Monday, November 28, 2016

Cheers to Tryptophan!

Happy belated Thanksgiving!  I felt like a kid with a school vacation last week.  Cambridge had a half day last Wednesday and then I had the following four days off!!!

I don't think I've had that long a holiday break since I was in college, so I was very excited.  I was planning on spending the whole time at in CT with my parents, but even though it's scary, Black Friday in the city is one of my favorite things.

Also I have to admit, I really liked the idea of just being alone in the apartment with the kittens and cleaning while binge watching shows on Netflix.  I love wrapping gifts right away, too, so I get it out of the way.  Probably not what a kid on school vacation would have done, but ehh...

It's weird that as I grow older, my idea of fun shifts more and more to include the words "alone" and "napping."  I was talking to someone at Cambridge last week and told him that when I first moved to New York, I went out almost every night, and his response was, "Really?  You?" because all I talk about there are my cats, how much I love my duvet, and how what they are saying relates to something I just read (which is probably annoying because the majority of what I'm reading are books that they could never have heard of because they're manuscripts).

Anyways, cheers to tryptophan!  What did you do for the holiday?

Monday, November 21, 2016

Query Critique

Query critique time!  For everyone who enters (and those who don't) spread the word so that even if you don't submit a query, you encourage others to read and comment.  Thanks :)

If you're not familiar with how to enter, take a look at my previous post to read the rules.  Good luck!  And don't forget to post any questions you want me to answer in the comments section with the hashtag #IHAVEAQUESTION!

Monday, November 14, 2016

George Orwell's 2017?

Instead of talking about what's going on in my corner of the world this week, I want to share an excerpt from my client Brian Zepka's YA manuscript, GETTING ACROSS.  Here is a brief blurb about the project:

Parker Hernandez has a secret.  In a near future America, a wall has been built across the border, shutting out illegal immigrants and housing the military personnel and families needed to maintain order.  Adopted from Mexico before the shutdown, Parker lives on the Wall with his family and best friend Crew.  Although he goes to school and is preparing for his ascension to the cadet ranks of the Border Task Force, at night, he sneaks under the Wall to help children like himself cross into Texas.
Fueled by the desire to find a friend he left behind, Parker finds solace helping others and clings to his hope that someday it will be his friend Gabby he helps cross.  But when he finally gets a clue about her whereabouts from one of the people he helps, it is just as new security measures are enacted at the Wall, forcing him to go farther into Mexico than he ever has before to retrieve the next group for crossing and find out more about where Gabby is.
With help from Crew, he makes to his destination, but this crossing will prove to be the most elaborate and dangerous one he has ever done...and there are no guarantees he will make it back.

And here is the excerpt:

“Names and IDs please,” one says.

“Are you kidding? We live here,” Crew responds, irritated. He attempts to walk through them but one guard puts his hand on Crew’s chest and pushes him back. Crew shoots me a look of disbelief.  
“Sorry, son. Increased security measures due to the president’s expected arrival.”
We concede and hand over our IDs.
The U.S. Border Task Force operates the border wall system along the U.S. –  Mexican border and are responsible for keeping the millions of migrants in the adjacent regions from spilling into the United States. They also help guard the Isthmus of Panama Wall.

After the migrant crisis was left unsolved in the 21st century and conflict continued to escalate across the world, millions of people were displaced in their own countries and began fleeing to other areas. Destination countries tried to deal with the massive influxes of people, but at some point it became too much of a burden. It was too late. The government systems were overwhelmed. The United States shut down their Citizen and Immigration Services and stopped accepting any kind of humanitarian visas—no refugees, no asylum seekers, no one.
Other developed nations followed suit and groups of countries partnered together and constructed walls along their borders to keep the migrants out.
The walls kept the people out but they also created confined regions where large numbers of people became trapped with nowhere to go. There were eight walls built in total over a period of fifty years that literally divided the world.      

In America, small towns were built into the sides of the Wall around each of the Border Towers to house the workers and their families, which is why I, Crew, Hawi, and many others live here. Everyone who lives on the Wall works for the Wall. Including my dad, who’s Head of the Border Task Force for the Texas Region of the Mexican Border. He works to keep the people out. And I bring them in. But he doesn’t know that.  

This manuscript was written before Trump even announced he was running.  It stuns me that we are now living in a YA post-apocalyptic novel.   

Monday, November 7, 2016

Pop the Champagne

Last week was full of deal-filled fun, so...champagne for everyone!

Super excited to report a four-book audio deal for Lauren Smith with Tantor!  Lauren has a lot of fans who are audio listeners, so I'm so happy that we will have these books in audio book form and that I'll get to work with Tantor for the first time!

Another audio deal is also in the works for Kristin Lenz for THE ART OF HOLDING ON AND LETTING GO with Audible!  Although I worked with Audible on deals for Prospect, this is the first time I'll be working with them on one of my own projects, as well, so I'm very thrilled about this deal, too!

Also, these deals aren't reported in PM, but I decided to announce them here:

Rie Neal is going to be working on an IP project for Little Bee that is set to be a four-book series.  Rock on, Rie!

Charles Maynard is working on adapting Dan Emmett's I AM A SECRET SERVICE AGENT to be a middle grade book for St. Martin's Press!  

Team Carrie is killing it 