The Edge Rules by Melanie Hooyenga Blog Tour with Giveaway :)


Being a bully isn’t all it’s cracked up to be.
Sixteen-year old Brianna had everything she wanted: money to ski all over the world, underlings to do her bidding, and parents who gave her every freedom—as long as she played by their rules. But when she’s busted shoplifting and assigned to the Chain Gang, she ditches her shallow ways and realizes being herself is easier than manipulating people.
Forced to partner with kids she’d never dream of befriending, including Xavier, a boy who makes her pulse go into hyperdrive, Brianna vows to be a better person. Breaking Old Brianna’s habits isn’t easy, but her infatuation with Xavier—someone her parents would never approve of—motivates her to keep trying.
Even when he convinces her to trade her swanky skis for a beat-up snowboard.
Brianna lets go of her need to control everything and finally starts to feel free—until her past threatens to jeopardize her first real chance at love. She discovers balancing on the edge is as challenging in life as it is in snowboarding, and when a new friend is in trouble, Brianna must decide between the superficial things that used to be her world and putting her friend’s safety before herself.

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR


Multi-award winning young adult author Melanie Hooyenga first started writing as a teenager and finds she still relates best to that age group. She has lived in Washington DC, Chicago, and Mexico, but has finally settled down in her home state of Michigan. When not at her day job as a Communications Director at a nonprofit, you can find Melanie attempting to wrangle her Miniature Schnauzer Owen and playing every sport imaginable with her husband Jeremy.

WEBSITE:

SOCIAL MEDIA:
www.instagram.com/MelanieHoo

***GUEST POST***

Is there a message in your novel that you want readers to grasp? 
The Edge Rules is about a former mean girl learning to change her ways, and I have two messages I hope readers take away. First, if you have a mean girl or bully in your life, there’s probably a reason they act that way. It doesn’t excuse their behavior, but knowing that can help to understand why they behave the way they do. In Brianna’s case, her parents have taught her to demand respect and fear from people, and that’s all she’s ever known. Second, that if you ARE that mean girl, you don’t have to stay that way. Changing isn’t easy, and the people you’ve tormented aren’t going to throw you a ticker-tape parade for your change of heart, but it is possible.

How much of the book is realistic? 
Hopefully all of it. I write contemporary young adult and it’s set in the real world. I want it all to be plausible and relatable.

Are experiences based on someone you know, or events in your own life? 
The specifics aren’t based on anything that I’ve experienced, but I definitely had a pair of mean girls who made my senior year of high school hell. This was long enough ago that we didn’t have a name for them—they were just catty [insert bad noun] who decided it’d be fun to make fun of me. I went to boarding school, so I had the added bonus of living in the same dorm as them, sharing a bathroom, eating all my meals with them, etc.

What book are you reading now?
I just finished The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas and it’s as good as everyone says.
What are your current projects? 
I’m finally starting a novel that I first thought of almost three years ago. It’s still YA, but it’s a psychological suspense and much darker than my previous books. I don’t have a set end date for this one because I know it’s going to be a lot of work, but I feel like I’m finally ready to write this book.

Name one entity that you feel supported you outside of family members
My two best friends Nadine and Sara. We text all day, every day, and we’ve seen each other through everything from writer’s block to family trauma. We met on a writing forum (Absolute Write) over a decade ago and I met each of them in person five and seven years ago. Now we plan annual trips to see each other. Our husbands have gotten close as well! The only thing that could make our friendship better is if we weren’t scattered across the country (LA, Michigan, and Pennsylvania).

Do you see writing as a career? 
Yes. I’m not at the point where I can write full-time, but that’s my goal.

If you had to do it all over again, would you change anything in your latest book? 
There’s always room for improvement, and I try hard not to second-guess myself once the book is published. So far I haven’t come across anything that I’d like to change, and hopefully I won’t!

Who designed the covers? 
I did! My background is in graphic design, and I designed covers for indie authors for several years. (I stopped when I realized I didn’t have time for a full-time job, cover design, and writing.) I recently won a cover contest for The Slope Rules, the first book in the Rules Series, and it’s especially significant for me because I’m the one who created it. I still remember when I found the stock photo of the two characters—I actually gasped because they look exactly how I imagined them. That doesn’t always happen.

Do you have any advice for other writers? 
Don’t give up. Writing is a solitary endeavor and you have to do it because you love it. Also, find writing friends. The internet has made it a lot easier to find like-minded people—your writing BFF is out there. They make those frustrating plots and uncooperative characters more bearable.

What genre do you consider your book(s)? 
Contemporary YA. This series is sports romance, but my first series had elements of magical realism plus mystery. I like to write about the real world—creating my own universe is beyond me!
Do you ever experience writer's block? Some writers will hate me for saying this, but no. (Knock on wood.) I do a lot of planning before I start writing, so if I do get stuck, I know it’s because the scene isn’t working so I figure out how to change it. If I’m bored or uninterested with a scene, the reader will be too, so I stop and either skip ahead to the next scene or fix the current one.

Do you write an outline before every book you write? 
Yes! I consider it more of a guide than an outline—some people are afraid of outlines because they think it’ll block their creativity—and it often changes as I write. For each chapter, I write 1-3 sentences that describe what happens, then I paste that blurb into the bottom of my document while I’m writing so I always know what I’m writing towards. When I get to the end of the chapter, I delete the blurb and paste the next chapter’s description.

In the second book of the series, The Trail Rules, my character decided she didn’t like her boyfriend anymore and I had to completely change the second half of the book. But that’s okay! Because I had it plotted out, I only had to change a few details and it didn’t stop me from writing.

What is your favourite theme/genre to write about? 
Strong girls who may not have it all figured out, but they’re doing their best.
What is your favorite genre of book that you read?
Contemporary YA, without a doubt. I’ve read some fantasy and science fiction, but contemporary has my heart. I keep saying I’ll read more adult books, but they linger on my kindle, never to be read…

Thank you so much for having me. This has been great!

Thank you Melanie for answering some questions for us today :)  Good luck with your future endeavors!

Giveaway Details:

Physical Copies of the series (US). Digital copies for international winners.


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