In June 0f 2012 I had this crazy idea. This blog was still in its infancy, and I was trying to get my footing as to what types of posts I wanted to share. At the time I was spending a lot of hours on AgentQuery Connect trying to improve my craft and make connections in the writing community. One day I came across posts from writers Mindy McGinnis and R.C. Lewis about their struggles prior to getting agents and publishing deals. As I was reading about their paths to publication I was inspired by how hard they’d worked to make their dreams come true. At that moment I knew I wanted to start a series sharing the triumphs and pitfalls of what it takes to make it in publishing. That idea turned into Writer Odyssey Wednesday.
Since that first post I’ve been lucky to share the stories of some amazing writers. Today, I want to share some of their inspiring quotes and highlight their work. I hope that you’ve enjoyed the series as much as I have and been inspired. Now, on to 100!!
“Silence is always frustrating. Rejection always stings. After going through the process with one manuscript, though, I knew what to expect. There were times I got down, but I tried to remind myself that if I kept working to improve, I’d get there.” – R.C. Lewis
(Available October 6, 2015)
Sixteen-year-old heiress and paparazzi darling Liddi Jantzen hates the spotlight. But as the only daughter in the most powerful tech family in the galaxy, it’s hard to escape it. So when a group of men show up at her house uninvited, she assumes it’s just the usual media-grubs. That is, until shots are fired.
Liddi escapes, only to be pulled into an interplanetary conspiracy more complex than she ever could have imagined. Her older brothers have been caught as well, trapped in the conduits between the planets. And when their captor implants a device in Liddi’s vocal cords to monitor her speech, their lives are in her hands: One word and her brothers are dead.
Desperate to save her family from a desolate future, Liddi travels to another world, where she meets the one person who might have the skills to help her bring her eight brothers home-a handsome dignitary named Tiav. But without her voice, Liddi must use every bit of her strength and wit to convince Tiav that her mission is true. With the tenuous balance of the planets deeply intertwined with her brothers’ survival, just how much is Liddi willing to sacrifice to bring them back?
Haunting and mesmerizing, this retelling of Hans Christian Andersen’s The Wild Swans strings the heart of the classic with a stunning, imaginative world as a star-crossed family fights for survival in this companion to Stitching Snow.
Do your homework, get good crit partners, learn how to take criticism. Develop very thick skin. It is not an easy undertaking, but sometimes it’s the unexpected things (like a kind rejection) that will make you keep going to that end goal. – Mindy McGinnis
(Available October 6, 2015)
Grace Mae knows madness.
She keeps it locked away, along with her voice, trapped deep inside a brilliant mind that cannot forget horrific family secrets. Those secrets, along with the bulge in her belly, land her in a Boston insane asylum.
When her voice returns in a burst of violence, Grace is banished to the dark cellars, where her mind is discovered by a visiting doctor who dabbles in the new study of criminal psychology. With her keen eyes and sharp memory, Grace will make the perfect assistant at crime scenes. Escaping from Boston to the safety of an ethical Ohio asylum, Grace finds friendship and hope, hints of a life she should have had. But gruesome nights bring Grace and the doctor into the circle of a killer who stalks young women. Grace, continuing to operate under the cloak of madness, must hunt a murderer while she confronts the demons in her own past.
In this beautifully twisted historical thriller, Mindy McGinnis, acclaimed author of Not a Drop to Drink and In a Handful of Dust, explores the fine line between sanity and insanity, good and evil—and the madness that exists in all of us.
Writing is such a subjective thing, as well—not everyone’s going to love the same book. Someone once said each rejection is like a scar you earn in battle, and it’s a great way to look at it. – Elsie Chapman
(Now available via Amazon, Barnes & Noble and other retail outlets)
The hunter becomes the hunted. . . .
West Grayer is done killing. She defeated her Alternate, a twin raised by another family, and proved she’s worthy of a future. She’s ready to move on with her life.
The Board has other plans. They want her to kill one last time, and offer her a deal worth killing for. But when West recognizes her target as a ghost from her past, she realizes she’s in over her head. The Board is lying, and West will have to uncover the truth of the past to secure her future.
How far will the Board go to keep their secrets safe? And how far will West go to save those she loves? With nonstop action and surprising twists, Elsie Chapman’s intoxicating sequel to Dualed reveals everything.
Writing, and more specifically story-telling, is an integral part of who I am. I could no sooner turn away from writing stories then I could make myself stop reading books or watching movies and TV shows. – Mindee Arnett
(Available August 4, 2015)
The final installment in a thrilling fantastical mystery series.
Sixteen-year-old Dusty Everhart breaks into houses late at night, but not because she’s a criminal. No, she’s a Nightmare. Literally. Dusty is a magical being who feeds on human dreams.
Being the only Nightmare at Arkwell Academy, a boarding school for magickind, and living in the shadow of her mother’s infamy is hard enough, not to mention the crazy events of the past year. Dusty may have saved the day, but there are many days left in the year, and with an old foe back to seek revenge, she’ll need all her strength to defeat him and save her friends.
Mindee Arnett thrills again in this stunning final installment in the Arkwell Academy series.
Our novels are personal to us, the writer, but not to an agent. To an agent, this is a business and they view potential manuscripts and clients with a professional, business eye. So you can’t take it personally. – Gretchen McNeil
(Available June 16, 2015)
The members of Don’t Get Mad aren’t just mad anymore . . . they’re afraid. And with Margot in a coma and Bree stuck in juvie, it’s up to Olivia and Kitty to try to catch their deadly tormentor. But just as the girls are about to go on the offensive, Ed the Head reveals a shocking secret that turns all their theories upside down. The killer could be anyone, and this time he—or she—is out for more than just revenge.
The girls desperately try to discover the killer’s identity as their personal lives are falling apart: Donté is pulling away from Kitty and seems to be hiding a secret of his own, Bree is under house arrest, and Olivia’s mother is on an emotional downward spiral. The killer is closing in, the threats are becoming more personal, and when the police refuse to listen, the girls have no choice but to confront their anonymous friend . . . or die trying
One of the best decisions I made in 2004 was to reach out to other romance writers and ask to trade manuscripts. You really can’t predict how your writing is coming off to other people unless you ask. – Jennifer Echols
(Available August 4, 2015)
In this sexy conclusion to The Superlatives trilogy from Endless Summer author Jennifer Echols, Sawyer and Kaye might just be perfect for each other—if only they could admit it.
As vice president of Student Council, Kaye knows the importance of keeping order. Not only in school, but in her personal life. Which is why she and her boyfriend, Aidan, already have their lives mapped out: attend Columbia University together, pursue banking careers, and eventually get married. Everything Kaye has accomplished in high school—student government, cheerleading, stellar grades—has been in preparation for that future.
To his entire class, Sawyer is an irreverent bad boy. His antics on the field as school mascot and his love of partying have earned him total slacker status. But while he and Kaye appear to be opposites on every level, fate—and their friends—keep conspiring to throw them together. Perhaps the seniors see the simmering attraction Kaye and Sawyer are unwilling to acknowledge to themselves…
As the year unfolds, Kaye begins to realize her ideal life is not what she thought. And Sawyer decides it’s finally time to let down the facade and show everyone who he really is. Is a relationship between them most likely to succeed—or will it be their favorite mistake?
Many thanks to all the writers who have participated in the series. I appreciate your time and honesty in sharing your journey!
For more amazing quotes and stories check out my entire Writer Odyssey Series here: https://chasingthecrazies.wordpress.com/w-o-w-series/