A couple of months ago I received the wonderful news that a short story I had written, Troubled Tess, had been accepted for the October edition of Positive Words magazine. Tempted as I was I didn’t mention it on here, with the world of writing the way it is, speaking publicly about something before it has gone to print is always a very dicey thing to do. However yesterday a bundle of 3 Positive Words magazines arrived on my door step. Whilst I would have loved to have read it cover to cover and stumbled across my story, I couldn’t wait that long so went straight for the index page, and found myself and Tess, on page 14. It was a lovely moment seeing my own words there on the page. I subsequently enjoyed the rest of the magazine. If you’d like a copy, head to http://positivewordsmagazine.wordpress.com/information/
As I sat in the Dr’s waiting room yesterday with my step son, it occurred to me how strange I might look. Whenever I know I am going to be sat somewhere for a while I pounce on the opportunity to do some reading. On this occasion I had picked up Junie B. Jones and some Sneaky Peeky Spying by Barbara Park from my library book pile. From the cover of this book, there is no mistaking that it is intended for 6-8 year old kids. And there I sat, with my 20 year old step son (so no excuses there) laughing out loud to wonderfully funny kids book. I noticed a few puzzled looks, and part of me wanted to explain myself, “it’s research!” I thought, but a sneaky peeky part of me was enjoying the puzzled looks on people’s faces as their brains tried to find excuses for me 😉
I’m procrastinating! I need to think of a scary creature that lives next door to my main character in my Marty Scott chapter book series and I can’t. I can’t move the story forward until I’ve worked out what it is. It needs to make a scary noise and look pretty terrifying, but turn out to be friendly in the end. At the moment it makes a low growl, but doesn’t sound like a dog. In fact to the protagonist (a 7 year old boy) it sounds like a crocodile would sound if crocodiles could growl. Any thoughts anyone?
On Monday 16th September I attended the Sydney SCBWI meeting. It was a fantastic evening and the passionate and successful children’s author Aleesah Darlison, spoke about the business of writing and marketing yourself as a children’s author. She shared her experience of how to secure book reviews, press opportunities and school visits, and talked about defining your own personal brand as an author.
On Wednesday 18th September I went along to the CBCA Northern Sydney Sub-branch AGM and Meeting. Here Zoe Bechara, Children’s Publicity Officer at Random House presented a talk on “A Publicist’s View.” Zoe was so engaging and gave a great insiders view into the role of the publicist in promoting and driving sales for children’s books.
And finally, on Tuesday 24th September the amazing Lisa Berryman, Associate Publisher – Children’s Books, Harper Collins came to our writers’ group to critique our work and provide an insight into the world of Children’s publishing for Harper Collins. Lisa gave great insight into how she selects books for her list and the most common problems she encounters in people’s writing. Needless to say I couldn’t sleep a wink last night, I think the whole group were buzzing after such an enjoyable and encouraging critique session from such a successful professional. And I was thrilled with her feedback on my story, Our Trip to the Zoo, which she declared I should submit, happy dance, but not to her, sad dance, but she gave some great suggestions of where to send it, happy dance, so that will be my mission over the next few weeks.
All in all it has been a fantastic and educational two weeks. I am pumped and ready to put all of this newly acquired knowledge into action.
Zoe Bechara, Children’s Publicity Officer, Random House, Speaking at the CBCA Northern Sydney Sub-branch meeting on Wednesday 18th September.
My Middle Grade Novel is finished!!…
Yey, what an exciting ride that was, it’s 37,000 words and I’m thrilled at how it has come together. Now for the hard part, revising, revising and revising again. I have a lot of work to do on the dialogue, don’t be surprised if you find me out and about eaves dropping on teenagers conversations, I need to brush up on my teenagers lingo. (they probably don’t say lingo anymore!) You may also find me watching Home and Away and Neighbours (What??!!) and reading lots of Middle Grade books, it’s so much fun stepping back into the world of teens again.
Thought for the day…
I think spell check should underline the part of the word you are miss spelling, it would save me changing every vowel in the word before realising it needs a double S or the I before E, not after.
I’m looking for two words to describe a wedding dress and have lost about 20 mins to wedding dress sites, some stunning dresses out there! I want to get married again, same man, same venue, same guests (plus a few new ones) New dress! It’s only been 8 years but dresses and fashion have changed so much.
Had uninterrupted 2.5 hrs writing this arvo. When I suddenly realised it was time to stop I felt like I’d just woken up, v. strange feeling!
An exhilarating days writing, 5,000 words, the end is in sight, I can’t wait for it to reveal itself to me.