In Which I Wonder “What Scares You?” and Host an Entire Blog Series About It

(Design & illustration by Robert Roxby)

Starting Monday, I’m opening Distraction No. 99 to guest bloggers—YA and other authors you know and love—for the first time ever. And I’m doing so to find out what freaks them out.

Why would I be curious what scares these authors, you ask?

Why would I beg them to tell me the scariest book they’ve ever read?

Might it be because I’m writing a creepy novel as we speak?

A dark and twisted novel I haven’t told you about yet?

Possibly a ghost story?


Hmm, yep, you guessed right.

Seeking inspiration, I thought to ask some authors I know a little question about what scares them and if—if!—they were willing, might they write me a guest blog about it? Some of these authors actually said yes!

Now you can share the inspiration with me, just in time for Halloween. Starting Monday, October 17 and running through October 31, here’s what’s coming to this space:

Guest blogs by YA, middle-grade, and adult authors…

Scary book recommendations…

Scary experiences that inspired…

And answers to the question, “What scares you?”

Plus, no blog series would be complete without… A BIG GIVEAWAY OF CREEPY BOOKS IN TIME FOR HALLOWEEN. Some of the authors have donated signed copies of their books or the books they’re recommending for prize packs that I’ll announce on October 31. And my publisher Penguin Teen has generously donated creepy books and ARCs for Penguin prize packs, including The Replacement and The Space Between by Brenna Yovanoff, Nightshade and Wolfsbane by Andrea Cremer, Harbinger by Sara Wilson Etienne, Ripper by Stefan Petrucha, The Name of the Star by Maureen Johnson, Born Wicked by Jessica Spotswood, and Virals and Seizure by Kathy Reichs. Thank you, Penguin Teen!

You will be able to gain extra entries in the big Halloween giveaway by commenting on the guest blogs. Every guest blog you comment on will count as an extra entry on October 31. So if you comment on twenty guest blogs, that’s twenty extra chances to win a prize pack containing signed books and Penguin books and ARCs! (And if you are a librarian or a teacher building a classroom library, you’ll have a way to gain extra entries in the giveaway, too.)

I’m also excited to be featuring spooky artwork for this “What scares you?” blog series by talented illustrator and designer Robert Roxby. Check out this month’s new blog header and the title card in this post! And there’s more where that came from… (Thank you, Robert!)

So… does this get you thinking about the scariest books you’ve ever read? I hope so, because I’d love for you to share in the comments. And do you want to know what books authors you know and love have to recommend?

Come back Monday and find out. And, remember, every guest blog you comment on will get you AN EXTRA ENTRY in the big giveaway on October 31, made big by generous donations from Penguin Teen and the authors involved!

You can keep track of all the “What Scares You?” guest blogs with this tag.

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