Making Space for Fear

Wednesday, October 31, 2018

I’ve spent most of my life afraid of writing. But I didn’t start out that way. When I was a kid, I made up stories all the time. I wrote a short book about a girl rescuing a tiger cub from poachers. A play about a group of friends searching for buried treasure. Lots and lots of Star Wars fan fiction. I didn’t care what anyone thought of it, I…

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Attacus Atlas & Other Inventions: Candids

Tuesday, October 30, 2018

Don’t think about making art. Just get it done. Let everyone else decide if it’s good or bad, whether they love it or hate it. While they are deciding, make even more art. — Andy Warhol I suppose I could write an entire tome about my fears these days, how unsafe America is for people of color, how America is changing, how the rhetoric and public discourse has become so…

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Let’s Talk About Fear

Monday, October 29, 2018

I know fear. Like many creative types, I have anxiety. I have lived with everything from constant, low-level anxiety all the way up to Code Red Panic Attacks. For me, the same overactive imagination that lends itself to worldbuilding also lends itself to imagining every possible way something could go wrong. For the most part, I manage the anxiety by playing along with the what-if game until I can show…

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[News Flash] October 28, 2018

Sunday, October 28, 2018

And thank you so much to yesterday’s guest, Vanessa Hua! If you haven’t already, enter the #DebBallGiveaway to win a copy of A River of Stars. You can enter by sharing our post on Facebook and/or retweeting the following tweet (make sure you follow @DebutanteBall on Twitter too!): This week we interviewed author @vanessa_hua! Read & RT to enter our giveaway of her masterful debut novel A RIVER OF STARS, the…

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Interview with Vanessa Hua + A River of Stars giveaway

Saturday, October 27, 2018

  I’m so happy to welcome Vanessa Hua to the Debutante Ball this week! Vanessa is a columnist for the San Francisco Chronicle and the author of the short story collection, Deceit and Other Possibilities, and the national bestseller, A River of Stars, which O, The Oprah Magazine calls “a marvel” and The Economist says is “delightful.” For two decades, she has been writing, in journalism and in fiction, about Asia and the Asian diaspora. She has received a Rona Jaffe…

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Letter from an Editor

Friday, October 26, 2018

  There are a lot of ways to approach this topic, now that I think about it. We revise our work so many times before it’s published, with feedback from so many different people. After I wrote The Dream Peddler, I went through it twice, then I gave it to a few beta readers, and went back in with their feedback in mind. Then I began to query, and I’ve…

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Do your edits like a grown-up would

Thursday, October 25, 2018

This week, we’re supposed to be writing about how to survive an edit letter — which refers to the list of revisions that your editor wants you to make after acquiring your book. I guess it’s hard to make big changes to your manuscript after you’ve sold it, but you should never really be that attached to your story anyway. You should always be open to making it better. I’ve…

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Add Sex, Rage, & Suffering, Then Stir

Wednesday, October 24, 2018

Writing Temper involved multiple major rounds of revision – first on my own, then with my Pitch Wars mentor, then with my agent, and finally with my editor. Looking back over the process now, there are several things that seem like such integral parts of the book, I almost can’t believe they weren’t there in the first draft. But they all came about through revision, and often as a result…

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Attacus Atlas & Other Inventions: Burying The Time

Tuesday, October 23, 2018

When I was a reporter, the best and worst part of my workday resided next to each other. The best moment was when I beat the deadline and turned in my news story to the impatient copy editors. The worst moment came next, when the copy editors and I would engage in a competitive dance off, figuratively speaking, questioning each other’s word choices and grammar (I have a thing for…

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How to Survive Your Edit Letter

Monday, October 22, 2018

  Dear Author, the edit letter reads. You suck. Wait, no, that’s not how it goes, not even slightly. Yet we all seem to expect those words, or a variation thereof, the first time we receive an edit letter. It’s counter-intuitive to believe the editor who got excited for your book, who championed it before the acquisitions board, who read it more than once and will continue to have to…

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