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Friday, September 30, 2011

But enough about me... Part 2

Thank you for all the lovely comments on my flash fiction post below.  You people are truly awesome.  Really.  So that's why I'd love to know more about you.  I've got a whole blog here about me.  Blah blah blah.  Let's hear about someone else for a change.
Last time, I asked for your top 10 songs, this time I'd like your list of top 10 books.  Again, the criteria for the 10 is up to you.  Top 10 favorite books of all time, that you just read, that make you cry, that you wish you'd written...etc.  Whatever you want.  I think I'll pick the top ten books that influenced the novel I'm writing revising now.  In no particular order:

1.  Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte
2.  A Crack in the Line by Michael Lawrence
3.  Twilight by Stephenie Meyer
4.  The Phantom of the Opera by Gaston Leroux
5.  Across the Universe by Beth Revis
6.  Falling Under by Gwen Hayes
7.  Shiver by Maggie Stiefvator
8.  Writing the Breakout Novel Workbook by Donald Maass
9. Nevermore by Kelly Creagh
10.  Writing Great Books for Young Adults by Regina Brooks

Dying to see your lists!!!

Monday, September 26, 2011

2nd Campaigner Challenge

Rachael put together a challenge for us to write a brief post 200 words or less with the following requirements:

1.  The word "Imago" be in the title.

A.Entomology . an adult insect.
B.Psychoanalysis . an idealized concept of a loved one, formed in childhood and retained unaltered in adult life.

2.  The following words also had to appear in the post:
A. noxious exhalations from putrescent organic matter; poisonous effluvia or germs polluting the atmosphere.
B. a dangerous, foreboding, or deathlike influence or atmosphere.
A. a gap or missing part, as in a manuscript, series, or logical argument; hiatus.
B. Anatomy . one of the numerous minute cavities in the substance of bone, supposed to contain nucleate cells.
C. Botany . an air space in the cellular tissue of plants.

To gape; to yawn.

an apparently meaningful coincidence in time of two or more similar or identical events that are causally unrelated

Here is my attempt at the challenge.  Enjoy or detest.  
Imago of my author

     When I put down your book for the first time, my heart was full.  You were like a god to me.  A genius of the written word.  No lacuna to be found.  Every word, thought, detail, tight and complete.  Perfection. 
     I thought it was synchronicity when we both suffered slights in an uncaring world.  I seized the chance to reach out to you, to align ourselves to each other at last.  You accepted my life preserver, and together, we drifted away from the miasma of decaying dreams.
      Some days I would oscitate, shocked and hurt at the vitriol the world had to offer.  Sometimes it was you, head in hands, wondering why we still bothered. We would stand before the mirror together each day, hands entwined, searching for signs of ruin.  My eyes didn’t shine as bright.  Your hair became grayer.  But then we would turn to each other and the smile lines would deepen.  If it hadn’t been for the heartbreak, I wouldn’t have found the courage to reach you.  And you are all that matters.   


Thursday, September 22, 2011

But enough about me...

Hello everyone out there!  In the spirit of fairness (and pushing down that debut video post of mine) I decided to do something fun with you.  At least, I think it'll be fun. 
Besides writing, music is very important to me.  I usually listen to music while I write.  It helps me access the right mood, feelings, words.  So I thought I'd post a list of the top 10 songs I listen to while writing my YA novel...which I'm still revising.  In exchange, I hope you'll post your own top 10 list of songs in the comments.  It can be for what you're writing, it can just be the soundtrack of your life, it can be your favorite 10 songs right now, it could be 10 songs you just hate.  Whatever you want.  It's all about you. 

These are the 10 most played according to my Itunes, and you know, Itunes doesn't lie. 

1.  The Consort  - Rufus Wainwright
2.  Trapeze - Iron and Wine
3.  Thinking About You - Radiohead
4.  A Long Goodbye - Erasure
5.  Rise - Gabrielle
6.  I hope tomorrow is like today - Guster
7.  To the Ghosts who write history - The Low Anthem
8.  Porcelain (Trin Remix with Enya) - Moby and Enya
9.  Follow Me  - Paul McCartney
10.  I'm About to Come Alive - Train

What top ten songs make your list?

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Versatile Blogging at it's...um...most versatile? **9/20 UPDATE**

Hello my restless readers!  In the interest of keeping things fresh and interesting, I decided to try a video post!  How cutting edge!  (not really)  What spurred this crazy endeavor, you might wonder?  Well, you'll find out in the video.  

(Could I have posted a video with a more flattering still?  I doubt it.)

One bonus tidbit about me, I'm a little crazy.  Otherwise, why would I decide to debut a video post when I'm coming down with a cold and didn't feel like applying makeup?  This is as real as it gets folks and I decided to just go ahead and throw it on the internet for your consumption.  Yep.  Insane.
As mentioned in the video, big thanks to :

So, that means it's time for me to share the love as well.  So here are my picks for versatile bloggers:
Michael Lawrence  (ok, not technically a blog but he's the king of versatile and I'm a huge fan...in case there was any doubt in your mind.  He's written successfully for babies through adults.  If that ain't versatile, I don't know what is.) 

Go check them out!

And that's all from me right now.  I still have that cold.  Time to sleep it off.  

**9/20 UPDATE**

A fellow campaigner has graciously offered to spotlight other campaigners on his blog and my spotlight is up now.  Thank you so much, Chris for offered up the blog space to help promote your fellow writers.  You're scoring some big time karma points, for sure.  

Also, just pressed 'send' on the submission of my Pajama Girl sequel.  Fingers crossed that goes over well.  Don't forget that MeeGenius, my publisher, is hosting their second new author contest.   That's the reason Pajama Girl is available to you now.  I've definitely enjoyed working with the good people at MeeGenius.  So what are you waiting for?  Head over with your picture book manuscript and take a look at the guidelines.  Maybe YOU will be this years winner!

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Working and hoping

Well, September seems to be a productive month for me.  I guess I shouldn't be surprised.  September has become a happy month for me. 
I sent out a picture book manuscript to a publisher I met through SCBWI in July.  Within 12 hours, she'd responded that the story was 'cute' and they would consider it.  I have no idea how long the considering process might take but I'm pleased to have received that tiny scrap of validation.  It's 'cute'.  It was worth passing on to the next level.  I hope to have great news on that front sooner or later.  We'll see.

I also finished a draft of the Pajama Girl sequel this afternoon and sent it to my illustrator to see what he thinks.  I'll admit it, I've been hyper critical of #2.  It's very difficult.  I truly loved Pajama Girl.  It was like a direct gift from the muse, and a lot like Mary Poppins: "practically perfect in every way".   PG2 required a lot more planning and drafting than PG.  I think I've finally come up with something interesting and new that stays true to PG.  Fingers crossed.

And now, a trilogy you should all read:

The Naia Underwood contest concluded with success.  Our winner is happily reading the first book in the Aldous Lexicon trilogy.  I love those books so much, I'm excited for her, experiencing them for the first time.  If your curiosity is piqued at all, take a look at excerpts from the books.  I dare you to not get sucked in.


Ok, something that you all might actually care about.  MeeGenius, the publisher of my Pajama Girl, is hosting their second annual new book contest.  Pajama Girl was the contest grand prize winner last year.  I can now say that I'm a published children's author.  Prior to the contest, I couldn't say that.  If you have a picture book manuscript, illustrated or not, and you've been sitting on it or getting heaps of rejections, I urge you to consider entering the contest.  I'm certainly happy I did it.  The prizes are pretty awesome this year!  Cold hard cash AND a publishing deal!
I also discovered this week that one of the contestants who didn't place last year just had their story published with MeeGenius, so you never know what could happen. 

You could be distributing postcards like this next year for your own book.  Wouldn't that be awesome?

Thursday, September 1, 2011

September is starting well

Wow, it's been an exciting couple of weeks!  My oldest child started kindergarten last week at my elementary school alma mater.  That's it's own emotional roller coaster, but first and foremost, I am so proud of that girl.  She's excited about what she's learning and she's happy to get up in the morning and get dressed for school.  I love it.  Ok, back to writing stuff.

If you've been following me for awhile, you'll notice some changes here...like the fact that I've doubled my number of followers in a weeks time.  Thank you Rachael Harrie and your awesome campaign!  :::waving and smiling at all my fellow campaigners and new writing friends:::

You'll also notice that super cute sticker in the upper right hand corner.  Thanks to meeting my fellow campaigners, I stumbled across a giveaway to win your own custom blog badge or sticker.  I chose the sticker so I could have a cute link to my digital picture book, PAJAMA GIRL.  Huge thank you to Carrie Butler, for offering the giveaway and designing such a cute sticker.  I love it! 

Another awesome thing is that Elana Johnson is now a follower of my blog!  I find this pretty incredible because I feel like every blog I follow has been buzzing about her debut novel, POSSESSION.  And by 'buzzing' I mean falling over themselves with praise and adoration for her book.  First, Allen Zadoff starting following me on Twitter and now I've got Elana Johnson here, I have totally entered an alternate universe here.  (and I like it!)

And that's still not all.  I am surprised and honored that a fellow campaigner, whilst visiting the plethora of campaigner blogs, decided that my blog was worthy of an award!  So thank you so much, Megan for thinking so much of this blog.  I really appreciate it. 

The award is to recognize bloggers with less than 200 followers.  Recipients of the blog are supposed to award it to 5 other bloggers, because, let's face it, writer's enjoy sharing the love.  I will share the love, I promise, but I'm too brain dead at this exact moment to do so.  I'll try to get to it sometime before Labor Day weekend is over.  Hold me to it folks.  After all, yours may be the blog I award it to.  

Finally, to end this little love fest, I want to remind you that the Naia Underwood giveaway I'm moderating is making me sad because only 4 people have entered.  For the backstory, I'm moderating the social media for Naia Underwood because her creator is an author I deeply admire and consider a friend.  I really, truly, love the trilogy she appears in, The Aldous Lexicon, and I want to see them become successful as ebooks.  Truly, my YA novel would not have been written if it wasn't for the trilogy.  The giveaway winner will be announced this coming Monday, Sept. 5.  So I'm urging you to enter.  All you have to do is Tweet to @NaiaUnderwood or leave a comment on her Facebook page, answering the question, "What would you do if you came face to face with an alternate version of yourself."  (the trilogy deals with alternate realities)  The winner receives a $12 Amazon gift card, which would easily cover the cost of the trilogy, although, of course, you can use it for whatever you want.  Spread the love folks, enter the contest.  It'll set my little heart aglow, and really, isn't that what we all want?