I got a surprise email from my editor at Walker/Bloomsbury one day last week while I was cleaning up my desk at school, getting ready to go home.
"I’m delighted to report that Scholastic Book Clubs have licensed book fair and book club rights to GIANNA Z…."
I had to write back to make sure that meant what I thought it did. That THE BRILLIANT FALL OF GIANNA Z. would be one of the titles on the big racks at Scholastic Book Fairs at schools? That it would be paperback, in a price that’s easy for kids to buy? That it would be in those book club flyers that get sent home in kids’ homework folders and backpacks?
Yes, yes, and yes, my editor answered. In September!
There was a stack of Scholastic Book Fair flyers on my desk, and I couldn’t help picking one up to page through it. There are a lot of fun milestones in this children’s book world, but this one is especially cool for me.
I grew up in Medina, a tiny town in upstate New York. It has a lovely independent bookstore now, but it didn’t when I was in school. You could get Archie comics at the drugstore, or you could try to get your parents to drive to the mall in Buffalo an hour away, where there was a Waldens, or you could order books at school through Scholastic Book Clubs. I’d bring those flyers home and circle the books I wanted with Magic Marker, over and over, until the color bled through to the other side of that thin paper. Those flyers were important to me, as I know they still are for kids who aren’t lucky enough to be growing up in a town with a great bookstore. I’m thrilled that my book will be one of the Magic Marker choices this fall.
I’m going to do something fun to celebrate GIANNA Z’s paperback release in bookstores (also in September) and her appearance in Scholastic Book Clubs & Fairs. Probably a contest on the blog and something special for teachers and librarians (I’m thinking about giving away some free virtual writing workshops for classes!) If you have other fun ideas for a paperback/book club launch, I’d love to hear about them in comments!