{Guest Post/Giveaway} The Sekrits of NIL--The Island World by Lynne Matson

Welcome to the NIL Blog Tour!

Here's a list of all the NIL tour stops:

Feb 17: Dana Square Interview
Feb 18: Book Loving Mom Review
Feb 19: Jenna Does Books Guest Post

Feb 20: Word Spelunking Review 
Feb 21: Book Addict's Guide Interview

Feb 24: Great Imaginations Review 

Feb 25: A Backwards Story Guest Post
Feb 26: Two Chicks on Books Interview 

Feb 27: As Told by Rachel Review 

Feb 28: Paperback Princess Interview 
Mar 3: The Best Books Ever Review
Mar 4: Wastepaper Prose Review 

Mar 5Book Haven Extraordinaire Review
Mar 6: Good Choice Reading Interview
My review is coming soon, 
so check back for more NIL goodness!

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Lynne is a former attorney who thinks writing books for teens is much more fun. :) Her debut novel, NIL, a YA thriller with a SF twist, will be published by Macmillan/Henry Holt on March 4, 2014.

When she's not writing or reading, you'll find her hanging out with her husband and their 4 boys, usually at the beach. Cookies are her kryptonite, especially thin mints.

Visit Lynne's website and follow her on Facebook and Twitter!

The Sekrits of NIL--The Island World
by Lynne Matson!

Thank you for having me! I love your question: What sort of world-building did you do in order to create the island of Nil, which manages to become like a character itself?

World building on NIL was huge! The biggest part was the start: the entire world of NIL began in one clear moment. I was on Hawaii (the big island) with my husband; it was our first real getaway from our four boys, EVER. As we left the airport after landing on our very first day, we drove through miles of ancient lava fields. Broken red rock stretched endlessly on each side, gorgeous and desolate. No roads, no buildings, no people–just the eerie sound of wind blowing over the barren rocks. I remember thinking how much it all looked like an alien planet, and thinking how creepy it would be to wake up there, alone. And I remember thinking how scary it would be as a teenager, to wake up by yourself, not having a clue where you were or how you how got there, and what if–because isn’t this every person’s worst nightmare?!–you woke up naked? NIL was born in that moment. That barren-red-rock visual locked in my head, and that's what Charley sees when she first wakes up in Nil.

From that point forward, every experience we had on Hawaii was fuel for my world-building fire.:) The black sand beaches, the lava fields, the rainforest and its breathtaking canopy. The shoreline cliffs, the smoking volcanoes. NIL was inspired by Hawaii, but it’s not Hawaii. Nil became an island all its own.

For me, the island is the ultimate antagonist in NIL. The island embodies the ticking clock, the hand of fate that dumps them on Nil and pulls teens closer to death with each day that passes. Some teens escape, others don’t.

A huge part of my world-building was the viewpoint of Thad, one of my two main characters. When the book opens, Thad’s been there for 267 days, and he’s seen the worst of the island. He’d slightly jaded, and after his time on Nil, Thad has an insider’s  handle on the machinations of the island, and the darkness. Thad’s take on NIL is key to building the island as an adversary--as someone to be defeated.

On the other hand, Charley, the other main character, is discovering the island for the first time, and through her, the reader gets initial impressions from a newcomer. Charley sees the beauty of Nil, and the unknown, allowing the reader experience the horrors and hope of the island through Charley’s eyes.

The rest of the world-building came together in my imagination, and occasionally, with some help from Google. How to start a fire with a bow? Are rock slingshots effective? How deadly are warthogs? How long can a person survive on coconut milk? So many questions, all answered to get the world-building just right.:) IT WAS SO FUN! I had a blast writing NIL and creating the world that Charley and Thad encounter. I hope you enjoy reading it! Thanks for stopping by! *sends all the island love*

Thank you so much for your awesome post, Lynne!
I loved seeing how Hawaii was the source of your inspiration, 
and loved learning more about how you created the scary island of Nil! 

O F F I C I A   I N F O:

Title: NIL
Author: Lynne Matson
Release Date: March 4, 2014
Publisher: Macmillan / Henry Holt

On the mysterious island of Nil, the rules are set. You have one year. Exactly 365 days--to escape, or you die.

Seventeen-year-old Charley doesn’t know the rules. She doesn’t even know where she is. The last thing she remembers is blacking out, and when she wakes up, she’s lying naked in an empty rock field.

Lost and alone, Charley finds no sign of other people until she meets Thad, the gorgeous leader of a clan of teenage refugees. Soon Charley learns that leaving the island is harder than she thought . . . and so is falling in love. With Thad’s time running out, Charley realizes that to save their future, Charley must first save him. And on an island rife with dangers, their greatest threat is time.

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  1. Thank you SO much for having me!!! And thanks for helped spread the NIL love…and ALL THE SCARY SEKRITS.:) xo


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