Inkpop, Rejection, and my HarperCollins review

Exactly two years ago this week, I made a decision that changed my life. I joined a site called inkpop.

For those of you who don't know how inkpop works, it's kind of like American Idol for writers. You post your work, people vote or "pick" it, and it rises up the charts. At the end of the month, the top 5 picks get a review from a HarperCollins editor. (REALLY cool... how often do you get to have a real live breathing editor review your work before it's query ready?)

At this point, I had the first ten thousands words of Shadow Watchers written and decided to upload it onto inkpop to see how it was received by teens.

My story rocketed. I was floored. Within two weeks, it shot to the number one spot and stayed there for the remainder of the month. Usually it took months to get into the top five, if that. And that's if you knew how to work it.

When my review from HarperCollins came in, I was sick. Sure, I had fooled teens to like my work *winks* but what about a Harper editor?

It ended up being a great review. And I took the advice whole-heartedly. A little too heartedly as you'll see below.

Part of my advice was and I quote: "There can be a fine line between intriguing readers and frustrating them by doling out too little information." This was in response to the editor saying there was not enough  answers being given up front. Great advice. I needed to hear it.

But I went overboard. I grasped onto this advice like a dying man in need of water. (Who wouldn't?) This became clear when the feedback coming in from agents was that the action never stopped. That I didn't slow down enough for the reader to take in the setting and catch up. Funny huh? Note to self: Find balance. 

Right after my review is when I believe I lost sense of my story--when I began to lose "that feeling" I wanted to surround my words. Because I was writing to appease advice I was given instead of what I knew was right deep down. And I won't expand further, because I've already done a post on this here. 

But it's okay. Because now it's clicked. I don't regret any advice I've taken and I don't feel remorse for a single rejection I've received. <-------and it's taken quite a bit for me to get here. But I am finally where I need to be. I'm in the part of the V for Vendetta when Natalie Portman is standing in the rain, crying, lifting her arms to the sky because she isn't afraid anymore.

I'm not afraid anymore. I'm not afraid of rejection.

As Herald Angus Penn (inkpop buddy, aka Ryan Greenspan) once told me, "It makes us stronger, doesn't it?"

I'm glad I'm not there yet. I'm going to enjoy the refiners fire. Because if I had had an easy "success" story, I wouldn't have learned that the success I needed first was conquering fear of rejection--not getting agent, getting published, or letting my friends down.

And why was it that I joined inkpop in the first place? To see how my work would be received. I ended up getting so much more. I've connected with the world's best breed of people, aligned myself with the most talented beta readers, and most importantly, made friendships that go far beyond the writing world.

Red. Head. Out. :D

On The Fourth Day Of Christmas, My True Love Gave To Me...

A signed copy of Timeless and soundtrack by Alexandra Monir!!!

I've got them in my hands, ready to send out... now all we need is a winner... 

*goes to*

*inputs the number of contestants*

*pushes the generate button*



The winning number is...


Not including my comments, the 41st person to enter was...



You've just officially become the 4th winner of the 12-Days of Christmas Blog Hop!

Special thanks to Sarah Belliston for putting this fantastic giveaway together! Make sure to stay tuned on Sarah's blog for the rest of the Blog hop winners!

And many thanks to all of YOU. Not only for entering, but for being such an amazing support system to me on this writing journey. You really are remarkable. Truly.

Red. Head. Out. :D

Last Day To Enter For The Giveaway!

That's right.

Just a friendly reminder that tonight at midnight, the 12-Days of Christmas Blog Hop ends! The winners will start  tomorrow the 13th.

Remember that I'm day FOUR, or the "Four Calling Birds" day of Christmas, so the winner will be announced on Dec 16th!!! Click here if you haven't entered!

And if you haven't seen all the giveaways yet, head over to Sarah's Blog to check out all of the amazzzzing stuff being given away!

I'm excited to see who wins. We've got some great entries! (Well, you're all great--except those of you who said you were half sparkly *winks*)

Red. Head. Out. :D