Message From The Author

Author's Message

When my book went out on submission to editors, I knew it was going to sell. It was going to be on bookshelves, and everyone was going to read it, and my story of the girl who could see visions of the future and the boy she didn't want to love but knew she would anyway would be a real, live book!

You may notice that that book? Not Paranormalcy.

Paranormalcy wasn't supposed to sell. It wasn't even supposed to go on submission. I wrote it for fun, egged on by one of my critique partners. Basically the idea behind it was this: wouldn't it be funny if there was an international organization dedicated to controlling supernatural creatures? And wouldn't it be fun to turn paranormal stereotypes on their heads? And wouldn't it also be fun to have some very cute boys and kissing in there?

It was fun! A lot of fun. When I was done writing it I said, wow, that was fun. And then I set it aside and waited for my other book to sell. And waited. And waited.

When it became very clear that my first book was not going to happen, I brought Paranormalcy back out. And that’s when it got less fun. Because suddenly instead of a carefree, funny book, it was a book with major pacing issues, 10k words that needed to be cut, characterizations that needed to be deepened, and a seriously offensive love affair with dialogue tags and the word “just.”

So I put fun aside and got to work. I sent it to critique partners far more insightful than I am. I cut scenes, I added scenes, I rearranged scenes. I took out some of my favorite passages in order to fix pacing issues. I reigned in my tendency toward overwhelming the reader with voice. I read the entire thing out loud to myself. I still enjoyed the kissing parts.

Then came the hardest thing of all: I turned it over to my agent. Coming off of a failed submission was brutal. What if no one wanted this book, either? I felt like it was special and was pretty sure it was both a good fit for the market and different enough to stand out, but then again, who was I to accurately gauge my own talent? I braced myself for a long wait, for rejections, and for the brutal disappointment of failure.

And three weeks later I sank to the floor, laughing in disbelief over Paranormalcy’s sale to my dream publisher exceeding my very realistic expectations.

Perhaps my character who could see the future should have warned me that her story wasn’t in it. But then again, if she had, I might not have written a book just for fun.

- Kiersten White

Read Book Review ›