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Blog: Writing

The Revision Process

I have entered upon that decent into darkness that is revising a first draft. The draft in question: Book Three of No Safety in Numbers. (New Idea has been put on hold until this process is complete.) I haven’t read this draft in two months, which means that it feels like someone else’s book. Which […]

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Cover Image for The Pack

On Characters…

I’m going to state the obvious: writing a convincing character is hard. I mean, the entire project sounds ludicrous. How do you get a bunch of words on the page to coalesce in the mind of a reader as a complicated, coherent, full-bodied person with whom they want to go on a journey of several […]

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Jumping on the Coverflip Bandwagon

Sorry about missing last week blog-wise. My mom was in town and we were doing fun stuff together. I like my mom. She is good. I’m really excited about this Coverflip project Maureen Johnson got started the other day. (If you follow me on Twitter, I’ve been posting a lot of cover-related stuff there.) The […]

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Book versus Movie — Discuss…

I’m so excited about the prospect of a Graceling movie! Not only is Kristin a friend, but I am a huge fan of Graceling, Fire, and Bitterblue. As a lover of the books, I wonder how the movies will change the stories, how well the production team’s imagining of the world will align with my […]

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Getting the Most Out of Getting Feedback

One of the best gifts a person can give you as a writer is constructive, thoughtful feedback on your work. None of my books would be what they are without the insightful comments of a few trusted readers and editors, and my writing would not be what it is today without having grappled with the […]

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The Slow Accretion of Story

I thought I’d take a blog post to talk about ideas and where they come from. I’m reading On Writing by Stephen King and the passage about how he came up with the idea for Carrie really resonated. King talks about how in college, he had worked as a High School janitor and was fascinated […]

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Odie

On Boys in YA…

This week, the Los Angeles Review of Books published an essay on the dearth of role models in modern YA literature showing a healthy path from boyhood to manhood. The author points to 19th century literature, such as Uncle Tom’s Cabin, as providing the kind of role models for this path that we currently lack. […]

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You live by Siri, You’re Gonna Die By Siri…

Today is the start of National Novel Writing Month or NaNoWriMo. If you have no idea what I’m talking about, it is exactly what it sounds like: A group of writers, both professionals and amateurs, who come together to support one another in writing a novel in a month, and that month is this month—November. […]

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Cover Image for The Storm

Hooray for School Visits!

I had the pleasure of visiting Ms. Bradunas’s class at the Our Lady of Hope/St. Luke School in Baltimore, MD this past Tuesday. We talked about The Storm, the first book in the Dogs of the Drowned City series, the real-world inspiration for the story, and how I created a dog’s eye view of the […]

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Cage Match: A Tale of Two Cities vs. The Hunger Games

This week, I thought I would take on the YA-is-super-dark-and-isn’t-this-a-sign-teens-and-YA-authors-today-are-evil/morbid/violent/etc. argument. This issue crops up again and again in the media, like here and here. It came up in my FastCompany interview. And yes, there is a lot of heavy stuff in YA literature today. But is this a sign of change, or are YA […]

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