Friday, June 06, 2014

A New Conference + Miscellany

News! Later this month, on June 28, I'll be appearing in a great little mini-conference in my hometown of Belton, Mo. (about half an hour south of Kansas City). I'll give a talk on the five things editors want to see in every manuscript. Then the picture book author (and my best friend) Katy Beebe and I will discuss query letters, particularly the one that led to the publication of her lovely book Brother Hugo and the Bear. And finally, we'll do a first-pages session to round out the morning. Registration is $60, to benefit the Cass County Library Foundation (one of several library systems that made Katy and me the writers and readers we are today). For more information and to register, please click here.

In sad news, last month marked the first month in the nine-year history of this blog where I did not write a single post! Not a one! Part of it can be attributed to this fine fellow:

Mr. Bob Jacob Marley Monohan, who has come to dwell in our apartment and demand my time and attention, cat treats, things to gnaw on (currently a pair of James's cargo shorts that he unwisely left on the couch), etc. Part of it is that I have Twitter to accept all of my random thoughts. Much of it was simply work and life. But I miss writing here. I'm going to try to do a post a week for the rest of the summer, and I hope it will result in good energy all around. 
  • The Great Greene Challenge is still on! Have you gotten your copy yet? It's a great opportunity to support diverse books, an independent bookstore, and fantastic middle-grade in one fell swoop. 
  • As this blog has often served as my running results archive: My sister and I ran the Brooklyn Half-Marathon a couple weeks ago in 2:10. It was my slowest time for a half ever, but I didn't care, because I super-enjoyed running and chatting with her.
  • We have a great new episode of the Narrative Breakdown up here, with Matt Bird and James and I talking character goals and philosophies. Our podcasting has fallen off a bit of late because we lost our sponsor.... If you'd be interested in donating to the cause or sponsoring an episode yourself (a great way to reach a wide audience of writers and other lovers of narrative), please contact us at narrativebreakdown at gmail dot com.  
  • And if you'd like to buy my book SECOND SIGHT, but not through Amazon, please e-mail me at chavela_que at yahoo dot com. I'd be happy to work out alternate means of payment and delivery with you. 
  • Happy summer!


  1. Cheryl! How did I not know that you are from Belton, MO? I lived there for the greater part of my childhood, not far from that giant water tower at the edge of the air force base. Sending a couple friends from KC to your workshop.

  2. Please please please (for the sake of good writing) don't let things slip to narrative-broke-down :-( If I had any sort of magic to create flying green cows to fund your program, I'd send them your way. Your posts are super insightful and have been my sort-of weekly does of "C'mon on kid, you're on the right track! Get that book done so Cheryl and James can have something fun to work on!) Which is, of course, another great benefit to you, as without the NB, I may have already sent you my muddled-up manuscript without having considered so many things your posts have discussed, which have helped fine-tune my crafting. So that is my appeal (or at least it's the most I'm willing to write in a random comment space. If desired, an essay to the tune of Jane Austen could be arranged!) And with that I simply ask, if only in the dead of night, take five minutes to send your thoughts on creating and transforming narrative into happiness and life, love and plight or magic and mystery our way.

  3. Your fine fellow is the cat's meow. Only wish he'd let you do such workshops a little closer (well, a lot closer) to where I can get to them. Good presentation wishes to you and Katy Beebe. I love her book.