Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Day 2: All About Courtney

Today we're finding all about Courtney, including where she finds inspiration. Could be you'll find some too!

2k8: So, Courtney, where do you like to do most of your writing?

CS: Usually I sit on my bed with my laptop computer on my lap. Sometimes I bring my computer over to my best friend’s apartment (she lives in the same apartment building, just down the hall) and write over there. I also keep a little pad of paper in my purse so if I have an idea for a book while I’m out of the house, I can write it down before I forget.

2k8: Purse check, everyone! Now that we're prepared for emergency inspiration, tell us how the book came about? What got your started?

CS: The idea came to me in pieces – I have a friend who used a donor to have a baby, and my best friend told me about a movie that featured a number of donor kids. Then one day I was watching The Today Show, and there were a bunch of women being interviewed whose kids all had the same donor. I thought about what it would be like to have siblings you might not even know about, and the character Leah was born.

2k8: It's so awesome when puzzle pieces come together like that. How did you end up finding a publisher?

CS: I have been very, very lucky so far. When I finished my first manuscript, I called one of my professors from law school, who is also a writer. He gave me the name of his agent – I ended up signing with another agent at the same agency a few months later. After a few tweaks to the manuscript, my agent made a list of publishing houses he thought would be a good fit for me and my book, and the offer from Simon & Schuster came pretty quickly after that. The hardest part has been waiting for actual publication – I signed with Simon & Schuster almost three years ago. But it has all been well worth it.

2k8: Whoa! That is lucky. Did anything surprise you or catch you off guard while you were writing MY SO-CALLED FAMILY?

CS: I am pretty good at writing the first couple chapters of a book – it is what comes in the middle that is most difficult for me, and then I am caught off guard when I realize that I’m actually close to finishing – that there is a light at the end of the tunnel.

2k8: That light is lovely, isn't it? Now imagine you have an offer from your dream press to publish your dream book, no matter how insane or unmarketable it might be. What story would you want to write and why?

CS: Each time I start to write a book, it becomes my favorite book – my dream book. I think because I see it as filled with possibility. Right now I am in the beginning phases of a new book, about a New York City girl who has to move away for the summer with her mom and sister, to Lancaster, PA. One of my current dreams is being able to finish it, and to see it also published by Simon & Schuster, since working with S&S has been an absolute dream come true.

Good luck with that Court! We're positive we'll see that story published with S&S.


Lisa Schroeder said...

Courtney, your bed looks so comfy? I think I would just roll over and take a nap. :)

Congrats on your release and your success so far. Your book is great and obviously, lots of people think so.

daphne grab said...

it's neat to hear how leah came to be! and i agree with lisa- that bed looks way too comfy for work!

Michelle O'Neil said...

Congratulations Courtney!!!Your book is awesome. You have an amazing talent for capturing the young adult voice.

I'll be waiting for the book tour to roll through Cleveland!

; )