Ready.Set.Write.

June 8th 2015

I’m participating in Ready. Set. Write. this year (Thanks to Leandra for the reminder). This writing intensive– hosted by Jaime Morrow, Katy Upperman, Erin Funk, and Elodie Nowodazkij is a fun way to give my writing the kick in the ass it needs. RSW gives writers an opportunity to set goals and cheer on other writers. Writing goals I have, but I don’t stay on top of my work until I’m racing toward a deadline. Then life gets too chaotic and I’m yelling at everyone to leave me alone because I’m writing!

Every Monday, I’ll be giving a brief report on how I’m doing. Key word: brief. RSW1

My summer writing goals are:

Finish my draft of Dead and Breakfast (Book 1 of the Cayo Hueso Mystery Series), complete revisions, and outline the second book, Ghost and Found.

My goals for this week:

Just add to my word count on Dead and Breakfast. I need to write new scenes.

Here goes nothin.

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#BEA15 — It’s been fun

May 30th 2015

Yesterday, I went to BEA (Book Expo America) in NYC for probably, the last time. (Next year, it’s in Chicago and I don’t see myself flying there to attend.) I picked up a friend at 6:30am and after hitting some of the worst traffic of my life (thank you very much, East Rutherford), we got to BEA at 11:30. We met up with my friend, Jill, and had lunch with our BookPage editor, Cat, who is as charming in real life as she is via email.

Finally getting on the ferry after hours of traffic.

Finally getting on the ferry after hours of traffic.

After lunch, my friends and I stopped at all the vendors and scrounged for ARCs. I’m always looking for new YA and this year there didn’t seem to be much. I got a ton of middle grade titles including Lauren DeStefano’s A Curious Tale of the In-Between which is off the hook. I found a few picture books for my boys and some new adult mysteries to check out. All in all, it was a very subdued BEA. Smaller crowds and fewer books. I wasn’t disappointed as BEA is my most favorite day of the year. But I wasn’t wowed like in years past where I scored Catching Fire, Ally Condie’s Matched, or a signed book by Holly Black.

I’ve been going to BEA for the past — I don’t know — seven years, maybe eight. The first year I went I was a library science student at Rutgers and I got free tickets. I came home with a few books, one on houseplants a vendor was nice enough to give me. As a student, I didn’t warrant too many freebies. After all, I wasn’t a librarian yet doing large book orders.

My paper badge

My paper badge

One of my favorite BEA memories was stumbling upon a book signing by the producer of Days of Our Lives a.k.a my mother’s most favorite soap opera in the world. And you know who else was there? Kristian Alfonso – the beautiful Hope Brady! I hopped in a relatively short line and got my mom a signed book about the soap. I was so excited I called my parent’s house right away and spoke to my very uninterested father because my mom was working at the time.

BEA has always made me feel like I was part of a special, albeit large, book club. I’d chat up other librarians on line and we’d talk about YA books we were excited about and we’d sound giddy talking about authors we wanted to meet. I had no qualms about marching up to publishers and telling them I loved their newest releases or that I wanted to see more YA mysteries. Just yesterday, I told Publishers Weekly that I loved that they’re reviewing indie books now, but that they need to email the authors to tell them the review it up. (I found mine by Googling.) Anyway, the point is, at BEA, librarians, authors, bloggers, reviewers can connect with publishers and book industry insiders.

Author signings!

Author signings!

Sadly, yesterday was probably my last BEA hurrah. I’m not gonna lie — I’m bummed.

I’m gonna miss all those free books.

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Sophomore Self-doubt

April 27th 2015

I’m self publishing my second book, The Lady in Blue, next week and I’m feeling (well, what I call) the sophomore self-doubt. This isn’t a new phenomenon. An author writes a first book and gets a great response, so they write another book and wonder — will people like this one, too? What if they don’t? And never read my work again? (cue: wailing)

I’d hate to disappoint my readers. I’m not naive. Not everyone is going to love, or even like, my work. (I’m no Hemingway.) But I’d feel awful if you loved GG&G and read The Lady in Blue and thought it was utter crap. That’s the kind of person I am. You tell me, “Your book is shit.” And I say, “I’m so sorry,” (That’s probably something I should explore in therapy) because I hate letting anyone down.

Truthfully, The Lady in Blue was harder to edit. I found myself unsure of last-minute fixes and additions. My editor expertly marked passages where I needed to explore feeeeeelings and I felt like I was being asked to deliver a presentation in Greek. How do I do that? I don’t know how to do that.

Anyway, I think the answer to the sophomore self-doubt is to publish another book. Which I am. In September. And I’m feeling super confident about this manuscript.

Anyone else experience self-doubt on your second book? (Say yes. Say yes.)

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Graveyard Shift! and other shenanigans

April 8th 2015

I feel like my writer life has been a whirlwind these past few weeks, which is unusual. Grunge Gods came out nearly a year ago and my professional life has been fairly quiet. Until recently. With my self-imposed May 1st deadline fast approaching, I’ve been pushing myself to complete revisions on The Lady in Blue novella and write my jazzy blurb. While I’m waiting on content and line edits, I’m trying to learn a zillion indie publishing things like Draft2Digital and uploading direct to Apple. Also, I’ve participated in two really cool YA marketing events and I’m going to ship copies of Grunge Gods to new homes this week. I’m working on my first draft of Dead and Breakfast, the first in a new YA mystery series and I’ve even lined up a cover artist for the books. I’m striving for an early September release day on that. Lastly, I can show off this amazing illustration that is accompanying my short story, “Graveyard Shift,” in the Brave New Girls anthology which should be out mid June. How kickass is that? Full disclosure: I didn’t draw this. This artwork is by Evelinn Enoksen.

Graveyard Shift

 

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YA Scavenger Hunt!

April 2nd 2015

Welcome to YA Scavenger Spring 2015 Hunt!

I’m Kimberly. Some of my friends like to call me KGG. I’m the author of Grunge Gods and Graveyards, a YA paranormal mystery set in 1996. GrungeGodscover

I’m on Team Purple and somewhere in this hunt, I’ve hidden the opening scene to my new novella, The Lady in Blue, a spin-off story to GG&G. Also hidden is the beautiful cover — which has not been revealed yet!

Also, I’m doing an extra giveaway via Rafflecopter. The prize is a character named after you in my next novel, Dead and Breakfast, which will be published this fall! The Rafflecopter is at the end of the post.

Make sure you head to Lisa T. Cresswell’s blog for the next stop.

SCAVENGER HUNT PUZZLE

This bi-annual event was first organized by author Colleen Houck as a way to give readers a chance to gain access to exclusive bonus material from their favorite authors and a chance to win some awesome prizes! At this hunt, you not only get access to exclusive content from each author, you also get a clue for the hunt. Add up the clues, and you can enter for our prize–one lucky winner will receive one signed book from each author on the hunt in my team! Go to the YA Scavenger Hunt page to find out all about the hunt. There are 8 contests going on simultaneously, and you can enter one or all! But play fast: this contest (and all the exclusive bonus material) will only be online April 2nd through April 5th, beginning and ending at noon Pacific time on those days.

Directions: In the post, you’ll notice that I’ve hidden my favorite number (hint: it’s bolded and in purple). Collect the favorite numbers of all the authors on the purple team, and then add them up.

Team Purple 1Entry Form: Once you’ve added up all the numbers, make sure you fill out the form here to officially qualify for the grand prize. Only entries that have the correct number will qualify.

Rules: Open internationally, anyone below the age of 18 should have a parent or guardian’s permission to enter. To be eligible for the grand prize, you must submit the completed entry form by DATE, at noon Pacific Time. Entries sent without the correct number or without contact information will not be considered.

 LET THE HUNT BEGIN

 Today, I’m super excited to be hosting CAREY CORP & LORIE LANGDON!

They are the authors of the Doon series, a YA retelling of Brigadoon. This must be serendipitous because I’m a huge fan of Scottish culture. Less than —-> 14 years ago, I went to Edinburgh and Loch Lomond. I highly suggest you put Scotland on your bucket list of beautiful places to visit. The Scots are lovely people and treated this American with warmth and kindness.

CAREY CORP and LORIE LANGDON came up with the idea for DOON, their debut novel, one fateful winter morning while discussing their love of musicals. Lorie had known since seeing Brigadoon, at age sixteen, that she wanted more of the sleepy kingdom than the original story revealed, while Carey adored the idea of reinventing a mythical world through the eyes of two, vastly different, but inseparable friends—much like themselves. As ideas flew back and forth, suddenly the village that slept for 100 years at a stretch awoke to epic life; and the DOON series was born. Book one, DOON, is now an Amazon YA bestseller. Book two, DESTINED FOR DOON, available now. Book three, SHADES OF DOON, coming 9/01/15 from BLINK (a YA division of Zondervan/HarperCollins).

Connect with Carey and Lorie at the Dooniverse: www.DoonSeries.com

Instagram: @lorielangdon_doonseries @careycorp Twitter: @careycorp   @LorieLangdon

Check out that gorgeous cover and the blurb for the Doon sequel:

In this sequel to Doon, Mackenna Reid realizes she made a horrible mistake—choosing to follow her dreams of Broadway instead of staying in the enchanted land of Doon. To make everything worse, she’s received her Calling—proof she and Duncan are each other’s one true love—and it’s pure torment, especially when visions of the very alluring Scottish prince appear right before she goes on stage. So when Duncan tells her an ancient curse threatens to overtake Doon and the new queen needs her to return, Kenna doesn’t have to think twice. With darkness closing in on all sides, Kenna and Vee must battle a world of nightmares in order to protect the kingdom. But it will take the ultimate test of courage for Kenna to salvage her happily ever after.

And now for your bonus content! These lovely ladies have graciously shared bonus material! Always fun!

DEEPER INTO DOON

The Rosettis

Since we are very visual writers, it is essential that have a shared understanding of what our characters look like. Often we send pictures back and forth until we find the right character inspiration. He’s a peek behind the curtain of Doon to the inspiration for the Rosetti family.

Our visual inspiration behind Mario and Sharron Rosetti.

Our visual inspiration behind Mario and Sharron Rosetti.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Mario Rosetti was called from Naples, Italy to Doon in 1915, where he met and married the love of his life Sharron. The Rosettis have seven children, Sofia, Gabriella, Giancarlo, Matteo, Fabrizio & Luciano (twins), and Charlie (named after Sharron’s father Charles). All the Rosetti children help run their parent’s pizzeria, Rosetti’s Tavern.

The Rosetti Kids-1Our visual inspiration behind the Rosetti children.

  • Sofia (Sofie) 18; Soft spoken, introverted. Has received a calling but the boy has yet to cross the bridge. Sofia loves Doon and has no desire to leave. Cook at Rosetti’s Tavern.

 

  • Gabriella (Gabby) 16; Extroverted and outgoing. Enamored with Vee and Kenna. Would love to cross the bridge and experience the modern world. She’s a server at Rosetti’s Tavern.

 

 

  • Giancarlo (Giani) 17; Alpha male, very protective of sisters – even more so than his father, Mario. He’s expected to take over the restaurant when his parents retire, but doesn’t want to continue in the family business. He wants to be part of the palace royal guard. Assistant manager at Rosetti’s Tavern.

 

  • Matteo (Matti) 16; calm, peacemaker, likes running things, Giani’s sidekick and voice of reason. He can cook better than his father. When Sofie and Matti are together in the kitchen, they speak their own language.

 

  • Fabrizio & Luciano (Fabi & Luci) 14; adventurous; pranksters. These inseparable twins work in the kitchen but they are more like a comic duo/assembly line always covered in flour with pizza dough in their hair. Their hobbies include amateur sheep shearing.

 

  • Charles (Charlie) 13; studious; book-lover; dreamer; busboy.

 

Note from Carey: The Rosetti family was inspired by my Italian surrogate family, la famiglia Fortuna. The Fortuna family had five boys and one daughter. They lived in a three-bedroom apartment in Torino (Turin), Italy but immediately made room in their hearts and home for me.

http://youtu.be/jSf9PkFuVko (Check out this video from Carey)

Get to know the Rosetti’s better in the third book of the Doon series, SHADES OF DOON, coming September, 2015.

Shades of Doon small-1

a Rafflecopter giveaway

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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