By: Melanie | August 13, 2013 | (9) Comments

Blog Tour: AntithesisAntithesis by Kacey Vanderkarr
Publisher: Inkspell Publishing
Release Date: July 21, 2013
Genres: Romance, Science Fiction, YA
Pages: 446
Source: For tour
Goodreads | Purchase

My name is Gavyn.

Liam doesn’t care that I only have one arm. He actually likes my red hair and freckles. I might forgive him for kidnapping me.

My name is Gavyn.

I lost my Liam. I’ve lost them all. And now it’s my job to make sure they don’t show up again.

My name is Gavyn.

I had a life with Liam, but he couldn’t give me what I need. Then I killed his father. I don’t expect he’ll forgive me for that.

My name is Gavyn.

Why Do You Have To Write The Hard Stuff?

It’s an ongoing fear of mine. I’m standing in front of a crowd holding a novel—I’ve just done a reading and now hands shoot into the air. They have questions—questions about my story that I don’t want to answer.

They want to know which character I am.

They want to know which horrible thing happened to me.

I want you to close your eyes and think back on your favorite books. I can list mine off the top of my head. The Fault in our Stars by John Green. Clockwork Princess by Cassandra Clare. The Perks of Being a Wallflower by Stephen Chbosky. The list goes on and on—now you’re trying to figure out what these books have in common. All of them deal with hard issues—and the best fiction does.

When I finished The Fault in our Stars, I thought I’d never be the same. My heart was torn out and stomped into nothing. It made me think. It made me appreciate. I cried for days. There were moments of sheer brilliance in that book, some of them quiet and beautiful, others loud and energetic. All of them heartbreaking. All of them.

Clockwork Princess. You’re wondering why this is on my list. Didn’t it have a happy ending? Yes. It had a very happy ending, but it explored things that are so important to me. Cassie has a way of portraying friendships between males that you don’t see in fiction. Beautiful love for one another that would be scorned in the real world. It makes me hopeful. It makes me cry. It makes me want to be a better writer.

The Perks of Being a Wallflower. Where to begin with how epic this novel is? It explores drugs. Suicide. Self-harm. Homophobia. Discrimination. Molestation. Sex. First love. The bittersweet taste of hope and second chances.

Writing is not a dissociative process. I find myself steeped in my stories. I cry when I write. I laugh. I let go. (And sometimes I just write for fun—I mean, we can’t be angst filled all the time.)

So often authors are afraid to step outside their comfort zone. There’s a scene coming up in my current work in progress where a girl finds her father after he’s killed himself. I initially wrote this story a long time ago—back before life turned me upside down. To tell you the truth, I’ve delayed rewriting this story because of that one scene. I picture it in my head and I’m terrified. I know exactly how it looks—how it smells. I know the sound her hands make in the blood. I know that she will never be the same. I know that she will always ask what if?

And then I cry.

For so long I told myself that I couldn’t do it. I had to let the story go because I couldn’t bring myself to write this scene that had become so close to me.

Now I’m looking forward to it. That sounds macabre, I know, but it’s not for the reason you think. The suicide, the horror, it’s something that I need to let go of, and when I put it on paper, I’m releasing it into the world. And if I share it with thousands of people, maybe each of them will take a tiny piece of the burden.

I know I have to write it—and I know it will hurt.

There are authors who refuse to write about rape or drugs or teenage sex or death. They skirt reality as if it doesn’t exist. But if we lie in our writing—if we pretend that real issues aren’t there—what are we really accomplishing? Lying in writing is lying to yourself. If you aren’t emotionally involved, you’re doing it wrong.

Sometimes writing a scene is so hard that I have to walk away.

You have to write the hard stuff. You have to face the fear of the unknown—that’s where the good is, that’s where the things you say will affect people. If your writing starts to scare you—if you find yourself questioning your sanity and wondering how you found these awful things inside of you—you’ve found where you need to be. Write. Let it out. Feel lucky that you have an outlet.

My words are like scars. I see them and I remember. Sometimes they still hurt. Sometimes I see them and I smile, because at least I had the courage to show them to you.

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About Kacey Vanderkarr

Kacey Vanderkarr is a young adult author. She dabbles in fantasy, romance, and sci-fi, complete with faeries, alternate realities, and the occasional plasma gun. She’s known to be annoyingly optimistic and listen to music at the highest decibel. When she’s not writing, she coaches winterguard and works as a sonographer. Kacey lives in Michigan, with her husband, son, crazy cats, and two bearded dragons. Visit www.kaceyvanderkarr.com for more information.

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Melanie

Owner (and crazy nut) at YA Midnight Reads
Melanie is one of the totally fabulous bloggers at YA Midnight Reads. She's a 16 year old student from Melbourne, Australia. She is normally found binge watching TV series, reading , blogging, procrastinating or fangirling about how Percabeth is the best ship ever. She's also a lover of caps lock and uses it excessively.

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9 Responses to Blog Tour: Antithesis

  1. VeganYANerds says:

    I haven’t heard of this until now but that cover is just so pretty!
    VeganYANerds recently posted…just_a_girl by Kirsten KrauthMy Profile

  2. Shaz Goodwin says:

    Thank you for hosting Kacey on tour today Melanie.

    Shaz
    Shaz Goodwin recently posted…Fiction Addiction Book Tours : Winners Deadly Gamble by Shirley KennedyMy Profile

  3. Oh wow…what a brilliant guest post. It really does encompass my feelings on books that carve out your heart and make it bleed. I’ve always said I have a penchant for reading books that make me hurt, but really, it’s just that they make me feel. Thanks so much for featuring this! 🙂

  4. Fantastic guest post! I’m not a writer, but I can definitely see why writing the hard stuff works, and it definitely portrays real life topics, because YA sometimes needs to be real and gritty and some of my favorite books explore the really hard things. I also totally agree with the examples, because you don’t expect them to be as real as they are. And the more emotional the writer the more emotional the reader as well, which is always a good thing. 🙂 <33
    Eileen @ ***Singing and Reading in the Rain*** recently posted…Tuney Tuesday: How to Be a Heartbreaker by Marina and the DiamondsMy Profile

  5. Lovely guest post!

    And that blurb is so weird and creepy, and I have NO idea what this about. However, I saw your rating on Goodreads and it seems like you didn’t really like this, right? I’m not sure if I’m reading this or not.

    Also – completely unrelated – but I finished All Our Yesterdays and you were SO RIGHT IT WAS AMAZING!!
    Celine (The Book Shimmy) recently posted…Review: Poison Study by Maria V. SnyderMy Profile

  6. new to me! thanks for sharing, Mel 🙂
    Katja @ YA’s the Word recently posted…The Final Empire by Brandon SandersonMy Profile

  7. Giselle says:

    Whoa this cover is freaky! Personally I love it when an author writes all of the harsh stuff – the grittier the better, even. I also like it when an author is daring. I’ve loved a book even more one bc the author decided to kill the main character which I thought was brilliant for the story and was it ever the killer twist (hey this is a pun or something eh?)!! I’m all about getting shocked or emotionally traumatized by books.

    Well, not in the September Girls way. No need for any of THAT!
    Giselle recently posted…Review: The Beginning of Everything by Robyn SchneiderMy Profile

  8. Thanks for the guest post. Love books that deal with tough issues. They should be talked about,and I think books are a wonderful medium to learn around real life issues, even if they are something you will never personally experience.

    The Perks of Being a Wallflower is a favorite of mine and I love that it touches on all these “topics” and does so in a wonderful way.
    ShootingStarsMag recently posted…Tune in Tuesday with Mads LangerMy Profile

  9. Amelia says:

    This one looks really good! Thanks for sharing, Mel

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