YA Scavenger Hunt!

It's that time again!

You are hunting on...

I'm Suzanne Lazear, author of the elfpunk THE SECRET LIVES OF ROCKSTARS which is about dragons, demons, rockstars, and mayhem. The band in the book, The Freakshow, has 5 members, all of them paranormal. I also write the Aether Chronicles series, which is about steampunk faeries.

Welcome, have a cupcake. You can start the hunt here or you can go to the YA Scavenger Hunt homepage to find out more or if you're stuck. I'm part of the ORANGE TEAM--but there are other teams, all with lots of prizes to win.

Collect the favorite numbers of all the authors on the blue team, and then add them up. Hint: the secret number is highlighted RED. Once you've added up all the numbers, make sure you fill out the form here to officially qualify for the grand prize. Only entries that have the correct number will qualify. Open internationally, anyone below the age of 18 should have a parent or guardian's permission to enter. To be eligible for the grand prize, you must submit the completed entry form by October 9, at noon Pacific Time. Entries sent without the correct number or without contact information will not be considered.

And now on to the author I'm hosting today:

Kathryn Holmes grew up in Maryville, Tennessee, where she was an avid reader and an aspiring writer from an early age. She now lives in Brooklyn, New York, with her husband and piles upon piles of books. A graduate of The New School’s MFA in Creative Writing program, Kathryn works as a freelance dance journalist, among other writing gigs. She is the author of The Distance Between Lost and Found and How It Feels to Fly.

A struggle with body dysmorphia forces one girl to decide if letting go of her insecurity also means turning her back on her dreams.

Sam has always known she’d be a professional dancer—but that was before her body betrayed her, developing unmanageable curves in all the wrong places. Lately, the girl staring back at Sam in the mirror is unrecognizable. Dieting doesn’t work, ignoring the whispers is pointless, and her overbearing mother just makes it worse.

Following a series of crippling anxiety attacks, Sam is sent to a treatment camp for teens struggling
with mental and emotional obstacles. Forced to open up to complete strangers, Sam must get through the program if she wants to attend a crucial ballet intensive later in the summer. It seems hopeless until she starts confiding in a camp counselor who sparks a confidence she was sure she’d never feel again. But when she’s faced with disappointing setbacks, will Sam succumb to the insecurity that imprisons her?

This compelling story examines one girl’s efforts to overcome her worst enemy: herself.

 Deleted Scene 

Hi, YASH Participants!

My second book, HOW IT FEELS TO FLY, is about a ballet dancer, Sam, whose severe body-image and anxiety issues get her sent to a therapy camp for teen artists and athletes. In this deleted scene, my characters have been learning breathing exercises that they can use to calm their anxiety when they feel stressed out. Unfortunately, the laughter and good energy the characters share in this moment just didn’t work in revisions. As much as I liked it, the scene needed to go.



*       *        *       *       *        *       *

I curl up in Child’s Pose. Spine rounded, forehead on the floor, hands by my feet. I register the room growing dimmer around me, even through my closed eyelids. I hear the shuffling and shifting of people getting into position, how their clothes drag on the carpet, how their movements push the air. But I stay still. I breathe.

I feel a little like a turtle inside its shell, or an ostrich with its head in the ground.

There’s no one but me here, no body but mine, and I am nothing but breath.

My ribcage expands and contracts, expands and contracts.

My legs start to buzz from being folded so tight. I let them buzz.

I think, through the whiteness in my head, This might work.

I wait for a snarky response from my inner voice. None comes.

I allow myself a small smile.

And then I hear a snore. It’s soft, but unmistakable. Someone is definitely asleep.

I’m trying to tune the snoring out when the giggles start.

I roll my head to the left, molasses-slow, feeling the carpet fibers peel away from my forehead. I blink my eyes open, letting the room come into focus.

Zoe is curled up in Child’s Pose a few feet away. And her body is shaking with laughter that she’s trying—and failing—to keep silent. She looks over at me, and I see tears streaming down her face.

“I’m sorry,” Zoe mouths, exaggerating the syllables. To my surprise, she looks like she really is sorry. Or at least, not intentionally trying to cause a disturbance. For once. Still staring at me, she clenches her lips shut, but that only leads to a snort escaping out her nose.

Her snort is matched by another snore from my other side, which is followed by the sound of stifled laughter behind me.

I turn my head. Dominic’s the one asleep. Flat on his back in an afternoon sunbeam, like a cat. Mouth open. 

And when I sneak a glance behind me, I see Katie lying on her back, hands on her stomach, looking back and forth between Zoe and Dominic with a mischievous grin on her face. She catches me staring, and her smile grows. “Sam!” she stage-whispers. “You have the most amazing carpet-print on your forehead!”

I push up to my forearms, feeling my face with one hand. My forehead is lumpy.

Now Zoe is laughing out loud. “You do!” she squeals. “You totally do! You look like—like—”

“You look like a Klingon!” Omar blurts from across the room. 

“Okay, everyone,” Jim says loudly. “Let’s try to focus on our breathing.” 

“Yes, please,” Jenna hisses from across the room, mock-indignant. “I have anxiety to exhale, if you don’t mind!” 

The room goes quiet. And Dominic chooses that moment to let out another snore—his loudest yet.

That sets Zoe off all over again. “I’m sorry…I can’t…” She gasps for air. “Can somebody wake him up?”

Jim gently shakes Dominic’s shoulders. But I guess it wasn’t gentle enough, because Dominic sits up like a shot, looking around wildly. “What the—?” 

“Nice nap?” Katie asks, giggling. 

Jim runs a hand through his dark hair. “Okay, let’s try to refocus. We still have some time left….”

“It wasn’t just Dominic,” Zoe says, still laughing. “I couldn’t stop thinking about curling up like this on the court, with my tennis skirt riding up over my butt.” 

Katie giggles. “What if I laid down under the vault? I wouldn’t be in the way.”

“Center ice,” Jenna says crisply. “I could slide to a stop right in front of the judges, and then just lie there. Breathing.”

“To be—” Omar begins in an overly dramatic voice, stopping to take a deep inhale and exhale. “Or not to be?” Another inhale and exhale. “That—” He makes his next breath long and ragged. “—is the question!”

I picture myself in the wings, backstage, in a tutu. Crouched on the floor with the tutu fanning up over my butt—a sparkly tulle half-moon.

We’re all laughing now. And I wonder if everyone else feels how the energy in the room has changed.

For the first time, I feel like maybe we’re all in this together.

Thank you so much for visiting me. There's a deleted scene from THE SECRET LIVES OF ROCKSTARS hidden someplace.

Please enter my bonus contest where I have some favorite things of my MC, Bitsy, up for grabs. A mini top hat, glitter lip gloss and makeup, fake eyelashes, glitter nail polish (in rockstar pink), and a handmade stocking shaped like a boot.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

All done? Time to move on to Megan Crewe.  Don't forget to bring her a cupcake.


Holed Up In A Book said...

definitely pumpkin pie!

- Stephanie

Rachel McKay said...

The cooler air. And pumpkin spice lattes.

Zeller Family said...


bookbunny68 said...

I love opening the windows and listening to the leaves blowing in the wind.

Mandy said...

I HATE pumpkin spice anything!!! I can't stand it! I do love breaking out my boots. Boots are the best thing about Fall.

cleemckenzie said...

Love reading scenes that didn't make it into the final book. Little orphans that need a home.

Shandra Torbett said...

I love pumpkin everything so I actually am that person who freaks out when the Fall Season starts bringing in the smell of Pumpkin Spice Lattes and Pumpkin Rolls.

Leah said...

I like seeing clouds, with a bit of blue sky, when it just finished raining and there are leafs on the ground. That is my favorite time for a walk. I hate Pumpkin Spice anything. The only Pumpkin tasting thing I like is Pumpkin Pie.

Meagan Ashley said...

I love the weather! I live in Louisiana so it is always SO HOT all year long but I at least get a few days of fall to pull out my cute sweaters!

brighteyes780 said...

I love being able to cuddle up with a blanket, hot chocolate and book. I hate that im too old to go trick or treating missing out of free candy =0

karen chappell said...

Thanks for thecupcake!
I like handing out candy ,dressing up like a witch and seeing all the costumes!

Amy Hart said...

Love the holidays! I like pumpkin spice stuff, and love vanilla spiced egg nog.

Mariana Perez said...

my favorite thing about the fal is the weather

Lauryn said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Lauryn said...

I love the cooler weather, wearing boots and sweaters, and eating caramel flavored everything!

Lauryn said...

I love the cooler weather, wearing boots and sweaters, and eating caramel flavored everything!

Lauryn said...

I love the cooler whether, wearing boots and sweaters, and eating caramel flavored everything!

Grace Burkhart said...

My favorite thing about fall is Apple Cider Slushies! I don't like that summer's ending though...

Delia Chavez said...

I love the change of color in the trees and I love Pumpkin spice lattes :)

Kassie Petersen said...

Hot chocolate all the way! I love the cooler weather! Makes me want to grab hot chocolate, a blanket and a good book! Thanks for being a part of the YA Scavenger Hunt!

Ashley Rogers said...

I love how cold the weather gets. I enjoy wearing sweaters boots and scarves!!

Turwethiel Istalri said...

I love the leaves and weather, but I hate that it means cold is coming and my best friend is away at college :(

-Victoria Falzo

Kim Cowgar said...

I love all the fairs and festivals that go on this time of year

swimwriteliv said...

Favourite things: Fall clothes and candles. Least favourite things: things with pumpkin in them.

Gabs @ My Full Bookshelf said...

The cool weather! My current apartment does not include an air conditioner, so it's a nice change from summer. ;)

Lily M. said...

I like fall and all its colors but it kind of makes me sad, because that means its going to be winter soon and its going to be a new year pretty soon, and I feel like life is passing by so fast. I know I went deep hehehe

Brygitt Pfaff said...

I love apple cider!

Zara Arshad said...

I love the color of the leaves, the chill in the air, and I love coffee in fall :)

Theresa Snyder said...

I love pretty much everything about fall!!! The cool weather, the colorful leaves, the crispness in the air, apple everything! Halloween!
(I just don't like the spices used in pumpkin stuff - nutmeg, ginger, etc...)

Debi Tonks said...

I love Halloween mostly. I get to dress up and nobody looks at me weird.

Bethany Phillips said...

I love seeing all of the cute outfits that I see people wear. I gives me ideas for my own closet! I also love to watch all of the excitement on the little kid's faces as they make cookies, go to the pumpkin patch, etc.

Stephanie H said...

I love the changing colors of the leaves in the fall season.

Megan said...

Anything with apples, apple cider, apple crisp, all the apples! Plus the cooler weather and Halloween and Thanksgiving! :) I'm probably in the minority but Pumpkin Spice is not my thing.

Penny said...

I love visiting the pumpkin patches and I love Halloween.

Rayna Reveur said...

Pumpkin spiced everything! Especially Trader Joe's Pumpkin Spiced mochi ice cream.

Bethany said...

I love the weather getting cooler and everything apples!

Vicky Icky said...

My favorite thing about fall is tht a lot of books come out during this season as opposed to the other ones and I love pumpkin pie!

magicseal said...

I love gingerbread syrup but hate that its getting cold

Gracie said...

The changing leaves

mimsy said...

I love fall fashion. Bc the weather finally gets cool enough for me to wear my favorite outfit staple: A leather jacket and boots! :)

-Michelle Grondine

insha iqbal said...

I love fall, It's my favorite season! I love the chillier weather, especially since I live in Texas now, with its melting summers, but I moved from New York, a place with heaps of snow. I also love Halloween, and yes I'll admit it, I enjoy Pumpkin Spice.