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  • I read a lot, and I have a lot of opinions, so I can't believe I haven't made a list like this before. If you are even a little bit like me or you want to get a peek into my psyche (you probs don't), these are the books to read.

Posts Tagged ‘New York City’

Spring in New York

Posted on April 9th, 2010 by annakjarzab

I’ve never been much of a romantic about New York. I don’t refer to it as my boyfriend, or get weak in the knees when I see the Empire State Building or anything like that. But there are times in this city where you just cannot deny how lovely something is, and how glad you are to be here at that moment. Like last night, for example. It was hot during the day, like in the 80s, which is crazy because it’s the first week of April THANK YOU GLOBAL WARMING. Anyway, Joanna is in town and we had dinner plans with our friend Abby, so I was walked from work to the West Village (maybe that sounds like it was a long walk? It isn’t. I work just over the Houston border in SoHo), veering off Hudson at Barrow and promptly getting lost because everything in this city is like a grid–above 14th Street. After that, things can get wonky at times. Which is ultimately fine, because I was early and happy to wander down side streets, past exquisite brownstones, the sun bathing the streets with a golden glow, the heat settling softly on my shoulders like a light sweater. I snapped this iPhone shot:


The street was so serene and pretty. What you can’t see is the small blossoms being shaken from the trees by a stiff wind and wafting down around me. Quite picturesque, if you ask me, as was the adorable, delicious little restaurant where we ate dinner.


The Little Owl is a restaurant that I’d never been to before, but which had been recommended to me several times in the past. It’s a bit wee inside, so if you’ve got a large party I wouldn’t exactly recommend it, but otherwise, if you’re just a couple of people looking for a delicious meal from a place with perfect service, friendly staff, and a lovely location, look no further.


Posted on April 8th, 2010 by annakjarzab

As I may or may not have mentioned, I moved a couple of months ago–different apartment, same roommate, same basic neighborhood except better. There are notable differences between our old place and our new place. We no longer live literally right next to (and I use the word “literally” here to in fact mean literally, I’m not abusing it for emphasis like some people) an elevated subway line, nor do we live directly behind a McDonald’s with a huge parking lot (for NYC standards) where people of all walks of life can congregate day or night. We only live two subway stops south of where we used to, but that makes a big difference for some reason. Our neighborhood is cuter and full of restaurants and convenience stores and bars and bookstores and banks and American Apparel and all those good things (actually, I couldn’t really care less about the American Apparel, but it is there). It feels safer, even if our old neighborhood was on the whole pretty safe even though it didn’t always look it. Also, I have a bigger bedroom (which means my poor roommate has a smaller one, which I feel guilty about every time I go in there except I did have the smaller room for two years so it’s probably karmically even), we have a huge bathroom with a washer/dryer (!!), a slightly bigger kitchen (such as it is) with a dishwasher, and cable television.

There are some down sides to the new place, too. Our old building was really secure and nice inside, even though our apartment, which had obviously been neglected for years during the rental boom times when landlords could basically put nothing into an apartment and then charge obscene amounts of money for them anyway, wasn’t really. It had an elevator and really nice mailboxes so that we could actually receive packages at home. The super lived in the building, and while he was a little strange and sometimes difficult, he was pretty attentive when we called him and it was nice to have him around during emergencies, like when I accidentally got stuck in the elevator at 2 PM (true story! for another time, though, I think).

Anyway, the one big thing that I miss about our old place is how quiet it was. It was a co-op building, so most of the people who lived there owned their apartments (we rented, but from a management company that owned eight of the units)–which meant that they were varying degrees of old, because this is New York, you guys. The only people who can afford to own their own apartments are Donald Trump and a grip of septuagenarians who’ve lived here their entire lives and bought their apartments in 1960 for fifty cents. That doesn’t mean it was quiet all the time–our strange but generally sweet neighbor, Jacob, had some sort of Victrola (I’m not making this up) that he liked to play what my roommate and I referred to as “Charleston music” because we don’t know a damn thing about old timey music and it sounded like something straight out of Bright Young Things. Sometimes he took the Victrola outside and played it on the stoop (?), but most of the time it was confined to his apartment–and, thanks to our ridiculously paper thin walls, ours as well. But my room was on the other side of the apartment from the one that abutted Jacob’s apartment, so I never heard it except when I was cooking or washing dishes or something. Also, occasionally there would be a loud argument or impromptu dance party in the McDonald’s parking lot, which would disturb my slumber, but otherwise, yeah, it was pretty quiet. And we lived–literally, may I remind you–right next to the elevated train line!

Such is not the case at our new apartment. It’s on a side street, not a main drag like the last one, so you would think it’d be quieter, and at street level it is. It’s just the people who are louder. For instance, the pair of young men who live next door really love to play techno music at extreme volume whilst also blasting a subwoofer of some kind right through my walls. The people downstairs play their high volume, high bass music so loud that my roommate and I called 311 a few weeks ago and made a noise complaint–it was 2 AM on a Monday! We had to be at work in a handful of hours! Who does such a thing? There is also a family living upstairs with two very young boys (something like one and three years old), who are super active and cooped up all the time. They run around like crazy–for a while we thought they were doing construction in that apartment, that’s how loud it is. I’ve learned to ignore and live with the little boy noise, it doesn’t really bother me, but my roommate hates it–she calls them “the cretins”, and while she has sympathy for the fact that they’re active toddlers and deserve to have a yard to run around and play in instead of a 700 sq foot apartment, she also values her sleep and they basically make noise from 7 AM to 11 PM EVERY. SINGLE. DAY.

I could give more examples (like the woman across the “courtyard”–really sort of an alley, even though we don’t have alleys in NY, but the space between the apartment buildings in the back–who sings opera on her fire escape on the weekends), but I think you get the picture. Suffice it to say we’re both a little on edge when it comes to noise that might disturb our precious, hard-won, too infrequent opportunities for sleep. Last night, I was just drifting off when I heard bass. I remembered my roommate’s ominous words from a few days previously (“I think our neighbors got a karaoke machine”) and flew out of my room, eyes and hair wild. “DO YOU HEAR THAT?” I demanded of my roommate, who was sitting on the couch, probably watching American Idol. “No,” she said. “But you should know, you’re lookin’ real crazy.” And I was all, “OUR NEIGHBORS WTF” and she was all, “I KNOW, RIGHT?” and then it stopped.

“Um, I think they heard you yelling,” she said.

“Oh well. G’nite!”

Rude. IT IS ALMOST ONE O’ CLOCK IN THE MORNING ON A THURSDAY. What is wrong with people? Don’t they have jobs? Don’t they like to sleep? I like to sleep. In fact, I like it a lot. I like it peaceful and quiet and dark. Is that too much to ask, at one in the morning on a Thursday? IS IT?

Packing is the new hell on earth

Posted on November 28th, 2009 by annakjarzab


Packing is so awful! I walk into our living room and just marvel at how we were able to get so much stuff to “fit” (I use the word loosely here, because we had stuff shoved in every crevice) in our teeny, tiny apartment. It’s absurd how much stuff we had hidden away in little nooks and crannies. My roommate and I were discovering all kinds of stuff–an adorable set of juice glasses I’d completely forgotten I had, knives we’d never used (which will be displaced by the set of knives my mom sent me a while ago that are currently living at work, which I realize makes me look like a serial killer, but whatevs), a pizza cutter…the list goes on and on.

The problem with our old place (this is the part where I talk about living in New York, which I feel like is only of interest to people who live in New York, so you can skip this if you don’t care) is that it had about zero amounts of storage. That doesn’t really seem to make any sense because I’m telling you we totally forgot about things we had, but it’s because everything was shoved into the few small cabinets we had, and we never had any cooking space (most of this discovery happened in the kitchen), so we had no desire to cook, hence the not using anything we had (I swear to God, I have pots and pans I used to use in Chicago that I absolutely have not  used since I moved to New York, because my roommate and I have just used one frying pan and one sauce pan to cook our food for two years), because there wasn’t any room to do anything with it.

This is all about to change. Our new apartment has an actual kitchen–small, but actual. It has cabinets for our things and some more counter space and is going to be a joy to spend time in. We keep marveling over this. We’re like, “We’re going to have dinner parties!” every five seconds. But I know my roommate and I, and we need to plan that stuff immediately upon moving in, or it won’t happen. We’re quite inert when we’re settled.

But anyway. What is it about packing that makes your belongings start multiplying like the loaves and fishes? Every time I think I’m done packing, I see something else I need to pack. It’s ridiculous. I’m so tired. I haven’t had a good night’s sleep in a week because my room is a shambles (also, after several weeks of not having heat and freezing at night, it’s a frickin’ sauna in here).

I can’t wait for all of this to be over and to be in our new place. I know I’ll shed some tears over leaving our own place–not because I love it (I do NOT), but because we spent two years there. Eesha and I are, in so many ways, totally different people than we were when we moved in. We’ve both gone through some heartbreak, and my life has completely changed because of AUT, and we’re very good friends now, whereas when we moved in to the apartment we barely knew each other. We’ll never be those girls again. We’ll never move to New York for the first time again. It’s the end of an era.

But because my default is to always believe that my life will be the same forever as it is at the moment (obviously a fallacy, but it’s just my mental default), I’m always looking backwards, not forwards, and I forget that the end of an era is always the beginning of a new era. Last night when I called him for Thanksgiving, I gave my dad this whole speech about how this upcoming year is going to be my year. This is the year things are going to go well for me, I just know it. I’m not usually the type of person to make grandiose pronouncements like that, but I’ve been tired and stressed out for a long time now, I’ve worked very hard for a long time without a break, and I’m ready to create some positive change. I’m looking forward to 2010. Not just because of AUT, although of course because of AUT, but also because I’m excited about the possibilities of the unknown.

I know how lucky I am. I have managed to make a real, honest to God life for myself in New York, which, aside from all the cliches, is actually very hard. I need to sit back and enjoy it. I need to let it wash over me and be grateful. I need to relax. That’s what I’m focused on for 2010. I believe in 2010.

But right now, it’s 2009, and I need to go to bed before I fall over and start snoozing on the floor like a Sim. Because the movers are coming at 9 AM. Oh boy.

Keep on keepin’ on

Posted on October 2nd, 2009 by annakjarzab

Boy I’m tired. I mean seriously, I feel like I’ve been running around like a chicken with my head cut off for many, many weeks now. The good news is that I’m starting to adjust to my new job. I have such a terrible memory that I tend to forget bad things, like how hard it is to start a new job and not look like a total incompetant asshole all the time, or at least feel like one. But what’s the other option? Stay in the same place for eternity because it’s comfy and easy? Wait, that was an option. REDO!

Just kidding.

Anyway, nevermind that. You come here to hear about writing! No, you don’t. Well, maybe you do. On all counts I pretty much fail as a blogger, but it’s officially October (scarytown, I can barely remember a single day in September), which means that it’s just three short months until AUT comes out, and things should start picking up, or maybe they won’t, I don’t know. I’m sure I’ll have plenty to complain angstily about when I get my MB editorial letter–I mean, that’s just a thing we authors do, not because it’s productive, simply because it’s easier than revising. So you have that to look forward to!

In the meantime, what to talk about? Hm, well okay, I’ve been steadily adding to my writing notebook, which I carry around with me and jot notes down in. For a while it was all GR notes all the time, and I was like, “Forget CH! I’m working on GR! It’s fun and exciting!” And then yesterday I got hit with a bolt of inspiration and now my notebook has a partial CH synopsis in it. OF COURSE IT DOES! When am I actually going to sit down and write these books, you ask? All in due time, my friends. All in due time.

Another fun thing is that I’m going to Chicago next weekend to visit my family. My baby sister just started her freshman year in college, so I’m going to stay with her for a couple of nights, and at my aunt’s house for a night. My cousin is going to come down from Madison, where she is a freshman in college, and on Friday I’m going to go to Browne & Miller to see Joanna and Danielle, which is always great. I think I’ve mentioned this before, but I worked there the summer of 2007, so it’s like a homecoming of sorts for me.

I’m also moving at the end of the month. Where? I don’t know. Somewhere on the Upper West Side. Do I have an apartment yet? Oh, no. No, no. When do I have to move? November 1. This is going to go really well, I think. JUST KIDDING. Moving in New York is awful, as is apartment hunting–can’t decide which is worse, probably apartment hunting because it seems interminable. And I haven’t done it in two years, so I’m rusty. But the upside is at the end of it I will live in a nicer apartment in a better neighborhood, so I’m just focusing on that and letting all the other crap fade to the periphery.

And that’s all the news in my life. Read the new Dan Brown book; it was good. What’s up with you?

Poor attendance

Posted on September 18th, 2009 by annakjarzab

Oh boo. I’m afraid to look and see how long it’s been since I posted something, so let’s just go with IT’S BEEN A WHILE. Sigh. Oh well! As I told you before, I’ve been busy getting a life and working and stuff. And reading! Always reading.

I put aside CH for pretty much no reason except I got sick of working on it and missed GR, so I’m back on that train. I know I always said GR was going to be a big book, in terms of how much work it was going to take to accomplish what I want it to be, and probably in terms of pages as well, but I don’t think I ever realized HOW big and HOW much work it was going to take until pretty much the last week or so. Because I spent five days drawing the floorplans of a house. FIVE DAYS. Let me tell you, I did not miss my calling as an architect. If I didn’t know for a fact he’s busy with school and everything, I’d call my friend Scott, who goes to SIARC and just have him do it for me, but alas.

It was kind of cool to design a house though, especially a crazy house with lots of secret passages and hidden doorways and enormous ballrooms and stuff. I was ridiculously proud of it and actually showed it off to my friends at the bar yesterday, just because I really can’t put it up here for you guys to look at and I’ve got no one else to foist it upon. I also made a nice family tree, which was an unexpected detour on Tuesday night but fun all the same. This is the stuff I like best, you know. The prep work. The stuff nobody really sees unless you whip out your notebook and keep a vigilant watch on your friends as they handle it, lest they accidentally set it down in a puddle of Bud Lite (drink responsibly!).

So things are moving. I’m working on the GR synopsis, which, while far from completion, is significantly farther along than I ever hoped it could be (mostly because I never worked on it before now).

As for my other books, I’m still waiting on an editorial letter for MB, which is sort of a relief. I thought I’d have it this month, and I was dreading it, because I’m exhausted and I know it’s going to be a lot of work. I’m sure I’ll be happy to work on it when it comes, though. MB has a special place in my heart because I am, in my bones, a funny, light-hearted person and secret romantic–AUT is dark and sad and serious, and while I like writing all of that, MB is sort of like a vacation in a lot of ways. I’m back to dark in GR, so it should be a welcome project when it comes along. It can’t be sturm und drang all the time, you know?

AUT is, predictably, resting in a cocoon for the moment, although I did get an exciting piece of sales news today that I’m sure I can’t share on the blog (and, truthfully, don’t wholly understand so I wouldn’t even attempt to explain what it means, but my editor seems pumped!), and I found out who my publicist is, although I haven’t talked to her yet. So the whole being published in January thing isn’t a dream! I was worried. I’ve been having some pretty vivid dreams lately.

I know I’m behind on emails, and ARC requests, and I’m honestly sorry about that. The only thing I can say in my defense is that I’m busy? Which, we are all busy, I get that. I will get to them eventually, I promise. I actually have many things to get to that I haven’t been able to do in a while, so please bear with me, my life has been undergoing some rearranging and–fun times!–I’ll be moving soon. Just to a new apartment, probably in the same general region of Manhattan, if not the same neighborhood, but still. Moving in New York is a bitch, and I have yet to find a new place to live. So fall will be pretty stressful and busy, but it’s mostly exciting stuff, so I’m happy about it. Posts might be a bit thin on the ground, though (is that a thing people say?), I warn you.

Checking in

Posted on September 8th, 2009 by annakjarzab

Ugh, sorry for being so MIA. Lately, there just seems like so many better things to do besides blog. And, I mean, go me for experiencing the outside world, stepping away from the computer and living life, but seriously, WHAT ABOUT MY LOYAL READERS?!

Anyway, what have I been up to? Writing, if you can believe it, although I’m in one of those writing valleys where I’m putting a lot of words on the page but none of it seems to be going anywhere. I talked about how I’ve gotten a lot of CH written, only to decide to rewrite it, only to decide to delete the last scene I wrote and just go on from there, which is going okay, although I haven’t touched it in a couple of days. I don’t know. I really should plot things out, I know this about myself, but plotting seems so hard to do when you just want to get into the thick of writing. I get really overwhelmed by all the possibilities offered without at least a rough outline, and then I get paralyzed, and then I don’t write. As my roommate would say, bad mojo.

This past weekend, I mostly worked on GR. I KNOW! I haven’t talked about that book in forevs. Because I haven’t really worked on it in forevs. But I started to write it again, albeit slowly and with trepidation, AND I decided to really go ahead and write myself a full outline for this one, even though I’m already about eighty pages into the actual manuscript. This book is going to be so rough to write. I haven’t got everything figured out yet, and I’m still puzzling out a lot of the most important details, which is stalling any real progress. But I feel oddly confident about it right now, like it might actually get written and not be terrible, which is odd for me right now but I’m going with it.

Other than that, I’ve just been hanging out with friends, working and reading. Lather, rinse, repeat. I feel so much better about living in New York than I have for the past almost two years now (which: hasn’t it only been two seconds? or two decades?). About a month and a half ago, New York suddenly clicked into place for me–I feel like I belong here, like I’ll be here long-term and rather than being sort of depressed about that, I’m happy about it. Which is cool, because this is a hard city to live in if you don’t really commit to it, and I was feeling the strain of trying.

Also: Matryoshka Monday! On Tuesday!

5333_dRussian Doll Squishy Keychain from

Big YA signing in NY this weekend

Posted on July 23rd, 2009 by annakjarzab

Lucky for people in the New York city area, nine really awesome YA authors will be at Books of Wonder in New York City on Saturday, July 25th, from 2pm to 4pm. I can’t attend this event even though I desperately want to, because my friend Maggie is getting married this weekend in Monterey, CA and I’m going to the wedding! I’m also going to see my friends Shannel (darling frequent commenter on this here blog) and Carmen, which I’m super excited about, so while I’m bummed to be missing out on this terrific event, I’m happy to be going out of town, too.

But if you ARE in the NY area, do stop by and buy a book or nine and say hello!

Participating Authors:

Lauren Barnholdt, author of Two-Way Street, The Secret Identity of Devon Delaney, Four Truths and Lie, and others
Sarah Cross, author of Dull Boy
Erin Dionne, author of Models Don’t Eat Chocolate Cookies
Heather Duffy-Stone, author of This is What I Want to Tell You (read my interview with Heather here)
Mandy Hubbard, author of Prada and Prejudice
Julie Linker, author of Crowned, Disenchanted Princess
Sarah MacLean, author of The Season
Mari Mancusi, author of Boys that Bite, Girls that Growl, Stake That!, Gamer Girl and others
Michelle Zink, author of Prophecy of the Sisters

More blog goodness

Posted on July 14th, 2009 by annakjarzab

This is a small thing, but I’m very excited about it–Eric added a little feed to the left sidebar of the blog, so you can see whenever a new A Team post goes up! Of course, you could also add the feed to your Google Reader, but whatever works for you.

Also, I don’t know if anyone cares about this, but I’m going to start doing yoga at the YMCA I think. I’ve never done yoga before, so it’ll be an interesting experiment. I just feel like I need a period of relaxation a few times a week to relieve stress and breathe deeply.

Oh, and one more thing. Remember how in April I cohosted a Monday night trivia game with my friend Tony? Well last night, I did it again! This time with considerably less butterflies, but I still read too fast and not loud enough. (ME? NOT LOUD ENOUGH? SURELY YOU KID. But no.) It went okay, though, and I seem to have stumped my friends with some Qs, so that’s good. Afterwards we went to Artichoke for pizza, which I’ve probably mentioned before but it’s definitely a go-to if you’re ever in NY. 14th St between 2nd and 1st Aves, you guys.

Anyway, here are the questions for the round, this time themed Kings and Queens. See how many you get right!

1. Executed on February 12, 1554 at the age of eighteen, which British monarch holds the record for England’s shortest reign at less than two weeks?

2. In chess, the chess piece relative value system conventionally assigns a point value to each piece when assessing its relative strength in potential exchanges. Which piece has an indeterminate value?

3. Speaking of chess, in Lewis Carroll’s sequel to Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland, Through the Looking Glass, Alice is challenged to a game of chess by the Red Queen, who forces Alice to play opposite her as a pawn on the white side of the board. Helena Bonham Carter, predictably, plays the Red Queen in Tim Burton’s upcoming live action Alice in Wonderland–what Oscar-nominated actress plays the White Queen?

4. Coterminous with Kings County, the borough of Brooklyn would be the fourth largest city in the United States (behind New York, Los Angeles, and Chicago), with 2.5 million residents, if it was an independent city. In which decade did Brooklyn consolidate with New York City?

5. In the 2006 film The Queen, what kind of animal does Queen Elizabeth II, played by Dame Helen Mirren, attempt to save after hearing news of the death of Diana, Princess of Wales?

6. On the east side of the turtle pond in Central Park there is an equestrian monument, commissioned for the 1939 New York World’s Fair and installed permanently in the park in 1945. The statue commemorates the victory at the medieval Battle of Grunwald by what country’s king?

7. Although the British rock band Queen had hit number one on the UK charts previously with “Bohemian Rhapsody”, what was the group’s first number one hit in the US?

8. There are four kings in every standard deck of playing cards, one of each suit. Which suit’s king is also known as the “suicide king” because he appears to be sticking his sword through his head?

9. Which 2004 teen comedy was based on the nonfiction book Queen Bees and Wannabees?

10. The role of Carrie on CBS sitcom King of Queens, played by Leah Rimini, was almost offered to another actress, who eventually turned it down for a supporting role in a comedy on a rival network for which she won two Emmy awards. Name this Broadway and television star.

Highlight between the brackets to see the answers: [1. Lady Jane Grey, the Queen of Nine Days, 2. The king, 3. Anne Hathaway, 4. 1890s, 5. A stag (deer), 6. Poland, says so right there on the plinth, 7. “Crazy Little Thing Called Love”, 8. The King of Hearts, 9. Mean Girls, 10. Megan Mullally]

Crazytown, Population: Me

Posted on June 29th, 2009 by annakjarzab

First things first: Cynthea Liu, 2009 Debutante and author of The Great Call of China and Paris Pan Takes the Dare, is raising money for Tulakes Elementary School in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. There are many ways to help out: you can spread the word, buy Paris Pan and have Cynthea donate the royalties to charity, donate through, or bid on auction items such as manuscript critiques from some of the best YA writers out there, as well as editors and agents. You can also bid on a full manuscript critique from me! So please check out what Cynthea’s doing over there.

Second things second: The All Unquiet Things ARC giveaway is still going strong! I’ve gotten so many great questions, you guys, I think I might have to randomly choose a winner because I can’t! pick! my! favorite! NOT ONLY THAT (so many good things), but now when you comment you have a chance to win ONE of TWO AUT ARCs! That is right. Joanna is donating her second ARC (she only got two, so you know she loves you) to the giveaway. So go ask some Qs!

Okay, also, you have to know, I’ve been keeping an Excel document of all the questions, because I’m ridiculously organized like that, and there are 90. 90! You guys rock. Let’s get it to 100, shall we?

Third things third: I’ll admit it, I was avoiding my pass pages. I was afraid that I would read them and cringe at my own writing. But last night I finally buckled down and worked on them (I’m about 1/3 of the way through at this point) and you know what? I’m totally enjoying it! I’m trying to take Dia‘s suggestion and read it as though someone else wrote it, and at first I thought that would be impossible, and in some ways it is (like, for instance, I will never be able to imagine what it’s like to read about Carly for the first time and form an impression about her based only on what I’ve written; once people have read the book, I would love some feedback on that, if only for curiosity’s sake), but as I get farther and farther into it I start to forget that it’s something I wrote and just enjoy it for what it is. Which is such a relief for me, I can’t even tell you. And I’m glad I’m getting this one last moment to read the book cover to cover, because after these pages are done, I probably will never read it again.

Fourth things fourth: Want to see where the magic happens?


That’s my desk. I just cleaned it up yesterday, so I felt like I could show it to you without embarrassment. That desk is where I write everything, from emails to novels. I don’t ever go to coffee shops or the library to work. Sometimes I write on my bed, which is to the left, but mostly I just sit at that desk, day in and day out for hours at a time, writing. I need a bigger bedroom.

Those three piles of paper are my pass pages; the pile to the left is larger now that I’ve done more work. You know what is crazy making? The fact that it’s summer and I don’t have AC (welcome to New York City), so I have to use the fan that’s sitting to the right of my desk to cool off while I’m working, but also I’m editing a huge stack of papers so I have to use various items to weigh them down so they don’t blow away and get mixed up. That’s what the purple starfish is for; I have no idea where I got that thing, or if it even belongs to me (might be my sister’s), but it’s incredibly useful for making sure my pages don’t all blow away.

Oh, and on that computer screen? That’s Book 3, a.k.a. GR. I’ve got about 80 pages written right now, and though I seem to have hit a wall at the moment, I’m confident I’ll push through soon. Productivity!

As you can probably see there’s a lot going on. This is going to be a big week for me, as I have to finish these pages, get them to my editor, wrap up the AUT ARC giveaway and announce winners, plus my BFF Kim is coming to town on Wednesday (poor darling, taking a red eye and arriving at the crack of dawn) and it’s the Fourth of July! So as you can probably tell, it’s Crazytown, Population: Me right now, but all of it’s exciting. And I’m happiest when I’m busy, anyway.

Back home again (and some fun news)

Posted on May 4th, 2009 by annakjarzab

Yesterday was sort of long. My flight was delayed and then I got in to JFK only to find that the taxi line was the longest I’d ever, ever seen it. It probably would’ve taken me an hour to get a cab, maybe more. I had already promised myself that if I took the subway to the airport on Friday I could take a cab home on Sunday, because of it being late and the weather and general laziness. But my desire to crawl into my bed last night vastly outweighed my total lack of desire to take the subway, and I hate standing around when I can be getting something accomplished, so I dragged my stuff to the Air Train and grabbed the A at Howard Beach.

Not that I didn’t already know this, but JFK is way the hell away from where I live. Like whoa. The A went local in Brooklyn, which is twenty-two stops (I counted). TWENTY-TWO. In Brooklyn alone. That doesn’t count the eight stops in Manhattan it took me to connect to the 1 train, which I rode another nine stops. Everybody on the train was so exhausted, you could see it in their faces, and every time we’d hit another stop in Brooklyn nobody recognized (because most of us were going to Manhattan or the first couple of stops in Brooklyn) you could see everybody’s shoulders sag.

I actually felt fine. I wasn’t hungry even though I hadn’t eaten much all day and I was relatively awake, considering how early I’d gotten up, the rapid time changes and the fact that I’d slept fitfully on the plane (my hands kept falling asleep, and I kept jerking awake, which is a really annoying habit of mine when I’m sleeping sitting up). Thank heaven for small mercies. When I got home, I was reminded of why people usually leave their apartments cleaner than normal when they go on a trip–because who wants to come back to a big mess? Well, I came back to a big mess. But I just couldn’t deal with it, so I threw everything on the floor/my desk and figured I’d deal with it later. Very Scarlett O’Hara of me.

Oh, by the way, that good news I wanted to share but couldn’t? Joanna gave me the go-ahead to announce that we sold the audio rights for All Unquiet Things to Listening Library, Random House’s audio arm! I’m really excited about this because they’re so enthusiastic about the book at LL that they preempted it, and having the audio book being put out by the same publisher as the physical book means that they can do a lot of marketing in tandem, which is fortuitous. I don’t do a lot of audio book listening myself, mostly because I need to read things in order to retain them, something about how my brain processes information. But I know a lot of people who love audio books, especially in New York where it can be a bit of a pain to read a physical book on a crowded subway train, so having the book released in that format is pretty rad.

Also, you can find AUT on two more sites now: Indie Bound and Borders. Borders even has a description up: “After the death of his ex-girlfriend Carly, northern California high school student Neily joins forces with Carly’s cousin Audrey to try to solve her murder.” Short, easy to remember. It’s better than my elevator pitch, which is, “Um…it’s a YA murder mystery?…About these two teenagers…whose friend dies…and they solve her murder?” I’m awful at this. Must improve. I can tell you that MB is about the snobby son of two academics who has to put aside his pretentions and his prejudices to solve the mystery of why his best friend suddenly went missing. That’s better, isn’t it?