What I Did On My Summer Vacation

As a kid, I loved school. Honestly, I still do. It wasn’t so much that I liked the structure (because I could’ve found a million different things to do besides sitting in a room all day) but playing sports and learning something new every day was pretty awesome.

Back-to-school time was the best! Shiny school supplies, fresh uniform gear (I went to Catholic school), and a new lunchbox. I carried lunchboxes until manufacturers got all won’t somebody please think of the children?! and started making them out of plastic. I’m glad to see the old-school metal ones are making a comeback.

Invariably, one of the first assignments would be to report on what you did over the summer. The fall I entered fourth grade was particularly momentous. I was the new kid, having left the school I adored in order to be closer to my brother’s choice of high school (which he abandoned after two years, grr…). I was scared, angry, and nervous.

When Sister Theresa asked me what I had done over the summer I stood up (because you had to stand when answering questions in her class) and said, “I wrote a book.” Her expression was dubious to say the least. She very kindly asked, “What was it about, dear?” I took a long glance around the massive, open space.  Classes K-4 sectioned off by thin dividers. No natural light. Too much  noise. My answer: “It was about how I don’t want to be here.”

Welcome, new girl!

Thankfully, my summer report is much more cheerful this time around. On the writing front, I finished Camp NaNoWriMo in June and August, attended WriteOnCon, received a professional query critique, applied for two residencies, entered three contests, applied to be a book reviewer for a national magazine, wrote an article for an online art magazine, and finished revisions on one story.

I also put a good dent in my to-read pile by gratefully consuming Nina LaCour’s THE DISENCHANTMENTS, Courtney Summers’ SOME GIRLS ARE and CRACKED UP TO BE, WHATEVER HAPPENED TO GOODBYE by Sarah Dessen, WITH OR WITHOUT YOU by Brian Farrey, and Jennifer Echols’ LOVE STORY.

I’m really proud of my productive summer and I plan to ride that momentum into fall. I have tons of editing/revising/teeth gnashing to do while using my new school supplies to sketch out story ideas and devise a plan to launch my queries out into the world.

Nothing to it, right? 😉

P.S. I was also selected as a judge for the 2012 Cybils Children’s and Young Adult Bloggers’ Literary Awards! I couldn’t tell y’all until the official announcement today. It’s hard keeping secrets!

What did you do this summer?


12 thoughts on “What I Did On My Summer Vacation”

  1. Holy crap, the Cybils!?!?!! Girl, when are you going to sleep? You have all sorts of stuff going down this fall–do you think you’re still going to do NaNo this year?

    Congrats on the Cybils. That’s a great honor and a wonderful experience!


  2. Whew, that does sound like a productive summer. Congrats on those accomplishments.

    I’m totally with you — I used to love going back to school shopping. it was the one time of year I actually got NEW things (usually I got hand-me-downs from my sisters). There is nothing like a few new outfits and binders and pencils to make you all excited about going to school.


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