28 Sep

Round of Words in 80 Days

Posted in Uncategorized, Writing Challenge

This fall, I’ve decided to join the upcoming session of Round of Words in 80 Days.  Not familiar with ROW80? It’s an 80 day writing challenge that gives you the flexibility to set goals that are right for you.

Most of you have seen me get on my soapbox about why goals have to be personalized and targeted to each particular writer.  (This is why I’ve been so obsessed with the DIY MFA concept.)  So this idea of joining a writing challenge that will help me forge ahead on my projects but will give me flexibility in my goals is so appealing to me.  I love that ROW80 allows me to change goals midstream, because if I’m 40 days into the challenge and something just isn’t working, why torture myself for another 40 days, right?

I also love that the goal doesn’t have to be writing fiction exclusively or even drafting per se.  For instance, your goal can be for editing or any other writing-related measureable goal.  Again, whenever I hop on that soapbox, I could go on for hours about measurable goals and why they’re so much better for writers than those unreasonable and vague goals we usually set.  Like, we might say: “I want to finish my novel” and that’s a great start, but how do you actually plan to do it.  Better to say “I’m going to write 1000 words, five days a week and in about four months I should be pretty close to having a draft.”

ROW80 starts up on Monday so sometime this weekend, I’ll post my goals for the challenge.  Then, for the rest of the 80 days, I’ll be doing check-in posts Wednesday and Sunday, as well the usual YA Cafe posts on Fridays.  So that’ll be my schedule here at iggi&gabi for the fall.  I’ve been needing some sort of structure on this blog lately, so I think this plan for fall will help me get on track.

Write on!

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15 Jun

YA Cafe Update

Posted in Uncategorized

A few weeks ago, Ghenet and I introduced the idea of doing a Summer Reading Book Club at YA Cafe.  We’ve decided our first book will be The Summer I Turned Pretty by Jenny Han and we’ll be discussing it next Friday (June 24th).  Here’s how it will work:

• Ghenet and I will post discussion points on our blogs this on Monday.
• You can use the discussion points if you want, or write whatever you like.
• Feel free to post about the book on your blog and add a link in the comments, or if you prefer, just weigh in on the discussion in the comments section and through twitter (#YACafe).

That’s all there is to it!  If this works, Ghenet and I have two more books in store for this summer (one for July and one for August) so we’ll continue the book club.  We even have an idea for a giveaway so get excited!

Anyone out there planning on joining the fun?

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13 Jun

We’re All Winners

Posted in Uncategorized

Hello Writer Friends!  How are you all on this beautiful Monday morning?  Today it’s just going to be a quick post announcing the winners of the Swag Bag Giveaway.  Drum roll please…

The Middle Grade Swag Bag goes to…

Iyesha Luler!

And the Teen Swag Bag goes to…

Lauren Morrill!

*throws confetti*

But wait, we’re all winners at Iggi&Gabi so I’ve got a little bonus for everyone.  While I was at Book Blogger Con, I met a rep from Lightwedge (they make reading lights and such) and she gave me a promo code for 20% off that I’m allowed to share with all my readers! (Code expires 6/30/11) If you purchase anything from their site between now and the end of the month, use this code: BLOGRDR11 to save 20%.

That’s all for now, friends.  I’ll be back tomorrow with a quick update about the YA Cafe summer reading book club. Ciao!


05 Jun

YA Cafe: #YASaves and Blogfest

Posted in Literature, Reading, Teen Lit, Uncategorized, YA Cafe

Welcome to this impromptu post from YA Cafe. As you probably already know, YA Cafe is a place where book lovers can gather and chat about teen literature. I’m your barista, along with Ghenet from All About Them Words.  Usually we post on Friday, when we pick from a menu of topics and share our thoughts on our respective blogs.  Sometimes, though, something will happen in the world of teen literature that makes us want to respond right away, even if it isn’t a regular YA Cafe day.  This is one of those days.

You’ve probably already heard about the article titled Darkness Too Visible which appeared in the Wall Street Journal (WSJ) yesterday.  Much discussion, disagreement, even outrage has ensued, coming mostly from the teen lit community.  A lot has already been said throughout the blogsphere about the various misconceptions presented in the article, so I’m not about to rehash the subject one more time in this post.  Janet Reid (AKA Query Shark) shared her straight-to-the-point response here. Misty from Nothing Cannot Happen Today raises an important question about the age-range for YA being much wider th an any other age in children’s literature.  The hashtag #YASaves is filled with links to responses from lovers of teen lit everywhere, weighing in on why YA is important.

A lot is being said from the point of view of YA readers, but I’ve been wondering about the writer perspective.  Sure, many authors of YA books have joined the discussion, but it seems the topic is approached mostly from the point of view of the reader.  Why is it important for teens to read YA?  What is the purpose and value of YA?  Why does YA matter?

These are all imp ortant questions, but what I want to know is why do we write YA?  Why is YA so important that as writers we choose to write it above all else?  As a writer, I could pick any genre, really, but why is it that YA makes my voice resonate in a way that no othe r type of writing does?  I haven’t figured out the answers yet, but I want to find out.

Questions like this are why we’re hosting the “Why Do You Write YA” blogfest on Friday.  In light of everything that has been happening in the teen lit community, I invite you all to join and tell the world why you write YA, why it it matters so much to you.  Just as people aren’t going to stop reading  YA, writers aren’t going to stop writing it either.  I know I won’t.

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