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Announcing my 2013 YA novel

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YAY! We have a title! And a very, very short description.

This is supposed to run in Publisher's Marketplace one of these days:

Lisa Schroeder's FALLING FOR YOU, about a teen girl who relives the love of a dangerous boy, and unravels the secrets that haunt her family, as she hovers between life and death, searching for light amid the darkness--and a reason to hold on, to Annette Pollert at Simon Pulse by Sara Crowe at Harvey Klinger, to be published in Spring, 2013.

I worked really, really hard on this book and I hope my readers like it. It's different for me - it's not in verse, although there is some poetry sprinkled throughout. It's also sort of a mystery -- from the first page, the reader knows something bad has happened to the main character, but it's not revealed what's happened and how it happened until the end of the book.

I finished line edits last month and I'm frantically working on copy edits right now, so we're still working hard to make it the best book it can be. Stay tuned in the coming months, when I'll tell you how you can read a sneak peek of FALLING FOR YOU long before the release date!

Happy Monday!!

Good news/Bad news

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Good news: I am about ready to send my revised YA manuscript off to my editor. It feels like all I've done for the past month is work on this book. I hope I can share more about this project soon - I don't even have a title yet.

Bad news: I still worry it's not good enough. I've never been this worried about a book before, and I'm not sure what that means exactly.

Good news: I had a fabulous time on a writing retreat this past weekend in Midway, Utah. It is so beautiful there, and these ladies are so fun to hang out with. From left to right, top to bottom, Irene Latham, Rachel Hawkins, Emily Wing Smith, Mr. Moose, Lindsey Leavitt and me.

Bad news: It was like the calm before the storm. Last night the dog hurt her leg running down the stairs and I have to take her in for an x-ray today. Freshman son wants to go out for track and I just learned he has to have a physical before he can start practice next Monday. I have to have some dental work done tomorrow. And I swore I'd get started on taxes this week. I hope our bank account survives all the madness. And me too, of course.

Good news: Some exciting news is in the works. 

Bad news: I can't say anything about it yet.
I've missed you all! Hope everyone is doing well. 

A new book - YAY!!!

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So... yesterday, Publishers Weekly posted a few deals, and one of them was mine! (And check out Jessica's amazing deal too, while you're there. We sipped virtual pink champagne over twitter. It was awesome!)

The announcement requires at least one side note. First, it's not YA, as you can probably tell from the description. It's very much middle-grade. Also, the title will probably change. And okay, one more note, it's a book that's really hard to explain, and has so much more to it than that little description. Like hummingbirds. Yes! Hummingbirds!!! I'm so excited about the birds, I can't even tell you!

So how did I come to write this MG fantasy that's hard to explain and needs a new, amazing title? I thought I'd share a little bit about it today. Last spring I was trying to revise another fantasy attempt from YA to MG, and I wasn't happy with how it was going. Every word was a chore. So one day, I opened up my idea journal and turned to a page where six months prior, I'd written:

Events happen in and around a garden - a beautiful flower garden. 

There is a gypsy.

There is a bird.

There is a girl and a boy.

There is a king. 

How can a small hummingbird help a girl and a boy?

I had turned to this page many times before. When I did, I would look at the words I'd written, ponder them for a minute, and quickly move on when nothing came to me. But not this day. This day, I looked at the page in my journal and said to myself, "I want to write THIS story. I just have to figure out what this story is." So I did what I don't allow myself to do very often. I sat and stared out the window for a long time, turning it all over in my mind. And what came to me was, what if a girl is trapped in a tower next to a beautiful flower garden?

That's how it began. It turned into something different, something more, as books usually do when you start with a small seed. Some of those original ideas changed like, although there is a king, the queen actually plays a bigger role. And rather than having a boy and a girl, there is just a girl. And there are other characters I won't bore you with who are important to the story too.

I had so much fun with this story! I checked out all kinds of books about castles, and every day the story swept me up and away to a distant land and I LOVED every minute of it.

My friend lisaalbert  critiqued the manuscript, and I want to thank her for giving me the encouragement I needed, and also giving me an idea that made the ending SO much better! It's scary, trying something new and branching out. But as I told someone recently, as an artist, there are times when the pull to create a specific something planted in your heart is so strong, there is almost no stopping it. And once I started writing, so was the case with this book.

I don't have a publication date yet. I believe Christy hopes to find a fabulous illustrator for it, and there may be black and white sketches throughout. If so, that will, of course, take time.

Anyway... that's how the book came to be in a nutshell. Or perhaps, a hummingbird's beak?


Good news, GOOD NEWS!

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I've had some good news lately, on various things, so I'll combine it all into one happy, slightly sickening post and then be done with it, how's that? That's a picture of me, being happy a few weeks ago, at the beach - happiness feels wonderful, doesn't it? That was even before all the good news hit, so wow, imagine how happy I look now - ha! I still look bundled up and slightly cold, however, thanks to the winter-like weather we've been experiencing here lately.


First item of good news - CHASING BROOKLYN is going to be published in Korea! Hooray!! It's my first foreign rights deal for that book, so I'm very excited.

Second item of good news - FAR FROM YOU is a 2011 Beehive Book Award Nominee (in the poetry category!) in the great state of Utah. You can read the entire list of nominees HERE.

And the last bit of good news involves this picture, which I also took at the beach a few weeks ago.

Who are Cole and Amber, you ask? They are the characters in my latest verse novel that I just sold to Simon Pulse this week, tentatively titled THE DAY BEFORE, described in Publisher's Marketplace like this:

The Day Before, about 16-year old Amber, who goes to the beach alone to spend one perfect day before her world is turned upside down, and meets and feels a strong connection to a boy, Cole, who she slowly discovers is looking for his own escape, but for a very different reason.

Yes, it is 100% contemporary and I'm SOOO excited about it. I'll be working with Annette at Simon Pulse, and I can't wait to dig into revisions with her notes and make it sparkle and shine. I'll share more about how I came to write the book and the inspiration behind it another time.

I really need to do some helpful posts soon, as my blog has been lacking in that area lately. I think it's because I did a bunch of guest blog posts recently, and so there goes all my good material! My own readers then get the leftovers. Sorry, dear readers!! I'll bake up something delicious just for you soon, I promise! And I should probably do a post linking to those helpful posts as well. I'll put that on my to-do list for next week, before I leave for the great state of Texas!

I'm wishing everyone a little (or a lot) of good news this week!

What a sweet day

I made these applesauce cupcakes (the recipe is in the back of the book):

and received these from my family:

because today is the official release day of this:

For a delicious blog post with lots of beautiful cupcakes and a very sweet review, head over to Jama's blog and tell her your favorite kind of cupcake for a chance to win one of two copies!!!

This day is a dream come true for me. I've dreamt of having a middle-grade novel on the shelves for a VERY long time. And the ten-year-old Lisa who loved to bake and dreamt of traveling, like Isabel (the main character), is pretty darn happy today too.

Good news!!!!!

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The announcement won't go up on Publisher's Marketplace until Monday, but it's a done deal so I'm going to share today!

My middle grade novel, IT'S RAINING CUPCAKES, will be published by Simon and Schuster - Aladdin in Spring, 2010 in hardcover format!

Here is the short blurb:

IT'S RAINING CUPCAKES, about 12-year-old Isabel who longs to travel and see the world, but is stuck in Willow, Oregon trying to help her mother get a cupcake shop off the ground.

I have always dreamed of publishing a mid-grade novel and now that dream is going to come true. In case you're curious this book is not in verse, but told through good, old-fashioned chapters. I'm so grateful to my agent and the fine folks at Simon and Schuster. This book did a bit of traveling around the S&S halls, but now it has a great editor at Aladdin, Alyson Heller, who I hope to talk with soon.

Here - have a cupcake to celebrate!


A little more about the sale...

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Yesterday was like one of the busiest days of the year for me!

I came to work at 6:30, left to drive over to Junior Achievement Biztown at 8:00 so I could work with 100 fifth graders for five hours as they ran their own little town and got to pay bills and write checks and buy things. I had a staff of five wonderful young ladies and we were responsible for doing the town's newspaper. It turned out SO great! They did an awesome job.

My son had some trouble with his personal checking account (but like the staff person told the kids, there isn't one adult who hasn't had trouble at some point, so it's okay!) and was starving afterwards and begged me to take him home. I had planned on going back to work, and him riding the bus back to school, but I changed my plans and drove him across town to our house.

When we got there, I had to use the bathroom, so I ran in, and when I was done thought - maybe I should check messages! Remember, I had not been near a phone or computer all day.

And lo and behold - a message from my agent!! It's funny because that morning I had thought about letting her know I'd be unavailable a large portion of the day and then decided it wasn't necessary. I mean, what are the chances?

I dialed her number and talked to her on my way back to work. Yes, I came back to work after that! But my co-workers were so excited for me. My boss brought me cupcakes today, with CONGRATULATIONS spelled out on them. So cute! Anyway, after work I ran to my other son's culture fair at the middle school. I am now recalling that I hardly ate anything yesterday. I need more action-packed days is what I'm thinking!!! Okay, actually, I take that back.

Here is the blurb my agent is putting in Publisher's Marketplace today. Terror is a bit of a strong word, but we couldn't think of anything else so we went with it.

I HEART YOU, YOU HAUNT ME author Lisa Schroeder's second novel-in-verse, FAR FROM YOU, about sixteen-year-old Ali's reluctant road trip with her stepmother and new baby sister, and the terror that ensues after they end up lost in the snow-covered woods, again to Michael del Rosario at Simon Pulse, by Sara Crowe at Harvey Klinger, Inc.

There is romance and music and lots of wintery scenes, all of which work really well in the verse format.

Thanks to everyone for the kind words, I appreciate it more than I can say!!!

Those of you still plugging away, dreaming of the day you get the call, please know if I could make your phone ring, I would. So much of this crazy business is right place, right time and you just have to keep going. I know it's hard! I have been there! I KNOW!!!!

Your day will come.


Always, with lots of {{{}}},
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Some Doggone Good News!!!

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Edited to add: Okay, I just watched this after I did it REALLY quick tonight and I hope you don't think I'm like one of those old ladies who treats her dog like a baby. I mean, okay, so Stormy is REALLY cute, but honest, I don't talk baby talk to her all day long. Just when I get home from work and she's happy to see me. Or when it's time for our nightly walk. Or when I'm really excited with good news like tonight.

She's a dog. I know!!!

(Except sometimes, I think she understands me better than anyone!)

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The Good News Fairy is VERY busy this week!!

Oh yoo hoo. YOOOO HOOOOO!

Good News Fairy!!!!

Please look around.

There's lots more people here in the LJ neighborhood who would love a visit! My friend over there, and my friend over there, and oh, don't forget my friend over there, and then, oh yeah, well, I'd love a visit too, if it's not too much to ask, of course.

(pssst - hey you people out there, what's a good bribe for the Good News Fairy? Chocolate? Starbucks? Cold hard cash?)

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Lisa Schroeder, Author for Kids and Teens

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February 2013



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