My 'Ascenders' Unboxing, Interview With C. L. Gaber, And Giveaway Contest For You

My 'Ascenders' Unboxing, Interview With C. L. Gaber, And Giveaway Contest For You

The Ascenders series looks like it's going to be so awesome.


Recently I've been working with the wonderful people at Wunderkind PR for my Odyssey articles. Most recently, they kindly sent me a really cool package with the "Ascenders" series by C. L. Gaber and a few other fun things inside and offered me the chance to ask a few questions to the author.

Read on until the end of this article for your chance to win your very own Ascenders box just like mine!

Unboxing the 'Ascenders' books.Kate Tayler

I wasn't expecting the box when it came so the uniqueness of the box was extra exciting! It was pretty heavy and I was super excited to open it.

Kate Tayler

This is what it looked like when I first opened it. The purple paper and yellow ribbon along with the dark green box all gave a very mysterious vibe that perfectly set the tone for the world within the box.

Kate Tayler

The first thing on top was a packet of papers with a "Welcome to The Academy" note right on top. The Welcome note had a quote from what I'd guess to be one of the characters in the 'Ascenders' series that really made me want to crack open the books right that very second. The packet also included an excerpt from the fourth book "11:11" that's out now. I didn't read it yet, but I look forward to reading it after I finish the last book.

Kate Tayler

After I set the packet aside, I was excited to see all of the books. The covers are absolutely beautiful and all of the books were signed by the author! The books included are the first three books in the series: 'Ascenders,' 'Ascenders: Skypunch,' and "Ascenders: Omorrow."

Kate Tayler

This was probably the coolest and most unique thing that I found in the box: a special Ascenders candle. This candle called "The Old Forest" is meant to be burnt while reading the books to give the scent that the forest in the books would give off. This is a really unique idea and is a really cool way to get you into the world of the books. The candle smells like pine and earth and a little bit like vanilla. I only wish it was bigger so I could burn it forever!

Kate Tayler

This was everything in the box. I gotta say this was a really cool way to be introduced to a series and it got me really excited to start reading it.

I was also fortunate enough to send some questions the author's way and I got some responses!

The interview with the 'Ascenders' author, C. L. Gaber, is as follows:

C.L. Gaber is the author of the 'Ascenders' Saga and a journalist for the New York Times Syndicate, Chicago Sun-Times, and the Las Vegas Review-Journal. She also co-authored the young adult 'Jex Malone' series with V.C. Stanley in 2014.

She is originally from Chicago and now resides in Nevada with her husband, bonus daughter, and two dogs.

1. When did you first realize you wanted to be a writer?

I was your average nerd who luckily wandered into the school newspaper office at Jack London Jr. High School. No one wanted to be the editor of the paper that year ...and I said yes. I was so lucky to do daily journalism as a way to practice writing. Many years later, I read about a fiction writing contest sponsored by Seventeen Magazine. I sent my story in, went away to college and tried to forget about it. The odds....I mean, come on! When I came home from school for a weekend, my little-to-no-mail was piled up on my card offer, letter from my cousin...Seventeen Magazine..."Hey, you won...and here's a check for $100." It might as well have been a million dollars. It was that exciting.

2. What has been your favorite part of being a writer?

I love creating new worlds, which is the entire basis of Ascenders, which is about a high school for the recently departed. But since I'm a journalist, I like to add factual truth to my fantasy. Ascenders is based on the medical fact that the human brain doesn't fully form until you're 25. If you died young, I wondered, where would you go? Where would all that potential go? In my mind, you'd linger in a place to continue developing into the person you were supposed to be. How long would you stay there? Who knows? How much "work" do you have to do?

3. What do you find most difficult about being a writer?

There is a lot of waiting...which requires patience...which, let's face it, few of us have these days. You wait for the book to come out, wait for the response and thrillingly I'm waiting right now to hear about a screen version of Ascenders.

4. What advice do you have for aspiring writers?

Write every single day. Just 200 words or 100 or 50. Write something. And let it flow. If you get into the mode of writing all the time, you will suddenly have a lot of content. Also, don't write by committee. There is nothing harder on the writer than showing five people a work in progress. Everyone will have a different opinion...and you don't necessarily need that at this point. Show one trusted person or no one until later. Finally, write for you. What story do you want to hear?

5. Where did you get the inspiration for Ascenders?

For over two decades, I have been a film feature writer for the New York Times wire. There I was in Los Angeles about to interview Cher the next day. I fell asleep and had a pretty wild dream that played out in my mind like a movie with a beginning, middle and end. My husband is a really light sleeper, so I snuck around the room, grabbed every notepad and spent the next several hours in the bathroom writing it all down. A lot of that became the first chapter of Ascenders. (Of course, around 5 a..m, I heard a tap on the bathroom door with the obvious, 'Are you okay in there?'") By the way, Cher was really nice the next day.

6. Which character do you relate to most in the series?

It's my main character Walker who has red hair and wanted to be a reporter for the New York Times. She's quite inquisitive and truly believes somehow it will all work out. This is a dead girl being positive. And, above all, she will go the distance for true love.

7. Which book was your favorite to write?

It might be the first Ascenders book that started it all. I also had an amazing journey doing the third book, "Ascenders: Omorrow," because Walker and her tat-covered rebel partner Daniel go time traveling back to New York's past where the time periods keep rolling. I personally visited the places I put in the book including what was once the old autopsy "theater" at Ellis Island. (It's a miracle I'm sleeping through the night -- even now). Looking for history's smaller stories was exciting, plus a few weird things happened. At the actual Church of Ascension in New York City, one of the few churches that kept their doors open all night long during the Great Depression, I had a moment. The doors were locked and I asked a young guy sitting on the front steps if the church was open on Sundays. He smiled and nodded. Then I turned to my husband Ron and said, "That guy thinks it's open tomorrow." My husband said, "What guy? It's just the two of us here."

8. What do you hope readers take away from this series?

I'd like them to consider that there might be more than one realm of existence. Perhaps what we are experiencing now is just the beginning. And I always sign the first book: Make. It. Count. We let so much time just slip through our fingers. Another theme of Ascenders is that there are many great loves in life...romantic love, love for your parents, love of a child or pet and even love of a place. Each should be honored as the threads that tie us to those loves never really break. They are just woven again and again as our story continues.

Good luck to all the writers out there and grateful to all the readers! xo CL

Enter to win a special "Ascenders" box, full of terrific goodies!

The box includes:

- A special forest scented candle that evokes the scents of the forest around the Academy, high school for the recently departed

- One signed copy of "Ascenders" (book one)

- One signed copy of "Skypunch" (book two)

- One signed copy of 'Omorrow' (book three)

- A special excerpt of the fourth book, "11:11," out now!

Enter to win the "Ascenders" box and delve into this interesting new world here!

The winner will be contacted on December 31st.

Check out her latest book in the Ascenders series "11:11."

Breeze Munson

A synopsis of book four is as follows:

In the Midst — a place for those who departed young — there is a fate worse than death. It's the passing of love. Tat-covered Daniel Reid's memory has been erased by his sadistic father who has also jettisoned his other children to places unknown.
Walker Callaghan must now face her destiny alone.
Alliances shift in the fourth book of the 'Ascenders' saga when Walker is accused of murder, lies, and crimes against existence. Only twice a day at 11:11 — a time when all things converge — is everything and everyone clear.
Forced to run to the other side of The Other Side, Walker meets up with Daniel only to discover that the afterlife world they previously experienced was only the beginning of The Vastness.
In a new realm of illusion and deception, there are no rules except one: Rock bottom builds heroes.

I am so excited to read this series! I wish you all luck in the giveaway and hope that you get the chance to enjoy this exciting series!

Popular Right Now

13 Of The Best, Most Famous Poems Ever Written

Masterpieces by some of our favorites like as Shakespeare, John Donne, and Homer.

Some of us read poetry for an eager and fast escape from this world. On the other hand, some of us read poetry solely to share it with the ones we love. There are miracles on paper that can easily be forgotten about if we let them be. The following poems are written by some of our favorites such as Shakespeare, John Donne, Homer, and more. It is clear why these have become some of the most famous and unforgettable poems ever written. So grab a pen, and interpret these poems in your own, unique way.

1. “Go and Catch a Falling Star” - John Donne

Go and catch a falling star,

Get with child a mandrake root,

Tell me where all past years are,

Or who cleft the devil's foot,

Teach me to hear mermaids singing,

Or to keep off envy's stinging,

And find

What wind

Serves to advance an honest mind.

If thou be'st born to strange sights,

Things invisible to see,

Ride ten thousand days and nights,

Till age snow white hairs on thee,

Thou, when thou return'st, wilt tell me,

All strange wonders that befell thee,

And swear,

No where

Lives a woman true, and fair.

If thou find'st one, let me know,

Such a pilgrimage were sweet;

Yet do not, I would not go,

Though at next door we might meet;

Though she were true, when you met her,

And last, till you write your letter,

Yet she

Will be

False, ere I come, to two, or three.

2. “Drinking Alone in the Moonlight” - Li Po

Beneath the blossoms with a pot of wine,

No friends at hand, so I poured alone;

I raised my cup to invite the moon,

Turned to my shadow, and we became three.

Now the moon had never learned about drinking,

And my shadow had merely followed my form,

But I quickly made friends with the moon and my shadow;

To find pleasure in life, make the most of the spring.

Whenever I sang, the moon swayed with me;

Whenever I danced, my shadow went wild.

Drinking, we shared our enjoyment together;

Drunk, then each went off on his own.

But forever agreed on dispassionate revels,

We promised to meet in the far Milky Way.

3. “Sonnet 18” - William Shakespeare

Shall I compare thee to a summer's day?

Thou art more lovely and more temperate:

Rough winds do shake the darling buds of May,

And summer's lease hath all too short a date:

Sometime too hot the eye of heaven shines,

And often is his gold complexion dimm'd;

And every fair from fair sometime declines,

By chance, or nature's changing course, untrimm'd;

But thy eternal summer shall not fade

Nor lose possession of that fair thou ow'st;

Nor shall Death brag thou wander'st in his shade,

When in eternal lines to time thou grow'st;

So long as men can breathe or eyes can see,

So long lives this, and this gives life to thee.

4. “The World Is Too Much with Us” - William Wordsworth

The world is too much with us; late and soon,

Getting and spending, we lay waste our powers;—

Little we see in Nature that is ours;

We have given our hearts away, a sordid boon!

This Sea that bares her bosom to the moon;

The winds that will be howling at all hours,

And are up-gathered now like sleeping flowers;

For this, for everything, we are out of tune;

It moves us not. Great God! I’d rather be

A Pagan suckled in a creed outworn;

So might I, standing on this pleasant lea,

Have glimpses that would make me less forlorn;

Have sight of Proteus rising from the sea;

Or hear old Triton blow his wreathèd horn.

5. “She Walks in Beauty” - Lord Byron

She walks in beauty, like the night

Of cloudless climes and starry skies;

And all that’s best of dark and bright

Meet in her aspect and her eyes;

Thus mellowed to that tender light

Which heaven to gaudy day denies.

One shade the more, one ray the less,

Had half impaired the nameless grace

Which waves in every raven tress,

Or softly lightens o’er her face;

Where thoughts serenely sweet express,

How pure, how dear their dwelling-place.

And on that cheek, and o’er that brow,

So soft, so calm, yet eloquent,

The smiles that win, the tints that glow,

But tell of days in goodness spent,

A mind at peace with all below,

A heart whose love is innocent!

6. “How Do I Love Thee?”- Elizabeth Browning

How do I love thee? Let me count the ways.
I love thee to the depth and breadth and height
My soul can reach, when feeling out of sight
For the ends of being and ideal grace.
I love thee to the level of every day’s
Most quiet need, by sun and candle-light.
I love thee freely, as men strive for right.
I love thee purely, as they turn from praise.
I love thee with the passion put to use
In my old griefs, and with my childhood’s faith.
I love thee with a love I seemed to lose
With my lost saints. I love thee with the breath,
Smiles, tears, of all my life; and, if God choose,

I shall but love thee better after death.

7. “ Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening” -Robert Frost

Whose woods these are I think I know.

His house is in the village though;

He will not see me stopping here

To watch his woods fill up with snow.

My little horse must think it queer

To stop without a farmhouse near

Between the woods and frozen lake

The darkest evening of the year.

He gives his harness bells a shake

To ask if there is some mistake.

The only other sound’s the sweep

Of easy wind and downy flake.

The woods are lovely, dark and deep,

But I have promises to keep,

And miles to go before I sleep,

And miles to go before I sleep.

8. The Jabberwocky” - Lewis Carroll

’Twas brillig, and the slithy toves

Did gyre and gimble in the wabe:

All mimsy were the borogoves,

And the mome raths outgrabe.

“Beware the Jabberwock, my son!

The jaws that bite, the claws that catch!

Beware the Jubjub bird, and shun

The frumious Bandersnatch!”

He took his vorpal sword in hand;

Long time the manxome foe he sought—

So rested he by the Tumtum tree

And stood awhile in thought.

And, as in uffish thought he stood,

The Jabberwock, with eyes of flame,

Came whiffling through the tulgey wood,

And burbled as it came!

One, two! One, two! And through and through

The vorpal blade went snicker-snack!

He left it dead, and with its head

He went galumphing back.

“And hast thou slain the Jabberwock?

Come to my arms, my beamish boy!

O frabjous day! Callooh! Callay!”

He chortled in his joy.

’Twas brillig, and the slithy toves

Did gyre and gimble in the wabe:

All mimsy were the borogoves,

And the mome raths outgrabe.

9. “Tears Fall in My Heart” - Paul Verlaine

Tears fall in my heart

Rain falls on the town;

what is this numb hurt

that enters my heart?

Ah,the soft sound of rain

on roofs, on the ground!

To a dulled heart they came,

ah, the song of the rain!

Tears without reason

in the disheartened heart.

What? no trace of treason?

This grief's without reason.

It's far the worst pain

to never know why

without love or disdain

my heart has such pain!

10. “We Wear the Mask” - Paul Lawrence Dunbar

We wear the mask that grins and lies,

It hides our cheeks and shades our eyes,—

This debt we pay to human guile;

With torn and bleeding hearts we smile,

And mouth with myriad subtleties.

Why should the world be over-wise,

In counting all our tears and sighs?

Nay, let them only see us, while

We wear the mask.

We smile, but, O great Christ, our cries

To thee from tortured souls arise.

We sing, but oh the clay is vile

Beneath our feet, and long the mile;

But let the world dream otherwise,

We wear the mask!

11. “The Panther” - Rainer Maria Rilke

His vision, from the constantly passing bars,

has grown so weary that it cannot hold

anything else. It seems to him there are

a thousand bars; and behind the bars, no world.

As he paces in cramped circles, over and over,

the movement of his powerful soft strides

is like a ritual dance around a center

in which a mighty will stands paralyzed.

Only at times, the curtain of the pupils

lifts, quietly--. An image enters in,

rushes down through the tensed, arrested muscles,

plunges into the heart and is gone.

12. “Sea Fever” - John Masefield

I must go down to the seas again, to the lonely sea and the sky,

And all I ask is a tall ship and a star to steer her by;

And the wheel’s kick and the wind’s song and the white sail’s shaking,

And a grey mist on the sea’s face, and a grey dawn breaking.

I must go down to the seas again, for the call of the running tide

Is a wild call and a clear call that may not be denied;

And all I ask is a windy day with the white clouds flying,

And the flung spray and the blown spume, and the sea-gulls crying.

I must go down to the seas again, to the vagrant gypsy life,

To the gull’s way and the whale’s way where the wind’s like a whetted knife;

And all I ask is a merry yarn from a laughing fellow-rover,

And quiet sleep and a sweet dream when the long trick’s over.

13. "Do Not Go Gentle Into That Goodnight" -Dylan Thomas

Do not go gentle into that good night,
Old age should burn and rave at close of day;
Rage, rage against the dying of the light.
Though wise men at their end know dark is right,
Because their words had forked no lightning they
Do not go gentle into that good night.
Good men, the last wave by, crying how bright
Their frail deeds might have danced in a green bay,
Rage, rage against the dying of the light.
Wild men who caught and sang the sun in flight,
And learn, too late, they grieved it on its way,
Do not go gentle into that good night.
Grave men, near death, who see with blinding sight
Blind eyes could blaze like meteors and be gay,
Rage, rage against the dying of the light.
And you, my father, there on the sad height,
Curse, bless, me now with your fierce tears, I pray.
Do not go gentle into that good night.
Rage, rage against the dying of the light.

Save these poems for your next coffee shop date or solitude moment. You might be surprised at how much you can find yourself in a poem.

Cover Image Credit: Thought Catalog

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Picking Up A Book Is Better Than Picking Up Your Phone

it could be used as a weight so you don't have to go to the gym.


There is a lesser-known debate between physical books and electronics. There was even a debate about books when the literacy rate wasn't as it is today. Since the invention of books, humans have debated their place in the world. Back then, the population believed that books weren't useful or needed. Now people are wondering why we need them when we have the technology. There are health benefits in choosing books over technology and the comfort of holding a book surpasses holding your cellphone. I'm not bashing technology as a whole, but when it comes time for me to choose a book or my cell phone, I will be choosing my book.

funny TruththoughtCo

Having a book with you is like having a friend that you can carry around with you. Books make you laugh, cry, excited and mad. Books don't increase your stress level if read for fun and it carries ideas that you may not have thought of. They can teach you things that others can't. When you develop a love for reading, it becomes better than watching TV. Yes, we can read books from our phones now. Imagine having 50 books weight the same as your cell phone in your bag. The convenience of having electronics carrying our books is great for those constantly on the go but can be annoying when people constantly message you while reading.

ECard truthQuite A Novel Idea

Did you know that staring at your phone screen disrupts your sleeping pattern? It takes your body 30 minutes to relax enough after playing on your phone? I know that with recent developments to the iPhones that you can switch to "night-mode" that provides a warmer toned backlight. For those who don't like reading, I understand that it's a win for you and those who prefer to having books on their phones. Whenever I go on trips, I have to be pretty selective about what I bring, so a phone is a useful thing to have. 95% of the time, I prefer physical books.

Book Vs. Ebook HumorMeme Collection

I know that people have vision issues can select their preferences to be able to see the print. My mom, who wears glasses, loves to read on her Nook, so she won't wake up my dad and she can see the print. A lot of people find comfort in standing around a bunch of books. It gives you a sense of calm and tranquility. Reading has helped me overcome A.D.D and it continues to help my brain. It stinks because when you're in college, you tend to spend the majority of your time with technology. Being around technology constantly reverted me back to have attention issues.

Why HumorBookBub

Being around books all of my life gave me a respect for education. When I was younger, I hated to read because I didn't understand the material. When I started reading the Harry Potter series that's when I started falling in love with books. I remember the Harry Potter Series came out when I was in Kindergarten. I hate to say, but I saw the movie first. When I read the first book, after I saw the movie, I preferred the book instantly. It's funny that when I was in elementary school, I got really bad grades but when I started reading more and more my grades improved.

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