My family and friends made this a really special night. Two of my high school French teachers, an English teacher, and the school librarian came out, some of whom I hadn't seen in a decade or more!
One of my former teachers gave her students extra credit for attending, and several of my high school friends had kids in tow. Afterwards, my family and three of my besties from high school and their families went out for dinner and a champagne toast!
So much love all around! Next up, the Chicago launch . . .
It's here, and it's beautiful!
Special thanks to director Matt Miller and the entire team at Capgun Collective and Whitehouse Post! To our brilliant composer, Christian Moder, and vocalist, Katie Todd. And to our amazing actors, Mia Hulen as Caddie, Brando Crawford as Peter, Clare O'Connor as April, Paige Collins, Ryan Goldsher, Daniel Kyri, Hannah Toriumi, & Aidan Traynor.
We shot enough footage for a short film, and we found movie-worthy talent, so if the Don't Touch trailer looks and feels like a mini movie, I'm officially #sorrynotsorry.
I love book trailers and knew I wanted to make one for Don't Touch, but I knew I'd need help from someone more filmically inclined. When I asked my bud Matt Miller if he'd like to help, I fully expected him to be too busy. After all, his Teachers webseries had been picked up for pilot and he'd just signed on with commercial production company, Cap Gun Collective.
As it turns out, not only was Matt up for directing my book trailer, he brought a bunch of his highly skilled friends with him.
We held a casting session to draw from Chicago's fantastic pool of talent and found the perfect Caddie and Peter, along with some other fine young actors to play students: Paige Collins, Ryan Goldsher, Daniel Kyri, Clare O'Connor, Hannah Toriumi, and Aidan Traynor.
Here's Matt with our Caddie, Mia Hulen. Yes, he's that tall, and yes, she's that tiny.
Peter was played by Brando Crawford, who was happily familiar with the term "adorkable" and who savvily borrowed these glasses for the audition and shoot.
I mean . . . if these guys aren't adorkable, I don't know what is.
The shoot went splediforously well. We were able to shoot on The Vittum Theater stage, a classic theater with a beautiful proscenium arch, where I've had the pleasure of acting a few times. Matt and our producer, PJ Fishwick, found some perfect Alabama-esque woods and railroad tracks. And another friend found us a house in Winnetka with a pool!
Then, I got to hang out with Matt and our brilliant editor, Travis Hockswender, at the WhiteHouse to check out the rough cut.
Composer, Christian Moder, wrote original music for the trailer. For lyrics, we settled on a Hamlet stanza and a few extra Don't Touch-ish lines, and a phenomenal vocalist, Katie Todd, total rock star, recorded them right in front of us.
I whispered to Matt, "I feel like I'm on a reality TV show." You know, where they make the Bachelors or Bachelorettes scribble down some lyrics and go in a recording booth even though they all have terrible voices? This was like that in terms of fanciness and coolness, but the exact opposite in terms of suckiness. In fact, I'm in love with the track they created: "We Fall." And it may even make its way toward being a full song.
I can't wait to share the trailer with you, but with so many talented people doing us favors, we need to wait a teensy bit longer for the finished product. As Matt might say, "soon, my sweet doves, soon!"
Some of my friends have begun to receive their pre-orders in the mail, which is wild!
I'll be having two launch events this week, in Birmingham and Chicago!
If you want a signed copy but can't make it to one of these events, you can order a personalized copy from The Book Cellar. Just make a note specifying how you would like it signed when you order.
I have a bunch of fun links to share:
I shared a "Recipe for Don't Touch" with HCC Frenzy--that's Harper Collins Canada--featuring Miss Piggy and her lavender evening gloves!
I'm psyched to have made EpicReads's list of The 20 Most Anticipated YA Books Publishing in September. This list is based on Goodreads adds, so it keeps fluctuating, but various points, Don't Touch has been was way anticipated.
I’m giving up The Debut Dish with That Artsy Reader Girl, along with Erica Cameron, Austin Aslan, and Paul Williams.
I also visited the Big Blue Marble Bookstore blog for an interview with the brilliant Cordelia Jensen, author of the forthcoming YA verse novel, SKYSCRAPER. Cordelia asked some thoughtful questions that surprised me, so I really enjoyed this one.
Sue from YA Hollywood made a fanmix for Don't Touch that I absolutely love! You can see the tracklist at her Tumblr.
And while I’m doing sharesies, I love this review from Ellis of Finding Bliss in Books. PLUS, she loved the book so much that she’s running a giveaway of a hardback copy. Here's what Ellis had to say:
If reading awesome reviews is your thing, here are a few more, from Hiver & Cafe (isn’t that name the coolest?), I Swim for Oceans, Island Geek Girl, Reading on the Farm, Ms. Martin Teaches Media, and Awkwordly Emma.
Stay tuned during launch week for the Don't Touch book trailer and a Fantastic Flying Book Club Tour!
I'm offering up one last annotated ARC and a pair of purple evening gloves like Caddie's.
There are lots of ways to win including some freebie entries, so hop in there and spread the word!
I'm so excited to announce a cool giveaway contest with one of my favorite Tumblrs, Fashion by the Book.
Fashion by the Book creates cool outfits inspired by book covers, and now you have the opportunity to try that out yourself. Entries can either be inspired by the book cover or by Ophelia. One winner in each category will receive an ARC of Don't Touch and a pair of evening gloves like Caddie's. Visit Fashion by the Book for all the details!
And while we're talking giveaways, HarperTeen's Goodreads giveaway of 10 ARCs of Don't Touch ends in just three days!
I'm happy to announce a new event with some fellow OneFour Kidlit types--a YA Panel with Lindsay N. Currie & Trisha Leaver, co-authors of Creed, and Natalie C. Parker, author of Beware the Wild.
We'll be at Anderson's Bookshop in Naperville talking YA and chatting about our books. Can't wait!
Don't Touch has a beautiful new Epic Reads Book Club Guide. It might be spoilery, so read the book first, then discuss!
Exciting news! I have two newly scheduled book launch events.
Whether or not you're able to make it to one of these events, these are also great places to pre-order Don't Touch and support a couple of excellent independent bookstores!
Two exciting cover updates have come about that I haven't yet shared here.
For starters, Don't Touch has a new, darker look.
Personally, I love it! What do you think? I've gotten a glimpse of the full jacket design as well, and I couldn't be happier.
Also, my short story, "The Game of Boys and Monsters," which will release October 7th as a digital short with HarperTeen Impulse has a cover now!
When you write a short story, you don't think about cover art, but it makes sense for digital shorts. The cover holds the story's place on the digital shelf! And this is a longish short story (40 pages), a novelette some might say.
I think the cover perfectly captures the story's tone and contains some nice thematic imagery as well.
And if you'll notice, my name is in the same font on both covers. No, I don't think I've ever loved a font so much as that one.
News, events, fun stuff, serious stuff, and online doings. I kept a personal blog for years at The Storybook Girl, and I'll slowly be migrating some of those posts to this blog.