Blurber THANK YOU Giveaway

HOLD ME LIKE A BREATH comes out two months from Today!!!!

Excuse me while I do a dance of impatient glee! While you’re waiting for me to calm down, check out the amazing blurbs HOLD ME LIKE A BREATH received!

“Ambitious and original, HOLD ME LIKE A BREATH captured my attention before I even turned the first page. It’s a thriller in every sense of the word, and I can’t wait to see what Schmidt has up her sleeve next.” –  Michelle Hodkin, New York Times bestselling author of the Mara Dyer trilogy

“The tightly coiled suspense and superb romance had me holding my breath!” –  Jennifer L. Armentrout, #1 New York Times bestselling author of Don’t Look Back and the Lux series

“This book swept me off my feet! Deadly family secrets, tense situations, surprising truths, and captivating romance kept me in suspense from “Once upon a time” to “ever after”. HOLD ME LIKE A BREATH is a gripping modern thriller for readers who still love fairy tales and people who think they’ve outgrown them. This is an offer you can’t refuse!” –  E. C. Myers, author of The Silence of Six and Fair Coin

“Heartfelt and haunting. Penny is a heroine to root for, a princess who creates her own ever-after.” –  Jessica Spotswood, author of the Cahill Witch Chronicles

I’m SO grateful to these fabulous authors — I admire their writing, AND I admire them as people. I’m feeling super lucky to have their praise on my book cover.  As a show of that gratitude, and because I want ALL readers to experience their brilliance, I’m giving away a book by each author + four Hold Me Like a Breath ARCs.


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Good Luck!!!

Contemporary Scavenger Hunt – Lauren Morrill

I’m thrilled to be part of the Contemporary Scavenger Hunt and more thrilled to be hosting fellow Apocalypsie and super-talented contemp writer (and new momma!) 


Check out her interview below, enter her fabulous contest, and if you haven’t done so already, READ her books!

(When you’re done here head on over to Chelsey Philpot for the next stop in the hunt! )


1) What are you working on now?

My next book is called The Trouble With Destiny, and it’ll be out Fall 2015. It’s about a band trip on a cruise ship, and the shenanigans (and romance!) that happen after the cruise ship breaks down. Right now, though, I’m in the process of writing my fourth book. It’s called My Unscripted Life (Fall 2016), and it’s about what happens when a movie comes to film in a small southern town, and one local girl who gets sucked into the production and a romance with the star. It’s inspired by my time working as an extra on The Vampire Diaries and The Originals, and I’m really really excited about it!


2) If you didn’t write contemporary, what other genre would you write? 

That’s a hard one, because contemporary isn’t just what I write, it’s my favorite thing to read! But I’ve been toying with an idea for a teen girl superhero book for a while. It may never see the light of day, but it’s been fun flexing a different part of my brain as I imagine what super powers would do to one of my contemporary heroines!


3) What book do you shove into the hands of innocent bystanders in libraries and bookstores?

The Jessica Darling series by Megan McCafferty, starting with Sloppy Firsts. For readers, it’s such a fun series to follow (and Marcus Flutie is my favorite YA guy), and for writers I think it’s an amazing example of narrative voice and how that voice grows with the main character. Even with the new middle grade prequel series, she’s managed to keep the essence of Jessica’s voice at every age.


4) What’s the strangest thing you’ve had to research for a book?

So many of my author friends have such great answers to this question! Mine isn’t so much strange as really fun, and that’s working as an extra for movies and TV shows for my newest book. Who else gets to stand next to Ian Somerhalder while researching their next book? And yes, he really is that handsome in real life (and so very nice, too!). I also got a close-up in a scene on The Originals, where I played a 1920s witch at a mystical bonfire. I stood next to a 10-ft yellow python!


5) Which of your characters would high school Lauren have been best friends with? 

My readers haven’t met her yet, but Hillary in The Trouble With Destiny would definitely have been my bestie in high school. She’s a free spirit tuba player in the marching band, and we would have had so much fun together on those band trips!


6) Which one of your characters would high school Lauren have crushed on?  

High school Lauren would have seriously crushed on Jason from Meant to Be. I always did love those class clowns. A good sense of humor is crazy attractive!


7) What do you snack on while writing? 

Anything gummy is my kryptonite. I love Swedish Fish, Haribo gummy bears, Starburst, Skittles (though I’m STILL mad at them for changing the lime ones to green apple … throws off the whole flavor profile!)


Clearly Lauren and I are writing kindred spirits, because I also love the Jessica Darling series (Marcus Flutie… swoon!) and have a gummy foods addiction — though, Lauren, you’re welcome to ALL my lime Skittles (you can get them in the Dark Side packs and I always toss them… yuck!)



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 About Meant to Be:

Meant to be or not meant to be . . . that is the question.

It’s one thing to fall head over heels into a puddle of hazelnut coffee, and quite another to fall for the—gasp—wrong guy. Straight-A junior Julia may be accident prone, but she’s queen of following rules and being prepared. That’s why she keeps a pencil sharpener in her purse and a pocket Shakespeare in her, well, pocket. And that’s also why she’s chosen Mark Bixford, her childhood crush, as her MTB (“meant to be”).

But this spring break, Julia’s rules are about to get defenestrated (SAT word: to be thrown from a window) when she’s partnered with her personal nemesis, class-clown Jason, on a school trip to London. After one wild party, Julia starts receiving romantic texts . . . from an unknown number! Jason promises to help discover the identity of her mysterious new suitor if she agrees to break a few rules along the way. And thus begins a wild goose chase through London, leading Julia closer and closer to the biggest surprise of all: true love.

Because sometimes the things you least expect are the most meant to be.


About Being Sloane Jacobs:

Meet Sloane Emily Jacobs: a seriously stressed-out figure-skater from Washington, D.C., who choked during junior nationals and isn’t sure she’s ready for a comeback. What she does know is that she’d give anything to escape the mass of misery that is her life.

Now meet Sloane Devon Jacobs, a spunky ice hockey player from Philly who’s been suspended from her team for too many aggressive hip checks. Her punishment? Hockey camp, now, when she’s playing the worst she’s ever played. If she messes up? Her life will be over.

When the two Sloanes meet by chance in Montreal and decide to trade places for the summer, each girl thinks she’s the lucky one: no strangers to judge or laugh at Sloane Emily, no scouts expecting Sloane Devon to be a hero. But it didn’t occur to Sloane E. that while avoiding sequins and axels she might meet a hockey hottie—and Sloane D. never expected to run into a familiar (and very good-looking) face from home. It’s not long before the Sloanes discover that convincing people you’re someone else might be more difficult than being yourself.


Author Bio:

Lauren Elizabeth Morrill is many things, including, but not limited to, a writer, an educator, a badass roller derby skater, a former band nerd, an aggressive driver, and a die-hard Mac person. She also watches a lot of TV, eats a lot of junk food, and drinks a lot of Coke. It’s a wonder her brain and teeth haven’t rotted out of her head.


(when you’re done here head on over to Chelsey Philpot for the next stop in the hunt! )

A new ~Adventure~

I’m a New England girl.

My favorite foods are clams and lobsters.
My favorite holidays are Thanksgiving and Patriots’ Day (Marathon Monday!).
My second puggle is named Bruschi.
My favorite sound is the ocean and my legs still sport faded scars from barnacle scrapes while tide-pooling.

I may not still live in Massachusetts, but my heart has never left.

Which makes me all the more excited to have been chosen to write the picture book for a New England icon:


In fact, my whole family is excited.

The puggles, however, did object when I suggested dying them black for this photo.


The Adventures of Black Dog will be publishing late summer – and, man, I can’t wait till you can see the jaw-dropping illustrations the uber-talented Betsy Bauer is creating.

I’ll be talking about the dog treats with CBD that I use to train my dogs and also cure them! They calm their nerves, alleviate their pain and improve their mood.

So, find your flip-flops and your sand pails; plan your clam bakes and ready your four-legged friends~ because this New England girl hopes you’ll join the Black Dog, her ship, and her crew for the first of many adventures!

A BRIGHT Sunrise, Indeed!

My second book, Bright Before Sunrise, releases today.

IndieBound   *  Amazon  *  B&N

Sometimes books happen quickly, but others take time.

Bright Before Sunrise took a lifetime – literally.

This is a picture from when I was drafting/revising BRIGHT BEFORE SUNRISE

That sweet face is now three years old.

I’ve heard it said that every book has a piece of its writer hidden within its pages, and there’s quite a bit of my heart embedded in this story.

I hope you enjoy it! <3

The Night I Became an Author

When my publisher approached me about Bright Before Sunrises blog tour, I knew I wanted to do something a little different. Rather than have me answer questions, I asked if we could have others answer one.

We asked author friends and an amazing group of bloggers to respond to Bright Before Sunrise’s tagline: One night can change how you see the world. One night can change how you see yourself by sharing One Night from their own life. The posts so far have been heartfelt, amusing, intriguing, thought-provoking. They’re so different, but they’re all wonderful!  They can be read here.

Here’s mine:


My twins were eight months old when my first novel, Send Me a Sign, sold.  It was two days after I’d sent my resignation letter to the superintendent, formally announcing I was leaving my beloved job as a teacher to stay home with The Schmidtlets.

This is not the One Night I’m going to talk about. It’s not that I wasn’t thrilled or excited, but at that point it all seemed so distant and surreal. I’d have a BOOK…someday, 18 months from then. And it would have A Cover. And Pages! And I had An Editor! These were all shiny fancy ideas, but they were too much like the first years after my wedding when people would say “Mrs. Schmidt” and I’d look around for my mother-in-law.

I may have *technically* entered the ranks of authordom, but I really didn’t believe it. It felt like dressing up for Halloween or playing let’s-pretend. I’d spent too long writing, revising, querying, writing, revising, querying, rinse/repeat to actually believe it was real.

Edits happened. Massive quantities of Revision Skittles were consumed. I met my editor, saw my cover, had a page on GoodReads… and I still felt like an impostor.

ARCs arrived. I snuggled those things to death, thinking that maybe if I held them tight enough, long enough, that belief would seep through my fingers and I’d start accepting this was REAL, that my dream was coming true.


It was one of my Schmidtlets that convinced me. Pip Squeak, toddling around at 18 months old, got ahold of an ARC while we wrestled his brother into pajamas. My husband and I both flew across the room to save it from drool, or the puggles’ water bowl, or whatever other mishap he was more than capable of inventing.

But he was hugging it. And he smiled and said, “Momma’s book.” (over and over and over and over as 18-month-olds like to do).

And I started to cry. Because this teeny little guy in his footie pajamas had recognized what I couldn’t: that was MY book.

More than that, his and his brother’s conception of me as a person would ALWAYS be: My momma writes books. He’d have no knowledge or memories of the years when I was 97% doubts, the times I wanted to chuck my laptop in the trash and walk away forever.

In his eyes I’d ALWAYS be an author.

And once I realize he understood that… how could I not?

In fact, I had a printed canvas made of my first book cover. The plan had been to hang it above my desk. Nope. The Pip Squeak had other plans. It hangs above his crib, reminding me every night at bedtime that he believes in me. How can I not believe in myself.

I’m an author.

And I’ve got a heck of an adorbs fan club.


When Jonah is forced to move from Hamilton to Cross Pointe for the second half of his senior year, “miserable” doesn’t even begin to cover it. He feels like the doggy-bag from his mother’s first marriage and everything else about her new life—with a new husband, new home and a new baby—is an upgrade. The people at Cross Pointe High School are pretentious and privileged—and worst of all is Brighton Waterford, the embodiment of all things superficial and popular. Jonah’s girlfriend, Carly, is his last tie to what feels real… until she breaks up with him.

For Brighton, every day is a gauntlet of demands and expectations. Since her father died, she’s relied on one coping method: smile big and pretend to be fine. It may have kept her family together, but she has no clue how to handle how she’s really feeling. Today is the anniversary of his death and cracks are beginning to show. The last thing she needs is the new kid telling her how much he dislikes her for no reason she can understand. She’s determined to change his mind, and when they’re stuck together for the night, she finally gets her chance.

Jonah hates her at 3p.m., but how will he feel at 3 a.m.?

One night can change how you see the world. One night can change how you see yourself.

Bright Before Sunrise releases on 2/18 (THREE DAYS!).

Hooray for Paperback Day

It seems like just yesterday I was writing this poem and preparing for my debut novel to release. In reality it was 15 months ago.

But look at my book baby! It’s all grown up and in paperback form now.


And inside it are a few surprises:

1) A bonus short story from GYVER’S point of view

2) The first couple of chapters of BRIGHT BEFORE SUNRISE

If you see a copy in the ‘wilds’ of a bookstore, snap a picture and share it with me, please. Or, snatch it up and take it home with you 🙂

Send Me a… PAPERBACK cover

This gorgeous cover* (+ some fabulous new bonus content**) will be hitting bookstore shelves and online stores on January 14, 2014.***


I love it & hope you do too!

* I’m pretty sure it would be impossible for the design team at Walker-Bloomsbury to be any more talented!

**I’ll drop some hints closer to pub date about what that bonus content looks like 🙂

*** Yes, you CAN pre-order it already (IndieBound, Amazon, Barnes & Noble) AND, yes, I WILL gladly send you a signed bookplate if you’d like.

Bookiversary Contest

Send Me a Sign turns one today. I think this is a perfectly valid excuse for cake.

Fake cupcakes will have to do for now…

It’s also a perfectly valid excuse for a contest.

I’m giving away a copy of SEND ME A SIGN, an ARC of BRIGHT BEFORE SUNRISE, and assorted bookish swag.*

Good luck!**

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Thank YOU, dear readers, for making this past year amazing, emotional, and entirely unpredictable. *blows kisses*

*Contest is open to U.S. and Canada. Thanks for understanding that international postage gets pricey!

** You can also enter on Facebook here:

Criminally Good News

Once upon a time, I was a little girl who loved fairy tale bedtime stories.

I’m not sure why I’m wearing pastel boxing shorts, or why I have them on sideways…but then again, it was the 80’s & my style icon was Punky Brewster.

Once upon a time, my long-suffering and infinitely-patient parents banned certain fairy tales from bedtime… because I asked too many questions. With all my whys and hows and wait-a-minutes, it could take hours to reach the happily ever after. And none of their answers were particularly satisfying.

The Princess and the Pea was one of the first stories to be eliminated from our bedtime repertoire.

I’m not a little girl anymore, but I couldn’t forget those questions.* So, I came up with my own answers…

Starting in winter 2015 you’ll be able to find them in:

HOLD ME LIKE A BREATH : Once Upon a Crime Family– book 1

As the name implies, the books are crime family fairy tale retellings. And the crime families traffic human organs.

It’s YA. A little bit thriller. A little bit fairy tale. And, of course there are kissing scenes!

Here’s what Publisher’s Weekly had to say:

*yes, I’ll definitely share a whole lot more about which questions inspired this story, but you’ll have to be a little bit patient…

ARC-itement & Blurb-blushes

Late last summer I came home from a Schmidtlet playdate at my friend Stacey’s house to find a box of these on my porch.

Today she and her daughter were over and these were delivered.

If I totally ignore the dozens of no-book-happens playdates we’ve had in between, I can say she’s good luck, right?*

Oh, these ARCs are so pretty! And the interiors? ALL THE FONTS. ALL of the lovely, lovely fonts that I can’t wait for you guys to see.

Will you indulge me just a little while I share two of my favorite parts of the ARC?


Do you know how honored I am to have the praise of these two uber-talentd authors on Bright Before Sunrise? On a scale of 1-10, my excitement is a 36! Thank you, thank you, Diana and Jen!

I promise I’ll do some ARC giveaways soon. But right now I’ve got to go snuggle some ARCs… or Schmidtlets.

Or both.

*Stacey, leave some dates open for playdates in early winter… I can’t wait to see my finished copies!