Wednesday, October 23, 2013

What's Up Wednesday (21): Catch-Up Edition (PHEW)

I missed the last few weeks of What's Up Wednesday (and missed all of you in the process!) so I have a wee bit of catching up to do. And well, I've been doing a few things so you'll get a very brief (and somewhat pictorial) version of what I've been up to. Here goes…


What's Up Wednesday is a weekly meme geared toward readers and writers, allowing us to touch base with blog friends and let them know what's up. Jaime Morrow and Erin Funk are the hosts, and we'd love for you to join in the fun! Just hit up their blogs and sign up on the linky. J

What I'm Reading:
These awesome books…

 
Kirkus Reviews said that ALL OUR YESTERDAYS is "time travel done right." I say it's time travel done AWESOME. If you haven’t read Cristin Terrill's debut, well what are you waiting for?! It's fast-paced and action-packed and all kinds of amazing.
 
I devoured BURNED a couple years back, and it's one of the few books that made me cry bawl boohoo buckets. SMOKE didn't make me cry, but it was an awesome follow-up to that story. If you've not read anything by Ellen Hopkins, again—you're missing out!
Currently, I'm reading WHERE THE STARS STILL SHINE (Trish Doller) and am LOVING it so far.
How about YOU? What are you reading this week?

What I'm Writing:
I have back story blues. I spent the past two weeks revising the first four chapters of my WiP and am trying to strike a harmonious balance of narrative, dialogue, action, and interiority without doing the grand info dump. Rather challenging. My front end is still too back story heavy, IMHO, but I'm moving on. I'm almost to my catalyst (!!!) and am very excited (!!!) to work on that. Can you tell? !!!  ;)

 Also, Alison was a big ol' tease a few weeks back—taunting all of you with my chosen story title without actually revealing it. I'm horrible. So, I'll share. It's not award-winning (some of you might want me to stick with "the blob"), but it is a song from Grease (my story sings of this musical) and it's so appropriate for this story—in SO many ways.

 

See it? Up in the left corner? Oh, and you get a sneaky peek too. You're welcome. ;)

Also, I sent off a few chapters to three of my CPs. My biggest fears are that my main characters will come off as too annoying and abrasive (they have a wee bit of growing to do), so I was beyond relieved when my CPs (who ROCK, btw) collectively said they loved them and the story (especially when my daughter did not! L)

But no matter what, I love my characters and my story. I am at the point where they consume my thoughts and I just really want to clean and polish and revise, like, all the time (another reason I haven't posted in a while—sorry!). I'm in the zone. And it's a fabulous place to be. J

What are you writing this week?!

What Inspires Me Right Now:
Music. I know I've said this, but this current story is most musical (lots of Broadway and classic rock influences), and much to my neighbors' chagrin, I've been singing a lot lately. A LOT. Saturday, I researched tons of songs (there's a reason for this) and memories of my theatre days flooded me, and well, I'm singing even more.

My poor neighbors. *sigh*

What Else I've Been Up To:

Um . . . a lot. Here's a small pictorial recap.
 First day of safety patrol!
 
 The daughter's first high school report card #soproud
 
My crazy husband all dressed for spirit week!
Oh, and a few weeks ago, I told you that one of my former students asked me to teach her a tap dance for a fundraiser pageant so I choreographed her a dance to "I Can Do That" from A Chorus Line. Anyway, she performed it (beautifully) last Saturday, and she won! I'm so proud of her!

Finally, do you know about this?
 
It's so fun and I'm so excited Jess and Kelsey are hosting this again this year! Click here to participate!
Hope you've been having a lovely week! What's up on YOUR Wednesday?! 

34 comments:

  1. LOVE the title!

    I am bad, bad, bad, I still haven't gotten around to reading any Ellen Hopkins, even though I keep adding her books to my TBR-list.

    Good luck with writing your catalyst scenes!!!

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    1. Thank you! And yes - my title's been growing on me - I love it too! And YES - you must read some Ellen Hopkins! She's amazing.

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  2. Music always inspires me to write.
    Looks like you've been busy lately! The title is great :)

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    1. Thank you! Yes - very busy, but a good busy. Have a great week!

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  3. Looks like your family have a lot to celebrate this week! :) And you highlight what I'm looking forward to when I send my ms off to be beta read: objective, honest feedback. Are the characters engaging, annoying, or just bleh? Are you turning pages because you're sucked in, or because it sucks but you feel duty-bound? Those kinds of things.

    All the best with your writing/revisions/CP feedback, Alison! :)

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    1. ALL my worries! I have the best CPs though who are typically very objective and honest and really help me and my story grow I also get super neurotic and do fifty revisions before I send them something so it's good for the revision process all around. :)

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  4. YAY WIP! <3<3<3

    I'm excited to see that page, because it's farther along in the story than what you sent me! SEND ME MORE!

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    1. Will do! And glad you enjoyed the excerpt!

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  5. LOVE the title, Allison! I sense your subtle excitement about your revision, and it is super inspiring. When revising is fun, or at least something you can't pull away from, that is always a good thing!

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    1. It IS a good thing. And so glad you like the title! Have a great week!

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  6. I loved All Our Yesterdays! It's one of the best time-travel stories I've read in a long time! And revisions can be frustrating but also fun, because you get to see your story go from good to awesome! :)

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    1. Agreed - one of the best time travel stories I've ever read! And my story is definitely going from good to better. Hopefully awesome! Have a great week!

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  7. You've been really busy lately! I hope you continue making progress on your revisions. Sometimes that's the most fun part of writing.

    I'm behind on reading and my portfolio for my most boring class, so I really need to get in gear with that over the next few weeks. At least I've got an A so far in the class, and As in my other two classes so far, in spite of the stress from dealing with my soon-to-be-officially-ex-roommate.

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    1. Congrats on all your hard work! And yes - while revising is often a challenge, it is my favorite part.

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  8. Music is always a big thing for me. I'm one of those who turn the volume way up, to the max if possible and drift away with the beats ...

    Looks like you and your family are having fun!

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    1. Me too! I'm sure the neighborhood is tired of Grease songs, but it's inspiring me. :)

      Have a great week!

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  9. I love time travel so after reading your post I immediately put All our Yesterdays on hold at the library.
    I sing a lot too. All the time and badly. I've been listening to a lot of Les Mis lately and singing it around the house.

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    1. And now I want to belt out "On My Own." ;) I was fortunate to see the stage version - so awesome (and heart-breaking)

      Hope you get to read ALL OUR YESTERDAYS soon!

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  10. So much going on... I LOVED those pictures, and now my TBR list is a little taller. Beware the tipsy books. ;)

    I didn't know you were a tap dancer/choreographer. That's awesome!

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    1. haha! My pile is as tall as my house!

      And yes - been dancing since age of four. I used to choreograph shows for the high school I used to work at and took lessons for many years. I miss it so much!

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  11. Love so much hearing all of your updates, Alison! Woohoo on all of the progress you've been making with your WiP and so awesome to hear you are in the zone! That's definitely a good (although sometimes tiring) place to be :) I also think it's so neat the role that music plays in your story. I love music (all kinds, really) and love the way it connects us, triggers memories, and tells its own sort of story. Hope you have a wonderful week!

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    1. Gosh, Temre - even your comments are beautifully written! You are so talented. I can't wait to read one of your stories!

      And yes - I am definitely in the zone and loving it! Have a wonderful week!

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  12. info dump is my achilles heel. i'm dying to read where the stars still shine! And a time travel novel? Sign me up. Hope you get everything figured out with revisions. I'm sure your CPs are more than happy to help out with that :)

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    1. Thank you! And yes - sign up for both of those books! They're fabulous!

      I am awed by people who do backstory well. WHERE THE STARS STILL SHINE is an excellent example of this. Hope you get to read it soon!

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  13. Oooh, I am so guilty of infodumps. Clearing them out is so hard. Beta readers are a great way of working how much is too much. I try to get away with as little as possible once I know the dump has to go.

    Have an awesome week! :D

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    1. Beginnings are my worst. Opening pages I'm okay with, but the next fifty. That's why I'm taking my time.

      And thanks! You too!

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  14. WHERE THE STARS STILL SHINE... Oh, how I love that book. And yay for sharing your title! As you know, I think it is perfection. Also, even though your daughter didn't love your main characters (yet!), she's clearly one smart cookie. Good for her!

    I'm looking forward to reading your next two chapters. I could use a laugh today, and I know I can always count on your amazing writing to get me there!

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    1. You are too sweet. And I blew through pages of WTSSS while Aidan was at soccer yesterday. Did NOT want to put it down!

      So glad you love my title and my story. You ROCK!

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  15. I love your title, and your little teaser. I was bumbed when it ended, so I guess that means that you hooked me.

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    1. That's awesome! Well, not that I left you hanging (sorry!), but awesome that you wanted to read more. Thanks!

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  16. Oh man, that's a great choice for a title! Glad this MS is still humming along! Also, your family rocks. And congrats to your student! You can teach math, write awesome books, and choreograph award-winning tap routines? What can't you do???

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    1. Oh, haha, A LOT. But thank you! *blushes*

      And I really am starting to love the title. So glad you like it!

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  17. I just signed up for the sip swap! Love that idea. I found out about it after the fact last year.

    It's always a nailbiter when sending that MS off to critique partners. But hopefully you're working with a collaborative bunch who can help you shape your story. :)

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  18. ALL OUR YESTERDAYS is a book I've been meaning to read. It sounds like it's awesome. I'm always a little scared to enter a time traveling book, but it seems like this one is universally well received :)

    And I totally understand the fear of your MC being annoying. I worry about that too with my WIP. I'm glad your CPs loved your story and character :)

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Yay! I LOVE comments!