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Dianne Salerni : Writer of Teen and Middle Grade Fiction | My Life in Bullet Points

My Life in Bullet Points


  • Next Monday, school starts for my children and for my former teaching colleagues, but not for me. This is the first time I haven’t started school in the fall since I was a kindergartner. To distract me from this major life change, my husband suggested I do something I wouldn’t normally be able to do, and I said, “Yes!” (I’ll tell you about it next week.)
G&G 2014

Both my daughters will be in high school this year. How did that happen?

  • Don’t forget the Back 2 School YA Giveaway. One winner gets ALL 8 books. CLICK HERE.
  • When I wrote about outlining with the Snowflake Method last week, I was surprised how many die-hard pantsters responded. I’m a pantster at heart, too. Outlining is more like an exploration of an idea, to see whether or not I really want to write it. I learned something important, though. Step 1 was to write a one-sentence summary of the book. I couldn’t find a way to make my main character the subject of the sentence without having it sound passive. I suddenly realized: I chose the wrong main character for the story!!! This is someone else’s story — and I need to re-envision the whole project!
  • On the subject of being a hopeless pantster, I’d like to share with you a favorite line I wrote for BRANEWORLD last week:

Regrettably, the only viable plan would require using her favorite human as bait.

What I love about the line is this: I have no idea what the plan is! Bwa-ha-ha-ha! (I hope the details are shared with me soon …)

  • One of the vice presidents of my husband’s company bought 5 copies of The Eighth Day, which he then gave to his son and his nieces and nephews. (Wasn’t that a nice thing for him to do?) Last week, his son went into school to take Accelerated Reading tests for his summer reading credit and discovered The Eighth Day was one of the AR tests available. Awesome! And he passed. Even better!
  • And for my final bullet point: A reader sent me fan art. Fan art! Is that not the most awesome thing ever?
Eighth Day fan art by Kat

Jax, Evangeline, and Riley ~ by Kat





14 Responses to My Life in Bullet Points

  1. mshatch says:

    Don’t you love when you know there has to be a plan but you have no clue what it is?

  2. Hilary says:

    Hi Dianne – life will be different .. but enjoy whatever treat your hubby has in store now that school’s out for you. The girls look delightful and do you both credit I’m sure …

    Fantastic boss … and then his son finding out that The Eighth Day is the Accelerated Reading test – great that he passed …

    Planning a panster … sounds good to me! Have fun adapting to your new way of life … cheers Hilary

  3. That’s cool your book is one of the tests!
    The fan art is awesome.

  4. Congrats on being a full time writer, Dianne!

  5. Steven Symes says:

    The more I write, the less I plan it out. I think the best writing happens organically, which you just can’t do if you have too rigid of plans for your characters.

  6. Angela Brown says:

    This has to be a rather exciting time for you, taking on the new challenges awaiting you as a former teacher (though for the teachers I’ve known that made participating in the education of others a life’s work, that former part of the title is in name only).

    It’s awesome that The Eighth Day was part of AR. It’s a great read and I am excited for the sequel to come 🙂

  7. J E Oneil says:

    I hope you find out what the plan is because that line is awesome.

    You got fan art!! You really made it!

  8. Joanne Fritz says:

    Woo hoo for fan art! And congrats on The Eighth Day being part of the AR list. Glad to hear the boy passed the test! 🙂

    Can’t wait to find out what you’re doing next week that you wouldn’t normally be doing.

  9. Lexa Cain says:

    Yay for sudden realizations about story ideas! Double yay for all the great Eighth Day news! Congrats on your lovely daughters both being in HS. The teen years – more fodder for your books! lol

  10. That fan art is amazing! They really did a terrific job. Are you keeping a folder or something for all your fan stuff? (just curious)
    The kids grow up quick-but your daughters are beautiful so I’m sure you’re proud.
    Can’t wait to see what you’re going to be up to. As of yesterday, I’m at home alone all day for the 1st time… I think ever. I have no trouble filling the time (*hahaha* I say that after 1 day), but my hubs was already throwing suggestions this morning about how I should take a walk or a shopping trip or meet him for lunch. Sweet. He’s scared I’ll get bored 😉

  11. I love the idea of the one-sentence summary. I’m getting ready to embark on a new project, and I’m going to try that. Thank you!

    Enjoy your back-to-school freedom 🙂

    BTW – your daughters are absolutely beautiful!

  12. Julia Tomiak says:

    My kids can take an AR test for TED? Awesome! More points for us. Congrats, and good luck adjusting to this new phase of life. Can’t wait to hear what your husband suggested…

  13. Fan art! Yeah and it’s so good.

  14. Beate says:

    Your daughters are beautiful! I’m sure there’ll be amazing things coming your way now. Can’t wait to hear all abougt it 🙂
    So awesome what the vice president did! 🙂 And I love the fan art, too!