Monday, June 15, 2009

My Personal Lifetime Movie... and Our Next Author Interview

Good morrow, yon readers! (See, I told you the writing conference worked.)

Bree Despain finally gets to show off her new book cover for The Dark Divine, so check it out!

Contest Status: Okay, so since the contest officially ended at midnight last night, that left me with no time to procure Smokey the Hairless Cat to pick the winner, so I will announce the winners Wednesday. Cool? Cool.

Again a big thank you to all the people who participated. The procreating bunnies didn't stand a chance. In fact, their latest batch of bunnies were born sterile, so, way to be intimidating, blog readers! We're sterilizing bunnies in our quest to take over the world! (Although I don't think that should be made into a bumper sticker or anything...)

And to those who thought about participating, but at the last minute didn't, because you think I can be temperamental and ornery (for some reason, I had to spellcheck both of those last words) I have the following to say to you:

Shannon Hale status: I finally met Shannon Hale in person; she was signing books at The King's English independent booksellers. (I've exchanged emails with her before- my agent Ted works at the same agency as hers). Also (Did you noticed how I used a semicolon?) My punctuation (rocks!)

Back to Shannon, what a cool girl. To kick off the signing, she and her husband sang "Islands in the Stream" karaoke in front of the crowd. Talk about not letting fame and fortune get to her head.

My sis-in-law E said to me at lunch on Saturday, "I have no idea how you keep coming up with stuff to talk about on your blog."
I laughed and shooed away the idea with a wave of my hand.

But then I thought about it. And thought about it. Hmm.... I have no idea either. Is this a problem most people face? Staring at the computer on blog day with nothing to talk about? Absolutely nothing?

And then I let it get to me. The fear. What if I run out of things to say? What if I can't think of anything funny? What if I'll never be funny again? Was I ever in the first place? (Don't answer that.)

You can probably guess what happened next: performance anxiety. This morning, I sat at my computer, with absolutely nothing of interest to say. Zip. Zero.
It reminded me of that Garfield comic strip, where Jon informs Garfield that cats can't walk on their hind legs.

I didn't know it was hard until someone told me. And now, FACE-SPLAT. I have nothing to say. I will never have anything more to say. I've blogged everything.

On that note, it's time for another author interview. Emily Wing Smith (author of The Way He Lived) has kindly agreed to answer our burning questions. Emily is one of the nicest people I have ever met, but that's not the only reason I love her book.

The Way He Lived is about
Joel Espen, who died of dehydration after giving away his water during a badly planned Boy Scout expedition.
The book starts after his death.

So, did Joel purposely give up his water? Did he want to? And why would someone want to?

I have to say I really love her book. From a writing perspective, it is a Master's Class on how to write several different voices.

e's an aspect of the book that not every reader picks up on, which I think is another interesting facet. So if you get a chance, read it. (You can also click on the picture to order it from Amazon). It got a starred review on Publisher's Weekly, which is pretty cool.

So, to make a long story short (too late) I'll send her a list of ?'s, but if any of you would like to ask a question, just add it to the comments. And I know for a fact many of you have read this little gem, so I expect questions. Sky. Anne C. Writer peeps.

And to sweeten the pot...

Since I just obtained some autographed copies of Shannon Hale's new book The Actor and The Housewife, and Shannon recently said Emily's book was one of her favorites, I think we'll give both books away. Cool? Cool. Ask a question for Emily, get entered in a drawing for Emily's book and Shannon's book.

Be sure to ask Emily about "bad hand". She cracks me up.

Holy cow. I really
am single-handedly keeping the publishing industry afloat with my giveaways. Sam just got mad at me, but I told him to talk to the finger. He's so not getting entered into the contest.

Shickety-brickets. I'm at the end of the blog, and I didn't even get a chance to start my actual blog post, which was "Thing About Me #16". And it was a doozy. I'll save it for Wednesday. That is, if I don't run out of blog ideas.


5. The Advocate's Devil

4. She Woke Up Pregnant

3. My Stepson, My Lover

2. Crowned and Dangerous

and my personal favorite...

1. Mother, May I Sleep With Danger?

Wanna know my own personal Lifetime Movie Title? (Courtesy of Lifetime Title Generator):

Not Without My Dead Husband: The Brodi Ashton Story

I prefer:

Sterilizing Bunnies on her Quest to Take Over the World: The Brodi Ashton Story

So, what are y'all doing this week?


  1. No, I did NOT notice your use of the semicolon. Yes, that is a GOOD THING because it means you used it right. :D

    As far as a question for Emily, how about "What is your favorite part of the writing process?" That is my standard question. I've quite a few authors now and it's interesting to see the variation. You can answer it too if you want, Brodi!

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  3. Whoops, I don't know how that happened. I meant to say...

    Great question Alysa! So, what are some of your favorite authors you've met?

  4. I love semi-colons; I use them whenever possible when writing. :) Semi-colons allow me to connect two related ideas without using a conjunction or creating a new sentence (which gives me warm fuzzies). Plus, I feel intelligent when I use them correctly.

    I have two questions for Emily:

    1. Where do your ideas for novels come from? How do they evolve into a fully formed plotline?

    2. Are motifs in novels premeditated? Do you write a novel planning on having a running motif? Or, does a motif emerge as you begin writing and you take it and run with it through the rest of the novel?
    (I've pondered this question ever since my high school English classes.)

    My Lifetime movie title reminds me of a Footloose song: "The Jessica Christensen story: Almost Paralyzed." (thanks for the link!)

  5. Almost Paralyzed! lol!

    And I knew I loved semicolons, I just didn't know how to put my love into words, like you.

    "Semi-colons allow me to connect two related ideas without using a conjunction or creating a new sentence (which gives me warm fuzzies"

    Are you, like, an English Professor? I'm gonna have to clean up my grammar!

  6. Shannon Hale is an entertainer isn't she? So fun.

    My questions for Emily are:
    -Did she have boyscouts in her family (or what motivated the idea of the boyscout?).
    -What is her favorite word?

    (my lifetime title "E-mail to My Murderer: The Truth About Debbie" oooy vay.)

  7. Debbie- good questions. And very interesting title! Is the email post-death? And what secrets would it reveal?

    If it's a Lifetime Movie, it would obviously read: Dear Murderer, I'm pregnant with your baby. So, whatever you do, don't kill me.

  8. I don't have a question to ask (have to think too hard), but I have to share my lifetime movie:

    I Loved My Sore Too Much: Karin's Test

    Still laughing as I type...

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  10. Goodness here is my lifetime movie:
    Expecting for Life: The Untold Story of Molly Smith

    Wow, makes it sound like I have had this exciting life!

    Sadly, I haven't read Emily's book yet (now that I have added it to my list). But for a question:

    When you write, do you draw on past experiences or acquaintances? If so, who was your inspiration in this book?

    What compelled you to write/become a writer?

    That's all I have so far!

  11. I needed to see a picture of the Spawn of Satan cat today, thanks for the pick me up!

  12. "Not without my dead husband: the Brodi Ashton story"--I would love to see that but it appears that I am dead.

    Well, my movie sounds even better:
    "Vitamin Poor for Life: The True Story of Sam." If that movie doesn't win some kind of award, I don't what to say.

    Long live Smoky!

  13. Cam- are you saying Smoky is so cute, he brightens your day? Thank you!

    Sam- Actually the dead husband refers to my first husband. So, you're in the clear!

  14. I didn't realize that Smokey enjoys reading. It appears he didn't like the interruption.

  15. Una- He wasn't mad. That's just Smokey's normal face. You should see him when he's really angry!

    And "Expecting for Life" makes me picture a woman who spends her whole entire life pregnant. Now that would be an interesting movie...

  16. Question for Emily:

    1) Why did you decide to write from many different perspectives instead of just one?

    2) Was it hard to hear the individual voices of these characters, and how did you know when you had found them?

    3) If you could take one picture of a dessert, and it couldn't be chocolate cake, which dessert would you choose?

  17. Great questions, Valynne! Thanks!

  18. Questions for Emily:
    1.) What are the steps to becoming a "real" writer besides starting a web site?
    2.) Do you think getting an MFA at Vermont College biases editors in writers' favor automatically or did your schooling have nothing to do with publishing success?
    3.) Who's your favorite Dawson's Creek character?
    4.) Did you ever watch Felicity?

  19. Well, the title was coincidentally good. My hubby and I are expecting our first child, but I shudder at the thought of pregnant for life. Goodness, I'm nine weeks along - I don't want this tired/ill feeling to last forever! (Haha)

    More questions for Emily:

    1. What authors do you most admire or relate to?

    2. Do you have any published authors who are your mentor? If so, how do you make those connections?

    3. How often do you draw on personal past experience when you write or is more of your writing imagined?

  20. My personal lifetime movie headliner would be: "What the Heck Just Happened to Me?!" I think I can plug that statement into just about every aspect of my day and it would fit in fine.

    As far as a question for Emily, everybody else took all of mine. Geez, you gotta answer pretty quick around here or your questions get taken. Aha! I just thought of a question for Emily:

    What would you ask another author if you had the chance?

  21. okay my question is;(semi colon!) is it harder to write from multiple perspectives or from just one perspective?
    Garfield ROCKS!

  22. Congratulations Una! And good questions everyone. I think we'll just throw mine out!