RSW Update 6

Ready. Set. WRITE! is a summer writing intensive that encourages goal-setting and accountability, and provides an opportunity for us to cheer each other on wherever we’re at in our writing—planning, drafting, revising, or polishing. This year, your RSW hosts are Alison MillerJaime MorrowErin Funk, and myself. Find the rest of the details HERE.

* How I did on last week’s goal(s).

1. Complete a revision of my contemporary-ish YA, Where Poppies Bloom.

2. Complete the first draft of my contemporary YA, The Road So Far, by the close of RSW… IN PROGRESS. I did a complete read-through of the 39K I already had, cleaned it up, and added another 2K words.

3. Read (on average) one YA/adult novel per week… YES! I read Burn For Burn by Jenny Han and Siobhan Vivian and thought it was excellent. I’m now reading the creepfest that is Lindsay Currie and Trisha Leaver’s upcoming debut, Creed.

4. Read (on average) one MG novel with my daughter every two weeks… YES! We finished The Miraculous Journey of Edward Tulane. This was a reread for me, but the first time my daughter has heard the story. She loved it like I do.

5. Maintain my tan… YES! We spent last Thursday at the pool on the AFB near our home. I love swimming with my girl!

* My goal(s) for this week.

Write every day. Add at least 6K new words to my WiP. Brainstorm conflict issues with Alison (and hope she has a solution for my problems!).

* A favorite line from my project OR a word/phrase that sums up what I wrote/revised.

(I had an f-bomb riddled excerpt here initially, but at the last minute I swapped it out for a sweet one. Why am I totally comfortable cussing like a sailor in stories [and in real life], but not on my blog?)

I edge across the expanse of mattress between us and brush her long hair off her face. She shifts. Her eyes don’t open, but her hand relaxes, releasing its bundle of sheet, and she reaches with purple-tipped fingers to brush my arm. She does it in sleep, on an instinct ingrained in her unconscious mind, and I feel minutely better because even when she’s dead to the world, she’s still confident that I’m an arm’s length away. 

* The biggest challenge I faced this week.

This was a FUN challenge, though still a challenge… I beta read Jennifer Pickrell’s fantastic contemporary YA romance, and I kind of wanted to work on her story more than I wanted to work on my own writing. Oops. 🙂

* Something I love about my WiP. 

My MC, Tucker. I think he’s my favorite of all the book boys I’ve written. He’s just so inherently good, and he adores his girlfriend so completely. He’s High School Katy’s dream boy (and not so dissimilar from my husband, come to think of it).

In other news… July is the month of RSW giveaways! 
Congrats to last week’s winner… Stephanie Allen!
Two Stephanies in a row! If that’s your name too, the odds of winning this week are forever in your favor. 😉

During the four weeks of July, ErinJaimeAlison, and I will be giving away some spectacular Writer’s Care Packages. All you have to do to be eligible to win is participate in Ready. Set. Write! and enter via the Rafflecopter link below.

A Rafflecopter Giveaway!

***NOTICE: We’re changing the entry process in order to make it easier and quicker… You no longer need to provide a link for each of your entries, though we will be verifying the winner’s participation upon selection.

This week, I’m giving away a fantastic package including an owl mug, chai tea, dark chocolate, Smarties, a “Think. Write. Create.” journal, a candle, owl notecards, pens, lip balm, and the latest Writer’s Digest.


I can’t wait to read about how Ready. Set. Write! is going for you. Don’t forget to share the link of your latest post below!


50 thoughts on “RSW Update 6

  1. Alison Miller says:

    Send those brainstorming issues! And so glad you’re working on ROAD again! 🙂 Also, I think I need to make TANNING a goal because, with all the rain we’ve been having, mine is fading fast. 😦 And I love Edward Tulane! And I love that you’re bonding with C over books! Aidan and I have mandated reading time every day, but he is all into Goosebumps and this non-horror girl may not be able to handle reading that. He wants me to read one though so we’ll see…

    Good luck this week, friend! We need to get back to writing together! I need the company and the motivation. 🙂

    • katyupperman says:

      I *think* I’ve got my issues sort of figured out, but I’d love your opinion on execution so I’ll definitely email you later. Plus, I owe you an excerpt. Slacker CP!

      Yes, yes, yes to more writing dates, please!

  2. Dawne Webber says:

    Sounds like you had a great week. Love the title, The Road So Far, and the excerpt. Hope this week is as successful as last week. Congrats on the tan 😉

  3. Rachelwrites007 says:

    It sounds like you had a super week, Katy! Great excerpt and LOL on the tan. 😉 I’ve been inside most of this summer so not a lot of tanning for me. Good luck this week!!!

    • katyupperman says:

      And I’ve been outside most of the summer with my kiddo, so getting a tan isn’t all that challenging. Plus, I love being at the beach/pool. I hope your revisions are coming along, Rachel. Have a great week!

  4. Liz Parker (@LizParkerWrites) says:

    I love that excerpt! Also that care package is killer. I had fun writing with you last night. This current WIP has definitely been influenced by you in that all of the sudden kissing! This has happened much more than it usually does for me. Good luck this week!

  5. Tonja Drecker says:

    What a wonderful excerpt – intriguing too! Looks like your daughter had a blast. That water looks so wonderful, I want to dive in too. A tan and revisions and. . .wow. Sounds like a great week. Keep it up!

  6. Jennifer Pickrell says:

    Hey, I am TOTALLY okay with you wanting to work on my WIP! I sent you a long, rambling email earlier this morning so wish granted 🙂

    Once again, your shared lines made me swoon so hard. For some reason, I’m weirded out by cussing on my own blog, too.

    Good luck with your drafting this week!

    • katyupperman says:

      I read your rambling email and I’m mentally formulating a response. In short: I’ve gotten the same “needs a hook” criticisms a million times, so I feel your pain. Writing contemporary YA is so hard!

  7. mandiebaxter says:

    I LOVE male POV stories!!!! I’m going to have to get my hands on this one. 😉
    I have that issue when Jessica and Joy send me their MSs. I completely forget all about mine and just want to read read read.
    Looks like y’all had fun! Was wondering where you went swimming. Maybe we can get the kiddos together this weekend.
    Good luck this week.

    • katyupperman says:

      Yes! For sure, lets get together this weekend. C and I haven’t left the house since Friday because of the crappy weather we’ve been having. Boo! Have a great week, lady!

  8. Stephanie Scott says:

    Congrats to another Stephanie! 🙂 Great going on your goals. I also read Burn by Burn and the end twist (of sorts) really caught me by surprise. I thought that book was a straight contemporary and didn’t see the “other” elements coming.

    • katyupperman says:

      I didn’t either, Stephanie, but I liked it. I already ordered the second book because that ending was a TOTAL cliffhanger and I’m dying to know what’s going to happen next. I loved, especially, how multi-dimensional all of the characters are. Anyway… Have a great week!

  9. prerna pickett says:

    glad you got some writing in as well as beta reading and reading pubbed books. Loved the line, Tucker definitely seems like a sweet boyfriend! Good luck with your goals this week!

  10. leandrajwallace says:

    What a beautifully written excerpt! Cute pic of your girl, swimming is the best. I’m hoping to get my little man comfortable in the water, so I’m thinking of paying a monthly fee to be able to use a local hotel’s indoor pool. Anyway, have a great writing week!

    • katyupperman says:

      Thanks so much! It took me forever to get my daughter comfortable in the water. This summer swimming really clicked, though, and she really took off. Finally! Good luck with your kiddo! Have a wonderful week!

    • katyupperman says:

      My mom reads mine occasionally, but she already knows I swear all the time. I learned it from my soldier husband. 🙂 Have a great week, Leslie!

  11. Jaime Morrow says:

    Wonderful excerpt, Katy! I’m the same way with cussing in real life and in my WiPs versus on my blog. Actually, I stress like crazy about sharing *anything* from my WiPs on my blog lol. I LOVE inherently good book boys. It occurred to me last night as I was reading SINCE YOU’VE BEEN GONE that Morgan Matson writes good boys and not troubled bad boys. I kind of like that. 🙂 So, yeah, I’m a fan of the sweet, good boys.

    You’re doing great with your goals. Now that you’ve done your reread of the first bit of this draft, I can see you motoring through the rest of it! Have a great week! 😀

    • katyupperman says:

      You’re so right about Morgan Matson and her book boys.. Roger… *swoon* I can’t wait to read SINCE YOU’VE BEEN GONE! And I so hope you’re right about motoring through the rest of this WiP. We’ll see how it goes! Have a great week, Jaime!

  12. Carrie-Anne says:

    I’m kind of the opposite about cursing; though I keep it to a minimum, if at all, on my blog, I used to curse a lot more on my old Angelfire page, and in the earlier drafts of a number of my Atlantic City books. I’ve actually never said the F word in real life (at least not in English!), and have never even written it out longhand. When I use a curse word in a book or on my blog, it’s sort of like taking on a new identity. I use the F word so sparingly in my Russian novels, it really makes one sit up and take notice when it is used.

    • katyupperman says:

      Well, I *might’ve* said the the f-word a *few* times in my lifetime, but my soldier husband uses it as a pregnant pause, so I can’t help but pick it up. 🙂 Hope you’re having a great week, Carrie-Anne!

  13. Margo Berendsen says:

    I love hearing all these little excerpts from everyone’s WIPS, yours especially. Good luck with your brainstorming session with Alison (the Alison of Ready, Set, Write ?) I am always so thankful for asking for help with ideas and problems… they almost always point me in the direction I need to go.

    • katyupperman says:

      Aww, thanks so much, Margo! Yes, Alison of RSW is my CP. We bug each other with emails/tweets/texts all day, every day. 🙂 She’s awesome for helping me work out plot problems. Hope you’re having a wonderful week!

  14. Kitty says:

    Sounds like you made great progress this week! And I loved, loved, loved the lines that you shared. So sweet. 🙂 I know what you mean about being comfortable with swearing elsewhere but not on your blog. I’m the same way. I know I swear but I don’t want people to know I swear! 🙂

    • katyupperman says:

      Thank you so much, Kitty! Yeah, I try to keep my blog (mostly) professional and I don’t want to offend people who dislike swearing. So, in my MSs and real life those dirty words will stay. 🙂 I hope you’re having a great week!

  15. Courtney Leigh says:

    Ooh! I just listened to Sara Zarr’s This Creative Life podcast episode with Siobhan Vivian, and she talks about working with Jenny Han. I can’t wait to read Burn for Burn!

    Congrats on having such a productive week, and good look with this week’s goals!

    PS: I know what you mean about cursing on the blog. I do it occasionally, but I always have to deliberate for a good long while before publishing. Idk why!

    • katyupperman says:

      I listened to that This Creative Life podcast last week while I was reading BURN FOR BURN — so good! I love Sara Zarr. And Siobhan Vivian, for that matter. 🙂 I totally recommend BURN FOR BURN!

    • katyupperman says:

      CREED is pretty freaking awesome. Don’t get too attached to any one character though, Emma. It’s a true horror story, and people go down. 😦 Have a wonderful week!

  16. crystalschubert says:

    Your excerpt is so snuggly and sweet. Love it. And I love that Tucker is a nice guy! Good guys are refreshing, what with all the bad boys hanging around in the romance genre. 😉 Good luck on this week’s writing!

    • katyupperman says:

      Writing a nice guy’s been really fun! All of my book boys have had good qualities, but most of them do some pretty idiotic things. Tucker… not so much. Have a great week, Crystal!

  17. Erin Funk says:

    Ha! I don’t cuss on my blog either, even though I’m much more “colourful” with my language in writing and real life too. I’ve read that it’s best to keep the blog professional, plus I’m never sure which uptight family members might be browsing it either. Eek.

    Love the excerpt you posted! The prose is gorgeous. And as for love interests that are inherently good, those are my favourite kinds. Happy writing this week!

    • katyupperman says:

      Thanks so much, Erin! I’ve having such a fantastic time with this story and this world. I hope it ends up going somewhere someday! Have a great week, lady!

    • katyupperman says:

      Thank you so much, Melanie! While I’m occasionally drawn to bad book boys, I definitely have a soft spot for GOOD book boys. Have a great week, lady!

  18. Ghenet Myrthil says:

    Sounds like you had a fun and productive week! I love your excerpt (as I always do. :)) Good luck writing all the words this week, and I hope you figure out that conflict issue.

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