GAME ON - Kyra Lennon Guest Post






Hey gang! Today I'm taking a break from WRiTE CLUB (you can find which rounds are open for voting HERE) to turn my blog over to a fellow blogging buddy with a dynamite new book she recently released. Everybody be on your best behavior and give Kyra your undivided attention. She's going to talk to you about a few things she's picked up since she's been blogging. You won't be sorry! :)



Thanks DL! 

My decision to start blogging was made because I wanted to connect with other writers. What I didn’t realize is just how much I would learn about writing in the process. It wasn’t that I thought I knew everything, it was just that, I didn’t realize how incredibly generous other writers are about sharing their wisdom. Since I started blogging in January, I have learned many, many things. Here are the top five things I’ve learned about writing since I became a blogger.

The importance of the first paragraph
This sounds like it should be obvious. I mean, when you pick up a book, if the first few sentences don’t grab your attention, you’re probably going to put it right back on the shelf. But I never thought about it too much. I wrote the words, and if I liked them, they stayed in the story. After reading many blog posts about how vital a story opener is, I purchased Hooked and learned a whole lot about how to make that first sentence jump out of the page and pull the reader in. I’m not saying I have it down to a fine art yet, but it is an area I have vastly improved in.

Querying
Not gonna lie, self-publishing made it very easy for me to avoid the querying process. It scares me senseless. When I wrote my first blog post, I had no idea what a query was, and people were offering query critiques as prizes for blog fests. I had to know. A quick Google search filled me in, and it occurred to me that getting an agent or publisher to even look at my work would be a challenge if I didn’t figure out how to write a good query. This is very much a work in progress, but I have learned many things from the ladies at Falling For Fiction. They offer critiques, and you can pick up some great tips from their suggestions.

The brilliance of critique partners
Clare Dugmore has always been my CP, but before I blogged, I wasn’t aware there was a funky name for it! Clare is an incredible CP, her eye for detail is second to none, but before I allowed my book to go out into the world, I realized that extra sets of eyes would help a lot. Having one CP is great. Having several is better. Everyone’s opinions are different, everyone sees things in a slightly different way, and I can honestly say that every one of my CPs added something new to the way I viewed my story.

It’s not as easy as it looks
Before you think I’m insane for ever thinking that writing is easy, I never thought that. But I thought maybe I had some kind of problem, and that struggling every once in a while meant that I was somehow inferior to people who can crank out books at high speed. After engaging with other writers, I was pleased to discover I am not the only one. Many supremely talented writers have times when the words just won’t come out right, or their muses take a long vacation, leaving them staring at a blank page. Another thing I learned is, it’s okay when this happens. It’s not cause for punishing myself and chanting, “I suck” over and over again. It’s simply the way things are.

Persistence is key
I am still pretty new to the blogging world, but in these past few months, I’ve seen some of my blog buddies experiencing the highs and lows of trying to get an agent or a publisher. There have been days when some of my favorite people have felt miserable because of a rejection, felt that their work wasn’t good enough, and even considered scrapping some of their hard work. But then the good news came. Recently, people who have been snapped up by agents and publishers include Cassie Mae, Victoria Smith and Carrie Butler.  These girls all worked hard, and their determination is what got them where they are. It’s inspiring, and reminds me that it is important to keep plugging away, even on the hard days. 

Game On Synopsis
After swapping her small town life to work for one of the top soccer teams in the U.S, Leah Walker thought she could finally leave the ghosts of her past behind. However, when she meets serial womanizer, Radleigh McCoy, the memories of her old life come swarming back, and she is forced to ask herself whether she has really changed at all.


Game On Buy Links

26 comments

  1. Thanks so much for having me on your awesome blog - I am very honoured to be here! :D

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  2. Hi Kyra,
    You are so right about persistence. Good luck with your book!

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  3. That first paragraph is still a struggle. Think I'm getting closer!
    Persistence - never succeed without it.

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    Replies
    1. Same for me - but I know we'll nail it in the end! :D

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  4. Great guest post, Kyra -- Persistence does pay off!

    I wish you tremendous success with 'Game On'!

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  5. Congrats on your new book! I just bought it for my Kindle. Unfortunately, you're #38 on my reading list...been doing the A-Z Road Trip this summer and have found so many intriguing books I've just gone a bit Kindle-Krazy. Love the front cover - it's one thing I really notice that makes me pick up a book to then look at that first paragraph. And I'll admit this, since D.L and I are friends, but I'm a harsh critic of the first para. A lot of the time its, "Are you KIDDING? THIS is the hook you thought was best?" But I usually give a book a chapter or two, so it's not a death sentence.
    Now heading off to check out your blog.
    Thanks for introducing us to a new friend, D.L.
    Tina @ Life is Good
    Post A-Z Road trip!
    Co-Host of the 2012 A-Z Challenge

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    Replies
    1. Aww, thanks for buying Game On! I hope my first paragraph hooks you! :D

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  6. Great guest post, Kyra. Blogging rules.

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  7. I love stories about writers who never gave up! Very true that writing is never easy, even for those of us who do it on a regular basis. Fantastic post :) Querying scares me senseless, too, but it gets a little bit easier every day. Sometimes I think a query letter is even harder to write than the novel itself.

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    1. I absolutely agree about querying! I see the stress that many writers go through to get the query right. It's such a struggle!

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  8. Querying is terrifying - the whole process is one big leap of faith after another. I knew next to nothing when I started blogging a couple of years ago. It's amazing how much you can learn from your blog buddies!

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    1. Yeah, blogging has really been great to help me learn more about writing. When I think about it, it's astonishing!

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  9. Great post! I read HOOKED and it changed the way I write. It's an amazing book on the craft.

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  10. HOOKED is an awesome book. I recommend it to all writers. And you've done brilliantly with blogging. :)

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  11. Lots of good insights, Kyra. Thanks for sharing.

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  12. Really insightful interview. Thanks for the tip on the Hooked book, I'm going to buy that. Also, thanks for the shout out. I was honored to be your CP, and that you shared this journey with me, and I hope I helped in some way. :)

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  13. Aw, thanks for the double shout out! I was nodding the whole time reading this post. I haven't read Hooked yet, but it sounds like a must!

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  14. Thanks for all the great tips. I'm definitely hooked on the idea of getting a copy of "Hooked". The cover of your book is very inviting, and I hope a LOT of people respond to the invitation. I will. Good luck with it!

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  15. Great points here. It's an honour to be able to celebrate and commiserate along with our peers.

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