Thought for the Day:
“The beautiful part of writing is that you don’t have to get it right the first time, unlike, say, a brain surgeon. You can always do it better, find the exact word, the apt phrase, the leaping simile.”
~ Robert Cormier ~
Gifts for My Writer Friends:
Everyone has to start somewhere, but you don’t need to start badly. HERE is a post on Bookfox with 13 Mistakes Beginner Writers Should Avoid.
Backstory is always tricky. How much? Where to put it? HERE Jenna Kernan has an excellent article from Writer’s Digest with 12 Dos and Don’ts of Revealing Critical Backstory in a Novel.
Sandy Vaile has a great post HERE on Writers in the Storm with 4 Essential Elements You Need to Create a Workable Novel. Her examples are terrific.
I am sure all of you have Uvalde, Texas, and the tragedy there on your minds, as do I. I cannot comprehend how anyone can object to background checks, how anyone can believe 18-year-olds (or anyone else, in my mind) should be able to buy assault weapons and body armor and hundreds of rounds of ammunition unchallenged, how we can continue to sacrifice our children on the altar of gun rights. I am furious and I will do what I can to help candidates who will take this on and make meaningful changes. I try not to get political on my blog, but sometimes I just have to say what I think is really important.
I hope you all have a good Memorial Day weekend. We have many to thank for the freedoms we enjoy in this country, and I include my thanks to all who served. For those of you who have a day off tomorrow, enjoy your day! I am happy to report I am feeling well enough to get to the post office, so I am back to having some giveaways. Yay! No real changes since last week, but I am being brave enough to get out more.
I don’t know if I ever mentioned here that I used to live in Poughkeepsie, NY. It was many years ago. In fact, that is where Dave and I were married. We lived there for five years, and it is a beautiful place. When I saw a book with Poughkeepsie in the title on the review list for the Seattle Book Review, I was intrigued. So I chose Crazy in Poughkeepsie by Daniel Pinkwater for one of my books. Here is the review I wrote for SBR.
When Mick comes home from summer camp, he finds an old man and a dog staying in his room. The old man is a guru, and Mick’s brother Maurice had brought him home from his travels. Mick and the guru get into the habit of walking around Poughkeepsie with the dog every day. Soon they hook up with Vern Chuckoff, Mick’s friend from camp, and his friend Molly, who, it seems, is crazy. They discover an old factory that is filled with ghosts, including the ghost of a whale named Luna. Luna is not happy where she is. She needs to be transported to where other whale ghosts are. The guru arranges to buy a circus wagon for that transport. Thus begins an incredible journey for Mick, Vern Chuckoff, crazy Molly, Luna, the guru, and the dog.
Daniel Pinkwater has written a very clever and funny story that will keep middle graders, even reluctant readers, fully engaged and turning pages right through to the end. The characters are fully formed and fascinating. The story is very compelling and the writing is superb, with snappy dialogue and excellent description. If quirky is something readers enjoy, this is the book for them.
I have a gently-read paperback for one of you. All you need do is be a follower or subscriber (it’s free!), have a U.S. address, and leave a comment below. If you would like extra chances, please share the link to this post on Facebook, Twitter, or any other social media outlet and let me know you have done that. And don’t forget to check for other Marvelous Middle-Grade Monday posts at Greg Pattridge’s blog HERE