Tuesday, June 1, 2010

GRAFFITI WALL: Casey McCormick of LITERARY RAMBLES

After having to postpone our interview for a week--Phew, what a long wait--the GRAFFITI WALL is pleased and honored to present to you a fabulous writer, mommy, major blogging icon, sage of agent/editor director, and probably a candlestick maker. (Just joshing you about the last one.)
Casey McCormick of LITERARY RAMBLES

For those of you who don't know her--Where have you been?--Casey is a fantastic person, who readily gives of herself to the writing community. She is the creator of LITERARY RAMBLES: a well-known, well-established, and well-run blog filled with a smörgåsbord of agent bios, craft/technique sites, and the simple love of writing.

What was it that first attracted you to writing, storytelling, and reading as a adult?





As an adult? Hard to say.  The HARRY POTTER series was definitely a huge inspiration for me.  They’re the kind of books that leave you desperate to write, to create something even a fraction as good and absorbing.   

When did you know you wanted to write?

I knew I had it in me after I finished my first novel at 17. I was about 20 when I decided to dedicate myself to writing as a craft and to learn about the industry.   

What characters, scenes, or plotlines tap your heart? Do you believe those same qualities exist in today's literature? 

Fantasy has always appealed to me.  I wanted to be special so bad as a kid that I was pretty withdrawn from normal life.  Later on, as a teen, I felt that same obsessive pull with love and romance.  The funny thing is, I think my desire for a fairytale childhood only served to make me that much more normal!  So yes, I think these elements still exist in today’s literature and I strongly believe they’re timelessly successful.   
It must be said. A LOT of bloggers recognize your name. Literary Ramblings, for those who don't know, is a well-know, well-established, and well-run blog filled with a smorgadborge of agent bios, craft/technique sites, and simply your love of the writing community. 

You were the first blog I started following. I was such a newbie, scared and meek, afraid of the teeny cyber shadow I was casting. And despite the size of your shadow, I was not afraid. Totally the opposite. You made me--even though you didn't know me--feel comfortable. YOU have a way of blogging. It really is an art form. 

Thank you so much!  Hearing your experience with my blog reaffirms what I’m doing.  I really strive to be helpful and approachable, so it means a ton to me that you view Literary Rambles and me in that light.  

When did you decide to start Literary Rambles? 

I started Literary Rambles in 2008 after I joined AbsoluteWrite.  I saw that a lot of other writers had blogs dedicated to their writing, so I decided to start one as well.   

At what point did you know that it was going to be a meeting ground for agents and the mast of hopeful writers in need of them? 

The idea for Agent Spotlight came to me in March of 2009, but I didn’t know it would become popular until it was well underway.

What is best thing about blogging for you? Hardest?

The best thing about blogging has been the community. Next to that, it would probably be the sense of achievement I have. The hardest part is definitely the time-consuming nature of it.  I’m painfully aware of the hours I dedicate to my blog and how much time I’m not putting toward writing because of it.      

As with every Graffiti Wall interview, I must veer the course and ask a silly question. Are you a dog or a cat person? 

Dog person.  Are you shocked?

Hah...Nope.

You are a mother, wife, writer, and pretty much tap upon all other aspects of the writing world. Alleywalkers click HERE to read more. How do you keep it all together?

Sometimes I don’t keep it all together.  Sometimes I want to scream at myself for piling my responsibilities so high.  But here’s the thing, even if I shook everything off (but my family, of course), I’d start stacking stuff on again after a week or two.  That’s just the way I am.  I like to be mentally stimulated, to feel like I have a purpose and a plan.  So I play a little game of Jenga with my life, rearranging things the best I can.  Yes, occasionally I crash and burn, but I get back up and start stacking again, determined to get higher and more organized.   

I am a HUGE fan of short stories. I love the idea of your Flashy Fiction--a tab off of Literary Rambles. Could you tell the readers a little about the 411.
  
Flashy Fiction is a place just to practice, play, warm-up, whatever!  There are seven of us posting prompts, one for each day of the week.  The only rule is that comments on other people’s writing be nice and supportive.  Flashy isn’t a critique site.  It’s a place just to write and be read.

What has been the most gratifying moment for you since you started blogging? Started Literary Rambles? Started writing?
Gosh, there have been sooo many.  It seems like I keep reaching new heights.  One of my favorite days was definitely when Jenny Bent linked to me on Twitter and then Janet Reid gave me a mention on her blog the same day.  That allowed me to take a deep breath and finally feel confident in what I was doing. 

What are your hopes for Literary Rambles? Where do you see it going in 6 months? A year?
I have a lot of ideas for Literary Rambles. I’d love to do more agent interviews to compliment the spotlights, particularly with the agents I have the least info on, and I’d love to incorporate a forum.  I’ve nearly reached a breaking point with time as it is though, so I’ve had to put those goals aside for a while.  Right now, I see myself focusing on what I have, keeping it going, and getting some of the older spotlights updated. Within the next couple of months, I am hoping to redesign my layout.    

Free time--yeah, I know...laugh, but when you find some, what is your most cherished thing to do?
Read!  Definitely.  Nothing is more relaxing to me than letting everything go and getting lost in a book.


On behalf of myself and the GRAFFITI WALL, thank you for sharing your splats of graffiti with us!! Best always to you, Casey.

Want more of Casey? 'Course you do.

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OOH...Only 9 days left to enter my contest!! Closes June 9th. Come on, enter away. For those of you already entered, +5 more entries if you tweet or blog about it again. +3 more entries for everyone of your followers or friends you send my way who enter and follow me. Leave the total in the comments or email me with the total and links!!
  





27 comments:

  1. Yeah, Casey pretty much rules. I love her blog and wish very badly that I had known it existed back when I foolishly started querying prematurely.

    My only question is where in the hell does she get all that info on the agents she showcases? The depth of detail is incredible.

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  2. We love you Casey! Your blog is amazing and this was great fun to read. Your hard work is definitely appreciated! Thanks S.A. for posting this.

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  3. Yay, Casey!! You are personable and approachable and an awesome blogging resource. What happened to that novel you wrote at seventeen? Did you ever do anything with it? And is the one you are working on now your second??

    Thank you, Sheri for the awesome interview.

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  4. Great interview, Casey! I'm off to read your blog now!

    Thanks, Sheri!

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  5. Great Interview! I love Casey's blog. I don't read it as much as I should, but I will once I start querying.

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  6. Casey!!! Woo-hoo! And, Jenga--that's the perfect analogy for life. Here's hoping I don't topple my responsibilities this week!!! Thanks for sharing, Casey and Sheri!! Although, I'm a little bummed you're not a cat person, Casey. You'd like my kittens, though. I'll bring 'em to the next late practice room session...

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  7. Great interview! Casey is a great blogger. Seriously great idea about the agent spot lights.

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  8. Good interview.

    From the outside, I used to look at a well done blog like Literary Rambles and think that is easy and cool. Well at least I got the cool part right.

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  9. Matthew, it's all on the web (unless they tell me something via e-mail). I'm just a really good agent stalker, uh, I mean researcher. Yeah! : ) I wish you would have found Lit Rambles earlier too. Thanks!!!

    Thanks so much Martina, Marissa, and Candace!

    Tina, as soon as I finished my first novel I put it away and started something new. I had brief delusions of publishing it, but I knew it wasn't good enough. I've written four rough drafts and have countless other partials written, but I haven't gotten something completely revised and ready for agents. I'm not ready yet!

    Thanks Joanne and Stina!

    Heather, I really do like cats. I'm just way more of a dog person. I'd love to play with your kittens in the practice room. : )

    Thanks so much Janet!!

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  10. Thanks slamdunk! It is hard at time. It really helps to have a weekly schedule, otherwise I'd probably blog a lot less.

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  11. Wow! What a great interview Sheri! I've never been to Casey's blog. I'm going right now! Woo hoo! =D

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  12. YEAH Casey!!! SO true what you said about blogging!

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  13. "Flashy Fiction" sounds cool. This is how I got started writing novels.

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  14. Really really great questions! Thanks for sharing Casey- that blog IS awesome.

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  15. Casey - I love how you say even if you quite all the stuff you've piled up, you'd just pile it up again in a couple weeks! I'm the same way, and long ago just recognized that's how I am. Onward! Thanks for sharing! :)

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  16. Love Casey's blog! Thanks for the interview.

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  17. SUPER AMAZING CASEY!

    As you already know - you were the very first blog I read just 3/4 months ago. SO MUCH INFO. SO MUCH DEDICATION and HEAPS of modesty and GRACIOUSNESS sprinkled in.

    You deserve EVERY success and I'm sure you will have your books published one day. With such a tremendous blog - it's only a matter of time.

    THANK YOU BOTH SHERI and CASEY!
    btw - Heather - we have 4 kittens around a week old!!! Want to adopt one?

    Casey - DONKEY may be preggers...not interested in DONKEY JUNIOR are you? Could throw in Matthew free if you like???

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  18. Thank you Carolyn and Christina!

    reading.writing.revolution: Flash fiction is a great writing tool. Feel free to stop by and contribute. It's been dead over there lately.

    Thanks Creepy Query Girl! You sound like someone who would be at home at my blog!

    Hi Susan! Glad to hear there's someone else out there that does the same. It helps knowing that about myself! : )

    Thanks Helena!

    Ann Marie, how much do you think it would cost to ship Donkey Junior and Matthew? I'll take em! ; )

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  19. You are all welcome for the interview. Truly, it was my pleasure. But...(sneaky peeky, I have more questions answered from Casey. I'll be posting an interview on Oasis for YA in a few weeks.)

    Heather, we can meow during unplugged.

    Reading, Writing, Revolution, I LOVE flash fiction and shorties. That's actually what made me believe I could write. ";-)

    Ann Marie, can I be the one to inform Matt???

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  20. casey is the BEES KNEES. i would be so lost without her. she deserves so much recognition for what she's done and all the help she's afforded the writing community.

    thanks so much for interviewing her!

    <3 you both!

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  21. Thank you again for the interview, Sheri!!!

    Thanks Tahereh!!! <3 You're so sweet.

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  22. Thanks, Casey and Sheri! I clicked over from Casey's blog, so this is my first visit to your blog. I really enjoyed it, and I'll be back! I am a mom, wife, and kids/MG writer too, and I am in awe of how you are both able to do all that you do! You rock! Any tips for how to fit in writing during these summer months when the kids are at home all day??? Casey- you said you "strive to be helpful and approachable" - I think you have definitely achieved that! I agree with what Sheri said - you have "a way" of making readers feel very "comfortable". Thank you for all you do for writers.

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  23. Alexandra,
    Thank you for stopping by and the compliments. Love to hear from you again. ";-)

    Thank you, again, Casey for the great interview. You were a trooper with me having to postpone a week. ";-)

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  24. I *heart* Casey. She runs a fabulous blog that's full of great information. Excellent interview, too!

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  25. Casey- great interview! Your blog totally rocks!

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  26. Alexandra, I'm so glad you're commenting now. Yay!! Thank you for the sweet comment.

    Thank you Elana and Christy. I heart you both!

    You too Sheri!!

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