Thursday, April 28, 2011

From Ashes We Will Rise

It's with a heavy heart that I post this today. Last night, the state that I live in was hit multiple times by horrible tornadoes. We are devastated. The streets look like war zones. So many lives have been lost and so many homes have been destroyed. Thankfully, the area that I live in was not affected, but many weren't as lucky. There are no words that can adequately express the sadness felt by all. I beg of you to please remember the families who have lost loved ones due to this line of storms in your prayers. The road to rebuilding will be long, but we are a strong people and from the ashes we will rise.

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Pitch Contest with Natalie Fischer!

Hello, guys. YAtopia has another amazing opportunity for us. Fantastic agent, Natalie Fischer of Bradford Lit agency, is going to be hosting a pitch contest, and some of you lucky people will get the chance to submit to Natalie (she's currently closed to submissions).

To see a recent interview with Natalie and find out her likes, visit here. The only difference from this pitch contest and others is that YAtopians will choose their top 20 to give to Natalie, who will then pick her winners from that.

Don't miss out on this great opportunity! Of course, there are guidelines and rules. Click here to check them out and enter!

Friday, April 15, 2011

A Picture Is Worth A Thousand Words

A picture is worth a thousand words. At least, that’s what I’ve been told, but I never really understood that phrase until recently when an agent tweeted about an interview with the 17 year old photographer, Alex Stoddard. Being the curious person I am, I thought I’d check it out and ended up spending most of my night marveling at his art. The emotions captured in his photographs are so raw that I felt myself tearing up while looking at some of them. Two, in particular, drew me in and reminded me so much of some of the characters in my novel, Saving Elizabeth.

The photograph which Alex entitled, The Forgotten Housewife, is so similar to my main character, Elizabeth. No, Elizabeth is not a housewife, but like the girl in this picture she’s bound and held captive. Elizabeth’s stronghold isn’t rope tying her to a chair. Yes, I realize there is no actual rope or string binding the girl in this picture, but that's the beauty of it. The rope is on the floor and floating in the air. So, why does she feel she has to stay there? Why can’t she just stop the rocking and get up already? She can, but it will only happen when she makes up her mind to stop it. Like this girl, Elizabeth’s struggle is internal, and she will only be at peace when she decides she isn’t going to let the anger she feels over her father’s death bind her spirit and control her any longer. Through the first half of the novel, Elizabeth thinks she has been abandoned by the God her father promised would love her no matter what. In my mind, this girl is Elizabeth. This picture sums up so many emotions that I felt, that Elizabeth felt, during the development of her story-anger, fear, isolation, confusion, abandonment.

This second photograph, entitled Arrival, reminds me so much of Gabriel, and for obvious reasons – the wings, the bright light, the otherworldly feeling. Need I say more?  

Here’s a few others I loved just because of their beauty and the emotion they convey. When I look at each of these my mind spins with story ideas.
Sanctuary                                                        The Time Traveler
The Aftermath                                                 The Love That Got Away
Hurricane Alex                                                 Rain On My Face
Blind                                                               The Book Burning
For Someone, Someday                                    It Was Summer, and We Were Happy
Forget The Pet Store                                        Your Turn With God

Are you in love with Alex’s photography yet? I hope so! Now that I’ve shared his wonderful work with you, I want to know what pictures inspire your writing. Do you have certain photos you look at while you’re fleshing out your characters? Is there a photograph that inspired the setting, the conflict, or the emotion felt in your novel? If so, please share!  Let’s all inspire each other!

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Great Things!!!!!

I know it has been a while since my last post, but I've been really busy lately with some great things that are happening in my writing world. First, I was informed my short story, "A Mother's Love" will be published in the soon to be released, Beyond the Diaper Bag. I've also gotten some interest in my YA novel, Saving Elizabeth. The full manuscript is currently sitting in the hands of an editor as we speak, and is awaiting its fate. My nails are down to nubs!!! I am very excited about these wonderful things, but humbled at the same time.

What has been going on in your writing world? Have you started a new project that you're just dying to tell someone about? Have you snagged an agent? Is your work being published? Let's use the comments section of this post to share our successes with others! Let's celebrate together! Go on! Share! Share!           

Friday, April 1, 2011

I'm a Published Author!!!!

Well, I'm not a published author yet, but I will be in May!!!! I've just been informed that my short story, "A Mother's Love," will be published in "Beyond the Diaper Bag." Eeeeekkk! I'm so excited!!! Can you tell?!?!?!  Authors featured in "Beyond the Diaper Bag" have a passion to help others! The book is the second book in the Beyond Book series. It is a collection of humorous stores, inspirational moments, and helpful tips from real moms. This book has it all! All proceeds from the book will be donated to The Mommies Network, a not for profit organization that helps mothers. The book is expected to be out in May and can be purchased from,,, and many others. They are also hoping to get it in brick and mortar businesses. I hope you'll all pick up a copy when it comes out.  :)