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Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Author Insight: Memorable Moments

What has been the most memorable moment on your road to publication other that the actual book deal?

"Probably receiving that first fan mail.  A real snail mail letter.  It was a letter from a fan that was sent to my publisher and forwarded on to me.  I'd gotten fan emails before but this completely surprised me.  Letter writing is a lost art in this digital age, so it was a delightful surprise." - Kay Cassidy, author of The Cinderella Society.


"Seeing the first cover comp. It's very different from the final version of the book cover, but when I saw that first image of my story in a visual form....I'll never forget it." - Beth Revis, author of Across the Universe.

"This summer, my wife and I flew to New York City for a visit to Random House headquarters and the proverbial “lunch with the editor.” It was one of the few experiences in this dream come true that was actually better than I imagined it could be. My editor and all the people involved with So Shelly at Random were welcoming and enthusiastic. For those two hours, I felt like a star." - Ty Roth, author of So Shelly.

"When I saw my book on a bookstore shelf for the first time. Goosebumps." - Cynthia Omololu, author of Dirty Little Secrets.

"My book isn’t on the shelves yet, so you can imagine how shocked I was when I got my first piece of fan mail. It was the nicest email from a girl who read my blog and said that I’d made her laugh during a particularly tough time in her life, and she wanted to thank me. It took me 15 years to write and sell a book, and every single second was worth it for that one email. I still have it. In fact, I think I’ll check in and see how she’s doing. We’ve kept in touch ever since." - Carrie Harris, author of Bad Taste in Boys.

"I submitted my query and first pages of Warped on a snowy morning. Within an hour I got an email from my editor, asking for the whole manuscript. It turns out she was snowed in at home and wanted to read Warped! That was really exciting and felt sort of magical, or predestined to me." - Maurissa Guibord, author of Warped.

"When I finished my very first complete manuscript. I was 14. I called everyone I knew and told them I'd written a book. It was terrible, but I finished it! It took me a whole year." - Hannah Moskowitz, author of Invincible Summer. 
"This wasn’t on the road to publication, but shortly after the publication of my first novel, Anna of Byzantium, I saw a girl on a plane reading the book. She was so engrossed that her mother had to tap her shoulder several times to get her to tell the flight attendant what she wanted to drink!" - Tracy Barrett, author of King of Ithaka.

"I was at an Illinois SCBWI writing conference with the manuscript for Rain Is Not My Indian Name (HarperCollins, 2001). I’d set it in a fictional town, Hannesburg, Kansas, based in part on my mother’s hometown of nearby Belton, Missouri and in part on German American towns here in Central Texas. After I read an excerpt, another attendee came up and explained that she had ties to Belton (I believe her husband might’ve been from there) and asked if that was the town in the story. I was flabbergasted." - Cynthia Leitich Smith, author of Blessed.

"Seeing my cover art.  From the moment I opened the early comp version of my book cover, I adored it.  The design team absolutely nailed the tone of the book and the look of my main character, all in one.  I want to sleep with it under my pillow at night I love it so much.  Weird…" - Gretchen McNeil, author of Possess.

"Honestly, getting an agent was even more memorable than the book deal, because I'd been trying to get an agent for three years, and although I frown upon the phrase "dream agent", Jennifer Laughran was an agent I really, really wanted. She sold my book in three weeks, and honestly, I was still not over celebrating the fact that I had an agent at that point! When she told me about our first offer I sounded more numb than happy. I'd expected more of a slog." - Jaclyn Dolamore, author of Between the Sea and Sky.

"Holding the book for the first time. Definitely a sob-worthy sort of moment." - Inara Scott, author of Delcroix Academy: The Candidates.

"Definitely the day my editor emailed me the book cover. Up until that point, I still felt like it wasn’t real. Like any day I could get a phone call taking it all back or telling me I was the victim of the cruelest prank ever. But when I saw the cover with my name on it, for the first time I felt sure that this was really happening." - Kim Harrington, author of Clarity. 

"I think it was when my mom read Rival and said that, while reading, she forgot it was me who wrote it. For the longest time she declined to read my work because she was afraid she'd be too critical. Hearing that she liked the book meant so much to me!" - Sara Bennett Wealer, author of Rival.

"The reaction of the readers, absolutely. Their enthusiasm completely blew me away." - Stacia Kane, author of City of Ghosts.

Stop by Thursday to find out what were the most memorable moments on each author's road to publication.


  1. This was a great post -- made me smile -- I can't imagine how thrilling it must be to hold a printed book in your hands that was once just in your head!

  2. Aww such a sweet post this week ^_^.

  3. I seriously love this post, it's refreshing to know a little more about our authors :)

  4. I'm passing on the Stylish Blogger Award to you because your blog ROCKS!!! Go here to accept it http://book-savvy.blogspot.com/2011/02/stylish-blogger-award.html