blo Teens Read and Write: Author Guest Post: Leah Cypess - NIGHTSPELL

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Author Guest Post: Leah Cypess - NIGHTSPELL

Today we're thrilled to welcome one of our favorite authors, Leah Cypess! NIGHTSPELL comes out May 31. It's a companion novel to her popular MISTWOOD, which we adored. (check out the review). We asked Leah about pursueing a 'practical' career vs a writing career and she has some great insight!

When I was eight years old, I told my grandmother that I intended to be an author when I grew up. She didn’t think it was a good idea. Authors, she explained, didn’t make much money.

The first time I told this story to someone, she said, “I’m sorry your grandmother wasn’t supportive of you.” The response took me aback, because I never thought my grandmother was being unsupportive. She was being practical. My grandmother is an immigrant who worked hard all her life and never, until she was much older, had much money. To her, telling me to pursue an acknowledged impractical profession and not worry about the financial consequences wouldn’t have been “supportive.” It would have been insane.

To some extent, I share that view. I don’t think there’s anything ignoble about recognizing that writing is not a profession designed for financial stability – definitely not until you get published, which can take years, and often not even once you are published. I think it’s a good idea, even if being a full-time writer is your dream, to have some sort of plan for how you’re going to pay for food and rent and clothes. (Just make sure the dream also includes some sort of plan for how you’re going to find time to write.) 

Don't be This Guy!
I’ll add that even though the main reason for pursuing another career might be money, there are also other advantages. Everything you do – the skills you learn, the experiences you have, the people you meet – feed into and enrich your writing. Also, if you’re not dependent on writing for your income, you’ll have more freedom: to write without thinking about what’s marketable, to take as much time as you need to get a book right, to spend time on the project of your heart without knowing if it will ever get picked up. 

The main costs, on the other hand, are in time and creative energy – which even full-time writers can find in short supply. So ultimately, it’s a balancing act. It’s not always an easy one, but it’s definitely worth it.

Creative and practical - a brilliant strategy! Thanks Leah. It's good to hear sage advice from such a fantastic author! She practiced law for two years, and kept writing and submitting for a long time before her first novel was published, so she knows whereof she speaks!

And she lives near Boston so we have a special place in our hearts for her since dad's from Boston and we have a huge family there. Next time we visit we might have to stalk, ahem, try to pay a visit to Leah. But for now we're just glad she was gracious enough to visit our blog!  So check out NIGHTSPELL (May 31) and if you haven't read MISTWOOD, be sure to pick that up too!

by: Leah Cypress
pub: 5/31/11
genre: Teen Fiction- Fantasy
Amazon / Website / Twitter
A stand-alone companion novel to the much-acclaimed MISTWOOD. When Darri rides into Ghostland, a country where the living walk with the dead, she has only one goal: to rescue her younger sister Callie, who was sent to Ghostland as a hostage four years ago. But Callie has changed in those four years, and now has secrets of her own. In her quest to save her sister from herself, Darri will be forced to outmaneuver a handsome ghost prince, an ancient sorcerer, and a manipulative tribal warrior (who happens to be her brother). When Darri discovers the source of the spell that has kept the dead in Ghostland chained to this earth, she faces a decision that will force her to reexamine beliefs she has never before questioned - and lead her into the heart of a conspiracy that threatens the very balance of power between the living and the dead.


A desperate prince… a castle full of lies… and an ancient shapeshifter trapped in the form of a human girl.


Blodeuedd said...

Great post :)

I would love to read book 1, it sounds so good

Tales of Whimsy said...

That was great. That picture cracks me up.

Alyssa Kirk said...

Linda: Mistwood was great so I'm also looking forward to Nightspell!

Juju: Me too! But I hope they weren't serious

Melissa (Books and Things) said...

Great advice and a great post. I need to read these books!

Jenny N. said...

My parents would probably think the same thing. They always want the kids to grow up and be successful.

Giada M. said...

I LOVE Mistwood and I can't wait to read Nightspell.
Thank you for posting! :D

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