the glamorous struggles of an aspiring author...

Saturday, September 13, 2008


The deadline to register to vote is October 14th at 9:00 p.m. Here is a new one-stop voter registration website from the Obama campaign for any state.

Click here for the one-stop voter registration website.

Nothing will change if you don't vote.

Friday, August 29, 2008

article done, back to the grind

Finished the article on Food Allergies in good time, and the publisher is happy. Now its back to slogging through this rewrite. Okay, its really just another edit, but now I've graduated from the course I was taking to help me complete it, and I'm ON MY OWN. How scary is that.

I got to thinking that even though my novel reads okay, it would be a lot clearer narratively if I changed the order of the chapters. Normally, what happens next is dictated pretty strictly, by well, time. Can't escape that. But, in this case, where so much is happening simultaneously, I have a conundrum. Originally, I went with the hero's chapters trumping and villain's chapters playing second, however,... now I'm thinking that the villain, who knows more at that point than the hero, ought to have his chapter come first, then, as the novel progresses, the hero's chapters could take the lead, subtly, symbolically taking control from his Nemesis until he finally triumphs at the end. Not exactly original, but oh, so satisfying. Is a YA fantasy, remember, so I'm not straining to be literary here.

What cha think?

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

New gig

Summer is winding down and I'm off for a whole week from regular work. Just in time, too. I have a new gig writing for a parenting mag. First up? An article about Food Allergies. Time to write!

Friday, July 11, 2008

Just got my preview copy of Neil Gaiman's The Graveyard Book yesterday and it is burning a hole in my carpet, next to the bed, just begging to be finished. It's a YA or middle grader, can't tell which. With Gaiman, everything is, well, aimed in your general direction anyway and my oh, my is it fabulous.

Don't want to give too much away, but its about a little boy with a sort of price on his head who is saved from the murderer of his family by some kindly ghosts and other undead types. Gaiman's range of historical knowledge is staggering, and he delivers it with such casual ease, it slips into the narrative without the reader noticing. With his usual dry wit, there are many levels to the story, and moments that will have you double-taking and LOLing, or giggle-snorting as quietly as possible, depending on your age, gender and if your spouse is asleep beside you.

Thursday, July 3, 2008

I finally got help on this miserable synopsis. My professor sent me this link...

Sunday, June 29, 2008

I see Cassandra Clare signed a new deal with S&S for a YA fantasy set in Victorian London. Awesome. Love the era, love the horror/fantasy mix.
I am really pleased to recommend Word Painting: A Guide to Writing More Descriptively, by Rebecca McClanahan. It is entertaining reading as well as being packed with excellent examples and exercises. McClanahan rewrites examples to show how the text might have been written and how the emphasis is changed and the life stolen by good but not stellar discription. Often less is more, and a variety of tools breathes life into even the blandest environment.

Saturday, June 28, 2008

The YA fantasy market is saturated, so I am told. But I wonder how saturated the appetite of YA readers is. I think YAs want what they always have wanted, a story about somebody that could be them, not to be talked down to, with plenty of pace and lots of heart. YAs are feeling their responsibility and their ability to make a difference. Those are not fantasies but realities, and novels that make them feel in control of a wild universe feed that reality.

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

What not to do when you are supposed to be...

writing a novel synopsis. What a drag. No matter how many times I wrote a synopsis while writing the novel, all jittery with excitement, like when you finally figure out the murky bits on a jigsaw puzzle. When it comes to writing THE SYNOPSIS after the last page has been written, well its kind of like watching reruns of Star Trek.