Here’s to epic summer love <3
TGIM, friendly neighbors! I hope your summer has been a spectacular one. Here in New York, we’ve been enjoying happy summer days and romantic summer nights. Including some rooftop city love, soul mate style.
Looks like a book cover? It’s actually me and my BF.
Breaking City Love trilogy news! The first book cover photo shoot happened on a Brooklyn rooftop yesterday.
Snaps for these fantastic models who braved the extreme heat and humidity. It was totally gross out, but they looked absolutely gorgeous. As models do.
This cover will be stunning. New York City skyline in the background? Yes, please.
The first City Love book will be out in April 2015. I can’t wait to share the cover with you soon!
Capturing the tone of a book in a book trailer is not easy. There’s a lot to think about – casting, locations, music, editing. I wanted the Now and Forever trailer to capture both the dreamy romance of falling in love and the exhilaration of rising fame. Which is why, when my BF/soul mate said he’d write and direct the trailer, I was all over that.
The first step was to find actors who would bring Sterling and Ethan to life. I was thrilled when Lily Zahn and Ben Bowers responded.
Lily is freaking adorable. As soon as I saw her reel, I knew she had the talent, depth, and right look to play Sterling. Ben showed up looking like a total rock star. Dude, he is an Abercrombie model. Ben submitted this ad he did with his resume and I was like, Um, yeah, you might want to work on your abs more? But other than that…
This past winter was so cold that we had to wait forever until it was warm enough to shoot. Finally the trees were flowering and we were good to go. Our shoot was a full day with four locations in downtown Manhattan, including my apartment. Ben brought the world’s biggest rock star to life right in my living room:
My red couch will never be the same. Especially after the hot makeout scenes:
What’s it like to show up for a job and kiss someone you just met (while dealing with horrible allergies and getting locked in a diner’s bathroom)? Lily shared some reflections from the shoot:
It’s somewhat rare when filming that we would get to have the writer (in this case, author) on set. Since the book hadn’t been released yet, it was so helpful to have Susane there guiding us to bring her characters to life. It was also really comforting to know that Susane had handpicked us for the task. Sterling’s specific experience is pretty incredible – I’ve never dated a guy who became a world-famous rock star (…yet). But in playing her, I keyed in to what I could relate to about her story, which is being young and in love and having to realize that things change as life takes each person in a different direction.
Oh gosh, I had the worst allergies the day we shot the trailer. It was April and everything was starting to bloom. Probably the biggest challenge of the day was to not let feeling under the weather impact my performance. After all, Sterling wasn’t feeling sick! In that case, all you can really do bring is some Zyrtec and power through – keep the energy up, try to enjoy the experience, and ignore that stuffy nose and headache.
As an actor on set, one of the weirdest things we do is form an “insta-relationship” with a co-star. In a play, I usually have weeks of rehearsal to get to know someone and build a rapport. When I’m called in for a one day shoot, I may show up on set, shake hands, and start making out. No matter how you slice it, it sounds pretty weird. But I think we all know it’s part of the job and when you have someone nice and hygienic (and let’s face it, not bad on the eyes), it’s generally fine… and even a little fun. But it’s also pretty technical; you might get directions like, “put your hand here,” “smile earlier,” or “no tongue.” Once that first kiss is out of the way, it’s sort of business as usual (how many jobs can you say that about?).
Oh! Kissing schmissing. I have the most awkward story of the day. On our lunch break, I got locked in the restaurant’s restroom. Literally, the lock jammed and I could not get it off. I had a bigger emotional journey in those 10 minutes than I did the whole day of the shoot. I went through annoyance at the faulty lock, panic that I’d delay the shooting schedule, embarrassment at what everyone must think I’m doing in the bathroom, laughter at the absurdity of the situation, and finally determination to unjam that lock with brute strength (which I did… eventually, thank you very much). I flung out of the bathroom, took a deep breath and returned to our table. Show must go on, right? Even with the allergy attack and bathroom debacle, it was such a great day. I wish all jobs could be that fun and relaxed (and on schedule!) Susane and Matt brought such a positive energy that it really made my job easy and enjoyable.
Lily and Ben were amazing to work with. And I was happy that they had fun with each other. They made the relationship between Sterling and Ethan adorable and relatable.
Thanks for all of your kind comments about the trailer, friendly neighbors. Here’s to bringing books to life!
Want to talk summer romance with me, Huntley Fitzpatrick, Jessa Holbrook, and Una LaMarche? Then join us tomorrow, July 1, 7:00-8:00pm EST for a #SummerRomance Twitter chat!
Tweet your questions to us with #SummerRomance. One winner will be randomly selected to receive this summer romance book prize pack from Penguin Teen.
Happy summer reading!
Happy summer solstice week, friendly neighbors! Summer officially begins this Saturday, June 21, at 6:51am EST. Bring on those summer nights.
I have a bunch of notes about stuff I want to share with you. As the bunch has gotten a bit out of control, I decided that a top ten list of the most important notes was in order. So here you go…
1. Which movie boy character is more adorable than Lloyd Dobler? That is a trick question. No one is more adorable than Lloyd Dobler. Who else would kick broken glass out of the way for Diane Court?
Say Anything… turned 25 this year. Respect. Enjoy these 15 Life Lessons from Lloyd Dobler.
2. Stay Bookish is doing a giveaway of a signed copy of Now and Forever. Plus they look at the Now and Forever playlist with a Story Soundtrack. You can listen to the complete Now and Forever playlist on Spotify.
3. Am I giving away books too? Of course I am. You can enter my Seventh Annual Ginormous Contest to win FOUR signed copies of my books! Show me your musical creativity in the form of a video, performance, fan art, original sound…however you want to express your musical brilliance!
4. In other book news, The LAMP is auctioning off a complete set of my first edition signed hardcover books to benefit their Media Breaker project. The LAMP brings media literacy training to students, parents, and teachers, encouraging everyone to perceive media messages in thoughtful, intelligent ways. Media Breaker allows you to remix and criticize commercials, news, music videos and more. As my good friend and co-founder DC says, Media Breaker is inspiring hundreds of little Jon Stewarts. What’s not to love about that?
6. PRN radio interviewed me about Now and Forever, why my main motto is Dream Big, and how my personal love life influences my books. You can listen to the podcast here, starting at 32:55.
7. Fun fact time for my fellow NYC trivia geeks. You know those orange discs on top of street lights? They are photo cells that turn the street light on and off. What about those orange bulbs on the side of some street light poles? They are vestiges of New York’s fire-box era, indicating that an emergency box to call the fire department is nearby.
I don’t know about you, but I feel way better that this mystery has finally been solved.
8. Skeptical about whether true love exists? I can tell you from personal experience that it does. Which is why I write book after book about soul mates. I want my readers to know that the kind of love they want exists. But don’t just take my word for it. The Lovumentary has collected the most epic love stories all across the country. Read them and be inspired.
9. I’m more of a scrapbooking than a quilting person, but this quilt freaking rules.
A quilt featuring cupcakes and strawberries? Is my kind of quilt.
10. I am definitely in the running to set a world record for playing Happy on mental repeat. That song is my summer jam. Every time it comes on, no matter where I am, I get super happy. Even when I ordered oatmeal at brunch to try it because I don’t like oatmeal but I feel like I should so I wanted to give it another try even though I knew I probably wouldn’t like it.
Did I suddenly like oatmeal? No. Was I regretting my choice of oatmeal instead of fruit salad? Yes. You all know how obsessed I am with summer fruit. But it wasn’t a consuming regret. Trying new things (or giving old things another try) is important. Even if it’s oatmeal that doesn’t taste any better after putting cinnamon and honey on it. As a Taurus, I tend to be a bit, um, inflexible about my opinions. I know what I like. I know what I don’t like. But I also know that change is key. Change is what makes our lives better than we ever imagined. Change is why Diane Court let Lloyd Dobler push that broken glass out of her way. And why she let him fly away with her.
Here’s to a spectacular summer filled with happy sounds, true love, and positive change :)
TGIM, friendly neighbors! I have some good news for you. My author copies of Now and Forever plus paperbacks of All I Need are in the house. You know what that means.
The Seventh Annual Ginormous Contest is on! And it’s international!
This one’s all about the music. For the Sixth Annual Ginormous Contest last year, you guys dazzled me with your beautiful summer collages. The collage idea was inspired by Seth Katims from All I Need. Seth is an artist who makes collages from repurposed and found objects. Since Now and Forever is about the world’s biggest rock star, Ethan Cross is inspiring the musical theme this year.
Show me your musical creativity and you’re in. What do I mean by musical creativity? Fan art, original lyrics, musical composition or mixing, artwork, video, or performance. Just express your love of music in whatever way works best for you. Let your musical obsession shine! I want to be dazzled by your musical brilliance! And what can you win in return?
Dude. First prize is FOUR signed books! How ginormous is that?
Here’s the breakdown of prizes:
First prize is a signed hardcover of Now and Forever, a signed paperback of All I Need, a signed paperback of Keep Holding On, a signed paperback of So Much Closer, and a Now and Forever guitar pick bookmark.
Second prize is a signed hardcover of Now and Forever, a signed paperback of All I Need, a signed paperback of Keep Holding On, and a Now and Forever guitar pick bookmark.
Third prize is a signed hardcover of Now and Forever, a signed paperback of All I Need, and a Now and Forever guitar pick bookmark.
How to enter the contest:
1. Create fan art, original lyrics or a tribute to existing lyrics, musical composition or mixing, artwork, video, a song or dance performance, or any other form of expressing your musical creativity. Let your musical obsession shine!
2. Email your entry in the form of an attachment or link to me at susanecolasanti at gmail. Include your full name and mailing address with your entry.
3. Entries must be received by Sunday, June 22 at 11:11 pm.
Shine on, you rock stars. Shine on :)