Posted by: Kathy Temean | July 27, 2016

Mimi Cross – Book Giveaway – Writer’s Journey

THE WINNER OF SHINING SEA IS LESLIE ZAMPETTIS –

Congratulations! Please send me you address for the book.

If you’re on your way to the SCBWI Conference in LA, you might want to pencil in this opportunity into your schedule Saturday July 27th at 12:15 pm with Mira Reisberg founder of The Children’s Book Academy is having a meet and greet at Pichoun Bakery – 545 South Oliver St.  Downtown LA. It is only a 4 minute walk from the conference and you can have lunch for $11. 50 while picking Mira’s brain. Here is her email if you need to contact her Mira@childrensbookacademy.com Have fun in LA!

Author of BEFORE GOODBYE, Mimi Cross has agreed to do a book giveaway of her second book, SHINING SEA that came out at the end of May.

All you have to do to get in the running is to leave a comment. Reblog, tweet, or talk about it on facebook with a link and you will get additional chances to win. Just let me know the other things you did to share the good news, so I can put in the right amount of tickets in my basket for you. Please make sure you check back on August 11th to discover the winner. Make sure I’m able to find your contact information, in case your name is drawn. Book can not be mailed overseas.

Cross-Shining Sea-21628-CV-FT-v3

A voracious reader of YA, I recently finished The Raven Cycle by Maggie Siefvater. The Raven King is the last book in The Raven Cycle series, and I imagine it was because of this, that Maggie Siefvater left herself a little wiggle room in the structure by starting quite a few of the chapters with the following line:

“Depending on where you began the story, it was about” 

The line is then followed by one of the character’s names, and a chapter featuring that character.

Today I’d like to borrow that line from Ms. Stiefvater and bring you the quick and dirty version of my path to publishing Raven King style.

“Depending on where you began the story, it was about” my second grade teacher, who told me I was going to be a writer.

“Depending on where you began the story, it was about” the public library, where my mom used to take me for story hour, and where, although the entire library has been rebuilt, the painting of a bunch of children sitting around a campfire on a starry night that captivated me as much as the books did, still hangs on the wall.

“Depending on where you began the story, it was about” my high school English teachers, who turned me on to Shakespeare, Thomas Hardy, Ayn Rand, and Hemingway.

“Depending on where you began the story, it was about” my mom, who read to me when I was a child, and whose D.H. Lawrence novels I devoured as a teen.

“Depending on where you began the story, it was about” my dad, who left novels by Frederick Forsyth and Robert Ludlum lying around the beach house.

“Depending on where you began the story, it was about” the orange bookshelf in that same beach house, where renters left their bodice ripper romances.

“Depending on where you began the story, it was about” University of Arizona, where every Friday afternoon while my housemates were in class, I sat in the corner of our living room and read books like Siddhartha by Hermann Hesse, Cat’s Cradle by Kurt Vonnegut, and On the Road by Jack Kerouac. (Until happy hour.)

“Depending on where you began the story, it was about” transferring to Ithaca College, where I read all the Russian writers, and became the editor of the Literary and Arts magazine, Stillwater. (Yep, that really was the name.)

“Depending on where you began the story, it was about” one of my grad school professors at NYU, art critic Rose Slivka, in whose aesthetics class (which consisted of a group of doctoral candidates in the art program and into which I was mercilessly thrown and told to keep up) I learned to write.

Providence, fate, destiny, kismet, some act of God—or for you non believers, my unruly schedule—connected me with Rose, who, at the end of our time together sat me down in her office and said:

“You should consider taking the necessary art history classes and becoming an art critic.”

Me: ???

Rose: Gazes fixedly.

Me: Um . . . but I write songs. I’m studying music. I’m a singer.

Rose: Silence.

Me: Silence.

Rose: “It doesn’t matter. Whatever you choose—you have your machine gun now. You’re going to hit something.”

“Depending on where you began the story, it was about” the second Rose, Rosanne Cash, (who later became my mentor and dear friend) accepting me into her songwriting workshop at Omega Institute.

Me: That Galway Kinnell poem makes my heart hurt.

Rosanne Cash: “That’s because you’re an artist.”

“Depending on where you began the story, it was about” my son, for whom I wrote my first Picture Books, The Crankamacallit, which was turned into an iPad app, and The Alligator Waiter, which was published by a small alternative press.

“Depending on where you began the story, it was about” my first NJ SCBWI event, where I took said picture book texts, and where THIS happened:

Girl in line behind me at registration: “What do you write?”

Me: Picture Books. (Lifting nose, because, like, what else would I write? What else could possibly have any value? I’m a MOMMY. I eat, breathe, and dream Picture Books.)

Me: (Finally remembering to be polite) “What do you write?”

Girl in line behind me: “Young Adult”.

Me: Long look.

Her: Really nice smile.

Me: (Thinking: You LOOK like a young adult—what the heck is Young Adult?)

Me: Finally remembering to polite. Again. “Oh.” Smile.

Her: Yet ANOTHER nice smile.

In fact, everyone at the NJ SCBWI event had a nice smile, because they were really nice people. Plus? They were super excited about books. That day, I felt like I found my tribe.

“Depending on where you began the story, it was about” Kathy Temean, who I met at the same SCBWI event. Yes, THIS Kathy Temean, who, for some crazy reason, believed in me instantly, made sure I kept going to SCBWI events, and introduced me to a gazillion people, each time acting like I was the cat’s pajamas, when really it was them.

Me: ???

Kathy: “By the way, when you indent a paragraph, use tab.”

Me: “Oh. Yeah, no—right, of course. Tab. Thanks.”

Kathy: Lifts eyebrows. Becomes my friend. And several years later, says, “You should do a Body of Writing intensive at the next NJ conference.”

Me: !!!

Me: Thanks Kathy. Thanks the universe.

“Depending on where you began the story, it was about” gratitude.

“Depending on where you began the story, it was about” hard work, i.e., butt in the chair.

“Depending on where you began the story, it was about” the day I took writing a novel off my bucket list.

“Depending on where you began the story, it was about” Chris Baty’s book No Plot, No Problem.

“Depending on where you began the story, it was about” the day I decided I didn’t need to write a GREAT novel. Just one I wanted to read.

“Depending on where you began the story, it was about” NaNoWriMo.

“Depending on where you began the story, it was about” making a bargain with a wonderful writer named Susan Heyboer O’Keefe, who I met at yet another SCBWI event and who became a close friend, and who left this earth too soon.

Susan: “Okay, look. I’ll help you with your manuscript.”

Me: Dances around room, bows down worshipfully.

Susan: “Yeah, yeah—okay, enough. But here’s the thing: you have to promise that you’ll help other writers. You have to pass it on.”

So. New writers? Aspiring writers? If you have specific writing questions and you think, for some strange reason I might possibly have the answer? Contact me via Facebook and I’ll do everything I can to help you. Just say Susan sent you.

Mimi Cross altered hi res author pic 2

“Depending on where you began the story, it was about” revision.

“Depending on where you began the story, it was about” Twitter.

Go. Follow. Check out writing links. Read. Learn. Make friends!

“Depending on where you began the story, it was about” Chuck Sambuchino’s blog.

Go. Read. Query. Query again.

Query agents you meet at conferences. Query your friends’ agents. Cold query.

And when an agent says, “I really love this BUT.”

  1. ASK IF THEY HAVE CHANGES IN MIND THEY’D LIKE TO SEE.
  2. OFFER TO REVISE AND RESUBMIT.
  3. QUERY THEM WITH YOUR NEXT MANUSCRIPT.

“Depending on where you began the story, it was about” Danielle Burby of HSG Agency, who fell in love with the manuscript that eventually became Shining Sea.

“Depending on where you began the story, it was about” revision.

“Depending on where you began the story, it was about” ‘The Call’ from Danielle (which was really an email, I think we’d already had ‘The Call’) on the day before Thanksgiving 2014, when I screamed so loud my son started crying.

“Depending on where you began the story, it was about” revision.

“Depending on where you began the story, it was about” an offer from editor Miriam Juskowicz—a two-book offer!

“Depending on where you began the story, it was about” revision.

“Depending on where you began the story, it was about” January 1, 2016 the day my debut novel Before Goodbye was released by Skyscape.

mimi book

“Depending on where you began the story, it was about” Everything I’ve left out.

“Depending on where you began the story, it was about” the to go cup: The path to publishing is in the Re Vision. So if you’re not published yet and you want to be, take another look. At everything. And do some yoga. That really helps.

Xo, and happy revising! Mimi

Thank you Mimi for sharing your book, journey, and thoughts with us.

Talk tomorrow,

Kathy


Responses

  1. No depending on where I began the story – I LOVE this! What a wonderful article. Putting it out there on FB and Twitter!

    • Congratulations, Leslie! You won Shining Sea. Send me you address, please.

  2. Yes, it takes a village to grow a writer! This was a perfect, inspiring read as I sat down just now to begin working on a new project that involves out-of-the box creativity and collaboration. (okay…so I was procrastinating by reading Kathy’s blog before doing any work…)
    Thank you Mimi and Kathy!

  3. Thank you so much, Kathy!
    And thanks, Leslie and Janet🙂

    Xo!
    Mimi

  4. All I can say is what a fabulous post by a fabulous author!
    Thanks Mimi and Kathy!


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