Tuesday, December 15, 2015

December Check In

Heyo! I hope everyone is having a fantastic holiday season. There's nothing more exciting than all the frenzy and finality December can bring. 

I had a wonderful Thanksgiving at home in Baltimore with my family. Not only did I spend lots of time with my favorite cousin, Sara and her new husband, but we threw her a baby shower (in which I promised her a blog mention). Our cousin Crystal made all the food, which included bacon-wrapped dates stuffed with goat cheese, meatballs cooked in grape jelly (is this a Maryland thing or does everyone make this?) and a pretty epic cake. 

My reading has slowed down considerably, only because things have been so busy. However, if you're looking for something new to pick up, consider:

ALL AMERICAN BOYS, by Jason Reynolds and Brendan Keily. A duel-narrative of two American teenagers--one white and one black--and how police brutality affects their lives.

THE BOSTON GIRL, by Anita Diamant. Follows the life of a young woman born in 1900 to Jewish immigrants in Boston and touches on pieces of history I hadn't read much about before: World War I, the flu of 1918, and the Minnesota orphan train.

THE SACRED LIES OF MINNOW BLY, by Stephanie Oakes. A story about a girl who escapes from her Kevinian cult at the price of both her hands.

Lastly, and most sadly, we lost our sweet pup this month. Nelly was my trusted cocker spaniel for the last fourteen years. I've owned her my entire adult life and she's spent many nights sleeping under my desk while I wrote stories and blog posts and query letters. To be honest, I'm not sure what to do with the hole she's left by my side. While I figure it out, I hope this year brings a bit of peace and some healing. And I hope it brings you joy and love.

Wednesday, December 9, 2015

Agents Like Us - Caitie Flum

This week Caitie Flum from Liza Dawson Associates Literary Agency stops by to chat agenting secrets, clients, and life with us.

She is looking for commercial and up market fiction, middle grade, young adult, and new adult, as well as nonfiction. You can learn more about Caitie here, find her submission guidelines there, and follow her on Twitter @CaitieF. Her answers are below in bold.

Caitie on Agenting

  • When writers query me, I really wish that authors would would follow my guidelines. About a third do not. I also really wish authors would have someone read their query who does not know their book at all. Sometimes it is confusing and the author or their beta reader is too close to it. Make sure it makes sense!
  • My favorite part about being an agent is authors! I love authors, that is why I do this. I love working with authors, fighting for authors, and having that partnership. 
  • Rules and trends aside, what I really look for in a story is a voice I adore. If I don't like the voice enough, I can't be the champion for it.
  • Whenever I make a book deal, I make sure the author celebrates and is properly excited. I also have some champagne. 
  • I really wish I saw more mysteries in the slush for all age groups. A good mystery is timeless.
Caitie On Clients
  • My ideal client would be someone who wants to be a long-term writer, someone who will grow and improve with every book. 
  • What I love most about my current clientele is they are enormously talented, incredibly kind, work really hard, and are just the loveliest people ever. 
  • What I want most for any client is whatever is best for them, whether that is a print deal, digital, or some combination. I want them to be happy and feel supported and to know that I have their back. I want them to have the career that they want and will do everything in my power to make it happen.
Caitie On Life
  • If I weren't an agent, I'd probably be working somewhere else in publishing or maybe in a library? I can't imagine doing anything else. 
  • My favorite (non-client) book is I just finished ILLUMINAE by Jay Kristoff and Amie Kaufman (had to change the billing since Jay is always second because of the alphabet) and it was AMAZING. Best book I read this year. It could easily move into the running for top 5 oo 10 favorite books of all time.
  • Secretly, I'm terrified of I can't do heights when there is a chance of falling. I love tall roller coasters and flying, but I had high seats at a stadium Taylor Swift concert and had to exchange them because I started shaking.
  • My secret boyfriend is Chris Hardwick because he is so nerdy and cute. I know that is a really weird answer!
  • I have a total girlcrush on Viola Davis. Have you WATCHED How To Get Away With Murder? The woman is brilliant and beautiful.
  • Sometimes, when no one is around, I sing along to Hamilton. Sometimes I even rap REALLY badly.
  • My favorite drink is Moscato wine. I love all wine, but that is my favorite!

    Want to see more Agent Interviews? Check them all out here.

    Monday, December 7, 2015

    I Promised You A Blog Post

    I promised you a blog post
    But all I can do is stare at a blank screen
    Struggling to write
    The one thing I'm good at
    The one thing I've always been able to do

    So I'll try to say it in a new way
    Words aligned into neat little lines
    Freestyle it from my heart
    Even though my thoughts knot and snarl

    With one click of a button
    I sent a Pack-and-Play to your doorstep
    And it will never feel like enough
    To say that I'm happy for you
    And sorry
    For all the times I've been selfish and cruel
    Or just confusing
    And thankful for
    And all the times you've picked up the phone
    Pretended like nothing was wrong
    My first friend
    My first best friend

    You are a new person now
    Your belly round 
    (but not that round)
    A new girl inside
    For our tribe of strong and fragile women
    A new partner at your side
    Who makes you laugh
    In a way I've never heard you laugh before
    The kind of laugh that means you're truly happy

    I promise you a blog post
    As I play the role of court jester
    Clutching a paper plate and a plastic cup
    Everyone laughs as we shower you with gift cards
    Cringe at chocolate bars melted inside diapers
    Cut cakes made of pink fondant
    Ooo and aww in all the right places
    Tiny clothes with cupcake covered behinds
    None say Future Feminist
    Like I know how you will raise a daughter to be

    She will have 
    The best of both worlds
    Southern sweetness
    Northern nerve
    Just like you

    In just 4 months 
    You will be a mother
    A role that seems so adult
    When did we become adults?
    I still think of us as two heads
    In a sea of family
    One blonde and one brunette
    Always together

    I write this late at night
    When I know you'll be sleeping
    Being the responsible one
    While I stay up
    The dreamer and star counter
    Because I promised you a blog post
    Even though you deserve so much more
    Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...