fog inside the glass around your summer heart

Yay, I’ve sent back the copyedited draft of Keep Holding On! The next step is the first pass printing to make sure the layout looks okay. Then ARCs will be printed. Which means we should have a cover soon! I know I keep saying that. The designers have been working on this cover for a longer time than usual, so I’m trying to be patient. But of course I cannot wait to see what they’ve come up with. This is not an easy book to design a cover for. Respect.

So I was on a hot teen lit panel with incredible authors at the Baltimore Book Festival. The event was on the autumnal equinox. For those of you familiar with my seasonal rants, you are very well aware that I don’t do winter. And that daylight hours have been decreasing by about two minutes per day since the summer solstice. I have tried really hard not to rant about these cyclical issues this year – and believe I have succeeded up until now. But it’s officially fall. It’s officially not summer. My boy John Mayer describes this feeling so eloquently:

When autumn comes

it doesn’t ask

it just walks in

where it left you last.

You never know

when it starts

until there’s fog inside the glass around

your summer heart.

Although I’m not sure my summer heart is sad just yet. It’s like 80 degrees and humid out. Plus, my heart is all happy about the amazing YA authors I got to festival it up with:

Maryrose Wood, Sarah Mlynowski, E. Lockhart, Susane Colasanti, and Joanna Pearson at the Baltimore Book Festival 2011

That’s Maryrose Wood, Sarah Mlynowski, E. Lockhart, me, and Joanna Pearson. It was a very sweet thing to do an event with authors I’ve been admiring since I began reading contemporary YA. I am so enamored with E. Lockhart’s Ruby Oliver series that I had to document The Treasure Map of Boys with its adorbs cover in Vancouver. Then there’s Sarah Mlynowski, who is always shiny happy and one of the kindest people ever. Not only did I get to blurb her latest book, I got to do an event with her at Anderson’s Bookshop in Chicago. If you’ve heard Maryrose Wood read, you were treated to some seriously profesh acting skills. She is so entertaining all you can do is sit there and be totally enraptured. And it was super fun to meet Joanna Pearson. Her debut novel, The Rites and Wrongs of Janice Wills, sounds like an awesome read.

So yeah. The panel freaking rocked.

Something else that rocked: receiving a wonderful gift from dedicated reader and professional photographer Bianca Inez Azcuy. She dedicated a gorgeous photo of a rose to me. How awesome is that? You can check out Bianca’s work on her website. I have to say, I am extremely impressed with her photography. Her work has amazing depth and conveys strong emotion. If you’re into photography, you will love checking out her website!

And now it’s time to say goodbye to summer. I’ll always have the memories. Like getting to meet yet another amazing author, the very famous Gordon Korman:

Susane Colasanti and Gordon Korman

Here we are in a hot pizza place during the heat wave. Just the kind of summer memory I will cling to when freezing winter winds are trying to slice me apart. We are invincible, friendly neighbors!