Saturday, 13 February 2010

Bad Experiences Can Be Twisted

Emotions can be tricky little things to put into words. If you haven’t had a certain experience, how are you supposed to know how your characters are feeling? Sure, you can easily guess and do a damn good job at it, but you’ll never really know that gut wrenching pain or how a tingle runs up your spine so fast that you want to collapse on the floor and stay there.

And eventually, when you do have that experience, no matter how painful, your writing will benefit from it.

My gay characters have always been strong. They’ve always had the right comeback when bullies have been on their case, they’ve always known just what to do to keep on top of everything. These characters have always been based slightly on one of my friends who came out while in school. He was bullied so badly and at first his self-esteem hit rock bottom. But then he picked himself up and eventually was able to snap his fingers at those bullies and laugh -- well, maybe not snap his fingers, but you get what I’m trying to say.

Personal story time. *Hands out popcorn*

Last night I went clubbing, and while in one club some girl came up to me and was a real bi-atch. She didn’t really say that much, ’So you’re the one who thinks she’s gay’-- cue turned up nose -- but it was the way she said it. Plus, she outed me to my girl best friend who didn’t know about my sexuality.

I just broke down. I had to leave. And the emotions that were running through me were something I’d never felt before. I cried all the way home, and then I locked myself in the bathroom and cried for three hours. It didn’t help that it was bloody freezing in that bathroom and I was still in my miniskirt and top.

So, what I’m trying to say is, bad experiences can be twisted into good. Now that I’ve had that experience, I’m able to show it realistically in my writing. And I plan to do so in my next WIP. So, I guess something good came out of last night.

Until next time.

Tuesday, 9 February 2010

My First Teaser Tuesday

“Callum?” I noticed an almost empty vodka bottle hanging loosely from his hand. Holy shit. He said he hardly ever drank alcohol, but I guessed whenever he did he went full out. “Are you okay?” I asked, stepping closer.

His eyebrows furrowed, and the liquid swashed around the bottle as he tilted it to down the last few drops. He was absolutely wasted.

“I didn’t think you were a big drinker?” I couldn’t think of anything else to say, and the silence was becoming more than uncomfortable.

His unfocused eyes wandered to my face. “mm not,” he slurred.

I nodded while tugging at my red tie slightly. “Shouldn’t you be at James’s party?”

“Didn’ wanna stay. I just… grabbed a bottle. Walked… clear my head.” He slumped forward to stand, and the light from the moon lit the side of his face as he almost stumbled over.

“Where’re you going?” I asked when he’d straightened himself enough to walk.

He stopped to shrug and tossed the empty bottle away. “Somewhere… else.”

I followed behind him silently until we made it out the park. He attempted to pull a set of keys from his pocket a few times, before dropping them and having to get onto his knees to pick them up again.

“Oh, no.” I snatched the keys from his grip. “There is no way you’re driving tonight.”

He tried to grab them back and almost tripped over his own feet. “mm fine.”

“Yeah, sure.” I put the keys in my pocket. “You’re not getting them back, so there’s no point giving me that look. Wait. Now where are you going?”

“Home,” Callum mumbled as he stumbled in the opposite direction.



“You live that way.” I pointed behind myself with a thumb. “Listen, come back to my place, and I’ll give you some water or something. I live closer.” He looked as if he were trying to decipher a hidden agenda in my words -- which probably wasn’t an easy task after all the alcohol he’d consumed. “Really.” I held my hands up. “If you end up getting hit by a car or something then it’d be my fault for letting you walk off in this state.”

He shook his head.

“Callum, you don’t have to worry.” I looked away into a dark corner between two trees. “I’m not going to do anything.”

“You’re not the one… mm worried ‘bout.” Blond locks swept his eyes as he looked down.

My head tilted to the side, and I let out a breath through my nose. “Callum, I’m here to listen if you ever need someone to talk to.”

A fake smile graced his turned-down features.

“Come on.”

Monday, 8 February 2010

Could I Actually Have a Chance?

I’m jumping around the house!

This has definitely been one of the best weeks of my life!

I received a rejection the other day from one agent who had a full on the manuscript Mr. In-The-Closet. Even though it was a ‘no’, the email she sent me was so lovely.

Thank you for sharing your work with me. This is an absolutely
wonderful concept—it's original, fun, and I can see a lot of young
readers liking this--but I’m afraid that this is not quite right for

Then I received another full request on Saturday from a new agent.

Your sample pages are fantastic. I'd like to take a look at the complete ms.

And now, after opening my email, I have another full request from a very VERY good agency. I don’t know if I’m allowed to put the agency’s name, but it was #1 on my agency list. I’m soo happy!

Thanks so much for sending a sample of MR. IN-THE-CLOSET. If you could please attach the full as a Word doc file, I'd love to keep reading.

I’m actually starting to believe that I might have a chance with this. I really REALLY hope that one of these agents like the manuscript. I have 3 partials out as well at the moment, but they seem to be in limbo.

Book Review : My Side of the Story

Here goes my first book review.

My Side of the Story. Well, what can I say about this novel? It is an amazing read. It draws you in with the first paragraph and tickles your sides with each turn of the page. This light-hearted story focuses on the main character, Jaz, who is a young gay dude who spends most of his time sneaking into gay bars, dealing with his religious sister and ‘whacked-out’ parents, and putting up with bullies at school. Listening to him whine about everything can start to get annoying after a while, but he does it in such a humorous way that you can’t really take anything he says too seriously.

His best friend, Al, who could earn a degree in fag-haggery, has Jaz’s back the whole way through this novel -- even when they have a little falling out. And once Jaz has enough of everything at home, he and Al decide to run away together. While on their short-lived adventure, they get into trouble with the police on more than one occasion, and when Jaz loses his virginity to some hairy dude, he has an epiphany -- while having sex, may I add (I sympathise with him here. I mean, if you’re thinking about life while having sex, then you know it’s time to bail.). And what’s even worse, while he’s being pounded by Big, Hairy Fat Dude, he hallucinates (he’s drugged up) and sees his dead ex-friend (If I were Jaz, I’d be feeling kinda violated by now).

Most of the issues in this novel are sorted out by the end, but, of course, since it’s supposed to be realistic, not everything is tied into a neat little bundle.

I’d give this one 3/5

Sunday, 7 February 2010

This is a Guy!

Okay, so this doesn't have much to do with writing, but I just wanted to write about it.

Anyone heard of the band Tokio Hotel? Yes? No? Either way, I found -- even though it wasn't lost -- this band on youtube. The singer looks AND sounds like a girl. When I first watched this video, I was so enchanted by 'her'. 'She' became my new inspiration -- I'm even getting prickles running down my spin writing this -- 'she' was going to be my new main character. Together we were going to create a beautiful piece of art. We were going to storm the LGBT world together. We were going to-- to--

But then I scrolled down and read a comment saying that the singer's name is Bill.

... Wait a second... Bill isn't a girls' name...

How disappointed I was when I realized that this chick was a dude. But in my defense, he looks AND sounds like a friggin' girl! It has to be illegal for a guy to look so feminine and sexy.

Aw, hell. Who says he has to be a guy in my mind? So, I'm sorry, Bill, but I will continue my deluded fantasy that you're a girl, and you WILL be my inspiration next time I write a lesbian YA novel. But for now, you'll have to wait, because I'm writing a gay YA which has GUYS in. And, my pretty, you're not male. But, you do have a twin brother who looks like a guy, perhaps I could use him in Camp Queen?

Man, that isn't supposed to sound so creepy.

Bill when he was 15. Wasn't he-- she just a little cutie? (The Japanese version was the only one I could embed. The chorus is in German, though.)

What am I working on Now?

Since I’ve finished Mr. In-The-Closet and have it with 5 literary agents, I decided to start plotting a new novel. At first I wanted to write a futuristic dystopian. I plotted the whole thing, and I really did love this plot. It had action, forbidden love, an underlying moral, etc, etc. BUT, I had no drive to write this piece. There was no spark between us. I didn’t want to commit myself to this relationship, because, well, I knew it wouldn’t last. Now, I have serious commitment issues, and I know this, so I don’t get into a long-term relationship unless I know I’m going to stick it through until the end. However, I did test the water before deciding to jump into the deep end -- My toe went in, and it was WAY too cold.

So I began to think of other ideas. What should I write next? I kept coming up with YA LGBT plots, but I’d already written one, and it was already with agents. And finally, after beating myself around the head repeatedly to find a new plot which wasn’t LGBT, some guy had a conversation with some other people within the walls of my mind.

I was sitting in my college’s computer room, doing research for a psychology project, when these pieces of dialogue recited.

MC: “Wait a minute, you’re a chick?”

Character 1 -- Girl: “Biologically, yes.”

MC: “Then why are you in here? This is a guy’s cabin.”

Character 2 -- guy: “They must’ve thought she was a guy, sweetheart.”

MC turns to Character 2 and sees him for the first time: “What the fuck are you supposed to be?”

Character 2 -- guy: “I’m a Transvestite.”

Character 3 -- guy -- raises his hand: “Gay.”

MC turns to the last character within the cabin: “And what about you? What the hell are you?”

Character 4 -- guy: “Lesbian.”

MC nods slowly: “Of course…”

And thus, Camp Queen was born. I haven’t come up with a synopsis yet, but I outlined the whole plot within one afternoon, and I can’t wait to start! It’s only going to be 50 - 55K words long, so it shouldn’t take me longer than two months to finish a first draft. But, the next step, I think, should be naming my babies.

(And just so you know: The girl has gender dysphoria and there is such a thing as a male lesbian. I studied Gender in Psychology last term, and we learned all about different sexualities.)

Until next time.

Let us begin

Okay, so this is my first blog post. I think I remember trying to create a blog a few years ago but never actually got around to posting anything. It’s probably floating around cyber space somewhere, collecting cyber dust.

But I’m not here to talk about past failed attempts. If I were here to do that, I’d be talking about trunked novels which will never see the light of day. Alas, I am here to write about my highs and lows, the damn struggles toward my ultimate dream, and everything in between. I doubt I’ll stick to posting JUST about writing/publishing/agents/etc.

But just so you know: You’re reading the blog of a future author. You see, I must be psychic, because I can say that without a doubt in my mind that it will some day happen. But then again, if I was psychic, I don’t think I’d still be in college. I’d be winning the lottery every week -- but that might get a bit suspicious, and I’d probably end up in some government lab while they run tests on me -- That doesn’t sound very fun. Plus, I’d never get time to write… hmm.

I’m not really sure how to use these sort of websites. So until I get the hang of everything, I’ll probably be screwing the whole thing up -- quite badly. But. But. But. I’ll figure this bloody thing out eventually! When I do, I’ll start posting most days.

AND, I think that’s enough of an introduction.