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Lisa Yee is an author. She has been a journalist, written for television, and penned lyrics for jingles. Her first kids' novel, MILLICENT MIN, GIRL GENIUS won the Sid Fleischman Humor Award and some other stuff. Her second novel, STANFORD WONG FLUNKS BIG-TIME is an ALA Notable Book, and SO TOTALLY EMILY EBERS was released by Arthur A. Levine Books/Scholastic in 2007. GOOD LUCK, IVY also debuted in 2007 and is published by American Girl. Lisa first YA novel, ABSOLUTELY MAYBE will be out in 2009 and so will the first of her chapter book series BOBBY ELLIS-CHAN in BOYS VS. GIRLS. Both are published by Arthur A. Levine/Scholastic. You can find out more about Lisa at http://www.lisayee.com. And please check out AS IF! AS IF! (Authors Supporting Intellectual Freedom) champions those who stand against censorship, especially of books for and about teens. Check out http://www.asifnews.blogspot.com for more information.
1. Cover Girl

Last week I got some happy happy news. Okay, well not news as is "This is CNN . . . " (said in Darth Vadar's voice), but a happy happy PDF. The new cover for SO TOTALLY EMILY EBERS!!!

Whooooaaaaaaa, it looks great. Elizabeth Parisi, the art director, did it again!

The cover features thick orange and purple stripes on the background, and Emily's head slightly off-skewed, wearing a paper crown. And it is lovely. I have it as my computer background.

I am working on the final edits (eek) of the book (due sooner than I think) and cannot believe how quickly time has flown by (whoosh). Three years ago I was unpublished. And now I am finishing my third novel and beginning my forth for Arthur A. Levine Books/Scholastic? The first book seemed like it took forever, and it did. There was no pressure or expectations. Well, not until I got a book contract. Then there was a lot of pressure and expectations, mostly from moi. Still, since it was the first time doing this publishing stuff, I was kind of ditsy about it. I got Harold Underdown's book IDIOT'S GUIDE TO CHILDREN'S BOOK PUBLISHING to make sure I knew what was happening to me.

I guess that's why I taught the course I did at UCLA. ("From Slushpile to Bestseller: Breaking Out of the Pack and Into Publishing.") Because I wish I had known what was going on. And now that I know, it surprises me that it's no secret. And also that authoring is not magical and mysterious (at least not always), but that a lot of people help make a book, like Elizabeth.

I spoke at St. James' School in Los Angeles on Tuesday and did my usual will-I-get-there-on-time-or-will-I get-lost? thing. So I Yahoo Mapped it. It said 22-minutes, so I gave myself 90-minutes. It took 34-minutes. I drove around for a while, until I realized that it was probably costing me $147 million an hour. So I parked and read DIGGING TO AMERICA by Anne Tyler. Anne Tyler is probably the only author who's books I just automatically buy no matter what. Okay, Anne Tyler and JK Rowling. Wait. Anne Tyler and JK Rowling and James Wilcox.

Lastly, I want to thank all of you who sent wonderful thoughts and wishes and prayers our way. Marieke's death still looms and will for a long time. But we are moving on and celebrating her life. Still, I find myself slipping into sorrow and zoning out or doing dumb things. Then I wonder, is it the grief, or just stupidity? Like the other night. Teen and I went for a run. On the way home I bought a watermelon. But since we didn't have a car (because of the run, which was really more like a walk/talk/run/walk/walk/talk), I had to carry the watermelon several blocks.

I think Marieke would have thought that was funny.

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