Showing posts from January, 2015

What's Up Wednesday - January 28, 2015

What's Up Wednesday is a weekly blog hop created by Jaime Morrow and Erin Funk to help writers stay in touch.
What I'm Reading: 
I finished Boy on the Bridge by Natalie Standiford last week. My review went up on Friday. I felt that it fell short of its potential. But now I'm reading Scarlet by Marissa Meyer. I have to admit that I was a little sad when I read the summary and found out it focuses on Scarlet rather than Cinder but I'm quickly falling in love.

What I'm Writing: 
Nothing at the moment. I haven't started querying either. I'm swamped with work.It's not likely to get any better until next week so I think I'm going to forego the writing goal.

What Works for Me: 
Musical motivation. I've listened to Fall Out Boy's new album an almost embarrassing number of times since it was released, but I regret nothing. Sometimes music gets me pumped up (like Fall Out Boy) and sometimes it helps me to settle down and focus (like my all instrumental p…

What's New This Week - January 26

I'm Glad I Did by Cynthia Weil Goodreads Rock and Roll Hall of Famer and songwriting legend Cynthia Weil's extraordinary YA debut opens the secretive doors of the Brill Building-the hit factory that changed history. Part Mad Men, part Grace of my Heart, part murder mystery, I'm Glad I Did is a coming-of-age story at an unforgettable cultural tipping point: the summer of 1963.

JJ Greene, a gifted 16-year-old songwriter, defies her lawyer parents by secretly applying for a job in the famed Brill Building-the epicenter of songwriting for a new genre called rock-n-roll. But their warnings about the evils of the music industry prove far darker than she imagined when she finds herself at the heart of a cover-up that involves hidden identity, theft, and possibly murder.

Cut Me Free by J.R. Johansson Goodreads Seventeen-year-old Charlotte barely escaped from her abusive parents. Her little brother, Sam, wasn't as lucky. Now she's trying to begin the new life she alway…

The Boy on the Bridge Review

The Boy on the Bridge by Natalie Standiford Laura Reid goes to Leningrad for a semester abroad as Cold War paranoia is peaking in 1982. She meets a young Russian artist named Alexei and soon, with Alexei as her guide, Laura immerses herself in the real Russia--a crazy world of wild parties, black-market books and music, and smuggled letters to dissidents. She must keep the relationship secret; associating with Americans is dangerous for Alexei, and if caught, Laura could be sent home and Alexei put under surveillance or worse. At the same time, she's been warned that Soviets often latch onto Americans in hopes of marrying them and thus escaping to the United States. But she knows Alexei loves her. Right?

As June approaches--when Laura must return to the United States--Alexei asks Laura to marry him. She's only nineteen and doesn't think she's ready to settle down. But what if Alexei is the love of her life? How can she leave him behind? If she has a chance t…

What's Up Wednesday - January 21, 2015

What's Up Wednesday is a weekly blog hop created by Jaime Morrow and Erin Funk to help writers stay in touch.
What I'm Reading:  Still Boy on the Bridge. I'm a little less than halfway. I ordered a bunch of new books from B&N and they shipped today, though, so I'm going to have to finish it before they get here. 
What I'm Writing:  Nothing at the moment. Working on getting Weredragon's synopsis down to a more acceptable length. My writing goal for the week is to get ten queries out there again.
What Works for Me:  Sometimes it's not giving myself rewards. I've talked before about how I like to give myself a little break after I complete a task on my to do list. Sometimes that break is an episode of a TV show. Recently, though, I've had to quit doing that because I find myself spending more time watching Stargate or How I Met Your Mother than actually working. For now I just work through my to do list and then I get to have fun. 
What Else I'm U…

What's New This Week - January 19

Killing Time in Crystal City by Chris Lynch Goodreads Crystal City called for him, and Kevin answered. And why wouldn’t he? His relationship with his father is broken—as is his arm. With barely anyone to miss him or care if he’s gone, it seemed like the perfect time for Kevin to run away to his estranged uncle and create an entirely new identity. New name. New attitude. New friends. Maybe even a new girl.

From the first moment of adventure, Kevin’s life takes a turn for the exciting. Making friends seems easy with his new persona, especially when a group of homeless beach bums instantly includes him in their crew. But do they like the real Kevin, or the guy he’s pretending to be? And will this new lifestyle help Kevin escape from the misery of his former life—or will it drag him right back into the reasons he left home?

All Fall Down by Ally Carter Embassy Row #1 Goodreads Grace can best be described as a daredevil, an Army brat, and a rebel. She is also the only granddaughter of …

What's Up Wednesday - January 14, 2015

What's Up Wednesday is a weekly blog hop created by Jaime Morrow and Erin Funk to help writers stay in touch.

What I'm Reading: 
Currently Boy on the Bridge by Natalie Standiford. I must admit that it's not holding me as well as I hoped.

What I'm Writing: 
Going to start working on submission materials for Weredragon tomorrow.I already have a synopsis and query, I just need to make sure they're the best they can be. 

What Works for Me: 
Giving myself time off when I need it. For instance, Mondays I have class from 11 to 8:20 with only a few hours of break in between. My goal is to lower my target word count to a more manageable number or possibly eliminate it completely. The rest of the week is not nearly as hectic yet so there will be plenty of time for a proper writing session.

What Else I'm Up To: 
Classes. I'm actually really excited about mine this semester. It's going to be quite a bit of work but also a lot of fun. 

What's New This Week - January 12

The Boy Next Door by Katie Van Ark Goodreads Maddy Spier has been in love with the boy next door forever. As his figure skating partner she spends time in his arms every day. But she’s also seen his arms around other girls—lots of other girls.

Gabe can't imagine skating with anyone but Maddy, and together they have a real chance at winning some serious gold medals. So, he’s determined to keep thinking of her like a sister. After all, he’s never had a romantic relationship that lasted for more than two weeks.

But when their coach assigns a new romantic skating program, everything changes. Will this be the big break that Maddy’s been hoping for or the big breakup that Gabe has always feared?

Vivian Apple at the End of the World by Katie Coyle Vivian Apple #1 Goodreads Seventeen-year-old Vivian Apple never believed in the evangelical Church of America, unlike her recently devout parents. But when Vivian returns home the night after the supposed "Rapture," all that’s le…

Cinder Review

Cinder by Marissa Meyer Lunar Chronicles #1 Humans and androids crowd the raucous streets of New Beijing. A deadly plague ravages the population. From space, a ruthless lunar people watch, waiting to make their move. No one knows that Earth’s fate hinges on one girl.

Cinder, a gifted mechanic, is a cyborg. She’s a second-class citizen with a mysterious past, reviled by her stepmother and blamed for her stepsister’s illness. But when her life becomes intertwined with the handsome Prince Kai’s, she suddenly finds herself at the center of an intergalactic struggle, and a forbidden attraction. Caught between duty and freedom, loyalty and betrayal, she must uncover secrets about her past in order to protect her world’s future.

I know, I know. Very late to the party on this one. With this book, though, it's definitely better late than never. This book caught me and refused to let go. About halfway in, I told myself that I could read a few chapters before I got back to work. Ende…

What's Up Wednesday - January 7, 2015

What's Up Wednesday is a weekly blog hop created by Jaime Morrow and Erin Funk to help writers stay in touch. First Wednesday of the new year! It's been over a month since I've participated and I can't believe I let the time slip by like that.

What I'm Reading: 
I finished Cinder by Marissa Meyer a few days ago. I'm very late to the party on that one, but it's a fantastic book and I'm looking forward to getting my hands on the next installment. Full review will be up on Friday. Next up is The Boy on the Bridge by Natalie Standiford.

What I'm Writing: 
Getting Weredragon ready to get back out there with queries. I gave it a skim and decided that I'm not quite ready to give up on it yet. My goal is to get my synopses and query agent-ready so that by this time next week I can start querying.

What Works for Me: 
Being busy. Quite honestly, I was hoping to get a lot done over my winter break. I figured that without school I'd have tons of free time…

What's New This Week - January 5

I used to do weekly posts featuring new releases in young adult and middle grade and I've decided that it's time to bring that back. I've gotten out of touch with what's coming out and there are so many fantastic books. 

Gone Too Far by Natalie Richards Goodreads
Send me a name. Make someone pay. Piper Woods can't wait to graduate. To leave high school-and all the annoying cliques-behind. But when she finds a mysterious notebook filled with the sins of her fellow students, Piper's suddenly drowning in their secrets. And she's not the only one watching... An anonymous text invites Piper to choose: the cheater, the bully, the shoplifter. The popular kids with their dirty little secrets. And with one text, Piper can make them pay. But the truth can be dangerous...
There Will Be Lies by Nick Lake Goodreads In four hours, Shelby Jane Cooper will be struck by a car.

Shortly after, she and her mother will leave the hospital and set out on a winding journey toward the Gra…

2015 Resolutions

Happy New Year, everyone! Seriously, where did the time go? It's January 1st again which means it's time to make resolutions. I try to keep mine realistic, so that I might actually have a chance at keeping them. I thought about throwing some kind of exercise- or health-related goal on here, but those are always the first to go.

My resolutions:

Figure out where my writing is going.
I wanted to have some kind of goal here, like "revise this novel" or "complete two first drafts" but the truth is this has to be figured out first. My goal is to set up a game plan and stick to it.

Read 75 books.
I've been terrible at keeping up with my reading goals over the past few years and this year I'm determined to change that. About six books a month sounds do-able.

Move out.
I'm graduating college in a few months and my goal is to be moved into my own place by the end of the year.

Blog at least three days a week. 
Blogging has definitely fallen to the wayside…