Author Archives: Kimberly G. Giarratano

About Kimberly G. Giarratano

I'm a YA author.

YA Spring Fling Blog Hop w/ Cheyanne Young

March 28th 2015

As part of the YA Spring Fling, I’m featuring fellow YA author Cheyanne Young. Screen Shot 2015-03-27 at 3.09.24 PMShe has a ton of books under belt including Somewhere Only We Know, which is part of the YA Spring Fling giveaway. Check out her website here.

And now on to the hop! Here’s the Q&A with Cheyanne.

What’s the best thing about being a writer?

Working in my pajamas and reading emails from fans are about the two greatest things in the world.

 What’s the worst thing about being a writer?

The worst thing about being a writer is the sheer terror of knowing that no matter how long I live, I’ll never live long enough to write every story that is in my head.

 Tell us more about your books. Screen Shot 2015-03-27 at 3.36.35 PM

I write YA contemporary mostly, with a little YA Superhero fiction thrown in. My stories have strong female characters and always always have kissing.

 Coffee or Tea?

Coffee is my life. My family and friends know this and understand that they all come second to my first love, which is coffee.

 Plotter or Pantser?

A little from column A and a little from column B. I can never plot or pants an entire story. They’re both plot-ants-ed.

 Are there any books involved in the YA Spring Fling that you’re secretly lusting after?

I’d love to get my hands on every book in the Science Fiction category. Luckily, I just picked up The Body Electric by Beth Revis, so I’ll be diving into it soon.

 What was the last YA book you read?

I just finished The Art of Pretending by Rachel Harris and it was adorable!

 What are your top tips for surviving a zombie apocalypse?

Listen. Zombies make loud, gurgly breathing sounds and creepy moans everywhere they go. How could you possibly let one sneak up on you? Also, cardio. Lots of cardio.

Where can readers find your books?

You can find them on Amazon, B&N, Smashwords, Kobo and iBooks!

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YA Spring Fling! Win books! Lots o’ books!

March 20th 2015

Nothing says ‘I am so over snow’ more than a big YA books extravaganza!

YA Spring Fling, baby! Over 70 authors are participating. Over 100 ebooks. Signed paperbacks, swag — you name it. Click here to enter. It’s crazy easy. Then stop back here on March 28th to read an interview with YA author, Cheyanne Young. Good luck!

This is just the tip of the iceberg. vvv

YA Spring Fling no text med

 

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The long and short story of it

March 5th 2015

I self-published a short story today! Last week, I got the final rejection on a beloved YA short story (“Strong writing but we don’t publish YA” — I didn’t read that anywhere on the submissions page). I had sent it to quite a few literary journals (one that even paid) but alas it was never accepted. I was not doing myself nor my story any favors by having it languish on my Macbook, so I decided to publish it myself. I created a cover on Canva for $1 (I don’t recommend this, but I’m low on funds), paid $20 for a quick copy edit (this I do recommend spending money on) and formatted it, only to have a lovely KBoards author reformat it so I wouldn’t embarrass myself (thanks, Pete!). onenightcover4And then I spent a few hours trying to figure out the best keywords to get the book visible. I created an account on Kindle Direct Publishing and uploaded everything. Summarizing all this makes it look like this was a quick process when, in fact, it took up a lot of time. So much so, I haven’t done revisions on my novella in a week. Despite this, I feel energized. I’m sure I’ll feel pretty crappy in a week when no one has bought the story and it’s sitting on page 1,200 on Amazon’s search results, but for now I’m excited. I truly believe authors need to be fed a diet of their own work in order to survive. Meaning: write and publish. Write and publish.

Here’s the summary to One Night if you’re interested.

After Margot Green helps move her older sister into the University of Miami dorms, she just wants to go home to New Jersey where she can wallow in her loneliness. Unfortunately for Margot, her parents decide to extend their trip to the Florida Keys where they sign up for a kooky tour of historic Key West. Margot is horrified to have to traipse around hotter-than-Hades Old Town with her embarrassing parents until she meets Sam, an enigmatic local, who convinces her to embark on a spooky adventure that will inevitably lead to discovery and heartache.

You can buy it on Amazon or read it for free if you subscribe to Kindle Unlimited.

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Making it on my own

February 26th 2015

So, I have some news. I am going to self publish my novella, The Lady in Blue. Hot damn, I’m excited!

 

The Lady in Blue is a spin-off story to Grunge Gods and Graveyards, and is set in 1955. It is the story of Lana, a golden-haired beauty with Hollywood dreams, who is run off the road and left for dead. Right now, I’m doing revisions so that I can send it off to my beta readers in the next few weeks. In the meantime, I’m lining up an editor (or trying to) and figuring out a release date. Hoping for June!

Self-publishing is exciting, but it’s also daunting, overwhelming, and confusing. There’s so much to learn. Formatting. Keywords. Kindle Unlimited. I’ve been on KBoards often, soaking up the knowledge that flows freely there. But it’s still scary to go out on your own. Wish me luck.

If you’d like to see The Lady in Blue’s cover before anyone else, please sign up for my mailing list. I’ll also send out an email when I have a firm release date planned.

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AuthorFest ’15

February 14th 2015

It’s been a tough winter. A two-foot pack of snow outside the patio door can chip away at a girl’s soul. So it’s nice to get out and mingle once in awhile.

Today, amidst a light snow fall, I attended AuthorFest at the Hawley Silk Mill in Hawley, PA. The Silk Mill is this beautiful historic building that looks like a castle and AuthorFest is like this giant meetup of local authors talking about writing. There were two workshops in the late morning — “How to Write a Bestseller” and “Traditional vs. Indie Publishing”. The audience was made up of aspiring authors, many with their notebooks open, jotting down relevant information. I sat on the latter panel and offered my opinions on small press publishing. I joked that it was a “dream-crushing” panel. We were all pretty honest about writing today — it’s hard to get a traditional publishing deal and it’s even harder to sell books. But we all love writing. I met many authors, including award-winning children’s book authors Suzanne Fischer Staples and Lindsay Barrett George. And Samantha Warren, an indie author who was kind enough to buy my book and give me solid advice on indie publishing. She was a doll.

I sold two books (and one ebook — thanks Samantha!) at the author signing and gave out a bunch of bookmarks. I had the best day ever!

Me at AuthorFest

Me at AuthorFest

Meeting fellow authors, networking, just getting out of my house is energizing. For a little while I am not retrieving juice boxes or scheduling dentist appointments — I am an author and I’m talking craft. Writing is hard work. Sometimes it’s not the actual writing that’s difficult but the feeling of isolation. Writing is solitary business. But networking and chatting with fellow authors makes me feel like I’m part of the profession. Community is vital.

My tip for anyone who writes: find writer friends. Join organizations. Go to conferences. I have small kids. For the last five years, I’ve either been pregnant or nursing a baby. I haven’t had a chance to get out. But now I’m starting to venture from home in order to market my books and meet other authors. In time, I’ll be able to do more. Can’t wait to do AuthorFest 2016! I already told the organizers, I’ll be there.

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