21 September 2016

Baltimore Book Festival Here I Come!

If you're heading to the Baltimore Book Festival this weekend (September 23-25), come say hi! I'll be at the SCBWI (Society of Children's Book Writers and Illustrators) booth from 3-7:00 p.m. on Saturday, September 24. 

I'm looking forward to meeting readers, writers, teachers, librarians... YOU! I'll have a pile of bookmarks to hand out, and will also be giving away three copies of Between the Notes. Hope to see you there!

10 September 2016

If you've read BETWEEN THE NOTES and want a signed bookmark, I'll send you one!

All I ask is that you leave a review somewhere... preferably Amazon (where the mysterious algorithms that suggest books to readers don't kick in until you've reached 50 reviews or more, apparently). Or you can leave a review on Barnes & Noble, or another favorite bookseller site. 

The last of my bookmarks! I've ordered some more, smaller ones... 
but if you want one of these, share a review now and I'll send one 
while supplies last!
Just post your review and email a link or a screen grab to me, along with your mailing address. I'll personalize and sign a bookmark and pop it in the mail to you! 

19 July 2016

Goodreads Giveaway of BETWEEN THE NOTES!

Hi! Hope everyone is having a fun summer. I'm mostly spending time in my garden lately, contemplating what I want to write next, and hanging out with my family. Oh, and offering this giveaway on Goodreads!

Goodreads Book Giveaway

Between the Notes by Sharon Huss Roat

Between the Notes

by Sharon Huss Roat

Giveaway ends August 18, 2016.
See the giveaway details at Goodreads.
Enter Giveaway

16 June 2016

BETWEEN THE NOTES + Friends Bookmark Giveaway

It's June 16, my official "bookiversary" (it's exactly one year since Between the Notes came out). I'm hosting a fun giveaway this week of bookmarks. 


From left to right, that's:
Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda by Becky Albertalli
Mosquitoland by David Arnold
The Night We Said Yes by Lauren Gibaldi
Girl Against the Universe by Paula Stokes
Fiona by Meredith Moore
How it Feels to Fly by Kathryn Holmes
The Distance Between Lost and Found by Kathryn Holmes
Between the Notes by Sharon Huss Roat
Sky scraping by Cordelia Jensen
None of the Above by I.W. Gregorio
For the Record by Charlotte Huang
Liars, Inc. by Paula Stokes
Under the Lights by Dahlia Adler
The Serpent King by Jeff Zentner
Crossing the Line by Meghan Rogers

I've read many of these books and loved them... others are on my TBR pile! Here's a closer look at their beauty:

You can enter on Twitter or Instagram. I have twenty sets of bookmarks, so will award ten winners on Twitter and ten on Instagram. (Enter both places told double your chances!)

Contest ends at midnight EST on June 23. The winners will be announced the following day.

Good luck!

01 June 2016

Happy Bookiversary! Celebrating my debut year with some favorite books of 2015...

My first bookiversary is coming up on June 16! (That's the one-year anniversary of the release of Between the Notes.) To celebrate, I'm hosting a book giveaway with author friends! 

To enter, go to Twitter, Facebook, or Instagram and retweet or comment by June 6 for a chance to win all seven books. Tag a friend for an additional entry, and triple your chances of winning by entering on all three social media outlets! 

Here's a little snippet of the Goodreads descriptions for each of the featured books, which are some of my favorites of 2015. I absolutely adored all of these books, in very different ways. Thanks to these fabulous authors for participating in my bookiversary celebration!

Fans of John Green and Matthew Quick: Get ready to die laughing. Denton Little’s Deathdate takes place in a world exactly like our own except that everyone knows the day on which they will die. For Denton, that’s in just two days—the day of his senior prom. Debut author Lance Rubin takes us on a fast, furious, and outrageously funny ride through the last hours of a teenager’s life as he searches for love, meaning, answers, and (just maybe) a way to live on.

by Dhonielle Clayton and Sona Charaipotra
Gigi, Bette, and June, three top students at an exclusive Manhattan ballet school, have seen their fair share of drama. Free-spirited new girl Gigi just wants to dance—but the very act might kill her. Privileged New Yorker Bette's desire to escape the shadow of her ballet star sister brings out a dangerous edge in her. And perfectionist June needs to land a lead role this year or her controlling mother will put an end to her dancing dreams forever. When every dancer is both friend and foe, the girls will sacrifice, manipulate, and backstab to be the best of the best.

Missouri, 1849: Samantha dreams of moving back to New York to be a professional musician—not an easy thing if you’re a girl, and harder still if you’re Chinese. But a tragic accident dashes any hopes of fulfilling her dream, and instead, leaves her fearing for her life. With the help of a runaway slave named Annamae, Samantha flees town for the unknown frontier. But life on the Oregon Trail is unsafe for two girls, so they disguise themselves as Sammy and Andy, two boys headed for the California gold rush. 

A captivating and profound debut novel about complicated love and the friendships that have the power to transform you forever, perfect for fans of The Perks of Being a Wallflower. Mira is starting over at Saint Francis Prep. She promised her parents she would at least try to pretend that she could act like a functioning human this time, not a girl who can’t get out of bed for days on end, who only feels awake when she’s with Sebby... Jeremy is the painfully shy art nerd at Saint Francis who’s been in self-imposed isolation after an incident that ruined his last year of school... Sebby, Mira’s gay best friend, is a boy who seems to carry sunlight around with him. As Jeremy finds himself drawn into Sebby and Mira’s world, he begins to understand the secrets that they hide in order to protect themselves, to keep each other safe from those who don’t understand their quest to live for the impossible.

THE ONE THING by Marci Lyn Curtis
Maggie Sanders might be blind, but she won't invite anyone to her pity party. Ever since losing her sight six months ago, Maggie's rebellious streak has taken on a life of its own, culminating with an elaborate school prank. Maggie called it genius. The judge called it illegal. Now Maggie has a probation officer. But she isn't interested in rehabilitation, not when she's still mourning the loss of her professional-soccer dreams, and furious at her so-called friends, who lost interest in her as soon as she could no longer lead the team to victory... Maggie must find the courage to face a once-unimaginable future... before she loses everything she has grown to love.

Poignant and provocative, Marcy Beller Paul’s debut novel tells the story of an intoxicating—and toxic—relationship that blurs the boundary between reality and fantasy, love and loyalty, friendship and obsession.

NOTE: This giveaway is open internationally! Tell your friends!

02 May 2016

Encouraging young writers… or leading them astray? What one fan letter revealed about the pressures teens face to choose more “realistic” careers.

I received the most heartwarming fan letter recently via email from a 14-year-old Swedish girl. It always makes my day to learn that my book is finding love out there in the world, that it is being read and enjoyed. In this case, however, my book had done more than that. It had inspired a teenager to pursue her dream of writing, a dream that had been squashed by what she described as the pressure to pursue a more “realistic” career. Before I comment further, here’s the letter, reprinted with her permission:

Hi, Sharon.
I don't really know why I started to type this email, I somehow felt the need to.

I am a fourteen year old Swedish girl. Despite my young age, almost everyone around me is stressing me out about my future, telling me what I shouldn't do, what I should do and which jobs I shouldn't pick. In Sweden, you have to apply to 'high schools' when you're sixteen, and if you get bad grades you won't get in to a good high school and choose the major that you want to study, maybe you won't even get in at all. All of this stressing has made me forget what I love the most and what I truly want to do; write. My family and friends tell me that I should choose something more realistic, a goal I can reach. It made me confused about what I wanted to do. It made me stop caring about planning for my future and start feeling down every time someone said the word 'future'. It made me forget my love for books and made me cringe every time I saw them, knowing my future wouldn't consist of making them. Made me feel stupid when saying the sentence:

I want to be a writer.

But when I stumbled across your book, I immediately fell in love with it. I loved everything about it, and I could see so much of me in Ivy, and not to talk about how much Reesa reminded me of my best friend.

Your book reminded me of what I love the most about books, and why I wanted to be a writer in the first place. I finished your book in two days, and when I got to the last page, I cried because I couldn't read your book for the first time again. It might seem silly, but thank you, really. 

The day after I read your book, I picked up my my laptop and started writing on a novel I started last year, my fingers were literally running across the keyboard! That hasn't happened to me in months! I'm writing this email to thank you, thank you for writing my new favourite book. 

– Alexandra N.

The letter came on a day when I was struggling to write a new, final chapter for my upcoming novel, HOW TO DISAPPEAR. A deadline loomed, and I was not sure I could pull it off. Alexandra’s letter inspired ME. I replied to tell her so, and encouraged her to keep writing. I let her know that I hoped she would never again feel stupid saying, “I want to be a writer.” In fact, I told her to say, “I AM a writer,” instead! She is writing, after all. She’s a writer!

Alexandra replied, even more excited and sure of her decision to pursue her writing. 

And then, I started to worry. Who was I to contradict the advice of her parents, family and friends? I know nothing of the education system in Sweden, or what might assure a bright future for her in that country. Was I leading Alexandra astray? As the mother of a 16-year-old son, I know firsthand the worry parents experience when contemplating their children’s future and ability to make a living. We lose sleep over how best to guide them in the right direction or let them find their own way. I also know that earning a livable wage as an author is, well, nearly impossible. Most of us have other jobs, or other sources of income. A small percentage earn enough to quit their day job.

But I didn’t want to discourage a 14-year-old from pursuing her dream of becoming a writer! I hate that kids must narrow their focus to a specific career path at such an early age. Why can't there be more flexibility and exploration in education? More “sure!” and “why not?” instead of only “should” and “should not.” 

In my email exchange with Alexandra, I noted that a career as an author is difficult. I told her that, no matter what field of study she ultimately pursues, she can ALWAYS write. (How many of us started our first novels while working as lawyers, doctors, teachers, librarians… and continue to work those jobs while writing 2nd, 3rd and 4th novels?) I encouraged her to keep writing, to persevere. Because age 14 is way too soon to give up on your dreams. 

Any age is too soon to give up on your dreams!

I am so honored that Alexandra read and enjoyed Between the Notes, that it reminded her of why she loves books, and inspired her to start writing again. Receiving Alexandra's letter was a wonderful reminder to me that a book's success cannot be measured in sales alone. While I'd love to reach more readers, knowing I reached Alexandra is enough to keep me writing. I very much hope that she keeps writing, too!

29 April 2016

Indie Bookstore Day at Aaron's Books, Lititz, PA!

I'll be joining the fun at Aaron's Bookstore on Saturday! Come hang out... there will be lots of fun all day, with games and giveaways.