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wrestling the whale

Currently reading: The Sweetness at the Bottom of the Pie by Alan Bradley

Wrestling the whale is my term for revision.

Because that is what it is.

It is so big. You can’t get your arms around it. But you jump in the pool anyway and try to dodge the slaps from its flippy flippers.

I think the inspiration from this phrase likely came from a time years ago when we were eighteen and graduated from high school and all went on a long, overnight bus trip to Disneyland/Sea World and my friend Krista bought a big inflatable Shamu and when we were tired on the drive home she put it in the bus aisle as a mattress and then tried to sleep. It didn’t work so whale. HA!

So all this week I am wrestling the whale. This is the longest book I’ve ever written (400 pages! What is up with that?). Good times.

Other news:

Have you heard of this writing conference? Great price, great presenters. I hope to be a part of it someday when I grow up. Or maybe next year, when MATCHED is actually out! They’re having a great auction for charity that night and Penguin was kind enough to donate an ARC of MATCHED, so that will be just one of many items available.

I’m doing a book signing in August (click the Events page for more details). There won’t be any copies of MATCHED there, but my other books should be available, and I always like going to the BYU Bookstore. I worked there for several years in college for the best boss ever, George Satteson. And everyone there is so nice.

And, finally, the biggest news of all. The potty-training was a success. I am living in a land of rainbows and gumdrops and shiny things and now have only one child in diapers.

+ comments (13)
  • M.J. Horton
    July 27, 2010

    This post reminded me of what I’m facing in a few days!

    Good luck with it all! πŸ˜€

  • Susan
    July 27, 2010

    I just finished wrestling that whale. Heidi Taylor at Deseret Book asked for changes in a story I’d submitted. It should be six weeks before I find out if I get to be a big time YA LDS author, just like you. Maybe one day I’ll be signing those books in those BYU bookstore. Fingers crossed. Congrats on your success with Penguin.

  • Susan
    July 27, 2010

    *the* byu bookstore. Whoops. Maybe if I could spell I’d get published. πŸ™‚

  • KristaBulloch
    July 27, 2010

    Okay, we need to talk. First, thanks for sharing my shamu embarrassment with the world. Second, I just finished Matched a couple of days ago and I LOVED it! Third, I need to know your potty-training advice – STAT!

  • Sandy Shin
    July 27, 2010

    “Wrestling the whale” is such an apt term for revision! So daunting and huge, and yet you do it anyway.

    And congratulations on successful potty training! :]

  • Samantha Stewart
    July 27, 2010

    Congratulations on the potty training! Also on the forthcoming book signing! That should be fun. It seems like all the awesome book signings are happening on that side of the Mississippi these days. Oh, to be West. Of course, as soon as I get out there, I’ll find a bunch of things I miss about the East Coast. But family is there. That’s ample compensation for any loss.

    Good luck with the editing. It’s the best and worst part about writing.

  • Enna Isilee
    July 27, 2010

    YAY! I’m totally gonna be there! Happy day!

    Good luck wrestling your whale, and congrats on the potty training!

  • Sara B. Larson
    July 27, 2010

    Congratulations on the potty training! What a huge step. Woot woot! And good luck with the revisions. Go tackle that whale. πŸ˜‰

  • Yay on the potty training. My friend is trying to potty train her daughter too!
    Good luck with revisions:)

  • Ali
    July 29, 2010

    wow. sounds like you’ve been really busy since I last checked in.

  • DogBlogger
    July 29, 2010


    Here is a link to my review of Matched. I was one of the lucky few to receive an ARC at San Diego Comic Con from Penguin.

    I am looking forward to sharing Matched with my students… they will love it! πŸ™‚

  • Julie Dixon
    August 1, 2010

    The whale analogy is so appropriate. I just finished a second draft of the story I brought to the writers’ conference last year and it felt so good.

    I was on Bree Despain’s blog and she mentioned you’d be on a panel of authors with her. It’s nice to see you popping up on all of these panels.

    Congrats on the potting training πŸ™‚

  • ally
    August 3, 2010

    M.J., are you potty-training too??? Or revising? Good luck with either. πŸ™‚

    Susan, that is SO exciting! Keep us posted, all right?

    Krista, we DO need to talk. I am going to call you as soon as my kids stop screaming.

    Sandy, thank you!

    Samantha, that really is the way it is. We just had a reunion with all our NY friends and now I am missing NY all over again. Sigh.

    Enna Isilee, it will be so great to meet you!

    Sarah, thank you!

    Lindsay, thank you too!

    Ali, it has been crazy. But good crazy.

    DogBlogger, thank you so much for that link, for liking my book, and for sharing it with students. You are awesome.

    Julie, that’s so exciting! Are you going to start submitting soon?

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