Monday, January 23, 2012

On EVERNEATH Eve, I am feeling Reflective

First things first: Check out this contest that Waterstone's in the U.K. is doing. Anyone can enter, no purchase or hoop-jumping necessary, and you could win the dress from the cover of EVERNEATH! Isn't that cool? 

Second things second: My main character Nikki gave an interview over here. That playful little minx! I didn't know she could do these things without my knowledge!

Thirdly, EVERNEATH comes out tomorrow. Tomorrow!! I know some of you have already seen it in stores (and if you have, tweet me a picture!) but it's out officially tomorrow. 

This is causing me to do something I rarely do: Reflect. I can't help it. I print up all of my rejection letters in preparation for the launch party tomorrow, and the next thing I know, I'm reflecting. 

All those people who thought my book wouldn't sell. And trust me, there is a stack of them. 

I check out the dedication in the book:

To: my dad.
A quiet man.
A fierce warrior.

And I can't help but remember there were many people in the past four years who told me he wouldn't live to see my book on shelves. 


I read over the acknowledgements page, which I'll share with you now, because there are so many people besides me who are behind this book:

Brace yourselves: this is going to be long. It takes a village to raise a novel, and this book owes its existence to one giant, crazy village.

First off, a big sloppy kiss on the cheek to the folks at DGLM, especially my agent Michael Bourret who is one half advocate, one half shrink, and the other third kindred soul. Thank you for seeing the beauty in the beastly draft that I sent you, and for talking me down from the ledge on a regular basis. And for loving tennis just as much as I do. Added kisses for Lauren Abramo and her stellar work abroad on behalf of Everneath

Next, high fives all around to the entire team at Balzer+Bray and HarperCollins. Special thanks to Sara Sargent and my editor Kristin Daly Rens, who fell in love with the story of Everneath months before it was even submitted. You taught me to never stop asking questions and digging deeper.  The Everneath came to vivid life because of you. Also thanks to the many people behind the scenes, including even more editors, copy editors, and the enthusiastic sales, design and marketing teams.

Slaps on the bums (football-team style) for my writing group The SIX (aptly named because we are all six feet tall) Bree Despain, Emily Wing Smith, Kimberly Webb Reid, Valynne Maetani Nagamatsu, and Sara Bolton. Without your brilliant critiques, endless readings of crappy drafts, and emergency runs to In-n-Out, this book would be a flaming pile of goo.

Hugs all around for friends who have helped me through the madness of trying to get a book published, either by reading early drafts or providing emotional support and chocolate: Amy Jefferies, Diane Adair, Anne Petty, Matthew J. Kirby, Alissa Owen, Raina Williams, Debbie Lambson, Jenni Elyse, Robin Weeks, Karin Brown, Amy Weech, and especially Dorien Nielson, who read the earliest version, when it was only twenty pages long and I was getting it ready to be critiqued at a conference.

Thank you to Martine Leavitt and the rest of my WIFYR 2009 workshop group for their insights. Thank you to many more blog friends, Twitter friends, real-life friends, and book bloggers who have watched my journey from the beginning, and have thrown their enthusiastic support behind this book. You know who you are!

Chest bumps to my extended families, including Frank and Kathleen, the Johnsons, the Otts, the Jacksons, the Ellingsons, and the other Johnsons, and endless nieces and nephews who also were subjected to early drafts. Special thanks to Eden Ellingson, who gave me the idea to write a book in the first place.

A noogie on the head for my sister Erin, who shouted the praises of crappy first drafts, and was ready with a pair of brass knuckles for anyone who thought differently. I'd want you on my side of any battle! Extra noogies for her husband, Dave.

A kiss on the forehead for my mom and dad, who raised me to believe I could do anything, and celebrated every step of the journey, from false starts and rejections to that magical day when I got THE CALL.  

A pinch on the cheek for my boys, Carter and Beckham, for reminding me there is life outside of my books.

Most of all, a smack on the kisser for Sam. You never let me give up. You believed in me when I didn’t believe in myself. You are the best man I know. It’s you and me against the world. Love you.

Lastly, I want to thank all of you blog readers - lurkers and frequent commenters - for accompanying me on this journey. Today, I'm just filled with love and gratitude and I don't know how to repay everyone. I'm always searching for words, but right now there are none. 

Except THANK YOU. 


  1. my name is in print (albiet in YOUR book)! how cool am i? oh alright, YOU'RE the cool one--i was so happy to watch the whole process! can't wait for tomorrow! celebrate BIG!!!

  2. Aw. Such a nice blog post. Can't wait to see Everneath on my door step when I get home from work later! :) Happy early book birthday! Enjoy the day tomorrow!

  3. OMG! I'm so excited! I've been having nightmares since I'm soooooo anxious to get the book. One of my nightmares was that the bookshops would refuse to let me buy your book.

    Oh god I really want that dress (If I don't win it, I think I'll hire a tailor to make me a replica!). Suddenly, I'm excited to be in the UK!

  4. Thanks for the WIFYR 2009 shout-out! We love you and are so excited! And I think it's reunion time again. I'll send an email and see you tomorrow!

  5. Oh, I love you, even more than I love your book (and that's a lot!!) Can't wait for tomorrow. I've enjoyed this amazing journey vicariously through you. You rock.

  6. <3 <3 <3 Sooooo stoked, Brodi! You are fantastic! So happy for your success :D

  7. Congrats, Brodi!! I can't WAIT to read it!

  8. Loved the acknowledgments. Congrats and I hope you enjoy every crazy minute of the next couple days.

  9. Congrats! Your post made me a little teary eyed. Not sure why. LOL. But I'm glad your dad is here to see this day come for you and that you have such a great support system.

    Can't wait to read it.

  10. Congratulations! I'm so happy and excited for you, it must feel amazing :D! Can't wait to read the book! Thanks for sharing your journey with us :).

  11. I'm so happy for you! I can't wait to read you book!

  12. I'm SOOOO happy for you, Brodi!! I can't wait to (finally!!) get my hands on EVERNEATH. Happy EVERNEATH EVE!!! *tosses semi-truck loads of confetti*

    P.S. I *loved* your acknowledgements page. :)

  13. Yeah, Brodi! You're ready to take on the world! Wish I could come to your launch.

  14. Gasp! Are these the same acknowledgments in the ARC? How did I miss my name? I totally read them, but apparently not closely enough.

    *feels unworthy* *dances* *runs off to brag to everyone she knows*

  15. This post made me cry. I'm so glad that your book is coming out tomorrow. I'm so happy for you! I'm extremely happy that your dad is still here to witness it. And, I'm glad I was able to provide you some support during your journey.

    <3 *hugs*

    Congratulations, Brodi! You deserve it!

    PS--See you tomorrow!

  16. I don't know you that well. Yet I feel there's a kindred spirit between our interests. I'm wishing you the best of luck and am happy to ride along.
    Happy Everneath Eve. Congratulations. *throws confetti* You're an inspiration to us all.

  17. Yay for book birthday eve! So happy for you, Brodi. :)

  18. So excited for you, Brodi. Congrats!

  19. Congratulations Brodi! I know you've worked so hard to get where you are. Your dedication to your dad made me tear up (although to be fair I am an emotional disaster of late). I can't wait to get the book tomorrow!

  20. I'm a late-comer to all of this, joining in your journey three, four...or is it well, doesn't matter. I've enjoyed what you've shared and allowed us to share back. You've cracked me up and made me cry. I'm thrilled to see this come down to the wire and am excited to see this happen for you.

    May your success return to you ten fold the obsessive work you put in. :-)

  21. And a hug and a kiss to you, for reminding us that dreams can come true! Love you Bro!

  22. SOOOOO excited and thrilled for you!!!!!

  23. HAPPY BOOK BIRTHDAY, Brodie Ashton and Everneath! :)

  24. Congrats and congrats!!!! So happy for you!

  25. Brodi, I just put Everneath on hold for myself at my library and was so excited to see it come up when I typed in the title. Congrats!

    (P.S. Sorry i didn't run out and buy a copy...we're on a budget!)

  26. What a lovely way to reflect. Congratulations on your novel! It sounds amazing and I can't wait to read it!

  27. I'm so happy for you and that Everneath finally came out! Though I am sad that since I live in the united states and not the uk or ireland I cannot enter. :(.........:)

  28. I just got done reading and I loved your book! But please, please tell me that there is going to be another one! I can not end that way!