Tuesday, April 26, 2011

3 Signs That I'm Revising

 I'm in major polishing/revision mode for my new ms, and some telltale signs have appeared:

1) My basket runneth over. Okay, if you've read my prior laundry related posts, you know I haven't seen the bottom of my laundry basket in years (seriously, I think it's possessed). But I aim to keep the clothes level lower than the rim of the basket. Hey, it's good to have goals. This week, a tower of abstract clothing art has overtaken my closet.

2) My inner addict emerges. I know I'm in trouble when I wonder if mainlining caffeine would be a more efficient delivery method than drinking it. While coffee is the biggie for me, chocolate also has a way of disappearing when I'm revising. I've tweeted about the evil called Cadbury Creme Eggs, but since Easter is over, my ass is safe for another year.

3) Sleep is for babies. There's not much I love more than my sleep. In fact, my husband would attest that I am a baby--like, a huge, super cranky one--when I don't get enough (and with two young kids, I never get enough). For me to willingly sacrifice sleep is not typical, but I've been up til midnight or later for the past week because I've been so excited about finishing revisions. As I do best with 8-9 hours of sleep, I realize this 4-5 hours a night thing will catch up with me soon, but I'm really close to the end. At least I better be, or my hubby is going to spike my coffee with benedryl.    
Can anyone relate to these? What are your signs that you're deep in writing/revision land?
Also, I wanted to pass along info about a great upcoming event: Want to ask an agent a publishing question? Super-agents Kathleen Ortiz and Liz Jote are going to do a LIVE podcast on Thursday, May 5th at 9pm ET.

Friday, April 22, 2011

Friday Book Recommendation--NEED by Carrie Jones

Happy Friday! My book recommendation this week is NEED by Carrie Jones. This is another one I picked up in the book store based solely on the cover and title. After reading the jacket flap, I was sold.

Summary from Goodreads:

Zara White suspects there's a freaky guy semi-stalking her. She's also obsessed with phobias. And it's true, she hasn't exactly been herself since her stepfather died. But exiling her to shivery Maine to live with her grandmother? That seems a bit extreme. The move is supposed to help her stay sane...but Zara's pretty sure her mom just can't deal with her right now.

She couldn't be more wrong. Turns out the semi-stalker is not a figment of Zara's overactive imagination. In fact, he's still following her, leaving behind an eerie trail of gold dust. There's something not right - not human - in this sleepy Maine town, and all signs point to Zara.

In this creepy, compelling breakout novel, Carrie Jones delivers romance, suspense, and a creature you never thought you'd have to fear.

Why I liked it? Well, it's creepy and funny which scores big points in my book. I loved the voice of the MC, Zara, and the secondary characters were well-developed and endearing. WARNING: You'll never see pixies as cute again after reading this. If you want a fast-paced, tension-filled page turner, check this out. I'm almost finished with the second, CAPTIVATE, and can't wait for the next one. 

Anyone else read this? Anyone look at tall, pale men differently now (no offense intended to tall, pale non-pixie men)?

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Flirting with the Enemy

Not so long ago, I shared my tragic news with you about my husband crossing over to the dark side. At the time, I reported I was sleeping with the enemy. Well, the iPad2 arrived at our house last week...
...and um, I kinda like it. Don't get me wrong. I'm totally not cheating on my books because I don't use it for reading, but I'll admit to browsing the app store when no one's looking. My hubby downloaded some games onto it for my 4 and 7-yo, and the graphics are amazing. Seriously, my son hasn't touched the Wii once since we got it.

It also has two cameras and you can do weird special effects with them (well, I can't--I barely understand my point and click camera), but my hubby snapped this pic of me when I wasn't paying attention. I'm not actually blue, green, and red in real life. Also, notice how hard I'm working on revisions:

But my favorite thing happened when my hubby opened up a bookcase app and showed me my books sitting on his "shelf," right next to The Book Thief by Markus Zusak, one of my all-time favorite books. For him, the device is convenient and more conducive to reading on the go. Though I still prefer old-school books and don't know if I'll ever read one on the iPad, I get that this works better for him. Basically, I've warmed up to the idea of having this device in my home...and even enjoy playing around on it. You won't tell him, right?

Anyone else out there who's an unwilling convert to new technology? Anyone else's kids forgo the Wii for some Fruit Ninja iPad action?

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Sharing Great News

As you know, the publishing business is super slow, so it's not too often I get to share fun stuff. But today I do. My awesome critique partner, Jeanne Ryan, (who has an equally awesome agent, Ammi-Joan Paquette) got a book deal!!! I told her when I read this book it would be "the one," and I'm so happy to share her Publisher's Marketplace news with you:

Jeanne Ryan's debut NERVE, about a teen girl lured into a voyeuristic online game where her decisions could have deadly consequences, to Andrew Harwell at Dial, by Ammi-Joan Paquette at Erin Murphy Literary Agency (World).

If you like uber-creepy YA's (and this one is WAY creepy), you'll love it! The release date is Summer of 2013. You can follow Jeanne on Twitter @Jeanne_Ryan (tell her I sent you!)

In other great critique partner news, Niki Masse Schoenfeldt has a second picture book coming out in Spring 2012. It's titled DON'T LET THE BEDBUGS BITE and is being published by Shenanigan Books. She also has a PB published by Orchard House Press titled Nature's Lullaby. Niki recently obtained representation with the fabulous Sandy Lu of the L. Perkins Agency. Follow Niki on Twitter @nikiofware and check out her blog The Fractured Keyboard

All of my critique partners are so wonderful, supportive, and encouraging, and it makes me really happy to help them celebrate their good news! You girls rock! 

Friday, April 8, 2011

Friday Book Recommendation--Possession by Elana Johnson

I tore through the ARC of POSSESSION this week (it releases in June) and I loved this book...so much so that my poor laundry basket overflowed to the point that my 6-yo suggested I buy a second basket. I loved the relationship between Vi and Jag, and Elana did a fantastic job of world-building. I told Elana my only issue was where the book ended...and I meant that in a good way. I turned the last page, like "What? It can't end here." I won't give anything away, but I told her I need the second book, like now. If you like dystopian, this is a must read book. Elana is also hosting a super awesome contest on her FB page and the details are here. I don't know if I'm allowed to say what everyone who enters will get, but it's really cool. Here's the cover and blurb for POSSESSION:

Vi knows the Rule: Girls don't walk with boys, and they never even think about kissing them. But no one makes Vi want to break the Rules more than Zenn...and since the Thinkers have chosen him as Vi's future match, how much trouble can one kiss cause? The Thinkers may have brainwashed the rest of the population, but Vi is determined to think for herself.

But the Thinkers are unusually persuasive, and they're set on convincing Vi to become one of them...starting by brainwashing Zenn. Vi can't leave Zenn in the Thinkers' hands, but she's wary of joining the rebellion, especially since that means teaming up with Jag. Jag is egotistical, charismatic, and dangerous--everything Zenn's not. Vi can't quite trust Jag and can't quite resist him, but she also can't give up on Zenn.

This is a game of control or be controlled. And Vi has no choice but to play.

Happy Reading! Anyone else read this yet? 

Friday, April 1, 2011

Friday Book Recommendation--hush, hush by Becca Fitzpatrick and POSSESSION preview

Before I get to my weekly recommendation, I need to tell you about a book that will be featured here as soon as I finish it. I got the ARC in the mail yesterday and though I only just started it, I can already tell you that POSSESSION by Elana Johnson rocks. More to come on that soon, but here is the very cool cover:

My recommendation this week is one I read awhile ago. The author is a fellow Coloradoan, and I'll admit I picked this one up in the store based on the cover. Why hello, hot fallen angel, I'd love to read all about you. Luckily, Becca Fitzpatrick's hush, hush also delivered great writing and a fast-paced plot. The relationship between Patch and Nora had great tension and kept me turning the pages. Also, did I mention there's a hot, fallen angel? If you're a fan of paranormal or urban fantasy, you'll love this!

Goodreads description:
For Nora Grey, romance was not part of the plan. She's never been particularly attracted to the boys at her school, no matter how much her best friend, Vee, pushes them at her...until Patch comes along.
With his easy smile and eyes that seem to see inside her, Nora is drawn to him against her better judgment, but after a series of terrifying encounters, Nora's not sure whom to trust. Patch seems to be everywhere she is, and to know more about her than her closest friends. She can't decide whether she should fall into his arms or run and hide. And when she tries to seek some answers, she finds herself near a truth that is far more unsettling than anything Patch makes her feel.

For Nora is right in the middle of an ancient battle between the immortal and those that have fallen - and when it comes to choosing sides, the wrong choice will cost her life.

Has anyone else read this? Anyone else like hot, fallen angels?