Posts Tagged ‘Lissa Price’
I always like to start of the recap with some of Lin Oliver‘s Conference stats. I’ll be honest, it’s soooo much funnier when she lays them out, but I do still think they are interesting even when she’s not delivering.
The 41st Annual SCBWI Summer Conference had…
46 States (Yes, the Dakotas and a few more were missing again!)
411 Published and the remainder Pre-published
171 Males (Yes–we stole their bathroom again.)
122 Undeclared (They had more bathroom options than anyone LOL!)
This year’s opening ceremonies included an Olympic theme and we even had a
torch match to help kick things off. And kicking things off meant we got to hear about TIMELESS books from the great Arthur Levine.
The question was asked…Should we look at a book with timelessness in mind? Do you have an answer? Opinion?
For this Keynote, we looked at the books that spanned Arthur’s career–the ones he felt were timeless.
*MIRETTE ON THE HIGHWIRE
*THE ROUGH-FACED GIRL
*THE GOLDEN COMPASS
*WHEN SHE WAS GOOD
*HOW ARE YOU PEELING?
*THE SNOW DAY
Throughout the whole conference, this theme was revisited in many other keynotes and sessions, all with differing opinions on what makes something timeless, but almost everyone seemed to agree that it couldn’t and shouldn’t be predicted.
*PREPARE FOR SHAMELESS PLUG*
On that note, I will not be so bold as to say that my friend Mike Jung‘s up and coming Arthur Levine book will be timeless–but I’m pretty sure that GEEKS, GIRLS AND SECRET IDENTITIES is going to be made of awesome!!!!!
*BACK TO OUR REGULARLY SCHEDULED PROGRAMMING*
The second keynote of the morning was NEVER ABANDON IMAGINATION by the very funny Tony Diterlizzi.
Tony started out with an amazing quote…
“If you want your children to be intelligent, read them fairy tales. If you want them to be more intelligent, read them more fairy tales.”
― Albert Einstein
Ummm how did I live my life not knowing that one?
But here are some of Tony’s best lines too…
*Imagination has to be instilled at a very young age. In my opinion–when they pop out!
*Each year, as I get better at my craft, I’m another year further away from the kid in me.
*All that Dorothy, Wendy and Alice ever wanted was to go home. There is a longing to be in a place that makes us feel safe and loved.
*I’m a Jedi. (On Star Wars love…all the best ones are *wink*)
It’s Apocalypsie Time!!!!!
One of my buds from the debut group of authors called the APOCALYPSIES is the lovely Lissa Price, author of STARTERS. And she had a wonderful breakout session called HOW TO APPLY SCREENWRITING TECHNIQUES TO MAKE ANY BOOK BETTER.
Lissa helped explain high concept movies and books.
*High concept is to be thought of as an internal phrase, not something we should be using in queries or throwing around with editors. It’s how we need to visualize our own work to make it very competitive.
*High concept creates an “ah-ha” moment in one or two sentences–often with a touch of emotion and/or irony.
Lissa then became hands on with the crowd, helping them to tweak pitches and first lines to their best advantage. She was also very clear that not all books are high concept and literary works can be equally as successful, but how they capture the attention of agents, editors and readers is very different.
And there may have been some Apocalypsie goofing around that Lissa had to deal with also LOL!
Next up was Sara Shepard talking about SCANDALS, LIES AND MURDERS: HOW TO MAINTAIN MOMENTUM IN A SERIES.
Sara is the author of the PRETTY LITTLE LIARS and LYING GAMES series. Here are some of her best bits…
*Know who your murder is before you set out.
*Always incorporate a red herring into the series.
*Leave a bit to chance. The narrator has to be a little bit unreliable, especially is suspicion is cast upon them.
*You have to be willing to change.
The next Keynote of the day was Patricia MacLachlan–REVISING MY LIFE.
I really didn’t take many notes, I sort of just soaked her up and enjoyed every minute of her speech. Aside from writing HILARIOUS!!!!! and putting hearts all over the page, I captured this one to keep…
Childhood is powerful–children experience life along side us. We are all children. The child knows all…
My next break out session was with Ruta Sepetys. I’m going to warn you. You are going to be hearing a lot about Ruta from me. I am going to refrain from gushing like a fool right off the bat, but consider yourself warned. You may want to come to the blog prepared for full-on-hero worship because it is inevitable.
Ruta–don’t hate me. I have many flattering pics of you and I fully plan to use them, but this one just captured how funny and accessible you were and it made me smile. This breakout session, MEDIA PREP: AUTHOR TIPS FOR RADIO, TV AND PRINT COVERAGE was part of the PRO Track–classes designed for the student who has different needs now that they are published.
I now have an endless amount of information to contemplate. Here are some of the broad strokes…
*Develop message points
*Distill them down to sound bytes
*Bridges allow you to communicate your message with a less than perfect question
*Pivots allow you to take something negative and turn it positive
*Never wing it…EVER!
The last Keynote of the day was HOW A DUMBASS LIKE ME GOT 100 BOOKS PUBLISHED by Dan Gutman. As you might imagine, this speech was funny, irreverent and very smart. Dan started off by giving us a list of advice starting with…
#13 Ignore all advice
#12 Join SCBWI (which negates number 13)
#11 Be persistent
#10 Try everything
#9 Don’t get stuck in a rut
#8 Become famous (like Madonna and then you can write anything and someone will print it LOL!)
#7 Find something really popular and then write something better
#6 Never write on an empty stomach (use paper)
#5 Break the rules
#4 Promote the hell out of yourself
#3 Take the Bull by the horns
#2 Use your strengths
#1 There is NO SECRET…when you do what you love, you love what you do.
Time for the Pizza Party and Book Sale honoring SCBWI Published Attendees. *yum and squee* Next year I’ll have pizza AND a book!!!!
Jodi Moore holding down the fort while Verla Kay had to step away. Seriously, doesn’t every one want to be Verla, mom of the Blue Boards?
Woo hoo!!! Got to meet fellow Apocalypsie Robin Mellom (Author of DITCHED) with her new MG novel THE CLASSROOM. Already loved DITCHED so had to get a copy of this one for me and the boys!!!!
I didn’t list the event times like I sometimes do, but in case you’re wondering…Jodi and I, registration and the Starbucks line were in full swing by 7:30 am and the Book Sale finished at 7:30pm. Somewhere after that hunted down dinner before I stayed up too late talking. For clarity, there was a quick break for lunch and I got to share a meal with my lovely RA for SCBWI Eastern Upstate New York–Nancy Castaldo. (Fun pics coming in future installments LOL!)
Don’t forget that I have an on going contest to win a pre-order of TOUCHING THE SURFACE right HERE! The contest will be open the whole time I’m recapping the conference. Stop over to win!!!
Are you tired yet? Any presenters that I’ve convinced you that you must see? Oh, my friend, you ain’t seen nothing yet! Be back on Friday with more.
CONGRATULATIONS to…*drum roll*…
Erica from The Book Cellar!!!!!
Erica will be receiving an ARC of STARTERS by Lissa Price, my very first signed bookmark for TOUCHING THE SURFACE, some additional Surface swag and some very tasty chocolate from my local chocolatier!!!! Yummy!!!!
I decided to give away a few extra TOUCHING THE SURFACE swag packages. Here are my winners…
*Jasmine Rose from A Room With Books
*Sara from The Book Life (Sarah has a beautiful bog-but didn’t have a button I could grab so be sure to stop over and check it out.)
*Celine from Forget-Me-Not
Thank you to everyone who participated and gave me wonderful suggestions about the best swag to have. Congrats to all the winners and feel free to click on their buttons to find out more about their wonderful blogs!!!
Stay tuned for Wednesday’s blog…I have something exciting coming your way. *rubs hands in anticipation*
So, before you go…Have you ever won anything in an online blog contest? What’s the best prize that’s come your way? What book would you absolutely kill to get an early copy of? Let’s go…spill the beans.
Woo hoo!!! I’ve got stuff to give away. Who wants it???
First, I have an ARC of STARTERS by fellow Apocalypsie Lissa Price…
Callie lost her parents when the Spore Wars wiped out everyone between the ages of twenty and sixty. She and her little brother, Tyler, go on the run, living as squatters with their friend Michael and fighting off renegades who would kill them for a cookie. Callie’s only hope is Prime Destinations, a disturbing place in Beverly Hills run by a mysterious figure known as the Old Man.
He hires teens to rent their bodies to Enders—seniors who want to be young again. Callie, desperate for the money that will keep her, Tyler, and Michael alive, agrees to be a donor. But the neurochip they place in Callie’s head malfunctions and she wakes up in the life of her renter, living in her mansion, driving her cars, and going out with a senator’s grandson. It feels almost like a fairy tale, until Callie discovers that her renter intends to do more than party—and that Prime Destinations’ plans are more evil than Callie could ever have imagined. . . .
Kimberly Sabatini’s Review of Starters
I was given the ARC of STARTERS at the New York SCBWI Conference and I can’t tell you what a lucky break that was for me. I am so excited to have gotten an early peek at this debut novel. My only complaint? Now I have to wait, for what is going to seem like forever, until I can read ENDERS and find out what happens after all those cliff hangers? *growls at Lissa Price*
Why do I love this book? Starters has amazing characters, a very unique setting and a super exciting plot. But the best part is that all these wonderful components blend together seamlessly. I felt the very same way when I read CINDER by Marissa Meyer. These books have mastered the art of story telling–they are the complete package. STARTERS reeled me in from the very beginning and thoroughly captured my attention and emotions.
So, what’s special about STARTERS? A lot–but one of my favorite things is Price’s integration of the elderly into her novel. Below the surface of heart-thumping excitement, I found myself pondering some deep and interesting thoughts about Price’s society and how it relates to our own. I love a story that has layers and depth. And I know I mentioned it earlier, but the CLIFF HANGERS are amazing!!! STARTERS is a complete and fulfilling book and it’s teasers are not gratuitous–they are exciting and well thought out. Thank you!!!!
In my humble opinion, this book will be a well deserved success. And making it even sweeter, I love being able to support my fellow Apocalypsies and Lissa Price has just made my job so easy. Congrats, Lissa–I’m expecting great things from you and if you ever want to let me peek at ENDERS–I’m available.
Here’s how to PREORDER STATERS
Want to read an EXCERPT OF STARTERS?
Join the conversation on FACEBOOK
You can also check out Lissa Price’s Website
And here is the STARTERS BOOK TRAILER!
Lissa Price is also on TWITTER.
The winner of this contest will also get some swag from me and it will include my new BOOKMARKS!!!! Want to see how pretty they are? They were created by the talented Jeff Allen Fielder and I loved working with him. I highly recommend him if you’re looking for someone to do your bookmarks. He’ll absolutely be making postcards for me too!!!
Here’s the front…with room for me to sign it if you’d like. How crazy is that??? Seriously, you’d be the very first person to have me sign anything. I’ll be blushing the whole time that I do it!
And here is the back with a sneak peek at my *heart squishing* blurb by the lovely and talented Daisy Whitney–the author of THE MOCKINGBIRDS and it’s sequel and new release THE RIVALS.
Yes, I get a little mushy every time I read it. *Pulls myself together* But the BIG question is…how can you win all this and maybe even a little piece of chocolate??? Leave a comment below with your contact information included and tell me and Lissa what your favorite kind of swag is? I’m starting to plan my swag bag and I’d like to invest in things that that are really useful and enjoyable to readers. Feel free to get creative. This contest will run from today (Monday, February 13th) until midnight EST on Friday February 17th. One winner will be picked at random. Good luck and PS…I give good chocolate.
One of my favorite parts of the conference is Lin Oliver‘s stats and joke during the welcome.
I’ve come to look forward to them. So with out much ado…the 13th Annual New York Conference stats…
*1,148 people in attendance (a sold out show)
*301 were published authors and the remainder are pre-published because that’s how we role in the SCBWI
*392 were women, 56 were men and 700 were UNKNOWN. I met a few of the 700 and they were confused but very nice.
*There were 867 writers in the house and 485 illustrators
*19 different countries were in attendance, including Aruba and Jamaica. Yes, you are correct if you guessed that Lin was singing.
*We also had 49 out of 50 States in attendance but because South Dakota actually showed up this year, Lin was stumped as to who was dissing us.
You have to have the right kind of person to follow Lin Oliver and we were not disappointed.
9:00-10:00 KEYNOTE: TURNING REAL LIFE INTO FICTION – Chris Crutcher
Here are some of my best walk-aways…
*If you want to make life important…shorten it.
*The language of grief, the language of hard times–they need to be told in their native tongue.
*We tend to write for the censors instead of the people who are reading our books.
*The truth you know is the one that will get you published.
*Jesus had an older brother named Esus! Who knew? Chris’ older brother, that’s who. Bwahhhh!!!!
10:15-11:30 PANEL: CHILDREN’S BOOKS: TODAY AND TOMORROW” FOUR EXPERT IMPRESSIONS
Moderator: (LO) Lin Oliver
(RP) Ruben Pfeffer, Agent, East West Literary Agency
(BM) Barbara Markus, Strategic Innovations Advisor
(JF) Jean Feiwel, Senior Vice President and Publishing Director, Feiwel and Friends (MacMillan)
(NP) Nancy Paulsen, President and Publisher, Nancy Paulsen Books, (Penguin)
Question: Significant changes in publishing? (LO)
*(RP) Much more energized and commercial publishing going on.
*(BM) We have bestseller hardcover children’s books that sell better than adult books.
*(JF) The closing of Boarders the changes in Amazon, self-publishing etc…
*(NP) Social Media. Remember, you can use it to help support local bookstores.
Question: How do you characterize the market? (LO)
*(JF) In the last 10 years you could publish just about anything. The market has forced a correction–in order to be effective you need to know your core strengths.
*(RP) Because we publish fewer titles, we have to publish titles better.
***GUEST SPEAKER ALERT!!!!***
Yes!!!! It’s Henry Winkler!!!! *heart squish*
Henry is dyslexic and he was wonderfully funny and thoughtful in his speech but I simply can’t capture his talk effectively, but I would like to add this link to a recent interview he did about his dyslexia. Henry Winkler on The Doctors.
11:15-12:45 1ST PRE-ASSIGNED BREAKOUT SESSION—YOUNG ADULT FICTION with Tara Weikum, Executive Editor, Harper Collins
Tara gave a brief history of YA and some thoughts on it…
* The OUTSIDERS–wasn’t the first book for teens but it was the book that made people stand up and take notice.
*Printz Award launched in 2000
*YA is in a major state of flux. Editors ask themselves–What is different about this book from the others I have read? Do I LOVE this book?
*Teens want to read about what is important and relevant to them.
*Voice is different for every editor.
2:00-3:00 KEYNOTE: LOVE TRIANGLE AND FORBIDDEN LOVE–CREATING AND MAINTAINING ROMANTIC TENSION IN YA LITERATURE by Cassandra Clare
-Because it’s unsuitable or dangerous
-Epic love vs Indecision
*The kind of love story that is fun to live is not fun to read about.
3:15-4:15 2ND PRE-ASSIGNED BREAKOUT SESSION–REVISION with Cheryl Klein, Executive Editor, Arthur A. Levine Books (Scholastic)
*Revision requires courage and love–be kind to yourself.
*Take the truth and put it in a story that makes money. (the best of both worlds)
*It’s much more exciting to be in the action than talking about the action that is coming up.
*Write a synopsis from the enemy’s point of view–to show balance.
*SAID is transparent, it disappears–the other tags don’t.
*Keep a copy of everything
*Don’t let perfect be the enemy of good.
4:30-5:30 3RD PRE-ASIGNED BREAKOUT SESSION–THE NOVEL with Wendy Loggia, Executive Editor, Delacorte Press
*Take the familiar and raft a narrative that makes me see things in a new light
*If you have a clear sense of what you want to do–it shows in your writing.
*There has to be a consumer for your book.
*Keep your reader hooked.
*If something doesn’t feel natural to you–don’t write it.
*Be aware of trends, but if you’re writing to a trend it’s too late.
I also have to mention that Wendy gave a huge shout out to my fellow Apoclaypsie Lissa Price and her up-coming debut novel STARTERS. Of course I was *squeeing* like mad–out loud when she was talking about Lissa’s book!!! And it gets better…Wendy gave me the ARC she was reading from!!!!! I started it on the train and LOVE it!!!! Contest coming soon!!!! Thank you Wendy and Lissa!!!!!
And don’t think you can sit down now–it’s off to the Gala where they had *drum roll* a mashed potato bar with toppings!!! If I hadn’t died and gone to heaven, I would have taken a picture. But here are a couple shots from the night.
Kim and Greg Fishbone-Founder of the Class of 2k7
Kim and Lynda Hunt Mullaly-Class of 2k12
And of course, long after the Gala was over, I was still talking to old friends and making new ones in the lobby…
Hanging with my Simon Pulse peeps–Hannah Moskowitz, Kim and Michael Strother. <3
Yes, that is Chris Crutcher hanging out with us!!!!! Life is good.
I’ll be back on Monday with the final installment from the conference, but in the meantime, have a great weekend!