Friday, May 27, 2011

The Most Important Choice At BEA

I had to make some tough choices this week at getting a second Maureen Johnson book or the only Ellen Hopkins book offered (I picked Ellen Hopkins). The YA editor Buzz session or the new Richelle Mead (I picked Richelle Mead). Some choices were, I would have probably waited in line for two hours instead of just one for CROSSED, the next book in Ally Condie's MATCHED series. Same for Kody Keplinger's SHUT OUT and Marissa Marr's books (I waited in two lines for three of hers).

Perfect (Impulse, #2)  The Last Little Blue Envelope (Little Blue Envelope, #2) Crossed (Matched, #2)Bloodlines (Bloodlines, #1)

Darkest Mercy (Wicked Lovely, #5)GraveminderEnthralled: Paranormal Diversions Shut Out  

There were some that slipped through my fingers, like FOREVER by Maggie Stiefvater, but I did get her new series THE SCORPIO RACES. Others I lucked out on like the new Heist Society novel by Ally Carter...they capped the line, saying they'd run out of books, but when I came by later they'd found some more. I also snagged the new Sara Zarr, HOW TO SAVE A LIFE.

The Scorpio Races  Uncommon Criminals (Heist Society, #2) How to Save a Life

Even with all these important choices, I've decided the most important choice you make at BEA is:

Your Shoes

Comfort is the name of the game. You may not be able to do much about your aching shoulders from hauling all those books (I carried over fifty onto the ferry Wednesday), but you should at least baby your feet during the haul.

Come back next week for a How Many Have You Read Contest/Giveaway of some BEA goodies. I'm going to list all of the audiobooks I listened to in May, and you get an entry for every one you've read.

What about you? Which of these books would you have sat in an hour-long line for a free copy of? More than an hour?

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Letter to My Future Self

Dear Future Me,

I'm so tired now, self. Motherhood, the house, money, writing...struggling to balance it all.

The problem is, I don't really want to tell you, my future self, a thing. What I want is for you to write me and say it's all going to turn out fine. That I'm making the right choices. That it's worth it in the end.

Of course, I just had to make this letter all about me, didn't I.

Maybe you should send me a message to get over myself and relax because I might miss all this someday.

Or maybe I just sent that message to myself.


Friday, May 20, 2011

Latest Audiobook Love(s)

Will Grayson, Will Grayson I've said it before about BOY MEETS BOY, and it's just as true about WILL GRAYSON, WILL GRAYSON...I'd like to crawl inside David Levithan's vision of how the world ought to be and live there forever. This book is even more amazing thanks, I'm sure, to John Green's talents.

About a group of teens struggling with how to do relationships. Throw in some musical theatre and two Will Graysons who meet by chance and you've got an amazing story that had me bawling at the end (yes, I'm a total sap).

Revolution Part edgy Contemporary and part Historical with a touch of Supernatural, this amazing novel spans the history of guitar music and the French Revolution in two girls' quests to find out what makes life worth living. Great stuff.

What about you? Read either of these? What's your latest book love?

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Road Trip Wednesday- Eye on the Prize

This Week's YA Highway Road Trip Topic:
How do you reward yourself when you meet your writing goals? Answer for big goals (i.e. I will buy a Lear jet when I get published) and/or small goals (I eat an entire pint of Ben and Jerry's in one sitting when I finish each chapter).

I don't have any traditional rewards for meeting my small writing goals, though I do use liberal amounts of Twizzlers, spice drops and sourdough hard pretzels to keep me going throughout the process.

I do have a planned reward for my first publishing contract. It will be opening a bottle of Gewurztraminer wine I bought on our ten-year anniversary trip to Traverse City, Michigan on Old Mission Peninsula. One of the most beautiful spots in Michigan, IMO...wineries and water views...perfectly romantic.

I'd written my first book, gotten my first agent and was about to go on submission for the first time when I tried this wine. I already loved Gewurztraminer wines because they walk that tight rope between dry and sweet and they're a little spicy, but this one had the added bonus of blooming in my mouth. I'd heard food and wine people say that could happen...that burst of flavor after the first taste...but I'd never experienced it before.

So, we bought the bottle, and I'm still saving it for my first publishing contract. It's a well-aged wine by now. I'm still waiting for that burst of flavor after all the taste of regular Gewurztraminer, but I still love the wine by itself.

Monday, May 16, 2011

BEA Here I Come!!!

May 23rd-27th. I'm registered and ready...Woo! Woo!

Anyone who doesn't know what this is, it's a book fan's dream come true. ARCs and Books and authors to sign them. Then I lug all of it back from NYC to my little New Jersey Cape Cod, so I can read and/or give them away to you on on my blog.

Sound like a cool deal? I think so too!

And this year I'm also attending the Book Blogger's Convention on Friday where I look forward to seeing some familiar blogoshere faces.

I just checked out the autographing schedule, and here are a few highlights:

Melissa Marr                                               Claudia Gray
Julie Kagawa                                               Ally Carter 
Walter Dean Myers                                     David Lubar
Lauren Oliver                                              Sarah Dessen
Gail Carson Levine                                      Anna Godberson
Lisa Desrochers                                            Maureen Johnson
Maggie Stiefvater                                       Scott Westerfeld
Ellen Hopkins                                              Kody Keplinger

I'm such a fangirl. Just looking at this list takes my breath away.

What about you? Anyone attending or who has attended BEA? Anything like it? Any book fangirl/boy moments?

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Road Trip Wednesday

This Week's YA Highway Road Trip Topic:
Some audiobooks are read by celebrities. Most recently, Cassandra Clare's CITY OF FALLEN ANGELS was partly read by Ed Westwick of Gossip Girl.

So, if you got to choose a celebrity narrator for the audio book of your WIP or your favorite novel, who would it be and why?

You would think this week's audiobook related topic would be perfect for me, the self-proclaimed audiobook addict, but not so. I've had friends who've tried audiobooks say they love a certain narrator or find some of them annoying, but, honestly, I rarely notice.

Things I do notice:
-Multi-voice recordings- It feels like a play, not a book
-Sound effects (storms, doors creaking, etc)- I want to imagine these things, not hear them
-When the author is the narrator- I LOVE this (as long as their voice can fit the age of the characters) as I feel like I'm getting to hear how the sentences sounded in their head as they wrote them and/or as they intended them to be read. (Stephen King does a great job reading his own books)

So, my dream narrator for my WIP would be someone (celebrity or otherwise) who has a young-sounding female voice, can do male voices in a realistic but not overdone way, and who has a feel for my characters, story and writing voice.

I know, boring answer, but there you have it.

What about you? If you listen to audio, are there any favorite narrators?

Narration styles that annoy you?

Would you be more likely to listen to a book (or audiobooks in general) if a certain celebrity narrates it (or them)?

Monday, May 9, 2011

Monday Motivation

Life begins at the end of your comfort Zone 
-Neale Donald Walsh

 I have a magnet with this saying on my refrigerator. I bought it last summer as I was contemplating starting another book, a safer book, instead of my WIP. I'd already written my first two books in my comfort zone then two more since getting the idea for my WIP. In fact, the last two were written specifically to avoid writing my WIP.

I love my other books. They're fun and real and (I dare say) have some depth to them, but my WIP is so much  broader in scope. So different than the rest of my books and so much closer to the heart of how I feel about the world. 

But it's moving so slow. Life is crazier than it was during the writing of my other books, but that can't be the only reason. Could it be I'm butting up against the edge of my comfort zone, afraid to fall? Afraid to fail?

Acapulco cliff diver. 5 Attractions to Visit in Acapulco, Mexico. A Mexico travel destination information article.

What about you? Are there times when your comfort zone holds you back? In writing? Elsewhere?

 Picture of La Quebrada Cliff Divers

Friday, May 6, 2011

Happy Mother's DAY?

I've planted three lilac bushes in my life, two of them as mother's day presents to myself. Anyone else who has tried this knows that it usually takes years for them to bloom. Well, I have flowers this year. I've finally lived someplace long enough to get flowers. Happy Mother's Day to me.

Still, despite all the flowers, hugs and handmade cards we love to get on this holiday, let's just acknowledge for a moment that Mother's day is probably the biggest understatement of all time.

A day. Really? Sure, the restaurants love it because while no one can justify asking the mom of the house to cook a big meal that day, most men of the house aren't willing to do it. And while husbands and children express their gratefulness and try to remain on their best behavior for one day, that doesn't come close to encompassing the thousands of tasks, toleration of behavior, and hours of worrying and caring most moms do without their families noticing.

Being a mom isn't about a day. It's something that takes over every moment of your life, every fiber of your being.

The Peace Corps have it wrong. Motherhood is the toughest job you'll ever love.

So, Happy Mother's Day all, from one who knows how little one day means compared to all that being a mom can be.