5 Fun Facts about Everything She Wants

1. The original title was Perfect on Paper 

I had the hardest time coming up with a title for this book so I picked the most obvious, unoriginal (and only) title I could think of. My publisher changed the title to Everything She Wants. I know some authors have a hard time when the publisher wants to change the title but I was secretly thinking the whole time “Please change my title!” I love the title they came up with. It encapsulates so much about the story perfectly.

2. Everything She Wants is a retelling Epigraph

Because the classic I chose to retell is one that nobody reads, it’s not a huge marketing tactic. If you are familiar with the original book (or the movie), you’ll probably realize it in Chapter 3 and you’ll appreciate all the little touches I’ve added to reflect the original work. If you haven’t read the original book, I think you’ll still enjoy my version. And then hopefully you’ll pick up some Forster.

3. It took me two and a half years to write.

I started my first draft in April 2014. I’m not a super consistent writer so I worked on it on-and-off until the first draft was completed in October 2016. There was a five month chunk of time in 2014 when I didn’t write at all because I was training to be a birth doula. Since I am only good at doing one thing at a time, I had to choose between birth work and writing. Writing obviously won out. But don’t worry, all the birth stuff I learned will come into play in my next book.

 4. This is the original cover.

ESW Old coverThis design was up on Seagull Book’s website until a few days ago. I got more say in the cover design than I expected. I filled out a questionnaire about my book and then spoke to two members of the design team about what I’d like to see on the cover. I honestly didn’t have very strong opinions because, OMG, my book was getting published! Once the designers did their magic, they sent over 4 possible covers and had me narrow it down to 3. From the 3, the design and marketing teams would pick the final cover. I loved all 4 covers they sent me and was excited when the cover with the airplane was selected. Then, in February, I got an email from one of the designers saying they were moving in a different direction with the cover for various reason and wanted to know what I thought of the ice cream cone cover. My heart leapt! This was the perfect cover! So while the air plane cover was good, the ice cream cover made my heart pound. 😉

5. Everything She Wants is the first in a series of books all set at Windy Corner.

Windy Corner is the hip Sugarhouse apartment complex Lucy lives at. Most of the residents are young urban professionals, pushing 30 years old and on the brink of getting kicked out of the singles ward. In the subsequent books I’ll tell the stories of the other residence as they send their last hail Mary in search of an eternal companion.

My First (and Last) Pinterest Birthday Party

My oldest turned 5 this month and I decided to throw him a birthday party. I wanted to put all the kids in the back yard and have them play Hunger Games but the weather is so unpredictable in March. And some of the kids coming to the party weren’t going to know each other, and being a shy person who projects their shyness on everyone, I was worried those kids would end up feeling left out. I decided we’d need structured actives rather than a free-for-all in the backyard (or the basement if the weather was bad) so everyone would have someone to play with.

I went on Pinterest for ideas. This is ALWAYS a bad idea. First came the theme: Dinosaurs. Not because my son particularly likes dinosaurs but because we happen to have a lot of dinosaur things: books, toys, t-shirts. My husband is the true dinosaur lover in our family. And just as I project my shyness on everyone, Brandon projects his love of dinosaurs on his sons.

Pinterest was full of adorable ideas for a dinosaur birthday party. Now, I should say that I am not a crafty person. I don’t like to make things. I don’t have a nicely decorated house. I use Pinterest mostly to look for recipes I’m never going to make or to pin writing tips I’m not going to read. Doing a Pinterest-worthy birthday party is really not me (as many of the moms at the birthday pointed out when they saw the decorations and activities).

I got most of my ideas from Project Mommy. But her birthday party was even more elaborate and over-top. My is B-list in comparison. I made the signs for the centers on fontmeme.com.

First, we had each child pick a dinosaur for their name tag. The idea was the kids would rotate through the actives in groups based on the dinosaur on their name tag. That did not actually happen as all 16 3-5 years who were invited came and the party soon fell into chaos.

Brandon gave a dinosaur presentation. He has scale replicas of dinosaur teeth and scale models of dinosaurs. He let the kids handle the dinosaur teeth and talked about what each of the dinosaurs ate. The parents in attendance were more interested in the presentations than the kids.

The kids ate pizza and then it was time for the activities.

We had a Hatchery. I made dinosaur eggs out of baking soda and water and hid a dinosaur toy inside. The children used eyedroppers and vinegar to “hatch” the eggs. This activity was a huge hit.IMG_1137

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There was a Dino Dig. I threw some dinosaur skeletons in the sensory bins I already had and the kids had a great time getting rice everywhere.

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We had a center where children could do “Jurassic Art.” No one appreciated the pun.

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We also had Playdoh out where the kids could make dinosaur tracks with dinosaur toys. (I didn’t get a picture of this.)

We ended the party with a pinata and donuts since 5-year-old doesn’t like cake. (I also didn’t get a picture of this. Taking pictures is another thing I am bad at.)

So much time and energy went into a two-hour party. After it was all over, I realized the kids really didn’t care about my carefully crafted decorations or the effort I put into center pieces on the table. The decorations are really for the parents. So, if 5-year-old asks for a birthday party in the future, I’ll show him pictures of this one and assure him he had a great time.

Cover Reveal: Everything She Wants

Everything She Wants COVERWEBHi Everyone! This is the cover to my debut novel “Everything She Wants.” The first time I saw the finished product was when my publisher did the cover reveal on their Facebook page. Haha. I’d seen a mock up of it about two weeks before and gave them my vote of approval. I absolutely love how it turned out. Ice cream plays a huge role in the story so I’m glad it made an appearance on the cover. We all judge books by their covers, so what do you think?

-Sarah!