Hello Squad! It’s been a while since I updated my blog. I have no excuse except to say I’ve been slammed with book releases, playing catch-up, and co-writing a book with a friend of mine. I have so much to update, but I won’t throw it all on you at once. If you’d like to get all the juicy details, you can sign up for my monthly newsletter, The Mindful Dramatist, on my website at http://www.mjpadgettbooks.com! The November newsletter will release on November 15, and will have a link for a FREE e-book just in time for the holidays so sign up soon!
Since most of my blog followers are Wattpad fans (If you found me through another avenue and have no idea what Wattpad is, you fan find it here: https://www.wattpad.com/) , I decided to focus on my co-written book called The Extraordinary Extraterrestrial Love Lives of Doppelgangers in this blog post. The book was written with my friend, Crystal Crawford, a fellow author I met on Wattpad. It will release directly to our Wattpad account @ConsiderateMalice on Thursday, November, 22. Yep, on Thanksgiving Day! So, while you wait for the turkey to roast, you can read the prologue and chapter one off our alien romance—which is not nearly as weird as it sounds. Okay, it probably is, but that’s okay! It’s fun and lighthearted, filled with awkwardness, a little brooding, lots of humor, and—most importantly—a sweet love story or two.
While you’re on Wattpad, give Crystal a follow @CCrawfordWriting, then follow our joint account @ConsiderateMalice (our lovely name is explained on in our biography.) Now for the fun part, the cover release and blurb! Read on for an interview with my co-author!
What happens when two normal girls find themselves in the middle of an intergalactic conspiracy? Romance, of course… what else?
Grace and Alexia are two strangers who live in the same city and who, unbeknownst to them, share the same face. They also happen to be the targets of alien spies, who aren’t sure which girl overheard sensitive information. When two extraterrestrial hot guys from warring planets come to find out what the girls know and whether their planets are at risk, things go a little bit crazy on Earth. Grace and Alexia must come together to save themselves… and their planet… and the men they love… in this fast-paced, romantic suspense comedy co-written by MJ Padgett and Crystal Crawford.
Love triangles, tension, comedy, angst, suspense, mystery… this book has ALL the feels. Oh, and did we mention it has aliens?
Join Grace and Alexia for the adventure of their lives… if they can survive it!
Interview with Crystal Crawford of CCrawford Writing!
1. Have you always wanted to be a writer? When/what made you pursue writing as a career?
I cannot remember a time that I wasn’t writing something. I wrote my first “book” in kindergarten — a story about my dog that my teacher bound with a little fabric cover. I used to climb up in trees and spend hours writing stories and poems. But I never really thought of writing as a possible career, until perhaps college, when I decided to study it. It’s just been always something I’ve done, and the times I’ve gone months or even years without writing, I feel… frustrated. Like something is missing. I’m happier when I’m writing.
2. What are your favorite books/series? Why?
I love books that surprise me but also make me feel. Harry Potter is one of my favorites. Inkheart (and its sequel)… Ender Games (though I think I liked the Bean spin-offs even better), Wheel of Time series… oh, and Name of the Wind. Patrick Rothfuss writes almost like poetry.
I love fantasy, but also romance… preferably a mix of both. The Hunger Games left me with a book-hangover for days when I finished the series. I like that, even though it’s unsettling. I loved Jane Eyre and I developed a love for Shakespeare (it’s an acquired taste) and I haven’t read much Dickens but I love David Copperfield. As a kid I read more adventure/drama, especially animal-related books like Julie of the Wolves and Island of the Blue Dolphins. I love animals, always have. It was my other career.
3. If you had to choose one author to read for the rest of your life, who would it be?
Oh wow. That’s hard. Is the Bible an answer? Lol.
Other than that, I’m going to say MJ Padgett, because I learn a ton from reading and co-writing with her.
4. What do you like most about writing fantasy?
The discovery of it. Exploring an entire world, the freedom to make something completely new. In fantasy, whatever you can imagine, you can do… as long as you can figure out how to make it work. I love the challenge of that, puzzling it all out and that magical feeling when it all clicks together.
5. You mentioned once that the idea for your Legends of Arameth series came to you about ten years ago. What made you finally decide to write about Lex and his world?
A couple years ago, I did NaNoWriMo, and started a totally new fantasy story. It didn’t go well. Something just wasn’t clicking. And then suddenly I realized that the world I’d set up could totally be the same world I’d created for the other one, with just a few small changes. I combined the worlds, put all the characters in the same place — which I’d never planned on doing, at first — and suddenly it all made sense. This fantasy world I’d created ten years before but didn’t know what to do with had a purpose. And The Lex Chronicles was born.
6. What is the best piece of advice anyone had ever given you?
Just write. It doesn’t have to be perfect — it can even be bad, because you can always fix it later! — but it does have to be written. I was the worst at talking myself out of a story… it’s dumb, it’s not original enough, where are you even going with this, no one will want to read this. The advice to just write, let it be terrible if it needs to but write… that changed everything for me.
7. What advice do you have for new writers who want to publish their own work? Any advice for young authors who are just getting started?
This builds on the last one. It turns out, the more you write the better you get. So the secret to being a good writer is pretty simple, really — write. A lot. Write and read and write and read, as much as you can. Let it be an obsession, that’s okay, writers are weird anyway and you can use that excuse. Get feedback. Be okay receiving criticism, because we all get tunnel-vision and sometimes readers’ feedback is the key to unlocking exactly how to make your story better. Take what’s useful, reject the rest… but be humble. If everyone is saying the same thing, they may be right. Keep an open mind.
For young writers: Don’t think your current level of writing is all you’ve got. Whether you think you’re great (most young writers do) or terrible, the truth is you haven’t reached your max yet. You can always do better, and there’s no magic solution. Read good writing, pay attention to what those authors do and how, study the craft however you can and then practice it. Again and again and again. This has been said before, and it’s something that’s helped me a lot: most writers give up. If you refuse to give up, you’re already in the minority. If it’s really what you want to do, don’t let anyone — especially yourself — convince you it’s impossible. Treat it like a calling, like a job, whatever works for you… but commit to writing regularly, daily if you can, and then write. A lot. Til your eyes blur or your brain implodes. Writing is not for the faint of heart but there’s also nothing quite like finishing a novel that makes people cry. If it’s your dream, make it happen. It’s on you. No one else can write your story.