Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Author Interview

I recently chatted with author Cole Gibsen, and seeing as I'm in the query process, I had a few questions for her. Oh, and the fact that one of her recently published books is of the mermaid type, certainly caught my interest. :) So, here are Cole's responses. Which answer surprised you? Have you learned anything new?

*How many manuscripts had you written before you landed your agent?
KATANA was the second novel I’d written and the one that landed my agent. My first novel was a hot mess that is shoved in a drawer never to see the light of day. (This is a very lucky thing for all lovers of fiction.)

*What would you say is the hardest part of being a writer trying to get published?
Battling with my self doubt. I have the harshest internal editor that loves to whisper in my ear and tell me everything I write is crap. I struggle with this self doubt daily and really have to work at tuning it out so I can get my writing done.

*What would you say is the easiest part of being a writer trying to get published?
Oh gosh, I don’t think the word “easy” exists in the publishing business. LOL. I’m a huge fan of martial arts and one of my favorite movies is Bruce Lee’s Game of Death. In the movie Bruce works his way up a building where on every floor he must face an opponent tougher than the one he defeated. Publishing is kind of like that.

*What did your road to publication look like?
See the above answer. LOL. But seriously, it took me two books, two years, and two hundred rejections before I landed my agent. It would take another year before I sold my first book and another two years after signing the contract before I would see one of my books on a book store shelf.

*If you could give one piece of advice to aspiring writers, what would it be?
Read books in the genre you plan to write, then read some more, and then repeat. I’m a firm believer that, if you don’t read the genre you’re writing, you won’t be able to write in it. 

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

BREATHLESS by Cole Gibson

I really like this cover. She's underwater, wearing blood red and it looks like she's struggling for air. Thus, breathless.

Here's the blurb on Amazon:

Obituary-reading emo girl Edith Small is broken - the end result of forcing herself inside a mold that doesn't fit. All she wants is to conform to her strict sergeant stepfather's rules long enough to make it to graduation day. But a boat accident threatens to unravel the life Edith has worked so hard to keep. After waking up in a hospital with a lacerated shoulder, Edith fakes amnesia. Because admitting she received her injuries from a blue-haired girl who breathes underwater is all the reason Sir needs to send Edith on the first bus to military school. Safe at home, Edith struggles to put the nightmare behind her. But the mysterious creatures that live in the ocean aren't about to let her forget. After meeting Bastin - a strange boy with silver hair and black eyes - on a secluded dock, Edith learns about the war raging undersea to end human existence. A war that Edith, unwittingly, has become the key to winning. In a world where death is an ever-present shadow and motives are as dark as the bottom of the ocean, Edith must decide if her life is worth risking for a love that can't survive past the shore.

Breathless was released about a week ago, so I'm a little late in getting the news out. Sorry. But, you want to see the latest stats on it? So far, on Good Reads, Breathless has a rating of 4.6 stars our of 5. Pretty impressive.

Want to check it out for yourself? Go here to buy it on Amazon. And make sure to leave a review when you're done reading it. I know I plan to. :)

What do you think? What do you like about the cover or premise or both?

Saturday, March 24, 2012

Mermaid Novels

As you know, I like mermaids. And like is an understatement.

When I heard mermaid novels would be the next big thing in the YA literary world, I was more than a little elated. Especially because I had finished a novel about mermaid-type creatures and was in the process of editing it. Fast forward to now, and I'm hearing that the supposed next big thing was actually more of a burst and then a fizzle. Meaning publishing houses bought mermaid novels and are releasing them this year and then that's it. They don't want anymore. Now, this doesn't mean I'm giving up hope, because like I said, my characters are mermaid-type. They aren't even called mermaids in the book (or sirens) and the word "mermaid" to them is offensive.

But I still LOVE stories about mermaids. So, I'm hoping this mermaid book thing doesn't fizzle out and end completely with the few releases this year. In an effort to spread the word on such novels, I plan on blogging about the upcoming books right before their release dates. And seeing as I have yet to receive an ARC for one of these lovelies, I wont be adding a review to these release blogs. Of course, you know me and as soon as I get my hands on these books there will definitely be reviews. :)

Sound good?

Okay, so when you think of mermaids, what comes to mind?

It's funny because as I'm writing this post, my daughter is sitting beside me watching H20. Yeah, it's in her blood.    

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Thieving Squirrels

I had a post planned about waiting, and lines with all kinds of deepness...I mean depth, and then I went over to the blog, Liz Writes, and all those ideas just flew out the window.

First, I have to tell you to check out her page here, because she recently signed with an agent and shares her story. I know writers need to hear these success stories every now and again to stay sane. Although, I wonder...were we ever sane to begin with? Hum.

But, before you leave my page to read about her exciting news, I have posted some pictures of my own breaking news. Squirrel season is upon us here in Washington, and the local dogs have mixed feelings. On one hand, squirrel chasing trumps ball chasing, but then again, the sneaky little things are thieves.

Monday, March 12, 2012


Have you ever had one of those days when you couldn't write if you wanted to? No, I'm not talking about feeling uninspired or having a case of writers block. I'm more going for angry, mad, pissed off royally. Those types of feelings.

And then after feeling red as a hornet, you sit down to write, and suddenly your MC is telling important supporting characters off, flashing a sword she never had before because this is a contemporary novel. And then someone dies a tragic and horrid death that has absolutely nothing to do with the sword, it's more like they spontaneously com-bust and then...

Wait. Is red hornet a saying or did I just mutilate that and mix two different sayings--one referring to being red and the other to being a hornet?

Yeah. You get the picture. Ever felt like that?

~This is not in reference to any writer-world stuff. So, not rejection related.

~I did mutilate it. I looked it up. It's supposed to be, "Madder than a red hornet." I attached pictures because to me they don't look very mad. Just busy as a bee working. :) Oh and apparently it's a wasp, not a hornet. 

Thursday, March 8, 2012

The Lucky 7 Meme

Happy Thursday! I was tagged by Donelle Lacy in the Lucky 7 Meme, and it's sounds like fun, so here goes. This particular Meme gives the world a peek into my most recently finished manuscript, DARK WATERS. I'm currently querying it, so cutting and pasting pieces into an online document of sorts has become rather routine for me these days. :)

Here Are The Rules:
1) Go to page 77 or your current MS
2) Go to line 7
3) Copy down the next 7 lines as they're written--no  cheating
4) Tag 7 other writers
5) Let them know

So I happily found page 77 of Dark Waters, and wished I had landed on a more action-packed scene. Although honestly, anywhere I land, I want to keep reading. I guess that's how a writer knows their book is ready to query. :) So here's page 77, lines 7-14 of Dark Waters:

     Most of her books were science related. A few were on human health, their skeletal and vascular systems, but far more had something or other to do with marine life. None looked to be about age-old water people healing.
     Pulling myself up, I peered around her room before deciding to check under her bed. Why she'd place the book under a bed, I had no idea, but it had to be here somewhere. My fingers trailed across the green satin sheets covering her mattress. When we have sheets on our bed, or in my and Cara's case comforters, it's not for warmth, but the feel of the fabric. Satin sheets were as close to sleeping in wet seaweed one could get without actually lining our beds with the stuff.


1) Rain Laaman
2) Shannon Lawrence
3) Darci Cole
4) Theresa Paolo
5) Ashley Nixon
6) Jessie Humphries
7) Jamie Morrow

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Writing Group Gossip

To critique or not to critique. That is the question.
A little bit ago, I blogged about Jayne Ann Kretnz and her advice to aspiring authors. She mentioned writing groups and critique partners, but you can read about that here. It feels like since then, I've seen a lot of stories, posts, and information, on writing groups and critique circles. Some good. Some bad.

The other day, I read a post from an anonymous published author who basically said that critique partners have their place and can be helpful. But early on in this persons career when they lacked confidence in their own ability and writing, sometimes critiques caused them to change pieces that they knew inside were perfect for their story. They said that critiques from others had a way of erasing their voice from the pages.

On Cupid's Connection yesterday, Cupid posted about what his/her blog is meant for. Cupid also included that during contests, the comments section is not solely for critiques of the submitted material, but more so for encouragement. And I couldn't agree more. I've noticed over the last two contests that people have felt the need to pick submissions apart. And If I'm not mistaken, Cupid actually used the word "nitpick". Because lets face it. We're humans. And odds are, if we feel it's our duty to "help" the author in searching out their mistakes and bringing said mistakes under the microscope, we will become bloodhounds until we can howl into the night that we've located the troublesome word/line/explanation. Even if there is no troublesome words, lines, or explanations.

I am in no way saying I disagree with writers groups and critique partners. After visiting numerous "interesting" groups and reading feedback that rubbed me the wrong way like sandpaper on already exfoliated skin, I have found my perfect little circle of a "friends who write" group. Not to mention the fact that I also have trusted beta readers and critique partners who sharpen and encourage me.  

So, whether we love them or hate them, lets gossip about them! Yes, give me your writers group/critique stories. No names please, but I'd love to hear the juicy details. Maybe one good experience and one bad? I think it's always fun to joke about negative learning experiences. It's much better than brooding over them! Right?