Friday, May 28, 2010

Lisa and Laura Roecker Interview!

With the speed of super ninjas, Lisa and Laura Roecker have answered the interview questions! (Dude. They have the coolest website.)
They also have an awesome blog. Seriously, I break out laughing pretty much every time I read it.
I kind of have an author crush on both of them.
Anyway. Ahem. Without further ado....

First, the question every author gets...Tell us about your upcoming book, please!

LIAR SOCIETY is about a girl named Kate Lowry who receives an email from her dead best friend on the anniversary of her death. She launches an investigation to discover what really happened to Grace. Along the way, she finds friendship, love and uncovers lots of secrets lurking within the halls of her private school.

Liar Society is your debut. What's it like, knowing that you've made it--that your book is coming out, that people are cyber stalking you now, and that something you've written will be read by tons of people?

Very, very surreal. We haven't quite wrapped our minds around the fact that next year we'll be able to hold up our book and people will (hopefully) be talking about it. It's exhilarating and terrifying all at the same time.

Now, don't get me wrong. I love my sister, but half the time, I'd be totally willing to ship her off to the circus, especially if it was concerning something as opinionistic as writing. Do you ever just want to kill eachother?

Shockingly, we rarely screen each other's calls (we're habitual screeners, sorry Mom) and we've never really gotten in a fight over anything (writing related. Don't ask about that time in 8th grade when Lisa refused to let me wear her stinky clogs on my birthday). The hardest time for us is when we're building our outline. Laura asks annoying questions in an attempt to poke holes in Lisa's perfect plot. She hates it.

It was mentioned on your blog that you follow a pretty rigorous schedule--6 chapters a week? How long does it take you to finish a book at that pace?

The first book took around 3 months to complete--not sure how much sleeping we were doing during that time. But that doesn't take into consideration all the revisions. The latest draft of the manuscript is almost unrecognizable from the first draft we wrote last winter. Book 2 is going a bit slower, which is why we gave ourselves a strict deadline. We would love to have a draft finished by June.

What keeps you motivated to write so much?

I think having a writing partner is motivating. Whenever I read Lisa's chapters, I want to write immediately (and hopefully she feels the same after my chapters). We would never give up on eachother, which is helpful in staying focused.

You have a fantabulous agent. (Yes. I agent stalk. Ahem. Don't judge, please.) What was the process like to getting her?

Catherine was our dream agent from the very beginning. We had heard so much about Inkwell and they represent so many authors we respect, so she was definitely in our top ten. She actually requested a partial of the first (doomed) book we wrote and we were over the moon. Sadly, three days later we got the big R. The second time around, instead of getting an email, we got a phone call. It was incredible. She wanted to express her interest over the phone, from Australia! Needless to say, we did a whole lot of dancing and screaming after that phone call.

What happens if you disagree on something? How do you compromise?

It's not all that hard to compromise. If one of us feels strongly enough, the other one usually gives a little. Sometimes we meet in the middle, sometimes we surrendor. But really, the person who has the document last gets the final say. Muhahaha.

You two must be pretty close to be able to write together. Has it always been that way?

Yes, we've always been very close. Even throughout high school when we claimed to hate eachother, we were actually pretty close. Lisa always looked out for me and she still does. We also have a younger sister and we're all best friends.

What's the best thing about writing together? The worst?

The best part about writing together is getting the document back. I always get super-excited to read what Lisa added to my chapter and to read the chapter she wrote. It's like being a reader and a writer all at the same time. And that NEVER gets old. The worst part about writing together is creating the outline. It's always annoying not to have the plot figured out perfectly. We feel much better once we have a map.

And then...Is there anything else you would like to add?

I can't really think of anything! Thank you so, so much for having us!

Thank you to both sisters for the interview, so very much! I cannot WAIT for Liar Society, and in the meantime, I'm going to continue to cyber stalk--Ahem.
Follow. I'm going to continue to follow their blog.

More later.

Thursday, May 27, 2010

Some girls

Some girls....
Spend all night talking about boys.
Oh wait, we did that.
Well. Some girls....They watch bad television until dawn.
Well. SOME GIRLS play with makeup all night.
HAH. We didn't do that.
(Except...Now I wish we had.)
Anyway. Maggie and I had a lovely sleep over last night. A Sleepover of Awesome. Why?
Because I totally made her talk about books until six in the morning.
And because we watched six hours worth of Sailor Moon.
And because she discussed, at length, with me about the evils of High Pitched Sailor Moon voice and Annoying Tuxedo Mask who Doesn't Know He Loves Serena Yet.
And then it came down to our own stuff.
You know how we ramble about that story we're writing? No?
Oh. Ahem. Well, we're writing a story together. And we have been kind of stuck.

We were so professional. Seriously, so mature. I mean, you wouldn’t even BELIEVE just how mature this outline is. I mean, we even got into character development.


-nods sagely-

Two hours of deep, deep development. Example:

Me: Maybe then, they could kill that one dude, you know, the one with--

Maggie: But I like him.

Me: But I want to kill someone.

Maggie: Let’s kill that one chick. You know, with the hair.

Me: …Eh. Sure. –scribbles down ‘Chick with the hair is going down.’

This was one of the deeper conversations, of course, but all was rather intelligent.

And then we talked a little more about Sailor Moon.


And then George Washington decided he wanted to be a Sailor Scout. Oh, and our Ipods and Phones of awesome kind of joined in.


Do you see our dear First President Extraordinaire?

He’s off in the corner. By Sailor Moon’s head, and the purple Ipod. Yes. He does now have red hair. He transforms into a Sailor too.

I’m off to go stalk authors on Twitter.

Ahem. I meant, off to go fine tune the fantastical pretty outline.

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Stereotyping? Me?

There's this guy I know. He's charming. He's cute. He's even aggravatingly smart.
And guess what?
He's a total player.
I have watched him flit from girl to girl. I have been flattered when I am that girl, and annoyed when he turns to my best friends. And I have written him off as an idiot time and time again. Not just an idiot, either, but a jerk, and a shallow jerk at that.
Then I talk to him. We'll talk about Caesar or politics. We'll talk, and I'll realize again...He's not an idiot just because he's a player.
And then we'll talk about girls. He'll bash idiot girls. He'll say stuff like "The only thing I really can't stand is a smart girl who acts like an idiot."
And I find myself staring at him thinking "But...Why do you only date idiots? Why do you act like an idiot? And why do you get offended when I call you one?"
(Okay, fine. The last thought generally isn't verbatim. I get why that's offensive, at least.)
It's interesting, because he stereotypes himself. He puts himself into the player role so thoroughly, and then doesn't even realize that he's doing it.
Don't get me wrong. He kind of is a jerk. But there is more to him than that. He does have some reason to what he does, and some motivation to why he acts like an idiot. He even
It happens in writing, too.
I've read soooo many stories where characters seem real. Three dimensional. And then they'll say something, and the reader just kind of blinks and stares and eventually ends up dissing the author for using a stereotype.
But we all do it.
For instance, I'm sitting in the library right now. A cheerleader walked in about ten minutes ago. I'm not even one of the people who doesn't like cheerleaders--I'm friends with several--but when she ended up pulling out like, twelve books and walking off, I was kind of shocked.
Scratch that. Kind of?
I thought she had nothing inside of her head. Or, you know, not much, except for really short shorts and sparkly eyeliner.

And then she went and sat down and started READING. Therefor, you know, all assumptions that she was just picking stuff up for a family member flew away.
And now here I am, feeling pretty dang shallow.
I guess it makes sense, though. If I'm smart enough to realize that using stereotypes in writing/reading isn't cool, then I should be smart enough not to do it in real life...even if it was subconscious. Just because the girl has good hair and makeup doesn't mean she's a bimbo.
(Granted, this also goes back to acting stupid even when you are smart. I mean, so not cool.)
Still, though. It's interesting.
More later.

Also. Maggie, along with several other people, have peer pressured me into getting a Twitter.
That's right. I now have facebook, blog, and twitter.
Yes. I promise, I do have a real life too.
The link is over on the sidebar, though. Come over and say hi!

Monday, May 24, 2010

Yes, yes, I know

I know I said I'd stop asking about author interviews. However. I got another one, and there's something different about this author.
Or, should I say, authors.
That's right. They're sisters, and they write together. At one point on their blog, they mentioned that they write six chapters a week.
Lisa and Laura Roecker have agreed for an interview.
I know a lot of people are interested about writing in pairs, so I figured I'd open it up to see if anyone had questions. -shrugs-
And now, because I've been wanting to post this for a while...
NIGHTSHADE CITY (Oct.1st, 2010, Holiday House)
Isn't it awesome? Hilary Wagner got her cover quite a while ago and I realized I hadn't posted it.
I can't wait for Nightshade City...Rick Riordan blurbed it, and the author is pretty dang fantabulous.
Anyway, that's about it for now.
More later!

Friday, May 21, 2010

The wonderful world of SUMMER

It's shiny.
It's pretty.
School is out here in the Middle of Nowhere.
So to this last year, I have this to say:
You have kicked my butt. I have glared at, cried over, and often beat against the wall, dozens of homework assignments. I have decided time and time again that people are annoying, and then decided minutes later that I love them anyway.
So, basically, School Year...You have not defeated me. Yes, you made me tired. Yes, I felt as if you might not end. But you are done. And now, I have three months to WRITE, READ, and SLEEP.
(Ahem. Because, you know, I did none of that during the year. None at all. As proof of this blog's rambles about writing and reading.)
Basically, I have three months to catch up on sleep.
However, Summer also means SUMMER BOOKS.
To me, Summer is the best time to read. Why? Well, if your friend catches you with a particularly fluffy looking book in your purse, it's no big deal. Now, the same friend would, in Winter, compare my fluffy novel to her Hemingway, and I might perhaps be a bit cowed. If that happened in summer, though, I would just laugh.
Because it's SUMMER. Things are just looser.
Of course, that doesn't mean the books are ALL fluff. I read both, always. However, at school, often I tend to go to the more serious stuff if only because teachers looooove to comment on whatever novel is sitting on your desk. Let's just say that goes better if you're reading something kind of deep as opposed to one about vampires.

Books that are on my summer list so far:

Sing Me To Sleep (the book on the right) caught my eye at Borders. It's beautiful

and it's shiny and that is a very good quality of a Summer Book.

Then there's this book below. Isn't it pretty? I want to read more Deb Caletti.
All of her books just look so good, and I've actually never read any of them.
This is a wrong that must be corrected this summer.
-nods solemnly-

Then, there are the summer classics. Meg Cabot, Melissa Walker, and, of course, Harry Potter.
But then, Harry Potter really is more of a 'Yes. Now. Whenever.' kind of book.
This book below is a tad more hard core than I'd like for Summer Books, but I think I'll check it out.
It was recommended for Gossip Girl fans. Now, after the season finale of Gossip Girl, in which SOMETHING AWFUL happened to one of the best characters--
--I'm not sure I can be a fan anymore.
But for old time's sake, I'll probably check out the book.
This one is more Summer like, though:
It's about a girl who eats like Cavemen for a science project.
I love this kind of book. :P
And then this one, because it reminds me of Tamora Pierce's Alanna books and because I got to read about the cover on Melissa Walker's blog:

It looks so good!
Farewell, 10th grade. I loved you. I hated you. You saw Altered finished. You saw me in braces, and then without them. You watched the drama of high school, watched me melt down, and then watched me just get over it and keep on moving. You saw this blog start, and now, you've seen it with more followers than I would have guessed. I will miss you, and yet, at the same time, I am soooo glad you are over.
I'm off to finish the edits on Altered (I've cut two characters, as per the Harper Collins review. I've added more to the remaining characters. It's actually really fun, editing off of their advice. It's also going freakishly fast.)
Summer has officially begun.

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Harper Collins Review!!

-added after the original post- In a strange twist of irony, I realized that this was my 100th post. I was wondering what I was going to do for the post, and then it went by without me noticing.
I guess, though, this was way better than anything I could have thought up alone.
-end of edit-

So, I was set up for a mean review. I was waiting. I was waiting, and I was waiting, and I was waiting. I was waiting to be destroyed.
Ripped to shreds.
In fact, I had my Emo Corner all decked out, ready to collapse inside with a pint of ice cream and some really, really bad literature. That way, I could not only gain ten pounds, which is, of course, EVERY sixteen year old's dream, but I could assure myself that not every published author is fabulous. That would mean I, someday, would have a chance.
So, yeah. I was waiting, eying that corner and considering putting some purple pillows inside and decking it out with posters of Alex Pettyfer.

And so I got the email last week. I frantically went over to Inkpop and checked it out--only to see that they'd accidentally gotten the wrong story and posted THAT review instead.
And let's just say...that review was a tad harsh.
So I knew I was in for it.
And I waited. I waited a little longer. The Emo Corner was now fully decorated.
I got the email in sixth hour today. I was in the middle of a game of Scream (a card game that takes a lot of concentration.) I then proceeded to promptly lose the game and try and load the review.
It wouldn't load.
The girls I sat and played cards with were getting annoyed by my lack of playing-ness.
And I waited while it loaded, still mentally eying my emo corner...
And then I got this.
My Harper Collins Review (Yes. It does need to be capitalized) lies below.

It starts:
Oh, wait, let me tell you a story about this butterfly...
No? You don't want to hear about the butterfly? You just want the dang review?
Oh. Fine.
Here it is:

I must commend you for being able to take a subject with the potential to fall into a clich├ęd category, and putting your own spin on it. There were times when I thought I could predict what would occur next within the story; but I was completely wrong – and I liked that. The surprise proffered upon each chapter, each page even, was so refreshing; it made me hungry to learn more about not only the characters, but what would occur to each one of them. The fact that I felt empathetic towards the characters made me create a bond with them, and establish a friendship between myself and these fictional individuals. That is quite a talent on your part.

You do not waste words within your writing. For some, this can be detrimental, as flowery, overly-described narratives are oftentimes favored; however, in your case, the bluntness found within your dialogue, and within your writing in general, is enjoyable. You get straight to the point, making for a very fast-paced, thrill ride of a tale. Nevertheless, you do not rush through areas that need more thorough explanation – for instance, the romantic relationship that builds between Ash and Ky. To be frank, you know when deeper description is desired by the reader, and required to make the story flow more smoothly; and when it is not.

The characters themselves, I feel, is what truly drives the story. While the plot found in ALTERED is engaging, and definitely an intriguing factor, if it weren’t for the characters, I feel that it could, quite possibly, fall flat. Your strong point is the way in which you craft characters that are believable. At no point did I feel that dialogue between them was forced, or that they were fake in any way. They come off as real people that you may bump into on the street on any given day.

Ash is a fantastic MC. Her desire for normalcy, yet fate of anything but, makes the reader feel for her; and, in a way, shoulder some of the burden that plagues her existence. Which is, oddly enough, one of the reasons why the budding romance between her and Ky is such a welcome addition to ALTERED. The thought that Ash may be able to love someone and have that person love her back is truly such a beautiful concept, considering the abnormalities she has had to face alone throughout her seventeen years. And Ky…let’s just say that female readers are destined to develop a crush on him as his character builds from the first pages to the very last.

Though your characters are your strong point; they have the potential to become your weakness, as well. Ash, Ky, Markal…these are memorable characters who can easily stand alone. Not only are they well-developed; they each harbor unique personalities that are not easily forgotten. The problem is the secondary characters – or rather, the volume of secondary characters.

You introduce so many secondary characters within ALTERED that it can be slightly confusing. Many of these characters flit across the pages as nothing more than names – popping up and disappearing without any true development to their personalities or reason for being there. The problem with these individuals being introduced in the first place is that when they did resurface – if only briefly – I felt the need to backtrack to refresh my memory on who, exactly, they were. I feel that these characters either need further development; or should be removed from ALTERED entirely.

All in all, this is a clever addition to the science fiction genre with the potential to appeal even to those who typically turn their noses up at such subject matter for the sheer fact that you have loaded it with humor, in addition to fantastical elements. This is not your typical, everyday, run of the mill science fiction novel; it is chockfull of personality and heart. Great job!

So what do you all think?
The first read through, I gotta say, I was a tad disappointed. I thought I was being patronized, maybe. Surely they were going to be meaner. The problem they pointed at was the problem I recognized. I wanted it ripped to shreds.
And then I realized that these are editors.
They aren't going to be patronizing, because it isn't good business, and that is what publishing is.
And then my mom printed it off.
And I realized that it's over a page. Someone had over a PAGE of good things to say and two paragraphs of bad stuff.

So, I gotta say...
I'm actually pretty pleased.
Back to the editing board. It's actually not that huge of a job--I've actually been working on this for a while...
I gotta say--I'm excited.
More later.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010


I love these books. And guess what? Richelle Mead is coming to a city near me on Friday.
Guess where I'll be?
---deep and sizzling hatred for school---*sUF0W-TrcYbh1p83Q4/5___Spirit_Bound_by_EverHatake.jpg
(I have no idea what this is, but it was pretty.)
I'd give a better post, but I have an eleven page math review to finish.
--deep hatred is growing deeper--

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Class of 2010
That book?
It made me cry. A lot.
The Sky is Everywhere, in essence, is about a girl who loses her sister.
As someone who generally is pretty fond of her sister, this book sent me into a nasty little spiral of depression.
However. It was very good.
It did get me thinking though.
Yes, I hear the groans. Don't worry, it's not that bad.
The book just got me thinking about my own sister. As of today, my own sister is graduated from high school.
In the book, the MC has to deal with the fact that she's now alone. Her older sister is gone. Now, my sister is still alive, obviously, and she's only going to college a few hours away.
But still.
Like in the book, 'the girls' or 'the kids' or even 'you guys' aren't the same anymore. Not in my family. My entire life, our names have been tacked together.
But now she's going to college.
"Will one of you do the dishes?"
"Does one of the kids one this?"
"Are the girls going together?"
That . . . isn't going to happen anymore.
When there's a bratty waitress, I'm going to have to deal with her. When I go to the movies, I'll be driving myself. If the dogs need to be let out, I'll do it. If I can't find my key, I'll be ringing the doorbell.
And that is scary.
Don't get me wrong. My sister drives me insane most of the time. She can't keep her hands to herself, my eyeliner mysteriously goes missing every time she steps into my bathroom, and she has a really annoying habit of canceling my favorite television shows. Often, I've considered calling the circus and asking if they'd take her away.
But I'm still going to miss her.
And it was still really weird to watch her walk onto a stage--a stage that people kept calling 'the next step in life' and 'the last place we'll all be together'--and then pick up a diploma.
She's never seemed that much older than me. We're only a couple years apart. If she's old enough for a diploma, then that means I'm almost there too.
My Peter Pan syndrome does not approve.
However, the fact that she spent the car ride home poking me and knotting my hair?
Yeah, that helped remedy the problem.
Congratulations, Class of 2010.

Saturday, May 8, 2010

Inkpop--new story!

So, I wasn't going to post this. I felt as if it would be kind of pretentious. Then I realized that at least ten of my followers are from inkpop.
Anyway. I have a new story up.
It's a joint story, done with Maggie. It's called Sing to Me, and is about Sirens. If you want the synopsis, I can post that. :P
The link is here.

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Stupid friend with stupid book taste

I have a long list of book favorites. They span pretty much every genre. There's the Jacky Faber books, by L.A. Meyer. There are the Immortal Instrument books, by Cassandra Clare, Ender's Game by Orson Scott Card, The Percy Jackson books by Rick Riordan and the two Hunger Games stories by Suzanne Collins.
Notice, however, what there really isn't that much of.
That's right.
Realistic fiction. I read a lot of it. In fact, of the author blog's I religiously check, there are probably the most realistic fiction authors (Meg Cabot, Maureen Johnson, Melissa Walker, ect. ect.). However, there aren't too many on my favorites list. I just tend to like fantasy more.
But STUPID MAGGIE is out to change that, apparently.
And she might have done just that (I won't know until about three weeks from now. :P It takes me a while to decide.)
It all comes down to this book.
It. Was. Wonderful.
I wanted to swoon through the book. I wanted to BE the main character at some times, and at other times, was really, really grateful I wasn't. I want a summer house. I want a pair of cute brothers. I want, I want, I want.
(I want my own copy of this book. Ahem. Borders gift certificate, prepare to be used.)
I'm really not sure why I loved this book so much. Yes, it was well written. Yes, it was very cute. Normally, though, I'm so not fond of this kind of story.
*As a note, this is the sequel. However, while I liked the first, I LOVED the sequel.*
This story, however, I adored.
And I want to live in it.
Stupid, stupid Maggie. If only she didn't have good book taste. If only she weren't out to shatter my preconceived notions about books I never would have read. I should hit her with a book.*
But, you know, that might hinder the book trading...
More later.

*Kidding. I love her. She is awesome.

Tuesday, May 4, 2010


Thank you Cipherqueen! Now, as the condition of receiving this award, I need to link to as many awesome people as I can think of, regardless of whether or not I think they'll repost or if they've gotten it before. This is just people who I think are awesome--because everyone needs to be reminded that every once in a while.
Here we go.

I award this to Maggie, Maddie, Aspen, Bish Denham, Kendra, Holly Schindler (A BLUE SO DARK IS OFFICIALLY OUT AND GETTING AWESOME REVIEWS!! WOOT!), Myra McEntire, Hilary Wagner (Cipherqueen, I know you tagged her. But she has her cover and her ARC's and RICK RIORDAN REVIEW-HOW AWESOME IS THAT? So yes. I'm re-issuing her awesomeness) and GreenBeanTeenQueen.
I feel as if I'm missing people. Several people.
If I am, comment. I will put you in. Please don't take offense--I'm strapped for time.
Anyway. Someone else awesome, who does not have a blog--
Mi madre. :P It's my mom's birthday today, and she is very awesome. -nods- This is me telling her that. She also bought the aforementioned new Rick Riordan book, which, too, is awesome. Plus she gave me her taste and music and almost gave me her birthday. That deserves something, at least.
More later. Actually, book review later, because stupid Maggie gave me a stupid book of awesome and I want more and I need to rant about that.
So, bye for now. :P

Sunday, May 2, 2010

Sweet Sixteen

16 has always seemed like some kind of mystical age to me. When I was younger, it was the age of magic. It's the time when you are supposed to be beautiful, mature, and quite possibly be dating some kind of mythical creature. It's the time when everything changes.
I'm not sure I believe that anymore, but regardless, tomorrow is my sixteenth birthday
I was going to post then, but I probably will be busy, so I'm doing it now.
Actually, I'm not sure what to say. Normally, I love birthdays. I count down to them for months. I wait and wait for them to arrive. This year, though, it's a tad different. Part of that, I think, is because 15 was a pretty good year by itself.
In the past year, I:
Finished Altered.
Sent out queries and got some responses, both good and bad--and have learned so much.
Started sophomore year and survived.
Got to talk to almost a dozen different authors online.
Got to talk to Holly Schindler in person.
Scored a Harper Collins review by getting Altered to the top five on Inkpop.
Have learned at the same time that getting an A- in English is not panic attack worthy--it just means I need to work a little harder.
Brought home several pretty trophies.
Started this blog.
And that's not even including the fun social stuff. :P All in all, even with school sometimes feeling like it's going to swallow me alive, this has been a pretty good year.
Plus, yesterday, I got this.
DSCN0570.jpg picture by Sammi207
Isn't it pretty? Notice the butterfly seats. That would be courtesy of my sister and her friend. My dad is so thrilled that we so quickly girl-i-fied it.
Anyway, though, that's it for now, because it's my birthday and I want to go celebrate. Love!