Monthly Archives: February 2013

The Next Big Thing Project

Fellow FinePrint family member (and author of books I want to read) Ted Fox tagged me for The Next Big Thing project, in which authors answer 10 questions about themselves and then invite a few other authors to do the same. My last post was along these lines, too, but this time the questions are about the book.

Huge thanks to Ted for the opportunity to procrastinate and talk about my work at the same time, which is basically a combo of my two favorite things. If we could just add chocolate and shoes, I’d be in heaven. You should also go and read his answers, because 33 looks amazing.

Note: These questions probably apply to a work in progress, but as my current work in progress is the sequel to a book that’s not out yet, I’m going to answer them about that first one.

1. What is the working title of your book?

It’s called Coda. It had a few other titles really early in the process, but it’s been called Coda for a long time and I don’t think I’ll be asked to change it now. (I hope not!)

2. Where did the idea come from for the book?

A Prodigy song, a marathon of cyberpunk movies, and that slightly unhinged mental state caused by having a really terrible cold. This strange combination got me thinking about how intensely music can affect our mood, often to the point of changing it entirely. Our psychological connections with music can be intense, as is the human need to make it or experience it. So I wound up writing a book in which music is a marketed, addictive drug.

3. What genre does your book fall under?

Most people would call it a dystopia, and even I’m guilty of that on occasion despite the fact that the label drives me crazy. I love dystopian novels, but that’s not really the point of Coda. Dystopian societies are merely one characteristic of cyberpunk novels, and while I wouldn’t classify the book as particularly intense cyberpunk, the connection between humanity and technology is, to me, the most important aspect of the story. Mostly I take the middle road and call it sci-fi. It’s aimed at young adults.

4. Which actors would you choose to play your characters in a movie rendition?

I get asked this often and should really have much better answers than I do, because it’s such a fun fantasyland to play in. (As yet, no one has any plans to turn Coda into a movie.) Scope, who is the main character’s best friend, looks like Ezra Miller in my head. I don’t have a clue who any of the others would be.

5. What is the one-sentence synopsis of your book?

Music is a drug–and drugs can be deadly.

6. Will your book be self-published or represented by an agency?

I’m represented by Brooks Sherman of FinePrint Literary Management, although this book was sold by my first agent, who was at a different agency and is no longer an agent. It’s published by Running Press Kids, an imprint of the Perseus Books Group, and out May 7th this year.

7. How long did it take you to write the first draft of your manuscript?

About 3 months.

8. What other books would you compare this story to within your genre?

I probably wouldn’t, because I feel so weird about comparing my stuff to books I adore, and wouldn’t want to compare it to books I don’t. Other people have compared it to M.T. Anderson’s Feed and James Dashner’s Maze Runner series.

9. Who or what inspired you to write this book?

Apart from Prodigy songs and 90’s techno-thrillers, the advice writers always get to “write the book you want to read.” I think I did that, although I’ve now read it so many times for editing purposes that I wouldn’t read it for fun.

10. What else about the book might pique the reader’s interest?

It has a male main character, which is slightly unusual for young adult. He wears a lot of eyeliner. There are some really fun Easter eggs hidden in it, references to bands and songs and such. (It’s possible I am the only one who finds this fun.) It’s 320 pages, which means you can totally read it on a Saturday afternoon and still have time to fall into a really good Ben & Jerry’s coma before bed.

Thanks again to Ted because this was super nice of him, and now for my tags!

Katherine Catmull, if she has time! She is one of my fellow Curators over at the Cabinet of Curiosities, and she hinted about her next book in an email recently. Must. Know. More. Twitter: @kmcatmull

My dear friend Melissa Marino, who is working on a middle grade I think sounds awesome. Twitter: @MelissaWrites2

Eric Devine, my publisher/editor sibling, author of TAP OUT and the newly-announced DARE ME. I think he’s editing the latter right now, but if he has a minute I really want to know more about it. Twitter: @eric_devine





Posted by on February 27, 2013 in Uncategorized


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Because we’re all in this together…

I was just over on Stefan Bachmann’s blog and he gave me the nicest shoutout (thanks, Stefan!) at the end of his post of 11 weird facts about him. And so, because I am enormously kind-hearted and he told people what his middle name is, I thought I’d come over here and embarrass myself a little for your amusement.

Plus it seems like fun, and I just finished a CHORUS chapter, and I need to figure out how to start the next one, so clearly I’m flailing around online instead of drowning myself in Scrivener like I SHOULD.

11 random facts about me:

1. I wear a Slytherin scarf in the winter and laugh to myself when I see people recognize it. And then I pretend they’re not laughing at me.

2. When I was really little, I thought you had to pass a test before they let you be a grownup. Knowing myself as a grownup now, I truly understand that they let anyone into the club.

3. I once hurt my shoulder so badly I needed months of physical therapy to get it back to something approaching normal function, and it’s still not totally healed. I’d love to tell you some thrilling story involving mountain climbing or pirates or that time I joined the circus, but I actually did it getting out of bed on a perfectly ordinary morning. Go ahead and wonder how I managed that, I’ll wait.

4. I collect shoes and dictionaries, but I have more of the former.

5. I’ve been hoarding music since I was about thirteen. It would take 45 days to listen to every song on my iPod just once. 12 of those songs are the Labyrinth soundtrack.

6. I’m allergic to kiwi fruit, which is a shame because I really love them. I’m not allergic to beets, which is a shame because I really hate them.

7. The very first copy of CODA I ever signed was for a Famous Person. No, I won’t say who.

8. My dog is bigger than your dog.

9. I have a scar on the bottom of my foot from stepping on a bee when I was seven.

10. I am awkward and nervous around people 100% of the time, although I’m told I hide it well.

11. I once ran into an actor while he was going into a bookstore and I was leaving it. Not, “Oh, hello, how are you” kind of ran-into, because that would be weird, but full on ran-into-into-and-fell-over, which was just humiliating. He helped me up, which was very nice of him, and ignored my incoherent babbling, also very nice of him.

SO THERE WE GO. And my thanks to Stefan for giving me something to do while I figure out the next chapter.


Posted by on February 23, 2013 in Uncategorized


My favorite thing on the internet today

I am amazed that someone took the time to do this, and oh, so glad they did.

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Posted by on February 22, 2013 in Uncategorized


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The final Lesson From Magic Bird Book, or BIG NEWS

Finish the book that scares you. That’s the final lesson. Because AMAZING things will happen.

I may have mentioned the Magic Bird Book. Once or twice, perhaps.



I can finally, FINALLY tell you things about it. Some things that have been secret for days, and some for weeks, and some for nearly a YEAR. So we’ll start with that last one.

Magic Bird Book is, and always has been, named GEARWING. And GEARWING is a crazy, middle grade, Victorian, steampunk-ish fairytale with dragons and airships and all manner of FUN.

Which brings me to other secrets: you’re all going to get to read it, if you want to. This just went live on Publishers Weekly Children’s Bookshelf:

Zareen Jaffery at S&S Books for Young Readers has acquired at auction two middle grade novels by Emma Trevayne, author of the forthcoming YA sci-fi novels Coda and Chorus. In the first book, Gearwing, a boy accidentally travels from his home in Victorian London to an alternate, fairy-populated, steam-clogged version of the city, only to be caught in a web of dangerous politics; his only hope of returning home lies with the legend of an enormous, wish-granting clockwork bird. Publication is set for Summer 2014. Brooks Sherman of FinePrint Literary Management brokered the deal for North American rights. Brazilian rights were pre-empted by Companhia das Letras by João Paulo Riff at Riff Agency, in association with Kathleen Ortiz at New Leaf Literary & Media.

I’m trying so hard to be calm and I am FAILING SPECTACULARLY. I am so obnoxiously proud of this book and I was so anxious about it finding the perfect home, the perfect editor who could help me make it even better, and I shouldn’t have worried because I GOT HER. Zareen…GAH. Thank you. My eloquence is gone but thank you, thank you so much. The week this book sold was CRAZY. I was at ALA signing copies of CODA and getting updates on what was happening with the auction and it was just the very, very best kind of craziness.

And I need to thank Brooks, too, because he understood this book in the most perfect way. The full extent of his rock-star-ocity has yet to be revealed, but trust me, he is a rock star. And Kathleen Ortiz is a rock star, too. She sold those Brazilian rights faster than I could blink!

And, you know, my CPs and betas and friends and whatnot who kept me sane while writing this book because that is NO MEAN FEAT, seriously.

This book is going to be SO BEAUTIFUL. There will be illustrations and gorgeousness and surprise things! It makes my heart flutter just thinking about it. I absolutely can’t wait for it to be out in the world.


Posted by on February 21, 2013 in Uncategorized


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This is AMAZING.

Look at what the awesome Safari Poet made!

Thank you so much! And she has a bunch, so go over and grab ones for books you’re looking forward to. 😀

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Posted by on February 5, 2013 in Uncategorized