Happy Spring!


I’m a bit late with this post. I’m just starting to enjoy spring up here in CT! Part of that is the weather’s fault and part is my work load.

I’ve been slogging through revisions on Six Train’s sequel since mid March and averaging 4-5 hours a day writing. It’s such an emotional journey in this book. I feel like I have to live through it all along with my characters. Writing alternating points of view means I am in effect telling two stories.

I forgot how hard this is. But I’m making good progress and I’m going to get it to my beta readers for June 1!

I’ve also been working with my publicist on the book tour, the blog tour, reviews, awards, and all the stuff that can help generate buzz for The Girl Who Ignored Ghosts. That’s another 4-5 hours a day.

Last week, I gave a Career Day talk at Wolcott High School. Met some amazing teenagers who are interested in writing. They were a great audience and I loved talking to them about what I do. I brought bookmarks and tattoos and stickers and they really seemed to like them.

I spent a week practicing my talk so I could do it without looking at my notes. ย I was really proud of myself. The teacher told me it was one of the best presentations she’s had from a guest speaker in her class. Woohoo!

I thinkย my part time job teaching really helped me get more comfortable talking to groups.

This weekend was my first break in months. I took a couple days off from writing and promoting, to head up to the NESCBWI conference–I’ll share my thoughts on that next week after I’ve had some time to process all the amazing stuff I’ve learned. ๐Ÿ™‚

I hope everyone is having a happy spring. Getting outside. Taking hikes. Gardening. And taking some time for themselves.

I’m finishing up Neil Gaiman’s The Ocean at the End of the Lane–AMAZING. I love how he just says stuff and never has to explain how any of it works. He’s such a confident writer.

How are things going with your writing? Your work? Spring fever setting in yet?



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34 Responses to Happy Spring!

  1. Elle Knowles says:

    Happy Spring to you too Kourtney! I’m writing on a new book while waiting to get my almost finished sequel unlocked from technology! uggh! Enjoying this new adventure immensely though. ~Elle

  2. Carrie Rubin says:

    Congrats on the talk. I’m sure the kids loved it. And what a great way to promote your books too!

    I’m antsy to get to the revision on my third book, but I’ve been tidying some things up on the second one. I seem to be able to only focus on one project at a time. But it’s just as well. We need distance from our first drafts, so I’m getting a few weeks away from it.

    • Thanks! I had a blast. I think teaching definitely helped me be a more confident presenter.

      I’ve found I can be marketing one book and revising another or querying one and drafting another, but I can’t be in two story worlds actively writing at the same time. I try to switch off between projects too because we need that time away. It’s really critical to being able to come back and re-envision the story. Go you! You are really getting the writing done!

  3. Happy Spring to you too, Kourtney! What a thrill that must have been for the students. How nice of you to volunteer your time.
    I’m in a panic trying to get my synopsis and first three chapters finalized for a contest. The day job keeps stealing my time…but it pays the bills. ๐Ÿ™‚

    • It was pretty cool to watch them go from mildly bored to actually interested and asking questions. ๐Ÿ™‚ Oh that’s hard to do. Synopsis never feels as good as the hook to me. ๐Ÿ˜‰ Good luck! It’s so hard to get time to write with a full time job. I used to have to plan around my day job. There were always 3-4 months a year when I had zero free time. Hope you can squeeze it in and get it all polished up! ๐Ÿ™‚

  4. Well done Kourtney upon mastering your public speaking nerves.. ๐Ÿ™‚ And again sounds like your feet have not touched the ground to experience Spring.. I know it was late arriving near you…. So Enjoy SPRING! and keep that lightness in your step.. And don’t wear yourself out.. remember you’ve not long recovered.. ๐Ÿ™‚ Special hugs to you.. Have a fabulous week.. xx Sue <3

    • Sue, they are still there but I know it’s not about me. It’s about giving the audience what they need. That helps. LOL. They haven’t. I’ve been go go go again. I’ve got a couple days with friends planned in early May. Very excited to have a little time with them. Plan to do stuff outside for sure! Hugs! ๐Ÿ™‚

  5. Lori says:

    Well, it’s been in the 90’s here for the past 6 weeks (except today), so we pretty much skipped spring. But, I’ll get to enjoy a bit of spring next month in Chicago when I get there.

    I understand the difficulty switching pov’s, especially in yours that has mind reading. I have no idea how you did that in the first novel and kept it straight so I understood who was thinking. My last novel has two pov’s, and that was difficult, but the two characters’ lives at least intertwined. In the novel I’m writing now, it’s basically two separate novels in one. The two main characters only meet once, they are really separate stories.

    Whew! Boy, I’m chatty today … writing long comments. Heh. Must be nervous energy from the move I’m working on. Anyway, try to enjoy some more of spring and good luck with the writing, Miss K.

    • Wow that’s hot for this time of year. Glad you get a taste of spring after the move. It’s so much work because you have to know everything from each of their perspectives and develop two distinct voices. My last WIP was single POV and coming back to alternating POV is painful after that. I’m getting in the groove but man is it hard work. LOL. No worries lovely to chat with you. Moving is such a big thing. Good luck with it. Best, K

  6. jmmcdowell says:

    It is wonderful to finally see Spring, isn’t it? ๐Ÿ™‚ I’m glad you’re taking some time to enjoy itโ€”your work ethic is awesome! I’m still struggling a bit to figure out my last few scenes for the rough draft. April has seen some writing, but I’ve been rereading (and rereading again) what I have written to see if I can envision those last bits. Of course, settling into the new house is still disrupting everything, too!

    • It is. That was a long winter. Or rather a very heavy snow in those last 12 weeks of winter. ๐Ÿ˜‰ I took a lot of time to get the marketing stuff down with Six Train, so I feel like I have to work on production now. I need to be getting stories out faster. Endings are tough. Sometimes it’s just about getting something down and then fixing it later. My ending for the Girl changed so many times. It even changed after it sold to Harlequin and to Beckett Publishing Group. Yes, I can imagine. I’ve moved around a few times and it takes a while to settle in. I think you’re doing an awesome job!

  7. EllaDee says:

    Happy Spring! Unless you suffer form hayfever, Spring and the warmer weather seems to energise, a renewed zest for life. For me, I’m hoping a little winding down will accompany the cooler season… life’s been a little too hectic!
    You always amaze and inspire me with all that you accomplish ๐Ÿ™‚

    • Thanks. I do have allergies. But it’s so nice to see grass and plants again. Aw thank you. That’s really nice to hear. It always feels like I should be doing more and faster on this end.

  8. Hi Kourtney, It’s nice when I finally make the time to read blog posts. Although I see you around on all the social media – FB, Goodreads – it’s not the same as reading a blog to get the full scoop. What an interesting point you make that teaching has enhanced your speaking skills. It’s a point I’d never really considered, but how true. I’ll bet you felt so much more confident standing in front of that group of kids, just based on having to do it all the time now. In my day job supervising lunchroom and recess, one of my coworkers always wants me to make the announcements at the end of each section’s lunch period, before the group heads out to recess — things like what areas of the playground might be restricted, getting the group to quiet down before releasing them. She calls me The Student Whisperer (lol!), because apparently I have a calming effect that she’s not been able to master. But I attribute it to years of heading up a classroom and knowing the techniques that work.
    Spring Fever has definitely made its way to Chicagoland. Our flowering trees are in full bloom, daffodils have come and gone, and tulips are on their last legs. We’ve already mowed the lawn twice. I love this time of year. So full of life and hope. Looking forward to reading Six Train’s draft this summer.

    • I love the blog because I feel like I get to be more me here. FB and Twitter are snippets of things, but this is where I can talk a bit more about things. ๐Ÿ™‚ It really has. I was shocked to realize how much better I am in front of people. I know I have to keep their interest and I’ve learned how to be more interactive and engaging from teaching. I was definitely more confident and that came through. LOL. I love it–the student whisperer. ๐Ÿ™‚

      I love the burst of life from the ground. It’s really awesome to see everything coming to life. Invigorating. Thank you so much for finding the time and energy to be a beta. I’m working through the second draft and it’s definitely coming along. There were times I couldn’t work the magic but it’s happening. ๐Ÿ™‚

  9. I miss being buried in a novel. I’ve been working on a non-fiction project (to be unveiled soon), but it is nothing at all like writing fiction, which is my first love. I’m so happy spring is here, too, although the winds certainly make it feel less like the end of April and more like mid February! But that’s okay as long as I can see daffodils, forsythia, tulips, and apple blossoms in my garden!

    Have a super week!

    • I am so excited to take a bus trip next week. 6 hours of reading! I am only struggling with what book to pick. ๐Ÿ™‚ Spring really is nice especially after that winter. I love not needing a coat. Woohoo. Have a great week!

  10. Ally Bean says:

    Sounds like all of your hard work is coming together. Glad that you presentation went so well. I adore words, but I think that you’re right when you say that sometimes you have to let spring fever take hold of your soul and drag you out the door. I need to do more of that, in fact.

    • Sometimes it really does. ๐Ÿ™‚ Me too. I find practice helps. Knowing that I am within my time limit and when to switch slides. It makes me more confident. I agree. This weekend I am heading out to Sleepy Hollow for some time with my old friend. It’s been in the works for months. A 36 hour break. We have hikes and tours planned. Woohoo!

  11. TBM says:

    Happy Spring! It’s been going strong in London for a few weeks, but we are in a bit of a cold snap and I don’t like it. I’ve been reading American Gods by Gaiman. Haven’t read the Ocean one yet.

    • Yay. Oh no. I hate wavering weather. Be spring, be winter, be fall. Just pick one and stick to it. ๐Ÿ™‚ I haven’t read that one. This was one the list for a workshop I attended at NESCBWI so I moved it to the top of my tbr pile and finished it the night before the conference.

  12. Pamela says:

    I applaud your writing 4-5 hours a day! That is my goal. I’m working on 3 hours a day and would do more, but blogging takes up time, as well as walking now that our weather is, well, walkable! No spring fever here – just so glad the snow has melted. Happy Writing to you.

    • I cut back to blogging once a week, it works best for me and my readers. I take my dogs out for 15 mins everyday. That’s my daily outside time. I try to hike on weekends. ๐Ÿ™‚ So happy the snow is finally gone and I can go on nature hikes again. Good luck with the writing!

  13. Happy Spring! (and I’m waaaay late with everything right now) Good idea to get outside while you can – clears the head and lets you think better…besides you deserve it reworking so much on your book. (and the dog deserves it for patiently waiting for you to say “Let’s go.”) Revision takes a lot of discipline, but it will be worth it.

    • Thanks! Especially after a long winter. I was in Sleepy Hollow all day Saturday out and about. Though sun is my kryptonite. I got very dizzy and tired and sweaty. Aw, it’s really cool to realize it’s coming together and almost ready for beta readers. They are so worth it. I’ve deepened the emotional arcs and added more symbolism. I like this part a lot. Even if it’s challenging. ๐Ÿ™‚

  14. Hope you enjoy spring Kourtney and glad to hear you’re doing well with the revisions so that we’ll get to read it all the sooner and I already feel a buzz about The Girl Who Ignored Ghosts ๐Ÿ™‚

    • I got out in the city–the past two days I walked a total of 13 miles. Woohoo. Love being back here. So much to see and do. And favorites to return to. Aw thank you. I’m on schedule to have six train’s sequel to betas for June 1. Then I start drafting TGWIG’s sequel. ๐Ÿ™‚

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