Created for Necessity, Employed for Passion

"What's in a name? That which we call a rose by any other name would smell as sweet"

Let's build a world. Explore what we believe by writing. In many ways my characters’ experiences with fate, destiny and free-will mirror my own. What is up to us and what isn’t? It’s one of the great questions of the human experience, I think. But no matter what is for us to control, we must own the identity. You’re a writer if you write. Period. Writing is a lovely way to spend one’s time. Enjoy it. And I hope you enjoy my writing here.

Monday, December 31, 2012

New Year

2012 has been a great one for me. I published my first novel, When You Were Mine. I sat on a panel at Comic Con (!) I even saw The Counting Crows AND Justin Bieber in concert (seriously, guess what I am most excited about?) The New Year is kind of a big deal for me. My birthday, like Rosaline's, is January 2nd, and therefore in many ways, all of my years begin again in the same period of time. Another year of life, another year of MY life.

I was hanging out last night with two of my friends. They are 19, but they still let me pretend I am cool. So many New Years and birthdays have passed since I was there age and even so, I don't feel grown up yet. And I think that is thanks to all of you. I get to keep talking about being young, figuring it out, about first love. I get to keep giggling and laughing and swooning over cute boys (here's looking at you, Efron). Sometimes people ask me why I write YA novels and I can't give a better answer than this: we have fun.

Thank you for a wonderful, lovely, exciting, dream-making 2012. Here is to an even BETTER 2013.



Sunday, December 16, 2012

I don't know what to say.

I don’t know what to say. I have heard those words so many times over the past few days. We don’t know what to say. Nothing seems adequate. We feel guilty for going about our lives, we feel guilty for our sadness—after all, we did not lose someone. I want to talk about gun control; I don’t want to talk about the shooter. I want to read everything about those children, to honor them, and yet when I see their faces, I cannot clear my eyes.

This tragedy has touched us all.

I don’t know what to say.  I don’t know what to say, so I will write.

I am a children’s author. I believe in words. I believe in their power—to inspire, to reflect, to love. I believe in their worth. I believe in their power to heal. Particularly stories for young people. Many of my fellow authors like to talk about how redemptive children's literature is. That it is hopeful, and that makes it not only lovely to read, but also to write. It gives us faith. The words make us believe-- we can do better, we can love deeper, all is well. 

I've seen so many words since Friday. News articles and blog posts and headlines. Some have made me cringe, some have made me cry. Some seem to lack pure motive, others have been simply snapshots of anguish. All have tried, in some way, to make sense of this. We have used the only tools we have.

And yet, they fail, too.

Words are not adequate. Everything is insufficient. There is so much.

But we need to try, I think. We must keep talking, keep writing, keep sharing. We must keep stumbling over words, using the wrong ones, forgiving each other for it.

Someone asked me yesterday how it is possible that so much evil exists in the world. I try not to believe in evil. I believe in people who have strayed very, very far from love. But how could we classify Friday’s events as anything but?

I do not know. But I know that word has power, and that is a start. Because if evil has power, so does love. And I believe, I know, that love is greater.

I love you all, and I hold you closely now.



Monday, December 10, 2012

12 Days of Questions!

I'm doing 12 Days of Questions this holiday season over on twitter!

Tweet me @RebeccaASerle and ask me anything! Publishing, writing process, my favorite type of peanut butter-- whatever! I promise to respond. 12 days. 12 questions-- ask away!

And if you don't have twitter, feel free to leave your Q here and I will get back to you in the comments.



Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Often, Things End

I have just finished a re-read of Nora Ephron's I Feel Bad About My Neck. I think it's more moving than I Remember Nothing, and more ominous, even though that makes no sense at all. She wrote I Remember Nothing while she knew she was ill. I Feel Bad About My Neck was before.

Even so.

I am a tremendously over-emotional person. I believe this is, in large part, what makes me a good writer. It is certainly what makes me try to be one. Writing helps sort some stuff out. It always has. Whether it's indirect or direct. Whether you see it, like in When You Were Mine, or whether it bears no resemblence to my life at all (except a few ex references. Those are real).

It's therapy. Word. word. word. word. I write. I get through the rocky beginning, and the endless, desert of a middle. I find the sweet ending, sort of. Most of this sucks. Most of it won't make it.

I will edit, and edit, and further edit, and edit some more. And then I will stand on my head, and do everything I just said but backwards, playing scrabble. It's all very confusing. It involves a lot of copy and pasting. A lot of sad, sad cutting. A bit of crying. A few bad decisions. A few breakdowns. One come to jesus moment. MAYBE two, if there is chocolate.

And then I get here.

Finishing a book is a strange experience, but I think you can relate. You have finished books. You have set a world down you've just spent time inside, and said goodbye to it. It's not always easy. Sometimes you don't want to leave just yet. But it's time. It's over. 

Every time I read Ephron I find myself totally perplexed at her ending. Not the fact that she's not here, although that is deeply perplexing, the most perplexing of all. No, what I mean is the fact that she was incredibly unsentimental about goodbyes. The woman who wrote the defining romantic comedies, whose love stories will live on for generations and generations (my sentimentality is really showing itself to be a fault of mine, here), didn't have a particularly emotional disposition. She was no-nonsense. She was onward.

There are so many things in life that end. Romance, and friendship, and trust, and even faith, sometimes. Stories are just one of them, but for tonight, for me, they are what matter.

That is all (for now).

(and yet)