Artistic License

May 5, 2010

Blog has officially been moved

Filed under: Uncategorized — Joana @ 1:22 am

Since the biggest part of writing AL is done, I decided to create a new blog for my writing in general.  It can be found at  Feel free to follow and comment on the writing I post there 🙂


March 27, 2010

A bit of a side note: Grammar

Filed under: Uncategorized — Joana @ 11:42 pm

As the title says, this is a bit of a side note as it has little to do with my actual writing of Artistic License.  But I thought I’d say it, anyway.

Earlier today (or… yesterday, since it’s past midnight for me) there was a thread on inkpop where someone said to the effect of “Oh, grammar doesn’t matter when you’re writing; that’s what editors are for!” This floored me.  I’ve known this wasn’t true for years now, but the person that said this was my age (nineteen) and still thought that.

Moira Allen said it best in her article Grammar Matters when she said “Grammar — including spelling, punctuation, and a grasp of where to insert (or omit) capitals — is not some esoteric, elitist requirement imposed by editors and publishers who want to close the doors in the faces of "good storytellers." It is simply a tool — an essential tool in every writer’s toolbox. In any career, if you do not know what tools you need or how to use them, you will not succeed.”

Allen also says earlier in the article that editors DO care about spelling and grammar when you send in pieces to consider for publication.  You don’t have to have it perfect, but editors and agents are more likely to, when given the choice, pick up a story with an okay storyline and awesome grammar and spelling than an awesome storyline but would take days or weeks to edit the messy prose.

So, if any of my readers happen to be writers who struggle with grammar and don’t bother to improve or get a personal editor because you’re under the impression that it doesn’t matter, try telling that to the agents that reject you 🙂 That is all.

March 25, 2010

Status update and Vlogs

Filed under: Uncategorized — Joana @ 11:57 am

Less than a week to go in March, and it looks like AL will finally be going in for that review 🙂 In other news, I started a vlog, and I thought I’d post the links to the videos in here since I talk about my writing.


Vlog 1: Editing

March 11, 2010

Status Update- March 11’th

Filed under: Uncategorized — Joana @ 11:24 pm

Rewrote bits of chapters nineteen and three today!  And I’m pretty sure I’m tired because I kept messing up and eventually blew a raspberry at my screen.  Yeah, I’m mature.  Pft.

In my (somewhat) writerly life, I will be taking a trip to the Maine Festival of Books in April with one of the professors from my creative writing department!  I’d get to meet a lot of Maine authors and feel special and such, because as an unpublished, struggling college student writer, I am not special.  Le sigh.

Also, however, I have applied to be a Teacher’s Aid at Longfellow Mountains Young Writers Program, which is a week-long writing camp to be held here at UMaine Farmington in July!  I’m really hoping I can get in because I think it would be an awesome experience to be able to help high school students progress their own talents in writing 😀 Wish me luck!

Until next update, everyone.

March 3, 2010

Status Update- March 3rd

Filed under: Uncategorized — Joana @ 5:28 pm

Well, Artistic License failed to stay in the top five for the month of February, which means that I won’t be getting that review just yet.  However, it also means that I have that much longer to edit it and up its quality so that maybe, JUST MAYBE, I’d be lucky enough for HarperTeen to want to pick it up…

Yeah, in my dreams.

Artistic License is currently on its third draft.  There’s a lot I still want to do to improve it, but I really like how it is so far.  Always room for improvements, as my obsessive editing of miniscule details will tell you.

Until next time.

February 22, 2010

Status Update- February 22’nd

Filed under: Uncategorized — Joana @ 10:06 am

The second draft of Artistic License is done.  I think I’m satisfied with how this one’s turned out, so unless I have a drastic change of heart, there won’t be much dramatic rewriting at this point in time.  Right now, I’m focusing on cleaning up my prose (there’s a fine line between realistic teenage boy speech and having no idea what the hell you’re saying) and probably adding a scene or two that I think would help flesh out the story as it needs to be.

As far as the agent search goes, I have a few ideas.  My first pick, however, has closed query submissions for at least three months.  I doubt this will be a problem, however, as I also doubt AL will be ready to be sent in to agents in three months XD I’m not THAT optimistic.  In fact, as I turn twenty this year, I was thinking of waiting until at least then (my birthday is in August).  I will no longer be a teenager and I will, perhaps, be taken more seriously in the publishing world.  Nineteen can be considered old as far as ‘teen prodigies’ go but we’ve all seen examples of people who got published early in life.  I’d rather not be one of those people 🙂

Until next time.

February 9, 2010

Status Update- February 9’th

Filed under: Uncategorized — Joana @ 1:34 pm

With the second draft, first edit of Artistic License almost finished, I’ve started looking into other things.  For one, I’d like to at least have an idea of the agents that I can send it out to.  Artistic License is currently staying strong in the top five at inkpop for the month of February, and should it stay there, I will be getting a critique on it by HarperCollins.  I doubt I’d be lucky enough to get a contract with them, so my plan is to wait until I’ve gotten that review and edit it according to their advice before sending it out.  They are, after all, a publisher, and it’s highly likely my manuscript would be several times better after incorporating their advice.

As I said before though, the first round of edits is almost done.  Just two more chapters of Artistic License to go and I’ll have that second draft.  I do believe this is as far as I’ve ever gotten with a book, and I’m fairly proud of myself for it :D  It hasn’t been easy by any stretch of the word, but I think it will be worth it.

Until next time.

January 28, 2010

Status Update- January 28’th

Filed under: Editing — Joana @ 12:35 am

I’ve gotten up to chapter sixteen with Artistic License.  The end is definitely what needed the most work; I’m rewriting completely all but part of it.  It’s not going too badly, though.  Of course once I get to the end I’m going right back to edit all over again.  Because that’s inevitably how it goes, right?  Just keep editing.  Of course no writer is really satisfied with how something is, but that can’t be helped.

Ah well.  Might work on some of my lighter stories until the weekend.  I need to relax and unwind.  I kind of wish there were actual tubs here in my dorm instead of just shower stalls so I could take a nice long bath, but then I realize how grotty those would be.  Yuck.  I suppose all there is to do is take a deep breath and smile 🙂 Until next update.

January 25, 2010

Status Update- January 25’th

Filed under: Editing — Joana @ 11:31 pm

I’m tired.  Physically and mentally.  But mostly I’m tired of people on inkpop automatically assuming Cameron’s a girl because they’re too close-minded to see the signs that he’s a gay, teenage male.  I’m tired of people reading half a chapter and going in for the kill with overly harsh critiques that wouldn’t even happen if they paid attention or actually read any of it.  I know I’m not the perfect writer, but if you actually READ you wouldn’t fill a page-long review with how awkward my prose is.

I guess what I’m saying is, I’m not looking for tons of praise, I’m looking for people that will actually READ.  I want people who will read my story.  If you actually read through it, paying attention, then I don’t mind whether your opinion is good or bad.  Artistic License isn’t on a bookstore shelf yet, and to get there, I need help with ALL of it, not just what you can read in the span of one minute.

That is my rant of the day.

January 19, 2010

Status Update- January 19’th

Filed under: Editing — Joana @ 11:28 pm

And I almost forgot to post in here today.  I’m kind of tired and worn out, but that’s how I usually am near the day so that can be ignored.  I edited and put up the next chapter for Artistic License on inkpop, and I was thinking of putting another one up tomorrow.

The only problem there is that after that chapter, I hit a block where what I already have written is basically useless.  As I’ve said in previous updates, I’ve been rewriting a good chunk of the text near the end, and that’s where it would start.  But I’m not really done with it yet (not even close!) so I don’t know.  I know that this kind of extensive rewrite is just part of the process, but still XD

Oh well.  It’ll be worth it in the end.  At least I hope so.

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