Friday, March 27, 2009


Happy Friday! It's the last full day of Spring Break around here and I'm about ready to take off for the day and live it up to the fullest before we head back home tomorrow.

But first, I'd like to introduce you to today's FREEBIE FRIDAY guest, author Liz Funk. Liz is a self-professed recovering Supergirl, i.e. "a girl who believes that in order to be happy, she must excel at her job or career, have the best grades, wear the coolest clothes, date the best-looking boy, and have the perfect body size."

In her new book, SUPERGIRLS SPEAK OUT, Liz follows five other Supergirls and discusses how their need for perfection in all things dominates their lives. She offers advice on recovering from their 'overzealous tendencies and habits' in a voice that Booklist calls "honest, urgent."

I must confess that I am a stranger to this phenomena. I'm too disorganized and mellow to get around to being an effective Supergirl and I don't understand the kind of drive that would make a girl let herself be miserable just so she could be all things to everybody. Apparently it's a very common affliction, though, especially with the kind of pressure girls are facing now. So to see what makes a Supergirl tick...
What inspired you to write Supergirls Speak Out?
Honestly, I wrote "Supergirls Speak Out" because I had to. I observed
so many young people around me in high school and college who were
consumed by the pressure to succeed... and often we'd see a "perfect
girl" in the community go on to have a mental breakdown or an eating
disorder, and I wanted to really investigate why so many girls felt
such pressure to try to be perfect and make doing everything look
easy. It's interesting that so many girls intellectually know that
being perfect is impossible and they don't need to try to look as
gorgeous as the women they see in the media, but emotionally, they
still want to adhere to these impossible standards.

When did you realize you were an overachiever?
When I wrote the proposal for Supergirls, I saw myself as a
workaholic, but not necessarily a Supergirl. But upon listening to so
many girls' stories and viewpoints, I realized that I too had a
diseased relationship to not just working, but also my approach to my
appearance, my relationships, and my goals.

Having identified the supergirl syndrome in your own life, do you
still feel the same pressure to succeed?
Honestly, yes. As I mentioned earlier, one of the ironies of being a
Supergirl is that you can intellectually know that you do enough and
that you're good enough, but you emotionally want to do more and be

What advice do you have for girls in middle school or high school
who think they have to do it all?
I think that girls need to understand that they value and that they
matter for reasons outside what they look like, what they accomplish,
and how others perceive them. They need to discover their intrinsic
worth, and develop identities outside what their communities expect
from them!

What excites you?
A really great book. I read the same ten books over and over again;
the children's book 'Eloise' is my favorite. I also love really silly
or cute movies, with Seth Rogen, Kate Husdon, and Anne Hathaway. And
a rainy day at a museum. That's probably the best the world has to
offer. Ha! The cool thing about recovering from being a Supergirl is
that you get more comfortable being eccentric.

What turns you off?
Cell phones! I wish they'd never been invented--people are so rude
with them! Sometimes when I see people talking too loudly on flip
phones, I have fantasies of grabbing their phone and smacking it
against the nearest hard surface. I have a BlackBerry that I'm
admittedly rather addicted to, but I'm always discreet with it and
never use it in movie theaters or at the dinner table or at parties.

If you could invite anyone you wanted - living or dead - to hang
out with you at a weekend retreat, who would you invite and why?
I would have loved to have met the feminist Betty Friedan. She wrote
the book the Feminine Mystique and she arguably started the second
wave of feminism in the 1960's. I think she would be so interesting
to talk to!

What's one thing most people don't know about you?
I love to paint! In my spare time, I make paintings on canvas with
acrylic paints. They're rarely very good or even look like what I set
out to paint, but I love doing it.

What's your favorite quote?
"It was a musical thing, and there was supposed to be singing and
dancing while the music was being played." It's from this youtube

Milk Chocolate or Dark?
Milk. I actually don't like dark chocolate at all! And I'm weird
about my chocolate stuff; I don't like chocolate flavored things, like
ice cream or cake. I just like the real thing!
Liz is offering a signed copy of SUPERGIRLS SPEAK OUT to one lucky FREEBIE FRIDAY reader. To be entered to win, leave a comment below telling me what you think about Supergirls. Are you a Supergirl? Do you envy them? Feel sorry for them? Know any personally?
This contest will remain open until Tuesday.

P.S. I'll apologize right up front because I won't be around today or tomorrow to monitor or respond to your comments, so I'm trusting you to play nice and keep it PG. I'll be back Sunday to check in. Meanwhile, have a great weekend!

Tuesday, March 24, 2009


Greetings from beautiful Myrtle Beach. This has been such a great break so far, even though it's too chilly to go into the water much. Doesn't matter... I'm all about catching up on all the books I kept adding to my list while I was pushing for the deadline. Nothing like sitting on the beach (albeit in a sweater) with a Diet Coke and a pile of books. Ah. Heaven. : )

Congratulations to this week's Freebie Friday winner, who will receive a signed copy of GOING TOO FAR by Jennifer Echols:


Please drop me a note at gerb(@)lindagerber(.)com with your mailing info and we'll get that sent out to you!

Meanwhile, I wish you all a spectacular week! I'll see you right back here on Friday for a FREEBIE with Liz Funk, author of SUPERGIRLS SPEAK OUT.


Thursday, March 19, 2009

FREEBIE FRIDAY with Jennifer Echols

Happy first day of spring!

Does it look spring-y where you are? Not here. It's 40 degrees outside. Blurg. But! We escape for spring break in warmer climes tomorrow. Woot!

Meanwhile, thanks for your votes in the Show me the Green contest. The winner is: Roxanne!

(Since you included your addy with the photo, no need to do anything. I'll get the books sent off to you.)

And now, I'm pleased to welcome GCC sister Jennifer Echols to the blog! Jennifer is the author of the Simon Pulse comedies THE BOYS NEXT DOOR, MAJOR CRUSH, and THE EX GAMES and is celebrating the recent release of her new book, GOING TOO FAR - which Teenreads Too calls "a novel readers won't want to put down."

Check out the official blurb:

HOW FAR WOULD YOU GO? All Meg has ever wanted is to get away. Away from high school. Away from her backwater town. Away from her parents who seem determined to keep her imprisoned in their dead-end lives. But one crazy evening involving a dare and forbidden railroad tracks, she goes way too far… and almost doesn’t make it back.
John made a choice to stay. To enforce the rules. To serve and protect. He has nothing but contempt for what he sees as childish rebellion, and he wants to teach Meg a lesson she won’t soon forget. But Meg pushes him to the limit by questioning everything he learned at the police academy. And when he pushes back, demanding to know why she won’t be tied down, they will drive each other to the edge—and over…

And now, for the interview:
What inspired you to write GOING TOO FAR?
I love the TV shows COPS and RENO 911. I had an idea to write a romantic comedy about two teenagers stuck doing a ride-along with a cop. Then I thought the story would be a lot more interesting if the cop could actually be the hero or the heroine, rather than a bystander in the romance. I did some research and discovered some agencies hire 19-year-olds as cops, and voila. Then the novel turned dramatic on me, no longer a romantic comedy, and I decided not to call it back.

Are any of your characters based on real people that you know?
Meg is my dark side, but I didn’t really base her on me. She just came out that way.

What excites you?
A great book, movie, or TV show. My latest discovery is CASTLE, a TV show about a novelist.

What turns you off?
Unhappy endings.

What's the biggest lie you ever told, and what happened as a result of the telling?
I am not much of a liar. Not that I’m so upstanding and honest, but I figured out pretty early that I’m a terrible actress and will always get caught in a lie.

What's the most suspenseful thing that's happened to you in real life?
Before I sold my first novel, I had several literary agents who said they wanted to call me to talk about representing me. We were in the process of moving, my husband had already moved to our new city, and I had stayed behind with our three-year-old. Every time the phone rang, I thought it might be a literary agent, but it was always a realtor wanting to show the house. Then the three-year-old and I managed to drop the phone in the bathtub.

It worked out okay.

If you could invite anyone you wanted - living or dead - to hang out with you at a weekend retreat, who would you invite and why?
I would love to have a writer’s retreat and plotting party with Jane Austen, E. M. Forster, and Jennifer Crusie.

What's one thing most people don't know about you?
I almost earned a PhD in English, but I never finished my dissertation on hypertext fiction. The degree didn’t seem important after I got a novel published.

What's your favorite quote?
“Human beings have their great chance in the novel.”--E. M. Forster

Milk Chocolate or Dark?
Cadbury Creme Eggs!

Jennifer has generously donated a copy of GOING TO FAR for this week's lucky FREEBIE FRIDAY winner. To be entered, leave a comment below, telling us either your plans for spring break, or your own real-life cop story. This contest will remain open until Tuesday, March 24th.

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Books Drop and Lauren Chats

Happy hump-day! Can you believe the week is half over?

A couple of things to tell you about today -

First, GCC, TFC and Agency sister Lauren Baratz Logsted and her husband Greg will be hanging out in the Knight Agency chat room tomorrow night to talk about YA fiction. Here's the link to the TKA blog post that tells about the chat and here's the info so you can join us there!

What: Online Chat with Lauren Baratz-Logsted & Greg Logsted
When: Thursday, March 19th @ 9pm ET
Where: The TKA Chat Room
How Do You Chat: Visit the chat room here:
Enter a username and password (this can be any combination). Your computer must be Java enabled to chat.

Next, it's Operation Teen Book Drop time again! Head on over to the Readergirlz blog to see how you can help spread the word - and win stuff!

Enjoy the rest of the week! See you Friday!

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Winner and Wearing o' the Green!

Happy St. Patrick's Day!

Welcome! You're just in time for the drawing of our A WALK THROUGH A WINDOW Freebie Friday winner...
*drum roll, please*


Congratulations! Please send me a note with your mailing instructions to gerb(@)lindagerber(.)com and we'll get that sent out to you.

Everyone else - stick around! Lots of fun stuff to tell you about today.

Be sure to check out Melissa Francis's blog today for your chance to win her first ARC giveaway for BITE ME.

TFC sister Lauren Baratz-Logsted and her husband Greg will be talking YA fiction at th TKA chatroom on Thursday. Check back here tomorrow for the full scoop!

And stay tuned for this week's FREEBIE FRIDAY with Jennifer Echols and your chance to win GONE TOO FAR.

Meanwhile, I'm pleased to give you our Wearin' o' the Green finalists. I do apologize - Blogger is being stoopid, so how this will work - please peek at the photobucket album to vote on your favorite picture. In the interest of anonymity, please send your votes to gerb(@)lindagerber(.)com. (Some of our teen panelists were concerned about their vote showing up in the comments section and since blogger is being weird today, my vote meter is not showing up. Nor are the photos uploading normally, which is why I have to use photobucket. Nor are the font or colors working. Blurg.)

Voting will remain open until Friday, and the winner announced right before Jennifer's interview.

Thanks and have a glorious day! : )

Sunday, March 15, 2009

Twitter Mosaic

Things to do on a Sunday evening while the guys are glued to Selection Sunday on the TV... I saw this on Justina Chen Hedley's blog and I had to make one myself. Thanks, Twitter followers! Do you see yourself in there?

P.S. Still time to enter KC Dyer's giveaway and to get your green on and send photos for the basket o' books freebie! See posts below.

Get your twitter mosaic here.