Showing posts from March, 2016

FREE CLASS THIS SATURDAY IN SEATTLE: How to write a query letter & find a literary agent

As part of the fantastic Seattle Writes Program ,  I’ll be teaching a FREE CLASS entitled Find an Agent and Submit Your Work: The Art of the Query and the Synopsis at Seattle Public Library’s West Seattle Branch. WHEN?   SATURDAY, APRIL 2 nd from 3:30 – 5:30 PM.   WHERE? SPL West Seattle Branch 2306 42nd Avenue SW, Seattle, WA 98116, 206-684-7444


I am so excited to read the final book in Romily Bernard's thrilling  Find Me trilogy ! If you fancy fabulous YA novels with puzzle-istic covers, here are a few more to try:


Today, I have read the usual flurry of "you don't understand me" Tweets by people of diverse faiths, races, dis/abilities. In the publishing cyberverse are the usual posts about how too many cis white women are writing stories of others' experiences. So much criticism and creative energy is put into gaining traction for these hashtags about what is wrong or absent from our libraries, what is ugly in our world. I'm not denying what these people are pointing out. But I also KNOW that you are not required to submit a photograph with your manuscript submissions--I know that editors are seeking all kinds of WELL WRITTEN stories--I know writers of diverse backgrounds whose work is on shelves NOT because of their color but because of their HARD WORK and amazing TALENT. I also know that in Saturday's WSJ (3/19-20/16), book reviewer Jonathan Rose speaks of a young African refugee who cites Jane Eyre because "'I always read novels that have the same backgroun

Mid-Career Monday: THE STEEP AND THORNY WAY author Cat Winters on panicking and managing

It's been in print less than two weeks and Cat Winters ' latest, THE STEEP AND THORNY WAY , has already been named a Junior Library Guild Selection and amassed an impressive collection of starred reviews. So, I asked her... You write for teens and adults. As your career builds, how do you manage your projects and deadlines (as well the whole being-a-parent thing)? HERE'S WHAT CAT SAID : I admit, it hasn't always been easy balancing both the YA and adult fiction careers. The opportunity to write my first published adult novel, THE UNINVITED, fell into my lap after an editor at HarperCollins read and loved my first YA novel, IN THE SHADOW OF BLACKBIRDS. I never expected to be writing two books a year, and I'm not certain I can continue to keep up this pace much longer. But for now I'm doing my best to make everything work . . . and to still take care of my kids and remember that I have a husband! The tool that saves me the most is my Google calendar.

Mid-Career Monday: Writing Across Genres with Gretchen McNeil

Gretchen's latest foray into horror, RELIC , was released just last week. And, though she's a master of scary storytelling, the uber-talented Gretchen will celebrate the release of her first YA contemporary this spring with I'M NOT YOUR MANIC PIXIE DREAMGIRL (title of awesome, huh?).  With a background in opera, television voice-over work, and all-around "How to be incredible in LA-ness," she is a champion of YA and a smart, passionate reader. So I asked her... What was the scariest thing about switching genres and what advice might you have for other YA authors considering switching tracks? Here's what Gretchen said: I wasn't entirely sure I could plot a book without murder.  My brain equates escalating tension and raising the stakes with murder, mystery, and mayhem, so how was I going to replicate that in a subversive, contemporary comedy?  It was a struggle at the beginning, and the first draft had enough plot for three books.  But as I got to

Free Writing Workshop with LISH McBRIDE this Saturday at KCLS Woodinville

SATURDAY, MARCH 12, 2016, 10:30 AM - 12:30 PM Woodinville Library,  17105 Avondale Road NE, Woodinville, WA The next class in this FREE series of writing workshops  will be taught by super-cool author, Morris Award nominee, and  all-around awesome book person  Lish McBride . Plot, Pitch, Plan. How do you turn a great story idea into an actual novel? How do you sell that novel to an agent, a publisher and a readership? If you love reading or writing high concept novels or just want to get some insider insights into the writing business, this is the class for you! What can Lish teach you? Well, maybe she'll hint at how to get reviews like this... “Deeply enmeshed with a magical world and its impossible choices before readers ever meet her, Ava and her wholly believable despair are a refreshing change from the endless parade of naive heroines found elsewhere.” ― Kirkus, starred review for FIREBUG “With fine writing, tight plotting, a unique and uniquely

Mid-Career Mondays: Taking Joy in the Journey with KIMBERLY GRIFFITHS LITTLE

BANISHED , the second in Kimberley's Forbidden Trilogy hit shelves earlier this year, praised by fans and reviewers! “...this is a romance, with all the push and pull that goes along with impossible love, and Little elevates the story by creating a perilous landscape, both outward and inward, as Jayden must deal with the hardship of desert life as well as her own desires.” (Booklist, starred)    At Kimberley's website  you'll find a treasure-trove of resources from reading guides to website links to information on belly dancing! So, I asked her... You write young adult, middle grade and now romance books, promote your work brilliantly, and offer support to other writers. What guidance might you offer others struggling to balance writing with the "business of authordom"? Kimberley said ... The aspect of trying to keep the career going and having to do so much of my own marketing and publicity has been the hardest to accept…I’ve come to realize that I spen
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