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inkpop Fundamentals: June 7, 2011

Posted by cat eyes & skinny jeans on June 7, 2011

‘Mortal Instruments’ author Cassandra Clare gives two thumbs up for the casting of Jamie Campbell Bower as Shadowhunter Jace Wayland! Though many have been up in arms since the official casting announcement of actor Jamie Campbell Bower as Shadowhunter Jace Wayland in the big screen adaptation of Cassandra Clare’s The Mortal Instruments series – some cheering and others expressing concern that the actor doesn’t embody Jace the way that Alex Pettyfer (the original name linked with the role in question) does – one individual who is thrilled about the casting is the author herself. Cassandra recently sat down with MTV to discuss the intricacies of casting, why Bower is such a perfect fit for Jace, fan reactions (to which she has stated “When they see him on the cover of a magazine, dressed up as Jace, with the runes, with the hair, with the build, they’re going to be pleasantly shocked and surprised and happy.”), and much more. Check out the full-length interview here. MTV.

‘Sweet Valley High’ spin-off on its way to the ‘net Since the return of Jessica and Elizabeth Wakefield – the towheaded twins from Sweet Valley, CA – in Francine Pascal’s Sweet Valley Confidential: Ten Years Later, which found itself on multiple bestseller’s lists in April of 2011, many have been unable to quell their desire to read more about the twins that they know and love from childhood – and now they won’t have to. Last week, St. Martin’s Press revealed that they will be releasing a follow-up to the bestseller – though it won’t be available in stores. “The new follow-up, tentatively titled The Sweet Life, will be published as a digital-only serial beginning next spring. It will be released in monthly installments published online, mimicking the original cliff-hanger form of the original series. St. Martin’s expects that the installments, which will run approximately 20,000 words each, will especially be read on mobile phones.” New York Times.

‘The Hunger Games’…four films instead of three? The Hunger Games, Catching Fire, Mockingjay. There are three titles in Suzanne Collins’ bestselling The Hunger Games trilogy; but now that the series is being adapted into a feature film franchise, those three books may be adapted into four films a la the adaptations of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows and Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn. Though nothing is set in stone yet, as Lionsgate has only signed up to produce one film thus far, chances are that the entire series will be picked up upon release of the first installment, and the additional three will hit theaters soon thereafter. “As for how the trilogy will be turned into four films, it’ll go much the way that ‘Harry Potter’ and ‘Twilight Saga’ did. The first two books will be the first two films. The last book will be split in half. The final installment, ‘Mockingjay’, is logistically ambitious and can be scaled up comfortably to cover two films.” Deadline.

Over to you…now that you’ve read author Cassandra Clare’s thoughts on Jamie Campbell Bower playing the role of Shadowhunter Jace Wayland, has your opinion changed? Are you excited to see him take on the role? Are you excited to see a sequel to Sweet Valley Confidential: Ten Years Later? What are your thoughts on digital-only serials – yay or nay? Would you read an entire book on your mobile phone – why or why not? Do you like the idea of adapting Mockingjay into two films instead of one, or would you rather see it as a single movie?

Share your thoughts in the comments section!

Erika (aka inkpoperika)

Posted in inkpop Fundamentals, inkpop News, Pop Culture, Teen Trends | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments »

inkpop Fundamentals: May 5, 2011

Posted by cat eyes & skinny jeans on May 5, 2011

Elizabeth Banks is ‘The Hunger Games’ Effie Trinket! The Hunger Games’ Effie Trinket is an invaluable character in the trilogy, serving as an over-the-top, chirpy, intense individual with pink hair looking to boost morale in the District 12 tributes – Katniss Everdeen and Peeta Mellark. And now, after much waiting, we finally know what actress will be claiming the role of Ms. Trinket in The Hunger Games big screen adaptation…Elizabeth Banks, who stars on the NBC sitcom 30 Rock! “Banks joins previously announced co-stars Jennifer Lawrence (Katniss), Josh Hutcherson (Peeta), Liam Hemsworth (Gale Hawthorne), along with Amandla Stenberg and Dayo Okeniyi as District 11 tributes, Leven Rambin and Jack Quaid as District 1 contenders, and Ian Nelson and Kalia Prescott for District 3.” MTV.

The star of Stephenie Meyer’s ‘The Host’ has been cast! Despite the fact that the big screen adaptation of Stephenie Meyer’s The Host is pretty bare bones at the moment since Director Susanna White left the project, one aspect of production is moving full speed ahead…casting the main character Melanie Stryder/Wanda. Deadline has reported that Saoirse Ronan – star of The Lovely Bones and Hanna – has signed on to play the dual role of Melanie Stryder/Wanda in the film. “ For a quick brush up on how Saoirse’s role(s) will work, the human she will be playing is Melanie Stryder. But Melanie is possessed by Wanda, the alien whose perspective the story is told from, which means Saoirse will be playing two characters in one. Think ‘Invasion of the Body Snatchers’ but, well, cooler.” Hollywood Crush.

Author Francine Pascal dishes on the future of ‘Sweet Valley High’ Though author Francine Pascal gained fans worldwide during the 80s and 90s due to the 152 volumes of Sweet Valley High books featuring the misadventures of California twins Jessica and Elizabeth Wakefield, mum has been the word from the author of the hour for a number of years now – until her latest release Sweet Valley Confidential: Ten Years Later debuted on numerous bestseller’s lists, leaving Pascal hungry for more. Recently the author sat down with Entertainment Weekly to discuss a film version of the series (with a script penned by Diablo Cody), the possibility of a sequel – “Now that it’s so well-received, I’m kind of in a corner. If I do it, I think it would be five years later [putting the twins at 32 years old] because I don’t want it to be a series. I think this was great fun, but I’m still not sure. Though I couldn’t help myself from thinking of an opening chapter already.” – and more. Check out the entire interview here. Entertainment Weekly.

Over to you…now that we know who has been cast in the role of Effie, are you eager to learn who will take on the roles of Haymitch and Cinna? Who would you like to see play the two? Are you excited to see Stephenie Meyer’s The Host come to the big screen? Do you think that Saoirse Ronan will be a good fit for the role of Melanie Stryder/Wanda? Have you read Sweet Valley Confidential: Ten Years Later? Would you be interested in reading a sequel if Pascal were to write one – why or why not?

Share your thoughts in the comments section!

Erika (aka inkpoperika)

Posted in inkpop Fundamentals, inkpop News, Pop Culture, Teen Trends | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments »

inkpop Fundamentals: April 19, 2011

Posted by cat eyes & skinny jeans on April 19, 2011

‘Sweet Valley High’ grows up…and hits the bestseller’s list! It was 1983 when author Francine Pascal first introduced tow-headed twins Elizabeth and Jessica Wakefield of Sweet Valley, California to the world. During their years as stars of the Sweet Valley High series, readers followed them through the many trials and tribulations they encountered as teenagers; perhaps those are the very same readers who helped to put Francine Pascal’s Sweet Valley Confidential: Ten Years Later – which hit bookstores on March 29, 2011 – on multiple bestseller’s lists, leading industry professionals to believe that “The book’s success will undoubtedly spawn a wave of YA novel updates for adults.” GalleyCat.

Breakfast with Roald Dahl? We’ve seen cereal boxes decked out in crossword puzzles, word searches, clever cartoon characters, and giveaway announcements; soon, however, Asda cereal lovers in Britain will find themselves treated to an excerpt from a Roald Dahl novel when they sit down for their morning breakfast. “According to The Telegraph, the excerpts will appear in at least ten million Asda brand cereal boxes sold in Asda supermarket chains. The excerpts will be drawn from ‘The Witches’, ‘The Twits’, ‘The BFG’, ‘Danny, the Champion of the World’, and ‘Charlie and the Chocolate Factory’.” MediaBistro.

Author Anthony Horowitz to take on the world of ‘Sherlock Holmes’ YA author Anthony Horowitz may be best known for his creation of the bestselling Alex Rider series, and work at adapting many of Agatha Christie’s Hercule Poirot novels for television; but come November 1, 2011, Horowitz – who has written and published over fifty novels during his writing career – will take up the role of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle by penning Sherlock Holmes: The House of Silk, a tribute to the author who passed away 81-years-ago. “The book is set in 1890, but as written by Watson in a retirement home, a year after the death of Holmes. The story opens with a train robbery in Boston, and moves to the innocuous setting of Wimbledon – but, Holmes says, the tale was too monstrous, too appalling to reveal until now. ‘It is no exaggeration to say it could tear apart the very fabric of society’, he writes in the prologue.” The Guardian.

Over to you…were/are you a Sweet Valley High fan? If you could revisit any YA characters in ten years, who would they be and why? What do you think of putting book excerpts on the back of cereal boxes – yay or nay? If you could sit down to breakfast with any fictional book character, who would it be and why? Are you a Sherlock Holmes fan? Will you be picking up a copy of Sherlock Holmes: The House of silk when it is released in November?

Share your thoughts in the comments section!

Erika (aka inkpoperika)

Posted in inkpop Fundamentals, inkpop News, Pop Culture, Teen Trends | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments »

inkpop Fundamentals: October 26, 2010

Posted by cat eyes & skinny jeans on October 26, 2010

Dakota Fanning in talks to star in ‘If I Stay’ adaptation Since it’s release in April of 2009; Gayle Forman’s If I Stay has tugged at the heartstrings of readers both young and old. Compared to a YA version of Alice Sebold’s The Lovely Bones; If I Stay recounts the story of 16-year-old Mia, an overachiever who winds up in a coma; wherein she reflects upon her life thus far via flashbacks that move her towards awakening, and returning to life. Now, the bestseller is being adapted into a film, and Dakota Fanning is in talks to play the lead character. Though production has yet to begin; Forman’s sequel, Where She Went, will hit bookstores in April of 2011. PopWatch.

Starbucks joins the digital age For years people have been plugging in to Starbucks’ free Wi-Fi service while downing hot chocolate and apple cider; since October 20, 2010, however, customers at over 6,800 Starbucks locations have been welcomed by SDN – the Starbucks Digital Network. Still free of charge to users; SDN offers channels such as Business and Careers, Entertainment, and My Neighborhood – all of which tailor content for those logging in so that they get the best Online experience possible. Mashable.

‘Sweet Valley High’ – the adult years During their time in bookstores, 16-year-old twins Elizabeth and Jessica Wakefield experienced it all – from car crashes to kidnappings; hostage situations to backstabbing besties; and countless other forms of teenage drama. Now, after years of the two gorgeous sisters being MIA, author Francine Pascal has revived their characters in the form of Sweet Valley Confidential: Ten Years Later – due out in bookstores on March 29, 2011; and finally we get to see the cover which has been concealed since news of the release first broke! The book is rumored to detail the new lives of the twins – now estranged from one another – and their kooky friends from high school. People.

Over to you…have you read If I Stay? Do you think that Dakota Fanning would be a good choice for the role of Mia – why or why not? Are you excited for the Starbucks Digital Network? Are you more likely to visit locations that offer free Wi-Fi than those that don’t? Are you a fan of Elizabeth and Jessica Wakefield? Are you excited to see what the twins have been up to for the past ten years?

Share your thoughts in the comments section!

Erika (aka inkpoperika)

Posted in inkpop Fundamentals, inkpop News, Pop Culture, Teen Trends | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment »

inkpop Fundamentals: July 27, 2010

Posted by cat eyes & skinny jeans on July 27, 2010

The Wakefield Twins…ten years later! It has been nearly ten years since the last Sweet Valley High book Sweet Valley University was released. In the meantime, author Francine Pascal – who, along with many ghostwriters, penned 152 books for the series (which consisted of various spin-offs) – has gone on to write other tales, including the popular Fearless books; but, come March 29, 2011, Pascal will revisit Elizabeth and Jessica Wakefield, the beautiful twins from Sweet Valley, California in Sweet Valley Confidential: Ten Years Later. The book is said to focus on the twins, now 27-years-old and living separate lives (one in New York City and one still in California), and their struggles with divorce and the search for love. Read the first chapter here. And for you diehard Sweet Valley fans – rumor has it that Diablo Cody is already working with Universal Pictures on a film adaptation. CNN.

Nine pages of ‘I Am Number Four’ Despite the fact that there are only eight more days until the August 3, 2010 release of the much-awaited release of Pittacus Lore’s I Am Number Four, fans are finding it hard to hold out on reading the highly-popularized book much longer – now they don’t have to. With a sequel – The Power of Six – already in the works; in addition to a film adaptation by Steven Spielberg and Michael Bay in production for a 2011 release, Pittacus Lore has been kind enough to share the first nine pages of his debut. Check it out here. Entertainment Weekly.

Today’s assignment…blog! In an attempt to jump on the social networking bandwagon, and spark enthusiasm for school assignments in students; high school teachers, at the urging of, are embracing a new type of curriculum…blogging. Having already created blogging-centric lesson plans for educators to access; feels that this new form of creative outlet will inspire students to take their texting and Twittering skills, and put them to good use via the creation of blog posts. Social Times.

Over to you…what do you think of authors revisiting characters and showing them in a grown-up state? If you could see any fictional character ten years from now, who would it be and why? What do you think of the first nine pages of I Am Number Four? On a scale of 1 to 10, how excited are you to get your hands on the book in its entirety? What do you think of adding blogging to school curriculums – yay or nay?

Share your thoughts in the comments section!

Erika (aka inkpoperika)

Posted in inkpop Fundamentals, inkpop News, Teen Trends | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments »

inkpopper of the Week: cyc

Posted by cat eyes & skinny jeans on June 14, 2010

“I am a 25-year-old girl (yes, girl, because I still feel like a teenager) who graduated from NYU with a bachelors in English and a masters in English Education. I’m certified to be an English teacher and I hope to find a job soon! Even though I plan to have a career in New York City, I can never root for any New York sports teams! I’m a Philly girl and always will be. Sorry, NY, but the Philly all the way. (Mandy in Summer Friends is a baseball fan of the Phillies.)

“I was never given an English name and I chose not to make one up like other Asians I know. Instead I stuck with my real first name Chen. If anyone’s wondering, ‘cyc’ stands for ‘Chen Yan Chang’ which means ‘morning-beautiful.’

“Who are the loves of my life? My baby turtles! Billy Starmaker and Raspberry ‘Ras B’ Biscuit are 3 ½-year-old red eared sliders who love to eat, sleep, and hide in various spots in my home. They are way too adventurous, and my girl Ras B must have 9 lives because she’s already used up 3!”

Though Chen (aka cyc) is devoted to Billy Starmaker and Raspberry ‘Ras B’ Biscuit; she is also extremely fond of not only the characters featured in her books, but a certain time of year that spells being released from rules and regulations and simply enjoying life for what it is…summer.

Your book Summer Friends was named an inkpop Top Pick for the month of May 2010. Another book you’ve written, Summer of Firsts, is currently ranked at # 33. What is it about summer that inspires your writing? Do you feel that the fact that your projects take place during the summer season, a time of freedom, has contributed to the popularity of your projects?

cyc: Summer has always meant fun and freedom, especially when the school year is over and you want to relax. (In my situation, I’m certified as a teacher so I will continue to have summer off!) In my books, summers give my characters the opportunity to do things they wouldn’t have normally done when they’re in school. Adventure, new boys, summer love, etc. Because it’s almost the start of summer, I feel readers can live vicariously through my characters as they read something light, summery, and romantic. My two summer books are that! Shocker shocker, I have 2-3 other summer book ideas, one which will be a sequel to Summer of Firsts called Summer of Second Chances.

You mention that Vanessa Carlton’s song White Houses inspired your book Summer of Firsts. In what ways? Can you tell us more about this? Have your other projects been inspired by songs, as well?

cyc: When people listen to songs, they come up with their interpretations of what the lyrics are about and how they can relate to their lives. In listening to White Houses, I see a whole story in the four minute song. It’s about a girl who goes on a trip, meets new friends, falls in love, and gets her heart broken. I wanted to expand on the song and develop this girl’s story who I later named Grace. I wanted to flesh out her new summer adventure story and put her in a situation where she gets the opportunity for a love story. It’s fun to see what elements from the song I would incorporate and what new things I could bring to the story.

I have always been inspired by music so, not surprisingly, I have two books and a bunch of short stories inspired by songs. My 2nd book Lucky Lucy was inspired by songs by this indie artist named Darcie Miner. My 3rd book Bottled Sunshine, Empty Jars was inspired by Lillix’s song Dirty Sunshine.

If you had to create a soundtrack for Summer Friends, what songs would you include and why?

cyc: 1. Paramont – Bliss 66: It relates to Sam and Mandy growing up and changing.
2. Summer Stars – Graham Colton Band: A fun summer song.
3. Sam’s Song – Dave Melillo: It relates to Sam missing Mandy when he’s at home.
4. Sadly Beautiful – Jessica Riddle: It relates to Mandy’s loss of her father and growing up.
5. You Found Me – Kelly Clarkson: It perfectly fits the hospital scene when Mandy hides.
6. Fall to Pieces – Avril Lavigne: It relates to Mandy’s romantic feelings for Sam.
7. Another Day – Lene Marlin: Sam makes Mandy feel good and she’s falling for him.
8. Shout – Ross Copperman: It’s what love can do to people.
9. Girlfriend – Avril Lavigne: Isn’t it obvious? Mandy wishes to be Sam’s girlfriend.
10. If Only She Knew – Michelle Branch: Mandy wishes Sam’s girlfriend knows how she feels.
11. In Another Life – The Veronicas: This song always makes me cry. Listen and you’ll know why.
12. Best Thing – Graham Colton Band: Then this song cheers me up because Sam does care.
13. Mandy – Barry Manilow: Mandy’s namesake!
14. Toasted Skin – The Academy Is…: A fun summer song.
15. Daydream’ – Boomkat: It relates to Sam and Mandy’s childhood and the things they used to do.

If you could have a dinner party with five of your favorite authors (dead or alive; no inkpopper’s this time) who would they be and why?

cyc: I would have a dinner with William Shakespeare, Jane Austen, Francine Pascal, Ann M. Martin, and Richelle Mead. I fell in love with Shakespeare and Austen’s writing in school, in love with Pascal and Martin’s writing as a kid/teen, and Mead’s writing now. The conversation would probably consist of writing and love although I feel I would have trouble understanding Shakespeare :P. We would have cheesesteaks b/c I’m a Philly girl and I want to see Shakespeare and Austen kicking back with some messy food!

What room is your favorite to write in and why?

cyc: I can write anywhere because my green laptop goes everywhere with me. If I have to, the living room is my favorite room to write in because of the TV. When I want to take a break from writing, I can just turn on the TV and relax!

Pop, Pop, Pop! Rapid Fire Questions:

Chocolate chip cookies or cupcakes? Cupcakes – Red Velvet from CRUMBS!
What’s on your iPod? I have over 1800 songs that include music by Glee, The Academy Is…, Tyler Hilton, Lene Marlin, etc.
Batman or Superman? Superman because I grew up on Dean Cain’s version of this hero.
Favorite book? Pride and Prejudice.
Dream destination/vacation? Hawaii, because it’s so beautiful there. I’ve been there once and I want to go there again!

Over to you…who do you think should be the next inkpopper of the Week?

Erika (aka inkpoperika)

Posted in inkpop Interviews, inkpopper of the Week, Teen Talent, Teen Trends | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 8 Comments »

inkpop Fundamentals: April 15, 2010

Posted by cat eyes & skinny jeans on April 15, 2010

Your mission, should you choose to accept it… Just a few short days ago we celebrated D.E.A.R. (aka National Drop Everything and Read Day), but today (Thursday, April 15, 2010) is all about Operation Teen Book Drop, an event which encourages everyone from readers to librarians, and even bestselling authors to grab their favorite YA book, and drop it somewhere unexpected in their community – a park bench, a bus stop…use your imagination – all in order to shine a little light on a very special occasion…Support Teen Literature Day! Authors Carolyn Mackler, Teri Brown, and Micol Ostow have already signed on to take part; now it’s your turn to follow suit and spread your love of YA throughout the community! readergirlz.

‘Ramona and Beezus’ star to design clothing line for Kmart Though only a few months shy of turning eighteen-years-old, Disney darling Selena Gomez has caused a stir with her acting and vocal skills; now the star of Ramona and Beezus has undertaken a new path in her burgeoning career…fashion designer. Come July, not only will Selena ring in both her birthday and the release of the film adaptation of Beverly Cleary’s Ramona and Beezus; she will also be celebrating the launch of her clothing line “Dream Out Loud.” A collection of modest clothes for juniors with affordable pricetags, and covetable designs! MTV.

Childhood favorites become fodder for teen and adult bloggers While Meg Cabot’s Princess Diaries, and Louise Rennison’s tales of Georgia Nicolson are just two of the YA series today’s youth are growing up with; Ann M. Martin’s The Babysitter’s Club and Francine Pascal’s Sweet Valley High were the literature of the 80s and 90s. The two series, however, have resurfaced in recent years in the form of snarky blogs penned by individuals in their twenties and thirties – the very same people who were so smitten with these books during their youth. The result is hot spots on the world wide web in the form of popular blogs such as The Dairi Burger (devoted to all things Sweet Valley High), and What Claudia Wore (a shrine to the wild ensembles worn by The Babysitter’s Club’s Claudia Kishi), amongst others; striving to keep the memory of such well-loved childhood series alive. Entertainment Weekly.

Over to you…what YA book do you plan on dropping somewhere special in honor of Operation Teen Book Drop? Do you think that Selena will make a good Beezus? Will you be buying pieces from her new clothing line? If you were to create a blog about a YA series, which one would it be and why?

Share your thoughts in the comments section!

Erika (aka inkpoperika)

Posted in inkpop News, Teen Trends | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 10 Comments »