Tonight I will be packing for Deaf Camp, but this mundane activity will always hold a little magic for me. That’s because last year my packing was interrupted by my agent, Steven Malk of Writers House, calling to tell me that I had been offered a two-book deal with HarperCollins, that after ten years of working and hoping, after more drafts than I could count, it was finally happening. It wasn’t an enormous surprise – I had spoken to Alexandra Cooper, my new editor, earlier in the week before she took the book to the Acquisitions Committee, so I knew that she was interested and was excited about the story. But it seemed too much to hope that it might, finally, all work out. And it did.
Looking back, I realize that there probably wasn’t a better time for the universe to spring such news on me, especially because I couldn’t post anything about it online at the time or scream it to the ends of the earth as I would have liked. Instead, I had a great distraction, as I spent the week following the announcement with a bunch of middle-schoolers in the woods, none of whom, I assure you, were the least bit impressed with my authorly success. Not even the camper whose unusual name I had borrowed for one of my characters when I wrote the first draft, back when she was in preschool. Yeah, that’s how long I’ve been working on this book.