Monday, June 21, 2010

Meanwhile, back in the real world...

I'm back from an amazing conference, everyone! Wow. My brain hurts. I made so many new friends, learned a ton about writing and the publishing market, and absorbed all kinds of ideas for my WIPs. So naturally, I'm blogging instead of writing.

I'll be sharing some things I learned here in the next little while, if I can get all my ideas out of my brain. But first, some business.

My friend Elissa was at the conference. I asked her about the middle grade blog I knew she had started, along with some other book peeps.

Guess what, sphere? Her blog, Mixed-Up Files, is HUGE. No, not just got a few followers huge. I mean Random House huge. That's right, the big houses are buzzing about her blog. They got 3,000 hits their first week. They already have 270 comments on their first post. Authors are contacting them begging to be interviewed. Sometimes, big things really do start with a small idea. Elissa, you rock. Congratulations. If you write or just love middle grade fiction, go check it out.

Also, I wanted to mention some amazing books I've read lately.

First, here's one I loved immediately after I read it--The Way He Lived. Emily Wing Smith's writing style is amazing--one that I hope to emulate someday. She doesn't tell the reader everything--you get to think and fill in the blanks. Told from six different points of view, we learn how 16-year-old Joel died and see the effect that he had on other people's lives.

Second, I'd been meaning to read The Chosen One by Carol Lynch Williams for ages, and I finally decided to buy it when I met the author and had a chance to get her to sign it. 13-year-old Kyra is a member of a polygamist religion. When she has to marry her sixty-year-old uncle, she wonders if she dares leave the only family she's ever known. This book was creepy and sad, but also hopeful and happy at the same time.


Cam Ballou said...

Creepy and sad? Can't bring myself to read that one yet! Hey, I should be writing. So should you. Get to work!

KarenG said...

I'll go check out the middle grade blog. That's really interesting, I like these kinds of zoom to the top, rags to riches stories.

MT said...

Hey, I was there too. Wasn't it amazing? *wishing I would have recognized you* I would have said hi! ;)

elissacruz said...

Thanks for the shout out, Kaylie.

And I did give you a second entry in the contest. Just thought you'd like to know, since I didn't reply on the site.

I'm glad you had a great time at the conference. I'm still recuperating from it myself.

Kaylie said...

Cam, I know, I know. Maybe we should cybernag each other. Repent, you slacker!
KarenG, I bet Elissa would love the riches part, though I don't think she's there yet. But her blog is pretty cool.
MT, If I'd known you were coming, I would have been zoning in on everyone's name tags looking for you. And then they would have kicked me out for being a weird chest-staring stalker girl.
Elissa, thanks for the entry. I mean it. You really do rock!