Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Book B-Day With The Boy Who Loved FIRE!

GRAFFITI PROMOTIONS is a regular feature on Writer's Alley for members of the publishing world to share valuable wisdom and experience, and to promote their work. Features include Author or Character InterviewsBook PromosSeven Sneaky Secrets, and Guest PostsJust signup to be featured!

***pompom cheers*** Technically yesterday was this Boy Who Loved FIRE's birthday, so here's an extra-whopping b-day wish from Writer's Alley! ***tosses confetti*** But I've saved some frosting for the real b-day person, here:

YA Author Julie Musil 
Julie Musil has been putting words to paper since she was ten years old, when she'd write poetry for anyone with a pulse. She's wife to her high school honey, and the mother of three teen boys. She's an obsessive reader who loves stories that grab the heart and won't let go. She writes from her rural home in Southern California. Blog | Twitter | Facebook | Website | Goodreads/The Boy Who Loved Fire | Goodreads/Julie Musil | Pinterest

One major quick splatter first ~ This is release Day 2 for Julie and guess what she's decided to do? Donate all of today's proceeds to a special charity - Carousel Ranch, where they provide equestrian therapy for disabled children. WOOT! So share this post away so more peeps buy her book and help her help this program! Even you can do that. For more on the program itself, click here and watch the slide show.

Now, before we get to sharing your book with the Alleywalkers, let's quench their pallets for a little Julie in her own words. Where you one of those 'child readers'?
This will sound strange, but I didn't become an avid reader until I was around 10 years old. My book choices were not Nancy Drew mysteries or The Hobbit. I loved reading about love, mainly Danielle Steel novels. I've always been a big fan of romance. If you're a mom with a daughter who reads lovey dovey stories at a young age, fear not. I'm relatively normal!

I'm a firm believer in we all come into ourselves at our own time. Describe yourself using five fruits, vegetables, TV shows, Movies, books, or a combination of them.
Oooh, fun question!

1. Peach, because I try to be sweet but don't always succeed.
2. Cucumber, because I try to be cool under pressure but don't always succeed.
3. Seinfeld, because I love the little absurdities in life.
4. Pride & Prejudice, because I love love & Mr. Darcy.
5. Grease the movie, because I love to sing out loud (even though I have a terrible voice).

Lover of all things Mr. Darcy, you and I will get along just fine. ;)

On to your authorship - what are the three most important elements of writing?
1. Character development. I've had to study a lot on this issue because I feel it's one of my weaknesses. I create worksheets on each character and get to know them well before starting the story.
2. Fleshing out a great story idea. I have notebooks full of ideas; the trick is to make them novel-worthy.
3. Pushing through "the wall," as James Scott Bell calls it. This happens to me during draft one, somewhere toward the middle. I feel as if the idea is terrible, the book is terrible, and that I have no idea what I'm doing.

One piece of writing advice.
Keep learning. I appreciate the fact that even seasoned pros keep learning. No writer knows it all, and no matter where we are on our journeys we must keep learning and growing. Our readers deserve nothing less.

Well said. Well said. Now, let's share your new baby!

the boy who loved FIRE by Julie Musil
Genre: Contemporary with a splash of ghosts
Released: January 28, 2014
Description: Manny O’Donnell revels in his status at the top of his high school food chain. He and his friends party in the mountains on a blustery night, sharing liquor and lame ghost stories around a campfire. The next morning, as a wild fire rages in those same mountains, Manny experiences doubt. He was the last of the drunken crew to leave the cave, and he’s uncertain if he extinguished the flames. Within hours, he becomes the number one arson suspect.

Santa Ana winds + matches = disaster. You’d think he would've learned that the first time he started a fire.

As he evades a determined arson investigator, Manny, a modern-day Scrooge, is visited by ghosts of the past, present, and future. He’s forced to witness the fate of his inadvertent victims, including Abigail, the scarred beauty who softens his heart. Manny must choose between turning around his callous, self-centered attitude, or protecting his own skin at the expense of anyone who gets in his way.

Manny, Manny, Manny ... ;) 

Care to share what you're working on now?
Manny, a modern teen Scrooge, faces 3 ghosts as he outruns arson charges, falls for his fire victim, & battles for redemption.

Whoa ... Thanks so much for joining us today, Julie! 

Julie has gracious offered up an eCopy of the boy who loved FIRE to a random commentor, so make sure to leave your thoughts! Spreading the word won't get you extra entries, but it will get you a cyber hug from me!! (((HUGS)))
 photo Sheri2.png


  1. I said elsewhere that this is a stunning cover and an awesome premise. Congratulations on your launch, Julie!

  2. Seinfeld is a fruit - who knew?
    Congratulations, Julie!! Hope it's an awesome week for you.

  3. Ooh, such a cool cover. I love the way Julie's name is written and the color contrast.

  4. Sheri, thank you, thank you, thank you! I'm so honored to be hanging out at your blog today.

    Dianne—thanks so much for your kind words. I was SO happy with the cover. (Designer is J. Allen Fielder, if anyone is interested in cover design)

    Alex—I had choices! But now that you mention it, there is a funny Seinfeld episode with peaches :)

    Kelly—Thank you! My cover designer threw that in for fun, and I love it. Thank you!

  5. Woot, woot! The Boy Who Loved Fire is finally out there!

    Julie, characters are you weakness, eh? Really? I'm betting that's really not the case, but I know what you mean. Plotting has always been my sore spot. It all comes together in my head, but between mental space and the electronic page, something happens. I think its my characters, hijacking the story. *shaking fist* Darn characters.

    1. Thanks, Crystal!

      Well, let's just say I "feel" like it's a weakness, so I work hard to overcome it. I know what you mean about plotting. Now I read through James Scott Bell's Plot & Structure before I begin each book!

    2. Oh, gosh. This really made me laugh. Great comment!

  6. Congrats to Julie. So interesting what you chose to read at 10. Good luck with your book.

    1. Natalie…I know, right? So weird. I still love romance novels, although now I like them grittier, like love mixed with a political thriller, or a coming of age love story. Thanks for stopping by!

  7. I'm so excited - I just bought it!!!

  8. Sounds like a great book and the cover is...dare I! Congrats Julie!!

  9. It sounds like a great read, congrats Julie! And you mentioned getting half way through the first draft and feeling like you have no idea what you're doing, which I can relate to. Isn't it crazy how that works? But I think that's why for me it helps to have an outline. I stick to it and usually by the end the confidence comes back.

    Nice post SA :)

  10. Kai and Emilyann, thanks so much for stopping by, and for your kind words.

  11. How much fun this was! Super hurray for Julie and for Sheri's great interview.

  12. Wow. I love the cover and it sounds like a fascinating book! Happy book birthday!

  13. Lee, glad you enjoyed :)

    Stephanie, thank you!!

  14. Yay Julie! Congrats on your release! This is going on my to-read list!

  15. I'm thrilled for Julie. This book sounds amazing and I'd love to read it.

  16. Heather, thanks for adding it to your to-read list!

    Medeia—thanks! If you do read it, I hope you'll enjoy it :)

  17. I love Julie's answers! Seinfeld and Grease. So awesome. Sometimes I break out in song too ... "Stranded at the drive-in... branded a fool ..."

    Awesome tips too! And what a nice thing to do for your first sales. All the best of luck to Julie!

  18. Pk—"What will they say? Monday at school." OMG I want to watch that movie NOW! Thanks so much for stopping by :)

  19. That's such a great photo of Julie, and love her book cover! I've got Playing with Fire on my to read list.

    1. That's great! And I hear she did wonderful during her first few days after the release. So thrilled for her.

      Thanks so much for dropping by!

    2. Karen, you're a sweetheart. Thank you!

  20. Hello SA, I'm pleased to have found you.
    I agree that characters are important, and I feel I need to work a lot on my characterizations. We all certainly do need to keep learning, but I'm certain we're all critical of our own work. There is a barrier when uncertainty kicks in.
    All the best to Julie with her work.
    I hope you don't mind - I've collected the rebel badge already. This creed is what we all need. Many thanks.

    1. Fanny—we're all works in progress, yes? Good luck to you with your work, and thanks for dropping by!

  21. Congrats to Julie and hooray for more Mr. Darcy lovers!

    1. Lydia—thank you! Darcy…that reminds me. I think I should watch it again :)

  22. I have heard about this book on other blogs, so it was nice to learn more about it and about Julie. :) Sounds like a great read and I always love learning more about other authors. I love Seinfeld. :) Wishing Julie the best of luck.

    S.A.- So glad we have connected via the internet. It is so exciting to meet another author represented by Talcott Notch. :) Yeah!

    1. DMS—Seinfeld episodes are the best! I love it when someone else gets my Seinfeld references. Like Soup Nazi, yada yada yada, close talker :)


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