Home of author A.C.E Bauer on the web

Catching up

Thursday, February 7th, 2013

I have been very quiet here these last few months, not because I haven’t been busy, but precisely because I have been super-busy. Here are some of the things that have been going on:

* Gil Marsh was nominated for the 2013 Teen Choice Book Awards. (Voting is still open until February 13 here)

* In November, I had the great pleasure of participating in the Bring Your Own Book and Blanket evening at the Davis Street Elementary School in New Haven, Connecticut. I met with a great group of inquisitive and engaged students who joined me to think about how you go about writing books that include many different cultures.

* In December, I finished the novel that I had been working on for NaNoWriMo, only to realize that I have to entirely restructure the beginning. I have since been working double-time to complete a serviceable first draft. At some point I’ll share some of the fascinating research I have been doing to help it along.

* In January, I presented at the first Shoreline Arts Alliance Winter Workshops for Writers & Illustrators in Chester Connecticut, and discussed the art of revising novels. The workshops were well attended, and as a bonus, the proceeds went to benefit the Tassy Walden Awards: Fresh Voices in Children’s Literature.

And coming up:

* Gil Marsh will be released in paperback on February 26th. Woot!…

I’m a winner

Sunday, November 25th, 2012

Winner-180x180It's official. I have completed over 50,000 towards my novel, and that makes me a NaNoWriMo winner.

Hurray!

And what did I win? A lovely certificate with my name on it (which I've printed out), the authorized use of a NaNoWriMo winner's badge (to your left), and bragging rights.

I've not finished, however. My novel still has another several chapters to go, and so I'll try to keep up my pace for the rest of the month, and as far into December as it takes to get that first rough draft written.…

I’m a NaNoWriMo rebel

Monday, October 29th, 2012

This year I signed up for NaNoWriMo: that's National Novel Writing Month. It's taken place each November for the past 14 years. The challenge: to write 50,000 words (about 175 pages) towards a new novel in 30 days time.

I don't generally need incentives to write novels. I've published three, have four more in my files, and am currently in the middle of writing my eighth.* My problem is that I compose new fiction very slowly.

I've written about this before. I am much happier revising than creating from scratch — that's shaping what's already on the page, work that I enjoy.

Getting ideas in my head onto paper is hard. Until I've written it down, an idea is an unformed possibility. It's a series of images that I see taking shape. The act of writing fixes the image in time and space, like a written snapshot. My job is to not only describe each snapshot of my story, but make the story flow from one to the next in a way that makes sense. I can easily spend half an hour thinking of different ways a story might flow, to get from one snapshot to the next, and not have written a single word.

So, this latest novel I've been working on is about half-written. Maybe more, maybe less. I probably have another 50,000 words or so to go. I figure that if I am forced to get 50,000 words down in 30 days towards this novel, I have a good shot at finishing a rough draft before the year's end.

But, it turns out, that finishing a half-written novel doesn't comply with NaNoWriMo's rules. They state pretty clearly: "Start from scratch. None of your own previously written prose can be included in your NaNoWriMo draft."

Fortunately, the good folks at NaNoWriMo have given me a way out. Even if I've already written half my novel, I can still join. I'm just a rebel, in their parlance, and I'm welcome aboard. They even have a section in their Forum just for folks like me.

Yay!

Check my blog. It'll keep you posted on my progress.

*Little known fact: most writers have written more than they shall ever publish.…

Getting all the details in a graphic novel

Wednesday, September 28th, 2011

Why did it take me 14 pages to describe 10 pages of a graphic novel? I explain over at Write Up Our Alley.

We have a winner!

Saturday, July 18th, 2009

Finally, my second novel has a title! Come Fall. There’s a chance it could still change. But for the moment, at least, Random House is very pleased about it. And so am I.

The story answers a question that had been bothering me for a long time. Whatever happened to that changeling/page that Queen Titania and King Oberon of the fairies argued about in Shakespeare’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream? We find him one autumn, placed in yet another foster home, when he meets a girl from a family with too many boys (as far as she is concerned), and a remarkably insightful boy with Asperger’s. It is a story about friendship. And about fairies who, if they’ve interfered with your life once, are bound to interfere again.

I promise more updates as they come in.…

Write Up Our Alley

Thursday, June 18th, 2009

We’re eight of us: Kate Duke, Deborah Freedman, Kathleen Kudlinski, M.W. Penn, Sanna Stanley, Leigh Ann Tyson, Cat Urbain, and me. Collectively, we’ve spent decades in the writing business, publishing over 75 children’s books. We write in different genres, covering nonfiction, picture books, middle grade novels, educational materials, historical fiction, YA, poetry. Despite our variety, we’ve discovered how many things we have in common.

We care about quality literature. And I don’t just mean our books — books that matter and that kids will enjoy. Our works explore similar themes, crossing age groups and genres. And more than anything else, we all want to get kids to read.

So we decided to form a group, Write Up Our Alley. We’ve pooled our knowledge and experience, and are building programs and resources for others who share our passions. We’ve put up a website — a work in progress — and on it started a blog where we will share what we’ve learned in the business, what we know about reaching kids, and our love of books. We post about once a week. It’s still an experiment, but we’ve been thinking about this for a long time. Come join us.…

News dump

Sunday, June 14th, 2009

The Hudson Children’s Book Festival was a smashing success. Over 50 authors were present. Some 4,000 people from the Hudson Valley came. Over 2,000 books were sold.

Awesome!

And I’ve been busy writing a new novel. I’m in that hairy middle part where I get stuck all the time. But I love my characters. And I love the concept. So I’m plugging away.

My editor is getting my next published novel ready for copyediting — now if we could only come up with a title we’d all agree upon! I’ll announce it as soon as it’s been decided.

And then a chunk of my time has been working with some amazing authors — Kate Duke, Deborah Freedman, Kathleen Kudlinski, M.W. Penn, Sanna Stanley, Leigh Ann Tyson, and Cat Urbain. I promise to give you more news about the project we’re working on, next week.…

 

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