Monday, April 20, 2015

Things That Feed My Soul: FIRST DRAFT Podcast With Sarah Enni

So. Podcasts. 

I don't usually listen to them, which is something I'm slowly changing about myself. A friend of mine started one recently (a super geeky, pop culture heavy one), and it was the push I needed to start diving into the podcast waters for real. 

A few months ago, I'd heard about one that seemed perfect for me:

Folks, Sarah Enni is brilliant. If you haven't read her posts on YA Highway, you're missing out. That's how I learned of her awesomeness. Then I read that she was starting FIRST DRAFT, a podcast featuring authors of both YA and MG books. My mind pretty much exploded, but since I wasn't too committed to podcasts back then, I didn't check them out immediately. 

Present Me is all sorts of upset with Past Me. Sarah's interviews are both enlightening and inspiring. She sits down with the most remarkable artists anyone could ever encounter, then proceeds to let them school her audience in the art of resilience. Last week, I was so, so sick. It was the cold from Hades, I tell you. But once I pressed Play on an episode of FIRST DRAFT, boom. Instant remedy. I felt like stopping everything and writing until the wee hours of the morning. I felt like strapping on my boots and climbing as many mountains as I could. I felt like dancing and belting out party songs with my ridiculously terrible singing voice.

I felt like not giving up on my dreams.

Go ahead. If you haven't done it already, press Play. Now. Right now. 

Happy listening!

Saturday, April 11, 2015

Book Giveaway: THE WALLS AROUND US By Nova Ren Suma!

So. I'm a certified Nova Ren Suma fangirl. This is fact. 

This week, I finished reading her latest gem, THE WALLS AROUND US. In case you haven't heard of this brilliance of a book, here's the summary:
“Ori’s dead because of what happened out behind the theater, in the tunnel made out of trees. She’s dead because she got sent to that place upstate, locked up with those monsters. And she got sent there because of me.”

On the outside, there’s Violet, an eighteen-year-old dancer days away from the life of her dreams when something threatens to expose the shocking truth of her achievement.

On the inside, within the walls of the Aurora Hills juvenile detention center, there’s Amber, locked up for so long she can’t imagine freedom.

Tying their two worlds together is Orianna, who holds the key to unlocking all the girls’ darkest mysteries . . .

What really happened on the night Orianna stepped between Violet and her tormentors? What really happened on two strange nights at Aurora Hills? Will Amber and Violet and Orianna ever get the justice they deserve—in this life or in another one?

In prose that sings from line to line, Nova Ren Suma tells a supernatural tale of guilt and of innocence, and of what happens when one is mistaken for the other.

Folks, this book is my new everything. IT IS MADE OF YES. I only wish I could've read it when I was thirteen years old, angry and aimless, wondering what to do with what I felt about myself and the world. This is the kind of story that would've pushed me to stay strong, to believe. 

I think it can bring a little magic into other people's lives, which is why I'm hosting this book giveaway. It's open internationally (wherever Book Depository ships to), and all you have to do is: 1) follow this blog, and 2) comment on this post. That's it.  

The giveaway will end next Saturday, April 18th, when I'll announce the (randomly chosen) winner!

Thursday, April 2, 2015

The Synopsis Post. Or, A Collection Of Posts On Writing A Synopsis That Are My New BFFs.

So. The synopsis. 

*cracks knuckles* 

I've written synopses before, but they still intimidate me. Not as much as they used to, I'll admit. They just take me a while to get right. Aaaaaaa whiiiiileeeeeeee. I'd rather write a gazillion query letters than one synopsis. #fact

The very first time I had to write a synopsis, I scoured the interwebz for advice/moral support/pizza. I found plenty of great resources. There's even more of them now. Seeing as I'm not the only one freaking out over Death By Synopsis, I figured I'd collect my favorite posts on how to write a banging one. I hope they guide you into the mystical land of Ninja Synopsis Writerdom. Word on the street is they have chocolate cake. *packs everything*

Here's my list of faves:

Writing a Synopsis from the Ground Up by Dee-ann Latona Leblanc

In Short: Writing a Novel Synopsis That Rocks by H.L. Dyer on the QueryTracker blog

6 Steps For Writing A Book Synopsis by author Marissa Meyer

How To Write A 1-Page Synopsis by author Susan Dennard

Hope these help!! :)