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Alyssa

Alyssa was born in small town Milton, Florida, but life as a roving military kid soon mellowed her (unintelligibly strong) Southern accent. Wanderlust is in her blood, and she’s always waiting for the wind to change. Stories remain her constant. Alyssa received her bachelor’s in English/Creative Writing from Berry College and her master's in Creative Writing for Young People from Bath Spa University. Alyssa is represented by Amber Caraveo at Skylark Literary. Her debut The Eleventh Trade – "a powerful story of love, loss, friendship and hope, centered around Sami, a young refugee from Afghanistan now building a new life with his grandfather in Boston" – will be published Fall 2018 by Macmillan (U.S.) and HotKey (U.K.).

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10 Writing Resources: Fantasy

10 Writing Resources: Fantasy

10 Writing Resources: FantasyEven though my debut, The Eleventh Trade, will be a contemporary story, fantasy remains my true love. There’s so much room for exploration, creativity, and experimentation — and I can’t wait to get back back to it! But in the meanwhile, here are some resources I’ve found helpful that you might enjoy, too.

My first golden rule of fantasy: The more real you want it to be, the more solid details you should use. I don’t mean like “the blue door that was chipped around the handle except for where it wasn’t chipped, aka everywhere else, and…Continue Reading

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100 Artists to Commission

100 Artists to CommissionI’m a big fan of commissioning artists to make concept art for my WIPs, especially whenever I hit a milestone. It’s a great way to reward yourself with some pretty pictures, while also paying it forward into the wider artist community.

Below I’ve compiled a list of 100 artists, mostly grabbed from DeviantArt, who are pretty darn awesome. You can click the pictures to be taken to their commission information pages. I snatched talented people from a range of experience and prices, so you’ll find everything from crazy ridiculous deals to professional illustrations. Enjoy!

And always check the artists’ pages to make sure their commissions are still open before you contact them!

(note: there are obviously a lot of images in here so it might take a sec to load)

Do you have a favorite artist you love to commission? Leave a comment and tell me about ’em! I want to know!

 

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8 Tips for Making the Most of a Writing Day

8 Tips for Making the Most of a Writing Day

8 Tips for Making the Most of a Writing DaySometimes, fate (or deadlines) plop a writing day in your lap. A glorious day with loads of energy to devote to your craft!

When I want to make the most of that time, I use these methods to keep myself on track. It hasn’t been uncommon for me to hit 5000 or even 10000 words within 5 hours when I am intentional about the following steps. And sometimes I’m not even half-dead by the point I leave my desk!

Of course, everyone has their personal style and way to get into rhythm, but hopefully…Continue Reading

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How to Focus on One Story

How to Focus on One Story

How to Focus on One StoryA lot of my novel-mentees struggle to stay focused on one story at a time. I get that. I mean, there’s so many other sparkly things out there to explore!

That abundance of story ideas might be a good thing far down the road, when you’re churning out multiple books a year. But early on, it can be dangerous. It’s always tempting to ditch whatever piece you’re working on for the newest, shiniest idea. And that’s what you want to avoid, particularly if you’re a chronic follower of random, time-device wielding rabbits.

 

Here are some…Continue Reading

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How to Avoid the Mirror: Description Tips

How to Avoid the Mirror: Description Tips

Avoid the Mirror: Description TipsAh yes, we all know the description cliché: Our hero or heroine looks in a mirror and studies it so that the reader can form a full picture of this character. Bonus points if it’s in the first chapter! 

Appearances can be tricky, I won’t deny that — but there are lots of creative ways to get around Ye Olde Mirror cop-out!

My cheat-answer for just about any writing question is intentional details. How do you build a fantasy world? Intentional details. How do you create mood? Intentional details. How do you describe…Continue Reading

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Writing Through Trauma

Writing Through Trauma

Writing Through TraumaOn the WriteOnCon forums this year, an interesting topic came up: How do you write when you have personal trauma(s)? Do you use them, or avoid them?

I only have my own experience to draw from, and everyone is unique. Our wounds are different and the ways we carry them are different. So please take this with a grain of salt.

In my young life, I’ve already had to carry a few traumas. Mine (like most) rise from situations where I (or a loved one) were incredibly unsafe, and afterward my life was entirely changed. That how my counselor defines…Continue Reading

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14 Exciting YA and MG Releases in 2017

One definite perk of being the web master for WriteOnCon has been reading all about the upcoming releases in 2017 and 2018. So this year, my TBR list already has some books that have yet to be released! I thought I’d share my list with you guys, in case any of them perk your interest, too.

The Book Jumper by Mechthild Gläser

Amy Lennox doesn’t know quite what to expect when she and her mother pick up and leave Germany for Scotland, heading to her mother’s childhood home of Lennox House on the island of Stormsay.

Amy’s grandmother, Lady Mairead, insists that Amy…Continue Reading

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