes, as a Teenager we are full of hope and love and excitement for the first "love" that it can be devastating when our hearts break!

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    1. It does sound good doesn't it? I'm really looking forward to picking it up:)

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  2. I do love her last paragrahp, so hopeful :)

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  3. Wow..this sounds pretty intense! I swear I nearly cried when I read Julie's guestpost...teenage heartbreak is certainly really hard to deal with especially when we're so full of hope that our first love is "the one". I'll definitely be checking out this book :)

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    1. I know. I haven't experienced that kind of heartbreak, so I can only imagine what it's like!

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  4. It's been on my TBR pile for such a long time now and I really want to read this book. Life inspired stories are always such a joy to read even if sad and depressed, because it seems even more real. Oh, and that sentence: "turning to something destructive usually results in destruction of the individual." - that is so true! Couldn't have said it any better myself. My parents luckily weren't that strict either and I'm glad they found balance between rules and freedom since I don't think I turned out so bad. Haha. And I definitely agree with Shirley - it was a pretty intense guest post! Being a teenager is not that easy at all. Especially being broken hearted, that never goes easier.

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    1. My parents were not strict either, I was allowed to come and go as I pleased, but I was pretty much as straight of an arrow as they come as a teenager, so I never really got into any trouble:) I can't quite imaging going through what Julie went through!

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  5. I'm not entering, but this book very dark and heartbreaking - I'm not sure I can handle it right now! Awesome guest post. It's nice when an author's own experiences shadow in their novels.

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    1. I can't handle it right now either, I'm in Disney movie type of mood so I need light and fluffy for a little while:) Still, I know I'll work my way up to this one and I'm really looking forward to it:)

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  6. I think girls seem to always have it worse than guys. The whole perfect concept is drilled into us whether by society or it's second nature to us. So it's hard when we see this ideal not within our grasp. I'm glad that the author is talking about the dark aspect of relationships. I think sometimes we need a wake-up call.

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    1. I like that it takes a closer look at a darker relationship as well, I think it's important for these to be portrayed given the prominence of insta-love in YA.

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  7. I have not heard of this book but it sounds awesome! I'm so into people falling in love with the "unexpected" person. Thanks for the giveaway!

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  8. I always love hearing personal information about an author's life. It helps give her book credence to know that she had a layered life as a teenager, one that wasn't always full of good decisions.

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    1. Me too! I think the book will have a lot more meaning knowing Julie experienced what Beck did:)

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  9. First of all Jenny, thanks so much for hosting! I will be sure to tweet and post on facebook.

    My parents were insanely strict and because of it I rebelled even more. I was constantly trying to find some way to alter my mind, whether it was drugs, alcohol or something else, I was always trying to find it. Fortunately I wasn't always able to find stuff and so I never became an alcoholic or anything. But once I was an older teen and moved out I went pretty crazy since I finally had my freedom and that's when things really went downhill. I managed to pull myself out of it before I officially ruined my life though.

    When I write I tend to take a lot from my own experiences as a teen as well. All that raw emotion is tied up in those memories and it makes it possible for me to put that on the page. When I just make stuff up without anything of myself in it, I just don't feel that emotion. I can twist my own stories into something else, but I always tend to put myself in it.

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  10. What a great guest post. I am not sure I would ever be able to identify what would be my inspiration. I love when authors are willing to answer that question. James Rollins once said that he just doesn't question where the stories come from and I never ask. I am just glad they get their stories from somewhere!

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  11. This is the type of book I'd shy away from, in all honesty. It sounds pretty intense, but I do look forward to reading reviews on it. For the right reader, it sounds like it could leave a big impression! :) Thanks for sharing the wonderful guest post too.

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  12. What a wonderful thing to do and perhaps teach others in the process. Taking your pain and turning it into an open moment like that. I have to say it made me more curious to read this book.

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  13. Very insightful. Heartbreak is touch no matter how old you are and self destructive behaviors as a result make it even worse. This was a very thoughtful post. I am looking forward to reading this for my blog!

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  14. Wonderful guest post - thanks for sharing! I loved this novel, so this post is truly such an eye opener and very insightful. I should have my review up of this one next week actually, so I'm thrilled you're part of this tour too! :)

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  15. Alcohol played a large role in my teen years, too, though it was fun for me rather than covering pain. I had a lot of older friends who were legal and I wanted to be like them (of course). But it definitely leads to some interesting story ideas!

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  16. Julie, I so admire your courage for putting yourself out there, both through your novel and in this post. SWELL is a powerful read - I highly recommend it!

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  17. Thank you for hosting my post, Jenny! And thank you to everyone who has read SWELL and/or commented here. It was not easy to write, but opening up about my dealing with alcohol dependence as a teenager was even more difficult. While I didn't become alcoholic, I did lose myself to experiences that were borne from drinking. Not everything in SWELL is my experience, but rather a mix of everything I and my friends went through. Sharing this with you has been the ultimate achievement of release. We can become better now if we stay in the now, if only because we learned from the past.

    - Julie

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  18. I hadn't heard of this book before now, but am looking forward to reading. Thanks for the giveaway and the info! xo

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  19. It's awesome that the author not only sought help and learned from her mistakes but had the courage to open up and share her story in a way. You know the issues highlighted will resemble reality more.

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  20. Oh, I can feel Julie's pain through this post. Teenage years can sure be painful! But I like her hopeful message.

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  21. Intense books are just my cup of tea right now and Swell sounds like something I might enjoy :) Thanks for the brilliant guest post too - I love hearing about authors' teenage experiences. Being a teenager myself I understand how difficult life can be sometimes. The pressure of school, parents, the desire to get good grades and experience love too! I haven't gone through heartbreak yet (thankfully :P) Thanks for the last message too - I will remember that!


    Fab post, Julie and Jenny!

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