Tuesday, July 2, 2013

COVER REVEAL: THE APOLLO ACADEMY

So, today I'm thrilled to participate in the cover reveal for Kim P. Chase's debut novel: The Apollo Academy!

As the heiress to Titon Technologies, eighteen-year-old Aurora Titon can have whatever she wants—clothes, expensive gadgets, anything money can buy. All she really wants is to escape her pampered, paparazzi-prone life for the stars. Becoming the first female pilot to train as an astronaut for the Apollo Academy is exactly the chance for which she has been waiting. Everything would be perfect if it weren't for her unreciprocated crush on a fellow student, the sexy astronaut bent on making her life hell, and the fact that someone keeps trying to kill her. 

The first in a four book new adult science fiction series, The Apollo Academy, is an action packed story of love, discovery, and survival.

Early praise for The Apollo Academy:
"I am obsessed with this book! Suspenseful, sexy, and just a great read!" 
-Cora Carmack, New York Times Bestselling author of LOSING IT. 

“Exquisite worldbuilding, thrilling suspense, and a sexy flight instructor! Chase’s exciting debut novel is one you don’t want to miss.” - K.A.Tucker, Author of Ten Tiny Breaths and One Tiny Lie

About the author:
Kimberly P. Chase holds a Bachelor's Degree in Aeronautical Science from Embry Riddle Aeronautical University, which basically means she's kind of a geek and loves flying airplanes. Naturally, her books tend to include aviation, hot flight instructors, aviator glasses, and—let's not forget—kissing! When Kimberly's not writing or reading, she's hanging out with her husband, four-year-old son, and two dogs.

Find Kimberly:



Thursday, June 27, 2013

Thursdays Children...Inspired by Meeting Other Writers

I'm late for Thursday's Children, an awesome bloghop about inspiration hosted by Rhiann Wynn-Nolet and Kristina Perez. Still, I figured better late than never. If you are looking for some great ways to get inspired, make sure to check out the bloghop, the link is at the bottom of the page. 

So, this month I finally did something I've been meaning to do for awhile. I started my own Writers group/Critique group on Meet-Up. Com. I held my first  meeting tonight and people actually showed up. Yay! We had a turn-out of six people and everyone seemed really cool. We have a variety of different writing styles, and a mix of experienced writers and novice writers, so it seems like it will be interesting to see how everyone comes together. 

I'm normally pretty introverted, so putting myself in charge and making sure I met
other writers was a pretty big step for me, but one I'm glad I took. I really hope the group works out because knowing we are meeting every other week will keep me on track with my writing while also giving me something to look forward to. 

Talking to you guys online is great, but it's also fun to get to actually talk writing face to face. How about you guys? Do you have writer friends? Do any of you belong to critique groups? How is the group run? Do you do writing exercises or just critique for one another or talk about different topics? Any ideas for me on how to keep things interesting? 

If you are interested in joining the bloghop click HERE

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Teaser Tuesday...

TEASER TUESDAY hosted by Miz Biz at SHOULD BE READING

Make sure you check out her site if you want some great book recommendations. In the meantime, if you want to play along just:

• Grab your current read
• Open to a random page
• Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
• BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
• Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers

My tease this week is from a book I just finished and really loved. I thought it was going to just be a cute romance, but it had a lot of depth and emotion. I also loved that the two MC's were definitely not your standard gorgeous YA couple. They were normal kids who fell in love because they saw the beauty in each other. A great book I'd highly recommend!


"Your the smartest girl I've ever met, and the funniest, and everything you do surprises me and I wish I could say that those are the reasons I like you, because that would make me sound like a really evolved human being...But I think it's got as much to do with your hair being red and your hands being soft...and the fact that you smell like homemade birthday cake."

Monday, June 24, 2013

Out On Submission…Again!

So my agent sent me the new list of editors we’ll be submitting to today. I’m excited and hopeful. The last round obviously didn’t get me a sale, but I can’t say I was crushed by the passes either. The general consensus was that I had strong writing and voice, but the concept was similar to something on their list—and there isn’t one vampire, werewolf, fallen angel or fairy in my novel. Imagine that-lol! So here’s to hoping this next round of editors don’t have a similar concept already on their list.

Wish me Luck!





Karen @>~>~

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Maggie Stiefvater ARC Contest...

So, I entered an ARC contest this week to try to win a copy of The Dream Thieves by Maggie Stiefvater. I didn't win, which wasn't surprising considering the HUGE amounts of talent and creativity out there. However, it was a super fun art contest where you could paint, draw, sculpt, film, sing or do anything creative to show your love of the book. I wish more writers would do contests like this!! The winning entries were SO cool. One person made a video, the other (my fave) made a truly amazing board game. If any of you guys are fans of Maggie, or love the book The Raven Boys, you need to check out the winners HERE. 

And, even though I didn't win, I wanted to share my entry with you
guys. It was a lot of fun to get to express my love of the book and characters. The link to my entry is HERE and, if you want to read about some of the processes I used to create it, the blog I wrote to go with the entry is below--but I'm omitting all the parts that might be spoilery in case you haven't read the book. Hope you guys like it! 

Have any of you ever entered a contest like this, or created something about your favorite book? What was it? 

BLOG ON CONTEST ENTRY:

This is my entry for Maggie Stiefvater’s ARC contest. First of all, I’d like to say that Maggie is my hero. Every time I think she can’t get any better, she does. LOVE The Raven Boys!  In the interest of keeping this short, I’ll stop gushing now and tell you a little about my entry…
To start, I’d like to point out the blue and red swirls on the raven that’s perched in the tree. I tried to make the raven look similar to the cover of the book. (Actually, I was quite sad to realize that, in the video, you can’t tell that the raven’s chest is red. You’ll just have to trust me on that. haha) The raven was hand-sculpted out of clay, carved with designs and baked. I then paint-washed it to make the red and blue swirls. 
Next we have Gansey’s famous orange Camaro—aka “the pig.” Of course, they didn’t have any orange Camaro’s at Target, so I had to get a red one, paint it and add some cool stripes. The road that the car is driving on is a sampling of tarot cards drawn by the different characters during their reading. 
The road of tarot cards leads to the tomb of the King of Glendower. The King and his tomb are both hand-sculpted and paint-washed brown to age them.Next is Noah. DESCRIPTION OF NOAH DELETED IN THE INTEREST OF SPOILERS.
After him we come to Gansey sitting on top of his  journal, which was painstakingly put together by cutting and gluing together an old writing journal of mine.  I wish I had a better picture of the different papers sticking out the side, but I was running out of time so I was forced to use a not-so-great picture to get this in by the dead line.(my stupid computer kept crashing) DETAILS ABOUT GANSEY OMITTED
By the middle of the road is Adam. I  tried to capture the fragility of his “pretty” looks.I also tried to make him look very put together. If you look closely, you can see the  raven on Adam’s pocket. He’s standing on a sculpted pentacle. Next is Ronan, leaning against the tree looking irritable  Ronan is also in his school clothes, although I did my best to make them look as disreputable as possible. haha. 
Lastly, we come to Blue. ALL DETAILS ABOUT THIS PART OMITTED. 
Just as a few final details.All the characters have a black feather somewhere around them. There is also a large, but subtle, ley-line symbol.
After I finally finished, my husband (who also loved the book) took hours and hours learning how to work Sony Vegas Pro-12—a software editing program so he could zoom in and out and across the canvas and do other cool stuff I don’t really understand. Plus he added music. He contributed at least six or seven hours to this project because he thought a video would be way cooler than just a photo. He is awesome, so I needed to give him his props.
 I worked on this every day this week—it probably ended up taking about thirty to forty hours if I include my husbands time. Obviously it was worth it because even if I don’t win (which I don’t expect to, having seen the crazy amount of talent in the other entries) I had a ton of fun. I also have a cool reminder of the Raven Boys to hang on my bedroom wall AND my husband knows a new software program. haha
In ending, I’d like to say that The Raven Boys is one of the only books I’ve ever read that  left me like I had a hole inside me that I didn’t know how to fill once  the book was finished. I mean it. I was depressed for like two days because I missed Blue and her boys. So thanks for such great characters and all the hours of joy! Also, huge thanks for hosting such a great contest!! Hope you like my entry!

Monday, June 17, 2013

Tapping Into My Inner Boy


I’ve been doing a rewrite of the first YA novel I wrote. While the pov is split between a few characters, the majority of the story is told in the pov of a 17-year-old boy. Not only do I need to have the narrative sound distinctive between characters, but I also need this boy to sound like a boy. I can tap into his mannerisms and I think I’ve got the dialogue down, but I’ve read books that still sound like a woman wrote them when it’s a male character and vice versa.

What I’ve been doing is reading, and sometimes rereading, books with male leads. Some written by men, some written by women.
 
-The Unwind series by Neil Shusterman.
-The Furnace series by Alexander Gordon Smith.
-I just finished reading TWISTED by Laura Halse Anderson. Her male character sounded like a male. Never once was I aware that a woman had created Tyler. That’s what I want.
 
As a teen, I hung around a lot of boys, but that was many moons ago. Still, I’ve been paying close attention to the men in my life just to see how they think, because usually when I become aware that a woman wrote a male character its in the narrative, the boy’s inner thoughts. Hopefully, I can tap into my mc's thoughts and make him  sound like a boy and not a boy written by a woman.

How do you all go about writing characters of the opposite sex?



Karen @~>~

Thursday, June 13, 2013

Thursdays Children...Inspired by great advice

Time for Thurdays Children again, an awesome bloghop about writerly inspiration hosted by Rhiann Wynn-Nolet and Kristina Perez.  

One of the things that always most inspiring is the awesome advice by other writers. Some of my favorite books on writing are: 


Stephen Kings On Writing   Half memoir of the master of horror and half instruction, this book is
packed full of awesome tips. 

Bird by Bird by Anne Lamont  This book contains useful instruction on both
writing and life. Not to be missed. 

The Fire in The Fiction: Passion, Purpose and Techniques to Make Your Novel Great. The title pretty much says it all! 

What about you guys? What are some of your favorite books on writing. And does ANYONE out there know of any books that aren't for beginners? I'd really love something that talks more about things like themes, moods and internal quests. Although, again, anything not geared towards beginner writers would be awesome! 

If you'd like to join the fun at Thursday's Children, click HERE

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Wednesday

It's my day to post, but I'm having one of those brain dead days. My plan to deal with this and not feel like a
total let down to my blog partner, Tamara is to spend the day visiting blogs. This is something I try to do regularly, but it doesn't happen as often as I'd like. So, today I hope to make it to your blog!

Talk to you soon, 


Karen

Monday, June 10, 2013

Writing Rules



So I read a lot, as most writers do, and I find that sometimes I’ll read as a writer and not as a reader. What I mean by that is sometimes I see all the things I was told NOT to do as an aspiring author right there on the page in front of me.

“If you want to be a great writer and get published you shouldn’t…”

…use passive sentences.
…overuse adjectives.
…overuse exclamations marks.
…have a first chapter where nothing happens.
…tell rather than show.
…overuse adverbs especially those ending in ly.

And on and on.

Yet I read book after published book filled with these things I’ve been told never to do if I want to get published, if I want to be a great writer. I think these are all good rules and I understand the need for them because when I read a book riddled with passive sentences I want to rewrite that sentence, but are these rules not for everyone? What I mean is are these rules pounded into the heads of burgeoning writers because we may have a tendency to fill our books with passive sentences, hundreds of adjective and adverbs ending in ly, and put an exclamation mark on every sentence that has a slightly higher degree of emotion? Or is it that if your story is good enough, entertaining enough, mind-blowing enough that no one is going to notice that you told us half of your story rather than showed it to us?

I have to say, one of my recent favorite books, an award winning, New York Times Bestselling novel, was mostly telling. A couple hundred of the nearly 800 pages could’ve been shaved off and I wouldn’t have missed it. Yet I loved the story that was TOLD to me, mostly through passive sentences.

So what’s a girl to do? Personally, I don’t like passive sentences so whenever I see them in my own writing I correct where I can—just not on here, of course-lol. I try to make sure that I’m following the rules above, but mostly, I try to tell a good story. Because when I really asked myself which would I rather read, a meh story that is technically, textbook perfect, or a story that didn’t abide by most or any of the rules but had me enthralled? I’ll take enthralled any day of the week!


What do you think? Have you seen a lot of these don’ts in books you’ve read recently? 

Thursday, June 6, 2013

Thursdays Children...Inspired by work

Thursdays Children, hosted by: Rhiann Wynn-Nolet and Kristina Perez.

This week I feel inspired by the simple act of working. I've been busy with a lot of other things. Sometimes life gets in the way of writing. And, for some reason, the more days I spend away from my desk, the easier it becomes to stay away. There are always a million other things to do and the act of writing starts to seem more difficult than it is.

I find myself dreading scenes that need to be reworked. But, once I make myself get to it, I'm always surprised by the simple joy of it. I don't know how I forget that in between. I guess because there are certain issues with my current book that I feel I can't overcome (wordcount. ugh). Sometimes that seems a little overwhelming but I know if I just take it step by step, sooner or later I'll figure it out.

And, in the end, I know the most important thing to do is just keep working at it. So that's what I'm doing this week...I'm being inspired by work. :) How about you guys? Do you get lazy with the writing sometimes? What inspires you?

If you'd like to join the list for Thursdays Children, click HERE

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Teaser Tuesday...

TEASER TUESDAY hosted by Miz Biz at SHOULD BE READING

Make sure you check out her site if you want some great book recommendations. In the meantime, if you want to play along just:

• Grab your current read
• Open to a random page
• Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
• BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
• Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!

My tease for this week is from an absolutely adorable book. If you are looking for a light, fun, feel-good romance, I'd highly recommend The Summer I Became a Nerd by Leah Rae Miller. I'm not going to lie, the premise struck me as totally unbelievable when I read the back but the story is so damn cute and appealing that it sucked me in anyway. And who knows? I suppose a popular girl could be embarrassed to be a comic-book-loving"nerd." At any rate, I had just gotten done reading a bunch of heavy, make-you-think-and-cry books and this was exactly what I needed. It was refreshing to read a fluffy YA book about a girl whose biggest problem is that she desperately wants to kiss the swoon-worthy and charmingly-awkward dork who works at her favorite comic-book store. (Plus she has both parents and neither are alcoholics or control freaks!) haha. I guarantee you won't get through this book without smiling!


His fingertips touching the side of my neck are the only thing I feel as the dice are totaled behind me. The creases between his eyebrows disappear as the smile that struck me as irresistible the first time I saw it in The Phoenix appears. 



Monday, June 3, 2013

Seriously?


So lately I’ve been watching episodes of Bones. Early in the series they really made a big deal about the main character, Temperance Bennan, being a mystery writer—a New York Times bestselling, mystery writer. So one episode she mentions that her publisher gave her a sports car as a bonus. Another time the publisher gave her a Rolex.

Seriously?

I remember years ago when I first saw this I wondered if it really happened. I went so far as to ask literary agent Kate Testerman, aka, “Daphne” if any of her clients had received these kinds of perks. Basically she said no. Any “perks” or gifts for her authors should be given in the form of money. *my thoughts exactly*

But this still puzzles me. Bones is based off of novels by Kathy Reichs. She is also executive producer of the show. Could she not have said, “No, no guys, that’s not how it works.” Not to mention, literary agents are NOTHING like agents for actors. Yet each time I see a literary agent portrayed on screen they are these fast talking, Armani suit wearing, Ferrari driving jerks.

I don’t know, maybe these things are minor in the grand scheme of the plot, but it really bugs me. So my question is for all of you published authors. Have you ever received a “perk” from your publisher? Car, house, watch, boat? Or do you know someone who has? Inquiring minds want to know…

Thursday, May 30, 2013

Thursdays Children...Growing as a writer....

Thursday's Children: Hosted by Rhiann Wynn-Nolet and Kristina Perez

Yesterday I read a prologue (teaser release) of a book called, "The Dream Thieves." It's the sequel to The Raven Boys, written by Maggie Stiefvater. And it's perfect. Personally, I thought it was some of the best writing I've read in a long time. Obviously, it's a subjective thing. I mean, I LOVE Maggie's writing style, but I'm sure it's not for everyone. That's not really the point though. The point is, the prologue to Maggie's newest book sounds (to me) like her best writing to date.  

Mind you, I've always enjoyed her writing. But from Maggie's first series, The Book of Faerie, up until now, she's grown immensely. In fact, it would be impossible to read her first book and her most recent back to back and not see the growth. Some writers don't seem to change much. While one book may do better than another, their style stays the same throughout their career. Maggie's writing, however, just keeps getting better. 

And, what I want to know is HOW? Someone answer that for me! Because I want to keep getting better, but I don't feel like I am. I'm working on my fourth book and I don't think my talent level is vastly different from the book I wrote last year, or even the year before. I kind of feel like I've plateaued and I'm definitely not ready to.

I tried to get some books on writing, but all of them seem to cover pretty much the same sorts of things. How to write a book. What not to do. How to plot a story. Stuff I feel like I already know. 

So now what? Do I take a class? Does anyone know of any writing books that aren't for beginners? How do you guys improve? 

If you want to join the awesome group at Thursday's Children click HERE 

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

My First Time

So I’ve been thinking about the first novel I ever wrote. A friend asked me about the writing process. My first answer was, “I sit down and write.” And then I went a bit deeper. When I was halfway through, my friend gave me a confused look. I realized I’d been telling her all of my rookie mistakes. My first novel was a true work of passion. I wrote because I was a lonely 19-year-old in a new college and hadn’t made any friends yet—my roommate was not my cup of tea!

So I wrote. It kept me company, filled up my days, and made me okay with not being so popular anymore—I was pretty well known in high school and at my first university. I’d just transferred to this school and wasn’t taking to my new environment as immediately as I thought I would. Nevertheless, my writing made all of that tolerable. Then I made friends, got a social life, and forgot my writing for a while.

When I went back to that story at the ripe old age of 23, I couldn’t believe how juvenile it was. I hadn’t had been lied to, had my heart broken, or flunked a class when I’d written that novel at 19—all of which had happened to me by the age of 23. So got back into my writing and plugged away at it for a long while. It took me FOREVER to let someone else read what I’d written. Only when I was contemplating getting published, like a decade later, did I finally let someone read my novel. My mom and my sister. With there stamps of approval—no one else, mind you—I was ready to get on with this writing thing, I mean, there were millions of dollars to be made. Here are the things I did when I stepped my virgin toes into query hell. Tell me how many mistakes you count. J

1. I italicized, bolded, and changed the font of all the dialogue. *It’s gotta stand out, right?*
2. The manuscript had a word count of nearly 200k. *That’s passion!*
3. To reduce the page numbers I used 10pt and 1.5 spacing and .5 margins. *My eyes are bleeding just remembering that!*
4. The main character was 17 years old so I should’ve queried it as YA, but I queried agents who were looking for adult novels only because they mentioned they liked ethnic fiction and my characters were black and Hispanic. *I’m still laughing about that one.*
5. And finally, I got a copyright. *No one was going to steal my precious work! Mind you, my mother is still telling me to get a copyright on each novel I finish, no matter how many times I tell her I don’t need it.*

It wasn’t until I submitted my novel to a small publishing house that the woman who read it pointed out all of my mistakes. I am, until this day, grateful for her kind words. After I received her positive, yet informative denial I became a researching maniac! I really felt stupid when I realized so much information was out there about manuscripts and how to format them. But I am forever grateful for my mistakes too. I think back on that first manuscript fondly. It will probably never sit atop a bookseller’s shelf, but it’s mine. I created it and I am proud of it…all 669 pages of the YA master piece.

How did your first novel come about? Did you make a lot of mistakes like me, or did you do your homework?

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Inspired by Rejection...Thursdays Children


Thursdays Children/hosted by:

So, it's really funny that last week I wrote about how I like waiting to hear back on things and then, this week, I heard back on two major things I was waiting on forever and they were both rejections (one of them on a full, which are always the worst) and it sucked. 

But, even though it's common sense, I really took the time to sit down and remind myself why I do this. It's so easy to get caught up in the query/rejection cycle and lose track. So I asked myself, in all honesty, is it the thought of getting published that keeps me writing? And the answer is no. It’s the joy I get from it. It’s the story and the characters and their world. 


And, no matter how many rejections I get, nobody can ever take the three manuscripts I've written away from me. Nobody can steal the happiness I felt while writing them. Writing has given me more consistent joy than anything else I've ever accomplished. And that is worth some pain.  

 So I decided it's okay to feel like crap for a little while. But then I have to remember that this rejection isn’t going to ruin my life. It’s just a speed bump. A hurtle. How many of those have I had? How many of those have I beaten? God knows I’ve handled things a hell of a lot more painful than a rejection. I've handled them and overcome them. And if I can do that, I can do this. 

Also, there is no way I can believe that not a single book I’ve written is worth reading. That’s bullshit.  
I've read all the books on all the main reasons people get rejected. I'm not doing any of those things wrong. It's always just a matter of personal taste. And all I have to do is keep reminding myself that, if I love the books I've written and my critique partner loves them then, eventually, I will find an agent who loves them too. 

And besides all of that, I decided one last thing. Like I mentioned up top, I asked myself: Is this going to ruin my life? Obviously the answer is no. And then I thought to myself: If it's not something that's going to ruin my life, why should I let it ruin my day? 

I think that's a pretty good motto to live by. Especially when it comes to rejections. 

If you'd like to join Thursdays Children and talk about things that inspire you as a writer, click HERE

Writer's Butt


If you don’t know what writer’s butt is, get to the gym immediately because you probably have it! :-)

I seem to have come back from vacation with a renewed since of health and wellbeing. I’ve always been a rather healthy eater, but my problem lies in the physical part of the health regimen.

My day job is sedentary. Writing is sedentary. So now I’m really worried that I’ll wake up one day and will need to have the side of my house cut away so I can get out—I’m not trying to make fun of those poor souls, just saying I don’t want to end up that way.

My plan to avoid further writer’s butt—you’ll know if you suffer from this affliction by the wide flatness of your hind-parts—I am going to the gym three times a week and taking walks three times as well.

I really love walking. I do a lot of writing in my head and have solved plotting problems, dreamed up awesome scenes, and developed characters all while taking a stroll.

How do you avoid Writer’s Butt? Do you have a workout regimen? Do you find taking walks opens up your mind to your writing?

Monday, May 20, 2013

Teaser Tuesday...

Teaser Tuesday again! It's hosted by Miz Biz over at Should Be Reading. If you are looking for some
great books make sure to check out her sight and the other people participating. 

In the meantime, if you want to play along, it's easy. 
• Grab your current read
• Open to a random page
• Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
• BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
• Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!



My teaser this week is from Altered by Jennifer Rush. 

Dad made his way across the field with a limp. Inwardly I flinched, remembering that day in the lab, the horror of watching Sam shoot him. 

Back From Vacation

My week on a cruise ship was fun, relaxing, and frustrating. Fortunately, the frustrating part was minor, but enough that I’ll not cruise out of Baltimore again—only because it is a small port and therefore the ships are smaller. I’ve been on a big ship and once you have, you can’t go back. Lol.

The first frustration was they split our party of 5 into two tables at dinner. All 5 passengers were booked together, yet they assigned 2 people to one table and 3 to another. Now, I’m not the complaining type, but I complained about this. We finally got the dinner seating squared away after speaking with 3 different people. Still, the food was pretty good, but not as good as it was on my last cruise.

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Frustration #2. Anyone who has ever been on a cruise knows that you check your luggage and it’s then left outside of your room later. Well, when I got to my cabin that first evening I went to pick up my suitcase and the handle was completely broken.

 
 




This frustration was one that was addressed and handled very quickly and to my satisfaction. They couldn’t fix it so they gave me a new suitcase! Way to go, Royal Caribbean!

 

Now for the relaxing part. Coco Kay was absolutely beautiful! It was the most relaxing port on this trip. The only downside…the sunburn on my shoulders. Now they’re peeling. Don’t you just love when that happens?

 

 

 









The last thing I want to talk about is all the creepy art on the ship. I mean, it was just weird. I took pictures of all the macabre art, hoping it wouldn’t haunt my phone. Truthfully, the art was beautiful, but I'd think twice before I hung any of it in my house. Lol.
 

 




















Now I’m back home, trying to get into the swing of things. I hope to have better posts soon. 
Have any of you gone on vacation yet this season? If so, where’d you go and how was it?

Thursday, May 16, 2013

Bouncing back and Inspiration

So, it is taking me awhile to bounce back from the rather excessive blogging in April. haha. And my website partner is off on vacation. But, I'm excited to be getting back to a normal blogging schedule (even if I am two weeks later than everyone else. I am being "fashionably" late) So, with that being said, I'm hopping back into one of my favorite blog-hops  "Thursdays Children" hosted by Rhiann Wynn-Nolet at A Nest of Words.  

I've always enjoyed this hop because it gives me a chance to talk about the things that inspire me as a writer, one of my fave topics. If you haven't participated be sure to check it out and join in the fun! The linky-list link is at the bottom of my post. (Linky-list link. Try saying that ten times fast.)

The topic I'm choosing this week is waiting. As writers we do a lot of it. First waiting to get an idea. Then waiting to finish the story. To get critiques. To do edits. To find an agent. To find a publisher...etc...etc...When you are a writer, the waiting literally never stops. 

And, sometimes I find it frustrating but, for the most part I find it inspiring. I love getting up and
checking my email every day. I love knowing that today might be the day I hear back on something, whether it's a full I have out or a short story I submitted or a critique I'm getting. I figure the more writing I have floating around, the more chance there is that I will strike gold with something. 

If I never had anything out on submission, I don't think I'd be as driven to keep writing. While it does make me nervous, I also like the thrill of anticipating good responses. And while I'm waiting, I'm inevitably inspired to fill up my time with writing more, so I have more things to submit, and more responses to wait on. 

And it's not just about submissions. One of my favorite things to wait on is critiques. I know a lot of people are super nervous about receiving them. I've even met other writers who dread the critique and the inevitable rewrites/doubts it brings. But, to me, each critique is a new and exciting opportunity to see my work through someone else's eyes. I love finding out what works and what doesn't. What could possibly be more exciting than someone pointing out how I can make my work better? 

What about you guys? Do you like getting critiques? Does all the waiting bother you or inspire you?  Would you rather be waiting to hear back on something or have the calmness of knowing there are no rejections coming? ;)

If you are interested in signing up for Thursdays Children just click HERE

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Teaser Tuesday

So, it's time for Teaser Tuesday again, hosted by Miz Biz at Should be Reading.
If you want to play along just:
• Grab your current read
• Open to a random page
• Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
• BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
• Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!


My teaser for this week is from a book with a neat background. Struck by Lighting by Chris Colfer. For any "gleeks" out there you'll know Chris as Kurt from Glee. Interestingly enough, he wrote the book as a screenplay, had the movie made (which he also starred in) and then wrote the novel after the movie. I didn't know any of this when I picked the book up. I just knew it sounded like a fun concept. So far, (and I'm only a couple chapters in) the  MC has an amazing, extremely funny, teen voice. I'm really enjoying it. And, with that being said, here is my tease:

"Until I was ten and saw a parents friend's interact, I never realized that people got married because they wanted to, because they loved each other. I always thought it was more like jury duty: You got an envelope in the mail telling you when, where, and who you were required to reproduce with."

Wednesday, May 8, 2013

My Vacation Reads


As I’m gearing up to hit the high seas on Friday, I've compiled a small list of books I’m going to read, or plan to read while on vacation. I get that beach books, or vacation reads are supposed to be books that aren't too complicated, light, flirty stories. But does that have to be what you take on vacation with you? I don’t think so. So here is what is on my Kindle queued up and ready:

Death Sentence (Book 3 in the Escape from Furnace Series) by Alexander Gordon Smith







Unwholly (Book 2 in the Unwind series) by Neil Shusterman







A Monster Calls by Patrick Ness









And my guilty pleasure—historical romance. Anything from the list of Mary Balogh that I haven’t read before.

Will I finish all of these books in 7 days? Probably not. But I got through 2 ½ books last year while on vacation so I know I can probably finish two of these. And while only the romance could maybe be classified as a “light” read, the rest are relatively short books, but have solid stories. There is something about sitting in a deck chair, listening to the ocean, and reading a good book. I can’t wait!

Take care and many happy vacations to you all!

Karen

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Teaser Tuesday...

Aaaah...April was fun, but I'm looking forward to falling back into the blogging schedule I used to follow. And, as such, I'm posting for Teaser Tuesday, a meme I followed on my old blog and always loved because it is a great way to find out about new books to read!

It's hosted by Miz Biz at Should Be Reading. Anyone can play along. All you have to do is:

• Grab your current read
• Open to a random page
• Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
• BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
• Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!

My teaser for this week is from Clockwork Princess. It's the last book in Cassandra Clare's Infernal Devices series. If you haven't read these, please give them a chance!! I read these books out loud to my family, one chapter a night. All of us, from my husband to my fourteen year old daughter to my seventeen year old son, all LOVED these books. And, with that being said, here is the teaser:
      Jem smiled at him, that smile that had always, even on Will's blackest days, eased his mind. "I think there is hope for you yet, Will Herondale." 
     "I will try to learn how to have it, without you to show me."

Monday, May 6, 2013

Monday Mind Game

Hi all. Glad to see you’ve survived the A-Z Challenge. Welcome and thanks to all of our new followers! Tamara and I really appreciate your support. So on our first official non-challenge post, I’d like to start off with something simple.

I’ve played this game with friends and have always found it interesting to see the unexpected answers. So here is my mind game question:

If You Could Only Bring 3 People to a Deserted Island, Who Would You Bring?

The rules:

We know you’d bring your kids, your spouse or Jesus, so I’m looking for Literary, Celebrity, Cartoon or Fictional. Someone who fits in the following three categories—remember, real or fiction:

  1. Guilty Pleasure Person
  2. Intellectual Person
  3. A Just Because Person


Here are my answers:

My Guilty Pleasure: Iron Man/Tony Stark. Maybe this is because I just saw the third movie and I LOVE Robert Downey Jr, but I think I’d have a great time with Tony Stark on a deserted island. Not to mention--even if the suit didn't make it--when we got tired of being there he could totally build us a jetpack from coconuts and blast us back to civilization.


My Intellectual Person: Sherlock Holmes. It's no coincidence this character was recently portrayed by Robert Downey Jr., but that's not the main reason I chose him. I think I’m a fairly observant person, but I’d really like to be much more so and I think I could learn a lot from him. I want to deduce!


My Just Because Person: J.K. Rowling. I’d make her write more installments in the Harry Potter series to fill in those years where Harry and Ginny, and Ron and Hermione really became couples and grew into the parents we saw in the epilogue…or else I'd tell Tony Stark not to build her a coconut jetpack and we'd leave her on that island!


So tell me, If You Could Only Bring 3 People to a Deserted Island, Who Would You Bring?