Saturday, 21 September 2013


 I want a lot. What I mean by that is two thing: I want a lot of things, and I also want a great deal--I feel the physical sensation of want day in, day out.

I don't want things so much as...places, people, experiences. I mean, yes I want material things: the Charlotte Olympia pumps with the gold deco heel, and a holiday to one of those fancy places with a bar in the pool, and diamond earrings. But those are things that maybe I'll have one day and maybe I won't. They're money things, stuff I can live without even if I do dream of them.

Mostly, I yearn. I yearn for somewhere more exciting to go, new people to meet, things to happen. I daydream about living in a big city and writing all day, going out to dinner at night and walking home in my heels to my tiny apartment. About boys with green eyes who draw or cook or dance. I fall asleep to stories I want to write and worlds I want to create.

I think we all are like this. It starts when we're young and it never stops. I think that's what I love about YA fiction, why I write it: there's just so much want bursting from the pages. First loves or independence or a sense of something great out there, waiting. When you're a kid you hold onto the thought of a future where things are going to better. It's like this: you're fourteen and you hate school or your parents, but when you're sixteen it'll all be different, you think.

You're sixteen and you still hate your parents and now also that boy who you liked until he called your best friend ugly. When you're eighteen, though, things will be better: you'll be an adult then, living on your own maybe, going out to cocktail bars and emulating Carrie Bradshaw but swearing that you're not.

Then you're twenty-six and Jesus, you can't keep your bedroom tidy for love nor money, you're still not quite sure how to iron your clothes and all those things you thought you would have under control by now are still running wild around you. But nobody tells you that there's no magic number at which life kicks in. You go through it all thinking "Just a few more years, a few more years," over and over. I don't know, but I'm going to guess that all this yearning never goes away. Maybe for some people, but for others, no. For me, I don't think it will ever leave.

The thing that you want might change: when you have kids and a career, you could want that fancy holiday or fun city life. Maybe you're fifty and living in a paradise with the love of your life, running around to art galleries and restaurant openings, but you dream of a cottage in the country and a quiet routine. Whatever it is, I think it stays with you.

YA is full of yearning and so am I. Always will be. And even now when that yearning is almost more than I can bear, I'm grateful for it. Because at least I know there are things I want out there and maybe, one day, I'll find them.


Wednesday, 18 September 2013

What's Up Wednesday, DANGEROUS GIRLS Edition

{click here for a full list of participants!}

What I'm Reading:

HOLY SHIT YOU GUYS I read DANGEROUS GIRLS by Abigail Haas/Abby McDonald and I just cannot even with the what and the words and how Someone please read this so I can discuss it with you. Crazy good. Seriously, my heart is pounding now just thinking about it.

Now I'm reading BEFORE I FALL by Lauren Oliver which is one of those books I always see on people's favourites lists, so I'm hoping it lives up to all the hype!

What I'm Writing:

Surprise! I'm still drafting! Will it ever end?! Who knows!

Query update: I sent out more queries last week, which have gotten me one request so far, plus I did a teeny bit of pitching on #PitMad, which got me another request! It was actually really scary pitching but fun at the same time. Did anyone else have success on the pitching front? I hope so!

What Inspires Me Right Now:

Fashion week, DANGEROUS GIRLS, Meg Myers. I could write a whole story from her song "Heart Heart Head".

What Else I've Been Up To:

Seeing friends before they go back to university, baking cupcakes, finishing Game of Thrones...oh, I'm so bereft. Arya is still my favourite, but I do have a soft spot for the villainous ladies Cersei and Melisandre. I can't help it, I just love evil female characters. Even (especially) when I hate them.

So don't forget--your assignment is to read DG and report back to me so we can discuss, okay? Okay,


Sunday, 15 September 2013

Things from NYFW

I probably don't need to tell you it's fashion week because nowadays you can't go anywhere without getting fashion week all up in your face. But it is, and I am somewhat of a...well, I like to daydream about being in a girl gang with Taylor Tomasi Hill, Miroslava Duma, and Emmaneulle Alt, is one way to put it. So now that London is up and running I thought I'd show you some things from New York that are super sweet. Because I know you're all so totally interested. Whatever, who doesn't like pretty clothes?!

{All photos taken from}

{J. Mendel}

Love that beautiful gold peeking through alongside that pink piping.

{Monique Lhuillier} 

Sweet detachable embellished collars at Monique Lhuillier.

Ballgowns = out. Bandeaus and full skirts = in.

{BCBG Max Azria}

As a winter girl, this is the kind of spring fashion I can get into. Sleeveless biker on the wishlist immediately.

{Erin Fetherston}

For the wood nymph in you--plissé pleats are always perfection.


For the gothic I've-seen-bad-things wood nymph in you.

I can't imagine how beautiful this is in real life! Stunning pearls and sheer and oh, just gorgeous.


I'm in love with this simple top/luxe skirt look. And for us poor style mavens, this look is easily recreatable.


Wednesday, 11 September 2013

What's Up Wednesday: Kitten Edition!

{click here for a full list of participants!}

 What I'm Reading:

Last week I read BURN FOR BURN by Jenny Han and Siobhan Vivian, which wasn't perfect (for example, there's a serious issue that gets kind of glossed over--hopefully it'll be dealt with properly in the next book) but which I really enjoyed. It's such a Becky book--rich girls, revenge, tons of voice...of course I was going to enjoy it. Right now I'm halfway through INFINITE SKY by C.J. Flood which got a glowing review from my friend Sarah Wedgbrow and is definitely living up its reputation.

What I'm Writing:

Same old, same old. I think I might be getting close-ish to getting towards the home stretch of this draft, if that makes any sense. And I will be glad when I finish, because I HATE drafting.

On the querying side, I've had a couple more rejections...and that's about it. I'm thinking I might attempt some Twitter pitching tomorrow, which I've never done before, so that might be fun? And I'm going to throw some more queries out into the world because--well, just because sometimes you get rejections but sometimes you get requests and I can't get either without actually sending any!

What Inspires Me Right Now:

I won't lie, the latest rejections I got really bummed me out. But just when I was feeling all wallow-y and mopey, along comes one of my favourite authors with some words of wisdom for everyone feeling the same way:
I know what it’s like to go through periods where the bad stuff is louder, when you can’t find the joy, when the tunnel just keeps getting longer and longer.  Sometimes the lows have been so crushing, I have days where I truly wonder what I do this for… but then I’ll get a new idea.  Start a new book.  Or I’ll have a breakthrough with the one I’m working on.  A scene that’s been bugging me will finally come together and I remember…
Every book holds a world of possibilities, creatively and professionally.  I’m hooked on that.  I may not always get what I want (and I don’t always get what I want—rejection continues even after you’re published), but I feel better for having tried.  When I write, I feel like I’m making doors.  Maybe this will be the one that opens up to the place I want to be.  If it’s not that one, maybe it’s the next one.  I can keep making doors.  That’s what makes it okay for me. 
So keep making doors.  Don’t let anyone stop you.
 Courtney Summers, everyone. Kicking ass and making us feel better about feeling shit. (I highly recommend you check out her tumblr because she gives the most excellent answers to questions like these. And also loves zombies.)

What Else I've Been Up To:

I got a kitten! She's is a very playful (VERY playful) teeny-tiny white and ginger thing, who I have called Milly. (Her middle name is Khaleesi. Oh, yes.) She is, as I write this, asleep on my shoulder.

I also went to a murder mystery party a couple of weeks ago. It was the first murder mystery party I've ever been to and the whole thing was very entertaining--I sadly was not the murderer, but I was a major suspect for quite a while. I felt very Velma Kelly!

That's about all. I hope everyone has had an excellent past couple of week and that the whole back-to-school back-to-work grind isn't getting everyone down too much. Also, I hope anyone who participated in Pitch Madness had a good experience (lots of requests, too!), and maybe I'll see some of you tomorrow on #PitMad :)