Monday, March 31, 2014

We Could Fall in Love (Maybe. But I'm Talking About the Manuscript)

I've been very bad. For months now, I've been writing something and kept it a secret from you.

Considering how often I've written serially on Figment, this was EXTREMELY HARD to do. I'm terrible at keeping secrets. That's why my friends know better than to ask me about movies and books. I usually slip up with spoilers, though I try to give fair warning. Sometimes.

But now, the time has come. My newest novel manuscript, We Could Fall in Love, is officially online and ready for reading!

So I've been giving you hints about this novel, but really, what is it about? Well, well. I could give you a list, or I could be reasonable and give you a summary instead:

Fallon attends high school in the town of Grimbaud, where magic takes the form of crafted charms, potions, and fortunes. When she receives this year’s love fortune from Zita’s shop, the mysterious woman whose fortunes are said to come straight from Love itself, Fallon refuses to accept what her new fortune decrees: being eternally unloved–and a guaranteed residency at the Spinster Villas. 
But a rebellion is brewing, and she suddenly finds herself at the center of it, joining fellow ill-fated teenagers determined to end Zita’s reign. There she meets Sebastian, a handsome boy notorious for dating and dumping girls before they can know his heart. 
Her aversion to Sebastian fades as she gets to know him, but love is risky when heartbreak awaits her–unless the rebellion succeeds.

Where Can I Find It?

I'm glad you asked.

You'll find three sample chapters on The full manuscript, however, is exclusively on 

Swoon Reads is a teen romance imprint publishing under Feiwel and Friends, an imprint of Macmillan. The great part about them is that they work the same way Figment does, creating a community where writers can share their manuscripts with readers. Swoon Reads is focused on YA and NA romance novels, spanning many different genres and subgenres. The exciting part is the chance of publication: if readers and the staff love the book, you might get offered a publishing contract with Swoon Reads.

You'll need to make an account on to read my manuscript, and I hope you do!

Voting for this round ends May 31st.

It may mean that you'll need to shift around your endless reading lists to read and comment on We Could Fall in Love in time, and for that, I'm truly appreciative.

Fallon and Sebastian's story is near and dear to my heart. I've been eating way too many sweets over the past few months, seeing hearts on everything, and questioning the fate (or lack of it) that brings some people together and keeps others alone.

Now is the perfect time to break out into an 80s love song, but I'll save you the torture (I can't sing. Really). Instead, I'll just say that I've been waiting a very long time in Kim-years to share this story with you. Please enjoy!

Saturday, March 8, 2014

Commercials and Life

I really don't care how hipster Instagram is. I love using it. There's something irresistibly charming about seeing the world through a phone. Little moments on the go. I look forward to sharing fragments from my life, as well as seeing what my friends are up to in their travels. And I've discovered that an old college buddy of mine is rocking Instagram. Meet Colby.

I'm really proud to say we're friends. In college, we lived down the hall from each other in the dorms. I remember stepping into her dimly-lit dorm room - one of the few dorms in the building that smelled nice. More than nice. Colby was always using a strong, cakey sweet perfume. I'd sit on her bed, admiring her Marilyn Monroe / Michael Jackson / Abraham Lincoln posters as she went through her beauty regimen. I'd always been interested in the past, but I think spending time with Colby strengthened that desire to immerse myself in all things vintage and research my favorite time periods. She also made me think about female role models.

Before college, I can't say I really had any. Except for maybe the heroines in the books I read. But along came Colby with her intense love for Marilyn Monroe. For our senior projects, Colby gave a riveting hour-long presentation about how different biographers have portrayed MM over the years (while my presentation had been on mermaids in folklore, using Vladimir Propp's version of structuralism - turning fairy tales into equations. So. Much. Fun).

MM wasn't quite for me, though. I looked at other Old Hollywood starlets. Who won? Mary Pickford, of course. Jeez, she was wonderful.

But Audrey Hepburn came in second. I love how she carries herself, a confidence that I've rarely seen. There's something mysterious about her as well. So far, I've seen Breakfast at Tiffany's and My Fair Lady. Though both films are classics, I can't say I like either that much. That's the weird part. I'm not too thrilled with the films (or even the prospects of watching the other ones), but I love the woman herself. I get the shivers every time I hear the lines from Sky Sailing's "Sailboats" song:

Once in 1964
An actress ran on the shore
And though you'll never return,
I love you Audrey Hepburn
Sometimes I can see your face in the crowd

And when I saw the brand-new commercial that Dove Chocolate released, I was in awe:

The best part? Audrey is actually CGI. It's a lot easier to notice that on the computer, but she certainly looked real to me on my plain old television. I had just assumed a lookalike actress or model was playing her. Wow. This is such a cute commercial. I get the chills (the good kind) every time I rewatch it. 

Speaking of role models, I'm guilty of periodically searching Nicoletta Ceccoli to see if she's created anything new. I'm fidgety and EXTREMELY RESTLESS because it's going to be forever (or never) until Jack and the Cuckoo-Clock Heart film makes it to America. Please, just give me subtitles and a way to buy it. 

I loved the book and author Mathias Malzieu's soundtrack (he's a brilliant musician, so you know...). And Nicoletta Ceccoli worked on the film. The character designs are modeled after her style. I'm dying, guys. Dying. To tide me over, I found a little commercial that she had worked on:

Lice-prevention has never been cuter. If you think about it, this was a good fairy tale for Paranix to choose. Having hair that drags all over the place because it's so long must not be very hygienic. A perfect home for lice. But luckily we have princes that ride stick horses and peddle Paranix.

Writing has been going well. I always gain more momentum when I pass the halfway point in a manuscript. At 64k, I'm almost done with We Could Fall in Love. Just. A. Few. More. Scenes.

The main thing I'm keeping in mind at this point is keeping the plot tight. No flabby scenes. No fluffy exchanges of dialogue. No boring.

Which makes watching this commercial highly appropriate if you ignore the car part:

I have no shame in saying that I've been singing this song around the house as my brain recovers from mad-typing. I may be an adult, but I still find Muppet humor just as funny as it was when I was a kid. I'm probably hyper aware of Jim Henson everything these days, since participating in The Dark Crystal Author Quest contest (sorry folks, I didn't make it). 

Still, the Muppets continue to put a smile on my face. I'm considering seeing the new movie, because I can't sit through those trailers without laughing. Even if I see the same trailer 15+ times in one night. 

So what commercials have you seen these past few months that seem to be speaking to you? What a crowded month March is turning out to be already :)