Mud in the stream/And earth in the air/Clay in my ears/And stone in my stare: I remember someone once asking me which song was my favorite and I chose this one. I don't know if I could pick one favorite of anything, but I do like it.
First paragraph: I love that feeling of waking up at home again after being away for a long time. What could in some circumstances be annoying--Pa's snore--is comforting.
pg 143-145: Dialog is a lovely and dangerous tool. It's so awesome for character and relationship building, and so lousy for exposition. A general rule is never use dialog for anything the narrator could tell. Never use dialog to deliver information. I break that rule here with Katar informing about delegates, and I did so very carefully. I hope it isn't jarring. I do like this conversation, all the girls talking together, making plans really for the first time. I love that this is the first time any of them have thought to ask the prince's name. Slowly, he's becoming more real to them.
Being smart, pg 150: Miri considers what it means to be smart. I've often felt discouraged that the main way we determine smarts is by school grades or the ability to test well. Of course there are so many different kinds of smarts.
Marda and the academy: Even as Mir and spring holiday solved some of the problems and questions of the story, new ones arise. Within the main story arc, a novel is a series of smaller problems and solutions.
Dr. Sallie N. Cheinsteen asks, "When you decided that you wanted to be a writer, was it solely because you loved writing, or did multiple things help you decide that? For example, you had a goal of uplifting others, you wanted others to read what you had written, etc." I dealt with this question on my site: Why do you want to be a writer? I'd also add that no author I know writes because it's easy for them. This is the hardest work I've ever done, yet the most satisfying too. It takes a ton of commitment and sacrifice. But the main motivation is always the words, the characters, the story. We tell the story the best we can and let the readers decide what it means to them and how, if at all, it changes them.
KMB asks, "how much research do you do on the country your story setting is based on?" Since I'm not writing non-fiction or historical fiction, I have so much leeway. I love doing research and the true facts I uncover help root a fantasy novel in reality. But I can pick and choose what I use. For quarrying, I used the library, reading all or parts of about ten books. For setting research, it was combined books and internet. I do no where near the amount of research as a non-fiction writer, but I do a fair amount, I guess.
HP asks, "are you given a choice about the cover of your book?" My publisher consults with me but they make the call on covers.