Tuesday, December 29, 2009

2009 Year in Review Vlog!

Okay, okay, I'm two days early. And watch, something HUGE and MOMENTOUS will happen between now and Friday and I'll have to do an addition. Oh well. Here is my 2009 Year in Review:



And now I'm realizing how many things I forgot (dang stream of consciousness vlogging), like my new nephews, family weddings, meeting Agent Michelle in person, selling in Germany and Poland, and discovering Twitter. I mean, not discovering discovering (although that would have been cool, and I could have put a KIERSTEN WRITES flag there to claim it, and name it Twitterlandia). But I did figure out how much time I could waste there. I'm very good at discovering new and innovative wastes of time. Who knows what 2010 will bring me in the way of procrastinatory outlets? Only time will tell!

Sunday, December 27, 2009

COVER!!!*

You may be able to guess that I'm a little anxious to see my cover. I'm just so excited, I can't wait to see what they come up with. But until Christmas, I had no idea when I'd see anything. (I even had nightmares that Editor Erica sent me the design and it was manga/anime style--and in Japanese.) Imagine my surprise Christmas morning when Hot Stuff came out with a package. "Kiersten," he said, "Your publisher sent this as a surprise for you. Keep in mind it's just a preliminary mock-up, but here's what they have for your cover so far!"

...



...



...



Are you ready?


Here it is!


Can I just say how much I love my husband?

Probably my favorite present of all. Isn't Hot Stuff talented? And, umm, kind of crazy?

*For the record, this is not my cover. There are no small, blue, cat-like creatures in the novel, nor does Evie carry swords. But now I'm thinking maybe she should. Also, Hot Stuff is pretty sure the Japanese characters say, "Stay off the grass." Which also doesn't have much to do with the book, but sure looks cool.

(Erica, feel free to pass this along to the design team.)

(Seriously? My husband is AWESOME.)

Friday, December 25, 2009

Merry Christmas!

Have a very merry Christmas!

And stay away from that creepy bearded man.

Love, Kiersten, Hot Stuff, Nayna, Dojo, Laptop, and Maisie

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Hot Stuff Writes

Kiersten made me post this. I know that none of you come here wondering what Ms. White’s husband (AKA “Hot Stuff”) thinks about anything, so sorry in advance that you’re not actually getting what you wanted from visiting the site today. I think I’m starting to sound like Laptop . . .

Anyway, here are some interesting facts:

  • Laptop was “my” computer for a while. However, circumstances changed and I donated the poor machine to a worthier cause. I still can’t forgive myself for putting Laptop through such torture (Kiersten does not type, she pounds keys). I swear I still hear its eerie fan whirring long into the night even though nothing is turned on.
  • I am a struggling artist. Here’s why:
  • None of the ideas for Kiersten’s books ever came from me. Sometimes I think I have this great idea and I get really excited so I tell her about it. She just smiles at me and nods. She says I inspired some of the characters, but they all seem to be the weird ones.*
  • Kiersten does clean. She’s just trying to sound cool when she talks about how dirty everything is in our apartment. Cool people don’t clean.
  • I have never lived in a haunted house, but I once lived in Transylvania. I was also stung by a bee on the day I entered a nuclear facility. I like to think I have vampire/radioactive bee powers.
  • One last drawing:

That’s it for today. Maybe I’ll be back. Maybe I won’t. It all depends on how my art sells.

*Kiersten's Note: This is not true. While Hot Stuff is, in fact, delightfully weird, I have never based any characters on him. Except the hag. And the gremlins.**

**Okay, okay, truth be told every love interest I ever write has a little something pulled from Hot Stuff. What can I say, he's wonderful.

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

A Christmas Surprise!

In honor of Christmas, I got together with another author, Josh Berk, and formed a band: The Improbable Probable. Using his mad skills on the guitar and my willingness to humiliate myself, we made a song and accompanying video for you:



He even has an Mp3 up if you want to, you know, add it to your iPod. I can't imagine why you wouldn't. Personally I'm just delighted that for once one of my imaginary bands is, in fact, a real band.

Merry Christmas!!

[Yes, that is me singing. Josh came up with the idea, I wrote the lyrics, he wrote the music, I did the vocals, he did the slideshow. Because we are a legitimate band and stuff.]

Monday, December 21, 2009

In Which I am the Worst Friend Ever

An Ode to Natalie on her Birthday (One Day Late)

Her books are multitudinous
She puts up with my moodiness
Her creativity? Supreme
She writes, she draws, she seldom cleans
Clearly she was meant to be
My friend and best writing buddy

She remains, 'twixt fact and fiction
Queen of YA literary diction
Someday soon our books will be
Snuggled on bookshelves, happily
Next to each other where they belong
Whipple and White, you can't go wrong.


Happy birthday, you amazingly talented girl, you!

Friday, December 18, 2009

An Ode to Editor Erica

(In Honor of Unofficial Editor Day)
Her editing, unparalleled
Her hair is naturally curled
Her smile, brightens any room
Her bid dispelled a year of gloom

She's funny, smart, and oh so kind
as genius seeps from her great mind
My love for her just grows and grows
as she gushes about cute shows

Aside from all these darling traits
What does she offer? Just you wait
If you know Erica, lucky you
'Cause then you know her puppy, too!

Aaaw, cutest dog ever!

Seriously though, in addition to the fact that I will love her forever for buying my book and bringing me to my dream house, Erica is nothing but a joy to work with. She's brilliant, insightful, hilarious, adorable--in short, the best possible editor for Evie! I couldn't have dreamed up a better situation to be in for my debut novel. Yay Erica! Yay HarperTeen! Yay puppies!

On a more somber note, Hot Stuff informed me today that I haven't been funny on the blog all week. What do you say we make him guest post?

Friday, December 11, 2009

Unofficial Official Agent Day

Among the weary, frustrated querying masses (and yes, I was part of your ranks--I'd even been promoted to a Lieutenant after spending nearly two years in the trenches), there's an insidious idea that tends to creep in. Much like the rats that eat our rations, negative ideas nibble at us and we begin to view ourselves as almost in opposition to agents.

If they'd just give me a shot!

If one--ONE--would just read this!

If THEY'D QUIT RUINING MY DREAMS!

I remember what an editor said at a conference I once went to. She said, "We're not your enemies. We want your book to be good. We want to love it. You just have to give us something we can love." That completely changed the way I viewed myself in relation to agents. It wasn't a matter of somehow tricking them into representing you. It was a matter of finding that person, the right person, who loves what you write.

Writing is lonely. It's frustrating, and disappointing, and rejection combined with waiting (and waiting and waiting and waiting and then STARTING COMPLETELY OVER TO WAIT AGAIN) wears you down to the point that you begin to question why you write in the first place and whether or not there is anything redeeming in your writing.

I will tell you this right now: Even if you never get an agent or book deal, your writing is worthwhile. Always. Never doubt that.

But I digress. Because this isn't about you. Or me. This is about my agent, Michelle Wolfson.

Michelle, who plucked my query from her slush and wanted to read more.

Michelle, who about gave me a heart attack when she called me to rave about my book.

Michelle, who put together a thoughtful and smart sub list for Flash.

Michelle, who stuck it out with me when Flash didn't sell.

Michelle, who was just as excited about Paranormalcy as she'd ever been about Flash even though I worried after not selling once.

Michelle, who nailed the submission and absolutely and completely rocked my book deal.

Michelle, who has remained actively involved in everything, and who, I have no doubt, will continue to be my partner in every aspect of this journey.

Michelle, who is more than I ever hoped I'd find in a literary agent.

Michelle, who, to put it simply, is freaking amazing.

She made my dreams (that for a long time felt like they'd never be anything but) come true. I very literally couldn't have done this without her.

Agents are a writer's best friend. I hope you find yours someday soon, too.

(For more agenty adoration, thank Kody for coming up with the idea and hit Lisa and Laura's blog for links to more of the lovefest.)