Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Rewarding Courage with a Long Nap

Following up on my previous CHICKEN-HEART post, I am happy to report that last night, after many days of angsting, rereading and tweaking, I sent my completed ms, along with a synopsis and opening chapters of something new, to my editor with the note: 

"Yes, you can read this now." 

This morning, I woke up early, made breakfast for the kids, packed lunches, loaded the dishwasher and...went back to bed for an hour. 

It was a delightful treat and a necessary break from thinking about the fact that I have again let pages fly out into the universe which I find awfully stressful. I am not alone. Scrolling through the social media portals of writers, you will find... 
  • laments over weight gained while revising
  • opuses on the struggle to stay physically active while committing to daily word counts
  • worries about giving up paying jobs to take a risk on one's own fiction
  • panic Tweets about being out on sub
  • and general musings on the tension between writer-life and, well, life.

Being a writer takes courage, people.

In sum, I'm just saying I think I earned my nap. And it was faaaantastic.

Friday, November 7, 2014


Do you know what I did this week?

Sent a manuscript to my agent. Threw up. Emailed her not to read it. Printed it out (again). 

All 356 pages now sit on my kitchen table waiting for me to feel ready to give it one more read and find the courage to email Catherine again to say "go ahead."

Have I mentioned I've done this before with other manuscripts? It's kind of getting to be a pattern.

Any amateur shrinks out there have any thoughts on this? Comments always open.

Saturday, October 25, 2014

2014 YA Contemporary Scavenger Hunt: MEET ANGIE STANTON!

YA Contemporary Scavenger Hunt

If you're so inclined (or want a free copy of THE SOUND OF LETTING GO), pop on over to Jenny Hubbard's site to read my thoughts about murky line between fiction and nonfiction. Meanwhile, I'm thrilled to be hosting the delightful Angie Stanton to get the "Scavenger Scoop" on her new novel, ROYALLY LOST, including some personal "facts" that find their way into her amazing books. And, if you want to win a copy of Angie's book, just leave a message in the comments below (North America only)!

WotS: Royally Lost is set in Europe. Have you been to Europe? 
ANGIE STANTON: Yes! In fact, I took the exact trip that Becca takes including the side trip to Prague. Most everything in the book I saw first hand. Except the chapter where they swim in their underwear.

WotS: Describe Royally Lost in 10 words or less. 
AS: American girl, dashing prince, on the run from the world. (That was hard!)

WotS: How has the writing process changed for you between writing your first novel and your most recent one? 
AS: I’m much more organized and do more research Writing is no longer a hobby, writing is my life. I can finish a book much faster than when I started.

WotS: Is there any other genre that you'd ever consider writing in? 
AS: Time travel. I’m not sure what genre that would be.

WotS: What do you like to do when you're not reading or writing? 
AS: I’m a reality TV show junkie. I love Survivor, Amazing Race, Dancing with the Stars, American Idol. My DVR is busy.

About Royally Lost...Dragged on a family trip to Europe’s ancient cities, Becca wants nothing more than to go home. Trapped with her emotionally distant father, over-eager stepmother, and a brother who only wants to hook up with European hotties, Becca is miserable. Then she meets Nikolai.

Nikolai has everything a guy could ask for--he's crown prince, heir to the throne, and girls adore him. But the one thing he doesn't have...is freedom. Staging a coup, he flees his kingdom and goes undercover on his own European tour.

When Nikolai and Becca meet, it’s their differences that draw them together. Sparks fly as they share a whirlwind of adventures, all the while dodging his royal guard. But Becca's family vacation ends in a matter of days. Will Nikolai and Becca be forced to say goodbye, will his destiny catch up to him, or will they change history forever?

About the Author... Angie Stanton never planned on writing books, she wanted to be a Rockette. However, growing up in a rural setting with her brothers' 4-H pigs as pets, dance didn't work out. Instead she became an avid daydreamer. After years of perfecting stories in her head she began to write them down and the rest is history.

Friday, October 24, 2014


Just in time for Halloween, I'm adding this to my TBR because a friend told me I'd love it if I was a fan of Laini Taylor (um, yeah!). In INVISIBLE, the second in Dawn Metcalf's Twixt series, mc Joy Malone must decide whether having the power of The Sight comes at too high a cost for everyone she holds dear. The novel has been described as both "romantic" and "creepy" and that sounds intriguing and awesome to me! If you want to learn more, I'm sure Dawn would love to hear from you @dawnmetcalf on Twitter!

And I'm looking forward to finishing this one while sitting by the fire this rainy weekend. Family issues, a hot boyfriend, the fascinating art of architecture and mc Rebecca's psychic ability (a perilous gift shared by the women of her family) have made for a great start. Have you read RETURN TO ME? Do you love tree houses and authors who write about them? Then you'll want to Twitter follow @JustinaYChen