Spotlight + Guest Post + Giveaway: The Cure by Stephanie Erickson

Monday, December 16, 2013

The Cure
Title: The Cure
Author: Stephanie Erickson
Date of Publication: November 14, 2013

“One life will make the difference.” Macey Holsinger has been hearing that promise her whole life. But it hasn’t saved anyone yet, not even her little brother.

The disease has claimed countless lives in the last hundred years, and the government is working hard to find a cure through human testing. Testing that has killed nearly as many people as the disease.

At sixteen, Macey has better things to think about than saving lives and submitting to any rule other than her parents’. As a budding artist, she has her whole life ahead of her, at least until she faces her own testing.

Questions plague Macey. Questions that make everyone else nervous. How can death be justified with more death? What’s the point of all this?

Answers evade her until she’s left with only one question: How much will she sacrifice in the name of the cure?

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Guest Post

5 Things I Wish I Knew About Being an Author I Didn't Know Before
by Stephanie Erickson

5. Everyone and their mother has an opinion

Everyone, and I do mean everyone, has an opinion about your life, your writing, your approach to publishing, your cover art, your book layout, your venue, your promotions, and…well, you get the idea. Learn to filter out the ones who are just being mean because they are jealous, and the ones who are being constructive. That is quite possibly your most valuable tool.

4. Read!

There seems to be a stark division on this subject. Either people feel writers should devour books like air, or they think you shouldn't read at all for fear of copying someone else’s idea. Personally, I think the latter is complete hogwash. If you don’t read, how are you supposed to learn and grow as a respectable writer? You can not only get ideas and see how other people are writing, but you can learn grammar, vocabulary, and evolve your style by reading. So, for heaven’s sake read!

3. Write as much as possible

So, most people will say, “write every day!” but I’m a realist. I know you can’t write every day. But you should write as much as possible. The idea behind the sentiment of “write every day!” is that it’s a priority for those people. Maybe their number one priority. For me, even though it’s not number one on my list, writing is still a priority for me, so I set goals. Usually weekly goals, like I need to write 5,000 words this week to stay on track. And, even if I’m not in the midst of writing a first draft, I still try to write, with stuff like this – blog posts, journal entries, musings etc. Bottom line here: Whatever you write doesn't have to be Earth shattering. It just has to be words on a page.

2. Never stop learning

The writing and publishing world is going through a dramatic change right now. If you are dumb enough to refuse to evolve with it then I’m done talking to you. There are a tremendous amount of resources out there, and all you have to do is absorb them. Some of my favorites are Stephen King’s On Writing and David Gaughran’s Let’s Get Visable.

1. Find what works for you

I used to be a seat of your pants writer. My first book – The Blackout – was filled with plot holes, changed character names and major issues when I finished with the first draft. So, for The Cure, I tried outlining. The first draft went much better. I had fewer changes, fewer mistakes, and in the end, produced a better book. However, I was flexible with my outline. When inspiration struck me, I went with it and ended up writing several chapters that weren't included in my outline. I feel like it was a good marriage of outlining and seat of your pants writing. And it worked for me. You might be a little more organized than that, and need to have a 17 page outline before you can even think about writing, or you might just need to start at it when the mood strikes. That’s fine. The important thing is to keep trying different things and do what works for you.

About Stephanie Erickson

Let's see. What do you want to know about me? I love apocalypse movies like 2012 (which is probably why my first book is sort of apocalyptic), I love to read, I love my fur babies, my husband and my family.

I'm a graphic designer by trade, but hoping to some day be able to write full time.

Dan, my husband, and I are brand new parents and loving life!

As far as writing goes, The Blackout was my first published novel, but I've been writing for quite awhile. I won honorable mention in the 72nd Annual Writer's Digest Competition for a short story junior year of college, so that was...awhile ago anyway. Although I published a scholarly paper senior year, fiction writing has always been my passion. Can't wait to see what's next!


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By the way, this is an awards-free blog. I appreciate it though, really. :D

 
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