Carrie Harris | Young Adult Author

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Things That Make Me Snarf - Steampunk LOLcats

This video puts me in the mood to make more lolzombies, but I think I've run out of dance movies. (For you newbie types, I made a bunch of lolzombies based on dance movies. Because haven't you always wanted to see a lol version of Dirty Dancing with zombies? I know I have.) So I need a new theme. I shall think on this, and you shall think on this, and hopefully no one's brain will explode. But in the meantime, enjoy THIS!

Monday, November 29, 2010

My Most Horrifying Experience EVAR

Warning that this entry is PG-13 for mind-numbingly embarrassing situations involving my mother.

This weekend, we had Scillius Maximus over for a game night. I love game nights. Game nights are totally SKULL. (And skulls = awesome, just in case you missed that.) But this weekend's game night reminded me of the most uncomfortable experience I have ever had, and I'm going to compound the discomfort by telling you all about it.

Freud would have a field day.

So here's the deal. Slayer and I were at my mom's house shortly after the Batson was born, and we'd brought along a new board game called ZINGERS. As far as I can tell, they don't make this game anymore, which is a pity. The concept's pretty simple: one person is the judge, and they randomly pick cards with a person and a situation. Everyone else has a bunch of cards with one liners, and they pick the funniest zinger for the situation.

For example, I might be the judge, and I'd pick Michael Jackson, and the situation: "You are shopping with _____, and he/she realizes their wallet is missing. He/she turns to you and says..." And you have to come up with the best one-liner for the situation from whatever you've got in your hand. If you've ever played APPLES TO APPLES, it's the same general idea, only with witty one liners.

With me so far? This is a long setup, but the humiliation is ohsoworthit.

So we were playing Zingers with my mom and her boyfriend, and I was the judge. And I ended up with THIS HORRIFYING CARD COMBO: "You're in the basement watching an adult film with YOUR MOM, and it turns out that she's in the movie! She turns to you and says..."

And I had to read this out loud. I know for a fact that my entire face was beat red, including my ears. Mom wasn't much better. But it got worse when my lovely husband played the following one-liner:
TASTES LIKE CHICKEN.

I'm still traumatized.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

How to Say Thank You in Carrieland

I hate buying thank you gifts, don't you? I think my problem is that the choices range from generic to genericker. Flowers? Meh. Candy? Double meh. WHERE IS THE EXCITEMENT? WHERE IS THE EXPLODING CANNON OF AWESOME THAT SPEWS STREAMERS INTO THE AIR PRINTED WITH THE PHRASE, "THANK YOU! PLEASE COVER YOUR EYES TO PROTECT THEM FROM ACCIDENTAL INJURY!"?

The world needs that cannon. *I* need that cannon.

Or so I thought. But this week, I got two thank you gifts that will never be beaten from my pseudo nieces. (You know what I mean, right? I'm talking about those people who you call family but are fortunate enough not to share your genetics.) My pseudo nieces got me the COOLEST THANK YOU GIFTS EVER.

Because really, nothing says thank you like a big old packet of zombie blood.

Thank you for everything you do, and for... erg... graaagh... BRAAAINS!


And then? THEN I got the thing that left me speechless. Nothing says thank you like "I made you this zombie penguin at school and my teacher almost referred me for psychiatric counseling."

How do you spell thank you? Z-O-M-B-I-E-S-H-O-P-P-R-O-J-E-C-T-S!


That's right. Pinprick, my stuffed zombie penguin, now has a girlfriend. Zombie penguins in love...isn't it CUTE?

So thank you, pseudo nieces, for the awesomest thank you gifts EVER. Those are even better than the cannon. Srsly.

Monday, November 22, 2010

Things That Make Me Snarf - Cool Guys Don't Look at Explosions

Good morning/afternoon/whenever the bleep you read this! It was a crazy weekend here at Chez Harris--my daughters turned four. It seems like only yesterday they were babies, and now they're pulling the screws out of bedroom door hinges with their hands...

Anyway. I'm still recovering from the explosion of pink things in my household. So while I go put a cold compress on my forehead, let me entertain you with a video full of explosions. Because everyone knows that explosions are KEWL.

Friday, November 19, 2010

Holidays with the Hoff

You can blame the following post on my friend Tiny T. She started it.

So. Holidays are just around the corner, and we all know what that means--Carrie starts suggesting strange things for you to buy. And today, we're looking at themed products for the people you love (or secretly hate). Today we're talking about HOFF THEMED GIFTS.

Because really, nothing says I love you like a hot water bottle with the Hoff's face on it.

I hope that cover is washable. (My kids tend to throw up in their sleep.)

Don't use a hot water bottle? It's okay. Everyone uses SOAP, right? It's a very soothing activity, right? You just go to the sink, and turn on the warm water, and then you reach for the soap...

I can think of nothing to say about this that isn't perverted.


But I think the best Hoff product EVER is this:
My awesomeness speaks for itself.


I'd like to make one of these and send it around a la Flat Stanley. If only I knew people crazy enough to do that...

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Nicknames

Nicknames have been on my mind lately. There are a lot of reasons for this:
  • My son recently proclaimed that his nickname is Luke. His name isn't Lucas or Luccio or anything vaguely Luke-like. Why Luke? I think he thinks he might trick the Universe (or us) into providing a lightsaber.
  • We had to come up with nicknames for the Class of 2k11. Mine? I'm the Zombie Master. It was either that or Resident Lunatic.
  • I'm writing a book now that involves lots of roller derby girls. I've been brainstorming derby names for about a year now and it still hasn't gotten old. (Normally it takes me only about six months to write a book, but I've gotten pulled off onto other projects.) Brainstorming derby names is one of the funnest things EVER. If I were a derby girl, I think I'd be Carrie Go Round.

Am I the only person who obsesses about things like this? Am I the only one out there who has picked out a derby name? And if you tell me yours, will you mind if I appropriate it and put it into a book? Because I just might do that...

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Things That Make Me Snarf - Shower Products for Men

This week's Thing That Makes Me Snarf comes courtesy of Allie and friends over at Hyperbole and a Half. If you're not sure what to buy your guy friends for Christmas, look no further. Because I've gotcher gift ideas right here.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

BAD TASTE IN BOYS blurbs!

Today is about as surreal as they come. Today? I've got blurbs.

Before I start gushing, let me just lay them out for you so you don't think I'm overreacting:

"With this laughing, shrieking riot of a debut, Carrie Harris captured my heart...and my braaaaiins."-Andrea Cremer, NYT bestselling author of NIGHTSHADE

"Kate Grable is my new hero. Thanks to Harris's darkly funny, twisted, and sexy tale of high school drama gone un-deadly wrong, I know who I'm calling during the next zombie apocalypse. Science nerds have never been so cool."-Kiersten White, NYT bestselling author of PARANORMALCY

"BAD TASTE IN BOYS is a nonstop romp, with more mayhem than a mall full of mocha-chugging monkeys. I loved watching Kate try to keep her sensible, scientific head amidst rampaging zombies and amorous football players (often the same people). Bring me my next dose of Carrie Harris NOW!"-Jeri Smith-Ready, award-winning author of SHADE

Shocked, I tell you. SHOCKED. So shocked, in fact, that I've been sitting here blankly trying to think of something witty to say. I'm speechless.

So let me just say this--I am so flattered and astounded and thrilled to be blurbed by these women. They're not only so talented they make my teeth hurt, but they're genuinely NICE PEOPLE. As I get closer to my debut, I'm realizing that the biggest commodity a writer has is TIME. You've got so many demands on it, and so much to do, and it is quite physically impossible to do it all. So THANK YOU Jeri, Kiersten, and Andrea for gifting me with some of your time. Of course I'm glad that you liked the book. Beyond glad, in fact. But the fact that you took time away from all your awesomeness to read and recommend BTIB? Priceless.

There's no way to repay that kind of thing, but I have dreams that someday I'll be able to blurb THEM and have it mean something. I think I'd say the following:

On NIGHTSHADE:
"Ren is ALL MINE." - Carrie Harris, slightly insane author of BAD TASTE IN BOYS

On SHADE:
"Zachary is ALL MINE." - Carrie Harris, highly delusional author of BAD TASTE IN BOYS

On PARANORMALCY:
"Tasey is ALL MINE." - Carrie Harris, possibly extraterrestrial author of BAD TASTE IN BOYS
Note to those who haven't read these books: Ren is a werewolf. Zachary is a cute boy with an accent. Tasey is a pink sparkly taser.

Second note to those who haven't read these books: WHAT IS WRONG WITH YOU? GET THEE HENCE AND START READING!

This is the part where I'm supposed to put a witty close, but all I can do is say THANK YOU one more time and gape.

Monday, November 15, 2010

That DIDN'T Just Happen, Did It?

Have you ever seen or heard something that you totally wouldn't have believed if you read it in a book? I was just telling someone the other day about the day Slayer proposed. He'd bought a bottle of sparkly and a couple of nice glasses, and we toasted each other, and it was all romantic-like. And then I was so flustered by the whole thing that I tried to put the glass down halfway off the table. Naturally, it fell over and broke.

Whoopsie.

Now, one of the things I love about Slayer is that he doesn't hesitate to give me a hard time, and he takes it as good as he gives. So he's washing up the one remaining glass, and he starts talking smack.

"Well, at least we have ONE glass left."

At that EXACT moment, the base of the glass falls off. PLUNK! Right into the sink. He didn't hit it on anything. He didn't move it. It just FELL OFF BY ITSELF.

Now, the scientist in me says there must have been a flaw in the glass, and that combined with the abrupt change in temperature--aw, heck with that. It was the Universe screwing with my husband to be. And to this day, one of us can look at the other and say, "Well, at least we have ONE glass left," and crack each other up.

So have you ever had one of these I-wouldn't-believe-it-in-a-book moments? I want to hear about it!

Friday, November 12, 2010

Things That Make Me Snarf - Organ Trail

Today, I'm going to break with history. Generally, I post a video for the weekly thing that makes me snarf. But not today. Today, I am DEFIANT.

Reminds me of this aborted comic book I was writing with a friend about Defiant Man and his chick sidekick, Groupie Girl. I had a sketch of Defiant Man hanging on my wall. Defiant Man was TEH COOL. But Defiant Man's artist lived in Manchester, and I lived in Ohio, which seemed highly unfair to me. And it never happened.

Wow. Hello, Tangent. I'm Carrie.

Anyway, I'm being defiant because I'm not posting a video today. I'm posting a GAME. A game that will suck away all your time. A game that you will in fact play periodically during the Class of 2k11 launch despite the fact that you have lots to do and your daughter keeps puking on things. (Or maybe you're playing it BECAUSE of those things.) I give you the the zombieriffic replacement for Oregon Trail.

I give you: ORGAN TRAIL!

So if you're stuck on your NaNo novel, you have places to go. See, aren't I nice? I provide a public service!

Speaking of public service, anybody interested in some superridiculouspretty Bad Taste in Boys bookmarks, featuring some superridiculouspretty illustrations by superridiculousbutnotnecessarilypretty Manning Krull? Email me at carrie at carrieharrisbooks dot com with your mailing address, and I'll hook you up.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Class of...Holy Amazingness!!!

One of the things that always strikes me about writing is how I can get SO RIDICULOUSLY close with people I've never met. But after a million emails starting with "I feel like an idiot complaining about this, but I know YOU will understand..." you kinda bond. (Either that, or by some strange coincidence, all their contact info changes and they "forget" to tell you in advance.) And I had the opportunity to join one of those groups this year.

I'm a member of the Class of 2k11, and today is our launch day! We've been working toward this for about a YEAR, and it's so exciting to see it all come together after so long! And I'm particularly excited because I get to share the experience with my fellow Team 11ers. They're some of the best writing friends I've got.

So please stop by the Class of 2k11 to see what we're up to and read the inaugural blog post by...er...me. But before you do, why not take a minute to tell me about the writing support you can't live without?

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Figuring Out the Next Steps

I have a confession to make--I get jittery when I'm not working on a book. I got into writing because it does lots of good things for me. It gives me an outlet for all the weirdness floating around in my head, and people don't usually look at me funny. It helps me relax. And when people say, "What are you working on?" I have an answer. Usually a long winded one that makes their eyes glaze over, but it's still an answer.

But this week, I've had so much going on that I haven't written a thing.

Well, not true. I've written blogs. I've written about 700 emails. I've written some web copy for the Class of 2k11 launch, which is TOMORROW! (Don't forget! TOMORROW! There will be FREE THINGS.) But no book.

So today, my goal is to write some fiction, in between cleaning this cesspool of a house and taking care of my poor flu-ridden child. Just a paragraph, universe. That's all I want. Just a paragraph.

Any other compulsive daily writers out there, or are the rest of you normal compared to me? Something tells me I know the answer to this. :)

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Putting My Birthday Gifts to Work for YOU

Today, I'm being interviewed by the lovely and gracious Kristi over at Sisters in Scribe. I admitted the truth about my first NaNo book and my old beret. Humiliating, but still true.

NOW. For my birthday, I got the coolest thing. It's a Monster High Frankie Stein Magic 8 Skull. You ask it questions. Like I asked it a question about the success of my WIP, and it said, "Frighteningly likely."

Thanks for the vote of confidence, Frankie. I really appreciate that.

You want the truth?
YOU CAN'T HANDLE THE TRUTH!

So I want to know, fair readers, what questions do you want answered? Ask any yes or no question in the comments, and I'll put Frankie to work for YOU and post the answers throughout the day.

Monday, November 8, 2010

PARTY!

Today, I'm older than I was yesterday. So I'm giving myself a day off and throwing a party. I also got my hair done.

Come and see the results.

More tomorrow!

Friday, November 5, 2010

Library Appearances and Devil Horns

Last night, I went up to the Brighton Library and met with a teen writers' group called Scribblers Between the Lines. Holy bleeping awesomesauce. I haven't had that much fun in a while. I think the highlight for me was borrowing a pair of glittery devil horns from one of the girls and singing the Barney theme song.

I returned the horns at the end of the night. Reluctantly. I did not keep the Barney song, because that's impossible.

At the end of the night, they did a prompt--write a flash piece incorporating sugar lips and zombie football players. The universe nearly exploded from awesomeness when they read them. These are some seriously talented kids. In fact, the poets inspired me to try my hand at a poem or two. I haven't written any in YEARS.

Anyway, I wanted to take a minute to publicly thank the Scribblers for letting me visit their group and to thank C in particular for lending me those horns. Sparkles make everything better. Including teen writers' groups, cupcakes, the undead...the list goes on and on.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Slayer and Carrie Wreck Havok

This weekend, Slayer and I are leaving the kids with Grandma and Grandpa and going out for a night on the town. Things tend to happen when we go out. Like the one time we went to a new Italian restaurant for dinner, and EVERYONE in the restaurant was off-the-boat Italian. They were all passing babies from table to table, and everyone seemed to know each other. Except us, of course. Then some of the men started watching us out of the corner of their eyes while they muttered to each other in Italian--and something told me they weren't talking about the spaghetti. I half expected to see Marlon Brando in the corner. Seriously. It got so bad that Slayer started looking for bulges in their jackets.

Not muscle bulges, mind you. GUN bulges.

Anyway, I think our server noticed how edgy we were looking, because he let us know that we hadn't stumbled into the middle of Godfather 42. We'd accidentally crashed their opening day party, and the owners had invited all their friends and family.

Whoops. At least it's better than the time we went apartment hunting and he broke into their "impenetrable" security system.

Anyway, between tonight's appearance and this weekend's night out, I'm all excited and can talk about nothing else. Sorry.

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Fear of Public Speaking. And Aliens.

I'm doing my First Official Author Appearance Thingy at a teen writer's group tomorrow night. I'm remarkably calm about this. I'm one of those mutant people who actually enjoys public speaking.

Yeah, I may be an alien. I'll peel off my face any minute now.

Here's the thing, though. Enjoying public speaking doesn't mean that I don't get an adrenaline rush. It doesn't mean that I don't get the shakes and the sweaty palms. It means that I think those things are AWESOME. You never know what's going to happen when you get up in front of a crowd. Your 80-some-year-old boss might offer you quarters if you do a little dance. Your AV equipment might start generating sparks. You might compare an infectious disease to a cannoli. Your audience might keep calling you Carrie Fisher, despite the fact that you aren't wearing buns or a chain mail bikini.

At least not on the outside.

And yes, all those examples are true.

A presentation, like a book, is a living thing. If you're a writer, how many times have you started writing a scene with one thing in mind only to find that your characters aren't cooperating? You end up in a totally unexpected place. It often, but not always, turns out better than what you'd so carefully planned. A presentation is like that. Notecards and memorization and preparation are great, but forcing the presentation to adhere to those standards turns out about as well as forcing your book to follow its outline. It doesn't work. At all.

Trust me. I'm an alien; I know these things.

So please, all you presentation fearers? Don't be so hard on yourselves. Your presentation will never turn out exactly the way you planned it. You will flub up your carefully constructed speech. You'll freeze when someone asks you an unexpected question or compliments your chain mail bikini. THAT IS OKAY. People are showing up to see YOU and all your faulty human awesomeness, not some perfect plastic automaton that can simultaneously make a speech on YA lit, juggle flaming bowling pins, and prepare a four course meal.

Although if you ever see an automaton like that, you better let me know. Because I do want to see that. Just not as much as I want to listen to YOU.

So please, wish me luck. I don't want a perfect presentation. I want the kind of appearance that can't be anticipated but makes me snarf milk out my nose when I remember it later. And of course I'll tell you all about it.

Now if you'll excuse me, I have to go find something to wear. My chain mail bikini's at the cleaners.

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Zombie Preparedness

Anybody watch The Living Dead on Halloween night? Of course I did, because it's practically a part of my job description. I loved the graphic novel, and I thought the show was very well done. And it got me thinking...

Of course I think about the zombocalypse a lot, because again--part of my job description. I really do have a zombocalypse plan. Of course, it's pretty much the same as all our other emergency plans, except that it involves more head shots. And the rules from Zombieland.



So if the zombies attack and you want to join my squad of survivors, come to Michigan and look for the chick pulling twins in a wagon and swinging at zombies with a katana. If you need further identification, I'll be repeatedly yelling, "Double tap!"

Do you have a zombie preparedness plan? If it involves running around and screaming, we need to talk.

Monday, November 1, 2010

Things That Make Me Snarf - Jane Austen Fight Club

I had an AWESOME Halloween. I saw three guys dressed up as a box of ninja dinosaurs. Seriously. I think I might be related in some cosmic way to those kids.

Another bit of awesome? My friend KM Walton sold her book! Thou must go and congratulate her!

So in honor of things that are totally skull, I have to show you this video. I've been sitting on it for a while, because it's not particularly Halloweeny, and I'm about to explode.

I want to join the Jane Austen Fight Club SO BAD.

 


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