Tuesday, June 28, 2016

From the Archives: WRITING: THE ODYSSEY

Today I'm recycling a 3-and-a-half-year-old blog post, because 1) encouragement is timeless, and 2) there is so much content on this blog from years-gone-by that I'd be downright silly not to pull some of it back up from time to time.

Here I am, three and a half years further along on my journey, and I'm still...journeying.  By now, I'm absolutely convinced that my journey-toward-publication has as much to do with those whose lives I'm speaking into as it does with me.  Sometimes (a lot of times) we need to see tenacity in order to achieve it.  We need to see flames that refuse to go out...attitudes that stay positive...hearts that rally after each disappointment.

And so I offer mine.

Without further ado, I give you:  WRITING--THE ODYSSEY 

Monday, June 27, 2016

I'm Back! And ON THE BLOCK 2016 -- Yes or No??

Hello, dear ones!

It always feels like half a millennium has passed once I get back from vacation.  Yanno?  And the whole getting-back-into-normal-life, for whatever reason, feels like more of a struggle this year.  That might have something to do with the ABSOLUTELY INCREDIBLY WONDERFULNESS vacation-time-with-Mr-A.

Aside from all the schmoopy romance and quality time (I really do love this guy), he READ BOOKS.
*pause for dramatic effect*

Guys.  THIS DOESN'T HAPPEN OFTEN.  In fact, it's about as common as having a sixth finger.  And you can imagine how I've ached over the years to have cozy, bookish conversations with my true love.  Imagine my delight when, after finishing Pride and Prejudice (his first reading--huzzah! It finally happened!), Mr. A dug into Rick Yancey's The Fifth Wave. 


See the OPEN BOOK on my husband's lap??  And I'm especially thrilled because I bought him The Fifth Wave, hopeful that he would love it.  And I was right!  So on the one too-damp-and-dreary-to-do-much-else day we experienced at the shore, we hit our favorite coffee shop.  I plotted, and he read.

(And the thrill hasn't stopped.  Because he is now reading Mary Pearson's The Kiss of Deception, which I read at the shore, and loved BEYOND ALL WORDS.  I suggested we swap books, so I'm now reading The Fifth Wave.  Every time I close the book, Mr. A is all, "So, where are you?"

This has never happened in the entire history of my relationship with this man.  I AM SO HAPPY.

Okay.  I think I've gushed enough.

You understand.  I know you do.

(Also?  If you love YA Fantasy and haven't read The Kiss of Deception yet, STOP EVERYTHING AND READ IT.)

So, I'm back, and the first thing I need to know is DO YOU WANT AN ON THE BLOCK THIS YEAR?

It's no secret that I've cut way back on what I offer here, for the sake of allotting more time to writing (instead of blogging, which is also writing, but not writing writing).  So when I do offer something on a larger scale like this, I want to be sure it's worth the time.  If you want it, I am glad to offer it!  But if the interest isn't great enough, I'd rather not jump in the water.  Because, yes, it is time consuming.

On that note, PLEASE TAKE THE SURVEY THAT POPPED UP ON YOUR SCREEN!  It's not long -- only 8 questions, mostly multiple choice.  Make your voice heard!

And if you didn't see the pop-up, here ya go:


Thank you, all!  It's good to be back.

ANNOUNCEMENT: Premiere Critique Now Available

Here it is -- my official "I've got a slot for you!" announcement.  If you've been waiting to take advantage of a Premiere Critique from Authoress Edits, now's your chance.

What you'll get:

  • A detailed line edit of your first 75 pages
  • An editorial letter
  • A guaranteed 1-week turnaround
Cost:  $260 (made in 2 installments via Paypal)
Note:  No first drafts

Email me at authoress.edits(at)gmail.com to reserve your spot!  First come, first served.

Friday, June 3, 2016

Friday Fricassee

(because she is beautiful)

June!  It's June!

This means, of course, that I'm going on vacation.  Not that I've been around all that much, anyway.  As I mentioned quite some months ago, I'm ramping down this blog in preparation for launching my Real Me author web site.  I'm also spending more time on my writing (I've got 2 projects going at once right now, which is something that's never happened for me before, though I've tried!), which is as it should be.

I've watched my readership here drop (because, well, there hasn't been much to read), and part of me is going OMG MY BLOG MY TRIBE MY PEOPLE MY CONTESTS.  The other part of me, though, is going AH. NICE.

There's more in store for the rest of this year, though.  Let me offer you a bulleted list of Things Both Blog and Non-Blog, shall I?

  • Our next Secret Agent Contest will be in AUGUST.  That gives you a couple of months to POLISH YOUR MANUSCRIPT!  (Hint: SF, Fantasy, Spec Fic, Literary, Contemp, Historical, and Thriller, along with YA and MG across all genres!)
  • I am still not sure whether or not I will host a second ON THE BLOCK this December.  I will be offering a poll when I'm back in town, so if this is something you'd like to see happen, BE SURE TO CAST YOUR VOTE!
  • Yes, I will be hosting another Are You Hooked? round, but I have to wait until Michael fixes the bot glitch.  Keep your eyes on the blog (and my Twitter feed!) for info on this and all in-house critique sessions (as I often come up with them spur-of-the-moment).
  • My recent #CPTwitterSearch--an alternative to the on-blog Critique Partner Dating Service--boasted only a moderate showing on Twitter.  This was my fault, because I came up with the idea in a flurry and threw it out there too quickly.  Next time, I'll give everyone MORE TIME by getting the word out in advance.  My apologies if you missed this!
  • I'm almost finished with my WIP and almost ready to start drafting my now-plotted Next Story.  This will be the first time I've moved straight from one draft into another.  One can only hope that this is a sign that I have somehow achieved a new level of writerness.  Or something.
  • My agent, Danielle Burby, is truly remarkable.  She is working SO HARD on my behalf.  She consistently keeps me in the loop, she's ne'er-say-die, and her belief in me and love for my work are a fire that burns beneath me and KEEPS ME GOING.  Her editorial eye is incredible.  Her sense of the market is excellent, and SHE'S PRETTY MUCH THE ROCKSTAR I'M PAINTING HER OUT TO BE.  If you write in a genre she reps, put her on your query list!
  • Mr. A has lost nearly 25 pounds.  This has absolutely nothing to do with anything, except for the fact that I am INSANELY PROUD OF HIM.  And he is insanely proud of himself (and ready to hit the beach without feeling like a beach ball belly).  The best part is that he had recently gone on BP meds for borderline hypertension--and HE NO LONGER NEEDS THE MEDS.  That's cause for celebration, for sure.
And it's a wrap!  I'll swing by after vacation and see what I can offer up.  I'll also be posting that survey on ON THE BLOCK, so please stay tuned!  I will need to hear from you.  (And, yanno, FEEL FREE to leave your thoughts on this in the comment box today, to give me a general idea of people's feelings on this contest.  I only want to offer things that you REALLY WANT!)

Thursday, May 26, 2016

CP Twitter Search

It's been a while since I've hosted a Critique Partner Dating Service, and I'm sure some of you newer "family members" might like the opportunity to hook up with another writer or two to swap work.

Here's the thing, though--we've got some little snaggy things to work out with our bot.  So I'm going to host this Critique Partner Dating Service on TWITTER!

It's called #CPTwitterSearch

And it's EASY to join in!  Here's how:

From 8 am to 8 pm EDT tomorrow (Friday, May 27), tweet the following to #CPTwitterSearch:

*what you're looking for and/or what you're good at

Note:  This will be CHALLENGING to do in fewer than 140 characters!  But succinct=beautiful.  Here are some examples:

#CPTwitterSearch YA SF/F Grammar Nazi. Big picture. Looking for same.

#CPTwitterSearch MG Contemp NEW WRITER but I'm great at proofreading

#CPTwitterSearch Historical/Agented Author/Looking for peer with equal experience

#CPTwitterSearch YA Mystery/Thriller/Horror/Magical Realism Love doing in-depth line edits!

There you have it.

How will it work?

Simple!  Follow the hashtag.  Reply to anyone who catches your eye.  It's very easy to hook up on Twitter (and you have the added benefit of being able to stalk read people's bios before contacting them, if you'd like.

You'll have TWELVE HOURS to peruse.

Then?  When you hook up?  Tweet to #CPTwitterSearch AND to me, and let me know!

Questions below!