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Onward!

2 Mar

I’ve officially finished my second novel and I can honestly say that the whole “practice makes perfect” phrase is totally true. Of course, I’m nowhere near perfect with my writing, but I can’t tell you how much better I feel about it and how much I feel I have improved from one novel to the next, even sometimes from the start to finish of a manuscript. Looking forward to hopefully continuing that progress.

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My latest is a young adult, post apocalyptic novel, and although I know that genre is seen as a tough sell right now, it was what I wanted to do, so I did it. I believe in going where the inspiration is and if the book is good enough and someone connects with it, it will be successful.

Now, I begin the journey of pitch contests and querying. I entered, but did not make it into Pitch Madness, but it was so great to meet and connect with other authors and some in the industry. There were over 900 entries and only 68 were selected to move through to the agent round! How amazing for those 68, I’m so proud of my fellow writers.

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Onward!

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Long time, no see

18 Aug

Helllllo everyone!

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So long time since my last post and a lot has been going on. Unfortunately not a lot of agent offers or publishing yet, but that’s okay. I’m enjoying the journey so far. 

As of right now, I am putting Earth to Earth on the back burner right now because I don’t want to oversaturate myself with that one novel and to be honest I feel it could use a massive re-write. I guess that’s what happens when you start a novel and don’t finish it for a couple of years. My writing improved and unfortunately it becomes really hard to just edit the old stuff at that point. I’ll get back to it someday.

But the really exciting news is that I’m getting close to closing out my 2nd novel, working title of Fallout right now. I always seem to be halfway through a story when the genre starts getting saturated, so although the dystopian genre is an extremely hard sell right now, I really believe in the story so I’m going to finish it as planned. Trends come and go, but I believe you have to go with your passion for the story above all else. 

Without sharing too much, here’s a glimpse of what’s to come with Fallout:

Harper was 12 years old when the world came to a halt and her father whisked her family away to an underground bunker below the subway system of New York City. Five years later, when their supplies get dangerously low, Harper makes the decision to go above ground, not sure of what or who she’ll find. She discovers the shell of a city, a teeter totter of chaos and silence dance in the streets, and a boy she never thought she’d see again finds his way back into her life. Can she save her family and her city before it’s too late?

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Thank you again for sticking with me and supporting me through this long, wonderful, sometimes sad, but hopeful journey!

Amanda

Pitch + 250 Contest

23 May

Hello everyone!

I recently entered a contest over at Adventures in Young Adult and Children’s Publishing called the Pitch + 250 contest. For the contest, we were asked to submit the pitch for our book, as well as the first 250 words. Out of the 100 entries, the top 50 were chosen by the hosts for the first round. The top 50 were then judged by book bloggers/reviewers to the top 25, and subsequently judged again by young adult authors to narrow it down to the top 10 entries. To my absolute surprise, my entry is a part of the top 10.

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When I entered, I thought I’d be happy enough to get to the top 50 and I never ever expected to get this far, but I am so ecstatic and humbled.

At this point, the top 10 entries have been posted on the site and are currently being evaluated by agents. The top entries receive critiques from one of the judges and I can’t tell you how critical that extra eye is when you’re trying to publish.

I’d love for you to head over to their website and check out the entries. Comments don’t affect the outcome, but I really encourage you to read all the entries and leave the authors some love. It’s incredibly nerve wracking to put your work out there to be judged, especially when you’re unpublished. There are some really amazing entries and I’m so humbled to be included with them.

#PitMad

29 Mar

Hey Authors! Yes, you, right there sitting there staring at the computer screen. Did you know that today is special? It’s #PitMad day! What is #PitMad?Image

#PitMad is the day when Twitter explodes with pitches from authors seeking representation or publication. Can you come up with a 133 word pitch for your story? Tweet it with the hashtag #PitMad to get thrown into the mix. Publishers and agents peruse the merchandise and if they likey anything, they could ask for a query or manuscript! Got it? Good. Get to tweeting!

 

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Win a Free Manuscript Critique!

27 Jan

 

This is a super cool and great way to get exposure and feedback on your manuscript. The contest runs in cycles, with each cycle having a different focus. This time, it’s Sci-Fi and YA and you could win a critique of your first 10 manuscript pages by an agent! Read all about it and get to submitting your stuff. You only have until the end of the month! Check out all of the info here.

 

 

The Next Big Thing: Earth to Earth…

8 Dec
I found this on the lovely Jessa Russo’s blog and thought it was a lot of fun. P.S. Go check out her novel Ever!
 Ten Interview Questions for the Next Big Thing:
What is your working title of your book?
Earth to Earth… It took me a really long time to figure this one out. Titles have never been my strong suit and especially dealing with a planned trilogy, I wanted something that not only matched the individual books, but also the series as a cohesive whole as well.
Where did the idea come from for the book?
The original idea for this book was born in my college screenwriting class and I actually wrote an entire script for a movie. Then I scrapped 95% of the plot and completely redid it (Thank goodness, first drafts of any story are never pretty). I was always a fan of taking something completely impossible and throwing it into a seemingly possible, normal world.
What genre does your book fall under?
New adult paranormal, mystery, romance.
Which actors would you choose to play your characters in a movie rendition?
That’s hard for me, because although I do definitely have ideas, I struggle with revealing them because I would never want to necessarily impose on any reader’s visions. But for Ash, I definitely picture someone like Alex Pettyfer. Hailey was a younger Amanda Seyfried. Bess is and always will be Jennifer Lawrence. Darcy is a little hard because she is such an otherworldly being to me, but I picture someone with very pale with very dark hair and dark eyes, possibly a Megan Fox type looking woman.
What is the one-sentence synopsis of your book?
This is hard! It was hard enough to put something into a query and be happy with it, I doubt I’ll ever be content with a one sentence synopsis.
Reeling from the death of her boyfriend, Ash, twenty-something Hailey moves to a new town and is suprised to see him walking down the sidewalk, living and breathing as if nothing had ever happened.
Will your book be self-published or represented by an agency?
This is up in the air right now. I’d tried my luck querying  A LOT of agents and dealt with A LOT of rejections. I became fascinated by smaller indie publishers and am trying out a few of those now. I tend to be very picky with publishers (which is ridiculous considering I’m trying to get them to take a chance on me), and I have to have a good feeling about a publisher before I’ll even consider them. But I’ve also been getting more and more excited at the possibility of self-publishing and it’s something I’m looking into if nothing else pans out.
How long did it take you to write the first draft of your manuscript?
I started writing it while I was in a semester long class, so technically the 1st draft of my script was done in about 2-3 months. The first draft/converting it to a novel took several months, as I was still in school.
What other books would you compare this story to within your genre?
I think this book is pretty different from a lot of the books within the genre, especially since new adult is a fairly emerging genre itself. I didn’t want to do anything that was the typical boy meets girl story, so I put in a twist and made them have a past that was seemingly destroyed by his death. It adds a whole new element.
Who or what inspired you to write this book?
My readers that have been with me for years have always been so supportive and I don’t think I could have ever reached this point without their encouragement and sometimes their criticism. Also, my wonderful friends who read my stuff for me, LiLeahe and Amber.
What else about your book might pique the reader’s interest?
Ash is a very interesting character to me. Besides that fact that he’s charming, sarcastic and handsome, he loves so, so fiercely, beyond what Hailey could ever imagine. It’s hard for her to understand until the end of Ashes to Ashes… when it changes her life so drastically that it’s impossible to not understand it. His loyalty, even when it completely tears him apart, is endearing and I think that is something unique that he captures perfectly.
Do you have any questions about Ashes to Ashes…? Post them in the comments below!

Title Reveals!

10 Nov

As most of you know, this series is a planned trilogy and I am happy to announce that I have come up with the titles for each book of the series and I am so excited about them! Titling is definitely not my strong suit and I firmly believe that like when you find your wedding dress, when you find your title you should get that feeling. After stressing about it, doing word association, writing down word lists, scouring poems and lyrics and doing almost everything under the sun to find that feeling, I found it in these titles. I couldn’t believe how well they fit with the plots of each book and I am elated that I finally have something that I am confident about. This is a very visual process for me and I knew that these were it when I could see the cover for the first book in my head using the title.

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So without further adieu unless you’ve glanced at the new menu on the top, these are the working (hopefully permanent) titles for The Guardian Trilogy:

Earth to Earth…

Ashes to Ashes…

Dust to Dust…

Let me know what you think in the comments!