Let Me Tell You How I Really Feel About… One-Star Reviews

Monday, June 22, 2015

Edit note: This week on The Ball we’re talking about reader reviews and how we feel about them (especially the bad ones). Seeing as how I wrote a post about that very topic for Passionate Reads a few months ago (coupled with the fact that I had way too much pinot noir last night), I’m using my two favorite shortcuts this week: copy & paste. Enjoy! Being a new author is kind…

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News Flash: Book Launches, Paperback release, & Giveaway!

Sunday, June 21, 2015

Congratulations to Beth Weaver, winner of our BIG summer Deb Ball reading pack (THE MOMENT OF EVERYTHING, BEFORE I GO, TINY PRETTY THINGS, THE COINCIDENCE OF COCONUT CAKE, COME AWAY WITH ME)! Check back next Sunday for this week’s winners of guest author Roni Loren’s NICE GIRLS DON’T RIDE! Reminder: We’re still taking applications for the Deb Class of 2016! You have until July 17th to submit your application. Looking forward…

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Sex Scenes— Just Do It?

Monday, June 15, 2015

Oh, the dreaded sex scene. It’s so tough to write on so many levels — mainly because in the back of your mind, you’re thinking how your mom and dad will be reading it at some point and OH The HUMANITY, but also because they can devolve into soft porn/E.L. James scenes where men have “throbbing members” and women have “love buttons” fairly quickly. Which is why the Literary Review created an…

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News Flash: (More) Revisions, (More) Writing & a BIG Deb giveaway!

Sunday, June 14, 2015

Congratulations to Christy Staude, winner of THE PERFECT SON by Barbara Claypole White! Check back next Sunday for this week’s winner of our BIG summer DEB BALL reading pack (THE MOMENT OF EVERYTHING, BEFORE I GO, TINY PRETTY THINGS, THE COINCIDENCE OF COCONUT CAKE, COME AWAY WITH ME) … Simply leave a comment below to be entered to win!   From the 2015 Debs: Colleen Oakley hates when other people…

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Tips for Tapping Your Creativity

Monday, June 8, 2015

I’m in the middle of three deadlines right now, so I’m going to make this post short and sweet. We’re talking about how to stay creative this week, and I’ve got a few go-to tips that help me when the right-side of my brain isn’t working too well (like now). 1. Always carry pen and paper. I keep a notebook in my purse and beside my bed. You never know…

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News Flash: BookExpo, Revisions & a TINY PRETTY THINGS Giveaway!

Sunday, May 31, 2015

Congratulations to Claudia Rivera, winner of THE RAINY SEASON by guest author Maggie Messitt! Check back next Sunday for this week’s winner of TINY PRETTY THINGS by our very own Deb, Sona Charaipotra …   From the 2015 Debs: Colleen Oakley has sent the first half of her new WIP to her agent and is anxiously awaiting feedback. She also has been on a book bender and bought 7 new books…

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NEWS FLASH: BEA, “Best Of” Book Lists, & a Giveaway!

Sunday, May 24, 2015

Congratulations to Christina Li, winner of Renee Ahdieh’s THE WRATH AND THE DAWN! Check back next Sunday for this week’s winner of THE RAINY SEASON by guest author Maggie Messitt …   From the 2015 Debs: Colleen Oakley is thrilled that Pop Sugar named BEFORE I GO as one of the Best Books of 2015 (so far)! It’s also in good company on this summer reading list. Pack your beach bag! Amy…

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What’s in a (Character) Name? How I Choose ‘Em

Monday, May 18, 2015

This week on the Ball we’re talking about how we pick names for our characters. I’ll be honest: sometimes it’s even harder than choosing names for my own kids (and I’ve been known to dig into baby name books for both). For BEFORE I GO, the name of the main characters Daisy and Jack came pretty easily. Daisy, to me, connotes perkiness, sunshine and flowers — pretty much the antithesis…

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News Flash: Conferences & Festivals, Awards & a Giveaway!

Sunday, May 17, 2015

Congratulations to Caryn Strean, winner of THE FAR END OF HAPPY by guest author Kathryn Craft! Check back next Sunday for this week’s winner of Renee Ahdieh’s THE WRATH AND THE DAWN …   From the 2015 Debs: Colleen Oakley sold rights for BEFORE I GO to Hungary! She’s still barreling through her WIP, slowly but (un)surely. Amy E. Reichert is still in the glamorous writing cave, except when she’s at her children’s…

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The Dreaded First Draft: A How-Not-To

Monday, May 11, 2015

This week on The Ball we’re sharing our tips and tricks for first drafts and how to get them done. But I pretty much buck all convention when it comes to drafting, so you should probably do the opposite of everything I do. First, I start with the idea and then mull it over in my mind — sometimes for four or five years. I live with the characters, write whole…

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