Swoon Reads NPR Story Airs on Valentine’s Day

So, a few months ago I talked about a publishing company called Swoon Reads where people can go on and vote for their favorite  books. The top rated books are then sent to the staff for review and they then decide which book is getting published. Well, their first book is being announced on Valentine’s Day, and an NPR story is being aired as well, interviewing the author,  Jean Feiwel, and me! I’m being interviewed as an active reader on the site and I’m so excited for this opportunity! I just wanted to tell everybody the exciting news (and, you know, brag a little. Despite my efforts, I’m getting a little insufferable and I need some fresh sets of ears 😉 and give a shout out to Swoon Reads and thank them again for asking me to do the interview! Thanks, everyone.

So on Friday the story will be aired on the NPR show “All Things Considered” and I’ve heard it’s going to be great and the suspense is killing me. Seriously, they wouldn’t tell me which book they picked. And for those of you that haven’t checked out the site, I suggest you do, it’s really cool and there are some great books on there.So,  Happy Valentine’s Day!


The Makings of a Pro

Writing novels is not for the faint of heart. There’s the idea sorting, and planning, and then submitting, and then publishing… and then the bad reviews. After all the hours poured into the novel, and then in promoting and publishing it, you have to watch or read as someone tells you it’s not perfect, and then points out everything wrong with your masterpiece. Taking this well, especially on your first book, is very hard. But that’s what Griffin Keener did when I gave him a review that was less than kind (see “Waters of Iwingee”). He even took the time to write an article saying how much he appreciated the feedback. I thought that was so cool, I thought I’d share it with everyone. http://griffkeener.tumblr.com/post/72702504800/everybody-loves-a-critic-or-at-least-they-should

I Can’t Make This Sh*t Up! 2.0

Here are some more crazy quotes from my life.

“Twerk it!” (A friend. Not directed at me. I don’t twerk)

“A: Do you have abs?

B: No.

A: I have abs!

B: Good for you.

Me: (hysterical laughter)” (a conversation between a friend and an acquaintance.  Don’t remember how this happened exactly.)

“That accent was Ozzy Osbourne visiting Scotland with a German Visa.” ( by a chorus director. The accent really kind of was.)

“If Jesus wasn’t the son of God and all that, he’d be a frickin’ babe!” (from a friend. No comment)

“Brittani, I can’t marry you because I’m pregnant with Jacob’s baby!” ( me, playing a game of ‘Curses’ with both Brittani and Jacob. You’ll get it if you’ve played the game. If you haven’t played the game, you really should.)

“And my mom gave me a belt- which was actually a good present because my old one smelled like fish and I don’t know why.” (a friend, telling me about his Christmas gifts)

“Hey, remember that time I blew up a potato?” (I never got the full story on this, unfortunately.)

If these quotes don’t make you laugh, then they’ll at least make you wonder about the mental stability of the people I hang out with.

Fun fact: Today is the two year anniversary of Ink And Paper! For that I’m putting this picture:

I Can’t Make This Sh*T Up!!



“I can’t make this shit up!” Is what my stepmother shouts when she’s relating a ridiculously funny incident that happened during her day, usually involving her mother or dumb people at her work.

The best way to create believable characters is to not make them up. Because some stuff is just too awesome to be made up. Honestly, who even needs imagination with the people we have to live with day after day? It’s pure writing gold!

For example, say your main character is a brand-new teacher (let’s call him Joe) who isn’t sure what to expect when he walks into class on Day One, especially since he was home-schooled all his life. How do teenagers act on the first day of school when they’re excited about seeing their friends for the first time in months, are jacked up on seven cups of coffee and are, well, weird?

How about this: On a small couch there were eight sophomore boys piled on top of each other, laughing, and crushing the boy with glasses who was under them. “Where are my elf bouncers to remove these children from my lap?”  The boy with glasses shouted.

“What?” Another boy burst out laughing.

A third wiggled around and jumped on the boy with glasses, getting into the game. “Santa! For Christmas, I’d like to be a Jew!”


Like I said: I can’t make this shit up. I witnessed this last week, not in a classroom, but at a summer music camp. And I think this is pretty good proof that real life can be better than imagination sometimes and making believable characters and coming up with accurate dialogue is hard. So why make it up?

Still not convinced? These are also quotes I’ve heard in the past year that are better than what I can make up:

“You never know who you marry until after you’re married. That’s why the man and the woman should live in two separate houses. And then, when one of them wants a piece of *ss…” (From a 93-year old woman)

“Dandelions are sadistic motherf*ckers who strive for immortality!” (From my mom, after a particularly bad day of landscaping. )

“I attack my rainbow!” (From a very gifted chorus director. There is a rational story behind this)

“Damn, if he could just take off his shirt and then run a mile, life would be perfect!” (a friend)

“Oh my god! The apocalypse is here! The plagues are spreading in from the left, the hurricanes are racing from the right and coming right down the center is Lucifer in a black chariot with ten black horses breathing fire, and above everything is the great spirit Sanitarius, who’s laughing in triumph and coming down on us all, raising zombies and killing babies! Oh my god! Hell just froze over!” (my dad, after I told him I did laundry.)

I can’t make this shit up!