Friday, July 29, 2011


There are the everyday moments, the ones you never notice.

Then there are the awful ones that wet your pillow with tears.

There are the moments that fill you with precious memories.

And there are moments you LIVE for.

I've just had a LIVE FOR moment!


Yeah, I'm totally freaking, flipping out. And dancing around the house.

Because I can now say I have an AGENT!!!!!!

I am totally thrilled to announce that I've signed with Jeff Ourvan from the Jennifer Lyons Literary Agency. Not only is he amazingly cool and knowledgeable, but he loves my work.

Here's me freaking out:

Thankfully I calmed down so I could sign the contract:
And here I am with the smile that's glued to my face:

There are some people that I MUST thank because they have been a huge part of all of this and are full of pure awesomeness:

My hubby- You never doubted.
Julianne, my sister and muse- So many late night phone calls listening and solving my 'issues'. You always believed in me.
Beth Revis- You were there when I first started writing (dear Lord, poor you), and you've been my cheerleader and great friend through all of this. And yes, your critiques are always spot on. 
Casey McCormick- You never let me give up even when I wanted to. Thank you for reading those awful drafts and never allowing me to write less than my absolute best. There are no words for how awesome you are.
Ellen Oh- My Korean expert! Thank you for dropping everything to read my story in the midst of your own awesomeness book deals.

Andrea Mack- You always have such great insights and find those details that I miss.
Debbie Ridpath Ohi- For those critiques that made me think about everything in a new light. 
Carmella Van Vleet- My taekwondo expert who inspired me to join a do-jang.
Susan Laidlaw- For keeping me true to my YA voice.
Kate Fall- For all those encouragements. How I needed those.

I truly believe that a writer's journey shouldn't be alone. It's about discovering, pushing yourself to new levels and more importantly telling a beautiful story that will touch lives. I couldn't do it without them. And I know my writing is that much richer because of them. *I heart you guys!*

Please pop back here on Monday because I'm going to celebrate with a PARTY on my blog! With book prizes, games, dancing and lots and lots of chocolate.

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Hints of My News!

I can't say much so I'm just going to share some pictures with you.

Kyongju Palace

 The Samjokoh Amulet

The Haechi

 The Tiger of Shinshi

Saturday, July 23, 2011

SCBWI Florida's Mid Year Workshop

First of all, it's time to announce the winner of Danyelle Leafty's serialized novel, THE FAIRY GODMOTHER DILEMMA. Congratulations to Melissa Higgins!!!!!! Please email your address to me at: farley dot christinaL at gmail dot com.

Not too long ago I attended SCBWI Florida's Mid Year Workshop with my local crit buds Larissa and Jess. While there, I soaked in the brilliance of Michele Burke, editor at Knopf, and authors Kathleen Duey and Marjetta Geerling.

My critique session was with Kristin Daly Rens, editor for Balzer and Bray, who edited a fantastic book called Rampant. Kristen was amazing and had some great ideas of how to make my latest WIP even better.

(okay so that's an awful picture of me and I promise I wasn't sleeping through the conference but Kathleen, Larissa, and Jess look gorgeous so that's all that matters)

Here are some gems that I picked up along the way form these amazing ladies:
  • There is a difference between writing for children and writing about children
  • Show! Show! Show! (don't tell)  
  • Marjetta Geerling's POV Test- if you can replace any I with she/he and it doesn't change the story, you are actually writing in 3rd person.
  • Experience the moments! Don't just tell about them. Smells, sounds, visuals (Duey)
  • In YA, voice is everything so get inside your character's head. Kathleen suggested to interview our characters.
  • Write everything through your character's lens. (Geerling)
  • The impact of revision. Always keep in mind the heart of the story and what propels the characters. (Duey)
  • Don't fall into the trap of being vague and mysterious (especially fantasy) because you will loose your reader to confusion. (Burke)
As you can see, I could share notes all day. These ladies were fantastic and if you ever have a chance to hear them speak--GO!

Monday, July 18, 2011


I am thrilled to be a part of the blog tour announcing the release of Danyelle Leafly’s THE FAIRY GODMOTHER DILEMMA! I’ve had the honor of reading the first three chapters and I can promise you, the story is full of action, memorable characters, giggles, and magic.

And I love how Danyelle is releasing her book as a serial novel. It’s like opening a little package every week when the installments are released!

Not only is Danyelle a collector of dragons, talking frogs, and fairy godmothers, she also helps run the Query Tracker blog and Myth-takes blog. You can find her on the web here:

To celebrate Danyelle’s book release, she has kindly offered to stop by and chat with us.
Here's a quick synopsis of THE FAIRY GODMOTHER DILEMMA:
Sixteen-year-old Breena doesn’t want to leave the faerie queen’s court, and she doesn’t want a fairy godmother. But if she has to choose between the two, she’d leave the Faerie Realm over getting bossed about by a faerie with a pointed stick any day. Unfortunately, her attempt to evade her fairy godmother gives her growing pains in the form of fur, whiskers, and a tail.

Turning into a cat is the least of her worries, though, because the potion wasn’t meant to bring out her inner feline, it was meant to put her to sleep. Forever. If Breena wants to make it to her Happily Ever After, she’ll have to accept that sometimes having a fairy godmother makes all the difference in the world.

The telling of THE FAIRY GODMOTHER DILEMMA alternates between four characters. What were your biggest challenges in writing through the eyes of so many characters?

My biggest challenge has been getting them to talk when they were supposed to, and getting them to be quiet otherwise. Two of them have a hard time taking orders, and it’s a bit unnerving to feel them boring holes of disapproval into my brain while I write.

What inspired you to try out this innovative means of publishing your novel?
I had considered doing something along these lines for a while now, but wasn’t sure how to do it. I was also a little worried about identity theft—my characters’, not mine—so I knew that I needed a platform that would make the story available to readers without having it too open.

I ran into Tracy Hickman at Caped CONduit earlier this year, and learned that he had just finished up with his first serial novel (he and his wife co-authored it) and was starting on the second book. I was intrigued when I learned a little more about how he’d set it up, and excited when I found out that he had an online course that detailed how his method worked and how to get everything set up.

His scope reached far beyond what I had been considering, and I’m definitely glad I went with it.
 Tell us a little about how and when the chapters and Nerissa’s journal entries are released:

Generally speaking, Nerissa’s journal entries (Fairy Notes) are released on the blog portion of my website every Wednesday. Or, if you subscribe to the email list, they’re delivered to your inbox instead.

Once THE FAIRY GODMOTHER’S DILEMMA is finished, edited, and formatted, I’m planning on including the Compendium and Fairy Notes as extras at the end of the ebook.
 I love how your website is interactive with your readers. You have an Are You My Fairy Godmother board, extras such as the Compendium of Fairy Godmothering Terms, and Fairy Notes.

Thanks! My idea for this—branching off of Tracy’s method—was to make my website as interactive as possible. The extras are a lot of fun to do, and I think they work to bridge the time in between chapter releases.

I also liked the idea of being able to chat and get to know my readers better through the comments as well as the forums. Some of the forums are hidden, but are fully accessible once you register. One of the forums deals with the story (so if that squid showing up in chapter twenty, for example, makes you wonder if my work space is ventilated well enough, you can say something :p). Another forum deals with general writing (anyone can get feedback on their own pieces), and the last deals with books (this is the place where you can share what you’re reading or spread the word about awesome books you’re reading).

Now that I’ve read your first three chapters, I’m hooked! But I also can’t wait for the ebook and hardcover. When will those be released?

Thanks, Christina! :) There will be about a month in between the end of the novel and when it’s released as an ebook. I’m planning on releasing the ebook near the end of November. The hardcovers will be mailed out as soon as I receive them from the printer. I’m hoping to have them mailed out by mid-December. (I’ll have a more definite date in a couple of months.)

And here are some quickies:

1. Favorite type of chocolate: Sordid confession: I don’t eat chocolate. But if I did, it would be the kind that was drowned in caramel. (Everything’s better with caramel!)
2. #1 country you’d like to visit: Embarrassing confession: I’d *love* to visit Scotland just so I could listen to people talk. Also, I hear it’s a beautiful country. O:) I’d also like to visit Japan one day.
3. Favorite mode of transportation: Pumpkin coach and a good book.
4. Preferred writing method: Definitely computer!

Thank you so much Danyelle for chatting with us!Now that you've heard from Danyelle, you can see what an amazingly creative author she is. In celebration of THE FAIRY GODMOTHER DILEMMA, I am giving out a subscription! Just post a comment to enter.

Sunday, July 17, 2011

The Key to Success

Recently I read a thread on a message board where authors were sharing some of their frustrations on their book sales and being able to meet their publisher's expectations.

What do you think helps an author find success besides writing a really great book? Is it their amazing blog? Book tours? Awards? Marketing?

And what would success look like to you as a writer? Would it be publishing a book?  Publishing multiple books? Movie deals?

I've actually thought a lot about this. I suppose for me it's to know that I have an impact on my readers. That somehow I can bring the joy of reading and discovery while somehow touching their lives in a way that I couldn't as a teacher.

The picture above is an antique Korean lock and key. Pretty cool huh? 

Saturday, July 9, 2011

The Fairy Godmother Dilemma Blog Tour Coming Soon

In two days Danyelle Leafty is kicking off her blog tour celebrating the release of her book, THE FAIRY GODMOTHER DILEMMA. The fun all starts on Monday with Christine Fonseca. Don't miss out!

Here's a little about Danyelle:

Danyelle Leafty writes MG and YA fantasy. In her spare time, she collects dragons, talking frogs, and fairy godmothers. She can be found discussing the art of turning one's characters into various animals, painting with words, and the best ways to avoid getting eaten by dragons on her blog. Her serial novel THE FAIRY GODMOTHER DILEMMA can be found here. You can contact her here.


Sixteen-year-old Breena doesn’t want to leave the faerie queen’s court, and she doesn’t want a fairy godmother. But if she has to choose between the two, she’d leave the Faerie Realm over getting bossed about by a faerie with a pointed stick any day. Unfortunately, her attempt to evade her fairy godmother gives her growing pains in the form of fur, whiskers, and a tail.

Turning into a cat is the least of her worries, though, because the potion wasn’t meant to bring out her inner feline, it was meant to put her to sleep. Forever. If Breena wants to make it to her Happily Ever After, she’ll have to accept that sometimes having a fairy godmother makes all the difference in the world.

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Finding the Right Idea

I have been trying out something new when it comes to deciding on a new book idea. I type up a synopsis and then write up the first three chapters of the book. Then I have my CP's take a look at it. If you're like me, you have a million book ideas and they all could be really cool.

But the question is whether there are already a hundred books recently published just like my idea. Or is this really something new and innovative? Or would it be something that my CPs are like: WOW! I HAVE TO READ THE WHOLE THING! WHERE'S THE NEXT CHAPTER?

It also feels good to get some of those ideas out on paper. To see how the story might unfold (although it always changes as you start writing it, doesn't it?). Is this the story I want to be spending the next year of my life on?

There is the negative in this. I could be super excited about an idea and then if I get bad feedback on it, I might not be as motivated to complete the next project. I have a lot of writing friends who don't like to share any part of the novel until they've got that first draft finished.

But right now I'm lucky. Since I don't have looming deadlines, I still have the freedom to write what I want and take as long as I want. So I might as well have fun and enjoy it.

Have any of you done anything like this before? I'm curious to see how it worked out for you.

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Angelina C. Hansen- She's Got Fiction Addiction

I'd love to introduce to you a fellow blogger friend, Angelina C. Hansen. She is a YA Novelist repped and the 2009 SCBWI WIP Grant Recipient. Impressive stats, if I might say.

And you can check out here blog here.
What got you started into writing?
A combination of things: a lifelong fiction addiction, extreme envy of my work-from-home husband, and an acute desire for a teenage daughter. So basically I started writing so I could stay home, read books for “work”, and create my very own virtual teenagers.

What book did you last read that had an impact on your writing?
Amy Efaw’s AFTER—a perfect example of deep POV with a fabulous voice and page-turning suspense. I aspire to someday reach this level of skill in my own writing.

What are some of the biggest issues you face as a writer and how do you deal with them?
Finding balance so that my writing life doesn’t consume the rest of my life. I’ve had to set limits on how much time I spend writing and all the other stuff that comes with trying to get a book published.

What has helped?
One day a week is designated “internet, computer, and electronic device” free. One morning each week is for hiking in the woods. And an alarm goes off at 8:30 every morning reminding me to close the laptop and move on to other things.

Tell us a little bit about your current project?
1942, Occupied Paris, brave young women, provocative young men. Loyalty. Betrayal. And one nasty Gestapo agent.

What has been the most difficult part of writing it?
Finding just the right words to suit both the voice and epoch.

What are some of your favorite books?
How about some of my favorite YA authors: Laurie Halse Anderson, Ally Carter, Sonya Sones, Jenny Han, Jo Knowles, Megan Whalen Turner, Sarah Dessen, and many others I can’t remember off the top of my head. If I tried to pick favorite books I’d implode.

And here are some quickies:

1. Favorite type of chocolate: All. But sadly, I’m sugar sensitive and can’t eat any

2. #1 country you’d like to visit: Italy, again. But I’m afraid I’d never come home…

3. Favorite mode of transportation: My feet

4. Preferred writing method: My laptop, Bertie.

(Can I just say I love that you named your laptop!)

Thank you Angelina! I loved hearing these snippets about your writing life.