Dazed and Bruised in New York City

It’s a rainy, stormy morning in NY, where the weather was perfect all throughout the Romance Writers of America national conference until today. No matter. I can catch up on sleep, which I didn’t get much of during the conference. Plus, I’ve got a gigantic bruise penetrating the thickness of my right foot and I have nooooo idea how I got it. I just woke up with it this morning. Did I sleepwalk? Sleepdance? This might hamper my efforts to walk to the Chocolate Bar cafe later. But now’s a perfect time to interpret some of the hieroglyphic notes I took during the conf on YA news. 

Tor Teen

Editor Melissa Frain said she wanted to see a ghost-ship submission. She later amended on Twitter that she also wants a buried treasure book. Aside from those, she’s into character-based stories and books with romantic elements. I also have here a scribble that reads “Trends toward 15-to-17 age group.

Editor Whitney Ross is hanging out for a YA along the lines of Diana Gabaldon’s Outlander series. Her YA tastes run similar to Melissa’s. She likes not necessarily a happily-ever-after ending but a hopeful ending, and books that aren’t entirely dark.

Kristen Sevick, editor of A Dog’s Purpose, is not a YA editor per se, but she is horse crazy. (A woman after my own heart!) Loves Black Beauty (but is interested in books from a human perspective rather than a horse’s POV), any stories in which horses feature.

Editor Susan Chang, who was not at the spotlight on Tor Teen, takes care of younger/middle-grade fiction for Tor Starscape.

Tor Teen books to look out for: The Faerie Ring by Kiki Hamilton; Anna Dressed in Blood by Kendare Blake; Original Sin by Lisa Desrochers.

Pocket Books

Pocket has a limited YA focus at the moment, but RITA-nominated Jennifer Echols is their YA star.

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My agent’s assistant, Beth, very kindly took me on a tour of Writers House lit agency. The building was once owned by the Astors. We went inside a vault the size of my hotel room. It used to house VIPs for the Astors. That is, very important paperwork like deeds and bonds, etc. I was too busy ooh-ing and ahh-ing at the bookshelves filled with Sweet Valley High, Stephenie Meyer, Nora Roberts and Ken Follett titles to take pictures, but you can see some nice shots of the Victorian interior on the agency website.

I didn’t get to all the YA events/workshops this time around, and at one very useful one that I did attend we were asked not to divulge info we learned there. But I will say a number of editors and agents said, submissions-wise, they often don’t know what they’re looking for until they see it. You just have to write a darn good book and if it happens to be a darn good vampire novel, then so be it.

Speaking of darn good books, my dear friend Erica O’Rourke celebrated the release of her debut YA novel, Torn, at the conference. Torn was last year’s Golden Heart-winning book. Erica’s beautiful new website went live, too. If you have one of her bookmarks, the QR code printed on it will lead you to exclusive content and extra scenes hidden on her site.

CONGRATULATIONS to this year’s Golden Heart winner, Suzanne Kaufman Kalb, and the 2011 RITA YA winner, Julie Kagawa, for The Iron King, which was the first book editor Natashya Wilson acquired for the Harlequin Teen line. For the full, stellar list of GH and RITA winners, see RWA’s announcement here.

Okay, the rain’s slowing down and I’m all out of Cheetos, so it’s time to venture out into the City. I ♥ NY!

Erica O'Rourke, me, Kim MacCarron - post awards, post deeeeelicious dessert

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Two New Releases YA Gotta Read

Two of the most adorable people I know are celebrating book release fever right now.

Erica O’Rourke won the Golden Heart last year for her dark urban fantasy YA, TORN. Not only did she win a shiny piece of coveted jewellery, she got a fetching fluoro tiara courtesy of her MargaRITA mates AND a book deal. Now Erica is the lead author for Kensington’s brand-new K Teen line and TORN will be out “in the wild,” as she says, on June 28. She’ll be in New York signing at RWA’s literacy charity event on that very day. Go chase her for autograph — I will be! For more about K Teen, check out a statement here from editor Alicia Condon.

The MargaRITAS (L-R): Kim MacCarron, Shea Berkley, Erica O'Rourke with fetching fluoro-green tiara, me, Jen McAndrews, Carey Corp

I am ‘fairy’ excited about Amanda Ashby‘s latest, FAIRY BAD DAY. In this fun YA, Emma Jones is assigned the less-than-impressive role of fairy slayer. On the career scale, this is apparently a few rungs below ‘dragon slayer’ but it comes with its own fair share of monster-sized problems. Amanda’s light paranormals are a scream (YOU HAD ME AT HALO, THE ZOMBIE QUEEN OF NEWBURY HIGH). Great reads if you’re in the mood to LOL.

Congrats, Amanda and Erica!

Carey, I Can See Your ‘Halo’…

Sing it with me! “You know you’re my saving grace…” (Apologies to Beyoncé.)

In 2010, Carey Corp’s YA novel was a finalist in the prestigious Golden Heart Award, and today we’re celebrating the release of that book, THE HALO CHRONICLES: THE GUARDIAN. Kristi Cook, author of HAVEN, says, “Thrilling and oh-so-romantic, THE GUARDIAN will keep you up all night, turning the pages!” In this urban fantasy, an angel, Gabriel, is sent to protect Alex, a girl with a special gift that she’d do anything to return. They each have their own destinies to fulfill, but will falling for each other get in the way and tear their fragile worlds apart?

Please welcome a dynamic new talent, Carey Corp!

Carey, congrats on the release of your edgy angel YA novel, THE HALO CHRONICLES: THE GUARDIAN! It’s the first in the series. What was the inspiration behind your story?

Strangely enough, the inspiration for my YA was women I knew who were “hooking up” with their high school crushes on Facebook. I started to wonder what it was about first love that would tempt women to risk the lives they’d built and their families. I wrote this: “A woman’s first love has a special and often confusing hold over her life. As it is happening and even years after the relationship’s demise, that love can become a stumbling block to happiness, impeding the ability to move forward.”

As I explored this concept, THE GUARDIAN fell into place. I mean, what better symbolism for the idealistic perfection of first love than an angel. Don’t get me wrong, the angel is *insert swoon* HEAVENLY. But what really intrigued me about this series was the boy who comes after the angel. Does he even have a shot?

Hmm, we’ll all have to buy the book and find out if he does! 😉 Your heroine, Alex, can see goodness and evil in others by the appearance of their auras or halos. Of course, most ordinary folks can’t see halos. It’s a preternatural gift that she feels is actually a curse–why is that?

Most teens just want to fit in — be normal. Alex is sooo not normal. She sees evil and her fear triggers all kinds of unpleasant sensory reactions. Wouldn’t you think that was a curse?

I’m a scaredy-cat, Carey — I’d probably react the same way! That brings me to my next question: Do you believe there’s a guardian angel looking out for you?

Absolutely. When I was a teenager, a guardian angel named Trey saved me from some scary guys in downtown San Francisco. Honest to God!!!

Here’s the story: I went on a trip to San Francisco with the peer-counseling club. All the other kids went off together and I got left behind — I probably could’ve joined them if I’d asked — but in my ego-centric perception I’d been intentionally snubbed. So, I took off on my own, at night, down Market Street. I walked for blocks in a huff, not noticing the surroundings go from nice to shabby.

Just as I realized I was in a bad neighborhood, a couple of creepy guys — who’d been loitering on a stoop — came at me. Not fast, but deliberate. Before I could panic *much* this teenaged boy came out of nowhere to step between the creepers and me. He put his hand on my shoulder, moving me as he said, “I think you want to turn about now.” Then he linked his arm in mine and walked me the fourteen blocks back to my hotel.

What I remember most is that he really listened to me at a time when I needed an empathetic ear. Well that and after he kissed my cheek in front of my hotel, he disappeared. As I entered the building, I stopped and looked back toward Trey but he was gone.

I got chills. Love that story!  In addition to the THE GUARDIAN, you’ve co-written DOON, another YA, with Lorie Langdon. What are the challenges and benefits of writing as a duo? 

Challenges: Hair pulling, name calling, crying, and, of course, the silent treatment. And that’s on the good days. 🙂

Benefits: Lorie was my crit partner before my writing partner and she’s one of my best friends. It’s a lot of fun to write a story about bffs with your bff. As part of our co-authoring process, we’ve talked to several collaborative duos. One thing we learned is every writing partnership works differently. Kami and Margaret (BEAUTIFUL CREATURES) collaborated on each chapter and wrote over one another (no hair pulling). Lorie and I each took a character and alternated chapters. It was so much fun. We’re in an intense revision right now *can’t say more* and part of my goal for my reworked chapters is to crack Lorie up. Trust me — it’s preferable to the hair pulling.

LOL! I can imagine! Sounds like a fun process. Speaking of fun, I hear you’re a big fan of John Hughes movies (You have such good taste!). What did his films teach you about life?

Everything. John Hughes recognized that my life was important. He gave value to the lives of every geek that rode the bus to school and every misfit that cowered against the gym wall at a dance. He taught me weird is good, popular kids feel pressure too, and rich guys are douches.

So true. Your blog features a fun series called FIRST LOVE FRIDAYS where your guests open up about — you guessed it! — their first loves. But, Carey, honey, I want to know about your first love. C’mon, spill!

Yes, FLF is the first Friday of each month. In June, I’m featuring *shameless plug* RITA finalist, Tina Ferraro. Oh sorry, you asked about my *ahem*  first love.

I didn’t date in high school. I was insecure and awkward. I took a junior to prom and he danced the last dance with someone else. In high school, I read. A lot. I liked boys — but they didn’t like me back — or they did, for about a minute — or they wanted to move too fast and when I wouldn’t, they ended up going to second and a half base with my best friend.

My first kiss was easy. Third grade. Jonathan. His dad was a nurse and my dad was a nurse and that’s all the kismet we needed for an elementary smooch. Love was…confusing. I’d have to say the first person I knew I loved — not an epic Pretty in Pink Jake-like crush — was my hubby. That was years after high school…for me, at least.

Wow! Is it any wonder I write YA? Cheaper and more cathartic than therapy. Plus it’s a great way to get revenge on the mean kids. 😉

Couldn’t agree more! Thanks so much for sharing, Carey! 

Carey is giving away an e-copy of THE HALO CHRONICLES to one lucky commenter. All you have to do is tell us about your guardian angel experience and/or your favourite John Hughes movie. 

Buy THE HALO CHRONICLES: THE GUARDIAN (a 2010 RWA Golden Heart® finalist for young adult fiction) at Amazon     Barnes & Noble    Smashwords    Coming soon to iBookstore. Turn your computer into a free eReader: Kindle for PC  NOOK for PC.

More information at www.careycorp.com. Visit Carey’s blog.

Codename: Amanda Brice!

My talented and clever friend AMANDA BRICE is here and we’re pirouetting over the release of her brand-spanking-new YA novel, CODENAME: DANCER. Heroine Dani is centre-stage in a reality TV show but soon finds herself embroiled in a sabotage plot…and she’s the prime suspect. I loved the story’s fast pace, and there’s plenty of fancy dance action to go around. Gemma Halliday says it’s “a must-read for every girl who ever danced — or wanted to!” Amanda very gracefully stepped away from the barre to answer my questions today.

1. Amanda, you’re one of those amazing people I look at and think, “How does she do it?” You’re a mum, a wife, a Ruby-Slippered Sister, a writer, and an attorney in Washington, DC. What’s your secret? And are you going to patent it? 🙂

LOL, I’m not sure I’d describe myself in as glowing terms as you are, but hey, I’ll take it! And now that you mention it, yeah, actually I am pretty busy. I’m tired just reading that list! But I’ve always found that I do best when I’m running around like a crazy girl. It’s when I have a ton of downtime that I get twitchy and don’t quite know what to do with myself.

2. Like your heroine, Dani, you’re a dancer. (See the evidence here, folks!) Apart from providing the backbone for Codename: Dancer, how has ballet enriched your writing life?

Dance has always been a part of my life. It sounds cheesy, but it’s in my blood. I don’t think I could ever not dance. Not only is it a wonderful creative outlet, but it also instilled a sense of discipline and confidence. And being a performer taught me that I could be any different character that I wanted, which helps when I’m trying to really get into the head of my heroine.

3. Dani faces some pretty daunting threats to life and limb. If you could whisper in her ear, what advice would you give to keep Dani on her toes, so to speak?

Honestly, I’d tell her to butt out and stop snooping! Sure, she only gets involved because strange things are happening all around her, but it’s her nosiness that escalates the situation. But of course, we wouldn’t have a story if she listened, would we? Like any self-respecting humorous mystery/romantic comedy/chick lit YA author, I like to torture my heroines. LOL.

4. What was the most challenging aspect of writing the book?

This was the first YA I ever wrote, so I wasn’t certain whether I could do it. I was more than twice Dani’s age! But I guess I never grew up, because it turned out that I was able to channel my inner teen pretty effectively. I ended up writing the first draft in just 6 weeks….but then it was time for the revision stage. And um, it took longer than just 6 weeks. LOL

5. Codename: Dancer was a Golden Heart finalist in 2009. Tell us about its journey to publication.

After I finaled in 2009, my former agent shopped Codename: Dancer widely, and we actually had a lot of positive feedback from editors. They loved the premise, loved the writing, loved the characters, loved the voice. It even made it to the final acquisitions meetings at a couple of publishing houses. Sounds great, right? Only problem was that marketing didn’t know how to characterize it. The YA imprints all said it was Middle Grade, but the Middle Grade imprints all said it was YA. And since traditionally published books can only be shelved in one place in a bookstore, ultimately they passed.

In reality, it’s kind of both. I consider it “Younger YA” and I think there’s a whole segment of kids out there in the roughly 11-14-year-old age group who aren’t being served by the current classifications. They’re ready for something meatier and hipper than MG, which they consider to be too babyish for them. (And let’s face it. It is.) But they’re not quite ready for the more mature emotional themes of, say, Twilight.

So I decided to take a chance and do it on my own. The publishing houses deemed this a niche book, but I can afford to market it to a niche readership. That’s the beauty of indie-publishing. In a virtual bookstore, I can cross-shelve it and I’m not tied to what bookstore buyers say.

6. Who should consider indie/self-publishing, and what do authors need to be aware of when striking out on their own?

I think if you have a niche book, indie-publishing is perfect for you. Or anything out-of-the-box. I do love NY, and I hope to have a traditional contract one day, but sometimes the definitions are a little too rigid. And I can understand their reluctance to take a chance, because that’s their risk on the line if a book doesn’t sell out its advance.

But I don’t think you should simply bang out a book and put it up on Kindle. Ultimately it’s your professional reputation at risk, so just like a traditionally-published book, you must put forward the absolute best product possible. And that’s the problem. The best thing about self-publishing is that anyone can do it. The worst thing about self-publishing is that anyone can do it.

I hope I don’t sound elitist, but unfortunately, there are a lot of self-published books out there that never should have been published. It’s not that they’re not good books, or their authors aren’t good writers — they’re just not ready. But there are also a lot of really excellent self-published books, and the revolution of the last year has shown that it’s a viable career choice.

So I guess my advice is that if you’ve gotten excellent feedback on your manuscript (and not from your mom!) and you think that NY is not quite right for it for whatever reason, then indie-publishing might be for you. But please do yourself a favor and give it as close to a traditionally-published experience as is possible.

Invest in a professional cover. Hire an editor (or at least utilize multiple critique partners and beta readers…as well as a qualified proofreader). Teach yourself formatting or hire a freelancer. Set a “launch date” and build up buzz ahead of time by giving away copies in contests and undergoing a blog tour. Send it to published authors in your genre for a cover quote. And send it to reviewers. Call on your networks. Were you in a sorority in college? Ask them to feature your book in their alumni magazine. Is there a particular hobby or activity featured in your book? Contact the various magazines or organizations for that activity and ask if they would help you promote. You never know unless you ask!

But remember that for every Amanda Hocking or Victorine Lieske, there are hundreds or even thousands of indies who will struggle. And it’s a marathon, not a sprint. Even the indies who have hit the NY Times list in the recent months started off selling just a handful of copies. On average, it takes 6 months or more for a self-published author to find a readership.

7. What projects do you have waiting in the wings?

I’m working hard on a Codename sequel, which I’m calling Pointe of No Return. I hope to release this one in late fall, probably November. I already have the cover, and I love it just as much as the first one. I heart my cover artist so much! (Shout out to the uber-talented Amy Lynch of Pens & Needles.)

I’m also writing a cozy mystery featuring a very pregnant heroine. (This one’s aimed at adults, not teens.) I’m having a lot of fun writing it and it’s cracking me up. (Hopefully other people will find it as funny as I do.) My goal is to hit up NY with this book. We shall see!

Amanda, I have no doubt NY is yours for the taking! Thanks so much for performing today’s blog pas de deux with moi.

Amanda is generously giving away an e-copy of her debut book, Codename: Dancer. For your chance to win, leave a comment and tell us what your favourite dance movie is. Amanda’s also happy to answer any questions you might have — she promises not to charge by the hour. The winner will be announced on the auspicious date of Friday, May 13.

Back to the Future

What I’m Dying to Read…

I may be the last Sweet Valley High fan to know this, but on March 29, 2011 St Martin’s Press will unleash Sweet Valley Confidential: Ten Years Later. Can’t wait for it! Has Liz become a best-selling author? Did Jessica graduate from high school? Would she be pleased to know chocolate-brown walls aren’t really considered putrid anymore? (And perhaps they’re even passe now!)  Did Bruce Patman squander his wealth on Porsches and pastel polo shirts?

What I’ve Just Read…

Doug MacLeod‘s Life of a Teenage Body-Snatcher.

Loved this book. It was pithy, dark, a little gruesome, but very entertaining. It is, as the title suggests, about a teenage body-snatcher, a sixteen-year-old gentleman named Thomas Timewell. The year is 1828, and Thomas has just buried his beloved grandfather. And now he’s digging him back up again under the cover of night. Grandfather Timewell’s last wish was to donate his body to science and Thomas wants to fulfill that wish no matter what. As you would expect from an amateur, Thomas is caught in the act. Veteran body-snatcher Plenitude, who prefers to call himself a Resurrectionist, finds Thomas and takes him (and the grandfather’s body) under his wing.  Plenitude decides Thomas is well suited to body-snatching. But is Thomas cut out for it? If you love dark humour, this book will have you in stitches.

Read the story behind the story on Doug’s website.

Rainy Day Round-Up

It’s raining, it’s pouring, I wish I were snoring… Yes, I do, because I’ve had an acute lack of sleep these last few days.

So what’s been going on? Well, our renovation is going full steam ahead now that we have a new builder on hand. All that remains of the old kitchen are the floor joists and bearers, kitchen sink, the walls and roof rafters. Brings new meaning to a ‘bare larder’. Here’s what it looked like yesterday:

And from the same angle, here’s how the room looked a few months ago:

If all goes well, in about two to three weeks, I will post a picture of the finished product…

In other news, I’ve interviewed my fabulous agency-sister Elizabeth Eulberg on the We Love YA blog. She’s a wonderful new talent and her debut book, The Lonely Hearts Club, had me in stitches–just ask the people who ride the morning train with me! Comment on the WLYA blog and you could win your own copy of the book, pictured below.

YA Article Round-Up

A few people have asked me whether YA fiction is all about back-to-school blues, peer pressure, frenemies and, of course, vampires. It’s all that and more. I rounded up a few great articles on the types of stories you can find on the shelves today.

Are angels set to overpower vamps in YA? This Publishers Weekly article answers that question.

Another PW article talks about dystopian YA fiction. What’s dystopian YA fiction? Tales of survival in an oppressive alternate reality. John Marsden‘s Tomorrow series is a good example.

The L.A. Times featured this story which talks about the cross-over appeal YA fiction has for older folks as well as teens.

I’ve recently fallen for historical YA fiction. Anna Godbersen’s luscious Luxe series started it for me. I’ll soon have a review and humungo giveaway of the series on the We Love YA blog, so keep your eyes peeled for that. In the meantime, take a look at this School Library Journal article for a brief overview of historicals for high-schoolers.

YA Author Interview – Sara Hantz

At school, my fellow Antipodean Sara Hantz was the girl most likely to get sent to the principal’s office for disrupting class. Now she’s the girl most likely to create a stir when her debut YA novel, The Second Virginity of Suzy Green (Flux), storms the bookshelves on September 1.

In between writing her next book, running a motel in beautiful New Zealand and vetting potential pool boys, Sara sat down to answer a few burning questions.

Tell us about your protagonist, Suzy Green.
Suzy is a typical fun-loving teen, whose life spirals out of control after the tragic death of her sister, Rosie, for which she blames herself. After one major incident she comes to her senses and decides, misguidedly, to emulate high achieving Rosie so she can ease the pain of her parents’ loss. When she starts her new school she reinvents herself, including joining the virginity club (for which she isn’t qualified), which has some amusing and poignant consequences.

What inspired the plot?
This is a tricky question because there wasn’t any one thing that inspired me. I had a title in mind, which I loved – Virgin on the Ridiculous – and I wanted to write something around that (as you can see it’s not the title I ended up with, but that’s okay because I love the new title even more). I remember brainstorming with one of my crit partners and she told me about virginity clubs and I researched them on the net and came up with the idea of someone lying about being a virgin so they could join. And the rest of the story sort of evolved through my planning.

Describe your writing process.
Little and often. I have a very low attention span and am easily distracted. So, I open my manuscript up first thing in the morning and dip in and out of it during the day. Some times I get more done than others, depending on how busy the motel is and how sidetracked I get on the internet.

I’d love to know more about your Call story.
I’d been writing chick-lit and hen-lit for a couple of years, when in November 2005 I decided to try a teen-lit. After writing three chapters I did what you’re not meant to do and started to send it to agents, to test the water. Ooops!!! That’ll teach me. The story seemed to hit the right nerve because straightaway five agents asked for the full manuscript and six for partials. I sent the partials and said to those requesting the full that it still needed some tweaking (aka writing) and I’d send when ready. In only a few days one of the agents had read the partial and asked for the full.

I managed to finish the full by January and send to all those who requested it… most of them asked for it by email which was an added bonus… and 10 days later the agent I mentioned above phoned and offered representation. I said yes pretty much straight away. By February I’d done some revisions for my agent and she sent it out to lots of publishers. Andrew, the editor from Flux, phoned asking if I’d be prepared to do some revisions. I said yes (obviously!!!) and he sent me a very detailed letter. I did them. He was happy and then asked me to do some more, saying if they were okay he’d take it to the Acquisitions Committee. He took it to the committee and they offered me a contract. The actual ‘call’ was staged. First, my agent emailed asking for me to let her know a time I’d be available for a chat on the phone. So I sort of knew they’d offered. So I didn’t scream or burst into tears because I’d already prepared myself.

How has your life changed since you signed that first contract with Flux?
Well, now I get up at midday, have a long soak in a bath full of bubbles, then my chef will prepare a light lunch and I’ll go to my office and write. I’ll write for maybe an hour and then go for a massage, after which I’ll sunbathe by the pool reading. The pool-boy will be on hand at all times to pander to my every need… no, not those sort of needs!! I mean peeling grapes and dropping them gently into my mouth.

What??? You don’t believe me. Okay… Not a lot has changed, except I have both an agent and editor to work with, and when given a deadline I must meet it. It’s also great to have such fabulous editorial input. My books are a thousand times better than they were originally because of their help.

What do you know about publishing now that you wish someone had told you earlier?
That publishing moves at a snail’s pace. Two days in publishing time is like two weeks for the rest of us. I’m slowly learning to be patient… but it’s very hard for someone who’s made impatience an art form.

Your book debuts in September – how are you going to celebrate its release?
Being stuck in NZ I won’t be able to stalk all the high street stores looking for it, and placing it to its best advantage. So, I guess I’ll be with my family drinking a toast to its success. I’m hoping to enlist friends in the US to go on a hunt for it and send me photos.

What are you working on now?
I’m working on a book called Dating The Megan Russell Way, which is about a teenage girl who sells psychic dating advice to pay off a huge debt.

What’s the best part about being a writer?
Being able to make things up! I spent many years in academia, having to research and write papers on some very dry and boring issues. Writing is like a breath of fresh air. Oh yes, and being able to wear track pants every day. Now that really is heaven!

Do you have any advice for aspiring authors who might be struggling with agent/editor rejections?
Hang on in there. Very often rejections don’t mean you have no talent, just that your manuscript isn’t right for them at that particular time. I believe there’s an element of luck involved in all sales. Take The Second Virginity of Suzy Green as an example. It landed on the editor’s desk just as he was thinking about broadening their offering to include books set overseas from a different culture. Right place, right time!

Great answers, Sara. Thanks so much!

The Second Virginity of Suzy Green is available for pre-order now at Fishpond and Amazon.

Mayday: New YAs You Need to Read

May 2007 YA releases I’ll be getting my hands on:

Niki Burnham, GODDESS GAMES (Simon & Schuster Books
for Young Readers)
Debby Garfinkle, THE BAND: TRADING GUYS (Berkley)
Debby Garfinkle, STUCK IN THE ‘70s (Putnam). Two releases! How amazing is that?
Shannon Greenland, THE SPECIALISTS: MODEL SPY (Puffin)
Alyson Noel, KISS & BLOG (St. Martin’s Griffin)
Kelly Parra, GRAFFITI GIRL (MTV Books)
Serena Robar, DATING4DEMONS (Berkley Jam).
Elizabeth Scott, fellow Writers House client, BLOOM (Simon Pulse).

Thanks, Juli Heaton, for providing this update. Juli’s own first release, Stirring Up Trouble (Puffin) is due out in 2008’s northern summer. I cannot wait!