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Random Thoughts: The YA Crush Tourney

One of the great things about being a book blogger is that it doesn’t always have to be about reading books and writing reviews. That may be why I blog, but there are also some lovely distractions from the blog that help keep things exciting.

Of course there’s Twitter. That’s probably the biggest distraction from blogging that I know. It’s so easy to follow the timeline and find that hours have passed as I check out all sorts of things that are being tweeted about. And even more hours can slip by if I get caught up in a conversation.

Late one night I hopped onto Twitter with no real intent to get caught up in anything and I saw a few Tweeters talking about this upcoming event called The YA Crush Tourney. and I decided to check out the blog that was hosting the event. It was mainly for curiosity and the fact that whenever I see a link tweeted I can hardly resist clicking.

Well, the tournament is hosted by The YA Sisterhood blog and at the time I heard of the event they had chosen their finalists and were looking for advocates.

I was already behind on my reading, I was stretched thin as it is between work, blogging and my real life endeavors, but seeing this event and seeing that a few bloggers I know were involved, I couldn’t resist asking a couple questions about it. What could be the harm in asking questions?

Many of the top crushes were already spoken for. Who wouldn’t grab up Jace, Dimitri, Ash or Patch if you had the chance? But there were still a number of crush-worthy boys looking for defenders. And I was immediately drawn to Tod.

I had somewhat recently finished reading If I Die by Rachel Vincent and had developed a significant crush on the book and the boy. I knew that if I chose Tod, defending him wouldn’t be easy, given the fact that Tod doesn’t really come into the spotlight until that book, unless you count Reaper which is a short novella devoted all to him.

But I’m never one for easy, and I’m always one to root for the underdog, and so when I heard back from the hosts of the tourney I decided to participate. It sounded like such a perfect distraction from the blog, something to get involved in that would be exciting and different and just really, really fun.

And it has been awesome. Yes, creating that original defense for my character was a challenge. It actually took me a few hours of searching each book to come up with every bit of information I could about him. And then several more to write up my defense.

I couldn’t reveal spoilers from the upcoming book, and I wasn’t sure I could properly defend him without some of that knowledge, but I think I managed fairly well. Although, by three in the morning of the day that I needed to turn in my argument I wasn’t even sure I was making any sense.

But once that was done, the fun could finally begin. Round one was exciting. There was no way to tell how many votes were cast, who was in the lead, but you could vote as many times as you wanted, and enlist your friends to do the same.

For many of the characters, the authors are involved, which is even more exciting. My character’s author, Rachel Vincent, mentioned the tournament on Twitter and on Facebook. But she wasn’t the only one. Cassandra Clare reached out to her fans in defense of Will, Jeri Smith-Ready in defense of Zachary, as did many other authors who wanted to see their character succeed.

Round two, which just started this week, has changed things up a bit. There is only one vote allowed, and the voting results are visible, which makes the advocacy process that much more stressful…I mean scary…I mean thrilling.

Last night’s last minute push for Tod’s competitor Archer Cross by Rachel Hawkins nearly cost Tod the win. But the amazing Rachel Vincent stepped in and saved her reaper, reaching out to her large following. (Believe me, I called in all my favors around the country to get those votes up and probably pestered every single person following me on Twitter and Facebook – sorry!)

But today, Rachel Vincent is going to give readers a teaser from the next book and put together a Q&A since he’s won. She’s reaching out to fans to ask their questions or leave possible teasers on her blog, HERE. And I can’t wait to see what Tod has to say!

And although I am Tod’s advocate, I have tried to show my support for some of those other crush-worthy competitors who are just as deserving to be in the competition as he is.

This event has been a chance to get to meet new bloggers and to compete in a friendly way – after all, all these boys are crush-worthy, there’s just no reason to be mean! And it has offered the perfect mid-summer break from the every day.

Again I would like to thank the bloggers at The YA Sisterhood who came up with this amazing idea and who have been doing such a super job with the tournament. I really hope they do this next year as it’s been a tremendous amount of fun and by next year just imagine how many new crush-worthy boys will be in the running!

This is a great way to discover new blogs, meet other amazing bloggers and get more involved in the book blogging community. And it’s the perfect way to get involved if you are just a little bit shy – book-boy crushes, we all have them!

You can check out their blog by clicking the image.

Oh, and I’m giving you fair warning – as Tod’s still in the running, and will be facing the victor from the Tucker versus Michael match-up, you will probably be seeing a few more manic posts on my blog’s annex and facebook page, as well as any number of tweets next week.

So, as a thank you from Tod…

I would like to give away, to one winner, one paperback copy each of the four Soul Screamers books by Rachel Vincent– My Soul to Take, My Soul to Save, My Soul to Keep and My Soul to Steal.

For U.S. winners it will come directly from Amazon. If you are international, I will order the books and send them to you via U.S. mail as my last three orders from The Book Depository have yet to reach their recipients and I’m not confident in their customer service any longer.

All you have to do for this quiet giveaway is to leave a comment saying that you want to meet Tod. If you put your email into the hidden comment entry form you don’t need to post it publicly. Or if you are on Twitter, you can leave your @ name and if you’ve won I’ll tweet you.

This giveaway runs until tomorrow, July 21st at 9 a.m. Pacific time.

Thank you all for your patience as I campaign for my reaper and if you haven’t yet met Tod I really hope you get a chance to soon! Author Rachel Vincent has made him one seriously amazing character and totally crush-worthy boy.

I just ran your names through Random and the winner is….

Congratulations Cara! I will be emailing you for your details. And apparently if you are international Amazon ships internationally so if you are located internationally I’ll ship them direct from Amazon. (Saves a long trip to the post office which isn’t much cheaper.)

Thanks again to everyone who has entered! As I am such a huge fan of the series be sure to check back around release date of If I Die and I may have another giveaway for the series including a pre-order of the upcoming book!

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