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Thursday Night Write – and Cover Love!

March 4, 2010

Also, for those of you who weren’t around for the excitement yesterday, the Prophecy paperback cover AND the Guardian of the Gate cover were both revealed at 10am on the Prophecy Community Site. It’s been so gratifying to hear the overwhelmingly thrilled feedback! Almost everyone I’ve spoken to loves the new covers as much as I do, and even though I’ve heard a few readers lament that their series won’t match (if they already have a hardcover), I really think this is going to be great for the series.

And look at it this way; those of you with the original Prophecy hardcover (which will remain available until they’re all gone and/or the paperback releases, whichever comes first!) might just be in possession of a future collectible.

😀

I also want to let you guys know that I’ll be a part of the 2010 Teen Author Festival in NYC! So many incredibly talented authors will be there, and I’m honored to be a part of this celebration of YA literature at its finest. I’m posting the schedule as follows and hope you can all make at least some of the events. I’d love to see you at the Books of Wonder signing on Sunday the 21st! You can learn more by visiting the Festival Fan Page on Facebook.

2010 NYC Teen Author Festival Schedule

Monday, 3/15 (NYPL, Tompkins Square Branch, 331 East 10th Street, 6pm):

First Draft to Final Draft – Talking About the Writing Process

featuring:
Gayle Forman
Daphne Grab
Carolyn Mackler
Sarah Mlynowski
Blake Nelson
Marie Rutkoski
Eliot Schrefer
Natalie Standiford

Tuesday, 3/16 (Barnes & Noble Tribeca, 97 Warren Street, 7pm):

Getting Inside the Mind of a Teen Boy

featuring:
Nick Burd
Matt de la Pena
Gordon Korman
David Levithan
Barry Lyga
Michael Northrup
Jon Skovron
Jake Wizner

Wednesday, 3/17 (Mulberry Street Branch, NYPL, 10 Jersey St, 6pm):

The Treasure Map to Going Bovine with Will Grayson(s)
(or, an evening of readers’ theater)

featuring:
Libba Bray
John Green
David Levithan
E. Lockhart

Thursday, 3/18 (Five Borough Read, 10am):

Authors read to high school students and the public in libraries across the city.

Manhattan:

Countee Cullen Branch, NYPL, 104 W 136th St

Donna Freitas
Eliot Schrefer
Rachel Vail
Lynn Weingarten
Ebony Wilkins

Jefferson Market Branch, NYPL, 425 6th Ave

Gabe Guarente
Carla Jablonksi
Kristen Kemp
Barry Lyga
Samantha Schutz

Muhlenburg Branch, NYPL, 209 W 23rd St

Emma McLaughlin
Lauren McLaughlin
Courtney Sheinmel
Jennifer Smith

Mulberry Street Branch, NYPL, 10 Jersey Street

Angie Frazier
Aimee Friedman
Alice Hoffman
Robin MacCready
Sarah Maclean
Amanda Marrone

Seward Park Branch, NYPL, 192 East Broadway

Cathleen Bell
Susane Colasanti
Matt De La Pena
Gayle Forman
Daphne Grab

Yorkville Branch, NYPL,, 222 East 79th St

Micol Ostow
Robin Palmer
Shani Petroff
Robyn Schneider
Abby Sher
Jake Wizner
Michelle Zink

Brooklyn:

Central Branch, Brooklyn Public Library, Dweck Auditorim, 10 Grand Army Plaza

Emily Horner
Melissa Kantor
Olugbemisola Rhuday-Perkovich
Matthue Roth
Siobhan Vivian
Adrienne Maria Vrettos
Melissa Walker
Robin Wasserman

Bronx:

Bronx Library Center, NYPL, 310 East Kingsbridge Road

Coe Booth
Sarah Darer Littman
Neesha Meminger
Maryrose Wood

Queens:

Broadway Branch, QPL, 40-20 Broadway, Long Island City

Jessica Blank
Sarah Burningham
Heather Duffy-Stone
Marianne Mancusi
Elizabeth Scott

Staten Island:

West New Brighton Branch, NYPL, 976 Castleon Avenue

Elizabeth Eulberg
David Levithan
Michael Northrup
Kieran Scott

Thursday Evening, 3/18 (Books of Wonder, 18 W 18th St, 6-8pm):

Sourcebooks Fire Launch Party

featuring authors Lisa Brown, Anne Eliot Crompton, Helen Ellis, Adele Griffin,
AND
the rocking tunes of Tiger Beat! (with Libba Bray, Dan Ehrenhaft, Barnabas Miller, and Natalie Standiford)

Friday, 3/19 (South Court, 42nd Street, 2-5 and 6-8:30)

NYC Teen Author Festival Symposium

Afternoon

2:00 Introduction

2:10 – 3:00: Using Genre to Tell the True Story of Adolescence

featuring:
Judy Blundell
Sarah Beth Durst
Lauren McLaughlin
Diana Peterfreund
Sara Shepard
Maggie Stiefvater
Robin Wasserman

3:00 – 3:30: Making a First Impression – 2010 Debut Authors

featuring:
Angie Frazier
Emily Horner
Alyssa Sheinmel
Ebony Wilkins

3:30 – 4:15: Grief, Loss, and the YA Novel

featuring:
Alexandra Bullen
Heather Duffy-Stone
Donna Freitas
Alice Hoffman
Sarah Darer Littman
Lisa Ann Sandell
Samantha Schutz

4:15 – 5: The Boy You Can’t Have

featuring:
Susane Colasanti
Elizabeth Eulberg
Robin Palmer
Elizabeth Scott
Melissa Walker
Maryrose Wood

5-6: Break

Evening

6:00 – A Tribute to Regina Hayes

featuring:
Sarah Dessen
Joy Peskin
Jacqueline Woodson

6:45 – 8:30: What it Feels Like for a Girl – Writing in a Teen Girl’s Voice

featuring:
Jessica Blank
Eireann Corrigan
Sarah Dessen
Jenny Han
Terra Elan McVoy
Siobhan Vivian
Adrienne Maria Vrettos
Jacqueline Woodson

Saturday, 3/20 (Bartos Forum, 42nd Street, 1pm):

Stuff for the Teen Age Event
Come check out Stuff for the Teen Age, The New York Public Library’s list of the hottest books, movies, music, and video games from 2009. Talk with your favorite authors. Rock out to your favorite songs. Have fun. Hear a very special presentation from keynote speaker, Libba Bray, the author of Going Bovine.

Sunday afternoon:
Books of Wonder Signing (2-6)

NOTE: Because of the number of authors, signings will be in shifts. Below is the approximate schedule, which is subject to change

2:00-2:45
Alma Alexander
Nora Baskin
Cathleen Davitt Bell
Judy Blundell
Libba Bray
Coe Booth
Elise Broach
Alexandra Bullen
Nick Burd
Sarah Burningham
Susane Colasanti
Matt De La Pena
Violet Haberdasher
Maggie Stiefvater

2:45-3:30
Tom Dolby
Heather Duffy-Stone
Sarah Beth Durst
Elizabeth Eulberg
Gayle Forman
Aimee Friedman
Jenny Han
Alice Hoffman
Carla Jablonksi
Melissa Kantor
Kristen Kemp
Michelle Knudsen
Peter Lerangis
David Levithan

3:30-4:15
Sarah Darer Littman
Barry Lyga
Robin MacCready
Carolyn Mackler
Sarah Maclean
Marianne Mancusi
Amanda Marrone
Wendy Mass
Lauren McLaughlin
Neesha Meminger
Sarah Mlynowski
Michael Northrup
Robin Palmer

4:15-5:00
Diana Peterfreund
Shani Petroff
Olugbemisola Rhuday-Perkovich
Matthue Roth
Marie Rutkoski
Lisa Ann Sandell
Samantha Schutz
Elizabeth Scott
Kieran Scott
Courtney Sheinmel
Sara Shepard
Abby Sher
Jon Skovron

5:00-5:45
Jennifer Smith
Natalie Standiford
Rachel Vail
David Van Etten
Siobhan Vivian
Adrienne Maria Vrettos
Melissa Walker
Robin Wasserman
Suzanne Weyn
Lynn Weingarten
Martin Wilson
Jake Wizner
Maryrose Wood
Michelle Zink

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63 Comments leave one →
  1. mak...XD permalink
    March 7, 2010 5:22 pm

    hehehe….not telling!!! i’ll post the rest of it next week and you’ll find out. actually, i based that character on me and i’m not small at all….i just wanted to point that out. and the room the girl, i mean i am in, is really like my room. i’m just hoping that something like this never happens to me in reality…………..thanxxx

  2. March 7, 2010 2:40 pm

    Wow, this was really good! I could picture your character, she seems small and weak, weary… Just a guess but I think that they are ghosts… Am I write??

  3. mak...XD permalink
    March 6, 2010 5:58 pm

    comments please and critiquing….and i’d also like to hear what each of you think who the “they” are….plz….just that small request…thanxxxx

  4. mak...XD permalink
    March 6, 2010 5:55 pm

    I silently sit on my window seat and stare up at the clear, star-filled sky. My mood is a bit uneasy. The lights in my room are limited and blazing golden by the small candles I have ignited.
    I weakly move from the window by where I sat to the other window across the room. No matter where I move, I feel the invisible eyes on me. Not just behind me, but all around. Watching… Waiting…I move my eyes from the glorious, brightly shining moon to timidly look at the night scene laid out on the earth below.
    Dark shadows are cast, not only by my home, but by the tree I have outside my room. I notice a light breeze blow by and the leaves quiver as it agreeing with my mood. The room turns instantly chilled and a dark shadow flashes in the refection of my window. I silently gasp, careful not to show my fear and step away from the window. I could see that my hands are pale in the dim light and they have an unbelievable low temperature that shocks me through my bones.
    They were here.

    • michellezinkbooks permalink*
      March 8, 2010 10:57 pm

      I really love the imagery in this piece, Mak.

      I especially loved this passage; Dark shadows are cast, not only by my home, but by the tree I have outside my room.

      If you’d like a critical comment, I would say to be careful about over-using adverbs. Instead of telling us she is moving weakly, show us. Perhaps her legs tremble or she feels faint from weakness. And a gasp, by definition, won’t be silent, but this is such a strong sentence; I silently gasp, careful not to show my fear and step away from the window. It’s actually more powerful without the use of the word “silently” anyway, don’t you think?

      I gasp, careful not to show my fear, and step away from the window.

      As for who “they” are, you have me stumped! I’ve thought and thought, but with so short a passage, I have no idea!

      Maybe you can come back and post next time and we’ll get more clues!

      MZ

      • mak...XD permalink
        March 9, 2010 3:52 pm

        yes…of course i’m coming back to post. you won’t be stumped then….and thanks for the tip. i’m amateur at writing. because of my age i guess…..anyways, thanks again.

      • michellezinkbooks permalink*
        March 9, 2010 7:39 pm

        I feel like an amateur at LEAST half the time, hon!

        MZ

  5. March 6, 2010 3:30 pm

    didn’t even realise that it was thursday until today, and that was a whole two days ago xD. i was out taking photography classes and they ended yesterday, but i managed to get something written for this. :]

    ——————————————–

    she’s nothing more than a modern ghost, her pale skin reflecting off of her mirrored wall.
    her eyes are translucent, speaking of promises that never were.
    the emotions that used to live in her have long since departed, leaving behind a sullen girl. old scars rake across her arms, marking her for life. her hair hangs lifelessly around her face, and her nails have been all but chewed off.
    bath water runs in the background.
    any chance of hope for her is now gone, and there isn’t even a spark left in her.
    no one really cares about what happens next, she thinks to herself.
    .
    trembling hands hold a note, and a tear drops onto the messy writing, blurry them beyond recognition. the car keys are now in his hand, and he’s dashing off to his chevy.
    those same hands are now trying to fit the keys into the ignition, but they keep missing. a sob runs through him, and he is at last able to start the car.
    tire marks are left in the driveway, but he doesn’t really care.
    as long as he gets there in time, that’s all that matters.
    .
    she’s gripping the knife in one hand, baring her opposite wrist.
    she’s counting down the seconds, preparing for the pain that is to come.
    she climbs slowly into the bathtub, sitting down.
    wincing.
    the water has long gone cold.
    .
    she used to be an enchanting figure.
    he still saw that in her, no matter how she looked now.
    the sad thing was looking into her eyes and seeing nothing.
    he drove faster.
    too bad he didn’t know that he was already too late.

    • Rebekah permalink
      March 7, 2010 10:59 am

      Jeez…. Beautiful writing. Quite morbid, but beautiful. Good job!

      • March 7, 2010 2:36 pm

        thats so sad. dark, but beautiful. absolutely beautiful

      • March 7, 2010 7:09 pm

        thank you rebekah and meagan! i had originally started a piece with that opening line, she’s nothing more than a modern ghost, her pale skin reflecting off of her mirrored wall. i didn’t like the way it looked after a few lines and gave up for a week or two. i picked it back up on thursday and this came to me. yes, it’s morbid and i normally don’t write like this, but i felt that i had to, just once. :]

    • michellezinkbooks permalink*
      March 8, 2010 10:52 pm

      Wow… this is intense. I liked the juxtaposition at the end when we get a glimpse into where “he” is while seeing where “she” is at the same time.

      I really liked this; the water has long gone cold.

      Simple but powerful.

      Nice job!

      MZ

  6. March 5, 2010 9:47 pm

    Just popping in to say that man, that author festival thing looks amazing. I so wish I could be there because… srsly dude, srsly. So much awesome there, both in content and in authors.

  7. March 4, 2010 10:44 pm

    This is an excerpt from a Rappunzel script I wrote.

    INT/EXT. RAPPUNZEL’S TOWER. MORNING.

    Rappunzel is using her long hair as a clothes line for Tresshlea’s robes to dry. She is sitting in the window looking sadly at the people passing by.

    RAPPUNZEL
    (to herself)
    Everyone who passes by has
    it so much better than me.
    Well, except that poor
    fellow with leprosy.

    INTERCUT to a group of four seedy-looking men walk by and see Rappunzel in the window. They begin cat calling her.

    MAN 1
    Hey, wench! Can I see inside
    your tower?

    Rappunzel turns away, but they continue to whistle and hoot.

    MAN 2
    Oh, come now, we won’t bite,
    unless you want us to.

    They laugh and continue to cat call. At that moment, PRINCE FERGUS (who has blue and gold princely garbs, dark brown hair, piercing blue eyes, and olive skin) comes riding in on his brown horse. He sees the rude men, stops his horse, and confronts them.

    FERGUS
    Hey! That woman deserves
    more respect than that! Try

    The men look like they want to argue, but they know Fergus is the prince and they grudgingly leave. Fergus is satisfied, but immediately his curiosity is roused. He cannot see Rappunzel’s face, but he is intrigued. He sees Tresshlea walking out of her castle towards the tower. He brings his horse over to the wall, climbs on him, and watches Tresshlea at the foot of the tower.

    TRESSHLEA
    Rappunzel, Rappunzel, let down
    your hair!

    Fergus watches as Rappunzel hastily throws the robes off her hair and lowers it down the tower. Tresshlea uses it as a rope and climbs up. He can her dialogue.

    TRESSHLEA
    When I call you, you must heed
    my call right away! No food for
    a week! Here’s a bucket of water.
    Make it last because that’s all
    you’re getting this week.

    Tresshlea climbs back down and heads back to the creepy castle. Fergus can hear Rappunzel crying and is moved. He brings his horse to a small opening in the wall.

    FERGUS
    Wait for me right here.

    The horse whinnies. Fergus takes a basket of food out of the saddle and stands at the short entrance. Without using magic, as if he had control over it like clapping his hands, he changes into a white deer (with the basket of food around an antler). He trots over to the foot of the tower and mimics Tresshlea.

    FERGUS
    Rappunzel, Rappunzel, let
    down your hair!

    Rappunzel lets down her hair, and Fergus changes back into a human as he climbs up with the basket of food in his mouth.

    RAPPUNZEL
    What do you want now?

    Fergus cannot respond with the food in his mouth, but Rappunzel does not find this odd. He steps inside the tower, but Rappunzel’s back is still to him.

    RAPPUNZEL
    I’m sorry I yelled, I’m just-

    Rappunzel turns around expecting to see Tresshlea and is startled to see Fergus standing there. She lets out an involuntary yell.

    FERGUS
    I’m so sorry, miss. I was
    just passing by and heard
    what your, uh, mother said.

    Rappunzel feels both apprehensive (since she’s never met anyone besides the animals and Tresshlea) and ease because there is something about his demeanor that she trusts.

    RAPPUNZEL
    (somewhat quietly)
    She’s not my mother.

    FERGUS
    Uh, yes, I thought not. I…
    I thought you might like a
    bite to eat. I assure you I
    mean you no harm.

    Rappunzel feels a little suspicious since nothing like this has ever happened to her before.

    RAPPUNZEL
    No one has ever set a toe on
    her garden without Tresshlea
    knowing! It’s part of the
    bewitchment she put around this
    place.

    FERGUS
    I got that impression, so I
    changed into a stag.

    RAPPUNZEL
    Are you a witch too? Or is
    this some kind of cruel joke?

    FERGUS
    It’s nothing of that sort! I’m
    sorry, I should introduce myself.
    I am Prince Fergus.

    Rappunzel is stunned. She can hardly believe that someone is visiting her tower let alone a prince.

    RAPPUNZEL
    The prince? Visiting my tower?
    Why?

    FERGUS
    Well, like I said, I heard what
    she said, and I wanted to share
    my food with you. I was riding
    through town and I saw those men
    being extremely rude, so I chased
    them away, and-

    RAPPUNZEL
    You defended my honor?

    FERGUS
    Of course! And after I saw
    that hag’s severity, I just
    had to help you.

    Rappunzel is surprised since no one has ever been so nice to her. She gives him a shy smile, and Fergus, relieved that she is starting to trust him, smiles back.

    • michellezinkbooks permalink*
      March 8, 2010 10:50 pm

      I’m LOVING get a glimpse of your scripts! It’s fascinating to see the differences in script vs. novel writing. This one is really fun! It makes me think a little of Stardust? Or am I off-base and this is supposed to be totally serious?

      Thanks so much for sharing it with us!

      MZ

      • March 10, 2010 11:15 pm

        I haven’t heard of Stardust, but I’ll totally look it up. I’m so glad that you’re enjoying my scripts! I will keep posting them!

  8. Indigo permalink
    March 4, 2010 9:56 pm

    Sorry I haven’t posted in an extremely long time. I’ve been busy with work and stuff! Here is a poem I dug up from my teenage years after going through my stuff:

    I am sorry I played this game
    your heart on a string
    a cat on your wing

    A bird in the breeze
    a fish in the sea
    I am sorry I played your heart
    on a string

    I watched and I waited
    I lived and I died
    I slept for an eternity
    with you by my side

    I watched the rain fall
    I felt the trees stir
    I left you with nothing
    I left you with everything

    I played this game
    oh, an awful game
    with your heart on a string
    me on your wing

    There is no bird in the breeze
    or fish in the sea
    I gave you everything
    and left you with nothing

    • Indigo permalink
      March 4, 2010 10:17 pm

      Oh, and also, congrats on the covers, Michelle! They are absolutely gorgeous. Although I will miss the old one… It was beautiful and different. These ones will definitely attract loads of attention!

      • March 5, 2010 7:36 pm

        This is absotlutely beautiful! I loved it, its pasionate, and sad and just really amazing!

      • Indigo permalink
        March 6, 2010 1:47 am

        Thanks, Meagan! I LOVE your poem; it’s very real. Great job!

    • mak...XD permalink
      March 6, 2010 10:15 pm

      beautiful
      and sad….made me want to cry *grabs tissue*

      • Indigo permalink
        March 7, 2010 3:01 am

        Thanks! Sorry abut the tissues….

    • michellezinkbooks permalink*
      March 8, 2010 10:47 pm

      This is incredible… Seriously. I’m totally in awe right now.

      MZ

      • Indigo permalink
        March 9, 2010 7:42 pm

        Thanks so much, Michelle! Coming from someone who is not only published but writes beautifully and vividly, I greatly appreciate it. By the way, I adored Prophecy! I have lent it to all my teenage family members, who have in turn enjoyed as much as I did. I can’t wait for the second one!

  9. March 4, 2010 8:48 pm

    Hmmm, who is Max’s father? his is pretty good. Keep up the writing! 🙂

  10. Caroline permalink
    March 4, 2010 8:02 pm

    Hey, I’m Caroline and I’m only ten so This isn’t perfect

    “Hey Max, look it’s Plato” Heracles yelled to Max over the roaring group of people that where leaving the Stadium. “Hello Boys how are you” Plato exclaimed. “Shall we go somewhere less noisy?” The three men strolled over to the side of the roaring dirt road. “Hey, We’re quite good, you?” Max said, excited to see his old friend. “I was wondering if you would like to go have dinner with me.” Plato asked. The boys looked at each other in surprise. They had never had dinner with Plato because Plato was afraid they might break something. Heracles shouted “Yes, of course” the second he say Max nod. “Max do you need to ask your father?” Plato asked. “We don’t him not to know where you are.” Plato exclaimed. “Yeah I’ll go ask him. Heracles do you want to come in case I can’t come.” Max asked. “ Sure I’d love to” Heracles said. So the two boys strolled of.

    “I hope I can come” Max said in a hopeful voice. “How is your dad doing? Being the overseer of all god, and goddess must be tough.” Max claimed. “Not as hard as having a stepmom that wants to kill you. But dad’s good.” Heracles said. The two strong boys finally got to Max’s house.
    “You should stay here. You know how dad gets about other kids in the house” Max said. “Okay just come tell me if you can come or not.” Heracles stated. As Heracles waited for Max he received many congratulations from strangers. At these moments he felt proud to be as athletic as he was. But if he were to say that out loud people would think him stuck up and cocky.

    After several minutes of waiting Max finally came outside with an unhappy grin on his face. “You can’t come can you?” Heracles had asked with a pitch of sadness in his voice. “Yep, Dad’s still jealous that everyone has a wife but not him” Max said “He will always be jealous but he should not take it out on you!” Heracles commented. “Well I’ll see you tomorrow.” Max said. “Yeah you will” Heracles put in his last comment for the night.

    • michellezinkbooks permalink*
      March 4, 2010 9:29 pm

      I love how this is coming along, my sweet. I really like your descriptive words, like when Heracles has to yell over the “roaring” group of people leaving the stadium and when the boys “looked at each other in surprise.”

      These are subtle touches that make it easy for people to envision the story you’re bringing to life.

      Your writing is coming along so nicely, dolly! I’m really enjoying your story and can’t wait to see more!

      Mommy

    • March 4, 2010 9:36 pm

      Can’t wait to see where this goes! Great job, being only ten :]

  11. March 4, 2010 7:19 pm

    Michelle, I love the new covers! And, yeah, I was one of those readers who was sad that my covers won’t match, but I’m sure I’ll get over it. 😉

    Here’s more of the WIP I shared at last Open Mic…the fantasy one with the five protagonists. Just to give you some idea, though, this bit is from Ella’s point-of-view (the five characters rotate chapters). Any feedback is welcome! ❤
    ————

    In retrospect, this whole thing started on a fairly normal day, as I suppose most bizarre situations do. Think about it—you never really hear any stories about something strange that began on a strange day. It just doesn’t happen. Really, for us, even after the whole thing started, nothing even happened for a while. That’s the other thing about this story—you have to wait. It’s something we had to learn pretty quickly when it happened. You have to wait for the right time. We were lucky in that there were other powers telling us when the right time was, but not everyone has that luxury.

    Even lunch that day was typical. There the five of us sat at one of the lunch tables in our high school’s cafeteria. We had almost always had the same lunch period. It was another one of those things we took for granted. We always sat at the same table and usually did the same things every lunch—Clio was doing homework that she had only gotten a period before, Jack and Gloria were both doing homework that was due in an hour, Kim was trying to find something in her book bag, and I was doodling in my writing journal.

    Clio nudged me in the shin with her foot. “Whatcha thinking about?”

    I didn’t look up from my journal, but I stopped doodling in the margins. I’m not very comfortable with eye contact, even with my oldest and closest friends. “Nothing.”

    "Liar,” Clio teased. “You’re thinking about something because you haven’t written a single word in your journal.”

    I looked up and saw Clio smiling wide. “It’s nothing. I just can’t think of anything to write.”

    Clio shook her head, still smiling. “Liar.”

    I rolled my eyes and resumed my doodles. Truth was, my mind was on Zach Hart right then. I wasn’t about to admit my attraction to him to anyone, even my friends. I had only just grown comfortable with admitting it to myself.

    “Why don’t you guys ever do homework before it’s due?” Clio asked suddenly, nodding her head toward Jack and Gloria.

    “Why don’t you ever act like a normal high schooler and procrastinate?” Jack snapped.

    “Procrastination isn’t a high school trait, Jack. It’s just how you convince yourself it’s okay.”

    “That didn’t make any sense.”

    Clio opened her mouth to respond, but Gloria held up a hand to stop her. “Let it go, will you? This worksheet is due next period and you two are distracting me.”

    • March 4, 2010 8:42 pm

      Ok, i really like that!! The characters are interesting and corky, which i love. 🙂 I really wanna know whats going on!

    • michellezinkbooks permalink*
      March 4, 2010 9:25 pm

      First of all, thanks for the philosophical view on the new covers! The next time someone is sad there’s won’t match, I will say, “Go see Erin. SHE’S going to get over it.”
      😀

      That said, I’m totally OCD about some things, so I definitely get it!

      What I loved about this piece is that I immediately felt a connection to these friends through the sameness and routine of their relationship. It made me feel… anticipatory. The way you laid it out, I KNEW something was going to change, and it made me sad even before it happened because I knew these people were going to feel LOSS.

      My only recommendation (since you asked!) is in that first paragraph. If you streamline a bit and get rid of some of your qualifiers (I suck at technical stuff but I think that’s what they’re called), I think it will flow more smoothly.

      Read this and see if you can tell what I’ve edited;

      In retrospect, this whole thing started on a normal day, as I suppose most bizarre situations do. Think about it—you never hear any stories about something strange beginning on a strange day. It just doesn’t happen. For us, even after the whole thing started, nothing seemed to happen for a while. That’s the other thing about this story—you have to wait. It’s something we had to learn quickly when it happened. You have to wait for the right time. We were lucky in that there were other powers telling us when the right time was, but not everyone has that luxury.

      These aren’t big changes. Just the removing of a word here and a word there, but over an entire manuscript that can make for a big improvement in making the book feel seamless and in increasing the sense of flow. And this comes from me, one of the BIGGEST over-users of words like “just”, “really”, and “even”, because that’s how I talk!

      Anyway, I really enjoyed this Erin. I’d love to see where it’s going, because this line is really going to stay with me;

      “We were lucky in that there were other powers telling us when the right time was, but not everyone has that luxury.”

      Very nicely done, hon!

      MZ

  12. March 4, 2010 5:48 pm

    Michelle, I love the covers! I think I might like the hardcover one just a tiny bit more, but they’er all really excellent!
    Ok, this is something I made from an assignment last year in English. You had to make a poem using other peoples words. You couldn’t have more than three lines from the same poem/story. We got it all from a mag. called Teen Ink (love it!!) and you had tell her what stories and/or poems they were from. This is what i came up with….

    I’m My Disappointment

    Cold winter air bites my skin.
    The tall leafless trees are like giants of the Ice Age.
    Everything is perfectly still, everything
    except me.

    So

    Let me roam freely.
    Through my dreams let me save, let me love, or perish

    Because

    This is where all the dreaming takes me.
    To a cold, empty reality
    with sleep still in my eyes
    shivering, confused.

    What has happened?
    I am
    No longer the same.

    • March 4, 2010 6:00 pm

      Meagan- That sounds like an interesting assignment. I enjoyed the result. It’s neat that you can take words from various stories and poems and mesh them together to flow into something of your own.

      I liked: Everything is perfectly still, everything
      except me.

      ~Danielle~

      • March 4, 2010 8:32 pm

        Thank you so much Danielle! I had fun doing the assignment! It took awhile though cause I’m so picky i couldnt figure out how i wanted to start 😉 lol

    • March 4, 2010 7:04 pm

      Amazing poem Meagan!!!
      I loved this part: Let me roam freely.
      Through my dreams let me save, let me love, or perish
      It’s beautifully written and I love the sense of pining to be accepted. How someone has changed or we are changing and others see us differently.
      I think this can be used in real life, to help others who may feel in the same position. I know I can relate to your poem and would have loved to read it when I was younger for a comfort to me!!!
      Again great poem I can’t wait to read more from you!!!

    • Caroline permalink
      March 4, 2010 8:31 pm

      All your work is marvelous!!!! Keep Writing

      • March 4, 2010 8:38 pm

        Thank you very much Caroline! And Rumpleteaserkitty, that means alot. I never would see that as something people would… i guess relate to? It was just kinda how i felt, like i had changed, others had seen that change and… i didnt know what to think about it except that i didnt like it… Thank ya’ll! 🙂

    • michellezinkbooks permalink*
      March 4, 2010 9:16 pm

      Meagan! You’re such a talented poet. I SO look forward to reading your work, and this one did not disappoint.

      It made me smile in places, like here;

      “So

      Let me roam freely.
      Through my dreams let me save, let me love, or perish”

      And then flipped over and made me melancholy here;

      “What has happened?
      I am
      No longer the same.”

      Great job, Sweets.

      MZ

      • March 5, 2010 7:42 pm

        Thank you soo much Michelle!! That means alot comming from you!! 🙂

    • March 4, 2010 10:19 pm

      Mmm…. I love this. So deep and marvelous. It grabs you and is dark. Beautiful. Positively beautiful, Meagan.

  13. March 4, 2010 5:37 pm

    This made me tear up a bit. It was really good! I espeacially like: It was time to move out of the pain of losing and into the heart of remembering. Really great!

  14. March 4, 2010 5:28 pm

    Hi Michelle!
    I, too, love the new covers, although I do love the darkness of the original cover for “Prophecy of the Sisters”.
    Wish I could be in NYC for what looks like an amazing event!

    Here’s the rest of the ‘Alice’ story I posted a couple of weeks ago. The story is titled: “Letting Go” and it is complete. It’s an extremely short short story. I have no plans to expand on it. I’ve posted the entire piece on my site as well!

    Thanks in advance for reading it and commenting. I look forward to reading what’s posted this week.
    Oh! And those of you who have expressed some interest in Grim, there will be a short story featuring him up at my site this weekend. 😉

    ___________

    Alice didn’t bring flowers; she brought a book. She sat down next to the grave and let her knee hang over the edge of the headstone. She traced her mom’s name with her fingers feeling the cold, hard stone against the softness of skin. Alice hated coming here. It made it real. She could pretend her mom was simply away somewhere. But here at the cemetery, everything was so final, permanent.

    Alice didn’t know what to say. She felt stupid talking to a slab of concrete in the ground. So, she read the book instead. She whispered the words as she read pages after pages aloud from the book. She didn’t care that the words began to blur together or that she heard someone in the distance. Alice just read.

    She sat next to her mom’s grave for hours until she was finished with the book. Alice hadn’t noticed the sun setting or the chill in the air. Alice closed the book and cried. She cried like she hadn’t cried since the day her mom died. She let every last drop of the sadness and darkness and fear and hatred and death out with her tears.

    It was time to move out of the pain of losing and into the heart of remembering.

    It was time for Alice to wake up.

    • March 4, 2010 5:38 pm

      Again Danielle I love your writing style!!! You have so much talent, I can see the scene of your story in my mind!!!
      I absolutely love the last line: It was time for Alice to wake up.
      But I think the favourite thing in this short story is the imagery!!! I can just picture Alice, sitting on her mother’s headstone and reading into the night, I can see her going sadness and then her breaking point when she cries. And of course her epiphany at the end “It was time for Alice to wake up.”
      I am also very excited about the short story on Grim, I love his character!!!
      Oh and I also read your short story Brave as a Bear and really liked that one as well!!!
      Another amazing job Danielle can’t wait for more stories!!!

    • michellezinkbooks permalink*
      March 4, 2010 9:14 pm

      Thanks for your support of BOTH my covers, Danielle! I really, really appreciate it.

      As usual, I find your writing to be seamless and smooth. I never struggle while reading your writing and rarely, if ever, stumble with something awkward or cumbersome. This is really important, because my cardinal rule when writing is to make it DIFFICULT for the reader to stop. Awkward phrasing, overly detailed descriptions of movement, appearance or clothing… these can all make a reader think, “THIS is a good place to stop.”

      And I’m like, “Noooo!”

      But there is NONE of that here or in any of your writing. I especially loved this;

      Alice didn’t bring flowers; she brought a book.

      Lovely. It made me hope someone brings me a book when I die. Or, okay, flowers AND a book.

      MZ

    • March 4, 2010 9:47 pm

      As always, a wonderful job, Danielle! I love the emotion you’re able to put into your writing and you’re so good with descriptions and characters. You’re really able to pull me into the story as a reader, even when I only vaguely know what’s going on. 🙂

  15. March 4, 2010 5:22 pm

    Congrats on the gorgeous new covers, Michelle! I thought the originals were good but the new ones are very eye catching! 😀 Onto my WIP! (which I still haven’t finished though I’m so close!)
    ________________________

    “Uh, PJ?”

    I turned to face Dexter, who was studying newspaper clippings on the wall opposite of me. I approached him with wariness, taking note of the uncertainty in his voice. He didn’t say anything as I neared him, just pointed with a trembling finger to an article.

    Man from Ohio receives death sentence. Oh, no.

    I looked at another clipping sitting next to it.

    Ohio killer possibly responsible for several missing persons. More. I needed to read more.

    Murderer’s daughter flees state. I slapped a hand over my mouth to stop myself from hyperventilating.

    These articles weren’t saying anything that I didn’t already know. But if what Dexter was trying to tell me was true, somebody was here. These articles were printed after my father’s conviction, so somebody had been staying in my cottage. For much longer than just tonight.

    “Dexter, we need to get out of here.

    I whirled around, ready to plead with him to just find Fram so we could skedaddle out of here, but I immediately lost my words. The lurking shadow hadn‘t been a figment of my imagination because it was now standing behind Dexter. His face was hidden in a shadow, only the paleness of his white arm displayed as he gripped a wooden baseball bat in his hand.

    Scream. Scream. Why couldn’t I find my voice? I had to alert Dexter. I had to scream.

    But it was too late. The man whose face was still cloaked by darkness slammed the bat into Dexter’s skull with a loud thud. I watched in horror as Dexter’s eyes rolled back into his head and he collapsed onto the ground next to my feet. I slumped to my knees, gripping his cheeks with both hands and shaking him, willing him awake.

    • March 4, 2010 5:34 pm

      Oh, woah, who’s the man?? That was really great! cant wait to find out who it is!!

    • March 4, 2010 5:42 pm

      Awesome story Katie!!! There’s so much suspense in your writing, being on the run and then of course a mysterious man who hits Dexter and we are left wondering if he is alive.
      So much excitement!!!
      I love it especially the part: Scream. Scream. Why couldn’t I find my voice? I had to alert Dexter. I had to scream.
      That sentence reminds me of how I sometimes feel in a panicked situation where I can’t speak.
      Great story I can’t wait to read more!!!

    • March 4, 2010 5:49 pm

      Katie- I’d love to see this entire story as a whole! These clips are torture!! 🙂 And creepy! (this might be my word for the day!

      The slow building of the scene works here because you can sense the rise of fear and panic in PJ.
      This is great: Scream. Scream. Why couldn’t I find my voice? because it shows her fear. She knows she needs to do something, but her fear has paralyzed her. She can’t stop what’s about to happen.

      Suggestions:
      The word “skedaddle” pulled me out of the scene because it didn’t seem to flow. Something as simple as “find Fram and get out of here” would keep me in the scene.

      Also, I don’t think you need to tell us that his face was still cloaked in darkness because you wrote that a few sentences ago.

      So exciting that you’re nearing the finish line!

      ~Danielle

    • March 4, 2010 7:15 pm

      Woah! Intense! I think I actually stopped breathing when I was reading that! 🙂

    • michellezinkbooks permalink*
      March 4, 2010 9:10 pm

      Whoaaaa! Eeeep! Eeeeek!

      This gave me goose bumps at the part where she realized someone was in the room with her. It was also very visual. I saw it in my mind, very clearly, like a movie.

      Love. It.

      And you’re almost doneeeee!

      MZ

      PS. Thanks for the the cover support!

    • Ashley permalink
      March 5, 2010 2:09 am

      Wow! More!

  16. March 4, 2010 5:15 pm

    Okay so this story isn’t very good, it’s kind of a mix between a poem and a short story, just wrote it on the spot. I should probably start writing in advance!!!:):):):):) Enjoy!!!
    _______________________________________________________________________

    The voice is back.
    Let’s have some fun.
    My arms are tied in front of me, my legs tied together, but the voice continues to speak to me.
    Let’s have some fun.
    It slithers around my body, luring me, repeating one thing over and over to me.
    Let’s have some fun.
    I shiver at its cold familiar words and shake my head, no more fun I want to sleep.
    Let’s have some fun.
    I whimper and cry, wishing I could cover my mouth to stop the screaming that will come.
    Let’s have some fun.
    I rock back and forth, hoping not to lose my balance and fall. My white room is around me, it was supposed to keep me safe, it lied to me.
    Let’s have some fun.
    I cry, hot tears leaking down my face. No more! No more fun! We got in trouble last time this time will be worse!
    Let’s have some fun.
    I scream, banging my head against the padded white wall of my room. “Help me, help the voice is back!”
    The doctor’s come in. I am so scared I try to hit them, all the while the voice repeats:
    Let’s have some fun.
    And then something thin and cold enters my thigh and I am tired, so tired, the voice now echoing in my mind.
    Let’s have some fun.
    They say that I am crazy; They say that the voice is my imagination. But They are wrong. The voice came to me when I was a little girl and uttered four words that ruled me to It forever:
    Let’s have some fun.
    At first we did have fun, we pulled pranks on my sister and hid Daddy’s keys. But when we cut the breaks on Mommy’s car I didn’t want to have fun anymore, and I was sent here.
    And as the drugs course through my veins, and as my eyelids grow heavy, the voice will forever echo
    Let’s have some fun.

    • March 4, 2010 5:31 pm

      wow! this IS good, really well written and you had my attention fromthe very first line! And writing on the spot sometines help get something good out in my opinion 🙂

      • March 4, 2010 7:07 pm

        Thanks Meagan glad you like it!!! I usually end up getting better ideas last minute but I was really rushing for two reasons: 1) I wanted to continue my streak of posting something for Thursday Night Write and 2) I really wanted to be the first one to post something for Thursday Night Write this week!!! I know I’m a nerd but I came on the site and no one posted a comment so I rushed to try to be first. Yeah I’m cool;p
        Thanks again Meagan!!! I’m glad you liked it!!!

    • March 4, 2010 5:41 pm

      Creepy! I love the way you keep repeating: “Let’s have some fun.”

      Some great things happening here like: ‘It slithers around my body…’ To describe a voice as slithering around…is intense and sticks with the creepiness of what’s happening here.

      The white room supposed to keep her safe and yet it lied to her…as if a room could tell the truth or lie.

      Sometimes when we write on a whim we get a rawness that makes a piece of writing stand out. Sometimes it works and sometimes it won’t. It works here because of what’s happening.

      Danielle

      • March 4, 2010 7:11 pm

        Thanks Danielle!!! I just put two of my favourite things together: Supernatural type books and that my favourite characters tend to be evil or crazy *I love crazy characters there more fun than the sane ones!!!:):):)*
        It’s weird, I tend to be writing creepy/dark things for Thursday Night Write, I think a lot of it is what types of books I’m reading at the moment *ghost books:):):)*.
        Yeah I notice that sometimes I’ll just write on the spot, on a roll and come up with something. But it would be nice if I have a story prepared so it’s nice and edited lolz:):):)
        Thanks Danielle!!! Glad you liked my story!!!:):):)

    • michellezinkbooks permalink*
      March 4, 2010 9:08 pm

      This really got under my skin, RTK. In a GOOD way. I loved the way you kept the structure short, almost abrupt. It let the words speak for themselves without having them get lost in too much exposition.

      Those first two lines are killer;

      The voice is back.
      Let’s have some fun.

      Damn! Very nicely done, hon.

      MZ

      • March 4, 2010 11:17 pm

        Thanks Michelle!!! I just recently finished reading a ghost story so I was in the creepy mood when I wrote this:):):) And, as I said above, love crazy characters so I wanted to try and write what it’s like to be tied up and having something, like a voice, tempt and scold you.

        Also I totally agree with what you said about the original hard covers going to become special!!! All the people of the future will have the new ones and I *as well as other people who bought Prophecy before the new covers came out* will be special for owning the “retro/original” copies *Yeah I’m talking when we’re old lolz:):):)* And everyone will want our copies but we’ll all say to bad we’re special!!!

        But I still love the new covers!!! I think my favourite things are the eyes, they’re so vibrant and colourful!!! And I like how the eye colours are different for each twin. I think Alice is blue and Lia is green??? Just judging by the facial expressions:):):)

        Thanks for your comment Michelle!!! I’m glad you liked it!!!:):):)

    • March 4, 2010 9:34 pm

      Oh, jeez! I’m really freaked out. This is SO good. I love it!

      • March 4, 2010 11:18 pm

        Thanks Rebekah glad you liked it!!! Just happened to be in a creepy kind of writing mood today, which is weird since all things that are creepy freak me out!!!:):):):) Thanks again Rebekah!!! I’m glad you liked it!!!:):):)

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