Monday, February 21, 2011

New Holding Page!

Still not a website, but today my new holding page went live. 

Thanks to Maddee at for bringing a little piece of me to life on line!

Check it out here.

I love it!  The website itself won't be ready for a few months, but for now I really love this page.

Sunday, February 20, 2011

Killing a Darling

I've just started the first round of edited revision on SPIES.  As much a I can't wait to be on the other side of this revision with a finished manuscript in hand, revision is my favorite part of the writing process.  The first draft hurts because it's both overwhelming and unknown.  But revision, revision is where a manuscript becomes a book, where characters become real, where plots have a purpose and where stories come to life.

I love discovering the hidden depths of my characters and the deeper meaning behind my stories.  I love exploring themes and plot threads in more detail.  I love adding layers that make the story richer and more complex.

Bur Revision is hard too.  Not every scene, or plot thread, or character serves the story.  And it can be hard to let them go.

One of my favorite characters got cut today.  It was my idea to cut him, because the overall story loses nothing from his absence.  He was a literal darling, brightening every scene he was in with a touch of humor. He didn't serve any purpose that wasn't being fulfilled by another character though and I needed to simplify.

I've cut characters from manuscripts before.  Body counts are nothing new for my revision process.  But this one hurt more than the others because I loved him so much. 

So tonight I raise a glass to Jason Hiles, thank him for the laughs and friendship, and send him into literary limbo.  For now.  He'll be back.   

And I promise him one hell of a storyline.

Sunday, February 13, 2011


So it seems as if I've fallen off the face of the earth right?  Nope, I'm still here.  And I've been very, very busy over the last few months.

Turns out that when you sell a book off of a partial manuscript, you actually have to deliver a finished product.  Who knew?  So I spent three months from September to December writing.  Then writing some more.  Then revising.  Until a finished manuscript of SPIES & PREJUDICE was born.  It was a lot of fun to write, and I'm about to start the editing process.

And I've been blogging as a regular member of the YA Muses blog.  I blog weekly usually on Wednesdays.  You can find me over at  The Muses is a blog featuring my entire critique group.  We've learned so much in the last year as we've moved closer to becoming published writers, and the blog is place to share our experiences, writing processes, books we love and more.  Plus, my critique partners are some of the most amazing writers I've had the privilege to read. 

Finally, I've been working on a new project, a new manuscript that for now is just for me.  It's fun to write without any deadlines or expectations. 

Writing a book under contract was wonderful and terrifying.  It's a great feeling to know your writing will be published, but it also brings a lot of pressure that you don't have when you're writing on your own.  In order to keep from becoming completely paralyzed and get a draft of SPIES on paper, I had to shut all of that out and just write the book for me.  It wasn't easy though, and I'm still not sure how I managed to do it.  I imagine published authors experience this to an even greater degree, because they not only have a publisher, but a legion of fans who they don't want to let down.  Talk about pressure.

As stress goes, this is definitely the good kind, because you know how lucky you are to have people who are looking forward to your next book.  And having a deadline really motivated me to sit down and write, as opposed to meandering my way to a first draft like I did in the past.  I proved something to myself.

I am really doing this.

I am a writer.