Jessica Day George

Monday, October 22, 2007

Gearing up for World Fantasy

And Halloween, too! I'm going to be The Man in the Yellow Hat this year, that is if I can find a yellow hat! My son is going to be a monkey, and I thought this would be a funny way to match. I'd love to be a banana, but all the banana costumes I've seen are hideously expensive. I'm not going anywhere special, and who knows if I'll wear it again, so I'm much too cheap to spend $50 on a costume. The best costume ever? My youngest brother-in-law was a piece of toast one year. Yep, a piece of toast. I've seen the toast costume, I've worn it, it's level of awesomeness cannot be measured. Not only is it perfectly clearly a piece of toast, but he MADE IT HIMSELF which you have to admit shows both imagination and ingenuity. My sister is going to be the crazy cat lady from The Simpsons, thanks to a suggestion from lil' ol' me, which is why I must really find a yellow hat. Surrounded by people in great costumes, I refuse to be the odd man out. I just don't want to spend fifty bucks. And the day after Halloween I will be getting up at some horrible hour to fly to Saratoga, New York, and wow World Fantasy Con with my outstanding books. World Fantasy is really amazing, just chock full o' talented authors and legendary editors. It's where in 2004 I met Sharyn November, editor extraordinaire who is single-handedly responsible for Firebird Press. Those of you who don't know what that is: Firebird is reprinting all the great classic YA Fantasy that has sadly fallen out of print over the years. Stuff by Lloyd Alexander, Pamela Dean, and Charles de Lint that will just knock your socks off. is the website. Sharyn's personal website, which is a hoot, is If you are age 12-18, you can contact her and become a teen reviewer. Great stuff. I'm especially excited for World Fantasy this year, though, because a) I am not there, tense and desperate, trying to sell a manuscript, and b) Guy Gavriel Kay is the Toastmaster. HE IS THE GREATEST AUTHOR LIVING, I SWEAR. Don't believe me? Read Sailing to Sarantium. (Although only if you are over 16, please, because these are adult books.) Guy Gavriel Kay. I'm all in a dither, trying to decide which book to bring and get signed. So many great choices!

Saturday, October 13, 2007

Out of shape. . . .

Well, let's not go into the number of sweets I've eaten in the past week. What I really meant was that my writing muscles are out of shape. I heard at a writers' conference that if you write for at least fifteen minutes a day, every day, that part of your brain stays in shape and you are more productive (in your writing, don't know about the rest of your life). But if you go for forty-eight hours without writing, that little corner of the brain starts to shut down, and it can take up to seventy-two hours to get it going again. After four months of only editing, I think that corner of my brain has atrophied. I've done a little writing on Dragon Crown, the third Creel book, but it's really slow going and I find myself easily distracted. Oh, dear! I'll have to really go for it this week, and try to get back into shape. In the meantime, I've been reading some fun new YA. I read "Love, Stargirl", the sequel to Jerry Spinelli's WONDERFUL "Stargirl". It wasn't quite as delightful as the original, but still a GREAT book. And now I'm into "Wicked Lovely", by Melissa Marr. Which is a must-read if you are a fan of fairies.

Sunday, October 7, 2007

So very . . . very tired!

AKA-Hasta la vista, Dragon Flight! Yes, Dragon Flight, fully copyedited and with some nice (I hope) revisions, is winging its way to New York City. Once there, I pray that it will pass muster with my editor, be typset, and turned into a nice little ARC. I never know what to do with editing: to me the book was fine when I sent it off, and I always feel bemused and sometimes annoyed when I have to edit. This is nothing against my editor: it's the fact that I look at the pages and they still seem fine to me, so I don't know where to begin and what to do. Making the smallest change breaks me out in a sweat- What if this doesn't fix the problem? What if it makes it worse? Have I done enough? Too much? Aaaaaiiiiieeee! So I came to a place where I thought I could only do harm rather than good, and I wrapped a big rubber band around the manuscript and I mailed it far, far away. There! Now I can get down to writing a fresh, new book, as I have been longing to do for some five months. Of course, now my brain is cottage cheese. . . .