Our local chapter of the Society of Children's Book Writers and Illustrators, the California North/Central Region, has been bidding a fond farewell to longtime regional team members, and welcoming new ones into their positions.

I'm happy to announce that I'm taking over the Twitter Diva (does a tiara come with this title?) position from Bitsy Kemper, who has done a fantastic job of filling the @SCBWINorthCal feed with useful and entertaining content for our regional members.

So if you're not already following, please do so! :)

Copyedit Virgin No More

First off, I need to send a shoutout to the most loyal reader of my blog: Hi, Michelle! :D

The reason why there wasn't any new content showing up here was those titular Copyedits for Crow's Rest.

I'd been a little nervous about getting them in my email because I've heard from authors how hard they can be--and they weren't wrong. These edits were definitely a monopolizer of my time and energy over the last few weeks!

The document became so cluttered with comments, changes, and countercomments that I eventually had to accept all changes and strip the comment boxes just to see how the flow was affected.

But when it comes down to it, the copyeditor is one more person on your side, invested in making your book stand out in a crowded YA market (or whatever your genre/category is). And when I felt myself whining too much, I also reminded myself that each strikeout or addition was one step closer to having a finished, printed book (or ARC) in my hand.

I tried to keep that in mind and rise to the challenge, and I hope I succeeded (my editor approved the changes, so yay!).

So here's to moving forward on that road to a real book!

I'm On The Writer Librarian Blog!

Oops, I forgot to link to this yesterday, but you can read an interview with me on Karen McCoy's The Writer Librarian blog--just click on the cover image below to follow the link.

The Cover That Almost Was, And the Cover That Is

Today is my cover reveal day! It's over on Operation Awesome (among other places), so please go check it out--I'll wait!

Are you finished staring at that luscious piece of artwork already?!? I think I'll be staring at it for weeks to come. At least, when I'm not working on the copyedits.

But I wanted to share some more images--at one stage of the cover art process, I mentioned to the higher-ups at Spencer Hill Press that I have access to models who fit the main characters, Avery and Daniel, very well.

My niece, Renee Sprouse, is trying to build up her modeling portfolio (she also acts,dances, and sings--is it still a Trifecta if it's four things? A Quadfecta doesn't have the same ring to it) and her then-boyfriend was actually named Danniel! They both have a slightly retro/rockabilly/vintage look going on, and great taste in fashion. Danniel has also done some modeling and is a musician--too perfect!

I got permission to do a test shoot with them, and then if that worked out well we could schedule an actual shoot at Preston Castle. So I grabbed my photographer friend, Eliya of Eliya Photography (the same one who did my author photos), loaded up Renee and Danniel, and we headed to some local photo spots--including an historic cemetery and a shopping center with Italianate architecture. Eliya and I both took photos, and these are some of my favorites from my portfolio:

So even though we ended up going a very different direction for the Crow's Rest cover, I wanted to make sure these great photos had their day!

Road Trip Wednesday

I've been parked on the side of the Road Trip Wednesday for awhile, but today's topic caught my eye and I'm in! Road Trip Wednesday is a "Blog Carnival," where YA Highway's contributors and followers post a weekly writing- or reading-related question and answer it on their blogs. You can hop from destination to destination and get everybody's unique take on the topic.

This week's topic: Share a line from your WIP.

I'm working on the sequel to Crow's Rest (which comes out in 9 months!!) and my favorite line from No Man's Land (at least so far) is too spoilery, so here's my first paragraph instead:

If I’d known this was going to be an intervention, I would have dressed better. Not that a polo shirt and khakis would have lessened the sting of my mom sticking a “Hello, I’m Promiscuous” label on me or anything, but my micro-miniskirt wasn’t helping my defense.

Avery's voice is so much fun to write--she comes up with some truly hilarious takes on things. :)


Feel free to put a link to your post in the comments if you played along with Road Trip Wednesday. Don't forget to go to the YA Highway post and read all the answers!

Music and Memory

I've started on my sequel to Crow's Rest (its working title is No Man's Land) and a couple chapters in I realized I was having trouble finding the tone of the book. In the past, I haven't worried about that too much in the drafting stage, but with this book the tone is going to direct several plot-forks in my outline. (Plot-forks are too real things! Don't make me show you my literary license)

I was thinking about how when I would come back to the Crow's Rest draft after an absence, two songs helped get my brain in gear for writing (Firethief by Karine Polwart, and the song I wrote for the book which will appear in the book trailer). But No Man's Land didn't have a song just yet, so there wasn't a tool I could use to drop me into the story.

To fix that, I spent some time rewriting lyrics to an old English folk song, variously called A Blacksmith or Blacksmith Courted Me. Now I have song lyrics that are particularly relevant to the story and plot, plus singing it puts me in the frame of mind to continue in the Crow's Rest world.

Do you ever use music in this way? It's a little more specific than a playlist, but I'm sure they'd be considered close relatives!

Some Changes in Store!

I've done some shuffling of domain names and websites, so here's the lowdown:

My domain name www.AngelicaRJackson.com now points to a shiny new author website! It has a place for news and events, links to my social contacts, and links to my books (once I have something available to pre-order or order, that is).

My photography galleries that formerly lived at the above domain are now at www.AngelicaRJackson.photography, oddly enough. They will still serve as a place to buy prints, digital downloads, and gift items featuring my photographs.

This blog will remain at this address, and will also feed into my website and Goodreads Author Page. I will still be blogging at Operation Awesome every other Monday, and starting August 15 my OA posts will show up on Angelic Muse a few days later. Original content on here will be sharing whatever strikes my fancy: photos from trips, interesting tidbits I've unearthed in research, and the like.

More of the day-to-day stuff shows up on my Facebook profile if that sort of thing interests you, and so do the links to conferences, grant opportunities, etc that I run across and share.

All this shakeup is the result of me needing to change gears now that I have a book coming out, and don't have as much time to browse other people's blogs as I used to. I actually still do a lot of reading of blogs in my feed, I just don't have as much time to comment.

That seems to be the case for a lot of friends (writer or otherwise) and I considered abandoning this blog entirely, but there are some gems in the archive and I poured a lot of myself into these pages.
I've opted to keep it up, with the compromise that I'm going to feel less guilty about posting on a regular basis. Who knows--that might actually make me more likely to jump in with spontaneous posts!