Carrie Harris | Young Adult Author

Wednesday, August 6, 2014

Yoo Hoo! I Want to See You!

Hey! Look! I’m going to be appearing in three different states over the next couple of weeks! It’s like a tour, minus the bus and the groupies. I’d love to see you at any of the above. You could come to all of them, but that might be creepy if we’re not related. Actually, come to think of it, it might even be creepy if we are…

ANYWAY. Here are the details; would love to see you there. Or there. Or even there.

August 9th from 1:00-3:00 – Barnes & Noble, Maumee, OH

As a part of the B&N Pop Culture series, I’ll be signing books and talking derby with a few members of Toledo’s junior derby team, the Frogtown Fallgirls. This is a chance to get a copy of Demon Derby if you don't have one yet! Come get a picture taken with some derby girls and see my new skeleton derby shirt. Oh, and me too. Get more details here.

August 14-17 at various times - GenCon, Indianapolis, IN

Geek achievement unlocked! That's right, peeps, I'm going to be at GenCon! I'll be talking authory stuff on my own and gaming stuff with the rest of the staff at Evil Hat Productions. Here's my schedule:

August 14, 11 AM - Writer's Craft: Mysteries (Room 243)
August 14, 3 PM - Writer's Craft: Team Dynamics (Room 245)
August 14, 5 PM - State of the Hat Panel (Crowne Plaza Pennsylvania Stn A)
August 14, 7 PM - Look Under the Hat Panel (Crowne Plaza Pennsylvania Stn B)
August 15, 12 PM - Business of Writing: Con Etiquette for Authors (Room 243)
August 15, 2 PM - Business of Writing: Author Networking 101 (Room 243)
August 15, 5 PM - Business of Writing: Selling Your Stories (Room 243)
August 15, 8:30 PM - ENnie Awards (Grand Hall Ballroom, Union Station)
August 16, 4 PM - YA: What Makes It YA? (Room 243)
August 16, 5 PM - YA: Pushing the YA Envelope (Room 243)
August 16, 7 PM - Urban Fantasy? Or Horror? (Room 244)
August 17, 11 AM - Read and Critique (Room 245)

August 19th at 7 PM – Nicola’sBooks, Ann Arbor, MI

Join me, Bethany Neal, Gae Polisner, and Lara Zielin as we read 90 seconds worth of awesomeness from our latest releases.

Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Happy book birthday, Demon Derby!

I don’t even know what to say about this, so I’m going to let my spokesman, Richard Simmons, say it for me.

PEEEOPLE! Demon Derby is out today! I’ve been so excited to read this book that I’m rolling around in vegetables! Okay, so I’d take any excuse to do that, but still, it's EXCITING! Also full of vitamins! And good for your hair!

I'm not sure about that last claim, but I'm still pretty darned excited. In case you haven't heard about it, Demon Derby is about a girl named Casey Kent. Casey is a cancer survivor turned demon fighting derby girl. The book is inspired by my husband, aka Slayer of Bees, who is a bone marrow transplant doctor, a cancer survivor, and a ninja. He is also awesome. I am also biased.

Totally biased.

One of the best things about this book is that it gave me a chance to get to know a lot of terrific junior derby girls. If you haven't taken in a junior derby bout, you are missing out! These girls are tough cookies, and it's been so nice to get to know them. I'm particularly biased toward the following teams, who signed up to help spread the word about the book and hold bone marrow drives to help make more cancer survivors like Casey and Slayer, even if they don't become demon fighting derby girls. You should totally check them out:

  • Central KY Junior Roller Derby (Louisville, KY)
  • Cherry Bomb Charmers Junior Roller Derby (Jacksonville, FL)
  • Delta's Angels (Memphis, TN)
  • Frogtown Fallgirls (Toledo, OH)
  • Greater Edmonton Junior Roller Derby All Stars (Edmonton, AB)
  • Hoosier Bruisers Junior Derby (Anderson, IN)
  • Hudson Valley Frightmares (Kingston, NY)
  • Indianapolis Junior Roller Derby (Indianapolis, IN)
  • Jersey Junior Roller Derby (Jackson, NJ)
  • Juvenile Dollinquents (San Diego, CA)
  • Lansing Junior Vixens (Lansing, MI) 
  • Lilac City Pixies (Spokane, WA)
  • Miami's Lil Miss Demeanors (Cutler Bay, FL)
  • Rolling Rebellion (Sanger, TX)
  • Second City Slaughter (Chicago, IL)
  • Southern Colorado Junior Roller Derby (Colorado Springs, CO)
  • The Atomic Cupcakes (Linden, MI)
  • Twin Cities Junior Roller Derby (Blaine, MN)
  • V Town Derby Delinquents (Hanford, CA)
  • Wasatch Junior Rollers (Taylorsville, UT)

But these are just the teams that have signed up to help promote the book, so if you don't see anything near you, that doesn't mean your area doesn't have a team. Here's a handy listing of teams, and there are lots of new ones popping up too. Google is your friend.

And vegetables! Don't forget the vegetables!

And also vegetables. Thanks for the reminder, Richard.

Bookstores are also your friend, but if you can't find a copy of Demon Derby at your local one, you can also get one at these fine retailers:

Now if you'll excuse me, I'm going to go flail with excitement. That's my plan for today. Lots and lots of flailing. Also accompanied by some high pitched noises. I'm so excited for this book, and I hope that if you read it and like it, you'll take the time to tell someone about it. It really does make a difference.

But don't worry. If you don't, I will still think you are awesome.

Thursday, June 19, 2014

Come See Some Derby!

Looking for something to do this weekend?

If you're anywhere in the Indiana-ish, Toledo-ish, Michigan-ish area, consider coming out to the Great Lakes Junior Roller Derby Tournament! It starts on Friday and runs through Sunday. Lots of fun derby action, PLUS the opportunity to win the last of the Demon Derby advance copies before the book releases in July, PLUS you can support some kick butt teen and tween girls, PLUS we'll be running a bone marrow drive for Gift of Life Foundation, PLUS it's probably the only time I'll leave my house in the next forever. Seriously, I've been writing all the words and barely see the light of day these days.

If you make it, come and say hello!

Friday, June 6, 2014

YA is an opportunity

I read YA. It feels like a huge, embarrassing confession now given recent articles like the latest from Slate, which makes a firm, unyielding argument that adults should NOT read books meant for teens. That they are not for us. That they are somehow lesser—the diet version of real literature, dumbed down for teenage consumption.

Is it me, or does that seem backwards?

Here’s the thing: I started writing YA because it was one of the things I really liked to read. Because it fit the story I wanted to tell. Because it fit my writing voice.

I stayed because YA is an opportunity.

If you want to really make a difference in the world, I’d argue that your best bet is not to write for adults. After a certain point, we’ve got our worldview pretty well locked in. We might even get a little jaded. Things happen, you know? Those big dreams that once seemed so possible…not so much. But if you think about the times when the world really changed, it was because people held on to those big, impossible dreams. When they defied the way things are, dared to take a step into the unknown. When they were inspired to think of things in a new way.

YA is an opportunity to light that spark with an audience who is actively looking for answers. An opportunity to say something about the way things are or should be to people who dare to dream about how to change it. People who are already asking those questions and engaging in that discussion.

Why on earth would we automatically assume that literature is and should be dumbed down if it’s written for teens? If they’re our future, if they’re in the process of figuring out what they want their legacy to be, then it’s in our best interest to make sure they have the BEST literature available. Good YA is about asking the biggest questions, taking the biggest risks. Challenging teens. Asking them point blank what they hold important, where their moral compass points. Sure, not all YA holds itself to that standard just like not all adult lit is earth-shatteringly good. But dismissing the entire genre of YA as lesser and unsophisticated because it’s written from the POV of a teen? Completely misses the point. If you don’t get it, that’s fine. That’s your prerogative. But don’t judge other adults because they’re not too jaded to say that we could learn something from young people. Because they’re willing to dare to dream. Because they’re willing to question what they hold true, regardless of how old they are.

Ultimately, that’s what YA is all about. It’s a search for answers. And I say that’s a good thing at any age.

© 2012 Carrie Harris. All rights reserved. Website design by Manning Leonard Krull.