Sunday, June 17, 2012

Confessions of a Sneaky Book Writer: A guest post by Jade Varden

Today I'm pleased to welcome Jade Varden to the blog!  She is the author of  The Deck of Lies series, that starts with the book Justice. I have it on my TBR list for July and I'll make sure to report back on how awesome it is!

A House of Cards...

When you build an entire life on a foundation of lies, it only takes one truth for the whole thing to come crashing down. I never invited the truth in. I never went searching for it. I never had any reason to suspect that the two people I loved most were dishonest with me every second of every day.

I made one bad decision, and in a single day my entire world changed. If I'm ever going to discover the truth about myself and my parents, I have to trace all the lies back to their source. I have to try to find the truth that they're hiding.

The more I discover about myself, and my past, the more I realize that lies really are better than the truth. But now that I know the lies are all around me, I can't stop until I've discovered them all. I'll pull each lie away, one by one, and examine it to see what's underneath…until this house of cards crumbles into dust at my feet.

I just hope I can survive the crash.

And now...I give the floor over to Jade! 


Confessions of a Sneaky Book Writer 
By Jade Varden

I confess, I make a lot of obscure references in my books to certain movies, other books, music and designers. But there’s a method to the name-dropping madness, which I’ve never revealed before now. I like to sneak my favorite things into the books I write not just because I like them, but because they’re clues.

It helps that I write mystery novels; I’m expected to include clues. The trouble is, many of them are so vague that no one could ever hope to recognize them but me. But if you recognize certain books and movies I mention in my writing, you might just figure out the mystery early…or at least, you might be able to predict where the story is going.

For example, I specifically mention Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland, by Lewis Carroll, in my book Justice (Deck of Lies, #1). Personally, the book holds special meaning for me, as it does for my main character Rain. But the book is also about a girl who leaves one world and goes to another, where everything feels very strange and new. Justice has a very similar theme. Is there a clue in Wonderland somewhere that hints at where the series is going? I can’t reveal that yet!

I mention several books in The Tower (Deck of Lies, #2) that also hint at specific themes in the story, and one of my characters directly mentions what two of those books are about. There’s a definite clue there that hints at the future of the two characters who are talking about the books. I’ve put several clues in my upcoming book Death (Deck of Lies, #3) by using movies. Each movie I mention in the book points at something specific, some of which hasn’t happened yet in the story.

Am I being sneaky? Only a little. Most of the books, movies and music I mention is stuff that I actually like, so in a way they’re also clues about who I am and what I enjoy. I’ve learned that most writers find ways to put themselves, at least parts of themselves, into the books they write. It’s my way to turn those pieces of me into clues for the story and some of the mini-mysteries inside of it, whichever story I happen to be writing at the time. It’s my way of adding a little extra mystery to all of my books.

About Jade: 

Jade Varden writes young adult novels for teen readers. When she’s not working on her books, Jade contributes freelance fashion articles to VAR magazine, and blogs practical writing tips for authors who self-publish. Follow her on Twitter @JadeVarden. 


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