Upcoming YA Release: ‘I Stop Somewhere’

Upcoming YA Release: ‘I Stop Somewhere’

“He wasn’t exactly attractive. There was something wrong about the way he moved, the way he smiled. Everything about Caleb was off somehow. He was tall, but he walked like he’d woken that morning into his tallness and now he couldn’t figure out how to get his body to work the same way.

There was also the way he smiled. It was cute, but it had this way about it. Like he’d learned about smiling from a textbook. The idea of smiling came through, but it seemed like he just followed the directions rather than actually smiled.

“I… um, nothing really. I have to read.”

We had a test Monday on summer reading, which I’d put off all summer to work on reinvention.

“What’re you reading?” He took my bag from me and rummaged through it. “Great Expectations? They’re still teaching this crap, huh?”

“Aren’t you, like, a junior?”

“Yeah. How’d you guess?”

I hadn’t had to guess. It had been three days, but everyone knew Caleb and his older brother, Noah; you didn’t need friends to know who they were. They walked through the school like the only people who’d ever mattered. It was probably true.”

I Stop Somewhere blitz banner

THE LOVELY BONES meets ALL THE RAGE in a searing, heartbreaking contemporary debut by T.E. Carter.

From Goodreads:

Ellie Frias disappeared long before she vanished.

Tormented throughout middle school, Ellie begins her freshman year with a new look: she doesn’t need to be popular; she just needs to blend in with the wallpaper.

But then the unthinkable happens and Ellie is trapped after a brutal assault. She wasn’t the first victim and now she watches it happen again and again. She tries to hold on to her happier memories in order to get past the cold days, waiting for someone to find her.

The problem is, no one searches for a girl they never noticed in the first place.

TE Carter’s stirring and visceral novel not only discusses and dismantles rape culture but also makes you slow down and think about what it is to be human.


“I Stop Somewhere” will be released by Feiwel & Friends (Macmillan) on February 27th, 2018. The hype for this book is already incredible; the cover is gorgeous and every preview I have read suggests that the story is just as beautiful and heart wrenching, so I suggest you join me and pre-order a copy now!

XX. Shelby Jo


Summer Update

So things this summer will be a lot different than last summer, it turns out. I’m not interning or officially working in anything publishing related, but if you’re interested in my other dabblings about, here’s what’s up.

  • As you’ve seen the past couple of weeks, I’m still reading and reviewing as many galleys and self-published books as possible. Mostly, I’m working through YA Bound Book Tours and NetGalley, but I’m certainly interested in working independently, too. If you have galley copies, manuscripts, or recently published books and you are interested in feedback or a published review, contact me.
  • I’m taking classes, as always. I’m finally in the last year of my undergrad, which is exciting, but also means that I have to go through the job/college application processes all over again. Yay.
  • I’ve started a sister blog, The Kipling Project. It’s still about books, obviously, that’s pretty much the only thing I know. I recently stumbled upon a host of vintage books, and I’m documenting my research and restoration of them. It’s pretty cool ~if I do say so myself~
  • I’ve done a bit of a redesign on the site, and I’m looking at updating it again at the end of the summer, so if you have any thoughts or suggestions for that, sling them at me!

All in all, I want to really increase my online presence while I have the chance this summer. It’s already been going well the few weeks I’ve been working on it, so thanks for helping me out and sticking around!

XX. Shelby Jo

P.S. I only read one book in May and, yes, I’m ashamed. It was Jonathan Strange and Mr. Norrell by Susanna Clarke. It was fantastic and I loved it, but, man, it aged me.

To the Kids Who Try Too Hard

(OR:  Please Agree with Me on the Internet so I Feel Like Less of a Freak of Nature, Thanks.)

In highschool, there was a light at the end of the over-achiever tunnel. I thought I would work like crazy for four years, get into the perfect college – rolling in well-deserved scholarship money – and be set for life.

I did everything right. I took five AP tests in one year. I stayed up all night reading the Communist Manifesto when I could have easily made up the answers in my workbook. I agonized over every essay and every assignment.

I didn’t get into that college. Right now, I’m working two jobs while taking 15 credit hours. My first summer during college I had two internships, worked part-time, and took classes online. I pulled my first all-nighter in 9th grade, and now I do it almost once a week. The light is gone and the tunnel has turned so many times, I don’t know if I’m heading in the right direction any more.

People like me try so hard because we want a lot. We want crazy intangible things (like making an impact on society), and maybe frivolous things too (like a collection of Tolkien swords, pleasepleaseplease). We have high standards for everything, mostly ourselves, and that’s okay.

But never forget to be kind to yourself. When you’re only getting three hours of sleep a night, there isn’t anything else you can do.

You do the absolute best you can and – at the end of your day, week, year, and life – you have to be satisfied with the results of your efforts, regardless of the reward. You tried everything possible and, yeah, you probably did deserve better on that stupid gen-ed essay, but you have to disassociate yourself with whatever comes out in the end. You are your art, your effort, and your lovely, over-achieving heart, not the results.

It’s a hard thing to remember. I cried the first time I got a ‘B’ in a class, and it still stresses me out (plenty of ‘B’s’ later). You will never stop working towards your goals. You can’t. But you are whole without them; you have always been whole.

Work hard, kid, but never think less of yourself because you’re still working.

XX. Shelby Jo

Summer Update

Well, it’s been a nice two weeks, but my summer break is officially over. Classes start up again today. Shed a tear with me.

I have plenty of things going on this summer, but here’s the update on all things writing and career related!

  • I am interning at Cincinnati Book Publishers this summer. My official title is Marketing Intern, but I’m doing a little bit of everything, as interns tend to do. It’s a small subsidized press, so I am primarily working on promotions for our authors and marketing and branding for the company as a whole. Most importantly, I’m leading the launch of a new blog run by Cincy Books, so hopefully I will be able to share some of that content here, because I’m very excited about it!


  • I am a Literary Blogging Intern at McWood Publishing, also located in good ol’ Cincinnati. I am one of many young writers there reading and reviewing self published books, which get posted on the company blog. I have to admit, this has been slow going so far, but I hope to get plenty more reviews done once my schedule works itself out.


  • I’m still taking classes, obviously! I’m taking a few credit hours of gen-eds online this summer, to help get rid of those nasty things.


  • I’m trying very hard (and largely failing) to keep blogging and writing. I need to chill out with something, but this certainly isn’t the area to do it. Bear with me and stay tuned, things will happen. At least that’s what I keep telling myself.


XX. Shelby Jo

Six Months

It’s been six months since I returned to blogging! Well, six months as of April 8, but why not prolong the celebration?

So much has happened in my life in the past six months, and even tiniest growth seems like it’s been an enormous change. And there’s been plenty of enormous changes, too.

I decided to wax sentimental this week and post a quick photo gallery of some of the highlights of keeping up Thoughts of a Word Nerd over the past six months.

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And I wrote more than I ever have before. Thanks for being a part of it.

And for bearing with this weird post. We’ll be back next week with your regularly scheduled programming.

XX. Shelby Jo

The Savannah Book Festival!

The Savannah Book Festival!

The 2016 Savannah Book Festival was last weekend in downtown Savannah! Several notable authors attended, including Erik Larson, Rita Mae Brown, and William Paul Young.

Book fest5

Though the works represented were not the style or genre I am normally interested in, it was fun to walk around and explore, and see all the people who are interested. It’s nice to know the industry is alive and solid. The event was well organized, and I was honestly surprised to see how packed the booths were. I know the opening and keynote addresses were both sold out.

Book Fest3

Rita Mae Brown came and gave a speech for the SCAD Writing Department and had an author signing. She is a brilliant woman and writer, and quite the badass.

Rita Mae Brown 2

My favorite thing she told us was, “You have to write what is true. You’re writing a novel, not propaganda.”

XX. Shelby Jo

I don’t have a word count this week, and I feel like a failure because I didn’t post on Friday, but there was a lot going on. Things should be back to normal now.

Tour: The Book Lady Bookstore

It’s a goal of mine to discover cool underground shops and places while I’m in Savannah, and, as long as they are somewhat relevant, I decided I’ll be sharing those adventures and low quality phone pictures here!

Our first stop is The Book Lady Bookstore!

The Book Lady 1

The Book Lady is a used bookstore in the downtown Savannah area, and it’s a collector’s paradise.The Book Lady 2

It’s packed stem to stern with books. It was basically a dream come true for someone like me; every corner and passage way is barely large enough to fit through, because there are shelves and stacks of books every where you turn.The Book Lady 3

The Book Lady was decently organized. The shelves were categorized nicely, but the books on them were in no particular order.

The book lady 4

The staff were pleasant and seemed knowledgeable from the conversations I overhead. The books were reasonably priced, I walked out with this stack for under $25.

Book Lady haul 1

All in all, the place is adorable and I loved it so much! I wish I was in a situation where I could grab handful after handful of books, because there were so many possibilities!

Visit The Book Lady Bookstore at 6 E. Liberty St. Savannah, GA 31401 or check out their website for more information about trade-ins and their selections.

XX. Shelby Jo

Weekly Goal: 5,000

Weekly Count: 1,692

Total Count: 12,652