I always feel bad when I stop writing. I have this image in my head of my characters waiting around wherever I've left them, waiting for me to come back and give them more to do.
Wednesday, December 15, 2010
Posted by Danielle at 1:01 PM
Saturday, December 11, 2010
I recently finished reading a highly anticipated YA novel, and while I enjoyed it, I had a problem with the pacing of the romantic relationship. It took fooorrrreevvveeerrr. Yeah, just like that. And on top of that, their interactions were extraordinarily brief and somewhat shallow, in my opinion. (Well, they were teenagers, so I suppose that is realistic)
Posted by Danielle at 12:17 PM
Friday, December 10, 2010
I think that all writers have certain obsessions that without fail appear in their writing. I know that mine come from things that have happened to me in my life and that I'm still (and will probably always) be dealing with or thinking about. My obsessions? Here is the list:
Posted by Danielle at 9:55 AM
Wednesday, December 1, 2010
Posted by Danielle at 1:02 PM
Thursday, November 25, 2010
I don't usually talk about this, because it's something that is very difficult for me, even this far past it.
7 years ago today my best friend died. We were 16. It's been a while since the anniversary fell on Thanksgiving. I think about her every day, without fail. A lot of times I think about how unfair her death was, how it wasn't supposed to be this way. I think about all the plans we had and all the things we talked about doing that will never happen now. I think about little things, inside jokes we had and times when we just laughed and laughed about pretty much nothing at all, because when you're 16 and invincible you think you have all the time in the world.
But today, I'm thinking about how lucky I was just to have her in my life at all. As much as I wish we could've become crazy old ladies together and done all the things we talked about, what's important is that I loved her when she was alive, and now I appreciate every second I had with her. She was an amazing friend, the loyal, funny, irreplaceable kind that don't come around very often. I hope that wherever she is she knows I'm thinking about her and that I will never forget her, and that her death changed me in ways I never could've imagined.
Posted by Danielle at 11:58 AM
Friday, November 19, 2010
Posted by Danielle at 5:17 PM
Friday, November 12, 2010
Vanessa's parents want to work through the tragedy by returning to their everyday lives back in Boston, but Vanessa can't help feeling that her sister's death was more than an accident. After discovering that Justine never applied to colleges, and that she was secretly in a relationship with longtime family friend Caleb Carmichael, Vanessa returns to Winter Harbor to seek some answers.
But when Vanessa learns that Caleb has been missing since Justine's death, she and Caleb's older brother, Simon, join forces to try to find him, and in the process, their childhood friendship blossoms into something more.
Soon it's not just Vanessa who is afraid. All of Winter Harbor is abuzz with anxiety when another body washes ashore, and panic sets in when the small town becomes home to a string of fatal, water-related accidents . . . in which all the victims are found grinning from ear to ear.
As Vanessa and Simon probe further into the connections between Justine's death and the sudden rash of creepy drownings, Vanessa uncovers a secret that threatens her new romance, and that will change her life forever.
Posted by Danielle at 12:09 PM
Friday, November 5, 2010
Okay, the title of this blog is misleading. There is no deciphering the teenage mind. The things teenagers do don't make any sense. However, if you are writing a YA novel and sometimes wonder how a teen would react to something or what they would say, here are a few ways to get a glimpse into the teenage brain.
Read Seventeen magazine. This is what teen girls actually care about: boys, hot boys, flirting with boys, having sex with boys...oh and makeup, clothes and shoes.
Disney Channel is not an accurate representation of normal teens. Normal teens are not secret pop stars, don't have magic powers, and no school sinks that much money on costumes and sets for high school plays . Instead, look at what happens to Disney stars in their private lives. Sexting, naked pictures, eating disorders and cutting, nasty break-ups, now that is realistic.
Watch MTV's True Life and/or Made. Okay, watch anything on MTV. No, watch everything on MTV. The absolute best source for info on teens.
Posted by Danielle at 10:46 AM
Sunday, October 17, 2010
Posted by Danielle at 7:54 PM
Thursday, October 14, 2010
Posted by Danielle at 6:14 PM
Wednesday, October 13, 2010
I am sad, and at the same time excited, to announce that as of October 25....
Posted by Danielle at 4:29 PM
Tuesday, October 12, 2010
Today is the Small Packages Blogfest, for you bloggers out there like me who have less than 150 followers. Awesome idea courtesy of Jessica at Witless Exposition. If you want to sign up or just check out the other blogs, click here!
If your one of those young people that doesn't remember when TV was fun, what's your favorite scary TV show or movie?
As for scary t.v. shows, I believe a majority of my childhood was spent cowering in the corner while my brother giggled maniacally as we watched "Are you afraid of the dark?"
The answer to that question being a huge, resounding YES! I slept with a nightlight until I was ten....Okay, twelve. FINE, FOURTEEN!! Sue me, okay? I got over it. For the most part.
The episodes I remember most clearly (well, there are alot of them, actually) include the ones where 3 girls get lost in the woods at summer camp and meet 3 old women who have been lost for years. Another where a guy who stole treasure from a ship can't fall go to sleep or zombies will come after him. And one about a little girl stuck in a mirror who keeps writing help on the walls backward.
Posted by Danielle at 2:25 PM
Sunday, October 10, 2010
Are you a wannabe writer? Sign up here.
Where I am in the writing process: Unpublished. And at the moment, distinctly unmotivated. I started a new MS last weekend (big mistake!). I now have 5 WIPs. FIVE!!! 2 finished, which have been shelved. 1 that is approx. 75% complete and is my main focus (Hellbound) and which I hope to edit and query. And 2 that are in baby stages and I hope to complete someday.
My current problem(s): Motivation. I've hit a wall with Hellbound and haven't looked at it in at least a week. It's soooo close to being done and I can't even look at it at the moment. I'm not sure what else it needs and I'm not looking forward to figuring it out.
My question this week: Do you work on multiple projects? Or do you write one book at a time?
Posted by Danielle at 8:51 PM
Wednesday, October 6, 2010
So, as I've navigated my way around the lovely blogger universe, I've noticed a theme on other writer's blogs.
Posted by Danielle at 9:17 PM
Friday, October 1, 2010
I have formed a new plan to get published. And, if I may say, it is B-R-I-L-L-I-A-N-T.
Posted by Danielle at 10:00 AM
Thursday, September 30, 2010
In honor of Banned Books Week, Tahereh at Grab a Pen and The Rejectionist have asked all us lovely bloggers to review one of our favorite banned books. You can find yours on the ALA list
My mixed-breed cat, half domestic tabby, half Scottish wildcat. The size of a small Labrador, only mad.
Stupid underwear. What's the point of them, anyway? They just go up your bum, as far as I can tell.
Kissing with all the trimmings, lip to lip, open mouth, tongues ... everything.
Her dad's got the mentality of a Teletubby (only not so developed). Her cat, Angus, is trying to eat the poodle next door. And her best friend thinks she looks like an alien -- just because she accidentally shaved off her eyebrows. Ergghhhlack. Still, add a little boy-stalking, teacher-baiting, and full-frontal snogging with a Sex God, and Georgia's year just might turn out to be the most fabbitty fab fab ever
Posted by Danielle at 2:24 PM
Wednesday, September 29, 2010
Posted by Danielle at 6:46 PM
Monday, September 27, 2010
As someone who works with teenage girls, waits on teenage girls, and coincidentally, is not long past being a teenage girl, it has come to my attention the depiction of teens in YA and books/movies in general are pathetically inaccurate. So. If you want your writing to have a truly authentic teen, use the following rules:
1. Facebook is GOD. If it is on Facebook, it is irrefutable fact and must be treated as such. Likewise anything said in facebook messenger can and will be used against you in future rumor spreading. There are also numerous rules and codes on Facebook. For example, if you list a best friend as your “sibling”, you are declaring to the world that you are BFFE. There is also listing yourself as “married” to your best friend, and your “wifey” bff has an even higher rank than your “sibling” bff.
Note: If you wish to show commitment between your female MC and her significant other, please ensure that you include they have made it “Facebook official”. This concretes the relationship and ensures that it will never, ever, end. I would compare it to Bella marrying Edward, only much, much more serious.
2. Begin all sentences with “Dude”, “Bro”, “Oh my god!” or “Seriously”
“Dude, did you see the VMA's last night?”
“Bro, was Kanye a dick again?”
“Oh my god, Lady Gaga wore a dress made out of meat.”
“Seriously, she's like, such a snazzhole.”
*Note: I'm not sure what a snazzhole is, but I just heard a 16 year old girl use it. I'd assume it's similar to calling someone an asshole.
3. Insert “like” after every two to three words. This is a given, and I'm not sure why it isn't used in dialogue in YA novels. We all know teens talk don't like this:
“I saw Maci at the mall with Josh and oh my god, she looked huge!”
They talk like this:
“I like, saw Maci, like, at the mall, with like, Josh, and like, oh my god, she like, looked huge!”
4. Use long, rambling, difficult to follow sentences. “Dude, you're the one acting weird. That's why he put a sad face. Because you're the one acting different. You know if you're acting that with Kyle and Sara's acting that way with him what do you think he's going to do? Seriously, it's not his fault that you're being a snazzhole right now and totally freaking out on him because of what he did that like, wasn't even his fault, like seriously how was he supposed to know that you knew that Sara told him she was into him?”
5.For some reason, in YA books and teen movies, there is that one, reliable, always-there, labrador-loyal best friend. DURR!! No!! That is completely unrealistic. Your teen character needs a new best friend every week. And a huge end-of-the-world, never-speaking-to-you-again blowup fight to end the friendship. *Note: Said ex-best-friend can be reinstated without warning at any time. Replacement best friend now becomes frenemie number 1. This cycle can be repeated throughout your book and is important because it shows what true friendship is (competition and jealousy).
6.When showing your character writing an e-mail, text message, status update, etc. please add extra letters to all words, for example: boyssss and be sure to include <3333s and :) and difficult for adults to understand acroynoms: ilysm, rofl, lmao, ily, wtf, etc.
7.If you are writing a contemporary YA romance, sexting is a must. It's completely romantic and well-thought-out on the part of the teens.
8.No more Miss Nice Girl. High school girls. Are. Bitches! I don't care how nice or innocent or sheltered you think your MC is. She isn't. By definition, she must be a bitch because she is a teenage girl. She must call other girls fat, regardless of how skinny they are. She must flirt with other girl's boyfriends. THERE ARE NO EXCEPTIONS!!!
9.If you think you might be going to far (drugs, sex, alcohol, tragedy) you aren't. If you're writing about kids in high school, it is impossible to go to far. If anything, real teens are far more screwed up and out of control than you could ever concieve.
Posted by Danielle at 4:39 PM
Friday, September 24, 2010
Today is the day, in case you haven't heard (is that possible?) of Elana Johnson, Jen Daiker and Alex Cavanaugh Great Blogging Experiment! To read the other blogs check out Elana's blog here. The topic is writing compelling characters. And now for my two cents:
Posted by Danielle at 8:44 AM
Wednesday, September 22, 2010
Let me preface this by saying, I love Kate Brian. I've loved the Private Series since it first came out. I love her other books as well. She is without a doubt one of my favorite and most admired authors.
Which makes what I'm about to say even harder.
I did not love this book. *cringes* I didn't even like this book.
I'm not including any spoilers because I love Kate and still recommend her books, so I apologize for the vagueness.
I put off buying it for a little bit as things have been so busy and I knew I'd want to read it in one sitting. Normally I would've bought it the same day it came out. So when I finally sat down to read it yesterday, the anticipation had grown enormous.
As it started, I waited to be grabbed, to be sucked in so completely I literally couldn't put it down, as I had with every other book in the series. Ummm....no such luck. I wasn't grabbed, and I really just wanted to know how it was going to end, although I already had a sneaking suspicion. So I did something I have never done with this author before...I skimmed. The entire book. Until I got about ten pages before the end. And when I got to the end, I screamed and threw the book down. I threw a book.
Oh, the shame!
But I couldn't help it. Kate Brian has kept me on edge with killer cliffhangers and shocking revelations. And Vanished ended with one that made me not even want to read the next book. I've read 12 books in this series (12!) and now she completely changes everything I've ever thought this series was about in one line on the last page. And more than anything it felt like a cheap ploy to have a plot for the next book and jump on the YA paranormal fad-train.
NOTHING in the previous 11 books makes this end plausible or realistic. There has always been a certain amount of suspending reality to make this series work, and I never minded before. There could never be so much murder, so many lunatics, kidnappings, secret half-sisters, ridiculously hot guys, etc. in real life. But Vanished crossed the line into completely ridiculous.
Posted by Danielle at 3:54 PM
Tuesday, September 21, 2010
Posted by Danielle at 5:41 PM
Monday, September 20, 2010
Posted by Danielle at 9:13 PM