Category Archives: The Near Witch

Hooray! Witchy paperbacks hit shelves, and “The Ash-Born Boy” goes up online!

I’m back in the states, jetlagged and just in time to celebrate!

Not only does THE NEAR WITCH come out in paperback TODAY, but, to celebrate its release, “The Ash-Born Boy” is finally up over at Disney*Hyperion’s website!




And the short story now comes with a shiny summary:

Before he came to Near…
Before he met Lexi…
Before they faced the witch…
Who was the boy named Cole?

Follow us to Dale, a city on a hill, where in a matter of days fire will devour everything. Meet the Lord and Lady, and their son, the boy destined to inherit all…until everything turns to ash.

It’s time to learn the truth behind the stranger’s story.

Now, a note.

If you’ve already read THE NEAR WITCH, “The Ash-Born Boy” is guaranteed to change the way you see Cole.

And if you haven’t read THE NEAR WITCH yet, don’t worry, “The Ash-Born Boy” won’t spoil anything!

And if you want to wait and read THE NEAR WITCH first, don’t worry! Cole’s story will stay up on Disney*Hyperion’s website. It has its own page and everything πŸ™‚

BUT I hope you’ll help me celebrate by taking a look!

And if/when you do read “The Ash-Born Boy” I hope you’ll post your thoughts over on Goodreads!

Also! Don’t forget that in the back of the paperback itself, you’ll find the first chapter of my new book, THE ARCHIVED, which doesn’t come out until January!


Thank you. Thank you all so, so much for sticking with me, for helping me shout and cheer and for being absolutely incredible. You are my sanity and my support and my favorite part of all this madness.

*falls over*



The first paperback secret was that I would be signing at BEA.
The second paperback secret was that the entire first chapter of THE ARCHIVED would be in the pb.
And now, the third and final paperback secret is…


What is THE ASH-BORN BOY? Let’s look back almost a YEAR to a convo I had with the awesome folks over at Disney*Hyperion.

*wiggles fingers and makes TARDIS-esque noises*

Publisher: Okay, your next book will come out in Jan 2013.

Me: Yay! But…but that means I won’t have any new work out into 2012.

Pub: You’ll have a paperback release!

Me: But nothing new…

Pub: Well, Jan 2013 is kind of like the 13th month in 2012.

Me: But I feel like I should have SOMETHING new. For readers. You know, a gift. A thank-you for sticking with me…Could I write them a story? We could put it up on the Disney*Hyperion website when the paperback releases on May 15th!

Pub: Sure! But what kind of story do you want to tell?

Me: *mischievous smile* I KNOW JUST THE ONE.

There’s one question I get asked more than any other.

Who was Cole, before he came to Near?

For those who’ve yet to read The Near Witch, there is a stranger that comes to Near. His name is not Cole. The main character, Lexi, gives him that name when he refuses to tell her his, when he refuses to tell her anything about his life before setting foot in her village. Over the course of the book we learn pieces of his past, but so much of it is never told.

And that’s why I decided to write THE ASH-BORN BOY.

“Who was Cole?” people ask me.

And so, on May 15th, when the paperback of The Near Witch goes on sale, I’m going to answer that question. THE ASH-BORN BOY is a novella that will go up on Disney*Hyperion’s website, There’s a note with the link posted in the back of the paperback, too.

THE ASH-BORN BOY will have a permanent URL on the site, but if for some reason it ever comes down, I will make sure it’s always up online. It will remain available. And most importantly, it will always be FREE.

This is my gift to readers. It is my thank-you to everyone who’s found me, shared this journey, stuck with me, cheered for me and for my books. I hope to be able to give you many more, but I know I can give you this.


Oh, oh, and if you’re interested in pre-ordering the paperback of THE NEAR WITCH (since I’m still waiting for final, final word that it will be in B+N…I mean, I think it will, I hope it will, but nothing’s sure and oh the stress it burns), it’s currently up for only $6.74 (!!! 25% off!! Free shipping!!) HERE on Book Depository. And you can of course pre-order it now or buy/order it later from any of your local indie or chain stores. THE NEAR WITCH, like all books, needs your love (ahhhhh it sounds like a phone-a-thon, doesn’t it!? Where are my celebrity callers?). Anyway, NW needs your love, since I hear the author has a narwhal-buying problem. And a book-buying problem. And a cupcake-buying problem…though, really, how can anything involving the purchase and devouring of cupcakes be considered a problem??


I’m so, so excited to be sharing THE ASH-BORN BOY with you!!!!!!

Presents, Bribes, and a Glimpse at THE ARCHIVED

It’s the 15th! The 15th of March, which is one month closer to the 15th of May when the paperback of The Near Witch comes out, and that means I can reveal the second of the three paperback secrets.

The first was that I would be signing paperbacks at BEA!

The second is THIS:

You guys, as we finalize the cover and the copy, all I can say is I am SO FREAKING EXCITED to share this book with you. And if you pick up the paperback, you could get a VERY early glimpse.


The Near Witch is in this tournament right now called YA MARCH MADNESS.

As a reward for helping it win yesterday’s round, I’m going to give away a pre-order of the paperback.



I don’t expect victory, BUT for every 50 votes The Near Witch gets this round I will add ANOTHER paperback to the giveaway. So if this turns out to be The Near Witch’s final round, but it gets 150 votes, then this weekend I will host a giveaway with FOUR paperback winners, etc.

So please consider giving The Near Witch your vote!

A small quantity of shiny, pretty things.

I like that quote. I’m thinking of starting my posts with quotes. There are just so many wonderful ones out there. You can’t really have enough quotes in your life, can you?


I’ve been away on a retreat in the North Carolina mountains…

…resting and thinking and hiking and editing (mostly editing).

And now I’m back, and I come bearing a few baubles.


So I was in the car with Carrie Ryan, on our way to a signing, when a friend sent her an email letting her know that the conclusion to her epic trilogy (The Dark and Hollow Places) had made the SIBA long list (SIBA takes in nominations from southern independent booksellers and their customers, then selects the top ones for its long list, and from there selects finalists and a winner). And then Carrie turns around and says, “Hey V, you’re on here, too!” And I was like “?” And so she sent me the link and I was so thrilled to see that Caroline of the incredible Malaprops store in Asheville nominated THE NEAR WITCH!


This thing is epic. And really, what I mean is EPIIIIIIIIC. Except with, like, 100 more I’s, because I think there are about 100 more authors involved. And this year I’m lucky enough to be involved, too!!! To see the FULL list of events (because its epicness is of the scale that would break my blog, go HERE. But below are the events I will be doing!

Thursday, March 29:
The NYC Big Read – Brooklyn (Brooklyn Public Library, central branch, Grand Army Plaza)
Kate Ellison
Gayle Forman
Melissa Kantor
Barry Lyga
Michael Northrop
Matthue Roth
Victoria Schwab
Melissa Walker

Friday March 30
Symposium (42nd Street NYPL, 2-6)

3:50-4:40: No Ordinary Love: How to Create a Satisfying Love Story and a Satisfying Supernatural World at the Same Time

Andrea Cremer
Melissa de la Cruz
Jeri Smith-Ready
Victoria Schwab
Margaret Stohl

moderator: Barry Lyga

Sunday April 1
Our No-Foolin’ Mega-Signing at Books of Wonder (Books of Wonder, 1-4)

Melissa De La Cruz (Lost in Time, Hyperion)
Alyssa Sheinmel (The Lucky Kind, RH)
Jennifer Smith (The Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight, Little Brown)
Jeri Smith-Ready (Shift, S&S)
Jon Skovron (Misfit, Abrams)
Victoria Schwab (The Near Witch, Hyperion)
Mark Shulman (Are You Normal?, National Geographic)
Margaret Stohl (Beautiful Chaos, Little Brown)
Arlaina Tibensky (And Then Things Fell Apart, S&S)
Siobhan Vivian (The List, Scholastic)
Melissa Walker (Small Town Sinners, Bloomsbury)
K.M. Walton (Cracked, S&S)
John Corey Whaley (Where Things Come Back, S&S)
Alecia Whitaker (The Queen of Kentucky, Little Brown)
Maryrose Wood (The Unseen Guest, Harper)
Natalie Zaman and Charlotte Bennardo (Sirenz, Flux)

You guys, that little signing list above is like 1/5 of the number of authors that will be at BoW.

I’m going to have to go save all my money. And then make some more money, so I can buy ALL THE SHINY BOOKS. *digs under couch cushions for change*


It’s like a lullaby for my bones.




I just needed to get that off my chest.

But March is cool, yo. And on the 15th, I’ll be able to share my second NW paperback secret!!

I guess that’s all I have to share today.

I was going to finish up this post here, but I felt like it could use a little more cowbell. But when I looked up photos, all I got was Will Ferrell in a too-short shirt, so I thought I’d give you this instead…

The Near Witch Giveaway of Witchy Epicness!!!

It’s almost Halloween!!

And in my world, that means it’s time for donning disguises, making mischief, and trick or treating around the interwebs. But since I don’t like to reveal my tricks, let’s focus on the TREATS.

In honor of this witchily wonderful holiday, I’m having a little giveaway πŸ™‚

How does it work?

The giveaway will run from now (Monday, October 24th) until 9PM on Monday, October 31st <–AKA HALLOWEEN.

ONE winner will receive a signed copy of THE NEAR WITCH!

ONE winner will receive a DVD of Hocus Pocus!

ONE winner will receive an ARC of A TOUCH MORBID by Leah Clifford!

ONE winner will receive a query critique or critique of their first 10 pages!

And ONE winner will receive CANDY!

All you have to do is fill out this handy little form, spread the word, and then go get high on sugar.

NOTE: You can also get a point for leaving a comment! Simply put that in the “Other” box!

NOTE: As usual, it’s international πŸ™‚


I had the pleasure of visiting some amazing friends this weekend in the DC area, and they took me to a Renaissance Fair! It was pretty epic, but even MORE epic was this:

Hello, October! And how I sent September out with a bang.

I’m writing this from SLC airport while I whittle away a layover writing guest posts and answering email and trying to stay awake after the crazy, wonderful Boise trip (some pictures below).

And you guys, I don’t know if you noticed this, but it’s October!!! I LOVE October. The shifting leaves and the smell of fall and the candy and the promise of cold…and this year, the weekend trips (Auburn, Nashville, DC, San Diego), and the fact that Halloween knows how to rock some witches, and being the proud owner of a witch book, it’s a great excuse for me to GIVE STUFF AWAY.

I’m also planning to dress up as a narwhal for Halloween.

As of tomorrow, The Near Witch will have been on shelves for TWO MONTHS, so it will definitely be a giveaway day on Twitter, and as the month goes on, I’ll be throwing lots more stuff at you from my corner of the internet.

Now let’s have some Boise pictures! And then I have to go get on another plane :\ Boo planes.


Every crazy day must start with tea…

Then it was off to South Junior, to talk to a bunch of fabulous junior high students in the library…

A picture with the kids who already had their own copies of the book…

Then it was time to sign stuff! Books and bookmarks! And then, somehow, binders, glasses, cell phone cases, shoes…

And then it was off to Hillside Junior High, to speak to an assembly!

And sign more bookmarks, binders, hands…

And, um, a face (ONE girl asked me to do it, and then four more appeared out of nowhere and demanded it, assuring me that *I* wouldn’t get in trouble, *THEY* would)…

I got to have lunch with a group of students who loved reading, and had all read the book!

From there, we went to Timberline High, and I spoke to the student book club…

After that, all that remained was the bookstore signing…

…where I massacred a narwhal…

…and recorded a radio interview…

And that’s how I sent September out with a bang!


Bring on October.

That’s my name! On that list! For YALLFEST!

You guys!!

I don’t know if you been following YALLFEST on Twitter and/or Tumblr, but it’s an amazing book festival happening this November in Charleston, SC.

Authors are being announced/leaked 1-2 at a time, and OH MY.

You guys.

The list SO FAR?

Kami Garcia
Margaret Stohl
David Levithan
Melissa de la Cruz
Heather Brewer
Gayle Forman
Kaleb Nation
Ellen Hopkins
Andrea Cremer
Beth Revis
Carrie Ryan
Isaac Marion
Sarah Rees Brennan
Kimberly Derting
Adele Griffin
Lisa Brown…


Can we have a moment of EEEEEEEE?

I am so, so excited to finally announce that I’ll be at YALLFEST!!! I was invited early this year, and have been bouncing in my seat ever since.


ALSO! This is random but very, very cool. The Near Witch is one of the top 5 #fridayreads! And it’s tied with, get this, THE HELP. Let’s all laugh and shake our heads and say “Silly little NW.”


And now, my dears, I’m off to Decatur Book Festival! If you’re looking for me, I’ll be the kid in the corner.

Let’s have ourselves a GIVEAWAY.


I am going to be in the Mundie Moms chat room tonight (8pm CST, PLEASE COME!) and I don’t know if you can tell but I am EXCITED.

And I thought, hey, what better way to show my excitement than to GIVE YOU THINGS.


We’re going to have ourselves a giveaway.

It will be Twitter only, ALL DAY leading up to the chat.

The giveaway will include a few of my favorite things! Like narwhals! And Doctor Who! And NW stuff, even though saying NW is one of my favorite things sounds conceited BUT HEY. I wrote it.

All you have to do is tweet!

Tweet, and be sure to include the hashtag — #thenearwitch — and mention the chat! Here’s an example!

“I am so excited for #thenearwitch chat tonight on MundieMoms!;

Here’s another!

“I love #thenearwitch! Come chat with @veschwab tonight on @MundieMoms!;

See? SO EASY. I’m going to be giving away goodies away at random all day, so let’s get started!


Plaid Skirts, Avoiding Trends, and Doctor Who.

An interview thingy! Big thanks to the awesome team over at He Geek She Geek.

Part One covers plaid skirts, private school, mouse house love, being high maintenance enough to have two publicists, and early inspirations.

Part Two covers real-life paranormal experiences, my way of avoiding trends, and the setting/character of Near.

Part Three covers the infamous multitude of university directions, cinematic writing, and (of course) bingeing on Doctor Who.

If you love The Near Witch (or any book)…

…well, there are things you could do.

1. You could eat a cookie. You might not know this, but the author of that silly little book loves cookies so much that she can SENSE when someone is eating a cookie in her book’s honor, and it’s ALMOST as pleasant as if she’s eating it herself.

2. You could take the book on a date and snap a picture of you walking on the beach, or sharing a glass of wine (mind the cover) or watching a roller derby match.

3. You could write a review and post it to any number of sites, including your own, Amazon, Goodreads, LibraryThing, etc. etc.

4. You could tell and/or hug the author. I hear she’s a bit silly, and divides her time between rocking in the corner, and working on her next book.

5. You could nominate the book for, say, the Morris Award, a special award for excellence in YA by a debut. There’s a little form on the site, it’s quite easy.

6. You could tell OTHER people about the book, since the author might not be as receptive because of the corner and the rocking and such. Suggested people: your friends, your teachers, your librarians, bookstore owners, their publisher, random people on the street…

7. Other…it’s still early, and I haven’t had my tea…