Start Your Day with Serial! That’s the name of the awesome Shannon Delany’s book blog tour for her novel, 13 to Life: A Werewolf’s Tale,  and today is her turn to stop here! Shannon’s debut novel (and first in her YA paranormal series) 13 to Life started as a winning cell phone novel written in serial segments. During the tour you can read bits of the book in order. Miss a day? Hop to Shannon’s blog http://13toLife.us/blog and check the link to the blog tour calendar in her sidebar.

As an aside, Shannon has been a model of pre-launch publicity. Any author who is having a book come out soon would be wise to take note!

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A quick introduction to me. I’m Shannon Delany (http://ShannonDelany.com) and a debut author this summer. When I’m not writing or reading or spending time with family I’m dealing with a small farm where we raise heritage livestock. I’ve been a writer in some capacity for most of my life–mainly playing at creation by building worlds and characters to populate them and amuse me.
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I write first for myself. I need to love what I’ve written because, dear aspiring authors, if we don’t love what we’ve created there’s very little chance we’ll push it forward and risk finding out if anyone else loves it, too.
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My very first novel (and the first in a YA paranormal series being published by St. Martin’s Press) is called 13 TO LIFE (http://13toLife.us/ordernow). Nope, it’s not about a jail term or life sentence–at least not in an absolutely literal sense. And yes, it does include werewolves and Shakespearean references. There is humor, romance, conflict a-plenty, a twist and teenage (and lifelong) issues.
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And the way it all started was mainly by accident. I am a Cyber Cinderella. To make a long story short… There was a contest. One of my CPs warned me not to do it. But I come from stubborn stock and had already given my opinion on the contest’s winner’s contract. It had been changed because of my complaints. So, I decided to throw something out in public and see what happened. My husband warned me not to enter anything I was too attached to. So I didn’t. I made 13 to Life up as I went along. About halfway through the Textnovel 2008 (http://www.Textnovel.com) contest I had become attached to the story. So I pushed myself. And I won. My winnings included an agent just starting out and some much-needed cash.
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Everything fell into place quickly. We were contacted by interested parties even before queries were sent out. Yes, it still blows my mind. I made a choice and haven’t looked back.
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Was I lucky? Yes. 13 to Life was definitely a right-place-right-time deal. And my skill as a writer was as ready as it could be to accept the challenge I was presented with.
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I’ve spoken to groups about serendipity and goal-setting (as well as other things) and I firmly believe there’s a certain amount of luck (and definitely timing) involved in getting a story published. You may be a tremendously talented writer (many, many exist) but if your book doesn’t hit the right person at the right time, it won’t be picked up. So my advice to the writers following the Serial Tour? Focus on your craft. Keep putting your heart out there. Step out in faith and take some chances. There is no one right path to getting published. So write first for yourself and do what’s right for you.
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and the snippet . . .

13 to Life: Chapter 4, part E (used with the author’s permission)

“Today, students,” he began, “we will be examining a mystery of World War II. Wait! Before the groans start, let’s remember that World War II defined the roles many countries still play today. Although it was a relatively recent war — I know, I know, it was forever and a day ago to you whippersnappers,” he stooped, squinted and comically wheezed out the term before continuing with a wink, “There are portions of it that we historians still eagerly research. Because history is not dead!” He glanced at the room full of students and said, “Now that I’ve delivered our public service announcement, you may all groan.”

Contest!

Shannon’s hosting several contests during the Start Your Day with Serial Tour. The big contest will award one lucky winner with a royal amber pendant, pietersite jeweled bookmark, stuffed wolf, 13 to Life mousepad, pen, tote, signed poster, personalized copy of 13 to Life and both of the 13 to Life pins. All you need to do is comment at 13 of the blogs hosting Shannon during her 30 day tour. Everyone who does so will be entered into a random drawing. Winner may be international.
Remember you can find Shannon’s blog at http://13toLife.us/blog — just check the link to the blog tour calendar in her sidebar.
Shannon said she’d stop by to answer comments, so if you have any questions for her, leave them here.