I just finished a YA book called, The Astonishing Adventures of Fanboy and Goth Girl by Barry Lyga. I stumbled across his website and read the first chapter. It is a GREAT first chapter. I just had to find out what happened next.

If you’d like to HAVE my book, leave a comment and let me know.  I’ll send it to you! If more than 1 person wants it, I’ll do a random number generator to choose, but I’m pretty sure my sister and my mom are the only people who read this blog and they can share.

I’ve written a synopsis of the book, in haiku.

Comic geek, Goth chick

Odd people make strange friendship

He evolves. Her? No.

I might not have done it justice.


Here I was wondering what to blog about and this shows up in the InBox –

Dear Ms. Tyre:

Thank you so much for your patience while I’ve had your pages under consideration. I’ve been hemming and hawing about my decision on this one, as I simply love the narrative voice. Lou had me under her spell from the first word. That said, I find myself with reservations, though I’m hard-pressed to articulate exactly what they are. I can’t tell you how frustrating it is to be writing this email, though I imagine it’s not all that fun reading it. Perhaps I was hoping the adventure would start sooner (but it starts up pretty quickly, so…I don’t know.) I know if I could give you feedback, you’d most likely dig right into revisions. Of course, it could be I’m just not the right reader, but I feel like I am!

Anyway, drop me a line when another agent scoops this up and sells it for you so I can properly kick myself. In the unlikely event that doesn’t happen and you try your hand at something new, please think of me again (though I suspect I’m coming off as the most wishy-washy of agents. Argh!)

Fondest regards,

Agent who almost loves Me

It’s a little like getting the “it’s not you, it’s ME” speech from a boyfriend. Not that I ever actually HEARD that speech. Wow, so THIS is what you felt like all of those times. Good to know.


I like YA. That’s just how I roll. But recently I found a Jodi Picoult novel on my bookshelf, courtesy I’m sure of my mother-in-law an avid reader, and decided to take a peek. It’s called My Sister’s Keeper and was written about five years ago, made into a movie, talked about, written about and reviewed extensively. Still, I had no idea.

It was REALLY good. You’ve probably heard that already. It was so good that I couldn’t imagine WHY I hadn’t read any of her books before. I remember picking them up, scanning the back, then opting for something else. But why? Tonight I went to the library, and remembered. They are so MATURE. They are DEEP. They are for grown up people with sense. Totally explains why I’ve been left out. But I went against my nature and picked up another one. A girl can change, you know.

As an apology, I’ve penned the following poem to Ms. Picoult.

Dear Jodi, Dear Jodi, Dear Jodi Picoult,

Am I pronouncing your name right, cause I don’t know.

Your books are deep, and I am slow,

But here I am reading, two in a row.

Wow. I am GOOD. Perhaps I should give up the YA book and start a book of poetry. It’s a thought.


is not accurate. Writers always say, “it’s MAKING the time to write.” You know, writers can be annoying. Anyway, I’m trying to MAKE more time to write this week. It is always interesting to me to hear how fast and how much other people write.  I read a Jodi Picoult novel this past week, and she says she writes a novel in nine months. NINE months. I don’t know if you’ve read her stuff, but if she can do THAT in 9 months, mine ought to take about 9 weeks.

Check back in eight. I’m feeling inspired.


I was lamenting to a friend that my daughter and I had a very tough day of homeschooling this week. You can lead a kid to homework, but you can’t make them write a two-point expository paragraph. Anyway, she raved about a book called, How to Have a New Kid by Friday. So I’m thinking that I’ll read it, then write one called, How to Have a New Kid by THURSDAY. Who would buy his when they could save a whole DAY?

I’ll start writing my query now.


depressing. I was going to blog about a cool website I found, but then I got this in the In-Box:

Thank you for thinking of me with this project; I appreciate the chance to have a look. I’m sorry to say I won’t be pursuing representation at this time, but I hope you have every success in finding the perfect agent and publisher for your work.

All best wishes,

I thought she had ALREADY rejected me. Maybe it’s a ploy that agents use when they REALLY want to discourage you from writing. No matter, I can’t be dissuaded. There are too many people in my family I want to use as characters.


The agent responded to MY response, (if agents don’t understand the need to drink, no one does) with another nice email. She encouraged me to revise carefully and get in touch with her again. It’s great to have an opening with an agent, for SURE. and she also gave me a more detailed critique. The first email suggested changes which could be dealt with pretty easily, while this one mentioned losing one of the characters. Much tougher to do.

At my last writer’s conference, our keynote speaker was an author named Evelyn Coleman. She was GREAT, but she told us that once she’s completed a novel, she DELETES it and STARTS OVER. Did I mention she’s crazy? Or so I thought….

Oh well, at least I know what I’ll be doing for the next few months –  revising, revising, and revising. And by revising, I mean drinking. But you knew that already.


is still a NO.


Thank you so much for sending along THE JUNKMAN’S DAUGHTER. There is so much to love about this manuscript. The voice pulled me in right away, as did your offbeat sense of humor. The mystery is a delicious one as well. The only reason I have been hesitating for a while on this is that the plot seemed a little crowded to me. There’s the whole yarn of them having to figure out how to get the book from the historian. (Going in the hotel room and how they got out of it was one of my favorite scenes!) There’s also the sports/racism/news/University visit. I know it is very important to the plot but it started to feel a little… busy. For a middle grade novel, it sure covers a lot of ground.

Now, I’m very interested in you as a writer. I think you’ve got great talent and potential. But I just don’t think this is 100% ready for me to take on. If you do figure out a way to simplify (or you get similar notes and end up revising), please do think of me. I’d love to read it again.


(Agent I don’t Hate)

So there you have it. The best rejection letter I’ve gotten thus far. Here’s my response to her:

Dear Mary,

Thank you for taking the time to read my manuscript. I appreciate your kind words and constructive feedback. The revision suggestions are great, and I look forward to jumping right in. And by “jumping right in”, I mean “after I drink myself into a mild hangover”.

Seriously, your comments ring true and I believe they will make the book stronger. When I’m done revising, you’ll be the first to know!

Thanks again.

Hey, it’s way better than the one I sent where I threatened VOODOO. I’m growing.


I’m involved in two critique groups, and I think they are INTEGRAL to my success as a writer. I use the term “success” loosely. While I’ve not been published (YET!) I don’t think my book would even be finished if it weren’t for the encouragement/harassment/prodding of the group. Certainly, my book would not be nearly as good if it weren’t for them.

It’s interesting, because the members of the writer’s group, are very different from me in writing style.  One is writing a romance novel, and another an epic, family drama involving World War I. Someone else is writing primarily things of faith. Mine is the only YA novel, but somehow it all works.

We get together every few weeks to encourage each other, give honest feedback about each other’s work, and share the high’s and low’s on the road to becoming published authors.

If you’re a writer without a critique group, I understand the FEAR of sharing with strangers. But do it. Your writing will be stronger, and you just may make life-long friends. Nothing binds people together like fear and humiliation!



Welcome to the new blog. Technically, its a hybrid between the old and new, since I’m moving all of the writing posts over here. This is my idea on how to blog about writing, without incurring the wrath of my mother who really only tunes in to see photos of my child.

It’s okay. She is REALLY cute.