It’s a pleasure to have fellow Black Opal Books author, Melissa Groeling, as a guest on my blog today.  Melissa’s novel, TRAFFIC JAM, was released in May 2012 and getting rave reviews! 

Welcome Melissa!!!!

Hi Leslie! Thanks so much for having me! It’s so great to be here! My name is Melissa Groeling and I, like my wonderful host, Leslie, have been dancing around with the written word for quite a long time. It’s a complicated, awesome, entertaining, sometimes frustrating dance but a dance nonetheless. There are days when I have my dancing shoes on and I’m ready to PARTY! Other days, I just want to wear my slippers, curl up on the couch with a book that’s not mine and stay far, far away from my computer.
As I sit here, sipping blueberry tea and staring balefully at the blister on my little toe, I wonder, what’s the hardest thing writers do? In the scheme of things, a blister is a walk in the park. There are days where I’d rather deal with a blister than sit at my laptop. Honestly, I can get so frustrated with a story that I’m surprised I’m not bald from tearing my hair out. I’ve always considered shaving it but my hair dresser refuses and then I chicken out. But okay let’s get back on track, shall we? What exactly is the hardest part of being a writer?
Is it fleshing out the plot? Is it building up a world and characters from scratch? Is it tying up the loose ends of the story within a reasonable amount of pages? Is it keeping the story in a constant flow from start to finish? Or maybe it’s keeping the motivation to continue. Maybe it’s fighting that feeling you get when you feel like what you’ve written is a piece of crap. Or maybe it’s everything that comes after—you know, the promoting, the marketing, getting yourself and your work out there so people can see it.
Or maybe it’s the people who tell you that you can’t do it.
That you’re no good.
That your story is too weird to get published.
That it’s impossible to be a writer because it’s so hard.
Well, my friends, can you imagine where we’d be if we actually listened to those people? All these reject letters and emails that we collect. They can beat a person down, sure. But will that person stay down?
          I think that’s the core of a writer. We just don’t know when to quit.
Melissa Groeling graduated from Bloomsburg University with a degree in English. She lives, reads and writes in the Philadelphia region and wherever else life happens to send her. She is a hardcore New York Giants fan and loves chocolate. Traffic Jam is her first young adult novel.
Come find me at Facebook!
Twitter: @stringbean10


When you’re caught in a traffic jam, you’ve got nowhere to go… Val Delton’s life is spiraling and there’s nothing she can do to stop it. Her dad lost his job, her mom works fourteen hour days to pay the bills and yet somehow there are high-end shopping bags and an iPod in her older sister’s room. Naturally, Val becomes suspicious but her sister’s lips are sealed. Then by accident, she uncovers a dark, dangerous secret hidden behind her sister’s bright smiles and cool indifference. Val has no idea how far and how deep the repercussions of her sister’s secret will reach but she’ll do whatever it takes to keep her family safe. Will she succeed before her sister’s secret destroys everyone she loves?

Great having you here, Melissa.  And for all those who haven’t picked up her book yet, it’s available on Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Smashwords, and Black Opal Books!