Hey Evs and Nevs,
Welcome to a new year. *The* year. Because after almost 9 years of waiting, the SGE movie will arrive later in 2022.
Strange typing those words. I remember ten years ago, when I was working on the first book, just thoroughly enjoying myself, with zero expectations or concerns as to who was going to read it. And now the series has become this living organism, with six books and spinoffs and a movie on the way, and new fans coming in every week, who are discovering the books for the first time.
I’m at once a completely different person from when I wrote the first SGE — I’m literally ten years older from when I put the first words on the screen — but I also still can look at those books and feel how much I love them and how much of myself and my own emotional journey is inside them. Much as I like to pretend I’m Sophie, I’m also just as much Agatha and just as much Tedros, otherwise I wouldn’t be able to write them. All three are equal parts of my character… though I will continue to insist I’m 100% Sophie to those not wise enough to read my blog.
Meanwhile, a new SGE book is coming — RISE OF THE SCHOOL FOR GOOD AND EVIL — releasing June 7th around the world. It is the first book in a series about what happened before Sophie and Agatha came to school. If you missed the cover, here is the glorious piece of work from the artist Raide:
I’m in the midst of editing the proof right now, which is when I see the book in fully typeset and illustrated form and I have my last few chances to correct anything. Here’s what a proof looks like:
The way I know I’ve grown as a writer is that when I first started with Book 1 of SGE, I literally redid at least 15% of the book in proofs. I was always editing to the very last moment. By the time I got to Book 6, though, I did very little in proofs, because I’d just become a much better, confident writer. Now, in RISE, I’m finding I’m barely changing much at all at this stage, except for tiny wordsmithing here and there.
I really do love this book. It’s 360 pages, with a few spreads of glorious illustrations. It’s structured completely differently than a usual SGE book and has a different pace and tone. I wanted this to feel like a completely brand new entrance into Ever Never World, so I wouldn’t think of it as a prequel, as much as just a new door into the Ever Never universe. It moves like a bullet and just as a very different energy, since it’s propelled by the relationship between two teenager brothers. Naturally, it also has twists 🙂
BEASTS & BEAUTY has had a wonderful time out there in the world, thanks to you. More translations are coming every month, so those of you who don’t read in English will likely have your copies soon. I loved writing that book so much and am thankful it’s had such a big, glorious life so far. News on a film / TV adaptation should be coming later this year…
Also just finished a screenplay adaptation of my novella, THE PRINCESS GAME, for a movie. That came out from Amazon in 2020, but it’s for ages 14+ only — as the movie will be, too.
Hmm, what else? I’m down in Miami as I usually am this time of year. I get up every morning, play tennis for a couple hours, then I write and do work until lunch, then I lift weights for an hour, then write and do a bit more work, head for a walk on the beach, and eat dinner with the family. That’s a typical day down here, where I kind of refresh and reboot for the new year. Then once I get back to NYC, life speeds up considerably, since all my friends are there, and I have to go out most nights. Hopefully you’re all staying safe with COVID, wherever you are. I’m hopeful this is the year where the emergency period fades into something a little more manageable…
So much planned for all of you in 2022. Thank you for being such loyal, wonderful readers over the years. I only get to do this because of you.