Wednesday, December 12, 2012


The next big thing! This wonderful meme is allowing authors to write about their latest project in this fabulous blog hop. I’ve been tagged by two author friends: long time pal, Janet Fox, author of three amazingly fabulous historical fiction YA novels: FAITHFUL (Speak, 2010); FORGIVEN (Speak, 2011); and the just released SIRENS (Speak, 2012), a noir mystery set in the 1920’s – with gangsters and gun molls and two kick butt female narrators. You can read about Janet and her books here. Also fellow Sourcebooks Fire author Patty Blount, whose powerful debut YA is SEND, about a boy who is trying to pull his life together after a bullying incident that went terribly wrong. You can find out more about Patty here.
Rules for The Next Big Thing Blog Hop if you’re tagged: 
1. Use this format for your post 
2. Answer the ten questions about your current WIP (work in progress) 
3. Tag some other writers/bloggers and add their links so we can hop over and meet them.
It’s the holidays, so I have tagged one. Yes, one. But it’s a good one!
What is your working title of your book?
THE SWEET DEAD LIFE (Soho Press, May 14, 2013)
Where did the idea come from for your book? 
I had worked with my Soho Press editor, Dan Ehrenhaft at Sourcebooks, and we both knew that someday we wanted to take a book from start to finish together. And one day in spring of 2011, we talked about some potential ideas that he thought would be a good fit for me. After that, I wrote about 20 pages as a sample. He loved them. So did I.
What genre does your book fall under? 
YA paranormal mystery
Which actors would you choose to portray your characters in the movie version of your book? 
If that actually came to be – and wouldn’t that be awesome!—I would prefer unknowns to play my characters. My dream is for previously unknown actors to become hugely famous playing characters I created!
What is the one-sentence synopsis of your book? 
After a fatal car accident rushing her to the hospital because she’s been poisoned, 14 year old Jenna Samuels’ stoner brother Casey returns as her guardian angel and together they solve a vast family mystery.
Will your book be self-published or represented by an agency? 
THE SWEET DEAD LIFE is being published by Soho Press, in the inaugural season of their new Soho Teen imprint. You can read watch the Soho Teen trailer and read samples of the spring season here. I am represented by Jennifer Rofe of Andrea Brown Literary Agency.
How long did it take you to write the first draft of your manuscript? 
This book wrote quickly – about 3 ½ months for a first draft. That’s honestly the fastest I’ve ever written a complete novel. But it’s a funny book, and bittersweet, and I just loved writing it. Same with the sequel that I’m working on now (due out in 2014). I anticipate a full draft in about 4 months now that my editor has approved the outline.
What other books would you compare this story to in your genre? 
I would say two good comp titles are DEVINE INTERVENTION by Martha Brockenbrough and THE CATASTROPHIC HISTORY OF YOU AND ME by Jess Rothenberg. Which if you know either of those books means that THE SWEET DEAD LIFE has a more humorous and quirky take on the angel genre. Which I loved writing.
Who or what inspired you to write this book? 
As I mentioned above, the idea for THE SWEET DEAD LIFE came from a collaborative discussion between my editor and me. And then I went back to him and said, hey: if I’m going to do a quirkier take on guardian angels, can I set it in suburban Texas, with characters who live on the ‘wrong side of the freeway’? I figured he would say no. But instead, he said absolutely.
What else about your book might pique reader’s interest. 
We initially saw this book as FALLEN meets VERONICA MARS, with a healthy dose of Judd Apatow movies like Pineapple Express. Yeah – you can see why it was so much fun to write. When Jenna's 16 year old brother Casey comes back as her guardian angel, he does so with all his bad habits still firmly intact.
Tag, you’re it:
Now it’s her turn!
And feel free to comment on this blog on authors whose work you love and who you think we should all read!


Janet Fox said...

What a great post, my friend!! I REALLY can't wait for SDL.

And hooray for PJ, too!!!

PJ Hoover said...

Great post! And thank you for the tag!!!!!

Thank you, Janet!