The Divining Wand

Discovering authors beyond their pages…
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Summer Vacations by Our Authors, Part II

September 01, 2009 By: larramiefg Category: Profiles

Having learned how some of our authors spent — or wished they had spent this summer — let’s hear from more of them beyond their pages.
Katie Alender (Bad Girls Don’t Die):
“What do I wish I were doing this summer? Exactly what I’m doing! Except maybe in a cleaner house. Although I would love to have the chance to visit my brother and his family in Switzerland, but my short deadline doesn’t really leave much opportunity for that. I also wish I were losing a pound or two a week… ha ha.”

Tish Cohen (Town House, The Invisible Rules of the Zoe Lama Juvenile, Inside Out Girl and Little Black Lies YA coming October 13, 2009):

“Right now I’m finishing up edits on the third adult book (due out next summer) and am listening to French jazz and the soundtrack to Something’s Gotta Give – which is all, you guessed it, French jazz.”

Meredith Cole (Posed for Murder):

“I wish I were writing in a quiet vacation home, preferably at the beach. Instead, I’m writing in my half unpacked/half painted house. I’m not very good at writing when everything is packed and in complete disorder, so I’m not getting much done right now.”

Ad Hudler (Man of the House, All This Belongs to Me, House Husband):

“I wish I were exploring the entire state of Oklahoma, border to border, in my truck.”

Jessica Barksdale Inclan (The Beautiful Being coming September 29, 2009):

“I need to teach and I love to teach, but I wish I did not have to teach so much — Five classes much.”

Holly Kennedy (The Silver Compass, The Penny Tree, The Tin Box):

“I’m doing exactly what I want to be doing this summer. I’m spending time with my kids and husband, then sliding off to Hawaii for 12 days to take in a writers retreat and present at the conference (where I’ll hopefully inspire some upcoming writers.” 🙂

Kristy Kiernan (Catching Genius, Matters of Faith, and Between Friends coming April 6, 2010):

“I’m doing what I want to be doing (editing BETWEEN FRIENDS, starting on the new one), but I’d rather be doing it somewhere else…like St. George Island, FL.”

Judy Merrill Larsen (All the Numbers):

“I’m having a great summer–I finished a major rewrite of what I hope will be my next novel on June 30, so now I’m taking some time away from it before going back to tweak it. In the meantime, I’m traveling to Seattle to visit my son and have a reunion with my mom, sister, aunt and cousin (one of those trips we’ve talked about taking for years), and then at the end of August my husband and I are running away to Amelia Island. And of course, I’ll be reading up a storm, trying to catch up.”

Kristina Riggle (Real Life & Liars):

“I wish I had more time to go camping. I miss sitting by a campfire in the still, cool night.”

Allison Winn Scotch (The Department of Lost & Found, Time of My Life):

“Oh gosh, summer really, really makes me wish that I didn’t live in New York City. I am a beach bum at heart, so I’d much rather be loitering on the beaches in Southern Cali than pounding the asphalt pavement here. Just to wake up at a beach house and step outside and inhale the air…oh, I’m getting depressed just thinking about it. But that said, we’re headed out west for two weeks, so I should get my California fix then.”

[Note: Not only did Allison enjoy her vacation, she just heard that Time of My Life paperback edition has gone into its third printing. Congratulations Allison!!].

The Sounds of Their Music

July 21, 2009 By: larramiefg Category: Profiles

Music, known as the universal language, can also be the most energetic force in inspiring a writer’s creativity. With that in mind, don’t you wonder what’s on your favorite authors’ playlists as they write?

The following writers share what and/or who they’re currently enjoying in song, and you may find their answers both surprising and revealing.

Meredith Cole (Posed for Murder)

“What’s on my playlist this week: John Legend, Sierra Leone’s Refugee All-Stars, and Lucinda Williams

“I don’t write to music normally, but I occasionally will when I’m at a cafe. Noise doesn’t bother me when I’m out like it does when I’m at home.”

Ad Hudler (Man of the House, All This Belongs to Me

“I am musically illiterate. I don’t have a playlist, don’t have an iPod. If I do have music on when I’m writing, I find it can’t have a beat or lyrics because they’re too distracting.”

Jessica Barksdale Inclan (The Beautiful Being, Intimate Beings)

“What’s on my Playlist: I listen to books, not music. I am currently listening to “A Changed Man” by Francine Prose.”

Holly Kennedy (The Silver Compass, The Penny Tree and The Tin Box)

“My playlist is an odd mix of present and past. At the moment, I love Nora Jones, but I also enjoy Christmas music, even during summer months. I usually choose a list of 20-30 songs for each novel and while I’m writing I play them in the background over and over again. I find it helps me set the tone.”

Lara Ziielin (Donut Days)

“I am (still) obsessed with Coldplay’s “’Viva la Vida’” and I really like Kings of Leon right now too. Music definitely helps me write, and if I find the right song that’s totally a fit with what I’m penning at that moment, I’ll hit repeat on iTunes and just let it play over and over. Sometimes I’ll look at the play count for a particular song at the end of the day and it’ll be something insane, like 200.”

So, readers, what’s on your Playlists?

News, Reviews and An Interview

July 09, 2009 By: larramiefg Category: Books, Interviews, News

There’s a bit of everything to report for the end of this week, beginning with Holly Kennedy (The Silver Compass, The Penny Tree and The Tin Box), offering some writing inspiration (or maybe just a break away from it all) to fellow authors. Where? Hawaii! For details, please visit Holly’s blog and read Hawaii bound for writing inspiration. Now those are authors who will be going far beyond their pages!

Mia King has received this first “official review for Table Manners due out on August 4, 2009:

“In this the follow-up to Good Things, Deidre McIntosh must figure out the right ingredients to make the recipe for her life work. As she does this, King provides a feast for the imagination, since much of the plot revolves around food. There’s no real doubt that this will end with a happily ever after, but the reader will enjoy getting there. There’s a treat at the end, where several mouthwatering recipes await.”__Sandra Garcia-Myers, Romantic Times

The novel garnered four stars which, according to their guide, translates into compelling — page-turner.

Reviews and blurbs for Crazy Beautiful also have Lauren Baratz-Logsted smiling. Scheduled for release on September 7, 2009, the novel’s early praise includes:

“Somehow, this romance transcends all of its potential pitfalls to create a powerful story about recovery and friendship.”__Kirkus

“Lauren Baratz-Logsted doesn’t write icky, gooey love. She writes stark, broken, gorgeous love. When you need a retreat, when you need to feel something, or when you just need a breather from your own freaky life, this is the love story you’ll run to. Crazy Beautiful has two hearts, one soul. I can’t wait to read it again.” ~ Lisa McMann, New York Times bestselling author of WAKE

“Written in spare, evocative, prose, Lauren Baratz-Logsted crafts a beautiful story of love and redemption so gorgeously rendered I was enthralled from the very first page. This book is simply breathtaking—and one you’ll want to return to again and again!”- Alyson Noël, #1 New York Times bestselling author of EVERMORE

“CRAZY BEAUTIFUL is gripping, with moments of sheer brilliance.” ~ Ellen Hopkins, New York Times bestselling author of CRANK and IMPULSE

And for anyone interested in how this site came to be (as well as a little about me), please visit Suzanne Anderson’s A View From Table One to read The Divining Wand — A New Spell Is Cast. Suzanne has been a great friend and enthusiastic cheerleader and I send her a hundred thank yous!