Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Wistful NA ~ MODEL POSITION & an Attitude of Gratitude

Kitsy Clare on FACEBOOK
A wonderful lady and very talented writer is splatting her signature on the Graffiti Wall! I've shared her work here before, but today I'm helping her celebrate the release of her very first NA title.

*Alleywalkers cheer, toss confetti*

Meet Young Adult and New Adult Author Catherine Stine aka Kitsy Clare. WEBSITE | CS on FACEBOOK | TWITTER | BLOG

In Manhattan’s glitzy gallery scene love and art are perilous games. 
Will Sienna dare to play?
All too soon, artist Sienna Karr will graduate art school and be flung out into Manhattan’s glamorous but cutthroat gallery scene. Luckily, she’s just met Dave Hightower, heir to the hippest gallery ever. He’s asked her on a date, and offered to introduce her to the gallery owner, his intimidating Aunt Lydia. Sienna’s excited! Now she’ll be able to climb the ranks and make those all-important art connections.
Trouble is, she’s falling hard for the sexy live drawing model, Erik, whose sizzling green eyes seem to pierce right into her soul. Dare she risk losing those potential art contacts for love? Erik insists that Sienna is a real talent and her painting stands out above all the others. But she worries that he whispers this come-on line to every pretty art student who flocks around him during breaks. And her friends worry, is Erik up to her pay grade? What kind of guy chooses modeling for a living? Who is he, really? Her choice may be her ruin… or not, but she must decide fast. Everything in Sienna’s super-organized life is turning to terrifying yet sweet chaos.

Guest Post:
The Importance of Gratitude
By Catherine Stine, and writing romance as Kitsy Clare

I learned from my first serious career, painting and showing work in galleries, that it’s valuable to acknowledge and celebrate each milestone. God knows, both the business of creating art and writing novels is hard, gut-wrenching work. It means many hours alone in one’s studio, sweating out plot lines or visual compositions.

In the case of the visual artist, he or she has one show a year with a one-month display. Then it’s back to the studio. At least in a writer’s case, a novel plays out in the world for longer. And books are a heckuva lot cheaper than paintings. I laugh when I hear folks grumbling about the high cost of ebooks “$3.99 for a novella, harrumph!” Really? A painting costs upwards of $3,000, and even a fancy pants coffee confection at Starbucks costs more than an ebook. Plus stories are spicier, sweeter, more satisfying—to the body and soul.

I learned from an art critic early on that it was essential to develop leathery skin, iron determination, a compulsion to create and a genuine spirit of gratitude to keep afloat no matter what kind of turmoil swirled around me.

I also discovered it’s good to write a gratitude list, and periodically update it. It’s quite helpful to read the list on those days you’re down and insecure—but also on any day, to celebrate your hard work. Here’s my gratitude list:

Take your writing seriously: I’m grateful I got the confidence to take my writing seriously by getting an MFA in creative writing, where I met a core of fellow aspiring writers who I’m still in touch with, and whose accomplishments I help celebrate.

That first sale: I’m grateful that my MFA thesis was sold and published as my first YA (Refugees).

Side jobs that teach you things: I’m grateful that I got a ghostwriting job that taught me I could plot and write a novel much faster than I thought possible (I wrote VolunteerVets #12/End of the Race in one month!).

How rejection can help push you: I’m grateful that my editor at Random House turned down my next novel because I’d written the teen’s mom as a pot addict (“Why write a mom like that?”) because it made me realize that if that editor didn’t get why, she wasn’t the right editor for me. It also helped compel me to try indie publishing. (Fireseed One and Ruby’s Fire). I still want to publish that novel about the girl whose hippie-come-lately mom is a pot addict!

The community: I’m grateful for the online community—awesome people like you, Sheri—who are talented, savvy and generous to others in the blogosphere!

More about the pool of talent: I’m grateful to the super-accomplished editors, book designers and art directors who I jumped to hire when they became freelancers after the economic collapse (Many got laid off from big pubbers). These folks are now getting tons of work from indies in the publishing revolution! Oh, and there is so much indie editorial talent too!

Grateful for past experiences: I’m grateful that I had exhilarating, frustrating and quirky art experiences to pull for story material in my newest venture, a new adult romance novella, Model Position, set in the Manhattan art world. (Out with Inkspell, under my pen name for romance, Kitsy Clare)

Risk-taking can be valuable: I’m grateful that at heart I’m a risk-taker, that I had the nerve to try my hand at writing romance. I learned that I really enjoy it.

What would you put on your gratitude list?
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 photo Sheri2.png


  1. I didn't realize Catherine was an artist too. How awesome! And that's so cool that her thesis became her first published book. Love her list of things to be grateful for.

    1. I hadn't realized that, either. She's definitely a go-getter!

  2. Love the gratitude list!

  3. I love the attitude of gratitude list. Congrats to Catherine.

    And I love that I'm seeing my granddaughter Sienna's name around more. :D

  4. Thanks, Sheri! And yeah, I do love the name Sienna.

  5. It's on my TBR list. Now that the time stopper is fixed, I might actually work my way down to it.

    Love the list, Catherine. Beautiful.

  6. I'm delighted to see your book here, Catherine! You have a great list of things to be grateful for. I wish I had your confidence. If an editor didn't like my pot-addicted mom, I'd write her out in a second. (I stuck by my guns with my last book and have great reviews to show for it, but no sales. *sigh*)

  7. You need to publish the pot loving hippie mom story!
    Everything that looks like a set back is really a chance for us to move forward in a better direction.

  8. Loved the post, Catherine and Sheri! Funny, my IWSG post today talked about being grateful. Speaking of side jobs that teach me things. Yes, I teach yoga, Catherine. It brings me clarity and balance, helps me focus, and boosts my creativity. Not to mention after sitting long hours in the chair, I get up, do yoga, and find more energy to write again. :)

  9. Alex C and Lexa, you made me chuckle. Yes, my weed-addled mom character is quite the pickled diva! Okay, just might get that uploaded some day soon! CandiLynn, yes, exercise really helps get the writing flow going. I did stretches and dance moves today, not to mention about 90 crunches. Crystal, I would love to get your take on Model Position, so I hope you do get to read it.

  10. Grats Cat! The book and cover sound hot! For my final college class, I had to venture into NYC every other Saturday and visit one of the galleries. Some of the modern art killed me. A powered donut in a brown paper bag? That's not art, it's old garbage. LOl

    I married an artist and I think he's super sexy ; )

  11. Looking forward to reading this! I actually know a hippie mom pothead so I'm curious about your other novel as well :)

  12. A wonderful list of things to be grateful for in writing. It certainly isn't an easy journey, but it's one worth taking.

  13. I love Catherine's blog! I have been hearing so much about Model Position, and I am so excited for her! Wishing her the best of luck. : Sounds like such a great book.

    I do think artists are sexy. Those creative minds are so appealing. :)

  14. Really enjoyed your post, Catherine, and look forward to checking out Model Position! Congratulations! :)

  15. Congratulations to Catherine! I've seen her book all over the blogosphere!

  16. wow...sounds like a great read!! congrats to Catherine!

  17. I hope to read this book and it was great learning about Catherine. I didn't know she was into other areas of art. I would read about a pot-addicted character since it's realistic.

    1. It looks and sounds so good. I love that Catherine has branched out of her YA zone.

  18. Eliza, yes, there is so much ridiculous art around (good art too). Kudos to you for marrying an artist-life will never be boring! Sherri, yes, I think lots of us know at least one hippie mom pothead. Gotta get this one out.

  19. Love this post! It's a good reminder. ;)


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