Eileen Cook Author, Writing Consultant, Editor

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My Celebrity Besties

I have decided that Amy Poehler and I should be best friends. I base this on the fact that I just finished her book YES PLEASE and realize that we have millions of things in common. Or at least four including:
– We both grew up in Irish Catholic families
– Growing up she would play these elaborate imaginary games and so did I.
– She knits, I knit. People who like yarn automatically score high on my people to like scale. It doesn’t mean you have to like to knit- just that it works in your favour.
– She’s funny. I like to think I’m funny.

It may be harder for Amy to figure out why she would like to be friends with me. However, she notes that she is quite short and given that I am tall, I would promise as one of her friends to always get things down from tall shelves and never pick her up. In my experience short people hate when you pick them up- or make jokes about working in a chocolate factory, or living in Oz. They can be touchy about those things and as her good friend I would never deliberately upset her. That’s just the kind of good friend that I can be.

Then there is the fact that Amy Poehler is real life friends with another one of my imaginary celebrity besties- Tina Fey. It seems only natural that we would all hang out. I’d even help them come up with jokes for random award shows.

I should point out that I am not a celebrity stalker by nature. I don’t want to be friends with just any star. For example, while I think Angelina Jolie is an amazing actress and her work with the UN is impressive, I don’t picture us having much in common. Once we covered how things in Nepal sure do suck, the conversation would likely trail off into awkward silence. However, I am pretty sure Amy would make me laugh until bourbon came out my nose. Amy should feel free to call me anytime. Especially if she has something up on a high shelf.

How about you- any celebrities you would want to befriend?

How I feel on Monday Morning

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Welcome Spring Weather!

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Random Monday- The Marriage Edition

We have a family wedding coming up this week. I love family weddings. It’s a great opportunity to catch up with everyone, an excuse to get dressed up, open bar, and a chance to bust out my chicken dance moves.

A friend hearing that we were going asked me what did I think led to a happy marriage. Here is what I came up with:

– It helps a lot if you actually LIKE the other person. Not just love them, but like them as a person.

– Figure out what things you like to do together (be it board games or bungie jumping) and then make time to do those things together.

– Say thank you a lot. If they get a cup of tea in the morning or take out the trash, say thanks. Even if the task “is their job” appreciation goes a long way.

– Just like you should have things you like to do together it helps if you have your own thing, maybe a friend or two that you see without your partner.

– Take time to decide if it is more important to be right than to be happy. Maybe whatever you’re fighting about doesn’t really matter that much.

– Remember that you’re in this together. Marriage is a long haul not a sprint. Have some fun. Be able to laugh at yourself and each other.

– When you have a chance give that person a kiss. Tell them you love them. It never gets old.

Any advice you would pass on?

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Random Monday

It has been a busy spring at Chez Cook. We’ve had dinner parties, school visits, hockey, work, writing and random things that I can’t even remember anymore. I’ve had my head down working on a new book. This making things up for a living can take a lot out of a girl.

I took a spin class for the first time. That’s a whole new level of hell I hadn’t experienced before. It is a mystery to me why with all the modern technology at our disposal we can’t make a bicycle seat that doesn’t hurt after 20 minutes.

In other news friends of our Pam and Jen got married and we were ridiculously happy for them. A young writer I know is getting married in two weeks and we’re headed back to see family soon for my cousin’s wedding- so it must be the season when love is in the air.

We saw the play Book of Mormon last week. I haven’t laughed so hard in forever. This week we’re seeing the play Farewell my Lovely. We are turning into theatre geeks.

Time to get back to the book! Hope everyone’s spring is going well.

Massive YA Scavenger Hunt!! #YASH #TeamRed

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I’m excited to be a part of the 10th YA Scavenger Hunt. Do you love books? Then you’re in the right place. You’ll want to check out all the info here and leave a comment at the end for your chance to enter two bonus contests!

For people who are new here, I’m your host for this leg of the hunt.

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You can tell that I love vintage typewriters, but you may not know that I’m dog crazy and I know how to knit, kayak, and I can bake a mean chocolate chip cookie.

On this hunt, you not only get access to exclusive content from each participating YA author, you also get a secret number. Add up the numbers, and enter it for a chance to win a major prize–one lucky winner will receive a book from each author on my team in the hunt. That’s twenty new books! But play fast: this contest (and all the exclusive bonus material) will only be online until Sunday April 5th noon PST.

You can start right here or you can also go to the YA Scavenger Hunt homepage to find out all about the hunt. There are EIGHT contests going on simultaneously, and you can enter just one or all! I am a part of the RED TEAM–but there is also a blue, teal, gold, green, purple, orange, and pink team and if you do the hunt for those teams too you’ll have a chance to win a whole different set of signed books! That’s the potential for a LOT of books.

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If you’d like to find out more about the hunt, see links to all the authors participating, see the full list of prizes up for grabs, or if you get lost along the way, go to the YA Scavenger Hunt homepage. You’ll also see that I am giving away two books on my site as well. (Details at bottom of this post) An ebook copy of my book REMEMBER. And also an ARC of VANISHED by fellow local Vancouver writer EE Cooper.

Looking for my exclusive bonus content? You’ll have to keep searching. Somewhere on this blog hop, I’ve hidden a top secret interview with Harper, the main character of my book. Before you go on though, check out the amazing author I’m hosting. But, first, a few rules.

Directions: Below, you’ll notice that I’ve listed my favorite number. Collect the favorite numbers of all the authors on the red team, and then add them up (don’t worry, you can use a calculator!). Hint: the secret number is highlighted in

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Entry Form: Once you’ve added up all the numbers, make sure you fill out the form here to officially qualify for the grand prize. Only entries that have the correct number will qualify.

Rules: Open internationally. Anyone below the age of 18 should have a parent or guardian’s permission to enter. To be eligible for the grand prize, you must submit the completed entry form by April 5th at noon Pacific Time. Entries sent without the correct number or without contact information will not be considered.

Now that all the technical stuff is out of the way, I’ll introduce the author I am hosting on this hunt.

I am super excited to be hosting…

RIN CHUPECO!

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Despite an unsettling resemblance to Japanese revenants, Rin always maintains her sense of hummus. Born and raised in Manila, Philippines, she keeps four pets: a dog, two birds, and a husband.

She is represented by Rebecca Podos of the Helen Rees Agency.

I’m super excited to have Rin on my site, even though she looks like she is 18. YEP- EIGHTEEN (Although I have no real idea how old she is. She could be 40 with great skin care)

Rin is here to talk about her book

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Well- that looks super creepy. Let’s learn more:

THE GIRL FROM THE WELL
“You may think me biased, being murdered myself. But my state of being has nothing to do with the curiosity toward my own species, if we can be called such. We do not go gentle, as your poet encourages, into that good night.

A dead girl walks the streets.

She hunts murderers. Child killers, much like the man who threw her body down a well three hundred years ago.

And when a strange boy bearing stranger tattoos moves into the neighborhood so, she discovers, does something else. And soon both will be drawn into the world of eerie doll rituals and dark Shinto exorcisms that will take them from American suburbia to the remote valleys and shrines of Aomori, Japan.

Because the boy has a terrifying secret – one that would just kill to get out.

Available May 2015 in paperback!

From Rin-
Thanks for hosting me on the Red Team for YASH! I’m attaching my exclusive content for my book – it’s a first look at THE SUFFERING, the sequel to THE GIRL FROM THE WELL, the book I’m promoting, due out this September 5!

BONUS CONTENT REMOVED AS CONTEST IS OVER!

I have two bonus contests you can enter. Leave a comment here telling me if you believe in ghosts and two winners will be drawn at random. One will win a copy of my book REMEMBER and the other will win a copy of VANISHED coming May 12th. I read an early version of this book- and trust me you’re going to want it read it too. Think Gone Girl meets Pretty Little Liars. If you like stories of deception, obsession, friendship and love- you’ll want to check it out.

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Leave your comment below to be entered to win this extra contest!

NOW ONTO THE NEXT STOP ON THE BLOG HOP! Check out:
Amalie Howard

YA Scavenger Hunt coming up

I’m so happy to introduce to you the Spring 2015 YA Scavenger Hunt Authors! This is my first time with this project and I’m excited!

We have eight outstanding teams this season. I am going to be a part of #TeamRED! The Scavenger Hunt runs from April 2nd through April 5th beginning and ending at noon Pacific time on those days.

If you’ve never been a part of the hunt before you should give it a try. It runs like a giant blog hop, introducing you to new YA authors and books along the way. There are tons of prizes including a grand prize for each team. If you win one of the grand prizes you will get a book from each author on that team! For more information and to make sure you get hunt updates, sign up for news on the #YASH website.

Not only will I be hiding an exclusive never-before-revealed sneak peek of an interview with Harper of REMEMBER, but I will also be sharing some top secret bonus material from another writer.

In addition to the grand prize- on my site I’ll be giving away a copy of REMEMBER by yours truly and also VANISHED by EE Cooper.

Vanished isn’t even out until May so this is your chance to win a sneak copy. Here’s what others are saying:

“This novel tackles themes of friendship, deception, obsession, and love… With early hints of John Green’s Paper Towns that slowly morph into Gillian Flynn’s Gone Girl.” School Library Journal

“Emotionally nuanced… and a genuinely chilling mystery… a complex and action-heavy tale. The ending provides enough emotional resolution to give a sense of closure but leaves the facts of the story interestingly open to interpretation. An impressive blend of suspense and insight.” Kirkus Reviews

And now, here are the teams!

I hope you are all as excited as I am!

THE HUNT BEGINS 4/2/15!

Perfect for a Monday

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