THE ASTONISHING ADVENTURES OF FANBOY AND GOTH GIRL and BOY TOY author Barry Lyga's I HUNT KILLERS, a dark thriller described as DEXTER meets THE SILENCE OF THE LAMBS for teens, about a teen boy who uses his killer instinct, inherited from his serial killer father, to help solve a series of gruesome murders, to Alvina Ling at Little, Brown Books for Young Readers in a two-book deal, for Spring 2012 publication, by Kathleen Anderson at Anderson Literary Management. (World)
See Barry's announcement here.
I'm a huge fan of the TV Show Dexter (not the children's show Dexter's Laboratory, but the show on Showtime about a serial killer. Yes, a serial killer. For years now I've been telling agents that I'd be interested in publishing a "Dexter for teens" and have been met with doubt (really? Could you publish that? How would that work?) or intrigue (Hmmm. That would be interesting.), but either way, it never led to any submissions. I was having drinks with Barry last year--we had been interested in working with one another for a while, and I mentioned the idea to him. He shrugged it off and didn't seem interested. But later inspiration hit, he sent in a proposal, and I loved it. I'm particularly happy with this acquisition, because I'm fascinated by serial killers (who isn't?), am finally getting my "Dexter for teens", Barry Lyga is the absolute perfect author to write this (he deals with tough issues in such a sensitive, thoughtful way), and I finally get to work with Barry! Win-win-win-win.
My second acquisitions also happens to be, like Barry, a GEEKTASTIC: Stories from the Nerd Herd contributor:
Libba Bray, hot off her Printz win for Going Bovine, has landed a major book deal at Little, Brown Books for Young Readers. Bray's agent-husband, Barry Goldblatt, sold North American rights, in an auction featuring six houses, to a new YA series called The Diviners to LBBYR senior v-p and publisher Megan Tingley, deputy publisher Andrew Smith, and senior editor Alvina Ling. Ling is set to edit the planned four-book series, which will bow in hardcover in fall 2012...
In The Diviners, a supernatural fantasy series set in Manhattan during the 1920s, Bray follows a teen heroine she says is reminiscent of two of the era's most famous literary women—Zelda Fitzgerald and Dorothy Parker. Bray, who admitted to having always been fascinated by the Jazz Age, said she's looking forward "to offering readers a wild new ride full of dames and dapper dons, jazz babies and Prohibition-defying parties, conspiracy and prophecy—and all manner of things that go bump in the neon-drenched night.”
Read more of the announcement here.
As the announcement says, this acquisition was won in a big auction, which is always nerve wracking. The morning we were supposed to find out the results of the auction, I found myself constantly checking the phone. "I feel like I'm a girl waiting for a boy to call," I told my coworkers. And indeed, I was. When the good news finally came, I was on the street with coworkers heading to an all-company, off-site meeting. As soon as I got on my cellphone, all of my coworkers stopped to see/hear my reaction--they were invested in the outcome too. As soon as the agent said, "Congratulations..." I jumped up and down and screamed, and my coworkers screamed and applauded, too. Very fun.
I'm so excited and honored to be working with both Barry Lyga and Libba Bray, two authors I've admired for a long time. So stay tuned for more news--the former should be out in Spring 2012, the latter in Fall 2012. And it's fun to think of the similarities:
1) Both projects feature a serial killer.
2) Libba and Barry inversely share the same initials: L and B. Just like "Little, Brown"!
3) They both live in Brooklyn.
4) And, as I mentioned, they both wrote short stories for GEEKTASTIC.
So, just for fun, because we're all geeks here, I thought I'd give away two copies of GEEKTASTIC to the first two commentors who answer the following question correctly:
What were the names of my D&D characters as a child?
(and yes, the answer can be found somewhere on this blog...)