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Irish connections and good news

I shall enjoy getting used to saying it: "I'm a McElderry author."

Margaret K. McElderry Books, an imprint of Simon & Schuster, is going to publish my midgrade fantasy novel. The one I struggled to finish. And I can get used to saying this too: "My editor is the lovely Karen Wojtyla."

For all this loveliness, I owe untold thanks to my sweet and savvy (and lovely) agent Tracey Adams.

I also owe a small nod of gratitude to whatever magic resides in the campanile at Trinity College, Dublin:

Trinity College, Dublin campanile

I was lucky enough to visit in September, just after Tracey sent my manuscript out into the world. (Note to writers: I highly recommend a fun vacation to keep your mind off a manuscript sitting on editors' desks!)

Apparently, campus tradition says that it's bad luck to walk under the campanile if you're awaiting exam results, or other important news. So my husband made sure I walked around it. The rest of the tour group laughed. Little did they know!
The luck of the Irish? I believe! 
(Hey! Isn't McElderry an Irish name....?)

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Poetic pottery

I love to collect ceramics, and here are two of my favorites, because they're literary:

A Louisa May Alcott quote on a little mug I ordered from England via the Internets.
Very sweet!

A little hand-painted cup encircled by a poem (the sentiment of which is pretty much my mantra):

I meant to do my work today
But a brown bird sang in the apple-tree
And a butterfly flitted across the field,
And all the leaves were calling me.

--Richard Le Galllienne (1866-1947)

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Hidden New York, and other stuff

Some people go to New York City for the shows. Some go for the museums.

The next time I go to New York, I'm going here

On other topics:

1. It's the time of year for royalty statements, wherein there was good news and bad news.

Good news: My novel has earned out! This is a very satisfying milestone for me.

Bad news: Apparently my first book, Sacagawea, is out of print. And no one told me except in royalty statement code. Sigh.

2. Am waiting for news on the next book and it's funny how many "waiting"-themed songs have been floating through my head: "Anticipation" (Carly Simon)..."Needles and Pins" (some really old group)...and other (sigh) oldies that I'd forgotten I even knew--until now.

  • Current Mood
    hopeful hopeful
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The new gadget reveals...a reader

Ring the bells, sing a song, jump for joy, all you lovers of the civilized mind: The long-form fictional format (e.g. the novel) is alive and well.

And residing in an iPhone.

My older son, the gadget-lover and recent college graduate (go Red Foxes!) got his iPhone 4 the other day. A cool gadget in lots of ways, but by Day 3 what was the app Tom liked best?

iBooks. He had downloaded a whole slew of public-domain titles, include most of Arthur Conan Doyle.

And by evening he was engrossed in (gasp!) A BOOK. A Study in Scarlet, the first Sherlock Holmes mystery. Tom is planning to read all of Conan Doyle from beginning to end. And he was following me around the house, reading me his favorite passages. Commenting on how readable a 123-year-old story is. How much he's enjoying it.

This is a kid who's never had anything against reading, but tended to save it for when all the electronic alternatives have been removed or lost their battery power.

So is this the secret? Put the pages on the electronic gadget?

Fear not, book lovers! The book is not dead. It's just becoming pixillated. 

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Fear of finishing

I've read 3/4 of The Tale of Desperaux twice now. I still don't know how it ends. I don't want that book to end. (Yes, I'm in denial.)

This happens all the time with books I really love (though eventually I finish them, with the above exception). It's a bad habit of mine, and now I realize I do the same thing when I'm writing.

I'm 3/4 of the way into my WIP. I really like this book. On the one hand, I can't wait to finish it, and send it out into the world.

But I'm having the hardest time finishing. Oh, I know how it will end. I know pretty much everything that has to happen.

I just can't seem to write it, because then the story will end.

This is a problem.

Does anyone else ever have this problem? Please someone tell me YES!?
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