Wednesday, November 21, 2012

School Library Journal on ROMEO REDEEMED and thanks

First up, a few words from SLJ on ROMEO REDEEMED:

"Told in alternating narration by Romeo and Ariel, this is an enjoyable reboot in which Romeo becomes a sympathetic hero rather than the contemptible villain of the first book." -School Library Journal, December 2012

So glad SLJ enjoyed Romeo's story. It's always thrilling to please the librarians. I love them so--which leads me to my pre-Thanksgiving part of this post:
This year I am especially thankful for:

1. My hysterical, sweet, clever, and compassionate children and stepchildren. I am truly a lucky woman to have so many kick-ass kids in my life. 

2, My hardworking, hard loving, entirely adorable husband who is always up for an adventure, big or small.

3. That the election is over and I don't have to utter the words "President Romney" or listen to people trying to convince me that Paul Ryan is anything but a meathead doofus of the highest order. Political genius, my foot. Here's to taking a big breath, and not thinking about him for at least another four years.

4. That my family and I have enough this year. There have been years when we struggled and I know so many people are still struggling, and so I am extra grateful to have enough, and to have enough of enough to donate to my local food pantry and do what I can to make a difference for people still struggling to get back on their feet.

5. Our family's health. Aside from some coughing and hacking and a hint of the barf bug for the youngest, it's been our healthiest year in a long time (*knocks on wood, gives Zeus the beady eye, and engages in other superstitious warding against bad luck.*)

6. An office of my own--it's been over a year, but I still give a little inner squee every time I step into my office and know I have the entire morning to myself in my own private lair to make words.

7. The words. No matter how hard this business can be from time to time, it always comes back to the words and those moments when the story lifts you up and carries you along. As Anne Shirley would say, "the flying is worth the thud," and the joy of telling stories is worth soldiering through the not-so-fun parts of this business.

8. My readers. You are fierce, passionate, funny, feeling group of people and I love every email I receive from you. Just a few years ago, I never would have dreamed that I would be published in other countries or receive email from all over the world. Thank you for deliciously blowing my mind the past few years.

I could go on and on, but I do need to get back to the words. I hope all of you in the States have a lovely long weekend filled with friends, food, and family.



Friday, November 16, 2012

It's Time, Once Again, for a Montage


For those of you new to the blog, every year on the boys' birthdays I make them a montage of all the fun things they did during the year, set to one of their new favorite songs. I am sad to announce that this year, newly 4's favorite song was "Bad Medicine." I'm even sadder to announce that I have yet to capture him singing "Bad Medicine" on video, because a 3 year old singing "Oh oh oh, shake it up, it's wike baaaaad med-sins, bad med-sins what I need," is some seriously hysterical shizz.

So, yeah, not only do I not really care for "Bad Medicine" myself, but the song is LOOOONNNNGGGG, which led to me inserting an entire roller coaster ride right smack dab in the middle. So be warned--if you're not into Bon Jovi, or pictures and videos of other people's kids, or poorly filmed roller coaster rides, then you might want to skip this entry and swing back around next week.

And now, a little note for Lo...

Dear Lo,

I almost didn't write this letter, and it may be the last public letter I write to you, and the last montage I post. I've been thinking a lot about the person you're becoming and the unique stresses of growing up in the internet age, and I'm not sure that, as a teen, you'll be cool with me having posted baby montages of you past the age of four-ish. We'll wait and evaluate next year, but as of now, I'm wary.

You're such an independent little man. You have very firm opinions on everything from fashion--you want black jeans, only black jeans, and woe to the parent who is tasked with getting you into anything but--to what music we play in the car, to what you think is funny and whether or not I am a genius (I am not, according to you. I'm not sure where you learned about the concept of a genius or how you came to the conclusion that I'm not one, but I have to agree.)

You, however, just may be a genius. You amaze me everyday, from the moment you were born and you looked around the delivery room with a "Really? This again? You've got to be kidding me" expression on your face, to a few weeks ago in the car when you and I had a conversation about why we didn't like Mitt Romney and you brought up several talking points from the broadcast we'd just listened to on NPR. You blow my mind, little man. You suck in all the information around you, twist it up in your brain, and spit out little gems that are some of the funniest things I've ever heard. You bring such clever goofiness to our family, and we love you for it.

You are also a handful and a half, and a bonafide Mess, but you know what they takes one to know one. (Thankfully your father has lots of experience on how to deal with messes,  having been married to one for six years.)

We love you buddy. Thanks for another crazy, magical year.


Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Group Book Signing in Two Days

Hey ya'll,

Okay, don't have a heart attack, but I'm back with another blog post. Yes, two in the SAME day. I'm not sure this has ever happened, but it occurred to that I'd forgotten to mention the group book signing for DEAR TEEN ME that's going down in only two days and I wanted to give you as much advance notice as possible.

Here's the info:

November 15th at 7:00 p.m. at Book Passage in Corte Madera, Ca

Celebrate teens with Book Passage and several of the contributing authors ofDear Teen Me: Authors Write Letters To Their Teen Selves, a book of reflections and advice from nearly 70 young adult authors writing to their teen selves. Editor E. Kristin Anderson and contributors Marke BieschkeStacey JayMike JungKatherine LongshoreErika Stalder and Mariko Tamaki will talk about their letters and their experiences.
Dear Teen Me includes letters from six New York Times bestselling authors, including Lauren Oliver, Ellen Hopkins, Nancy Holder, Carrie Jones, Sara Zarr, Tom Angleberger, Robin Benway, and more, and covers a wide variety of topics including body issues, bullying, friendship, love. Some authors chose to write diary entries, some chose letters, and a few graphic novelists turned their stories into visual art, but they all offer invaluable wisdom and advice to young readers. All of the Dear Teen Me authors experienced challenging times as teens in one form or another, and now they are here to relate that it does get better!
51 Tamal Vista Blvd
Corte Madera
United States

I really hope some of you can join me at the event. I would love to see you and talk about whatever is on your mind.



Don't you, forget about...Romeo

Hi ya'll,

Sorry to neglect the blog, but it's been a big few weeks around here with Halloween, an anniversary trip for me and My Old Man (a long overdue grown up vacation that was so, soooo nice), and then the epic celebration of my youngest son's fourth birthday (I swear the Birthday Brouhaha gets more intense every year).

But I'm finally back to beg you not to forget about ROMEO REDEEMED. Poor Romeo doesn't seem to be launching as well as Juliet. I don't know if this is due to the cover not pulling the eyes as well, the hurricane on the east coast, the election exhausting everyone to the point that they just couldn't drag their bodies out to the bookstore, or what, but the fact is that Romeo needs your help. And, if you've enjoyed my other books, I don't think you'll regret picking up a copy of this one. It is a story, and a romance, that I'm really proud of.

So how can you help if you're of the mind to? Here are a few ways:

1. Pick up a copy of ROMEO REDEEMED at a local bookstore. If you already have a copy of your own, consider snagging a copy as a holiday gift for a friend.

2. If your local bookstore doesn't carry ROMEO REDEEMED, ask them to find a place for it on their shelves.

3. If you've exhausted your book buying budget, you can formally request that your library order a copy of ROMEO REDEEMED for their collection.

Anything you can do would be so appreciated. A writer's career depends so much on sales, especially in the first few months. If those copies of ROMEO REDEEMED that are on the shelf now don't sell, they will be returned to the publisher and that will reflect negatively on my ability to contract more books. I receive emails everyday from readers who encourage me to "keep writing." I definitely want to, but my ability to contract more books depends to a large degree on you.

Thanks again to all of you who have already snagged your copy, I truly do appreciate you so much.

Be back later in the week with 4's birthday video. It's been too long since I annoyed you with a Proud Mommy post.

Happy Tuesday,

Stacey Jay