Wednesday, September 1, 2010

A Post I'm SO Scared to Write...

So ... it's Grey Griffins week--which means I'm supposed to be dedicating all the posts to the absolutely fabulous Grey Griffins series. But as I was planning the week, I realized that there's so much more to the Grey Griffins than awesome stories (though seriously guys, the books are fantastic--especially if you love Middle Grade. You need to read them.)

I said it yesterday, but I'll say it again today: Jon Lewis--one of the writers of the series--is definitely one of the sweetest, kindest, most helpful writers I've met. And whenever I think about his books, I can't help thinking about what a huge inspiration he's been to me on my journey toward publication--more than he probably realizes.

Not only was he one of the planners of the event that really kicked my butt into gear and got me to crack down and finally WRITE THE DARN BOOK, but he's given me snippets of advice, support--even some very generous offers of help along the way. And even though I never took him up on those offers, it was through them that I found the motivation to keep going--even when it was hard. Even when I wanted to give up.

So as I organized a week in honor of his books, I realized it wouldn't be complete without me paying the help he's given me forward. I needed to give something back to the writing community, just like Jon has for me.

But what? 

I'm...nobody. 

What could I possibly give back that anyone would want?

Hence the title of this post because, well, I came up with something--and I'm SO scared that no one is going to want it. But I'm offering it anyway and if no one takes me up on it, well, at least I put it out there. It can't be bad to offer. So here's what's on the table:

I've been told that I have a good eye when it comes to critiquing. I've done a lot of it over the last year, for various CPs and Betas, and a bunch more thanks to WriteOnCon--so I do have *some* experience. And I know most of you have a work in progress.


So...what I'm offering today are three 'first chapter' critiques, for three people who comment on today's post--assuming three people even comment.

If I only get three comments, those are the lucky winners. If there's more than that, then randomizer.org gets to choose.

You don't have to blog, tweet, or do anything other than comment (unless, of course, you want to). And I'll give you until midnight PST on Thursday to leave a comment before I draw winners. I'll announce the winners on Friday. Oh, and if you don't have an email address attached to your profile, make sure you leave it in the comment, so I have a way to reach you if you win.

And...I guess that's it. We'll see if I have any takers. *bites nails*

Oh, and in case you missed it, I'm giving away some awesome Grey Griffins books and posters, signed and drawn in by the author. Trust me guys--you do not want to miss out. Contest details can be found here.

Happy Wednesday Everyone!

70 comments:

  1. Woohoo! Why would anyone *not* want that??

    *crosses fingers*

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  2. I foresee a LOT of comments on this post.

    That's an awesome thing to give away!

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  3. This is a super awesome contest. I would LOVE to win. I know it'd help my manuscript that I'm in the middle of cutting. So pick me, pick me please.

    And you are giving a lot back the the community with your query critique too. Mine will be coming as soon as I fix it.

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  4. I'm a taker!! And comment #4. How could you doubt only three commenters? LOL. Um...yeah, love the Tiffany look of that box.

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  5. Girl, don't be so modest! You're going to have a lot of takers! I'd jump all over it if I had something reasonably worth critiquing at the moment. One of these days...one of these days!

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  6. YAY that's awesome. You're a rockstar in case no one has told you that today.

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  7. You are so far from being a nobody! But what a great thing to giveaway! And see...you already have more than three comments!

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  8. An honest opinion? That has to be one of my favourite prizes :) Count me IN. There are going to be Many more than three, which means, I might not win now ;) Fingers crossed!

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  9. Okay, this is only the best prize ever! Something I really need right now. Please Randomizer... pick me. Shannon, you're awesome and extremely generous. Thank you.

    iwillwhisperno(at)gmail(dot)com

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  10. I do! I do! *Jumping and waving hands in the air* Pick me!!

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  11. Sounds like a great prize! I'd love to win this and have someone look at my new book!

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  12. I love your humility. Srsly. I think all writers and esp. ones on the other side of the hump can give critiques! That's a great way to pay it forward!

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  13. DUDE! Seriously???? YOU RAWK and you are about to find out HOW MUCH when your comment box is OVERFLOWING!!!!!

    WOOT!

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  14. Ummm, you dangle that apple in front of starving writers and what do you aspect us to say? Yes, I'm throwing my hat in. :)

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  15. We're writers, we crave critique! I don't think you'll have any problem getting comments today, because critiques are the BEST possible prize.

    I hope I win, 'cause I think your awesome! *sends positive brain waves to Random.org*

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  16. What an awesome thing to do. I know they'll be loads of comments. Please, random.org pick me !

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  17. That is the perfect prize...fingers crossed.

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  18. you are awesome my dear! I already see lots of comments :)

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  19. way more than 3 comments already! *hugs* I don't have anything for you to critique, so leave me out of this :D

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  20. What a sweet post and I love that you're paying it forward. Who could ever turn down a critique!? Can't wait to hear more about the series

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  21. I will have to check out Grey Griffins. And most importantly, I think what you are doing is generous, and the right thing to do. I always try to remember the people who have helped me in the past, and when I get the opportunity to help others in kind, I try to do it. I really could use a critique of my first three chapters. Keeping my fingers crossed.

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  22. +JMJ+

    This is a very generous offer. You make me wish I were still writing fiction. =) (And maybe you'll prove to have inspired me and I will again!)

    Obviously, I have nothing for you to critique. I just wanted to tell you that I think this offer is awesome! =)

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  23. Silly girl! When was the last time you had only 3 comments on your blog?! And of course we will all fight over - um, jump at - the chance to receive a critique from you. My query pre-Shannon vs. post-Shannon is unbelievable. Count me in, #1! :-)

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  24. Yay for paying it forward! Thanks so much, Shannon--definitely count me in :)

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  25. Seriously? Seriously. Anyone would be crazy not to take you up on that offer. People who are in the writing journey offering to read another person's work? Priceless.

    I'm jealous of the first three and sorry that I went to that dentist appointment instead of reading blogs! :)

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  26. Silly Shannon--of COURSE we want your help! Thanks for the chance at a stellar critique :)

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  27. What an awesome prize! So generous to give up your time and pay it forward.

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  28. I'm totally jumping on this bandwagon, Shannon. And you thought you'd only have three...

    I love the idea of a pay it forward. Thank you!

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  29. Critiques from people are always useful.

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  30. Pick me! Pick me!! :)

    anniemcmahon20 at yahoo dot com

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  31. Ummm, I would be thrilled to have chapter critiqued by you! :)

    And hey - 30 comments! (now 31!)! You are much loved and respected and admired, methinks. :)

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  32. Speaking as someone who knows how unbelievably amazing you are I want to throw my name in this bowl and hope it comes up! We love you girl and value your knowledge & passion!

    Visit My Kingdom Anytime

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  33. Hahahaha...I am still chuckling over the idea that you'd only get 3 comments...I can't believe I squeaked into the first 50!
    I am crossing all my fingers and toes...and making my husband and kids do the same. I loved the query critique you did for me....I would be beside myself to have you look at my first 3 chapters.
    Thanks again, Shannon, for "paying it forward"! You are awesome!

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  34. Awesome!! Do you critique more than MG? If so, count me in :)

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  35. What was WriteOnCon, if it wasn't giving back to the writing community? I bet your critiques are fantastic!

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  36. Well, count me in! This is a GREAT prize. Thanks so much for doing this! Never sell yourself short!

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  37. Sounds like a great prize to me! Thanks!

    lisagalek at gmail dot com

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  38. Um, I think you have a few more than three comments. LOL! Please enter me to win one of those critiques! :)

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  39. Um, WOW! I am seriously blown away you guys. I can't believe how sweet and enthusiastic you all are. THANK YOU!

    Just one tiny note--I'm giving away 3 'first chapter' critiques. Meaning 3 winners will get to have me critique their first chapter.

    I wish I could do the first three chapters, but I'm a VERY meticulous critiquer (no really, ask my CPs) so it usually takes me 2-3 hours to do one chapter. Sometimes longer. So I unfortunately don't have enough time to do 3 chapters for each winner.

    But since this is seeming MUCH more popular than I expected, I may have to do this again. To thank you all for your wonderful support for my blog.

    Again, THANK YOU!

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  40. WOW you ARE generous! I'm still sending you my query for critique and now I'm hoping I'll be sending SO much more *bats eyelashes*

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  41. Oh, and I'm happy to critique whatever the project is: MG, YA, even adult.

    I'll admit, I have more experience with MG and YA, but I have read and critiqued adult (um...in the non dirty sense of the term) before, so I am happy to try my hand at whatever you write. :)

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  42. 41 comments later. Let me just add my testimony to Shannon's brilliance. She read my pages for me -- fast too -- and holy cow. She is FLAWESOME (flippin' awesome).

    You want to win this. You want to win it bad.

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  43. I'm not throwing my hat into the ring but wanted to offer up encouragement anyway. I think it's a fabulous prize. I'm still needing to re-write after my Katherine Duey crit. Otherwise, I'd be right in the competetion for it too. :)
    Lisa ~ YA Literature Lover

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  44. Ok this is not fair!!! I just read this and already look at all the comments!!!

    I was out buying my copy of Paranormalcy!! ok and working sort of.

    Like Elana says I want this...I want this bad.lol
    I am sure everyone else does too!

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  45. OMG, want want want! Or to be more coherant, should I say:

    Why, isn't this exciting! I would adore this opportunity to get critiqued!

    And in closing, PICK ME!!!

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  46. I think you offer more to the writing community than you think :)

    Shannon critiqued my query and it was exactly what I needed!

    Any critique I can get on any of my work is awesomesauce!

    taffy.lovell@gmail.com

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  47. Woo! Who wouldn't want a crit?

    *fingers crossed*

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  48. hehehe I'm not entering because I get your critiques daily anyway <3

    But to everyone who IS entering--dude, I hope you win! Shannon is a freaking AWESOME critiquer!!

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  49. Sorry you offered? You will be if I win! ;-)

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  50. Ooooh, another set of fresh eyes on my work? Sign me up!

    rebeccaenzor@gmail.com

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  51. As I write this, I see you already have 50 other entries, so I don't think you need to worry about no one wanting a critique from you. =)

    I second the recommendation to read the Grey Griffins series! The cover of Revenge of the Shadow King intrigued me enough to pick up the book from a Scholastic book fair at my kids school a few years back. After reading the first one, I had to have the other two. They are AWESOME!

    Now I can't wait to read the Clockwork Chronicles!

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  52. Sounds awesome! Please universe (and whatever god(s) control random number generators) pick me :D

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  53. Um, I would DEFINITELY love a critique! This is an awesome gift, thanks!

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  54. Wow, I would LOVE to be entered into your drawing! *jumps around, waving hands* Pick me, random.org, pick me!

    And my contact email would be jasmine at littleknown dot ca

    I think I'm entry number 53, so at this point I wouldn't worry overly much about people not wanting to enter your draw. :D

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  55. Awww, not number 50, but trust me, this contest is SOOOO worth it. You want to win this. She's embarrassed, but she rocks hard core with the critiques.

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  56. Who wouldn't be interested in that?? Woo!

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  57. You seem to have gotten a bit more than 3! Thanks for the offer!

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  58. Yup. I want to win this. Boy, do I want to win this.

    Please, let this contest go my way!

    And thanks for hosting this great contest! How could you think no-one would want you to critique their first chapter? You are a WriteOnCon organizer! Everything you touch is gold now. (If that sounds like I'm trying to be flip, I'm not - I'm totally serious. You and Elana and the rest of the WriteOnCon team gained yourselves some serious cred with that event.)

    Thanks again for the contest!

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  59. Wow, this is a generous prize! Please put my name in the hat:)

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  60. What a fabulous giveaway idea! Would love to win. Thanks for the opportunity!

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  61. I think I'm comment #61. Woo hoo! Love to be entered in your awesome critique contest.

    Even if I'm not chosen to be one of those lucky 3 people, I want to say thanks for doing this, Shannon. A really generous thing to offer.

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  62. Shannon - you're a doll! What a terrific idea. As you can see by now, there are a LOT more than 3 people who know you'd be a fabulous critiquer (I'm sure that's a word... right??). Love your idea.

    And seriously, please never say you're a nobody again. With your heart you're most definitely a wonderful somebody.

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  63. 62 comments! That's more than 3! I'd love a critique. :)

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  64. Great post! You're so generous and sweet. Whoever wins this is very lucky!

    It's really great that you are giving back. You are a very special writer & person ;o)

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  65. Awww Man! I am so bummed that I missed this great opportunity. And Miss Shannon, you are silly to think no one would want a critique from you...You're obviously awesome!

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  66. I didn't miss it, did I??

    Silly girl, thinking people wouldn't want this.. :-)

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  67. First, lovin' the new look of the blog- Second, yeah, like only three people would comment...right. Third, maybe this will be the time I actually win!!! (although, Frankie did say you could be tough, so may be not...jk)

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  68. Have I missed this? I just saw this on YA Highway..*kinda bummed*

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  69. Oooh, I would love to win a critique from you! It couldn't come at a better time.

    Please enter my name :)

    Thank you!

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  70. Missed it! How terrible. (But I'm glad you got so many comments!)

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Yay-I love comments! Thank you so much! (But please remember to keep your comments spoiler-free. Also, I try to keep this a happy, positive place. Friendly debate is fine, but always be kind to each other). <3