Category Archives: Updates
So many writerly things happening lately. After being on a bit of a (if unasked-for) hiatus for a year, these past several months my imagination has felt the need to make up for lost time. After about a month of simply trying to get the skeletons of all my ideas down on paper, I finally had to take a step back and decide which one to pursue first. As you may remember from a previous post, I chose to focus on a chapter book for children (ages 7-12) and I am happy to announce today that my revisions for this story are finished at last.
You know what that means! I will be asking 2 or 3 beta readers to look over the story and offer feedback, criticism, and advice. Never having written anything in this age category before, I’ll admit I’m a little nervous of the results. But it was a story I felt I had to tell, so though it may need even more revisions, I am ready to share it with at least a few others at this point, and with everyone a short way down the road.
I wished to put off writing a full-length novel for the time being, simply because I have so many other things going on in my life that I know I don’t have the time to devote to it. Despite this, a story idea for a trilogy (YA fantasy of course!) has been stubbornly clamoring at the back of my mind for a long time now and I had to give in finally and at least write the outline for the first book . . . which led to writing the outline for the second and third books . . . which led to writing character sketches and fleshing out some scenes that I had in my mind . . . which . . . well, you get the point. This trilogy is daunting to me, and will probably not be written in full until some time in the future, but it is most certainly not an idea that is fading. The opposite, in fact. When characters start talking to you in the middle of every-day tasks on a daily basis, and when scenes play out so vividly in your head that you rush to the nearest scrap of paper to get them down, you know there’s no escaping the story.
In the meantime, to fill my time between outlining trilogies and revising a children’s book, I have also been working on some fantasy short stories which I would love to publish as a collection one day. So many of these ideas are so exciting to me, yet aren’t full enough for a novel. Answer? Put it in a short story! I’m so thrilled about some of these stories, I can’t wait to get all my ideas explored and written.
With my newly-written and revised children’s chapter book has also come my desire to add a few illustrations within the book itself. I won’t decide on this for certain until I’ve spoken with my agent and some others who have had experience to see if this is a feasible option. But it has led me lately to scouring book store aisles and Pinterest boards for samples of artwork that I admire.
Illustrations have such an impact on our feelings for a story. I’d love to know what some of your own favorite illustrations or artists are!
Also, what have you been up to this end-of-summer?
Friends . . . It has been a while since I’ve blogged! I’ve missed you. We have some catching up to do!
A WISH MADE OF GLASS – AUDIOBOOK
First things first: A Wish Made of Glass has been made into an audio book!! If any of you follow my Facebook page, you will have seen my occasional posts on the exciting progress of the audiobook – what a fun process! I auditioned several narrators, and was absolutely thrilled with Keely, the lady I ended up choosing. Keely’s voice is mesmerizing and whimsical and just perfect for my little tale. I couldn’t be happier with her lovely rendition of it, and I think you’ll love it too.
I have several FREE audio books to give away, too (of course! You knew I would!). In order to receive one, you only have to do two little things for me: Write a review of it to post on Amazon, and share either your review or the link to the audio book on as many of your social media as you’re comfortable doing so. See . . . not so bad!
If you’d like to be considered for receiving a free code for the audio book, email me at email@example.com and let me know why you’re interested, and what social media you’d plan on sharing the book through (Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, etc.). Preference will be given to those who also have blogs they plan to share on. If you’ve already read A Wish Made of Glass – no worries! You still qualify for receiving a free copy!
Life has thrown some huge changes at me this past year or so. Some good and some bad, including two big moves, a change in schools for my almost-10-year-old son, and a brand new job for me. Needless to say, amidst all these changes, my writing has had to sit on the back burner. That doesn’t mean that everything that has been happening to me hasn’t been grist for the mill . . . when life gets complicated and sad and stressful and unexpectedly joyful, that’s where the real stories come from! So, story ideas abound, and you’ll often find me scribbling away on the back of a receipt or church bulletin, to capture the next idea or snippet of an idea before it floats away.
About 3 or 4 months ago, when my son was having a hard night, I lay in bed with him and told him a bedtime story (something I haven’t done in ages!). That story, which was for his own courage and comfort, sparked something in me, and I couldn’t let it go. A few weeks after telling it to him, I began writing it. And just a couple weeks ago, I finished the rough draft of what is now a 14,000-word children’s book. Yes, it’s different from what I’m used to writing. But still fantasy, still full of fun and whimsy and even some heartbreak. I’m so excited to be able to do my preliminary revisions and then gather a few beta readers to help me on the next step to publishing this story.
Tell me what this near year has been like for you so far . . .?
A Wish Made of Glass will be releasing Friday, August 14th, 2015. Yes. As in NINE DAYS FROM NOW!
Here are the things that will be happening at this point:
Launch day. Where happy, interesting, launch-ish things happen here on my blog. If you’d like to help when the time comes, feel free to do a spotlight post on your own blog sometime during launch week, or perhaps just share the Amazon link to my book on one (or all!) of your social media.
Blog tour. This is set for the last week of August. The guest posts are written up and I’m ready to start answering interview questions. It should be fun. Also, FYI, there’s going to be a pretty cool giveaway package during the week of the blog tour. So you should definitely check in for that, if nothing else 😉 I’ll be posting more info about the blog tour, dates, and stops in the near future.
Special price on Amazon. For the first 3 or so weeks after release, BOTH the Kindle and the paperback versions of A Wish Made of Glass will have a special sale price. If you’re already certain you’d like to read this novella, that will definitely be the time to purchase it! Also, the book will be enrolled in some sort of Amazon program (forgive me for having no clue what it’s actually called . . .) in which everyone who purchases a paperback will receive the Kindle version for free. Awesome, yes?!
Also, thanks so very much to all of you who agreed to pre-read and review the novella. I’m seeing a few reviews pop up on Goodreads and I’m so humbled and honored at your sweet and thoughtful words!
“Books are mirrors: you only see in them what you already have inside you.” – Carlos Ruiz Zafon
So what do Cinderella, edits and assassins have in common? It’s not a riddle, I promise 🙂 They’re all the things that have been driving me bonkers lately, that’s what! (Don’t worry – the assassin isn’t after me…)
I have been working on several things. First and foremost has been the Cinderella retelling I’ve been chattering on about for the past several weeks. Yes, I realize I promised a cover reveal quite soon for this story (the cover is finished and absolutely beautiful!!) – and I’m still planning on that. I’ll be putting out a request for anyone wanting to be involved with the reveal through my newsletter, probably within the next week or so. So be on the lookout!
At the behest of my agent, I officially hired a professional editor who will be giving my story the finishing polish it needs. This was a first for me, and rather exciting. Can’t wait (i.e. panicked/scared) to see what she’s got to say. I am confident she’ll help me make this story the best it can be.
After the edit is finished, I estimate that it will be approximately 6-8 weeks until I release the novella. That will put the release date somewhere in July. We’ll see. Again, as a first-timer I’m very unsure of an exact date at this point, so I’m making no promises! I’ll keep updating you with my progress, of course 🙂
When I get moments between preparing for publication of my Cinderella story, I’ve been working on my novel (the one with dragons and assassins and mysterious identities, among other things). After hearing from my beta readers, I’ve decided this story needs a couple of scene rewrites. A simple thing – that is, if these scenes were simple scenes…which they’re decidedly not. Try climax scene and ending scene. Yikes. Daunting. Lots of prayer will be happening, let’s put it that way.
My son will be out of school in 6 days. Mini-vacations and friend play-dates and lots of tree-climbing and swimming are planned for this summer, too. We’ve already caught a dozen toads and two turtles – talk about starting the summer right! Having my Bug’s sweet little face to look at every day and spending time playing with him will help make the writing and editing less intense and stressful – at least, that’s my hope! Either way, I’m looking forward to summertime.
What does your summer look like?
2 + 2 = 4
For those of you who follow my Facebook page, you’ll have seen that I’ve finished revisions (at last!) on book 1 of my new fantasy series, and have passed it on to my first round of beta readers. This is the first time I’ve used betas, so I’m naturally a bit nervous. It’s one thing to finish a book and hand it to your husband or sister or mom, knowing they will gush with praise. It’s quite another to hand it to someone and say, “Please tear it apart.”
I originally planned for this book to be one of two. The first draft of the sequel has been written already, in fact, although it is awaiting much work! However, something has happened along the way. Rather inevitably, I suppose …
The characters … have come alive.
One or two of them are asking for their own stories. A couple others are wishing for more of their stories to be told. It’s all I can do to keep up with the ideas that are being flung at me, and in the process … two additional book outlines have taken shape. So it looks like this book duo has now become, officially, a series. A family of four books … two of which are only ideas thus far, yes, but rather strong and insistent ideas.
A bit scary. Quite challenging for someone who has never even considered writing a series. But what a delicious challenge! I think I’m willing to tackle it 🙂
As I’ve said, the first round of my beta readers have copies of the book already. However, I will be announcing, at a future date, my need for a second round of 2-4 readers. Those who follow my newsletter will be the first to hear about this opportunity, and if the need is filled by them, I may not be announcing it again on my blog.
NEW FAIRY TALE
Before I launch into revisions for book 2 of the fantasy series, I am working on a novella of a fairy tale retelling that I plan on indie-publishing sometime soon (eek!). As it was written a couple of years ago, I’ve got a lot of work to do on it yet. I began revisions on it today, and I must say they are going swimmingly so far! I basically read through it and marked down all the “homework” I’ll need to do. Several hefty changes, but I’m excited to get started on them.
My wonderful newsletter followers will also be the first to hear about beta reading opportunities for this book, plus fun things like participation in the cover reveal, etc., when the time comes. (Ooh, helping design another cover … I’m definitely looking forward to that part!)
On a rather random note, I just finished the amazing His Dark Assassin trilogy by Robin LaFevers, and am in a bit of withdrawal. None of the books I pick up seem to be appealing to me, but I’m ready to dive into something. Any great suggestions?!
My publisher is reducing the cost of The Word Changers eBook for two weeks, beginning today. It will be just 99 cents (marked down from $3.99), from August 8th – 22nd.
Here are the links where you can find this special deal for The Word Changers:
If you’re new to my site, and unfamiliar with The Word Changers, you can click here to read the back-cover blurb.
In honor of this promotional price, and to help spread the word, I’m hosting a giveaway! It’s super easy to enter your name, and you can come back every day it’s going on and enter again. So, lots of chances to put your name in the hat!
All you’ve got to do to enter is share about the promo price of The Word Changers on one (or several!) of your social media.
Below are a couple of pictures that may come in helpful when sharing. Feel free to use either of them, or both.
A word about Rafflecopter … my site won’t allow the actual giveaway widget to show up here on this page, but you can click on the link at the foot of this post and it will take you directly to where you can enter your name. No problem.
And without further ado, here are the super fun items I’m giving away to one lucky winner!
ONE BRASS MERMAID BOOKMARK
ONE “LIBRARY CARD” NOTEPAD
In advance, thanks so much for your support, my friends! I couldn’t do it without you!
The giveaway doesn’t end until August 22, at the same time the promo ends. So until then, keep coming back to enter your name daily for more chances to win!