Book Launch for Monsters of Virtue

You are warmly invited to the launch of Monsters of Virtue by L.J.Richie.

Tuesday, October 23rd at 6pm
Te Auaha, Level 5 Studio, 65 Dixon Street

Please let us know if you would like to attend via our Facebook event page.

 

Monsters of Virtue cover

New Zealand, 1932. The height of the Great Depression. In the wilds of the Ōtaki River Gorge, the newly formed Eugenics Department gathers the best and brightest in an attempt to create perfection.

… But what makes a perfect person?

Fifteen-year-old Eve knows she’s not one – but with her sister’s life on the line, she’d better onvince her new classmates that she could be. Together with uneasy allies Orion and Nyx, she’ll pry into the dark heart of this fledgling utopia. Will the future that awaits them there be one worth fighting for?

 

Monsters of Virtue will appeal to fans of thought-provoking, action-filled YA fiction like The Hunger Games and Lord of the Flies, as well as readers who want to explore the darker side of New Zealand’s past.

About the author:
L.J. Ritchie is a Wellington-based author of young adult fiction. His previous jobs include secondary school performance arts co-ordinator, lighting and sound technician, garden labourer, web designer, domestic cleaner, data-entry operator, and publicist for an Elvis impersonator. One perk of becoming a writer is that what was once a motley curriculum vitae can now be called professional development. He completed the Whitireia Creative Writing Programme in 2013. His debut novel, Like Nobody’s Watching, was a finalist in the Young Adult Fiction and Best First Book categories at the 2017 New Zealand Book Awards for Children & Young Adults.

Escalator Press and young writers

Escalator Press describes itself as a ‘learning press’. Learning is in its DNA – encouraging new authors, working alongside them at every stage of the process, providing authors with media training, workshops on websites etc, working with the publishing students at Whitireia, taking on interns – it’s quite a long list. But over the last month we’ve had another role, as part of the ‘Creative Writing for Youth’ programme at the Hutt Library. In fact, we’re a big part of the programme.

Escalator authors Rudy Castañeda Lopez, Trish Harris and Rob Hack all talked about their writing experience, and Adrienne Jansen talked from the publishing point of view. And that’s a big point of view these days, when the options for publishing have really opened up. Most of this group of young writers are working on their first novel, so we might see them before long!

On the experience, Rudy Castañeda Lopez writes:

Rudy at the launch of Open Your Eyes, Jackson Ryder

Rudy at the launch of Open Your Eyes, Jackson Ryder

It was a very pleasant experience. I didn’t know what to expect, whether there would be two that showed up or thirty. As it turned out there were a very respectable dozen high school students.

I did a brief reading (one minute) then they did an exercise. In this case they chose an image from a carefully chosen wide variety of possibilities then they had to write for seven minutes from the point of view of one of the subjects in the photo. Then, after that, write another seven minutes from the POV of another character, then another. I was invited to participate and, despite my fear of being shown up, I plunged in with satisfying result. I might even make it into a short story.
Some of the  students read from their efforts and I was very impressed at the quality of their work. Afterwards I told them about my own journey in writing, my methodology, talked a bit about short stories vs novels and finally tips I wished I had been given when I started writing – basically to write a lot, take risks, embrace failure as a catalyst of growth and to read.
They were very attentive and asked intelligent questions. In all, I was there for two delightful hours and would go back in a second.

 

See Hutt City Libraries website for more information on this great programme.

Creative Writing for Youth

Hutt City Libraries is offering young Wellington writers a great opportunity to get some writing done and pick the brains of local authors, scriptwriters, publishers, poets and lyricists. The line up includes three of Escalator Press’ own authors.

The sessions will run from the 10th of August until the 21st of September and are free to ages 13 to 21.

You can catch Rudy Castañeda López, artist, novelist and author of Open Your Eyes, Jackson Ryder, on August 17th, Trish Harris, poet and writer of the memoir The Walking Stick Tree, on August 24th, and Rob Hack, performer and poet of Everything Is Here, on August 31st.

For more information see the Hutt City Libraries website.

New Zealand Book Awards for Children and Young Adults News

We’re very excited to have another Escalator Press author shortlisted in the New Zealand Book Awards for Children and Young Adults this year.

Erin Donohue’s Because Everything Is Right but Everything Is Wrong is up for both Best First Book and the Copyright Licensing NZ Young Adult Fiction Award. The awards kick off on the 8th of August.

You can find out some of Erin’s writing secrets, and those of her competition, in this wonderful article by The Sapling.

Ebook Deal: Open Your Eyes, Jackson Ryder

We would like to invite you to download a free copy of Rudy Castañeda López’s Open Your Eyes, Jackson Ryder which at the beginning of this promotion jumped to the top of two of Amazon’s free ebook bestseller lists. It appeared as #1 for US Historical fiction and #4 for Literary Fiction.

Fifteen-year-old Jackson Ryder has always loved art, but in the wake of his mother’s death, he must choose between his passion and his grieving father’s approval. Pulled from his New York home and thrust into the melting pot that is San Sebastiano, California in the 1960s, Jackson finds himself embroiled in an era of assassination, an emerging art scene, the Civil Rights Movement and The Beatles. As he learns how to deal with life, death and a new found interest in girls, drawing is the only thing stopping his world from spinning out of control.

Now is your chance to read this captivating novel for free. Just click here. Available until 7pm Sunday 3rd of June.

Ebook Deal: Because Everything Is Right but Everything Is Wrong

For the last week of May, Erin Donohue’s debut novel Because Everything Is Right but Everything Is Wrong will be available to purchase on Amazon for $1.14.

Click here to take advantage of this amazing price.

Erin recently took part in the Auckland Writers Festival on a panel with Guardian Fiction Prize winner Alex Wheatle and Eileen Merriman called Can We Be Frank? which explored the difficulties of writing about big issues for a younger audience.

This ebook deal will last until midnight on May 31st.