Mary Cecilia Jackson

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Mary Cecilia Jackson

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Born
Providence, Rhode Island, The United States
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Member Since
November 2018


Mary Cecilia Jackson has worked as a middle school teacher, an adjunct instructor of college freshmen, a technical writer and editor, a speechwriter, a museum docent, and a development officer for central Virginia's PBS and NPR stations. Her first novel, Sparrow, was an honor recipient of the SCBWI Sue Alexander Award and a young-adult finalist in the Writers' League of Texas manuscript contest. She lives with her architect husband, William, in Western North Carolina and Hawaii, where they have a farm and five ridiculously adorable goats. ...more

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Mary Cecilia Jackson Honestly, I'm always a little nervous every time I sit down in front of a blank page. My little lizard brain whispers, "What if I can't do it this tim…moreHonestly, I'm always a little nervous every time I sit down in front of a blank page. My little lizard brain whispers, "What if I can't do it this time? What if the words won't come? What if I suck?" But I've learned, over many years of writing, that this is ALWAYS going to happen, and I'm ALWAYS going to get through it. How? I just begin. I know that my first drafts are always going to suck, but I write them anyway. I sit at my desk, and I write, knowing that if it's terrible, I'll fix it in revision. The important thing is to get something down. Anything. Even if it's not perfect. Maybe especially if it's not perfect. For me, the story, the magic, the inspiration all come during revision. (less)
Mary Cecilia Jackson So, so many things! Knowing that I am expressing the deepest human emotions. I love the creativity, the beauty of a perfectly formed phrase, the feeli…moreSo, so many things! Knowing that I am expressing the deepest human emotions. I love the creativity, the beauty of a perfectly formed phrase, the feeling of satisfaction when I say exactly what I meant to say. I love putting the words on the page, watching the story coalesce and become something outside myself. I love the solitude and the quiet, carrying notebooks in my purse, keeping them beside my bed, shamelessly eavesdropping on total strangers for story ideas. I also think writers observe the world differently - sometimes I feel like an observer as well as a participant in my own life, my own world, and I love that. (less)
Average rating: 3.79 · 439 ratings · 235 reviews · 2 distinct worksSimilar authors
Sparrow

3.78 avg rating — 436 ratings — published 2020 — 8 editions
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Sparrow Sneak Peek

it was amazing 5.00 avg rating — 3 ratings2 editions
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The Two Lives of Lydia Bird by Josie Silver
The House in the Cerulean Sea by T.J. Klune
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Vote to decide on our May 2020 Young Adult BOM

Nation by Terry Pratchett
Nation by Terry Pratchett

Alone on a desert island — everything and everyone he knows and loves has been washed away in a storm — Mau is the last surviving member of his nation. He’s completely alone — or so he thinks until he finds the ghost girl. She has no toes, wears strange lacy trousers like the grandfather bird, and gives him a stick that can make fire.
Daphne, sole survivor of the wreck of the Sweet Judy, almost immediately regrets trying to shoot the native boy. Thank goodness the powder was wet and the gun only produced a spark. She’s certain her father, distant cousin of the Royal family, will come and rescue her but it seems, for now, that all she has for company is the boy and the foul-mouthed ship’s parrot, until other survivors arrive to take refuge on the island. Together, Mau and Daphne discover some remarkable things (including how to milk a pig, and why spitting in beer is a good thing), and start to forge a new nation.

Encompassing themes of death and nationhood, Terry Pratchett’s new novel is, as can be expected, extremely funny, witty and wise. Mau’s ancestors have something to teach us all. Mau just wishes they would shut up about it and let him get on with saving everyone’s lives!
 
  11 votes, 44.0%

Something Strange and Deadly (Something Strange and Deadly, #1) by Susan Dennard
Something Strange and Deadly by Susan Dennard

There's something strange and deadly loose in Philadelphia. . . .

Eleanor Fitt has a lot to worry about.

Her brother has gone missing, her family has fallen on hard times, and her mother is determined to marry her off to any rich young man who walks by. But this is nothing compared to what she's just read in the newspaper:

The Dead are rising in Philadelphia.

And then, in a frightening attack, a zombie delivers a letter to Eleanor . . . from her brother.

Whoever is controlling the Dead army has taken her brother as well. If Eleanor is going to find him, she'll have to venture into the lab of the notorious Spirit-Hunters, who protect the city from supernatural forces. But as Eleanor spends more time with the Spirit-Hunters, including the maddeningly stubborn yet handsome Daniel, the situation becomes dire. And now, not only is her reputation on the line, but her very life may hang in the balance
 
  6 votes, 24.0%

Witches of Ash and Ruin by E. Latimer
Witches of Ash and Ruin by E. Latimer

Modern witchcraft blends with ancient Celtic mythology in an epic clash of witches and gods, perfect for fans of V.E. Schwab's Shades of Magic trilogy and A DISCOVERY OF WITCHES.

Seventeen-year-old Dayna Walsh is struggling to cope with her somatic OCD; the aftermath of being outed as bisexual in her conservative Irish town; and the return of her long-absent mother, who barely seems like a parent. But all that really matters to her is ascending and finally, finally becoming a full witch-plans that are complicated when another coven, rumored to have a sordid history with black magic, arrives in town with premonitions of death. Dayna immediately finds herself at odds with the bewitchingly frustrating Meiner King, the granddaughter of their coven leader.

And then a witch turns up murdered at a local sacred site, along with the blood symbol of the Butcher of Manchester-an infamous serial killer whose trail has long gone cold. The killer's motives are enmeshed in a complex web of witches and gods, and Dayna and Meiner soon find themselves at the center of it all. If they don't stop the Butcher, one of them will be next.

With razor-sharp prose and achingly real characters, E. Latimer crafts a sweeping, mesmerizing story of dark magic and brutal mythology set against a backdrop of contemporary Ireland that's impossible to put down.
 
  5 votes, 20.0%

Sparrow by Mary Cecilia Jackson
Sparrow by Mary Cecilia Jackson

In the tradition of Laurie Halse Anderson’s Speak, a devastating but hopeful YA debut about a ballerina who finds the courage to confront the abuse that haunts her past and threatens her future.

There are two kinds of people on the planet. Hunters and prey
I thought I would be safe after my mother died. I thought I could stop searching for new places to hide. But you can’t escape what you are, what you’ve always been.
My name is Savannah Darcy Rose.
And I am still prey.

Though Savannah Rose―Sparrow to her friends and family―is a gifted ballerina, her real talent is keeping secrets. Schooled in silence by her long-dead mother, Sparrow has always believed that her lifelong creed―“I’m not the kind of girl who tells”―will make her just like everyone else: Normal. Happy. Safe. But in the aftermath of a brutal assault by her seemingly perfect boyfriend Tristan, Sparrow must finally find the courage to confront the ghosts of her past, or lose herself forever…
 
  3 votes, 12.0%

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