Are you, like me, super excited about Alexandra Bracken's new book The Darkest Minds? Then look no further! You've come to the right place.
Read on for an interview with Alexandra Bracken's editor and the Editorial Director at Disney Hyperion, Emily Meehan!
What was your experience of working with Alexandra Bracken like, in general?
Love Alex Bracken! She handles editorial direction so amazingly well. And she's got a bit of an insider's view of things, since she works for a publisher by day. So she knows editors can take FOREVER with editorial letters and she doesn't get mad at me. ;)
How would you pitch The Darkest Minds in ten words or less?
A frightening, haunting, achingly heartbreaking, thrill ride of story
To follow that up, as a dystopian book, what makes The Darkest Minds stand out among the rest?
I'm not sure Alex intended to write a dystopian novel, so that might be why it stands out from the rest. At its heart it is really a novel about kids who have been marginalized and isolated and feel that they have only themselves to count on for support and survival.
What was it about The Darkest Minds that made you want to acquire and work on this manuscript?
The way the book pulled me right in from the first page and, ultimately, Ruby.
What was the hardest part about editing this book? the easiest?
Alex writes LONG. So the hardest part is figuring out what can stay and what should go. Book two is even longer! The easiest part is knowing that whatever I ask Alex to do I know she'll be able to pull off. She is so good with taking editorial notes and implementing them.
Could you give us a little overview of what a day in the life of a young adult book editor is like?
No two days are alike! We have three offices, one in NYC, one in White Plains, and one in Glendale, CA. So we have a lot of meetings, there is a lot of going between those offices, and there's also lots of photo shoots, phone calls, and meetings with agents and authors. I am also involved in all of the YA projects on the Disney-Hyperion list, so we do a lot of meetings to go over potential acquisitions and cover concepts. Basically, a lot of meetings! I read and edit on my own time, either on my commute or at night (after the kids go to bed!).
Out of all the books you’ve edited, which would you say has been the most interesting experience, and why?
This one is too difficult. Celebrities are always fun. I got to go to Paula Deen's house twice when I did her children's cookbooks. The first time she greeted us in her bathrobe!
What is the most rewarding part about being a young adult book editor?
Finding stories that I know kids will connect with and that they'll want to talk about.
Alexandra Bracken was born and raised in Arizona, but moved east to study at the College of William & Mary in Virginia. She recently relocated to New York City, where she works in publishing and lives in a charming apartment overflowing with books. You can visit her online at www.alexandrabracken.com or on Twitter (@alexbracken).