Friday, April 19, 2013

Kai Strand, author of Save the Lemmings



Author Bio:
Kai Strand writes fiction for kids and teens. Her debut novel, The Weaver, was a finalist in the 2012 EPIC eBook Awards. She is a (very lucky) wife and the mother of four amazing kids. The most common sound in her household is laughter. The second most common is, "Do your dishes!" She and her family hike, geocache, and canoe in beautiful Central Oregon, where they call home. 

To find out more about Kai’s books, download companion documents, find links to her published short stories and discover all the places to find Kai both virtually and in person, visit her website: www.kaistrand.com. She loves to hear from readers, so feel free to send her an email or visit her facebook page, Kai Strand, Author.



Title: Save the Lemmings
Author: Kai Strand
ISBN: 978-1608207107
Page count: 108 pages
Genre: Contemporary Fiction, tween, young adult
Price: $8.99 paperback, $4.99 Kindle/Nook



Tell us about your book:
When Natalie’s Texty-Talky invention makes her an overnight sensation, the media digs until they find a way to smear her goody-goody image. When her best friends start believing what they read, Natalie’s sunny spirit is pushed to its limits. How will Natalie stop the lies and win her friends back? And who will SAVE THE LEMMINGS?

How long did it take to write the book?
Save the Lemmings came to me as a fully formed idea, so it hardly took any time at all to get the first draft down. Maybe a couple months. The editing took much longer.

What inspired you to write the book?
Mostly the media. I don’t understand people’s infatuation with celebrities and it breaks my heart to see the pressure of fame break one celebrity after another. I wanted to show a more positive example of how someone with that kind of audience chooses to use the opportunity for good.

Talk about the writing process. Did you have a writing routine? Did you do any research, and if so, what did that involve?
I didn’t have a routine for this book and simply wrote when I could. I did some Internet searches on tabloid stories in order to emulate the proper writing style in the tabloid articles in the book.  I did some research on lemmings, their habitats, their migration, whether or not they are suicidal and the origin of that myth.

What do you hope your readers come away with after reading your book?
In the least I hope they understand better the cliché, “Don’t believe everything you read.” However, there are other things like being true to yourself – even if that doesn’t make you popular, standing up to bullies – whether your bully is in your class or is a huge unknown factor like the media, and finally volunteering and being involved in your community is really, really COOL!



Excerpt from book:
Chapter 1
Natalie Isabelle Cailean Edwards bounded up the steps of Carver Middle School with a spring in her step and a welcoming smile on her face. She walked down the hall greeting her fellow eighth grade students.
"Good morning, Cecil. How's your dog recovering from his surgery?"
Cecil shrugged.
"It's a fine sunny morning, isn't it Bella?" Natalie said. "Smile at the morning and the whole day smiles back. Did you ever find your sunglasses?"
Bella rolled her eyes.
"Yo! Bryson! Bro! Awwlrite?" That was the only greeting of hers that got a verbal response.
"Don't be talkin' like that, girl," Bryson warned. "It's just wrong coming from someone like you."
"Oh, Bryson, I'm only trying to relate," Natalie said, pointing between herself and him.
Bryson wrinkled his nose at her stick straight, chin length, blond hair. He raised an eyebrow to her perfect posture and preppy coral colored outfit. He growled at the stack of textbooks balanced in her left arm while her right hand perched on her hip. Sweeping his gaze from her head to her toes, he shivered and grimaced. "Yeah, like that's ever gonna happen." Bryson flung his arm around his girlfriend's neck and walked off, dragging her with him.
Natalie shrugged and bounced into her classroom. First period: science.
"Good morning, Mrs. Hemple."
"And cheery, now that you are here, Natalie," Mrs. Hemple said.
"I worked on my Texty-Talky last night," Natalie said, "and I'm close to having it all put together. The mechanism works, I just need to figure out what to make the casing from. I don't have the ability to mold plastic at home. Yet."
Natalie and Mrs. Hemple chuckled.
Sandra, Natalie's grumpy mathlete friend, rolled her eyes. "You are ten times the nerd I am."
"Awww, thanks, Sandra!" Natalie slid onto a stool at their lab table, directly in front of Mrs. Hemple's desk.
Science was the only class Natalie had with all three of her lifetime friends. Tamilla and Jayne were already perched on their lab stools.
"Your Texty-Talky works?" Tamilla asked.
"Yes sirree!"
"You figured out how to integrate the GPS function?" Tamilla asked, gnawing on her lower lip. "Even I wasn't able to figure it out."
"Don't sound so surprised. It's thanks to all the help I received from you guys!" Natalie beamed a smile around the table and then grinned at Tamilla again. "Because of your legendary computer skills, I was able to convert speech to type and type to speech. You had all the right code in there. I just kept clicking on things until it worked."
"This will take cheating to a whole new level, you know?" Jayne said.
When Jayne scowled, her heavy brows reminded Natalie of a full grown caterpillar of the Mourning Cloak Butterfly; all black and fuzzy.
"Text messaging has already done that! And I was careful to build in features to avoid the device being used for dark purposes such as cheating or spying."
Sandra looked suspicious. "What kind of features?"
"Tones and beeps so the unit can't be used secretly," Natalie said. "It would break my heart if my invention was used to deceive."
Jayne sighed heavily and pushed her thick-framed glasses up her nose. "I suppose I could help you with the casing."
"Oh, Jaynie, that would mean the world to me! You're really the only one of us who has any style." They all nodded.
"We can work on it after school," Jayne said.
"Friends are the sunshine and water to my vegetable garden!" Natalie jumped up and skipped around the table to wrap Jayne in a hug.
Jayne pushed Natalie away and scratched her armpit.
Sandra smacked Jayne's arm. "You're not supposed to scratch."
"I know," Jayne sat on her hands. "But this new medication doesn't work at all."
"Settle down, everyone. Natalie dear, take your seat, please," Mrs. Hemple said, flashing a grandmotherly smile at Natalie.
"Right away, Mrs. Hemple." Natalie skipped back to her stool.

 




Where can we go to buy your book?
Buy your print and electronic copy:

request from your local bookstore, or
Featherweight Press
Amazon
Barnes & Noble

Any other links or info you'd like to share?
M
y website has companion documents for the book clubs and info on my other published books and short stories: http://kaistrand.com/


1 comment:

  1. Thanks for letting me talk about Save the Lemmings. Teachers can find a teacher's guide on my website too!

    The Amazon and B&N links are hiding (at least on my screen) scroll over them to make them appear (under the Featherweight Press link)

    ReplyDelete