my book tour!

The So Much Closer book tour schedule is ready for you! Some times still need to be confirmed and changes might be made, but this lets you know where I’ll be. Any changes to this schedule will be made on the events page of my website.

I’m doing a cluster tour this time around. It’s a multi-media approach to touring which involves TV, radio, print, school visits, and bookstore events. Which all sounds awesome! The thing is, cluster tours only focus on a few areas instead of being more spread out. The idea is to saturate a few select areas. So I won’t be coming to a bunch of states I was hoping to get to on this tour. Sorry if I’m not coming to you this time – I hear you, Texas and Florida! – but I’m really hoping I’ll get to see you on next year’s tour.

The So Much Closer book tour is coming to NJ, PA, NY, MA, and CA. Here’s the schedule:

May 3, 2011
River Road Books, Fair Haven, NJ
Pub day event TBA

May 4, 2011 – 2:30 pm
NJLA Conference, Ocean Place, One Ocean Boulevard, Long Branch, NJ
YA panel discussion

May 6, 2011
Harleysville Books, 672 Main Street, Harleysville, PA
Teen Girls Night Out – this is a ticketed event

May 7, 2011
Joe the Art of Coffee, 9 East 13th Street, New York, NY
Meet the Author

May 8, 2011 – 5:00 pm
Barnes & Noble, 267 7th Avenue, Park Slope, NY
Reading, Q&A, and signing

May 10, 2011
A Great Good Place for Books, 6120 La Salle Avenue, Oakland, CA
Reading, Q&A, and signing

May 11, 2011 – 5:00 pm
Towne Center Books, 555 Main Street, Pleasanton, CA
Pizza party

May 12, 2011 – 7:00 pm
Books Inc., 855 El Camino Real, Palo Alto, CA
Not Your Mother’s Book Club pizza party

May 15, 2011 – 4:00 pm
Oblong Books, 6422 Montgomery Street, Rhinebeck, NY
Hudson Valley YA Society literary salon

May 20, 2011 – 4:00 pm
Book Ends, 559 Main Street, Winchester, MA
Reading, Q&A, and signing

June 21, 2011 – 4:00 pm
Merrick Library Annex, 2369 Merrick Avenue, Merrick, NY
Beach Bag Book Club – call to reserve your spot

Hope to see you at one of these events!


Okay, it looks like I’ll be able to post my book tour schedule either later this week or early next week! My excellent publicist is putting together some super fun events. Several of them involve pizza. And there’s a unique event here in New York I’m beyond excited about.

I’m going to be doing lots of school visits on my tour. I’m stoked. As much as I love my job and working at home, I miss being with teens all day. Teens are my people. I miss my people. For this exciting reunion with them, I’m putting together a new seminar/workshop that I’m hoping everyone will relate to. It’s also a perfect excuse to skip right over to Shiny Happy Apple World and procure a new MacBook Pro. Cannot. Wait.

Around this time, we usually film my new author video. But it’s a good thing it hasn’t been scheduled yet because I just got the best idea for a filming location. Hopefully, it will work out and you’ll love it as much as I do. I’m also going to be doing a video this summer on the High Line, which is featured in So Much Closer. The High Line is where the cover photo was taken. It’s a magical place that I’m really looking forward to sharing with you. Until then, I blogged a bit about the High Line here.

As I’m writing this, my unfriendly upstairs neighbor (aka Herd of Elephants) is thrumping up a storm. But it’s a good kind of thrumping. He’s moving out! No more pounding on the floor “dancing” while yelling the most tone-deaf lyrics you’ve ever heard. No more slamming dresser drawers at 4:00 in the morning. No more bagpipes (that one goes out to my fellow How I Met Your Mother fans). Don’t let the door hit you on your evicted rear too hard. I heard his official moving day is tomorrow. I will declare tomorrow a national holiday.

Lesson: If you are a rude dumbass who acts like no one else lives within a 10-mile radius, no one will like you. And you will be evicted.

So there’s much to anticipate. A refreshing Zen atmosphere at home. Fun new videos. A packed book tour. A shiny new laptop for me. And of course a shiny new book for you! Bring on the party.

copy that

The following takes place between 8:00 p.m. and 8:15 p.m.

Events occur in real time.

Jack: What’s your location?

Tony: Houston airport, South Terminal, Borders bookstore.

Jack: Do you have a visual on the suspect?

Tony: Negative. But a visual on your girlfriend’s books is affirmative.

Jack: Upload the file to my PDA.

Tony: Stand by.

>upload houstonairport.jpg to pda jackbauer<
>processing file<

Waiting for You by Susane Colasanti, Houston Airport

Jack: That’s what’s up.

Tony: Nice documentation, right?

Jack: Copy that. I have a visual on The Hunger Games.

Tony: Google Alert has picked up on chatter regarding So Much Closer.

Jack: Give me the highlights.

Tony: “I needed this inspiration. I needed the characters in this novel. This novel was flawless.”

Jack: Source?

Tony: Just Read Books review by Miranda. Reference to Tricia has been traced to The Truth About Books! review.

Jack: Are those girls suspects?

Tony: Unlikely. Where are we on background check?

Jack: Chloe’s decoding the files now. Patch me through.

Chloe: Go for Chloe.

Jack: Chloe, this is Jack. Is the background check ready?

Chloe: I need a minute.


Chloe: Well, maybe if you stop pestering me they won’t.

>chloe out<

Tony: This just in. Rumor of your presence on Twitter. What, you’re tweeting now?

Jack: Stand by for evidence.

>link to RealKiefer<

Tony: Just when you think you know Jack…

Jack: You don’t know jack!

Tony: Returning to CTU outpost.

Jack: Returning to NYC. Dinner is ready.

>upload coordinates<
>upload dinner<

Kiefer Sutherland having dinner at home

Tony: Over.

Jack: Over and out.

spring things

After much waiting and wishing and longing and hoping…

Spring. Is. Here.

*throws sparkly confetti at spring*

Yay yay and YAY! Even though this winter didn’t feel as relentless as usual, the vernal equinox remains my favorite holiday. In celebration of the first full day of spring, here are some things that are making me smile.

1. The ginormous Books of Wonder signing yesterday. I was really impressed that Tricia of The Truth About Books! and Miranda of Just Read Books traveled so far to be there. They even made me a gorgeous sparkly star box and decorated journal as gifts for, like, no reason other than that they are awesome. Renee of The Book Girl Reviews was also in the house. She’s been to every ginormous Books of Wonder signing since our first. That’s hot.

2. The Compulsive Reader’s review of So Much Closer. “So Much Closer is an unexpected, funny, and real novel that is charged with energy and life.” Sweet!

3. Sunset is now after 7:00.

4. My new iPod Touch case. Lily had the cutest iPhone case on How I Met Your Mother. I just had to have it for my iPod. Google magic led me straight to it. Well, almost. They don’t carry her exact one anymore (white with a pink flower), so I got the next best one (turquoise with a white flower). Or maybe the purple one was the best? Or the one with little hearts…

5. Red pandas frolicking in the snow, super moon photos from around the world, and pretty much everything else on The Mary Sue. A guide to girl geek culture indeed.

6. Fresh lavender from the greenmarket. Lavender makes me happy.

7. Three of my books are going to be published in Indonesia! I have a feeling those will be some super interesting covers.

8. The narrators for the new When It Happens, Take Me There, and Waiting for You audiobooks. They’re all so perfect I can’t even tell you.

9. Zumba! I’ve only gone to two classes and I’m already hooked. I’ve never seen the studio so packed. There’s like 100 of us in there. Gym crowds usually annoy me to the point where I avoid night gym classes. But Zumba is so freaking fun that I don’t even care. When a good workout is also a party, that rules.

10. The first mourning dove of the season has been heard. Check out this fat and fluffy one.

Wishing you a spring filled with good times and exciting adventures!


It’s NYC Teen Author Festival week! For those of you in the area or coming in to see so many awesome authors in one space it’s not even funny, here’s where I’ll be:

Friday, March 18
5:00 – 6:00
Under the Influences panel discussion

NYPL 42nd Street Branch, South Court
476 5th Avenue (at 42nd Street)
New York, NY 10018

Sunday, March 20
3:15 – 4:00
Ginormous signing!

Books of Wonder
18 West 18th Street
New York, NY 10011

Hope to see you!


What am I doing right now? Or, just admiring a finished copy of So Much Closer! Even though it doesn’t come out until May 3, my publisher got a few early copies in. Of course I had to stand there in the lobby like the big book nerd I am and document it for you:

So Much Closer by Susane Colasanti at the Penguin offices

Now it feels real.

Because I am a big book nerd, I must also report that underneath the gorgeous book jacket (love that stripey spine!), the cover is lavender with pink foil lettering. And the book smells really nice. I just randomly opened to page 157 and landed on this quote:

“This dream came true. The possibility that other dreams could also come true makes me want to turn my life into everything it can be.”

Always dream big…

so much closer trailer

As we get so much closer to So Much Closer, I’ll have a lot more fun book things to share with you here.

Today it’s the So Much Closer book trailer! This trailer really captures the tone of the book. I love how the stripes transform into buildings. I love that one sparkly blinking light. I hope you love it, too.

secrets of the ivy league

It’s been 15 years since I graduated from the University of Pennsylvania. Participating in alumni events isn’t really my thing. But when I got an email about an alumni seminar on the Ivy League admissions process, I immediately signed up. It was an excellent opportunity for research. And it was at the schmancy Penn Club here in New York. Which brought me right back to the days of not fitting in at schmancy Penn, but I wasn’t there for social hour. I was there because I believe a quality education is worth every penny. Even after paying for college and grad school entirely on my own. Even after paying off over $70,000 in student loan debt. I would have had way more debt, but I received a lot of financial aid. Are the Ivies ridiculously expensive? Hells yeah they are. But until things change (if they ever do), this is the world we live in. And there are ways to make things work for you.

The seminar was way informative. I gathered all this inside info on what will make someone stand out as an Ivy League (or any top university) applicant. When I asked you guys on Twitter if you wanted me to write a blog post about all of this, you totally did. So per your request, here you go!

Q: Can I still apply if my class rank isn’t 1 or 2?

A: Yes. Class rank is on its way out. What’s more important is challenging yourself within the context of your high school. You are evaluated based on the quality of your school’s curriculum. If you go to a rigorous school where As are less frequently earned, an A in one of those classes will carry more weight than an A in some other class at a school where As are tossed out all the time. The Ivies get to know your high school really well so the admissions committee can ask, “Did this applicant work hard to earn their grades, or was their 4.0 easy to build?”

Q: Do I have to have a 4.0 to apply?

A: Not necessarily, but your GPA has to be pretty close. I think most Ivies require a GPA of at least 3.8 (unless that’s changed recently). Essentially, everyone applying will have straight As. Not good enough. What have you done to stand out among all the other top students in the world who are applying? The Ivies are looking for students who have made the most of the opportunities available at their school and in their community. Community service is a must.

Q: What if my high school already requires community service? Isn’t that enough?

A: No. If your school has a community service requirement, you need to do way more than what’s required to stand out. Again, this goes back to being evaluated within the context of your high school.

Q: How important are extracurricular activities?

A: Extremely important. In fact, activities within your school are required. But you can’t just do a bunch of activities to be strongly considered. Your activities need to demonstrate two things: consistency and connection.

By consistency, I mean that admissions officers are looking at the longevity of each activity. I had no idea that playing violin in my junior high/high school orchestra for all six years held as much weight as it did. Activities you do over grades 9-12 hold more weight than activities you participate in for only one or two years.

Connection among your activities defines your passion. For example, I knew I wanted to be a science teacher when I was 12. I’ve also felt an extremely powerful pull towards volunteer work since I was even younger. When Penn saw that my volunteer work included being a Girl Scout leader-in-training and candystriping and that my activities included being a member of the New Jersey State Science League, they were able to paint a picture of this girl who was serious about becoming a science teacher and reaching out to kids and others in need.

Q: Do I have to play a sport to be considered?

A: No. Hello, I got in!

Q: Should I take college classes? Or extra classes over the summer?

A: If you’re passionate about taking a class, sure. If not, summer is a good time to introduce a new activity or have a summer job. The admissions committee is looking for well-rounded people with a sense of purpose, not a brain in a box. When they read your app, they’re asking, “Are you interesting and are you interested?” Whatever you do, show that you did it with your heart.

Q: Does the admissions committee read every app?

A: At Penn, yes. Every app is read by two (sometimes three) people. This may vary among colleges, though.

Q: Does the admissions committee look at Facebook?

A: They probably don’t have time for that. BUT. Do not post anything on Facebook or anywhere else online that could incriminate you. Remember that everything you post online is out there forever, even if you delete it. Forever is a long time, yo.

Well, those were the main highlights. Feel free to ask in the comments if you have more questions. I’d be happy to share my own experiences or anything else I learned at the seminar. And if you’re applying to a competitive university, work it and own it!


My braces are off! When I started with Invisalign last February, I thought those 13 months would take forever. But it actually wasn’t that bad. It’s so weird to be sitting around with nothing on my teeth. They feel different. Like sharper or something.

It’s also weird to see my teeth perfectly straight. My front tooth had been slightly crooked since I was about 13. I had a retainer in junior high. It killed. The wires dug into my gums and my back teeth always ached where the wires wrapped around them. Maybe that’s why I kept accidentally throwing my retainer out at lunch. I never finished with the retainer, my front tooth stayed crooked, and the pattern of my teeth settled into this V shape instead of a U shape. Which made my bite a problem. When I bit down, my teeth were meeting at an angle. That would cause enamel rods to break off over time and eventually might lead to teeth loss later on. I decided the proactive approach would be best. It’s always better to be proactive than reactive when it comes to your teeth.

There was no way I’d be able to handle old-school braces. I seriously would have clawed them out of my head. A BIG shout-out to those of you kicking it old-school. I hear those braces are super painful. You are way more courageous than I am! I’m just happy to have my braces off in time for my book tour in May. Touring with Invisalign was challenging. You have to take them off to eat. Then you have to brush your teeth before you put them in again. Which was not fun times on planes, let me tell you. There would always be turbulence right when I was hunkered down over the little airplane sink, trying to rinse my mouth without soaking my entire shirt. But I do like the habit of brushing after every time I eat. Which is pretty easy to do since I work at home – I have no excuse. I’m going to try and keep that up. Although I just had some corn nuts and totally didn’t brush my teeth. Attempt fail!

Corn nuts always make me think of that scene in Heathers where Veronica asks Heather what kind of corn nuts she wants at the gas station. Heather whips herself out the car window all like, “BQ!” With this attitude like, What other kind of corn nuts would someone even eat?

Ah, the 80s. Era of big hair and bigger fashion catastrophes. Who decided that angular new-wave shapes on everything was a good idea? I do not know. What I do know is that I was never a fan of big hair. So having big hair is kind of a problem. Japanese straightening to the rescue! I’m going in tomorrow for my touchup. Twice a year I sit in a chair for five hours and let technology mellow out my hair. It is so curly and frizzy and puffy in its natural state I can’t even. I’m so immensely grateful that I get to have straight hair now.

Everything about the 80s wasn’t heinous, though. I’m all about the nostalgia. Although my nostalgia is more for times I didn’t experience, but still. You may know that I have an addiction for graphic tees. I have way more graphic tees than necessary. Does this stop me from getting more? Not remotely. I just scored these awesome 80s tees online and I can’t wait to wear them:

Atari, Simon, Ferris Bueller's Day Off, and Reading Rainbow 80s tees

I’ll probably wear the Reading Rainbow one at my New Jersey Library Association conference event. I adored that show. In fourth grade, my best friend’s mom’s book was on it. I thought she was the biggest rock star. The Simon shirt is awesome because I played that game obsessively. And the Atari one brings me right back to my Atari 2600 days when I ruled at Pac-Man. As for the Bueller one…well, some things need no explanation. You will rock on in our hearts forever, John Hughes.