Tag: bookitcon

Bookitcon Author Guest Post: Writing Process- Plantsers Do Exist by Amy Lynden Rolland

Posted August 6, 2015 by Nori in Guest Posts / 2 Comments

Of Breakable Things
Amy Lynden Rolland
Release Date: 04/29/2014
Publisher: Month9Books

A captivating debut about the fragility of life, love, and perspective.

When Chase dies tragically, Alex embraces her own mortality. What she didn’t expect was that she’d have to make a choice: forget the years of pain and suffering once and for all, or linger as a spirit and get another chance at life and love.

Alex doesn’t hesitate to choose; she’d follow Chase anywhere. But the spirit world is nothing like she expected, and Alex finds she’s forced to fight for her life once more. For even in a world where secrets are buried much deeper than six feet under, a legacy can continue to haunt you—and in a place this dangerous, no one is resting in peace.


Princess Sofia Regular


by Amy Rolland

I often hear writers calling themselves planners or pantsers. I’m somewhere in between. I plot by the seat of my pants, and then I plan the overall novel. Then I begin writing by the seat of pants until the characters become real and the story takes on its own life, and then I organize it into an outline. So, I guess I’m a hybrid. Imagine me as a planster, if you will.

Of Breakable Things, version one, was 800 pages long because I never intended to publish it. Yes, I said 800 pages. Clearly, I’m longwinded. I had a story and some time, and I just wrote and wrote and wrote until the story was finished. 200,000 words later, I reluctantly let someone read it, thinking they’d say, “Oh cool- great job” and move on. Instead, I was urged to publish…with some major edits. It took me a year (longer than the time it took to create the first draft) to cut the book to 90,000 words. Even then, some agents rejected my query because the book was still too long.

But the purpose of this ^^^^ is to say that I cannot write ‘by the seat of my pants.’ The pants are too large. Or the seat is too large. Something like that.

When I wrote the sequel to OBT, I structured it. I’ve used the same process for everything I’ve written since then.

The beginning is organized chaos. My favorite part of this whole mess is brainstorming. I write notes everywhere and on everything (napkins, receipts, post its).  I listen to all sorts of music and make playlists. I make Pinterest boards. I pin pictures and notes on the walls like a psycho. And the mess ends up looking like this:

image (1) - Copy

I let the chaos simmer and then try to sort the notes into piles. Characters. Themes. Plot. Etc. Then I create a vague outline:

  1. Theme
  2. Conflict/problem
  3. New setting
  4. Side story
  5. Fun
  6. Midpoint
  7. Plot thickens (bad guys)
  8. Everything falls apart
  9. Solution/Final fight
  10. Ending

I write the event that creates the catalyst, the conflict, the question, or the debate. To stay or not to stay. To join the group or not. To take the trip or maintain status quo. What happens to turn the character’s world upside down? In Alex’s case, she dies and finds herself in her third grade classroom, and she has to choose where to go and what to do.

Once the characters start to develop stronger personalities. I stop and give each major character their own web (that’s the English teacher in me) with their traits, their appearances, their choice phrases or superstitions, and their flaws. I also take this time to try to sketch out each chapter.

Then, I go back to writing.

I like complications and drama, so after the first draft, I make a chart. Along one end, I list the major points/issues I want the reader to pick up on. Along the other end, I list the chapters. This way I know there’s a purpose to each chapter. Looks like this:

image (1)

I plug in the holes. I go to the chapters that don’t have enough meat and I try to fatten them. This is the most frustrating for me because I’m not working linearly. I end up making a lot of lists and taking a lot of notes that say the same thing.

Then, I read from beginning to end and tear it apart. Does the story make sense? What isn’t necessary? What needs more? What needs less? This is also beta reader time (if anyone is crazy enough to read my first drafts.)

I take advice/input. Fix those issues.

I read from beginning to end again, editing as I go.

I give it to my agent.

I take her advice/input. Fix those issues.

I read from beginning to end, editing as I go.

I turn it in to my agent again. She might send back more edits or she might give it the ‘okay’.

I’m jealous of the writers who can sit down and start at the beginning, who can write in a straight line until they finish. Unfortunately, that doesn’t work for me. Maybe one day.

If you live in the NJ/PA/NY/DE/MD area, and are free on Sunday, August 9th, make sure to come meet Amy (plus 25 other awesome young adult authors) at Bookitcon, a charity book event that I’m organizing! All information can be found on the website: www.UBUbiz.com. Also, if you’re unable to come, you can still help to support the event by making a donation!

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Bookitcon Author Guest Post: W..

Bookitcon Author Guest Post: Writing Historical YA by Dianne K. Salerni

The Caged Graves Dianne K Salerni Release Date: 05/14/2013 Publisher: Clarion Books Synopsis: 17-year-old Verity Boone expects a warm homecoming when she returns to Catawissa, Pennsylvania, in 1867, pledged to marry a man she has never met. Instead, she finds a father she barely knows and a future husband with whom she apparently has nothing in common. One truly horrifying surprise awaits her: the graves of her mother and aunt are […]

Posted August 5, 2015 by Nori in Guest Posts / 3 Comments

Bookitcon Author Guest Post: H..

Bookitcon Author Guest Post: How To Write A YA Novel by Martina Boone

Compulsion Martina Boone Release Date: 10/28/2014 Publisher: Simon Pulse Synopsis: Three plantations. Two wishes. One ancient curse. All her life, Barrie Watson has been a virtual prisoner in the house where she lives with her shut-in mother. When her mother dies, Barrie promises to put some mileage on her stiletto heels. But she finds a new kind of prison at her aunt’s South Carolina plantation instead—a prison guarded by an […]

Posted August 3, 2015 by Nori in Guest Posts / 5 Comments

Bookitcon Online Sales!!! *Spe..

Bookitcon Online Sales!!! *Special Announcement!*

Hello everyone! I have very, very exciting news to share. So, as most of you know, I am putting together a book event called Bookitcon on Sunday, August 9th. It is taking place in Moorestown, NJ, and it’s sure to be a lot of fun! There are currently over 25 Young Adult authors participating! I am currently selling tickets for the event plus accepting donations. 🙂 You can buy your […]

Posted June 9, 2015 by Nori in Event Recaps! / 3 Comments



I am proud to finally announce Bookitcon- a book event taking place on Sunday, August 9th from 3pm-8pm! Bookitcon will be composed of author signings, meet-and-greets, and an after party as well as a book drive concurrent to the event. We currently have 20 authors confirmed to participate in Bookitcon! To check out the amazing authors, click HERE! Something that is unique about Bookitcon is that the majority of the profits […]

Posted April 16, 2015 by Nori in Event Recaps!, Uncategorized / 21 Comments