Monthly Archives: September 2012

The Next Big Thing

The Next Big Thing

      Okay, I know I haven’t been posting much, so this meme is a big of a cop-out, but it looked fun and when my friend Nicole Storey tagged me, I couldn’t help but join in the Wacky Wednesday fun!
      Technically, I am supposed to tag five writer friends and make them do it. But… well, I think most of my writer friends were already tagged in this challenge (darn it!). C’est la vie! Read on to find out my oh-so-fascinating answers to these ten questions, and feel free to comment at the end.
      Also, if you want to be tagged – link back to this page and fill the questions in on your blog! I would so love to read them!

What is the working title of your book?
The working title is “Incandescence”. At this point, I’m sort of married to that title in my brain, but there’s always a chance it’ll change. Who knows?

Where did the idea for your book come from?
*scratches head* A random thought occurred to me while I was sitting on the couch at my bestie’s house. I texted it to Jack (and my own email account, as I am wont to do) and the rest is history. If it hadn’t struck so hard, I might not have ended up using it for NaNo two months later, but gosh I am glad I did. I’ve grown so much as a writer and social media maven (in training) this past year. More on that later.

What genre does your book fall under?
Modern-day Fantasy. Possibly young adult – due to the age of the protagonists – but I’m not really sure. I didn’t write it with a target audience in mind. I wrote it because the story had to come out. You know? Anyway. Hannah is 14/15, Michael is 20, Alexander is in his 20s, and then great-great-grandmother Torovaldi is 102. So… does that ‘qualify’ as young adult?

Which actors would you choose to play your characters in a movie rendition?
This is so hard for me. Previously, I mentioned that the girl who plays Alexis Castle on “Castle” could have played Hannah a couple of years ago (probably too old now), with her lovely red hair and bright eyes. But who could match the image of Mike, in my mind? 20, fit, olive-skinned with dark brown hair and eyes, and a smile that makes chickadees melt. I’m sure my future readers will have great ideas, but I just don’t know!

What is the one-sentence synopsis for your book?
While the foundations of civilization crumble around them, mageborn siblings Hannah & Michael find themselves thrown into a coming war they never dreamed of and up against an ancient enemy with powers beyond imagining.

…er… maybe?

Will your book be self-published or represented by an agency?
Good question. Probably self-published. At this point, I admit it, I am too disillusioned by the whole process of BIG SIX publishing to even think about pursuing that and although I am totally open to smaller presses, I’m still a little leery of legalities. If I do it myself… maybe it won’t be so… scary? Or will it be scarier? AAAAAHHH!

How long did it take you to write the first draft of your manuscript?
For “Incandescence”, I started on November 1st with NaNoWriMo and the first draft was complete in March. The second draft, well… Jack’s whole medical issue threw our world into chaos for three or so months, so I’m really just now getting back on track with editing. I had originally hoped to have it released by September. *sniff*

What other books would you compare this story to within your genre?
I wouldn’t. I don’t. Honestly, I’m still not sure what this genre is

Who or What inspired you to write this book?
Well, I’ve written all my life. But I think between Jack and my best friend both PUSHING me to get back to writing and following my passion for words… its their fault. That’s all. They inspired me to write it and finish it.

What else about your book might pique the readers’ interests?
It features magic and mayhem! What’s not to love?

There’s a teenage girl confronting adolescence, her birthright as a magess, dealing with death and loss, with boy-trouble and with the creepy, stalkerish attention of the villain.

There’s a twenty-ish guy trying to find his footing in the adult world, coming out of the closet as a mage, thrust into position as a leader, trying to figure out how to build a future while the world he knows comes to an end.

There’s a 102-year-old matriarch with more secrets than even she knows, there’s the pair of villains, an an ancient enemy, there’s magic and natural disaster, and just when things can’t get any worse – they do!

Don’t you want to read it?

* * *
      So there it is! My Ten Questions for the Next Big Thing! (Lots of Caps for No Reason! Yay!)
      If you want to participate, snag the questions below and blog it up!

Ten Interview Questions for The Next Big Thing:
What is the working title of your book?
Where did the idea come from for the book?
What genre does your book fall under?
Which actors would you choose to play your characters in a movie rendition?
What is the one-sentence synopsis of your book?
Will your book be self-published or represented by an agency?
How long did it take you to write the first draft of your manuscript?
What other books would you compare this story to within your genre?
Who or What inspired you to write this book?
What else about your book might pique the reader’s interest?

Love & Rainbows,
P.P.

Snippet Sunday: Before & After II

Snippet Sunday: Before & After II

      No, guys, I wasn’t kicked off the VBT. In fact, you can see an Author Spotlight on little ol’ me over at MasterKoda.com. But since my scheduled guest is experiencing some personal turmoil and had to leave the tour (sending much love & good mojo!) I decided to revert to a Sunday Snippet. Yay!
      So, today’s excerpt is a scene from “Incandescence”. Its another before-&-after-style post where I show off how important editing can be for me. Making a first draft really…sing! I use that phrase too much, but sometimes I just can’t help myself. So without first ado…

– – – – – – – – – – –

Before


      They assembled before her in borrowed clothing. Hannah had donned a pair of jeans that were both too long and too big around the waist; she had rolled the hem of the trousers up so that they brushed the top of the hiking boots she had stolen from the owners of the Cozy Coach and cinched the waist with a belt so long she had to tie the leather in a knot well past the last hole. She also wore a flannel shirt tied to reveal her midriff and her brother’s denim jacket over it. Michael was in a pair of clean Wranglers, dark and stiff with starch and a grey hoodie that featured a large, roaring brown bear. He had covered his floppy dark hair with a baseball cap and Hannah wore a black straw Stetson. Poor little Jeremy had drawn the short shrift, they had dressed him in a t-shirt that was probably Hannah’s size and made an improvised diaper out of a kitchen towel and some yarn. OLDLADYNAME was impressed by their resourcefulness; she had resorted to keeping one of Hannah’s old shirts wrapped around his little hiney all the previous day.
      “Thank you for breakfast, dafuzina,” she began, speaking slowly, giving herself time to compose the proper words. “I think we should stay here.”
      “Here? But-”
      “Humor me, damorsi. Please. I need to recouperate here – not just for the day. No, no. Hush. Let me finish. Before we leave this place, we need information and supplies. It is better if we wait here awhile.”
      The two exchanged a look that OLDLADYNAME could not define. Then Hannah nodded, crossing her arms before her thin chest.
      “Alright, OLDLADYNAME. Are you going to be okay, this morning at least, if Mike and I go exploring the place? The power still works so someone must live here, and they may be back. Better we find out the type of people they are now than after the fact.”
      Michael adjusted his cap. “And we have to see if there is a working radio or TV here, because the ones in the living room are just static. I’m still going to try to find some fuel too, in case we have to leave abruptly. Okay?”
      She nodded, a wan smile upon her wrinkled lips. “Yes.”
      Jeremy was trying to climb up onto the bed again and OLDLADYNAME looked up at Michael, imploring him silently to help the child up. Hannah removed the empty tray and came back into the room a few minutes later with a pitcher of iced tea and a pristine glass tumbler. Each of the kids kissed her forehead and murmured something about being careful, then they vanished in a whirl of denim and flannel.
      “Skib-Mommy,” Jeremy giggled, crawling over her legs, his chubby little hands grabbing at one of the lovely embroidered roses. He made his way to her torso and used her chest to pull himself to his unsteady feet. The little boy placed his hands on either side of her face with surprising tenderness and looked up at her. His deep brown eyes were velvety as a doe’s and the expression within them was so much older and wiser than belonged in the eyes of a child so young.
      “Skib-Mommy,” he repeated, patting her cheeks again. Then he wrapped his arms around her thin neck and buried his face in the crook of her shoulder. “Skib-Mommy.”
      Her heart fluttering in her chest, OLDLADYNAME hugged him back; her tears wet upon his silken black locks.
– – – – – – – – – – –

After


      They assembled before her in borrowed clothing. Hannah had donned a pair of jeans that were both too long and too big around the waist; she had rolled the hem of the trousers up so that they hung parallel with the top of her stolen hiking boots and cinched the pants with a belt so long she had to tie it in a knot. She also wore a flannel shirt tied just above her waist with Michael’s denim jacket over it. Michael was in a pair of clean Wranglers, dark and stiff with starch, and a grey hoodie bearing the image of a large, roaring brown bear. He had covered his floppy brown hair with a baseball cap. Hannah wore a black, straw Stetson.
      Poor little Jeremy had drawn short shrift. They had dressed him in a t-shirt that was probably Hannah’s size and made an improvised diaper out of a kitchen towel and some twine. OLDLADYNAME was impressed by their resourcefulness.
      “Thank you for breakfast, dafuzina,” she began, speaking slowly to give herself time to compose the proper words. “I have been thinking and I think we should stay here.”
“Here? But-”
      “Humor me, damorsi. Please. I need to recuperate here, not just for a day. No, no. Hush. Let me finish. Before we leave this place, we will need information and supplies. I think it is best to wait here for awhile.”
      The two exchanged a look that OLDLADYNAME could not decipher. After a moment, Hannah nodded and crossed her arms before her thin chest.
      “All right, OLDLADYNAME. Are you going to be okay, for this morning at least, if Mike and I go exploring a bit? The power doesn’t work, but the place is clean and stocked up. Someone must live her and they may be coming back. Better we find out what we can now.”
      Michael adjusted his cap. “And we have to find out if there is a working radio or TV here, because the ones in the living room are dead.”
      A wan smile upon her wrinkled lips, she nodded. “Yes.”
      Jeremy climbed back up onto the bed with a little boost from Michael and squealed with delight, his chubby little hands grabbing at one of the lovely embroidered roses.
      “I’ll bring some iced tea and stuff, so you don’t have to get up,” Hannah said and dashed off. She returned a few minutes later with the promised pitcher and a heavy glass tumbler. Both of the kids kissed her forehead and mumbled something vague about being careful, then they vanished in a whirlwind of denim and flannel.
      “Skib-mommy,” Jeremy crawled over her legs, giggling. He made his way to her torso and used her chest to pull himself to his unsteady feet. Placing both hands on either side of her face with surprising tenderness, Jeremy looked up at her. His deep brown eyes were velvety as a doe’s and the expression in them was much older and wiser than he was.
      “Skib-mommy,” he repeated, patting her cheeks again. Then he wrapped his arms around her thin neck and buried his face in the crook of her shoulder. “Skib-mommy.”
      Her heart fluttering in her chest, overcome with emotion, OLDLADYNAME hugged him back. Tears slipped down her cheeks.

– – – – – – – – – – –
      And that’s it for today’s snippet. What did you think? Can you pick out the changes? Its probably not as dramatic a change as the previous Before & After post, but I think that little tweaks can really make the difference in how a passage flows. So, better or worse? Comments, questions, suggestions appreciated – let me hear about it below!

Love & Rainbows,
P.P.