Wednesday, August 31, 2011

It's a new two-book deal!!

It posted in Publisher's Marketplace today so I guess I can finally talk about it!:

Jaclyn Dolamore's DARK METROPOLIS, about a city in which corruption and vice are rampant and disappearances warrant a shrug from the authorities: when a girl vanishes, her best friend must search the city's underground, only to find that here, people who die don't necessarily stay dead, to Catherine Onder at Disney-Hyperion, at auction, in a six-figure deal, in a two-book deal, by Jennifer Laughran at Andrea Brown Literary Agency (World English).

EEEEK!

This book has a bit of a fascinating story. I started it back in 2007, if I recall correctly. Fritz Lang's 1927 film Metropolis happens to be one of my favorites, and I was pondering a story based on it where the workers are all revived from the dead. I wrote the first chapter and I thought the voice came out sounding both more sophisticated and tense than anything I'd written up to that point.

And frankly, I didn't feel ready to write it. I didn't know what it was really about yet, but I knew I couldn't do it justice.

Last October, my cat died. I nursed her through cancer until she had to be put down, and the last months of her life were traumatizing for me, but she remained the cat of my heart, a cat who always spent her nights melted against my stomach like a baby in an invisible womb, with her paw tucked inside my hand. I didn't write much in November once I turned in Magic Under Stone, and in December I had a talk with my agent and decided to work on a middle grade.

But that Metropolis-story kept poking at me all of a sudden. I realized it was kind of a book about death. And until Tacy died, I hadn't been close enough to it to write that book. Even though I was "supposed" to be writing a middle grade I started writing this instead.

About a week after THAT, my agent told me that her client Lisa Madigan had advanced pancreatic cancer. I knew she would die. That isn't something people really make it out of. Lisa wasn't a super-close friend, but she was close enough that we had exchanged quite a few emails, that I had a ceramic mermaid that was a gift from her hanging by my desk. A lot of people loved her, because she was generous and funny and just a wonderful part of the writing community.

She died while I was writing this book, and in a funny way I think she helped me write it (although, obviously, I'm sure that was not her intention...), and a part of me sort of wanted to write an awesome book that my agent would love and sell well to cheer her up because we all loved Lisa, not that a book is any replacement for a PERSON, but...anyway. I finished this book really fast. It was a cathartic thing to write. It was the first thing that really made me cry.

Although it is not really a sad book, I don't think. And it has a romance--two romances, in fact, one with a girl and a magical silver-haired boy and one with a girl with strange magic of her own and another girl. It has my usual love of describing food and fashion! It was tremendously fun to research, even though it is not quite the real Weimar Berlin, because the real Weimar Berlin sort of had nothing to do with the plot of Metropolis. Still, you wouldn't know that from all my particular Googling of what hat styles were in fashion in 1927, and 1920s political theater, and other things. I listed to a lot of the Threepenny Opera.

It is tentatively scheduled to be a summer 2013 release, and I am SO very excited to be working with Hyperion and Catherine Onder, as I have heard wonderful things about both! I hope you will enjoy it!

35 comments:

  1. *Deep breaths, deep breaths*

    Okay, I'm just going to let it out.

    OH MY GOD SO EXCITED FOR YOU SO EXCITED TO READ THIS WOW HURRAY HURRAY!

    Ahem. Yes, congratulations.

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  2. Congratulations! The book sounds wonderful--sad and beautiful and hopeful. I can't wait to read it.

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  3. Wow that sounds AWESOME! Can't wait to read it! Big congratulations!

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  4. The book sounds wonderful and from the heart! Congrats!

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  5. Eee! Welcome to the Mouse House!!!

    ~Victoria

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  6. This just all sounds so beautiful and fabulous! Congrats, Jackie!!!

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  7. Congrats! Just read about this on Publisher's Marketplace, and your name stood out because I'm reading MAGIC UNDER GLASS right now. If I'm remembering correctly, you're a member of 2k10. (I'm a member of 2k11.) Very happy for your success--and a beautiful post about Lisa Madigan whose books are on my shelf.

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  8. Woot! Huge congrats, Jackie! I'm happy dancing for you. The books sound wonderful, and I can't wait to read them. I'll shout out your great news in the next FL SCBWI listserv.

    I already have an SCBWI Success Story for the upcoming one. You've been on an amazing roller coaster journey and have such an inspiring story. Do you want to be the Success Story for the listserv after that?

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  9. Yay! Congrats, Jackie! Hooray for finally being able to share!

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  10. Huge congratulations on your new deal! This sounds like it will be a fabulous read.

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  11. Congrats! That's sounds like a really fabulous story!

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  12. Congrats again! Glad you can spill the beans at last. ;)

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  13. Congrats, the book sounds awesome!

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  14. =D =D Thank you so so much everybody!

    Amy: Nice to meet you! I tried to get an ARC of your book last year at Bloomsbury/Walker but they were out. I tend to always love Bloomsbury/Walker books, and not just because they've been my publisher for several books, but their books are just darn good.

    Mindy: Sure, I'd love to!!

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  15. You had me at "magical silver-haired boy..." Congrats!

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  16. Yay! I don't ask for a specific length, because some stories need more space than others. Make it as long as yours needs to be. I can't wait to share yours with everyone! I especially love seeing how SCBWI has helped--I know you've met some great critique buddies after going to our Miami conference.

    Can you also send me one or more writing tips? No rush on getting it to me--it'll probably be at least 3 weeks before I send that listserv. I'm hoping to get this one out by the end of the week.

    Congrats again! I'm still happy dancing for you. :)

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  17. So happy to hear this news, Jackie!! Congrats!!

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  18. Congratulations! What a wonderful story.

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  19. Sure, Mindy, I'll get it to you soon, writing tips and all!

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  20. Congratulations! And you brought tears to my eyes in talking about how Lisa influenced you in writing this book. I'm looking forward to reading it! :)

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  21. Sounded awesome just from the PM deal, but the METROPOLIS inspiration just made it even better! Can't wait to read it!

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  22. Congrats! Congrats! Congrats! I'm so excited for you and can't wait to read it!

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  23. NYAAA, congrats again, my dear~~ XDDDDD The more I hear about this series, the more excited I am to read it~!!! XD

    That said, I had no idea about your cat. ;__; That little detail of how she'd sleep with her paw in your hand kind of quietly obliterated me. I'm so sorry for your loss (belated though I am). I remember talking about the heavy realization of death and what it really feels like when it finally sinks in that we are finite in an ongoing world... If this book dips into those ideas, I'd be really interested to see what conclusion (well, as much as one can be had on a topic like DEATH) you came to on the whole subject. Really--very, very much looking forward to it.

    Congrats again. :)

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  24. Su...sorry for obliterating you! -_-;; She was one heck of a sweet cat. In some ways this book felt like a conversation between my divided self, a logical, mortal human who fears death may be the end of everything, and wants to defy it kicking and screaming, and a spiritual self who believes that death is only a part of a cycle that is right and good, and there is more to it all than one can dream. I wrestle with this all the time.

    I really struggled with a crisis of faith and existence while writing it where the mortal human self seemed to be taking over and mourning and despairing. And yet the way the book actually HAPPENED seemed so fated and magical (I left some of that out here, even) that it almost seemed to affirm the spiritual self.

    I still don't know. Of course. I'm sure there will be more of that conversation in future books.

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  25. Congratulations!! I finished Between The Sea and Sky the other day (loved it!) and I've read Magic Under Glass (more love!) so news about more wonderful words on the way makes me very very happy :)

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  26. Yay, Emily, always good to hear! Looking forward to your Sea and Sky review!

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  27. I remembered loving the concept when you mentioned it in chat a few years back and am so glad you finally wrote it! Congrats on the deal. It's well deserved.

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  28. A moving story about the story, Jaclyn. What a spectacular achievement.

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  30. Congrats!!!! I'm so happy for you (and Jenn). What an inspiring story. I was lucky to meet Lisa at SCBWI a few years ago and treasure some photos. I understand what it's like to be inspired by feelings that seem larger than life. Good luck with everything.

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  31. Seems you were meant to tell this story! Destiny, fate (or whatever you want to call it) has a funny way of working. Congrats! I'm really happy for you!

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  32. YAYAYAYAYAYAYAYAY!!!

    I am SO EXCITED for you! That's amazing! Go you! *throws confetti* *does a happy dance*

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  33. Congratulations! If you ever need reviewers, I would happily host/feature you on my blog: http://livetoread-krystal.blogspot.com/ edysicecreamlover18@gmailDOTcom

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  34. That's so awesome!!!! Congratulations. I look forward to reading it.

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  35. Awesome news! Sounds like a great read and what a history to the story. Grats :)

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