Sunday, October 3, 2010

Holy Crap! I pitched to an Editor

Okay, so I had no idea on what to expect since I've never formally pitched a story to anyone. The one thing I can say is that Thankg God I was prepared and had some key bullet points listed on a notecard.

My elevator pitch went okay even though it wasn't exactly what I'd written down. I also discussed the bullet points I'd prepared and answered some questions. One of my bullet points was to emphasize my YA mystery had series potential and I shared the ideas for Book 2 & 3. My other bullet points included my hook, the key elements that I felt made my book unique, and why it would speak to a teen audience.

We only had 7 minutes and it was amazing how quickly they passed. There was a person with a stopwatch outside the meeting room and at the 6 minute mark, she knocked on the door.

The editor was so nice and she put me at ease, so I'm grateful for that.

I'm also proud of myself for going through with it. After the COFW conference, I realized that we writers should really applaud ourselves for following through on our dreams of becoming a full-time writer and on being persistent when it comes to trying to get published. It takes alot of courage and alot of picking ourselves up off the floor when we face the rejections that come with wanting to be a professional writer.

At one point, Suzanne Brockman, asked everyone who had completed a book to stand up and we received a round of applause. It's easy to dream about getting an agent or being published or being on the best seller list, but it all starts with finishing and polishing the writing.

So if you're writing, stand up and give yourself a hand.

Monday, September 20, 2010

What's with all the Censorship?

I got all high and mightly about censorship back in high school when the PMRC was trying to censor my heavy metal rock music. Well, now individuals are attacking my reading list and favorite authors.

The latest is Laurie Halse Anderson's incredibly moving novel, Speak. Speak deals with the issues of teen rape and the effect it had on the main character. An associate professor from Missouri State University considered it pornographic. Seriously? I don't even know what to say about that, other than shame on him. You can read Anderson's account on her blog Mad Woman in the Forest

If you remember it wasn't too long ago that YA author, Ellen Hopkins, was 'disinvited' from the Teen Lit Fest due to the content of her novels.

Sherman Alexie's brillant novel, The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Tme Indian was recently banned in Missouri.

What bothers me the most about this is that all these novels deal with real issues that teens face everyday. It reminds me of High School Health class. No one thought teachers should teach sex education because it would lead to promiscuity. News flash, kids were still going to do what they wanted, but at least this way they'd be educated about being safe.

Teens have access to more information than they'll ever need but it's different reading in the privacy of your own bedroom about a character who has gone through the same things you have. Connecting to the words on the page and knowing that you are not alone is key.

Please consider doing something to combat censorship today. You can visit the National Coalition Against Censorhip for ideas on how you can help.

Monday, September 13, 2010

Finding time to Revise

Lately, I've been feeling as if I can find no time to revise my current WIP, a YA Mystery. I love, love, love the story and am committed to trying to get it polished up so I can re-submit it.

Summer was full of activities, classes, and To Do Lists, but my original deadline of Sept. 1, 2010 has come and gone. I'm in desperate need of finding 30 minutes a day, just 30 minutes. I could then do a few pages at a time.

The main culprit, if I can call it that, is that I'm now seriously focusing on getting healthy. I've joined Weight Watchers and now use my lunch hour to work out. That used to be my writing time.

I now need to find that 30 minutes elsewhere. It's like balancing a budget. If you overspend by $30, then you need to make up the $30 from somewhere else.

Finding that 30 minute make up time is my writing goal for the week.

Friday, September 10, 2010

If you haven't discovered, you should head out to their website and check them out. Smories are basically online videos of children reading children's stories. Children can listen to the story and read along. All kinds of stories are published from retold fairytales to original works.

This month, I have a smories published. It's about what happens when a stuck up kitty meets the aquarium's newest family member, a dolphin.

You can watch it at:

Sunday, July 4, 2010

Registration for Write On Con is Now Open

Registration for this amazing free online writers conference is now open. Yep, you read correctly, it's free. Several writers have teamed up with agents and publishers to bring you this opportunity.

Register now:


Thursday, May 13, 2010

Dear Lucky Agent" Contest on the GLA blog

There's another contest on the Guide to Literary Agent Blog. This one is for fantasy or science fiction (adult fiction and/or YA fiction; no MG please).

Here are all the details:

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Maggie Stiefvater's Novel "Linger" is coming out in July

LINGER is the sequel to SHIVER which was one of my favorite novels of the year. It's a beautifully written love story and I can't wait for the sequel.

Here's the book trailer so you can check it out for yourself.

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Should Unknown Writers Blog?

I've always wonder about this. In fact, I resurrected my blog so I could use it as an online journal but with the hope that others will find the content useful.

So if you've wondered whether you should have a blog or not, here are some thoughts.

Jane Friedman wrote a great article on her blog about this.

Friday, April 16, 2010

Entering Writing Contests Does Pay Off

Entering writing contests are a great opportunity to get your work in front of agents, editors, and other writers.

This is from Miss Snark's First Victim Blog.

Friday, April 16, 2010
Friday Fricassee

And we have another agent signing!

January Secret Agent Contest winner Vahini Naidoo has just signed with the lovely Ammi-Joan Paquette, who had chosen Vahini's excerpt as one of her winners! (Entry #14, if you want to take a peek in the archives.)

CONGRATULATIONS, Vahini and Joan! Best wishes on a long and successful pairing.

This is Ms. Paquette's second signing from our blog, so I probably ought to start charging her commission. Or something. (I'm totally kidding. She knows I adore that she adores this blog.)

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Sharing Food Ideas with other Moms

Tonight I met with a group of other moms and had a food discussion. Other moms are such a great resource of not only information, but of experience. You can share what's worked for either or you, where to shop for food, which store has the best produce, etc.

My child isn't in public school yet, but I also got valuable insight on what to expect and it's not pretty. Inspired by Jamie Oliver, we are set on making a change in our community.

Our veggie plants have also begun to sprout and I feel like a proud momma. I love growing and nurturing something that is going to help my body be nurished and help my child continue to grow in a healthy way. It helps me connect to the Earth and motivates me to continue to plant new flowers and shrubs.

Earth Day is around the corner. How will you be giving back to her?

This month's nutritional goal: Try New Veggie: Kale
This month's physical fitness goal: Go to the gym 3 times a week
This month's writing goal: Revise current WIP per workshop critique.

Thursday, April 8, 2010

The Nice Diet by Alicia Silverstone

As a mom, nutrition is always on my mind. I've been working with a dietitian and focusing on making meals that are nutrient rich. So when I saw Oprah's show with Alicia Silverstone, I was intriqued and wanted to read her book, The Kind Diet.

I got it from my favorite library and some of her points really struck home for me. Even if you don't want to be a vegan or vegetarian, you can do some of the steps such as incorporate more leafy greens in your diet and reduce the amound of meat you eat.

Every 2 weeks, I set a new dietary goal. It can be to try a new fruit or vegetable. Try a new recipe. Make a food substitution. So my goal for these next 2 weeks is to make 2 meatless dinners a week.

So far so good.

If you want more information, please visit Alicia's site: The Kind Diet