Sunday, January 24, 2010

What a Week!

Wow, what a week! Lots to report, so probably no musings this time, just an update. Top of the news heap: Mark & I have been invited to the cast and crew reception and screening of Flipped. It's happening next week (!) at a theater on the Warner Brothers film lot. So next Sunday I'm hoping to have a fun report to post about that. In other "Hollywood" news: The screenwriters who were interested in Swear to Howdy have sent me their first-draft script--they did a great job! We had a conference call today, which went really well, and I'm feeling very optimistic about the potential here. Key to me is that these writers really love this book, and it shows in their script. AND you Sammy Keyes fans will (I hope) be happy to hear that I got a call about having Sammy as a series on a new network (that focuses on family programming). Ordinarily I'd be very skeptical about this (and worried that the process would morph Sammy into someone I didn't recognize or like), but the key here is that the CEO has read the books and is a woman who likes Sammy just the way she is, and I've been told that the network would want my input. So I'll keep you posted on that, too! In book news, Sammy Keyes and the Wedding Crasher is back off my desk and on my editor's. She had some good suggestions (like she always does) and then going through it again, I had a couple of extra ideas, too. And after our "Think Tank" entry and comments, I was sure to mention Sammy's shoe charm :-) Which brings me to the result of the "Think Tank" -- I've consolidated the best ideas and submitted them to Random House for consideration, really focusing on the idea of a shoelace charm. And since this is the 13th book and Sammy is 13 years old, I'm thinking a horseshoe charm just like Sammy's would be the perfect item. (Good luck to offset bad?) I'd wear one, and I know a lot of you would, too! Our own fashion trend :-) Also, I've seen the rough sketch for the book jacket, and as soon as it's done and I have permission, I'll post it here for you to get a first look at. Right now I'm working on the rewrite for The Running Dream (which is a stand alone book, and the reason I'm late with Wedding Crasher). It's going very well, and I've seen (and LOVE) the preliminary art work for the jacket. We also came up with a new "family band" song this week. It's rough still, but smokin' hot! Tssss! (Sorry I'm being a little hyper. Band practice always amps me up.) Anyway, here's the link to the "secret" site, if you haven't already been there. http://www.myspace.com/thing2pismo (If you're at a school and myspace is blocked, try: http://www.purevolume.com/thing2 --fidelity is not as good.) And last, but certainly not least, ETRTR news: My trip to Oklahoma for the ETRTR winner is shaping up, and aside from the usual school visit activities, they've asked me to put on a mini concert for them. I said I would IF some kids from the school played with me. So they're putting together a little rock band to help me shake the rafters off the gym. It should be a blast! (The principal and librarian there are SO cool...!) And I'm happy to announce that my contact at First Book had TWINS. Boys. I used to think I wanted twins, but then I had a child and realized one boy at a time was plenty overwhelming enough for me! But I'm excited for her and her husband, and the kids, too -- they've obviously come into a great family. And that, my friends, is the news for now. Thanks for checking in--I'll see you here next Sunday!

25 comments:

xxCammyLoverxx said...

Wow, that WAS a busy week! You're having two movies of your books made and possible a tv series! :) And having two books almost-published. I'll check out the song asap. Speakingof twins and children, I'm going to have a new little sister in June! :D I was wishing for a brother, I already have two sisters (Siera and Paige), but whatever, I'm cool with another sister (hopefully this one will turn out civil? Jk, jk, I'm reaaally close with Siera. Paige is only six, so I'm not so close to her). We've already decided on the name Danielle, so for short it would be Danni (maybe the name is making up for it not being a boy? Lol, jk)
Anyways, um... its always been a strange dream of mine to write a book series, have it published (and succesful), then have a movie made of it and I get to be the musical producer and the visual effects editor. So maybe I'm a nerd, but I really love: to write, write songs, play music (guitar and piano), photography, and edit videos/music. Thats a lot of things, and most likely my "dream" will never come true (oh, and I'd also want to pick the perfect actors/actresses). I'm the type of person who needs everything to be perfect. :/ Not my best trait. But hopefully, one of those things I'll be able to do- at least maybe just publish a (succesful) book series (which I am currently working on). ((It's called "Heartless", but you wouldn't really care lol))
Anyways, you're really lucky to have movies/shows made of your books. :) I can name a couple really good books that deserve to be made into movies (*coughJanetteReallison'sbooks*cough). I really cant wait for Flipped-I've never read Swear to Howdy, but I will before the movie comes out (is there a movie coming out for StW? I'm sort of confused on that)
Woah! Mega-long comment. My apologies.
Xo, Stephanie

bookfreak said...

Ive wanted to post a comment on your blog for sooo long but I only made profile today soo... yeah.I dont know how parents can handle 2 kids at the same time.I only have a brother and hes 3 years older than me so my parents had it easy or at least i think so.=)haha k i have to go to school tomorrow-almost today.

Wild About Words said...

Wendelin, What exciting, thrilling news! I don't know how you sleep at night. Your hard work is paying off and you deserve every moment of this. Glad you're having so much fun with your family band. What a great idea!
All best,
Donna

Wendelin Van Draanen said...

xxCLxx: A baby coming! How exciting. I remember when my little sister was born--I was so happy! (Of course, I was surrounded by brothers, so it was a different situation, f'sure.) I'm sure your mom will appreciate all the help you can give her, and I know your new baby sis will adore you. Love the name Danni, too! BTW, I love that you want to be the musical producer, not the "star". Says a lot about you! And NO--STH is not anywhere near that stage--they'll have to "sell" the screenplay to a production company and that can take some doing. But it's a very promising first step and I like the writers :-)

Hey Bookfreak, welcome aboard! I'd say no parent has it easy, but those with 'bookfreak' kids have it easier than others, that's for sure!

Hi, Donna--thanks for your nice comment :-) Even with all the excitement this week, I've had no problems sleeping. By 10:00 I'm zombie-girl! Must...get...sleep!

Jinnyd said...

Woopee! It's going to be so exciting seeing how Flipped turns out (speaking of books-turned-movies, do you think you're gonna go see The Lightening Thief? It's one of my most favorite series EVER and Rick Riordan is SUCH AN AWESOME AUTHOR JUST CHECK OUT THE 39 CLUES STORYLINE EVEN THOUGH I'M WAY OLDER THAN THE AGE RECOMMENDATION FOR THAT SERIES SRRY FOR RAMBLING IN CAPS)!

I'm going to have to read Swear to Howdy! Maybe after all of these annoying semester finals are finished I can go to library and CHECK OUT/STEAL all of the Sammy books and STH.

:-)

Nicole said...

Wow that's great news, I'm so happy for you! Congratulations on the movies/tv series/books, it must feel so rewarding to get this kind of attention for your hard work. As a rule, I usually don't watch movies made from books, but I might have to make an exception in this case. Oh, and I'm glad you liked the horseshoe charm idea :)

sammy4ever said...

NO WAY! i was literally just thinking about how awesome it would be if the SK series was turned into movies or a t.v. show and then i read your post and was just.... WOAH! i totally called that! anyway, that is so great that you and you husband get to go to the Warner Bros. film lot! can't wait to hear about that adventure! i hope you have an awesome time! and Swear to Howdy might be turned into a movie, too? you are on a roll!!! and I can't WAIT to see the cover art for SK and the WC. SAMMY KEYES AND THE WEDDING CRASHER, AHHHHHHH!!!!!! so what's The Running Dream about? this is great! another Wendelin Van Draanen novel to look forward to! I gotta tell you, this post has made my day! i usually hate mondays but this just brightened my whole week! I'm so happy for you!!!!! and your family band is AMAZING! why don't you guys have an album yet?!?!?! i would buy it in a hot second!!!! and that's so cool that you get to do a mini concert! i am so jealous of that school right now!!! so, your contact at First Book had twins?!? that's so cool! and I can totally relate! i have two younger twin brothers. well I'm glad things are going so well for you! i feel so proud (: i know that doesn't make sense because I'm not one of your parents, but I AM your #1 biggest fan!!!! that's gotta count for something, right? oh, and my school is having a READ-A-THON this week so all week, for the last 45 minutes of school, we go to our homerooms, and READ. I brought SK and the CHC today and I got so wrapped up in it that I didn't even notice the bell had rung until my teacher kicked me out of class 5 min. after! anyway, I have to do homework now so....
can't wait to hear from you next Sunday!!!!!
(:

bookfreak said...

Yeah even though Im a 'bookfreak',my brother is the complete opposite of me.He plays in a band and hardly ever reads while I read in all of my spare time.so my brother's always asking for parts for his instruments(drum set,etc.)and I'm always asking for books.I love the idea of the charm bracelet but the horseshoe charm also sounds AWESOME!!!I think its cool that SK is going to come out in a TV show. I cant wait for SK #13,Ive been waiting for it for months!(i got a book last year and i finished the rest of the series this year)Can't Wait!!!=D

sammy4ever said...

why, WHY must I wait so long!!!!! need..... sammy..... keyes..... 13...... NOW!!!!!! going crazy! AHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
i apologize for that strange and random outburst.

quintessajazz said...

Wow! I'm so excited -- about everything! Though I'm not sure how I feel about Sammy being made into a network program. It would ruin the book, no matter how hard they try. I mean, to me, when a director tries too hard to please the author instead of the audience the movie is messed up for those who read the book already -- they already every single thing that will happen and get no surprise. But then when the veer away from the book too much it ruins it just as much because it's like the script writer or director was trying to make the idea their own. =(

We'll just have to see!

I'm so thrilled about the Wedding Crashers and "Flipped"! Can't wait to hear how things turn out ... =)

So, what is The Running Dream about, and who's the target audience? I just love ALL of your stand alones! I can't wait for a new one! I cried for a while when I read Runaway and laughed out loud with Serial Kisser. Wonder what the next one has in store for us?!

Wendelin Van Draanen said...

The whole idea of book-to-movie, or to TV, or whatever is scary to me. Especially with Sammy. I'm very protective of Sammy, and since the series isn't done yet, there's a lot that can go wrong if the 'adapters' don't stay true to the characters / spirit of Sammy. Years ago I pulled out of 'big time' negotiations because it was moving in the wrong direction. The books are what's important to me, and I'm sure not dying to have Sammy on TV or at the movies. But this new company seems to love Sammy just the way she is and so I'm willing to have a conversation about it. That's all it is for right now, so don't worry! I'm not afraid of saying no :-)

stephanie said...

Wow that's quite a week! I'm so happy to hear about all the potential movies/TV shows. 3 books (well, technically two books and a series) are going to be able to be watched at home - that's pretty exciting! I can't wait to hear more about the charms, Wedding Crasher and your new book :)

xxCammyLoverxx said...

Legacy!
Sorry, I was reading an interview (with you obviously) and it said usethe word legacy around you at the end- Santa Maria Sun Times, right? Is it a magazine or a newspaper? I read it online. :]

Wendelin Van Draanen said...

Wait! You're NOT supposed to use the word legacy around me! No, no, no! It makes me feel like I'm DONE. Or about to kick the bucket! No bucket-kicking language! ('Cause if I die, you'll never know about Sammy's dad or what happens with Casey or Heather...or what happens to Sammy in the LAST BOOK!) So yeah. Save legacy for somebody else. :-)

xxCammyLoverxx said...

We cant let that happen!
Un-legacy!
:P

Pooja Dimba said...

Oh Man that is so so so so so so so so so so so so so soso so so so so so soso so so so so so soso so so so so so so so so so so so so soso so so so so so soso so so so so so soso so so so so so soso so so so so so so so so so so so so soso so so so so so soso so so so so so soso so so so so so soso so so so so so so so so so so so so soso so so so so so so cool! I love how Sammy Keyes might be a T.V. show! Who's going to play Sammy and Casey!!!!???? Oh yay! That's soooo cool!

Wendelin Van Draanen said...

We're nowhere near the "casting" stage. It's REALLY preliminary at this point. NO contracts or agreements...just talking :-)

Pooja Dimba said...

I agree with you about the ruining part. One of my friends from school said that you came to their school and started talking about how Disney offered to make Sammy Keyes into a movie. But they wanted Sammy to have a Crush in the beginning of the series which is so un-Sammy.
Is this true because maybe he (Kyle Matthews) is lying. He loves your Shredderman books.
Sammy is one of those role model types for me like I am a seventh grader right now and I wanted to start off the school year by punching a girl in the nose.
I am not as BRAVE as her though.
She gave me a lot of confidence... or else I was that quiet girl that everyone hated.
Now I am that you mess with me watch your back type girl and I am kind of still hated by people but I learned how to deal with it because of you and Sammy.
So thanks for that! :-)

quintessajazz said...

So what is The Running Dream about?

Elizabeth said...

I know this is off topic from your post, but I just read Runaway. I loved it, you did an incredible job, the poetry is so perfectly suited to the character, and your Author's Note at the end only added to the book. I got pretty choked up at times, and it was so deep and insightful and I can't even describe it with the words it deserves. Even though I haven't been through what she (and so many others) have, I have felt the way she feels. Maybe I shouldn't, but I do. And this book touched me unlike any other I've read. So thank you for writing it.

sammy4ever said...

@ elizabeth, i felt the same way after i read Runaway. i thought it was so amazing and it impacted me so emotionally. it literally left me breathless.
and on another note.....
i'm kinda confused on how i feel about the whole SK as a t.v. show. now that i've had time to really think about it, it kinda scares me. i feel like Sammy is my sister for some reason. maybe that's dumb but i just have so much in common with her. i don't mean that i solve crimes on a daily basis or anything like that, but i am very tomboyish and i care a lot about my friends and family. and even though sammy deserves to be on the big screen, i'm afraid she would somehow change on the journey from the pages of a book to the screen of a t.v. like Mike T.V. in Charlie and the Chocolate Factory. my teacher said that people are afraid of change. she used the new health care plan for an example. she said that many people hate it but they're afraid that changing it will only make things worse.
sorry I'm being so emotional and deep. i had to write a poem AND a persuasive essay today in class and it still hasn't quite worn off.

kirby said...

Thank you Wendelin for sharing your books, your insight, and your life with us on this blog. As an inspiring young writer who just finished college, I find it really cool to read up about your life and your current projects and such. Hearing that you just finished your latest Sammy book and moving to the editing stage, is cool for me because it makes me feel that if I keep writing and going, one day, I can do the same thing that you're doing! Having a TV show, a movie, or anything is such a great honor. You must be thrilled and slightly nervous, but it's still very flattering for you. But I just wanted to say thanks. I need to discipline myself more to write though! Do you have any tips for doing that, while trying to balance work, school, and life?

Wendelin Van Draanen said...

Thanks for the recent comments -- some of the questions are answered in the Patience post, The Running Dream I'll get to in the next post ? I hope. I'm realizing that "Run" appears in a lot of my titles -- no, I'm not obsessed! Just happens to be the root of Runaway? Anyway, yes, Runaway is near and dear to me, too, so I'm glad you like it. More later...

Toyosi said...

Hi Wendelin
I Am Toyosi
I Am 10 Years Old
I Love Sammy Keyes Books
If There Is A Movie For Sammy Keyes
I Would Love To Audition
My Question Is There Going To Be A Movie

Wendelin Van Draanen said...

Toyosi--welcome aboard! Keep checking new posts as that's where I'll give updates. The latest info is in the "Patience" posting. Short answer, not yet!