shiver maggie stiefvater

From the Other Side of the Signing Table

“I don’t know what to say to you,” the girl said. “Um, thanks, I guess.”

“Thanks is good,” I replied.

Silence stretched, punctuated only by the scuffle of a Sharpie on a page.

We were in the same boat, the girl and I — both at a book festival, both at the end of a long day full of people, both in a signing line that had been going on for an hour already. There was only one big difference between us: she was on one side of the table, and I was on the other. Sometimes that difference seems to matter more than others.

Before I was published, I read a lot of accounts of what it was like to have your work out there, but I never read anything about what it was like to have yourself out there. I suppose I never really thought about it, to tell you the truth. I thought you wrote a book and hopefully people liked it and if I thought about book tours at all, I figured they involved standing on a stage for a bit before disappearing into a rental car. The truth, however, is that now — ten years and fifteen novels in to my career — most of my hours in front of people are spent in a signing line. Forty minutes on a stage or behind a table for a panel, and then two or three hours meeting a few hundred strangers. I had no idea what it would be like.

This is what it’s like.


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I fell for her in summer, my lovely summer girl,
From summer she is made, my lovely summer girl,
I’d love to spend a winter with my lovely summer girl,
But I’m never warm enough for my lovely summer girl

You’re beautiful and sad,” I said finally, not looking at him when I did. “Just like your eyes. You’re like a song that I heard when I was a little kid but forgot I knew until I heard it again.” For a long moment there was only the whirring sound of the tires on the road, and then Sam said softly, “Thank you.
—  Maggie Stiefvater, Shiver
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books i’ve readthe wolves of mercy falls series by maggie stiefvater

“Once upon a time, there was a girl named Grace Brisbane. There was nothing particularly special about her, except that she was good with numbers, and very good at lying, and she made her home in between the pages of books. She loved all the wolves behind her house, but she loved one of them most of all.”  

anonymous asked:

Hi, I'm kind of new to planning out my writing, My story needs conflict and I'm not quite sure how to go about structuring a plan, If you have any tips or ideas I would much appreciate it. Thank You xx

Hello there!

I’m normally not much of a plotter, but I’m giving it a try on my current project. I’m using Tara Ison’s Story Maps method and it seems to be working out so far!

You can also try out 1000storyidea’s zigzag method, in which your characters keep moving closer and father from success. 

I use Scrivener for my writing, so I’m able to organize chapters based on the different steps in the Story Maps structure. This helps remind me where in my arc I’m supposed to be.

Here is a super pro-tip! Break down the plot of a novel you’ve recently read. As a class assignment, I had to break down the plot of a novel using the Story Maps format.

It took a fair amount of time and ended up as 2 pages of describing the novel’s plot, but it really, really helped me understand plot on a deeper level!

I made a Word doc version of my breakdown so you can see what I mean. I analyzed Shiver by Maggie Stiefvater, and there ARE spoilers! (Click here to download

At the end of the day, the main takeaway is that you need to make things difficult for your character. Keep throwing things in their way that push them farther away from their goal. Sometimes it’s a case of “one step forward, two steps back”… and that struggle is what builds conflict.

As another general rule of thumb, it’s good to start stacking up problems to build up the tension. Meaning, don’t introduce a problem in chapter 1, only to solve it in chapter 2. Instead, let that problem simmer for multiple chapters, all the while you keep introducing new problems that build up and really put on the pressure.

–E