Win Prizes! Vital Writing Questions Answered! BEA videoJuly 3rd, 2009
Happy 4th of July (in advance)!
4th of July is one of my favorite holidays because it involves eating delicious grilled foods, explosions, and water sports (depending on where you live, of course).
In fact it was a year ago this 4th of July that I was snorkeling and my snorkeling partner purposefully woke up a sleeping nurse shark right in front of me (it swam away without attacking us, fortunately).
So I decided to write that experience into the opening scene of Being Nikki.
So who knows what will happen during my water sport adventures this July 4th ? Maybe it’ll end up in Runaway (cover art coming soon!).
From last year’s Being Nikki cover shoot.
Anyway, just to let you know, lots of stuff is happening this July! I have two book signings in Minnesota!
And July is Meg Cabot Month at Teen Scene Magazine. They’ll be giving TONS of my books away all month. So if you didn’t score a book in my contest last week (and you should have heard by now if you had), this is your big chance!
The schedule goes like this:
July 3-Airhead Contest
July 6-Being Nikki
July 8-Queen Of Babble
July 10-Queen of Babble in the Big City
July 13-Queen of Babble Gets Hitched
July15-Victoria and the Rogue
July 17-Nicola and the Viscount
July 20-Size 12 is Not Fat
July 22-Size 14 is Not Fat Either
July 24-Big Boned
July 27-Pants on Fire
July 29-Meg Cabot Interview
So be sure to drop by Teenscenemag.com to check it out!
Also every Friday this July, Girl’s Life Magazine is giving away 5 signed Allie Finkle books! Log on to girlslife.com, look for Give Away of the Day, and click Enter Now. Check the “Winners List” each Friday. Enter as many times as you want!
Not the most recent GL cover. I couldn’t find that one!
And don’t forget, July 31 was declared Meg Cabot Day in Bloomington, Indiana. We celebrate it by floating in the pool, reading, and refusing to help with any housework.
I’ve been getting a lot of mail recently, so I thought I’d answer some of your letters before I took off for the holidays!
So here goes:
Q: What’s the deal with you writing all these books for tweens and nothing for us adult readers?
A: I know! I got a little distracted by all the sparkle lip gloss those fourth graders are wearing. But there’ll be a new book for adult readers coming out next summer (more info coming soon…I don’t want to give away too much because the new book is such a departure for me. And I’m pretty far into a new installment of the Heather Wells mystery series, too, so look for updates on that as well)!
Q: Why are you so obsessed with Michael Jackson’s funeral arrangements?
A: Because if he is in an open casket in his drum major uniform wearing a single white glove, as reported by the NY Post, I will find it such an amazing coincidence…because my grandmother was dressed exactly the same way at her funeral last week.
Q: Hi Meg, I was wondering when “Being Nikki” will be available for sale in e-book form.
A: Soon! I don’t know the exact date, but I can assure you, it’s going to be any minute now. My publisher has a whole new deal worked out with Kindle.
Q: Meg, when will your next book be out?
A: In September I’ll have TWO books out! Stage Fright, the next Allie Finkle book:
And Hunter’s Moon, the third and final book in my manga series (and my last manga ever):
Q: Dear Meg, I want to be a writer, but my parents don’t believe in my dream. I’m not sure I’ll be able to make it without their support. What should I do?
A: You’re probably not going to make it without their support—their FINANCIAL support—unless you start planning now for your future career, keeping in mind that only a small percentage of writers make enough money from their writing alone to support themselves.
So you shouldn’t be so hurt by the fact that your parents aren’t over the moon with your dream of being a writer. Your parents want you to be happy…and self-supporting!
So stop talking about your dream, and start making it a reality by focusing on getting an education that will allow you to get a great “day job” so you can support yourself until you make it big in publishing. Learn to type. Learn to teach. Learn to stick needles in cats. Learn SOMETHING that helps people so someone will want to hire you, in case the novel you wrote your senior year doesn’t get published right away (or bought for very much money).
Although some authors do make large advances on their first books, most only make advances in the mid-to-low five figures. After taxes and your agent’s cut, there’s very little left to live on. Keep in mind, most authors spend their first advance marketing their own books (putting up a website, etc), because publishers don’t tend to spend a lot marketing new authors.
So try to be more understanding of Mom and Dad. Instead of focusing on your dream of being a writer when you talk to them, focus on what you’re going to do to support yourself until that dream comes true (getting a good day job, with benefits like lots of vacation time, which you can spend writing).
THAT is what’s going to make Mom and Dad (and ultimately, you) happy…and also what’s going to keep you fiscally stable until you’re making the big bucks from your writing.
Q: What do I do about friends who aren’t supportive of my wanting to be a writer?
A: There could be lots of reasons why your friends aren’t supportive of your writing dream. Maybe they’re jealous because they always wanted to write, too, but were too lazy and so never did. Maybe they’re freaked out because you used to like to hang out with them, and now all you want to do is write.
It’s fun to have people to hang out with, so if your friends just aren’t the type to understand something like the fact that you write, just don’t talk about the writing thing with them. Not everybody is going to get it.
This applies to family, as well. Keeping a cherished dream to yourself is OK if you don’t want people to make fun of it. That’s just being self-protective.
In the meantime, remember: Be your own cheerleader! You don’t need the support of your parents, or anyone else, to achieve your dreams. As long as you believe in yourself, you’re going to be fine.
Here’s a video from this year’s Book Expo America where I talk about my own road to becoming a published author. Sadly, I should have worn a lot more make up. Live and learn. AND you can’t see my accompanying Power Point.
But you can see Julie Andrews, which is better.
Good luck, and keep writing! If I can do it, so can you.
Have a great 4th of July!
PS More writing tips for those of you looking for them!