Seven Things I Learned at My Summer Internship

I just finished my first week back at school. It’s  a bittersweet feeling, because as excited as I am to be back it’s so so weird that my MFA program is already half over and that this is my last semester taking classes (next semester I’ll be working on my thesis). Before we get too far away from summer (I got my flu shot yesterday which makes me feel like the season is officially over) I thought I’d share a few things I learned from interning at a literary agency.

1.) Agents have way way way more to do that read queries and look for new writers to represent. I think when I’d pictured agents jobs before my internship I thought reading query letters would make up a huge portion of their day. Not so much. They have existing clients to work with! Contracts to negotiate and double, then triple, check! Subsidiary rights! Endless phone calls to take! Everyone seemed very excited about signing new clients, but their jobs consist of so much more.  Continue reading

Truest, by Jackie Lea Sommers

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*One of my favorite books I’ve read this year – Truest, by Jackie Lea Sommers – came out this week! Here is my review!*

I’ve been excited about reading Truest, by Jackie Lea Sommers, for a long time. A really really long time. Why? Because I’ve been reading her blog since before she even got an agent. And because after she wrote this guest post about belonging to a writing group, Jackie and I stayed in touch and she such a big inspiration and support on my writing/grad school/hopefully eventually publishing journey. She is such a caring person and her blog posts are so well-written and interesting that I couldn’t wait to get the book in my hands. Those were the reasons I was excited to read Truest. After finishing the book (in basically one sitting) here are the reasons you should be excited about it…

The story follows small-town pastor’s daughter, Westlin Beck through the summer before her senior year. In the beginning, she seems like she has everything figured out. Her father is one of the most respected men in town. Continue reading

Top Ten Characters I Didn’t Click With

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Even if I don’t like a book, it is rare for me not to identify in some way with the main character. This becomes even more true when a book is told in first person narration. Still, there are exceptions and there are even books I like where I don’t love the main character … here are a few characters I didn’t click with. Would love to know what you think of my choices and some of your own picks for characters you don’t connect with in the comments. Happy Tuesday!

Thanks to The Broke and the Bookish for hosting this weekly book meme!

Marry, Date or Dump: Ballet Shoes

Ballet ShoesDid anyone else read Ballet Shoes, by Noel Streatfeild, growing up? I read (almost) all of his shoe books: Theater Shoes, Skating Shoes, Dancing Shoes, Circus Shoes, etc. But Ballet Shoes was definitely my favorite. I read it so many times the copy is basically falling apart and at one point I had almost the whole story memorized. The story follows three orphan girls adopted by an eccentric man and raised by his niece who attend a school that trains children to be professional entertainers – with an emphasis on ballet. Pauline wants to become an actress. Petrova is hopeless at dancing, singing, and acting and wants to become a pilot. And Posy is a ballet prodigy. Even though many of you may not have heard of these characters, I thought it would be a fun marry, date or dump topic (for the girls once they are all grown up of course). If you have read the books or you just want to play along, let me know your choices in the comments.

Also wish me luck on my first day back at school today! With my schedule this semester, I think I’ll need it!  Continue reading

Book Review: Mechanica, by Betsy Cornwell

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*** I originally posted this in April, but since the book came out this week wanted readers who might have missed it to get pumped for this fantastic, feminist Cinderella retelling … also I’m still on vacation and didn’t want to write a new review. Hope you enjoy!***

As some readers (especially those that knew me when I was ten) know, Ella Enchanted, by Gail Carson Levine, is pretty much the most important book I ever read. It totally converted me from from being a kid who could barely read, and absolutely hated it, to someone who LOVED books (not just with a capital L, but with capital O, V, E, and D as well). It solidified my interest in fairytale retellings, especially ones focused on Cinderella. So as you can imagine, when I found out my friend Betsy Cornwell’s Cinderella retelling Mechanica was coming out this year, I was beyond excited. And even though it can’t take the place of Ella in my heart, it is now definitely my second favorite Cinderella story … and I’ve read a lot a lot of them. Here’s why (and it’s not because Betsy is so nice and funny and blogs about important things like writing and PTSD, being a friend to yourself, and making goat cheese): Continue reading