Filed under On Books

Agonizing Toward Publication

I was all dreamy over Ooligan Press after pitching my book at the 2016 Write to Publish Conference. Then this happened… Ooligan’s amazing Acquisitions Editors, Molly and Bess, emailed in March that they were excited about Conspiring to be Meri and wanted to pitch the novel to their executive committee. I had no idea what that meant, but … Continue reading

Ooligan Dreams

My friend Karen and I road-tripped to Portland last month. We stayed in a skanky-ish hotel, and what we saved on lodging we spent on food. Totally worth it. We also went to Ooligan Press‘ Write to Publish conference at Portland State University. Here’s what I learned: 1.) I suck at driving in Portland, 2.) everything at Andina is delicious, … Continue reading

Jimmy James Blood: An Interview with Missy Anne

Hello again, pretty blog people! The other day I met up with independent author Missy Anne Peterson at a local hotspot where they serve a mean tofu and egg English muffin sandwich and asked her questions about her debut novel, Jimmy James Blood, a dark story about a rough group of teenagers growing up in a twisted rural … Continue reading

Fault Line: An Interview with Christa Desir

Forever ago I interviewed Carrie Mesrobian about her fabulous debut (released October 2013), and I’m thrilled to report that both readers and critics are gaga over Sex and Violence. Now go buy it. Thanks to Carrie, I had the chance to gab with another fantastic debut author this week. Christa Desir’s novel Fault Line (which just came … Continue reading

Writer Girls Who Make Me Scream

Today I wanna celebrate. Partly because I’m sick of my own Sad Sackery, but mostly because there are so many amazing writer girls in my world and I WANNA SCREAM ABOUT THEM! So I’m gonna. Course I’m psyched that Alice Munro won the 2013 Noble Prize in Literature, and I love that she’s willing to share her … Continue reading

Delirium Delirium

NEWSFLASH: The hottest book club in America–the Girls on Fire Summer Book Club–has started meeting again. True to form, the girls were on fire Friday to rant about the non-ending ending of Requiem, Lauren Oliver’s “conclusion” to the Delirium trilogy. We also chose the cast of the movie version (see our picks below). You’re welcome, … Continue reading

Uses for Boys: An Interview

Uses for Boys is one of those books I read in one sitting and can’t stop thinking about. Erica Lorraine Scheidt’s writing is sparse and unusual. She explores the psyche of a young girl, Anna, who is growing up without much connection or adult guidance. The voice of Anna captivated me. Her innocence is part … Continue reading

Sex and Violence: An Interview

The more connections I make in the writing world, the more I have the opportunity to read early copies of novels (which I love). This week I finished reading my ARC of Carrie Mesrobian’s debut Young Adult novel Sex & Violence, and I wanted to talk about it with someone. Actually, I really really really wanted … Continue reading

Guilty Pleasure Marathon 2012

Like most Americans, I dutifully spent Turkey Day in full consumption mode. I ate more turkey and potatoes and stuffing than I had capacity to digest and so, spent the next day combating killer heartburn and indigestion. Feeling like an idiot. I did put the hurt on the TUMS, though, and downed enough H2O that … Continue reading

The end is near

Summer, my thirties, the pears I canned last year…so many cool things on the verge of being gone forever. Stupid finite human reality. I hate it. Now I have regrets…like  I should have blogged during August (I’m a slacker). Should’ve made more of myself during the decade of my thirties. I should have savored those pears a … Continue reading

Crashing the Tin House Writer’s Workshop

Of course I couldn’t officially attend Tin House’s writing extravaganza this past week—it’s like $1,100. And of course I’ve been plotting for months to go anyway. The thing is, I’ve been to enough of these writing confabs to know they’re a bit like weddings. Everybody’s slightly drunk and blissed-out and wouldn’t know if you’re a cousin of the groom … Continue reading

The Best Bad Book Titles EVER!

My friend Carrie Mesrobian is getting ready to have her first novel published. With a real publisher and everything. The book is YA and is going to be rad and she’s gonna be famous and all that. So yesterday, Carrie mentioned that she still doesn’t have a title for said forthcoming novel, which she’s just been calling … Continue reading

THOSE kind of people.

This week I’m reading  Stephen Chbosky’s The Perks of Being a Wallflower and, of course, now I’m thinking about how I like quirky, distinct characters in writing. Also I’m wondering how best to create my own characters like Charlie, the book’s first-person narrator. If you haven’t read the book, it’s worth the read. Unless you hated Catcher … Continue reading

Writing A Magical Story

This week I’ve been obsessively searching for the magical ingredients of successful story writing. Not like the obvious stuff that we always talk about–character, theme, plot, blah, blah. And please don’t suggest I go read Joseph Campbell. I’m talking about the magic! Secret somethings that pull you in and keep you reading (or watching or listening), … Continue reading

Extremely Incredibly Peculiar Child Narrators

As a rule I like kid narrators.  I read a lot of them. An embarrassingly high percentage of the books I read are YA and most young adult novels feature a first-person narrator between the ages of 14 and 17. This week, I met sixteen-year-old Jacob whom I accompanied on a quest to solve the mystery of … Continue reading

Feeding the Plot-Starved

On the heels of consuming several smarty pants books, I’m hungry for plot candy. Now feed me a story with action, imagination, and maybe a little sweet romance, please. Don’t get me wrong. I love good character-driven literary fiction, too. I mean, I just finished a marvelously lyrical memoir by Sonja Livingston called Ghostbread. Beautiful, award-winning … Continue reading