Anyway, this is the short version of my announcement: The book formerly known as The Gnome is Watching (it'll be retitled later down the line), is going to be published.
WAHOOOOOOOO!!!! *Happy dances* *More happy dances*...
Ahem. What? There can never be enough happy dancing.
The PM announcement isn't up yet, but here's some of what my super amazing incredible don't-really-have-enough-superlatives-for-her agent said about the deal on our agency website. My book is an...
untitled dark, edgy YA thriller about a girl named Ella, who is desperate to understand what could have driven her best friend Amy to jump off a roof to her death. Even worse, Ella can’t remember a thing about the time leading up to the event—and gradually she starts to suspect that those around her know more about that night than they are letting on. Was Amy’s death really a suicide? Or did something more sinister happen…something her best friends are desperate to keep her from ever finding out?
This is a fast-paced, edge-of-your-seat psychological mystery, and will keep you guessing right up until the end. North American rights were acquired by Marilyn Brigham at Marshall Cavendish, for a Fall 2012 release.
This news, has led to this girl, who is typing these words, being ridiculously happy-happy-happy. I'm so happy to be joining this amazing house, which publishes a bunch of super talented authors (they published the US version of Beatle Meets Destiny by Gabrielle Williams, which is one of my absolute favourite books of this year. I seriously recommend you check it out), and I'm so grateful to my lovely agent Ammi-Joan Paquette for making this happen.
Do you want the long version? If you don't, you can just click out here, but if you do, read on.
There were two things that led to this book being written. The first is a garden gnome that lives in my bedroom (it's actually a money box), but hey:
Look at him! Isn't he so shiny and wonderful??
Anyway, so at the same time as I had this garden gnome Nathan Bransford (yeah, you know, that really cool guy with the amazing blog? Him) was running this contest, to write a teen diary entry or letter. And I slapped something together and entered, because I thought the book that was a prize sounded cool.
I didn't win, if that's what you're thinking (my entry wasn't very good, to be honest). But the character I wrote that teen diary entry in the POV of? Would. Not. Leave. Me. Alone.
Her story started to come to me in bits and pieces, and when I was about to start writing it (abandoning the fantasy project I was 40k into), I remembered that I'd used the gnome in the piece I'd written for the contest. And I was like, "Okay, I'm going to use the gnome again."
And a story was born.
And then re-born several times in revision -- it'll probably get re-born a lot more in revision over the next year or so. I'm looking forward to that.
Anyway, that's how this started.
The middle of this story is really boring, but I wanted to share it with you anyway, because of this amazing post written by Natalie Whipple on the submission process, and how hard and heart-breaking it can be.
This is not the first book I worked with my superwoman agent on (That was THE COLORS OF SKY. I'm revising that first book at the moment and will hopefully send it back to my agent, soon. Seriously, I love that book to pieces and I'm hoping it will one day sell). This book did not sell overnight, or in three weeks, or even in two months. I'm saying this, because so many writers think their book is dead in the water after three weeks.
Publishing is slow, sometimes. It took me five months. I went on submission in July, and heard back with an offer on the 1st of December (yeahhhh, been keeping this under wraps for a while), which was probably actually the 3oth of November over in the US. But basically, five months were spent garnering rejection letters and then suddenly there was interest, and more interest, and more interest, and then there was an offer.
Again, sometimes things are slow.
The end of this story is better. The book sold. I happy danced and then got to share the news and celebrate with all of those amazing critique partners, and beta readers and just all-around awesome people who I had to thank. (Hi Amna! Hi choco! Hi Deb! Hi Jill! Hi Nomes! Hi everyone at Let the Words Flow and you know, there are a ton more people who should be here, but they know who they are). Plus, you know, Ammi-Joan Paquette, the agent for whom there can never be enough superlatives, for actually making this happen. No way would this ever have happened without her input and guidance and all-around brilliance.
Then I wrote this blog post and happy danced some more.
No, I did not just post that picture randomly. I posted it, because THAT is how delicious the world tastes to me today (oh, I am such a freaking cliche! But a happy cliche, so it's all good).
This year has been amazing for me. I finished high school, I did about five million cool things with my friends, and now this amazing wonderful news. Next week, I turn eighteen, and I'm determined to make next year even better. The world tastes awesome right now because of the potential.
P.S DID YOU KNOW I'M GOING TO BE A REAL AUTHOR WITH A BOOK AND EVERYTHING?! *runs around screaming and happy dancing*
Also, I'm a member of the Apocalypsies! (The group of 2012 debut authors) How COOL is the name??