Chasing Dreams, Literary Magazines, and Why Not Now?

Today I’m thinking about chasing long-held dreams and finally stopping all the excuses and the, “I’ll do it tomorrow.” Or “Next year.” Or the vague but still hopeful “One day.” You see, this is a thing I do to myself, and have been doing for years. I have dreams of writing certain novels. Of moving … Continue reading Chasing Dreams, Literary Magazines, and Why Not Now?

Facing The Handmaid’s Tale Today

I first read The Handmaid’s Tale when I was 12 years old in the late 1980s. I discovered it on my mother’s bookshelves, and I was fascinated by the story, not scared as much as I should have been but stilled by possibility, intrigued. I surely didn’t understand a lot about the book (much as … Continue reading Facing The Handmaid’s Tale Today

Look

Look, it has been difficult to write much of anything that feels worthy lately, living in this world. This morning the news is a child suicide bomber who killed 50 people at a wedding. The suicide bomber was no older than 14. There is flooding, and people have lost their homes. There are fires, and … Continue reading Look

When to Resurrect the Dead Manuscript Under Your Bed?

I’m struggling with something, an ongoing thing I’ve been struggling with for years. It’s about the novels that live under my bed. The two unpublished novels I wrote before I almost gave up writing, and then discovered ghostwriting, and, soon after, YA. Two novels totaling eight and a half years of my life. Two novels … Continue reading When to Resurrect the Dead Manuscript Under Your Bed?

The Teaching, the Inspiration, the Chupacabra, the Not-Writing

This has been my most public year, ever, in my life. It's been wonderful... and it's also been somewhat of an adjustment for a shy person like me. So much of 2015 has been about teaching. I really made this goal a priority to have better balance in my life—the ultimate goal was to get … Continue reading The Teaching, the Inspiration, the Chupacabra, the Not-Writing

The Surprises, the Failures, the New Chapters in This Author Life

When I entered the YA world in 2010, with the impending publication of Imaginary Girls (before that I didn’t feel a welcome part of it because my debut was middle-grade), I looked around at all the authors and thought there was one single kind of career to aspire to, the Best Kind, and of course … Continue reading The Surprises, the Failures, the New Chapters in This Author Life

Filling the Well

I hear this advice often—I think I read it first from Julia Cameron, author of The Artist’s Way, one of the books I borrowed from my mother’s bookshelf way back when. Artists need time to “fill the well,” or replenish our creative resources, especially after we’ve completed large, all-encompassing, energy-draining projects such as novels that … Continue reading Filling the Well