I’m totally in love with the cover of TAG ALONG. One of the biggest inspirations behind the book was my love of ‘teen movies,’ from the 80s, 90s and early 2000s. I’ve always loved movies that take place over one night, like Can’t Hardly Wait and Dazed and Confused. It’s always been one of my favourite plot structures to follow several people around over the course of one night, and I decided to attempt my own story based on that very idea.
What makes the cover so awesome to me is that it totally reminds me of a movie poster for the kinds of movies that inspired the book in the first place! So awesome, but I’m not going to show it to you here. I want to make you to work for it a little bit.
Here’s the synopsis, to get you excited.
SYNOPSIS : It’s junior prom night. Andrea is grounded, Paul is having panic attacks, Roemi has been stood up, and Candace is trying to avoid one particular cop. Over the course of eight eventful hours, paths are crossed, plans are changed, messages are mixed, and four near strangers form some unlikely bonds.
To celebrate the reveal of the cover, I’ve solicited the help of four amazing book bloggers. Since TAG ALONG is told from four different perspectives, each blogger will be revealing the cover along with one of the four first chapters, each one told from the perspective of the four main characters, Andrea, Paul, Candace and Roemi.
White Pine voting has begun! Check out the video below for details on my White Pine contest!
I’ll be announcing a swag pack winner on this site every day until the 30th. To be eligible for a swag pack, leave a comment with your email address below this post. To be eligible for the Grand Prize (A signed and personalized copy of WAY TO GO, a copy of WITCHLANDERS by Lena Coakley, and winner’s choice of one of the other 2013 White Pine nominated titles) enter the raffle below. Remember, the more options you fill out, the more chances you have to win!
To enter the contest do any or all of the following – each option puts your name in the hat so the more you do, the more chance you have to win :
4. Follow @tomwrotethat on Twitter and send me a tweet (just tweet if you already follow me)
5. Subscribe to myYouTube channeland leave a comment (just leave a comment if you’re already subscribed)
6. Tweet about the contest (once a day if you’re so inclined – each tweet gives you a chance to win!) – Here’s a sample Tweet : Books and Swag! @tomwrotethat is hosting an amazing White Pine awards giveaway! http://tomwrotethat.com/?p=1255 RT to enter!
Good luck! I’ll be back in a week to announce the grand prize winners.
I’ve been tagged by Hilary Graham on The Next Big Thing Blog Tour! Find out about her work-in-progress — GIRLS LIKE ME – over on her website!
And here’s some info about my Work-In-Progress.
What is your working title of your book? TAG ALONG
What genre does your book fall under? Contemporary YA.
Which actors would you choose to play your characters in amovie rendition? For Andrea, I’d cast Ariel Winter, who plays Alex on Modern Family. Karan Brar from the “Diary of a Wimpy Kid” movies would make a great Roemi. Shailene Woodley, from “The Descendants” and soon to star in “Divergent” would be perfect as Candace. Finally, Tyler Posey from “Teen Wolf” would be an awesome Paul.
What is the one-sentence synopsis of your book? Andrea, Paul, Candace and Roemi aren’t friends – they barely even know each other – but they do have one thing in common: it’s prom night, and for very different reasons, none of them is at the big event. Over the course of one crazy night, paths are crossed, plans are changed, messages are mixed, and things definitely do not end the way they began.
How long did it take you to write the first draft of your manuscript? I wrote the first draft in six months, alternating with editing WAY TO GO (my debut.)
Just over a year ago, I posted a letter to my teenage self on the fantastic website Dear Teen Me. (you can check out my letter here) Dear Teen Me was the brainchild of E. Kristin Anderson and Miranda Keneally, and is structured around a simple, but amazing, premise – if YA authors had the chance to get in touch with their much younger selves, what would they tell them? Writing a letter to my fifteen year old self was eye-opening, to say the least, and the whole experience was very rewarding.
A few weeks after my letter was posted, I was contacted by the ladies at Dear Teen Me and asked if I wanted to propose a new letter for an upcoming Dear Teen Me anthology. They didn’t have to twist my arm – I gladly wrote a new letter and sent it off to team DTM, and was thrilled to hear it would be included in the book. Tomorrow, on October 30, Dear Teen Me : Authors Write Letters to Their Teen Selves, will officially hit the shelves. I’m honoured and excited to be part of such a great project, and humbled to be featured alongside so many other fantastic YA authors!
E.K. Anderson wrote a great piece for Huffington Post Books (which was noticed and facebooked/tweeted about by the one and only Anne Rice!) about building the Dear Teen Me website and anthology - check it out!
Tonight, a bunch of my oldest, best friends are coming to visit. They’ll spend the weekend helping us warm our new house in our new city, and we’ll cook some turkey and eat some pie. For those of you who don’t live in Canada and might not realize it, yes, we celebrate Thanksgiving in October, and I wouldn’t have it any other way. October is far and away my favourite month – it’s crisp and beautiful, full of great food and long walks through the colourful Canadian forest. As far as I’m concerned, it’s the perfect time to reflect on all the great things that have happened over the previous year.
I’m obviously grateful to have published my first novel. I’m amazed every day that WAY TO GO is rolling around out there in the big wide world, and I’m thrilled to have met so many great people – readers, bloggers, and other writers – who’ve enriched my life in ways I can’t even begin to describe. I’m also incredibly fortunate to have a huge and solid group of friends and family who have, as always, provided lots of support and enthusiasm during this exciting step in my life – it’s a great feeling to know that I have so many great people backing me up in every possible way.
I’m excited that I received an email today containing the first round of edits to book #2 – TAG ALONG. When editing WAY TO GO, I had such a great time with, and learned so much from, my editor Sarah Harvey at Orca Book Publishers. WAY TO GO wouldn’t have been half the book it turned out to be without her guidance, and I’m thrilled to get started on this next book. I haven’t so much as glanced at TAG ALONG since I submitted it last November, so it’ll be cool to come at it with fresh eyes.
By the way, Sarah’s latest book – THREE LITTLE WORDS – was just released into the world and it’s a doozy! I’ve read it, and I’m here to tell you that it’s going to make some serious waves. If you are so inclined, I highly recommend buying a copy. It’s a great story, and has an incredible cover to boot. Congratulations Sarah!
Finally, I am especially excited to finally announce some awesome news that I’ve been holding in for a few weeks. Today I signed two new contracts with Orca, and I couldn’t be more excited about these books. Orca’s new series – LIMELIGHTS – will be launched in Autumn 2013. Books in the LIMELIGHTS series will focus on teens in the performing arts, and I’m happy to say that I’ve been working on two great stories as part of this exciting new endeavour.
FAMILY BAND is set in Deep Cove, the same Cape Breton Island town featured in WAY TO GO, and focuses on Shamus McClintock, the middle child in a very special, very musical family. Shamus has been playing Celtic music since practically the day he was born, but what he really wants is to break away from his famous family and do his own thing. When a new opportunity throws his commitment to his family into question, Shamus is forced to confront his priorities, and his future, head on.
BIG TIME tells the story of Gerri Jones, who has dreamed of becoming a professional singer since as far back as she can remember. Gerri grew up singing old school country tunes with her granddad, and she knows she’s got a good voice. When the popular reality TV singing competition, Bigtime, comes to town, Gerri stands in line for hours to try out, but when an underwhelming audition and some harsh feedback lead her to question her abilities, Gerri begins to wonder if a life devoted to music is really all it’s cracked up to be.
I feel very fortunate these days. I’m doing something I love, and I have some great projects on the go that make me excited to get out of bed in the morning – what could be better? This weekend, when the turkey’s been picked clean and I’m collapsed on the couch, barely able to move, I will definitely have a lot to be thankful for.
Over the last three months, a lot of things happened :
- I moved from British Columbia to Ontario. Instead of flying we chose to drive across the continent (hello Great Falls, Montana! hello Chicago! hello terrifying Grizzly Bear on the side of the road!)
- I took two trips home to Nova Scotia, which involved lots of swimming, sailing, BBQ’s, and catching up with family and friends. As always, my time in NS was far too short, and I didn’t get to see everyone or do everything I wanted to, but that’s all the more reason to work towards my plan to make millions and move back east to build my solid gold mansion. Hopefully the book I’m working on now, “Larry Botter and the Sparkling Vampires of Panem” will be a step in the right direction.
- I started painting and organizing our new house (best office ever! yay!) and began to explore the new city.
- I also sadly neglected the website. What else is new? But now that the overwhelming summer is more or less over and fall is pretty much here (sorry for those of you who hate to see the summer go, but I love the fall, it’s hands down my favourite time of year, oh yeah) I’m raring to get back into blogging. I’ve been thinking about tweaking a few things as I move forward. I want to refresh some of the smaller details, like biography content and reviews for WAY TO GO and I want to add “buy the book” buttons on the homepage. I also have a more ambitious plan to start doing more videos for the site and my YouTube channel. I have a great office in the new place, and I have a corner that I’m going to set up for video recording. This could be dangerous!
Finally, here are a few pieces of news about WAY TO GO and some of my other projects :
1) WAY TO GO has been getting some really good reviews, which makes me very happy. It’s been favourably reviewed by Publishers Weekly, Voya, Booklist, and Quill & Quire among a bunch of others. Check out some review samples on the Orca website! (scroll down to read them)
2) I’m going to be published again! Soon! About a year ago I was asked to contribute to the Dear Teen Me anthology. After my original letter was published on the Dear Teen Me website, I was contacted by Miranda Kenneally and E. Kristin Anderson, who created the site, and asked if I wanted to write a brand new letter for their anthology, which will be released in November. I’m pretty excited to be part of this exciting project, and thrilled to be included alongside so many great YA writers! As the release date approaches, I’ll be posting more details about the book and my contribution, and running a contest or two!
3) I’m expecting to begin editing book #2 sometime in October – I’ve been wracking my brain to come up with a new title (original title was Tag Along – I hate it)… I might be sending out a request for suggestions, we’ll see how the next wave of brainstorming goes!
4) Finally, I have some exciting projects in the works, and I’m really hoping to have some good news to share in the coming weeks and months. All will be revealed in time!
Hope everyone has a great labour day weekend, and jumps into fall with both feet – savour the sweater weather!