Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Year in Review: 2013

Good-bye 2013! It's been a roller coaster year. This year I spent a lot of time setting down the stepping stones for myself.

This year I:

 --Career: Changed jobs. I left Valve after 8 years and worked on about five games. Highlights: making Portal and Portal 2.

 --Joy: My boyfriend proposed to me in the Cascades!

 --Travel: I went to England to research, driving 1000 miles.

 --Tragedy: Two weeks before my novel release, tragedy struck my family. Someone very close to me nearly died. The person is recovered now and it's reminder to me to always be thankful.

 --Debut: I spent most of the debut month in the hospital due to the tragedy. Despite the challenge, I released CLAN--a healthy debut with a nice review from Kirkus, over 1000 copies sold, and making it on Amazon's best seller list for Young Adult Sci-Fi eBooks. Nearly all of the royalties were given to charity this year. Thank you, everyone--your support meant the world to me.

To close the year, today I have sent off CLAN's December royalties to the Cancer Research Institute.

CLAN is no longer my book, but yours. Dear readers, if you've read the book and enjoyed it, please do consider taking the time to review it and to share it with your friends. 

Whether you've followed me for my video games, art, or my novel, I hope you'll stay tuned for more of my creations. There is more to come and I'm excited to have begun this journey.

Yours,


--Realm

Sunday, December 22, 2013

CLAN - Happy Holidays!

Hello everyone! I hope you enjoyed the blog tour that ran this month and thank you for making CLAN rise to second place in Amazon's Young Adult Science Fiction best seller list for eBooks! Please note that CLAN will go back to it's regular pricing on the 26th--enjoy the discounted price while you can.

If you missed it, there's still a chance to enter the giveaway for a signed paperback and illustration.

Today Book Marks the Spot reviews CLAN! A quote from the review: "The other clones reaction to Twain's differences really made me think of some other prejudices that have come to pass in our world due to differences in appearance or culture.(read the rest here.)

I offered CLAN for free for two days last week and I have some more gifts for you!

Firstly, I am offering another donation. All royalties earned thus far in December plus this week until the 28th midnight will be donated to the Cancer Research Institute--which is a nonprofit organization





In CLAN, genes are a huge theme and how each of us are born with certain genes we cannot control. We can hope that advancement in science and technology and medicine can help cure the consequences of genetic mutations. I am also making the donation in memory of my Grandmother, who I lost in 2009 to cancer. If you buy a copy of CLAN this week, please know your money is going toward the research for a cure. 

Secondly, here is a CLAN snowflake that's actually in the book. Save it, print it, and use it as a stencil--BUT only try if you're super skilled with scissors or a blade. The small negative spaces are really tricky:





Excerpt from CLAN with this snowflake in it:



Buster reached for a book and began flipping through it with a curious expression. His elbow bumped some kind of ornament. It fell with a clunk. He picked it up. It was a glass orb with a miniature tree inside and white, small dots flying around in the water.
Buster shook it, causing the white things to swirl. “What’s this?”
“Hmm…” Twain narrowed his eyes as he searched his memory. “Oh, my sponsor told me once that on Earth, it snows. It’s like rain, only frozen.”
“No way.”
“Yeah. That must be a representation of ‘snow.’”
Buster inspected a white paper cutout that was next to the orb. “This?”
“That’s snow, too. It’s the ice crystal. My sponsor was fascinated with the idea that no two crystals were the same.” The paper’s shape looked like humans all around a globe, holding hands. Twain suspected that his sponsor had made it. In some ways he missed the little odd things his sponsor had done. It had always made him curious about a world that was bigger than theirs.
Wonder took over Buster’s face. “You think I can keep it?”
“Why not?” Twain shrugged.
Buster put the paper in his pocket.
“Why do you want to keep that crap?” Chad grumbled.



If you're up to making some sugar cookies from CLAN, try making 'em man-shaped:





I made these for my CLAN book release party!

Excerpt with the CLAN cookies:



Twain took his plate of three homemade cookies in the shape of stick figures. Each cookie had its own face. He still couldn’t believe that his sponsor had tampered with the food, concocting baked goods that were against the law. Twain didn’t understand why his sponsor defied the norm—his action was not a good example. Twain left the room, wanting to be anywhere but with his sponsor at that moment.
Once in his room Twain leaned against the closed door. On his plate the cookie men smiled at him with their carved mouths. Twain had never seen his sponsor or any other Clan smile. He spiked the plate onto the ground. Taking in a shaky breath, he bit his lower lip, trying to compose himself, but this only re-opened the cut there. He tasted blood.
The cookies cracked under his heels… duplicate cutout men, broken into a million pieces.



You can also make a garland of paper men from the book to decorate for the holidays:






Excerpt with paper men:



Twigg pointed at the Y-shape on his shirt: the Clan symbol. “I was named after this symbol. It doesn’t just represent the Y-chromosome—it’s a broken twig. You see, when cloning was first introduced on Earth, a man held up a twig and broke a piece of it off to show what cloning meant.” Twigg motioned to the tree sculpture behind him. “Even though the branch was segmented, it still belonged to the same source and was still the same wood it came from. Knowing this, I think that no matter what, we will always be Unified, even in difference.”
Twain’s eyes landed on the metal tree. He noticed something wrapped around it—it had been decorated with cutout paper men, holding hands.



Happy Holidays everyone!!!!


--Realm 

Friday, December 20, 2013

CLAN - On Amazon: #2 Best Seller in Young Adult Science eBooks!

What a surprise! For the current moment, CLAN is #2. Thank you so much, everyone! I hope you'll all enjoy reading CLAN and if you haven't grabbed a free ebook yet, now's your chance!




--Realm

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

CLAN - eBook is Free for Two Days!

Hello, everyone! As an early holiday gift, I am giving the CLAN eBook away for free on 12/19 Thursday and 12/20 Saturday! 

There are multiple advantages to downloading a free book: you could read it on the plane ride to your holiday destination, read it over winter break, or pass the eBook around to your friends and family. I hope you guys enjoy CLAN! 

You can download CLAN here and read the reviews. Today, The Nerdherd Reads posted an informative review that you can check out here. (Plus it comes with an animated gif!)

Also, don't forget the other blog posts going on today and tomorrow! Enter the giveaway for a chance to win a signed paperback, illustration, and other prizes.

I'm starting my winter vacation and am excited to read in front of the fire and revise my second book. I hope you're all having a nice start to the holidays! 

Cheers,


--Realm

Friday, December 13, 2013

CLAN - Blog Tour Day 5!

Hey, guess what's in my favorite Seattle local newspaper The Stranger?




Did you spot the CLAN ad? :)

For Friday:

Next week the tour resumes again--stay tuned!

Have a nice weekend!


--Realm

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

CLAN - Blog Tour Day 3 + 4!

Today's links include two book reviews! 

Day 3:

  --Leanna Reviews CLAN!


Also, prize winners are starting to receive their prizes--like these happy winners! I hope you're enjoying the tour so far!


--Realm

Monday, December 9, 2013

News Week - 12/09/13 - Blog Tour Day 1!

Hello everyone! I got a letter in the mail from Holiday Stockings for Homeless Children. Thanks again for everyone who bought a copy of CLAN during November--your money went to a good cause.



I shipped all the CLAN prizes! If you won something, I hope you enjoy 'em! There's a chance to win more prizes with the YA Bound Tour, starting today.




  --Today editor and writer Taryn Albright interviewed me on my publishing journey! I hope you check it out.

  --Book blogger and reviewer Candace is having a blogaversary giveaway! She is giving out a ton of signed books as prizes (including CLAN). I hope you enter the raffle!

  --CLAN's YA Bound Tour starts today! There will be reviews, excerpts, art, and a raffle. I hope you'll enjoy the tour! Be sure to check out the excerpt from CLAN over at Literary Meanderings

Enjoy!


--Realm

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

CLAN - Five Values of Clan

Did you enjoy the Intro Blog Tour for CLAN? Each of my author friends revealed an illustration of the Five Values of Clan that I drew. I am now revealing the final illustration!

Unity. Above all else, Clans value the concept of Unity.


"...in Clan, we rely on each other. We’re cogs operating the machinery of our civilization. What another does reflects everyone else. We, individually, represent the whole at all times; we are cells in one body. This is why you trust the Clan next to you without having to know anything about him.
--Luge, from CLAN    











The other Values:








What do you think? Did you like the artwork? Got a favorite? You can win all five of the illustrations in postcard form plus more prizes.

a Rafflecopter giveaway



--Realm

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

CLAN - Intro Tour Stop 4

Today my friend and fellow YA author Gretchen McNeil is interviewing me on my writing process and revealing the 4th Five Values of Clan illustration. Do you like scary books? Read Gretchen's horror books! 

I hope you enjoy the interview! It's the final stop for the Intro Blog Tour. Don't forget to enter the raffle! The raffle ends Thursday night. 

Cheers,


--Realm

Monday, December 2, 2013

News Week - 12/02/13 - Free eBook

Heads up! CLAN eBook is free today!

  --Last week, CLAN was on Kotaku--my favorite gaming news site. Thank you for sharing CLAN, Kotaku




  --Yesterday I donated all of my earned royalties for CLAN to Holiday Stockings for Homeless Children. Big thanks to everyone who purchased a copy of CLAN. Also my friend Beth Lopez is doing a fundraiser for Dunlap Elementary School's homeless families. If you are interested in donating, please contact me and I'll forward you Beth's email.  

  --Today is Cyber Monday! That means today CLAN eBook is... free! Take it!

  --If you miss the free eBook today, you have the option to get the eBook for free after your paperback purchase. You can gift one or the other, or both! 

  --Book Reviews: I hope you'll check out Candace's review form and sign up to review CLAN! It comes with a giveaway raffle that you can include in your review (between December and January).

  --Tuesday: it's the last of the Intro Blog Tour! The awesome author Gretchen McNeil is interviewing me on my writing process!

  --Wednesday: I am revealing the final Five Values of Clan! Plus it will be last call for the CLAN merch raffle! The raffle ends on Friday.

Thank you,


--Realm

Monday, November 25, 2013

News Week - 11/25/13 - A Week of Giving Thanks!

This week:

Royalties earned thus far for CLAN (both eBook and paperback) will go to Holiday Stockings for Homeless Children. All royalties earned this Thanksgiving week until 11/28 midnight PST will be donated. I have spent time in the homeless shelter as a child and was very grateful when presents were donated to my family--without the donations, we wouldn't of had Christmas. It's important for me that I can help out through something that I created and worked hard on.  



Also I want to say thank you to everyone who's been so supportive and helped spread the word about CLAN. Thank you very much! 

Last Week:

CLAN was selected for Best Books: Kirkus Stars & Recommendations!

Candace reviewed CLAN! Check out her review here.

Author Courtney Summers interviewed me.

Author Kristi Helvig interviewed me.

Book Blitz began. 

Winners of the Clan trailer reveal giveaway were posted! If you didn't win in this raffle--no worries! There's still the Intro Blog Tour raffle going on!

Stay tuned for December! Blog tours continues as usual!



--Realm

Thursday, November 21, 2013

CLAN - Intro Blog Tour Stop 3

Kristi Helvig and I have two sweet things in common--we share the same awesome agent, Jessica Regel, and we both wrote a YA sci-fi. Please check out Kristi's upcoming book BURN OUT--it looks so freaking badass. That cover!

Kristi is interviewing me today on world building (since she's a fellow world-builder herself!) and revealing an illustration of one of the Five Values of Clan. There is an ongoing raffle for prizes!

Enjoy,


--Realm

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

CLAN - Intro Tour Stop 2

Courtney Summers is an awesome person and an incredible YA writer--I love her work because it has a dark edge and it's fun to read. I interviewed her a long time ago and illustrated her character. If you've never read her work, I hope you check it out at her site!

She is interviewing me about my creative process for CLAN today and revealing an illustration of one of the Five Values of Clan. I hope you check it out! Don't forget the raffle!


--Realm

Monday, November 18, 2013

News Week - 11/18/13

Just got back from the Clan Book Release party! Pics to be posted soon. A lot happened last week and a lot is happening this week! This post will make it easy for you to navigate through all the recent happenings.

Now: Book Blitz is on! Hosted by YA Bound.

Tuesday: My friend and author Courtney Summers is interviewing me about the creation of CLAN plus revealing one of the Five Values of Clan.

Thursday: My agent sister Kristi Helvig (who also has a YA sci-fi coming out!) is interviewing me about world building and revealing one of the Fives Values of Clan.

Last week:

CLAN was released and is now on Amazon! (The paperback is $7.50 right now!) Plus it's starting to get reviews! If you get a chance to review CLAN and enjoyed it, a review will very much be appreciated!

CLAN's book trailer was revealed! Don't miss out on the giveaway to win the Kindle Fire! I've added more prizes since there are a lot of entrants. The giveaway ends Thursday night. 

Author S.R. Johannes interviewed me about art and marketing and revealed the first Five Values of Clan! 

Don't forget the raffle happening for the Intro Tour! A lot of new CLAN merchandise was made.

I hope you enjoy all the events!


--Realm


Thursday, November 14, 2013

CLAN - Intro Tour Stop 1 + Clan merch raffle!

Hello, everyone! The intro tour has begun. Author S.R. Johannes (aka Shelli) is revealing one of the Five Values of Clan (illustrated) and she interviewed me on art and marketing. I hope you'll check her blog post out!

Kickstarting with Shelli, another raffle has begun!

Below are the prizes:

A set of the Five Values of Clan signed postcards (only one illustration is revealed so far, hence question marks!):



12/05 UPDATE:

Here are all 5 revealed illustrations!




A super prize pack with signed paperback, Clan button (with the the Clan symbol), and a signed illustration from the paperback:





And one winner will get a Clan t-shirt inspired by the book cover:






What's your favorite? Enter the raffle below!


Thank you for visiting! Please do check out Shelli's blog. Next up is Courtney Summers on Tuesday!


--Realm

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

CLAN - Trailer

Here's the book trailer! I made the book trailer using the artwork I drew for the CLAN paperback. The music is by Kevin MacLeod. Don't miss the raffle at the end for a chance to win the Kindle Fire HD!

Please enjoy.



What do you think?

If you share this video (or do some other task listed below), you enter a raffle to win the Kindle Fire HD and many more prizes! 

Enter below:

a Rafflecopter giveaway



Thank you!


--Realm

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

CLAN - Happy Book Birthday!

CLAN is born! Hurray! 







Click here for the paperback! 

Click here for the ebook!

Stay tuned--tomorrow I am posting the book trailer!

In the mean time... here's some Clan-inspired party music!






Everyone--thank you so much for being a part of my journey and for your support.

I hope you enjoy the book as much as I enjoyed writing it and I can't wait for you to meet Twain, Buster, and Chad. 

Thank you so much and I'm looking forward to your feedback. If you enjoyed CLAN, please help spread the word and post a review. 

As always, email me comments at: rtlovejoy (at) yahoo (dot) com

Yay!


--Realm


Monday, November 11, 2013

CLAN - Pre-Release Info + Illustration Samples

Woo! CLAN is out tomorrow! 

I am providing some info here in advance so you can decide which format is right for you.


Where can I buy CLAN?

Amazon. CLAN may be available in other outlets in the future. 


Is CLAN illustrated?

The paperback is illustrated by me with 25-30 black and white illustrations. If you enjoy illustrations and want a hardcopy on your shelf, this is a good option. Illustration samples will be in the trailer (will be up Wednesday). For an example of the paperback, here is the link to my proof copy.

The eBook is text-only without illustrations. (This has to do with digital distribution constraints, but it may change in the future.) For those of you who just want to read the story and don't need to see pictures--the eBook is a good option.

Here are some paperback illustration samples:







How much will CLAN cost?

Until 12/26, the ebook (not illustrated) is 99 cents. The paperback (illustrated) is $8.99Please enjoy these discounts until 12/26!

Also, you can borrow an ebook for free if you are an Amazon Prime member. I will also have a whole bunch of raffles going on for a chance to win a paperback copy or a signed paperback. 



What time will CLAN be available?

Unfortunately, I have no control over the exact time. You'll likely see the ebook on sale tomorrow morning. 

The paperback will be available on the CreateSpace page for purchase tomorrow, though for a short time it may lag to show up on Amazon. In the meantime, I will link the CreateSpace page once it's available.



If you have any questions and/or feedback, email me: rtlovejoy (at) yahoo (dot) com

I am very much looking forward to sharing CLAN with you!


--Realm

Thursday, November 7, 2013

CLAN - Paperback Proof

The paperback proof arrived a while ago. It's surreal to see the book... all the years of writing and drawing for CLAN bound up into glued paper. I'm very pleased with the paperback and I hope you will be too!




Hurray!


--Realm

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

CLAN - Blog Tours

Hello, everyone! Well, guess what... CLAN will be out next week! 

There are a few online book events happening for CLAN.

For the kickoff, my fellow writer pals are going to be a part of the Five Values of Clan propaganda poster reveals. Each of them will reveal one poster with one of the values along with interviews, and I'll reveal the final one. Think of it as an introduction to CLAN!




Secondly, YA Bound is hosting the CLAN Book Blitz during November 18th-25th. Please sign up if you're interested in participating! 





Finally, the great big tour happens December 9th-20th, again hosted by YA Bound. If you're a book blogger, I hope you'll join the fun! Click here for the tour sign up.





I hope you will enjoy these events and thank you for your support,


--Realm