TRAVELER Deleted Scene: Jessa Had A Secret

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TRAVELER has gone through many revisions on its road to being a published novel. A lot of is was polished and re-arranged, and two subplots were cut completely. One of them I felt a little torn over, but the editors felt it was too much – considering the plot arc of that character.

So here’s what the original scene looked like, the first time Jessa stepped through an antique mirror and met Pirate Finn . . . Continue reading

There I Am, Like A Regular Cee-Lebrutty

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That’s my picture, right there on the sign. My book is on the shelves and I’m featured on a sign and holy tamales is it still so surreal to me.

I told a friend the other day that authors have their own little corner on immortality. Now and forever, I have a book in print. Whether it fails or flies or falls somewhere in between, it’s been published by a publisher, has a library of Congress number, and somewhere, someone read it and said, “Oh, I love this book.” Continue reading

Breaking Out The Focus Words – My Writing Strategy For Staying On Track

three post-it notes hung with wooden clothes pegs

I’m hammering away at my next manuscript, and I’ve started using post-it notes as a way to keep myself on track as I’m getting through a scene or a chapter.

You see, I have a bad habit of knowing where I want something to build and then meandering off a bit, which only creates stuff I have to slice later, or rearrange once I’m into my edits. I’ve found that if I pick a word – just one word – it helps me focus.

Continue reading

Guest Blog: How My “Useless” Theatre Degree Made Me A Better Writer

Actor preparing lines

My guest blog on using Theatre techniques for better writing is up at Adventures In YA Book Publishing.

Even though I haven’t landed on Broadway (yet!), I’ve never regretted my Theatre degree. As a writer, it’s become even more invaluable. I cannot tell you how many scenes I’ve blocked out for logistics, acted out for emotions and beats, and recited aloud for pacing and inflection. If you’re holding my book in your hand, you’re holding a performance piece – a very carefully rehearsed performance piece.

And if you’ve never had an acting class and you’re a writer, you might want to consider it.