I'm excited. So excited that later on in this blog post, I actually use two exclamation points.
This book is by far the biggest, most ambitious thing I've ever written. After three entire years of writing and editing, many months of pitching, and one final month of negotiation, my agent, the esteemed Abigal Samoun of Red Fox Literary, has accepted an offer from my dear friends at Holiday House. The offer is for my next book, which has a working title of...
The Five Impossible Tasks of Eden Smith
That title definitely may change along the way, but it will likely be something close-ish to that.
The likely publication date is fall of 2022, which is an entire year from now. That may sound like a long way off, but by publishing-standards is actually pretty speedy. Lots of stars need to align to get a book edited, illustrated, designed, marketed, reviewed, and distributed. I'm fine with that schedule.
Holiday House published my last middle-grade novel, The Bottle Imp of Bright House. That means I get to work with one of my favorite editors, Kelly Loughman. Kelly is smart, demanding, and delightful. I like that combo in an editor.
The elevator pitch for this book is basically this:
Eden Smith, a young teen girl, loses both her parents when a meteor crushes them while visiting the conservatory at Wright Park in Tacoma. After years in foster care, her grandfather is finally located and she moves in with him. But her grandfather, Vulcan Smith, lives in an old folks home for master metalworkers, The Guild Hall of Smiths. Eden is the only child in the place. And Vulcan, a legendary master smith, has just been stripped of his standing and imprisoned in a basement room. The only way Eden can restore her grandfather to his former glory is to complete the Five Impossible Tasks. But surviving them may be the hardest task of all!!
There's lots of adventure, lots of fascinating elderly characters, a few mechanical birds, lots of smithing, and many servings of pudding.
Add it to your 2022 Christmas shopping list now!