So I’ve kind of been a closeted writer for over a year now and I’m thinking it’s time to come out.
There are a lot of reasons why people don’t shout from the rooftops that they are a writer and I am no exception to that. People have expectations when they hear “writer” …the questions that always come are, “When will your book be published?” or “Will you be going on a book tour?” or “Are you writing the next Fifty Shades of Grey?”
Writing is a long and tedious process as is the publishing industry. Nothing moves fast at all. Also, people think once you have this massive first draft in your hands then it should be on it’s way to sitting pretty on the book store shelves in no time. SO WRONG.
And don’t even get me started on when people ask me what my book is about.
Usually I sound something like, “Well there’s this guy and he feels guilty about this accident he was in…but then there’s this girl…and you know, well they don’t really get along at first and…” YEAH, it usually doesn’t end up sounding much like a story you’d want to read. But I swear, it’s way better than my lame explanation 🙂
However, even if I do suck at explaining my own stories and even if I do get bombarded with questions from others about when they can buy my book (at best it will be years from now, people), it’s not really an excuse anymore to hide. I have a finished book. IT IS COMPLETED. Yeah, I’m still editing it here and there based on feedback I get from early readers but it’s a whole story. I’m proud of it. I’m delighted at this accomplishment. And you know what, that’s not something I should take lightly or hide away. It’s something I should share.
Maybe it will be two years until you see my book on a shelf, maybe it will be ten years. Who knows – but I have to believe if I don’t give up, the dream will be accomplished. To start that dream off right, I have to be open and honest with those around me about what I am.
So, my TBR list is already jam-packed full of so many reads I still need to get to that have already been published. But as every avid reader knows, getting excited for shiny new releases is an obsession I will never quite conquer. That being said, I’ve got some top books I’m looking forward to in 2014 that I CANNOT WAIT to get my grubby hands on. Click on the cover to check out the Goodread listing for each book!
You knew this was coming and that it would be at the top of the list, right? If you didn’t then you don’t know me AT ALL. I adore Maggie Stiefvater to pieces and the second book in the Raven Cycle (THE DREAM THIEVES) left me absolutely captivated. (See my review here if you don’t believe me). So it’s no surprise I’m all in for the third book and can’t wait to get my hands on it.
I feel like this series has been a little more under the radar but I’m still in love with it. The world is built around magic being comparable to a person’s life source and if you take it away, you die …or become a Shadow Person which is worse. The first book had a few twists that I didn’t see coming and totally broke my heart!! The second book was more foreseeable but still loved the characters and the journey they found themselves on. Can’t wait for Book #3 to make my collection complete!
3. SINNER by Maggie Stiefvater
This is probably my MOST anticipated book of 2014. 1) Because, Maggie Stiefvater ..2) Because Cole St.Clair ..3) Because LA!! I’ve made this a no-brainer for you, yes? Continue reading →
So looking back at my New Year’s Resolution post from a year ago, I want to do things a little differently. Last year, I was really analytical with my resolutions and I don’t think that is the way to go with writing goals. Maybe it works for some people but it didn’t really work at all for me. I accomplished a few of the items but some I didn’t even touch.
This year is going to be different. I’ve already accomplished something that has been one of the biggest achievements for me YET. I completed a first draft of a novel. It is a REAL story. It might suck big time in it’s massive, unmanageable first draft format, but it is a story from start to finish. When I first started writing, I thought that would be easy, finishing a book. I thought what would be hard would be finding time to write the hundreds of ideas I have for books. No, sticking to a story and pouring your heart and soul into it is exhausting and emotionally draining and lots of hard work. LOTS. A TON. Way more than I expected. But guess what?
This year has been big for me in writing. I think it was the first full year that I really took my writing seriously and worked at it as often as time would allow. I also reached out beyond my own little writing cave to other writing craft opportunities. So for this post, I thought I would recap all the major happenings of my writing life and hope to top that in 2014!
In February of 2013, I was selected as a FREE participant in literary agent Mandy Hubbard’s class on Writing and Selling the Young Adult Novel. Wow, was that class an eye-opener for me. And I met sooo many talented writers there that I’m still in contact with today! It was a great way to kick start my year of writing, even though it led me to morph my WIP idea to something completely different, I think it turned out pretty well!
So I said I was going to re-cap what I’ve learned this year in my little writing world. I have done that and listed is as a Volume 2 for my 10 Writing Tips I Wish I Would Have Known. (If you’re looking for Volume 1, I have it right here!)
1. End a writing session and KNOW what is going to happen next.
I used to wrap up my writing sessions by ending a scene. I would then be stuck on where the story was going next so what did I do? I stopped writing. Ugh, do you know how hard it is to go back into your next writing session without knowing where the story is going? Try stopping in the middle of a scene where you know what will be happening next. It makes starting up again easier. Continue reading →
So I know I’ve been absent from posting on my blog. I admit it and I accept the punishment of barely any traffic. I’m on the cusp of finishing up my FIRST DRAFT of my FIRST full length novel EVER. So yeah, I’ve been busy doing other things. You know, the things I TALK about doing on my blog posts.
Anyway, I promise January will be more active. If you missed it, I will be reading the Harry Potter series for the FIRST TIME starting in January. I’ll be posting my thoughts and reactions to one book in the series per month, so if you haven’t read them either or are up for a re-read, join me! I also will be posting about my final drafting and querying journey here and at YAStands for my bi-weekly post there, so if you are in the same boat or interested in seeing how I take this rough first draft to the finish line and (maybe, hopefully, possibly??) snag an agent, then stay tuned for those!
To get back into my blog skills, I wanted to cover my top reads of 2013. This doesn’t mean the books were all published in 2013, only that I read them during this time. Also, they are in no particular order. Without further ado, here we go! Continue reading →
You don’t need to tell me that I’ve been pretty absent from writing on this blog. Trust me, I definitely know! Between keeping up with my writing group blogs The Writer Diaries and YA Stands, sometimes I don’t really have much else to say (or the time to say it).
But I want to get back into writing on this personal blog because that’s what it is. It’s personal. I don’t have any specific “types” of post I have to put up here, I’m not required to do it because of a commitment I made to a group. It’s just me sharing my journey all alone here on my personal blog.
To catch you all up on what’s been going on in my writing, it might take a few posts of complaining and crying and shouting for joy and then crying again. It’s been kind of a roller-coaster over here. Basically, this: Continue reading →
Here we are, the final panel of the graphic novel blog hop for Leigh Ann Kopan’s soon-to-be-released ONE!! Everyone jump up and down and flail in excitement!! Okay, now that you got that out of your system, check out the 10th and final installment of the ONE graphic novel! Release date is tomorrow!!
So who is excited to see the third installment of Leigh Ann Kopan’s wonderful comic series for her debut ONE?!!?!? Because I know it can’t just be me! We have less than two weeks to go until ONE is available for purchase, so get super pumped. Here we go!!
So I’ve been reading a lot of dual-narrative books in YA contemporary because that is what my current WIP is – trying to do my homework since I’ve 1) never really been drawn a lot to contemporary and 2) also never really read a lot of multiple POV stories except maybe Game of Thrones…but come on, George R.R. Martin is a genius so of course that was good.
Anyway, in my research, Katie McGarry’s Pushing the Limits kept coming up as a good dual narrative YA contemporary. When I saw her latest novel Dare You To on NetGalley for free to review, I thought it would be the perfect opportunity for me to test out her writing style since it was also a dual narrative (and pulled characters from Pushing the Limits so I guess it’s considered part of a series). Now I had just finished reading The Sea of Tranquility which I am still reeling about how amazing it was so I wasn’t sure how much this book was going to show me anything more about dual narrative that I didn’t already acquire from TSoT.
Here’s the book summary:
Ryan lowers his lips to my ear. “Dance with me, Beth.”
“No.” I whisper the reply. I hate him and I hate myself for wanting him to touch me again….
“I dare you…”
If anyone knew the truth about Beth Risk’s home life, they’d send her mother to jail and seventeen-year-old Beth who knows where. So she protects her mom at all costs. Until the day her uncle swoops in and forces Beth to choose between her mom’s freedom and her own happiness. That’s how Beth finds herself living with an aunt who doesn’t want her and going to a school that doesn’t understand her. At all. Except for the one guy who shouldn’t get her, but does….
Ryan Stone is the town golden boy, a popular baseball star jock-with secrets he can’t tell anyone. Not even the friends he shares everything with, including the constant dares to do crazy things. The craziest? Asking out the Skater girl who couldn’t be less interested in him.
But what begins as a dare becomes an intense attraction neither Ryan nor Beth expected. Suddenly, the boy with the flawless image risks his dreams-and his life-for the girl he loves, and the girl who won’t let anyone get too close is daring herself to want it all.