Saturday, December 31, 2011

January 1st, my tradition

Strangely, this post feels almost like a dream. Two years ago on January 1st 2010, I decided I wanted to write a book. I had this idea that wouldn't die down and for some reason (that had nothing to do with silly New Year's resolutions) I decided to write. Looking back, I made all the mistakes. The novel began with a dream, was littered with adverbs, and etc. I thought I knew more than I did. I thought the writing thing would be easy. And many rejections later, I realized I had a lot to learn.

Fast forward to November 2010, I had another idea. A great idea. And so I started writing, but I didn't have the time to dedicate much. So to keep my tradition (and b/c December is crazy), on January 1st 2011, I started with a blank document and dove into that great idea again. This time, it took. This time I couldn't stop writing. That novel was GRAVITY. I can't tell you how crazy it is that a year ago GRAVITY was just a thought, and now it's going to be published. I can't believe that over three-hundred people have added it to their TBR lists on Goodreads in only 2 months of being on there. This is all very surreal. I am thankful beyond measure.

Now tomorrow, I won't start a fresh idea. I'll continue with one that I've slowly been working on. And hopefully, a year from now, I can say it too will be published.

All best for a wonderful 2012,

Melissa

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Waiting on Wednesday Awesomeness

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Title: THE VANISHING GAME

Author: Kate Kae Myers

Release Date: February 14th, 2012

Blurb: (Pulled from Goodreads)

Jocelyn's twin brother Jack was the only family she had growing up in a world of foster homes-and now he's dead, and she has nothing. Then she gets a cryptic letter from "Jason December"-the code name her brother used to use when they were children at Seale House, a terrifying foster home that they believed had dark powers. Only one other person knows about Jason December: Noah, Jocelyn's childhood crush and their only real friend among the troubled children at Seale

House.But when Jocelyn returns to Seale House and the city where she last saw Noah, she gets more than she bargained for. Turns out the house's powers weren't just a figment of a childish imagination. And someone is following Jocelyn. Is Jack still alive? And if he is, what kind of trouble is he in? The answer is revealed in a shocking twist that turns this story on its head and will send readers straight back to page 1 to read the book in a whole new light.

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Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly event hosted by Jill at Breaking the Spine that spotlights upcoming releases that we are eagerly anticipating! Want to participate? Post your own WoW entry on your blog, and leave your link at Breaking the Spine.

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Waiting on Wednesday Awesomeness

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly event hosted by Jill at Breaking the Spine that spotlights upcoming releases that we are eagerly anticipating! Want to participate? Post your own WoW entry on your blog, and leave your link at Breaking the Spine.

Here's mine:

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Title: PERIGEE MOON
Author: Tara Fuller
Genre: Young Adult
Blurb: (Pulled from Goodreads)
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After a horrific fire claims the life of her mother, seventeen year old Rowan Bliss finds herself in the miniscule town of Ipswich, Massachusetts. It’s here that she meets Alex, a deliciously mysterious boy who holds the key to unlocking her family’s dark secret.
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As Rowan falls helplessly over the edge for Alex, the secrets that he insists on keeping refuse to be contained, and the truth that she uncovers challenges everything she has ever believed. Alex is a witch. And now he’s awakened something within her she never even knew existed. But out of all of this, the one thing Rowan won’t accept is the fact that Alex is destined to die.
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Now Rowan must unearth the buried power she harbors within to escape a deadly prophecy, defy the very laws of time, and prevent the hands of fate from taking yet another person she loves.
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Monday, December 19, 2011

WoW Winner!

Sooo...remember my WoW INSURGENT pre-order contest? Well, I have a winner! I did the random drawing thing. And the winner is...
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Yay! Congrats! Please watch out for my email so we can firm up the details. Thanks so much to everyone that participated. This was so much fun that I'm going to work up a monthly WoW giveaway. So make sure to check in, say hi, and watchout for awesome things to come in 2012.
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Happy Holidays!

Friday, December 16, 2011

Why I write (and read) YA

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So yesterday I was thinking about why I write (and read) YA and came to a really embarrassing conclusion. Do you remember when you were in high school and had your first real crush? Do you remember how it felt like the entire world was spinning when he (or she) would talk to you? Do you remember the intensity of your first kiss?
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That’s why I write YA and why I love reading it. I get that same tingly feeling when I write (or read) one of those scenes. It’s addicting. I love recreating the amaziness, awkwardness, and general craziness of being a teen.

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Waiting on Wednesday + CONTEST!

I'm jumping on the super cool WoW trend, but in the spirit of the holidays, I wanted to make it a bit more fun with a contest!
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So here's how this will work--below you'll find my WoW pick. All you have to do is comment (including your email) and follow my blog for a chance to win a pre-ordered copy. Not interested in this book? Then if you're the winner, you can choose any single book on Amazon to swap out for this one. Don't want a book? Then I'll offer a 10 page (or 1st chapter) critique to the winner. Simple, right? Now to my pick.
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I love, love, loved DIVERGENT, so for my first ever WoW I decided to go with...
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Title: INSURGENT
Author: Veronica Roth
Genre: YA Dystopian
What's it about, Fred?: (Pulled from Goodreads)
One choice can transform you—or it can destroy you. But every choice has consequences, and as unrest surges in the factions all around her, Tris Prior must continue trying to save those she loves—and herself—while grappling with haunting questions of grief and forgiveness, identity and loyalty, politics and love.
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Tris's initiation day should have been marked by celebration and victory with her chosen faction; instead, the day ended with unspeakable horrors. War now looms as conflict between the factions and their ideologies grows. And in times of war, sides must be chosen, secrets will emerge, and choices will become even more irrevocable—and even more powerful. Transformed by her own decisions but also by haunting grief and guilt, radical new discoveries, and shifting relationships, Tris must fully embrace her Divergence, even if she does not know what she may lose by doing so.
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And that's it. Sounds crazy awesome right? Now, all you have to do is comment and follow to get your pre-ordered copy (or other prize) for FREE! Yay! You have until Sunday, Dec. 18th to enter. I'll draw the name and post the winner here on Monday, Dec. 19th. For readers outside the U.S., if you enter and win we can work something out for either a digital book or Amazon/B&N giftcard. So all readers are welcome to enter!
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Happy Holidays!

Friday, December 9, 2011

Let's talk about over writing

It's tough for us writers, don't you think? We have a zillion words we're not supposed to use, including an entire segment of the language called adverbs (which I do use, btw). Then we're told that our writing should flow, yet not turn purple. Keep it tight, but not choppy. How are we ever to get it right?
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Here's my 2c. The most important thing in writing is that the narrative flows. We work on making sure dialogue reads naturally, so why not the same for the narrative? I think that's the secret. Our novels, especially if written in 1st, should sound like your MC is talking to the reader.
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Now, would a person actually say every line the way you've written it? Of course not. There has to be balance between beautiful lines and lines that move the story. And if we focus too hard on making every line beautiful, then what happens? Over writing. Author talk. We don't have to prove we can write by making a line beautiful. We prove we can write by telling an engaging story that the reader melts into, forgetting that he/she is even reading a novel written by an author.
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What about you? Are you guilty of over writing? I am! :)

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

What writing strength do you want for Christmas?


Let’s pretend Santa could bring you a writing strength for Christmas. What would you ask for? And what author do you feel has that strength?

For me, it would be world building. Those of you that have followed my blog for a while know I struggle with this more than anything. I write fast-paced, tight stories. You’ll find fight scenes, high tension, kissing scenes, and etc. in my novels. Long drawn out bits of description? Not so much. I have to force myself to weave in all the little details during revision that strengthen my world. I wish it came more naturally, but I’m not that lucky.

As for the authors that do this well, for YA I think Suzanne Collins, Cassandra Clare, and Elizabeth C. Bunce are all wonderful world builders. And then, of course, Tolkien is the master.

What about you? What writing strength do you want for Christmas?