I just got my contributor copy of CWIM 2012!
And right there on the cover, where they highlight three of the twenty-two interviews and articles inside, are blurbs of BOTH of my interviews, with Ally Carter and M.T. Anderson!
And the interviews themselves are, if I do say so myself, wonderful.
Ally Carter's Gallagher Girls series books ("I'd Tell You I Love You But Then I'd Have To Kill You," "Cross My Heart And Hope To Spy," "Don't Judge A Girl By Her Cover," and "Only The Good Spy Young") keep hitting the New York Times Bestseller lists and her novel "Heist Society" was a 2010 YALSA Teens Top Ten Book!
My interview with Ally is titled "On creating likeable characters and hooking your readers early." It's loaded with great stuff she shares, like:
"...characters and plot are always interconnected. Always. If you take two different characters and present them with the same conflict, you will certainly get two different stories."
her take on writing series
"My characters are very different people book to book because the events of each book do change them."
and even her top five revision tips!
they're all great, but I'll share one of them here:
"Murdering your darlings" is easier when you don't delete them altogether. Open a "scraps" file that you can cut and paste those things into. That way, you have them if you decide to use them later. (Hint: You probably never will, but it still makes cutting them far easier.)
M.T. Anderson won the National Book award and Michael L. Printz Honor for his historical YA fiction novel, "The Astonishing Life of Octavian Nothing, Traitor To The Nation, Volume One: The Pox Party." His YA science fiction novel "Feed" was a finalist for the National Book Award, and he's also written wacky middle grade fantasy adventure like "Jasper Dash and the Flame-Pits of Delaware." He's even published three picture books!
M.T. did a session on experimentation in fiction at a SCBWI Summer Conference that was beyond capacity and blew my mind, and I took the opportunity to expand upon that in our discussion, "On experimentation in fiction."
The interview with M.T. is packed with insights and ideas and he is so funny! Here's just a taste:
"Five hundred years of one format are coming to an end, and we're moving into a new world. You can either find this depressing, demoralizing and even irritating, or you can embrace these new possibilities and see that they will yield new forms of narrative, the like of which have hardly yet been known. I choose the former path. It all makes me want to stay in bed with the covers over my head, eating Cap'n Crunch and reading Herodotus."
and this one
"What I've tried to do in many of my books is to stick the readers someplace they think they know and estrange them from that place. So yes, the Delaware in my Pals in Peril novels is a world of exotic fantasy adventure, rich in wizards, pterodactyls, ancient cities and spies. And yet, as you say, it's my hope that after a while, the place in my books becomes so real that kids driving along Delaware Route 1 will feel kind of disappointed they aren't attacked by ogres."
And he shares nine "experimental" elements that often appear in books for young people (and even some books for older people!) They're all great to know about, but I'll share one of them here:
"Typographical Play and Intrusion. Instead of taking the form of the book for granted, some books actually play with the typeface they're written in, using that to change the meaning of the words. For example, Lauren Child's Clarice Bean (and sequels), Lane Smith and Jon Scieszka's True Story of the Three Little Pigs (and others), Emily Gravett's Wolves, etc."
CWIM 2012 is a resource packed with wonderful information, including articles interviewing agents, on writing for magazines and writing a synopsis, and more interviews including Editor Cheryl Klein, Superstar Author Meg Cabot (70 novels published, 50 of which are New York Times best sellers), and eight debut authors! Of course, there are also the lists of book publishers, agents and art reps, contests and conferences, advice on how to treat your writing as a business and lots more.
I'm really honored and proud to have my interviews with Ally Carter and M.T. Anderson included in this latest CWIM 2012, and I hope you'll take a look!
And get this: One random commenter to this post will win a free copy of CWIM 2012! - So add your thoughts below and I'll be choosing the winner this Friday (September 23, 2011)!