on the grind

Shark Attack! (Imma bite you, Monday)

This morning I saw an inspirational post on Instagram that said, “Do sharks complain about Monday? No. They’re up early, biting stuff, chasing shit, being scary – reminding everyone they’re a fucking shark.”

Considering I haven’t posted a blog post in about two months, this was just the wake-up call I needed. Get back in the action, dreamers! Take the opportunity that might seem like a burden and dunk its ass in your morning coffee. If you need me, I’ll be revising until further notice.



on the grind

the C list

Just discovered a killer new blog, filled with positive wanderlusting thoughts and cool pics. Loving each of these links on this specific article but you should check out the Stray Dog post. Enjoy!

East Coast Mermaid


Happy Friday!

You may have noticed there was no mid-week post this week. Life was just a little too crazy for that to happen this week but I promise I will be making up for it next week. I have some super exciting stuff in the works that I’m so excited to share.

Until then, here is this week’s C list. You’re going to want to click on the starving stray dog link. I promise. 

1. 30 Weird Reasons You’re Tired AF (via Refinery29) It seems everyone (including myself) has been brutally exhausted this week. Here are 30 very possible (and logical) reasons why we’re all doing the zombie walk.

2. 5 Mouthwatering Vegan Recipes Even Carnivores Will Love (via Hint Blog) I’m not even vegan, but I’m dying to try the Vegan Chickpea Omelet.

3. Starving Stray Dog Is Rescued and Taken to Pet-Friendly Restaurants All Over LA (My…

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on the grind

Time for a #brainbreak #Halloween #amwriting

After several months of editing and brainstorming, I’m taking a serious brain break with some binge TV. Part of me feels unproductive, but then another voice tells me to hush up.




Ultimately, taking a good brain break after hauling ass in my day job as well as writing, is refreshing and much needed. Hopefully after another few days of reading, watching TV, and Halloween scares, I’ll be even more inspired than before.




on the grind

Twitter contest fever #amwriting #cowbell

I’ve got a fever. And the only cure….




Is more Twitter contests!

High off of great revisions and critiques from Pitch Wars, I jumped back in the fire with Pitch Slam, another contest meant to showcase your best work to prospective literary agents. Rules and details for Pitch Slam can be found here.

Aren’t you tired of Twitter pitch contests, you ask? Especially after winning Page 70 Pit in July in the Adult category? Casual plug to winning post

No! Because although I won Page 70 Pit, it was based on the 70th page of my Thriller Romance and my first chapter needed more work to reel in the agents. Intro Pitch Slam! A contest that provides a built-in week of free critiques and feedback on your 35-word pitch and first 250 words before the actual contest.

Receiving the thoughtful words of three different industry professionals is such a gift and also an affirmation that publishing is subjective. One person’s opinion may not match another’s. While that’s an easy out to brush off criticism you might not like, it’s hard to ignore when multiple opinions are bemoaning the same issue.

With that in mind, after trading critiques with friends, CPs, and Twitter acquaintances, I feel my MS is ready to take on the submission button.

So hurry up Saturday! I’ve got a hankering for more Twitter pitch contests!



on the grind

Your daily dose of #amwriting screen locks

Your daily dose of #amwriting screen locks

At times, I feel like the effort made toward my writing is less impressive than I would have it. Some days I only have thirty minutes to sneak in edits here and there while other times I shut myself in for the entire weekend to write. Ultimately, instead of feeling disappointed with yesterday’s work I start each day anew, remembering that it adds up in the end.

Hitting that repetitious stride this afternoon and hoping you’re finding the time, too!

on the grind

2016 Query Statistics

Awesome stats for the #amquerying author! Great insight into an agent’s request process and particularly interesting for me since I subbed a Thriller Romance in June. Check it out!

Pub Writes

I have been neglecting this poor blog far too much this year, because it has been such a busy year!

I am going to try to be better these last few months. So to jump back in, I wanted to share my query statistic for 2016 – as I type this, I have 25 unread queries in my inbox. These numbers do not include requested materials from conferences, but I have not made any offers on anything from conferences so far this year.

Queries Responded to: 2,451

Partials requested: 179, which is 7.3%

Full manuscripts requested, from those partials for the most part: 21, which is .85% of all queries sent

Offers made: 5, which is .2% of all queries sent. (two of those people are with fabulous agents who are not me)

What genres am I requesting most? I have those stats too! This isn’t saying I don’t want…

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on the grind

Great advice: PitchWars and Walking Away #amreading

Friends, check out this post from author Michael Mammay below. I found it to be really insightful on how to walk away from a 1st MS and when you know. Considering I just did the same thing with mine (walk away for about a year and a half, then jumped in and TORE. IT. APART.) I thought I would share. Great advice!


I put out a call for Pitch Wars questions tonight. In this post, I’ll answer some of them. These are off the top of my head answers, not at all researched, and not at all definitive. In almos…

Source: Answer to Random PW Questions

on the grind

Pitch Wars Mentor Pintip Dunn! — Brenda Drake #amreading

Pintip Dunn Website | Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | Goodreads Pintip Dunn graduated from Harvard University, magna cum laude, with an A.B. in English Literature and Language. She received her J.D. at Yale Law School, where she was an editor of the YALE LAW JOURNAL. She also published an article in the YALE LAW JOURNAL, entitled, “How Judges Overrule:…

via Pitch Wars Mentor Book Spotlight with Pintip Dunn! — Brenda Drake

I was moseying along my WordPress reader list and saw this great post on Pintip Dunn, a Pitch Wars mentor. Not only does her book sound great but she’s got a legal background (like me) – gotta support that! Adding her to my #amreading list now!

on the grind

Synopsis haalp! #amwriting #blog

Synopses are the bane of my writerly existence. I hate them with the fire of a thousand suns and several other trite phrases. However!


Recently, I came across a BRILLIANT method that boils it down to a few simple steps.

  1. Choose the main plot points of your story, let’s say 6-8. (I chose 7 because I have an *spoiler alert* epilogue)
  2. Flesh out each point to a paragraph-size (3-5 sentences).
  3. Adjust paragraph length accordingly until you have about a full page.

Boom! One-page synopsis DONE!!


4. Continue fleshing out each paragraph until you have a two-paged synopsis (save as) then a three-paged synopsis (save as, again).

It’s way easier to expand upon these initial 6-8 plot points than it is to reduce from 5-pages of stream-of-consciousness summarizing. Hopefully this helps you writers out there as much as it did me! While I’m still in the process of polishing mine (did I mention I despise synopses?) I feel so much better knowing I have a system prepped and ready.


In between books, on the grind

Today I Don’t Feel Like Doing Anything #BrunoMars #amwriting

Since finishing final draft edits and sending off my precious MS to beta readers, I do not feel like doing a damned thing. Except for binge-watch movies and binge-read the stack of books by my bed.

And you know what?


Giving myself permission to completely re-charge has energized me in ways I haven’t felt since beginning edits back in April. I go on walks, I read, I tweet, I happy hour, I lunch date, and I don’t obsess over revisions. Really! I’ve had pretty much an amazing week, even receiving some encouraging #amwriting news, and it’s all thanks to taking a step back.

Granted I wouldn’t feel comfortable doing that unless I had totally exhausted my reserves from the last time chillin-out-max-n-relaxin-all-cool period but this feels warranted as a result.

So go ahead creative person you! Take a load off. Buy some stinky cheese and re-charge. You’ll thank me for it.