You Say It’s Your Birthday…

  …It’s my birthday, too. On Tuesday this week, when my book officially came out, I also turned forty-four years old. Now, I am not a person who believes in signs or astrology or anything like that, but I am sort of a neat freak. I like it when things line up. So this little coincidence really does please me no end. I’ve received many wonderful and thoughtful birthday gifts…

Friday, April 12, 2019
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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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Tips for Querying (or as I like to call them, Q-tips)

Friday, November 16, 2018

  You know how they say you should never put anything smaller than your elbow in your ear? I know why. It’s because if you poke around in there with something that actually fits, like a q-tip, you might slip up and accidentally jab yourself in the eardrum. Which is really painful. Much like querying. You can see where I’m going with this. I’ve been racking my brain to come…

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Driven to Distraction

Friday, November 9, 2018

  Tips to keep your writing distractions to a minimum: Don’t have children. Download one of those apps like FocusMe that let you forbid yourself internet for a certain block of time. See number 1. Alternatively, book a babysitter/bribe your partner/friend to watch the kids you chose to have so you can have uninterrupted time. Kids will not let you write. I repeat: they will not. You will put your…

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Interview with Karen Meadows and Giveaway of ALMOND, EYELESS

  It gives me great pleasure to welcome poet Karen Meadows to the Debutante Ball this week! almond, eyeless (2018, Groundhog Poetry Press) is the first book of poetry by Karen Meadows and is an SPD bestseller and recommended read. Her work has also appeared in Subtropics, Blackbird and The Hollins Critic. She was honored in March at McDaniel College as the 32nd recipient of the B. Christopher Bothe Memorial Lecture….

Saturday, November 3, 2018
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How I Fear: Facing Every Arduous Revision

Friday, November 2, 2018

    I forget which author it was who said that we write about what terrifies us—most likely many of them have. Until I read this phrase a few years ago, I’d never looked at my own work in that light, but it strikes me as true. My protagonist in The Dream Peddler suffers the disappearance of her only child, and this is definitely the worst thing I can imagine…

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A Childhood Bookshelf

Friday, October 19, 2018

    Most writers are also avid readers. That’s usually how we got here. So when you ask us what authors we admire, who has influenced us, it can be a pretty long list. As in a “please stop talking now, I just wanted a few names” kind of a list. In my case, I think I made it pretty clear that when I was a child and a teen,…

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Dorothy Parker and the Vicious First Draft

    It is one of the minor tragedies of my life, perhaps a major tragedy in my writing life, that no one ever told me first drafts are supposed to suck until I was thirty-eight years old. Yup. Thirty-eight. Now, this is most likely because I never really knew any writers, and I rarely took any actual writing classes. While most writers would probably agree that having an MFA,…

Friday, October 12, 2018
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Interview with Lori Rader-Day and Under a Dark Sky Giveaway

Saturday, September 15, 2018

    CONGRATULATIONS to author Lori Rader-Day, whose book, The Day I Died,  is the 2018 winner of the Anthony Award for Best Paperback Original! I’m so pleased to welcome Rader-Day back to the Debutante Ball. For those of you who’ve been following us for a while, she really needs no introduction. Rader-Day was a deb back in 2014, and we have since hosted her a few times, celebrating every…

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The Book Within A Book

Friday, September 14, 2018

      I’m not sure how old I was the first time I tried to read Anne of Green Gables, but I must have been too young. I was vain as a reader, always showing off by trying to read far above my age level, reading classics with a view to bragging about having read them. I didn’t get very far with that first attempt. Anne has a long…

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