Monday, July 20, 2009

David Gray: Fangirl Moment

Ohhhh...guess who is playing in town in a few weeks from now? David Gray!

Babylon! Babylon!

Now here's a guy who should be writing a YA novel.

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Sweet Memories of ALA

Thanks to my publisher for sending me to ALA where I had the privilege of signing in their booth... complete with my own sign. I still can't believe the number of people waiting in line, holding my books...

And thanks to Follett who hosted me in their booth as well where I signed another 100 copies of North of Beautiful. Thank you!

And then off to a dinner where I was starry-eyed over the amazing librarians who came out to hear debut novelists Malinda Lo and Sarah Ockler as well as me. I'm not sure I laughed so hard during all those conversations.

The Printz Awards? Phenomenal. It is absolutely inspiring to hear authors detail their journey and the back story to their novels. And even more when they take a stance publicly about young adult literature. The highlight of the evening though? When Jack Martin--he who is all things fashionable...and oh, yeah, a rock star librarian at NYPL--told me he loved my dress.

Monday, July 13, 2009

Hanging with 30,000 Librarians!

Sweet room looking out over the Chicago skyline and the water. Thank you, Little, Brown! My head is still reeling over last night's wonderful catch-up with Beth Yoke, executive director of YALSA, and Stevie--her PR person of much wonderosity. We're rolling out another very cool teen literacy project together...more soon.

Then, why oh why, have I not learned to keep some ideas to myself? Such as telling the YALSA president-elect (who kicked off this year's party with a Project Runway theme) that NEXT year, we should give people book covers, duct tape, and two hours to fashion an outfit. She stared at me (never a good sign), and said, "WE should have AUTHORS do that."


So today I'll be signing my books. If you're in Chicago, drop by the booths over at ALA:
10:30-11:30 Little, Brown Books
11:30-12:30 Follett booth

And then off for a dinner with some rock star librarians, finishing the evening over at the Printz Awards reception. I heard that Neil Gaiman gave an extraordinary speech last night at the Newbery Awards... I am SO disappointed that I missed it.

Yay, new day!

Saturday, July 11, 2009

Move Over, Twilight

How sweet is The Dreamer Reader's review of NORTH OF BEAUTIFUL?

"Oh my freakin' goodness, what can I say about this book that hasn't been said before?! The characters are amazingly real, the writing is pitch-perfect, and it just resonated with me. It is truly awesome and even when I'm old and on my death bed, I will still remember this book."

On her death bed? Really? But my favorite line in The Dreamer Reader's book review:

"If Jacob from North of Beautiful and Jacob from Twilight (never heard of it? You're my type of person.) appeared on my doorstep I would just grab the Jacob from North of Beautiful and beg him to be mine while the other one can just suck it."

Take that, Jacob from Twilight! LOL.

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Justina on The Talking Potatoes!

And now...I bring you my favorite interview of all. My "celebrity" spot on...The Talking Potatoes, a book blog run by two avid readers, both under four feet tall!

Monday, July 6, 2009


Two weeks ago, my friends, the DeVaans, surprised me with a full week's worth of meals when I started a new project. So when my writer-buddy Martha told me that her 79-year-old adventurer of a dad jumped off his ATV before it launched into a ravine in Tahiti (yes, you read that right) and critically injured himself, I thought I'd supply her family with a few meals, too.

Which sounds easier than it is. (Need I remind anyone about my crock pot adventure? Who knew that most crock pots don't survive stovetops?)

Lest I food poison my friend, I dropped off some FROZEN MEALS over the weekend and then trekked around Madrona. Martha took me along a fabulous secret path connecting a series of streets, wending through gardens, one chicken coop, a sliver thin house, and a unicycle mounted on a tree stump.

Which, of course, got us talking about miracles--and the miracle of surviving a near-fatal accident the way her dad did. Which led to Martha writing her dad a Nobituary--all the reasons why he had to stay alive.

I love that. However, I am not sure a Nobituary for my crock pot would have done much good.

Reading Recs over in Readergirlz-Land sweet is this? The postergirlz have selected NORTH OF BEAUTIFUL as a recommended read, accompanying Cecil Castelucci's featured graphic novel, THE PLAIN JANES.

From the readergirlz site:
Many thanks to our postergirlz for the recommends to join the divas' spotlight in July: The Plain Janes and Janes in Love. Every one of these works is a great compliment to the other. Welcome, esteemed authors!

The Opposite of Invisible by Liz Gallagher
A Map of the Known World by Lisa Ann Sandell
Emiko Superstar by Mariko Tamaki and Steve Rolston
North of Beautiful by Justina Chen Headley
Same Difference by Siobhan Vivian

Wreck This Journal by Keri Smith

Sunday, July 5, 2009

Chicago-Bound for ALA!

My peeps of wonderosity at Little, Brown Books have sent me my schedule for ALA (American Library Association). Fun times will be had in Chicago. So if you're in town (hello, Kathleen at Anderson's Books and Robin at Chicago Public Library), please drop by and keep me company:

Monday, July 13:
10:30 a.m.: Book signing at the LB Booth (#2212). (At TLA in April, I was told-ahem-that I chit chatted a bit too much with all the people who wanted a signed book. Me? Chit chat too much? I will henceforth keep all chatting to one quick quip per person, especially if I like your earrings. Or glasses.)

11:30 a.m.: Book signing at the Follett Booth (#4811). (I'm getting a wee bit anxious about finding this booth since, as we know, orienteering is not my strong suit. Especially with thousands of book-hungry librarians milling about a ginormous convention hall. Oh, dear. Will LB be supplying me with emergency flares in the event I get lost?)

And then my publisher is hosting a dinner for me along with debut novelists Malinda Lo (ASH) and Sarah Ockler (Twenty Boy Summer). Just wait until you read these new books; they are fabulous. As for me, I suspect I will probably start tearing up at the sight of Megan Fink (Charlotte Country Day) who asked me to keynote a multiculti conference for her two years in a row--what an honor--but scheduling this year isn't allowing me to make the trek to South Carolina. Disappointment doesn't even cover how I'm feeling.

8:00 p.m. Printz Awards reception, baby, over at the Sheraton! My publisher has promised mucho partying afterwards. So find me and we'll toast another year of very fine literature for young adults.