Kidlit Guide

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And the lucky winners of my holiday WRITING IRRESISTIBLE KIDLIT giveaway are:

Stephanie Schumann and
Josef Bergman

Please email me if I don’t email you first to give me your mailing address and confirm your personalization. I’m going to the post office tomorrow and would love to mail your books in time for Christmas. To everyone who didn’t win this round, BUY IT and make your favorite agent/blogger/new author very happy. ;) I have more author copies and will be giving them out in 2013 as well.

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Just in time for the holidays, I’d love to give away TWO personalized copies of my book, WRITING IRRESISTIBLE KIDLIT. I just got some new author copies in and they are getting restless sitting on my bookshelf. Instead of making you guys do a bunch of stuff like Tweet or Facebook or blog and provide a link in order to be eligible, I’ll just open this up to anybody who wants to enter (provided you live in the United States for the sake of shipping costs).

If you want to read an interview I recently did about the book with Lenore Appelhans over on the Apocalypsies blog, click here. To enter the contest, leave a comment below with the name you want me to personalize your book to, should you win. No need to also leave an email address as long as you enter it in the form (only I see these). The contest ends midnight, Tuesday December 18th and winners will be announced December 19th. Tell your friends and your writing group!

ETA: Just to clarify, I’m giving away two copies of the book to correspond with two entries by two different writers, not two copies of the book to one entry. I just want to avoid any confusion!

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Please head over to Literary Rambles today to win a copy of WRITING IRRESISTIBLE KIDLIT! I’m sorry for the lack of substantial posting over the last few weeks and all the book talk. But I have discovered just what a different beast it is to promote a book than to just dream about having a book be published. I’m learning and will share some thoughts on marketing once I get the hang of it. (If that ever happens!)

Not only was my publication date moved up by about six weeks, but I am also coming to terms with the realization that you can’t put off important things until…you feel less tired, or until the stars are perfectly aligned, or until the house is clean. That’s what I was trying to do with marketing the book. “I’ll start talking about it more once I have my head around book promotion and once I know I can do it well,” I said to myself. Then I got real. You’re never going to feel less tired (coffee helps you forget this sometimes), the stars will always be just a degree or two off, and the house…well…the house is what it is. A reminder never to put off all the hard and exciting work of publicizing, writing, and chasing after your goals!

So expect some more book promotion talk and some giveaways just in time for the holidays. I’ll post interviews and other things I’ve done across the web for the guide as I get them. At some point in the next few months, we will return to our regularly scheduled programming. Until then, I’m going to trip and flounder through some book promotion and see what happens. :)

ETA: Updated the link, sorry guys! I had my wires crossed because I was sharing with someone the Bravo page of the sous chef for my boyfriend’s new restaurant.

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After a great weekend at the Kansas SCBWI conference with Jay Asher, Arthur Levine, and many more talented faculty and writers, I’m back in NYC for Hurricane Sandy. Some people with flights out yesterday were stranded, so I made sure to take one at 6:30 a.m. just to get back home. Now, despite being very close to the evacuation zone here in Brooklyn, both me and my boyfriend are hunkering down for a cozy day.

Just an update on WRITING IRRESISTIBLE KIDLIT, it seems like it is shipping from Amazon now, in addition to being available from the Writer’s Digest Shop. If you see the book “out in the wild” at a brick and mortar bookstore, I would love it if you could take a picture and send it to me via email or on Facebook. If you have read the book and loved it, please tell your writing friends, and (if you are feeling really ambitious) leave a review on Amazon or Goodreads to help spread the word.

I’m thinking of getting some labels printed for “bookplates” to sign and mail around to people who want a signed copy of the book but aren’t nearby. Would any of you take advantage of that?

Back to our regular programming on Wednesday…

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My book has arrived at the Writer’s Digest warehouses and I got to see and buy a copy of it at the Writer’s Digest West conference this past weekend in Los Angeles. Hooray! Now it is only a matter of time before it gets out to bookstores and online retailers. Crazy, right? If you have pre-ordered it (thank you!), I have no idea when it will ship, but I’m guessing sometime in the next two weeks rather than on December 4th (as is stated on Amazon). If, in the meantime, anybody sees the book in the wild at a bookstore or receives their copy, take a picture and send it my way–I would be thrilled to see it!

I started the proposal in July of last year, sold the book on September 9th, 2011 and now it’s more than a year later and it’s a real thing rather than a Word doc on my computer. A lot of books have come into the world as a result of my efforts on behalf of clients, but none have yet been my own. It’s a trip.

For those who don’t know, I took a WRITING THE BREAKOUT NOVEL by Don Maass approach to the guide and excerpted thirty-four middle grade and young adult novels to make various points about character, voice, setting, etc. I find that it’s a lot easier to teach with examples rather than simply sprout off on a topic. I recently contacted most of the authors whose books I talked about and offered them a review copy of my guide.

The legendary author Karen Cushman, whose book ALCHEMY AND MEGGY SWANN is excerpted, was kind enough to read and write a quick review of my guide:

On quiet afternoons, I love to sit curled up in a chair and read books about writing (really!). I’m a writing book nerd. Mary Kole, literary manager at Movable Type Management who blogs at kidlit.com, just sent me a copy of her new book, Writing Irresistible Kidlit: The Ultimate Guide to Crafting Fiction for Young Adult and Middle Grade Readers. And ultimate is right. I can’t think of a topic Mary doesn’t cover. The book is lively and helpful—my only quibble is the term kidlit in the title. It’s my pet peeve, but a pretty minor quibble for what is a terrific book. If you want to write for children or are a writing book nerd like me, take a look at Writing Irresistible Kidlit. I recommend it.

The original review is here. I am flattered and grateful for her kind words! I’ll cross-post more reviews as I receive them. You can see what I have to say about Karen Cushman’s work and the writing craft in general by pre-ordering my book today!

Speaking of more, well, uh, speaking on the writing craft, I’m teaching my Middle Grade and Young Adult Craft Intensive webinar with Writer’s Digest on Thursday, October 25th at 1 p.m. Eastern. As with all of my webinars, you don’t actually have to be available and logged in at that exact time and date to participate, but you should still register. All registered students, regardless of whether they attend the live event or not, get a recording of the session after the fact (audio and video of the PowerPoint), the opportunity to get all of their questions answered in a class-wide PDF, and a critique of the first 500 words of your MG or YA manuscript.

It’s important to note that this might be my last time teaching on this topic for a while, so get in there while you can. Find out more and register here.

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