Cover Reveal: NOW IS EVERYTHING by Amy Giles
This is a post from YA Highway by Kate Hart. The original posting is HERE.
Today we have a cover reveal from an upcoming HarperTeen release: NOW IS EVERYTHING by Amy Giles, releasing fall 2017!
Here’s an overview of the book:
Be the smartest. Be the best. And be invisible when necessary.
Hadley McCauley knows that’s how you survive in her household. So she’s the perfect student, perfect athlete, and perfect daughter, all to keep her father happy and off her little sister Lila’s case.
The McCauleys look perfect on the outside. But nothing is ever as it seems, and this flawless family is hiding a dark secret.
Hadley will do anything to keep Lila safe from their father’s abuse. But when Hadley starts secretly dating Charlie Simmons, the boy she’s had a crush on for years, her world shifts. As their relationship deepens, the tension, violence, and stakes at home escalate, culminating in an explosive accident that will leave everyone changed.
When Hadley arrives at the hospital after the accident and attempts to take her own life, everyone—from her friends to her doctors, to the investigator on the case and her family—wants to know why. Only Hadley knows what really happened that day, and she’s not talking.
Now Is Everything is a powerful story told in alternating THEN and NOW chapters about what one girl is willing to do to protect her p and future.
And Amy is here to share her thoughts on the cover:
I have no design skills whatsoever. I rely on trusted friends and family to tell me if my clothes even match. That’s why I was more than willing to leave the direction of the cover design in the capable hands of my brilliant designer, Katie Fitch.
My first reaction (well, second; I cried first) was: “Wow! Look at that smug sky.” By “smug,” I mean it’s the same deceptively cheery sky that the story opens with, after Hadley survives the plane crash: But the sky is a perfect crisp blue, like someone forgot to tell it to wipe that smug smile off its face.
What I also loved about the design was the dissonance between the sky and the ground, as if a dark cloud is passing overhead. We used Magritte’s Empire of Light paintings as inspiration to set the mood. Although the skywriting looks carefree and wistful, it also connotes a warning of what’s to come, like in The Wizard of Oz (“SURRENDER DOROTHY”). And then there’s Hadley. Her figure stands so heroically against the sky and landscape. Her pose and stance took a little finessing to strike the perfect balance of strong and capable, but also contemplative, suggesting the dark secret in her life beneath her bright exterior.
Get ready for the reveal…
10.25.2016: Swanky Seventeener Amy Giles chats with Peter Brown Hoffmeister, author of the YA contemporary novel THIS IS THE PART WHERE YOU LAUGH, which has been published by Knopf Books for Young Readers.
ABOUT THE NOVEL
Fans of Andrew Smith and Matt de la Pena will be captivated by this summer-in-the-life of a teenage guy growing up in a trailer park in Eugene, Oregon.
Travis plans to spend the summer as follows:
Working on his basketball game with his friend, Creature.
Reading excerpts from Creature’s novel-in-progress: The Pervert’s Guide to Russian Princesses.
Canoeing around the lake, trying to catch a glimpse of the beautiful girl who just moved in.
Not getting into trouble, not going back to juvie . .
Searching the homeless camps for his mother, with a jar full of cash to help her get back on her feet.
From a powerful new voice in YA literature comes an unforgettable account of growing up, making mistakes, and growing out of the shadow of drug abuse.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Peter Brown Hoffmeister is the author of the critically acclaimed adult novel Graphic the Valley, and the memoir The End Of Boys. A former troubled teen, Hoffmeister now runs the Integrated Outdoor Program, serving teens of all backgrounds, taking them into wilderness areas to backpack, climb, spelunk, orienteer, and whitewater raft. He lives with his wife and daughters in Eugene, Oregon. You can find him at peterbrownhoffmeister.wordpress.com or on Twitter @peterbrownhoff.
Amy: This is the part where I try to ask you intelligent questions when really all I want to do is ramble on and on about how much I loved your book.
In the opening chapter, Travis releases caimans into the lake. His grandmother has cancer and he just wants to stir up some excitement, something to talk about with his grandmother over the summer. The caimans are an extreme way to stir up some fun, though, especially when they start devouring the local cats and dogs. It’s a powerful opening scene because it has us questioning Travis a bit: Is this an act of love, an act of anger, or something in between?
Peter: In this book, I was always trying to ride that line between anger and love. It’s so difficult to be a teenage boy, especially in a dysfunctional family, and we don’t always deal with loss or frustration in healthy ways. So – to answer your question – Travis loves his grandmother fiercely and doesn’t know how to say it. He doesn’t know what to do. Releasing five-foot crocodiles on an Oregon lake isn’t the best way to say, “I love you, and I don’t want you to die,” but that’s what Travis decided to do. He’s extreme, and he makes a lot of mistakes.
Amy: The book is so lush and cinematic; I felt as if I were camping out by the lake with Travis. How did your experience running the Integrated Outdoor Program help you write this story?
Peter: Thank you for saying that. I’m always hoping to evoke emotion when I write, but I often fail. So I’m thankful any time it works. I’m also grateful to work with teenagers, and to work outside. The outdoor program puts our group out in the natural world daily, in the sun and rain and sleet and snow. We read under the cover of redwoods. We raft rivers through desert canyons. We rock climb basalt columns. And a lot of my writing draws from those experiences, especially the feelings I have while doing those activities with my students.
Amy: In your bio, you mention that you are a former troubled teen. How did that experience help shape This Is the Part Where You Laugh?
Peter: I was arrested in high school. Expelled from three schools. Homeless for big portions of my sophomore and senior years. I lived for a short while in a Greyhound bus station in Dallas, Texas. And I was also incredibly angry. So there was a lot about Travis that I understood when I started to write this story. I also set the book in my Great Aunt Ruth’s manufactured home in her real retirement trailer park in Eugene, Oregon. The characteristics of the lake – with the wealthy houses on the other side – are all true. I’ve canoed and fished that lake. And in the book trailer on Facebook and Youtube, that’s me paddling the lake. So my experiences are definitely in the book.
Amy: What was your revision process for this book? Did the book drastically change from the first draft to the finished product?
Peter: I wrote a failed novel right before writing the first draft of this book. That novel took two years, and it wasn’t any good. It was terrible, in fact. I buried that book, and started This Is The Part Where You Laugh while my family and I were living for a short time in a town of 200 people in Congrejal de Samara, Costa Rica. Right away, I was hopeful that this new book could become something important to me and – hopefully, maybe – to readers. But all first drafts are, as the writer Annie Lamott says, “shitty first drafts,” so I wrote four more drafts before I felt comfortable sending the book to my agent, Adriann Ranta. Then – working with my editor at Knopf, Katherine Harrison – I reordered some of the book and cut more than 100 pages to get it to current length. Revision for me is important because my first drafts are especially shitty.
Writing jet fuel: coffee or tea?
P: Coffee first. Then tea? Any hot drink while I write.
Favorite place to write?
P: On the couch in my den.
When writing, do you prefer silence or music?
P: Silence for sure. No sounds, except me talking to myself.
Are you a night owl or an early bird writer?
P: Definitely an early bird writer. I read at night, but my night writing is usually no good.
Pantser, plotter, or somewhere in between?
P: Somewhere in between. I usually write a draft until it’s a complete mess of random scenes in almost any time order. That part of the process is wide open. Then I start to organize, to outline, and eventually start to figure out how to clean it up.
Favorite author as a teen?
P: Anything my mom set down, I picked up. So I don’t know about a single author. But The Painted Bird, by Jerzy Kosinski, was the most important book I read as a teenager. I kept coming back to that story.