Friday, August 20, 2010

First Steps

Well, you might be wondering how this blog came into perspective. It started with my Uncle Scot. :) Thanks to him, he set up a meeting with a published author and journalist, Deborah T. I was so excited to take the subway down to the Thomson building, and when I finally got there, the nerves set in. I had that weird feeling that you get on a rollercoaster, as if my stomach had suddenly turned to water. My mom and I went upstairs and were seated at a large conference table. I must say, it was intimidating. I couldn't help but think "Wow, this is what it would be like to sit down with a publisher".

Then, my nerves turned into panic when Deborah (who is one of the kindest and most helpful people I have ever met) sat down and said the dreaded words: "So, Gemma, tell a bit about your book. What's it about?" Oh, how I should have practiced, should have thought long and hard about what exactly I was going to say. Sadly, I was not prepared. I started, yes, to ramble! :S The whole thing went by in a blur of humiliation. How can an author not express what their own book is about?! I think I said something like: "'s a romance/fantasy/adventure about..." Something like that. (How embarrassing!) And it's not the first time. You'll have seen, if you checked my profile, that a favourite series of mine is "The Mortal Instrument" series, by Cassandra Clare. Well, I had the great fortune of meeting her when she came on tour to Toronto, and the same thing happened! Imagine, the opportunity to speak with Cassandra Clare, and my first word was: Um...

But, live and learn. And this is something that I know is a key point to consider for all aspiring writers: Learn to talk about your book in under 30 seconds. Choose three strong points to highlight your book/story, just to give the reader a taste. (Thank you, Deborah. :-D) This is something that I am still working on, because there is so much to talk about! Still, I wouldn't want to give the whole story away!

Back to the meeting with Deborah: Well, another great piece of advice she gave me, is to have connections and other publications. For example: I have corresponded several times with Cassandra Clare, and also an author called Mahtab Narsimhan, who is the author of The Third Eye and The Silver Anklet. I have also had a poem and a short story published. However, Deborah suggested that I send poems and short stories, or even pieces of artwork to magazines for consideration. I think that this will be part of my next project :)

And the biggest tip of all-can you guess?-yup, to start this blog! So here I am, with my own blog, and one step closer to getting my writing out there to the public and hopefully, one day, published!

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