Contest Winners!

Last week, Shana Silver and I held a contest to win an ARC of MATCHED plus several other ARCs.

Here are some of my favorite responses when the entrants were asked to match up a boy from my list with a boy from Shana’s list.

Nathalie says:

Cameron Morgan with Humbert Humbert because…I think he’d really like her.

Authorwithin says:

Bella from Twilight and Scrooge. He’s a controlling miser and apparently Bella likes to be submissive. She took care of her father and would have no problem serving good old Ebenezer. Plus, she’s used to cold men so Eb’s cold shoulder wouldn’t bother her. A perfect match.

Besides, Scrooge’s fiance, Belle, left him so replacing her with Bella whose name is only one letter away seems appropriate. =D

Jen Hayley says:

I’d like to team up Katniss and Voldemort, just to see what would happen!

Beth says:

I’m going to say Zoey Redbird and James from Twilight because Zoey needs another bad boy vampire boyfriend. Plus, he’ll chase her down if she tries to stray too much.

Writertessa says:

Cameron Morgan from Gallagher Girls and Voldemort!!! Not because I hate Cameron but because she and her spy-girl network can keep Voldemort in line :)

Dara says:

Hermione and George Wickham from Pride and Prejudice. I think her logical nature and no-nonsense attitude would straighten out the cad. She’d keep him in line. And I think he’d introduce her to her wild side a little more :P Plus their both Brits–that’s gotta be a plus, right? LOL.

Spav says:

I would match Rose from Vampire Academy and James from Twilight because Rose would be able to kick his ass when he steps out of line and she could also try to make him a better “vampire”.

Kelley says:

I was going to go with Hermione and The Grinch because, just like Cindy Loo Hoo, Hermione would melt that grumpsters heart in no time, but then I realized Bella really needs someone to whip her annoyingness into shape. So, I’m settling with Bella and Voldemort. There’s no way her all-powerful shield will be able to protect anyone from Voldemort’s evil.

Emily says:

Katniss and Scrooge, because the story of Katniss’ depressing childhood will soften his heart without having to go through all that pesky ghosts of Christmas past stuff. Plus, with their combined (significant) financial resources, Katniss can help so many more people in need.

Secret_Ivy says:

I match Voldemort and Bella from Twilight because Bella can love any kind of monster if he has the right heart. Who knows? Does Voldemort have heart??? LOL


Looks like Bella and Katniss are going to have to battle it out to see which one gets Scrooge and which one lives (happily?) ever after with Voldy. Bella can shield Katniss’s attacks but we all know Katniss has a way with breaking down invisible shields. I’d love to see how this plays out.

And now for the winners. Drumroll please…

1st place goes to:


(who posted on my blog)

Second place goes to:


(who posted on Shana’s blog)

Third place goes to:


(who posted on Shana’s blog)

Prizes available:

Matched, The Duff, Nightshade, and The Map Thief are all ADVANCED READER COPIES

Losing Faith is signed by the other

Chosen is a regular book


1st place winner will choose first, then the 2nd place winner will choose from the remaining books, and 3rd place will get whichever is left. If the winners could email me at shanasilver at gmail dot com with their address and then rank the books from 1-6 with 1 being the one you want most, I’ll figure out who gets what and send it off! Since the books are possibly coming from different locations (since some are Chandler’s, some are mine), they might not all arrive in the same package.


MATCHED Contest!

When? January 17-January 24 

What? Matched Contest
Where? The combined blogs of Shana Silver and Chandler Craig
How? All you have to do is pick a “Girl” from Chandler’s list (below) and a “Boy” from the Shana’s list and tell us why the two characters should be matched for life. Leave your message in the comments and we’ll pick on January 25th.


1st Place: Choice of 3 books
2nd Place: Choice of 2 books
3rd Place: Choice of 1 book
1st place winner will choose first, then the 2nd place winner will choose from the remaining books, and 3rd place will get whichever is left.
Prizes available:
-ARC of MATCHED by Ally Condie
-ARC of THE DUFF by Kody Keplinger
-ARC of NIGHTSHADE by Andrea Cremer
-Signed finished copy of LOSING FAITH by Denise Jaden
-Copy of CHOSEN by P.C. Cast and Kristin Cast

In the Society, Officials decide. Who you love. Where you work. When you die.

Cassia has always trusted their choices. It’s hardly any price to pay for a long life, the perfect job, the ideal mate. So when her best friend appears on the Matching screen, Cassia knows with complete certainty that he is the one… until she sees another face flash for an instant before the screen fades to black. Now Cassia is faced with impossible choices: between Xander and Ky, between the only life she’s known and a path no one else has ever dared follow — between perfection and passion.



Bella from Twilight
Hermione from Harry Potter
Aislinn from Wicked Lovely
Katsa from Graceling
Clary Fray from Mortal Instruments
Cameron Morgan from Gallagher Girls
Mary from Forest of Hands and Teeth
Zoey Redbird from House of Night
Rose Hathaway from Vampire Academy
Viola Cohen from As You Wish
Gemma Doyle from A Great and Terrible Beauty
Charlotte Doyle from The True Confessions of Charlotte Doyle
Chloe Saunders from the Darkest Powers trilogy
Tally Youngblood from Uglies
Ever Bloom from Evermore
Katniss Everdeen from The Hunger Games
Ruby Oliver from The Boyfriend List
Stargirl from Stargirl
Kiki Strike from Kiki Strike

And remember, if you love us, tweet it. If you really love us, blog it!

2008 Wrap Up

I was checkin’ out Shelli’s blog the other day and really liked her review of her life in 2008. Since so much has happened in my writing (and personal) life this year, I thought it’d be nice to look back.

So here we go…

-Graduated a semester early to focus on writing

-Researched industry, tried to figure out what the heck I was supposed to do

-Found Absolute Write Water Cooler

-Finished book #1, a YA mystery titled WEIRD TATTOOS AND LOW IQS

-Queried WEIRD TATTOOS, racked up rejections

-Wrote the proposal for SCOUT, a YA graphic novel

-Started Fumbling with Fiction!

-Began receiving review copies of fabulous books like The Gargoyle, The Map Thief, Land of Invisible Women and many more–an unexpected perk

-Joined the Verla Kay Blueboards

-Discovered some of my all-time favorite YA books: The Boyfriend List, Wicked Lovely, Twilight, I’d Tell You I Love You But Then I’d Have to Kill You, Thirteen Reasons Why…

-Found artists for SCOUT

-Queried SCOUT

-Moved from Philadelphia, PA to Austin, TX to start law school at the University of Texas

-Found Purgatory and the fabulous Purgatorians

-3 offers of representation for SCOUT, plus 1 offer of represenation for WEIRD TATTOOS

-Signed with Super Agent Dan Lazar of Writers House!

-Nate (boyfriend) moved from Washington, D.C. to Austin

-Finished SCOUT script, lengthened synopsis, completed proposal, signed contracts with artists

-Wrote an article for SCBWI’s January issue of Sprouts

Agent began subbing SCOUT

-Went in a hole to study so that I would not fail out of my first semester of law school

-Met some great writing friends through Purgatory whom I am so thankful for because I know that I would not know half of what I know now without them

-Began work on next 2 proposals/projects

…And here we are. That’s a pretty successful year if I do say so myself. It will be interesting this time next year to check back and see how much has changed and how much as stayed the same. I certainly hope to have taken the next (or next several) step(s) in my writing career. And you can bet that I’ll be spending another year working my tail end off to make sure that happens.

Book Review: The Map Thief

First, y’all should know that I hold a special place in my heart for lawyer-authors (or author-lawyers, as they might prefer to be called). So when Heather Terrell’s book arrived on my doorstep I was excited to get started. A quick glance at the inside back cover revealed a stylish, young attorney who quite apparently writes books–in other words, everything I’d like to be.  

But, I’ve been known to be disappointed by books. High hopes dashed and, when I cracked open The Map Thief, my heart sank. This was not what I expected. For some reason–I think because Tess Gerritsen provided a blurb for Terrell’s first book–I’d decided the book would read like The Sinner or even The Bone Garden.

Not the case. Though the book is a thriller. 

After two pages, I overcame my preconceived notions and discovered something better than I’d anticipated. If you can wrap your head around this, The Map Thief is a thriller told in a fable-like manner comparable to the works of  Paulo Coelho, which in my opinion is a beautiful style and a ginormous compliment to Heather Terrell.

The narrative shifts between Beijing in 1421, Lisbon in 1496, and present day New York City. So, while the chapters set in the present day have more zing, Terrell writes the more historical sections in prose that marks the story as something of a hidden legend. 

Ok, so unique writing style? Check. But, the book has another component I love: a main character with a really cool job. 

I can’t help it. I’m a sucker for that brand of MC and Mara Coyne is no exception. She’s an attorney who starts her own firm to help restore stolen artwork to its rightful owner, often requiring her to work on the fringe of the law.

Mara’s story is satisfying, but the real magic comes as Terrell details the career of Ma Zhi, the gifted cartographer. 

You’ll love this book if you enjoyed the Da Vinci Code, The Thomas Crown Affair, or just like learning cool things while reading and thinking about history in a new way. And, though Terrell openly admits to tampering with history, the question of whether the Chinese could have been the first to discover the New World remains intriguing.

Finally, we still have half the summer left and with easy-to-digest chapters and a pace that will speed your metabolism, The Map Thief will serve as a tasty treat for a day at the beach.  


For a description of The Map Thief visit Heather Terrell’s website.

Or to Buy it click here:  The Map Thief: A Novel

Want to read another book review? Check out my thoughts on the House of Night series.

** Comments today count as double entries to win your copy of The Map Thief! Since Heather Terrell takes us globe-trotting across time and space, tell me about the coolest place you’ve been OR if you could go back to any time in history what would it be??


Status: Shipping boxes today. The Breaking Dawn party was really cute. I’ll talk about it tomorrow. Have lots of work coming up this week.

Friday Forecast: Blog To Book–I Guess They Lost My Number

Have y’all heard of this blog called “Stuff White People Like“? I hadn’t. The name is pretty self-explanatory, but apparently we should have been paying more attention because this guy (Christian Lander) bagged a $300,000 book deal from Random House.

And! It wasn’t even some fancy-schmany blog. It was a WordPress one just like I’ve got here.

The kicker is he started the blog in January 2008 and had the deal by March! Well, shoot, by those calculations I’ll be expecting my call in another month or so.

Ok, Random House? You’ve got my number? Alright, I’ll wait by the phone.

Oh, and this will light a fire under your blogging bum–lit agents are popping up bloggers like they’re fat free M&Ms.

You might say the trend started with agent, Kate Lee, who, in 2003, was looking for a way to build her list. Following closely on her heels were Erin Malone and Kate McKean.

But internet and print are two different donkeys. Will people be willing to buy what they got for free? Or will they surf their way over to the next big thing? Only time will tell, but in the meantime, I’d keep blogging away until your fingers fall off and then go purchase one hundred and twenty-three lotto tickets.


P.S. Simon & Schuster? I didn’t mean to discriminate. I mean, if you’re interested, I guess I won’t block you on my caller ID.  K, thanks.



For another one of my Friday Forecasts, read Honey, I Shrunk Our Audience.


Status: Well, first off, you’ve got today and tomorrow to comment in order to enter yourself in the drawing for The Map Thief. Can’t wait to hear from y’all! Second, I finished my audition for the video game company. We’ll see how that goes. It was a lot of fun to do, but it kind of caught me on a bad week. So, I did my best.

Nate and I are going to head over to the Breaking Dawn party at our local Barnes and Noble tonight! I’m excited just to see what it is like. I’ve never been to a book party. I’ll let you know how it goes and maybe some of you will have your own experiences to report.

Thursday Pics: Introducing…Scout!

For today’s picture day I’m going to give you a sneak peek of Scout. This is a cleaned up sketch and flatted version that Scott Forbes, Scout’s artist did. I should be receiving the completed, color version of the first page later today! 

I can’t tell you how cool it is to see my ideas interpreted into a completely different medium. I am in love with the look Scott has come up with. 

This and other drawings from SCOUT will be available on the SCOUT page on the top right. I will continue to add to it, but probably won’t publish a ton of artwork that will actually appear in the book. 

I hope that someday you’ll be able to share my love for this kickass heroine by reading the completed, published graphic novel. But, until then, this will have to count as Scout’s first debut!



And…in color!



*** Don’t forget to comment to be entered to win Heather Terrell’s The Map Thief. The more you comment, the better chance you have!

Status: I have so much writing work it’s scaring even me. I have a lot of opportunities coming my way all at once, which is great! But, really, really busy! Later today, I’m meeting Nate’s future roomie and my new classmate at UT law, so that will be fun. I’m getting excited to move, but sad that I will not see Nate for so long. 

Say What?: How Dialogue Can Keep Your Readers Sane

“You know, fellow blog reader, Chandler’s blog is beginning to read a lot like a monologue. She keeps talking and talking and talking-”

“I know what you mean! It’s like she can’t shut up. You’d think she believes she owns Fumbling with Fiction or something.”

“Yeah, like yesterday, she wrote two posts. Two posts! How could one person have so much to say!?”

“Exactly my point! I mean, let someone else chime in, why don’t ya?”

“Right! She can’t just sit there and narrate the entire publishing industry to us. I’d rather smell like Funyans for the rest of my friggin’ life than listen to that!”

“And we thought Stephenie Meyer’s descriptions were tedious! I’m sitting here like, ‘Chandler, hello? Some dialogue might be nice!'”

“No kidding. Doesn’t she know that a few snippets of witty repartee might keep her readers from being bored into rigor mortis?”

“Not to mention speed up the pacing. Geez!”


“Oh shoot! Do you think she heard us?”

“Too soon to tell!”

“Of course I heard you, you’re on my blog!”

“Classic example of a heavy-handed author, no?”

“Excellent diagnosis.”

“Guys! I can still hear you!”


“Ugh! I do use dialogue! The comment section. Ever heard of it?”

“The comment section…the comment section. Nope! Doesn’t ring a bell.”

“No ringing here either.”

“The comment section, y’all! And! If you get your bony bums over there you might just win yourself a copy of Heather Terrell’s The Map Thief while you’re at it.”



Status: Goodies from Random House today! I now have the advance reading copies of The Gargoyle in my hot little hands and Random House threw in a couple other books for fun. I got One More Year by Sana Krasikov and the bound galley for When We Were Romans by Whitbread Award Winner Matthew Kneale. They all look great and I look forward to reading and reviewing them.