Wednesday, August 09, 2006

Caroline B. Cooney...

The Face on the Milk Carton has sold a bazillion copies, and in this session author Caroline Cooney gave a rather fascinating look into how she got from initial idea to bestseller, describing how she developed her plot and her character in Milk Carton and a few other titles. Below are a few nuggets from this presentation:

  • Be sure your character, though flawed, is lovable.
  • When you develop stories ideas, come up with 100 questions.
  • Action is easy to write--don't slow down action with details.
  • She believes the bulk of YA readers are 11- and 12-year-old girls.
  • Her first drafts are always "stupid."
  • The lead character has to be the one to resolve the story.
  • You can do anything for 15 minutes--set a timer and write a scene.
  • It's much easier to expand and revise than to write in the first place.

She ended saying: "I love writing, except when it's really hard--then I hate it."

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