Faeries and zombies

Bones of Faerie is five years old this spring! I’d get all sentimental, only Liza isn’t really the sentimental sort, so instead here’s a Book Smugglers’ “Old School Wednesday” review.

“Bones of Faerie is an unexpectedly lyrical and beautifully written book – I am an immediate fan of Janni Lee Simner’s haunting prose, which captured me from the first eerie chapter. It’s a poignant, elegiac novel about a world ravaged by magic and the children who have grown up in its ruins. It is Liza’s world that is so captivating, that draws you in and defines Bones of Faerie …”

Also, the Zombies, Run! episode I wrote is now live! Specifically, it’s Season 3, Mission 6: Career Day: “Mysterious giant footprints have been spotted–could this be related to the Phantom of Abel?” I had a blast writing this, and of course, I jumped ahead and ran the mission out of order just so I could hear it. It was a blast, running to my own words–but of course, the real blast is thinking of other people running to my words.

Because, after all, we are all Runner 5.

News, reviews, and where I’ll be in November

My short story “Drawing the Moon” is being adapted into a short film by Chelsea Garland–details on the movie’s facebook page. “Drawing the Moon” originally appeared in Bruce Coville’s Book of Nightmares.

Elizabeth DiFiore created a series of images inspired my short story “Tearing Down the Unicorns”–see her art here. “Tearing Down the Unicorns” first appeared in another Bruce Coville anthology, A Glory of Unicorns.

It’s so easy for it to feel like the things we write are “through” within a few weeks or months or maybe a year after we release them into the world. I love these reminders that everything we create echoes out far beyond that.

Takes on Faerie After from Shorewood Library, Faerie Winter from Random Amber, and Bones of Faerie from Nerdy Enough and Randomly Reading and Ranting.

I’ve been taking the past few months off from traveling/conferences/speaking (though I was very sorry to miss everyone at Sirens!) for some much needed retreat/vacation/book-finishing/well-charging time, but will be around and about again in November:

Saturday, November 2, 1-2 p.m.
Signing at Mostly Books
6208 E Speedway Blvd
Tucson, Arizona
Perfect for some early holiday shopping–plus, it’s the day before my birthday, so there’ll be cookies/cake, too!

Friday-Sunday, November 8-10
TusCon Science Fiction Convention
Hotel Tucson City Center
475 N Granada Ave
Tucson, Arizona
I’ll be reading Friday night at 9 p.m.–come join me!

“You, whose people sent fire raining from the skies, would lecture me about right and wrong?”

Sanah Dillon interviews me at YA Books of Witchcraft and Wizardry. Head on over to learn what Liza, Matthew, and Allie’s original names were in the very first draft of Bones of Faerie, or just to enter to win a copy of Faerie After. The interview is part of July’s Summer Author blitz–check out all the blitz posts here.

Mettie Ivie Harrison recommends Faerie After:

I love the mix of post-apocalyptic dystopia and fantasy in this series. Love, love, love! … This is what speculative fiction does that realistic fiction doesn’t do as well. It makes us think we are getting a fun story, and then there’s a twist and we realize we are suddenly looking at ourselves in a new, and not always so happy way.

More thoughts on Faerie After from Breathless Book Reviews and Novel Grazing Redux (aka Mrissa).

And: Bones of Faerie trilogy fanart! Lady Skylar’s take on Liza at the arch, and Moozy6’s take on Liza and Ben. 🙂

Header text from Faerie After.

“You take care of the magic. I’ll stand watch over the rest.”

My Shelf Confessions reviews Faerie After:

“Simner has a way of connecting you to her characters on an intimate level. Their struggles with each other could very well mirror your own struggles with loved ones … Simner has a deft skill at writing characters I can directly relate to.”

I also have a guest post up at My Shelf Confessions this week on talking to my characters and how Matthew became a wolf.

“… they considered storytelling a skill as important as sowing a field or wielding a bow.”

In the Albuquerque area? I’ll be reading at Alamosa Books’ Summer solstice party this Friday night at 7 p.m. The party itself begins at 5:30–do come! (And if you’re not in Albuquerque, spread the word to those who are.)

Alamosa Books has some lovely things to say about Faerie After:

“Janni Lee Simner has a gift for moving a plot along at a relentless pace but making it feel whispered and ethereal. Her books are tantric, but rather than emptying you of emotion these pages fill you up … you cannot disbelieve the story—no matter how fantastic—when wrapped in its magical web.”

VOYA also reviews Faerie After this month:

“Fans of the first two novels of this series will be delighted to read the wrap-up to this trilogy … Liza continues to be a strong female protagonist, and the supporting cast of characters, both faerie and human, are well drawn and interesting. Besides the suspense of survival, this story also explores the themes of use and abuse of powers and talents. This is a satisfying finish to the Bones of Faerie trilogy that both junior and senior high students will be eager to read.”

My Shelf Confessions reviews Bones of Faerie and Faerie Winter:

“Faerie Winter exceeded my expectations for a sequel! I felt about it the same way I did Bones of Faerie. That it was a great story and by the end I would have been satisfied if I learned there wasn’t going to be another book. Lucky for me its a trilogy but even better that each book thus far in this trilogy has done such a stellar job of standing on it’s own legs.”

Marietta Zacker asked several Nancy Gallt Literary Agency clients, including me, for our thoughts on writing YA for her guest post on Pub(lishing) Crawl. You can see our thoughts, and her definition of the genre, there.

Arizona Jewish Life included me in their summer roundup of Jewish Arizona authors.

There’s still time to watch VLC Productions’ most excellent Faerie After trailer and win the entire trilogy.

“I am weary of being lost–that is not your concern. We have made a bargain, and I will keep it.”

Don’t miss Kathi Appelt’s lovely Writing for the Long Haul post on the power of story.

At Cynsations I talk about research for fantasy writers:

Besides, I’d read enough descriptions of coppery-tasting blood through the years. That many writers couldn’t all be wrong … There was only one way to resolve the question. I dug through my pocket, found a particularly clean penny, and tasted it.

At Tor.com I look at the question of “what’s a faerie?”

“Flitting nature spirits or inhuman bearers of dangerous magic. These two threads run through much of contemporary faerie fiction. The smaller, flightier faeries might seem the more benign, but even Tinkerbell, one of the most famous representatives of the type, tried to kill Wendy before putting her life on the line to save Peter Pan …”

Tor.com is also giving away copies of Faerie After this week.

Eve’s Fan Garden reviews Faerie After:

“Janni’s writing always leaves me sighing and wanting more, yet at the same time feeling complete and satisfied. It’s just the perfect mixture of dark and melancholy and loveliness and hope.”

At Eve’s Fan Garden you can also read a Faerie After excerpt and join me for a game of This or That.

“Magic is for help, not harm. You of all people should know that, living in the place where magic began”

Rachel Ann Hanley reviews Faerie After today:

“Some books feel like they exist in your mind (You can close your eyes and picture every detail) and then some books feel like they exist all around you (It’s as though you’ve been transported.). Simner’s books always fall in the latter category …”

Faerie After is Book of the Week over at Eve’s Fan Garden. Check out this Faerie After excerpt today, and check back throughout the week for a guest post, giveaway, and other Faerie After posts throughout the week.

Faerie After comes out tomorrow! I’ll be celebrating the official release date at Changing Hands in Phoenix/Tempe at 6 p.m. Tuesday, then returning to Tucson to read at the eastside Barnes and Noble at 1 p.m. Saturday.

Another Faerie After review

Over at Snowdrop Dreams of Books, where I also talk about writing the final book of a trilogy and admit to who my favorite character is.

“Liza is still as strong of a character as ever, fighting for what is right, pushing the limits and always looking out for those around her … The entire world building in this last book is amazing … You are always wondering if things will be okay, if Liza and her crew will figure out how to make things right and if they do – will anything be like was once before?”

If you head over in the next few hours, you can enter to win your own copy of Faerie After, too!

“Sometimes you tell the truth / Like you’re pulling taffy”

It’s been … well, longer than I thought … since I last did a review-and-interview roundup post. So!

An interview with the Montgomery County Book Festival, where I’ll be February 2. (Are you in the Houston area? Come join us!)

An interview with the Mesa Bookman’s, where I chatted about Bones of Faerie with their Young at Heart book club last fall. (If you’re an adult reader of YA in the Phoenix area, you should totally join them for their spring book discussions.)

SLJ’s roundup of the Fae-Tal Attraction faerie panel I moderated at NCTE this fall. Includes a link to our handout of recommended YA faerie fiction.

FromSkye’s trailer for Bones of Faerie:

Various takes on Bones of Faerie from Writings by K, Readview, For Those About to Read, Bitches with Books, and Fairy Fiction for Young Fans.

Takes on Faerie Winter from The Book Fix and Readview.

Takes on Thief Eyes from Readview and Mette Ivie Harrison. Planet YA also includes Thief Eyes on this fun map of YA books from every country in Europe. In the Iceland slot, of course. 🙂

A review of The Fortune Teller, edited by Lawrence Schimel, in which I had published the short story “Beyond the Flames” a decade or so ago. Because every book is new if it’s the first time you’re reading it.

And Rhiannon says nice things about “Drawing the Moon” and some of my other stories in Bruce Coville’s Book Of series.

“We love the things we love for what they are”

I’m a guest blogger over at Cynsations today, talking about Love, Perfection, and Books: “… once we reach a certain basic level of craft, writing is no longer about avoiding mistakes or carefully not doing anything wrong. It’s about the things we do right. No one ever loved a book, after all, simply for not making any mistakes … We love books for what they do, not for what they manage not to do.”

And this is true, as so many writing things are, for other things, too.



Reviews of Bones of Faerie from Read for Your Future, Bookish, and Christiana’s Amazing Blog.

Static Multimedia interview with me and several other Phoenix Comicon attendees, including fellow YA writer Aprilynne Pike.

And an article from the Phoenix Examiner about the social media panel I was on.