Skylark by Meagan SpoonerPlease help me give a warm welcome Meagan Spooner, debut author of SKYLARK! She’s here today to share a guest post with us, and an awesome giveaway.

Vis in magia, in vita vi. In magic there is power, and in power, life.

For fifteen years, Lark Ainsley waited for the day when her Resource would be harvested and she would finally be an adult. After the harvest she expected a small role in the regular, orderly operation of the City within the Wall. She expected to do her part to maintain the refuge for the last survivors of the Wars. She expected to be a tiny cog in the larger clockwork of the city.

Lark did not expect to become the City’s power supply.

For fifteen years, Lark Ainsley believed in a lie. Now she must escape the only world she’s ever known…or face a fate more unimaginable than death. (Goodreads)

Pre-Order/Buy: Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Indiebound

Write What You Know

by Meagan Spooner

We’ve all heard it at some point or another. Write what you know. In stories like Little Women and Anne of Green Gables they’re always writing fantasy, and failing to get published, until someone tells them to write the stories of their own lives, at which point they sell their work. I’ve had people tell me—not suggest, but actually tell me—that I should be writing closer to home, that there’s nothing to sink your teeth into with fantasy. That fantasy isn’t important.

It always rankled—fantasy was what I read, what I loved. There was a period in my life where, if I could’ve gotten away with wearing fantasy costumes every day, I probably would’ve done it.

The truth is that you can often do so much more with fantasy and science fiction than you can with contemporary settings. You can put characters into situations that would never come up otherwise. Settings and magic and fantasy creatures can become metaphors for things you can’t discuss directly. But the risk, and one of the pitfalls I think many aspiring fantasy writers fall into, is that the story will lack the real textures and weight that a setting more close to home might have. The story can feel groundless—something that can often turn into pointless.

It’s only in the past couple of years that I’ve come to realize that I actually am writing what I know. A lot of this understanding came through working with my scary-smart editor at Carolrhoda Lab, Andrew Karre—he’d see things in my book that I didn’t know were there.

Lark is me—or rather, Lark is any teenaged girl who’s a little too smart, a little too strange. She’s that girl who never fit in, who lived to grow up fast and wanted to go straight from precocious child to independent adult. In Lark’s world, that’s literally what happens—you go from child to adult over the course of a ceremony. And when Lark is passed over time and time again to pass into adulthood, she’s left as the world’s last teenager. We’ve all felt alone as teenagers—Lark literally is alone.

The setting is the forest behind my childhood home. True, yes, the real setting is an alternate universe in which magic, not electricity, powers technology. But really, if we’re being honest, Lark is journeying across my backyard. The city she leaves is the city where I’ve lived my whole life. The Institute that captures her is the museum that captivated me.

And the choice Lark faces is the choice we all face at some point in our lives. Join the crowd, become an adult, be safe and normal, be accepted—or step beyond that and do the unexpected, the exciting, the dangerous.

Despite the magic, despite the danger and the clockwork monsters, I’ve been writing what I know this whole time. And I wouldn’t have it any other way.

But I still roll my eyes at those people who told me that fantasy isn’t important.

About the author: Meagan Spooner grew up reading and writing every spare moment of the day, while dreaming about life as an archaeologist, a marine biologist, an astronaut. She graduated from Hamilton College in New York with a degree in playwriting, and has spent several years since then living in Australia. She’s traveled with her family all over the world to places like Egypt, South Africa, the Arctic, Greece, Antarctica, and the Galapagos, and there’s a bit of every trip in every story she writes.

She currently lives and writes in Northern Virginia, but the siren call of travel is hard to resist, and there’s no telling how long she’ll stay there.

In her spare time she plays guitar, plays video games, plays with her cat, and reads.

She is the author of SKYLARK, coming out August 1 from Carolrhoda Lab/Lerner Books. She is also the co-author of THESE BROKEN STARS, forthcoming from Disney-Hyperion in Fall 2013.

Links: WebsiteTwitter | Facebook | Goodreads

OK. So I was excited to read SKYLARK before this post, but now I’m dying to read it! I can already relate to Lark and I can’t wait to read her story. Many thanks to Meagan for sharing this post, and also for offering the Skylark Swag Pack (details below) as a giveaway!


Swag pack includes some of the items pictured above, like signed SKYLARK bookmarks, buttons, postcards, bookplates, and custom-designed pixie temporary tattoos!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Thank you Meagan! Entrants, good luck!

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27 Responses to Write What You Know by Meagan Spooner & Giveaway

  1. Rebecca Hipworth says:

    Thanks for the giveaway.
    I’m really looking forward to this book.
    Look at that gorgeous cover. 😀
    You should check out Black City by Elizabeth Richards.

  2. Sai K
    Twitter: readersai

    Wow awesome giveaway! And the book sounds cool too. Also liked the author’s thoughts: realistic fiction and fantasy are my two favorite genres, so… interesting. 🙂 Thanks!! 🙂

  3. Hwa Sun says:

    Fantasy is SOOO IMPORTANT. I love fantasy 🙂 There’s so much more room for freedom when you can create you own universe.
    Hwa Sun recently posted..[REVIEW] Kill Me Softly by Sarah CrossMy Profile

  4. TayteH says:

    Yes, Thank you. You know, I haven’t heard a thing about this book ever since The Story Siren announced the cover and a giveaway for the books. Thank you. I love the cover and the post. 😀
    TayteH recently posted..Giveaway Alert!: MY 1 Year Blogoversary! w/ Books: A true StoryMy Profile

  5. Christina K. says:

    I love how there’s parts of the author in the fantasy!

    Wonderful interview!

    Thanks so much:)

  6. Love the blurb and the cover and that is how I get won over by books so I am only too eager to get my name in the giveaway
    Jessica (frellathon) recently posted..Fallen by J Bennett Guest post and giveawayMy Profile

  7. Kari W says:

    What a great interview. Thank you so much.

    Thank you for the opportunity to win. I have been looking forward to this book’s release.

  8. JennyC says:

    this book looks really awesome:)

  9. Lauren Goff
    Twitter: FearofLung

    I’ve been really curious about this book! Can’t wait to read it! 😀

  10. Babel says:

    I understand that feeling, being left out because all you like and think about is fantasy. I’d have loved to see you in costume 😉
    I like many genres but fantasy really does it for me. It makes something click inside my soul, you know 🙂
    I’m not from the USA but I wanted to add my thoughts anyway.
    Thanks for everything.

  11. Joella Elbert says:

    I love the cover of this book and am really excited to have a chance to read it!! Thanks so much for the awesome giveaway!!!

  12. […] BEA Bloggers Conference 2012 This past week I was honored to have debut author Meagan Spoon (SKYLARK, August 2012) as a guest! She shared a post called “Write What You Know” and is giving a SKYLARK swag […]

  13. kimbacaffeinate
    Twitter: kimbacaffeinate

    I love how you too things and placed around you and brought them into your story..thanks for the awesome giveaway, I look forward to reading Skylark.
    kimbacaffeinate recently posted..Slow Summer Kisses by Shannon StaceyMy Profile

  14. Abby K. says:

    I can’t wait to read this one! Thanks for the chance to win it!

  15. Ashna says:

    Skylark sounds like a very interesting book! I would love to win it! Thank you for this giveaway! 🙂
    Ashna recently posted..Meg-a-readers Blog Hop! + Review: UnderworldMy Profile

  16. Diana says:

    Dude! I totally agree. Fantasy and Sci-fi and all of its sub genres can be amazing crucibles for real, human, universal emotions and themes. But it needs to be done right.
    Diana recently posted..(YA) Freedom to Read Giveaway Blog Hop!My Profile

  17. Momo X.
    Twitter: BooksOverBoys

    I am so in love with the cover for this book. It’s simply but at the same time it says a lot. And it depicts the story so well–so enchanting and mystical!

    Thanks so much for the giveaway!
    Momo X. recently posted..Teaser Tuesday (23): Easy by Tammara WebberMy Profile

  18. Kate
    Twitter: Littlestar300

    I cannot wait for this book, it looks amazing!!
    Kate recently posted..300 follower giveaway!!!My Profile

  19. magan bagan says:

    Thanks for this giveaway!

    I’m beyond excited to read this book. Not only is the cover absolutely gorgeous and mysterious, but the description makes it sound so fascianting 🙂
    magan bagan recently posted..Clockwork Prince by Cassandra ClareMy Profile

  20. Kelley says:

    This was a great blog post. “Write what you know” makes so much more sense to me now. I’m so glad I found this. Thank you. 🙂

  21. This book sounds so great. I had gotten it from Net Galley but sadly the publisher archived it before I had the chance to download it.

    As far as the write what you know, it makes perfect sense and makes me appreciate the story all the more. I also think it helps in the story because I think the writing doesn’t seem as forced and that makes the read more enjoyable.

    Thanks for hosting the giveaway!

    Christina2227 recently posted..Foretell (Wanderlove, #2) by Belle MaloryMy Profile

  22. Lili
    Twitter: LiliReflects

    Thank you for the giveaway. The cover of this book is absolutely gorgeous! I can’t wait to read it.
    Lili recently posted..Review: PureMy Profile

  23. Desiree says:

    I have been excited about Skylark for some time now but the more I read about/from Meagan Spooner, the more excited I get! What an inspirational woman! Thanks for the giveaway!

  24. Danielle says:

    I’m really excited for this one. The cover is stunning.

  25. Isabelle
    Twitter: isabelledoan

    Lark sounds really interesting. I mean, we’ve all seen THAT KID who never seemed to be a teenager. They’d go straight from being “immature” to doing this an adult would do, like teenagers who are book blogging very well.

  26. stacie puett
    Twitter: stacielpuett

    I love all the swag. im a cover lover. this is an amazing cover.
    thanks for such a great give away

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