Missouri SCBWI Conference Recap, Part 1

I attended the Missouri SCBWI conference on Saturday. I drafted a single post with my key takeaways, but it was too long, so I’m splitting it into two. You’ll get Part 1 today and Part 2 tomorrow. The first keynote speaker was the very entertaining David Harrison, a prolific author who’s been publishing since the…

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MMGM: THE END OF INFINITY

First of all, thanks to everyone who participated in my giveaway last week for a signed copy of Shannon Messenger’s KEEPER OF THE LOST CITIES. The winner is: Orchid (@HauntedOrchid) It was so much fun doing a giveaway. I don’t plan to do one every week, but I will throw them in every once in…

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How Timing Plays Into Querying Strategy

Querying is such a game of strategy. And timing is a major factor in so many ways. Here are a few I’ve been thinking about lately. Catching the agent at the right time. Although I don’t have the link handy, I once read an interview with an agent who listed 10 reasons she might reject…

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MMGM: KEEPER OF THE LOST CITIES with a giveaway!

Like everyone else who participates in MMGM, I anxiously awaited the release of MMGM founder Shannon Messenger’s debut novel, KEEPER OF THE LOST CITIES. I’m thrilled to say that it met all of my expectations and then some. And because I want to give back to Shannon the way she gives back to all of…

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Endings: How Much Can You Leave Hanging?

As I’m working on revisions for my current WIP, I’ve been musing over a question that’s occurred to me before: As an unagented, unpublished author, how much can I leave hanging at the end of my manuscript if I have ideas for a series? Unfortunately, I think the answer is: not much. When I wrote…

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MMGM: SCIENCE FAIR

I love that my library lets me check out ebooks on my Kindle. Browsing through the available titles has led me to several books I might not have read otherwise. Today I bring you another library find–SCIENCE FAIR by Dave Barry and Ridley Pearson. Here’s the description: When Grdankl the Strong, president of the small,…

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Character Flaws and Why We Have to Care

Over the past few days, I reread two of my favorite romance novels. Although I read much more MG and YA these days, I grew up reading romance novels, starting when I was 11. This may seem young, but there wasn’t the strong category of YA or MG books then that there is now, and…

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MMGM: THE UNWANTEDS: ISLAND OF SILENCE

THE UNWANTEDS is one of those buzz books that I heard about so much I finally picked it up. I read the first book earlier this year, before I started participating in Marvelous Middle Grade Monday, but now there’s a second one, and I’m thrilled to cover THE UNWANTEDS: ISLAND OF SILENCE today. If you…

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Practice Makes Perfect–Or At Least Closer to Perfect

It’s been more than a month since my cupcake celebration for finishing my latest first draft. It took great self-control to let the draft sit for that long, but I filled the time with critiques for other writers, a major contest, and a revision to DUET. But finally, this week it was time to start…

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MMGM: THE PARADISE TRAP

As anyone who’s familiar with my work knows, I’m a fan of alternate realities, so the premise of THE PARADISE TRAP caught my attention as soon as I read the blurb. I’m happy to say it fulfilled all of my expectations and then some. I couldn’t put this book down because I couldn’t wait to…

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When Is It Time to Revise?

There’s a time to query. There’s a time to wait. There’s a time to … revise? I started querying DUET WITH THE DEVIL’S VIOLIN in April, entered a little contest called The Writers Voice in May, queried a bit more for the first two weeks in June, then decided to wait. You see, I had…

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MMGM: THE LONDON EYE MYSTERY

I picked up this book expecting to find a fun mystery and realized almost immediately it was so much more. After reading THE LONDON EYE MYSTERY, I’m not surprised it won several awards when it came out in 2007. I’m so glad it was one of the e-books available when I started browsing my local…

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