Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Requiem for a Dell

Sorry for being so absent the last ten days. I've been neck-deep in my second round of revisions. But they are done and turned in (yay!!) so I can get back to blogging regularly . . . at least until round three comes in.;)

Yesterday was a very, very sad day for my laptop.

It got replaced.

Which really is a little sad. I've had this laptop . . . or a version thereof . . . for four years. I have written at least part of every book I have ever even attempted on this laptop. And it has been severely abused. I have three kids, you know. It has been sat on, stood on, pushed off of footstools, had keys broken and yanked out, and been subjected to more than a few crumbs and sticky hands.

And it has war wounds. I don't know how well you can see this picture, but it is the AC adapter. Not only is it held together with electrical tape, but it is totally bent too. I can see the silver wires on the inside and have had blue sparks a couple of times. Can you say firehazard?

A while ago the little brace that holds the bottom of the keyboard to the bottom of the computer broke, and so now I can actually lift up and see into the guts of my laptop. Showing here.:)

And among other problems, the plastic on the hinges is very cracked. (Both hinges look about like this, but it's easier to see if I only took a picture of one . . . and really, I don't want to bore you guys too badly.;)

So farewell old laptop. You've been a good friend, and truth be told, I do feel a little bad about moving on after all the good years me and my lappie have had together. No with a bit of nostalgia, here is my laptop in it's final farewell. Laptop, we salute you!!!

Aaaaaaaand we're good. Out with the old and in with the new. And what a beautiful new it is!!

Oh yes, I am much happy about this.:) Now, as with any new relationship, there will be adjustments and things I will need to get used to. Using "Command" for all of the things I used to use "Control" for, for example. The delete key being a backspace key, and no actual delete key at all. But there are also good things I am getting used to very quicky: the two finger scroll, a CapsLock key that lights up when it is on! How cool is that? And, of course, a battery that doesn't short out my computer. (It's the little things, yanno.)

So yeah, I am getting accustomed to the Mac world these days, and rather enjoying it.:)

And hopefully, many, many, many books will get written on this lappie too.


Friday, April 18, 2008

Tunz, I Needs Dem!


So in about a week or two, I am getting my long-time-coveted iphone. I've never had an ipod at all so I am really excited. However, because I don't have an ipod or any other kind of personal listening device, AND I have kids as well as an oft-studying husband, I've gotten used to working in relative quiet. Now, with an ipod all my own, I can crank my tunes!

Just one problem.

I don't have any tunes.

Or, more appropriately, there is a major shortage in my kind of tunes.

My husband and I share many (even most) tastes and even in music our tastes align pretty closely. However, there is one genre of music that I adore and that my husband . . . well . . . less than appreciates.


Oh, yeah.

Because of that, I haven't bothered to have him download much loud music for me because, well, they're on the desktop and he's usually the one at the desktop. (I work on my laptop which is about six years old. That's like six million in computer years.) So I haven't really been in touch with the loud music of late.

I need music suggestions!

I want there to be much loud music on my ipod so I can really crank it up when I'm struggling with a hard scene. (I listened to this one song at my mom's house over and over again for about three hours at top volume last week. But the scene rocks!)

So tell me what loud music out there is awesome! Now, to specify things a little, loud does not mean just noise. I like loud with tune and preferably awesome lyrics. Sung, not rapped. Think Muse and Linkin' Park. (Mmmm, love Muse.:)) I feel like I'm totally behind on the times music-wise, so your mission--should you choose to accept it--is to catch me up!

Groups, specific songs, bring it!! I'm counting on you!! (*koffkoff* Saundra.)


Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Reality Bites

It's so funny to tell people that I have a book that is going to be published. They first thing they ask is "What's it about?" and I give them a short synopsis. (Tiny, seriously, have one sentence ready. And I'm not talking a Faulkner-esque sentence. More like a Shel Silverstein sentence.:)) Then they ask what the title is. I tell them I don't know (although that is supposed to change this week! Cross fingers!) That's when the "Yeah . . . sure you're getting published," looks start. Then they ask me when they can buy it, and I drop the bomb. In just over a year. The thoughts in their head at that moment go something like this: "Wow, they are making her wait a year to get published? Her book must really suck to be so far back in the line." Then they smile and back away slowly.

I don't blame them. Most people who know nothing about publishing think it happens like this:

Me: *skipping* La la la la . . . oh, hey! I have this great idea for a book!!

(Three Weeks Later.)

Me: This is clearly a most brilliant book. I will pack to whole thing up and send it to Very Big Publisher.

(Three Weeks Later)

Me: Oh, look! Very Big Publisher has sent me a contract! Hooray!

(Three months Later)

Me: Oh look, my lovely book here at Barnes and Noble. Yay!

This is how people think it happens. Really! They look at me like I have three heads when I try to explain how it really is.

But folks, this is how it is. (not always, but this has been my experience and I have found my experience to be fairly typical.)

Me: *skipping* La la la la . . . oh, hey! I have this great idea for a book!! (See, it starts the same way!)

(Three months later)

Me: Oh, look, I have a book. Yay! Now I need to write a query.

(A week later)

Me: This is hard.

(A week later.)

Me: Okay, a query! Now I'm going to query agents.

(Three months later.)

Me: Everyone said no; I must need a new query!

(Nine months later.)

Me: Everyone still doesn't want it. I must need a new book!

(Three months later.)

Me: Oh wait, an agent does want it. Must shift focus.

(Six months Later)

Me: No publishers want it. Must study the market THEN write new book.

(Three months later)

Me: Yay! I has new book!

(Three months later)

Me: Okay, I have finished edits with agent. Time to send the book out to editors!

(Two weeks later)

Me: Publishers already don't want it. I must give up writing and find new hobby. *mope*

(Next day)

Me: Oh, wait. Someone does want it! Hooray!

(Three months later)

Me: Oh look, an ed letter that I will spend about 100 hours working on.

(Two months later)

Me: Oh look, another slightly less intense ed letter that I will spend 75 hours working on.

(One month later)

Me: Oh look, more edits.

(One month later)

Me: And yet more edits.

(One months later.)

Me: Copy edits! Hooray!

(One month later.)

Me: Round two of copy edits. I'm starting to really hate my book.

(Three months later.)

Me: Hey! ARCS! I love my book again!

(Six months later.)

Me: Hey look, there's my book in Barnes and Noble! Yay! Now I must get back to work because about the time my book 1 comes out I am hard at work on the edits of Book 2. Yay!!

That's pretty much how the cookie crumbles. Lots of work, lots of time. Now, I'm not complaining about the work and time. Rush jobs make for lousy books. I'm happy they are putting the time and work into my book that they are. But I wish more people knew how this all works because seriously, when I tell them my book hasn't got a title and that it's not coming out till next yeah, I can just read their little thoughts. They say, "Oh, sure. I bet you haven't even written a book!!"

To which my little brain replies, "You have no idea . . . you have no idea.":)


Monday, April 07, 2008

Fan Art!

Can I just say, one of the coolest things about being an author, is the possibility of fan art. And that is one of the major perks of writing for young adults because teens definitely lead the pack as far as demographics who do that kind of stuff. However, I got lucky. I get a little fan art *before* the books hits the teen world.

I belong to a little group called 2009 Debutantes which is kind like the class of 2K9 only *looks around for the ravenous YA mafia* way cooler! We're more about community than publicity, but we have started unlocking some posts, so feel free to pop by and check us out.

Anyway, there is a woman in the group named Saundra who has been making cover mock-ups for us. Just for fun, of course, but man they are so pretty! So here's mine!

Oh yes, I iz happy!


Thursday, April 03, 2008

I Have the best Job in the Whole World!!!

How much do I love my editor? *Spreads arms wide* I love her thiiiiiiiis much.:)

I got my second ed letter this morning. (She overnighted it. I know it's lame, but that makes me feel special!) Now, I had requested an ARC earlier this week, so I knew that was coming with it. And she told me she was also going to send me two book on my wish list. So I was expecting the ed letter to come with books. Specifically, three books. But when I opened the rather enormous package, there were SEVEN books in there. SEVEN! Check it out!

How freaking awesome is that?!?!? My editor loves me.:)
Now if you'll look closely, you'll see that I managed to get my hands on an ARC that is one of the hottest properties around. Why yes, that is an ARC of Ink Exchange.:)
I got Wicked Lovely (HC) and Ink Exchange (ARC, 05-08) by Melissa Marr
Night Road (ARC, 06-08) by A.M. Jenkins
Feathered (HC) by Laura Kasischke
Switch (ARC, 09-08) by Carol Snow
The Blonde of the Joke (ARC, 09-08) by Bennett Madison
And The Luxe (HC) by Anna Godbersen

Getting books makes me so happy! It's like crack . . . only significantly more healthy. But definitely not less addicting!

It helped me drown my woes over my very sore knee. I managed to fall down my porch steps on Tuesday and crunch my knee into a metal pole. (Why yes, I did dance in college . . . why do you ask?) I proceeded to limp around the rest of the day and was still pretty gimpy yesterday too. It's much better today, but still a little sore. i am hoping for a full recovery by about Monday.

Till Monday I will be reading my new books like mad . . . er, I mean reading through my marked-up manuscript and getting to work.;)