Look at this. I had my doubts, but here I am writing my second What’s Up Wednesday post. I’m feeling very accomplished and like the sort of girl who follows through on things. Please go with me on this.
So, here’s what I’ve been up to…
What I’m Reading: I’m dying to start Kasie West’s The Distance Between Us. I loved Pivot Point (you can read my review here), and though this is a straight contemporary I have faith I’m going to completely love it. I’ve ordered The Westing Game, which, might I remind you, the YA Book Club is reading this July. So, you know, feel free pick up the book at your local bookstore or library and join in.
What I’m Writing: I’m still plugging away at that YA sci-fi novel I’ve been talking about for the past few weeks. And now a PSA: If you need a little push with writing, follow the #ReadySetWrite hashtag. Most nights you can find me and other writers pounding out words. It’s a great accountability tool. Why, just the other day Ready, Set, Write! co-coordinator Katy Upperman threatened to scoop my eyeballs out with a spork if I didn’t write.* That’s what I call service.
As promise, I’ve also come prepared with another snippet from my story. Have I mentioned before that this is a very, very rough draft? Please do not judge. Or, if you do, remember that making fun of rough drafts kills puppies.
Cold finds its way under the covers and I shiver. Our building controls the temperature in all units, but my father has hacked our system to keep our apartment cooler. Better to fall asleep to, he says. I flip to my side and tug the comforter to my chin. The thin fingers of the oak on my balcony scratch against the glass. When I was younger, my father and I would climb onto the first thick branch, swinging our legs in the space between us and the earth. It’s been a year since we sat up there, mostly because his work got complicated and I got boobs, but looking at the branch trying to claw its way into my room, I can smell the dirt and fallen leaves. The crisp taste of wood smoke–scented cold air.
“Syna, honey,” he’d said, peeling a leaf along the veins, “there are three truths in life. Nothing good happens before 10 a.m. and I love you more than the sun and the moon and the stars and those guava chews we get with takeout.”
“And the third?”
“Boys are snakes. Avoid them at all costs.”
What Else I’ve Been Up To: My parents are preparing to sell their house so I currently have in my possession boxes of photos from my teen years. I haven’t even attempted to sort through them yet, but when I do, dear friends, get ready for me to reveal teen Tracey in all her flat-chested glory. Maybe I’ll even find some from the middle school years when I had braces and those giant glasses everyone thought was cool. The horror.
What’s Inspiring Me: I’ve finally found some photos of my characters, which I love to look at while writing. I don’t stick too closely to the real humans in the pictures, but they’re helpful to look at (or, in the case of Linden’s character, gaze longingly at) when I’m feeling a bit stuck.
How about a quick introduction?
SYNA: MAIN CHARACTER, WHO, UNLIKE THIS GIRL, DOES NOT HAVE UNNATURALLY TURQUOISE EYES
LINDEN: LOVE INTEREST WHO, LIKE THIS MODEL HERE, IS, WELL, PLEASING TO THE EYES
MAGS: THE BEST FRIEND
DAN: THE GUARDIAN
Finally, I wanted to send out a giant CONGRATULATIONS to my friend Caroline Richmond who has just sold her book to Scholastic! Might as well memorize her name because when her book comes out you’re going to want to read it. Two words: Nazis. Superpowers. Yep.
What have you been up to?
* Based on a true story.