Archive | Miscellaneous

Creating Character Voice

Hi PubCrawlers! Julie here, and today I want to talk a bit about Character Voice—that is, the pattern of thought and speech that is unique to each character. A strong and distinct voice will help bring a character to life on the page. I want to be clear in differentiating Character Voice from Writer’s Voice, or the voice you as a writer bring to your stories. JJ and Kelly have a great podcast about Writer’s […]

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How to Survive a Book Hangover

Hi everyone! Today I’m taking a brief detour from my series on Contract Clauses to talk about a problem every reader will eventually face (especially, I’m told, readers who’ve recently finished Crooked Kingdom). Most of us have been there. You reach the end of a book that has wrecked you. You turn the final page, softly close the over, and stare out into the void, unmoving, unseeing, unable to rouse yourself to any purpose.  Your […]

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Telegraphing, Foreshadowing

The other day, I picked up a new YA that I had been looking forward to reading, and a few chapters in, I knew exactly how it was going to play out. The author gave away too much too soon, and I was able to figure out exactly what was going to happen. There is nothing I hate more than being able to predict what’s going to happen before it happens (I do this all […]


Being Wrong About a Book

Every year around this time I become completely obsessed with the School Library Journal Battle of the Books competition. If you aren’t familiar with it, it’s a nearly month long contest that rounds up elite children’s/YA authors to judge head-to-head contests between a variety of books ranging from Middle Grade to Non-fiction to YA. The books are assigned to brackets, and one book from each bracket is eliminated, the other advancing to the next round […]


Reading Aloud for Pleasure and with Purpose

I met my husband at an author reading at Kettle of Fish in Greenwich Village when he sat in an empty seat at my table and politely endured an endless round of rapid-fire questions from my friends (including JJ!), so I knew he liked books from the beginning. But on our third date I knew he was a keeper, because that’s when he offered to read a book aloud with me. We were sitting on the […]