Tuesday, May 28, 2013

YA Author Smackdown - Teaser

Eve Silver, author of RUSH, and I are both debuting our young adult novels with HarperTeen on June 11th and that can mean only one thing: WAR. 

Here’s our tour schedule for next week. (Please note that we messed up the dates in the video. The Smackdown actually starts June 10th.)
Mon. June 10th – Shortie Says… (www.shortie-says.com)
Tues. June 11th – Good Choice Reading (www.goodchoicereading.com) & Books With Bite (www.bookswithbite.net) (Joint Post)
Wed. June 12th – ReadingTeen (www.readingteen.net)
Thurs. June 13th – Once Upon A Twilight (www.onceuponatwilight.com)
Fri. June 14th – WastePaperProse (www.wastepaperprose.com)

So join us starting on June 10th to vote for the winner of each round and enter to winner awesome prizes!

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

(They Just Keep) Moving the Line

Is it blog chain time again? Why yes, yes it is and I am already a day late in posting this but who's really counting - amiright?

Anywho, let's get things started with this question from the always amazing Cole:

How do you define success? Is it getting published, making the New York Times list, or just finishing a novel?

The moment I read this question, a song from the TV show SMASH (If you haven't seen it, it's about making a musical about Marilyn Monroe. The show is now cancelled and was often terrible, but I have a weakness for musicals and am sad to see it go.) called: "(They Just Keep) Moving the Line".

Three weeks from today - on June 11th - my debut novel will be published. 

Six years ago I started writing with the end goal of just finishing a novel. 

Then I moved the line. 

I wanted to find an agent and get published. 

I finally reached that line with my third novel. It was all I'd ever wanted and it still wasn't enough. 

Now I want great reviews, everyone in the world to buy my book, and to sell another book and another book and another book and... well you get the idea here. 

Making the New York Times list would be HUGE - blind-blowingly HUGE. Buuuut, yeah - even then I'd STILL want more. 

If I were JK Rowling or Stephen King, I think I'd even then keep on wanting more. I don't know exactly what that more would be - maybe something like having someone from five hundred years into the future come in a time machine to tell me that my books are printed on gold because they are considered that precious to people of the future (although, to be honest, if they were printed on toilet paper, I'd probably still fist pump and say "YES! Still in print!"). 

The thing is that humans are wired for wanting the same way that Wile E Coyote's can't help but chase the Roadrunner. And yes, sometimes, the publishing journey can hurt a little bit - but I haven't yet fallen off a cliff, so in that way, I guess I'm still better off than that poor old coyote.

Meep. Meep.

That's it from me, as always, to keep following this blog chain, go check out Sandra's blog next.

Monday, May 6, 2013

(Don't) Play it Again, Sam

It's not only a new month (Yay for May!) but it is also time for a new blog chain. Today Christine is kicking things off with this question:

What are your "go-to" scenes or phrases? You know, the ones you have to remind yourself NOT to use too frequently? What do you do to keep yourself from being overly reliant on them?          

Oh, this question is so perfectly timed since I was just last week finished working on the first round of revisions for my next book and WOW it was very clear to me that I am still way too reliant on certain words.

Specifically JUST and THOUGH.

Just is a junk word that is almost never necessary. AND YET, I love it so. It just (see that there?) adds a little dash of something extra that I love. Sometimes (as in the previous sentence) I will replace it with a 'simply', but it's never as satisfying as a just.

Though, though, is such a lovely transition word. To my ear, it is more invisible than 'however' or the incredibly similar, yet not quite as pleasing 'although'. I just(!) love it.   

So those are my two big crutch words. I also have a punctuation crutch - the dash. Sometimes a comma would be better or a semi-colon (which I doubt I will ever feel completely confident in using), and yet I still reach for - the dash.

As for Christine's final question - how do I kick the habit? That's a question I'm still trying to figure out. Even when I try to be aware and kick these bad habits in the first draft - they somehow sneak in when I am distracted by the larger problems of plotting and characterization. I guess the only really good solution is CTRL+F aka search and destroy.

I've confessed my literary sins, now it's time for the rest of the blog chain to 'fess up, starting with Sandra tomorrow.