Monday, May 12, 2014

Tag a Writer

So you know that you have serious brain problems when you prepare a blog post weeks ahead of time and just forget to post it. Wow! Yep that is me J

My dazzling friend Deana Barnhart tagged me last we and since Emily King and I are working on a colab together we thought it would be fun to answer the questions together.

What am I working on?

Emily: Angie and I are currently finishing revisions on our YA fantasy, A SEASON OF BLOOM AND SHADOW, our first collaboration. We’ve also begun conceptualizing another YA fantasy that we hope to start once we’re querying. Writing a collab is so much fun!

I’m also receiving beta feedback on my rewritten (from MG to YA) fantasy, DAGGER ISLAND. Some of you may remember this MS from a year ago. It was received really well by agents, but I was told it would sell better as a YA. After writing another MS, I returned to this one and am now hoping to polish it up to query soon.

Angie: Emily is way more ambitious than me. My only project for the moment is my collab with Em, unless you count throwing Honey Nut Cheerios at my eight-month-old so I can write a project. Some days it is.

How does my work differ from others of its genre?

Emily: I like worlds with different ethnicities and landscapes, among other diversities. I feel a world isn’t complete until it’s as varied as ours is.

Angie: I think of my work as fantasy with a twist. Maybe it’s an unusual world, or fun magical limitation. Our current MS is about people separated into tribes by the seasons of their birth. Their season is the only time they possess magic.

Why do I write what I do?

Emily: I write fantasy because I enjoy building a world wrought with the same prejudices, government injustices, religions, and various ideologies we find in ours. Then I plunk my characters down in all that turmoil and watch them wither or thrive.

Angie: I second Em’s answer and add that fantasy is an escape from this world. I love the possibilities that open up when I’m not required to stay here, and I don’t have to do much research J.

How does my writing process work?

Emily: Well, I just ask Angie what we should do and go with it. J  Really though, working on a collaboration novel requires a lot of late night emails, early phone calls, and texts the size of the Bible. You do everything you normally do when writing—brainstorming, plotting, drafting, revising, rewriting—except you don’t have to do it alone. Two heads really are better than one.

Angie: I LOVE writing with Emily. It’s by far the most fun I’ve ever had writing. Everything is easier when you have someone to bounce ideas off of and share the stress. And just to set the record straight, any time Em says something feels off and we need to fix it—I listen. Her writing instincts are ALWAYS right.

To get really technical, this is our process: Brainstorm the world, beat out the bones of the plot, draft chapter by chapter in order, let it sit for a few months, revise for character depth and plot holes, send to betas, revise again, polish polish polish, query!

I know I want to tag my favorite Burley Idaho writer Cortney Pearson. We had such a great time at Storymakers. She is so sweet and talented! I also happen to know its her B-day this week, so take your time with the tag Cortney J


Friday, April 11, 2014


I’m a blog slacker this week. Sorry. My kids are home for Spring Break and my hubby is out of the country on business. Its been nonstop pizza, movie marathons, and popcorn parties at our house—anything to keep the peace :)

I’m hoping that next week I will have a few one-sentence-pitches that I could use some feedback on. Until then I hope you all had a great week and an awesome weekend!


Monday, March 31, 2014

In Defense of YA

I love books. All kinds of books. But I will say I tend to gravitate to the fiction variety. I can be found reading non-fiction once in a while, but it better blow my mind or I’m not interested.  If given the choice of fiction, YA is by far my favorite.
Courtesy of

I’m so tired of people slamming YA. Belittling it and those who read it. If I was a fab lawyer like Jessie Humphries, I could argue my point better but I’ll just have to settle for listing why I LOVE YA.

YA is still relevant in my life—As much as we would like to think that once we are out of high school we never have to go back, the truth is SCARY. The world is HIGH SCHOOL. I can’t count the times I’ve listened to what is going on in at my hubby’s office and thought it sounds just like high school—rumors, lies, gossip, stealing others work, etc.  Even among women I know, I feel like I’m a Sophomore again.

YA helps me understand my teenagers—I have two (yep, I’m that old). I love to read YA and talk to my boys about it. As I read, I remember teens are moody, learning, confused, insecure, whiny, sometimes selfish. But that is okay, because they are still trying to find their place in the world.

YA lets me explore feelings—When I read YA (or most fiction) I feel like I am living the story. When I read non-fiction I feel like I’m sitting through a lecture. Yawn. YA is always heavy on the feelings. Teens tend to be more dramatic in the expression of how they feel :)

In YA I can dig for meaning—I can find truths in fiction that aren’t readily apparent. If I read a YA story that explores the theme of selfishness, I have to work to understand how it affects the characters and me. Reading a non-fiction book about selfishness generally doesn’t change me as much.
Everyone can love what they want. Reading is such a personal experience. I would love to see a little more open-mindedness and a little less judgment. A girl can wish.

What kind of books do you LOVE and why?

Side note—Here is an old post called Fiction and Empathy. It includes a study that explores the idea that reading fiction actually makes people more empathetic than people who read non-fiction. Just saying :)

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Just for fun!

I watched this a while back and I just had to share it. Studio C is big in Utah but I'm pretty sure most of my non-Utah friends haven't seen it. Take the time to watch it. It's SO worth it!!!


Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Long Overdue Update

Geez Louise! It’s been exactly 9 months since I posted. I have a million reasons why I’ve been so busy but only one reason why I decided I need to make a serious effort to come back—I miss you all!

I’m so out of the loop about who has new agents, who is writing new books, whose books are coming out. I need to get back in touch.

Here is what I’ve been up to in the last year…

We like to call him Smoosh :)
Had a sweet baby. He’s my real reason for being out of the loop, but he’s worth every squeeze.

Wrote a book with Emily King. Emily kept me sane during a terrible pregnancy. Nothing gets your mind off your troubles like writing. Except maybe serving others J I’m so lucky, Em called me up and asked if I wanted to do a collaboration. We are almost ready to query.

I moved from Florida back to Utah. I LOVED Orlando. There are some days I really miss it, and I always miss the people there, but I couldn’t keep my kids thousands of miles from their grandparents. And I missed the mountains in my back yard.

So that is about it for me. I’m going to make a serious effort to break away from the laundry and baby food to blog at least once a week. I think I can commit to that.

Catch me up. Tell me the most exciting thing that has happened to you in the last year.
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