- New name. I mean, come on, let's face it. This really is a site where I ramble on and on and on and on and on and- you get the point. And the name has a cute little ring to it, right? Right? Of course, Laura, of course it does. Good, we're all on the same page.
- Book review: Alright, I brought them back, I'm not very good though, as you can obviously see down below.
- Leave me a comment! Do it, just do it, and be amazed at the awesomeness...
- I'm pretty sure that's it.
Until three months ago, everything in sixteen-year-old Camelia’s life had been fairly ordinary: decent grades, an okay relationship with her parents, and a pretty cool part-time job at the art studio downtown. But when a mysterious boy named Ben starts junior year at her high school, Camelia’s life becomes anything but ordinary.Rumored to be somehow responsible for his ex-girlfriend’s accidental death, Ben is immediately ostracized by everyone on campus. Except for Camelia. She’s reluctant to believe he's trouble, even when her friends try to convince her otherwise. Instead, she’s inexplicably drawn to Ben…and to his touch. But soon, Camelia is receiving eerie phone calls and strange packages with threatening notes. Ben insists she is in danger, and that he can help—but can he be trusted? She knows he's hiding something... but he's not the only one with a secret.From the best-selling author of Blue is for Nightmares comes a new series that's sure to be a thrilling and chilling teen favorite.
First thoughts: I was really excited to read this, I found it a couple of months ago on goodreads and added it and the sequel to my to-read list. Finally, I got to this book.
Writing: The style was simplistic, nothing too fancy, Present tense, which worked for this book, and it flowed well for simplicity.The story was told in Camelia's POV, but every few chapters, there was this mysterious male POV. I originally thought it was a main character, and I found that really creepy the way he talked, but about 3/4s of the way in the story, it dawned on me that there was no way it could be who I was, and the male who had his own POV really shocked me.
Characters: The main character, Camelia, was okay. She's a sculptor, which Stolarz really worked into the story. But, that was about the coolest thing she ever did. The characters are pretty well rounded, I really liked Kimmie, her best friend. But, at some points, Camelia seemed borderline obsessive with Ben, and it made me a little crazy.
Plot: The plot was pretty good. It was suspenseful. I finished this at 11pm and I refused to go to sleep. It wasn't until the climax that the plot got amazing and it all made sense, but that's how suspense stories work, right?
Final thoughts: While this wasn't quite as great as I expected it to be, it was still a good read, and I'm going to read the two sequels.
Today's New Music Tuesday album is Outlaws Like Me by Justin Moore. It's a great album, and features his current hit "If Heaven Wasn't So Far Away." For anyone who's ever experienced the loss of someone special, this is a song you need to listen to. In fact, do it. DO IT NOW I SAY! :D
So, here's the track listing:
- Redneck Side
- My Kind of Woman
- If Heaven Wasn't So Far Away
- Run Out of Honky Tonks
- Beer Time
- Bait a Hook
- Flyin' Down a Back Road
- If You Don't Like My Twang
- Sunshine Babies
- Til My Last Day
- Bed of My Chevy
- Outlaws Like Me
Nooks. Books. My OCD-ness. What do they all have in common?
Well.... a lot of things actually.
Last week, while I was in Bryan-College Station, Texas, my mom and I stopped at Barnes and Noble. Oh, how I love that place. I ended up getting two books.
Anyways, that's not the point of the post. The point is, while I had to buy Pride and Prejudice, I didn't have to buy Uncommon Criminals, but I still did. When I showed up with it, my mom asked, "Don't you have a nook you can buy these on?"
Yes, Mom, yes I do.
For Christmas, I got a fancy nookcolor. They've got commercials all over the place for them.
So, do any of you guys have nooks or kindles? Or do you just go with regular books? And if you do have an e-reader, are you OCD like I am?
Once again, I'm gonna talk about Super Ordinary. Oh boy, does it need work or what! It's pretty rough, and the inkpoppers who've read it agree. So, I guess the next week, I'll be editing it and doing some major rewriting....
Next week, I'll start off Short Snippet Saturdays with the new improved Super Ordinary!
Today, I'm featuring Crystal Shawnanda and her debut album, Dawn of a New Day. She's Native American, and her last name actually means "Dawn of a new day." Pretty cool, right? She's got this rough sound to her voice, and while I'm usually not a fan of the rougher sounding singers, she pulls it off very well.
- My Roots are Showing
- Tender Side
- Baby You're Back
- Dawn of a New Day
- You Can Let Go
- I Need a Man
- What Do I have to Do
- Your Cheatin Heart
- You Can't Take It Back
inkpop...... Oh inkpop.... How I used to adore you, back when I could open the home page and see things like this:
And the HC review is gone. All of the top picks have lost their reviews. That really bites. I mean, yeah, I saved it because I loved it, but STILL!
I bet by the end of the month, I'll be a goner, unless they seriously fix up their site.
Hey everyone! I'm Marisa from over at Live to Dance, Write to Live, and one of Laura's BFF's on the interwebz. I'm also known as mleedancerr12 on InkPop. My first book, Dancing Through Life, was an InkPop Top Pick July 2010. Currently I have two other projects up there, another realistic fiction calledPerfection is my Enemy and my brand new dystopia novel Expiration Date. I love dancing, singing, reading, acting, summer, and Grey's Anatomy (lol).
Basically because all chances of you ever getting published pretty much rest on its shoulders.
Here are some random tips that have all come out of the mouths of one or more agents at one point in time or another. Yes, I have revised them to make them more reading friendly and less boring in general.
1. Avoid clichés like the plague.
They are the figurative equivalent of fingernails on a chalkboard to an agent.
What your book says: “It was a dark and stormy night”
What the agent sees: “This book is going to suck”
2. Avoid being unoriginal.
You are pretty much personally flushing your manuscript down the toilet when you use an unoriginal concept.
What your book says: “I’m an original book about a girl who has a secret identity.”
What the agent sees: “Halfway through chapter one, you’re going to forget the main character’s name and description and just picture her as Hannah Montana the rest of the way.”
3. Avoid hero nicknames.
If your main character has a name, use the dang thing. Don’t name him Engleburt in chapter one and then call him Burt the rest of the book. One, it’s confusing. Two, that’s totally ridiculous and a waste of precious word count. You could have saved yourself that 25 to 50 words and just called him Burt in the first place.
What your book says: “My name is Engleburt, but I hate that, so call me Burt.”
What the agent sees: “My parents were on crack when they had me, Call me Burt and get confused the rest of the time because Engleburt and Burt don’t even start with the same letter.”
4. Stay away from dream scenes/prologues as an opening.
It makes a reader feel cheated.
What your book says: “This is a beautiful dream scene and/or prologue that is important in the last chapter of the book only.”
What the agent sees: “SYKE! You just wasted ten minutes of your life reading this and getting a feel for the book when really, 95% of the book doesn't even have the same feel.”
5. Avoid making your first chapter look like you're reading the character's doctor records.
Ancestors, hair and eye color, height, weight, facial descriptions, medical conditions, these can all be woven into the actual story.
What your book says: “I’m establishing backstory.”
What the agent sees: “You’re getting sleeeeepy.”
6. Keep your opening clean.
You want your opening to be original, but don’t do something tasteless.
What your book says: “I’m the first book in history to start out with a character peeing off the deck!”
What the agent sees: “There’s a reason I’m the first book in history to start with a character peeing off the deck.”
7. Don’t open a book like it’s a letter to your reader.
That’s just weird.
What your book says: “I’m fun and cute and I’m going to address my readers so they feel like part of the story.”
What the agent sees: “I see you sitting there on your bed reading this book. I’m incredibly creepy and you now feel like someone is watching you.”
8. Save the small talk for when you visit grandma.
Avoid opening with the weather or something else that would lead to small talk and not much else.
What your book says: “This is probably foreshadowing.”
What the agent sees: “The character is making small talk with me, I suddenly have a heightened sense of awareness involving my age and this conversation most likely won’t lead to anything constructive.”
9. Don’t kill a character in chapter one.
Just say N-O to drugs and dead characters.
What your book says: “It was important that this person died here.”
What the agent sees: “HA! I just wasted ten minutes of your life making you like this guy and then I killed him.”
There it is, do's and don't. Of course these are the rules and not the exception. Sure, maybe you are incredibly talented and can make one or all of the above work. If you feel brave enough, shoot for the moon, even if you miss you'll land among the SlushPile.
This week is going to be strange in terms of posting. I'm actually on my way to New Mexico, Santa Fe to be exact, with my best friend. So, I've got some surprises lined up for you while I'm gone. Trust me, they're good surprises!
Today, though, I'm going to show you my playlist for my book, Super Ordinary. All
62 63 songs. I've added it to youtube, so click here to see my playlist. I'm just going to touch on a couple of songs on the list and talk about why they're on there.
1. "Holding Out for a Hero" by Bonnie Tyler
This song is all about waiting for a superhero to come and save her, and when I'm writing a book about superheroes, how could I not include this one?
2. "I Won't Say (I'm in Love)" by Susan Egan and the Muses
Okay, this is one of my favorite songs. Not one of, my favorite. I love, love, *love* Susan Egan. And Lani spends a lot of time trying to convince herself that she doesn't like Rob, and that she isn't falling for him. But, do you think that's gonna stop her?
3. "Nobody's Side" by Idina Menzel and the Soloists
This song talks about how you can never really know who to trust, and Lani suffers from that a lot, especially at the beginning of the book.
4. "Nothin' Better to Do" by LeAnn Rimes
Lani is a criminal, robbing people! This song is all about getting into trouble as a teenager, and it fits well.
Those are just a few. Here's the link to the playlist, which doesn't have all of the songs.... I'll come home and add more, I promise!
“Morgan, please, don’t make this difficult.”
FIRST DAY OF SUMMER!! WAHOOO!!!
And, in honor of summer:
Yes, yes, you read that right. The title does indeed say "Why realistic fiction needs them." Yes, I do believe that realistic fiction needs stereotypes, to make it realistic.
1.) The Lorraine Benson factor.
Who's Lorraine Benson? Why does she get her own factor?
A: Lorraine Benson is the mean girl in The Assassin. You know, the typical, blonde mean girl. Like the ones in the movie (which I've never actually seen). She's the daughter of a billionaire, gets the cute boys, and she's shallow.
Now, I live in a town full of middle to upper class families. Poverty is almost nonexistent in my town. I joke that my school is the rich druggies school because kids have all this money to do with whatever they want. Kids get cars for Christmas at my school. But, I didn't. There are plenty of Lorraine Bensons at my school. In fact, you can probably find a Lorraine Benson in every American high school. They're all over the place, which is how they become stereotypes in stories.
If the stereotypes exist in real life, why can't they exist in books too?
2.) Hot Boys Let Their Looks Go to Their Head
It's true, I've seen it happen. Some of the best looking guys at my school are a bunch of assholes because they know their looks will save them in any situation, at least when they're in trouble with a girl. My school certainly can't be the only one with guys like this.
3.) The quiet one did it....
I believe that the quiet ones are the ones to watch. I really do.... My best friend, Courtney, talks to about five people, she's just shy. I've had people ask me if she can talk.... I swear, she's a evil genius, well, we both are. My ex-boyfriend (never thought I'd have to write that :P) is quiet too. And he's in the army, and loves guns. He's this 6'5" guy in the army....I swear, some day, the quiet kid will do it.... Just you wait.
See, there are plenty of stereotypes that we know of in books that show up in real life. In my opinion, real life created the stereotypes, not the books.
Today's New Music Tuesday is from the sister trio SHeDAISY. This album, Knock on the Sky, is a country type pop. It's their worst selling album to date, but I really love it, it's got great songs.
- Mine All Mine
- I'm Lit
- Man Goin' Down
- Get Over Yourself
- I Wish I Were the Rain
- Everybody Wants You
- All Over You
- The First to Let Go
- Turn Me On
- Keep Me
- Knock on the Sky (hidden track)
Today, I'm doing a new segment, called On My Mind Mondays. This will be for me to talk about anything on my mind, like work, or a boy.... or in today's case,. a book!
Yes, a book. What's on my mind this Monday? Well....
superheroes!Yes, today, later this afternoon, I'm posting Super Ordinary. *dances around* I'll post the first four chapters up on my excerpts page later tonight too, so if you don't want to read it on inkpop, you can read it here. :)
When she wakes up, totally unaware of where she is, she’s only more shocked to find that she’s ended up at the home of this secret society. The rules soon become clear. A dark secret has almost shattered the superheroes in two and saving the world is the only thing keeping them together. Will, the leader, has his eyes set on Lani.
Until he goes missing.
The superheroes elect Rob, the group misfit, to go out and find him, in hopes that Will will be able to save the world, once Rob saves him. Lani begs Rob to take her with him, in hopes to escape, and possibly grow closer to the mysterious boy who seems so against the world.
As the war rages on, Rob and Lani must travel across the world in hopes of finding Will and saving the world before it’s too late.
It's June, I should be out of school. Junior year should be done and behind me, and God only knows how much I wish it was. It's been a year of heartache, that's for certain. I've lost people that mean a lot to me this past year, no, no one died, but in some cases, they might as well have, since I never hear from them. Ever.
That, and my schedule this past year was so out of whack, it wasn't even funny.
But, here in good ole' Texas, we've hit 90 degrees or higher the past, like, ten days in a row. IT'S FREAKING SUMMER ALREADY!!
Don't believe me?
Alexis isn't introduced into Cassie's world until the second book, but she appears in every book afterword. She's another foster child Joe takes under his wing, eventually adopting her, and she and Cassie are best friends.
Alexis isn't afraid to speak her mind, and neither is Allie. They're never afraid to take up a challenge. Both of them are just looking to have fun with friends.
But, Alexis isn't Canadian like Allie.
But, once you meet Alexis, if you know Allie, you'll agree, they're so much alike. :D
How the heck is it June already? Jeez! Time goes by so fast. I've had such a crazy month. But, this month will be so much better as I'm going to Houston and Santa Fe. :D
In May, I read a measly 8 books. :/ I had AP testing the first two weeks, and then the last week and a half, well, it's been, not fun to say the least. But, between all the car rides, and long days without school, I'm going to probably read that many books in a week.
My goal this month is to read twenty books. I've fallen really behind on my reading with all the stress of school, but I've got a list of books to read. Here's a few:
- The Last Boleyn
- A Rose for the Crown
- Deception Point
- Deadly Little Secret
- Deadly Little Lies
- Digital Fortress
- The Wide Awake Princess
- The Informationist
Writing wise wasn't much better. After AP testing, I stalled because I was so relieved that was over. I'd written six, hard core essays in a period of a few days, and I didn't want to think about writing. As soon as I felt like I was ready to write again, I got dumped. *sigh* It's okay, I gave him what he deserved yesterday. I need to hit 10K by Monday on Super Ordinary, so I can post it on inkpop Monday night.
Beyond that, I'll be gone so much, I'll be lucky to get any writing done at all. So, let's just say that's my goal for this month.
Life has been pretty crazy the past month, so my normal responsiblities and joys fell through the cracks, but I'll be back.