Monday, March 23, 2015

Cynsations: Guest Post: Author-Librarian Amy Bearce on Knowing Your Audience

I'm SO EXCITED to be a guest at Cynsations!

Cynsations: Guest Post: Author-Librarian Amy Bearce on Knowing...: By Amy Bearce for Cynthia Leitich Smith 's Cynsations One thing I learned while earning my Masters of Library Science and my school l...

Wednesday, March 11, 2015

Tuesday, March 10, 2015

SCBWI GERMANY + AUSTRIA: Interview and Giveaway with Debut Author Amy Bearce

I had a great time visiting with Patti for this interview!  Check it out!  Thanks, Patti!

SCBWI GERMANY + AUSTRIA: Interview and Giveaway with Debut Author Amy Bearc...: Today we welcome debut author and new Germany & Austria SCBWI member, Amy Bearce to the blog! Her book FAIRY KEEPER (Curiosity Quills P...

Thursday, March 5, 2015

Happy Birthday to FAIRY KEEPER! Out Today!

It's release day for my book!  It's strange, because I'm sitting here in Germany, without any copies of my book, but it's officially out there now.  Some of my friends have already gotten the emails saying their digital copy is ready to download.  My parents have gotten their paperbacks.  It's out there in the world now.  Remember that it's an upper middle grade fantasy, which means it's going to best suit those ages 11-14. But I hope it's a book that others can enjoy, too!

Here's the synopsis and the links:


Forget cute fairies in pretty dresses. 

In the world of Aluvia, most fairies are more like irritable, moody insects, and almost everyone views the fairy keeper mark as a gift. But not fourteen-year-old Sierra. She hates being a fairy keeper, but the birthmark is right there on the back of her neck. It shows everyone she was born with the natural ability to communicate, attract, and even control the tiny fairies whose nectar is amazingly powerful. 

Fairy nectar can heal people, but it is also a key ingredient in synthesizing Flight, an illegal elixir that produces dreaminess, apathy and hallucinations. She’s forced to care for a whole hive of the bee-like beasties by her Flight-dealing, dark alchemist father. 

Then one day, Sierra discovers the fairies of her hatch are mysteriously dead. The fairy queen is missing. Her father’s Flight operation is halted, and he plans to make up for the lost income by trading her little sister to be an elixir runner for another dark alchemist, a dangerous thug. Desperate to protect her sister, Sierra convinces her father she can retrieve the lost queen and get his operation up and running. 

The problem? Sierra’s queen wasn't the only queen to disappear. They’re all gone, every single one, and getting them back will be deadly dangerous. 

Sierra journeys with her best friend and her worst enemy—assigned by her father to dog her every step—to find the missing queens. Along the way, they learn that more than just her sister’s life is at stake if they fail. 

There are secrets in the Skyclad Mountains where the last wild fairies were seen. The magic Sierra finds there has the power to transform their world, but only if she can first embrace her calling as a fairy keeper.



Amy writes stories for tweens and teens. She is a former reading teacher who now has her Masters in Library Science. As an Army kid, she moved eight times before she was eighteen, so she feels especially fortunate to be married to her high school sweetheart. Together they’re raising two daughters and are currently living in Germany. A perfect day for Amy involves rain pattering on the windows, popcorn, and every member of her family curled up in one cozy room reading a good book.

Wednesday, March 4, 2015

Think Stew--Not Soup--for your Story

I have a confession to make.  I really don’t like soup.  It’s okay as an appetizer, if you are fancy enough at your house to actually serve your meals in courses.  I’m lucky to get one thing made for dinner, but when we eat out here in Germany, often you get a little cup of soup and a little salad before the meal and that’s fine and lovely. It’s delicious, for the ten bites it take to finish it.  It whets your appetite.  But you know what that little bowl of soup does not do?  It doesn't satisfy your hunger.

Now, let’s be clear.  Some soups might as well be called stews and I’m not lambasting those.  Pasta e fagioli, for example, is at its best when it’s thick and rich, with so many noodles and chunky goodness of veggies in there that you can stick a cracker in that sucker and it’ll stand up straight.  Chowders, chilis, stews:  All good.  Of all the liquid-based dishes, those work wonderfully.

I’m talking about soups.  Thin, runny, often all one thing.  Like split pea soup.  Why is that ever a good idea?

Free image from MorgueFile: by Max Staeten

Some stories are like that soup.  They do one thing really, really well.  They are super green and healthy  perhaps.  Or maybe they are like chicken broth—nice and nourishing when you’re sick, but without anything much in it.  And a little of that is fine.  But if someone puts a tureen the size of your head in front of you, filled to the brim with split-pea soup, I think you might turn green yourself. 

No,  what is better is STEW.  Broth, yes.  But also vegetables.  Maybe bits of chicken if you’re not a vegetarian.  Beans. Some pasta swimming around in there, too.  Maybe even some crusty bread to dip into it.  A stew has all sorts of things going on, offering a variety of flavors and textures to keep you engaged with your meal, and full for hours afterward.

A good story does the same thing.  It has strong characters, but also an enticing plot.  Some spice sprinkled in with dialogue or perhaps luscious world-building.  The meat of the stew is something you can sink your teeth into and it warms you on a cold day.  And it’s the kind of food that you happily remember the exact taste of even hours later, when your belly is still gurgling happily from your meal.

Write stew, not soup.


Monday, March 2, 2015

Goodreads Giveaway for FAIRY KEEPER!

Sign up this month to possibly win a free copy of FAIRY KEEPER! Whoohoo!

Goodreads Giveaway:

There will be more giveaways in the future, but this is the very first!  Go sign up and tell your friends!

Fairy Keeper by Amy Bearce