People You Should Follow On Twitter

Another quick one this week, delving into the really quite sweet community of YA readers / writers on Twitter.

I should probably say that I actively, in-my-bones hate the title and first sentence of this post. There’s something about writing about social media that makes me feel like my teeth are glued together with syrup. I’m a fairly sporadic Twitter user (which means I mostly forget I have it, then have intervals of ‘shit, I was supposed to be trying to build a following and I haven’t tweeted in a fortnight’, swiftly followed by ‘so…how does one build a following again?’), but as my tweeting mostly revolves around my writing, so do most of my follow-ees.

So, having been all over my feed for YALC (Young Adult Literature Convention) this past weekend: here’s my pick of favs to follow in the writing (often specifically YA/children’s writing) community, just in case you care:

@sarahcrossan – YA writer

@WalkerBooksYA – YA dept for Walker Books. Duh.

@canongatebooks – whoever Canongate’s social media manager is, s/he deserves a raise.

@acaseforbooks – Anna James, who knows/reads/recommends a lot

@matthaig1 – writer

@HaggardHawks – this has provided me with more character names than will ever be useful

@Patrick_Ness – if you haven’t heard me talking about him you must be very new

@junodawson – YA writer

@ClaireWingfield – editor and literary consultant

@johngreen – YA writer / professional internet-er (shh, it’s a thing)

Sorry for another scab post, there’ll be a real one up soon, I promise! ‘Til next time.

stayclassy

 

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A spade is a spade, and this is a Placeholder Post.

Er…oops. Again.

I don’t even have an excuse as to why I forgot to post two blogs in a row, and then randomly came back on a Wednesday. I’ve been kinda busy, and fairly ill, and mostly lazy. So to make up for it (as I’m sure you’ve been crying yourself to sleep), I don’t have a post, but I am going to leave you with a random collection of my favourite gifs.

And (hopefully), I’ll see you on Monday.

dance hit baby

fuck...

go faster

i regret nothing (5)it's dinner time

Enjoying the Unopened Box

So I’m guessing most of you know what Schrodinger’s Cat is, but for the sake of clarity; the idea as far as I understand it (and I’m quite sure it’s infinitely more complicated than the way I understand it) is that if you put a cat in a box with a bunch of other nasty stuff, then until you open the box, the cat is simultaneously alive and dead – in that, until you open the box, you don’t know which it is. Now my knowledge of physics is limited to some half-remembered, disconnected GCSE facts, but this I actually understand. (Well, sort of – I did have to clarify with Pete that this was just a ‘thought experiement’, and that Schrodinger didn’t actually put a cat in a box and wait for it to die.)

Currently, I feel like I have a (metaphorical) cat in a box.

Bear with me.

So last Friday morning I pottered into New Writing North to edit some Cuckoo reviews, got myself set up, opened the various tabs I need for work and the various others I have open anyway. When I got to Twitter, I saw this:

tweet

Now my initial feeling was, obviously, excitement. Then anxiety. Then, when I looked sideways at how many reviews I had to edit that day, a wince. But hey, let’s be honest, it was a small miracle I’d bothered to check Twitter in the 24 hours I had to find out about this; I wasn’t going to pass the opportunity up.

So, intending to send tweet-pitches for both my new project and the book I’ve been submitting, I cracked on. I started with the new project, because a hook occurred to me pretty much immediately. For the interested, this was my pitch:

“What if YOU were your own currency? Sweets cost eyelashes, a car costs a memory, true love; your health. And what if you made a bad trade?”

Then I settled back to work, thinking I’d work on the next one during my lunch break (it takes an inordinate amount of time to condense an 85,000 word novel into 140 characters). Exactly TEN MINUTES later, I received a private message from Chicken House asking me to send a full novel pitch and my manuscript in progress to them. Bearing in mind I’m used to waiting 2-3 MONTHS for a reply, for about a minute and a half my only reaction was this:

blink

Then I stood up and sat down again, did an in-the-chair jig, clapped my hands together like a three year old on their birthday and sort of stared around the empty office, wondering what the hell to do with myself. I ended up leaving work early through sheer friggin joy.

So over the weekend I have been frantically writing, re-writing, re-writing again and trying to work out what on earth a ‘full novel pitch’ actually is. It’s honestly been a blast. Mostly because it feels like it’s been a good while now since I’ve had a positive response to my writing – I know that in the scheme of things it hasn’t been that long at all, but Jesus it’s felt that way. I’d gotten myself properly mired in the Rejection Blues. So even to have had a thumbs-up that doesn’t lead anywhere is just the best kick up the arse I could have received.

But speaking of leading anywhere, this is where we come back to Schrodinger’s cat. Even though you thought I’d finally cracked at the beginning of this post, here is the relevance: this is my unopened box. This brief period in between being given good news, and finding out it’s not going anywhere. And unlike my previous full MS requests, where I checked my emails relentlessly and willed the agencies to respond to me as fast as possible, this time I plan to just enjoy the knowledge that the cat could be alive in there.

On Friday, for the first time in ages, I bounced home, and spent the rest of the day high as a bloody kite. To make matters even better, I got a phone-buzz every time someone liked the pitch I’d sent in to Chicken House, and every one pumped a little bit more air into my happy bubble. And I know – Christ, do I know – that this bubble is more than likely to pop, but fuck it.

Right now it’s fat and happy, and so am I. Whether the cat’s alive or dead, for the rest of this week at least, I plan to enjoy every single second of not knowing.

happy dance

 

Whoops.

So…I missed a week, and then I came back with an absolute nonentity of a post (this).

clueless

The tragic part is that I wasn’t even busy writing, or submitting, or getting rejections or anything. I was on holiday, not suffering for my art in the slightest. Even so, as a result of flight times I’ve been up since 2.30am this morning, so please excuse me whilst I go collapse in bed until next week, where at least a little actual effort will be made.

‘Til next week!

EDIT: Just remembered, I actually did get one rejection! Yay?