What’s Up Wednesday

“What’s Up Wednesday” is a fun weekly meme started by my friends Jaime Morrow and Erin Funk. From Jaime: It’s similar in some respects to the Currently… post, but it’s been whittled down to only four headings to make it quicker and more manageable on a weekly basis. You’re invited to join us if you’re looking for something to blog about, a way to let your blog friends know what’s been going on with you.

Awesome, right? Here’s what’s up with me this week…

What I’m Reading: I finished The Sea of Tranquility by Katja Millay over the weekend, and it was indescribably amazing. This story and these characters tore me apart, then slowly — slowly — put me back together again. My full review is coming tomorrow, but *spoiler alert* The Sea of Tranquility is a definite new favorite. Last night I finished Jessi Kirby’s latest, Golden, another lovely contemporary. Jessi is quickly becoming one of my go-to authors, and look how pretty her book is beneath its jacket…

Now I’m diving into Strands of Bronze and Gold by Jane Nickerson, a retelling of the Bluebeard fairytale. It’s interesting, different from what I usually read, but the writing is gorgeous and the concept is intriguing. We’ll see how it pans out.

What I’m Writing: I’m slowly immersing myself in my contemporary YA WiP again, the draft I’ll be focusing on for Ready. Set. Write! and hope to finish by the end of August. When I pitched this project to my agent, I shared the lyrics of the song that inspired it (still a secret!) and added this: …the story is basically the YA version of the song, with a lot of backstory and angst and tragedy, and it jumps back and forth from this night that’s inspired by the song, to all the events that build up to it. I’m aiming for something along the lines of Amelia Anne is Dead and Gone and Nobody But Us. To which my agent said: Proceed. Yay! My goal is to write at least 3,000 words a week. I know my limits when my girlie is at home, and I want to set goals that are reasonable and attainable, and leave lots of time for summer fun. That said, I’m hoping that once I hit my 3,000 word mark each week, I’ll have found so much momentum I’ll just want to keep going. 🙂

What Else I’ve Been Up To:

 
Need I say more? This girl is now officially a first grader!

I also met a HUGE running goal yesterday. I’ve been striving to get my five-mile pace down to 8 minutes per mile for months. That’s five miles in forty minutes for the math impaired (me). It’s also the Army Ranger Standard that my husband has told me all about. Well… YESTERDAY I DID IT. I very nearly threw up when I finished and I had to walk a half-mile before jogging the rest of the way home, but I totally rocked five eight-minute miles. So happy!

What’s Inspiring Me Now: Ready. Set. Write! is inspiring me, because it’s the perfect motivation for getting my booty to the couch and my fingers to the keyboard. And we had such an awesome response yesterday! Have you signed up yet? You can do so HERE. Trust me — it’s not too late to set your summer writing goals and show your WiP whose boss. As far as my WiP goes, the I’m finding the following images and words to be incredibly inspiring:

              

I can’t wait to get back to writing. 🙂

Tell me: What’s up with you today?

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59 responses to “What’s Up Wednesday

  1. Alison Miller

    LOVE the pictures of Claire! Congratulations to her on her kindergarten graduation.

    And have I told you how much I want to read your story? Those pictures make me want to read it more. 🙂 Good luck this week with your writing! Go, Katy, GO!

    Also, congrats on the running milestone! You are so inspiring!

  2. ZOMG, I LOVED The Sea of Tranquility, too! That ending has to be one of the best EVER.
    I’m super-impressed by everyone’s goals. Mine are more low-key, but I am so glad to be taking part in Ready. Set. WRITE!
    My girls (twins) just finished preschool. I think I’ll need a box of tissues for the last day of Kindergarten next year. Glad it’s a year off!

    • I’m so glad you’re joining us for Ready. Set. Write! Best of luck with your goals, and best of luck to your girls when they begin kindergarten. I had a hard time with it at first, but my girlie learned and grew so much over the course of the year… I bet yours will too!

  3. Dude. Five miles in 40 minutes is a CRAZY INSANE accomplishment. That’s hard, yo. You should be very proud!

    Kids grow up way too fast. It’s scary. 😦

  4. Congratulations to your daughter – she is so cute!
    You’re new WIP sounds interesting. So neat that it pins up to a song. That must have made it a lot of fun to pitch to your agent.
    It’s hard to get writing done with the kids home, but it looks like you’ve got the right attitude. 🙂

  5. Everyone is talking about The Sea of Tranquility … sounds really amazing.
    Ah, a secret WIP! I’m curious!
    You’re daughter is just so cute!! Love those pics 😉
    Congrats on your running achievement!

    • Oh, TSoT is SO AMAZING, Juliana. I’m doing a review tomorrow and, since I love it SO MUCH, I’m giving away a paperback copy. You’ll have to check back in and enter to win. 🙂

  6. Woo hoo to 8-minute miles! I feel queasy just thinking about running one in that time 🙂

  7. I am in awe of your running goal! So, so impressive!
    And I have to say the pitch for your WIP is fantastic. I’m hooked on that alone. I’m excited to hear about it!

  8. So impressed with your running goal, congrats!!! Your WIP pitch is freaking faaaantabulous – seriously, Amelia Anne meets Nobody But Us? SIGN ME UP. I am ready to read 😉 Congrats on your girlie being a first grader – first grade is so, so fun! And gaaaaaah I NEED to read Sea of Tranquility; don’t I?? Will have to hunt it down tomorrow…

    • Thank you, Rachel! Now, hopefully I can do those comps justice. 🙂 Before you hunt down TSoT, check back here tomorrow. I’m posting a Bookanista review and, since I loved this one SO MUCH, I’m going to give away a paperback copy. You’ll have to enter to win!

  9. Holy cow. Five 8-minute miles? I’d die. I’m so impressed with you. I’m excited to be writing buddies again this summer! Our goals are pretty similar 🙂

    • Thanks, Liz! I’m excited to be writing buddies again too, and I can’t wait to find out more about the project you’re going to focus on. Are you all unpacked and settled in at your new place? Have you found the perfect writing spot yet?

  10. That’s pretty groovy that your WIP was inspired by a song. My contemporary historical Bildungsroman Little Ragdoll was also inspired by a song, The Four Seaons’ “Rag Doll.” It’s kind of neat to take the basic story of a song and expand it into an entire fictional world.

    Congratulations to your daughter on her kindergarten graduation. Because of some undiagnosed issues I had, I wasn’t allowed to attend my kindergarten graduation for fear I’d act up or wouldn’t participate. They’d probably never get away with that today.

    • Thanks, Carrie-Anne. I find music super inspirational, and it was really fun to find a song that just fit so perfectly into a story idea. 🙂

  11. Very interested in your WIP! I’ve heard that flashbacks are bad, but I personally like them! I guess I just need to figure out how to write them in a better way or something.

    Congrats on your running! That’s great!

    • Thanks, Zanne! I’m hoping I can pull the flashbacks off, though really, the story is more of a then-and-now format, so the “flashbacks” are just as much the plot as the current stuff — if that even makes sense. 🙂

      Can’t wait to hear about what you’re going to work on this summer!

  12. Ooo, I like that poem and that picture! Also, I am SO curious about this WIP you’re working on and the song that inspired it. I love when inspiration comes from things like that. I think you’ve set some great goals for yourself for this week. I think I seriously overshot, so I have my work cut out for me this week. O_o I’m going to have to check out THE SEA OF TRANQUILITY and GOLDEN soon. They both sound really good! Love the pictures of your girlie. 🙂

    • Thanks, Jaime! Check back here tomorrow… I’m posting a Bookanista review of THE SEA OF TRANQUILITY and, since I loved this one SO MUCH, I’m going to give away a paperback copy. You’ll have to enter to win!

  13. I’m dying to read Golden, heard many fabulous things about it. Congrats on your running goal! I’m still at a 10 min mile pace, but someday I would love to get to 8, that would be fantastic.

    • GOLDEN was really amazing. I think I liked it even better than Jessi’s debut, MOONGLASS. Now I just need to hunt down IN HONOR. Best of luck with your running. I bet if you keep at it, you’ll drop your time quickly. 🙂

  14. Oooh, the Sea of Tranquility sounds so intriguing Katy! I can’t wait to read your full review. I also am so totally blown away by your running accomplishments. Go Katy!! That is awesome and amazing, and I am continually inspired by all that you do. Also, love the start and ending pictures of your girlie in kindergarten – what a neat idea and her proud graduation smile is the best. I am also excited beyond words for your new WiP – it sounds rich and complicated and beautiful. I am cheering for you ❤

    • Thanks, Tem! Hard to believe you’ll have a kindergartener of your own in a few months! Time goes too fast when it comes to our kiddos. I’m going to give away a paperback copy of TSoT with my review tomorrow. You should definitely check back in and enter to win. Best of luck meeting all your Ready. Set. Write! goals, Tem! ❤

  15. My library doesn’t have The Sea of Tranquility, which I guess means I’ll have to buy it (OH DARN).

    I snickered when you said “for the math impaired” because I totally hurt my brain trying to figure that out. (My dad has an M.S. in math and has no idea how he spawned me, I’m sure.)

    Cute pictures!

  16. Whoa, a Bluebeard retelling? I was fascinated/traumatized by that story when I was little, but that retelling looks too interesting not to read.
    And CONGRATS on the running goal. An 8/min mile is fantastic!
    That YA pitch was great, and we don’t even know the song yet. 🙂 Good luck on your writing this summer!!

  17. Aw, congrats to your little graduate! She is beautiful! And I’m very intrigued by The Sea of Tranquility. This goes on my ever-growing to-read list!

  18. Holy geez, Katy, congrats on the running achievement! You’ve helped inspire me to start running, and while I don’t see myself hitting milestones like that, um, ever…I think it’s very cool that you can do it. And congrats to your daughter, as well! So exciting 🙂

    I’m curious to see what you think of Strands…I’m intrigued, but haven’t totally decided if I’m going to give it a shot.

    • Thanks, Jess! I’m so excited that you’ve started to run — I love talking with friends about their progress and methods. 🙂

      STRANDS is… Interesting. It’s very different from my normal reading fare and I don’t dislike it, but I’m having trouble really connecting with it. I’m only about 100 pages in and I think it’s starting to pick up, though, so we’ll see. I’ll let you know!

  19. I love the photos of your daughter, she is so cute. I may steal the chalkboard idea for my son’s first day at school next year.

    I am super impressed at your running time, I run but not that fast. I can’t quite imagine being able to go that fast or that long!

    Good luck with Ready, Set, Write, your WIP sounds great!

    • Thanks, Alexa! I stole the chalkboard idea from Pinterest, so it’s totally fair game. 😉 So glad you’re joining in on Ready. Set. Write! I think it’s going to be an awesomely productive summer for all of us.

  20. Congratulations on hitting your running target! And to your first-grader daughter too! She looks very proud ^_^

    How exciting it must be for your agent to utter the word “proceed”. Have fun!

    Wow, that Golden book is super beautiful!

  21. katharineowens

    ooh, your reads sound so interesting! That Golden cover and the drawings inside have me salivating! Gorgeous. I am eagerly awaiting your review for the other book(s)! YAY for your WIP– it sounds so cool. And your daughter is just about the cutest thing! I can’t even get into the running thing– SO. FREAKIN. IMPRESSIVE. You go!

    • Thanks so much, Kat. It’s been a whirlwind week, but a good one. That said, I’m excited for things to settle down so I can get moving on my WiP. Looking forward to a summer of writing with you!

  22. You go with your bad self on those 8 min miles! That’s so awesome!

    Congrats on your little one too. They grow up so fast.

    It’s great to meet you and I look forward to your posts! :O)

  23. The back-and-forth of AMELIA ANNE was my favourite aspect, so I’m definitely intrigued 🙂

    Your girlie is so adorable and growing up so fast! If only you could slow it all down, right?

    • Thanks so much, Rebecca. I loved the back-and-forth of AMELIA ANNE too, along with the gorgeous writing. I hope I can do that comp justice! And yes… If anyone finds a way to freeze time, I need to know about it ASAP. 🙂

  24. Your new idea sounds amazing! I can’t wait to hear what song inspired it. I loved both of the books you listed as comps so I’m sure I’ll love reading your manuscript too. That said, if you need a beta reader at some point, email me!!! 🙂

    Your daughter is so cute! Congrats to her for finishing kindergarden!

    And congrats to you for reaching your running goal!

    • Thanks so much, Ghenet! I hope I do those comps proud! Big (and fantastic!) stories to align my little WiP with, but I find them both so inspiring. And thank you so much for your offer to read. I will most definitely take you up on it when this story of mine is ready to see the light of day. 🙂

  25. I just checked out Golden from the library. I can’t wait to read that once I’m finished with The 5th Wave. Your new idea sounds cool. I love the idea of having a song as inspiration. And I read Amelia Anne is Dead and Gone a couple of months ago. It was so good. Now I’m intrigued even more. Good luck in your writing goals!

    • Thanks so much, Amy. And yay for THE 5TH WAVE… I loved that book! I hope you enjoy GOLDEN. I thought it was lovely. Jessi Kirby has a real talent for contemporary YA. I love her protagonists!

  26. I love to hear it when people add a new book to their list of favorites! It makes the bookworm in me so happy! Congratulations on meeting your running goal! That’s an amazing pace! I hope you’re just as successful with your writing goals this summer! 🙂

    • My inner bookworm was VERY happy to find a new favorite. THE SEA OF TRANQUILITY struck a real chord with me. I hope it finds many readers, because I think it will become well-loved. (I’m giving a copy away with my review tomorrow, so be sure to check back and enter! :))

  27. Ah, I LOVE the sound of your WIP! Nobody but Us is high on my reading list, and I read Amelia Anne because of you (and really liked it), so excited to hear more about your WIP. And speaking of books to read, I totally want to read Sea of Tranquility. Glad to hear you liked it so much!

    Congrats to your little lady on graduation and congrats to you on that running pace! I feel tired just thinking about it, haha.

    • Thanks so much, lady! Just a hint: I’m giving away a paperback copy of THE SEA OF TRANQUILITY tomorrow when I post my review, so you should definitely drop by and enter. That book hit me so hard — I LOVED it!

  28. mandiebaxter

    SO glad you liked GOLDEN! 😀 And CONGRATS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! That’s a huge accomplishment! Both your little one graduating and the running pace! And can’t wait until we can hear more about your WIP. Sounds interesting. I adore books inspired by songs.

  29. A new favorite of yours means a new book on my Amazon purchase for me. And I’m thinking of ordering some books during the weekend. Hmm 😛

    Your girlie looks adorable and she did grow up a lot in just one year! You must be a proud mama!

    And can I just say? WOW you lady are superwoman, I need to share with my hubby how fast you run!

    And can I get even more excited about your story? Every single time you mention something new about it, my toes curl in expectation. Wait, that picture looks a tad funny as I type it, but you get the feeling ❤

  30. I really need to read Jessi Kirby’s books! I’m so behind on that one.

    Congrats on your running goal – that’s so inspiring to me. Guess what – the sun is out in MN today for the first time in months, it seems. So maybe I’ll get out for a long walk tonight.

    Congrats to your girlie – so cute! Birdy will start first grade at a new school in the fall.

    AND best of all luck for your writing goals this summer! We’re all gonna rock this.

  31. congrats on accomplishing the running goal!!! That’s just so wonderful 🙂 Best writing wishes to you, your wip sounds beautiful…can’t wait to hear the song behind it, I’m sure it’ll be well worth the wait!!

    • Thanks, Patrice! Hopefully I’ll be able to do the amazing song justice. So glad you’re doing Ready. Set. Write! with us. I look forward to reading lots of your posts, and learning more about your WiP. 🙂