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May the 4th Be With You Giveaway

Happy May the 4th! Also known as Star Wars Day. Today, I'm celebrating space and science fiction. Especially space operas!

Since we last spoke, so much has happened in my writing life and personal life. Most notably, I was interviewed by Austin Gragg for Space and Time Magazine. I had so much fun, and I hope you all enjoy the interview. You can get a copy here. I also put a photo below for those of you who missed it. Before you scroll down, don't forget...

Every newsletter includes a (hidden) giveaway.

The winner of my last newsletter was Tracy U., who won any romance eBook, and Bethany L., who won a query critique. This time, the winner will receive any eBook that is science fiction, fantasy, or horror. But that's not all! You can also win a first chapter critique up to ten pages.

Good luck!

Space and Time Magazine: It is SO neat being able to hold an interview in your hands.

Pitch Wars Mentor Update


This past year I co-mentored in Pitch Wars with long-time CP Sandra ProudmanTogether, we mentored 
Miranda Sun, and she recently announced that she was offered 
representation by Paige Terlip at Andrea Brown Literary. We are so excited! I cannot WAIT to hold Miranda's contemporary fantasy novel in my hands. It was such an honor being a part of her writing journey. Until then, I hope you give her a follow and keep a blank space on the bookshelf for her book: Kissing Boys, Raising the Dead, and Other Things My Mom Won't Let Me Do. 

SAT Update & Writing Tips


Last time we spoke, it was February. Since then, my fiancé and I bought a home. It's our first, and we're very excited. We closed in March, and spent all of March/April renovating. I painted every wall and ceiling. My glasses are permanently stained, but the spatters look like my space-themed banner above! We also replaced all the flooring, which took up a lot of time and space. *wink* Did I mention that our house came with my dream writing desk? It definitely felt like fate. And you'll get to see a photo of it in the exclusive excerpt!
Maybe next time, I'll be able to share photos of the finished renovation! 

In writing news, I'm now blogging writing and publishing tips every first and third Monday of the month. The posts include giveaways, too. Keep an eye out at www.ShannonAThompson.com. I recently covered topics involving imposter syndrome and other not-so-fun writing parts, so I wanted to cover something light and fun for my newsletter. (But super top secret, of course.) 

Sometimes, when I'm feeling down about writing, I love to write fanfic. I don't get too particular about it either. If I just want to take one character and run with a new idea, I do. Or
my favoritetake a particular scene that stood out to me and play with a new before and after. This forces me to make the story my own while maintaining all the feels that I was drawn to in the first place. A quick, fun exercise like this almost always results in me playing with a brand-new story idea.

I challenge you to try it out this weekend.


Pick one scene from a favorite book or movie, then change everything about what happens before and after that scene while maintaining the integrity of that original scene. It will really challenge you to get creative!

Virtual Writing Program!


On Wednesday, June 2 at 6:30 PM (CST), I'll be teaching how to start a writing project for The Story Center. This ZOOM program is free and open to anyone in the world. You do not have to have a library card. Just register as a guest, and you'll be emailed the ZOOM link. I'll go over outlines, creative inspiration, craft books, and tips on how to stay motivated and defeat the dreaded writers block. Register here.
What I've Been Reading and Loving
While moving, I was a little too busy to sit down and read a physical novel, so I picked up mostly audiobooks (with a few exceptions). Anyway, these are my recent favorites that I hope you check out! The far left one is a manga called A Man and His Cat by Umi Sakurai. You can always follow what I'm reading on Goodreads.

Exclusive Sneak Peek

 
I always look forward to sharing a little snippet of what I'm currently working on. Today, I'm sharing an excerpt from my adult fantasy novel about a grim reaper. This scene is where my protagonist, Amoret, finds his desk. (I told you this desk was lovely!) What do you love the most about sneak peeks? Let me know by replying to this email, and you will be entered to win any speculative eBook and first chapter critique. Without further ado...

Amoret didn’t know if she should be impressed or concerned. She mostly felt annoyed as her gaze adjusted to the abandoned dark, the shadows taking shape as furniture. A lounge by the wall. Beside it, a free-standing forged iron fireplace grate. Crammed bookshelves. A desk. 

Amoret stepped closer to the desk and ran her hand over the oak. It was an exact replica of the one in her room at Rosemoor, with less wear, no stains. Someone had recently built it. Used it, too. The inkwell sitting on top was empty, as if the writer valued every last drop of ink. Their choice of utensil, a swan quill. 

Straining to see what they wrote, she leaned over and opened the curtain to let in moonlight. Her name—Amoret Thorne—had been written once without anything else before or after it, as if she had been a single thought so encompassing nothing else had been necessary. 

She ignored her bristling heart and brushed the note aside to access the secret compartment. It flipped open easily, but unlike the empty one in Rosemoor, this one held an old photograph of a couple and their two boys. A family. The mother’s soft smile drew her in, so small it could’ve been seen as sad if not for the affectionate hand she laid on the youngest’s shoulder. 

Sven Blackmoor.

Amoret traced her finger over his unfamiliar curls, his white uniform, his boots. Then his brother. 

Kallon. 

Despite being the older son, he stood an inch or so shorter, with dark wavy hair and softer features. A single mole dotted his right cheek. 

Amoret felt her throat constrict as she took in his hardened stare, so focused she would’ve believed him if he told her he’d been looking right through the camera one hundred years ago and straight at her peeping. Guilt almost made her place the photo down, but his father stopped her. He wore an oddly familiar ring. 

The wood behind her creaked.

Amoret swiveled to find a ghost. She recognized his windswept hair and misplaced uniform immediately. He’d been the one in the Blackmoor graveyard, but if this photo proved anything, he wasn’t Sven. 

“You tricked me,” she said with a hint of admiration.

The boy raised his brows. “I never lied. Just didn’t correct you.”

“You’re a ghost, not a fairy. Your intentions matter.”

He flinched, the change in expression a first since they’d met three days prior. 

“Did Kallon send you to spy on me?” she asked. 

“On the contrary”—the ghost flickered in and out of existence—“he told me to stay away.”

I hope you all enjoyed the sneak peek. Being able to share my WIPs is a joy. I think of it as a way of getting my stories out in the world, even if they never get published. I love sharing that with you all. And I appreciate your kindness. 
 
See you all again in August!
 
Thank you for your continuous support.
 
<3

*Grabby Hands*

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