Gabrielle Prendergast: “The Books That Made Me a Writer” + Zero Repeat Forever Blog Tour Contest

Posted September 6, 2017 by Sara 1 Comment

The first time I noticed Zero Repeat Forever by Gabrielle Prendergast, it was because that stunning cover caught my eye and I just couldn’t stop marveling over it. The second time was when I actually read the synopsis about a teen girl who forms an unlikely alliance with one of the aliens invading her home. And the third time was when I signed on to be part of this blog tour.

Today, Gabrielle stops by with a guest post about the books that helped make her a writer — but be sure to keep reading to learn more about Zero Repeat Forever and enter to win a copy of the book.

As a writer from a literary family, books have been part of my life for as long as I can remember. I don’t think I can narrow it down to one book that had the biggest impact on my life, but I think there are a few that form a critical part of the path that led me here to my life as a professional novelist.

The first one is probably, believe it or not, the STAR WARS novelization by George Lucas. I read this when I was very young (about 10) and it was the first time that I realized that books have authors, that movies have directors and writers, that there were JOBS to be had in the storytelling world I loved so much. I must have read the STAR WARS and THE EMPIRE STRIKES BACK novelizations a dozen times each. I firmly believe that my grasp on plot comes from reading and re-reading these books.

The next book that paved my writing path was The World According to Garp by John Irving. I love all of John Irving’s books but this one must have resonated particularly strongly with teen me (I think I was about 16 when I read it) because it was about a novelist. I have read this one probably ten times too. I still love it.

The next example is a non-fiction title. When I got it into my head at age 25, to try screenwriting as an escape from my nightmarish day job (think Issa’s job in Insecure but worse) I bought myself a copy of Syd Field’s seminal screenwriting book, Screenplay, which introduced me to the three-act structure. I use what I learned from that book in everything I write.

Finally like most writers for young readers, I am profoundly grateful to J.K. Rowling’s Harry Potter series, for single-handedly breaking open the possibilities for books written for young readers. I love these books as a reader too, and re-read them regularly. One of the many great things about them is that most people have read them so they offer a touchstone we can all use and understand when talking about books and writing. Need an example of a villain? Try Voldemort. What is a McGuffin? The Sorcerer’s Stone is a prime example. Point of View? Let’s hear it for third person limited. World-building? O.M.G.

There are so many others I could list that impact my writing life, and many more that impact my non-writing life. As writers we are in tune with this but I think for most of us, books play a larger role in our lives that we know.

He has no voice, or name, only a rank, Eighth. He doesn’t know the details of the mission, only the directives that hum in his mind.

Dart the humans. Leave them where they fall.

His job is to protect his Offside. Let her do the shooting.

Until a human kills her…

Sixteen year-old Raven is at summer camp when the terrifying armored Nahx invade, annihilating entire cities, taking control of the Earth. Isolated in the wilderness, Raven and her friends have only a fragment of instruction from the human resistance.

Shelter in place.

Which seems like good advice at first. Stay put. Await rescue. Raven doesn’t like feeling helpless but what choice does she have?

Then a Nahx kills her boyfriend.

Thrown together in a violent, unfamiliar world, Eighth and Raven should feel only hate and fear. But when Raven is injured, and Eighth deserts his unit, their survival comes to depend on trusting each other…

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Gabrielle is a writer, teacher and designer living in Vancouver, Canada.  You can read about her books here. She is represented by Barbara Poelle at the Irene Goodman Literary Agency.

In 2014 she was the Writer in Residence at Vancouver Public Library. In 2015 she was nominated for the BC Book Prizes and chosen to tour the province to promote BC Books. In 2017 Gabrielle took part in the TD Canada Children’s Book Week Tour. She has also been nominated for the White Pine Awardand the CLA Award.

Gabrielle won the Westchester Award for Audacious. Audacious was included in CBC’s list of 100 YA Books That Make You Proud to be Canadian. A poem from Capricious was chosen for the 2014 Poetry in Transit Program. Pandas on the East Side was chosen as an Ontario Library Association Best Bet for Junior Fiction in 2016. It was also nominated/shortlisted for the Chocolate Lily Award, The Red Cedar Award, the Diamond Willow Award and the Myrca Award.

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(1) winner will receive a signed finished copy of ZERO REPEAT FOREVER, US Only & Canada.

(3) winners will receive signed postcards and bookmarks ZERO REPEAT FOREVER, US Only & Canada.

Ends on September 19th at Midnight EST!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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Sara
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