They’re dynamic, and they’re a duo, but they don’t do spandex

Unfortunately I am neither a Dr. Pepper-fueled writing machine nor a ninja cyborg, but fortunately they both have blogs so I can read all about them and live vicariously through their success!

(And when I say “all about them,” I mean ALL about them. Over the last few weeks, I’ve read their entire archives, or about 1,000 posts between the two of them. Yeah, productive, I know.)

Seriously, BFFs Kiersten White and Natalie Whipple are the awesome-est. Like, I should just delete my blog now because it will never live up to how funny and talented and wise they are. (But I’m not gonna do that, because I like my blog. Good blog. Pat pat.) Both Kiersten and Natalie write YA, but their advice is applicable to writers of any genre. I won’t link to ALL the posts that I favorited from their blogs, but here are a couple gems from each:

“The Weight of Words”

I feel as though I carry around the weight of all of my words, books written and unwritten, edited and unedited. Some days it’s overwhelming. And some days there is nothing better than being the shepherd of words, guiding my little flock of nouns and verbs to become characters, actions, stories.

I love these words, this mess and mass of meaning. Because just as often as I carry them, they seem to carry me.


Many aspiring writers have this belief that there is an idea out there. Not just an idea–THE Idea. The Idea that, if they just found it, would be the key to everything. Things would magically fall into place. Agents would call, sobbing, begging to represent them. Publishers would trip over themselves to buy it.

The Idea is everything. Find it, and you are set.

You really want to be a writer? Your Idea isn’t going to sell. Your WORK is going to sell.

“Some Musings on Subjectivity”

I think we as writers sometimes focus too much on the “magic formula.” We want everyone to like us, which is totally impossible. And we want so badly just to be told what to do to get published, how to become a best-seller, and on and on that we lose sight of how awesome subjectivity really is.

Here’s why: Subjectivity means there is a place for you, or several, if you so chose.

“Energizer Bunny”

If there’s one thing I’ve learned about writing and attempting to publish, it would be how much stamina it takes to push through. See, it’s not “Oh, I tried once and failed, so it’s over.” It’s trying. A perpetual state of TRYING. Trying to find a good idea. Trying to finish that WIP. Trying to get all the revisions right. Trying to get an agent. Trying to get a book deal. Trying to get readers. Trying to write a sequel. Trying not to go insane. Try, try, try.

It’s exhausting. It really is—there’s no way to sugar coat it. It’s like running a marathon, but you don’t know how long you have left.

See, awesome? Now go enter Natalie’s contest, and/or her agent Nathan Bransford’s contest. Yes, that’s right, Natalie is represented by THE rockstar agent Nate B. And Kiersten’s debut book (1 of 3) is coming out in Sept 2010. What’s that? AWE. SOME.

Like this:



Writing transforms


Word math


  1. Are you entering both of the contests? If so, it would be cool to see your entries here on your blog. Kind of like those writing exercises you did for that writers workshop dealie.
    .-= • Recent post by Sonja: OMG it’s a new decade in the 2000s =-.

  2. They’re great, aren’t they? Kiersten’s blog inspired me to start a blog of my own, so basically, I have her to think for all nights of Ramen I have to eat now. LOL. I love it, though, and wouldn’t have it any other way!

    I’m working on my entry to NB’s contest right now! I hope you enter, I would love to see it.
    .-= • Recent post by Kimberly Franklin: Catching Fire =-.

  3. Some really great advice in those quotes. Especially the subjectivity one.
    .-= • Recent post by James Brush: The Last Post of 2009 =-.

  4. Sonja-
    Now THAT is a very good idea. Crud. That means I actually gotta do ’em!

    Aw, I didn’t know Kiersten inspired you to blog. How awesome! Right now she’s got me contemplating vlogs, actually… but I dunno, other than hers, I’m never too excited by videos.

    Howdy! Fellow Texan, woot! And do you know Mike Chen? He’s a writer with greyhound love too (although his beloved girl Indy recently passed…).

  5. Yep, it’s true! She truly is all-inspiring! I love the vlogs. Personally, though, I never see myself doing one. I think it would be way to akward, for me, to talk to myself on camera…LOL. Lots of people do them, though. And I Love them!

    Good Luck!
    .-= • Recent post by Kimberly Franklin: Catching Fire =-.

  6. You crack me up. I love how you make us look all smart and wise, when we’re really just a couple of wackos. Well, at least I am. Kiersten might be normal…sometimes.
    .-= • Recent post by Natalie Whipple: Self-Editing—An Example =-.

  7. Natalie-
    If y’all are wackos, lead me to the loony bin!

  8. Good stuff. Sorry I’ve been absent lately–holidays have been busy as hell.
    .-= • Recent post by Eric: Writing & Music =-.

  9. Aw, no worries, I totally hear ya on that one! No need to apologize, although it makes me feel warm/fuzzy that you’d even think to. :)

  10. You are so funny, Kristan. And I’m glad you clarified that we don’t wear spandex because really, spandex? Not my friend.

    I’m just relieved there are people out there that think we’re actually helpful and entertaining and stuff, rather than the truth: we are stark raving mad.

    I think it’s the cuteness factor that confuses people…
    .-= • Recent post by Kiersten White: Answers: Part the Second =-.

  11. Yeah, you know, after 2.5 years with Riley, I’ve definitely decided that cuteness is one of nature’s survival mechanisms.

Comments are closed.

Powered by WordPress & Theme by Anders Norén