April Fools! AKA Marni is a Pranking NINJA! Maybe…

Hey everyone,

I’m usually the one who forgets about April Fools day. And I also usually don’t realize I’ve been pranked until about a year after the fact.

Not kidding.

Freshman year, my college roommate convinced me she had a boyfriend. And I didn’t figure out that “Ben” didn’t exist until the summer of my Sophomore year. She even staged a fake “breakup” near the end of the school year.

And like a chump, I believed her.

So this year, I wanted to be the prankster instead of the prankee.

And initially I was quite pleased with my success.

I started off with a VERY difficult act. I confessed on Twitter that after doing some deep soul-searching, I was ready to admit that Luc is hotter than Colin in Erica O’Rourke’s addictive series. (Torn and Tangled have both been released. You should buy them. So freaking good.)

Now for those of you who DON’T follow me on Twitter (Why? How can you pass up my pithy tweets? Okay…my not-so-pithy tweets?) this might not seem like a big deal.

Two fictional guys. Who cares?

Um…a lot of people. And we’re writers which means we spend a large portion of our time obsessing over people who aren’t real. So…things can get a little heated in the Twitterverse.

As in, we have a bet going. And when I am proved right, my dear misguided friend Jenn Rush will have to create a video apologizing for picking Puke…I mean “Luc” over Colin.

Yes, this really is how I spend the majority of my free time.

Anyhow, so I went on Twitter today and I pretended to have switched sides. That I had realized the error in my ways *gag* and was now fully invested in Team Luc.

I tricked a few people. Here are some of my favorite tweets.

@MarniBates Does this mean you are crossing over to the Luc team??? 

@MarniBates yay!! You made the right choice. @jenn_rush & I welcome you! Things are hot & sparky with Luc

And from my fellow Team Colin-mate…

MARNI! SERIOUSLY?! *sad puppy eyes*

Alas, some people were not fooled!

Jenn Rush realized I would NEVER switch teams. And the author who started this mess, couldn’t resist joining in!

Ha! I was reading my @ replies, saw this, and told Boyo, “marni is messing w/them.”

D’awww…they know me so well!

This just inspired me to plan a bigger prank. Something MAJOR. And after a lot of consideration (And a little too much coffee) I realized it should be someone who was obligated to love me no matter what. Someone who wouldn’t hold a little practical joke against me.

Someone other than my mom.

So obviously, I had to get my agent Laurie McLean!

(Love you, Laurie!)

Now this was dangerous for a few reasons. Not least of which is that she sends my paychecks.

Although knowing that we are going to be sharing a room at the Romance Writers of America conference scared me ever more.

I have a feeling that Laurie is well-versed in revenge.

EEEP!

Still, I consulted with evil genius/agent-in-training Pam van Hylckama and we created a plan.

A REALLY good one.

That has serious potential to become a REALLY bad one.

I sent Pam a fake email saying that a movie studio wanted me under contract and that I wouldn’t be able to write any more novels for TWO YEARS!

Then Pam emailed it to Laurie and suggested the she call me…right away.

So here I am…waiting for the call.

And while I initially thought that being the pranker was better than being the prankee, I’ve discovered some distinct disadvantages. All this waiting around is stressful!

Because I keep running through bad possibilities. Like Laurie could call up my film agent and demand to know what the hell is going on.

That would be bad.

Oh crud. That would be terrible!

*Marni panics*

Okay! I can’t take it anymore.

April Fools Day has defeated me. This year…

~Marni

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Hotties of Literature!!!!!

Hey everyone!

Okay, so a bunch of authors have agreed to blog about one of our favorite topics today: hot guys!

Gah! It's just so much cuteness!

Gah! It’s just so much cuteness!

Where was I? Oh, right. Hot guys.

So I spend a lot of my time thinking about what makes a guy attractive. It’s one of the things I love most about my job. And while I know some people may scoff and start muttering to themselves something along the lines of this girl needs to get a life, just hear me out.

I think what we read does affect the way we live. Which isn’t to say that after reading Harry Potter you should try to play quidditich.

Still laughing!

But I do think that books (and movies) send strong messages to their readership about how men and women should behave. So when I write my novels I definitely spend a lot of time trying to find the line between confidence (hot) and arrogance (erm, no).

It’s surprisingly hard!

I think most people agree that Edward Cullen overdoes it with Bella by being on the creepy side of protective. But wanting to make sure that your friends, you know, live to see the ending?

Super attractive!

So when I first started writing I had this small epiphany. I like my guys the way I like my girls: witty, snarky, flawed, and willing to fight for what they believe in.

And yeah, that means I like my guys to have some personal damage. That’s what makes them feel real to me. It’s also what makes me fall in love with them. If Logan Beckett wasn’t so touchy about needing a tutor, I wouldn’t have been able to finish writing Awkward. I would’ve stared at the screen and yelled “Stop being so freaking perfect all the time!”

Because perfection is boring.

But you’re here for the pictures of hot guys, right? So let’s begin!

Zach Gilford.

Um, swoon! I think it’s the grin. It’s part confident and part sweet and full on adorable! Small confession: Zach Gilford is the reason I watched Friday Night Lights. Larger confession: I didn’t exactly watch Friday Night Lights. I skipped the football stuff so I could get to the good parts. You know, like every scene with Zach Gilford sans football uniform.

Although I soon learned that watching only the high school drama parts of Friday Night Lights earns a girl absolutely no cool points with the members of her college football team.

Sigh.

Still…while Zach has just the right amount of adorable, I think he’s too old to play Logan. The guy was pushing believability as a high school student even back with Friday Night Lights was on the air.

So let’s check out a different FNL hottie:

Matt Lauria.

If you’re wondering why I seem oddly fixated with the guys from this show, I’d like to point out that that they managed to get the largest collection of hot unknown actors to join the cast.

Like Grey Damon.

I’m a little afraid to post a picture of him here since YA rockstar Brigid Kemmerer has told me (repeatedly) that he belongs to her. She may have told me to stop ogling her protagonist without permission. Although, I think her exact words were: MINE, MARNI. MINE MINE MINE.

But…can’t look away! So. Much. Hotness.

*Fans self*

Damn. The good ones always go quickly. Which is why I’m staking my claim right now on…

Logan Lerman!

For the record: the name thing is a total coincidence. I did not have him in mind when I wrote Awkward. He’s ridiculously perfect for the role though. The sexy smirk? Check. The effortless hot factor?

Um, yeah. I think he has that too!

I didn’t stumble across Logan Lerman until I was writing Decked with Holly (my holiday sequel spin-off which will be released this September!) and that’s when I fell under his spell.

Here’s the embarrassing part.

I made a collage. To be fair, it’s not all devoted to Logan Lerman. I used it to plot out the novel and…it looks like I’m a stalker.

(Hey Logan. Um, just in case you’re reading this…I swear, I’m not a deranged fan. Really.)  

I took this picture a year ago and as you can see not a lot has changed.

Yeah…it’s still pretty embarrassing. But the collage totally helped! Decked with Holly is the funniest of my novels and since I’m still swooning over Nick Wyatt, I must have done something right. For those of you who read the teaser at the end of Awkward, I pictured Emma Roberts playing Holly and Molly Quinn as Jen.

Although I’m always interested in hearing who you would cast in those roles!

I don’t want to spoil anything for future readers so I’m going to attempt casting three of my favorite YA hotties:

1. Rob Wilkins from Meg Cabot’s 1-800-WHERE-R-U series.

(A young Ian Somerhalder!)

Why is he hot? Well, there’s the dark mussed hair, the piercing blue eyes, the confidence, oh, and the motorcycle! He’s a good guy who is willing to break into a government compound to bust out the girl he met in detention. Rob might not be good when it comes to actually discussing his feelings, but he’s always solid in a crisis.

2. Ash from Julie Kagawa’s Iron Fey series.

Okay, so this is kind of cheating because I know Julie so I’m 95% sure she would cast…

Ben Barnes! (I’m guessing she likes his hair longer, but I think it’s sexier this way.

So what makes Ash sexy? Correction: what makes Ash so sexy that he distracted me from the wildlife in Africa?

For starters, he’s a prince among faeries. He’s got a sly smile, a quick wit, and he’s a crazy good kisser.

Or so I’ve read.

He’s also noble and sweet, with a sensitive streak that I find utterly charming.

Which brings us to our final hottie!

3. Colin from Torn and Tangled by Erica O’Rourke.

Matthew Goode.

Not sure if Erica will agree with me about the casting (I’ll be sure to post her response) but here’s why I think Matthew Goode captures Colin’s off-the-charts sexiness.

He’s got that skeptical look, which makes you rethink decisions…but he’s also going to back you no matter what happens.

Colin has made some decisions in the past that are making his life very difficult in the present. And the fact that he’s hired to bodyguard a girl seeking vengeance for the death or her best friend isn’t going to help matters. But he does what he thinks is right and that’s why I’m completely in love with him.

Plus he’s ridiculously sexy.

(Side note: Jenn Rush (author of Altered and Bot Wars) believes that Colin is destined for disappointment. She thinks Luc will get the girl in the end…but she couldn’t be more wrong. I think. Poor Erica will have to listen to a lot of grumbling no matter what happens!)

Anyhow, that’s all the sexiness I can handle right now!

I hope you join the conversation by tweeting with the hashtag #HottiesofLit today! Or if you don’t feel comfortable with Twitter, maybe you can leave a picture of a hot guy here for me? I’ve got a novel to write and I can always use some hot male inspiration!

~Marni

P.S. Don’t forget to check out these blogs for more hotness!

Jenn Rush’s Blog

Brigid Kemmerer’s Blog

Julie Kagawa’s Blog

 

My First Blog Tour!!!! And serious amounts of hotness…

Hey everyone,

So, I’m officially participating in a blog tour for Awkward!

Yeah, I’m only a little excited about it…

Blog tours are super awesome. Here’s how it works: I get emailed roughly ten pages of questions. Then I spend the next three weeks obsessing over my answers.

I’d like to send a big shout-out to my friend Laura who helped me through one particularly rough set of questions intended for Logan Beckett to answer.

If it weren’t for her, I might still be staring at my laptop screen muttering “Whales or Bears? Whales are really big and cool. But so are bears! I don’t know! THEY’RE BOTH AWESOME!”

Yes, this an example of an honest-to-goodness work-related freak out.

Which is yet another reason for me to love my job.

Anyhow: I’m going to update my blog here with links so that you can check out my blog tour and join in the fun!

You can read my tips for surviving high school (and college) here:

Marni’s Advice!

I discuss some of my experiences in high school here:

High School Flashbacks!

And you can read a wonderful review of Awkward (and score a chance to win a copy!) here:

Fun times ahead!

And for those of you who enjoy geeking out over hot (potentially shirtless) boys: I hope you’ll drop by my group twitter event on March 15th. A bunch of amazing YA writers (including my friends Brigid Kemmerer and Jenn Rush) are getting together to share pics of some of their favorite hotties.

I predict there will be a lot of this:

And this:

And if you’re thinking um, why aren’t they reading? Don’t you know that there is nothing more attractive than that?!

All over it.

Four words: Hot. Guys. Reading. Books.

Here’s the link: Hot Guys Reading Books!

Oh, and for all you Ryan Gosling fans out there . . . this always makes me smile.

Ryan Gosling Reads Young Adult!

Anyhow, March 15th is going to be a ridiculous amount of fun. I’m hoping it will also inspire YOU to share who you would cast to play the characters in Awkward! So drop me a comment here or send them to me via Twitter!

And if you are feeling extra awesome: you can always send me fan art!

Isn’t this adorable! All pics will completely make my week. This particular masterpiece is brought to you courtesy of My Cute Bookshelf! You can check out the review that had me glowing for over a month here!

So many reasons to be feeling giddy!

Now I better get back to work. Chelsea is yelling at me . . .

~Marni

P.S. This blog tour wouldn’t be happening if it weren’t for Shanyn Day and Pamela van Hylckama Vlieg! Thank you so much ladies! I really appreciate it!