Sarah J. Carlson

Contemporary Young Adult Author

Tag Archives: Wisconsin

Goodreads Giveaway for EVERYTHING’S NOT FINE

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There’s currently a Goodreads giveaway running for Everything’s Not Fine. If you’d like a shot at getting an early read of an advanced copy, click here!

Here’s a bit more about Everything’s Not Fine.

Seventeen-year-old Rose Hemmersbach aspires to break free of small-town Sparta, Wisconsin and achieve her artistic dreams at Belwyn School for the Arts after she graduates. Painting is Rose’s escape from her annoying younger siblings and her family’s one rule: ignore the elephant in the room, because talking about it makes it real. That is, until the day Rose finds her mother dying on the kitchen floor of a heroin overdose. Kneeling beside her, Rose pleads with the universe to find a heartbeat. She does—but when her mother is take to the hospital, the troubles are just beginning. Rose and her dad are left to pick up the pieces. Now all that matters are her siblings. Rose doesn’t have room to do to her schoolwork, let alone pick up a paintbrush. Until she’s forced to do the homecoming mural with Rafa, a new senior at Sparta High. Rose and Rafa don’t have an ounce of school spirit between them, but Rose discovers her brain still has room to paint. As Rose fights to hold everything together, and her dreams for the future start to slip through her grasp, she must face the question of what happens when—if—her mom comes home again. And if, deep down, Rose even wants her to.

novel aesthetic 2

It’s hard to believe my second novel comes out in less than two months.

Get on the Early Reader List for EVERYTHING’S NOT FINE

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ENF cover

It’s so hard to believe, but a box of Advance Review Copies for my second young adult novel, Everything’s Not Fine, is on the way! It’s really happening…

If you’re a librarians, book blogger, bookstagrammer, vlogger, or frequent reviewer on Goodreads/Amazon/B&N and want a chance to snag an ARC of Everything’s Not Fine, you can submit your name for consideration on the early reader list.

Here’s a bit more about Everything’s Not Fine:

Seventeen-year-old Rose’s world is shattered when her mom almost dies of a heroin overdose. As Rose tries to pick up the pieces, she discovers the power in admitting everything’s not fine.⠀

 

 

Memorial Day Weekend R & R, AKA a break from writing

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We planned a last minute escape to Door County, Wisconsin for the long weekend. I forced myself to take a much-needed break from planning a possible book trailer for my debut novel, All the Walls of Belfast, and preparing feedback for both my future #WriteMentor mentee and also all the people who trusted me with their submissions. Here’s a few of my favorite pictures 🙂

Feeling refreshed and ready to work.

 

Ringing in the New Year with the Dutch…singing the Yon Yonson song? Whaaaaaa…..

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photo 1-11Happy New Years Day from Singapore! Singapore is in the future when compared to a lot of places, so it’s the morning after for me. To ring in 2015, I went to a beach party with the following rules:

Beach partyTake note of the no swimming or selfie sticks ;). They actually had people guarding the ocean AND a fence around it. Safety first!

photo 2-11Actually, this was very smart. There were a lot of very drunk people there. Which leads me to my funny New Years Eve story. So we were hanging out and these guys come up to us, probably early 20s. One of them says, “I’m from the Netherlands, where are you from?” So I tell him the US, because in my experience there’s generally not much point telling non-Americans what state you’re from unless it’s California, Texas, Florida, or New York. But this guy asked me what state, so I say Wisconsin.

….

And he launches into the following song:

“My name is Yon Yonson

I come from Wisconsin,

I work in the lumberyards there.”

Now granted, it was a VERY slurred rendition of the song, but it was–in fact–the very song I grew up singing in elementary music class back home in good ol’ Wisconsin. My sister sings it to my niece all the time. But how? Why? Netherlands????

So I’m like, no way you sing that in the Netherlands.

So the guy calls his friend over and starts singing it and then his friend jumps in, independently verifying that yes, in FACT, they do randomly sing the Yon Yonson song in the Netherlands!

mind blowAnd then they kind of stumbled off before I could get to the root of the mystery, so now I may never know….

Here are the lyrics as I learned them in their entirety, if you’ve not had the pleasure:

My name is Yon Yonson,
I come from Wisconsin.
I work in a lumber yard there.
When I walk down the street,
All the people I meet
Say “Hello! Yon Yonson, hello!” (repeated again and again).
And a video if you really, REALLY want to enjoy it. It’s a different version though, not as good…. 😛
History note: I googled it to learn the origins, and apparently it was linked to the arrival of Swedish immigrants to the US (such as some of my ancestors). A lot of Scandinavians settled in the Midwest and at least in Wisconsin and Minnesota, lumber was a big industry around that time.
Oh, the world is a random place. Here’s wishing you and yours a happy, safe, and amusing New Years Eve/Day!

Christmas in Wisconsin: One expat reminiscing

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Don’t mind me. I’m not going home for Christmas this year and was just struck with a spontaneous, crippling bout of homesickness as the holidays approach :P. Occupational hazard of living the expat life over here in Singapore. Please. If you can. Ship me some snow.

Anyway, enjoy my glorious photos form last year’s Christmas back home in Wisconsin.

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And then there’s the whole polar vortex thing? Like 40 below zero Fahrenheit for several days. You may remember that being when a bunch of people burned themselves throwing boiling water in the air to watch it freeze instantly–which it does. Maybe I’ll post my video later :P. In case you don’t live in a place that gets RIDICULOUSLY cold…if you leave your car sitting outside, your gasoline can freeze and then starting your car can be a bit tricky. Which is why you need……. HEET!

1464686_10100409446268925_1580921105_n“Sorry we have no Heet.” In the entire city of Madison. CRISIS! Pssshhh I don’t need to unthaw my frozen gas anyway

Seriously though, I’ll be fine :P, just had to reminisce a bit.