YOU, ME, & LETTING GO by Katie Kaleski
Publication Date: May 14, 2019
Publisher: Swoon Romance
Van Sato’s got labels. Tourettes, ADHD, SPD – words that have defined his existence since the time he was old enough to know what they meant. Now, Van wants to prove he’s more than an acronym, a syndrome, a problem kid. He takes a summer job as a day camp counselor to prove he’s capable of independence and moving on to the next phase in his life. Maybe, he might even make a friend while there. Someone who’s got just as many or even more labels than him. Someone who understands what it’s like.
Tabby Dubanowksi wants to forget about everything, the hospitalization, the judgment, the whispers behind her back. As a camp counselor, she will be admired, looked up to, and able to help people who don’t know anything about her old life. Tabby wants a fresh start and a chance to re-ignite her passion for film-making, if only for one summer.
After running away from their pasts, Van and Tabby collide in a storm cloud of attraction laced with self-doubt, insecurity, shame, and blame. Now, with Van feeling like he might have to quit his job, and Tabby struggling to quell the urge to cut, they will struggle to find themselves in a world designed to keep them apart.
If I Knew Then What I Know Now About Writing
I contemplated if I should focus on things I wish I knew about writing craft or being a writer, and I decided to do a bit of each.
As a writer, you will be blasted with so many writing rules. Rules so many other writers say you’ll need to follow because otherwise you’ll never get published or your work will be thought of as amateurish. Well, I’m here to say don’t focus too much on these rules because even the best-selling and most literary of all authors break them. Write the way that is comfortable for you. Perhaps keep the rules in mind, but it’s okay if you break them. One of the most mentioned rules out there is show, don’t tell. Sometimes, you just need to tell. And pssst, that’s okay. I try my best to do the whole show thing, but this rule still kind of confuses me.
And the list for rules goes on and on. I say write your story and worry about the rules later. But I’m just one writer. Take what you hear from all sorts of writers and form your own opinion and go from there.
Another thing that would’ve been helpful back in my wee baby writer days is if someone said, “Keep writing.” That’s the only way you’ll get better. They say practice makes perfect, but when you’re a writer, practice only makes you better than your last book. You should be growing and practicing throughout your whole writing career. And right now, if you’re sitting in front of your manuscript and screaming, “Great googly mooglies does my writing suck butt,” into the void, just keep writing.
It’s also so important to know that each and every writer has their own path and timeline, and those paths and timelines are so different from each other. I know it’s hard, but don’t compare your journey to someone else’s. No two look alike.
But I will say one of the biggest things I wish I knew about writing back when I was just starting out wasfind some writing friends. A writing squad, a group that’ll be there for you. Other writers that help keep you positive, help with your five million comma questions (I always have comma question), and to be there to listen or laugh or cry about being a writer. If you have fellow writers who support you, it makes the craft and career of being a writer so much more pleasant.
Katie Kaleski has started down many career paths and held many jobs—indie craft store clerk, pizza maker, photo developer, shoe salesperson and cashier, dental assistant in the army, daycare teacher, student teacher—but her favorite one by far is being a writer.
She’s originally from Chicago, so she says things like pop, gym shoes, and front room. Her favorite food
group is sugar, and she loves writing young adult novels.
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