Friday, April 1, 2011

April Fools's Friday Week In Review

I can be funny. In fact, someone once told me I should have been a comedian (umm...it was an ex, before we broke up, so I am not sure it was career advice) but I have never been good at any April Fool's trickery. So I swear, there are no misleading links or facts or anything in the weekly round-up below.

Last Saturday I presented a workshop, Creating Your Own Canon, to the SCBWI of Brazos Valley. Lots of learning was had.




Fired! You're all fired.  (My Donald impression)



Scenes were read, books were analyzed, tools of the trade were swapped. Plus, there were cupcakes for when our sugar ran low. It was a great day and I would gladly go back to College Station anytime. 




A big thank you for planning the event to BV SCBWI RA Liz Mertz and ARA Jacqueline Gramman. 

On Tuesday night, the Delacorte Dames and Dude got together to talk shop at House Pizza. I love Shana Burg, April Lurie, Margo Raab, Varian Johnson, and Jennifer Zeigler each individually but as a group when we get together something wonderful always happens--whether one of us (or all of us) need encouragement to go deeper in a project, navigate life outside of writing, or whatever it is we have been shouldering camaraderie, pizza and friends makes it all easier.




On Thursday I visited with Mr. Farr's creative writing class at Anderson High. Mr. Farr is the kind of teacher I wish I had, and hoped I was when I was teaching. He is passionate, encouraging, and he believes in his students and their abilities. It was fun to sit at the head of the room on a big chair (no high chair jokes allowed) and talk craft and the biz with his very serious students. For an hour and a half, I shared my journey from being a HS writer to a published author, to how to develop authentic characters, to how to navigate finding the right agent, to crafting the inevitable endings and to finding the right and perfect title. I encouraged the students to enter the Hunger Mountain  Prize for Young Writers being judged this year by the bestselling Austinite Cynthia Leitich Smith. I have nothing to do with the judging but I am keeping my fingers crossed one of those intent writers win. 


And today, Kirsten Cappy, of Curious City is going to be at the WLT leading her one-on-one consultations. Kirsten is in Austin from Portland, Maine to share her book publicity knowledge and I'm the lucky leaguer who gets to take her to coffee.


Not to Be Missed Links of the Week

Austin's Own Don Tate makes the Huffington Post on the opening day of the baseball season. Let's hear it for She Loved Baseball, written by Audrey Vernick and illustrated by Don Tate.







Run don't walk over to the Dear Teen Me Blog and read this amazing letter from author Saundra Mitchell,  which begins...

Dear 16,

All right, look. You didn’t kill him.
You’re going to spend tonight in the laundry room, sitting on the dryer. Shuttered doors closed, and phone pulled as far as the cord will let it so you can start out complaining about it to your best friend.


And wrestles with the hard stuff from there on out. Bravo to Saundra for being brave and speaking about her brother's suicide. 






And anyone and everyone is keeping up with the SLJ Battle of the Books. Head over and see which book has succumbed to defeat and which books are headed to be judged in the Big Kahuna round.





Happy April Fool's Day!

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