The Story - (flap)
There is a great legend of the guardian angel who traveled across time and space for the human girl he loved, slaying those who would threaten her with a gleaming sword made of heavenly light.
This is not that story.
Jerome Hancock is Heidi Devine's guardian angel. Sort of. He's more of an angel trainee, in heaven's soul-rehabilitation program for wayward teens. And he's just about to get kicked out for having too many absences and for violating too many of the Ten Commandments for the Dead.
Heidi, meanwhile, is a high school junior who dreams of being an artist, but has been drafted onto her basketball team because she's taller than many a grown man. For as long as she can remember, she's heard a voice in her head - one that sings Lynyrd Skynyrd, offers up bad advice, and yet is company during those hours she feels most alone.
When the unthinkable happens, these two lost souls must figure out where they went wrong and whether they can make things right before Heidi's time is up and her soul is lost forever.
1. Tell me about Devine Intervention in your own words.
It's a book that combines many of my favorite things: comedy, awkwardness, misfortune, and corn dogs. The stars are Jerome, an inept guardian angel, and Heidi, the girl he was supposed to be watching over. Bad things happen, and they only have twenty-four hours to make things right before the ultimate disaster occurs.
It's taken a really long time, but along the way, I've made great friends, read hundreds of wonderful and inspirational books, and learned how this whole novel-creation process works. High points include getting to work with my editor, Arthur A. Levine, along with the unflagging support of my agent Jill Corcoran. It was also pretty darned incredible to have the book optioned as a movie by Zucker Productions, the team responsible for the hilarity of "Airplane" and the heartbreaking beauty of "Ghost." Low points mostly involved self doubt and that feeling you get when the draft you've finished has more holes than that really terrible pair of underpants you wore in eighth grade.
The SCBWI, without a doubt, has been an incredibly helpful organization. Really, though, it's been the people who volunteer and give so much. This is where I met my critique partners, where I heard the words I needed to hear to improve my writing, and where I met both my editor and my agent. I can't overstate the excellence of the people who make all this happen for aspiring writers and illustrators.
I have always wanted to go to Paris. So yes! That would be my first stop.
It's OK if it takes you a long time to get where you want to be. It can be frustrating, and you can sometimes doubt yourself. But the more joy you can find in the process, the happier you will be. There's always some milestone ahead, and if you focus too much on those, you miss so much on the struggle. All of that struggle is a gift, by the way. Imagine reading about a hero who gets everything without sacrifice or sadness. That would be a boring story. So the more open you are to feeling everything life has to offer, the richer your characters will be. Also, make time for reading. The more you understand how the books you love are put together, and what the author has done to make you feel the way you do, the better shot you have at being able to do the same thing in your own writing.
Her website: http://marthabrockenbrough.com
And Twitter: http://twitter.com/mbrockenbrough
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