Date Archive

November 2012

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The One with the BIG Announcement

Hello lovelies!

I know some of you have been waiting for an update forever, and I’ve been carefully avoiding answering your questions with any finality. Sorry about that. It was a necessary evil.

But now I can officially announce that a print version of LOSING IT in the U.S. is imminent! I’ve signed a three book deal with Harper Collins! The deal includes LOSING IT and two companion novels (one for Cade and one for Kelsey).

HUZZAH!
AND… as if that wasn’t cool enough. THE NEW YORK TIMES broke the news of the sale. Yeah. I said New York Times. You can read the article here in which they discuss how LOSING IT is heralding in “New Adult Fiction.” Then you can come back and celebrate with me! 

I don’t have a set release date for you yet, but I can tell you that everyone is working hard to get the book ready for a quick and seamless release. As soon as I have more information that can be shared, I will send it your way! 
And lastly, I cannot end this post without a host of thank yous! Many of you have been with me on this from the very beginning. I remember watching the adds on Goodreads and getting SO excited when LOSING IT had 1,000 adds. It has since blown that number out of the water, and it’s all thanks to you guys. Amy at the YA Sisterhood and all the bloggers from the blog tour did such a tremendous job sharing the news about my little book. I have no doubt that you all are largely responsible for its success. Heather Self was my self-pub mommy and answered all my multitudes of questions and calmed my freak-outs– you’re the best! I have been blessed to have so many fabulous readers reach out to tell me about their experience of reading the book. Many of those same readers have told their friends, for which I am very thankful! I have just been inundated with love and it is the best feeling EVER. I have the best agent and agency EVER. Suzie Townsend did an amazing job negotiating this deal, and as evidenced by the NYT article, the whole team has put their full support behind LOSING IT. They are really making some amazing things happen. Signing with New Leaf was possibly the best decision I ever made. 
I love you all so much! I am just feeling ALL THE FEELINGS. 
Now, I need to get back to work on that second book we sold. :D But for all those who have asked about a paperback version of LOSING IT, I can finally say… IT’S COMING! 
P.S. OH! OH! I just realized. It’s been one month since the book released! Wow. A lot can happen in a month. 

The One About What New Adult Means to Me


What is a “New Adult” book anyway? 



I’m a re-reader. 



 That’s how I know that I really LOVE a book, when I can read it a second, third, or fourth time and get just as swept away in the story as that very first time. 

I discovered this for the first time when I was twelve and re-reading HARRY POTTER. Since then, I have reread and loved many books, one of which stuck with me so completely that I can still recite entire quotes from it with ease. 

That is THE AWAKENING by Kate Chopin. It was one of those books that you’re forced to read in your high school English class, and for many people it is a miserable experience. But for whatever the reason, I didn’t resent having to read that book. The story captivated me utterly, and I’m inclined to believe it is a huge part of the reason I write stories like I do. 



 THE AWAKENING is about a 28-year-old married woman named Edna. As you can guess, she goes through an awakening where she realizes she hasn’t truly been living. Her ideas and opinions and emotions all begin to change radically because for the first time in her life, she is determined to live life on her own terms. 

There is one quote that has stuck with me all these years: 



“Mrs. Pontellier was beginning to realize her position in the universe as a human being, and to recognize her relations as an individual to the world within and about her… But the beginning of things, of a world especially, is necessarily vague, tangled, chaotic, and exceedingly disturbing. How few of us ever emerge from such beginning! How many souls perish in its tumult!” 
 

There could not be a better way to describe the turbulent years between adolescence and adulthood, that terrifying in-between. Whether you’re at college or moving out on your own or working your first full time job—your life seems to change radically overnight. And yet for most people in that age group (18-25ish), you’re still not completely on your own. Your parents are still a large part of your life. You’re not a child anymore, but you’re also not quite an adult. You may call yourself an adult (as will others), but deep down in side you are petrified because you don’t feel like one. 


At least, that’s how it was for me. It really did feel like my world was starting from scratch. I was searching for my perfect fit in this wide world. I once likened the feeling to leaving behind a comfortable pair of old shoes for new ones that fit a bit better. It’s not that you want to stay with the old shoes that have become worn out and are a bit too snug, but breaking in those new shoes takes time and can be painful. That is what New Adult books are about to me.



Young Adult books are about surviving adolescence and coming of age. New Adult is about how to live your life after that. New Adult is the “I’m officially an adult, now what?” phase. 
 Just like growing up, that life stage is different for everyone, but I do think there are some things that are constant.

The first is figuring out who you are outside of the world in which you grew up. A few lucky people may figure out who they are when they are teenagers, but I’m inclined to think that for most of us, we just think we know who we are. Some of it might be right, but a lot of it can be very wrong. We believe things because we’ve never known there was another way to believe. We think life is a certain way until we experience the opposite. 


So why are people just now hearing “New Adult” in terms of a category for fiction? Well, the world is a very different place than it was when YA first became an accepted genre. It used to be that many people got jobs straight out of high school, and only some people went on to college. And usually those who did go to college were more financially and emotionally dependent. Now, it has become the norm to go to college, and for young adults to remain in contact or even dependent upon their parents for years after graduating high school. College is the new high school, and as such that “growing up” phase has been stretched to include a few extra awkward years. 


That time, like Kate Chopin says, can be vague and hard to understand. It can be chaotic (oh so chaotic). It can be a mess. We, as the “new adults” can be a mess. It can be awkward and emotionally exhausting and painful and disturbing. For me, it was a time of anxiety and self-doubt, where I questioned everything I’d always thought to be true about the world and myself. I’d grown up as an intelligent, confident, ambitious young woman. Then suddenly I was this indecisive, terrified girl who was afraid she’d made all the wrong choices and doubted her ability to achieve her dreams. 


I’m twenty-five-years-old, and I still suffer from some of those symptoms. In the moments before I hit the button to self-publish LOSING IT, I felt like I was going to be sick, and was moments away from a complete breakdown. I had to turn my music on really loud, dance around, let go of the world, and completely clear my mind, so that the prospect of hitting a stupid button didn’t break me. 
 And now LOSING IT has been more successful than I ever could have imagined. For the first time in a long time, I feel like that new world that Kate Chopin talks about is finally starting to make sense. It has become a little less vague and a little less scary.

Who would have thought that by writing about this awkward phase in life, I would begin to find my way out of it?

easy

The One with the Contest

So… I keep getting questions about how I envision the characters of LOSING IT to look or who my dream cast would be for an imaginary movie.

And honestly… while there are actors that I think could work, I don’t and never have had certain actors in  mind. So, I thought we might have some fun, and find out who you all pictured when you read the book. Or if you don’t picture the characters in your head, who your dream cast would be.

So, here’s the deal:

  • To enter the contest, make a post on your blog about your dream cast for LOSING IT. You must include Bliss, Garrick, Cade, and Kelsey. Other than that… you can include as many other characters from the book as you’d like. The contest ENDS at 12:01 AM on November 19th. 
  • Once you’ve done that, come back and leave a link to your post in the Rafflecopter form below. You’ll get five entries for your post. You can get one entry a day when you tweet about your post . Please @ me in your tweet and then come back and post it here in the Rafflecopter form.  

THE WINNER will be chosen randomly using Rafflecopter and will receive a prize pack of some of my favorite New Adult and YA eBooks. This includes: Easy by Tammara Webber, The Wild Ones by M. Leighton, Half-blood by Jennifer L. Armentrout, On Dublin Street by Samantha Young, Reflection by Jessica Roberts, and Want by Stephanie Lawton. 

PLEASE NOTE: This contest is open internationally BUT SOME OF THESE BOOKS ARE NOT. If you win and one of these books is not available in your country, we’ll figure out a replacement. :)

So, you have my permission to begin wasting hours on the internet trolling through pictures of hot actors that could be your dream Garrick. I know it will be a real hardship. :)

a Rafflecopter giveaway And finally, I know not all of you out there have a blog, and will be unable to participate in this contest. So for the rest of you, I’ve got another giveaway of LOSING IT that is open to everyone! Ends November 19th at 12:01 AM also! U.S. and Canada only. 

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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The One with the Update

Hello my awesome readers!

Have I told you lately how much I love you?

Because I do. A lot. 
I’m just popping in to give a quick update and answer a few questions! 
FIRST… 
LOSING IT has made the NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER LIST for the second week in a row! This time it moved up two slots to #13 on the ebook list! And it’s still holding strong at #18 on the combined print and ebook list! 
AND… you guys may not care about this as much, but it totally rocked my face off. Two authors that I admire and love SO MUCH read and loved the book– Jennifer L. Armentrout and Wendy Higgins. 
If you haven’t read their books, please do! They are awesome! Jen writes both YA and Adult, fantasy and contemporary. There’s not a book she’s written that I don’t LOVE LOVE LOVE. And Wendy writes YA Fantasy. Her first book, SWEET EVIL, blew me away! And I’m so excited for her second. 
I totally fangirled when they tweeted that they’d read the book. 
And now for some questions! 
1. I’ve had a lot of people ask me about the print version of the book. I addressed this briefly in the last post, but I’ll be more specific here. 
My Agent of Amazingness, Suzie Townsend is currently shopping the book to traditional publishers here in the U.S. If we make a sale, that would not only mean a print version of the book, but also the ebook would be available through more venues than just BN & Amazon. I wish I could give you more information or a set timeline, but the fact is nothing is guaranteed. If we make a sale, I promise to give you more information just as soon as I can. But right now, it’s a waiting game. And the devastation caused by Hurricane Sandy in NYC has caused plenty of upheavals in the city, including for publishing professionals, so I can’t do much but tell you where we are now. (And while we’re on the topic of Hurricane Sandy, if you’re a writer or a reader and want to give back, check out this amazing auction event occuring at Jen Malone’s blog).  
2. Similarly, I’ve had a lot of people ask about reading the book in countries outside the U.S. and Canada. 
I’m afraid the book is not currently available for purchase outside the U.S. or Canada. It was before, but  since I signed with my agent I’ve taken it down. Kathleen Ortiz is the foreign rights specialist at New Leaf Literary, and she’s working on selling rights to the book in foreign territories. She’s great at what she does, so we’re very hopeful. But I just couldn’t leave the book up for sale across the world, because it would make her job more difficult. Again, I promise to let you know as things happen, but you should be aware that foreign sales can happen a bit more slowly. So, again, it’s a waiting game. One that requires a lot of patience. 
The best thing you can do if you’re wanting to see the book in print or in foreign countries it to continue to spread the word! Tell your friends. Tweet about it. Facebook it. Blog it. The more attention the book gets, the easier it will be to make these sales. 
I LOVE LOVE LOVE you all! 
P.S. I’m working on Cade’s book now, and I have a trip to Philadelphia planned soon to do some on the ground research! I’ll post pictures! :)