Reviews, rants, and tidbits from an overpassionate novelist

Posts tagged ‘teen fiction’

Prom Nights from Hell ~ Thoughts on The Exterminator’s Daughter by Meg Cabot

I’ve always been a Meg Cabot fan–ever since 5th grade when the Princess Diaries movie became an obsession of mine. It’s been a while, though. I probably haven’t read any new Meg in a couple of years.

Considering that A) I had possibly outgrown her, B) this was a vampire story, and C) it was told via alternating narrators, never an easy trick to pull, I had a lot of doubts I would enjoy The Exterminator’s Daughter.

But I did.

I have to say, I have not outgrown her at all. Yes, she’s easy to read. That’s a strength. Lots of drive in her voice. Okay, her voice is outright addictive. I was impressed with how well she pulled off the alternating narrators. Yes, it’s annoying to get yanked out of one head and into another. But that sense of annoyance didn’t last long. I enjoyed being in Adam’s head almost MORE than I liked being in Mary’s. ‘Twas not a problem.

It was still a vampire story, though. I’m sick to death of those. And it was very predictable. Can’t give it plot points. Le sigh.

Overall rating:  3 1/2 stars.

A few notes about Kate McKean of Howard Morhaim Literary

I just wanted to say she seems like a nice lady. The open-minded sort. She was another one who made the South Carolina Writer’s Workshop worthwhile for me last year, suggesting I email her at the very last moment of the conference, shortly after the last class. I had asked a question during a panel about young writers and whether my age was something appropriate to mention in a query. She said yes – It’s a marketing point and a strength.

Dream Diary:  I dreamed about getting to see my long-distance boyfriend!

Word Count:  Still around 20,000.

My Whole New World ~ The Little HS Author Starts College

Sorry for the long time no see! My life has been a little crazy as I’ve made a rather epic transition. I am no longer little Fort Millian high schooler. It’s to Columbia with me, to the Honors College at the University of South Carolina.

Sweet freedom. Sweet change. Sweet refuge from dramaaa…

For the last three weeks or so, my focus has been all on the changes and not on my writing. Regrettable. But necessary. Now I am ready to buckle down and GO.

I spent a nice hour in the bookstore today doing my Cinderella Mouse thing – gather stacks of books so high I have to use my chin to keep them from falling. Then I sit down with them and scan through the pitches and acknowledgements pages, taking notes on the books that sound interesting and literary agents I need to check out. (I’ll type my notes up below.)

I LOVE doing this.

I also realized something pretty epic when I was in the bookstore today. There used to be about nine shelves filled with teen fiction. Within the last three or four months, that number has grown to eleven.

If I miss this wave, I will not know what to do with myself. Thanks to Miss Stephanie Meyer and Mr. Edward Cullen, my genre is skyrocketing, maybe just in time, maybe in time….

Meh Notes:

Title – Author ~ Agent
Waiting for You – Susane Colasanti ~ ? *(I found this one interesting because the acknowledgements made references to depression and anxiety, topics of personal interest to me.)
Bait – Alex Sanchez ~ Miriam Altshulter
Snap – Carol Snow ~ Stephanie Kip Rostan
My Soul to Take – Rachel Vincent ~ Miriam Kriss (Interesting for its language. I read the first page.)
Shiver – Maggie Steifvater ~ Laura Rennert
Breathless – Jessica Warman ~ Andrea Somberg (Gorgeous cover on this one, but the only word in the pitch that caught my interest was “semiautobiographical”)
Graceling – Kristin Cashore ~ Faye Bender
Kissed by an Angel – Elizabeth Chandler / Mary Claire Helldorfer (This is one I should read because it resonates so well with my life and the stories I tell, but I haven’t been able to find this lady’s agent if she has one.)
Twenty Boy Summer – Sarah Ockler ~ Ted Malawer (I think this title was a bad idea.)
Reincarnation – Susanne Weyn (This has the potential to be FASCINATING.)
Radiant Darkness – Emily Whitman ~ Nancy Gallt
The Fetch – Laura Whitcomb (I’ve heard this ones really good.)
A Kiss in Time – Alex Flinn ~ George Nicholson
As You Wish – Jackson Pearce ~ Jenoyne Adams


I left the store with:

Crank by Ellen Hopkins (I need to read her books. I just need to.)
Odd Hours by Dean Koontz (So I don’t have to borrow it from Megan again)
Prom Nights from Hell by Meg Cabot, Kim Harrison, Michele Jaffe, Stephanie Meyer, and Lauren Myracle (Needed this too.)
Pride & Prejudice  by Jane Austen (An extra copy because I shall be reading it for SCHOOL ^.^)

More later! ❤

The Printz Award

The Printz Award first caught my eye on the cover of White Darkness (Geraldine McCaughrean) in the media center at my high school. The more I learn about the literary nature of the books that receive them, the more I think it may be a main marker of this “Literary Little League” the wall street journal mentioned. That article, by the way, is here. http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052970204261704574275941028138178.html

The more I learned about the Printz Award and the kinds of books that receive it, the more I like it. I’m very interested in reading the list of winners, including the 2009 winner, Jellicoe Road (Melina Marchetta). Perhaps this would be a good study for me, and even help me develop yet another dream, another goal.

More about the Michael L. Printz Award here:

http://www.ala.org/ala/mgrps/divs/yalsa/booklistsawards/printzaward/Printz.cfm

UPDATING THE DREAM – REALITY GAUGE

I thought I’d blog a little about what’s going on in my own life today and update everybody on how my dreams are going. =) I attended the SWA Conference a few weeks ago, which I blogged about. I repeat:  This conference is an IDEAL beginner experience.

Thanks to this experience, my manuscript is in the hands of a literary agent I like very very much. Keeping my fingers crossed. We’ll see.

The last few days, I’ve been outlining Sunlight, the sequel to Sunrise. No, I’m not completely satisfied with that title. Bubbles would be more appropriate, but it sounds too much. like the name of a poodle. Le sigh. I think I’m going to start updating my second book’s word count on my blog just to add some accountability.

At the SWA Conference this year, I also got a definition for that mysterious thing I’ve been hearing about called Dragoncon–it’s an anime convention, a writer’s conference, and a sci-fi/fantasy convention combined.

Can you say My Paradise? How cool is that

It must be humongous. Apparently there are even something like 1500 registered Storm Troopers in Atlanta. My little brother wants to register and keep his helmet in his car so he can put it on whenever he sees a state trooper

I’m going. =D At least, I’ve got some of my anime friends interested, not to mention my Star Wars-fanatic parents. (Which might be an Oops….)

That’s the general past, present, and future of the moment though. I’ll keep everyone updated.

More soon ❤

Word count:  4000

YOUNG ADULT FICTION – LITERARY WITHOUT THE SLUSH

Laurie Halse Anderson recently posted this link in a Facebook note, and I absolutely love this article. Favorite, favorite, favorite. In essence, the article is about the growing literary nature of the young adult genre and how it’s becoming more enjoyable to adults. It describes it as a Literary Minor League–or literary without the boring stuff. That’s my kinda reading, and it will always be. Thank you, Wall Street Journal!

The Article Here:
http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052970204261704574275941028138178.html

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