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Friday, January 27, 2012

A little taste of THIS IS SO NOT HAPPENING

What's up, readers?

As many of you know, tonight, in about 41 minutes actually, I'm going to be giving away an ARC of THIS IS SO NOT HAPPENING via twitter. If you're not aware, then you still have time to enter. All you have to do is click your butt on over to twitter and tweet "I can't wait for THIS IS SO NOT HAPPENING @kieranscott!" and you're entered. But the problem is, only one person can win. And I feel kind of badly about that. So for all of you guys who DON'T win, here's what I'm gonna do. Right here, right now, I'm going to give you my favorite line from the very first chapter of THIS IS SO NOT HAPPENING. And then, next week, I'm gonna get the digital file from my editor and post a big, fat, excerpt. But for now, it's just a line. And that line is . . . .

Chloe Appleby, princess of perfection, queen bee of Orchard Hill High, she who had never stepped a pinkie-toenail out of line in her life, was going to have an actual baby. This was what I like to call a holy-crap moment.

Okay. So it was two lines. A little extra giftie just for you. ;) Check back next week for the whole first chapter or two. I can't wait for you to read it and let me know what you think!

And now it's only . . . 36 minutes until I announce the winner!

Thursday, January 19, 2012

My Worst Fear

(Other than Global Thermal Nuclear War. Thank you John Badham.)

Confession: Every time I come up with a new idea for a book, I live in fear that someone else is going to come up with the same idea and write it or sell it before I get the chance.

I know. It sounds a little insane. Like what other person in America (or anywhere else for that matter) was going to wake up and think "Huh. What if a brunette cheerleader from New Jersey had to move to Florida and join a competition squad completely made up of blondes?" right around the same time I was pitching I WAS A NON-BLONDE CHEERLEADER? But believe it or not, it has happened to me. More than once.

A few years back I had a writing partner and together we wrote three screenplays. The first one was a teen body-switch movie that was cute, but ultimately silly, I guess. The second one was about a guy in his twenties who still had a frat-boy mentality who, on learning his best friend was engaged to a girl he detested, went about trying to break-up the wedding. We had just finished our sixth draft and were very excited to send it out, but we couldn't come up with a title. We racked our brains for days, weeks, trying to come up with just the right moniker to catch the reader's attention and get us our first big movie deal. And then, one day, I was at the theater and I turned around and almost walked right into a huge, cardboard standup ad for a movie called SAVING SILVERMAN! My first thought was "Omigod! That's the perfect title for our movie!" And guess what? It turned out it had the EXACT SAME PREMISE AS OUR MOVIE!

I almost threw up. And then the movie sucked and it made no money and everyone in Hollywood who read our script said, "It has a lot of funny parts and memorable characters, but Saving Silverman bombed, so . . . no." And that was the end of that.

So we came up with a new idea, wrote a new screenplay (took us a couple of years of toil, btw), put the finishing touches on that one, and were ready to send it out when I went to the theater and saw a trailer for a movie called DOWN WITH LOVE, which had THE EXACT SAME PREMISE AS OUR MOVIE! Except it was set in the 1950's and ours was set in the present day. That time I actually had to get up and go to the lobby to have a panic attack. My date (now my husband), thought I was having a nervous breakdown. It's kind of a miracle he stuck with me after that public display.

Anyway, my writing partner and I kind of gave up after that.

In the last few years, there have been two separate occasions that an idea I was mulling was basically written by someone else. Both times someone more famous and successful than I am. So as much as I happen to appreciate my own creativity, I've learned to believe in the maxim, THERE ARE NO NEW IDEAS. (Most notorious case in point, TWILIGHT? Yeah. THE VAMPIRE DIARIES came first, people.)

So I've had this idea that I totally, TOTALLY love for the past month, but I haven't had a chance to perfect it and send it out yet, because first Christmas happened, then the kids were home for a week, then they both got sick and have actually been sick EVER SINCE! I've spent the entire month of January tending to sick children. Which, let's face it, is my more important job, but still.

Every day I get that email from Publisher's Marketplace listing the deals of the day, and every day when I see it there in my inbox, I get this awful, hollowed out feeling. I click it open, actually leaning back, away from my monitor, as if it's going to detonate in my face. Then I quickly scan all the deals for key words that might point to something similar to my beloved idea, and only when I see that there are none (not today), do I exhale. Right now, my worst fear, is that I open that sucker and see the line:

PITCHED AS A TEENAGED ________ ________ who must save her ________ ________ from _________ by going to _________ and ________ _________.

What? You thought I was just going to give it away?

So anyway, wish me luck. I plan to have this thing finished by the end of next week, provided I can keep the germs at bay. If all goes well, you'll see MY name in the Marketplace soon with all the blanks above filled in. NO MORE FEAR!

Thursday, January 12, 2012

The Bad News, The Good News

The bad news is, my entire family, baby and all, had the dreaded stomach flu this weekend. If I were writing a novel, I would share with you all the gory details, but as this story of true heinousness is about those I hold the most dear, I will withhold said details in order to protect the innocent.

Let's just say, it wasn't pretty. And in fact some of us have not yet fully recuperated.

The good news is, I found out exactly how strong I am during the ordeal. I mean, if you can pull off the things I pulled off--dragging a mattress up the stairs so I could sleep on the floor of B's room, rocking W to sleep, making bottles and cleaning up other people's--you know--all while retching every five minutes yourself--well, I'm still pretty impressed with myself. I'm not saying I'm a Katniss Everdeen-level ass-kicker, but at the very least I could win a Mom of the Week award.

The other good news? It turns out that line in The Devil Wears Prada about being one stomach flu away from one's goal weight? That's actually possible.

And the third good news? I just wrote the first few lines of the prologue of my new novel. Or what I hope will be my new novel. If my publisher buys it. Which maybe they'll do once they read this and realize I started writing it at 1:45 am after bringing B some Gatorade in the midst of five days of nasty bodily functions. I mean, pity has to play a factor on some level, right?

Aren't you SO glad I decided to blog every week? Look at the kind of fun stuff you get to read!

Wish me luck.


Wednesday, January 4, 2012

New Year, New Posting Resolution

Right so, it's been so long since I posted on here that I actually forgot my password. For shame! I don't have that many followers, but those of you who follow me follow me for a reason. So here's the deal. I made three new year's resolutions. Want to hear what they are? I know you do!

1. To be more frugal in the New Year. I am one to click on the modcloth.com or athleta.com links on my facebook page when I'm bored and just order stuff. Then I usually feel buyer's remorse after it arrives and end up returning all of--okay well, some of--it. This year, I have resolved on no pointless clicking. I will only buy clothing if it is needed! Or if it's 70% off. Which, let's face it, it never is.

2. To wash my face every single night before bed. I know this sounds easy, but it's not when you've spent your entire day writing and running errands and then you have to pick up your two little boys, play with them, feed them, bathe them, read to them, wrestle them into their pjs and get them to sleep within a two hour time frame. EXHAUSTING! But as Lorelai tells Rory upon meeting the Chilton headmaster's assistant in the second episode of the best-ever girl power TV series GILMORE GIRLS, "See? That's what happens when you go to bed with your makeup on."

3. To post a blog AT LEAST once a week. I was going to go for daily, but the only way to keep a resolution is to make it realistic, and considering my track record, yes, once a week is realistic. Maybe next year I'll go for daily. If, you know, the Mayans were wrong and the world doesn't actually end this year. Which, for the record, I don't think it will. In case that makes you feel any better.

So keep an eye for more posts and send your friends! You never know. One day I might actually write something useful!