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Monthly Archives: October 2008

So You Wanna Be a Writer, Pt. 1 (Don’ts)

I haven’t been doing this writer thing long. Yes, I’m a relative rookie. And yet, despite my rookieness, everywhere I go, I end up in conversations with various people who would like to be doing what I’m doing and want to know what pearls of wisdom I might be able to give them in order to improve their chances of success.

Honestly, these conversations are in large part responsible for why I let myself get talked into blogging. I know I’m not capable of ladling out silver-bullet profundity that will automatically anoint the furrowed brows of hopeful writers with the warm shininess of success. [Sidenote: I apologize for the previous sentence. But it still make me smile.] I don’t think anyone can do that. But I can point out some of the more obvious things that have been unfortunately overlooked by many of the aspiring (with whom I have spoken). In other words, nothing can guarantee success, but any number of things can guarantee failure.

While I fully intend to be as constructive as I can, I’m kicking off this series of posts with some hard (but hopefully helpful) shots of negativity. So lick that salt off your wrist, and then brace yourself.

If you wanna be a writer, do not become a . . . Read the rest of this entry »

Dandelion Fire Giveaway

Dandelion Fire (Book 2 of the 100 Cupboards) officially releases on February 24. That’s when the general public will find the book in stores. In the five months twixt now and then, one or two or maybe three (who knows, four ?) people will discover their latent specialness. My fab publicist (thank you, Meg O’Brien) is sending me Advance Readers Copies to give away here.

Dandelion Fire is fatter than 100 Cupboards (which means I should say, “I’m sorry,” or “You’re welcome,” depending on the reader). It’s bigger in scale and scope, has a shiny cover, I like it, and I’m going to give away the first one now.

If you want it, all you have to do is leave a comment here (one comment only, please), and surrender your fate to a web-based random number generator. The winner will not be chosen by merit, but by destiny.  Next week, I’ll give someone their due.

Frequently Asked #1

What’s with all the classical allusions in Leepike Ridge? And what allusions am I missing?

These are variations on a question I usually field from those among my readers who happen to qualify as “adult.” Librarian types. Teacher types. Friendly parent types. And as it just cropped up again in ye olde bloge comments (shout out to Ben Hoyt, Kiwi), I thought now would be the time to fire up an answer.

I’ll start by telling a little story about me. (Thrilling, yes?) One night, while brushing my teeth, with every intention of schlumping off to bed, a line occurred to me. That line was the first line of Leepike Ridge:

In the history of the world there have been lots of times and lots of onces and every time has had a once upon it. Read the rest of this entry »