Books and Stuff

October 7, 2011 @ 4:39 pm | Filed under: , ,

What I’ve got on deck, since a few of you have asked:

• Middle-grade novel called NOT THE WHOLE TRUTH, forthcoming from McElderry in Fall 2012.

• Early reader called FOX AND CROW ARE NOT FRIENDS, coming from Random House in, guess what, Fall 2012!

• (Project I can’t announce quite yet, book #1 currently scheduled to pub in—you guessed it—Fall 2012.)

• YA novel in progress, under contract with Knopf & scheduled for…Spring 2013. Gotcha!

And the answer to: why the long hiatus since your last book? Easy. As long-time Bonny Glen readers know, Scott went back to a fulltime office job as a comic-book editor in the summer of 2006. Took me nearly four years of Saturdays to write my next book. (The aforementioned middle-grade.) I’ve always said the only reason I was able to write so many books during my Little House years was because Scott was also a work-at-home writer back then.

When DC Comics shuttered WildStorm last December, Scott took the severance and came back home to freelance. And zing, I’m working everyday again. It’s lovely. We miss the affordable healthcare, of course, but other than that it’s heaven having him home. He’s got a stunning number of books in the works with Disney and other publishers, he’s writing cool music stuff for AARP, and he does all the laundry, cooking, and shopping. Sweet deal for me, eh? I get to play with the kids all day and then closet myself away in the evenings and write write write. Most afternoons, I work from 3-9, with a dinner break. To eat the dinner someone else has made for me.

In his WildStorm days, he had long office hours and a long commute and didn’t get home until 7—on a good night. And after a full day of mom-duty with five or six kids, 7pm was just too late for my brain to be at all thinky. Ergo: whirlwind Saturday writing marathons and a much longer percolating time for NOT THE WHOLE TRUTH.

The freelance life may have its downsides—well, downside singular, since all I can think of is the healthcare situation, but that’s a doozie; would you believe we’re currently paying almost $2000/month for health insurance? And with our family medical history, we’re unlikely to bring that number down, though heaven knows I’m looking. So, well, the one major downside is that our cost of living is monstrously higher. But money, as we all know, isn’t everything. This is a great way to live. Long morning walks; days full of books, music, games, and art; no traffic, no meetings, no boss; fulfilling work to do and the freedom to do it; and the love of your life never more than a few rooms away.

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13 Reponses | Comments Feed
  1. Mary G says:

    So wonderful to hear the free-lancing is working and that you’re able to write … can’t wait to read the results of all the diligence!

    Hugs and prayers for you and yours …

    Mary G.

  2. monica says:

    I didnt konw about the jov change for scott. I hear you about the health insurance burden, especially for special needs kids. I am so glad the changes have resulted in more writing time for you.

  3. sarah says:

    You’re so blessed. The healthcare costs are crazy, but I have a solution to them. Come live in NZ, where it’s only about $30 to visit the doctor, children under 10 are free, and necessary hospital treatment is free. I recently visited a specialist, had a bunch of tests, and had an operation, and it cost me only $50 for the original GP appointment. And you know my dd’s medical issues, all of which are handled for free.

    I really envy you the chance to write from 3-9pm. But I even envy you your old Saturday schedule! And how lucky are your kids, having two fabulous authors as their parents? One of them even a COMIC BOOK writer! So cool.

  4. maria says:

    Melissa, thank you so much for including the link to your “Not Superman Series” as I needed to read that about now. Your blog encourages me so in ways I could never fully explain. Thank you for sharing. -maria

  5. Annette W says:

    Now all you need is a new born baby in fall 2012! HA!

    A husband and wife team is something special…glad you have it! Congratulations on all that you are doing.

    We learned the joy of insurance, too…though costly (not like yours though!) it’s worth it.

  6. Kelly says:

    sigh…That last part is lovely.
    And I’m so very happy about your newest projects!

  7. Sue says:

    Like most successful people, you guys intimidate me–both in terms of creativity and productivity. I am truly impressed! To accomplish so much *and* raise a large and happy family (including a child with special needs) is more than most of us can manage to imagine being able to do. Congratulations on all fronts to both you and Scott.

  8. Amy C. says:

    So happy for you . . . and for the rest of us, who get to enjoy the results! And that husband of yours is obviously the second-best guy on the planet. 🙂 (I appreciate how you describe your happy family . . . you have a knack for making me enjoy my own family all the more, not an easy feat for a blogger.)

  9. Penny says:

    Your days sound pretty wonderful – and your healthcare costs terrifying. In my state we have the ability to sign up for independent healthcare (which I am looking into for our family right now, actually) and the costs are about $208 per adult and $60 per child (each month) – for coverage that’s better than we currently have by a long shot. Currently we pay about $1500. This would save us *well* over half.

    I hope all states start to adopt this sort of thing, or better, and SOON! You and Scott must stay home!

  10. coffeemamma says:

    Can’t wait to get my hands on every one of your new projects!

    And so very jealous that you have Scott at home every day. Hubby is only home one day a week, but what a *lovely* day it always is!

  11. shaun says:

    OH my, how I covet your workday. Someday, I know, but not now! For now I have to work early mornings and late nights — and yeah, that is not conducive to extended thought.

    But the hubby at home is still nice. We’ve had that for 3 years now, and I can’t imagine any other way.

  12. Lisa says:

    You guys are blessed to have the talent and know-how to successfully freelance. Enjoy the time together as a family. I cannot imagine having to find that much money every month for health insurance. I’ll be good and buy your book–I promise!

  13. MelanieB says:

    Oh yay yay yay for all the books.

    Truly your days sound just lovely. I miss the days of Dom working from home in our first year of marriage. It was so sweet to have him around all the time. You kind of give me hope though… perhaps some day he’ll be back at home with us again. How lovely that would be.

    And did I mention yay for the books!