30 August 2011

The Warm Fuzzies Blogfest!

Here it is folks, news about the blogfest that's in works! I'll be hosting the Warm Fuzzies blogfest in the middle of October. I know this is a month away still, but you'll just have to be patient and wait :)

This blogfest is a celebration of writers. Being a writer can be exhausting- we put a lot of work into our writing and sometimes, we just need a pick-me-up. The end of October and beginning of November will be a party. We'll get to know other writers, work on our writing and of course, win some pretty cool prizes.

And isn't that button above awesome!! Seriously, I love it. The wonderful Janice who also hosts The Blog Bakery made this for me. Janice is offering a completele blog make over as one of the prizes. See, I told you- awesome prizes :D

Starting mid-september I'll start putting up instructions for the blogfest. I hope y'all are as excited as I am!!

---For those of you who have not signed up for Rachael's Writers Platform Building Campaign you need to do so now! Tomorrow is the last day to join!!!

26 August 2011

Tribal Writer

For those of you who do not follow Justine Musk's blog, please remedy and go follow. She has a powerful writing style that never fails to inspire me.  Her recent post on 'How to be a dangerous woman (in fiction + life) gave me goosebumps. I couldn't help but be reminded how it connects to being a writer.

When we decide to take the step and annouce to the world that we want to be a writer- we are making a bold decision. I know we all hear plenty of doubts and yet, it's our job to feel confident inspite of those doubts.

And that segues perfectly into the blogfest I have brewing for y'all! I promise, I'll have more info up later this week for you including.

1. The theme- which is awesome, and 2. The prizes- which are also awesome.

I'm making the move to Nashville tomorrow and am not entirely sure when we'll have internet at our new place. I'm hoping soon- not sure how long I can last without it! I promise though, I'll get myself to a coffee shop to get a fix every day :)

(I'm excited to be meeting my fellow campaigners! Yay!!)

24 August 2011

A Winner!

Random.org picked...Krispy!! Yay! Shoot me your e-mail and I'll send you your winnings :)

I found it extremely ironic that only one new person found their way over here (yay for Liz!). But hey, the point was to celebrate reaching 100 whenever it comes.

I'm back from Colorado. Vacation was amazing. The mountains had me spinning with ideas and I LOVED being in a dry climate. Here are a two pics for your enjoyment :)

p.s. Thanks guys for all of the book suggestions! I'm super excited to be moving to a place that has an awesome library :)

19 August 2011

GASP! Triple Digets Giveaway!

When did this happen?? I looked at my blog today and gave a shout of happiness when I realized my followers were up to 96. Eee!

I feel so loved :)

And in honor of almost being at 100 followers I'm going to give someone, a very special someone, a $15 giftcard from Amazon! I mean hey, that's good for two or three books.

All you have to do is be a follower, pass word on (twitter/blog/whatever) (and no, you don't have to post a link mostly because I probably wouldn't go check. I am the trusting sort ;) and give me one suggestion for an awesome book I need to read.

(And no, Sophia, you can't say Sea/Spy Glass because you know I haven't read them yet. That would be cheating...sort of.)

I'll let the random.org pick the winner next Wednesday.

Good luck!

14 August 2011

Kill them with Kindness

Last week, I was on the phone with a lady who was not very nice. As great as the temptation was, I resisted and was extremely kind to her. I thanked her for her time and she quickly got off the phone not knowing how to respond.

When I hung up, Cale said, "You killed her with kindness, didn't you."

Yup, I sure had.

Recently, I've seen an influx of angsty characters, mean for the one reason that they can use harsh sarcasm which can be funny. That's great and yes, sometimes it works incredibly well, but what's happening to the nice characters out there? Where have they gone?

Sad as it is, in real life, mean people tend to stay mean and nice people tend to stay nice. I'm not sure if I can one hundred percent believe your character going from mean to nice or bad to good in the course of a few hundred pages.

I say, bring back the nice characters who go through genuine character development. Give your character a personality that goes beyond snippy words and actions. Trust me, your reader will appreciate it :)

12 August 2011

Liebster Award

The wonderful Christine and Sophia have both passed the Liebster Award to me and so it's my turn to pass it on to others!

The only problem is that everyone has already gotten this award. Would it be totally cheating of me to pass it on to all of you, my wonderful amazing followers? Probably, but I don't care, I'm still gunna do it ;)

So here you go, my lovelies. You all are amazing.

5. And most of all—have bloggity-blog fun!

07 August 2011

We interrupt our regular programming...

for a rant!

Why are writers in such a rush to be published?  I know, I know, it's the dream.  We all want to hold our lovlies in our hands, smell the pages, sign them for all our fans, give them as presents on Christmas, and of course, high jack our friends for long car rides and tell them to READ IT!  Yes, it's the dream.

It is my dream too.  I want all those things sometimes so bad I think I could cry or throw up (yes, seriously). But I started walking down this road only six months ago and only wrote my first novel a year ago. My first book was horrible, terrible, but I learned a lot. My second was a middle grade book that I had a ball writing. My third was a full length YA. And now, I've begun another YA.

I can't believe how I've improved with each book I've written!  The old adage is right, if you want to get better at writing, you have to write.  No excuses.  Just get it done.  Don't stop at book one, write a second, third, fourth...

No, I'm not saying don't query the first or second because I'm sure going to, once I feel they're polished, but I'm also saying, what's the rush?  You're probably not starving because you haven't sold any books.  That's what other jobs are for.

The moral to my rant: don't be in a rush, just write, perfect your craft, and make connections with other writers (yes, make friends, just like in kindergarden).  But the biggest thing you should focus on is to enjoy writing.  Love writing.  Be happy you can do this at all.  Every single second of it.  Fall in love with your characters.  Drown in the worlds you build.  Plan more ways to thwart your characters and figure out how to get them out of it.

So go! Write! And never, for a second, take for granted our ability to do what we love.

05 August 2011

Dusting off my Middle Grade novel

Gabriela Lessa has given me a great reason to dust off my only completed novel: a contest! Rupert is my MG novel. It holds a special place in my heart since it is the only novel I've managed to finish (although, when you think I've only been at this since the new year, it doesn't sound that bad).

I'm supposed to write a one sentence pitch (which I would love some help with!) and post my first paragraph. Lots of you will have seen this before when I posted it a few months back, but for those of you it's new to, feel free to share your thoughts!

Name: Juliana Brandt
Title: Rupert Reginald Robinson, XI & the Mysterious House Next Door
Genre: Middle Grade
Manuscript word count: 23,000
Judge: Aubrey Poole

One-sentence pitch: Rupert must defeat a powerful pirate when he discovers imaginary creatures live in his next door neighbors house. (Ick, I know this is bad. Thoughts??)

First paragraph:
Rupert Reginald Robinson clutched a thick book to his chest; his forehead rested against the glass of the backseat car window.  The car bumped across the road.  His head slid to a new place and left a smudge of grease on the glass.

(I am guest posting over at Jack Flacco's on being a critique partner. Go check it out!)

04 August 2011

Moving Stress

I've been sitting here in front of my computer trying to figure out what to write and all I can think about is how much work there is to do still with moving. So, I'm totally stealing Deana's post because she wrote it wayyy better than I could. Go read.