Tag Archives: Elizabeth Bird

Countdown to THE BROKEN LANDS: the Cover, and a Contest or Two

About a week ago I got to see the final cover of my next book at last. Yes, The Broken Lands jacket art has been finalized, and all I can say is that it’s truly beautiful. Not that I expected anything less for a moment. Andrea Offermann, the amazing artist behind the cover and illustrations of The Boneshaker, returned for this book, and I’m just in love with what she’s done this time. In fact, I’m so in love I want to celebrate a little.

Here is Andrea. Wonder what she's working on...

I’ve also been receiving some fabulous comments about the book from some fabulous writers, educators, and librarians. I want to celebrate that, too. I’m just feeling generally celebratory. So here’s what I’m thinking. I’m thinking: how about I show you the jacket art next weekend, and how about before do, let’s have a CONTEST? In fact, let’s have TWO OF THEM!

Contest #1: Draw some stuff.

I’ll post an excerpt from The Broken Lands later this afternoon, to introduce you to the setting and one of the characters. I invite you to bring either or both of them to life any way you like. Post a link to your art in the comments of the posted excerpt any time this week.

Contest #2 (for those of you who, like me, lack any drawing capability whatsoever): Help get the word out about this contest and the cover reveal next weekend.

Post a thoughtful comment or question here, tweet or re-tweet links about the contest, mention it on Facebook, do what you can to keep the chatter going. Those cool comments about the book I mentioned? I’ll be dealing some of those out on Tumblr this week, and you can re-blog one or two of those if you’re so inclined. I’ll do a random drawing from all chatter-amplifying commentary I can find, and select a few winners. It’s probably best, so that your efforts don’t slip my notice, that you also make it easy for me to find them. Use my Twitter name, @katemilford, or my Facebook name, @katechellmilford, or comment here on the blog as to how you’ve passed the word along. Thoughtful comments or questions will earn you an extra entry. What constitutes a thoughtful comment or question? I don’t know, but I know one when I see it.


The deadline to enter is Friday the 10th. I’ll post the cover Saturday the 11th, and announce the winners Sunday the 12th.


The winner of the chatter portion will be drawn at random, but multiple contributions will earn you multiple entries. The winner of the art portion–well, it depends on how many entries there are. If you’re the only person who steps up and gives it a shot, YOU WIN. If you’re one of only two or three, you probably all win. My blog traffic isn’t that high, so honestly, your chances are pretty good. I’d give it a go.


My endless gratitude. Oh, and yes, books. The winner of the art portion will receive the ANDREA OFFERMANN CELEBRATION PRIZE: a copy each of The Broken Lands (your choice, advance copy in about a month, or real-live bound book in September) and Sonya Hartnett’s The Midnight Zoo, which Andrea also illustrated.

The winner of the chatter portion will receive the SAYING NICE THINGS ABOUT MY BOOK CELEBRATION PRIZE: The Broken Lands (same choice, arc very soon or hardcover this fall) and your choice of a book by one of the wonderful writers who so generously gave their time to read The Broken Lands. I’ll let you know the specific choices at the end of the week, but there are clues here as to whose books will be up for grabs if you look closely enough.

I should also warn you that I’m overseas this week, six hours ahead of you. It’s 8pm here, and I have somewhat limited internet. So please don’t panic if I don’t reply right away–or, you know, for six hours. Or if something gets stuck needing me to moderate it. Just think of it as part of the fun. And while you’re waiting, here’s an interview with Andrea from just a couple of days ago to keep you busy.

So, without further ado…let’s start…NOW!

It Was a Good Week.

First of all, and I’m really tempted to capitalize it, The Boneshaker is a YALSA Best Book for Young Adults! (Look at that. I even managed to restrict myself to only one exclamation point. It was tough, I’ll tell you.)

Here’s the rest of the list, which contains my wonderful crit-mate Heidi Ayarbe’s Compromised as well as some other books I well and truly loved in 2010.

Compromised by Heidi Ayarbe: Book Cover

Another cool thing that happened to me last week was  that I got to participate in a Children’s Literary Salon at the New York Public Library, along with Adam Gidwitz (A Tale Dark and Grimm) and Michael Teitelbaum (The Scary States of America). Betsy Bird acted as ace moderator for the panel, entitled Blood, Bones and Gore: Horror and the Modern Children’s Book. It was a ton of fun! I had already read A Tale Dark and Grimm (and LOVED IT. LOVED IT LOVED IT LOVED IT), and after hearing Michael Teitelbaum talk about The Scary States of America I went right out and picked it up. It will be my subway reading, starting tomorrow. I expect to love it just as much.

Scary States of America by Michael Teitelbaum: Book Cover A Tale Dark and Grimm by Adam Gidwitz: Book Cover

Oh, also, work is going swimmingly on The Broken Lands. I am pretty sure I am going to change the date the story takes place from 1883, when the Brooklyn Bridge was completed to 1877, when it was very definitely still in pieces. Why? Oh, so many very good reasons I think I’d better not spoil the surprise by sharing. Suffice to say some awesome stuff happens when I stick the story in 1877, and I think I like that stuff a lot.

Current research reading:

  • Emergence: the Connected Lives of Ants, Brains, Cities, and Software (Steven Johnson)
  • Fools of Fortune, or Gambling and Gamblers, Comprehending A History of the Vice in Ancient and Modern Times, and in Both Hemispheres; an Exposition of its Alarming Prevalence and Destructive Effects; with an Unreserved and Exhaustive Disclosure of Such Frauds, Tricks and Devices as are Practiced by “Professional” Gamblers, “Confidence Men,” and “Bunko Steerers.” (by John Philip Quinn, who modestly, yet with sincerity, tenders to the world what he hopes may extenuate his twenty-five years of gaming and systematic deception of his fellow men.)

No, I did not make any of that up or embellish it. That’s literally what the front title page says.

  • The Great Bridge (David McCullough)
  • Ambrose Bierce: Alone in Bad Company (Roy Morris, Jr.)

That’s all for now. Happy (belated) New Year, everyone!