Monday, August 27, 2012

Why I adore Rebecca Stead

As I prepare to dive into the next draft of my manuscript, I find myself thinking about this quote from author Rebecca Stead. When asked how to craft a believable voice, she replied:

"Read. Listen. Wait a little, if you want to. Let the voice gather force in your mind. But don’t wait forever.

And mostly, don’t be discouraged if it feels terrible for a while."

(You can read the full interview at Novel Novice.)

I could go on and on about how much I adore Rebecca as a person and an author, about how I can't wait to share When You Reach Me with my kid, about how I bought Liar and Spy on the first day it was available...but I've been reading and listening and waiting for long enough. Now it's time to write.

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Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Pick Me. Choose Me. Love Me.

Yeah, Meredith Grey might be a little crazy, but when I'm on submission, I get how she feels:

Up until a few months ago, the last time I went out on wide submission (to multiple editors) was back in April 2008 for Saving Maddie. For four months, my phone was my best friend. Where ever I went, it went. I even propped it outside of the shower a few times. No way was cleanliness getting between me and a book contract.

Going on submission for Jackson Greene was much, much worse. Instead of a flip phone, now I have a smart phone that remains connected to the internet. Instead of editors being these anonymous people in New York, they have Facebook pages and Twitter feeds and such. And probably the biggest change is that four years ago, I knew very few editors in the business. This time, we submitted to a lot of people I know. People I like. People that I even consider friends.

It was all very weird.

I wasn't necessary worried about the ethics of it--I knew editors were judging the work, not me. If they passed on the manuscript, that didn't mean they were passing on me. It just meant that the novel wasn't the right fit.

But still...I wanted them to pick me. Choose me. Love me.

While I would have been lucky to work with any of the editors that we submitted to, after reading Cheryl Klein's editorial letter, I'm so glad to be publishing this book with Arthur A. Levine/Scholastic. I love her vision for the novel, and I'm looking forward to jumping into revisions.

Hopefully you all will love the story as much as Cheryl and I do.

Well, maybe not that much.

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