Tuesday, June 30, 2009
Monday, June 29, 2009
Ah well, what can you do, right? Just keep trudging along . . . :-)
But cover flats should be coming soon, so that'll balance out some of my day. That, and I got some Haagan Dazs Dulce de Leche ice cream!!! *cue angelic choir*
That is all.
Friday, June 26, 2009
Second, Diana Rowland's new book, Mark of the Demon came out this week. It's gotten some great reviews, so I'm eagerly awaiting my copy!
Galleys are done. So it's back to work on Book 2. Rough draft is basically complete. I have to fill in a missing chapter or two near the end and then start revising, polishing, and filling in some research details. Really excited about this book!
Each book I write, I can see myself improving as a writer. My rough drafts are getting smoother and my pacing now seems to fall into place without too much effort. Here are some stats:
1) Book 2 is the 9th novel I've written.
2) As of this year I've written two novels: Book 2 and Le Super Secret YA.
What I need to do, and would like to do in the remainder of 2009:
1) Turn in Book 2 in Charlie Madigan series.
2) Write YA sequel.
3) Write a 3rd book in Charlie Madigan's world.
4) Revise my Turn-of-the-Century YA fantasy proposal (1st 3 chapters and synopsi of two more books already done) into a middle grade novel.
Wednesday, June 24, 2009
Friday, June 19, 2009
I bought a new, very substantial journal in hopes that I can start keeping all my random notes (ideas, character names, titles, interesting words, etc..) in one place versus the four or five spiral notebooks I have lying around the house. It's chaos the way it is now. I'll suddenly think of an awesome last name, pick the closest notebook I can find and jot it down. Two months later, when I'm looking to name a character, I'll remember writing down a really cool name, and then have to flip through all the notebooks to find it. I do this endlessly. It's getting old. So, journal, you shall be the center of my Idea Universe.
Let's just hope I can stick to the organization plan. Not that I have trouble being organized. Heh.
Thursday, June 18, 2009
May 15 - 30 My agent began the submission process, starting with three of our top choices. Editor from Pocket was first to respond, expressing interest. Wanted another editor to read. Book was then pitched at editorial meeting. According to agent, two more editors were now reading.
June 10 - My eventual editor (Ed Schlesinger) wants to make an offer.
June 13 - Pocket makes a two book deal. Agent calls. I, of course, accept!
June 19 - I get my first 'hello' email from my new editor.
Mid July - FinePrint receives my contract. Must be reviewed, changes requested and then returned to Pocket.
Oct 24 - First actual phone call from Ed. We'd been communicating mostly via email and realized we'd never actually spoke! Great conversation.
Late Oct. - Contract, after having been at Pocket, is once again sent to Fine Print for another read-through.
Mid Nov. - Contract arrives at my doorstep along with tax forms. Let it sink in for a few days and then mailed back.
Mid Dec. - First advance payment arrives at Fine Print.
Dec 18th - received hard copy line edit of the book, along with gifts -- the latest urban fantasies published by Pocket! Read through edits. Didn't have heart failure. All looked doable.
Dec 21 - Had awesome phone call with Ed, just going over the line edits and revision ideas for the book.
Early Jan - My check arrives! (Actually, it came sooner, but there was a small error that needed to be fixed and FinePrint rocked it out with no problems).
Jan 26 - completed revisions on the book! Turned them in with much anxiety.
Same week - Time to come up with author bio, pic, and acknowledgements.
Mar 9 - Hear that revisions looked good, just some small notes to attend to, which I do and then send back. Also, am told firm release date for the book, Nov 24, 2009. Yay! See first draft of cover as well.
Mar 18 - see first draft of the cover copy (the blurb on the back of the book, the front cover tagline, and the small excerpt piece that goes in the very beginning of the book). Made a few minor edits and sent back.
Mar 25 - receive the production schedule of the book, which consists of copy edit and galley dates and printing schedule.
Apr 17 - Copy edits arrive, and must be returned the first week of May.
Apr 20 - see revised cover. Looking awesome.
May 21 - get permission to reveal cover. Not final cover, but close to it.
And this week I should receive the first pass galleys of the book, which I'll read through for typos and any last minute errors and such and then send back to Pocket. Looking forward to getting these! And, I'll make sure to post about it, too . . .
Wednesday, June 17, 2009
Hopefully this chapter won't give me issues today. Ever have a scene that just refuses to be written? I can see the whole thing in my mind, know all the details and yet when I sit down to write it, nothing happens. Oy. I've written around this scene for weeks now and have a placeholder where the scene takes place in the book with a few notes. IT SHALL BE WRITTEN TODAY. There. I have commanded. Now to make it so...
Monday, June 15, 2009
So, on Saturday, June 13th, I realized it was exactly a year since my agent called to tell me that Pocket had decided to offer me a two-book deal for The Better Part of Darkness and a sequel. A year. Doesn't seem like that long ago. But I will always remember this date for obvious reasons, but also because I was out of town for my sister's nursing graduation, and it was Friday the 13th.
I'll talk more about this later, but for now... Hope you all had a nice weekend!
Friday, June 12, 2009
Thursday, June 11, 2009
Okay, I should back up and say that, yeah, obviously I had some idea of the entire series arc, otherwise Book 1 would not be set up in the way that it is. But there were a lot of paths I could have taken with Charlie to get to the ultimate series goal. That was the gray area. That was the hard part b/c there are so many possibilities there.
I don't want to have the entire thing planned out to a tee, because that would be a little stifling for me, but I kept feeling like I needed to know where certain things were headed. And now I know. And guess who, of all people, got me there?
We actually brainstormed together for the first time. I was having trouble with the backstory in Book 2 -- the villain's motivation. I wanted it to be rock solid, something that would carry over and drive some of the next book, and I felt that it wasn't quite there yet. And there I was just running away at the mouth and all of a sudden, he said something, something I didn't understand. Then, he explained. I caught on, changed it up a bit and then it hit me. That missing piece -- not the missing piece I spoke about in Book 2 earlier -- but the missing piece of the overall series puzzle. I know what's going to happen to Charlie beyond Book 2. And I had THEE COOLEST epiphany for a companion novel for two characters we will see in Book 2 (just a glimpse really, but OH MY GOD). They could actually have a few books to get to where they're going . . . hee, hee. But that's one of those things you keep locked up for the future. . .
Anyway, I'm settled now. I like the feeling of knowing the bones of Charlie's future, but not knowing too much b/c I also like being surprised along the way. But it sure is a relief to know there's a solid road map and an end game for her.
Of course, all this is immediately followed by an 'Oh Crap, now I have to write it all down in a legible, entertaining, hopeful exhilarating way. Oy.
Tuesday, June 09, 2009
Book 2 has finally come together and jelled with the vision I had in my head, but just couldn't seem to translate into the story. Found the missing piece of the puzzle, and found the 'feel' that the story was lacking. Once that happened, I realized it was totally in sync with something my editor talked about back in the Spring. So that's a very good thing! This is where the 'energized' part comes in, because I know now that it's right. And, though, I'm tired, I want to sink in and see how it all plays out.
Nights are spent revising another project. Decided to change the tense, which is a bitch to do. Long, boring. The kind of work that makes your wrist and hand scream in agony. Yay carpal tunnel. Not. But, good news is that I finished that part last night, and now just have to re-read to make sure I didn't miss anything and take care of a few notes.
So that's the latest from my world. Back to work . . . :-)
Thursday, June 04, 2009
Here are a few:
DEMON MISTRESS by Yasmine Galenorn
MAGIC STRIKES by Ilona Andrews
ATLANTIS UNLEASHED by Alyssa Day
BLACK & WHITE by Jackie Kessler & Caitlin Kittredge
STREET MAGIC by Caitlin Kittredge
CRY MERCY by Toni Andrews
THE DEMON'S LEXICON by Sarah Rees Brennan
THE ENCHANTMENT EMPORIUM by Tanya Huff
WITCH FURY by Anya Bast
RED KISS by Deirdre Knight
CARPE CORPUS by Rachel Caine
There are more, but I have to get back to writing. Feel free to mention others in the comments if you'd like. :-)
Oh, and make sure to stop by Bitten by Books. They're having a chat with Yasmine Galenorn -- she'll be answering questions, so take advantage! She's an awesome writer, has been in the biz a long time, and is a well of knowledge and good advice.
Wednesday, June 03, 2009
The mind wanders mightily while multi-tasking. Case and point:
Exhibit A) Whilst checking iPod battery and preparing to make toast. Mind wanders to scene in book and wonders 'will that fight scene really work?'... Result: Losing iPod and finding it a day later inside of the toaster. (Bread is still missing).
Exhibit B) Cleaning off table for dinner, throwing away trash and removing a few folded pieces of laundry. Mind wanders to book and wonders 'is the feel right, is it dark enough, does it translate to the reader...' Result: Clean clothes thrown in trash and found later.
Yeah. I have it bad. There's more. Lots more, but I think I'll leave it at that. Can't decide if Story on the Brain is a good thing or a bad thing. Maybe bad for household items, but damned if the story isn't gonna shine!
Surely I am not the only one afflicted with this malady . . .
Tuesday, June 02, 2009
And speaking of websites: Mine will get an overhaul sometime this summer.
I'm also having lots of fun going through Book 2 to find a suitable excerpt to go into the back of Book 1. I have two scenes right now that I think are really exciting and intriguing for different reasons, and hopefully will whet appetites for the next Charlie Madigan installment. I'm leaning toward one in particular. We'll see what my CP and my agent think though...
That's it for now. Back to work.
Monday, June 01, 2009
Aren't they pretty? I've finished STRANGE ANGELS and HUNGER GAMES (which Jenna Black had lent me and then I had to go out and get my own copy -- so good!). Looking forward to MAGIC STRIKES and THE FOREST OF HANDS AND TEETH.
I've been searching out YA's that are dark and perhaps don't read like YA (though that's hard to identify b/c the way they read can also be opinion and not necessarily fact), but have teenage protagonists and relatable themes, thus making them appeal to both the YA and adult audience. YA/Adult cross overs. I've heard this term before. And a few reviews have mentioned that some of the above YA's fit that description. It seems the question of what separates a YA from adult gets a little fuzzy with certain books. It also seems opinions vary on this point, too. Hmm, must read more. And buy more books. Heh. Good excuse, huh?