Robin’s Randoms: The Writing Life of an Wannabe-Hallmark-Card Author

Before I was published I was just trying to get published.  I wasn’t as industrious as Susan.  Oh my.  Articles?  Let me think…

1. My only article:
I wrote an article for the local health food store newsletter about trying to expand my family’s palate.  I had a three year old at the time and he’s now eighteen so that tells you how long ago it wrote it.  One of the members (who is a travel writer) told me it was “cute” which totally pissed me off because he said it in such a condescending way.  I didn’t do another article for them.

2. My attempt at early chapter books:
My love for Arnold Lobel and his Frog and Toad and Owl books is well known.  My other favorites are Little Bear by Else Holmelund Minarik.  I tried for about six months and never got the hang of it.  BUT I hadn’t yet taken a class.

3. My attempt at picture books: I wrote poetry and mistakenly thought I could simply divide the poem even over the pages and call it good.  Done.  Well, of course that was wrong.  I never took a class, I did read a picture book how-to book, but the genre never really called to me.  I do still love to write poems when I need to.

4. My first novel: When I began to write YA I knew it was a done deal.  No question it was what I should be writing.  My first novel was a romance-mystery-time-travel- coming-of-age thing, but I loved it and the characters and I never wanted it to end—and actually didn’t know how to end it.  I think it ended when my computer finally crashed…  But I found my voice.

5. My attempt at Hallmark writing: When I was a kid I made cards for everyone.  It was what we did in my family.  If you didn’t give a homemade card for the occasion you didn’t really care.  I hoped this would somehow translate to a lucrative career in the gift card business.  I kept index cards with clever (or not so clever) sayings for every occasion, but I never found out if this biz was for me because (YAY!) Buried was sold to Dutton.



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