Friday, January 6, 2017

YA Gets Real: Wizard School

The rolling hills fly past us as we head down the lush landscape and into a deep valley. I'm adoring the drive, and my mind rushes with the ideas of how the next four years will play out. To think, my parents had been keeping this a secret my whole life.

"We wanted you to grow up as a normal girl," Mom said.

"That meant keeping your past a secret from you." My dad nodded.

I grin as I look up at the clear blue sky. All of those things I read about were true. The fantasy books they gifted me as presents were hints, and I never knew how real they were until my parents confessed everything a few days ago. They had signed me up for my first year at Harringtons, a school for girls who are training in the magical arts. They had handed me a brochure which featured this great stone building, and it looked magical.

We turn onto a long drive and come to wrought iron gates. My dad presses the small red button, and the intercom comes on. A lady on the other side greets us cheerfully, and the gates swing open. Our car carries us all the way up the gravel path to the steps heading into the main gorgeous building on campus.

I step out of the car with my backpack on my shoulder and slam the door shut behind me. I take in the large steeples, the antique window frames, and warm stone of the structure. The building looms over us, but feels welcoming and cozy just the same.

My mom helps me get my two bags out of the trunk and gives me a wide smile. Something about it feels strange though, because normally her eyes light up. Maybe she's sad about me going away to school. "Honey, I want you to know, we love you." She pulls me into a hug.

My dad presses his hand on my shoulder, which is about as affectionate as he'll get these days. "Do you want help inside?"

A woman with a clipboard comes out from inside Harringtons. She has a pen tucked behind her ear, and her hair is pulled taut away from her face. "You must be Delilah."

Both of my parents back away from me, as if this woman is going to burst into flames. Perhaps she can.

"We'll be seeing you on holiday." My dad slides into the car, and my mom hesitates with her hand around the handle.

"I have in my paperwork that your parents told you about Harringtons."

I turn back to the woman and nod, eager.

The lady glances at my mom and gives her tight-lipped smile. The engine of the car starts behind me, and the gravel shifts underneath the car as they pull away from the building.

"I'm Mrs. Sutherland, and I'm afraid I have some grave news." She swallows, and my face falls. "You see, we're a boarding school. Just a regular one."

"But ..." I scrunch my face up. My parents had been telling me about my past for months. There had to be some kind of a mistake. "What about the brochure?"

"We made them so parents could convince their kids to come here. You see ... Most children don't want to come to boarding school, so at Harringtons, we decided to make the transition a little easier." The lady stands upright and looks down her long nose at me. "We do have some of the best classes and professors this state has to offer. And most students who graduate from here go onto do amazing things."

"But nothing magical," I say, crushed.

"Nothing magical. Just the wonders of the natural universe, I'm afraid." Mrs. Sutherland laughs to herself. It's high and tinny, but I don't get the joke.

She turns and heads up the stairs, carrying one of my bags with her. I grab the other and trudge in her wake, counting down the days until I could scream at my parents.

As much as I'm mad at them, I'm more angry with myself for believing them. Magic. Yeah, right.

- - -

Oh man, I wish Wizarding School existed in real life. I've been in love with the idea of being called to an adventure most of my life. This is probably why I read and write as much as I do, and go out hiking when the weather will let me.

Thanks for reading YA Gets Real! It's a parody series that takes some of my favorite YA tropes and turns them into something more realistic. Although this one is pretty silly in itself.

If you want to read about people learning about their supernatural abilities, consider some of the following titles:

Wednesday, January 4, 2017

Goodbye 2016, and Hello 2017.

I apparently make vlogs now! I have no idea what the world is coming to, but I am making a commitment to post three vlogs a month for the next year. We'll see how it goes.

In this one, I review 2016, state some of my accomplishments, and uh ... Hang out with some cats? I also look ahead to January 2017, where I'll be um ... Hanging out with more cats?

Watch the video. It's funny and stuff.

But seriously, if anyone wants a review copy of any of my books, I will happily send you a mobi or epub. Just tell me the title and give me  your email address and it's yours! All I ask is that you actually review it within two months (amazon, goodreads, your own blog, whichever!).

Also, remember to sign up for my Newsletter to get information about sales and new titles when they are released!

Happy New Year!