"...IF YOU FOLLOW YOUR BLISS, DOORS WILL OPEN FOR YOU THAT WOULDN'T HAVE OPENED FOR ANYONE ELSE." - Joseph Campbell

"SOMETIMES ON THE WAY TO YOUR DREAM, YOU GET LOST AND FIND A BETTER ONE." - Unknown (as seen on River's blog, "Drifting Through Life")

"IT IS POSSIBLE AT ANY AGE TO DISCOVER A LIFELONG DESIRE YOU NEVER KNEW YOU HAD." - Robert Brault


"IT'S NEVER TOO LATE TO BE WHO YOU MIGHT HAVE BEEN." - George Eliot

"WE DID NOT CHANGE AS WE GREW OLDER. WE JUST BECAME MORE CLEARLY OURSELVES." - Lynn Hall

"GO CONFIDENTLY IN THE DIRECTION OF YOUR DREAMS! LIVE THE LIFE YOU HAVE IMAGED." - Henry David Thoreau



Wednesday, July 16, 2014

* GUEST * MARGO DILL * AUTHOR * FRIEND * BOOKS * PRIZES *

* It's Major League Baseball's All-Star Week *

I'm happy to have Margo Dill as my guest blogger today. Margo and I met when I attended my first writers conference in 2007. She was the Missouri Writers Guild conference chair that year and in charge of a huge production. She was so kind and helpful to a very green, unpolished, untrained, in-awe-of-the-entire-experience, writer -- yours truly! We became fast friends, partly because we're authors, but also because we have the same sense of humor, and in my book..... that's everything! Margo also helped edit my memoir and she didn't just fix grammatical errors; she suggested different things that I mostly agreed with! If you saw us standing next to each other, we're quite a unique sight. Anyone who remembers an old cartoon strip named Mutt & Jeff will know what I mean. J 
(I'd be the short one!)


Margo is here today to share some thoughts on books, and writing, and fictional characters, and she also brought along some fabulous PRIZES! So, without further ado, Margo, take it away.....

~~~~~
 
The other night, I couldn’t sleep. There was a storm; my daughter crawled into our bed; then our power went out, which made me worry. So I grabbed a flashlight and a book I had been mildly interested in, Beautiful Oblivion by bestselling author Jamie McGuire, thinking it would put me right to sleep.

WRONG!

Turns out, McGuire drew me in with her hero and heroine, both twenty-something flawed, delightful people trying to figure out love and life, and I couldn’t put the book down. I stayed up past 5:00 am, trying to finish it. I couldn’t figure out why I had been so drawn in.

My mom (I know it’s my mom, but just bear with me) said the same thing about my second novel, Caught Between Two Curses, which is a young adult novel with love, magic, and baseball. She read the whole thing in one day, and the only reason this makes me a bit happy is because it took her weeks to finish my first middle-grade novel, Finding My Place (if she ever really did finish it!). So what was it about my YA novel that made her stay up all night? Why did I stay up reading about people 20 years younger than me?

 
My mom’s theory is these books take us back to our youth, something about the characters makes us connect with them and reminds us about ourselves. I think she’s on to something here. Most readers have connected with Julie, my 17-year-old main character trying to figure out love and what sex has to do with that while also breaking a curse that’s been on her family for decades. But a couple haven’t, and those reviews have read something like: “Margo Dill is a good writer, but I didn’t like Julie and wished she wouldn’t be so stupid.” OUCH! But these readers didn’t connect with her, so that’s okay.

I checked reviews on Beautiful Oblivion—most were 4 and 5 stars, but she got a few bad ones and most people just didn’t get the characters.

So is that what draws us in? Characters that remind us of ourselves in some way? I think this is probably true for 95 percent of readers—think about books that are a series—most of the time a book is part of a series because a good writer has created a remarkable character, and readers want to know MORE about this character. I can name a hundred (I won’t, Becky would kill me), but think about it: Harry Potter, Alex Cross, Mma Ramotswe, Katniss Everdeen, and so on.
 
So here’s to the characters we love—whether we write them or we read them. And hopefully if you have a chance to check out Caught Between Two Curses this week during the All-Star Sale and Contest (details below), you’ll connect with Julie, just like my mom did.



Margo Dill
 
Thank you, Margo! And now bloggers, please continue to read all about Margo's very generous sale prices and FREEBIES!

 
DETAILS: Margo’s book, Caught Between Two Curses, is on sale this week thanks to baseball’s All-Star Game!

You can find out all the details about the sale here (http://margodill.com/blog/2014/07/10/all-star-week/),

but basically, the e-book for KINDLE is on sale for $1.99 (July 16-17) and $2.99 (July 18-19).

An autographed copy of the print book is available for $5.00 off the cover price--$6.95. 

Thanks to All-Star week, she is also having a contest with a prize of one $25 gift card to one of 5 restaurants (Olive Garden, Starbucks, Panera Bread, Applebee’s, TGI Friday’s) (U.S. mailing addresses only please)

And a 3000-word free edit (anywhere in the world, English-language only).

Enter to win those prizes on the Rafflecopter form below—no purchase necessary!

Check out more about Margo and her books at: http://margodill.com/blog/