We were planning this really big cover photo challenge in June, like leading up to my book release and then I post about it. Generate ebooks for Kindle, Apple Books, Kobo and others. It always makes me feel bad when I do like, you know, US only promotions. + Some of the true stories were not familiar to me and had to guess myself, so it's not all kiddy stuff there making it a podcast for everyone. I'm very jealous of those people. I like what you said about not forming a hard line for age ranges yourself. At the time we pushed it back, we were just like, we'll postpone it. But then, like my virtual tour I feel, I felt so bad about that because I had put a lot of planning, and my agent had put a lot of planning into, like what we would do, reaching out to like my friends, like author friends and other authors to like, Do it with me. Like I have those days too. Sometimes that means changing it quite substantially, But you can make it work. Miss those discussions, I miss sitting in a classroom with people and saying, Well, you know, what is this book really about? In the era of fake news, kids need to learn to be able to tell what’s true from what’s false. The other thing is that my writing style does tend towards the more lyrical. Hayley: I guess I'm more thinking about the teams who might encounter that term because I'm just thinking about the idea that, like certain kinds of behavior, are dirty or wrong? You can get Capable Monsters now from Bull City Press dot com and listeners of the show can save $5 on any book order by entering the coupon code FIRE. You could make an idea pretty much out of anything. I think it's very difficult for people that don't suffer from it to understand this like - No, it doesn't matter, like nothing matters right now, all I feel is nothing. But yeah, definitely. I mean, that's the thing I have a difficult time expressing about depression. It's very hard to do, and especially when you are a younger writer or you're unsure of yourself and what your own voice might be. The kids can ask questions and comment on the stories to find out the true I mean, it truly is just like a mental fog and a funk, and nothing matters. Mindy: The incapability. I don't know, even the most sort of potboiler thriller I think you know, is always about something. I have always been a proponent of using the tools that we have to promote ourselves. And then for my release day event, I had to figure out how to stream a video like, panel between me and two other authors. Then my dog died. I don't know. And, it's a very unusual library, it’s an infinite library, and the shelves in that library go on forever. She has made an attempt on her own life, which is why she's between life and death, and she's drowning in regret. If you want me to change everything about this book, I'll do it. I was done. I don't know that I can walk that balance that you're talking about because I write for teens. Lori: I did not get any numbers of data, but the nice thing was that a lot of them were available, like to stream on YouTube. So that is, right now, for many of the authors that I know - It's kind of a universal story, so if you'd like to talk about that, that would be great. I'm not belittling any of that, but I think sometimes to look at the big picture to look at our place in time, look at our place in space. Ii did that specifically. I'm not doing anything. Yet it is difficult. It's dirty, you know? I remember thinking like I'm marking this day like mentally. It has to be like strange, pretty prose, and that's what the book is. I was posting a ton and I was doing all like the virtual book festivals and the panels. I write middle grade fantasy books and my books, like you said, they skew upper middle grade. Have you done many Skype phone calls or presentations or zoom talks? I don't get a monetary benefit from this. I'm constantly in conversation with different people about different things, usually with book related stuff. Mindy: Writer Writer Pants on Fire is produced by Mindy McGinnis. She got back to me and she said, I really loved the voice in this, like I love your writing and I love the concept of the idea. I don't know if that's just cause lower YA sounds weird. Mindy: It's a frustrating place to be. It's another step in the ladder, so why don't you talk a little bit about that R and R process. Available for all ages, any occasion. And then I became mildly depressed, and I got to the point where I couldn't imagine even writing another book anymore. Like I would never hand a book to a kid and say, You'll like this. I didn't want anything to happen. Did you gain from that? Lori: When quarantine happened when, like everything shut down, I didn't feel stressed out, but like my skin completely went crazy, right? And I'm lucky enough that I do write full time. And then I was, I had just posted all the stuff for our cover challenge, and then I just had, I don't know. But I think it's something that Children's writers maybe have to navigate that maybe people who write for adults don't really have to navigate that thing. You can't motivate yourself when nothing matters. I was on the promo train and I was on social media like a ton. You know, I would never hand a book and be like, you’ll like this. But anyway, I was just in such a bad place, and I just didn't care. So I love your point. I've been managing it for a long time. That is very much an area where you can kind of edge into some darker thematics and even push the envelope a little bit with your content. I mean, I feel like, you know, we're here. I will be. Such a specialized and important job. Now, unfortunately, I think, A lot of us have had To really kind of refocus and pivot and find new ways to promote anything that released in 2020. I think it's just kind of the heaviness of the themes, sometimes more so then, like the actual content of the book. The only planet we know of with life on it and we Get to witness that. Mindy: We're here with Lori M. Lee, who is a YA author. I ended up with a group of people because I was forcing myself to go out, forcing myself to be with friends, forcing myself to find those things. It's such a different feeling, too. Mindy: That's cool. Anxiety was a new experience for me. That's something that I have just become more and more aware of and enacted in my own life. I should have been posting. I find it odd and I have some guilt over it that it's like when the evening rolls around and I've always been a night owl, and I've always enjoyed nighttime and evening, so maybe that's part of it. Hayley: My name is Hayley Chewins. And so if I get feedback about those weak points, I'm like pretty much always like my agent is right or my critique partners are right, because I yeah, there's just some things that come really naturally and then other things that you have to work really hard on. A comedy entertainment series for E4 which puts teams of bluffers to the ultimate test.. For the longest time, I was just like I feel like I'm pretty, pretty mentally stable person. I have no idea why it was. And that, of course, all ended quite abruptly. It was a relationship that had lasted for 12 years. I'm not saying it doesn't work. Ad: Capable Monsters is a new book of poetry by Marlin M. Jenkins that uses the Pokedex to explore blackness, queerness and coming of age in America. But yeah, I'm not kind of looking to pass on any kind of message, and I'm not really thinking too hard about, you Know, how the book is going to be marketed or categorized, even though, obviously, if you're querying, you have to know that. So, yeah, it is really It's a really hard line to walk with each project. I will say, though, that like it was really, really bad in the mornings. To be honest, my second book is coming out in a week, Um, and it feels super surreal. Your synopsis writing guide will arrive in your inbox shortly! So you mentioned before your memoir, and a couple other books that you've written specifically, Notes On A Nervous Planet, I enjoyed very much in dealing with depression and anxiety. Music by Jack Korbel. I was just like, I have to do this. No one can quite reach you. And I want to say this in support of your choice - Which I would support regardless - But I had an interesting experience as an author last in the summer beginning of fall. Don't forget to check out the blog for additional interviews, writing advice and publication tips at Writer Writer Pants on Fire dot com. To be honest. I want to circle back a little bit. Like you just write the book. But essentially we are alive. Before I started writing for Children, I was bored with myself. Um, but I had, like, a year to plan all the promo for this book, you know, And I had so many things planned, I was gonna go on a book tour through the Midwest with, like, a lot of author friends. So I didn't query my books as upper middle grade. And I do think that first book that I queried that I was getting too a sense of who I was as a writer and kind of what I wanted to say and the kind of book that I wanted to write, that I wasn't quite there yet. So, like I would just eat for the sake of eating. YA can be very dark and like maybe 10,15 years ago, that was really celebrated like Look, we're really pushing the envelope here and we can go there for teens now and I think that's wonderful because that's where I live. What is the one thing that I would not be able to take out because if I took out that thing, it would die basically. I did a version that was more of a walk through. You're not alone in this, And to have it hit with release. I don't know if it's the same for you, but I just had absolutely zero appetite. But first, Haley, why don't you tell us a little bit about yourself? And so I was recovering from that. And I was out with a group of people and I was in a canoe. We do have that distinction of clean YA, which is for any age, but it's more of a content descriptor rather than an age range. Um, I don't know if you've ever done that, but I kind of revised, like the book out of the book. And it was kind of like, unrecognizable by the time I sent it. I was like, Well, and it does make you question a little bit about how you're leading your personal life, but yeah, I mean, the world ended and it didn't really affect me. Mindy: It is. And also, I think another therapeutic aspect of writing fiction is you, You're literally creating a world you can have control over. So I'm glad that I had that experience because just every experience that you have like that, when you're querying is just like a nugget of gold because you're learning how to query, you’re learning how to interact with agents. She wanted him to live. And in the month of October, you can even send ah, Halloween boo Graham from a puppet trying to be spooky while haplessly holding a flashlight under their face. Podcast for kids 4-15 but also for parents.
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