Monday, November 30, 2009

Still typing...

I thought I better pop in to say hello and to let everyone know I'm still alive. I've had all these great idea for posts but have been way too involved in revisions and life in general lately to get the ideas down.

So...hello! *waves hand* I'm alive!

Life is good. The revisions are moving along and I have a shiny new query (thanks to some awesome helpers) ready to go when they are finally finished (which is looking like the end of the month). Eh, so maybe things are better than good. Let's go with great, shall we?

Once I get the rewrites wrapped up and I'm in editing mode I plan on posting more regularly and finally sharing the scoop on our meet-up in Philly with the fabulous Becca Fitzpatrick and her editor from Simon & Schuster, Emily Meehan, complete with photos and all. As well as a few thoughts on what it's like to be back working on a book that I thought was ready to collect dust. Boy, am I glad I listened to my instincts on this because I have changed about 89% and if I do say so rocks.

Speaking of revisions. Back to work. I can't waste this golden quiet time with the little guy asleep and the house to myself.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

I could go on and on...

I hadn't really thought about writing a post in honor of Thanksgiving, but after seeing the fabulous list Lisa & Laura shared this morning I felt rather inspired to do the same. I hope you ladies don't mind if I duplicate a few of your things to be thankful for, because let's face it, many of us writers can appreciate a lot of the same things.

Family and friends.
I could chew up this whole post on how amazing my family and friends are, how supportive they are, how thankful I am for all they do. They have, and continue to go above and beyond the call of duty, and without them I shudder to think of where and what I'd be doing. Probably working a stuffy full time job in some city I hate instead of writing and loving the simplicity of life. This includes my incredible little guy who has no clue about what mommy does on the computer but who makes me laugh and inspires me to be better in every way. Then there's Jenn, who's my number one fan, tech person, fellow founder, and all around rock star big sister. The fact that she has read SAGE like twenty times already in its various stages says it all.

Writing buddies.
Speaking of people who have been kind enough to read some of my rather rough stages in SAGE, I couldn't give thanks without mentioning two of the most spectacular writer friends a girl could ask for. Sara and Jamie, who have stood by me since the day we connected to start a critique group. Without them my book wouldn't be half of what it is today. They didn't even call me crazy when I pulled SAGE back out and started tearing it apart last month. Love them!

Becca Fitzpatrick is just as awesome in person as I imagined and after reading her blog this morning I had to share. Here's that post here. Not that I'm bragging or anything about having the chance to hang with a NYT best selling author and ask her all sorts of writerly questions and stuff, and meeting two other fabulous publishing stars. Getting to know someone who is living the dream I'm aiming for myself and having her be sooo down to earth and excited is about as inspirational as you can get. *Just please excuse the small detail that my face looks puffy and my hair is all flat in the picture.

I couldn't mention each and every person here, but if you're reading this it's safe to say I'm pretty darn thankful for you too. When I started this blog I thought I'd reach about 20 followers, but here I am with 94! You mean people actually want to read my little random rants? Like Lisa & Laura said, I too am so grateful for your comments and I love reading your blogs every morning. I wish I had more time to post comments out there, but know that I am reading them and appreciate you.

HAPPY THANKSGIVING to you and your loved ones. Enjoy!

Friday, November 20, 2009

What do authors, editors and New Moon have in common? My weekend!

I know a lot of you out there aren't so into the Twilight thing, but I am a very big fan, and proud of it. Which of course means I went to the midnight show last night. It was perfection. I won't gush too much but I can tell you it was a thousand times better than Twilight and it was very true to the book. I cannot wait to see it again Sunday to really digest it all. Yep, I said Sunday. Two times in one week. It was sooo worth the 3.5 hours of sleep I got last night.

Now, to continue with my fan girl theme in a whole different way...

I have to head to bed super early tonight so that I can actually wake up in time tomorrow. My sister Jenn and I are heading out at about 5:45 am for Philadelphia to meet the fantastic author of Hush, Hush, Becca Fitzpatrick, and the equally amazing editor, Emily Meehan, from Simon & Schuster who worked on Hush, Hush. I'm extremely grateful that both of them are so gracious to make the time to meet with us. As both an aspiring writer and major fan of Becca, Hush, Hush and the books Simon & Schuster produce, this is way better than meeting any A-list celebrity. Hello, a NYT best selling author and a rock star editor. Um, yeah, no question this will be awesome.

Off to take a nap then let the weekend continue with all its fabulousness...

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

I'll crawl out of this hermit hole soon...

So, I have pretty much sucked at posting on my blog the last few weeks. There has been a lot going on in general, but I'm also hardcore revising my book and query. Which is nothing new since I've been at this for months now and the end is in near!

*Note--there is now a sobbing 2-year-old laying on the floor beside me because he is upset that I won't allow him to consume a very large quantity of soy milk this morning. This also tends to get in the way of things like blogging. It's a good thing he's so darn cute and says things like this...While tucking him the other night I said "Good night, pumpkin," to which he replied with the most serious little face "No, Mommy I'm not a pumpkin. I just Nathan."

Heart officially melted.

But, I have and will have some very exciting things to share here like, my super awesome writing buddy/critique partner who scored an agent, the chat we did with the HUSH, HUSH cover model, heading to Philly to meet Becca Fitzpatrick this weekend, New Moon much good stuff going on that it makes my head spin. In the best of ways, of course. Yep, all of these things will have my fangirl self out in full force. Watch out!

*sigh* I love November...

Now, off to prepare for a day of installing the Christmas display windows at work. Seriously, when did it get to be the time of year for this to happen? I really ought to get out of this hermit hole more often.

Friday, November 13, 2009

This has been so hard to keep quiet

One of the toughest parts about being the first one to break a story is keeping your mouth shut before you share it with the rest of the world. And so, I give you the model from the cover of HUSH, HUSH...

Check out the exclusive interview we did with Drew with even more photos here. Eeeek!!! He's even doing a chat with our forum members Sunday to wrap up our cover week. *sigh* Then it's back to my usual writing and everyday life rants on here.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

The scoop on the follow up to HUSH, HUSH

For our second feature of the week on's HUSH, HUSH Cover Week, Becca was gracious enough to share some info on the cover of the sequel, CRESCENDO! She rocks.
Check it out here.

*I'll be back to blogging with my usual randomness next week, but with how fun all the HUSH, HUSH stuff has been I thought it would be perfect to share here. Even if you haven't read the book it's awesome info on what goes into making a gorgeous cover like this one.

Monday, November 9, 2009

Read Hush, Hush yet? Doesn't matter! Check this out.

Hmm, not sure I have ever been so excited for Monday to come until now. Woohoo! My sister Jenn and I thrilled because today kicks off our HUSH, HUSH Cover Week with a fabulous interview with the genius behind the cover, James Porto. You can check that out on our site here. Be sure to read the note near the bottom because there's a hint at what's to come later and it's HUGE for anyone who loves the cover of HUSH, HUSH. Squeee!

*Sigh* This one of the many reasons I heart this November...

Of course there's also New Moon, finishing my revisions and the biggest thing--there's a good possibility Jenn and I will meet the amazing Becca Fitzpatrick in person while she's in Philly for a convention! Heck, if November rocks this much I can't wait to see what December holds.

Friday, November 6, 2009

Because who doesn't want to win a Kindle

As if Lisa and Laura aren't fabulous enough with their new publisher and all, they're having a contest to give a free Kindle. Yes, I said Kindle. As if we don't love them enough already! All you have to do if visit their blog to become a follower and for more chances to win you can leave a comment and post on your own blog to spread the love. Heck, even if you don't want a Kindle you should follow their blog because it's stinkin' hilarious and these ladies are about to become a household name.

And since I'm on the topic of the incredible LiLa I want to just say how super excited I am to get my hands on A Kate Lowry Mystery: THE HAUNTING OF PEMBERLY BROWN come spring 2011! Congratulations ladies!!! Check out their surprise post with the big news here.

Writing Community

Lin asked us to share our thoughts on the writing community this week for the blog chain. Do we mainly write alone? Do we work with a critique partner or group? Attend workshops? That sort of thing.

This a super easy thing for my to discuss because I simply adore the writing community I've come to know over the last year since beginning my own writing. I would be lost without my critique partners and beta readers like Jenn, Sara, Jamie, Crystal, Nova and the other fabulous volunteers who have read my work. There's no question about it. My writing would be a total mess, my sanity would be gone, and I would likely have given up on Sage. And speaking of critique partners who rock. My rock star writing buddy, Jamie Harrington scored an agent last month!!!! But stay tuned because I plan on posting about her and her kick ass story next week.

Then there are the super awesome writers, bloggers, agents, editors and fellow fans who I've connected with or follow. I'm not the most consistent commenter but I try and read all the blogs in my follow list and always find some helpful writing tip or at least something to make me smile. I love the connection of knowing other writers out there are going through the same things whether they are published or struggling to complete their first novel. I believe strongly that writing is not a solitary art and that if you surround yourself with positive and supportive people your work can only improve.

I have yet to attend any workshops, classes or conferences but I hope to do so at some point down the road. But for now I'm grateful for the people I've found, especially those of you who take the time to read my random posts about my journey and offer comments. Whether they are words of encouragement, sharing your opinion on a question I asked or stopping in to say hello, I truly appreciate each and every one of you. You rock!

Visit the other blogs this week to see how they feel about their writing community. Flames and Shadows, Somewhere Nowhere In My Kingdom, From Elysium, and Girl With a Notebook

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Stand back folks, I'm planning a book binge!

Its like I've been on a reading diet the last couple months since I started my new story then went back to my hard core revisions. This is nothing new. I tend to stray away from reading while I disappear into creating first drafts and such, but I think it's time to feast. There are far too many books sitting on my desk waiting to be read. (not literally, some are my sisters or the libraries -which I have now renewed twice!)

My lack of reading slapped me across the face when I saw Maggie Stiefvater's blog announcing the cover of Linger and a passage from the book. It looks and sounds awesome, but ugh, I haven't read Shiver yet! I've been meaning to since it came out when my sister read it and loved it. Then there's Catching Fire. I bought it the day it came out and have lent it to three people, yet I have yet to crack that exquisite jewel open for myself. Oh, the horror.

With the end of 09 looming and kick ass sequels on the horizon for 2010, I'm putting a stop to this madness and going on a reading binge. Of course I'm waiting until I finish my revisions because I'm dark and twisted and like to torture myself like that.

Here's what my list looks like:

Graceling by Kristin Cashore
Fire by Kristin Cashore
A Certain Slant of Light by Laura Whitcomb
Shiver by Maggie Steifvater
Catching Fire by Suzanne Collins
Wake by Lisa McMann
Fade by Lisa McMann

Ahhh, it sounds good just typing those titles. There's no doubt they will satisfy my YA fantasy cravings. Is it wrong to salivate over a book? I'll keep you posted when I start this little party and of course I'll share my thought on the ones I love, which I'm hoping will be all of them.

Monday, November 2, 2009

Did I seriously write that?

I experienced one of those rough patches last night where everything I read in my manuscript sounded awful. You know those days. Thankfully they pass quickly for me and the next night I'll be in love with it again, but in an effort to motivate myself I went back and read one of my first query drafts.

It's so awful I would never subject anyone (else. yes, I made the HUGE mistake of sending it out to a few agents last year!) to it let alone humiliate myself by sharing it here. It sucks. There I said it. Not even the closing was good. The word count was ridiculous, it was packed with cliches, and the story sounded like crap. After I got over the initial cringe I laughed. I sat there staring at the computer screen with a big ol' smile spread across my face because where I'm at today is light years ahead from that horrible beginner query. Not just the query, my writing, the story--me. We've all come a very very long way in the span of a year. So the next time I hit an icky mood and think my work isn't so hot I'm totally pulling out the old query and first drafts.

So instead of hiding your old work under a bed or if you're considering sending the file to the trash bin, think again. Save it for those days when you second guess your writing because I guarantee you'll see just how far you've come and it will make you feel loads better. But if you're like me and actually allowed other human beings to read the early mess I recommend blocking out that small detail from your mind. It's way easier than crawling under the bed with the dusty old first, second, third or fourth draft.