Monday, January 17, 2011

Get mad. Then fix it. And be jealous

Rachna @ Rachna's Scriptorium honored me with the Fair Dinkum award! This one has taken off since L'Aussie made it! Thank you so much Rachna! If you don't know her, you need to. She writes some awesome posts!

Liz Pezzuto @ 8-Bit Words gifted me with the Versatile Blogger award! Oh...I do love this one. And Liz is such an awesome blog buddy to know! Know her!! Thanks Liz!!

This is unusual for me. But I thought it would be educational for all of you to see what $70.00 worth of books looks like.
You're welcome.

It was a great weekend for using gift cards. 

And being interviewed! It always blows my mind when people want to know more about me. I always want to ask if they're high...But, you all truly flatter me. Thank you!

Abby, my fantabulous crit parter (whom I really want to send roses now. And money. And chocolates), just saved my MS from the flames this weekend. There I am, plugging in all the edits from the last round of critiques(from Abby herself) and it hits me like a 2x4.

I HATE THE BEGINNING OF MY NOVEL!! It's a year old. I'm coming up to the finish line. I'm almost done and ready to query and now...I hate it.

So I sent her a panicked email. And waited.

Just my luck, she worked all day and wasn't able to check emails till I had already stewed in my hate and desire to set it on fire for a good day.

And then she responds with...heaven.

All my tension...POOFT...

Because until she replied I had no idea what I hated. I just hated it all. The first 3-4 chapters, I just wanted them to die a horrible, painful death.

But she made me realize where I had gone wrong.Why it didn't work. (Lack of motivation for my MC to do what she needed to do. Yea I gave her a reason to think about it but not a reason to push her off the cliff, so to speak. A year ago it seemed like what I did give her was enough. Now, I know better. And I could tell it wasn't enough. Made me hate it.) AND, if that wasn't enough of a relief, she gave me a way to fix it!!( Hooray for awesome crit partners!!!(THANK YOU ABBY!)

But, it all made me realize something else: A year ago, two years ago I had no one but my best friend who I could email panicked. And, while I love her to pieces, she isn't a writer and would have only been able to reassure me that it wasn't garbage and...that's it. I would have felt better about it, after that, but I would have been no closer to solving the problem.

This blogger world of writers, where everyone I have ever met on here is awesome, saved my MS!

I don't like to brag, but this Monday I couldn't resist. I had to brag on my lovely book pile, and my incredible crit partner friend, and all the amazing interviews I was asked to do.

I just had to brag on how much you all lit up my life. And how much I sincerely care and appreciate all of you guys. I haven't met a one of ya I didn't like yet!

Thank you. Again.


  1. What a great post. The blogging world is great. So supportive and CPs are awesome. I know that feeling of the stewing of anger and hate with something.
    I just did a book shopping spree. So much fun. Looks like you got some great stuff.
    Good luck on the revisions and query.
    HAve a great day!

  2. So happy the CPs are so great for you. Always believe. There is always a solution. And all those books!! Jealous...

  3. CP's are a great thin to have, aren't they?

    Don't hate the beginning of your novel. I think you're a very good writer, and if you send in your query, it's sure to be published. :)

  4. Congratulations on the awards - you deserved them.

    How fantastic you have a crit partner, because they really can make all the difference. I think sometimes we become so involved and attached to our WIP, we don't think clearly.

    Good luck with the revisions!

  5. I'm suffering a green eyed monster attack because of you book pile! Makes a comment hard but I'll try.
    Congrats on the awards. They are well deserved.
    Always good to take a long pause before the burn. Glad you waited.

  6. Brag it up girl! You're deserving! Great pile of books and aren't betas THE BEST?!

  7. Congrats on the awards....

    And we are the best community! I have never found a more wonderful and supportive group of people.

    I'm so glad you're happy with your ms... YAY COLENE!


  8. Aw, love you too Colene!! I have to say I'm a little choked up right now :)

    And a little jealous! I want new books!! I did get the box set of Sarbriel a couple weeks ago...but I have a list of some new ones I'd like. I may have to crack down and get me some books.

  9. I could have written this exact post a year ago. Oh, wait, I pretty much did, lol. The opening is SO hard.

    Congrats on the awards.

  10. Free books and an awesome crit partner? So jealous! Good luck finishing up revisions!

  11. Wooooohooooo! Sounds like you are perfect cp's. :D

  12. A great CP can make all the difference in the world! Good luck as you get ready to query!

  13. oh, man! That's why critters are so fantabulous. I love it when that happens! Congrats on your wins, and best of luck w/your WIP! :o) <3

  14. Wow, what a pile o’ books! It’s great to hear your crit partner was able to help you out of your stew of opening hated. The blogging world is good. ;)

  15. GREAT pile of books! I'm copying down the ones I need to read (ok, well nearly all of them...) That should keep you busy! :) And it was an honor to interview and feature you on my blog! Congrats on the awards. And so cool that you and Abby have eachother - I'm sure that makes all the difference and wonderful that you two are spurring eachother on to publication (I see it happening soon, I really do!)

  16. You rock Colene...and so does this blogger community. Every once in awhile I meet someone who is all into themselves, but it is rare.

    Congrats on the awards and buying all those books and best of luck with your wip.
    N. R. Williams, fantasy author

  17. Hooray for crit partners (and $70 worth of beautiful books). I firmly believe that a good beta reader/critique partner is vital to any author's success. Having someone with a keen eye and good story sense, who can point out the flaws in our manuscripts, makes all the difference.

  18. This blogging world is awesome and what would we do without crit partners.

  19. Glad she was able to help you! My test readers found all sorts of screw-ups in my first manuscript.

  20. Gideon, everyone is so awesome(you included!!) Thanks so much!

    K.M. She is all that and more for sure! I don't think we(writers) could do it without them!

  21. A great beta is worth his or her weight in gold! And that is an impressive pile of books. :)

  22. There's nothing like a trip to the bookstore to make me happy:) I love the pic of your new books. I see a lot in there that I can't wait to read.

  23. Congratulations on your awards!

    Great pile of books. :D

    It sounds like you have one awesome CP!

  24. That pile of books looks like HEAVEN! I got happy just looking at them. I can't wait to read your reviews and recommendations. ;-)

    Yay for crit partners. I'm tearing Dark Forest apart and smashing it back together again starting today. Just added a new character over the weekend and have to figure out where she fits in.

    Still tossing around the idea of Skype Critiques for us YA authors who are miles apart...

  25. Look at all of those books!! They're all so pretty! And YAY for crit partners. I swear, we'd be lost without them, right? :)

  26. I'd be jealous except Abby and I are going to start trading sometime in February and I'm even more excited now! She is so awesome!

    NICE BOOKS! The Looking Glass Wars! I really enjoyed the first book! You'll have to let me know if the others ones are good! I have SO mnay books that I bought over christmas (lots of giftcards and I spent a lot of my own money too!) in anticipation of my 2011 reading
    g goals (so far I've read 9 and am almost finished two other books - though those are for two of my english classes and I am NOT enjoying those at all and I'm worried about trying to find one positive thing to say about them for next monday....)

    Your books look really pretty! I kind of want to take a picture of all the books I got in December but that would require taking them off the shelves.... I've been thinking about it but... I'm really lazy. :P

  27. Good crit partners are so important. That is so awesome you have one. I treasure mine and couldn't get by without them.

    I love your cat sanctuary idea. ;)

  28. What a great post Colene! It's awesome to have a crit partner you can count on, not to mention a wealth of writers out in blog land always ready to lend support, advice, and a helping hand. :)

    BTW, loving that big pile 'o books!

  29. Aww.. what a wonderful post! :) Congrats on the awards, and the interviews, and having such a fabulous CP, and that you were able to get back on track.

    You've definitely earned bragging rights! :)

  30. It's so NICE to be able to have someone be your rock in the writing world.
    WOW, so that's what $70 worth of books look like. And yes,thank you. :)

  31. Hooray for having a great crit partner! What would we do without them?
    And congrats on your Fair Dinkum award!

  32. That's awesome you have a great crit partner! That's what the relationship is all about! Your pile of books looks lovely. /jealous

  33. I'm glad Abby saved your manuscript from a fiery death! Sometimes we're so close to our stories, we can't see the simple things that are right in front of us.

    Thanks for sharing your photo! There's nothing so lovely as a fresh pile of books. Some of those have such gorgeous covers, especially Bleeding Violet.

  34. Aw, sweet. Yay Abby and yay you for recognizing the need for change! I am glad you got it figured out. Time is a good thing for our projects... I kind of had a beginning-of-book crisis a while back, too. Sometimes we just need time for the story to evolve.

  35. A great CP is worth all the chocolate in the world. :D

  36. Yayy! This post is so uplifting :) I'm glad your CP helped you see those points in your story. I just received feedback from my CP yesterday and it is helping me a lot. Love this blogging community! Good luck with finishing your novel.

  37. GREAT to have someone able to spot the problem, and right when you needed it! (or within several hours anyway) and CONGRATS on all those great books!

  38. I love your bragging - and those books - sigh! So pretty, so lovely!

    And don't you just love those *aha* moments?

  39. Just last year, I teamed up with two gals who I used to be in a writing group with. We are now critique partners and it is AWESOME. We are all on the same "wave", so to speak, and I know that if I need help, they're just an email away. It's been a true God-send.

    And there's nothing like a huge stack of new books. Enjoy!

  40. I always had a non-writer friend reading for me as well. She had great advice but, it wasn't enough to get to where I wanted to be. Thank goodness for awesome writer friends! Good luck with your changes!

  41. I am drooling over your pile of books!

    I second you on praise of Abby - she is pretty darn awesome!

  42. This is all so fabulous!!

    Your pile of books? I could just dive into it...

    So glad you have an awesome crit partner to help you out! It does take another writer to help us out of those writerly ruts.
    Congrats on the awards, the interviews and the
    positive changes to your MS :D


  43. You know who's awesome? You're awesome. :) Just had to let you know if you didn't.

  44. Those are some lovely books! And aren't CP's great? Especially ones that won't hold back and tell you why something isn't working.

  45. Kindros, you are a doll! Thank you!

    Melissa, YES! Honest Crit partners are essential. Can't be honest, why be a CP!? Thank you!

  46. I love our support system we have going! Yay! I'm glad your CPs pulled through. And I just picked up a handful of books at the library. I always feel like I'm getting away with something because they're free!!

  47. yay! i love when a bad beginning turns good. it's the hardest part to write. no, wait. it's the middle (i know because i'm stuck in the middle of two middles and instead of working through them...hello! i'm here!) i'm excited to hear about your querying process! christy

  48. You have a right to brag. Your book pile looks wonderful. I loved The Adoration of Jenna Fox. :-)

  49. Ooh, congrats on your awards!

    Love the look of your book pile. I've read Bleeding Violet, it was pretty cool :)

    That's so wonderful that Abby could help you out. It's awesome to have fantastic critique partners to support you. And for her to put her finger right on what needed to be fixed, impressed much!

    Can't wait to read your book when it's published, it's going to rock. Seriously!




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