Sign up for our 2016 TBR Pile Reading Challenge and tackle your ever growing pile of books!

Sunday, June 10, 2012

Guest Post by Karen Schreck, author of While He Was Away + Giveaway



Today I have the pleasure of sharing with you a fabulous guest post by Karen Schreck, the author of YA contemporary novel, While He Was Away. I have reviewed While He Was Away on the blog today, for my review click here (or scroll down a little bit, it's the post under this one). 

Thanks to the wonderful people at Sourcebook Fire, I am also hosting a giveaway of one copy of While He Was Away (US/Canada), but don't worry if you don't win! At the end of the month I will also be giving away an International Prize pack consisting of: While He Was Away, The Summer Of No Regrets, Rock God and Catching Jordan, thanks to the fabulous Raincoast Books! (International) 

Enjoy the guest post and make sure to leave your feedback about it! :) 



Stories My Mother Told Me . . . and the Ones She Never Did 
A Guest Post by Karen Schreck

     I think a lot about family stories, perhaps because I’m an only child, and now that both of my parents are dead—no longer living, I almost wrote, because the other, more naked statement is still sometimes hard for me to write—I feel like I’m the only one left who can and will carry them. 

      Sometimes the family stories rattle around in my head, demanding attention all at once, and I don’t know where to focus—I guess that can be the effect of remembering. But other times, (especially when I follow the advice that great writer and teacher once gave me, which was: “Write where the pressure is!”) a particular story will rise up above the others and say: “Pick me.” 

     That’s what happened with While He Was Away. 

     I got quite and waited until the pressure revealed itself—and it was a story my mother told me in three simple sentences right before she died when I was fourteen. 

     Her story went like this. 

     “I was married before I married your father. I was very young. My first husband died in WWII.” 

     That was it. That was all she would say. 

      She knew she was dying, and she wanted me to know this truth about herself. For years afterward, no one else said a word about it, and then finally, it was revealed that there was really very little to say—only the classic: “They were childhood sweethearts, deeply in love; it was like a dream”—and then there were a few pictures that a cousin gave me—my mother, young and beautiful, in love with a young and beautiful boy. 

     When I started thinking about the other young and beautiful boys and girls who were heading off to Iraq to do battle for all kinds of reasons, I found myself thinking again about my mother, the girl, and her boy, and how in some ways, love in wartime is so different now, and in other ways, it isn’t all. I wanted to retell the story she told me in three simple sentences, and it turned into a novel.,While He Was Away.

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++





About the author:

Karen Schreck is the author of the young adult novel WHILE HE WAS AWAY (Sourcebooks Fire, May 2012), as well as the novel DREAM JOURNAL, which was a 2006 Young Adult BookSense Pick, and the award-winning children's book, LUCY'S FAMILY TREE. The recipient of a Pushcart Prize and an Illinois State Arts Council Grant, Karen received her doctorate in English and Creative Writing from the University of Illinois at Chicago. She writes and teaches for a living, and she loves visiting schools and other gatherings of readers and writers to talk about her books the writing process. 

For more information or to contact Karen, please visit her blog: http://karenschreck.com/blog

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++



Giveaway~! 


Sourcebooks Fire has generously offered to give away one copy of While He Was Away to one lucky US/Canadian reader!

Open to: US and CANADA ONLY 
Ends: June 30th
Enter through Rafflecopter below:
a Rafflecopter giveaway

28 comments:

Carrie at In the Hammock Blog said...

Thank you for sharing your inspiration for the story with us. it sounds like the story is going to be very intense.

Lisa Nguyen said...

I really can't wait to read book now! :)

@HarleyBearBooks said...

I love when real life inspires books. Your story definitely makes me want to read this book more than I already did lol. I think it's true that war is different know, but at the same time it is still the same for families and friends of people fighting overseas.

Randi said...

That made my eyes prickle a little bit. Just knowing the background behind the writing of your book makes me even more anxious to read it; the personal connection to the story makes it much more meaningful. Thank you for sharing that with us!

Bethie said...

I love the cover! Thanks for the giveaway.

Lizzi0915 at aol dot com

Darling Nikki said...

I have been wanting to read this since I first saw it. And knowing this is a sort of dedication in her mother's memory, makes me want to read it more in a sappy kinda way =)

States of Decay said...

Thank you for this wonderful guest post! The bittersweet inspiration behind the story makes me want to read While He Was Away even more!

Thank you for the giveaway!

Aspen Firefly said...

Reading this post has really made me want to read the book more! Thank you so much for sharing the story that inspired While He Was Away! I can't wait to read the book.

PuttPutt1198Eve said...

I think the advice about writing what's causing the most pressure, was really great! In your case it seems to have just caused more questions. Writing about it would definitely help!

Cathy De Los Santos said...

That's a beautiful story. I know your book is just as beautiful. There is just something about the military especially wwii that just gets to me. I can totally picture what your mom has said and I can't wait to see the story you came up with. Thanks for sharing and thanks for the great giveaway!

Megan @ Unearthly Reviews said...

That guest post is very emotional/beautiful/touching. I have a feeling I'd really enjoy the book. Thanks for the giveaway! :)

Thalia Anderson said...

I'm so excited to read this book, even more so after having read this! Thanks so much for the chance. (:

Alicia said...

I know that I tweeted this to you and Karen but I also wanted to give you some comment love.

This guest post brought tears to my eyes and I cannot wait to get this book in my possession!!

Jen said...

I love anything comtemp lol:) so i really wanna read this book:)
-JennyC

roro said...

sound emotional
goodluck all

Tore said...

I would love to read this book. It sounds very good. Tore923@aol.com

Lexie said...

That . . . is honestly stunning. There are a lot of beautiful guest posts. A lot of powerful and lovely ones. But this one . . . wow. So short, but so incredible.

I really must read this book.

Jennifer @ A Librarians Library said...

I feel like this novel is super emotionally intense if that is the story that inspired it...holy cow I am getting choked up just thinking about it!

Thanks for the giveaway!

Na said...

I also like stories about families especially when it comes from different perspectives. The sentence you shared tells a story and I'm glad she told it to you in her way.

Rebecca said...

Wow, what a beautiful post. I'm even more interested to get myself a copy now!

Amy said...

That is such a touching and beautiful post. Thank you for sharing.

Emily said...

That is such a wonderful post! This book is so good and heartfelt and amazing...I just love it!

samantha35 said...

Sounds like a great book!

follow via gfc
drakebdog@gmail.com

Gaby said...

Loved the summary of this book and would most definitley loveto read it :D

Tobi Helton said...

So, when my grandmother met my grandfather she was engaged to someone else. He was over seas my grandparents were love at first sight. Same time frame.

Your book sounds amazing. Thanks for the giveawy!

starryblue said...

I've heard nothing but delightful things about this book. Thank you for the giveaway.

Moirae(thefates) book reviews said...

I want to read this book so bad. Someone very close to me is being deployed soon so these types of books are very close to me right now.

BookWormInBarrie said...

That story seems like something a movie would be made of.

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...