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Name Calling

  Posted by Professor VJ Duke in The Punchy Lands!, 30 October 2014 · 9 views

So, you know how it usually happens.

The professor is about when something dreadfully vexing happens. Well, in this case, it wasn’t vexing, just a bit silly.

And maybe embarrassing.

Especially after all I’ve said about that fellow with the wig and sandals named Darcy.

You see, this professor had stopped by…well, now that I think about it, I’m not sure what type of place it was. But it was a place where one could get some food.

But it wasn’t a normal place.

But it wasn’t normal food.

But it wasn’t a normal place.

Anyway, I had placed my order, and a name was asked for.

Now, you must understand, that this professor is secretive. You see, I don’t go by my real name when I’m out (i.e. Professor VJ Duke), for then this professor might get into trouble.

So, I gave my fake name for this order, and…well, they must have gotten the name wrong.

This was the name on the order. And I think I promise it wasn’t the name I gave. Professorish promise.

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Thursday Thoughts

  Posted by bigblackcat97 in Writer, Writer Pants on Fire, 30 October 2014 · 16 views

Thoughts lately...<br /><br />1) If I wrote a Dr. Seuss-esque book about the research I do for my novels it would be titled "Oh, The Things You Now Know." It would be totally inappropriate for children.<br /><br />2) For some of my upcoming titles it's going to be very hard to answer the oft-asked question, "Where did you get the idea for this book?" If I'm honest the answer will be things like, "<i>Well, I was lying in bed and thinking that being awake for a lobotomy would really hurt</i>," and "<i>One day I was thinking about Woody Guthrie and brain parasites...</i>"<br /><br />3) Why are the buttons on men and women's shirts different?<br /><br /><br />

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Getting the Call with Tasha Cotter

  Posted by Michelle4Laughs in Michelle4Laughs: It's in the Details, 30 October 2014 · 18 views

I'm happy to have Tasha Cotter here to provide inspiration right before the big agent round starts for Nightmare on Query Street! From poet to commercial writer. You need an agent in your corner.




There are a lot of things I never realized back in my MFA days. For one thing, I didn’t understand what an agent actually did (no one talked about agents), and I certainly didn’t know when you might need one (if you plan to query commercial projects) and when you don’t need one (looking at you, Poets). It was only after I got an MFA in Creative Writing that I began to shift from poetry to fiction. And after checking out lots of library books and reading lots of blogs I began to sort of connect the dots: Agents are there to serve writers. They help writers get a foot in the door. They are deal-makers. They are an advocate for the author.

I got my first agent at a young age, and the experience didn’t go so well. It did, at first. I was told my work was great. I was informed that editors were reading my work and they were very interested (whatever that meant). I was told a lot of things. Years passed and I began to feel like the relationship was not working the way it needed to: there were too many unanswered questions. I was in the dark a lot, and getting no feedback on my work (editorial, or otherwise). Looking back, I was young and naïve and I didn’t know what was to be expected and what wasn’t. In the end, I had to part ways with that agent, which was a very scary experience, but, looking back, a necessary one.

I decided to venture into the publishing world on my own. I discovered that there were lots of indie presses and open calls for new work. If you were writing fiction, especially literary fiction, you could get your work read by small-to-medium sized indie publishers. But in order to get a more commercial project looked at by a big house, you still needed an agent.

I felt a little burned by my whole experience with an agent, to be honest, so I didn’t look for another one right away.  I focused on my writing. I did a lot of online research and reading about the publishing industry. I began to query for a book I co-wrote with my friend Christopher Green. The book, Us, in Pieces, began as an idea back in 2010 and it was completed in 2011. We’d been continuing to work on it over the last few years and I knew the book was something special. We kept the most up-to-date version in Google Drive, and continued thinking about the book, re-writing sections, and emailing each other about the book. Each time I opened the manuscript I began to feel like it needed to be out there, circulating. It felt like the most wonderful secret. Us, in Pieces is a love story across time. It’s a novel-in-letters (and e-mails, and text messages, and chats). It’s a whip-smart love story born out of silence that follows two old friends into the unforgiving and wild terrain of the heart.

I began to send the book out. At one point I think I emailed Chris to say, hey, here’s a list of where I’ve sent our book!  

There was some initial interest. One agent in particular seemed to match our level of passion about the project. Her name was Alice Speilburg. I found out about her from a friend. She opened her literary agency, Speilburg Literary in Louisville, Kentucky in 2012. After reading her website, I liked what I saw. I also liked that she clearly had placed books, and had a background in the business.

After sending her a partial, she got back to me almost right away that she’d like to read the full manuscript. I sent it to her immediately, then waited.

A little over two weeks later I got an email from her that began: I love this story.

I was eating lunch at the time, squinting to read the email on my phone. After rereading her email, I got up and threw away my lunch, half-eaten. I was grinning from ear to ear, stunned. I re-read her email again then forwarded it onto Chris. I loved how interested she seemed. I could sense her passion for the project right away and I appreciated her observations about the manuscript. It was clear that she had experience in the industry and saw a lot of potential in the book.

Two days later I spoke to her on the phone and after talking for about thirty minutes she offered representation. I loved how open and transparent she was about how she works. She knew I’d had a bad experience in the past and she was willing to be detailed about how she worked, how she preferred to communicate, and what I could expect if we were to work together.

The tricky thing about working on a collaborative project, and then shopping the project to agents, is that there has to be an open line of communication. I knew Chris had started querying agents himself, so I sent an email to Chris letting him know about the discussion and letting him know that he’d likely be getting a call from her, too. Since he didn’t have an agent, she may be offering him representation, as well.


It was a good day. Scratch that. It was a very good day.

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Tasha Cotter's first full-length collection of poetry, Some Churches, was released in 2013 with Gold Wake Press. Twice nominated for the Pushcart Prize, her work has appeared in journals such as Contrary Magazine, NANO fiction, and Booth. Her debut novel, Red Carpet Day Job, is forthcoming in 2015 with Bookfish Books. A graduate of the University of Kentucky and the Bluegrass Writers Studio, she lives in Lexington, Kentucky, where she works in higher education.



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W.O.W. – Writer Odyssey Wednesday with Jen McConnel

  Posted by Amy Trueblood in Chasing The Crazies , 29 October 2014 · 28 views

      Persistence. It is the driving force that pushes many writers on, urging them to send one more query or write that next manuscript. In today’s W.O.W., Jen McConnel talks about how each “no” she received drove her to work her harder and fight for the ever elusive “yes” in publishing. It is that persistence that […]

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An Interview by Fiona Mcvie

  Posted by Deb Borys in Debra R. Borys, 29 October 2014 · 18 views

Finoa Mcview has one of the most prolific author interview sites I’ve ever seen.  If you want to find new authors to follow, or learn more about some of your favorites, I suggest you visit her blog, “Author Interviews.” She … Continue reading

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Wednesday Words: A Hundred Thousand of them!

  Posted by DebsBlueRoses in The Writer Ambitious, 29 October 2014 · 18 views

Happy Wednesday!

By Blood We Live was CRAZY good! I'm so glad I stumbled onto Glen Duncan. Phenomenal writer!

On a whim a couple of weeks ago, and I tweeted the article I'd read, I decided to look up black fantasy writers to see what I'm working with, so to speak. (Being a black speculative fiction writer is a totally other topic, and I'll probably work on that for Friday, but...) The article gave me SIX fantasy AND sci-fi writers, only one of which I'd heard of already, my spirit animal/vampire mother, Octavia Butler. The writer of the article said there were more, but geez, can you write an article with a list, or something? (I'll Google them, but still, if she could only pick 6, then I imagine there aren't that many others.)

I went with whichever cover gripped me most for fantasy (One book was voodoo-y, and the cover of another was jungle-looking, sooo...) and chose N.K. Jemisin's The Hundred Thousand Kingdoms, which is actually Jemisin's debut. The cover is AWESOME. Look at it. The story is set around the princess of an outcast princess whose grandfather named her one of three heirs to his throne. So I'm guessing a fight to the death will ensue.

Now, because it is Wednesday Words, I will be using Random.org to pick a page and a line from the page to give everyone (and myself) a taste of what I'm reading.

There are 427 pages in The Hundred Thousand Kingdoms, and Random has chosen page........358.

There are approximately 21 lines on that page, and they're all like half sentences (the print is wide-set), so I'm going to go with sentences today. Random has.........gone down the middle and chosen sentence 10.

I consoled myself with the fact that at least the poor soul in the oubliette was dead now.

Yikes.

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How You Can Help Your Small Press Writer Friends – Start by Sharing This Post

  Posted by From The Write Angle in From The Write Angle Blog, 28 October 2014 · 48 views

by RS Mellette

A while back, Sophie Perinot posted here about how helpful pre-orders are for a published writer. That was way back in 2012, but it's still true today, especially for books coming out from major publishers. The majors have very little patience, so a book that doesn't catch fire right away can quickly fall out of favor. Pre-orders help fight corporate anxiety and give a book better first week numbers. That's a great way to have your purchase do a tiny bit more to help promote the book.

But since 2012, the market has changed dramatically. Small presses and self-published authors play in the same electronic playground as the majors and they are all fighting for the same thing – good word of mouth that turns into sales. Thankfully, small presses have more patience when it comes to building an audience.

Since you're reading this article, you know at least one small press author with a book on the market (me), and probably more. Since you're a nice person you're probably wondering, "How can I help my friends with their book?  I don't know anything about publishing."

Not to worry. In a world full of social media there is plenty you can do to help – and the best news is, you can scale up your participation depending on how much you want to do.

For example:  Let's say the writer you know isn't really someone you know, you know?  Maybe you have thirty-seven mutual friends on Facebook, but for the life of you, you can't remember who this person is. Still, you'd like to do your bit … as long as you can do it from your phone while you're taking a break from work in the restroom. This is easy. If they invite you to like their author's page, do. If they post something about their book, like the post. In two quick seconds, you've done your part.

But let's say you do remember how you know the author. Maybe you went to high school or college together. Sure, you haven't talked to them since then – but fifteen years ago (or thirty… five years ago), you were close friends. You'd like to do a little more to help the author out. What can you do?

Here's the first thing that people often forget to mention:  READ THE BOOK. Chances are, you'll like it. If you don't, you can still politely like their pages and posts. I don't think anyone is going to hunt you down for liking a post about a book that isn't worth the cover price, and you'll still be socially safe when you run into your friend at a reunion.

If you do like the book, then your assistance can scale up again. Go from liking posts to sharing them. A small press book has to sell tens of thousands of copies to be a success on the scale of one from the majors. I don't know of anyone with ten thousand actual friends and family, much less ones that are willing to cough up money for a book. Sharing posts with your friends is the easiest way to have an impact on the number of people who are aware of the title. Hopefully, that awareness will lead to a new reader, and then a new fan.

Still want to do more?  Great!  Post a review on Amazon. Reviews are the biggest way to boost sales, period. Don't worry, you don't have to say much. If you love the book, give it five stars and write something as literary as, "I love this book!"  If you have a Goodreads account, post a review there. While you're at it, copy a link from your Amazon review to Facebook. That way, your friends can click on the link and see your brilliance.

Still want to do more?  You're fantastic!  I hope you're a friend of mine.

Talk about the book with people who might be interested in it. For example:  Say your author-friend has written … I don't know… a Sci-Fi adventure that's good for 6th-9thgraders. You might know some 6th-9th graders. You might know their teachers or librarians. You might have a relative or two looking for good gifts for that hard-to-shop for geeky 'tween. You can be the hero with a single sentence, "I read a book they might like."

And, who knows, if the title becomes a household name, and you're at some stuffy cocktail party and that person who constantly looks down his nose at you mentions the title of the hot new indie book they've just read, you can say, "Oh, yeah, the author is a friend of mine, and I helped make that book the hit that it is."

Look for R.S. Mellette's new book, Billy Bobble Makes a Magic Wand in December from the independent publisher, Elephant's Bookshelf Press.  

R.S. Mellette is an experienced screenwriter, actor, director, and novelist. You can find him at the Dances With Films festival blog, and on Twitter, or read him in the Spring Fevers, The Fall: Tales of the Apocalypse, and Summer's Edge anthologies.  


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Manga Review: A Bride’s Story Vol. 6

  Posted by Sakura Eries in Sakura Eries' Blog: Keeping It In Canon …mostly, 28 October 2014 · 21 views

Kaoru Mori is best known for her work, Emma, an exquisite romance/slice-of-life set in Victorian England. Her latest work to be released in the United States, A Bride’s Story, is also a historical/slice-of-life but is vastly different than Emma. Set in Central Asia in a rural town near the Caspian Sea during the early 19th century, A Bride’s Tale revolves around a young woman, Amir, who arrives from a distant village across the mountains to marry Karluk, a boy 8 years her junior. Volume 6 has recently been released, and you can read on for the review. (For reviews of other volumes, click here.)

Back Cover Blurb

Acclaimed creator Kaoru Mori’s tale of life on the nineteenth-century Silk Road heads back to Amir and Karluk. In the year since his marriage, Karluk has grown a good deal, but Amir can’t help but feel overprotective of her much younger husband. Karluk wants nothing more than to prove that he can be a strong and competent man–and he may soon have the opportunity to prove just that. Desperate for land to feed their flocks, Amir’s former tribe prepares to attack her village with a fearsome arsenal of cannons and guns provided by their new allies. This time the Halgals are not interested in capturing Amir–no one is safe from their terrible assault!

The Review

After spending the last couple volumes with twin brides Laila and Leily, the story returns to its original bride Amir and her native clan’s as of yet unresolved dilemma. It’s been a while since the story’s touched on this particular arc, and Mori-sensei provides a handy recap of the circumstances that drove the Halgal to try to take Amir from her new family. While the Halgal’s failure to retrieve Amir resulted in a happy ending for her and Karluk, it left the Halgal with no solution for their predicament. Now, with winter approaching, the tribe is desperate, and the one who really shines in the tumult is Amir’s brother Azel.

Recent chapters have spent a lot of time on kids starting to take on the role of adults. Even Volume 6 opens with Karluk arguing with Amir because he wants to wear the clothes of a man, not a boy. However, once Azel returns to the story, everything changes. He is without question a man. Most of this volume is told from his perspective, and these chapters paint him as both a sympathetic and sexy character. Mori-sensei seems to revel in showing off Azel’s masculinity, whether on horseback, hunting game, or on the battlefield. She even finds an excuse to have him go shirtless for several pages, and yes, it is dazzling eye-candy.

The Halgal’s crisis causes a split among generational lines. Unfortunately, seniority trumps all, and Azel and the other young men must obey their elders despite their misgivings. The clan chief’s eagerness to ally himself with the Badan is the weakest part of the plot. The deal’s so obviously fishy that a disgusted Joruk says, “Even I can see that, and I’m an idiot!”

However, if you can ignore the fact that the Halgal elders are wholesale fools, the rest of the book is an excellent read. The subsequent joint attack on the village is thrilling with battle scenes that jump off the pages. Karluk and Amir once more display their bravery and devotion to one another, but Azel is the one who really shines. I have a feeling that his fangirl following will rise sharply after this installment.

Extras include Mori-sensei’s manga style afterword.

In Summary

The Halgal plot another attack on Karluk’s village. This time it’s not about seizing a bride but taking everything. Amir’s older brother is the star of this volume, a stunning contrast to his seemingly deranged father. If you’ve wanted to see the strength of a nomadic herdsman exemplified, this volume showcases Azel’s skills both in the solitary wilderness of the mountains and in the heat of battle.

First published at the Fandom Post.




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Love & perspective: How to succeed at NaNoWriMo

Posted by Selene Bell in Confessions of a Binge Reader, 28 October 2014 · 35 views

Last November, I wrote 59,863 words, completing the rough draft of what I would come to title Little Bird, Broken Monster. It was hard work, but it didn’t seem like it because I had so much fun and was so invested in my story. Almost all of that writing ended up in my completed manuscript. Here are some tips:

Make a plot plan before November starts. Before this, I’d always been a pantster—as in I plotted as I wrote. Because of my concept, though, I knew early in the process that wouldn’t work. There were multiple story lines I had to plot and match with the others to figure out the best way to shape the puzzle, essentially. I hung big posters above my writing desk, each focusing on an essential idea.

Know who your characters are. I had named them, I’d determined what their motivations were, and I knew what my main character didn’t know about the secondaries—which was key to the plot. I decided I would write a first-person, present tense, single speaker POV—which I had confidence I could just let pour out, so I wouldn’t have to think about it as I wrote. I also knew Wren would be sarcastic and all her description would come from the experience a poor kid would have. So my word choice and writing style had to match that.

But stay flexible. As I wrote, I didn’t pressure myself to stay tied to my story plan or character sketches. If something didn’t feel right, I changed it—up to and including the fate of my main character.

Give your story something to mean. By that, I mean give a character an issue you’re passionate about, or make a character represent an injustice that pisses you off. When you feel strongly about an issue, the words flow—and when you feel like you’re doing good in addition to writing your heart out, it’ll help motivate you through tough spots. For example, the plight of foster kids without a clear future, or a chance for a promising future, upsets me like just a few other issues. The main character in the book I did for NaNoWriMo last year is just such a character.

Write. And write. And write write write write. I wrote when I got up in the morning. I wrote when my 3-year-old was in the bathtub, in preschool and ballet. I wrote when I’d usually nap, and I wrote when I got home from work at midnight. I didn’t watch TV. I stayed off Twitter, Facebook and email. I didn’t write blog posts. I didn’t read any novels that month or any of my critique partners’ work. And mostly, I didn’t miss those things. I was enthralled by my story. In fact, the only time I didn’t write was when I was at work, commuting, showering, sleeping, and when my daughter was at home and I was the only person here with her. I did write while I made us lunch though. And often, when I couldn’t write, I was thinking about what I’d be writing next.

But don’t focus too much on your word count. It sounds counterintuitive, but when you pay so much attention to the numbers, your attention is not on your words and your story. You kind of have to go in with the attitude, “I can totally do this! But if I don’t, there’s always December, and my story will be awesome no matter when it’s finished!” And definitely don’t compare how far you are to how far other people are. Because that makes you lose focus on your story, too.

Don’t get caught up in editing. That takes up valuable time. Being a copy editor, I’m generally a proponent of editing, but for this one month project, just don’t. Sometimes it helps not to second-guess yourself. Sometimes it’s just good to set all that aside and save it for your next draft.

Consider a subplot. If you’re not sure you can focus on one story line for an entire month, maybe adding a side story will help. When you start to get that itchy, maybe-I’ll-watch-a-movie feeling, you can switch over to the other plot. I’ve heard solid subplots should be about 25-30 percent of your story, though that’s not a hard and fast rule. Subplots can be different characters from the same family or organization, or it can be side characters who actually interact with your mains. The key thing is to make it interesting, and make it complimentary to your main plot line, which can mean emphasizing the opposite.

Love your story. If it’s work, it won’t get done. But if you’re genuinely excited about your story and your characters—if every time you sit down you don’t have to force yourself to focus, you just are focused— NaNoWriMo will go far better.

Love the people in your life. You have to have buy-in from your family members to even attempt this, and more important, you have to remember that this is setting an artificial deadline for yourself. If it doesn’t work out, who really cares? November will pass, and the people who love you will still be there, and so will your manuscript, just waiting for your tender, loving care and everything you can imagine for it.

www.selene-bell.com

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Nightmare on Query Street has BEGUN! Agents, Welcome!

  Posted by SC_Author in SC Write--Writing, Publishing, and Harry Potter, 28 October 2014 · 30 views




NIGHTMARE ON QUERY STREET IS HERE!!


Are you guys excited? BECAUSE WE ARE!!


Below this post, you'll find the thirteen Spooks I picked with the help of the amazing slush readers, Laura and Nicole. 




You can head over to Michelle's and Mike's blogs as well. (But why would you, when we Spooks are obviously the best?)




Sorry everyone, but no commenting, cheerleading, etc. (I've deleted the few comments that have been made.) Only agents will be able to comment.

BUT

PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE


CHEER OVER ON TWITTER! We're going to be under the hashtag #NoQS and we will be having FUN. So vent, be nervous, cheer each other on, and hold hands over Twitter. One of the best parts of contests is seeing how the writer's community gathers and supports each other.


Spooks, we all have to gather and annihilate the Minions and Monsters (both start with M, how boring).

For the next two days, agents will have fun ways to request in the contest.

They can SCREAM for a full request.
They can SHRIEK for a 50 page request.
They can SHIVER for a 10 page request.

Agents, in your comments, be sure to include any other material you'd like to see (like a synopsis) and any unique email address you'd like the submission to be sent to.

And agents can make as many requests as they want! So go wild! We have some awesome talent for you to peruse.

GOOD LUCK EVERYONE!! Hope you all get a ton of frighteningly amazing requests!


Once a Spook, always a Spook!






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Oprah sneaks her own supply of rare truffle into Miami restaurant

Posted by pennydress in pennydress' Blog, 28 October 2014 · 25 views
dresses australia

 
 
Oprah Winfrey’s love of truffles clearly knows no bounds.
Just a few days after Instagramming a series of pictures of herself on a truffle hunt in Italy, the TV host turned up to top Miami restaurant Prime 112 with her own truffle in tow, before presenting the rare white truffle to the chef so it could be shaved over her Kobe Beef burger.  
One witness told the New York Post, 'Oprah not only rolls deep in a huge toe-crunching SUV and more security than the president, she also rolls with her own personal truffle.'
 
'I’m a truffle freak,' she told reporters at the premiere of The Hundred-Foot Journey in August.
'I walk around with truffle salt. That’s on my rider for the hotels - truffle salt, truffle oil. I want to go to Alba [in Italy] and do the truffle hunt with the pigs,' she added.
Earlier this month, she fulfilled that dream, traveling to Umbria, Italy, to hunt for the delicacy with her best friend, Gayle King, and Ms King's daughter, Kirby Bumpus.
'Best trip ever! thank you @SabatinoTruffles for helping me fulfill bucket list dream. Here's to TRUFFLES!,' she wrote on Instagram alongside a photo of herself holding up one of the rare mushrooms.
 

 



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Robin Gianna & Keeping the Muse Alive

  Posted by Jemi in Just Jemi, 27 October 2014 · 25 views

Please welcome Robin Gianna to the blog today!
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When Life gets Rough, how can you Keep the Muse Alive?

First, thank you, Jemi, for having me here today!  I’m going to share a bit about my recent life
challenges, in the hope some of you may find what I’ve learned in the process helpful to your own writing life.

Everyone handles life’s challenges differently.  I know people who find solace in their writing.  When life is otherwise full of problems, they retreat into their imaginary world of story to replenish and heal.

Unfortunately, I’ve found myself to be the opposite of that, which has proven to be a not-good thing!  About five years ago, before I was published, my parents had one health crisis after another before my father passed away.  I was responsible for taking care of everything—getting them in and out of the hospital and rehab, doing their grocery shopping, and you-name-it.  It was challenging,  especially since I had all three of my children still at home then.  My writing was the first thing I threw aside, because it seemed the most expendable.  And what that really shows, I now realize, is that my own needs and wants are always the first to go, which isn’t the best way to keep myself healthy and able to care for everyone.

This year, my mother’s health has dramatically declined, and again, it’s been up to me to manage all that entails - doctors, hospitals, caregivers, bills, hospice.  I have only one child home now, but even college kids need  help moving into new apartments, and obviously being with them is something I love to do.  I feel guilt when I don’t spend time with my dying mother, and guilt when I don’t spend enough time with my children or my husband.  And now that I’m a published author, I feel guilt that I’m falling short there, too.

Believe me, there’s more guilt than you can imagine that my current manuscript is quite late!

I’ve been beating myself up about all of this, because I think that’s what women do.  We try to be everything to everyone, and eventually it takes its toll.  So I’ve finally learned a few things about handling crises while still somehow keeping our muse alive:

1.   Ask for support and accountability from writer friends.  Agree on some kind of daily word count you will be accountable for.  Even if it’s something very small, it will keep you in the story, give you a positive feeling that you’re still making progress on your wip, and you’ll have the emotional support of your friend/s as well.

2.   Find a place in your wip where you can use some of the emotions you’re feeling.  If you’re going through a divorce, think about how that pain can apply to a character’s past or present.  If you’re losing or have lost a loved one, is there a character who has had to deal with that in their past?  Mine those emotions.  You may find it enriches your manuscript at the same time it’s an outlet for the feelings you may otherwise be keeping bottled up.

3.  Don’t compare yourself to others.  I have a tendency to say to myself, “But Author X writes 5,000 words a day!  Why can’t I do better, get more done, since I’m so behind?”  The answer is, because I’m not Author X.  There are some days I can crank out that kind of word-count.  But on a consistent basis, I just can’t.  And that’s okay.  I have to find what works for me, especially when I have so many other demands on my time.  But do sit down and write, even if it’s only for half an hour.  You’ll be happier knowing you haven’t thrown your writing completely aside, which never feels good.

4.  Ask for help.  I don’t know about you, but I think that, when times get tough, we tend to put our heads down, grit our teeth, and GO, taking everything upon our own shoulders.  A couple months ago, I felt like I was drowning in all I had to do while feeling emotionally drained as well.  Something happened that showed my husband how really on the edge I was, and he said in surprise, “Are you feeling stressed?”  At first I stared in disbelief, then felt angry.  How could he not know I was beyond stressed?  Then I realized it was my fault.  It was because I was doing that head-down and go thing, not sharing how I was feeling, and not asking for help.  That was eye-opening to me, and I began to open up more and ask for help from him and from my kids. 

5.  If you’re published, be honest with your agent and/or editor.  While I was trying to convince myself I really could finish the book in time, I was reluctant to be honest with my agent and editor about what was going on with me.  When I finally did, it was a tremendous relief.  Both were sweet, understanding and helpful.  Knowing they were supporting me instead of frowning, and learning it wasn’t a problem for me to have a little more time, went such a long way to my feeling better.  Consequently, I was able to relax enough to get the juices flowing and make my muse smile again.

6.  Be kind to yourself.  Give yourself credit for doing the best you can, even if it feels like you’re falling short.  Take that long walk, or hot bath, or get that haircut you’ve been needing but felt you didn’t have time for.  Know that others understand.  And if that book takes longer to write than you wanted it to?  The sun will still come up in the morning, and soon, the days will look brighter.  They will.


After completing a degree in journalism, working in the advertising industry, then becoming a stay-at-home mom, Robin Gianna had what she likes to call her ‘awakening’. While on vacation, lying in the sun with a beach read, she realized she wanted to write the romance novels she'd loved since her teens.

Robin loves pushing her characters toward their own happily-ever-afters! When she's not writing, Robin's life is filled with a happily messy kitchen, a needy garden, a wonderful husband, three great kids, a drooling bulldog and one grouchy Siamese cat.

Robin Gianna on the web:
Website             Facebook         Twitter

FLIRTING WITH DR. OFF-LIMITS
Flirting with the forbidden… 

For intern Dr. Katy Pappas, seeing delectable surgeon Alec Armstrong again is sweet torture! He might have rejected her after their sinfully delicious kiss years before, but he still sets her pulse racing!
Alec is captivated by gorgeous, grown-up Katy. But as his best friend's sister, a colleague and his student, Katy is definitely off-limits! He's made the mistake of mixing business with pleasure before, and he won't risk Katy's career. Yet can he resist the oh-so-wrong when it feels oh-so-right…?


Read ReaderReviews
Read an Excerpt

Buy Links:

Amazon         Amazon Aus               Amazon UK

Mills & Boon UK         Mills & Boon Aust

Harlequin US                 B&N

Enter this Goodreads Giveaway to win signed copies!

Enter this to win!



***
Wow. Timely post for me. We lost someone very special in our lives just last week and the stress for the last several months has been beyond believable (still is). You've expressed it so well here. I also tend to do that head-down thing. Time to lift up my chin! Thanks!!

How about you, any of Robin's pointers helping you out as well!


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#imawriter

  Posted by Joe Stephens in My Train of Thought, 25 October 2014 · 15 views

Coming December 2014!
This has been some week and a half. At my school, where I love my kids so much, I saw the aftermath of a fight (less a fight, really, than a senseless beating) and injured myself breaking up another. Every day I hear stories of other fights throughout the school. It's getting to the point where I dread walking the halls for fear of what I'll come across around the next corner. When you add to that just how debased the children seem to have become, from little freshman girls using language that would make a trucker blush to the "good" kids doing dances that could only be described as sex with some clothes on, and I ended a tweet this week with #iwanttobeawriternotateacher.

I never thought I'd say it, but I really am losing the joy of teaching and am finding the idea of writing full-time more attractive every day. And yet, teaching pays so well, at least compared to the unsure future of writing, and I really am good at it. I like to think I make a positive impact on my students, though I become less convinced every year that my example and words have an appreciable impact.

The idea of retiring early and jumping into a writing career with both feet sounds great, but I simply don't have that option. I have financial obligations that won't go away simply because I haven't sold any books this week. If I only had to consider myself, the life of a starving writer would be fine. But I don't only have myself to consider. There's another person in my life who depends on my income and, even though we aren't together anymore, my obligation to help her live and pay her bills doesn't go away.

So early retirement is probably not an option, at least not yet. And it's not going to be an option ever if I continue to make exactly zero dollars as a writer. So it's time to quit dawdling. It's time to quit saying one of these days. It's time to quit waiting for an agent or a publisher to come along and take a chance on me. It's time to take a chance on myself. It's time to publish my books. I have two manuscripts ready to sell. I believe they're good. I'm well into the third, and I think it has potential to be just as good, if not better, than the first two.

So here's my commitment: I will publish my first book by the end of this year. I will hold a combination Christmas/publication party at which I will debut Harsh Prey to my family and friends. I will, in the ensuing months, publicize my book in every way I can find, from social media to readings and signings at bookstores, libraries, church basements--anywhere that will allow me. I will tell everyone I meet about it. And in a few months after that, I'll publish the second and do it all over again. And by then, I'll have the third book in the can and ready to go.

If I want to be able to say #imawriter, then I need to stop just saying it and start actually doing it. If it's going to happen, I can't depend on anyone but myself to make it happen.

So those of you who are looking for a good book to put under the Christmas tree for the detective fiction lover in your life, this is the year you're in luck.

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Memory Lane

Posted by JordanTheNinja in JordanTheNinja's Blog, 22 October 2014 · 78 views
writing, publishing, english

I sit, staring off into space during ninth grade English. It’s October, leaves falling and cold air nipping at me as I go through the courtyards to reach my other classes. I was young, incredibly naïve, but with a dream that still has yet to vanish. We talk about literature and I find myself becoming excited at the idea, that, maybe one day, I could rank myself up there with The Greats –J.K. Rowling, Stephen King, all of those people that seemed to grace their way up the NY Times list. But this is merely a daydream, a fantasy, and I immediately stop imagining this kind of life because, realistically, it wasn’t likely to happen. But I still imagined; still dreamed. I’d caught the writing bug, and there was no way I was going to cure myself of it—I couldn’t even if I’d wanted to. Being young, I still knew that rooted inside me was the seed of determination. That, even if the likelihood of me becoming this “legendary writer” was just a far off daydream, I still strived, still would keep going. It’s hard, when you’re 14 with this forced pressure of being good, of trying to perfect your writing, of constantly going back to the drawing board. I was so cocky, but at the same time so scared: how in the hell was I going to pull this off? Was it just an impossible feat for someone as young as myself to write something that would affect a reader in the same ways The Greats have affected me?

My teacher continues onto Shakespeare and poetry and I find myself zoning out again, reliving another daydream filled with interviews and book signings, movie deals and money. This is where I learned that you won’t get anywhere without working hard. To me, this meant constant revision, constant changes. I knew virtually nothing about what “markets” are into; I just figured that if someone liked the things I wrote, they could publish them. It was almost as if I lacked any fear, but the real answer was I lacked knowledge. I didn’t know anything about the publishing word really. All I had to go one was some vague ideas and misconceptions. I was currently finishing up my first novel that year. I was proud of that, because I’d really put work into it and created something that would be my own. But I was biased; in reality, the writing was nowhere near as good as what that same novel is today. But I loved it because I’d made it.

I used to get so annoyed, so frustrated with this whole thing. I was impatient (still am), I was confused as to why an agent wasn’t responding or that I didn’t already have a book deal. I figured this thing would be so easy. My character flaw was pride, and that had taken several blows over the course of it all. When you’re young, it’s easy to feel trapped. It’s easy to feel afraid. Easy to be manipulated by what you see or read or hear.

Then I came across AQC. And you guys really put me in check. You put a stop to my cockiness and shredded my queries to bits (for that, I’m eternally grateful; I wouldn’t have been steered in the right direction had you not) and I came to know a community that was just as driven and determined as I was. We all rejoice the good news, and lend a helping hand when things aren’t going so well.
I know I’ve come a long way since my pompous, gangly, 14 year old self, and I know I still have a lot to go from here, but I’m glad that I’ve made some friends and have made some changes along the way. I’m curious to know what the future holds for me.

One thing though, I’m still channeling my 14 year old phantom, because that was when I started to be determined, to enjoy the beginnings of an adventure through writing.

That is one thing that will never change.

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Lakers Reversed Jazz, Kobe Bryant 26 Points for Coming Back

Posted by oolorres in oolorres' Blog, 20 October 2014 · 37 views

Lakers Reversed Jazz, Kobe Bryant 26 Points for Coming Back Oct. 20 NBA preseason, the Lakers vs. Jazz, results in 98-91 reversal opponent, ending three-game losing streak. The Lakers trailed by 22 points in the second quarter, but Bryant led the team to 31-5 wave of attacks hit the go-ahead score, and ultimately difficult to win. Bryant shot 7 of 22 contribute 26 points, five assists and four rebounds, Jeremy Lin (microblogging) and Nash injury continued truce.

Game review: Jazz end the Lakers with 22 points reversed three-game losing streak

Opening, Bryant feel bad, before three shots were wide of the basket, but the Lakers rely Price and Hill scored, the first gain an advantage. Since then, the Jazz back attack feeling, Hayward pointers and free throws to help the team go-ahead score. Bryant promptly force, consecutive field goal, the Lakers biting score. But before the end of the first, Bryant end, the Jazz took the opportunity to play a 10-5 wave of attacks, will expand the advantage to double digits, a single to lead the Lakers 32-20.

Second section, the Lakers lineup rotation poor performance, was jazz played 11-2 offensive. See the team behind as many as 21 points, Kobe Bryant can go it alone, he forced two consecutive third shot hit, three-point play and later succeeded in his marker. Under section 9 points Bryant single stimulus, the Lakers finally play some improvement, Boozer storm and free throws. Before the end of this section, the Lakers answered with a 8-2 offensive half to 38-54 behind the Jazz.

Ex situ battles, Jazz let Hayward, Favors two main early break, the Lakers continued the second last paragraph of section excellent condition. Bryant free throws, three and CIC quickly scored six points, Carlos Boozer and Johnson, who also lend a helping hand. Only 6 minutes, the Lakers finished 23-3 offensive surge, in one fell swoop to 61-57 go-ahead score. Since then, the Jazz finally found the feeling, the use of long shot and breakthroughs up points, to stabilize the situation. Three kick, jazz advantage almost gone, only the Lakers leading 72-69.

Distal, the Lakers up is a 7-0 attack wave, again ahead score. Since then, both teams refused to give the Jazz hit two three-pointers, the Lakers will rely on rookie Randall cut points, his scoring range jumper in the rapidly contributed 8 points. Call of Duty, Bryant played again, and assists Davis layup after Ellington hit third, the Lakers lead six minutes. Since then, the Jazz offense sluggish, Bryant made ​​two free throws to seal the victory. The Lakers defeated after three consecutive games, finally ushered in returning to the victory.

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Exactly about Sports Gambling Traces

Posted by haiiroe in haiiroe's Blog, 16 October 2014 · 72 views

Individuals who have recently been followers regarding sports would certainly are planning to help make the ability regarding observing the particular game titles a lot more advantageous. Quite often, they are going to check into the particular sports gambling traces for your newest media in terms of their particular clubs and also participants. Getting up to date will be everything that is made for these. At times, if they are misplaced inside the dialogue of these close friends, they might lookup the net when they go back home. The net is a superb destination for a remain up to outlet sale date in terms of sports. It is possible to head to legitimate sporting activities sites and even the state internet site with the clubs to learn just what they are carrying out. When you can find virtually any revelations in regards to the method or perhaps the particular enjoy, there exists a possibility you will initial examine that right now there. It really is really great to stay the particular realize regarding existing activities, specifically if it is in regards to the sports activity you adore.

Folks can question an individual regarding media and will also be capable of offer that in their mind. Sports gambling traces are usually constantly available in order to guess normally when you need. Way more, you can even guess although game titles remain continuous. Contact friends and family to assist you using this to enable you to determine correctly.

Which is aware, friends and family furthermore desire to guess. The harder gamble, themerrier. When possible, an individual also also can separated the particular payout between her and also head out to get a handle. That is one thing you may not arrive at carry out each day. Besides gambling, you can even make an effort to study about making the gambling a lot more successful. Folks will get trapped with all the current pleasure at times in which they cannot also look at the probabilities should they can acquire or perhaps not necessarily. Provided that they will guess, which is that for the kids. They should be mindful also, due to the fact gambling also can result in these several problems making use of their funds occasionally. Sports gambling traces are usually definitely the following to keep. They've got produced any indicate inside the lifestyles of men and women as well as the sporting activities planet at the same time. Remember to own entertaining observing the particular game titles and possess several helpful gamble together with several the best close friends. In case an individual drop, usually do not sense negative. Right now there can constantly appear an occasion which you will have to become around the shedding conclusion. Which is aware, within your subsequent guess, you may come out the winner following your extended hold out. More visit http://outletsalecheap.wordpress.com/

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OF MERMAIDS AND CENTAURS Query Critique

Posted by jadah in The Query Faerie, 13 October 2014 · 65 views

OF MERMAIDS AND CENTAURS Query Critique


Or


A Tale of, Er, Um, Mermaids and Centaurs?


Hey, hey, Lords and Ladies of the written word! Happy Monday to ye all. It’s been a while since I’ve done a query critique, and I have to say I am out of practice! Nothing better than taking a break from Doctor Who on a lazy, rainy Monday night to fire up the ole lasers.

I would like to make one announcement before we get down to business, if you’ll pardon the interruption. I’d just like to say that my short story, Letters to Jennifer, was published in this month’s edition of Blue Lake Review. It was inspired by a family member’s death this past summer, and it’s only 1,500 words, so I’d love if you took a moment to read it! You can find it at bluelakereview.weebly.com.

Anyway, enough of that!

Without further ado, off we go to Query Faerie land:

Original:

Dear Agent:

They were gods once. Gifted with magic and long life, thousands of Sapiens walked our world. But that which was, no longer is. And that which now is has only come to be because of their downfall.

I am Alexys Elizabeth Rothschild. Five ancient codices scribed in three lost languages, I was the key to unlocking their secrets. The translated result of my efforts is OF MERMAIDS AND CENTAURS.

Another world existed before the one you now know, but we humans in our native, virgin skin have been too blind to find it. We are so clever in so many ways, yet are clueless as to the true nature of our ‘myths’. Nearly everyone knows of grand creatures such as mystic Sapiens, Centaurs, Arachna Majora, Mermaids, and Gryphons, but know nothing of how they came to be, the lives they lived, their heroes and heroines, villains and villainesses, some obvious, most not, who ensured that each misstep of the East down a perilous staircase carved by the West brought Terra Australis ever closer to war.

A Mermaid Queen and Gryphon King seeking to dominate all, a Witch Queen hoping to break free the ‘mythical’ gem that is the Soul of Terra Australis from its haunted prison, and with it, unleash the ancient prophecy to transform all, a Centaur Chiron and Arachna King doing their best to withstand all; amidst this subtle chaos, a Centaur polymath named Adamarcus fights to keep the malice festering deep inside his forbidden love, Evagoria – young daughter of Queen Diedrika and the ‘Gift from Poseidon’ – from beating everyone to the punch and destroying all.

Script and hieroglyphs upon copper plates deciphered, a select few of us deserving enough to hear them gathered; I stand ready to tell the tale. Terra Australis at its peak – our story will begin but twenty years from its end. Will it begin without you? A simple, sweeping choice is now yours to make: Hurry with great haste to West Antarctica and embark on a great discovery or keep firm your blissful ignorance.

A completed historical fantasy at 297,000 words, OF MERMAIDS AND CENTAURS is a departure from most fantasy works. Similar to the movie TITANIC, the novel uses a present day timeline to set up the historical one. In addition, it introduces major characters with a variety of ethnicities such as Nubian, Huaxia, and Olmec. OF MERMAIDS AND CENTAURS is gender balanced and contains as many female as male characters.

Cordialement,

Dr. Alexys Elizabeth Rothschild
P.S. Please direct all correspondence to my liaison in the States, REDACTED


My critiques:

Dear Agent:

They were gods once. Gifted with magic and long life, thousands of Sapiens walked our world. But that which was, no longer is. And that which now is has only come to be because of their downfall.

Right away this is very vague. You’ll need a stronger hook to draw an agent in. This opener leads to a lot of questions, and not necessarily the good kind. Who were gods? What was? What is now? What downfall? This paragraph confuses more than it intrigues. You’re better off starting with specifics, such as the main character and introducing us to the conflict right away.

I am Alexys Elizabeth Rothschild. Five ancient codices scribed in three lost languages, I was the key to unlocking their secrets. The translated result of my efforts is OF MERMAIDS AND CENTAURS.

So, is Alexys the main character? First person queries can be done, but this doesn’t work for me. The main character talking to the reader feels a bit gimmicky. Also, this paragraph leads to more questions. Ancient codices? What secrets? Why is she the key? If OF MERMAIDS AND CENTAURS is what she’s transcribed, is this a book within a book? Bookception?

Another world existed before the one you now know, but we humans in our native, virgin skin have been too blind to find it. What purpose does this sentence serve? Does it introduce any plot to the reader? I’m keen to say that it doesn’t. Let me keep reading. We are so clever in so many ways, yet are clueless as to the true nature of our ‘myths’. Nearly everyone knows of grand creatures such as mystic Sapiens, Centaurs, Arachna Majora, Mermaids, and Gryphons, but know nothing of how they came to be, the lives they lived, their heroes and heroines, villains and villainesses, some obvious, most not, who ensured that each misstep of the East down a perilous staircase carved by the West brought Terra Australis ever closer to war.

Okay, now that I’ve read it I can say that whole entire paragraph is fluff. It’s unnecessary. It can be cut and I won’t miss it, and good thing too, because this query is heavy by about 100-150 words. That paragraph is cumbersome to read, and almost ambling. As in, if you read it to yourself, does it tell us anything about the plot? You used 100+ words to tell us mankind is clueless and name off a few races.

A Mermaid Queen and Gryphon King seeking to dominate all, a Witch Queen hoping to break free the ‘mythical’ gem that is the Soul of Terra Australis from its haunted prison, and with it, unleash the ancient prophecy to transform all, a Centaur Chiron and Arachna King doing their best to withstand all; amidst this subtle chaos, a Centaur polymath named Adamarcus fights to keep the malice festering deep inside his forbidden love, Evagoria – young daughter of Queen Diedrika and the ‘Gift from Poseidon’ – from beating everyone to the punch and destroying all.

This is information overload. I forgot it as soon as I read it. It’s a general rule to mention no more than three characters to avoid turning a query into character soup. It seems like you’re naming off all the characters of the book…without even giving them names. Who are these people? How will I know which ones are the MOST important? There is a hint of plot in this paragraph: a witch queen breaking free a gem from a haunted prison. But for what? What’s the plot here?

Script and hieroglyphs upon copper plates deciphered, a select few of us deserving enough to hear them gathered; I stand ready to tell the tale. Terra Australis at its peak – our story will begin but twenty years from its end. Will it begin without you? A simple, sweeping choice is now yours to make: Hurry with great haste to West Antarctica and embark on a great discovery or keep firm your blissful ignorance.

Please cut that entire paragraph. It doesn’t make any sense to me and adds nothing to the query.

A completed Is this adult, YA, MG, etc? historical fantasy at 297,000 Holy Jesus. You do realize that’s three long novels, right? And by reading the query, I’d imagine a good one third of it could be pared away. words, OF MERMAIDS AND CENTAURS is a departure from most fantasy works. Similar to the movie TITANIC, It’s not really typical or advised to use a movie as a comparison for a novel. the novel uses a present day timeline to set up the historical one. In addition, it introduces major characters with a variety of ethnicities such as Nubian, Huaxia, and Olmec. OF MERMAIDS AND CENTAURS is gender balanced and contains as many female as male characters. Pointing out the balance of ethnicities and ratio of men to women character seems like a really strange thing to showcase. They’re interested in the merit of the plot and writing, not the balance of men to women.

Cordialement,

Dr. Alexys Elizabeth Rothschild
P.S. Please direct all correspondence to my liaison in the States, REDACTED

By your closing I can now tell that you’ve written the entire query in the first person POV of your main character. I encourage you not to do this. In some cases it does work, but not this case. This reads as gimmicky.

I’ve read approximately 400 words and I have no idea where the plot is in these 300,000 words. Let me take a moment to comment on the word count. Novels with high word counts like this need to be spectacular, especially for a breakout novel. I’ll tell you why. More words means more ink and paper. More ink and paper means it costs more money to print the novel. Being published is already an exception to the rule. Don’t try to make yourself an exception to the exception to the rule.

I’d say you’re better off starting over and telling me 1) Who the main character is 2) What the main character wants 3) What stands in the MC’s way 4) What must the MC do to overcome that obstacle, and 5) What are the stakes for the MC if they cannot overcome it? This last one is very important. Why should I care about this person? Why should I read THEIR story when there are millions of other stories I could read?

From reading the query it seems like the story may focus around several story arcs, several characters. Pick a similar BOOK to use as a comparison.

Hope this has helped, and feel free to contact me with any questions.


Love,
The Query Faerie

P.S. Damn folks, I still got it! ;)

Thanks for reading!

Follow me on Twitter: @TheQueryFaerie
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Follow my blog: TheQueryFaerie.wordpress.com

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Tribute to My Father

  Posted by LucidDreamer in LucidDreamer's Blog, 13 October 2014 · 49 views

I haven’t been posting much — life has gotten in the way and made me focus on some things rather more essential than blogging. The truth is, my dad passed away on Sept. 29th. This was not unexpected, as his health had been declining over the last few years, and he had been moved to […]

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Surreal For-real

  Posted by mlebleek in Bleeker Street, 05 October 2014 · 39 views

The day before I left for vacation with my family to Disney World I received an email from my editor with my copy-edits, due two days after the end of our vacation. This meant I either got to mush all my edits into two days (there were almost 3,000 edits soooo that wasn’t going to happen) or I needed to find time to work on the copy-edits at night and early in the morning DURING vacation while the kids were sleeping. No biggie. I actually enjoyed the quiet time every night and morning, rereading WRECKAGE for what I calculated was the 27th time.

Vacation-quote

Then, one night as I typed along in my hotel room, kids snoring on either side of me, as I stumbled upon a fun surprise. WRECKAGE on Amazon. It’s already available for pre-order! WHAT?

I shared the news on my Facebook page and Twitter and over the past week my friends, family and even some new readers have taken the plunge to pre-order. And that, my friends, is when it got real. All this work, all the time and effort into writing the story, revising, editing, querying, submitting, editing again and again and now, in a few short months, people are going to read this thing!

Soon after returning from my trip I was introduced to my Lake Union author team. They’ll be helping me through the next phase in the publishing process. My wonderful author’s relations manager already emailed me about personalizing my Amazon author page and filling out a questionnaire for the audiobook. Wait, let me say that again *clears throat*. The AUDIOBOOK. Ah! See what I mean?

I know there will be a lot more of these times ahead of me. They make me nervous and excited at the same time. There is still work to be done on this book and plenty of books still to be written but I’ve decided to just enjoy these “it’s really happening” moments as they come because they are awesome. Really awesome.

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The Gathering of Wits and Nerves

  Posted by RC Lewis in R.C. Lewis, 04 October 2014 · 59 views

<p>A long time away from blogging, a lot of excuses. Last school year was tough—emotionally exhausting and stressful. It was hard to come up with anything to say that wasn’t venting, and no one needs that.</p>
<p>Then the momentum was gone. Still not sure I had anything to say.</p>
<p>Things happened, though. I survived the school year. I lost my editor as she got an amazing-awesome job at another house. (For those keeping count, this is <a href="http://www.fromthewr...publishing.html" target="_blank">the second time this has happened to me</a>. Editors should flock to me if they want promotions.)</p>
<p>I also went to Las Vegas for the American Library Association (ALA) annual conference and signed ARCs—my first-ever author event! Look, here’s proof:</p>
<div id="attachment_421" style="width: 310px" class="wp-caption aligncenter"><a href="http://rclewisbooks....12398831901.jpg"><img class="size-medium wp-image-421" src="http://rclewisbooks.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/10/ALA-signing-e1412398831901-300x225.jpg" alt="Me and my signing buddy, fellow Hyperion author Melissa Landers" width="300" height="225" /></a><p class="wp-caption-text">Me and my signing buddy, fellow Hyperion author (of awesome!) Melissa Landers</p></div>
<p>I’m advising student council at my school for the first time ever, and I also went to a leadership conference with most of the kids over the summer. Lots of fun there.</p>
<p>Now the school year has started … well, actually, we’re almost through the first quarter. My classes feel more balanced for the most part, and I’m making things up as I go with student council. Generally, I feel like I have a better grip on things.</p>
<p>Well, except for the fact that my debut novel launches in ten days. Not sure I’m gripping that just yet. I keep expecting it to feel more real, but it doesn’t quite yet. Not even with a hardcover in my hands:</p>
<div id="attachment_423" style="width: 235px" class="wp-caption aligncenter"><a href="http://rclewisbooks....W-hardcover.jpg"><img class="size-medium wp-image-423" src="http://rclewisbooks.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/10/SNOW-hardcover-225x300.jpg" alt="It even FEELS pretty." width="225" height="300" /></a><p class="wp-caption-text">It even FEELS pretty.</p></div>
<p>Maybe it’ll feel real when I’m standing in front of people, talking about it at the launch party. (If I don’t pass out and/or run screaming from the venue.) Or maybe when I see it stocked on shelves at the bookstore.</p>
<p>Maybe the rational, logical side of me took charge of this and accepted it as “real” ages ago, and that’s why I’m not noticing a difference. Maybe two years of students saying, “You wrote a BOOK??” helped it sink in. (If so, thanks, kids!)</p>
<p>So now it’s time for me to pull together. To gather my nerves for everything happening around the launch, and to hopefully gather my wits and come up with a few things worth sharing here now and then.</p>
<p>Wish me luck. <img src="http://rclewisbooks..../icon_smile.gif" alt=":)" class="wp-smiley" /></p>
<p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="http://rclewisbooks....ng-wits-nerves/">The Gathering of Wits and Nerves</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="http://rclewisbooks.com">R.C. Lewis</a>.</p>

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