Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Another Mega Book Gossip Time

I'm excited to gossip about the books and audiobooks I've been spending my time with.

I met the author of TALKER 25, Joshua McCune, on the interwebs a few years ago. He'd comment on my blog posts and I'd comment on his, and a writerly friendship developed. Not only is he a fantastic writer, but has an excellent editorial eye.
Goodreads has a summary of the novel here.
I love the concept and pacing of this novel. As I was reading I kept thinking it was kind of like PLANET OF THE APES crossed with ERAGON, but set in an alternate militarized reality of the contemporary midwest.
I also always get wrapped up in stories about humans vs animals. My heart ends up in my throat and my brain screams, why can't everyone just get along? Ok?
This story is intense. So much so, I had to put the book down when I reached the end of Part One. I just couldn't believe the predicament the characters and the dragons were in. Thankfully, I found the courage to jump back in and finish it. Can't wait for Book 2!

Mindy McGinnis, the author of NOT A DROP TO DRINK, happens to be an agency mate. And I'm so honored to be in her company. This is an amazing book.
In fact, on October 19th, NPR interviewed Mindy and some other authors about dystopian worlds in which water becomes the most valuable commodity.
I always gravitate towards character driven books. Every character in NOT A DROP TO DRINK is so fleshed out, and you can see how by the end of the book everyone irrevocably changes. It's a truly excellent read.

Goodreads has a summary of the novel here.

IN A HANDFUL OF DUST is the sequel to NOT A DROP TO DRINK. And I am not going to put the link to the Goodreads summary here because it kind of gives away (in my opinion) what happens at the end of NOT A DROP TO DRINK.
IN A HANDFUL OF DUST released on September 23rd, which happened to be the day I was in NYC and met our agent, Adriann Ranta. And I remember Twitter was buzzing with the release, and rightly so.
My friend and I often talk about good books that fall flat in the end. How the endings just aren't satisfying. IN A HANDFUL OF DUST has one of the most satisfying endings I've read in a long time. And it was an absolute delight to go on another adventure with the characters from NOT A DROP TO DRINK.

I'm humbled to say the author of GIRL OF NIGHTMARES, Kendare Blake, is also an agency mate. This book is the sequel to ANNA DRESSED IN BLOOD.
Not many people know this, but ANNA DRESSED IN BLOOD is responsible for me signing with Adriann. After I finished listening to the audiobook of ADIB, I was so blown away by this unique ghost story, I turned to the interwebs and read everything about Kendare. I discovered Adriann was her agent and the agent of another writer friend, Ron Smith. So ANNA played a hand in me sending out my query letter.
But, now let's talk about the book! I don't want to say too much because I don't want to give away anything from the first book. But let's say I found myself sitting in my car long after I reached my destination just to hear what happened next to Cass and the crew in this next installment.

Saturday, October 4, 2014

Loving a Flooded Genre

So I'm searching for my next book idea. And they say you should write something that you're passionate about. Well, I LOVE fantasy books! I love dragons, vampires, wizards, werewolves, people with super powers, pigs that can mind read, cats that can predict the stock market.
I just eat it up!

So one would deduce that I should probably write that next big story about the house cat that took over Wall Street that falls in love with the vampire next door that has to hide his dragon in the basement to keep the werewolves from eating his exotic pet. Yes, that is what one would logically deduce I should write.

The problem is that there are sooo many stories about magicians and dragons and vampires. And I know that it is possible to take an over done concept like a vampire and to execute that story so uniquely (like the COLDEST GIRL IN COLD TOWN by Holly Black) that it becomes something hot and exciting. But to have that unique vision about something that has been written about so much is not an easy thing to do.

A writer that has a stupendous ability at doing this is Maggie Stievfvater. Have you ever hear her Ted Talks? Well, here it is.


Ok, I got a little off subject there. Because Maggie's talk actually doesn't have anything to do with what I'm talking about here. But, why I like to bow down to Maggie is she is so good at coming up with unique fantasy ideas. One of my all time favorite books that she wrote is THE SCORPIO RACES. It's about man eating horses that come out of the sea. And people race these dangerous creatures. Well, it's about more than that. But, still, what a cool concept.

So wish me luck as I search for that next amazing idea in a flooded genre that I love.