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  • 02/21/12--15:00: Book Review: Mockingjay
  • Wattpad brings you a guest post originally published in Teen Ink:

    Mockingjay by Suzanne Collins

     In anticipation of Suzanne Collins’ third and final Hunger Games novel, Mockingjay, I was among the crowd of impatient fans ready to flip through the pages at a papercut-worthy speed. Which is why, as I grew closer to those fateful last pages of the series, I felt disappointment pushing through my thoughts.

    Mockingjay wasn’t at all what I expected. I knew the story would have to be dark like its predecessors (more so, since it was about war),
    but I had no idea how dark it could be.

    By the end, Collins writes of so many horrific deaths in such a short time that there is no breather. Her message is pounded into our minds with each slaughter: war is bad, War Is Bad, WAR IS BAD! And yet her writing lacks grace or subtlety. What should have been a sad yet sincere conclusion transforms into a contrived, deliberately alienating story with no regard for the characters who originally brought the books to life for readers.

    Continue reading here!

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    “What’s the most adventurous thing you’ve ever done?” Tweet us your answer @Wattpad with hashtag #hrtsmom to enter today’s special giveaway.

    Hrtsmom is giving away the complete set of her five-book Zania Corthinn series to one lucky winner!

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    Anti-gravity? Efficient wind farms and solar energy? It’s not as far-fetched as you think. Check out this guest post from Glide author Bill Gourgey:

    [Photo source]

    The other day I was talking to my neighbor, a high level TV executive at the Discovery Channel, about Green Science.  We were at a party and the topic came up because he asked me what I was up to, so I began to describe my new novel, Glide, and how one of its themes is Green Sci Fi.  Well, I might as well have announced that I was writing about something as whimsical as Oz. He wrote me off with a wave of his hand.  Green doesn’t sell, he said matter-of-factly.  Really, I said, that surprises me. The opinion polls I’ve seen and the research I’ve done suggests that people love the concept of Green. That’s just it, he replied, they love the concept, but as soon as it comes down to the reality—to changing lifestyles to be Green—they avoid it.  Trust me, he added, I know. We keep trying out Green programs on the network and they just don’t get traction. 

    Of course, there must be some truth to my neighbor’s advice.  After all, he has the numbers to prove it. That got me a bit worried. If people don’t enjoy watching Green shows on TV, what would compel them to read Green fiction? But the more I thought about it and continued to research Green Science and Green Science Fiction, the more I realized that Green is simply too broad a term to throw around without qualifying it. For example, most people probably don’t want to be told that they should be making the extra effort to compost their organic garbage and recycle the rest. It’s a lot of work.  Who has time…or money? And those are the kinds of Green How-To shows you tend to find on TV, narrated by some svelte intellectual who leaves you feeling guilty for not making more of an effort.  BUT!  What if there was an invention that allowed you to throw out your garbage the way you always do? Underneath the counter, this little machine would sort your trash for you and compact it so that all you would have to do is take two little biodegradable bags out to the curb each week? One labeled “Organics” the other “Recyclables.” Sounds a bit like something the Cat in the Hat might come up with, I know, but that invention, if it existed, would be Green Science.  Since it doesn’t yet exist (to my knowledge) it would be Green Sci Fi. For the record, you can buy indoor compost stations (they look like fish tanks) and multi-bin trash compactors, but nothing that automatically sorts through a continuous flow of household trash.  At least, not on the residential level.  Commercially, lots of companies are tackling the waste-sorting problem with a fair amount of success.  Hence, the lines between Science and Fiction have already begun to blur when it comes to Green Waste Management.  Still with me?

    In the simplest terms, Green means anything that is considered friendly to the environment.  Of course, there are different degrees of green when it comes to science, technology, and invention.  Using my own highly technical classification, Dark Green implies something consumable (it all comes down to consumption!) that either restores or preserves our natural ecosystems without unwanted byproducts (e.g., solar energy) while  Light Green refers to the other end of the spectrum—to technologies that may not be Green in the strict sense, but are friendlier than prevailing technologies (e.g., ethanol vs. oil). 

    As Jordan Kessler from the Natural Resource Defense Council once wrote on Switchboard, the NRDC’s blog, “Sometimes, the facts on the ground are so grim, that all I can do is try to have hope that there’s a better tomorrow on the way.  Just for today, I’m going to think about what…[Glide’s author] Bill Gourgey calls ‘Green Sci-Fi,’ a kind of anti-apocalyptic vision of the future.”

    Here’s the thing. Mr. Kessler’s right about the facts on the ground being so grim when it comes to climate change and ecological stewardship, but you would be surprised to know just how much time, energy, and pure creative genius is applied to Green Science day after day, year after year. In lots of ways, that anti-apocalyptic future is already here waiting for our embrace.  It’s truly amazing and rather unfortunate that there’s so little press devoted to this all-important field. It’s as if our brains have been so hard-wired by jaded journalists that we would rather watch the devastation of oil spills than celebrate the triumph of fuel cells. Ever hear of Bloom Energy? A company whose fuel cells convert natural gas and bio-fuels into electricity without generating carbon emissions. Google uses their boxes (called Bloom Boxes) to power some of their facilities. EBay uses Bloom boxes, too, and so do dozens of other companies. 60 Minutes even did an expose on them last fall, but I’ll bet Bloom’s not ringing a bell.  And it’s a shame, because our Federal and State governments could be approving Bloom Power Plants instead of Nuclear ones or, even worse, “Clean Coal” (a phrase that ought to be entered into Webster’s as the definition of an oxymoron).

    To prove my point that Green Science is a dynamic, growing field, here is a smattering of Green Science examples with their Fictional counterparts:

    Urban Wind Farms, the Science:

    The city of Hull in the UK has funded a project to deploy mini-turbines (see below) and are in discussions to expand the project to deploy these turbines throughout the city making it one of the first truly green energy cities on the planet.  For more, see this article from the Hull Daily Mail.   

    Wind farm network develops green city

    Urban Wind Farms, the Science Fiction:

    The micro turbines I describe in Glide are vast arrays of wind turbines as small as nickels or dimes woven into a fabric that floats above buildings like sails, or wraps around them. That may sound futuristic, but it will probably be here before you know it.

    Solar Energy, the Science:

    Semprius, a start-up company, has figured out how to make miniscule solar cells about the width of a line drawn by a pen. The efficiency of these cells (and the fact that they require much less cooling), significantly reduces the size of the panels needed to generate practical amounts of electricity.  For more, see the following article from MIT Technology Review:  

    Concentrated Solar Startup Sets a New Efficiency Record

    Solar Energy, the Science Fiction:

    In Glide, all manmade exterior objects (cars, buildings, homes, etc.) are painted with NanoPaint, a solar emulsifier, which is an acrylic laced with nanoscopic solar cells.  While this vision is still Green Sci Fi, researchers at Ohio State University stumbled on just such a possibility using molybdenum and titanium. Again, it may not be that far from reality.

    Anti-Gravity, the Science:

    We’ve all heard of high speed trains, which use electromagnetics to “float” the trains and achieve, to a small extent, the illusion of defying gravity.  Well, researchers at Tel Aviv University have taken it one step further to produce objects that truly float using quantum levitation.  While this still does not qualify as anti-gravity, it does open up a whole host of possibilities for transportation and beyond.  It’s still a long way off from commercial viability, but to learn more, check out this gizmag article:

    Tel Aviv University’s astounding “quantum levitation” demonstration.

    Anti-Gravity, the Science Fiction:

    Glide, the title of my novel, also stands for the futuristic industry known as the Glide Industry, which came about when the protagonist, Dr. Magigate, a genius as bright as Einstein and an inventor as prolific as Edison, discovered how to manipulate the Gravitational Constant.  Here is his epiphany at the moment of his breakthrough as excerpted from Glide:

    His eyes grew glassy as he allowed himself to fantasize a world no longer confined by the yoke of gravity. Possibilities rushed at him with the tumult and festivity of a parade. A new industry—the Gravity Reduction Industry, or, better yet, the Glide Industry—would be born. Raw material suppliers would continuously improve upon Magigate’s superconductive sample. New pharmaceutical divisions would be dedicated to improving his Polyena virus. Glide cell manufacturers would pack these gyroscopes into bikes, cars, boats, and planes—all of which would need to be reinvented too.

    Without gravity, a calculator-sized solar cell could supply enough energy to propel a family sedan or even a taxi from New York to London at Mach speeds—no need to travel by plane. And the best part: besides a small charge injected into the Glide cell just before it left the loading docks, there would be no other energy requirements and no waste. No oil, no gas, no carbon dioxide, no ozone.

    Of course, Dr. Magigate goes on to imagine all of the dark consequences of his invention, but you’ll have to read the book for that!  As an added enticement to read more, here’s an image of a g*car (“g*” represents all things powered by antigravity in the future) as described in Glide.

    I could go on and on with examples, but here’s the point: as Albert Einstein once said, “Imagination is more important than knowledge.”  And there are times when imagination is more important than ever, too.  Green Science is real, but we don’t hear about it as much as we should. I think its scientists and entrepreneurs could use a little help from friends who create fiction for a living.  Rather than imagining dystopian futures (which are easy to see when “the facts on the ground are so grim”), how about stretching for hopeful futures to draw attention to the possibilities and force a public discourse, one that might even sway our media and thus our politics.  As the tyrannical Prophet in Glide says about our politicians, “oil flows through their veins and gunpowder salts their meals.”  But it occurs to me that we can hardly ask corrupt politicians to set us on a more hopeful road if our artists and writers can’t even imagine one.  Being an optimist by nature, I truly believe in humanity’s capacity to innovate ourselves out of the dark places our biology and self-interest often lead us.  Green Sci Fi, then, is my Emerald City, my attempt to bring to life (bring back to life?) a genre that focuses on a hopeful future.  And Green Science is its Yellow Brick Road.

    By Bill Gourgey, author of Glide

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    From BillGourgey 

    Share some of your amazing Wattpad comments and reviews for Glide on Amazon and you’ll have a chance to win a black 2GB USB Bracelet imprinted with the Glide logo and filled with Glide goodies including the Glide eBook, invention imagery, and interviews with me, the author, talking about Glide I’ll be giving away THREE bracelets.

    Click Here for Full Contest Details! This contest will run from February 22 to March 21, 2012.

    Thank You Wattpadders!!!

    Glide on!

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  • 02/23/12--08:00: Author Interview: Wendy Mass
  • Wattpad brings you a guest post originally published in Teen Ink:

    Author-Wendy Mass

    By TheJust, Ellenton, FL

    Her most popular book is probably “A Mango Shaped Space”, but author Wendy Mass has written many other novels for pre-teens and young adults, including “Leap Year”, “Jeremy Fink and the Meaning of Life” and her fractured fairy tale series, “Twice Upon a Time”.

    I was recently given the opportunity to interview Ms. Mass for Teen Ink.


    RH: When did you first get interested in writing?

    WM: I wrote my first short story in 5th grade, and was hooked! I co-wrote it with my 2 sisters and it was about our cat who turned into a goat and broke into the neighbor’s house!

    RH: When did you know you wanted to be an author?

    WM: By the time I was in high school, I knew this was what I wanted to do. I spent most of college writing short stories, and then when I graduated I got a job in publishing, so even though I wasn’t the one writing the books, I got to have a hand in bringing them to life.

    RH: What was your inspiration behind “A Mango Shaped Space”? Do you actually know someone like Mia?

    WM: I didn’t know anyone with synesthesia before I started writing the book, but as I went along I met many. I think it’s a lot more common than people think. Just start asking your friends the colors of various letters and I bet some can tell you!

    Continue reading here!

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  • 02/23/12--13:00: Cover-Off: "The Godfather"
  • Which version of Mario Puzo’s “The Godfather” do you like better - left or right?

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    Every Friday, we bring you an undiscovered gem to read on Wattpad. This week, our secret Wattpad Talent Hunters recommend Secrets of Successful Writers, a non-fiction:

    Secrets of Successful Writers by Darell Pitt

    Interviews with fifty writers as they speak about writing, publishing and promoting their books in the digital age. Some of the writers are traditional authors. Others have built careers as self-published ebook authors. It contains interviews with authors who write detective stories, westerns, romance, thrillers and children’s books.

    Included are: John Locke, Micaela Wendell, Dolores Durando, and Robert J. Randisi.

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    SMWTOPost It. Pin It. <3 It. Party in Wattpad HQ!
    Wattpad’s Social Media Week event:

    Post it. Pin it.

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    Check out this blog post from Daniela, the author of The Day, Wattpad’s newest Featured Story. She gives us the top 5 things she wants to do the most in her life.

    What’s on your bucket list?

    1. Tour Europe - I’ve always loved the culture. Every time I watch a movie, or even see a picture of anywhere in Europe, I kind of feel a longing to go. The people, the languages, the food - oh my GOSH, the food! - everything just connects with me. I don’t want to go on one of those touristy-tours, where they only give you like three minutes in each country. I want to do my own thing, with a best friend - maybe even a boyfriend if I have one. I want to visit the Eiffel Tower, the Leaning Tower of Pisa, all of that.

    2. Play in the O2 stadium - I’m in a band, and playing in the O2 stadium in England has always been a dream of mine. We’ve never really played in front of an audience before, but I can just imagine myself on that stage, yelling out to fans and whatnot. It doesn’t even have to be full. There could just be like 3 or 4 people there, but I’d be happy. Oh, and I’m the singer, by the way. My absolute FAVORITE band, Paramore, played there, and I watched a video of it, and it was their best performance, in my opinion.

    3. Complete the Susan G. Komen breast cancer walk - My aunt had a scare  with breast cancer once. And ever since then, I’ve been hyperaware of cancer. Everytime the commercial for the 2-day walk comes on, I watch it. It’s just so inspiring. I’ve wanted to do it for forever and a day, so I will one day. Before I kick the bucket.

    4. Grant someone’s last wish - This, to me, is the most important one. I feel like seeing the look on their face whenever I grant that wish - whatever it is - so much better, because I think it will give me a whole new perspective on life. I just want to see the light in that person’s eyes when it happened. They don’t even have to know it’s me who granted it. I just want to see it.

    5. Fall in love - Yeah, I know… cliche. But I feel like love was created for a reason. “The Only Exception” by Paramore (yeah, again) is my go-to song for this. When Hayley sings “Maybe I know, somewhere, deep in my soul, that love never lasts. And we’ve got to find other ways to make it alone, or keep a straight face. I’ve always lived like this, keeping a comfortable distance. And up until now I had sworn to myself that I’m content with loneliness. Because none of it was ever worth the risk.” That’s so so so true, for me. I want to find that one person who will be the exception to my rules that guys are a whole bunch of cheaters with bad intentions. I’ve read enough romance novels to believe that love exists, so I’m going to save my heart until I find my only exception.

    P.S. This last Valentine’s day? I had a hot date with Ben & Jerry’s. For those of you who don’t know, it’s a brand of ice cream. I stayed home all day while my parents went out to eat and saw “The Vow”. I was in my living room, watching the sappiest romance movie in the world, and eating my ice Cream with chopsticks. And you know what? I’m okay with that. I’m not going to settle for a guy. Just because it’s Valentine’s Day, people think that it’s the time to go and be with someone you have no feelings for. I’d rather be a total loser than a pretender.

    And folks, that’s my happy ending. (For now, at least.)

    “I’m on my way to believing…”

    Read Daniela’s mystery thriller, The Day, on Wattpad:

    Eighteen-year-old Hailee Windor girl dies on her birthday. Just before she died, she wishes that she had told her best friend that she loved him. The result: she gets to keep re-living the day over and over again.

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    Cloud Prophet Trilogy Giveaway:

    Who wouldn’t want to have one magical power that made them special? Reychel discovers hers in Anathema and in the contest to win signed paperback copies of the entire Cloud Prophet Trilogy (Anathema, Oubliette, and Severed) by Megg Jensen, you can discover yours too!

    Find out how to enter the contest!

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    Check out the newest update on Wattpad! We’ve totally redesigned the left side of the Story Page…and there are even more changes to come. Like us on Facebook to get sneak peeks and access to new stuff.

    We’d love to get your feedback. What do you think?

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    Keep Calm and Read on Wattpad

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    Hello! To reblog one of our posts:

    • Click on the time stamp (e.g. “3 days ago” or “41 minutes ago”). This will open the specific post.
    • You should now see a “reblog” option on the top right corner of the screen.
    • Reblog! :)

    Thanks for wanting to share our Wattpad posts!

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    Wattpad brings you a guest post originally published in Teen Ink:

    [Photo source]

    Journalist Bill Hemmer

    By Darina S., Warren, NJ

    While studying journalism at Brown University this summer, I was fortunate to score an interview with Bill Hemmer of FOX News Channel.

    What did you major in at Miami University?

    I was a broadcast journalism major. I was able to take advantage of a fairly large media market, which was critical tome. As a sophomore, I had an internship at Channel 5 in Cincinnati and,as a junior, got hired primarily to work weekends. I took
    a producer’s job and worked there for almost three years. The lesson is that it’s
    very important to understand the value of an internship - whether it’s TV or anything else, people hire those they know. When it comes time to fill entry-level positions, if they’re familiar with you as a person, people will reach for you and you will be in a position to get the job.

    How did you get to CNN?

    Continue reading here!

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    "The Rock Star’s Daughter" Wattpad Contest:

    It’s easy to imagine how great life would be if your parents were rich and famous. But in The Rock Star’s Daughter, 15-year-old Taylor finds out that the reality falls short of the fantasy when she has to go on tour with her dad’s successful rock band.  Check out the book, the first in a series being developed by Caitlyn Duffy about the students of Treadwell Academy, and enter for your chance to win a prize package!

    About the Contest

    Post a comment here in response to this question: “If you could choose any famous musician to be your parent, who would it be, and why?” We’ll accept entries from February 29th through March 31st, and you can only enter once. The winner will be chosen by author Caitlyn Duffy based on originality, creativity and humor, so even if another Wattpad user has the same celebrity dream mom as you do in his or her entry, use your imagination to make your entry stand out.

    Grand Prize

    One grand prize contest winner will be chosen by YA author, Caitlyn Duffy. The winner will receive a $300 gift card or e-gift card for Coach, and an autographed paperback copy of The Rock Star’s Daughter.

    Runners Up

    Four runners-up will each receive an autographed paperback copy of The Rock Star’s Daughter.

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    Got the travel bug? Check out this guest post by author David Gaughran:

    My South American historical adventure A Storm Hits Valparaiso took me over five years to write. I’m not really that slow, but part of the reason it took so long is that I wrote the book while traveling around the world: Mexico, South America, Eastern Europe, India, and South-East Asia.

    Right now, my writing desk is my kitchen table here in Sweden. It’s a nice, bright space, with a big window looking out onto the garden – where deer occasionally pass through – plus the fridge is two steps from my chair. But it’s also in the middle of the house, meaning that everyone walks through when they are coming or going, or when they want a sandwich, a glass of water, or just to annoy me. I often look out that window and fantasize about a room with a door I can lock. Okay, that’s not very ambitious but, after a while, you appreciate the simple things. And that’s especially true when you are writing a book while backpacking around the world!

    Jericoacoara, Brazil

     Just getting to this beach town is an adventure. I had to fly from Dublin to London, to Sao Paolo, to Rio de Janeiro, to Salvador, to Natal, and finally to Fortaleza. Then a six hour coach ride, before transferring to a dune buggy for the final hour. That’s right, a dune buggy. Jericoacoara has no cars. It doesn’t even have streets! It’s cut off from the rest of Brazil by a shifting sand dune desert. They only got electricity and phone lines a few years back, and the only internet connection is a spotty satellite hook-up. In short, perfect for writing. Oh, and that big sand dune you see is moving. Not too fast, mind, you wouldn’t notice it while you were looking at it. But it’s slowly encroaching on the town, and eventually will swallow it up. In fact, they already had to move the town once – the old town is buried underneath. Spooky.

    (Photo courtesy of Wikimedia)

    Plaza Garibaldi, Mexico City

    If you want to write well, one of the key things you must learn (aside from reading and writing lots) is to become a keen observer of people. Watch how they interact. Listen to how they speak. It also helps if the people are doing something interesting. Plaza Garibaldi, in the center of the sprawling metropolis of Mexico City has some of the craziest characters on the planet, and it’s where lovelorn Mexicans come to indulge in some consolatory drinking, before hiring a mariachi band to serenade their intended under her balcony, in the middle of the night. Hey, it beats texting.

    Koh Tao, Thailand

    This island is about nine hours from the Thai mainland by overnight ferry. It doesn’t see as much tourism as the other, more famous, islands nearby, and is all the more appealing for it. The beaches are unspoiled, the locals are unbelievably friendly, and it never gets too crowded. Plus, if you ever need a little more action to get those creative juices flowing, Ko Pha Ngan (home of the famous Full Moon Party) is only a speedboat ride away. That’s right: a speedboat to a party. That’s how I roll.

    Buenos Aires, Argentina

    Argentina’s capital is like Paris and New York rolled into one, with a Latin beat, better weather, more beautiful people, and cheaper, well, everything (which can lead to some interesting souvenir choices). It also has some of the best beef and red wine in the world, at prices that allow you to treat yourself every single day. It’s not just a great place to be a writer; it’s a great place simply to be. I spent three months living there. It was awesome. I had a purple velvet couch. Nothing more needs to be said.

    Palolem, Goa

    Writing is no easy path to riches, and, if you’re fond of travel and adventure, all this moving around is going to put a serious dent in your pocket. Experienced literary vagabonds know when it’s time to park somewhere cheap, and get some serious writing done. And it doesn’t get much cheaper than India. Palolem is a perfect beach. It’s in the south of Goa away from all the package holidays and crazy dance parties – which you would be wise to steer clear of if you want to get any work done. It’s a quiet spot, and the only real danger to the prolific writer is the soporific effect of the mountainous plates of scrumptious Indian food served all along the beach. You’ll spend a lot of time snoozing, but hey, it keeps you young.

    Check out David Gaughran’s South American historical adventure A Storm Hits Valparaiso

    Catalina Flores de la Peña’s tongue got her in more trouble than any other part of her body, even though there were far more likely candidates. But when a storm rolls into her sleepy port town, she finds herself embroiled with a gang of adventurers, mercenaries, and prostitutes on a journey to free South America from the Spanish Empire.

    A Storm Hits Valparaíso is an epic, historical adventure starring two brothers torn apart by love; a slave running for his life; a disgraced British sailor seeking redemption; and José de San Martín, an Argentine general who deserts the Spanish Army to lead a bloody revolt against his former masters.

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    Happy Leap Day! Listen to our podcast interview with Samantha, also known as GermanSam on Wattpad, author of the Cupid series. We talk about romantic culture and tradition, and chat about the upcoming Hunger Games movie adaptation.

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    [Photo source]

    Looking for friends in the Wattpad Community?

    Visit The Wattpad Cafe!

    The Cafe is a club for Wattpad members to connect socially about topics other than reading and writing. Spend some time getting to know each other! This club is the home of off-topic threads, games and mini-clubs that do not fall into any other specific category.

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    Cover-Off: “Neuromancer”

    Which version of William Gibson’s “Neuromancer” do you like better - 1, 2, or 3?

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    Wattpad brings you a guest post from youXfoundXme, author of The Only Girl In The Band:

    Anyone who knows me knows that I absolutely love music. It’s a way to get away from the stress of my life—from college to work to just life in general—and lose myself in the music. When I listen to a good song, I imagine my own little music video playing in my head. When I listen to music, I create a whole other world inside my mind, a place that is filled with music and dancing. So it’s no wonder that I would choose to write a story about the one thing I love most.

    The Only Girl in the Band is a story about a young woman who has an amazing voice, but has stage fright. She comes across a band called The Velocity and by some miracle, gets in. Although the story seems like it is mostly a love story, it is primarily a story about a girl who finally discovers who she really is and realizes that she has nothing to be afraid of: if her passion is making music, then that’s what she would do in her life.

    The kind of music that I listen to is generally stuff that not a lot of people have heard of. Sure, I like the occasional pop song, but I’m an alternative pop/punk rock junkie at heart. Among my favorite bands are All Time Low, The Fray, The All-American Rejects, and The Killers. But in addition to these all-boy bands, I also have a few favorite bands with an amazing female singer.

    The first of these bands is Paramore. I first discovered Paramore after hearing their song Misery Business. I immediately fell in love with the band, and moreover, with Hayley Williams. Here was a strong female vocalist, standing out from the other female singers of the day, like Kelly Clarkson and Rihanna. With her powerful rock vocals, Hayley Williams won me over with one song. And I’ve been a dedicated fan ever since.

    Another band that I think has an amazing female lead is Evanescence. Now this band’s music is a little different than what I usually listen to. It’s more goth-alternative rock than it is punk rock. But that’s all right with me. Amy Lee, the female lead of this band, has the most beautiful and angelic voice, in addition to being visually very beautiful. Her first hit single My Immortal struck an emotional chord in me when I was in the sixth grade. Since then, I have loved the band.

    The third band that I think has a great female singer is We Are the In-Crowd. I love Tay because not only does she have a fantastic voice, but she’s so relevant to teens today. She’s trendy and beautiful, but in a simple and dorky way. But again, she’s the only girl in the band, and she definitely dominates.

    The next band that has an amazing lead vocalist that’s a female is an Australian band called Tonight Alive. I have only just recently been introduced to their music, as they aren’t really very famous at all. But they definitely should have more fans because they are an amazing band. Jenna’s voice sounds so similar to Hayley Williams’. Actually, the first time I had heard her voice, I thought it was Hayley that was singing. But she is just another female lead that shows that girls can sing pop-punk just as well as guys can.

    Yet another band with a fantastic female singer is Within Temptation. Now, Within Temptation isn’t really a pop-punk band, either. This band is more like Evanescence than all the others, but I love it just the same. It’s a Dutch goth-rock band (goodness, I seem like I’m emo. I promise I’m not!). Sharon den Adel has a beautiful, melodic and almost haunting voice, in a way that’s a little different than Amy Lee’s. But the effect is the same. 

    The thing with these five bands is that they all have only one female in them and each of these females plays a central, if not lead, role in the band. Each female dominates, bringing character to an otherwise ordinary band. I think that’s what draws me towards bands with females in them. They’re unique and different. And it’s especially refreshing to see women and girls singing in bands and not the pop music that all other females sing. It gives them almost a sense of being hardcore; as if girls can be more than just pretty dresses and love songs. They can be strong girls with killer vocals that sing with a passion. And that’s what I love about them.

    Check out The Only Girl In The Band, a teen fiction.

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