Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Links

Just popping in with a couple links that might be helpful.  First is agent Kristin Nelson with the top two reasons she passes on sample pages.  If you're having trouble with your begining then there is some seriously good advice here.

Next are five writing tips from Blake Bailey.

I'll be visiting blogs but won't be posting until A-Z starts. See you then!

Friday, March 22, 2013

Book Sale

It's time for our local Friends of the Library used book sale.



The room is just as big in the other direction.  And it's filled with tables that are filled with books. And there are even more books in boxes underneath.  It's the second day of the sale so it's not as crowded and I noticed that there were less books blocking the isles too.  I've heard this is the biggest library book sale east of the mississipi, though I don't really know how they can verify that.

Now before everyone jumps all over me for buying used books and not supporting authors let me just say that I spend more than I can reasonably afford on new books.  I'm helping the industry as much as I can.  This is just a way to supplement that a little.  Plus, it helps the library. And come on, who wouldn't love to be in a warehouse sized room surrounded by books you can look at and caress.  It's just fun.

Do any of you have library sales?

Monday, March 18, 2013

Extra, Extra

This post has nothing to do with writing or reading but I do need your help.  As many of you know both our children are adopted. 





Well, we are filling out adoption papers again, hoping to find another member of our family.  Most placements are made because of knowing someone who knows someone who knows of a child.  Both of our children were found that way.  So I'm getting the word out to as many people as possible. We need your help to find our children.  Not as much fun as having kids the old fashioned way but this way we can involve all our friends and family.  :)


I know that to many of you I'm a faceless person behind a computer screen but I'm asking anyone who's willing to keep us in mind if you know of a child or children who need a home. Our adoption website isn't up yet but if you want to find out about us shoot me an email (sara(dot)bowers(at)gmail(dot)com)  and I'll send you all the info that we give to our agency and that we would put on our adoption website profiles so you can get to know us. 


Thanks for reading and for keeping us in mind.
Our children have changed our lives, and I hope we've changed theirs for the better.


Friday, March 15, 2013

Query Breakdown

Happy Ides of March everyone!  I once went camping in the mountains of Utah for the ides of March.  Coldest night of my life.  There was at least five feet of snow. 

Agent Linda Epstein has a post here explaining why she requested a manuscript from a query.  She described each part of the query and what she liked and didn't like about it and I found it very interesting.  We often hear why they don't request manuscripts and I thought this was a nice change.


Hope all of you who celebrate it have a Happy St. Patrick's day this weekend. 



Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Miscellaneous Ramblings.

I'm new to this whole A-Z thing so I was wondering how do you plan all your posts for April and still have something to post in March?  I just don't have much to say since I'm saving it all for April.


Work on my WIP has been sporadic over the last several months as I've rewritten the beginning and done some tweaking and editing on the book I'm querying.  Plus querying takes up time.  So, while I've been putting words down it hasn't been an avalanche.  Yesterday I decided to read over the whole MS as it stands just to try to get back into the story and voice and I have to say, I'm loving it.   I'm falling in love with my character and MS all over again.

How's your WIP coming?


P.S. I'm sure many of you have noticed I've been emailing comment responses.  If you aren't receiving them it's because I don't have your email attached to your comments so I'm leaving those responses in the comment section.  If you're receiving the emails and you want to stop getting them let me know and I'll be happy to oblige. 


Friday, March 8, 2013

Stories

So who likes Pixar? 

I know I do.  They tell great stories, they entertain, they teach, and they are never dull.  Recently one of the story board artists tweeted Pixar's 22 rules of phenomenal storytelling.  They may be something to pay attention too. 

Monday, March 4, 2013

What do bookshelves and reviews say about us?

Author Jody Hedlund had a discussion here about what our books say about ourselves.  In a world of Goodreads it's very easy to see what our favorite authors are reading.  Many authors have fairly diverse reading habits and it's not likely that everything they read will fit their target audience.  Should authors worry about what they post on their bookshelves?  Is it possible to offend your readers, or will they too have broad reading habits?  Does an author really want every book they read, and their impression of it, out there on the internet? 

Another question she brings up is rating books on Goodreads. As an author is it alright to leave poor reviews on books?  Is that considered unprofessional or mean?  Yet, if you only leave good reviews does that make you unreliable or misleading as a reviewer?

I know people who refuse to leave less than a three star review.  If they didn't like the book, they won't review it.  Simple, right?  Yet won't that leave false expectations on the book?  I know when I read reviews I want to read the one and two star reviews to see what they didn't like about the book.  That doesn't mean I won't read it.  Sometimes the issues people have aren't issues for me.  And sometimes they have good points and I'm warry about getting the book. 

Personally I like to have a wide range of reviews so I can get the best overall look at the book.  Yet I understand the worry about appearing mean or snarky for low reviews.  Is it enough to leave a well though out and polite, yet honest, review, or will it still give authors bad reputations?  And if so, what happens if authors only give good reviews to books?  How will that change readers perceptions? Or even authors growth, since we do rely on crits for improvement. 

As you can see I've got more questions than answers.  Has anyone thought about this at all?  What have you decided?