Monday, December 7, 2015

MMGM~The Secret Files of Fairday Morrow Is Having A Birthday!!!

I'm back in the lineup for Shannon Messenger's MMGM, today, and I have an exciting new middle grade release for you, plus words from the authors themselves!

Jessica Haight                                              Stephanie Robinson
Meet middle grade authors Jessica Haight and Stephanie Robin as they welcome you into the mystery of the Begonia House. 


Hi Jessica & Stephanie! It's wonderful to have you visit the Alleyway. How did you write a book together? 
A question often asked of authors who decide to collaborate on writing a story. The underlying truth of what they are really asking is, “How did you manage to not end up hating each other during the process?” The answer to this is simple, it’s not about the ego; it’s about the book. We decided this first.

Makes sense. The story above all! What was a surprising thing you learned while writing your book?
Jessica: I learned a lot about myself and about discipline in writing. I am sort of a free-form writer, and it's absolutely essential to keep everything in tune and orderly to progress. Stephanie is the master of organization, so I am very lucky to have her as my co-author. Most of the time, instructions and lists sound to me like the adults in Charlie Brown, whoh, whoh, whoh. However, after working on this with my awesome writing partner, I embrace the list.

Stephanie:  I have been surprised by the amount of time Jessica and I spend discussing Fairday and her friends and coming up with ideas. Most of our conversations center around our writing and blog. I never knew how exciting it would be to write a book with someone who shares my vision and makes work fun. Also, I have been pleasantly surprised to find support for my book in places I never expected. Thanks to all of our supporters.

As a writer myself, this is a question I've always wanted to ask co-authors: How'd you do it? What was the writing process like?
We started off brainstorming about our characters and the basic plot. Our daily conversations were about Fairday and the DMS. We flushed out characters, story lines, and everything else both in person and on the phone. Our meetings were always productive. Using Google docs for an online format allowed us to post a chapter or two at a time that we could work on together. What an amazing tool! Being able to make changes to our book from any location opened up our world of writing and our story was written in Poland, Yellowstone, from our town libraries, and the comforts of our own homes. Usually one of us would start a chapter and the other person would go in and start working their magic- adding, deleting, and crafting the writing until it was a blended expression of both of our ideas.

Wow! So interesting that you used Google docs collectively. Sounds like you devised a road map and stuck to you. Good for you! Now, let's share this fabulous story with your readers. 


GOODREADS
THE SECRET FILES OF FAIRDAY MORROW
by Jessica Haight & Stephanie Robinson

Release date: DECEMBER 1, 2015
Publisher: Delacorte Press/ Random House Kids Books 
                   MIDDLE GRADE/ ages 10 and up
Illustrator: Roman Muradov
Pages: 272
Description: Fear Not the Unexpected. 

Eleven-year-old Fairday Morrow is less than thrilled that her family is moving thousands of miles from civilization to the quiet country town of Ashpot, Connecticut, where she’s absolutely certain she’ll die of boredom.

As if leaving New York City and her best friend, Lizzy, the only other member of the elite Detective Mystery Squad (DMS), weren’t bad enough, Fairday is stuck living in the infamous Begonia House, a creepy old Victorian with dark passageways, a gigantic dead willow tree, and a mysterious past.

Before she can even unpack, strange music coming from behind a padlocked door leads Fairday up a spiral staircase and into a secret room, where an ancient mirror, a brass key, and a strange picture of a red-haired lady are the first in a series of clues that takes the members of the Detective Mystery Squad on an amazing adventure.

"Mixing realism and fantasy, Haight and Robinson’s debut opens with 11-year-old Fairday’s move from Manhattan to a small town in Connecticut, where her relentlessly cheerful parents plan to turn a dilapidated Victorian into a bed and breakfast. No sooner has the family arrived than eerie sights and sounds begin to haunt Fairday. The house turns out to hold dark secrets that everybody in town suspects but nobody can explain: a perfect mission for Fairday and her best friend Lizzy’s Detective Mystery Squad (DMS)."
~ Publishers Weekly 

Jessica Haight is a true New Englander, with a deep desire to be near the ocean and a love of the four seasons. She enjoys drawing while standing up and cultivating magic in her garden. She easily floats away in the pages of a good story and is still waiting for her owl from Hogwarts. Jessica lives in Connecticut with her charming fiancé, James.

Stephanie Robinson lives with her husband in a quiet town, though not as quaint as Ashpot. After teaching fifth grade for almost fifteen years, she is now enjoying her role as a school media specialist. One of the many benefits of her job is that she learns something new every day. When Stephanie isn't working, she spends her time creating stories, getting lost in books, and traveling to new places.


a Rafflecopter giveaway 

Marvelous Middle-Grade Monday is where authors and bloggers get to show off some pretty sweet middle grade reads! And we all know that this is the season for giving, right? Why not give a middle grade book! 

Click HERE for the other MMGM participants.

Have you ever co-authored a book or short story? Would you like to?

Due to my deadline with my MG edits, this is most probably my final post before the end of the holiday season. (Also, I'll be slow with blogging, but I promise to get to it by the end of the week! I want to know what you have to say.)

Wishing each one of you a blessed & safe holiday season! 
And to my fellow Christmas-teers, Merry Christmas!!!

 photo Sheri2.png

32 comments:

  1. Congrats to Jessica and Stephanie on their book. So very excited for them!

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    1. Thanks, Natalie! :) ~Jess and Stephanie

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  2. Using Google Docs was a smart idea. Congratulations, ladies!

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    1. Alex- We couldn't have done it without Google Docs! It made things SO much easier. :) ~Jess and Stephanie

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  3. Co-writing must have been such an interesting journey. I must try it at some point. Congrats!

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    1. Catherine- It really was an interesting journey. We hope you get to try it at some point. :) ~Jess and Stephanie

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  4. Aren't Jess and Stephanie something? I'm so envious they are a team. I want a co-writer!

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    1. Lee- Thanks! We do feel very lucky to have a team. Who knows- a co-writer could be right around the corner from you. :) ~Jess and Stephanie

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  5. SA- Thank you SO much for having us on your blog. We are having such fun visiting with your readers. We appreciate your support. :) ~Jess and Stephanie

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  6. A huge congrats ladies. Writing and publishing a novel is a great accomplishment.

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    1. Sheena-kay Graham- Thanks so much for your good wishes. We are thrilled to have our book out in the world. :) ~Jess and Stephanie

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  7. Hi Sheri and Jess - sounds wonderful you can write happily together like this. I love the concept of you both working and writing about your passion, which is leading to the joint book - so much more fun having someone else around. Great - cheers Hilary

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    1. Hilary- You hit the nail on the head! It is more fun having someone else around experiencing everything! :) ~Jess and Stephanie

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  8. Congrats to Jessica and Stephanie on their release. Their blog tour is amazing.

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    1. Medeia- Thanks! The blogging world is filled with amazing people! We are so thankful. :) ~Stephanie and Jess

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  9. I always wonder about co-authoring, because I can't help but think that it's a totally different process to going it alone. :-)

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    1. Misha- You are right- it is definitely a different process writing a book with someone else! :) ~Stephanie and Jess

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  10. I adore collaborations. One day, I'd like to try one.

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    1. Crystal- Collaboration is fun! We think you will love it. :) ~Stephanie and Jess

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    2. Ooh, so would I! I'm fascinated how authors work together on one world-building expedition! I think I'd be fun and challenging to bounce ideas off each other and see the end result.

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  11. I not only love hearing about author collaborations but I love middle grade mysteries. Sounds like a fun one!

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    1. Laura- Yeah for MG mysteries! So glad you like the sound of The Secret Files of Fairday Morrow. Great to hear from you. :) ~Jess and Stephanie

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  12. I've done a bit of collaborative work and really enjoyed it. It can be a lot of fun and be really enriching when you have the right partner. Glad this worked out for you both, sounds like a great book. Congrats!
    SA- Good luck with your edits and happy holidays! :)

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    1. Elise- We agree with you that having the right partner is very important when working on a collaborative work. Thanks for your good wishes. :) ~Jess and Stephanie

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  13. Google docs is a smart way to work together -- I wondered how you guys did it. Thanks for that bit of insight into your writing process. And congrats on your book birthday!

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    1. Sherrie- Glad you learned how we worked together. Thank goodness for Google Docs! Thanks for the good wishes. :)
      ~Jess and Stephanie

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  14. Congrats and best wishes to Jessica and Stephanie on their book, and that must've been a FUN kind of challenge, to write a novel together. Sounds like a book MGers would love. :)

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    1. Carol- Writing our book together was tons of fun and definitely had its own challenges. We felt like it was putting a puzzle together with someone else. :) Thanks for the good wishes. Happy Holidays! :) ~Jess and Stephanie

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  15. How informative post it was! Keep sharing such stuff my friend. Anyway, my son’s 15th birthday was on this weekend and we made this day so special for him by throwing a surprise karaoke party at his favorite New York event venues.

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!SPLAT Your Awesomeness! I love to hear from you!

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