First, thank you everyone for your patience while my wife and I settled in to our new home. We are all unpacked and completely out of the old place. I'd also like to thank my friend Danny Oertli for putting together a post about my Charity of the Month.
So on Friday, when I actually had access to the internet, Blogger shut down their site for some emergency maintenance. I don't know all of the details, all I know is that I couldn't get on to write a post. Instead, I spent my day reading through WYRM FIEND to find out where I can work in some great re-writes. As I put together a new pitch for this book, I started to realize that I wanted this book to be about something very specific. But every time I tried to write the pitch and SAY that the book focused on this topic, I realized that I didn't write the story that way. In fact, the more I analyzed my book, the more I saw that my book didn't stand out from the other books on the shelves. So I'm going to add some scenes, re-write the bland scenes, and add some valuable substance to the characters and their reactions to the events that come to pass.
Here's a question for you (if you read YA Fiction): what is your favorite YA book/series, and why? What makes that book/series stand out when compared to the wide variety of books out there for young adult readers?
This weekend, I started to re-vamp my own efforts to move forward in my career. I joined a writing group. The Rocky Mountain Fiction Writers, to be exact. They have an annual conference that I'm going to attend this fall, and I realized a while back that I need to get involved in a critique group. And not just for my own work. I edit my own manuscripts better when I actively participate in critique groups. When I go out of my way to help other writers, I learn from their styles, their well-written passages, and those areas of their manuscripts that need some polish.
Another question: are you involved in an official or unofficial writers' group? Does it help?