Before I get to my What’s Up Wednesday post, I’d like to take a moment to feature one of my favorite annual blogging events — one that’s coming up soon!
For the last two years, Jessica Love, Tracey Neithercott, Alison Miller, and I have hosted The YA Superlatives Blogfest, an interactive way to highlight our favorite YA novels, covers, characters, and story elements of the year. (My previous Superlative posts are HERE and HERE.) We’ve had a fantastic group of bloggers sign on to participate in the past, and it’s so much fun to hop from blog to blog to find out how our friends awarded their superlatives.
Jess, Tracey, Alison, and I have had such a great time talking about awesome books and getting to know new bloggers through this blogfest, we’ve decided to do it again! There will be lots more information about the specifics of the The Class of 2013: YA Superlatives Blogfest in the coming weeks (I can tell you that it will take place during the third week of December), but we wanted to give you a heads up now, so you have plenty of time to beef up your books-published-in-2013 reading list (there’s a comprehensive catalog of titles HERE).
Just like 2011 and 2012, the The Class of 2013: YA Superlatives Blogfest will be all about FUN and promoting fantastic novels! Don’t worry if your 2013 reading list is on the short side, or if you don’t have a book/character/cover/element for each category; we just want you to jump in and participate any way you can! Happy reading!
“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. If you’re participating, make sure to link your What’s Up Wednesday posts to the list on Jaime’s blog each week. That way, others can visit your post and check out what you’ve been up to. And now, here’s what’s up with me this week…
What I’m Reading: I finished Bennett Madison’s September Girls, and now I understand why this is such a polarizing novel. It’s graphic and it’s haunting and it’s obviously not for everyone, but I loved it. It’s a surreal, trippy sort of story, beautifully written, and with a setting that felt both dreamlike and entirely real. Plus, main character Sam’s voice… Wow. Now, I’m reading April Genevieve Tucholke’s debut, Between the Devil and the Deep Blue Sea, a novel with one of the best settings I’ve seen in a while. I would love to visit Echo and the Citizen!
What I’m Writing: My WiP! You know how when you take an extended break from a project, it’s really had to pick it back up again? Well, my WiP and I have had a bit of a hiatus over the last few weeks, and I was dreading that moment when I’d have no more excuses and would have to sit down and attempt to recover the groove I once had. Last week I finally bit the bullet and dove back into the story and guess what? My groove has been recovered safe and sound! I’ve written about 6,000 words over the last seven days, and I’m thinking I have about 10K left to go.
My story is told in a rather untraditional format. Most of it takes place over the course of a year, but there are scenes from one transcendental present-tense night sprinkled throughout, a now-and-then structure, if you will. I am *almost* done with the “then” scenes (which make up about 85% of the story) and I can’t wait to get started on the “now” scenes. Progress!
What Else I’ve Been Up To: Mostly, I’ve been reading and writing and hanging out in the kitchen. This week I made Lentil Soup, a family favorite, plus Snickerdoodles and a Hootenanny (a really easy melding of a pancake and French toast that bakes in the oven). I also indulged in another fall dessert…
Apple Crumb Cake, which I thought was tasty and my daughter loved. She even ate it for breakfast (there’s fruit in it — why not?). My always-honest husband, on the other hand, declared this “not a favorite” of the treats I bake. He’s a peanut-butter-and-chocolate kind of guy, though, so let’s take his opinion with a grain of salt, shall we?
I’ve also been hanging with this girl, who plays soccer like her mama used to — timidly and lackadaisically. Contact sports have never been my thing (I swam in high school and now I run), and I’m pretty sure they won’t be my daughter’s either. Nevertheless, my husband and I have been working on the fundamentals of soccer with her. We’re trying to teach her how to be aggressive without being a jerk. It’s a pretty fine line when you’re six.
What’s Inspiring Me Now: The incomparable Laini Taylor‘s thoughts on Writing and “Found” Objects and Beachcombing, or why it’s awesome to be a plotter and a pantser all at once, as well as 2014 debut author Sara B. Larson‘s honest and thoughtful post On Overcoming Doubt…
Oddly enough, television has also been inspiring me. I don’t watch TV much, but I’m a faithful fan of a few shows — Breaking Bad being my favorite. Sunday night was the series finale, and I can’t express how anxious and sad I felt in the hours leading up to that last episode. I’ve grown so invested in Walt and Jesse and Skyler and Marie, and I’m continually blown away by the show’s amazing writing and no-holds-barred take on storytelling. There will be no finale spoilers here, but I will say that I was extraordinarily satisfied with the way the series wrapped up. For me, it was perfection. And on the other end of the television spectrum, the Uppermans have started watching The Voice, which is one of those rare shows that’s perfect for family viewing. My daughter loves it for the singing and the young talent, and I love it because it’s positive and clean and stresses the importance of hard work and perseverance. Even my husband, who was skeptical at first, is charmed by the humor of the coaches. I totally recommend The Voice if you’ve been living under a rock (like me) and have yet to catch an episode.
Tell me: What’s up with you today?