Tuesday, October 2, 2018

YA Scavenger Hunt: TEAM ORANGE!

Welcome to YA Scavenger Hunt! This bi-annual event was first organized by author Colleen Houck as a way to give readers a chance to gain access to exclusive bonus material from their favorite authors...and a chance to win some awesome prizes! At this hunt, you not only get access to exclusive content from each author, you also get a clue for the hunt. Add up the clues, and you can enter for our prize--one lucky winner will receive one book from each author on the hunt in my team! But play fast: this contest (and all the exclusive bonus material) will only be online for 72 hours!

Go to the YA Scavenger Hunt page to find out all about the hunt. There are SIX contests going on simultaneously, and you can enter one or all! I am a part of the ORANGE TEAM--but there is also a red team, a gold team, a blue team, a red team, and an indie team for a chance to win a whole different set of books!

If you'd like to find out more about the hunt, see links to all the authors participating, and see the full list of prizes up for grabs, go to the YA Scavenger Hunt page.


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

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 SUNDAY, OCT 7, at noon Pacific Time. Entries sent without the correct number or without contact information will not be considered.



Today, I am hosting Jennifer DiGiovanni on my website for the YA Scavenger Hunt!
Jennifer is the author of contemporary and light fantasy novels for teens. When she's not reading or writing, she likes to try new sports and activities, from archery to ballroom dancing, all in the name of book research.

Find out more information by checking out her website here, and find her on Twitter @jendwrites and on Instagram @jendwrites!


Cara Scotto is living a secret life. She hates holding back the truth about her supernatural powers from her family and friends, but tells herself it’s the only way to protect them. When she struggles to control her surging energy levels, she fears someone will uncover pieces of the truth in her lies.\n\nIntent on learning how to best use her new abilities, Cara trains with her boyfriend Alex, hoping to increase her speed and strength. Though Alex and Cara vow not to let fear rule their lives, they can’t forget Ian, the supernatural scientist intent on uncovering Cara’s true potential, and wonder what his next step will be. They won’t need to wait long before he strikes again.

Soon, the answer becomes clear—someone needs to step up, eliminate Ian, and replace him. Until now, Alex has avoided the underground supernatural networks, but he realizes that agreeing to take over Ian’s position may be the only way to secure the future he and Cara dream of having.

Intent on learning how to best use her new abilities, Cara trains with her boyfriend Alex, hoping to increase her speed and strength. Though Alex and Cara vow not to let fear rule their lives, they can’t forget Ian, the supernatural scientist intent on uncovering Cara’s true potential, and wonder what his next step will be. They won’t need to wait long before he strikes again.

And now...drumroll...an exclusive content from TRUTH IN LIES! 

This is a novel aesthetics board to get you in the mood. I love it!


if you need some audiological supplementation to your reading experience, a playlist!

Unstoppable – The Score
Never Be the Same – Camilla Cabello
Whatever it Takes – Imagine Dragons
Bad Liar – Selena Gomez
Come Alive – Greatest Showman Soundtrack
Warriors – Imagine Dragons
Who Do You Love – Marianas Trench
Confident – Demi Lovato
I Lived – OneRepublic
Natural – Imagine Dragons

Something Just Like This – The Chainsmokers, Coldplay

Jennifer is generously offering an exclusive giveaway just for the YA Scavenger Hunt! 

a Rafflecopter giveaway

And don't forget to enter the contest for a chance to win a ton of books with my exclusive content, hosted by Tori Rigby! To enter, you need to know that my favorite number is   4  . Add up all the favorite numbers of the authors on Team Orange and you'll have all the secret code to enter for the grand prize!


To keep going on your quest for the hunt, you need to check out the next author, Katy Upperman!

BUT before you keep going, I am also having my own exclusive giveaway!

A signed copy of TOXIC and this fantastic swag pack including a signed copy of TOXIC artwork created by me, buttons, enamel pins, stickers, and bookmarks!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Monday, October 1, 2018


I'm so excited to announce this preorder. I've been working on it for months, and there is some supremely awesome swag in this preorder bundle!

Here's the painting that I worked on for weeks. 
It's a print of a watercolor that includes pearls, a luna moth, and a lotus flower in space. 
Each has its own symbolism in the book. 

I love this enamel pin! 
I designed it myself, and it also includes a quote from the book 
as well as that lotus flower. 

These are some of the buttons included in the swag pack. Love this quote, too!



**Preorder Details**

Open Internationally

Send proof of purchase of TOXIC to LydiaKangContest@gmail.com

Preorders will receive:
-signed 8x10" artwork
-two pins
-enamel lapel pin
-signed bookplate


Wednesday, August 15, 2018

TOXIC countdown!

Have you seen the cover reveals for TOXIC and THE IMPOSSIBLE GIRL? Right over there on your left. I am so happy with how well they turned out!

I love the smoky, disintegrating lotus flower on the cover of Toxic. It has so much symbolism in the book. (No spoilers--you'll see!)

And I also love the colorful heart for The Impossible Girl. It's so perfect and delicate and brutal at the same time.

Get ready for two very different books coming soon!

In the meantime, I have this nifty countdown widget for TOXIC. If you'd like it on your blog, click on the HTML button on the left to copy the code!


Thursday, March 22, 2018

My Querying Journey

This is an old blog post from my days as a Lucky13 Debut, on our old defunct blog. So I'm reposting here for posterity!

By Lydia Kang

For some reason, I've been secretive about the intricate details of my querying quest. I think it's time to come clean. Even with an agent and a great book deal, I'm still embarrassed that I got so many rejections. I'm afraid I'll be judged by them, that I'm not one of these "I queried 10 agents and got 8 offers, voila!" kind of people.

So here's the nitty gritty, down the very last numbers and request rate percentages. Hold on to your hats!

June: Decide to write a YA urban fantasy novel, after writing mostly non-fiction and poetry. In a manic 4 weeks, it's done, all 90K words of it.

July: Start querying. Meet Querytracker and its lovely forum peeps. Get a few partials and a full. I'm overjoyed.

August: Start getting rejections on partials and fulls. Revise the novel lightly. Revise the query heavily. Send out more queries. More fulls and partials; more rejections. Learn a lot about the publishing business. Learn about writing. Inhale Steven King's On Writing. Realize that my UF novel is pretty amateur, but not horrible.

September: Decide that writing a historical YA is the way to go. Start researching (fun!). Continue querying the UF; more rejections pile in. Reread every forum post that says "Rejection means you're that much closer to success." Refresh email box 1000x per day.

October-November: Continue writing the historical novel; decide I'm going to query the heck out of the UF. I exhaust the agents in the U.S. Decide I don't have to be that patriotic. Start querying in Canada and the UK.

December: A bite! FISH ON! (Sorry, I've been watching too many episodes of River Monsters.) Have phone call with UK agent. She wants to pass my MS around to her agent mates. Two weeks later, she rejects me. She offers a R & R, but I've lost faith in the novel and I sense that the agent is not a good fit for me. Meanwhile, the historical novel is written. Send it out to my precious crit partners that I've found via Querytracker and close friends.


January: Stop querying the UF. Crits come back. They are not pretty. Start major revision #1. Continue to read voraciously online about revision and the craft of writing.

February/March: Voraciousness continues. Start blogging, because I vaguely hear I need it for platform. Start meeting lots of blogger/writers who teach me what I don't know about writing, such as arcs (not the gold ones from the first Indiana Jones movie.) Continue revisions.

April: Revision is done; start querying historical YA. I select my agents better this time and refrain from using the spaghetti method. Get better at writing my query. Get lots of rejections. Realize that the historical needs yet another huge revision #2. Hold of on sending full to Very Interested Agent. She graciously agrees to wait.

July: Send full to Very Interested Agent. She loves it. Requests an R & R.

August: Send back revised MS to Very Interested Agent. Start outlining a dystopian.

September: Dystopian outline is 35 single spaced pages. Toss dystopian as certain elements have been done too much, but learn a ton about plotting in the process. Very Interested Agent doesn't offer, but wants more revisions. We email back and forth...

October:...and she stops replying to my emails. Tear out some precious hair. Start outlining a YA sci-fi.

November-December: Write YA sci-fi (AKA CONTROL!). Stop querying the historical, just wait for more rejections on old queries to pour in. Surprise of surprises: I get an R & R from Big League Agent. Realize that to do the R & R correctly, I'd need to completely rewrite historical all over again. But am currently in love with my sci-fi.  I stress out and decide the sci-fi would have a larger audience and might be a better debut novel anyway.


January: Feedback rolls in from crit partners on CONTROL. It's great feedback. CPs enthusiastically tell me this is "the one." Start working on revisions but they are less humongous than the revisions needed on the historical. Plotting skills are much better this time around! I email Big League Agent and tell her I need more time on the R & R because I'm working on the sci-fi. She doesn't respond. (I was hoping she would nibble on the sci-fi; she didn't.)

May: Start querying the sci-fi. Get a good request rate, about 1/4.

June: Start writing a fantasy/dystopian MG. Get one near miss by an agent. Query some more.

July: Get two more near misses by agents. Both said they loved it but had enough issues that they didn't want to offer. I query the R & R Big League agent from January, but she rejects my query. :(

Early August: Get R & R from great, interested agent. I don't agree with the R & R, but sit on them for a while, to see if I'll agree with them after a period of time.

Mid August: Seriously consider self publishing.

Late August: Get offer from agent! She's stoked about my novel. We have a phone call where I bounce around a room a lot. I let the R & R agent from early August know I have an offer, and that I stand by my novel as is; she declines to offer rep. We part ways very amicably.

Early September: After notifying the other agents who have my full, get another offer from awesome agent who's also super enthusiastic.

I accept the second agent's offer...Eric Myers of the Spieler agency.

And now, the deets. I dug them up from Querytracker, which compiled the stats for me. And the highlights, in case the above synopsis was a blur.

YA Urban Fantasy
Queries sent: 155
Partials: 7
Fulls: 11
Request rate: 11%
1 Agent phone call with R & R. I decline to do R & R. No offer.

YA Historical
Queries sent: 54
Partials: 6
Fulls: 4
Request rate: 18%
2 R & R's (one I revised, one I didn't). No offers.

Queries sent: 101
Partials: 11
Fulls: 13
Request Rate: 24%
Three near misses
One R & R (I declined to do it)
Two offers of rep!

Total rejections: Umm. A lot.

So there you have it. I've learned plenty along the way, but with regard to querying, these rules always applied:

1) Work on the next WIP while you query. Never stop writing.
2) Be your own best critic and trust your instinct. I rejected one R & R because it didn't feel right; and another because the agent didn't feel right, and yet another because that novel wasn't meant to be the one I wanted to debut with.
3) Never stop trying to perfect your craft (first and foremost) and your query writing skills. My query writing got better and better, and my request rate reflected that, I think. And my third novel reflected that my craft improved a great deal from June of 2009.
4) Understand that there will be practice novels that you will have to shelf. Personally? I am glad that my first two novels didn't find an agent. I am much, much happier with my third novel being the one.
5) Find friends who will celebrate the good news and listen when you're down, because it's no lie when they say querying is an emotional roller coaster.
6) There are certain laws of the universe you can't change. The earth will spin dizzily, vinegar will perpetually remind me of stinky feet...and rejections will always happen to a writer. Don't fester in them or you'll get soggy. Just keep writing.