Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Curious Parents Magazine

I just had my phone interview with Jillian Johnson from Curious Parents Magazine!  The article will be out in the October issue of the magazine.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Samantha Bell

Alicia Jones at college
Before I started writing Future Vision, a lot of thought went into what the main character, Samantha Bell, would look like.  Samantha has a lot in common with me.  However, I didn't want her to look exactly like me because I wanted her to take on her own personality.  So, I finally decided on having her look mostly like my younger sister, Alicia (pictured left).  In this way, Samantha still has things in common with me, but she's not me, and I was able to write freely!

Saturday, August 7, 2010

Description of Future Vision

Here's how I described Future Vision in my query letter to Metal Lunchbox Publishing:

Samantha Bell is an ambitious high school student when she visits the Future Vision attraction at a state fair.  This attraction allows viewers to see up to twenty seconds of highlights of their personal future.  However, for safety reasons, viewers must ingest a dissolvable pill afterward, causing them to forget what they had just witnessed.  Samantha tries to take the future into her own hands, though, when she smuggles a pen inside the attraction.  Although she was forced to forget what she had seen, she leaves the attraction with three words written on her hand:  Snow, fight, and ca. She knows that she has to figure out what those three words mean before the event they’re about occurs and her future is ruined.

Thursday, August 5, 2010

The Other Side of the Interview

Next week I'm being interviewed by Curious Parents Magazine. I'm very excited, but also slightly nervous. I've been interviewed for publications a few times in the past, mostly as a senior in high school. However, that was before I got my journalism degree, became a freelance writer, and learned some interview tricks. Now, I can't help but try to anticipate potential questions and think of answers, though I'm trying to stop myself. The main reason being that an interview is essentially a conversation. When I have worked as a reporter, I almost never wrote questions down ahead of time, and so as an interviewee I would just want it to be natural as well. However, I can't help but wonder if some of my own interview tactics will be used. It will be weird to be on the other side.

As I try not to think too hard about my future interview, I thought it would just be fun to post my two favorite interview tactics as the reporter. (Aside from the obvious, of course, like ask appropriate questions and take good notes!)

Tactic #1: When I first started out doing phone interviews and taking notes on my computer, I would often write down a good quote and stop and listen for more. Apparently, that scared people, though. "Uh oh. You stopped typing," some people would actually say. My solution? Always type no matter what. If someone says a great quote and then says something that's definitely not going in whatever I'm writing, I certainly don't stop. Sometimes my notes would look like the following: "I'm really proud of the kids and how they pulled together to help this family in need. hisjkdjfkgui jkfdjsakj fdkjakflds. ajskjfa. We're expecting a bigger turnout this year than in any other year." By doing this, the sound of me typing just creates a kind of background noise that hasn't seemed to intimidate people nearly as much as when I'd start and stop. Plus, I have really entertaining notes afterward!

Tactic #2: You're doing an in-person interview, pen and notebook in hand. Someone gives you a great quote, but it's really long and if you don't stop them talking about other things, you might forget what it was you were originally writing as you try to capture the other things they're saying! What do you do? Ask them a question that you don't feel like knowing the answer to. In this way, you don't miss anything while you finish writing their long quote. Also, you don't encounter a really awkward pause if they stop talking and just stare at you uncomfortably as you finish writing the original quote. This can happen all too easily!

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

The Beginning

Technically, I was in elementary school the first time I had my fiction published.  I wrote a story based on true events about my younger sister's back surgeries. It was titled Alicia's Alarm, and the short story was published in Guideposts for Kids Magazine. Though years have passed from that time to now, I have always enjoyed writing. I received a journalism degree from Rowan University, and I have spent a lot of time freelancing for newspapers. I've always loved fiction, though, and have pages of notes on novels I have been writing and intend on writing. I am now excited to have my first novel, Future Vision, being published through Metal Lunchbox Publishing.  Future Vision is a young adult novel with a science fiction base and a romance plot sure to thrill pre-teen and teenage girls. Check back soon to learn more about Future Vision.

The Paperback is Here!

Add a little "spooky" to your Christmas shopping list this year. The paperback of Night Light: Haunted Tales of Terror is offi...