Disney Day 2:
Disney Day 2:
Matt and I got up at 4:45 yesterday morning to catch our plane to Orlando...and though we were both wiped out by the end of the day, it was totally worth it. The flight went by pretty fast, however, there was a TON of turbulance (not sure if you heard, but Hurricane Nicole is sending aftershocks our way), which left everyone just a TAD uneasy about being in the air.
|photo credit: Disney|
Don't worry, I'll be taking pics the whole time and I'll try to post them while I'm there. Have fun wherever you are and I'll be talking to you soon! Hopefully I'll even be able to bring a little bit of magic back with me!
Okay, we've got Mrs. Sassy Pants back in the house and she's chock-ful of plenty of DELETE's for your amusement. Take a look at what made her list this week!
|photo credit: The CW/Gossip Girl|
Here's what's going on right now in the writing world. The good, the bad and the ugly. You choose which is which!
*Gwen Cooper, author of Homer's Odyssey: A Fearless Feline Tale, donated $10,000 to the Blind Cat Rescue and Sanctuary. The author has a soft spot in her heart for the "special needs" kitties—her own cat is eyeless, but managed to scare off an intruder in Cooper's home once. If you'd like to follow in Cooper's footsteps, you can donate your own amount to the cause here. (Warning—once you click on this link and see these kitties, it may be hard NOT to want to help!)
|photo credit: Back Bay Books|
*Shania Twain is putting down the mic and picking up a pen. The country crooner is writing a memoir that will come out next spring and word has it, it's full of lots of dirty details...including the ending of her marriage in 2008 when her husband left her for her BFF, pushing Shania straight into the arms of the "other woman's" ex-husband. Sounds like this book will be in the "scandal" section of B&N.
*Author of The Accidental Billionaires doesn't get why Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg doesn't want to see the movie The Social Network. Check out this interview with the drama writer here.
*David Sedaris' latest book, Squirrel Seeks Chipmunk: A Modest Bestiary, is being described as "bedtime stories for children who drink." So that's what was in their sippy cups!
|photo credit: New Line/Austin Powers|
How cool is that?
I wish I'd gone to a school that had allowed me to really tailor my education to what I was actually interested in learning. I can honestly say all the math and science I use today, I learned in grade school. Imagine all the stuff I could've learned in school had I been given a little more freedom to choose. I mean, wouldn't students be more excited about learning if they were taking classes they were actually interested in? In fact, it would seem like it would take some major creativity to come up with an original major and then have to plan out all the courses you'd need to achieve it.
|photo credit: Universal Studios/Heroes|
Or maybe I'd major in "FEAR" and study the history of the horror film; the psychology behind people's attraction to fear; a deep look into the physical ramifications that fear can have on a person; delve into the most common fears and ways to overcome them.
Or maybe "SUPERNATURAL STUDIES" and then I could look into ghosts, demons, vampires, werewolves and other supernatural topics, discovering their origins and their impact on society.
Man....the prospect of coming up with my own degree is actually kind of making me want to go back to school (and I hated school). Maybe I could just start by taking one class: The History of Zombies, perhaps?
If you could create your own major, what would it be? Leave your comments above!
So, I'll start off this post by letting you know that I got another rejection (ominous duh, duh, duuuuuh!!!). A bit of a bummer, but I'm moving on....because "Glee" started back last night! I was so worked up about it being back on that I practically had a Glee-gasm. That's right, I said it.
Last night's episode did not disappoint on the music front. With songs like "Empire State of Mind" by Alicia Keys, "Telephone" by Lady Gaga featuring Beyonce, and "Billionaire" by Travie McCoy featuring Bruno Mars. But the act that really stole the show was a newbie on the scene, Sunshine Corazon (played by Charice). Man can that girl sing! She's like Christina Aguilera: tiny in stature, big in presence and voice.
And speaking of newbies, we've got three new faces walking around McKinley High. I already mentioned Sunshine Corazon and trust me, she's going to give Rachel a serious run for her money when it comes to the spotlight. Next, we have Hottie McStud-Muffin...errrr, Sam Evans (played by Chord Overstreet; yes, that's his real name. When I first read it, I thought it had to be his character's name on the show. Nope...real life.) who plays the new kid in school who has natural talent both in the music room and on the football field. Again, his voice is awesome and I'm looking forward to hearing (and seeing) more from him. Lastly, there's the very masculine yet emotional new football coach, Shannon Beiste (played by Dot Jones), whose heart is as big as her arms!
So, since they're new to the "Glee" world, I thought it was a good time to get to know them a little better. Here are some fun facts about our new favorite gleeks:
|photo credit: FOX/Glee|
1. Her real name is Charmaine Clarice Relucio Pempengco.
2. She's a tiny thing, standing at only 4'11" tall.
3. It's no coincidence that her character, Sunshine, sang a song from the movie Dreamgirls for her glee club audition. Apparently a young Charice sang "And I Am Telling You" from the Dreamgirls soundtrack on "StarKing," a Korean variety show, which pretty much launched her career.
4. The first talk show Charice was ever on in the U.S. was "The Ellen Degeneres Show." Check her out back then in the video at the bottom!
5. After meeting her, Oprah called famed music producer David Foster who took her under his wing.
|photo credit: FOX/Glee|
1. He got his name because his dad's in the music biz. He's the third kid in the family and there are three notes in a chord. And thus Chord was born.
2. His first instrument was a mandolin.
3. He's originally from Nashville, TN.
4. Songs he'd like to cover on "Glee?" "Losing My Way" or "Cry Me a River" by Justin Timberlake or T.I.'s "Dead and Gone."
5. Dancing isn't his strong suit, but he's willing to work on it, if they have him dance on the show.
|photo credit: FOX/Glee|
1. She's a 15-time World Arm Wrestling Champion.
2. She's currently a towering 6'3", but she used to be 6'4".
3. Dot scored her gig on "Glee" after running into co-executive producer Brad Falchuk at a Whole Foods about four months ago.
4. She was first "discovered" at a body building tournament.
5. She worked at Juvenile Probation Services before making the switch to acting.
What do you think of the newbies? Like, Love, Hate? Let me know in the comments above!
I have to admit, I was a little worried when I started out this round of queries with a big fat rejection (and not even a personal one...one that actually said, "We're sorry for the impersonal nature of this standard rejection letter..."). But I wasn't going to stress over it. In fact, I let it roll off of me and kept my attitude set to "Positive."
And good thing too, because the day after I received that rejection, I got a request for my full manuscript from one of the other agents I'd queried. And then a few days later, another agent wanted to look at it, too. Agent #4 (who's actually a friend of a friend) let me know that Painless wasn't for him, but that he wanted me to send the summaries of each of my other books. So, not exactly a rejection, but not exactly a "yes" either (to this book).
Then yesterday, I received another request, this time for the first 30 pages! People seem to be generally interested in the book, which is awesome! Now, if only one of them (or more; I certainly wouldn't mind if there was a bidding war over representing me) would fall in love with it and take me on as their client!
So, since last time I kept a positive attitude about this whole thing and got some positive feedback, I figure this is the way to go. Though I don't want to get ahead of myself (or become overconfident), a little bit of faith couldn't hurt...I think I can, I think I can....
What do you guys do to stay positive? Leave your comments above!
I have this friend of mine who's really very funny. Let's call her Mrs. Sassy Pants. As I was saying, she's a funny girl and although she can be incredibly patient most of the time (case in point: she's friends with me!), she also has a low tolerance for people wasting her time. So, we were sitting having coffee a few weeks ago and Mrs. Sassy Pants was telling me about a few things that happened at work that annoyed her and she mentioned that she has these rules and if people don't follow them—they get deleted. Yep. Duh-leet.
I thought the idea was both hilarious and intriguing, so I asked her to start writing a weekly guest blog about the situations that make her reach for the delete button. So, enjoy. And if you don't...you know the drill: DELETE!
I’m a big fan of the DELETE button. And in my opinion, it should be used more often. Bottom line: I hate people. Period. I just don’t understand asinine behavior and if you insist on being an idiot…just don’t do it in my presence. Because if you do, you got it—DELETE.
In an ironic twist, I’m in the people business, so I have to interact with them on a daily basis (and on a very personal level). Which in turn provides me with plenty of opportunities to hit DELETE. For instance, if your voicemail message is longer than 30 seconds…DELETE. I don’t need to know your life story, this isn’t an audition. I don’t care who you know, where you’ve been or why I should call you back. Just, for the love of God, tell me what you want and how to reach you. I’m not your therapist. Bottom line: if I can finish my lunch in the time it takes you to leave a message…DELETE.
Every week I'll provide a list of recent encounters that require a big fat DELETE. Here's my first batch.
*If you insist on leaving numerous messages (my favorite) after I’ve told you that it’s not going to be a match…DELETE!
*Couples full-on making out in the middle of the street. Ew. If I can see your tongue…DELETE!
*Really hot guys with hideous girlfriends. WTF?!?!…DELETE!
*Anyone who wears those sandals that look like your feet are in jail. You're not a Roman warrior, so don't dress like one…DELETE!
*People who stand in the middle of the subway turnstile and dig for their metro card, holding up the line when the train is pulling in the station…DELETE!
So go get your DELETE on! And if you don’t like what you read, too bad. You’ve been DELETED!
What would you delete? Leave your lists below!
Here are the answers to the riddles from Thursday's Post. Congrats go to our winners: Jenni, Rusty and Diane! E-mail me your addresses (firstname.lastname@example.org) and I'll send out your prizes!
1. How could the 22nd and 24th U.S. Presidents have the same parents, but weren't brothers? They were the same person (second term anyone?).
2. How can you use the letters in NEW DOOR to make one word? One Word
3. There was an airplane crash, every single person died, but two people survived. How is this possible? They were a couple.
4. How could all of your cousins have an aunt who is not your aunt? If it was your mom.
5. How far can you walk into the woods? Halfway. Any more than that and you're walking out of the woods.
6. Johnny's mother had four children. The first was April, the second was May and the third was June. What was the name of her fourth child? Johnny
7. Railroad crossing. Look out for cars. Can you spell that without any R's? That
8. What came first, the chicken or the egg? The dinosaur laid eggs.
9. Imagine you are in a sinking rowboat surrounded by sharks. How would you survive? Stop imagining!
10. "That attorney is my brother," testified the accountant. But the attorney testified that he didn't have a brother. Who's lying? Neither. The accountant is the attorney's sister.
11. A father and a son are in a car accident. The father dies instantly. The boy, in critical condition, is rushed to the nearest hospital for emergency surgery. The surgeon looks at the child aghast and says, "I can't operate on him—he's my son!" How could this be? The surgeon is the boy's mother.
So, originally I bought the apartment I'm living in now because my former living situation was not so good. The apartment I was renting had mice and bugs and was a little run down. Then, my living room burned down (due to the negligence of my roommate's douchey ex-boyfriend, but at no fault of my roomie—she's the BEST!!!! Hey, Darcy!) and a lot of my stuff was destroyed, partly due to the fact that the building didn't have fire alarms installed—ANYWHERE in the building.
Finally, when my apartment was broken into while I was away for Christmas vacation (I know, Happy Holidays to me!) and my DVDs and Jewelry were all stolen, my parents and I decided it was time for me to move into a place that was more secure. A girl can only booby-trap her front door (by balancing a cup on top of the doorknob so that if a robber was to break in, the cup would fall onto the floor, thus making enough noise that I would be alerted and would be able to either get out or hide before aforementioned robber was able to attack me) for so long before she says "enough!"
So, with the help of my super-awesome parents, we decided to buy an apartment in the city as a joint venture. A safe place with a doorman that didn't have rodents and that I wouldn't have to worry about feeling uncomfortable in my place of residence. And I loved my place. It's pink (as you can see to the left), totally comfy and girly. And I feel safe...mostly.
Well, the time might be coming for me to make another move. First off, the thing about owning a place in NYC is that most apartments are co-op's, which means that although you technically own the place, what you do in your apartment and to your apartment really isn't your decision. It's the board's decision. Want to renovate? You have to get the OK from other tenants. Wish for one of your friends to stay at your place while you're away on a trip? Well, you may not get permission for that. See...you're paying to own, but you're still controlled by someone else.
As I've gotten older (over the last 5+ years that I've lived in my place), my priorities have begun to change. I'm 31 years old and it's no longer acceptable for another person to tell me when I can have friends over and how I can decorate my apartment. I'm getting sick of paying more a month for my 14x16 apartment than my sister does for her three bedroom house. I don't want to deal with nosy neighbors and mean superintendents and the gossip mill that goes on in an apartment complex.
Did I mention that I think my super is trying to kill me? Yeah, I'm not so psyched about this fact either. My super and I don't exactly see eye to eye. In fact, ever since "Stretch" replaced the building's "Hot Super," I've had numerous confrontations with him...most of which have ended with him yelling at me (He claims he's not yelling and that this is just how he talks. You may "talk" that way all the time, but make no mistake, it's still yelling.) and me bursting into tears out of frustration as I complain to my mom. So, you can see how I was a little bit freaked out when I got home the other day to find that the gas was on in my apartment (by then the whole floor reeked). My super had been in my place that day to fix a leak in my sink and Matt and I had definitely NOT left the burner on. So, it only leaves one possible scenerio....
And then tonight, halfway through my workout of circuit training while watching Wednesday's episode of "Hellcats" (how awesome is that show, btw?!?!), I get a buzz from my doorman, telling me that my downstairs neighbor was complaining about my exercising. Apparently she was wondering if I was jump-roping (I wasn't, but I was jumping around) and was making too much noise. I was furious when I heard this, because I only work out for 40 minutes a day and you're telling me that this girl couldn't chill out for that short amount of time and let me have my workout? After all, the apartment complex IS a shared space and there's GOING to be noise. But you don't see me complaining about the woman across the hall whose cat meows all day and night. Or about the couple down the hall that makes cabbage soup and stink up the place once a week. Or about the family around the corner who have kids that yell and scream. No. I get that we all live in a small space. And besides, that's what fans are for—to drown out the noise of your neighbors.
Long story short, I'm wondering if I need to consider a relocation. This time out of the city and into a real house. Sure, I'd have to commute in and get a car and I'd spend more on transportation, but it might be worth it for the peace and serenity the environment would bring. I don't know....What do you think? Should I stay or should I go?
Do you think like a third grader? No, I'm not talking in the, "I know you are, but what am I?" or "Boys have cooties!" kind of way (but since I brought it up, I'm awesome and boys totally have cooties!). I'm talking about a child's ability to think simply without "intelligence" and "logic" getting in the way. In other words, adults can be too smart for their own good sometimes.
Here are 11 simple riddles with simple answers. Now, think like a third grader and take a wild guess. The person with the most correct answers will win an awesome prize pack. Just e-mail your answers to email@example.com by the end of the day on Friday, Sept 17th, and I will post the correct answers in Saturday's post.
1. How could the 22nd and 24th U.S. Presidents have the same parents, but weren't brothers?
2. How can you use the letters in NEW DOOR to make one word?
3. There was an airplane crash, every single person died, but two people survived. How is this possible?
4. How could all of your cousins have an aunt who is not your aunt?
5. How far can you walk into the woods?
6. Johnny's mother had four children. The first was April, the second was May and the third was June. What was the name of her fourth child?
7. Railroad crossing. Look out for cars. Can you spell that without any R's?
8. What came first, the chicken or the egg?
9. Imagine you are in a sinking rowboat surrounded by sharks. How would you survive?
10. "That attorney is my brother," testified the accountant. But the attorney testified that he didn't have a brother. Who's lying?
And the real doozie:
A father and a son are in a car accident. The father dies instantly. The boy, in critical condition, is rushed to the nearest hospital for emergency surgery. The surgeon looks at the child aghast and says, "I can't operate on him—he's my son!" How could this be?
My good friend Zachary Booth is an actor—and a damn fine one at that. Having streaked across the big screen (Nick & Norah's Infinite Playlist and Taking Woodstock) and killed it on the small screen (Damages and Royal Pains), it was only a matter of time before he took to the stage, conquering that medium as well.
|photo credit: Me, Myself & I|
In Me, Myself & I, Zach plays OTTO (notice the caps), a 28-year-old who's officially had it with being a twin and having to put up with his crazy family. Insisting he's the evil brother, he spends the whole play trying to push his twin away—also otto, only this time lower-cased (played by Preston Sadleir)—by insisting that lower-cased otto no longer exists.
But it's not just otto that OTTO wants to get away from. He also has issues with his frazzled mother and her live-in boyfriend (who just happens to be her doctor). So OTTO announces that he plans to move to China and become Chinese because the future is in the east. OTTO manages to turn everyone's world upside down throughout the course of the play, but really crosses the line when he poses as lower-case otto to sleep with his girlfriend (HINT: It's not the first time, either). I don't want to give everything away, but Me, Myself & I will leave you seeing double—and you know what they say: double your pleasure, double your fun!
|photo credit: Me, Myself & I|
If you live in the NY area and are looking to see a fun play with some amazing actors, check out Me, Myself & I before the show ends October 31st! Here are the details:
Me, Myself & I
416 West 42nd Street
Last week I got a phone call from my mom with some bad news. A boy I used to know back in high school was killed in a head-on collision after being thrown from the vehicle he was a passenger in. Francis Malloy (Fran to the rest of us) and I used to both take ballet at my mom's dance studio (The Ballet Slipper) in Oak Harbor, WA, growing up. He was one of those really happy guys...totally secure with who he was. I mean, not many guys would have the guts to do ballet and actually tell people about it. Point is, he was a very sweet kid. The kind of guy you hope your younger sister would date one day.
That's why it was sad for me to hear that years later, Fran found himself struggling with alcohol and drug addiction. Not too surprising (given that plenty of good kids with the potential to make a positive impact in the world fall prey to the diseases of alcoholism and drug addiction), but still very sad. Apparently Fran had been trying to get sober and had even recently gotten out of rehab, only to find himself in the car that ended up claiming the lives of three men, including his own.
According to police reports, Fran was in the backseat of a car being driven by a young woman when she went to take off her sweater and asked another girl to take hold of the wheel. The car began to veer off and the driver panicked and over-corrected, sending the them into oncoming traffic and hitting another car head-on. Fran, his friend who was seated next to him as well as the driver of the other car were all killed. To add to the devastation, the man who was driving the other car, swerved at the last minute in order to save his pregnant wife from injury. An investigation into the accident found heroin, cocaine, marijuana, syringes and a gun in the car and the female driver was discovered to be under the influence at the time of the collision.
My heart goes out to all the families, especially the young mom-to-be who should win a medal for her strength in the face of adversity (Check out an interview with her on "The Today Show" below). But if there's anything people should take away from this situation, it's that addiction is a serious disease with serious consequences. Though people can recover from a seemingly hopeless state of body and mind, not everyone's so lucky. The important thing to remember is that for those out there who do have a problem, there are places to get help. If you know someone who may have a problem with alcohol or drugs, encourage them to visit www.aa.org or www.na.org depending on their specific problem. And lastly, though you can't always control what other people do, you can choose not to get into the car. Be safe out there.
First thing's first, right after I got my first rejection for Painless last week, I promptly received a request for a full look and synopsis from another agent! So, WOO HOO! Can you say glass half full?!
So, since I'm riding the high of my first manuscript request, I thought I'd bring all of you a little glass half full news too! Anyone ever try Groupon? Well, if you go to www.groupon.com, you can sign up to receive daily deals that will knock your socks off! Each day the site has a super deal (like a month unlimited membership to YogaWorks for $15 or a $50 gift certificate to the GAP for $10) that you can get in on. The deals are so good that the other day I purchased 6 sessions of laser hair removal for $100 (this usually costs anywhere from $3,000 to $5,000!)!
So, the way groupon works is that there's a deal of the day and if enough people sign up for it, the deal is on! Seriously, check it out...signing up is free and you may just get a wicked deal on a deep tissue massage or a boat trip around NYC!
As you all know, I sent out my first round of query letters for my latest book, Painless, on Wednesday—Well, I just received my first rejection.
What's surprising me though, is that the sting doesn't hurt as much as it did with my last book. Painless is the sixth book I've written. Let's say that each book has averaged about 20 rejections, then that means I've already received approximately 120 letters essentially telling me I'm not a good enough writer, that people didn't "connect" with the characters in my books, that they didn't believe in my writing enough to give me a chance.
Each of these rejections hurt. Because writing is my passion, because it's all I've ever wanted to do, to have strangers tell me it may never happen...well, it's hard thing to take. And I haven't always dealt with these "opinions" well in the past. I've cried, thrown fits and asked my boyfriend (on far too many occasions according to him) why it's not happening for me. I've even given up. Not something I recommend, btw.
But this time, the rejection didn't hurt as bad. In fact, I'd describe it more as annoying than upsetting. Do I want an agent? Of course. Am I going to die if it doesn't happen right this second? No way. Is my life going to be over if I NEVER get an agent? I used to think so, but not anymore. Why? Because one way or another, I will be published. I already have people asking to read my books, well-known authors willing to write blurbs for them, so the only thing really stopping my books from being available to the public is....me. What a revelation that is!
So no, another rejection isn't bringing me down. If anything, it'll make the victory of seeing my book in the hands of readers that much more sweet.
|all photos credited to Disney|
And then it hit me. In 20 days I will be embarking on my first adult vacation...And we're going to Disney World!
Yeah, I know, that may sound backwards. Taking your first "adult" trip to a kids park. But you have no idea what Disney means to me. Ever since I was old enough to remember it, my parents used to pack us up in the car and we'd head off in the middle of the night to Disneyland (a few times we drove from Washington to California, but mostly we flew. For some reason I always remember taking off when it was still dark out. My mom always warmed the car up for us before taking each of us out to the car wrapped up in our own individual blankets and buckling us in for the ride.). Once we were there, we'd spend a few days riding rides, eating food and spending some quality time together. My mom even used to make us get up early, so we'd be at the park when they cut the ribbon in the morning. Then she'd make us all run from one ride to the next. These are some of my favorite memories of growing up.
So, can you see why Disney is such a magical place for me?
This is why I felt it was apropos that Matt and I spend our first real vacation together (and not the kind where you're surrounded by family. That's nice too, of course, but I'm talking couple time here.) at the happiest place on earth.
And although he'd never admit it to anyone else, Matt's excited to be going too. He's even the one who convinced me we should take a day trip over to Universal Studios to check out Hogwarts. To say I'm excited about this trip is an understatement. I made our dinner reservations at some of Disney's finest dining areas about three months ago, and plan to wake up early every morning to have my gluten-free Mickey waffles (yes, they have them!). I'm going to line up at the ribbon in the morning before they open the park and then I'm going to (try to) convince Matty to run with me to the first ride. I've even been working on getting him to agree to take silly pictures with me while we're there (I think he still needs convincing on this one though).
Either way, we're looking at an opportunity to build some new memories, just the two of us. And I can't think of a better place to do it than the magic kingdom!
|photos courtesy of Stacey Jay|
Anyhoo, being the Stacey fan I am, I just learned on her blog that Razorbill has decided not to publish her third book in the Megan Berry series. To say I was sad to hear this is an understatement. I loved the character and the voice was dead-on (Get it? A little zombie humor here.). But lucky for us, the lovely Stacey has decided to publish the last book, a novella, herself. Now, we may have to wait a few years (she has other projects she has to finish first—ones that have been greenlit by publishers, so we probably won't be reading it until Spring of 2011), and it'll only be available in ebook form, but we WILL get to see what happens to Megan Berry. And that's all that really matters, right?
If you haven't already read Stacey's books, go out and get them today. I promise, you won't be sorry. And in the meantime, check out this interview I did with her...After you're finished reading, you may just want her to be your BFF, too!
Q: You’re the brains behind the zombie-riffic Undead book series! Growing up, did you ever think this is where you’d end up? Stacey Jay: No way! Acting was my major in college. I thought I was going to be an actress, but acting’s not a dependable career when it comes to putting food on the table. I wrote plays and screenplays in college, but didn’t start writing novels until my first son was born. Becoming a mom made me get serious about earning a living. And since I’m not qualified to do anything but play pretend—I got my B.F.A. in acting—I decided I’d write books and make money to support my precious baby. Once again, not a very well thought out plan on my part—writing is another undependable career—but thankfully it worked out!
Q: Have you always wanted to write for teens? Stacey: I started out writing romance novels for adults, but I love writing for teens more than any other age group. The teenage years are such an exciting, drama-filled time, and some of the most enthusiastic readers I’ve met have been young adults.
Q: How does it feel to see your labor of love out on bookshelves and in the hands of teens? Stacey: It’s unbelievable. I’m so grateful to my readers. As cheesy as it sounds, continuing to write for a living is a dream come true for me. No matter how hard I push myself, it’s a dream that would have ended after my first book if it weren’t for all the awesome people picking it up off the shelves and taking it home.
Q: Why zombies? Were you always a fan of the lore? Stacey: Because they’re so scary! Just thinking about them freaks me out. And I love being scared almost as much as I love reading about people falling in love—both are a big part of the Undead series. I write romantic stories, and I’m not afraid to put that out there. Romance rocks!
Q: Where do you get your zombie intel from? Stacey: I did a lot of research on voodoo and the history of zombies—both on the Internet and at museums across the south. Also, the voices in my head are very helpful, too. (Kidding!)
Q: Do you remember having your first “I have arrived” moment? Stacey: I’m not sure that I have arrived, but it was pretty strange to come across a yahoo question page where a slew of people were discussing how old I was. (I’m 32.) I couldn’t imagine that anyone would even know my name, let alone care how many years I’d been wandering around the earth making stuff up.
Q: What inspires you? Stacey: My two little boys and my amazing husband (pictured left as zombies), my mom and dad and everyone who enjoys reading my books. Also cheese. I really love cheese. I find a good feta or a well-aged gouda quite inspirational.
Q: For Megan, high school has been a pretty dangerous place. What was it like for you in high school? Stacey: I loved high school. Junior high was terrifying and stressful, but high school was so much fun. I loved getting to take classes that I actually enjoyed instead of the same old stuff all the time. I loved the friends I made—friends from all different social groups that all got along and had great times together. Sure, there was drama, but life is full of drama. Unfortunately, that doesn’t stop once you get out of high school. But I choose to remember the positive things about my teen years as well as my twenties. Hopefully I’ll feel the same way about my thirties!
Q: Are you a fan of other books that go bump in the night? Stacey: Of course. I’ve always loved paranormal books. I only wish I had more time to read. With two little boys and work, it can be a challenge. Though my 5-year-old and I are really getting into Halloween picture books. We read them all year round.
Q: What’s your writing process like? Stacey: Very methodical and goal-driven. I set word goals for each day of the week and work my hardest to meet them. I always tell my kids that a dream isn’t something that comes true because you sat on your rump wishing for it. I try to be a good example of that—though I do have to sit on my rump to type…
Q: Can you describe your journey to being published? Stacey: I started writing fiction in 2005. After 16 rejection letters from various agencies, I signed with my agent in the summer of 2007. We got the offer for You Are So Undead To Me from Razorbill in October 2007 and it was published in January 2009. (It takes an astoundingly long time for a book to go from submitted manuscript to pub-ready book!)
Q: What advice would you give aspiring writers? Stacey: Read and write. Read everything you can get your hands on—each book will teach you something about storytelling. Write every day—because you can’t get better if you don’t practice. (Something every cheerleader knows, of course.)
Q: In your journey to being published, was there ever a time you wanted to give up? How did you push yourself to go on? Stacey: There are still times when I want to give up—like when I get a bad review, or a mean email from someone who thinks that writing about zombies is “evil” and “weird.” Or when I read over my latest work in progress and think it stinks and have to delete everything and start over.
But in the end, I really feel that writing is what I’m best at. It’s a career that suits me and I’m committed to continuing to push myself to improve at my craft and write even more entertaining books for my readers. Also, this is how I earn money. My kids are big eaters (as you can see by the pic), and the little one uses a lot of diapers. Diapers, I’ve come to find out, are very expensive!
Q: When the zombie apocalypse finally happens (and we all know it will eventually), can you give our readers any tips to being one of the survivors? Stacey: Totally! Move to a zombie-free island. It’s a known fact that zombies are very bad swimmers!
Check out the full interview at americancheerleader.com.