Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Contest Alert

Looking for a critique? Looking for an agent? Looking for a critique from an agent? Then do I have the contest for you.

Author Shelley Watters is hosting a Made of Awesome first page contest on her blog, judged by the completely bad-ass Judith Engracia of Liza Dawson Associates. I don't usually use that term, but Judith has a Siberian Husky named Grendel, does martial arts, and graduated summa cum laude from Fordham University with a B.A. in English and History. Oh yeah, and she did it on a full presidential scholarship. I mean, it's not every day you read a literary agent's bio and ask yourself, "If my MC Justine and this literary agent got in a fight, who would win?" Let's see, both Justine and Judith have martial arts training, but Justine does happen to wield Excalibur. Judith probably doesn't have a magic sword. Then again, Justine doesn't have a Siberian Husky named Grendel, who quite possibly has magical powers, and who may or may not transform into a fierce fighting companion the way Battlecat did in He-Man. So let's call it a draw.

Anyways, the point is: Awesome contest, ends today, May 31, so enter now. First-place winner will win a 10-page critique and the way these contests usually work, Judith may ask to look at the runner-ups' work as well. So, you know, enter! Now!

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Still Alive!: An Update

Hi all,

Just wanted to give a quick update on what I've been up to. For the past six months (no, I cannot believe I've been at it THAT long), I've been revising my beloved manuscript, Knights of Avalon, whenever I've had a spare minute. The thing is, between work and cat rescue, there haven't been that many spare minutes.

I have two big goals this time around:

1. Build more of an emotional connection between the reader and the characters, especially my main character Justine.
2. Strengthen character relationships.

That's a little edit, right? I can do that easy. No problem!

It's all about the emotion, people. Not having an emotional connection is like having a car without an engine. But, well, hrm, how do I put this gently... I'm no good at the emotional stuff! Apparently I suck at it more than a factory full of Dyson vacuum cleaners.

I am getting better though, bit by painful bit. Every revision has a little more emotion. And now I've been studying it, putting it under the microscope and figuring out the mechanics of building a connection with the reader, because some people do it naturally, and then there's me.

I hope to be done in a few weeks. When I am done, I'll do two things: 1) Post about what I've learned 2) Have another contest, because it's been way too long! BTW-If there's any particular book you'd like to see go up for grabs, let me know. If I don't have it, maybe I can get it. I definitely take requests when at all possible.