Thursday, July 11, 2013

All About My Firsts! Like A Virgin Pitch Contest Bloghop


Hey y'all! Nice to meet you. As a brief introduction, I'm JRo, author of NO PLACE TO FALL, a contemporary YA coming Fall 2014 from Harper Teen. As well as being a writer, I'm a high school art teacher, an equestrian, dog lover, blueberry picker, and lover of wild things (nature that is). Looking forward to getting to know you and reading your AWESOME WORDS!!

So, without further ado:

My first birthday and first piece of chocolate cake! I still enjoy it as much!

1. How do you remember your first kiss?

Honestly? I remember being totally grossed out. I was at summer camp in Missouri. The boy's name was Steve. I think I was eleven or twelve and he'd been following me around for weeks. We went frog gigging promptly after the kiss.

2. What was your first favorite love song?

I'm pretty sure it was Lorelei by Styx. I was obsessed with them. They were my first concert, my first oil painting was of one of their album covers (Crystal Ball), and my first celebrity crush was the guitarist (Tommy Shaw).

3. What's the first thing you do when you begin writing for the day?

That one's easy. I pour a big cup of coffee with enough half and half to make it caramel colored.

4. Who's the first writer who truly inspired you to become a writer?

Honestly, I don't think a writer inspired me to become a writer. I just wrote. But, I am currently obsessed with THE ELEGANCE OF A HEDGEHOG by Muriel Barbery. She makes me want to become a BETTER writer.

5. Did the final revision of the book have the same first chapter it started with?

No. The one thing consistent about my writing is my beginnings always change. Sometimes I'll write half a book to get to know the story and the characters and I start over from scratch. But even if it's not that extreme, beginnings always change for me. It's hard to know the perfect place to start a story when it's just being formed. It's been a blessed release to learn this about my process and allows me to draft with some freedom.

6. For your first book, which came first: major characters, plot, or setting?

Always characters. I'm a very character-driven writer. When I hear the voice, know the intricacies of their relationships, the issues they're battling, then I have enough to worm my way in and let them tell me their stories.

7. What's the first word you want to roll off the tip of someone's tongue when they think of your writing?

Oh wow, what a FABULOUS question! And hard to do just one. Okay, heartfelt is what first came to mind. But genuine followed shortly thereafter.



37 comments:

  1. Gah, I love Styx! This video is definitely what I needed to finally wake up this morn :)

    I never know where to start a book either - I'm usually several revisions in before it really clicks for me b/c by then I've finally gotten to know my characters.

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  2. I recently threw out 38k words (or something like that) because the story finally showed up.

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  3. The Elegance of the Hedgehog is such an awesome book! Okay, gotta ask, what's frog gigging? :)

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    1. You sure you want to know? Take a long pole with a metal spike and capture frogs on said metal spike. This was Missouri. Big Frogs. Big Frog's legs.

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  4. I don't care how gross the kiss was it isn't as gross as frog gigging...

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    1. Yep. I've always been a bit of a ruffian. I wouldn't gig frogs anymore but I'd sure gig a flounder!

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  5. Love your first kiss story and frog gigging? Yeeks... But it's good to learn something new everyday :)

    Great getting to know you!

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  6. Heartfelt - that is a fabulous word! I think that sums up what I'd like people to think about my work, too.

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    1. I will share! And then I will READ YOUR BOOKS!

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  7. What on earth is frog gigging? Please explain to this city slicker. Can't wait to see what you make of our Virgins ;-)

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    1. It's a dastardly, brutal way of catching frogs to then hack apart to eat their legs. See comments above.

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    2. Oh yes. They really DO taste like chicken.

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  8. Okay, have you read THE UNDERNEATH by Kathy Appellet (spelling?). I really think you should. I'd send you my copy, but my greedy hands won't let me release it :)

    Frog gigging reminds me of the 'war' I had with a boy who used to blow up frogs with firecrackers. I blew up the dams and waterwheels he'd created in a stream. Revenge of the frogs! Of course, the big issue was the he didn't even eat them.

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    1. I have not, but I want to so bad. I pick it up almost every time I go to the bookstore. Must change this.

      No blowing up frogs is not cool. Not at all.

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  9. Love your answer to #5. So far I've had to rewrite the first chapters of my novels at least four times before I find the right place. I keep thinking at some point I'll nail it and just know how it's supposed to begin! But it sounds like I can relax knowing it's all part of the process.

    Oh, and frog gigging ... GROSS. I read it first as frog "giggling," which makes a much happier picture in my head, so I'm going to stick with that.

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  10. I love how interesting your firsts are! Nice to meet you!

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  11. Great words! I would love those words for my novels as well. Loved the kiss story :)

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  12. I agree, books that make us want to become better writers are as important as the book that first inspired us to write. And "heartfelt" and "genuine" sound good! It's nice to meet you :)

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    1. If you've not read THE ELEGANCE OF A HEDGEHOG, put it in your TBR pile. Soooo amazing.

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  13. I genuinely look forward to reading your heartfelt nove. ^_^

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  14. Ha! We have similar answers. I can't even start writing without pouring that cup of coffee, and mine has to be caramel in color, as well. LOVE, Lorelei!

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  15. Beginnings are such a tough one to nail...for me the voice has to ring almost perfectly. Nice first kiss story, now that's one to remember.

    Also I just added NO PLACE TO FALL to my TBR and I am so excited to get it in my hands!

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    1. Oh - that is so sweet! It's still surreal to think folks will be reading my book.

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  16. I've never heard of The Elegance of a Hedgehog. I should look it up.

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    1. Yes! Gorgeous, deep, make you think, make you cry book.

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  17. Love. Need to read the Hedgehog book. Anything with "hedgehog" in it must be awesome.

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  18. Replies
    1. See answers above, but basically, it's poking a frog all the way through with a sharp metal stick. To consume the legs. Forgive me, I was a huntress at age 11 or 12.

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  20. Love the photo! Ahhhhh, Styx! I learned something new: "frog gigging" LOL Nice to "meet" you!

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Hey, do you ever wonder why they call it 'your two cents?'