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Four-legged Friends

January 2, 2012 at 12:30 PMKatie McGarry

Book I'm currently reading: Saving June by Hannah Harrington

This morning's running conditions: I uh *cough* didn't run *cough* this morning. I went out to eat with my husband. Will run later today though.

Song my husband and I laughed/sung in the car: Red Solo Cup by Toby Keith

Why I love the song: Because I love how my husband smiles when he hears the song

 

The song Red Solo Cup makes my husband smile which makes me smile. You know what else makes me smile?

 

The pets.

 

We have three guinea pigs and a cat. All four of them keep my company as I write during the day. You see, the guinea pig's cage is in my office and the cat always happens to be wherever I'm at. She loves to fall asleep in my lap as I type. Sometimes that's not always comfortable for me, but I never have the heart to kick her off.

 

Let me introduce you to them. This is Thomas:

 

 This is Prince Charming:

 

This is Car:

 

This is Kitty Witty:

 

Do you have four-legged furry friends who keep you company?

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Best Gift Ever

December 26, 2011 at 11:47 AMKatie McGarry

Book I'm currently reading: Saving June by Hannah Harrington

This morning's running conditions: 38 degrees and sunny

Song placed on repeat while running: Good Feeling by Flo Rida

Why I love the song: Because it makes me want to dance!

 

Yesterday, my daughter opened a gift I bought her because I secretly wanted it: Just Dance 3. Yes, I knew she'd love it, because my daughter loves to dance almost as much as I do.

I'm going to admit something: I don't like electronic games. I have suck reaction times and, for some insane reason, I never blink when I play them. So I always end up last or dead while wiping the tears continually flowing down my cheeks because I hadn't closed my eyes for ten minutes straight.

But this game...Just Dance 3...I can do it! It's dancing and I can dance! Nothing organized, but I love to move my body to music. This gift...it became the best gift ever when we went to my husband's family last night to celebrate Christmas. At first my daughter and her older cousin started playing it. Soon, the massive throng of cousins of all ages were playing, even if they didn't have a Wii remote. It wasn't long before the adults became involved--my husband, his brothers, his sisters, his parents.

We all danced. We all laughed. We all smiled. We all played.

Isn't that what life is all about?

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My 2012 Prayer

December 18, 2011 at 8:12 PMKatie McGarry

Book I'm currently reading: Tricks by Ellen Hopkins

This morning's running conditions: 49 degrees and cloudy

Song placed on repeat while running: Love Like Crazy by Lee Brice

Why I love the song: Because of the lyrics...

Be a best friend, tell the truth
And overuse "I love you"
Go to work, do your best
Don't outsmart your common sense
Never let your prayin' knees get lazy
And love like crazy

 

God, I love that song. The entire thing. There isn't a word I don't love.

This year, if nothing earth shattering happens, I'll be published. It feels insane to write those words. Yeah, I wrote the book, found the agent, signed the deal, worked on revisions, and have seen the ARC, but it still doesn't seem real.

Who knew, me, the teenager so lost that even a compass couldn't help me find my way, would not only become a published author, but more importantly--be happy. I never saw any of this coming, including the happy. Here is the beyond insane thing, the happy didn't come because of the book or the agent or the deal. The happy came way before that.

Guess I should get to why this post is titled "My 2012 Prayer." Around this time of year, people generally give their resolutions or goals. I don't have either of those, I have a prayer.

While I'm excited to become published, my prayer is that no matter what happens in August (good or bad), that I'll keep my happy. That my husband will always remain my best friend. That I always put the needs, wants, and happiness of my children before my own. That I still have coffee with my bff every Tuesday. That I remember to feed the cat and guinea pigs daily. That I stay close with my friends, remembering to call at least once every two to three weeks like a I do now. That I always take time to pray and be thankful before I do anything associated with writing.

That I laugh loudly, with tears and with no apology, out in public when I hear something funny. That I never apologize for my taste in music or for my love of reality TV. That I never lose my awe when something good happens because of my writing. That I remember that my self confidence isn't wrapped up in my career, so therefore, I should, in theory, be able to take the blows associated with the business. I want to remember that this is a piece of my life. Not my entire life. That the smiles and giggles of my children, the laughs and tears with friends, the quiet time with God, and the simple touch from my husband is more important than anything else.

This is my prayer.

The shorter version would be the song lyrics:

Be a best friend, tell the truth
And overuse "I love you"
Go to work, do your best
Don't outsmart your common sense
Never let your prayin' knees get lazy
And love like crazy

 

 

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Boys and YA literature

December 12, 2011 at 11:49 AMKatie McGarry

Book I'm currently reading: Half-way through Miranda Kenneally's CATCHING JORDAN. I'm loving it and I have a crush on Henry.

This morning's running conditions: 29 degrees, clear sky with full moon and stars. Beautiful pink sunrise at the end of the run.

Song placed on repeat while running:  Boomdocks by Little Big Town

Why I love the song: Because of the lyrics...

I feel no shame, I'm proud of where I came from...

It's where I learned about living...And knowing where I stand, You can take it or leave it, this is me, This is who I am

 

This is who I am...

Last week I wrote about when I spoke to a group of fourteen year olds. There were hundreds of things I found interesting, but there was on thing that raised my eyebrow. The students are required to have with them, at all times, a book of their choice. Being a writer, I think it's a beautiful idea. The students are to read whenever there is a lull, whether it be between classes or if they finish their work early. This keeps them busy and also introduces the reluctant readers to the wonderful world of literacy.

I was quite familiar with the books the majority of the girls carried around: Stephenie Meyer, Suzanne Collins, and I was thrilled to see some Ellen Hopkins fans. What I found interesting is that the boys carried around adult novels--Tom Clancy, James Patterson, Stephen King.

If there was something I would have changed about my school visit, I would have put the discussion on my road to publication on hold to ask the boys, why they weren't reading from the young adult genre. They do enjoy the genre. When asked what my favorite book was, I answered S.E. Hinton's The Outsiders. The boys lit up, talking about how they loved that book too.

I have a friend who is currently trying to break in to the boy YA market. He's received several nice rejections that say the same type of things: you have wonderful voice, we love your writing, we adore you story, but boy books are a hard sell.

So where is the disconnect? Are there teenage boy books out there and the boys aren't aware of it? Or is it a chicken versus the egg theory? Boys can't buy boy YA books if they aren't available, but if they are available, will boys buy them?

I'll admit. I don't know. If someone has a theory, I'd love to hear it.

 

 

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Hope

December 5, 2011 at 2:35 PMKatie McGarry

Book I'm currently reading: Miranda Kenneally's CATCHING JORDAN

 

This morning's running conditions: pouring rain and 50 degrees

Song placed on repeat while running: Dr. Dre featuring Eminem I Need a Doctor

Why I love the song: Because of the lyrics...

I told the world one day, I would pay it back

and...

Hope--I just need a ray of that

 

Hope.

It's one of my favorite words which is funny because there was a time in my life when I never believed in hope. In fact, it felt almost as forbidden as a curse.

Anyone who knows me well is aware that I wear the same jewelry day in and day out. One of the pieces is a silver ring with the word hope engraved in black.

When I wrote PUSHING THE LIMITS, I knew I wanted Echo and Noah to begin in a place of hopelessness and for the story to end on a note of hope. I accomplished the goal and I think that's why the story sold. Who doesn't want a sense of hope?

Hope.

It's why I went to speak to a group of fourteen-year-olds last week. As I related to the five different English classes, I never once thought at their age that I could be a published author. Why? Because no one ever told me that I could do it. Sure, I knew books were sold at bookstores and I was savvy enough to understand that someone somewhere was getting paid for writing those books, but never in a million years did I ever think I could be one of those people.

So I stood up in front of the students and told them what I wished someone would have told me: you can.

Hope.

At the end of a class, a student I was sure hadn't listened to me came up as his fellow classmates were filing out.

"You've got too much energy," he says.

"Yeah." I laughed. "I do."

"And you're spastic."

I laugh harder. "Yeah and that."

"So am I. Maybe I can be a writer too."

He left quickly and I wanted so badly to chase after him and say, "Yes, you can."

It feels good to give someone else hope.

 

 

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Story Beats

October 3, 2011 at 11:10 AMKatie McGarry

Today I'm blogging over on YA Fusion about the ninja technique of story beats. I also rap Green Eggs and Ham!

http://yafusion.blogspot.com

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Continuation of Pushing the Limits series!

August 1, 2011 at 10:16 AMKatie McGarry

I am thrilled to announce that Harlequin Teen has decided to continue the Pushing the Limits series by contracting me to write books 3 and 4. Here is the Publisher's Marketplace announcment:

Katie McGarry's CRASH INTO YOU, in which two teenagers, an anxiety-ridden daughter of a wealthy businessman and a street-smart guy raised by the foster care system, face their greatest fears and fall in love when their shared obsession with speed and drag racing creates a debt to a dangerous street hustler, again to Margo Lipschultz at Harlequin Teen, in a two-book deal, by Kevan Lyon at Marsal Lyon Literary Agency (World).

Facebook Fan Page

June 9, 2011 at 4:10 PMKatie McGarry

Today is another milestone for me. I created my Facebook fan page.

This entire journey for me is surreal.  A year ago, I was querying agents. I had no idea that within a year, I would not only have turned in revisions to my editor for book one, but also my first draft of book 2.

Who could have ever known – I’m writing a series.

So long story short – go check out my Facebook fan page and if you’re feeling nice, I’d be thrilled if you “liked” me.

Here is the link: http://www.facebook.com/pages/Katie-McGarry/110067059083846#%21/pages/Katie-McGarry/110067059083846

 

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Vlogging - Beta Readers and Revisions

May 11, 2011 at 2:35 PMKatie McGarry

Pushing the Limits - Title Change

April 6, 2011 at 3:01 PMKatie McGarry

I am so excited to announce that my previously titled manuscript (Redefining Normal) is now titled Pushing the Limits. This title is absolutely perfect for this manuscript as I feel it best describes the relationship between Echo and Noah. The two are constantly pushing each other - demanding more from each other than what the other believes they are capable of. Thank you Harlequin Teen!