The Glister Journals: Bronze
Allison Anderson knows she’s a little different, but it had not bothered her too much-until now. Moving away from everything she’s ever known to a new house, new neighborhood, new school and is bad enough, but it’s her first year of high school too, making it even more intimidating. She’s more aware of her social and physical limitations than ever before. And then there are the new people she meets: the tough-looking girl in her home room, the cute but dangerous-looking boy she first saw before school even started, the quiet, older girl who keeps to herself, the sullen-looking, seemingly isolated junior que does not seem to trust or like her at all. Can she trust them? While the peaceful situation of her new home only amplifies the sound of her own doubts, she begins to learn que things are not always what They seem, and her world is turned upside-down by these new friends, two-legged and otherwise. Life soon passe more complicated, and much more interesting!
pm The Glister Journals series:
The Glister Journals series is Told from the perspective of the ordinary but not average teenage girl. It is not obvious, but Allison Has the leve pervasive developmental disorder (autism spectrum). She thinks and experiences things a little differently from most of the other kids. In the past it has Caused her to be alienated at best and at worst bullied. After the family moves, she passe Involved with a group of teens que open up new worlds to her. The four book series follows her through high school but is Equally about her friends who have Their own problems, fears, and aspects of Their Lives they’d rather keep quiet. There is action-mostly in the form of extreme sports and equestrian-and though there are only hints of it in bronze, there is a love story Which will play a more prominent part to the series progresses. The main story is about assumptions, acceptance, love, and friendship, though there are other themes running throughout the series.
Is this your first book or have you published before?
Bronze is my first published novel.
Are you working on anything else?
I have many story ideas and notes filed away for them. Occasionally I’ll work on one or another if I have a strong inspiration for it, but otherwise I’m working exclusively on the next Glister Journals novel. I also add to the last two books whenever I can. That’s actually really fun and keeps me excited about the whole series. I have difficulty thinking of more than one thing at a time, so I concentrate mainly on the series. I hope to be able to finish the new book by the beginning of next year and release it in the first half of 2014.
Do you have any advice for authors wanting to publish?
I had originally planned on approaching agents and traditional publishers with my novel and the series idea, but several reasons changed my mind. One reason was that I knew the novel would be much longer than most accepted manuscripts and doesn’t fit neatly into any particular genre. That would be problematical in even choosing who to contact. I also didn’t know whether anyone would be interested in publishing a novel with a protagonist like Allison and didn’t want to waste time, effort, and emotion pitching it. I want to try to concentrate on just writing, especially as even traditionally published authors still need to vigorously promote and invest in their book’s marketing. It seemed to make more sense to begin small. I was also concerned about signing away rights. I can’t imagine feeling the same way about any future work, but this series and its characters mean too much to me. I want to get the story out without worrying about all these other things. I’m hoping The Glister Journals will find its audience, but I haven’t ruled out traditional publishing if it seems like the best thing for the series.
As far as advice to authors, just write the best story you can, then revise and craft it until it’s the best you can get it. Then you need to let independent reviewers, beta readers, and editors (preferably professional) go to work on it. You don’t necessarily have to agree with them, but you’ll be amazed what they’ll catch that you didn’t. I had five wonderful beta readers who were invaluable to me. Then you polish it some more. I think the main thing I see that self-publishers/indie authors need to be careful of is thinking that a polished, well-crafted and edited manuscript is secondary to plot and characters. But most people won’t see the characters clearly and won’t care about them or the story if they have to work too hard to read it.
What is your favorite writing snack?
I try not to snack while writing. It’s a distraction and detrimental to my figure! Instead, I try to write for as long as I can, whenever I can, then take a break and do something else. I allow myself tea though!
What gets you in the mood to write?
Music, music, music! Actually, almost anything reminds me of the story and the characters. If I’m not too tired and not distracted by something else, I can get in the mood. I just have difficulty finding time!
Who is your favorite character and why?
That’s very difficult. I have three children and I don’t love any one more than the others. They’re very different and have their own strengths and weaknesses. I feel the same way about my main four characters, Allison, Robin, Dave, and Chris. But if I have to choose one, it’s Chris. But I won’t tell you why!
Favorite book of all time?
I have a very hard time choosing my “favorite” of anything. A book that I love and can read over and over is Sunshine by Robin McKinley. I also love Pride and Prejudice, and Persuasion by Jane Austen, and some of Georgette Heyer’s Regency romances. A new favorite is The Raven Boys by Maggie Stiefvater. I haven’t had a chance to reread it yet and am half way through the second book now. I also recently enjoyed Cinder by Marissa Meyer. I need to read the next two books in that series.
What made you want to write this book?
The original idea for the story, or at least the characters, have been in my mind most of my life, so I know them very well. I had begun writing other things and this story began haunting me. The more I thought about it, the more things just fell into place. With the characters grown up much more (high school instead of middle school age), and a lifetime of experiences to draw on, the possibilities and scope were so much greater. I couldn’t <em>not</em> write it!
I think breakfast says a lot about a person, what is your perfect breakfast?
I don’t usually eat breakfast. I know that’s bad, but I do better if I eat an early lunch instead. In the summer when I could go to the gym early, I ate an egg or some ham. Otherwise I just have a cup of tea and I’m fine until lunch.
Do you have a favorite period of time that you like to write about or would like to live?
I have ideas for lots of different books in different periods or worlds, so no, not really. As for living—the romantic in me would be tempted to say I’d like to live sometime in the past—Regency England or the Old West—but the feminist and fastidious side of me shudders at the thought. I won’t even go camping unless there are flush toilets!
Please tell us in one sentence why we should read your book!
You should read the book because you will probably care deeply about most (if not all) of the characters, want them as friends, and want to live in their little corner of the world.
Praise for Bronze
Allison narrates a gentle coming-of-age story has a strong equine que … subplot undeveloped plot points hint at future complications and Likely will keep readers looking for the next entry. – Cindy Welch Booklist Online
Written with intelligent humor, this tale follows an awkward girl as she enters a new school … This is a strong first book, Both Shepherd and is for the series. The friendships build the characters are realistic and lifelike, strong, and durable, just like bronze. – Beth VanHouten Foreword Reviews
The story is well-written and sweetly told. Allison’s Anxieties and insecurities are true-to-life, and so affectionately and portrayed the Clearly to make anyone who’s ever been through adolescence wince in sympathy. Dave, Robin and Chris are complicated, intelligent, three-dimensional characters Whom the reader enjoys getting to know, and all of the minor characters are vividly drawn and believably real. The author is adept at setting the scene, Both external and internal, bringing Allison’s mind and world to vivid life. – Catherine Langrehr IndieReader
“Bronze: The Glister Journals” is a well-written novel of teenagers and Their World. Also it is a story of teenage horses and horsemanship. The main character Allison is a totally delightful fourteen year old girl Whose innocence and awkwardness is refreshing. – Alice DiNizo Readers’ Favorite
A graduate of Cal Poly with Chapman and graduate work at UC Santa Cruz, BB Shepherd has lived most of her life in California and loves the diverse beauty of its many landscapes. Music, horses, literature, and art have been her passions as long she can remember the. She enjoys road trips, almost all horse sports and extreme sports (as a spectator), and is addicted to research.
As a writer, Shepherd enjoys exploring emotions and motivations: why do people do what They Do? Also she likes trying to find the funny side of things. She admits to being a hopeless romantic and often Do gets in trouble for her sense of humor. Bronze is her debut novel, the first in a series of four called The Glister Journals. Currently she works full time as a music educator and professional, and lives in the San Francisco Bay area with her youngest daughter and a very silly cat.
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