Sunday, July 19, 2015

Hello friends,

I am so excited because I just received the final proof pages for MAYDAY, out next May from Little, Brown Books for Young Readers. It's been about five or six weeks since I last read this book so I'm hoping it will be new and fresh during this final read. I love this story. It's about a young boy who struggles to find his voice - literally and metaphorically - after he's injured in a plane crash and cannot speak for weeks. The story illuminates his evolving relationship with his super patriotic military grandfather and his immature, unreliable father as he tries to find his own place in the world.

I'll share something interesting with you about this book. When I set out to write it, I thought I would use a piece of advice from author John Irving. Irving once said that he doesn't begin writing a book until he knows the last sentence of the story. Years ago when I read that piece of advice, I decided I'd try and do that one day. For Mayday, I did. I conceived of the final sentence before writing Chapter One. When my editor read my first draft of the story, she wrote to me that she was "obsessed with the last line!" (I hadn't shared my Irving experiment idea with her.) Now, that final line remains in the book. Of course, you're going to think I'm a big tease because I'm not going to share that line with you right now. :)

Have a terrific week!


Tuesday, June 30, 2015

The scobberlotching blogger returns

Hello friends,

Allow me to blow the dust off of the blog and tidy things up a bit. Phew!

It's been a long time since I've visited my own blog. But I've been busy writing a new story so the time was well spent. The story is finally done and so now I don't feel like I have homework every night.

The new book is called MAYDAY and it will be out, appropriately enough, next May from Little, Brown Books for Young Readers. I just got to see the cover and I can't stop staring at it. It is truly special and conveys so much about the spirit of the book.  Flight. Patriotism. Finding your way through the clouds - real or imagined. I love this story.

There was a time when I thought that SURE SIGNS OF CRAZY might be my one true heart book. But the story of MAYDAY, which came to me in full like a gifts, made me feel for the main character the way I felt for Sarah Nelson in SIGNS. I call myself truly blessed to be able to say that.



Tuesday, February 3, 2015

Harper Lee to publish new novel, GO SET A WATCHMAN, July 2015

Hello friends,

Maybe you've already heard the news announced today. Harper Lee will publish her second novel this July!

From the Daily Mail:

Harper Lee sequel to To Kill A Mockingbird will be published in July after she thought it had been lost for the past 50 years

  • Go Set a Watchman, a 304-page book, will be Lee's second
  • Book features Scout as an adult woman and was written first, in the 1950s
  • Lee's editor, taken by the flashbacks to Scout's childhood, persuaded her to write To Kill A Mockingbird from the point of view of the young Scout
  • To Kill A Mockingbird, published in 1960,  has sold over 40 million copies
  • Lee hadn't realized the original book had survived

Read all about it here. 

Saturday, January 17, 2015

COURAGE FOR BEGINNERS named to 2015-2016 Spirit of Texas Reading List!

Hello friends,

I'm so excited that my books SURE SIGNS OF CRAZY and COURAGE FOR BEGINNERS were just named to the 2015-2016 Spirit of Texas Reading List by the Texas Library Association! So honored to be on this list along with great Texas authors. (I'm the first author to have TWO books nominated and selected for this list! Woot!)

Check out the list!