A PLACE FOR PLUTO coming Summer 2018

Dreams come true.

Writing has been my “thing” since I was able to form words on a paper. Being an author has been my dream since I started reading. Eight years ago, I decided to get serious about it.

I’m proud and excited to announce that my first children’s book is becoming a reality. A PLACE FOR PLUTO will hit shelves Summer 2018.

A PLACE FOR PLUTO follows Pluto as he struggles with a bit of an identity crisis after being told he’s no longer a planet. The book is illustrated by Melanie Demmer and published by Capstone.

For the Publisher’s Weekly announcement, click here.

I’ll share more about my journey along the way, but for now, we’re popping the cork and toasting to Pluto. Here’s to chasing dreams that may seem out of this world.

Cheers!

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The truth about the bird’s acne

Sadie here. Today’s post is brought to you by the letter D for duped and the number 3 for my third finger…because it’s up in the air right now, facing my mom’s bedroom. Just because she can’t see it, doesn’t mean it’s not there.

To all my fellow bloglets out there who’ve been through something similar, this one’s for you:

Hunger Games

Today I discovered that Mother Bird’s been sneaking behind my back, taking before and after pictures of my face. Okay, it’s not like she tiptoed into my room while I was sleeping (though I wouldn’t put it passed her). She had me pose with my siblings for pictures right before bed (pajama snuggles! cheese!). I’m sans make-up, looking just shy of my worst when she lures me using tiny people, then crops my face to show how great the recent facial cleansing regimen has been to my skin.

Before: acne!

After: less acne!

{Pictures have been removed to halt further embarrassment to “face model”}

Thanks Mom. Having zits isn’t enough, let’s show the world a magnified portrait of my facial volcanoes.

I know there’s benefit from a good before and after picture, but there’s also a little thing called consent and our beloved Mother Bird? She doesn’t have it.

That’s all for now. If you need me, I’ll be holed up in my room researching photography and the law.

In truth,

Sadie Peck

 

Stef’s 2015 Year in Review

It is said that Christmas is the most wonderful time of the year, but I happen to believe it’s right after Christmas when year-in-review and best-of lists swarm all forms of media. I guess I’m a sucker for nostalgia. This year, I’m making a short year-in-review for what has proved to be my most monumental year in writing (to-date, of course. I’m hoping it doesn’t go down in history that way).

I often get asked where I’m at with all of my writing projects. This should help sum it up, along with providing some tidbits I’ve learned about my writing, the publishing industry and myself.

2015 started off with a resolution or some may just say a goal (perhaps a recycled goal) of getting an agent.

I received suggested edits from an agent during a Twitter contest the previous year and was invited to revise and resubmit. I worked from September until January to polish up my manuscript and get it out. I waited for a response from the original agent, and after waiting six weeks, decided to put it forth into the world. I sent my manuscript to agents who also represent picture books as that is another interest of mine and to my pleasant surprise – ended up in talks with five different agents, three different offers and one agent signed and sealed by the end of the process! Amazing! Living on top the world! Right? Well sort of…

As with all writing roller coasters, it’s back to the computer for more edits. I was so excited for the direction THE TRUTH ABOUT THE BIRDS took after my edits, I couldn’t help but excited about the whole process.

In the meantime, my first creative non-fiction children’s book PLUTO SINGS THE BLUES and my second entitled DO IT MYSELFIE were polished up and officially sent on submission. Which is where those stand now and right before the end the year, THE TRUTH ABOUT THE BIRDS released itself into the publishing wild. So I am currently being reviewed by a variety of amazing editors. I pray that, just like the Bachelor (see Bachelor Agent Post), I will find my match made in heaven and you will someday in the not too distant future be able to check out my work.

Until then, I’m working on a yet to be titled contemporary YA work and praying hard every night that my writing finds its match with the right pair of eyes!

2016…Let’s do this.

xo stef wade green

#DIYBookClub – July

It’s July already? Not sure how that happened. July is a time for summer celebrations, BBQ and for many…travel! That’s why the #DIYBookClub July pick is to read a travel book. I’m particularly fond of travel writing and typically read a book about whatever place I’m traveling to. Some of my favorites include: IN A SUNBURNED COUNTRY by Bill Bryson and IT’S ALL GREEK TO ME by John Mole.

Well, th51GkRO+9b9L._SX334_BO1,204,203,200_is month I am not traveling (unless you count between state borders), so I am going to pick up a travel book I never actually read when I was in Ireland years ago. McCARTHY’S BAR by Pete McCarthy. I mean, I love a guy who has the motto: “never pass a bar that has your name on it.” I’m sure the people he meets along the way in this book will make it worth my while.

I’m hoping this book takes me back to the rolling green hills of the Irish countryside and the smooth taste of Guinness on tap. Where are you going this month? If you’re not going anywhere, travel like me! In a book!

 

#DIYBookClub – June

I signed my son up today for the summer reading program at the library and wished they had one for adults! But for now the #DIYBookClub is going to be as good as it gets. So without further ado, the category for the June #DIYBookClub is:

Read a book by an author you’ve read once and liked.

51L7YKlAiuL._AA160_This is a fun one for me. I often shy away from reading a second book by an author (at least for awhile) so I don’t keep too narrow of a scope in my reading. But when you read something you really like, chances are, the author will have more! And why wouldn’t you want more!

So this month, I am reading Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell, author of Eleanor & Park. I loved Eleanor & Park – the characters, the setting, the message – and I’m digging the premise for Fangirl. A Potterhead or Twi-hard or pick-your-fancy fan who is having trouble letting go.

Now I probably won’t get a cool pencil or my name up on a bulletin board for reading this, but I’m looking forward to digging in!

What will you be reading?

 

xo stef wade green

Why finding an agent is like being on The Bachelor

The Bachelor

Those of you who know me, or follow me on any form of social media, know that I am a reluctant yet faithful watcher of The Bachelor. I fought the good fight for almost a decade before caving in to the deliciously ridiculous “reality” of it all.

Those of you who know me, or follow me on any form of social media, also know that quite recently I officially got an agent. A real one. I swear.

If you don’t know me, or follow me on any form of social media, my name is Stef Wade and I’m a young adult and children’s writer, now represented by the lovely Christa Heschke at McIntosh & Otis and…I watch The Bachelor.

I’ve read countless posts about writers finding their dream agents. How they queried, how they researched, how they joined contests and sold their souls for one tiny peek at their manuscripts. For the record, I did all that too. I was not one of the few lucky people who send one query or meet someone in an elevator and bam! Agent!

It took years of writing and determination, but I will spare you those details. What I will tell you, is:

Why getting an agent is like being on The Bachelor (or Bachelorette):

I’d like to break this into two sections. Today, I will focus on section one.

Section 1: The Contestant (before an offer of representation)

My mom meme

You’re just looking for someone to love you

Before you receive an offer of representation, you’ve likely spent days, weeks, years dutifully, or not so dutifully, searching for the perfect person. Just like all those lonely Bachelors and Bachelorettes out there, you cannot BELIEVE why someone doesn’t want you; why the good ones always pick the undeserving; why you have yet to be chosen.

But you march on even if you feel pathetic, or are actually pathetic. It doesn’t matter because you freakin deserve a break. You want to ride that horse into the sunset. You want the writer’s equivalent of that appearance on Dancing with the Stars.

bachelor kelsey

You spend as much time making yourself sound good as a contestant getting ready for a date

You’ve written your query letter, an audition tape portraying only your best traits, your stories best parts and why you are the most original person to ever exist. You and…everybody else. You hope that by adding an extra layer of foundation or doing a few extra sets of squats at the gym that you will catch his eye. If you look good from the outside, the inside has to be the same, right?

bachelorette

The probability that you’ll be over looked far surpasses that of getting chosen

Some agents get 200-300 query letters per week! And some people have that many dates. But you’re not one of the toss aside at the first typo letters, nooooo, you are smart and witty and character driven. You will make yourself stand out. You’ll kiss that guy if your life depends on it, even if it makes you look completely ridiculous in front of millions of viewers. You will win that contest that 1000 other people shut down the internet while entering. You will kill that pitch session regardless of how sweaty your palms gets.

Likely you will not.

At least for a while.  You might be the person that hangs on, getting full manuscript requests, the one who goes on only group dates but sticks it out until the Bachelor or Bachelorette realizes there is nothing very special about you or that they just don’t connect with you.

ashley-s-bachelor-paintball

The pressure makes you go bat shit crazy

You say the rejection doesn’t bother you. Your favorite catch phrase is “onward and upward!” a mantra attached to your bedside table. But the pressure that your very life goal and possibly livelihood depends on one person’s personal connection with your first ten pages or your elevator speech on how great of a person you are and why you deserve love is enough to make you lose your flippin mind. You might even lose your mind in the Mesa Verde like Ashley S.

chris-harrison-meme-say-your-goodbyes

Rejection emails are a less public rose ceremony

Every time you check your email, you’re standing in your sequined, low-backed evening gown, trembling in your high heels, unsure if you’ll get that rose. You will get the rose. You’re sure of it. He likes you. There’s no reason he wouldn’t.  They read your query, or your first fifty pages or the whole damn thing so there is no plausible reason why you wouldn’t experience pure bliss in the next few moments.

Instead, in front of America, you’re sent packing with mascara running down your face, looking overtly downtrodden and depressed as you roll away in your luxury limo crying with a desperate lack of self-confidence that you will regret showing later on. You didn’t find love today.

I’m sorry to tell you, you are not the next agented writer…

xo stef wade

I’m So Excited, I’m So Excited…

Do you want to know why I’ve been saying this?

excited

And doing this?

vip-excited-celebration-o

And acting like this?

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As you can see, I’m super excited to announce to you that I am now represented by the lovely super agent Christa Heschke at McIntosh & Otis!

We’re already hard at work and I’m well…excited…about the projects we’re working on. I’ll give you more details in the near future. But for now, I’ll just do one more of these…

dancing-baby

xo stef wade green

2015 #DIYBookClub Challenge

Ahhh the new year. A time of fresh starts and new beginnings. A time to set resolutions we will give up in two days, two weeks or if you’re really ambitious two months. Lose weight! Find love! Follow my dreams! I find that breaking new year resolutions down to the nitty gritty helps me to stay on task. This year, for example, I aim to take my nail polish off before it diminishes to small spots in the middle of my finger. Small goals. Baby steps. As they say, set the bar low. It’s not that I don’t have huge lofty goals for myself (hello, look at this website) but I don’t necessarily find the new year resolution to be the best goal setting device.

I do like the idea of starting the year out with some ideas that offer room for growth. I was inspired by a reading challenge list PopSugar put out at the end of the year. I love book clubs. I love being given something to read that I may not have grabbed off the shelf. However, sometimes book clubs end up with the same books or you put off reading books you really want to read because of your book club. Problem and Solution! Enter the 2015 #DIYBookClub Challenge. I’m hosting a virtual do-it-yourself book club. Once a month (and a few bonus challenges too), I will post a challenge topic. However that topic pertains to you and your interests, you pick a book to match. The beauty? We can read the same books, or different books, and share our thoughts during and after reading them – right here on this site.

So who’s with me?

Our January challenge is to read:

A book that became a movie 

Book becomes movie

I am vigilant about reading books before I see their movie counterparts (with a few exceptions), so I love this category! I am starting out by reading THE GIVER by Lois Lowry. I’ve had this book on my to-read list for years and have yet to get around to it. The movie is out to rent now and before I watch, I need to read!

What will you be reading? Please share below! Also, follow me on Facebook or Twitter for extra updates and reviews. If you post on social media, let’s use #DIYBookClub so we can follow it together!

Happy New Year and Happy Reading!

xo stef wade green

 

YA Highway #197: Quarterly Check-in

YA Highway RTW
It is quarterly check-in time on YA Highway Road Trip Wednesday and boy could I use one! Many of you have asked how the world of writing is going for me and thank you for all of your support. In the beginning of this year, I have to say that I would never have foreseen the forward motion of my writing career really take off from idle to, well…at least first gear.

My first manuscript is floating around the agent world. I have seen some great response and feedback. Nothing big to speak of thus far, but I realize more than anything that these things take time. And patience. Lots and lots of patience.

In the meantime, I am very excited to be writing my second full manuscript, currently titled THE TRUTH ABOUT THE BIRDS. I’m hoping to have a solid draft by year’s end (please hold me to that).

It has been a strange and crazy ride so far learning the ins and outs of the publishing world, but like any good student, I am taking it all in stride, reading a lot, writing, talking to people, making writer friends and immersing myself into this world I have always wanted to be a part of!

As the final quarter of the year rolls around, I wish for progress on manuscript #1 as well as completion and satisfaction in manuscript #2.

Thanks again to everyone for your love and support and I patiently await the day I have big news to share! Until then…

xo stef wade green

Evolution of a Young Adult Author


stef wade

Allow me to introduce myself. My name is Stef Wade and I am a writer. You may know me from my work on cooking and home blog Haute Apple Pie, you may be a fellow writer, young adult novel enthusiast, encouraging friend or perhaps we have the same DNA. Whatever your reason, welcome to stefwade.com, my own little creative corner of the internet.

For those of you visiting from Haute Apple Pie, don’t worry! I will still be hanging out in my kitchen, blogging about my latest recipes. For those of you who prefer take out or store your shoes in your oven, this site probably suits you better.

I do not plan to constantly blog about myself, but I do want to give some background so you can better understand who is writing these words and why. I was born in Chicago and grew up in the northwest suburb of Des Plaines, nestled along the train tracks. My hometown later became the inspiration for my novel, SOMETHING TO PROVE, which I am currently looking to publish.

From the very moment I put pen to paper, I knew writing was my passion. I’ll never forget the one-sided worksheet given for my first second grade creative writing assignment. My large, bubbly words extended far off the front, on to the back and to the extra sheets sitting at the front of the room. I was angry when time was up and we moved onto math. I had more to say.

Early on I dreamed of being a writer and later turned my writing dreams toward more “practical” areas, leading me to a degree in advertising, advanced degree in business administration and a career in marketing. While writing about corrugated cardboard boxes sounds sexy, it only quenches your thirst for creativity for so long. After giving birth to my son, I knew I had two callings. First: to be the best mom I can be. Second: to be the best writer I can be.

Through the turns and turmoils, I thoroughly enjoyed my adolescence and loved my junior high, high school and college experiences. Channeling that time is easy and accessible for me. Because of this, I’m drawn to young adult fiction and have chosen the path of a young adult author.

So here I am! Looking to make my dreams come true. I have a completed young adult contemporary fiction novel titled SOMETHING TO PROVE, for which I’m currently seeking representation and publication.

As for stefwade.com, this is a place where creativity abounds, including inside looks at my latest works, special novel “extras,” poetry, young adult news, good reads, creative writing exercises and more. Whether you are a reader or a writer (or both!), I invite you to join me in my journey. After all, it’s the friends you make along the way that make journeys worth your while.

Thanks for reading!

xo stef wade green