Attacus Atlas & Other Inventions: And the Oscar goes to….

Tuesday, February 19, 2019

If The Atlas of Reds and Blues were a major motion picture….Let’s see. (BTW, I love this:) Archie Punjabi as Mother with makeup to make her have a few wrinkles and graying hair, and, Brad Pitt as hero, in soft-focus to make him look a little younger. Shabana Azmi as as Mother’s mother. Glenn Close as Mother’s mother-in-law. Priyanka Chopra as the Baby Sister, with makeup to make her look…

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Dear Lucy Maude

    In many ways, The Dream Peddler is a love letter to L. M. Montgomery. I can’t think of any author whose work I spent more time reading during my adolescence. Eventually I collected every novel she ever wrote, and read many of them over and over. Back then I never gave any thought to the opportunities to read something new that I was squandering every time I picked…

Friday, February 15, 2019
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Attacus Atlas & Other Inventions: Love-hate relationship

Tuesday, February 12, 2019

Aloha! What I like about my debut novel, The Atlas of Reds and Blues: it’s short. Also, I think it’s full of suspense. What I love about writing in general: I get to tell stories, I get to try out new writing techniques. I get to read books about craft. I get to write poems. I get to attend writing conferences and workshops, where I meet other writers and poets…

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Interview with Rae Theodore and Giveaway of MY MOTHER SAYS DRUMS ARE FOR BOYS

Saturday, February 9, 2019

  I am so pleased to welcome memoirist Rae Theodore to the debutante ball this week! Rae visited us last year to do an interview for her debut, Leaving Normal: Adventures in Gender, and now she’s back with more great stories in her latest release, My Mother Says Drums Are for Boys: True Stories for Gender Rebels. I’ve known Rae since I first walked into a little writing group in Collegeville, PA…

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I Thought Branding Was Only For Livestock

Friday, February 1, 2019

    Publishing my first book in 2019, I often find myself daydreaming about what it must have been like to do this a hundred years ago when there was no internet, no blogosphere, no Twitter or Facebook or Instagram to manage. I don’t know why, because I have absolutely nothing in common with him, but I always picture F. Scott Fitzgerald, scribbling away at his writing desk, blissfully ignorant…

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Attacus Atlas & Other Inventions: Building a Platform

Tuesday, January 29, 2019

I want to go on record as saying that I have nothing to add to K.A. Doore’s perfect post yesterday. 🙂 Being part of a literary community is the best thing I writer could wish for. Writing itself is a solitary and lonely, and often isolating, endeavor. But if we’re really lucky writers, we learn some craft techniques and make friends along the way. Then you have people in your…

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Interview with Rachel Howard + THE RISK OF US giveaway

Saturday, January 26, 2019

We are thrilled to have Rachel Howard as our guest author this week at The Debutante Ball! Rachel Howard’s novel THE RISK OF US, described by Jenny Offill as “an emotionally complex and amazingly suspenseful novel about love and fear,” will be published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt on April 9th. Rachel earned her MFA in fiction from Warren Wilson College and is the author of a memoir, The Lost Night….

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The Comp I Kept

Friday, January 25, 2019

    I know you’ll all be shocked when I announce that I did not use comp titles in my query. I did not. I don’t think I was taking any particular stance in this; it’s just that I had a very hard time to come up with any, and very few agents actually required them. I described my book and sent my query off without them, and that seemed…

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Attacus Atlas & Other Inventions: compare and contrast

Tuesday, January 22, 2019

I don’t have any magic formulas for the books I selected and used as comparable titles — except if you consider reading, as I do, as a superpower. A few years ago I wanted to start sending out my own book.  I attempted to take stock of what I loved to read and re-read, the books I kept returning to for inspiration and solace: The House on Mango Street by…

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A Year or a Career

Friday, January 18, 2019

    Before writing this blog post, I never really gave much thought to a bucket list for this year. Or a career bucket list, for that matter.  I daydream about miraculous debut and career events all the time: I see my book in O Magazine. Terry Gross wants to interview me on Fresh Air. I make the NYT bestseller list. Wait, they get bigger: eventually, I win the Pulitzer…

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