dark

I didn’t get nervous until the sky lit up.

That’s what I saw last night the second before the power went out. The sky lit up with a bright blue flash to the east. I was in my kitchen, wondering if I had enough pots filled with water and trying not to freak out about the scary wind gusts hitting my windows, when the sky lit up in a way I’d never seen before. Kind of like a cross between lightning and an enormous searchlight. That’s when I got really scared. Because what was that? The zombie apocalypse? An alien abduction? Terrifying, yo.

The first blue flash wasn’t when the power went out. The lights were flickering and the wind was scary, so I went online for live coverage. I was looking out of my window wall. Which by the way? Is awesome to have every single day there’s not a hurricane. But when 70 mph wind gusts are slamming against those windows, you want to run and hide. It was weird because I was having an eerie feeling the power might go out after all. Con Edison had already turned out power in the evacuated Zone A (the southern tip of Manhattan and areas right near the rivers) and warned us that they would be turning out sections of lower Manhattan if flooding was imminent. Flooding can cause salt water to come in contact with the underground electrical grid, which can cause large-scale power outages.

So there I was at my window wall, looking south over 18th Street. Another blue flash lit up the eastern sky. And the power went out a second later. I can’t tell you how cool it was to see all the city lights and illuminated windows in my view go dark instantaneously. If I knew everything in my refrigerator would soon be rotting, I probably would have thought it was less cool.

In my panicked estimation, there were three possibilities for the outage. 1. The zombie apocalypse. 2. An alien abduction. 3. Con Ed turned out the power like they said they would. But no. That blue flash I saw was an explosion at the Con Ed substation.

How did I find out about the explosion? By venturing into the dark hallway of my floor with a flashlight to knock on my friend Jayne’s door. She was all hooked up with an emergency radio. They were saying that the power should be on by tomorrow.

Lower Manhattan blackout during Hurricane Sandy

Well, tomorrow is today. I am writing this from my friends’ place on the Upper West Side. Lower Manhattan is entirely dark. There’s no electricity at all. The subways aren’t working. My building has no running water. No heat. I did not open my refrigerator once, but am still worried about all the food I’ll have to throw out. Including several bags of Trader Joe’s Tofu Edamame Nuggets (aka my new addiction) in the freezer. Really? Could we at least spare the nuggets? You know it’s bad when the nuggets don’t make it. So I packed some stuff and hiked up to 76th Street, stopping briefly to gawk at that dangling crane.

The living is pretty sweet here on the Upper West. There are lights. There is Internet. I won’t have to read by flashlight like I did last night. There’s running water and heat. You can even flush the toilet without having to manually refill the tank! I might stay forever, Tim and Nick. Just so you guys know. Thanks for being a ray of light in the dark.

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all i need giveaway

Guess what my editor messengered over? ARCs of my new book, All I Need!

All I Need by Susane Colasanti

You know what this means, friendly neighbors. It’s time for a giveaway. We’ll do this one over on Twitter. No worries if you don’t tweet. I’ll be doing a ginormous contest here on my blog for a chance to win more ARCs…along with an ARC of an eagerly awaited book by another Viking author…all with a special twist! So please stay tuned for that contest.

Now for this Twitter giveaway…

Here’s how to enter:

1. Follow me on Twitter.

2. Tweet this:

Win an ARC of ALL I NEED! Follow @susanecolasanti and RT to enter. Giveaway info here: https://susanecolasanti.wordpress.com/

Giveaway rules:

1. All entries must be completed by Friday, November 2 at 11:11 pm.

2. Only one tweet per entrant will be counted.

3. I will announce the winner on Twitter on Monday, November 5.

4. The winner will have two days to email me (susanecolasanti[at]gmail[dot]com) their full name and mailing address. If a response is not received in time, an alternate winner will be selected.

5. The winning mailing address must be located in the United States. If you live abroad and have a contact in the States who can receive the prize for you, it can be sent to their address.

Let’s get this party started!

all i need synopsis

Thanks to all of you who’ve shared your enthusiasm over the cover of All I Need. And thanks to those of you who have already pre-ordered it! I’m blown away. You guys seriousy are the best.

Some of you have asked what the book is about. That is an excellent question. Here’s the book synopsis that I believe will be going on the jacket flap.

***

The last night of summer
is only the beginning.

Skye wants to meet the boy who will change her life forever. Seth feels their instant connection the second he sees her. When Seth starts talking to Skye at the last beach party of the summer, it’s obvious to both of them that this is something real. But when Seth leaves for college before they exchange contact info, Skye wonders if he felt the same way she did—and if she will ever see him again. Even if they find their way back to each other, can they make a long-distance relationship work despite trust issues, ex drama, and some serious background differences?

Teen favorite Susane Colasanti returns to the alternating-voice style of her beloved debut When It Happens in this Serendipity-inspired story about summer, soul mates, and the moments that change our lives forever.

***

One of the things I’m most excited about All I Need is that the story is told from alternating girl/boy perspectives. Last time I was able to pull that off was with my first book, When It Happens. Take Me There is told from three perspectives, but that’s a whole different dynamic. My original intention was to write all of my books from both the girl’s and boy’s points of view. Then I realized that telling the boy’s side would give too much away in my later books. I’m stoked to get back to my original style with All I Need.

Want more info? Here are five things you should know about All I Need. Cheers!

all i need cover

Guess what I just saw on Amazon? The cover of my new book, All I Need, which will be released on May 21, 2013.

All I Need by Susane Colasanti

All I Need is a story about soul mates, summer, and serendipity. I believe this to be the most romantic book I’ve written so far. This cover is freaking gorgeous. I adore how perfectly it captures what I’m hoping is an epic love story.

The book synopsis and a ginormous contest to win ARCs are coming soon…

I really hope you love this cover as much as I do!

five things

1. If you’re wondering how best to adapt a teen novel into a film, you really need to see The Perks of Being a Wallflower. That movie was so freaking good I can’t even tell you. Stephen Chbosky wrote, directed and produced the film adaptation of his own novel. Which is what made the movie resonate so brilliantly. The whole way home I couldn’t get my favorite quote from the movie out of my head:

"We accept the love we think we deserve." - Stephen Chbosky

Normally I’ll read the book before seeing the movie. But in this case, reading the book will be enhanced by replaying the wonderful movie scenes behind my eyes while I’m reading. Snaps for SC. Dude! We have the same initials! This is totally a sign you will see When It Happens or Something Like Fate on the big screen soon.

2. New York! I’ll be at the New York Public Library’s main branch (476 5th Avenue) this Saturday, October 20 at 2:00 pm on a Bullying in Books panel. Please stop by and say hey if you’re in the area.

3. Not only is it Teen Read Week, but it’s Anti-Bullying Month. Justine Magazine asked me to write a letter to their readers on how to survive bullying. You can read the letter here. Justine also posted a list of books that focus on the consequences of bullying.

4. It makes me so happy when I hear from readers who have been inspired by my books enough to make positive changes in their lives. Some of you have sent me pictures of your own treasure maps, wish boxes, and inspiration for looking up. I just want to say thank you to everyone who has shared these with me. The main goal I have for my writing is to reach out to teens and help them feel less alone. When you send me feedback, it makes me even more determined to keep reaching for that goal. You rule.

5. My friend Elizabeth came over the other day. When she saw my poster of John Cusack holding that boombox over his head in Say Anything, she told me how he held another boombox over his head at a recent Peter Gabriel concert. Oh how I wish I was there. The image of Lloyd Dobler holding that boombox over his head makes my heart happy. Here’s JC passing the boombox to Peter at the beginning of “In Your Eyes,” another iconic image in its own way:

John Cusack, Peter Gabriel and boombox during "In Your Eyes"

Ciao for now, party people.

the key

As most of you know, I moved to a new neighborhood here in downtown Manhattan this summer. It’s called Gramercy. I never knew how cute Gramercy was until I moved here and started exploring it. But I have been achingly familiar with Gramercy Park for many years. Not familiar with it from the inside, though.

I’m not allowed in.

Gramercy Park is the only private park in Manhattan. Its gates are always locked. The park has been locked this way since 1844. Those first keys were made of solid gold. Only residents who live on the perimeter of the park are granted keys. My place is like a block from the park. One block = too far away for a key.

This rule, of course, is unacceptable.

I am determined to procure a key to the park. Gramercy Park is absolutely gorgeous. And no one’s ever in it! It’s the most beautiful, peaceful park and it pretty much sits empty day after day. People with their exclusive keys don’t know how lucky they are. Right before I moved, I made a pact with myself that the key shall be mine. Not sure how it will happen. But it will happen. Always dreaming big…

So of course The New York Times did a huge front-page article on these elusive Gramercy Park keys right when I’m trying to score a black market key on the DL. Way to blow up my spot, NYT. Whatevs. That just makes me even more determined to get one.

According to the article, there are only 383 keys to the park. They are numbered. They are coded. And they are guarded like you wouldn’t believe.

This clearly calls for a plan of Ocean’s 11 caliber.

Ocean's 11

P.S. The locks and keys are changed every year.

Oh, and P.P.S.? The keys are virtually impossible to duplicate.

Bring it on, key energy. I’ll bring the power of the Clooney.

George Clooney in Ocean's 11

burn for burn

When I was lucky enough to score an advance copy of Burn for Burn at the best rooftop party ever, I was pretty stoked. This is the first in a trilogy that promises to heat up with each new book.

Burn for Burn by Jenny Han and Siobhan Vivian

Lillia, Kat and Mary are three very different girls who all want the same thing: revenge. They tell this story in distinct voices that will keep you up late reading. There are unpredictable twists. There are relationships so entwined it will make your head spin. And there is a lot of drama. Jar Island hasn’t seen action like this in the history of ever. Jenny Han and Siobhan Vivian are en fuego, yo.

I can’t wait to see what happens next in this hot trilogy. Sizzle!