Thursday, June 18, 2015


Here it is, the official day-before-vacation post, with 2 very big GUESS WHATS.


You know that WIP-FROM-HELL I've been bellyaching about?  The one that I've been working on for NINE MONTHS NOW?

I just finished it!


As in, I just typed the word "FIN" in 96-point font at the end of the document.  Because THAT'S HOW GOOD IT FELT.  It was definitely a 96-point moment.

I can't thank you enough for your ongoing support.  YOU ARE ALL AMAZING.  I honestly don't think I could have done it without the collective cheering and encouragement from the writing community.


Remember that job interview you all cheered me through, and how I didn't get the job?  And remember how the gal who interviewed me said she was so impressed with me that she was recommending me for another position, if it ever became available?


The CEO emailed me yesterday and wants to do a phone interview.  Tiny hitch--I'm leaving early in the morning for vacation!  Which I told him.  But I also told him I'd be happy to squeeze it in later today, if he wants.  As of this writing, I haven't heard back yet.


But I'm super excited about this.  It fell out of the heavens at my feet when I was least expecting it.  So we'll see how it goes!  It's not a done deal by any stretch, but it's a terribly exciting opportunity!

Oh, and have I mentioned that IT'S A WRITING POSITION?  As in, online content.  DUDES!  That's what I DO, right?

I'm pretty stinkin' excited over here.

I mean, okay.  I'd be EVEN MORE EXCITED if I were announcing a book deal right now.  But you know what?  I've stopped waiting for that to happen.  And don't you know, that's when life starts to happen.

Bring on the life!

Bring on the vacation!

Love you, and I'll update you on all the things when I get back after the Fourth.

Be good!  Write words!  And see you soon.

Friday, June 12, 2015

Friday Fricassee

Hello and happy Friday!

I'm looking forward to hearing the CP-of-my-dreams stories that I'm sure will be flowing my way over the next few months.  Thanks again for your patience with our broken system.

On that note, here's the skinny:  The bot is permanently broken.  I had a phone chat with Michael, our Bot Guru and Resident Superhero, yesterday, and he threw out several options on how to redo our system.  The short story:  it's a big job.  It's going to take him lots of time.  So here's what you need to know:

1.  We won't be having any major contests/critiques on the blog until the September Secret Agent Contest.
2.  We will do a few (very) small-scale critique things, as I will have to do them by hand, and I simply don't have the time to hand-post large quantities.
3.  Some time in August, we will have a Test Thing on the blog, to see how the new system is working.  (And also I'll be wanting your feedback!)
4.  The new system will work differently.  I'll need you to flex along with me!

That's the bot scoop.  Now here's the Authoress scoop:

I'm leaving for vacation one week from today.  (Hooray! Hooray!)  No week at the shore this year, but we are managing to sneak one night at our favorite beach anyway, in addition to all the family-and-friend-and-other-cool-stuff activities we have planned.  I'm looking forward to time with my parents (who are amazing), and I'm even planning to take a ballet class when we're there (which is terrifying, because I hate going to new places where I don't know anyone).

In short, this is good-bye!  I will be taking the critique partner posts down as planned, and I may pop in next week if I have something that's itching to be shared.  Otherwise, I will see you when I get back after the Fourth.

Authoress Edits clients:  I will resume my schedule when I return.  So if you know you're "next" or think you should be soon, it will be some little while yet.

Oh, and one final plea for all the collective YES-YOU-CAN-FINISH-THIS-WIP-BEFORE-YOU-LEAVE-AND-WE-ARE-ALL-VIRTUALLY-SLAPPING-YOU-UPSIDE-THE-HEAD-EVERY-TIME-YOU-GET-DISTRACTED you can spare.  I, like most of us, do so much better when I feel the energy of the collective.  (Borg, anyone?)

Hugs to all!  I'll come back with stories and photos, surely.

Monday, June 8, 2015

Our 4th Critique Partner Dating Service--FINALLY!

All 79 entries ARE FINALLY UP.  Thank you again for your forebearance!

Guidelines are as follow:
  1.  If you see an entry that looks like it might be a good fit, send an email to introduce yourself (this is not the time to send materials).
  2. If you are interested in an email-less entry, leave a comment requesting the email address.
  3. If you're not sure you want to send an email, leave a comment asking further questions.
  5. This is a public list.  I am no longer the "middle man."  Please do not come to me with your dating woes.  (If you have a legitimate technical difficulty, I will always help you with that.)
  6. For security purposes, I will remove these entries from the blog one week from tomorrow.
Please post your questions below!  I will check the comments regularly and try to stay up to date with public questions.

Also:  If your entry looks wonky or is in any way unreadable, or if you've forgotten to include your email address or name or anything else, PLEASE EMAIL ME.  I am always happy to fix things.

Happy dating!

Update: Critique Partner Dating Service

Here's where we're at:

The first 44 posts are ready to roll, and will begin to post at 9:01 a.m.  The rest of the posts will go up as soon as possible, as Michael and I continue to work through this mess!

If this Blogger/bot mess had to happen, though, I'm glad it happened now, instead of during something highly time-sensitive like a Secret Agent Contest.  Right?  Looking for the lemonade!

Thank you for your patience.

Friday, June 5, 2015

Friday Fricassee

Two things!

1.  If you're wondering why the Critique Partner Dating Service isn't live yet, here's why:

Yesterday morning, when I checked my Blogger post line-up, none of the entries were in there.  This was suspicious, to say the least, because the bot immediately starts posting for me as soon as a submission round closes.  Sure enough, the posts (all 79 of them) were still sitting in the database.  When I tried to post a couple of them by hand, I got an error message.

Enter the irreplaceable Michael, who created the bot in the first place and who is incredibly supportive on an ongoing basis.  Michael will fix this, I thought.  He is Ironman.  No worries.

Except, he couldn't fix it.  Because Blogger changed something, and now, in order for the bot to work properly again, Michael is going to have to do some major work.  But no worries for the CP Dating Service, because Michael extracted the entries for me last night, and, while I was busy drooling on my pillow, he created posts for over half of them.  So I have much less work to do than I thought.

I am so spoiled.  When this blog was new, I did all my posting by hand.  Michael made things magical, and now I'm used to the magic.  All that to say, thanks for bearing with me--and the posts will be up on Monday morning for you to peruse!

2.  On Wednesday and Thursday, I wrote 1000 words each.  It may not seem like it deserves fireworks -- 1000 words a day is, after all, my normal rate for drafting.  But you all know that this has been the draft from hell, stretching way beyond my normal 3-months-per-draft rate.  I've been slogging through at a couple hundred a day, if I'm lucky.  Some days, I haven't even written (life is busy right now, but it's still not like me to not prioritize the writing).

I realized on Wednesday that I needed to tap into the wonderfulness of the writing community to ask for help.  Sometimes we need that collective, affirming energy to keep going, yes?  So I posted a long-winded plea on Facebook, the crux of which was this:

WILL YOU PLEASE SHOUT ME THROUGH THIS OR SOMETHING? Throw me a line, promise me chocolate, write me a sonnet, cheer me on. If I don't get this thing drafted by the time I leave for vacation (in 15 days!), I will be SO SAD! Okay? Can I count on you? Will you tough love me through to the end??

 Lo and behold, help came from all corners.  Shouts, cheers, inspirational videos, detailed writing advice, empathy, solidarity. It is A DIRECT RESULT OF THIS AMAZING SUPPORT that I was able to write so productively for the past two days--and I'm confident that today will be the same. So I want to publicly shout out to the writers/colleagues/friends who took time to pour a little bit of themselves into me when I cried out for help.  You all gave me the gift of FINDING MY WRITING SELF AGAIN, and realizing that I DO have the strength and determination to PUSH THROUGH.  Two weeks and counting--I'm going to nail this thing. Thank you!

  • Angela Ackerman
  • Amethyst Adams
  • Kathleen S. Allen
  • Erin Bow
  • Heather Davis
  • Pat Edsen
  • Dana Smith Edwards
  • Christine Fonseca
  • Myrna Barber Foster
  • Deena Graves
  • Cat Hudgins
  • Margarett Ann Jones
  • Alice Loweecey
  • Kathryn Magendie
  • Jodi Meadows
  • Ishta Mercurio
  • Scott Mitchell
  • Elizabeth Mueller
  • Christine Nguyen-McGrew
  • Sue Stella O'Connor
  • Heather Petty
  • Melody Peugh
  • Jamie Wyman Reddy
  • Karen Rose
  • Christine Stockton
  • Amy Trueblood

  • I'm on track again BECAUSE OF YOU.

    And on that note -- have a fantastic weekend, everyone!  See you Monday.

    Thursday, June 4, 2015

    CP Postings Delayed

    I'm weeping into my tea over here.

    Okay, not really.  It's too warm for tea today.  But I'm ever so frustrated to announce that the Critique Partner Dating Service will be delayed until Monday.

    Reason?  Blogger changed something, and the bot isn't able to post.  Therefore, I've got 79 posts waiting over in bot-land, AND THEY CAN'T MOVE ANYWHERE.

    Which means, of course, that I will have to post them by hand.  And that will take a bit of time, which is why I'm giving myself until Monday.

    I am so sorry!  This was an unforeseen snag, but rest assured that your critique partner dating can get under way bright and early Monday.

    In the meantime, please send chocolate, wine, and someone with a British accent to read Tolkein to me while I work.

    Thanks for your patience!

    Tuesday, June 2, 2015

    One More Time: Critique Partner Dating Service

    It's been a while, mostly because participation in our last round was fairly low.  I've had some requests for another round over the past few months, though, so I felt like now was as good a time as any.

    So, ARE YOU LOOKING FOR CRITIQUE PARTNERS?  Now's your chance to find some!

    Here's the disclaimer:  Finding good critique partners really is like finding good life partners.  Just because you both write fantasy or you've both been writing for exactly three years or your first names both begin with "N" doesn't mean you're going to be a good fit.  Relationship is a huge part of this, in addition to artistic vision and the ability to "get" each other's work.

    So keep in mind that, as you seek people to swap work with, things may or may not work out, and that's okay.  What I'm offering you here is a springboard; a chance to get your name and your needs out there in the hope that you may click with someone.

    • Starting at 10:00 AM EDT TOMORROW (Wednesday), the bot will accept your Dating Service Entry.  The submission window will remain open until 11:57 PM EDT.
    • Submit your entry HERE.
    • Up to 100 entries will be accepted.  Even if we only get 2 entries, though, I will still post them.
    • Please format your entry EXACTLY as outlined below, for ease of browsing.  Please note that the word count for these entries will be limited to 100.  
    TITLE: (Put your screen name OR your first name here; NOT a title. Full name NOT NECESSARY)
    GENRE: (list ALL genres that you write)

    Then, in the body of the submission:

    EMAIL: (PLEASE use (at) instead of "@"!! Like this: Authoress(at)

    I'm working on my {1st/2nd/47th} novel.

    {And here's your "pitch about me" -- a sentence or two that will express who you are and what your goals/dreams are.}
    • All entries will post on Thursday, June 4.  You may browse the entries and contact anyone who seems like a potential match.
    • YOU ARE NOT OBLIGATED TO CRITIQUE THE WORK OF SOMEBODY WHO CONTACTS YOU.  NEITHER IS ANYONE OBLIGATED TO CRITIQUE YOUR WORK SIMPLY BECAUSE YOU CONTACTED HIM.  This is simply a jumpstart to creating new friendships that could potentially become critique partnerships.
    • I will remove the entries after one week.  Simply because I don't think it's wise to keep this information up for longer than that.
    To clarify the above, here is a sample entry:

    TITLE: Authoress

    EMAIL: Authoressmail(at)

    I am working on my ninth novel.

    I'm agented by the fabulous Josh Getzler and I'm addicted to Twitter.  I'm a grammar nazi and my critiquing strengths lie in sentence structure, clarity, and dialogue. 

    (You can write whatever you want about yourself.  Not to "sell" yourself, but to give a glimpse of who you are and where you're at in your journey.)

    Please ask your questions below!