Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Ink Blog Tour: Author Interview + Giveaways


Today I'm hugely excited to be a part of the promotional blog tour for Amanda Sun's paranormal young adult novel Ink, which releases June 25th from HarlequinTEEN. Amanda was nice enough to take the time to answer a few questions for me, so I hope you all enjoy the interview:) Be sure and check the bottom of the post for a pair of unbelievable givaways as well as a full list of participating blogs so you can following along as the tour continues!

Drawings sometimes come to life in Ink when Katie and Tomohiro are in close proximity to one another. What one piece of artwork would you most like to see come to life if it were possible?

Great question! One of my favorite painters is Michael Whelan. I’ve always loved the vast fantasy landscapes he paints, and how creative they are, so I think I’d choose one of his paintings to come alive so I could visit. In particular I love “Sentinels,” “Landing,” and “Destiny’s Road.”

Is there a particular piece of information or a small tidbit about Japan’s history or culture that most surprised or fascinated you as you were researching?

I was actually really lucky with my research, because the myths and history keep lining up perfectly with the stories I want to portray in INK. For example, Katie makes a visit to Itsukushima Shrine for a variety of plot and author reasons—it’s an important shrine to the storyline, but I also wanted to feature it in The Paper Gods because it made such an impact on me when I visited it. I looked for a historical figure associated with the shrine, and found Taira no Kiyomori, who features in SHADOW and is mentioned in INK. The most interesting part? He was plagued by nightmares like Tomo’s, and all the signs lined up to them having the ink in common. I keep finding these figures that I can twist just a little to place my own Paper Gods mythology there without altering too much, and that’s what I love. It keeps you guessing—how much is real? :D

What country other than Japan would you love to use as a setting for a future story? Why?

There are a few I’m really interested in writing about. One is the Cook Islands. I think Polynesian mythology is so fascinating, and it’s such a beautiful, almost unknown place. So I would love to set something there. Another is Egypt, since I majored in Archaeology. ^_^ And the UK, where I’ll be doing some research this fall.

I love epic Fantasy too, though, so I have a couple Fantasy worlds in my head that I’m pretty convinced are real. ^_^ I love YA set in other countries because it’s such a different experience to read. But of course, I want what I write to be authentic, so it would involve a lot of research to get it just right!

If Katie and Tomohiro could only describe each other using colors, what three colors might they say most suit the other person?

Interesting! Tomohiro would be dark blue, black, and plum. I guess he’d look like the cover of SHADOW. Those colors come up a lot when the ink is coming to life. They’re beautiful colors, but a little ominous.

Katie would be pink for the more gentle side of her, red for her defiant streak, and yellow for optimism. Even though she’s been through a lot in SHADOW and INK, I feel like she’s always trying to reach for more in life, so I see her as someone who doesn’t give up.

If Tomohiro were to give you a lesson in kendo, what’s the very first thing he would teach you?

First would be stances, I think. How to move properly, how to hold the shinai so you don’t pull (too many) muscles in your arm, and the etiquette surrounding kendo. There’s a lot of weight in martial arts put on respect, how you enter the practice area, how to treat your gear, and how to show respect to your fellow competitors. So I’m pretty sure he’d go over all that stuff first.

The cover for Ink is absolutely stunning and makes me want to blow it up huge so I can hang it on my wall. What’s one other YA cover that makes your jaw drop when you see it?

First of all, thank you! I’m so glad the covers have been well received. I love them too and think the team did an incredible job capturing the feeling of the books.

There are two YA covers I just love. One is SOME QUIET PLACE by Kelsey Sutton. That cover is a work of art. It’s so eerie and beautiful at the same time, and I just love it. The other cover I love, which is also eerie and beautiful, is A MONSTER CALLS by Patrick Ness. It fits well with the feel of INK, too, so it just gives me shivers. Actually all the art in that book is stunning, not just the cover.

Let’s say Ink is going to be made into a movie and you’re put in charge of writing a tagline for the movie’s promotional poster. What would the tagline read?

You know, I’m going to cheat here and use the tagline my editor came up with for the series, because it’s brilliant and I think it’s the best one there is. “Ink is in their blood.” It gets everything in one go—a little sinister, a little literal, and a lot ominous. ^_^

Of course, I came up with a silly tagline a while ago which is fun too. I like to think of INK as a mini-vacation, making Japan accessible for those who may want to visit but be unable to at the moment. Which produced the tagline “INK—it’s cheaper than airfare!”

Thank you so much for having me on the blog! :)

• • • • • • • • • •

INK


I looked down at the paper, still touching the tip of my shoe. I reached for it, flipping the page over to look.

Scrawls of ink outlined a drawing of a girl lying on a bench.

A sick feeling started to twist in my stomach, like motion sickness.

And then the girl in the drawing turned her head, and her inky eyes glared straight into mine.


On the heels of a family tragedy, the last thing Katie Greene wants to do is move halfway across the world. Stuck with her aunt in Shizuoka, Japan, Katie feels lost. Alone. She doesn’t know the language, she can barely hold a pair of chopsticks, and she can’t seem to get the hang of taking her shoes off whenever she enters a building.

Then there’s gorgeous but aloof Tomohiro, star of the school’s kendo team. How did he really get the scar on his arm? Katie isn’t prepared for the answer. But when she sees the things he draws start moving, there’s no denying the truth: Tomo has a connection to the ancient gods of Japan, and being near Katie is causing his abilities to spiral out of control. If the wrong people notice, they’ll both be targets.

Katie never wanted to move to Japan—now she may not make it out of the country alive.

Find Ink


Find Shadow (novella prequel to Ink)


• • • • • • • • • • 

AMANDA SUN


I’m a YA author and proud Nerdfighter. I was born in Deep River, Canada, a very small town without traffic lights or buses, and where stranger safety is comprised of what to do if you see a bear—or skunk. I started reading fantasy novels at 4 and writing as soon as I could hold a pencil. Hopefully my work’s improved since then.

In university I took English, Linguistics, and Asian History, before settling into Archaeology, because I loved learning about the cultures and stories of ancient people. Of course, I didn’t actually become an archaeologist—I have an intense fear of spiders. I prefer unearthing fascinating stories in the safety of my living room.

The Paper Gods is inspired by my time living in Osaka and travelling throughout Japan. That and watching far too many J-Dramas. I currently live in Toronto with my husband and daughter. When I’m not writing, I’m devouring YA books, knitting nerdy things like Companion Cubes and Triforce mitts, and making elaborate cosplays for anime cons.


• • • • • • • • • • 

GIVEAWAYS


Thanks to Kismet Book Touring and HarlequinTEEN, I have two spectacular giveaways to share with you guys today. The first is a chance to win one of 9 copies of Ink, and the second is a one-of-a-kind authentic Japanese Yukata (see above picture). Isn't it gorgeous? Filling out the Rafflecopter form below enters you to win both giveaways, good luck everyone!

a Rafflecopter giveaway
Don't forget to follow along with the remainder of the tour for more interviews, reviews, and chances to win!

Tuesday, May 28th – Supernatural Snark 
Wednesday, May 29th – Page Turners
Friday, May 31st – Reading Angel

Monday, June 3rd – Alice Marvels
Wednesday, June 5th – Chapter by Chapter
Friday, June 7th – YA’s the Word by Katja

Monday, June 10th – Bewitched Bookworms
Wednesday, June 12th – Oh Chrys!
Friday, June 14th – Melissa Watercolors

47 comments:

  1. Ooh I haven't read INK yet but this interview with Amanda Sun has certainly got me pumped for when I read it next month! I agree with Amanda, I love YA settings where it's set in different countries, but it is definitely hard to pull off. I love the color descriptions for her main characters! And LOL at her personal tag line for Ink. Loved this interview, thanks for sharing, Jenny! :)

    ReplyDelete
  2. Such a cool questions, what colors would they be. Got me thinking

    ReplyDelete
  3. I'm intrigued by the Japanese setting!

    ReplyDelete
  4. It's awesome the author actually saw the shrines she used as a setting and that the mythology lines up with what she wanted in the story:)

    Lovely interview:)

    Thank you:)

    ReplyDelete
  5. I was really interested in this book and then I've heard some not so great things for it. Still the book really sounds interesting and the author seems really nice. Also once again you asked some amazing questions. Great interview Jenny :)

    ReplyDelete
  6. Ink is in their blood - wow! That would be one heck of a tagline. Jenny, you just slam these questions every time. Gah, I wish I was you, lol. Anyhow, I'd love to read something more from Eastern culture and mythology other than Japan or China which are the most popular. I really liked the colors Amanda chose for Tomo and Katie -- I can easily see those colors representing them in every aspect of their lives. Loved the interview! I can't wait to see your review:) Luckily this time around, I have already read the book and my review is written so I can read your thoughts without the fear of them clouding my judgement. PS. I hope you have fun at BEA!

    ReplyDelete
  7. Is this giveaway international?

    ReplyDelete
  8. Ooh, I love that this is set in Japan and Polynesian mythology sounds so fascinating. Lovely interview, Jenny!

    ReplyDelete
  9. I LOVE this cover -- I was drawn to it the first time I saw it. The Japanese culture is fascinating to me and I look forward to reading this intriguing book!

    ReplyDelete
  10. Super interested to read this!

    ReplyDelete
  11. This cover drew me in the first second I saw it, and it's next up in my review queue, so I'm really excited to hear the background of mythology. Fantastic interview, Jenny :)

    ReplyDelete
  12. I love the cover on this and the premises. I am really hoping this turns out to be a great read. I haven't seen too much on it yet but I am looking forward to giving it a try!

    Fun guest post/interview!

    ReplyDelete
  13. Ooh love the tagline question! And yes, I agree that is a wonderful tagline for the book (and a movie if there is gong to be one). I totally just googled those Michael Whelan paintings—so lovely! And I hadn't yet seen the Shadow cover, so thanks for linking to that. It's so gorgeous. Wonderful interview ladies! :-)

    ReplyDelete
  14. OMG OMG OMG OMG OMG OMG TRYING NOT TO FREAK OUT OMG OMG OMG OMG.

    I just LOOOOOOOVEEE Amanda soooooo much!!! Wonderful questions! I seriously how Tomohiro is dark blue and plum~~~~ Can I claim him now~~??? ヽ(愛´∀`愛)ノ

    ReplyDelete
  15. I so love the cover! I cannot wait to read Ink. Thanks for the giveaway!

    ReplyDelete
  16. *-* I'm so corious to read this book! I love the cover and the setting, i love Japan!!

    ReplyDelete
  17. Can't wait to get the book and great giveaway!

    ReplyDelete
  18. I cannot wait to read this book! <3

    ReplyDelete
  19. Wonderful interview and I loved the fascinating info regarding Japan and the shrine. Totally agree the cover is gorgeous!

    ReplyDelete
  20. It seems as if the author has really done her research.. I'm definitely going to get my hands on this now !

    Great interview Jenny :)

    ReplyDelete
  21. Nice interview Jenny! As always you ask the best questions. And thanks so much for the giveaway!

    ReplyDelete
  22. Jenny you rock the interview!!

    I had to look up Michael Whelan. I knew the name and couldn't place it until I saw his artwork. I have seen his artwork/illustrations and enjoy them too!

    Love the color descriptions as well. Can't wait to read the book!

    ReplyDelete
  23. The Japanese mythology really drew me in when I first heard about this book. I haven't read anything about that culture and Ink sounds amazing. Plus, I love the tagline the author came up with. So true :)

    ReplyDelete
  24. I love books that takes place in other countries! And this one sound incredibly unique! I think I might like this one and I'm definitely adding it to my WL!

    ReplyDelete
  25. This is a fab guest post Amanda, I always love learning about whats influenced an author to write their novel in the first place and I also love the fact that there was so much research involved in making Ink appear as realistic as possible! :)

    ReplyDelete
  26. Very nice interview

    ReplyDelete
  27. Ooo this is very interesting. I haven't read a book about this kind of folklore. Can't wait to read it!

    ReplyDelete
  28. Thanks for the giveaway. Please enter me. I would love to read this book. Tore923@aol.com

    ReplyDelete
  29. I've seen this one around a LOT without actually really knowing much about it. I'm definitely fascinated, now!! Plus I had no clue the author was Canadian -- awesome! That actually makes me more likely to pick it up.

    ReplyDelete
  30. Sounds awesome! Thanks for sharing :)

    ReplyDelete
  31. I've heard some say that Ink was bad, but I want to be the judge of that, so I'm entering this so I can decide for myself.

    ReplyDelete
  32. I love the cover of Ink and it sounds like a interesting story,
    I would love to win a copy and that Japanese Yukata is gorgeous!
    Thanks for the giveaway.

    ReplyDelete
  33. That is a very freaky exerpt!!!!

    ReplyDelete
  34. Great excerpt! Sounds like a terrific book!

    ReplyDelete
  35. This looks so great! Thanks for sharing with us! I adore that cover as well.
    Books like this make me wonder whether the author had any influence from friends and family while writing it.
    Thanks for the giveaway!
    mestith at gmail dot com

    ReplyDelete
  36. I love the cover and this sounds like an amazing read!!

    Jolene A

    ReplyDelete
  37. Super questions! And answers :) Love the tagline "Ink is in their blood", it really does work on so many levels.
    Katja @ YA's the Word

    ReplyDelete
  38. I absolutely love the book cover and I've dying to read it too.

    ReplyDelete
  39. I'm really looking forward to reading this book, the cover is simply amazing and it's set in Japan! What more can you ask for LOL looking forward to reading reviews on Ink for those that were lucky enough to get ARC.

    ReplyDelete
  40. Great interview!! I have been dying to read this book..thanks for the giveaway!!

    ReplyDelete
  41. That is so cool that your research lined up with what you wanted to write so well! Clearly ti was meant to be.

    ReplyDelete
  42. Cannot wait to read Ink! And I will be keeping my eyes open for a Polynesian inspired story coming from Amanda in the near future! I will be researching its mythology and history in the meantime, so that I will be ready for it!

    ReplyDelete
  43. I am so enamored of everything to d with Japanese culture and so the blurb for INK definitely captured my attention. With all the new mythology based novels, I have not come across one in a very long time that is based on Japanese mythology. It definitely sounds like a fascinating story and I am very much looking forward to reading it. The cover is also gorgeous. Thanks for sharing and for the the amazing giveaway!

    ReplyDelete
  44. Great interview. This is the first Japanese book that I will have read. I've read manga, but never any actual books that have to do with the Japanese culture. Looking forward to reading this one.

    ReplyDelete
  45. Really interview you gave here. Thank you for sharing.

    ReplyDelete
  46. I Love the Q&As in this interview. They seem to perfectly highlight the originality of the Paper Gods series. There is so much about Japanese history and culture that fascinates me. The Paper Gods series sounds mesmerizing. I very much looking forward to reading it.

    ReplyDelete
  47. Great author interview and giveaway!! I can't wait to read this book. <3

    ReplyDelete