Tuesday, July 31, 2012

The Agent Search Has Begun

It's begun. I've queried two now, one through meeting at conference, one through referral. Yesterday I did my research on agentquery.com and came up with a list of fifteen more to query in the upcoming weeks. I'm thinking five a week.

I have a few top ten lists I'm going to go through. Top ten most queried, most accepting, most unresponsive, most rejecting, and research, of course, the most accepting and see if there are any that are a good fit for me, and try and avoid the other ones (they don't all rep YA btw). Of course one of my dream agents is on one of the other lists, so, you know, I can't avoid them all.

I've also gone back to the Blue Boards. It's been a long time, so I'm listed as a newbie again. :( I was a frequent poster before. The Blue Boards were pretty much my bible when I started the journey to publication. I'm in Verla Kay's debt for the invaluable resource.

I'm also curious, if I query an agent I know reps friends, do I mention that? Even if they didn't really refer me there? And if I mention them, do I mention that they didn't refer me there?  Maybe I should ask my friends, but getting some unbiased opinions would be good too.

Anyone else out there on the quest for an agent?

Okay, wish me luck.

Monday, July 30, 2012

Birthday contest and getting better with age

My class reunion
Okay, first off, I want to mention my Never Eighteen half birthday contest. I haven't received very many entries and it ends tomorrow!! That's right I said tomorrow!!! All I want you to do, is tell me six things on your bucket list.  Winner will be chosen randomly because all the answers have been so good so far I can't pick myself. But don't do it here on this post, do it here.

Okay, enough of that. I went to my 25th high school reunion on Saturday. I know, I know, you're thinking, 25 years! Megan can't possibly be that old. But alas, I am. I was thinking to myself as I schmoozed and mingled with my fellow alumni, wow, everyone looks great!!

Now, I will admit, five years ago at the last one (yes we do one every five year at the tens we do the fancy schmancy one, at the fives we keep it more casual in a bar) I thought the guys looked a little rough around the edges (if any of them read this I hope they aren't offended, I didn't look that great either), but the women looked fantastic.  But this year, the guys looked awesome and the women did too.
Me 1986

I think we've all aged well. In high school, I think I was cute enough, but I had a fat face (I think a lot of us had fuller faces back then) and of course was a bit self conscious about my body. My face has thinned and yeah, I dye my hair, the purple isn't natural ;) I've got some wrinkles, I'm softer in places than I'd like to be, but I really do think I've aged well.

Me and my friend Heidi 2 days ago.
Maybe it's just wishful thinking I don't know. Of course, Maybe I'm just appreciating the cycle of life more now that I'm getting older.

Friday, July 27, 2012

F³A: Is this thing on?

I'm wondering, some days on my blog I have a lot of comments, other days I have none. I know people look at my blog daily. How come so few comments? 

I started thinking about what  makes me comment on a blog or not. I mean, in truth, I've not had the time to look at a lot of blogs lately, but when I do, there are specific reasons why I comment.

I want to support my fellow bloggers. To show them that I read them.

Because I have something to add to the conversation.

If I don't comment it's usually just because I don't feel like I have anything useful to say or don't know much about the subject matter.

Sometimes I feel like I lose readers because I'm at times sporadic. Life gets in the way of my blogging and I'll go a few days or even a week without connecting with my audience.  I think that's detrimental to a blog. Maybe it's also because I'm all over the place with the blog. One day I'm talking about writing, then dating, then kids, then exercise...it's a blog about life really. I've decided to kind of keep focused on the writing aspect of my life, but you know, I can't stop myself from ranting if something comes up.

Do you have any insights as to blog trending? Why do you comment or not? Do you try to change things up when people don't comment?

Here's the Friday Scribbles, which I've not done in awhile either.

Next Pandora Song: Missed the Boat by Modest Mouse (The Head & the Heart channel)

Netflix of the Week: To be honest, I can't remember the last thing I watched. Let me think a minute. Oh, yeah, it was a movie called Spork. Think female Napoleon Dynamite. Well, kind of female, she's a hermaphrodite. Very funny.

Book of theWeek: The Wicked and the Just by J. Anderson Coats. Think, Medieval girls gone bad, as Jillian says.

Quote of the Week (because of recent events in my life): "Don’t interfere with something that ain’t bothering you none" ~ Old Wild west Talk

Thursday, July 26, 2012

How much is too much marketing

Someone posted this link on facebook today: http://heyauthor.tumblr.com/ . I found it very funny, but it is telling. As writer's are we promoting ourselves too much. Yes, normally we are a bunch of narcissists, and we are trying to get our work out there to the masses, but as far as social networking goes, are we bombarding the internet with too much "hey buy my book" and not enough, "I'm just a real person, here's my life"

I admit, I don't Tweet all that much. I just don't have the time. And I do try to interact with people on there, but I feel like I'm lost because I'm just not on there enough, though I would like to be more. So yeah, I Tweet writing stuff. I also promote friends writing stuff. I also asks questions which no one seems to answer (because I just honestly think I'm not on there enough.

And I have heard that when social marketing like 25% should be marketing, the rest, just real life stuff. Or something like that. Don't quote me. So maybe I'm screwing up on my Twitter.

However, on Facebook, I think I'm doing it right. I have my personal page, and then I have an author page. So on my author page I write all about my author stuff. On my personal page, I mostly write about life, but if there is important writer stuff, like an event, or an awesome review, yeah, I share it.

I don't do much else as far as social marketing goes. I Tumble, which I've hardly done, and yeah, I've used it for writing, but I only have two posts. I Youtube, but that's pretty  much about writing too and people know it. When I veered off to life, people stopped watching me :( So I'm going to get back to a writing Vlog. Soon. Hopefully.

So, what do you think? Do you think writers go overboard when social networking? Or do you think it's just part of the biz? Would you unfriend/unfollow a writer who did nothing but tout their writing?

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Queen of Dirt Part Deux

I check Amazon daily to see if I have new reviews, to check Never Eighteen's ranking, and see if I'm still on top book lists. I know I'm selling books if I'm on lists. Usually I'm on the following lists.

Books > 4-for-3 Books > Children's Books > Issues > Illness

Books > 4-for-3 Books > Children's Books > Issues > Death

Once I was on the romance list. 

Today I made a new list.

 Books > 4-for-3 Books > Teens > Health, Mind & Body > Sexuality

Um, that's different. I suppose the book has bits of sexuality within its pages. Very little bits. But, hey, this is a new realm. Will it help me sell more books? I have no frickin' idea. In truth, I have no idea what these lists really mean. What's a 4 for 3 book? Do you buy three and get the 4th free? I don't know. 

I am obviously still the Queen of Dirt. Maybe someone will send me a sash and a tiara this time. Oh, and if you want to find out just how much dirt and sex is in the book you can go buy it by clicking the title of the book at the top of the page, or you can enter my contest here.

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Life is Fragile

I don't know how many times we're reminded of this throughout our lives. I've seen people in losing battles with alcohol and drugs. I've seen them in vehicle accidents. I've seen death. Too much of it for my age I think. Two people I knew died while I was in high school. Two right after. Many along the way up until now. My own daughter almost died on me when she was only five weeks old.

Yet still, and I'm guilty as anyone, we sit idle. Become complacent in life. Live an unhappy existence. I even wrote a book on the subject and I still find myself at times, sitting back watching the world go by.  Not as much as I used to, but still, a little.

I have tried to live up to the message of my book though. I've done a lot the last couple years. I've written books, gone to New York, Arizona, Sundance. I've started running, biking again. I'm getting out of my comfort zone. I try to touch people's live in a positive way. But still, I let myself get all crazy and frustrated by the things I can't control. I need to learn to let it go. YOLO. That's the motto. You only live once.

Do I want to live it frustrated all the time? Letting the smallest thing get to me? No. I merely want to LIVE it, and live it well. Live it to the best of my ability with no regret.

I'm having a contest. I posted it Monday. Enter here. Just post 6 things on your bucket list.

I'm dedicating this blog today to my niece, Gina. She was in a car accident yesterday. As you can see, she's amazingly beautiful and full of life. Could you send some good vibes, prayers or whatever you may do? Injuries seem to be minor, but everything helps, you know?

Live and love without regret,


Monday, July 23, 2012

Captain Crazypants

I just happened along a Goodreads flame war the other day. Way past disgruntled author getting a bad review. This person sounded totally cray cray.

I sat there reading for at least an hour. I don't know how I became so engrossed, but I was. As I read, it was hard for me to decide who was causing the most problem. The writer who was completely off his rocker and more than once stated that he was doing what he was doing to sell more books, or the bloggers who continued to fan the flames by commenting.

I mean, don't get me wrong, if it were a matter of choosing sides, I know whose side I'd be on. That's not the question. And I admit, I've right in the middle of a flame war. Watching it from the sidelines though, it was different. I could actually put things into perspective that I think those involved failed to see.

The writer sought attention. He freely admitted it. Every writer knows that bad publicity is still publicity. The bloggers gave it to him and in a sense, he beat them. He kept asking, "if you hate me so much go away. Leave me alone." (the war took place on his goodreads blog) He had a point.

 The crazies thrive off of your outrage and frustration. Worse, you will find yourself saying things that are completely out of character, calling names, casting blame, spearheading a witch hunt.

The coo-coo-for-cocoa-puffs person on the other end will keep it going and going as long as possible. You're like a fish on a hook. They'll reel you in little by little, but when things seem to be calming down, they'll let the line drop and begin reeling all over again.

You want to know how to douse the flames? Ignore them. Walk away. That will hurt them the most.

photo by Emilie Hardman
Hey, reminder, I have a contest going on for Never Eighteen's 6 month birthday. Enter here.

Saturday, July 21, 2012

Never Eighteen Half Year Birthday Contest!!!!!

First, let me say, it's been a wild ride. Never Eighteen has been selling pretty good, especially here in the Pacific Northwest where the book is set. But I've actually sold copies all over the world.

It started out tricky, as the night of my release party we had a major snow storm, which kept some people away. We also started a little early, so people could get home earlier, of course, this pissed others off. Also, a box of books didn't come in because of the snow. Luckily I had a couple boxes of my own in my car, but we still ran out. There were a couple other snafus, but I told myself, especially after hearing about the snow, it is what it is.

I've done 1 Skype school visit to Illinois, 3 library visits, 6 book store events, 7 interviews (not counting blog interviews), 14 school visits, and many more online events and had fun with every one of them.

I've lost an agent. I've struggled to write a second book. It took me over a year, which is unprecedented for me. I don't have a second book deal, nor do I have any foreign rights sold for Never Eighteen. I've spent just about every dime I have marketing Never Eighteen. Those are the frustrating things about the business.

I've met tons of cool readers, writers, librarians, bookstore owners, teachers. I love those connections so much.

And that's pretty much how my last six months have gone.

Okay, I've figured out the contest. For Never Eighteen's Half birthday I want you to tell me in the comments below, 6 things on your bucket list. I will pick the winner. What will you win? A signed copy of Never Eighteen, a CD of some of the songs on the playlist in the back of the book, and swag. Always swag!!!

photo by Charlie Wolf
Here are some of the things on my bucket list.

1. Take my kids to NYC
2. Go to Australia
3. Apologize to people I need to apologize to and welcome anyone who thinks I've wronged them to step forward and talk to me.
4. Thank all the people in my life you has helped me along the way.
5. Participate in a triathlon
6. Yeah, throw the big party.

Your turn. Six things on your bucket list.

Friday, July 20, 2012

Half Birthday!!!!!!

So, this month is Never Eighteen's six month birthday so I'm thinking I need a giveaway! I just have no idea what to do. Pictures of you with the book at your favorite place? Stories of how you reached out to someone? I have no idea. Maybe I should make it easier and save those for the actual birthday of the book. What do you think? Any ideas?

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

It takes a lot of nerve...

I'm going to talk about Goodreads and reviews, though it's a topic I try to stay away from. I do reviews on Goodreads, and Amazon for that matter. As an Amazon Vine reviewer, Amazon gives me products to try for an honest review. I used to review books on Amazon. Since I became a writer, I will no longer review books on Amazon (plus it's a time drain and you can only get more products if you have most of your other products reviewed).

I do still review occasionally on Goodreads, but if I don't like a book, I won't review it. I will only review books I would give four or five stars. I know some people don't agree with this policy, but as an author, I know how much low ratings hurt egos and feelings. That's just how I roll. 

Obviously there are review bloggers on there who review many books. Here's the thing, many of these bloggers are writers themselves. I don't know how they feel confident about giving a book one or two stars when they have books out there also. I mean, I would never retaliate against a blogger, low reviews don't really bother me any more, but I think some people might.

What do you think? I'd love some bloggers to weigh in if they read this.

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

The weirdness that is Amazon

So I'd been getting a little down, my Amazon sales ranking was sucking. Since I don't yet have a second book coming out, I keep trying to think outside the box about marketing Never Eighteen. I've been reading marketing books, etc.

Seriously, my rank was at close to a million. I wasn't on any of Amazon's weird lists.

Then yesterday I checked, and my ranking was like 57k and I was on two lists:

#13 in Books > 4-for-3 Books > Children's Books > Issues > Illness

 #65 (guessing, don't really remember what this one was, but it was somewhere around there) in Books > 4-for-3 Books > Children's Books > Issues > Death and Dying.


My weekly sales are seriously up and down. Usually I do an event and they go up, but I've done nothing this week. Absolutely nothing.

This business is seriously insane.

Monday, July 16, 2012

The trouble with rewrites

Um, what isn't the trouble with rewrites. After sending my novel, An Unbalanced Line, which used to be titled Cheesy, which if it ever gets published will more than likely be named something else, to my editor, I realized I'd made a horrible mistake.

At that moment I began to realize all the things wrong with the book.

Have you ever done that?

When she wrote back and said she'd read about a quarter of it and there were definitely problems with it that she had every faith I could fix, and would I like it back to do that before she read on, um, yeah, I jumped at the chance.

I realized for YA my protagonist started out too young. Her dad wasn't quite the asshole he was supposed to be. I also decided she needed to be from a specific geographical area instead of some nondescript place.

Thus the rewrite begins.

The beginning was fairly easy, because it was like writing a new book. The first 10,000 words were mostly new writing. Of course with the new geographical area, and the fact that my main character drives across three states made for a lot of research.

Then the harder part began--I caught up to the point I had to rewrite.

Do you know how hard it is to change a 13 year old voice to a 16 year old voice? Well, it's not easy. Not to mention every other kid in the book, their clothing, social activities,yadda, yadda, yadda.

I have to totally rewrite the dad and make him a big fat jerk.

I also changed some other aspects of the book in the new beginning, therefore having to change other things throughout.

I' plodded along.

I stopped for awhile and started a new project, then thought to myself. You already have a finished novel here. Just get it done. So I went back to it. I continue to work through it slowly. I'm on page 73 of 171. Word number 24,464 out of 56,721. I'm almost halfway there.

How do you feel about rewrites? Are you always up to the challenge? Do they frustrate you? Invigorate you? Make you crazy? Inspired?

Saturday, July 14, 2012

Thinks that make you go hmmm...

Life has been nothing short of chaotic lately. I don't have a magic wand to make time slow down or annoying people to go away or life to be perfect, so I have to deal. I'm just not good at dealing. I'm learning, I really am. When something pisses me off, I take a deep breath and try to let serenity wash over me and let the moment pass. I try not to use the word "hate" although it's much too easy to say.

Some days I feel like the Tasmanian Devil, spinning out of control, leaving nothing but piles of rubble in my wake.

Some days there is so much going on in my head I can't process it all.

Some days I don't want to get out of bed.

Why, why why, you ask.


People annoy me. Let me be more specific. Ignorance, stupidity, and meanness annoy and anger me.

Politics/religion. Yes, taboo subjects, but I'm going there. I'm tired of people downing a president who is doing the best he can with the eight year mess he was left with. I think it's wrong for the government to tell two people in love that they can't get married. I'm tired of people thinking the environment is fine, there is no such thing as climate change. I think when your clergy is abusing children, maybe it's time to rethink your policies and let them be married, or gay, or women. *cough* I'm done with that. I'm not trying to start any political or religious debates. If you'd like to say something in response to this, please feel free, but keep it civil and I'm sorry if I've offended anyone, but these are my opinions and I stand by them.

Day job. I love my day job. I'm good at what I do. But this week it made a very bad start to my weekend. I get tired of people not speaking up when they want to and then not keeping their mouths closed when they should. If you don't like my work, fire me, but I've done a damn good job.

Teenage girls. I'm pretty sure that's all I have to say there.

Writing. I'm not going to be specific here, but I think reviewers should be kind to writers and writers should be kind to reviewers. There is no reason to take personal jabs at either. I've seen a lot of ugliness on the net lately with regards to this, and it is nothing short of bullying on both sides. It needs to stop.

And I'm scared. I don't have an agent. I don't have a second book deal. My foreign rights for Never Eighteen are dangling in the stratosphere without a home. I've started querying, but it's frightening. It's something I never wanted to have to do again, yet here I am.

I have a book finished. This is good. I'm rewriting another. This is hard. I have so many projects I want to write, so many ideas. This is frustrating.  I don't have the time to write all the ideas swimming around in my head.

Sometimes I wish my brain would just quiet down and leave me be. But it doesn't.

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Gearing up for my coming out

I'm talking about my new blog, vlog, website. It's why I haven't exactly been doing any of those things lately. And while I don't exactly have the money yet for my new website, I'm still going to release my blog and vlog soon. hopefully this week. Maybe blog Friday, Vlog Monday? I'll try at least.

Thanks to my winner Kevin Johnson for coming up with my new brand, Creative Chaos. Fits perfectly.

Stay tuned for more chaos.

Thursday, July 5, 2012

Spokane Here We Come!!!

So if you're in the Spokane, WA area, I will be at Auntie's Bookstore with two other fantabulous writers and Class of 2k12ers, J Anderson Coats, and Jennifer Shaw Wolf. Here's. We will be reading from our novels, taking questions, and selling and signing books. Here are little blurbs about the books, so you know what to look forward to.

In thirteenth-century Wales, ten years into English rule, two girls at cross purposes are caught up in ethnic strife, institutionalized corruption and impending rebellion.

1293.  North Wales.  Ten years into English rule.
Cecily would give anything to leave Caernarvon and go home.  Gwenhwyfar would give anything to see all the English leave.

Neither one is going to get her wish.
Behind the city walls, English burgesses govern with impunity.  Outside the walls, the Welsh are confined by custom and bear the burden of taxation, and the burgesses plan to keep it that way.

Cecily can’t be bothered with boring things like the steep new tax or the military draft that requires Welshmen to serve in the king’s army overseas.  She has her hands full trying to fit in with the town’s privileged elite, and they don’t want company.

Gwenhwyfar can’t avoid these things.  She counts herself lucky to get through one more day, and service in Cecily’s house is just salt in the wound.

But the Welsh are not as conquered as they seem, and the suffering in the countryside is rapidly turning to discontent.  The murmurs of revolt may be Gwenhwyfar’s only hope for survival – and the last thing Cecily ever hears.

Breaking Beautiful
 Does time heal all wounds?

Allie lost everything the night her boyfriend, Trip, died in a tragic car accident—including her memory of the event. All she has left are the scars and a sneaking suspicion that the crash wasn’t an accident after all.  

When the police reopen the investigation, it quickly turns on Allie and her best friend, Blake, especially as their budding romance raises eyebrows around their small town. 

As the threats begin and the survivor’s guilt sets in, Allie’s memories collide with a dark secret about Trip she’s kept for too long. Caught somewhere between her past and her future, Allie knows she must tell the truth. Can she reach deep enough to remember that night so she can finally break free?

 Seventeen-year-old Austin Parker wants to help the people he loves live—even though his own future is uncertain.

I had the dream again.  The one where I’m running.  I don’t know what from or where to, but I’m scared, terrified really.

Austin Parker is never going to see his eighteenth birthday. At the rate he’s going, he probably won’t even see the end of the year. 

But in the short time he has left there’s one thing he can do: He can try to help the people he loves live—even though he never will.
It’s probably hopeless.

But he has to try.

So, please if you're in the area, come by and see us. We'd love to meet you!

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Branding Winner!

So I have my winner of my branding contest. He's someone that commented on my youtube video about the contest. I don't even know if he reads this blog, but if you do, hey Kevin, you won! So, what's the brand?

Megan Bostic 
Creative Chaos

I think it's perfect for me. My writing style as well as my life is nothing short of chaotic. I can barely keep track of myself.

So there it is. Soon I'll have a new look for my website, my blog (hopefully if we can figure that out), and I'll be starting a new video series.

Thanks to all who participated. If any of you who entered want a signed bookmark, send me an email with your address at meganbostic at ymail dot com

You guys rock. Seriously.

Oh, and since I didn't blog yesterday, here's a monkey.

This is how I've felt the last few weeks.

My Dad. He's awesome.

John Messina, Personal Injury Attorney

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