Welcome to my bio page!

Hi! Thanks for dropping by my #AMMConnect Bio page.

I’ll be submitting DREAMWALKERS, a YA Contemporary with Magical Realism, set in the New Mexico desert and the world of dreams. I submitted it for round 3, and it generated a lot of interest and some targeted feedback that I took to heart.

I was a writing contest rookie until last summer’s Pitch Wars. I wrote this book utterly unaware of the extraordinary Twitter writing community. I had amazing feedback from Pamela Thompson, my BFF/librarian/YA blogger/writer/alpha reader, but I did not know what a CP was, or a beat sheet–much less a Twitter pitch, a three-line pitch, or the difference between a query synopsis and a full synopsis (“Wait, you mean I have to tell them EVERYTHING? But I already did that when I wrote the book!”).

In 2014 I wrote DREAMWALKERS, the book of my heart, and I spent a year double-checking my research, getting feedback from beta readers, revising and editing before putting it out to query. I figured I would get a bunch of rejections at first, because even JK Rowling got rejections, and didn’t The Help have over 50 of them? But there would be an agent who loved it, and would be able to sell it, and that would probably take what, a year?

(insert laughing/crying emoji here, or maybe a .GIF of the steepest learning curve in the universe)

My adult writing credentials consisted of less than a dozen YA novel reviews in Pam’s award-winning blog, and a few non-fiction essays. One of them, The Secret of Santa, went viral a couple of years ago, and made it to the Washington Post, Huffington Post and Today Show websites.

So, my experience and writing cred are pretty skinny. But I know my reader. Disguised as a history teacher, I have eavesdropped on an entire generation, and I have never stopped listening to my teenage heart. My teenage voice speaks as loud as it ever has–maybe louder, because I have secretly been a teenager my entire life, and having served as an impostor and a spy in the world of adults, I know stuff now.

Everyone says your first book will never be published. You will love it more than anything, and it will never be better than mediocre, much less make it to a publisher. I don’t believe that. Technically, DREAMWALKERS is about three books different than it started out to be, and another three away from the first draft. I received two full requests last year, and two last month. If it isn’t there yet, DREAMWALKERS is very close, and I will not give up. Even as I write the sequel and outline four other projects, I will never quit. My teenage heart won’t let me.

I’m so glad to meet everyone. I can’t wait for #AMM round 4 to begin.

Leslie

 

 

 

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