Are You a Joiner?

I've been a member of the Society of Children's Book Writers and Illustrators for five years now, and gotten all kinds of benefits from this organization. I found my original critique partners through SCBWI, and their conferences are consistently outstanding. Our local regional chapter also holds schmoozes, where we can meet in person to brag, gripe, and share information.

I highly recommend them, but I have run into one problem: one or more of my novels may end up in the New Adult genre rather than Young Adult--which is as high as SCBWI goes for age levels.

So, partly to cover all my bases (but mostly because I've heard great things about their workshops), I'm also joining Romance Writers of America. Hubby is giving me the membership as my Christmas present, and I'm so excited to see what the local RWA chapters have to offer! There are actually 2 chapters nearby, and I may end up going to both of them.

What about you? Do you belong to any worthwhile writers' organizations? Sisters in Crime is another one I've heard good things about; I've actually been to part of the Left Coast Crime conference, even though I don't write mysteries.

The Glorious Dusting Wand Tree Topper

So yesterday on Twitter, an alumni Operation Awesome operative, Wesley Chu, was mentioned in a contest:

My curiosity piqued, I went to check it out. Basically, Wes posted a picture of a book tree in his Christmas blog post for Angry Robot Books, his publisher. And then Justin Landon of Staffer's Book Review and Angry Robot decided to challenge readers to make a book tree of their own--with the enticement of prizes to get us off our asses.

Being in the midst of Dreaded Chore Avoidance, I tweeted back to them:

To which Justin replied:

Challenge accepted!

I think that Glorious Dusting Wand Tree Topper is quite fetching, personally. Plus, I avoided chores while I assembled this from beloved (or aesthetically colored) books, and I'll be able to avoid dusting for however long it stays up. Hmm, maybe I'll change out the trimmings seasonally, until it develops its own festive draping of cobwebs and dust--just in time for Halloween.

If you care to enter the contest, follow the link in the first tweet embedded above. Merry Bookimus!

Update: My husband insisted that we add a sign to the precarious book tree. We hope that says, "I dare you, pig (Liesel)!" as Google Translate claims, and not "I am attracted to female pigs" as we fear.

Gift Idea for Writers

I've seen this pop up on a few Facebook pages, but wanted to share this gift idea here too--I get some of my best ideas in the bathtub or shower!

Happy holidays everyone!

OA Today

I'm on Operation Awesome today, with a query critique. Except, I couldn't find anything to nitpick with this one! So click on over and check out an example of a great query!

Cover Reveal for Kelley York's Dirty London!

I'm a big fan of Kelley York's books, and I'm happy to take part in the cover reveal for her forthcoming Young Adult novel, Dirty London:

All London Noble wanted out of her senior year of high school was anonymity. The complete opposite of Jasmine, her emotionally unstable baby sister, London has worked hard to stay out of the spotlight.

Then she discovers that Wade, one of the most popular guys in school, is gay like her and their new-found closeness based around their shared secret has half the student body convinced they're hooking up...and a lot of girls aren't happy about it. Rumors are flying about "Dirty London" and her inability to keep her clothes on, and London is pretty sure she's developing a crush on the only girl who sees through it all.

If she could admit why stealing boyfriends is the last thing on her mind—not to mention find out what's going on with Jasmine and her rapidly disappearing psych medications—her life would be a much brighter place. But if her and Wade's truth gets out, and if she doesn't find a way to help her sister, London faces losing a lot more than her obscurity.

Release date: February 2014 (tentatively)

About Kelley:

About the Author
Kelley York was born in central California, where she still resides with her lovely wife, step-daughter, and cats, while fantasizing about moving to England or Ireland. She has a fascination with bells and animals, is a lover of video games, and likes to pretend she’s a decent photographer. Her life goal is to find a real unicorn. Or to at least write about them.

Kelley is a sucker for dark fiction. She loves writing twisted characters, tragic happenings, and bittersweet endings that leave you wondering and crying. Character development takes center stage in her books because the bounds of a person's character and the workings of their mind are limitless.

Love that cover and blurb, Kelley! Can't wait to read it in February!