Iowa Flood Anthology for YA Authors

I *just* found out about this, so I thought I should mention it to you guys too, just in case you had any Midwestern corn punk stories laying around.

Iowa Flood Anthology Guidelines. Submissions close on the 23rd, and it’s not for cash, but it is to raise cash for people who need help in Iowa.

That said, I sent off two scenes from the Grant section of Gossamer and Viridian. They did say they wanted Iowa.


Happy Monday!

It must be Monday. I went back to the gym, Happy Hour of the Damned in tow. The author, Mark Henry, remarked that people usually react strongly to the book. I am amused, much in the same way I was when I watched the American Werewolf films. Sure, the characters are shallow and undead, but it’s laugh out loud funny. You have to truly enjoy dark humor. Or be perverse. Or both. So yes, if that’s you, I’m recommending this one.


Some internet things (it’s all about me!)

Another dollop of Blood is Thicker than Water

A reflection on Takarazuka, the all woman Japanese theater troupe


Finally, another soapbox on why it’s useful to send out your novel even if you’re rejected: learning the players.

Many new writers feel that they want an agent. ANY agent. I begin to think of an agent as getting a job when you enter any field. At first, you want a job. Then you want a better job. You might even have a dream job in mind, and you decide to work toward it.

There are plenty of places to learn about disreputable agents, and that’s not what I’m talking about here. If you stick with Agent Query, Query Tracker, and various places that tout reputable agents, if you watch Preditors and Editors, you will probably find a legitimate agent. What I’m chatting about is a good match from that wide field of legitimate agents.

Personally, I’d like a great agent from word go. I’d like an agent that fits me like a glove, that I enjoyed, that matched me in pace and concern for my work. Since that didn’t happen with my first teaching job, I will be delighted and surprised if it happens with an agent.

Continue reading “Happy Monday!”

Weekend Madness!

Maybe not so much. I’m sewing, and I have to tell even my writing peeps how much I’m looking forward to the last episodes of Avatar: The Airbender tonight. If you haven’t been watching Avatar, you owe it to yourself as a writer to do it! It may well be the best written show in years. Well, it and Battlestar Galactica. There isn’t an ounce of fat in the show, and no plot thread is ever dropped. If you want to learn to write YA with heart, romance, drama, AND you want to write YA where the adults aren’t superfluous bunglers who merely get out of the way because it’s YA and the kids have to do it, my God, you should be watching this show!

Enthuse much? Well, I’m saying that if I taught screen writing, I’d include the show as a great example of how to do it.


To keep you posted, Taryn Fagerness from Sandra Djikstra sent her rejection.

Next travelogue? The spectacular Toei Eiga Mura!


Had I not waxed quite so poetic on Avatar, I would made some observations about agents and their stables of writers. I want to continue newbies like myself to keep sending things out, because while you’re getting rejected, what you’re learning is that all agencies have different climates, and all agents have different opinions. You begin looking at where you might fit and where you might not fit.
But more on that to come. With no names and full of my biased opinions.

First, though, I must go to a meeting to plan a seminar on old anime, and then I must watch a little bald kid with a blue arrow on his head triumph mightily.


Around the Internet

Besides the Q&A with Sarah Prineas, which you can find at a stellar site called Writer Tamago, around the internet today…

Yolanda treats us to Quotes from the Criminal Justice World at Las Habladoras.

Julie Rose gives us another interview, this one from Mandy Roth at Writers and Their Soundtracks.

I’ve updated the Fukuoka Gallery, the Hiroshima Gallery, and the Hikone Gallery.

Today’s travelogue features Tojinbo, the famous suicide cliffs of Japan.

Questions and Answers with Sarah Prineas

Direct from Monday night!

Mindbridge Book Club Proudly Presents
Questions and Answers with Sarah Prineas

Mark: When is the second Magic Thief book coming out?
Sarah: The next hardback will come out next June, and the paper back of the first one will come out in early May next year.

Two L Michelle: Who is your favorite author, and is your writing style similar to theirs?
Sarah: It’s hard to choose one. Tolkien has strongly influenced me, as have Laura Ingalls Wilder and Jane Austen. Megan Whalen-Turner is my favorite children’s author. She’s a master at concealing information from reader and then revealing it. Her first book is called The Thief, and was published in 1996. Someone wrote a review that suggested the Magic Thief reminded me of the Thief, which I considered a great compliment.

Continue reading “Questions and Answers with Sarah Prineas”

Book Club

Wanted to post our upcoming books for the rest of the year…

August Accidental Time Machine by Joe Haldeman
September Valor’s Choice by Tanya Huff
October Happy Hour of the Damned by Mark Henry
November Old Man’s War by John Scalzi
December Goblin Quest by Jim Hines (Remind about Short Stories)

Tanya Huff is our guest at Icon, so we’re going to try to peg her for author discussion then.

If any of the rest of you authors lined up want to come for Monday night coffee, just let us know. 😉 We had a great time with Sarah.


Procrastination versus Percolation

I can’t put Sarah Prineas’ Q&A up, until I’ve given her a chance to look over what I’ve said, so wait for it!

Instead, here are a couple of things:

First of all, Taga Taisho and Fukui.

Next, how do you know if you’re putting off writing, versus waiting for delicious writing gumbo from your subconscious? Here are a few ideas.

You’re procrastinating if:

1. You are doing household chores instead of writing. And you don’t have to. 🙂

2. You spend time blogging instead of writing. A lot more time blogging.

3. You find several small projects becomes more important than keeping up your word count. You know the drill. “Just as soon as I do … I’ll write my great American novel.”

4. You think about lots of other stories you could be writing, often romanticizing them as ones that will write themselves and won’t actually be difficult to write. I have several thousand of these in my head…

5. You take on tasks you might not care for much to avoid writing, because you need an excuse not to write. This leads to 5a.

5a. You blame time deficit for not writing. Really. This is my favorite one. You can make it impossible for yourself to write by choosing to fill up every moment of every day for everyone but you.

You’re percolating if:

1. Your thoughts return to your characters, even if you don’t know what’s going to happen with them yet.

2. You try several writing solutions to a stymied plot point.

3. You do research and reading to gain ideas to improve your story

4. You find that you come back to the story after a few days off, and you feel good about coming back to it, if not the actual writing.

5. You are rewarded with the eureka moment, and you get good gumbo.

See you tomorrow.

Down and Out

Exhaustion and the sinus demons tackled me, and I took the day off work. So, you may say to yourself, what could she possibly have to share? Well, a few things.

Rejection from Jennifer Duvall from Schiavone

New stuff at Las Habladoras: Blood is Thicker than Water and a sketch of Maeve, Cat’s daughter.

Sarah Prineas kindly came to talk to our writer’s group last night. I’ll have a write up of our Q&A as soon as I can.

New look for the publisher of Sister Night, Sister Moon Drollerie Press. Check them out!

Also, Cats Curious is running a press release contest. Find out more in publisher Sonya Sipes’ journal!

Now, back to doing a post headache kind of thing. The right side of my face feels like a mudslide in California. Nice of it to hold off until after all the travelling.

Back from Dallas

Well, the Potter con was good. The YA reading series was small, but mighty, and I met some wonderful authors. Lee Hillman’s short story captivated and I am excited to go out and buy Beth Fehlbaum’s Courage in Patience, classic teen with a problem YA. I also can hardly wait to read Rosemary Clement-Moore’s Maggie Quinn, Girl vs Evil series, and have Prom Dates from Hell in queue.

Other things: Hung out with Sonya Sipes, Yolanda Joosten, and Jenn Racek. Neville paper was standing room only (yes, only at a Potter con), and the costuming presentation we did was well received. So, it was a good weekend.

Very quickly, as I work on catching up electronically from the weekend.

George M. Nicholson of Sterling Lord Literistic rejects me, but says, “…your work is obviously adept…” Groovy.

And, here’s the first part of our day in Hikone:

See you tomorrow.