Good morning, everyone! This is my first What’s Up Wednesday post in over a month (Junior Spring has not been kind…) so I’m excited to share what’s up!
What’s Up Wednesday is a weekly meme started by Jaime Morrow and Erin Funk. If you want to participate you should link your What’s Up Wednesday posts to the list on Jaime’s blog so that we can all stop by and say, “Hi!” It’s a great way to connect with other writers!
What I’m Reading
Yesterday, I received this absolutely beautiful signed hardback of THE LOST PLANET by Rachel Searles (MG Sci-Fi Thriller) (that I won in a YA Buccaneers giveaway). I didn’t get a chance to start reading it yesterday, but since I’m “home sick” I’ll be reading, likely all of it, today!
Also, I recently finished UNINVITED by Sophie Jordan (YA Dystopian), which has two amazing + accurate comp titles, Minority Report meets The Scarlett Letter. I LOVED it. Full review to come!
Oh, and I’m reading a couple MSs for friends & CPs, but that’s been on hold as I don’t want to critique people’s work when I’m sleepy & sick.
What I’m Writing
I’m finishing revising BLOOD OF ISIS (YA Contemporary Fantasy)…yes, again but I have a pretty good feeling this is going to be the final one as everything is clicking beautifully.
Here’s an excerpt from the beginning:
The sharp smell of spices, meats, and perfumes collided as I walked through the Khan El-Khalili bazaar. People zoomed in and out like cars on a highway, touching trinkets, jingling jewelry, and clinging to cloth. French, English, and Arabic’s many dialects intertwined throughout the aisles while I stood in the middle of the madness, fighting for my sanity.
A car honked and a radio blared reminding me that though the bazaar harkened of a distant time, it was grounded in the twenty-first century. Beside me was a group of tourists, ooing and ahing at the pretty silks hanging from a beam in front of them. The vendor lied to one of the women, telling her in his broken English how one such scarf would complement her fiery hair. On my other side were several children, deep in a game of tag. My eyes flitted over them to the mob of people behind them whose faces blurred until they resembled the Monet landscapes at my favorite museum, the Musee d’Orsay. I sighed as my left hand grazed over the frayed edges of my passport. Hollywood had it all wrong. There was nothing glamorous about having an Egyptologist for a mom. Rarely was there a familiar face anywhere we went.
I pushed through the knotted isles and came out on the other side. I held out my arms as warmth rippled through my skin, encasing me in a golden glow. I smiled. Cairo might not be home, but at least it wasn’t London.
This MS has gone from 1st person to 3rd back to 1st, but I think that’s what made the writing so much richer. Also, I love how diverse and alive the world and characters are 🙂
In addition, I received some phenomenal critique from an agent and an editor, at the SCBWI Winter Conference this pat weekend (more on that later) that enabled me to make a few tiny yet amazing changes to the beginning of ALEX DE VEGA AND PANDORA’S BOX, MG Sci-Fi Thriller (link goes to new beginning).
What Else I’ve Been Doing
Running around everywhere, which has been both good and bad, yet is probably the cause of my sick state (that & the fluctuating Boston weather).
However, I won the SCBWI Student Writer Scholarship and got the chance to go to NYC for the Winter Conference!! I couldn’t stay the entire time (started feeling feverish), but I did receive some amazing feedback, met some twitterpeeps (unfortunately left before pictures were taken), and got to eat at my favorite Parisian themed restaurant, outside of Paris, Cafe Lalo.
..more to come in a full post either tomorrow or Friday 🙂
I restarted querying ALEX DE VEGA AND PANDORA’S BOX thanks to my now fixed beginning. The full/partial was/is out with a few agents, and I had this feeling that something about the query just wasn’t working for me, but all has been improved so I’m ready to jump through the ring(s) of fire once more!
The literary society I’m in (it’s kind of like a sorority, but with a heavy focus on literature in addition to social events) got ten new ZAbabies (the society is called Zeta Alpha). They’re super amazing, most of them being sophomores & first-years, and I can’t wait to share the traditions of the club with them 🙂
What Inspires Me Right Now
<– This quote stands above the rest and is directly above my desk so when I sit down to write I am eye level with it.
It’s so interesting because the black student org, Ethos, that I’m the president of had a speaker yesterday who during a Q&A session said those exact words (she, Joan Morgan, is a writer). It was like fate. So yeah, that is what inspires me right now.