Friday, December 12, 2014

Giveaway Day 1: Drift by Former Teen Author M. K. Hutchins (Winner announced!)

The winner of the copy of Drift by M.K. Hutchins is Selah Bell.

Congratulations, Selah! Contact info@jillwilliamson.com to claim your prize!






Jill here.

To celebrate the coming holiday and vacation, we're hosting the 12 Giveaways of Christmas. That's 12 giveaways, 12 days in a row, starting today. 

Each giveaway will run for 48 hours, so be sure and check back each day to see what giveaway is next and who the winners are.






M.K. Hutchins is the author of the YA fantasy novel Drift (Tu Books, 2014). Her short fiction appears in Orson Scott Card's Intergalactic Medicine Show and Daily Science Fiction. She studied archaeology at BYU, which gave her the opportunity to compile histories from Maya glyphs, excavate in Belize, and work as a faunal analyst. Visit her online at http://www.mkhutchins.com to learn more.

Welcome to Go Teen Writers, MK! Tell us about yourself and your novel.

I'm a boardgame-addicted, bread-baking mom of three boys. I've also got a degree in archaeology, so I enjoy studying really, really dead people and their trash heaps. Drift is a YA epic fantasy inspired by Maya mythology and set on the shores of hell.

Ooh, sounds intriguing. You were a teen writer. Can you tell us about your journey to publication?

Getting published took me a long time. I didn't really have a critique group until I was twenty, and I think that slowed down my learning process (on the other hand, by the time I had a group, I was super-excited to have other people tear my manuscript apart, instead of being crushed by criticism...maybe that's an okay trade-off). I started Drift when I was nineteen, but I knew it wasn't working. I kept writing other things, occasionally coming back to poke at it as my skills grew.

In 2011, I submitted Drift to Tu Books. I'd heard Stacy, the editor, speak at a conference and I thought she might like it. Also, I stink at query-writing. Stink. I'm glad they had open submissions at the time so I could just send sample chapters.

Stacy asked for a full. Lots of revisions followed, eventually the book was accepted, and now Drift is out!

Congratulations! How many books did you write before Drift was published?

Before I submitted it, I'd written six or seven, including Drift--Drift is in the middle of those. Before it was published, I'd written twelve.

Wow! That's a lot of time respecting your dream and honing your craft. I love that you built worlds on the backs of turtles. Where did you come up with that idea?

One of my archaeology professors was talking about how the Maya viewed the world as being on the back of a turtle, surrounded by a watery hell. I latched onto that image and began imagining how a world of drifting turtle-islands would be different from our own.

So awesome. What advice would you give teen writers?

Focus on what you can control. You can't control agents, editors, or reviewers. But you can more or less control how much you write and how much you submit. When you collect the inevitable rejection letters (everyone gets rejection letters--lots and lots of them), be proud of them. They're tangible proof that you wrote something, and that you had the courage to submit it.

That's great advice! Thanks so much for sharing that. What's next for you? Is Drift a stand-alone novel or is there a book two?

Drift is a stand-alone, though I've contemplated writing some short fiction in this world, both before and after the novel. I'm getting ready to release a collection of previously-published short stories. And of course, I'm working on writing and selling new novels...hopefully I'll have news there in the not-too-distant future, too!

Thanks for visiting Go Teen Writers, MK! 

As part of the 12 Giveaways of Christmas, we're giving away MK's novel Drift. Enter on the Rafflecopter form below. International entries are welcome---anywhere The Book Depository ships.





50 comments:

  1. I love the idea of a world on the back of a turtle!! I've also kept all my rejection slips :)

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  2. Drift sounds like an interesting story. O_o
    So excited for these giveaways! :D

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  3. Archaeology! One of the minor characters in my WIP is obsessed with archaeology. Thanks for stopping by GTW! :)

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  4. Your book sounds awesome! And thanks for the words of encouragement :)

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  5. Wow! Twelve books. I've barely finished one. And turtles. I want to read this.

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  6. Does anyone know when the lot of luck winners will be announced? I'm still anxiously waiting

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    1. Sometime before Christmas, Ashley.

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    2. Thanks! Just checking it hadn't been forgotten :)

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  7. Wow! That is a whole lot of books to get finished! Did you edit them all as well? I have finished seven rough drafts but I am only just now going to edit them.

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    1. There's recent one that I trunked for now because it has structural problems I still don't know how to fix (eek), and there's one that I'm about to start editing -- but the others have all be through a lot of drafts. I actually like editing better than first drafts. There's something really fun about hammering out the raw ideas into a cohesive story.

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  8. This books looks so cool!! :D Also, really great interview :3

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  9. I love the title of the book 'Drift', sounds very intriguing. :)

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  10. What a cool premise! I've always loved that legend. I think the Iroquois told a similar story.

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  11. That sounds so interesting! I've been thinking what a unique and fascinating career archaeology could be. I feel like it could bring so much inspiration.

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  12. Thanks so much for being here, MK! Your book sounds super creative.

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  13. Very interesting. I plan on studying Archeology in college : )

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  14. The book looks great. Love the title!

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  15. Wow your book looks incredibly interesting. I love that you chose a mythology that isn't written about a lot. For someone who reads a lot of mythology based books its refreshing and intriguing. Thanks for sharing with us! Just curious. Have you found your degree in archeology useful in your writing?

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    1. Archaeology has been tremendously helpful! Especially for worldbuilding. How food production works, different kinds of trading and economies, technology, how environment influences culture, social organization...there's just so much good stuff here to help create a well-rounded fantasy world.

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    2. That's awesome! I love how everything can be useful to writing. No matter what you major in you can still apply it to writing. I love stories :)

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  16. The book sounds really interesting. Worlds on the back of turtles? Such a cool idea, especially when we barely ever see Mayan mythology books. I'm so glad it got published.

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  17. So great how you took this little snippet of history and turned into a whole new fantasy world, amazing!

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  18. Thanks for hosting these giveaways! The book looks really interesting.

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  19. I LOVE seeing the bright side of things, so I shall when I get my first rejection letter, which will be years from now. Thanks for this post!

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  20. So I LOVE the cover and am planning to look more into your book! I love a good fantasy! :)

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  21. "Drift" sounds very intriguing. Also, I will definitely be storing away the advice regarding rejection letters. I have a feeling it will be helpful.

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  22. I love that you started Drift at a young age and then stuck with it and had the privilege of seeing it published! :) Beautiful cover!!

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  23. That's a really interesting idea... A world on the back of a turtle. It definitely sounds unique!! Cannot wait to read it!! :)

    http://plottingertwist.blogspot.com/

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  24. Sounds like a really cool book!

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  25. Hello, M.K.! The premise of your story - a fantasy inspired by Mayan archaeology - fascinates me. :) And your point about treasuring rejection slips as proof that you've written really hit me. It's a good perspective to have on the "negative" of rejection.

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  26. I love mythology! Would love to see how your story turned out.

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  27. Hi MK, thanks so much for your advice! I'm amazed and encouraged by how much you had to write before you got published. Keep up the good work - Drift sounds fascinating!

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  28. Looks exciting and your story is encouraging, too.

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  29. This looks super exciting. Mayan mythology is super intriguing from the little I've heard, and I'm surprised more people don't write stuff based off of it. (-: I'd love to read this.

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  30. Twelve books! that is a LOT before being published!

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  31. This giveaway is so exciting! Can't wait to see the twelve days unfold!

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  32. On the back of a turtle?! That is WAY too cool! :D

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  33. I thought this looked familiar...I searched it in the library catalog, and sure enough, I've seen it in our library before. Too cool. :) Not quite my type of book, but definitely sound like a cool idea, and thanks for sharing!

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  34. Especially since we've spent some time learning about other cultures and mythologies in my Spanish career (más los Aztec que los Maya) this sounds like a super interesting read... I imagine I'll end up reading this anyway. :)

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  35. This book sounds SO AMAZING!!! Without reading it, it kinda reminds me of a Frank Peretti book called Door in the Dragon's Throat. This guy and his kids were on an archaeological dig (or...something...), and *SPOILERS*






    found the door to Hell. Whoops!






    Spoiler over. Continue.

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  36. This sounds so awesome! Turtles. I want to read this. And yeah, thanks for the encouragement! It's cool you could stop by on GTW.

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  37. I love the idea of the rejection letters! I'm gonna remember that one!

    arendedewit.blogspot.com

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  38. I was reading the first pages on Amazon and the story is really captivating!

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  39. Ooh, that cover is gorgeous, and the story sounds really intriguing!

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  40. Sounds like an amazing book! And all of my rejection slips have been emails, but maybe I'll start to save them or something.


    Alexa S. Winters
    thessalexa.blogspot.com

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