Exciting news everyone! HarperCollins—the publisher behind Where the Wild Things Are, The Giving Tree, and Charlotte’s Web—has signed with our very own Jodi Kendall to publish Some Pig in the City, the novel she created and serialized on Storybird.
Jocelyn Davies is the editor at HarperCollins who purchased the rights and is planning two books under the title The Unlikely Story of a Pig in the City, one released in 2017 and then another the following year. Details here.
We’re thrilled for Jodi. An active non-fiction writer with dozens of articles filed for National Geographic, NBC Health, and ABC News, this will be her first mainstream fiction deal, and marks the next stage in her writing career.
We reached out to Jodi in New York to see how she was doing and ask her about the news.
How are you feeling now that the news is out?
I am so grateful and excited. For months I’ve felt a bit like, “Is this all a dream?” because so much was going on behind-the-scenes. But today the news is out there and suddenly it feels incredibly REAL. I just want to scream from the rooftops, I’m going to be a published author! This is actually happening! It’s a dream come true, and I couldn’t be more thrilled to get this story into the hands of readers.
What happens next?
Next I’ll await my first editorial letter. Every editor has their own communication style at this stage of the process, but most likely it’ll be big-picture thoughts on the book as a whole, and how to improve certain areas of the story. Then I start the hard work of revising—which is actually my favorite part of writing. I love combing back over scenes and discovering ways to tighten the language, boost tension, and improve character. There’s a long journey ahead with several revisions, but I feel like I’ve been waiting for this moment for my whole life. I’m so ready!
Any advice for writers who dream of getting published?
Read, read, read! Immerse yourself in wonderful stories. Talk to your friends and family about them. Then write as much as you can! When I think back on my childhood, I was constantly writing… I have two huge cardboard boxes of stories I wrote when I was a kid (so save all your good stuff for ideas later). I sent out my first book to a publisher at the age of 16. It was rejected, but the editor scribbled a nice little note on the bottom of the page (I still have it!) and I kept on writing.
You know, my young niece is a very talented aspiring writer, and we had this conversation quite recently… A piece of advice I gave her, I’ll share with the gang on Storybird: One thing that I wish more people had told me when I was younger is that yes, to be a writer you need to know the mechanics of writing and read a lot, but you also need to EXPERIENCE stuff and LEARN as much as possible and EMBRACE the differences of people around you. All of that is inspiration. It’s what educates your material and characters and world-building, and makes your words/stories fresh, so you’re not just reiterating what’s been already been published. YOUR special point of view shapes your own unique VOICE. You have a story within you that only you can tell.
If you know much about Some Pig in the City, the idea sprung from my own personal experience growing up…. My brother actually brought a piglet home from college when we lived in the suburbs of a big Midwestern city in the U.S. It’s always been one of those experiences of my life that stayed with me. One day my husband said, you know what? I think that’d make a great book. He was right! And the rest is history. :)
Editor’s Note: As Jodi mentioned, the story will first go into revision before planning, marketing, and launch—a process that can take from 12 to 18 months before the book hits shelves at your local bookstore! We’ll touch back with Jodi throughout the process so she can share her journey with you, and give you insights and tips on the process.