Kidlit Authors as Theater Kids GAME AND GIVEAWAY!

My summer theater book, LOOK BOTH WAYS, comes out in just one week! And in order to prepare, it’s time to play a game/give away my last few ARCs!

Like Brooklyn, my book’s protagonist, I was a theater kid. I started doing children’s theater when I was nine, I was part of a dance company in high school, and then I switched to the backstage side and worked as a lighting designer throughout college and during my first four years in New York City. When I started making friends with other YA authors, I was surprised to discover that nearly ALL of them were involved in theater as children/teens. Apparently, there’s something about performing that lends itself to becoming a writer.

Below, you will find twelve current photos of kidlit authors and twelve photos of those same authors as child performers. Each kid photo has a number next to it, and each grownup photo has a letter. The rules are simple: match the kid photos with their adult counterparts, and leave a list of your number/letter matches in comments, along with your Twitter handle. (Please do numbers first, then letters: 1A, 2B, 3C, etc.) You have until midnight today (Wednesday, June 8) to complete your answers, and then I’ll score them and announce the winners!

The person who matches the most photos correctly will win the one and only SIGNED, ANNOTATED ARC of LOOK BOTH WAYS, and the two runners up will receive signed, non-annotated ARCs!


P.S. No, I am not included in this game. But don’t worry, you’ll get to see plenty of photos of me as a theater kid! I’ll post one on Twitter/Instagram every day in the week leading up to LOOK BOTH WAYS’s release! Follow me at @alison_cherry to witness the magic.


THE KIDS (click through for larger images):

Theater kid collage

THE GROWNUPS (click through for larger images):

Adult collage

Best reads of the year, 2014 edition!

It’s time for Alison’s Best Reads of the Year Awards!

The rules are as follows:

1) I must have read these books for the first time in 2014, though they don’t need to have been published in 2014.

2) Books I read as ARCs or manuscripts prior to 2014 do not count, even if they came out in 2014. Sorry, critique partners!

3) Books are listed in no particular order.

4) I am not allowed to choose more than five books per category, but I can choose fewer.

5) Books may receive more than one award.

Here we go! [Read more…]

2014 book-buying and reading stats!

Friends! It’s that time of the year when I remind you how completely neurotic I am!

Ever year, I keep a color-coded spreadsheet of all the books I buy and all the books I read. Why do I do this? I really have no idea, except that it’s bizarrely satisfying to me. I can’t keep my closet or my files organized to save my life, but there’s something about all those little rows of data that warms my weird heart.

And what’s better than neurotic oddness besides SHARING your neurotic oddness? (Nothing. The answer is nothing.) Therefore, behold, my book-buying and reading statistics for 2014!

[Read more…]

The Ten Most Bizarre Reality Shows of All Time

While I was writing my For Real, I had to think up concepts for eleven fake reality shows. (Some of my favorites: TwinCognito, in which twins switch lives and attempt to fool their friends and coworkers; Catwalk, the definitive pet fashion show; and Speed Breed, in which young women race to become pregnant.) Since I didn’t want to accidentally mock any real shows, I had to extensively research what had actually aired during reality television’s long and storied history. It’s a good thing I looked—one of my original fake shows, which involved a family fighting over someone’s estate, was indeed the concept for a real show.

Here, for your viewing pleasure (or, you know, sheer horror,) are the ten most absurd reality shows I came across in my research. These are all real, I promise. [Read more…]

What’s Making Me Happy This Week, fourth edition

It’s been a while since I’ve posted a What’s Making Me Happy This Week—the world has been so weird and sad and incomprehensible lately that all I’ve wanted to do is bang my head against the wall and yell, “OMG, NEWS, WHY MUST YOU SUCK SO MUCH?” But this is the week FOR REAL became a real book people can actually BUY, which is extremely happy-making, so it seems like a good time to get back on track. Here are some other things that have been making me happy these past few weeks:

[Read more…]

Eight (more) things I’ve learned about publishing since I got published

Last year, right after RED came out, I wrote this post about the nine things I wish I’d known about publishing before I got published. I stumbled across it the other day, and I still stand by everything I said then. But I’ve had all kinds of new experiences during this past year in the trenches, and it turns out I might be the teeniest bit wiser now than I was last November. So here are eight more things I’ve learned about publishing since I became a published author.

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What’s Making Me Happy This Week, second edition

It’s time for our second edition of What’s Making Me Happy This Week! Let’s get to it.

1) The European Space Agency has landed a spacecraft called Philae on the surface of a Central-Park-sized comet FOUR BILLION MILES AWAY, and it’s sending back some truly fantastic photos. Sentences like, “The lander was secured the comet’s surface by ice screws and the craft had fired its tethering harpoons” are all over the news. This is REAL, you guys. We are living in the future. (Unfortunately, it’s likely Philae will run out of battery power and stop functioning tomorrow, as it landed in a spot too shady to use its solar panels. BUT STILL.)

[Read more…]

What’s Making Me Happy This Week, first edition

Hello from my long-neglected blog! 

Lately, I’ve been completely obsessed with NPR’s Pop Culture Happy Hour podcast. It’s produced by Linda Holmes, who runs the NPR pop culture blog Monkey See, and features a bunch of NPR’s other music, book, and television bloggers. Each week, they focus on one specific topic, like a single TV show or movie, and one broader topic, like unreliable narrators or nudity in film or the deaths of beloved characters. Everyone who contributes to the show is incredibly smart and entertaining, and I cannot stop listening. At the end of each episode, the whole PCHH team goes around the room and talks about what’s making them happy this week. Anything is fair game: museums, comic books, new albums, internet memes, cakes they baked, etc.

[Read more…]