- Genre rules don't always apply - you're limited only by your imagination.
- Sometimes literary and commercial are one in the same.
- I can let loose my inner teen.
- Hot bad boys! What?
- No fear. YA writers go for the gusto. They take risks that adult writers don't always take both in craft and in subject matter.
- Reaching readers of all ages. YA spans a multi-generational audience.
- Fantasy is mainstream, more easily accepted by YA readers. Just look what Harry Potter and Twilight have done for the genre.
- The characters are easy to connect with. YA tends to be very character driven, which I love.
- There are so many GOOD YA books out there, I know the quality of what I'm picking up is likely to be high.
- YA writers are the friendliest most frawesome group of people I know.
Thursday, March 31, 2011
Monday, March 28, 2011
- If I need encouragement from my friends, why wouldn't you?
- For all I know the person I'm speaking to is the next JK Rowling, but they haven't yet written their Harry Potter. Why should I assume otherwise?
- I tell my kids they can accomplish anything they set their minds to if they put in the work to back it up, and I mean it. Why would I tell anyone else anything different?
- Everyone's path is different. Yours might involve an uphill trek in the dark with vampires laying in wait, but it might be shorter than the guy next to you who has a flat, well lit path that goes on for miles. Okay I'm drowning in my own metaphor here, but everyone HAS a path, and that path leads somewhere if we keep to it.
Thursday, March 24, 2011
Ondine: *grins* Um, well, I’m from Brugel. That’s in Eastern Europe. I like cooking, my favorite subjects are history and science and my second favorite singer is Anna Lesko And um, this is Hamish. He used to be a ferret, but he got better.
Hamish: Hellooo *waves*
Ondine: Oh, you’ve made me blush now. I’m very new to this ‘being interviewed’ business.
Colette Romano: Is this going to take long? We have work to do.
Ondine: She acts like our manager now. Col’s my great aunt and she’s all right, most of the time. Um, where was I? Oh yes, Hamish helped save the Duke’s life. Twice now. I wouldn’t be surprised if he got a medal for bravery or something.
Lisa: I've heard rumors that you're psychic. Would you read my palm for me? What does it say?
Ondine: Oh no, please, let’s not do this. Who told you I was psychic? I bet my Mum did. Jupiter’s moons she’s driving me crazy. Sure I went to psychic summercamp but it didn’t do me a lick of good.
Hamish: I’ll read yer palm if ye want me to? Och hen, yer a writer! I can tell that just by looking at ye. So creative! Ye’ve got a wonderful career ahead of ye. Everyone hanging on to every word ye say.
Ondine: *collapses in giggles* *recovers* Sorry about that. *wipes eyes* Reading palms makes me feel silly. I just say the first thing that pops into my head and people keep saying, ‘that’s so true, how did you know?’ It’s weird, you know? You’ve got a spot of dermatitis there. Put some honey on it.
Lisa: *pulls hand away*
Ondine: I don’t feel the slightest bit psychic or magical or anything.
Hamish: Aye but yer magic to me.
Ondine: *collapses into more giggles*
Lisa: What's it like spending time in a palace?
Ondine & Hamish together: The food is terrible!
Ondine: It was weird. And I can’t believe how hard I worked. I used to think working at my family’s pub was slave labor but the palace took it to a whole new level. The gardens were pretty, though. I had some nice times there.
Hamish: Aye, I’ll never forget meeting ye under the myrtle trees as the leaves were falling.
Ondine: Uuuuuuuummmm. *blushes furiously* Hamish is the best thing that ever happened to me.
Hamish: Aww lass, I love ye right back.
Ondine: And he’s brave and clever and he makes me laugh.
Hamish: Och, go on. No, seriously. I love hearing ye talk about me.
Ondine: And when he’s Shambles? Not so much fun. But sometimes he has to be a ferret, so when it happens I just count down the hours until he’s back again.
Ondine: I’m horrified and embarrassed and angry. She took my life and made it public to the whole world! There are people from Thailand to Tanzania reading about me, about us. Aunt Col said I shouldn’t read what they say in the papers –
Hamish: – aye, but they keep writing such nice things.
Ondine: Yes but, they’ve taken my life and made fun of me.
Hamish: Dinna fuss yerself, they’re laughing with us, not as us.
Ondine: I guess so. And, the books make you into a hero.
Hamish: You told me you didn’t read the books.
Ondine: Just the reviews, because they’ve all been so nice. And a few chapters of each. OK, so I read book one, but seriously, you have nothing to worry about. And for that at least, she’s done a good job because now the world knows how amazing you are.
Hamish: Naw, you’re the amazing one.
Ondine: Oh stop it.
Lisa: Ahem. What's your next adventure?
Ondine: My sister’s getting married soon, and then it’s my birthday, and I hope after that to take it easy. I’m looking forward to the Eurovision Song Contest. Go Slovakia!
Brugel’s not even in it this year. Such a shame.
Oh, and CovenCon’s coming up. That’s the annual gathering of witches and warlocks and magicians of all kind. It’s in my home town of Venzelemma, which will be exciting. Aunt Col wants Hamish and I there.
Hamish: Knowing yer auntie, she’ll put us to work.
Colette Romano: Speaking of work, are we done here? They’re needed back at the pub. The dishes won’t clean themselves you know!
Ondine: It was lovely to meet you Lisa. Oh, and watch out for werewolves.
Lisa: They’ll bite me?
Ondine: No, but they’ll give you a rash.
Monday, March 21, 2011
- Is the comparison easy to understand?
- Is it the kind of comparison my character would make? Does it match the voice?
- Is it cliche? Because you know you can do better!
- Is it worth it? Does it really add anything?
- Is it overkill? Have I already used a better metaphor in this paragraph?
Thursday, March 17, 2011
- OBVIOUSLY I like to live in my own little world with sexy vampires, pretty unicorns, and scary ghosts. If I act like they're real, then they are. :P
- I believe in treating others with the respect you want to be treated with, and love all my writing friends, whether just starting out or on the NY Times best seller list.
- I don't do well with conflict. It gives me a tummy ache, but I'm also
- A total HYPOCRITE because I love to torture my characters and throw lots and lots of conflict at them. Usually the weight of the entire universe is on their shoulders. Yeah, I'm kinda mean that way.
- I won't turn down coffee. Or red wine. Or chocolate. Unless there's a REALLY good reason.
- I cry at almost every movie I see. Even the bad ones.
- I am absolutely terrible at housework. I should be fired. Please fire me!
- Chocolate. Coffee. Wine. (I know I already mentioned these above, but come on)
- Reading - I call it work, but let's be real here.
- Vampire Diaries - you already know but it's definitely on the list.
- Sleeping in - it doesn't happen often when you're a mom, but every once in a while...
- Laura Pauling because she does such a fabulous job at writing about writing that I want to see more about HER. :D
- Heather McCorkle because she is one PROLIFIC blogger who is just an absolute sweetheart.
- Leslie Rose because she's covered in awesomesauce and happens to be the funniest woman I know. She's pretty smart and supportive too.
Monday, March 14, 2011
- the right point for your book to start
- Important to the story (EVERY scene should be or you don't need it)
- showing me something about the MC that I can connect with
Thursday, March 10, 2011
- People - either reviewers or critiquers - will tear apart what you write?
- That you're just not good ENOUGH?
- That you'll never get the call?
- Using critiques you can and will make your manuscript even better.
- Not everyone likes the same things. Each reader finds the right books for him/her.
- No one is perfect. Even JK Rowling gets called on her adverbial dialogue tags! But by working on your craft, writing, revising, reading, and learning all you can, you will consistently improve.
- Getting the call would be great! Icing on the cake. But that isn't really WHY you're doing this. You're doing it because you have to. Because you can't NOT write.
Monday, March 7, 2011
- Multidimensional Characters - Hot guys can only take you so far. The characters on the show aren't just stereotypes, and they don't always behave as you expect them too, but they DO behave in a way that is true to their character. For example? Well, let's take Damon. Every time I think he's "reformed" because of his newfound love for Elana, what does he do? Rip out someones heart. Attack and kill an innocent girl, but not before pouring his heart out to her about how he misses his humanity. It's this inner conflict that holds my interest. Let's hope all our characters have such deep and intriguing motivations.
- Complex Plots - The story lines on the show keep moving and building in interesting ways. They consistently up the stakes for the characters, though I admit I wonder how long this can continue. So far so good though. Lots of twists and turns that I don't always see coming (and it's pretty hard to fool me), and original material. A great example that we can write about things as common as vampires and werewolves while remaining unique.
- Consistent Lore - With a show this complex, it would be easy to trip up somewhere and make a mistake. I used to love the show X-files. Remember that one? But in the end, I think Chris Carter wrote himself into a corner. So far, everything in Vampire Diaries has remained plausible within the world they have created. There's been an explanation for everything. We have to do the same with our world building. The second we write something conflicting with a rule we've set out, we shatter that delicate trust we've instilled in our readers.
Thursday, March 3, 2011
- They should be easy to read/understand
- We should be at least a little flexible
- They can give the reader a clear image of the character, so you better think it through ahead of time!
- By meaning - Either one that fits the character, or something misleading and/or ironic.
- By time frame - when does your novel take place? When was the character born? Was the name Gertrude really used then?
- By origin - Where is the character from? What is his/her ethnicity?
- By sound - is the name abrupt and punchy? Slippery and seductive? Bold? Does that illustrate your character?
- By familiarity - search your memory for names that bring up certain personality types and attributes.