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2016: In Review

2016: In Review

I am not sure how to do a year in review this time around. A lot of people have many things to say about 2016, and much of it isn’t encouraging. But what has been black for many has been more complex for me.

Here are some moments from 2016:

January

I dance the night away with my nieces at one cousin’s wedding. Megan and Hana think I’ve got the moves, and I let ’em believe it.

New diagnosis: Gastroparesis. It is the third autoimmune attack in under a year, and takes my diet from “gluten free levels of inconvenient” to “ask me…Continue Reading

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A Novel Idea: Excerpts

A little bit ago, I participated in A Novel Idea’s prompt for story blurbs. It was a lot of fun and I got some great responses (shout out to my Tumblr folk and brambleberrycottage for chiming in!), so I’m doing it again: this time, with excerpts!

Here’s the Novel Idea prompt for this week:

This week, share a favorite quote from your novel: whether it’s one sentence long, a paragraph, or even a whole chapter. It can be from your current novel or one that you’re finished with. Writing can be filled with self-doubt, but this week, take the time to show off your hard work.

Like last time, I’ve included four responses to the prompt from my four most-active works-in-progress. And I made them graphics again because why not! Enjoy!

a novel idea: excerpts
My fingers tremble, but for once it’s not the hunger or the sadness that’s gnawing my insides. It’s a painful warmth. Hope. – The Eleventh Trade
a novel idea: excerpts
Melle’s father fell silent. Beyond the palace walls, the clatter of carts and shouts of vendors grew louder as the city woke. Everything was unreal, the scenes of a life that would go on whether or not her father lived, whether or not this was the last time he would tell her the story. Unbearable was not the word for the hollowness in Melle’s chest. She could bear it. She could feel it and still she breathed, still her heart beat. And that was worse.
a novel idea: excerpts
While he began to pour [the tea], she studied him on the sly. If she ever made a pigment for his eye color, she would mix black made from vine twigs with a touch of gold powder. That way his eyes on the page would flash, as they did now—dark and then, when he looked up and the light caught in them, bright and shining. Illuminated. – Illuminate
a novel idea: excerpts
The birds round me fall silent and air sharpens with evergreen scent. I drop the fletching, my hand already to my quiver when I turn. But it’s not another stranger come to shoot at me. It’s the child. The child from the tree. “Wheest!” I blurt, startled. No one sneaks up on me like this. Even the assassins gave themselves away by creaking in the tree boughs. “What are you doing here, little one?” She smiles, mouth full of sharp teeth, and steps from the tree shade onto the trail. Pointed ears stick out of wild black hair, and her skin gleams in the light—like gold brushed over with soil. “I smelled the blood,” she says, “and I came.” – Popinjay

I’m curious – which blurb intrigues you most?

Want to join in? Check out Sky’s original post.

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A Novel Idea: Blurbs

Click the pictures to see them full-size (and read the full blurbs).

I’m taking a quick break from the Q&A series to participate in A Novel Idea. Yes, I’m talking about my own projects quite a lot here lately – mostly because that’s what my life currently revolves around! The Eleventh Trade is back with my agent now, and I’m busily editing away at Illuminate (and having entirely too much fun rediscovering the story after a nine month break).

Here’s the Novel Idea prompt for this week:

What would the back cover of your novel say? Try to make it as intriguing as possible. Remember, this is all readers have when trying to decide if they’re going to read your book or not. Do the best you can to convince a hypothetical reader to pick up your book.

Since I had already written blurbs (it’s one of my favorite things to do early in a writing project, oddly), I got a bit ambitious and made them into fun graphics. Illuminate and The Eleventh Trade are currently my top priorities, but I threw in Blessings and Popinjay for funsies. I didn’t bother with Wake or Heiress Letters (title to be determined??) for now, as they are the farthest off my radar at the moment.

I’m curious – which blurb intrigues you most?

Want to join in? Check out Sky’s original post.

4 Comments 531 Views
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The Eleventh Trade: Moodboard

 

Farewell music! Even your sweetest tunes are best kept silent
The Taliban on the edge of the village have stilled all lips

When the Taliban invaded Afghanistan, Sami lost everything — everything except his grandfather, and the rebab.

Sami and his grandfather make a new life in Boston. But one day when Sami is playing the rebab at a T station, a teenager snatches the instrument and jumps on the T. The doors snap shut, and the rebab is gone.

When Sami finds it again in a pawnshop, the shopkeeper won’t return the instrument, but he offers to hold it. The only problem: The rebab costs $700, and Sami has no money.

Thirty days is all Sami has to raise $700 — and if he can’t, he’ll lose the last remnant of his old life, and break his grandfather’s heart forever.

Every musician who adjusts the pegs of the rebab:
His tuning burns my heart.

– Rahman Baba, Afghan poet

Instrumental Playlist :: Normal Playlist

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New Look! Plus Writing News!

New Look! Plus Writing News!

It’s been a bit quiet here. Why, you ask? Because I have been up to my ears in writing deadlines!

Once upon a time, my agent Amber Caraveo asked me to send her information on my other projects. Among other things, I sent her the synopsis and first few chapters of (what was then called) The Great Tanboor Trade. She loved it… like, a lot.

Like, she sort of wondered if it should be my debut level of a lot.

After having a 24-hour panic attack/identity crisis (“Me? Writing middle grade contemporary? MEE??”), I agreed to do a speed-draft of it so that we could see how it stood next to Illuminate. So in January, February,…Continue Reading

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General Writing Update (CampNaNoWriMo)

General Writing Update (CampNaNoWriMo)

Today is the end of CampNaNoWriMo, normal NaNoWriMo’s more fun cousin! For those of you who are my parents, that acronym stands for “National Novel Writing Month,” and every November writers from around the world try to (as the name implies) write 50,000 words in a month. In CampNaNo, it’s basically the same idea—except that you can set your own wordcount goals.

So, needless to say, this month has been full to the brim with writing. I finished with about 60,000 words, spread across four different projects. Here’s some of the stuff I’ve gotten done (with bonus excerpts!):

The Great Tanboor Trade

As part of my publishing course for my master’s, I had to write a query and synopsis for…Continue Reading

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