ALM: Fave Chapter Ending

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What could this end to chapter 2 mean???? If you want to find out–for FREE!–check out the upcoming giveaway on Monday!

Goodreads Book Giveaway

Ten Commandments for Kissing Gloria Jean by Britt Leigh

Ten Commandments for Kissing Gloria Jean

by Britt Leigh

Giveaway ends February 29, 2016.

See the giveaway details
at Goodreads.

Enter Giveaway

ALM: My Critique Partners

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Critique partners are super important people writers need in their lives. I’m lucky to have several, whom I also count as friends.

[1, 2, & 3]

Shoshana, Emily, and Jimmy were the first to read Ten Commandments for Kissing Gloria Jean. And the first to like her. My Simmons classmates, they are some of the kindest, sharpest, generous critiquers I know. Thanks, guys!

[4]

Nicole is a fellow Catholic author. Her picture book critique group helped me stay actively writing.

[5]

Carol is another fellow picture book author, who gives excellent feedback. I was so thrilled to help her get her first book published by passing it along to my editors.

[6]

Rebecca hasn’t yet read my writing, but she will! A YA writer like me, she has a great sense of voice and structure.

[7]

Carter is an editor, who read my book, deemed it funny, and I could not be more proud. I got a great critique from a real, traditional children’s book editor!

Want a copy of my book? Save this link for my upcoming giveaway! In honor of my March birthday, I’m giving you the presents–five signed copies of Ten Commandments of Kissing Gloria Jean–and the only thank you I need is a review!

 

Goodreads Book Giveaway

Ten Commandments for Kissing Gloria Jean by Britt Leigh

Ten Commandments for Kissing Gloria Jean

by Britt Leigh

Giveaway ends February 29, 2016.

See the giveaway details
at Goodreads.

Enter Giveaway

ALM: Research

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A major storyline in Ten Commandments for Kissing Gloria Jean is her diagnosis of Celiac disease. To portray not just the diagnosis, but the thoughts and emotions of dealing with a new reality, I had to do a lot of research. Medical articles, forum posts, and importantly, speaking with people, including a young girl who had it, all came together to inform my writing. The following is a list of resources included at the end of the novel:

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Curious to see how Celiac comes into play in a novel about kissing, theology of the body, and Confirmation? You can win one of five signed copies of the novel via a Goodreads giveaway! Help me celebrate my March birthday–you get a present, I get a review! Giveaway starts Feb. 22, so bookmark the page now!

Goodreads Book Giveaway

Ten Commandments for Kissing Gloria Jean by Britt Leigh

Ten Commandments for Kissing Gloria Jean

by Britt Leigh

Giveaway ends February 29, 2016.

See the giveaway details
at Goodreads.

Enter Giveaway

ALM: Where I Relax

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Writing is hard work! Fun, but hard. During NaNoWriMo, it was particularly intense, and I had to get out of my head. My favorite place to relax is my couch, snuggled up with a blanket and cup of something hot, often with some show streaming on my laptop or on the TV.

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Did you know I’m running another giveaway? It’s my birthday in March, and all I want are reviews of my book, Ten Commandments for Kissing Gloria Jean. To that end, five people will get a present of a signed copy. Bookmark the link to enter the giveaway from Feb. 22-29!

 

Goodreads Book Giveaway

Ten Commandments for Kissing Gloria Jean by Britt Leigh

Ten Commandments for Kissing Gloria Jean

by Britt Leigh

Giveaway ends February 29, 2016.

See the giveaway details
at Goodreads.

Enter Giveaway

ALM: Where I Write

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I write lots of places–cafes, libraries, my couch, but I’d say the bulk of my career has been spent at this desk:

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Here are two more of the winners in my Valentine’s Day giveaway of Ten Commandments for Kissing Gloria Jean! Congratulations to

Benita P., who blogs at https://benitajprins.wordpress.com

and

Katie B., who blogs at http://looktohimandberadiant.blogspot.com/

Want another chance to win? I’m running a giveaway on Goodreads next week, Feb. 22-29. In honor of my March birthday, I’m giving you the presents! 5 more signed copies to be given away. No thank you necessary, but a review would be lovely, too! [Bookmark the page/friend me so you can remember to enter!]

Goodreads Book Giveaway

Ten Commandments for Kissing Gloria Jean by Britt Leigh

Ten Commandments for Kissing Gloria Jean

by Britt Leigh

Giveaway ends February 29, 2016.

See the giveaway details
at Goodreads.

Enter Giveaway

 

ALM: Swag

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Here are a couple of bookmarks the wonderful marketing team at Pauline created for me.

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Speaking of bookmarks, some lucky people will soon be able to stick one in one of the five signed copies in the Valentine’s Day giveaway!

Congratulations to

Claudia M. and Christine C., who blogs at EpiphaniesofBeauty.com.

More names to come!

Want in? I’m doing ANOTHER giveaway! Thanks to Goodreads, I’m hosting a birthday giveaway from Feb. 22-Feb. 29. In honor of my March birthday, I want to give YOU a present. And as a thank you, a review would be nice… 😛 Stay tuned to this blog for details.

ALM: Fave of your covers

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Well, I only have the one, so right now it’s my fave! 🙂

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And five signed copies are going to be heading their way to the lucky winners of the raffle! I’ll post the names (with their permission), once they open the little Valentine I’m about to send!

As a thank you for your readership, and a an extra treat to all, I’m going to be doing ANOTHER giveaway of five MORE signed copies via Goodreads. Details tomorrow!

ALM: Fave Book in Genre

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Asking an avid reader their favorite book is a fool’s errand. I usually have to follow up with a question of my own–which genre? Because I can’t say that a picture book is my all-time favorite over a novel, and of novels, both middle grade and YA have such clutch-my-heart perfection about them, I can’t put one over the other.

So if I’m going to get specific, with my favorite of the genre of my book–young teen realistic/relationships–I’d have to say this  one is among my favorites. With regard to the religious aspect of my novel, Ten Commandments for Gloria Jean, I can’t say I have a favorite, meaning I literally cannot say. I used to work in Catholic publishing and have seen so many manuscripts, I don’t feel it fair or appropriate to comment on anything from that time in my life (which is when I read the majority of religious realistic fiction for young teens).

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Stargirl, by Jerry Spinelli.

I love the character of Stargirl. I love her goodness. I love lack of drama and despair. I love Spinelli’s trademark infusion of humor. I love the innocence of the teens, especially when it comes to relationships. I love how the “love” story is closer to authentic love than teen lust. A one-word summation: refreshing.

Want another refreshing, lightly funny young teen realistic romance? Enter the giveaway below for one of FIVE signed copies of Ten Commandments for Kissing Gloria Jean. TODAY IS THE LAST DAY!!!

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ALM/7QTF: Killed Darlings

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Linking up with Kelly and the rest!

A common expression in writing is “kill your darlings,” meaning, get rid of the precious little bits of your work-in-progress that you don’t really need. As darling as the super-descriptive scene is to the writer, it’s probably extraneous. These aren’t Dickens days, when writers got paid by the word (that explains Ulysses…), so all those cute sentences and words…they’re up for the chop. Here are seven deleted words, lines, etc. from Ten Commandments for Kissing Gloria Jean.

[1]

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I did not want a Table of Contents…official publishing style be darned!

[2]

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Fun story–these four words turned into an entire sentence better describing the birthday fun.

[3]

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Because that is not a word a young 14-year-old would use.

[4]

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This killed darling actually came back to life, but from a different version of the Bible, because the translation with the word “trustworthy” better fits some of the plot’s themes.

[5]

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The copy editor’s note said that this line repeated what was already shown in the story. And showing, not telling is good!

[6]

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This line was cut because the timeline made no sense. Yes, I had my characters’ class schedules all figured out.

[7]

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I was adding a detail for a very minor character, but I couldn’t really include it without adding much more, and that would have detracted from my point, my story, so, bye bye baby!

Want to see what got left? Enter to win one of FIVE signed copies of my book Ten Commandments for Kissing Gloria Jean in this Valentine’s Day giveaway. Only a day left! (ending 11:59 pm on 2/13) Celebrate authentic love!

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ALM: A fave review

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I have been fortunate to receive some great reviews, as well as some with, er, notes, on my book. But my absolute favorite has to be this one below from Kirkus. For those unaware, Kirkus is one of the top literary review journals for books for young people. For “I’m-okay-with-that” reasons like sheer volume of submissions of books to such places for consideration; as well as making sure its broad, general audience gets reviews for books they’re likely to pick up, like librarians for their collections; or simply publishers don’t think to send books for a literary, critical review, Kirkus has not really reviewed a ton of books like mine: explicitly religious from a niche publisher. Having moved in the KidLit circles a lot,to me, a positive review from a journal like Kirkus was like the cliched, proverbial brass ring. They liked my book, and they thought it was well written. All I could ask for.

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Here is the text of the review: “A 14-year-old girl tries to follow her Catholic faith but wants to get her first kiss too. Gloria Jean likes Connor, but on her first date with him she has a bout of the Troubles, an ailment that requires embarrassing emergency trips to the bathroom at awkward times. Connor’s not the only boy around, though; she meets another boy, Ian, in her Confirmation classes. In fact, she learns more about the ethics of kissing from her Confirmation classes than from the sex-ed class she takes at school. She goes through a minor rebellion when she learns that her Troubles are caused by celiac disease, which means that she will no longer be able to take the host in Communion. Wondering why the church requires wheat to be used in the host, she investigates. Even as Gloria Jean breaks a few rules in her anger and frustration, she nevertheless comes across as a basically good and sincere girl. Leigh titles each chapter with an amusing “Commandment” for kissing and writes convincingly from inside the head of her main character, who comes across as a fully realized adolescent. She presents a credible portrait of teen friendships and their angst over romance.”

Now, isn’t that something you’d like to read? HOw about for FREE? For just three more days, you can enter this giveaway for one of FIVE signed copies. Contest ends Saturday night! This Valentine’s Day, celebrate authentic love.

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