Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Merry Times In The Maritimes.

Why, hello there!

As usual, the title is a perfect segue into this morning's post. My new WFNB profile is finally up and running, and I've just received word of yet another wonderful workshop with the amazing Donna Morrissey.!

This one starts at 10 a.m. on December 3rd at the Moncton Lions' Club; you'll need only $85, some stationery, and a smile. :) If you're a writer in the Moncton/Dieppe/Riverview area, and are looking for an excuse to leave your attic/cubicle/kitchen chair, come on out and join the writerly festivities.

Signing off,
El Veeb.

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Sweet Victory, & The Bitter End.

Good evening, all! I interrupt this blog-post with a very-special announcement...


*shifty eyes*

That's right, everyone. Nineteen days and 50,512 words later, my NaNoWriMo journey is over- at least until next year. Best get plotting, and celebrating this well-deserved end to an otherwise-crappy week. In the meantime, I think I'll give my hands a break and get back to drinking my wine... Now, back to our regularly-scheduled programming!

El Veeb.

/youthful enthusiasm

Saturday, November 12, 2011

The Awkward Sex Scene: You're Doing It Wrong!

Hello, hi!

I'm fully aware that it it is after 6 o'clock in the morning; other obvious things include my gender, age, social-security number, and the fact that I should probably be sleeping. But never mind that- this post is about the lost art of awkward moments, particularly those of the (semi) erotic persuasion.

Before I start rattling off random things, I should probably mention that I'm no stranger to erotic fiction- in fact, my 2007 NaNo project was probably the raunchiest thing I've written to date, even more so than the poems that I wrote (which I won't post here, since my mother reads this blog) before I had any idea what I was doing. Here are two very important tips for avoiding (or embracing) those awkward moments:

1. Erotic scenes involving new or unfamiliar characters are (usually) quite awkward. 

In the novel's early days, I once tried to write a love-scene between M. (the emo genius) and his girlfriend. I remember cringing, staring awkwardly at the page, because I just couldn't picture him in that kind of scene, no matter how hard I tried! I got used to the idea, but not until years later, when I'd gained a better understanding of that character and his personality.

Writing such an emotionally-charged scene (especially with a new set of characters) is, in my opinion, akin to going on a blind date with some random person you've just met on the internet. In other words, you really don't know what to expect- it's hard to tell how much chemistry (if any) there will be between the two of you, whether or not you're well-suited to one another, or if there's any long-term potential... The first meeting will likely involve a lot of awkward pauses, stuttering, and uncertainty, and the same holds true for the writing process, especially if you're inexperienced or new to the genre, which brings me to my next point.

#2: Awkward moments are totally normal!

To this day, I still curse the silver screen. If you've ever watched a romantic movie, then you've probably noticed that the racy bits are very formulaic: virgin/inexperienced couple gets it on in the most-unlikely of circumstances, complete with symphonies, fireworks, and the almighty O... Hate to break it to you, but the hot-shot directors behind these films are setting you up for disappointment.

The writing process does not work this way.  Most of us fail to realize that real first times are rarely (if ever) that perfect, and it's nearly impossible to hit the ground running, sans awkwardness and first-time jitters, unless you know your characters- inside and out. It can be overwhelming, especially if this is your first foray into the erotic-fiction jungle; but, as with the real thing, the kinks usually work themselves out (bad pun intended).


My point here is, you should own those awkward moments- enjoy them, make them yours, and let your imagination run wild, for you never know what ashes may rise from the dust... even if that dust is horrible and awkward, you'll probably find something in it worth keeping (don't quote me on that, lest you end up disappointed).

Uncomfortable writerly love always,
El Veeb.

Monday, October 31, 2011

The Countdown Is On!

That's right, folks. Just 15 minutes to NaNoWriMo 2011 (probably less, by the time I post this), and I'm absolutely raring to go! I realize I've been a bit of a slacker lately, but will try and update on my progress as often as possible (don't expect anything more than weekly, though, as 50,000 words is a lot to type in 30 days).

Update: UNB Faculty of Nursing presentation on domestic violence went really well, and I've submitted that same excerpt to the Writers' Union of Canada's short-prose contest. Grand prize is $2500, and possible publication... Wish me luck! 

Only 11 minutes left!

El Veeb.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

I'm Still Alive!

Kinda, sorta... Not really.

Between being sick, working, and prepping for the hospital presentation, I've definitely not been around much. Started a new job just before the Thanksgiving weekend- I'm now slogging it out at a warehouse 50+ hours a week, so I finally understand how it feels to live in constant pain. Fortunately, it does not involve office politics or dronery- I'd rather work myself to death than be bored to it.

Nonetheless, I would have completely forgotten about this blog, had it not been for a chance meeting with Lee Thompson, head of the WFNB, at the grocery-store this past weekend. He is, by the way, a wonderful writer- at the Find Yourself in Fiction workshop on the 1st, we had the privilege of hearing several excerpts from his novel in progress, and learned from him how not to be pasta. Yes, it's delicious, but boring without the sauce, and other accoutrements- a theory that Lee taught us to apply to our writing... No wonder I didn't see any ramen in his shopping-basket.

The most-interesting part of the workshop, though, was that we were able to get our hands dirty. Lee had brought in a rejected submission from The Galleon (his former literary journal), and let us dissect it- at first glance, the writing wasn't terrible; but, as we stripped it to the bare bones, I was able to understand why it had been relegated to the slush-pile.


Sadly, I am still without a real 'pooter. This one is on its last legs, though I'll (hopefully) be able to replace it before the start of NaNoWriMo- their site has been updated, so head on over to check out the new layout. I must get back to noveling, but will be back soon... that is, if the job doesn't kill me first.

El Veeb.

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Find Yourself In Fiction!

Hello, again!

Now that The Firestarter can officially hold a connection, without setting anything aflame, it's time for some more good news!

Awesome adventure #1: This Saturday (October 1st), W.F.N.B director and local author Lee Thompson will be reading from his novel-in-progress at the Riverview Public Library, followed by a workshop. The reading starts at 1 pm, and is free; the workshop, Find Yourself In Fiction, costs $40 and will run from 2-4 pm.

Awesome adventure #2: The hospital recitation has been confirmed for October 24th, and I'll be reading from my novel-in-progress as part of a presentation on family violence. I've got 30 minutes to fill, so I'd best get to work.

Awesome adventure #3: The Writers Who CARE campaign begins next week. For those who are in the area and are interested, please contact Kathy-Diane Leveille, via her website.

Awesome adventure #4: National Novel Writing Month is just around the corner- if caffeine, sleepless nights, and speed-writing are your thing, check out NaNoWriMo.org for more info. I also applied for a position as an ML (Municipal Liaison), so those of you in the Moncton/Dieppe/Riverview area may see more of me... Lucky you. :)


Signing off,
El Veeb.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Dancin' With Words, and Bad Techno-Romance: Parte Deux.

Ooh, finally!

I've been dying to get on here since Saturday afternoon, but d'you think that my laptop (a.k.a. The Firestarter) can stay connected to the 'net for more than 5 minutes? Not frickin' likely.

The 'pooter is on the fritz again- in fact, the BF has just informed me that he purchased it with a cracked motherboard. Way to go, Travis. Anyway, moving on to the fun part...


Topics ranged in scale from the minuscule (syntax/sentence structure) to the ginormous ('what is the heart of your novel?'), and many laughs were had. We learned how to emulate our writing role-models (it's not considered cheating- there is a difference, you know), shared personal stories, poems, and even read the prep exercises we'd done beforehand; I'll be posting mine shortly, so pop on over to Allpoetry and sign up to let me know how I did. :)

Once again, I cannot even begin to describe what a wonderful teacher Donna is. I don't know if I'll ever be able to do what she does, since I imagine that having to listen to a bunch of writers who, while we don't suck, are nowhere near as gifted as she is must get a bit exhausting. Of course, it's possible for a good teacher to transform even the most-inept student into a prodigy, so there's hope for me yet!

She was also generous enough to pose for a photo-op, so that I can put her picture in the same space as Atwood and Harris. Sadly, with the 'pooter out of commish, I can't post it yet... I do, however, assure you that it will be up as soon as the desktop is up and running. Sometime before Christmas, I hope.

Until next time,
El Veeb.

PS: Hospital recitation date is tentatively set for October 31st. More on that, as details come in.

Friday, September 16, 2011

An Evening Of Epic Proportions!

Good evening (though it probably won't be, by the time I'm done posting this), dear readers!

I've just returned from a 2-week hiatus, which I spent visiting family and friends in Ontario... Since a lot of the relationships in my novel are rooted in my real life (with the exception of bits like the one from tonight's reading, of course), I came back with a ton of ideas and hope that they will produce some potentially-publishable sequences.

But, enough about me... Onto the REAL reason for this post!

Tonight marked a new beginning for the Attic Owl reading series. Having had the entire summer off, it was with great pleasure that I joined the other writers- including award-winning author Donna Morrissey- for a beautiful supper at La Teraz. The meal consisted of risotto, asparagus, bread, and pork medallions so soft that they practically melted in my mouth, and was followed by a scrumptious strawberry shortcake for dessert... A big thank-you to Mario and Jackie, for not making us cook for ourselves. :)

Then, the fun part... the reading!

Since public speaking and I don't mix, it was incredibly nerve-wracking to open for someone like Donna... Still, Chapter 2 (M's first part) was well-received, and I managed to stay upright for the entire recitation. Sharing part of my 8-year work-in-progress, which had never been read by anyone but my mom, was a bit like a coming-out party- both liberating and utterly terrifying, all at once.

One thing I did not anticipate, however, was the crowd's reaction. The novel was written for a younger (read: mid-teens to early twenties) audience, and I definitely hadn't thought that a group comprised mostly of older adults would react so viscerally to it... It was very unexpected, though it gave me hope for my future career- if they liked it, then I don't suck at writing... right?

Also worth noting: I received an invitation to read my excerpt at the Moncton Hospital, to a class that is studying the effects of family violence (a major theme in that particular passage) on children and teens. Psychology has always been a passion of mine, so I'm definitely amped-up about that (if the whole writing thing doesn't work out, perhaps I'll even have a future in it). Unexpected, but a great perk... More on that, as the details come in.

*boots ego out of the window closest to the 'pooter*

Of course, Donna really made this event special. She is amazing, on so many levels, and the first real writing role-model I've had who is more than just a name on a cover. Her advice has been invaluable, and she's a great teacher... I feel sorry for those unable to make it to Saturday's workshop, since you're missing out on a fantastic experience.

(FYI: my bookshelf has also just informed me that it's a tremendous honour to have a signed copy of Sylvanus Now on it, alongside Alias Grace and You Comma Idiot, and I agree with it completely).

Yep, I talk to my bookshelf. Clearly, bedtime was a few hours ago...

Sadly, I still have to wake up in the morning and attempt to find a normal, soul-sucking, 9-5 job- preferably something that involves as few human beings as possible (unless they're writers) and doesn't suck... I guess that rules out office dronery, any position that requires me to cook stuff, and everything else. Just thinking about it is exhausting... yawn.

Until Saturday,

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Bow Down To My Awesomeness!

Okay, so... happy dance time!

Just got some great news from Lee Thompson (the director of our wonderful WFNB) yesterday afternoon: on September 15th, two days before the workshop of awesomeness, Donna Morrissey will be reading from her latest book, What They Wanted, at La Teraz. It's a cozy little banquet hall on Church St., and I can't think of anyone I'd rather share the space with for a few hours on a Thursday night than a group of writers. :)

But it gets better...

Lee also said that they'd wanted a local author to open the festivities, and guess who they picked? Me! Isn't that just spiffy? Seriously... How awesome is that?

I'll be reading a short passage from the novel (yes, THE novel)- the one that Donna herself told me had "better be written exactly like [the piece you wrote in class], or else you've gotta go back and rewrite every, single darn line" Naturally, I'm excited to show her what I've done with it, and that I've taken her advice.This means that I expect you, if you're in the Moncton area and you love me, to be there- I'll make another post when I get a full itinerary for the evening.

Off to gloat some more!

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Humour For Writers/Save P & E!


Today is August 24th- female protag K's birthday (were the novel in real-time, she'd be 24 on the 24th)! Therefore, I shall commemorate the occasion by sharing these websites for writers; they're scathingly-funny, and let's just say that, after reading the posts there, you'll be glad that those queries weren't yours. Or, if they are yours, then I can't help you.

Miss Snark (inactive since 2007, but still worth reading)

Also, just found out that Preditors & Editors is being sued for trying to protect us writerly folk against vanity presses, scammers and so-called "agents". They are currently accepting donations to mount a legal defense- visit their website to save writers everywhere from scamnation.

Onward, upward, & Edward (my uncle, not Cullen)!

Friday, August 19, 2011

The Long and Fruitless Summer Ends.

Never thought I would hear those words from my mouth. Hey, who didn't look forward to summer, at some point- we all had vacation plans, and fun things to do; not to mention a ton of free time to commune with family and nature; and dreaded going back to school (the place where I once pursued an edu-ma-cation).

Once we are adults, though, that all changes. Most of us now live alone (or with a significant other), don't have time for the holidays we used to take, and no longer have to worry about dodging the hordes of angry back-to-school shoppers at Wal-Mart; yet September still signifies a time of change. As a writer, this is a great thing- it means that the drought is ending, and that all of the adventures of aspiring writerdom that were on hiatus through the summer are coming back full-force! Among them:

The one and only Donna Morrissey is returning to Moncton for yet another amazing fiction workshop! This awesome event costs $85, and will take place on September 17th, at the Riverview Public Library... Having worked with Donna previously, I have to admit that I not-so-secretly adore her; she is very warm and friendly, funny as hell, and a wonderful teacher, so I highly recommend her seminar to anyone who's ever written anything, or wanted to.

Also on the calendar is the Writers Who Care project, the brainchild of local author Kathy-Diane Leveille and CARE International. For $50, donors will receive the opportunity to submit 50 pages of a work-in-progress to a published author for review- proceeds go to the Somali refugees facing starvation. Whether you are a published author and would like to give us writers some C.C., or a writer who'd like some feedback, I encourage you to contact Kathy-Diane through her website- it's a pretty sweet perk, and for a great cause. :)

Writing for change,

Saturday, July 16, 2011

A Much-Needed Optimism Break!

As my Facebook friends (what other kind are there?) have probably seen, I've been oddly-chipper lately- very odd, considering that I'm at home wearing sweatpants, doing laundry, eating ketchup chips, and playing around with Audacity, instead of working on my novel. I have, however, been on a total writer-high, ever since I self-published Happily Ever Afterlife (click here to preview and/or purchase- hint, hint), and ended up posting this thing on Facebook that my wonderful sister, Cat, thought sounded like it should be a coffee-break. So now, it is one- let the puke-worthy awesomeness perk you up, too!

Off to spew some more potential genius (and finish the laundry)!

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Support The Arts: Buy This Book, Like, Naaaaaow!

No, not the novel... That's still a (disappointingly-stagnant) work in progress; the summer hasn't been very kind to my muse, or conducive to adventures of aspiring writerdom. In fact, I was dying to go to Sheree Fitch's workshop in Fredericton last week, but it wasn't to be- I had to be at work, to find out whether or not I would have a job, come this week. Oh, the perils of contract work... If this book ever gets off the ground, I'll pay someone to do my thinking for me; until then, I'll do my time, just like everyone else.

Anyhow, the good news:

My amazingly-talented Auntie Barb recently published a book of poetry, via Blurb.com, called Blind Thoughts; not to be left out, Yours Truly attempted a similar project. The words & photographs are all my own work, so I'm very excited to put it out there. Since the preview-widget link won't work here (though it's supposed to), you can preview the end-result & purchase here instead.

So, yes... Buy this book, & win a lifetime of hugs & cookies. Come on... graveyards, poetry, the beautiful dark... what's not to love? My wallet and I thank you in advance. :)

With love/avec amour/con amore/s laskou,

Friday, June 17, 2011

Attic Owl Reading a Hoot!

Here's a tip: when among writers, one must do as writers do. If you're an introvert, like me, this means sharing your work, pretending that you're totally at-home in front of people and not about to commune with the floor of the banquet hall.

Fortunately, neither I, nor my lunch, spent any time bonding with the carpet. I was fourth, out of fourteen writers/readers, one of whom I'd met previously, at Donna Morrissey's workshop, and met a ton of cool people- superheroes, broken hearts, and the female posterior were only a few of the themes touched on tonight, and I'm honoured to have had the opportunity to participate in such a fantastic event. I also hope that Lee Thompson will now remember me as someone other than the girl who can never remember to attach files to her emails!

I also have a new respect for James Joyce, whose work was read aloud at the end of the night (The Dubliners is exactly the kind of stuff I love to read), by a woman whose speaking-voice held me for the entire six-page excerpt.

Tomorrow night, I'll be helping one of the girls I met at the reading to set up another event similar to this one, except that we'll be choosing and reading works by famous black poets; the event takes place at Kimberly: the Studio, on Archibald St. in Moncton, and includes poetry, a film-screening, and even dancing! What's better, this can all be yours for only a $5 cover-charge, so come & join the party!

Write on,

Sunday, June 12, 2011

And Now, For Something Completely Awesome.

Ranty post over.

Despite the fact that AP is currently sucking the life out of me, there are a few bright spots in this self-inflicted torture:

1. Awesome new novel idea!

-Just about everyone who knows me, whether online or in real-life, knows that I dislike the fantasy genre (save for Harry Potter, and his amazing author, J.K. Rowling). That said, I've been playing this awesome game recently, and have been inspired by characters I've created there; the ensuing attempt at fantasy will be my NaNoWriMo pet-project. Sure, it's 6 months away (okay, 5), but what better excuse to plan, plot, & block?

2. More epic adventures of aspiring writerdom!

-Yes, it's true. I will be participating in the Attic Owl poetry-reading at La Teraz on June 16th. The fun starts with a dinner at 6 pm, followed by poetry at 8, so those of you in the Moncton area should come out and join the party- to sign up for the mailing-list, or for more info, contact Ed and Elaine, our great & fearless leaders.

All's good in the 'hood,

Immo vs. Emo: The AP Upgrade.

Holy lack of postage!

I'm almost sad to see May go... After all of the epic adventures I had that month- Fryefest, Donna Morrissey, Trimedia N.B, Youtube fun- it's going to be a tough act to follow! I can't believe it's gone already!

To add to this ever-growing frustration is the AP upgrade- since I'm not posting there (I can't- I'm staff, and don't have the same rights to free speech as everyone else), I shall let it be known that:


That site has been my home away from home (away from home) for the last five years, and I'm seriously thinking about leaving. I've cancelled my gold-membership, given up on posting anything, and just can't find the energy to do my job properly. Were I not so emotionally-invested in the place, I'd have already left- I've opened accounts on other sites, including Deep Underground Poetry and Writerscafe.com (they have agent listings there, too).  I've also discovered the AAR Database, which is a great tool for writers- even if I'm not writing at the moment, I can still attempt to market the damn thing.

Onward & upward, I suppose.

Sunday, May 29, 2011

Awesome Novel Trailer!

Two posts, you ask? Oh, yes.

Following the last post's obvious fail, K., M., and I have come to a mutual decision that I should never attempt to write a script, ever again. Then again, it's partly my fault- there is no guitar-solo in Act Five (it's actually in Act Four, but M. wasn't having any of it and is now being quite uncooperative). Fortunately, this trailer:

did not require me to manage any annoying characters, or deal with M.'s endless fits of emo. It did, however, require a great deal of patience- editing the clips, timing everything just right, and countless crashes almost put my poor Task Manager out of business! But it's done, so watch & enjoy!

With love/s laskou,

Life In This Corner, [Un]Scripted.


Fade in-

Closeup of a pretty outdoor cafe on Bank Street. K. and M. are standing outside, drinking coffee and chatting about whose life sucks more.

She scares me, you know. That part, 
where that thing happens? Not fair!
What has gotten into that author of
ours, M.? She used to be so nice!

I don't know. Last I heard, she was
planning to send this thing off to an
agent, or something- how could she
leave us alone? I might break a nail!

Just then, THE AUTHOR appears. She is in her mid-20s and not bad-looking; she is carrying a brown bag and a binder, and takes a sip of her diet Coke as she approaches them.

Hey, you guys.

What do you want now?

Let me guess... They hate us. 
Everyone does. It must be because
I'm so hardcore. No one gets me.

Whoa, you guys... What's up
with all the negativity? I was
just going to tell you what an
awesome time I had at the NB
Film Co-Op's screenwriting class.

That's awesome! I've always 
wanted to be in a movie!

Just what your big head needs, K.
You're nuts, and so is Ms. Author-
Lady. Nothing good ever happens 
to us... Why is that? Because you

(points to The Author)

are a sadist, and clearly hell-bent
on exploiting us for fun and profit!

Wait a sec. Look, Author Lady...
I'm glad you had fun. Even though
I whine about most of your plot
and really don't like sharing the
stage with a spotlight-hog like M.,
we've had some good times. I'll 
definitely be in your script... 
if you'll have me, that is.

Of course, K. You're pretty cool,
and I'd love to have you... and
M., too, if he changes his mind.
He'll probably warm up to the idea
when he finds out that there's a 
guitar-solo for him in Act Five.

Really? I think I'm in love,
Author Lady... Sign me up!

I knew you'd both see things
my way. I must be going now,
but I'll be back to check in
later. Peace out, you two!


Now, where did I put that pencil-


Friday, May 27, 2011

Epic Adventures of Aspiring Writerdom: The Movie.

Well, not exactly.

The title of this post, however, is half-true- I'll be attending the Trimedia Atlantic screenwriting workshop, with Chris Fulton, tomorrow at 11 a.m. This will surely come in handy when I decide to bring K. and M.'s story to life, in a way that doesn't involve Windows Movie Maker and/or The Sims; after last night's/this morning's adventure, I'm not sure I want to look at either one, ever again (I probably will, anyway).

Write on,

K. and M.'s Youtube Dance-Party!


Yes, it is after 6:00 A.M. I have been awake all night, working on this lovely, little video- since I've already spent the last 6 months talking about my characters (and how awesome they are, of course), I may as well put faces to names, right?

Making this video was equal parts amusing and annoying- one scary power-failure, 3 Windows Movie Maker-initiated crashes, and tons of lost data later, I hereby present you with the end-result:

K. and M.'s Happy Dance!

Naturally, I am completely and utterly sick of hearing that song now. ;)

Dancing along,

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

To Write Love On Her Arms: Do The "Write" Thing.

As a writer, it's important to be passionate about things- and people. With our words, we can make a difference in many lives, and we don't need some fancy degree that, in all likelihood, will sit around and collect dust for years on end, in order to do so.

One such cause is the post-title. Having created M, a character who, like many people that I know and love in the real world, openly struggles with SI and suicidal thoughts has really opened my eyes to the issues faced by both people like him and their loved ones. As someone on Allpoetry once told me, in response to a poem I wrote: "You have an understanding of [self-injury] that I didn't know someone who's never cut herself could have".

In all honesty, my experience with SI came when Sarah*, a good friend of mine at the time, called me one night and said, "I need you to come over, right now". I was both awed and repulsed by both the physical (blood, the deep cuts on her arms) and the metaphysical (her motives and emotions) aspects of that whole night and, at first, I really didn't understand why anyone would want to do such a thing. Now, I feel as though I "get it", even if only a little.

It's an issue that I feel strongly about, hence my decision to join the TWLOHA street-team; signing up is free, and it's in support of a cause that is very close to my heart. To answer the call, click here.

Remember, there is ALWAYS hope. If you (or someone you love) ever feel like hurting yourself, it's important to realize that it's NOT your fault- everyone makes mistakes, and feeling this way does NOT make you a bad person. If this post stops even one boy or girl from going down that path, then my job here is already done.

Stay safe,

*names have been changed.



S.A.F.E. (Self-Abuse Finally Ends)
What Not To Say To Teens With Depression.
What Is Cutting?
How Do I Help A Friend Who Cuts?
How Can I Stop Cutting?
My Friend Is Talking About Suicide- How To Help.
Youth Suicide Prevention.
Light For Life/Yellow Ribbon Project.

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Dead Author Shirt Has Arrived!

Yes, it has- I ordered it a few weeks ago, after meeting Margaret Atwood (it's one of her designs) and it turned up in my post last night around 3 p.m. Here it is:

See? Without us, those agents (editors, booksellers, etc.) would not have jobs!

To all of the aspiring writers out there, who are going through some form of this process with me, I wish you the very best. Keep following your dreams!

Gelato calls!

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

More Epic Adventures of Aspiring Writerdom.

As anticipated, Donna's workshop was a total blast! All of us (14 women and one man) had one helluva time learning how to combine fiction and truth- to make our characters so real and flawed that they are, in the readers' eyes, like old friends. The exercises opened our minds and helped us to see that even our antagonists are human, somehow- take M, for instance. He's as whiny and annoying as they come, but there's a part of him that's real (and lovable), too- the awesome Lynn Casey and I talked about this over lunch, and the ensuing conversation was more amazing than even our cheeseburger-meals!

I love meeting other writers- hearing their stories, getting to know them and the passion they feel for their own projects. Assuming that we all become literary phenomena (sooner, rather than later), I will buy a copy of everyone's published work- including some 60 copies of my own, which I will display proudly whilst admiring my own artistic genius. Gotta have a sense of humour!

The most-important thing I learned today, though (besides that writers are awesome- d'uh), was rediscovering my voice. When we shared some of our work (exercises we'd done in class), I read a poetic prose-piece that I'd written about Ron/my bro-in-law, and Donna said:

"That's your voice right there. I hope that your entire novel is written like that because, if it isn't, you're going to have to rewrite every, single line!"

Did I mention that I love writers?

Off to rewrite every, single, damn line of that manuscript- it's not going to write itself, after all.

Signing off,

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Fiction Is Fun!

Yes- yes, it is.

Anyone who knows me will attest to the fact that I hate mornings, with a fiery passion. But tomorrow is different- at 9 a.m., I'll be going to a 6-hour fiction workshop with Donna Morrissey, the award-winning writer of such books as Kit's Law and Downhill Chance, at the Riverview Library. Having spoken to her a few times by email, I've gathered that I'll be making at least one very-cool acquaintance! Who knew that Moncton was such a great place to be a writer?

Definitely worth getting up early for.

Monday, May 9, 2011

Honey, I'm Home!

Yes, we are back in business!

I managed to get my six-year-old fire-hazard of a laptop running, so I'm not completely stuck. In lieu of the novel, however, I've been working on a series of short stories based on it- the idea is that it will:

1. Produce some potentially-publishable sequences of events that may or may not appear in the sequel's final draft. Some neat characters and subplots have already resulted from this process. :)

2. Ward off writers'-block.

My 'pooter is in the shop as we speak, and should be back any moment, so I'll turn this thing off, lest it torch the apartment.


In alphabetical order,
this is K, L, and M. signing off.

Saturday, May 7, 2011

My Ongoing Bad Romance With Technology.

...And that's the way the cookie crumbles.

After Frye Fest, it was expected that I might return to my writing with a renewed vigor. Sadly, it wasn't to be- my computer died this morning, leaving me with no games, no music, no internet, no novel (sigh), and no blog (double sigh). Fortunately, I was able to sneak onto a library comp for a few minutes, so K, M, and I will let you all know how we are doing, come Monday (hopefully).

Until then,

Monday, May 2, 2011

The Literary Goddess (Not Me... Yet!).

First of all, thank you to Rachel (my wonderful photographer-friend) for allowing me to see how fat I've gotten. I hope that this picture never surfaces until after I'm famous, and the press can airbrush to their hearts' content... Until then, I'm working on it- honest!

Of course, the point of this post is not that I'm getting fat, but to show off the picture! This is me, with Margaret Atwood at the Capitol Theatre in Moncton- she is one amazing gal, a real class act, and I'm so lucky to have met her!

Now that you've seen the literary goddess (well, both of us- haha) in action, I'll go back to doing crunches and muttering some form of encouragement to myself as I attempt to continue reading You Comma Idiot (which is excellent, so far) while doing said crunches... If that isn't dedication, then I don't know what is.

Goodnight, world!

Sunday, May 1, 2011

Frye Fest 2011: My Trip To Writer-Heaven and Beyond!

So, it's official- Moncton is an untapped goldmine of literary awesomeness!

After spending the day at Chapters, I attended the Frye Festival's meet-and-greet, which featured all sorts of Canadian writers, both big names and some newly-published ones. Since I'm painfully-shy in crowds, it took some guts, but I finally got to networking! Here are a few of the awesome people I met today:

Susan Juby

She is an adult- and YA-fiction writer from BC, who moved to Toronto (not far from my own hometown of Mississauga, Ontario) at the age of 20. This trailblazer also taught me a lot about query-writing, as well as possible pros and cons of breaking the rules (including unsolicited excerpts, for example) and that it's all about marketing: "Whether or not your book is any good doesn't matter, as long as you can market it well."

 Helaine Becker

A successful writer of children's books, she also had a lot to say about putting myself out there. When I asked her about "networking for introverts", which was how I'd gotten talking to her and Susan in the first place, she had this to say: "Go to workshops, go to seminars and places like this- take a plane home to Toronto, and go to the literature festival. Get practice."

This is a picture of me with Doug Harris, the bestselling author of You Comma Idiot. We started talking titles by the punch bowl, which ended in him giving me a copy of his winning query-letter and teaching me how to sign my future masterpiece. He said, "when your book gets published, you can scratch out your name on the first page and sign there. But, if you like the person- and I like you- you probably want to sign in a bigger spot." Inside my copy, he also wrote this:

"To Laura- I hope that you enjoy the book, but more than that, I truly hope that you never give up on your writing dreams. All the very best."

I was surprised at how down-to-earth he was! We had a great chat, and having met him in person will make reading his book twice as awesome.

I'll also be posting a picture that my friend Rachel took of me with Margaret Atwood at the Capitol Theatre. Margaret gave a presentation on Northrop Frye and mythology, but also talked about her own life and work- even at 70-odd, she is a very funny and intelligent lady. While she signed my copy of Alias Grace, I asked her if she had any words of wisdom for an aspiring writer; she recommended her book Negotiating With The Dead: A Writer On Writing, saying that "it's not exactly a resource, but I hope that you find some encouragement in it. Just keep at it, and don't ever give up".

The world needs more events like this; more writers, and more Canada.

Off to read my autographed masterpieces, and fill out my volunteer-form for FryeFest 2012!

Friday, April 29, 2011

Margaret Atwood, and the Book-Signing of Awesomeness!

First, there's the Frye Festival. As the site says, it's "Atlantic Canada's largest literary gathering"- rough translation: mecca, for reader/writer-folk like me.

As if that weren't enough, my friend Rachel and I got tickets to the interview with all different writers, including awesome fellow Canadian, Margaret Atwood! She is like the Lady Gaga of Canadian literature- it's impossible to set foot in any bookstore or writing seminar, without seeing her work, or hearing about her. Her website is full of great advice for aspiring novelists (such as, say, Yours Truly), and I'm bringing in one of her books for the signing- maybe she'll even tell me who her agent is!

Mucho stoked for Saturday night!

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

On Slovakia, Lesbians, and Words That Rhyme With Orange.

 Finally, after close to 3 days of staring at my computer, I managed to write two whole sentences. Getting this far has been a stretch of late, so I'm proud of myself- two sentences may not seem like much to most people, but it just so happens that every single, itty-bitty one counts, when you are a writer.

In truth, I owe those two sentences to the wonderful music I've been listening to lately. Learning the language helps, but speaking Slovak to yourself (with an Italian accent, no less) doesn't help much, especially if the first words you learned in it were "pork" (bravčové), "ugly"(škaredý/a), "secret" (tajný/a), "tomato" (paradajka), and a few obscenities. That said, playing with Audacity (my voice-changer toy) and the sound-recorder also works wonders- it gives my characters a voice, and it's easier to be 'in the moment' with them that way.

On a brighter note, I've recently discovered (thanks to Horkýže Slíže and their wonderful L.A.G. song) that Slovak has a lot of great words that rhyme with "lesbian" (that must mean that there's a word out there, other than door-hinge, that rhymes with orange, right?).  Unlike most of the English-speaking world, I also know that Slovakia's 2010 Eurovision song is called Horehronie and, as M. says, has nothing to do with prostitutes.

Aiming for two more sentences before the night is out!

Writer's Blocked, Me Arse!

It's one-thirty in the morning; boyfriend is passed out drunk, and I am staring at my manuscript, trying to make it write itself. Not going to happen.

If I were awesome, like K., I would put my kick-ass imagination to good use and write an entire chapter about myself and how great I am. Alternately, were I like M. (read: moody, selfish, and practically bipolar), I'd drink myself into a stupor, then complain about how much my life sucks and write about that instead.

On that note, maybe I should just go back to my old job and stick my head in a fryer for inspiration- hey, it worked for both the title AND the tagline of this blog-thingy, so don't knock it 'til you've tried it. That, and it's a lot easier to channel your inner emo when your life actually DOES suck and you have something to whine about, like the cold and crappy weather we had last week- perfect for sparkly vampires; not so much for me.

Off to stare at the computer screen some more,

Friday, March 18, 2011

This Writer Has Been Wresurrected!

Hello, hi!

My apologies for slacking. Now that I have a (semi-regular) job, with steady hours and pay, and am not sick anymore, I'm back at it. Back to this, at least, since my little Atticus (code-name for the novel) is still going under the proverbial knife for some major reconstructive surgery- more commonly-known as editing.

I just wanted to say that I love this little hole in the wall (and the internet), and am looking forward to posting here once again. :) I will also be contributing regularly to Our Pink Thoughts, a blog that celebrates both women and eco-friendly lifestyles (K would love it!), and is owned by Catherine Brindley-Jordan. Click the link above to visit her page, or check it out on Facebook.

Until next time,


Also signing off:

^_^ (this is K.)

>_< (and here's M., the emo genius)

Saturday, February 12, 2011

Silly Writer- Hope Is For People With Realistic Goals.

Somewhere inside, my inner M. is sobbing openly.

I'm trying to be realistic about this. Rejection is a fact of life and, although I'm okay with them, I'm also counting down Jack King's projected twelve- that means there's a 'yes' out there somewhere, with my name on it, right? Of course, if I never hear back from anyone (or if it takes an annoyingly-long time for that agent to respond), how am I ever supposed to know whether it's the idea itself that sucks, or maybe something else?

My theory- it's the query.

Admittedly, I learned how to write one from a sample that I found on a published writer's website; I then filled in the blanks, and used her example as a template, which I'm beginning to think was a bad idea.  I recently read that agents want your query to show off your personality, as well as that of your novel- upon rereading my own, of course,  I have discovered the missing ingredient: ME!

This letter needs more ME! There's not enough of ME (or K, or M, or anyone else) in it- of course, that doesn't mean that I'm going to write them a note in my own blood, threatening to kill myself if they don't accept the book, or attempt to bribe them with cake and fluffy bunnies. It simply means that I'll change things around a bit, so that the proposal better reflects ME and sounds less like a template- I'm an Aquarius, and everyone knows that we Aquariuses love templates, just as much as we love surprise root-canals and the occasional UTI. You get the picture.

Sorry, K- no cake or fluffy bunnies for you, today.

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Badge of Determination #2.

Chalk another one up to the Wall of Rejection!

It's a little disappointing, but only because it's not even the book that's being rejected at this point- it's the idea itself, the query, and me/the writer. Clearly, one of the three of us needs fixing, and I'm not sure which one is the problem- maybe it's all of the above.

Back to the drawing... er, writing... board!


Acceptances: 0
Rejections: 2
Manuscript requests: 0

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Wanted: Inspiration

As you can see, my lack of posting has (probably) made it obvious that my inkwell is drying up. When you're a writer, whether well-known or not, this is never a good sign.

 That all said, my main excuse for slacking is that I'm looking for a job (again), as I'm not getting many hours at the current one anymore and need something to supplement my paycheques there. If I could make money from writing on the side, that would be great (some literary journals pay $50-200 per article/poem/thing), but most of them take anywhere from 6 months to a year to reply- that doesn't help my cause right now. EI is a godsend- not just to me, but to anyone who lives away from home and needs to eat.

One of the things keeping me the most busy right now is editing the book... again. This was something that I was hoping to avoid, at least until I had enough rejection letters... I mean, badges of determination... to attest to the fact that the thing sucks; however, I did myself in by writing that awesome query-letter. Talk about shooting yourself in the foot- both literally, and in context.

It's interesting, though, how my characters have told me what to do over the years, rather than the other way around. For example, E. (M's girlfriend) was annoyed that she never got to tell her story, so I gave her a few chapters to herself; F. (K's uncle, and M's dad) has always been a meanie, but he somehow turned into a total d**chebag, who does all kinds of not-so-nice things to his family; and then there are B., D., (E's bffs), J. (all three are in M's band), T. (K's older sister), and L. (T's bff) who insisted on ruining every, single sappy scene that I wrote, with either their antics or ignorance.... Not fair! I am the allmighty Author, and you'll all do as I tell you, from now on!

(Not likely to happen- it never works that way.)

Clearly, these are desperate times.

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

What's In A Name?

A lot, actually.

"If people have to read your book to know what the title means, you're not there yet..."

I found out from Writer's Digest magazine that my book's title needs to change. Fine, since I was thinking about it anyway, but really... In theory, it's like renaming your kid, after s/he has already been Anne or Kyle for seven years, and then having to remember to call him/her by the new name that s/he has chosen for him/herself- no doubt something like Gwendolyn, or Atticus. Needless to say, I've tried a few different ones, and nothing seems to fit as well as the original- except, as shown above, some long, fancy one that is three times the length.

Admittedly, I hated my name as a kid, and didn't grow into it until I was 16, or so. Still, I was born, and will probably also die, with that name and I sincerely doubt that I'll be changing it to Alexandra or Catherine (apologies to my sister!) anytime soon. It may sound more fluffy and romantic (great, if I wrote romance), but I've kinda grown on 'Laura'- it's a strong name and, as a book-title also should, represents me (the hapless subject-matter) and what I'm about.


In other news, the agency that I've been dying to pitch to has finally reopened to submissions, and I stayed up all night writing a killer query. Thing is, I'm beginning to think that the only thing I've killed with it is myself- while accurate to the plot, it made me find a couple of holes in my manuscript that need filling in, and I now have to rewrite the whole thing before I even think about submitting... Argh!


Off to give my little Atticus another makeover,


Monday, January 24, 2011

What They Say Is Greek To Me.

... More like Japanese, or Hindi. You catch my drift.

So far, I've spent the morning looking at submission-guidelines for literary magazines and journals (start small, I say!)- after all, these agents are going to want publishing credits before they accept anything I've written. Needless to say, I now feel like a dyslexic person trying to crack a binary code- completely and utterly confused.

(Or, as M. might say, "lost in frustration". Yep.)


The rejection-letter I received on Friday is now hanging on my wall- I've heard they make great scrap-paper. :)

Friday, January 21, 2011

Heaven Knows I'm Miserable Now...

...But, despite what the title of Andre Jordan's biography (and this post) suggests, I am not miserable at all. That's just the name of the book that I picked up at Chapters today, and it is rip-roaringly funny- this guy is a genius, and I love his funny little drawings.

Got my first formal rejection today- it reads:

"Thank you for allowing us to consider your work. Regretfully, this is just not right for us, and we wish you all the best in your literary endeavours (sorry, endeavors- the agency in question is American)."

Short. Sweet. Generic.
Chalk one up for the Wall of Rejection.

Still, rather than letting my inner M. (read: emo prodigy and super-sensitive literary genius) loose on the world, I'll let K's awesomeness take over- she would never let something so simple as this get her down, and that's why all of my future readers (except the emo-y ones) will like her better.

In all, can't really complain- as far as rejections go, suspense writer Jack King says that the average writer sees at least 12 of them, before getting accepted. So, not to despair just yet- rejection, at least, is a form of acknowledgment; someone must be paying attention. :)


Acceptances: 0
Rejections: 1
Manuscript Requests: 0

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Sordid Tales of Aspiring Writerdom: The Redux.

This entire week has been a total waste of life.

Being sick has done nothing to help further my career. I've been meaning to do productive things, like join up with the WFNB (Writers' Federation of New Brunswick); instead, I've spent it curled up on the couch, either sleeping or drinking lots of tea whilst crying into my cough-suppressant- not a pretty picture, but I'm sure that every aspiring writer has done it.

Last night, I started rewriting my final draft. I just feel that there's so much of the story that hasn't been told; so many important details left out, due to the perspective/narrative style I'd chosen to use; and that some of my characters have so much more to offer than what I've given them time to say. Don't ask- they tell me what to do, rather than the other way around.

I haven't been checking my emails all that much, either- I think that a part of me has preemptively admitted defeat. That's the M. in me talking, though- my inner K. is kicking me in the ribs right now, pushing my buttons and telling me to quit being a whiny bitch; sorry, K.


Now, back to sobbing into my Nyquil.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Query-Wh*ring: You're Doing It Wrong!

Okay, so I lied.

Between sleeping, sniffling, and hacking my lungs out, I've been more than a little occupied with things other than my writing. I figure that recovering will give me a bit of a break- at least long enough until my submissions can be considered 'exclusive' again.

Being off from work, of course, I've had time to think about things like query-letters- and the different, conflicting advice that everyone and his/her cat is hitting me over the head with. Looking back on my previous submissions, I've followed each agency's individual guidelines- I even used a template from a bestselling-author's website as a base- and not done anything more or less than what's required: synopses, keeping my rants to less than a page... You name it, it's there. But my novel-writer's-market guide tells me one thing; then, Writer's Digest says something else, and the Writers' Union of Canada, and so on... ad nauseum.

Naturally, I'm beginning to despair more than I should at this point. I realize that it's only 3 weeks into the new year- this means that I still have another 49 (or thereabouts) to find a home for this book, but it's hard not to be disappointed when no one seems to be checking their emails. I was tempted to take my Wall of Awesome/Wall of Rejection signs down today, but I didn't- it would feel too much like admitting failure, and it's too early for that.

As "E" (M's girlfriend) might say: "You can either get a grip on yourself and see this through, or let the negative energy eat you alive- your choice."

Way to go, E.


I choose all of the above.

Saturday, January 15, 2011

Down, But Definitely Not Out.

Greetings, all-

As my lovely fellow Facebookers may or may not be aware, I've spent the last two days sick with something or other. Fortunately, things seem to be getting better- except for the funny, little hissing-noises that my chest makes when I try to breathe. Not exactly my idea of a good time.

So, it's Saturday again.

At the very least, my two-job nightmare has ended. This means I'll have a ton more free time to concentrate on the novel- query-whoring, mostly, and leafing through my copy of Writer's Digest- when I'm not slaving over a hot grill, that is.

Good thing I'm not like M. What with all the cuts and burns I end up with on a daily-basis, it's a surprise I'm not, like, totally emo- as a writer, my odds of being killed, dismembered, or otherwise injured on the job will significantly decrease.

In closing, I quote M. once more: "Life sucks, and then you die."

Sure feels that way, sometimes.

M., you always were the eternal optimist- why don't you do something constructive, for a change? Oh, that's right- people might actually start to like you, and that just wouldn't work with your image, 'cause you're totally hardcore.


I believe I've just been Emo'ed.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Good News Travels Fast...

...Sadly, so does whatever I've got at the moment.

Just got home from work/trekking across town in a snowstorm; I've been sick since boxing day, and haven't really had any time off to recoup- this does not bode well for my paycheque, or my writing career.

Nonetheless, this is a celebratory post, for two reasons:

1. A shoutout to M. and C. (a.k.a. Emo Genius and K's BFF) whose shared birthday was today, January 12th- were the novel in real-time, they would have turned 27 and 24, respectively.

2. I met a fellow writer today at Chapters, and she gave me the name of an agency (the Sarah Freeman agency, I think it was) that is actively seeking new/unpublished writers and is interested in her book; she is a non-fiction writer, but she suggested that I check it out, anyway- if it hadn't been so busy at the store, I would have gotten her name.


This is the most development I've seen all week- now, for some tea and a nice, long snooze.


Tuesday, January 11, 2011

To Query, Or Not To Query...

... That is the question.

With the lack of responses, it's hard to decide what my next step should be. I've pretty-much decided to stick with exclusive submissions, since they typically garner a faster reply (so I've heard, anyway), but I have no idea how long I should wait before calling a submission "exclusive"- different agencies have different timelines, so I'll probably wait 8 weeks (the max. amount of time it usually takes an agent to respond to a query) before submitting again. Then, I shall call it an exclusive submission, and it shall be mine, and...

Enough with the Finding Nemo references, already.

Right now, I'm frustrated and (as you probably noticed) beginning to despair a little- still, I have more sense than to give up. As C. says, in Chapter Three:

"I know, it sucks. But, just think about it- one day, the whole world will know who we are!"

Way to go, C.

Keeping my fingers crossed for a better tomorrow.

Monday, January 10, 2011

The Monday Blahs, and Other Sordid Tales of Aspiring Writerdom.

So, today was a total bust.

Today was supposed to have been my day off, and I had planned to spend it researching different agencies (and possibly query-whoring, though I'd best stick to exclusive submissions for now)- sadly, it wasn't meant to be.

I'd been looking forward to today, and I now have absolutely nothing to show for my efforts- what a total disappointment/epic writing fail. Oh, and no emails, either... I'm beginning to suspect that even the spam-bots hate my face.

In the meantime, I'm just praying to things that I don't believe in, and hoping that they give me the energy/patience to see this through.

All hail the Literary gods!



Acceptances: 0
Rejections: 0
Manuscript Requests: 0

Saturday, January 8, 2011

A Long, Frustrated Sigh.

So, it's Saturday.

Nothing ever happens on Saturdays- the agents are all out of the office, probably enjoying some grade-A steak and a bottle of expensive wine before a trip to the cottage for the weekend; a trip during which they probably won't check their emails. Perhaps I should do the same- stop compulsively checking my emails, I mean.

 Be back on Monday.


Acceptances: 0
Rejections: 0
Manuscript Requests: 0

Friday, January 7, 2011

The Waiting Game, Part One

Once again, not even spam... I'm starting to think that I should stick to exclusive submissions, from now on, as well as to wonder if these people are even reading my emails.

I realize that agents are busy people- after all, they receive hundreds of queries per day, and might not be able to answer every, single one within the allotted time-frame, but since when is no response the new rejection? Why would they advertise on their websites that, "we reply to every query we receive", if they have no intention of ever replying?

As K once said: "They’d have to be mentally-retarded or something to not accept you.” 

Way to go, K.

This is doing nothing for my nerves.

Thursday, January 6, 2011

New Hope For The Novel In Question

...Or, in LOLcat-speak, "hope- I can haz it nao."

Since I write teen fiction, I occasionally read stuff by other authors, just to see what's out there- I've been worried about my content being too mature for the younger half of the 12+ age-group, you see. But then, I read "After", by Amy Efaw (who is, by the way, brilliant), which is for the same audience and is about a pregnant 15-year-old who dumps her baby in a trash-can and goes to jail.

And I was worried about M.'s endless fits of emo.

If they can read about dumpster-babies and crime-scenes, they can handle a little bit of blood.

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Thar, She Blows!

Yep. And does she ever.

Once again, not even spam in my inbox. I'm kind of disappointed, and starting to lose hope- the bookstore isn't keeping me, so it seems that the rest of my life is about to become the sad story of that writer-chick who just couldn't get out of the food-business... Like Steve Dublanica, except that a) he's a dude, and b) Waiter Rant was actually published.

As M. might say: "Life sucks, and then you die."

Way to go, M.

Maybe someone will redirect me some Twilight fan-mail, by mistake... that would keep me amused for a while.


Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Once Upon A Time, Life Really Sucked.

So, yeah.

After yesterday's query-whoring adventure, a total of 7 different agencies have my cover-letter (I guess I lied in that first post). They are:

-Anne McDermid & Associates
-Artists and Artisans Inc.
-Jane Rotrosen Literary Agency
-Andrea Brown Literary Agency
-the Amy Rennert Agency
-Victoria Sanders & Associates
-RLR Literary Agency
-Levine Greenberg agency

My inbox, however, tells an entirely-different story. Every day, I check my emails several times, hoping for a change in development, but all I get is junk-mail- even that's a stretch, since it seems that even the spam-gods aren't interested in sending me anything.

The only email I've gotten in the last few months (that was totally worth-opening) was the one with the cute pictures of my nephew, Joshua- he's a total cutie, and I could write a book about the many reasons that he is the sweetest baby ever. Perhaps said book would garner a better response than this one has thus far.

Now, for some cheesy pop-music to make it all better!

"I can almost see it-
that dream I'm dreaming,
but there's a voice inside my head saying,
"you'll never reach it".

Every step I'm taking,
every move I make feels
lost with no direction.
My faith is shaken,

but I've gotta keep trying;
gotta keep my head held high..."


I just quoted Miley Cyrus lyrics.
Shoot me. NOW.

Monday, January 3, 2011

Free to a Good Home

I feel like a serial dater.

So far, I've spent the day looking at agent-websites, rewriting query-letters, and attempting to find a match for my novel. In all honesty, it's like searching through a million profiles on Lavalife for Mr. Right (which I have, admittedly, done), without any success- I'm trying to stay optimistic, but it's not easy when the odds are stacked against us new writers. 

From most of what I've read, getting published is like getting laid- one can't get it unless they've had it, but how are those who've never had it going to get any? Of course, in the infamous (and case-appropriate) words of Moliere: "Writing is like prostitution- first, you do it for love; then, for a few close friends, and then for money." 


If that's the case, then I suppose it would be easier to just prostitute myself... I mean, engage in shameless self-promotion. As "C" (female protag K's best friend) would probably suggest: "We’ve got some convincing to do, and a little bit of cleavage never hurts.”

Way to go, C. 

Even a rejection-letter would do wonders for my self-esteem right about now.

Welcome All...

...to my spiffy, little corner of the Web! Since you're here, why not sit down and stay awhile?

As the description states, I am a 20something writer (well, sort of), who dreams of publishing a novel before the year is out- I've already got the book, and the balls; all that's missing is the agent, and the ensuing celebration. :)

My life right now is a little less than glamourous: I work two jobs- one as a prep cook, and the other at a bookstore, which I plan to buy when I'm a famous writer... Until then, however, I need something to pay the bills (the least-fun part of growing up), since I can't exactly write this if I'm homeless and without the Internet.

Anyhow, onto the more-fun part...

THE NOVEL!!!!!!!

My wonderful characters (I'll call them K. and M. for now) have been in the works for seven (yes, 7) years- "K", the female MC, is a quirky and spirited teenager, with a sharp tongue and a bit of a nasty streak, who dreams of becoming a superstar-athlete. Male pro/antagonist "M" is K's musically-talented and romantic, albeit hot-headed, cousin, who comes from a violent background and spends most of his time trying to convince people that he's not emo.

"Really. I'm hardcore."

Way to go, M.


As of now, I've queried (I think) 8 different agents thus far. I'll be posting any rejection/acceptance letters that I receive here, as well as rants about life as a (n aspiring) writer in general. Hopefully, anyone who's ever written a novel (or tried to) will be able to relate- feel free to comment, or to share your own experiences in the comments below!

Wish me luck!

Laura VB.


Acceptances: 0
 Rejections: 0
Manuscript Requests: 0