Sunday, December 30, 2012
Saturday, December 22, 2012
Sunday, December 9, 2012
|Sometimes revisions involve digging through the|
dirt and sniffing out the parts worth saving. See what
I did there?
But if you can do that, your story will be that much stronger, and you will be that much better. Write on.
Monday, December 3, 2012
When I sold RECLAIMED to Spencer Hill Press back in September, I felt like Santa had come early. Working with my editor Danielle Ellison and the entire family at Spencer Hill Press has continued to feel like a dream, and I'm so thrilled to be able to celebrate the holiday season by participating in a giveaway. The Spencer Hill family put together a little something to help get everyone in the Christmas spirit. So visit the participating blogs and enter to win!
One Spencer Hill Press book (winner's choice--can include soon to be release selections)
TOUCH OF DEATH Handcrafted Pendant- www.stainedglasscreationsandbeyond.com
Handcrafted Necklace and Earrings
So Many Books, So Little Time Necklace
$20 Amazon or Barnes and Nobel (Winner's Choice)
Two $10 Amazon
First Chapter Critique-Mary Gray
First Chapter Critique-Rhys A Jones
Query Letter Critique-Trisha Wolfe
BETRAYED Fridge Magnet
Holiday Towel and Potholder
Candy- nom nom nom
FINN FINNEGAN Handcrafted Charmed Bookmark- www.stainedglasscreationsandbeyond.com
TOUCH OF DEATH
TOUCH OF DEATH Handcrafted Pendant- www.stainedglasscreationsandbeyond.com
First Chapter Critique (2500 Words Max)-Elizabeth Langston
Query Letter Critique-Kimberly Ann Miller
Holiday Towel and Potholder
Candy- NOM NOM NOM
TOUCH OF DEATH
First 250 word-DK Mok
Either query or first 250 word critique (your choice)--Michelle Pickett
Contest is opened to US and Canada residents only. Sorry :(
rel="nofollow">a Rafflecopter giveaway</a>
Wednesday, November 21, 2012
Monday, November 19, 2012
I am so thankful for the writing community. Anyone who says agents and editors are trying to keep people from getting published aren't listening to the right people. There are so many awesome industry professionals who work hard to educate and help new writers. If you want to get published, you must do your research. There is an abundance of information on the Internet, and honestly, I have no idea how people learned what they needed to before we had this amazing place to share and gather information. So here are just a few places where I learned more than I ever knew I needed to.
There are so many wonderful agents out there, all offering advice and willing to help new authors, even though they are already busy enough with helping their clients and finding new ones. So thanks to all those agents who are willing to share their advice. Here are three I've found helpful.
Thursday, November 15, 2012
Monday, November 12, 2012
|Aren't my parents adorable?|
|I'm the one in the dance costume.|
My sister is the cool one.
|Seriously adorable, isn't he?|
|Me with my crew at their senior prom|
And there are so many others out there - my Mama Gayle, my friend Leslie, countless Twitter pals. Thanks, y'all!
Friday, November 9, 2012
So stick around this month to see all the things I'm thankful for, and participate in the Thanksgiving Blog Hop at Brenda Drake's blog.
Saturday, November 3, 2012
Tuesday, October 23, 2012
|Gus enjoys moments with food or flowers.|
Some of you are in query hell. Some of you have subs out with editors. Some of you are working on your very first draft of your very first novel and wanting to be done already. I understand your impatience. I feel it every single day.
Sunday, October 21, 2012
One of the great things about teaching teens is their passion. It is also why I write for teens. Angelle and some of my other students were so passionate about this book, were such advocates, that I just had to see why they loved it so much. And I appreciate their courage in recommending it to me. If they are anything like me, then they have a hard time recommending books that mean that much to them. If someone doesn't like a book that you feel speaks to you in such a way that you are changed when you come out the other side, then it feels like they have betrayed you. If they say ugly things about a book that is your heart, they are saying ugly things about you. (I feel like way about Fahrenheit 451. That books means so much to me, and when people criticize it, I feel criticized and my soul is sore.) Some books seem to be a letter written only to us.
I enjoyed Perks. It felt very much like Catcher in the Rye, and I adored Charlie. You have to. The character development was extremely well done, and the innocent yet stark way Charlie viewed life was great. But I'm going to keep my review short so that Angelle can talk about it. After all, this is her Fahrenheit 451.
The whole book is written in letters from Charlie to “friend”, who is never revealed. The book starts with Charlie the day before he starts his first day of high school. Charlie is a really introverted dude with serious social problems. He has no friends after the recent suicide of his best friend Michael. He has a hard time connecting with other kids his age and would rather get lost in a book then deal with the things going on around him. It wasn’t until Charlie went to a football game trying to “participate” in high school life that he met Patrick, (possibly the best character EVER) who he knew as “Nothing” from shop class, and of course the one and only Sam. They took him under their wings, appreciating his quirky and shy behavior. Later on in the book they took him to his first high school party, where he met Mary Elizabeth, Alice, and Bob. It was at that party which Patrick finally coined Charlie’s wallflower status. “You see things. You keep quiet about them. And you understand.”
I absolutely love this book because it has REAL characters who I can really relate myself and people I know to. Charlie and his friends are those kids who wear “weird” clothes, listen to music they don’t play on the radio, and have their own ideas about how things should be. They don’t care what people think and I absolutely, positively, 100% love that. I guess I loved these characters so much because I see myself and my friends in them, which makes it so much more real to me. Charlie is so pure because he’s crazy, really he is, but he doesn’t know it. Charlie has a right to be very sad but he isn’t; like everyone else, Charlie is just trying to get through life the best he can, despite his circumstances. You would think Charlie is a depressing character from hearing him described, but he really isn’t and I think that is why he’s such an interesting person. He’s hopelessly in love with Sam, who I like. Usually the main girl character annoys me because she is usually perfect and just kind of deals with the choice of which boy she should choose or something dumb like that. Sam is a real girl with real problems. Her past is a broken one, which made me really like her. She’s a very round character who has her own problems to deal with. Sam is not a damsel in distress begging to be rescued; she is a broken girl struggling against the current of life just trying to keep her head above water. Charlie finds Sam beautiful and I think part of her beauty is in her sadness. Patrick is Sam’s brother and my favorite person ever born, written, thought up, whatever you want to say. He is cooler than any of us will ever be and that is just the truth. I’ll let you take that in for a moment…. Ok and we’re back. Patrick. I LOVE HIM. Let’s talk about it. First of all I want to thank Stephen Chbosky for making him a real person. Patrick as you may or may not know is gay (sorry to tell you ladies), but thankfully is not portrayed as a sassy best friend: purely there to give fashion advice, drink coffee, and make catty comments like most gay characters in books are. Don’t get me wrong, he’s hilarious, but he’s much more dynamic than the occasionally sassy comeback. I think my favorite part about Patrick is how unapologetic he is for being himself and I just love that so much! I enjoyed Mary Elizabeth for her spunk and stubbornness, which I can relate to. I like Bob a lot too because he’s that simple pot head type who’s just nice to everybody. Over all I think Chbosky did a really good job making these characters intriguing. I say intriguing because it’s their faults that make them more interesting. I think we can all see aspects of our own lives in theirs.
I could write a whole novel just talking about how much I enjoyed this book and how important it is to me. It deals with issues like abortion, abuse, and self love, which are real issues teens deal with. I would DEFINITELY suggest this book to anyone, but especially teens. I’ve heard a lot of people say this book is too depressing which I STRONGLY disagree with. Anyone who has actually taken the time to read and UNDERSTAND this book for what it really is knows that this book is something beautiful, and just like Sam, there is a certain beauty in sadness. The best thing about this book is that it’s not obnoxiously sad. It doesn’t shove depressing situations in your face and force you to cry yours eyes out. I think Charlie’s social “wallflower-ness” helps to blatantly express what’s happening and he can honestly express his feelings almost matter of factly. I never felt like the book was supposed to make me cry. It was always the things Charlie said that I just connected with so much that I couldn’t help but to get emotional. This book doesn’t make you cry because you feel bad for Charlie, it makes you cry because you see yourself in Charlie and feel the pain with him. You feel the emotions of all the characters. They are all broken in some way and are just trying to find the missing pieces like everyone is. That’s why it bothers me when people say this book is sad because it’s not. This book is life. Life has some sad moments, some happy ones, but most importantly, infinite ones!
Monday, October 15, 2012
So writing is like running a marathon. It hurts. Sometimes you want to quit. But if you’re lucky, there are people there to keep you from falling. And when you cross that finish line, it’s worth every painful moment. And I’m not talking about the finish line of being published. My book won’t be on shelves for another year. I’m talking about that sense of accomplishment when your own words make your heart race, when someone else loves those words and lets you know just how much, when someone else completely gets your characters.
|After the finish of the 2011 RocknRoll New Orleans Marathon. |
I look as rough as I felt.
Sunday, October 14, 2012
Author: Mary Gray
Publisher: Spencer Hill Press (www.spencerhillpress.com) Please feel free to use any images, text, links, etc. from our website.
Release Date: October 22, 2013
Formats: Paper, e-book
Add it to your Goodreads shelf here.
Sunday, October 7, 2012
Saturday, October 6, 2012
|Poster one of my students made. Isn't she clever?|
But I also wanted my students to discuss their feelings on banned books week, since they are the ones it seems to affect most often. So I encouraged by book club members to jot a few things down, and three of them participated
Personally, I’ve never been limited when it comes to reading. My parents never censored my books, and they never tried to control what I read. If anything, they encouraged my devouring of books, always willing to buy me something new at any time. (Except for the one time I got punished from getting books from a Scholastic book order, but that’s a different story for a different day.)
So, Happy Banned Books Week! Go read something wonderful.