Tuesday, February 26, 2013

On Growth


I’m not a huge fan of the Oscars. I do appreciate artists, those who work and hone their craft, and I am always glad to see that celebrated, as well as disappointed when it isn’t. This is not going to be a long rant on the state of Hollywood, as I know absolutely nothing of the state of Hollywood. But what I have noticed since the Oscars is frequent comments, namely on Twitter, that make me believe that we as a society have failed to grasp the  notion of growth.
When Anne Hathaway won, I saw over and over again how an Oscar just went to the girl from Ella Enchanted or The Princess Diaries and isn’t that appalling and horrendous. No, actually, it’s what should happen.

I don’t know where we got this notion that a person – and their talent – is stagnant or frozen. Artists, whether they are actors, painters, musicians, or writers, have to start somewhere. And I don’t believe they are born incredibly talented yet remain undiscovered until finally bursting out into the world fully-formed and incredible. Yes, some do. But most begin with a passion for something. They work hard at this passion, and over the years, they improve.

This is how it should be.

So no, I’m not surprised to see someone grow and improve in their craft. I’m impressed. No, I would not be surprised if someone wrote fill-in-the-blank-with-the-genre-you-think-is-trash novels and then later went on to pen a book that won the National Book Award. That is what growth is.

True artists work hard at their craft, seeking to improve it with each new work. Some of them start out way beyond where the rest of us will ever be. But that doesn’t mean they should stay there. I don’t care where an artist begins – what I want to see is their journey, the way they learn from each work they produce and go on to make it better, more meaningful, different.

I want to see passion translated into hard work and success, whatever that looks like.

I want to see someone become a master of their craft by meeting each day with the idea that they will give a little more of themself and be a little better than they were the day before.
I want to see Ella Enchanted go on to win an Oscar.

Thursday, February 14, 2013


I've already shared the beautifully creepy cover for my friend Mary Gray's book The Dollhouse Asylum, but today I get to share the trailer! Check it out:

A virus that had once been contained has returned, and soon no place will be left untouched by its destruction. But when seventeen-year-old Cheyenne wakes up in Elysian Fields--a subdivision cut off from the world and its monster-creating virus--she is thrilled to have a chance at survival.
At first, Elysian Fields, with its beautiful houses and manicured lawns, is perfect. Teo Richardson, the older man who stole Cheyenne's heart, built it so they could be together. But when Teo tells Cheyenne there are tests that she and seven other couples must pass to be worthy of salvation, Cheyenne begins to question the perfection of his world.
The people they were before are gone. Cheyenne is now "Persephone," and each couple has been re-named to reflect the most tragic romances ever told. Everyone is fighting to pass the test, to remain in Elysian Fields. Teo dresses them up, tells them when to move and how to act, and in order to pass the test, they must play along.
If they play it right, then they'll be safe. But if they play it wrong, they'll die.


Spencer Hill Press is offering a special The Dollhouse Asylum bone charm necklace to FIVE winners throughout the tour. Potential winners only need to add the book to their to-read list on goodreads! (And, for bonus points, they can tweet about the giveaway!)
Add it to your Goodreads!

Saturday, February 2, 2013

A Gif-tastic look at the Writing Process

1.  Oh look, a bright, shiny new idea!  This is probably my best idea ever; I can’t wait to start!

2.  Wow, the writing is going well.  This one is it!

3.  Hmm, not sure where this is going.  I love the characters, but where did I put the plot?

4.  This is horrible.  I hate everything about this.  I’ll just keep plugging away and fix it later.

5.  Later – this is the vilest piece of crap ever saved in a Word document.  It’s a horrible idea, and the writing is putrid.

6.  Ooh, an idea to fix the idea.  Scribble.  Scribble. Scribble.

7.  Nope, that didn’t work either.

8.  Fetal position.

9.  Rewrite the entire thing.

10.  Curse the Muse.

11. Rewrite the rewrites.

12. Kiss the Muse.

13. Drink.

I've never made gifs before, obviously, and it look me three times as long as it would have if I had just written this out. :)