Nov 11, 2015

Guest Post & Giveaway: Beached by Brenda Beem


Guest post

I am so happy to be here today. Thanks for inviting me.

My favorite novels have always been stories where kids outsmart adults. Think Harry Potter, Ender’s Game, and Hunger Games. It wasn’t a far stretch for me to write about teens surviving a world disaster on a sailboat. I’ve sailed the Pacific Northwest for years. And I live in Seattle, U.S.A., in the shadow of two giant volcanoes. I used to imagine how I'd save my family if an earthquake or an invasion stuck our area. Now I write about it.

The number of survival sites I’ve found while doing research for my novels is incredible. Yes, there are people out there even more obsessed than me. Bet you didn’t know that seaweed is packed full of vitamins. You can make penicillin out of citrus rinds and those tiny little pills you put in fish tanks when your fish get sick? Well, they’re penicillin too. (Not that I recommend you take them. See a doctor if you need meds.) And don’t get me started on Duct tape. It even comes in patterns.

But a good novel is really about the characters. The pre-dystopian world I created is only the back drop for the drama of the characters in the books. How they react during a crisis is so telling. One of my favorite characters is a girl named Zoe. She is very ditzy. She falls apart if a finger-nail breaks. But during a crisis, she becomes the medic. And my main character, Toni, who has grown strong and has become a leader, is extremely jealous and insecure when her boyfriend befriends a beautiful girl they meet on the island.

In my novels, romances blossom, friendships are tested, and yes, lives are lost. But still the characters endure and carry on their search for their families and a safe harbor.

I’ve loved creating this world where teens out maneuver and survive in a world that is changing so fast, adults can’t cope. I hope you love it too.

I’ve had a great time. Thanks again for having me.

Brenda Beem

Amazon USA Amazon UK

Blurb

Toni and the young crew of the sailboat, Whistler, have just found a safe harbor. Or so they thought... 

They may have survived a tsunami, but they’re racing ahead of an ice age as they continue the frantic search for their families. 

The island they’ve anchored near is anything but safe. Dangerous men lurk nearby—along with snakes, stingrays, and sharks. An island girl threatens to destroy Toni and her boyfriend’s relationship, the youngest member of the crew gets lost in a narrow dark cave, and Zoë is more annoying than ever. 

Will Toni and her crew survive the island and its treacherous waters?

Giveaway

Enter this giveaway for a chance to win a $25 Amazon gift card. Good luck!

126 comments:

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    1. Great! If you read it, let me know what you think.

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  2. I'm on a reading kick right now and this sounds pretty good ;)

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    1. I hope you like it. Please let me know.

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  3. Ooh. I love a good survivalist story! Les Stroud from Survivalist is my hero.

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  4. I always wonder with all the dystopian stories and movies lately how truly a group of young adults would handle the end of the world.

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    1. I hope we don't ever get to test it, but I'd like to think young people would be more creative and flexible.

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  5. I love the sound of your book! When you started writing what made you choose this genre?

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    1. I have always loved to write YA. Perhaps because I started out as a news reporter. I like getting to the plot quickly.
      Thanks for asking.

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  6. What inspires you the most for your stories?
    Thanks :)

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    1. The threats in the world right now inspire me a lot. Also, the mountains around me are dormant volcanoes. I don't live my life in fear, but I do like to think about what I'd do if....

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  7. This sounds great. How long do you spend writing and how do you treat yourself?

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    1. I treat myself by writing. It's my happy place. I think most writers of fiction feel this way. The story is just there waiting to come out. I'm usually as surprised by the twists and turns as the reader is.

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  8. This sounds great. How long do you spend writing and how do you treat yourself?

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  9. interesting storyline! :) i like to explore new authors

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  10. It's always interesting to watch/read about the heroism of ordinary people under extreme circumstances. These apocalyptic books & films probably reflect our fears post 9/11 & 7/7 that brought terrorism & war to our countries.

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    1. Yes, and as the terrorism grows, we may be looking more and more for ways to overcome. I think the most important thing to remember is there are things we can do. We must not live in fear.

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  11. Sounds great for a night lounging on the settee -good book choc and a coffee

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    1. I hope you like it. I'd love to hear what you think.

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  12. This sounds, good, I will have to read it!

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    1. Great! I hope you like it. Please let me know.

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  13. Oh this sounds like such a good read! I love finding new authors to try.

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    1. I hope you like it. Please let me know what you think of it.

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  14. I love that the main character is ditzy. My husband calls me "dizzier". Did you model your charcter after a real person, or just an idea?

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    2. I think a little of both. I love characters who turn out not to be what you expect. I also needed my main character to grow over time, and the situations she over-comes make her more than she was.

      Wow, didn't mean to make that sound so serious. She is a fun character to write about.

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  15. This sounds really good, the main character sounds great!

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    2. Thank you. I hope you like it. I'd love feedback to use for my next novel.

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  16. Sounds like a very exciting read! I love survivalist stories! Thanks for sharing!!

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    1. You're so welcome. Thank you for taking the time to read my post.

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  17. Question for the author: If you could trade lives with one person for an entire day who would it be and why?

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    1. There are so many great writers I'd love to meet. If I had to pick just one, humm...
      I have to think about that. Shakespeare? J.K.Rowling? Still thinking!

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  18. Replies
    1. Thanks for taking the time to read the post. Glad you liked it.

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  19. Do you have much experience of the sea? How did you research it?

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    2. Yes, I do have experience on the sea. My husband and I have a sailboat and we sail around the islands near Seattle, U.S.A. and Canada. The sailboat in my story is based on my boat and many of the mishaps the boat has, I've experienced. I've never been in a knockdown however. I'm thankful.

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  20. I think my wife would enjoy this book. What inspired you to write this book? Thankyou, Ken pohl19@comcast.net

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    1. My husband and I are sailors. And there are not many novels that are fun to read out there about sailing. Also, I love to read dystopian novels. The two just seemed a good fit.

      Thank you for asking. I find a number of men are actually enjoying my novel. A nice surprise.

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  21. Sounds like an amazing story!!! I would love to read it!! Thank you very much for this amazing opportunity!! Kisses from Italy!

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  22. This sounds really interesting! Thank you!

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    1. Thank you so much for reading the post.

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  23. Replies
    1. Thank you. My publisher did a nice job. It was just what I asked for. A dangerous beach.

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  24. The concept of this book is really interesting disaster novels are not things that I have read. Did you have to do a lot of scientific research to create the book ?

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    1. I did do a lot of research. Most of it I had to keep to myself, however. The characters in the novel are mostly cut off from the world, and have to re-act to what is happening to them, not particularly know why it is. They are kids. Not scientists. I had to keep them ignorant,although I did give them some survival knowledge.

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  25. I like to read books by new authors :D

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  26. This sounds like a really good book. Definitely one I would love to read.

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    1. Please let me know what you think. I love feedback, and will use it with my next novel.

      Thanks.

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  27. Hi Brenda, what do you enjoy the most about being an author?

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    1. I love writing! It is my happy place.

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  28. Hos old were you when you just knew you wanted to be a writer?

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    1. I always told stories to the neighbor children growing up. I can't remember a time I didn't want to be a writer. I thought maybe it was because I was an only child, but other writers I meet tell me the same thing.

      We have to write.

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  29. How do you define pre-dystopian?

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    1. I think of pre-dystopian as the world just before and then as it is falling apart. For me, dystopian is a world that has fallen apart and has been rebuilt to look very different than the world today..

      My first novel, Beached, starts out in today's world, at a high school swim practice.

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  30. I enjoy dystopian novels and your book sounds like something I'd enjoy!

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    1. I hope you do enjoy it. Please let me know what you think. I love feedback that I can use for my next novel.

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  31. Why do you think dystopians are so popular now?

    --Trix

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    1. Dystopian novels have been popular for awhile, but I'm sure the growing unrest in the world contributes to the popularity now.

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  32. Which scenes are the hardest to write and why?

    Betul E.

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    1. My first novel, Knockdown, was the hardest to write because most of the book takes place on a sailboat. Because the setting was so limited, I had to work hard to create interesting scenarios and characters.

      Fight scenes are the hardest for me in Beached.

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    1. My next book is book three and the final novel in the series. It is still about the kids on the boat and it will wrap up all the unanswered questions.

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  34. Sounds like a great read thanks for sharing!

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  35. What a lovely sounding story. I really enjoy the concept of a pre-dystopian setting. Totally adding this to my Goodreads list!

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  36. Sounds like a great read. Thanks for the giveaway.

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  37. The book sounds really good. I would like to read it. I added it on my list. :)

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  38. Wow I love books like this! I will definitely be buying this book! Thanks so much for introducing me to this author!

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    1. It is nice to meet you too. I hope you like the book and will give me feedback to use in my next novel.

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  39. I have added the book to my list. I like the cover.

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  40. I'd love to give this book to my teen niece to read. I like that it isn't all about the adults or all about "that taboo subject" lol

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  41. This book sounds great!Thanks for the great post :)

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  42. it sounds like a fun book, i agree survival stories are great, especially if you make the characters good

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  43. Looks like a great book, how much of yourself do you put in your characters?

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    1. That's a good question. All of the sailing stuff comes from me. The characters are bits and pieces of people I know or kids I taught.

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  44. Hi Brenda! Were any of your characters inspired by the people in your life?

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    1. When I started my first book, I had three main characters, all modeled after my children. But soon, these characters took on a life of their own, although my children still claim them.

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  45. This sounds like a fantastic adventure, I'd love to read it.

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    1. Thank you. I hope you do. And please let me know what you think!

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  46. Thanks for the giveaway! This book sounds great. ;)

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    1. You are welcome. Good luck and I hope you like the book.

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  47. This one sounds really thrilling...thanks for the chance to win!!

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  48. sounds like a great book. Where do you get your inspiration to write your books from ? x

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    1. I get my inspiration from the books I've read. From the sailing trips I've had. And from my dreams.

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  49. I find this book really good. Where do you usually write your books?

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    1. I have a little desk in front of a large window in a loft area of my home.

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  50. Did you always want to be an author or was it a decision later in life?

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    1. I've always wanted to be an author, but I didn't write novels until later in life.

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  51. Your book sounds so good. :)

    Megan @ reading away the days

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  52. What inspire you to take up writing?

    trevor Linvell

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    1. I've always been a story teller. Now the stories haunt me until I write them down.

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  53. This story sounds fast paced with lots of adventure and interesting characters.
    Theresa N
    weceno(at)yahoo(dot)com

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    1. It is very fast paced and full of adventure. I hope you like it.

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  54. It seems like the books I love :) I'll put it in my wish-list.

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  55. What advice would you give to a wanna be author

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    1. The first thing would be to write- write- write!!!. The second would be to join a professional organization that specializes with the genre you are writing, and the third would be to join a writing/critique group. For Young Adult genre, I joined SCBWI in the United States.

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  56. How long did it take you to go from a vague concept to the finished article?

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    1. My first novel took me two years. Beached took me almost one year. The second book was easier because I already knew my characters well.

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  57. Sounds very exciting! Which character was your favorite to write?

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  58. Your journey sounds interesting. I bet you have lots of ideas for future novels?

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  59. I am excited to finish the journey of this series. I've been thinking of writing my next series set in the world a couple of hundred years from when this series takes place. Most of the world will be frozen over. What do you think?

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  60. This book sounds very interesting. Hope to read it someday and possibly snag some survival skills in the process.

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    1. I'd love for you to read it. It actually is a fun read. Despite all the life and death stuff.

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