Calling all Educators

If you teach grades 8-12, English or Health, or if you are a librarian or book club advisor, then I have an opportunity for you: Advanced Reader Copies of One in Ten.

I have already reached out to multiple educators regarding whether they would like Advanced Reader Copies of One in Ten. I’ve had English teachers who have teens in need of Independent reading books say yes. I’ve had librarians with after school book clubs say yes. I’ve even had a district realize that One in Ten addresses their Health curriculum for addiction education. They gave a resounding yes.

Therefore, if you are an educator, and you think your students would enjoy a contemporary story about a teen who gets a addicted to heroin in a near-future setting where the government has taken over heroin addiction recovery, and who then uses its patients like guinea pigs in one crazy ride of a Black Mirror-esque treatment protocol, then you should absolutely use the Contact form

I am asking for some completely optional assistance in return: reviews. I will provide the details if you reach out. In the meantime, read the back copy of the novel, below. Maybe share it with your students to check their reaction. I will be posting the first chapter soon, but if you think that might help you win over your students, let me know, and I can share sooner rather than later. Let me hook you up!

Copy

At seventeen, Kenny Jenkins is fresh out of his third heroin rehab. He is among the last to be released before the U.S. government seizes control of all rehabilitation centers. It intends to end the heroin epidemic by any means necessary. Kenny fights to stay sober, afraid of what he faces if he can not, but his addict is stronger than his resolve and he ends up in the government program: One in Ten.

One in Ten forces reliance upon groups of ten patients, and uses constant surveillance inside the ward to bolster success. Kenny settles in with his crew, but grows concerned when he learns that patient-tracking continues after successful rehabilitation. He tries to follow the program and be successful for his group, but when Kenny realizes that the government’s technology is more than superficial monitoring, he has one choice: break free or be broken by the system. 

In this follow-up to his series of standalone novels that unflinchingly look at the dark side of being a teen in American society, Eric Devine crafts a novel about addiction and alliance, alongside a fight to find the truth within a government system selling one story while acting out another. It will leave readers questioning whether this is a near-future dystopian, or a prescient, contemporary tale.

Eric Devine is also the author of Look Past, Press, Play, Dare Me, and Tap Out. His work has been listed by YALSA for reluctant readers, a Junior Library Guild selection, and twice a “Best in Sports” for Booklist. He is an English teacher and lives with his family in Waterford, NY. You can find him at ericdevine.org, @eric_devine on Twitter, @ericjohndevine on Instagram, and Eric Devine: Author on Facebook.

Goin’ Hybrid

For those of you not familiar with the terminology of the book world, a hybrid author is someone who is both traditionally and self-published. There are multiple reasons someone would do this: the flexibility to write for different age groups (adult vs. YA); the ability to work in different genres; the desire to control the process and all aspects of the book. This is not an exhaustive list, and one that doesn’t even contain why I’m going this route.

Long story, short, during the publication of Look Past, I lost my editor and then subsequent foothold with my publisher, who was purchased by another publisher. I kept writing, but what I was writing were not projects my agent could get behind, and so we parted ways. This left me with multiple novels and no in with the traditional publishing world. In other words, I was lost.

The decision to self-publish came when I was at the Albany Book Fest and had multiple librarians, teachers, and fans ask what was up with my writing career.  Not the most fun question to answer when you’re feeling down and out, but I explained, and to them, it all seemed like a no-brainer: Just get your work out there. You already have a fan base.

I am so very happy that they all spoke up, because I was close to quitting. Not because I didn’t have the talent or stories, but because I couldn’t see any other viable way to move forward, so tethered was I to the idea of traditional publishing.

And so here we are. I am finalizing the manuscript for both e-book and paperback sales of One in Ten, which will be available through Amazon and Ingram. Therefore, you will be able to get an e-book or paperback through Amazon, or you will be able to get a paperback through B&N or your favorite Independent bookstore, via the Ingram catalog. Tentatively, pre-sales should be available by the end of this month, and the novel should be listed on Amazon and Goodreads by then as well.

Of course I will keep you posted when those are realities, and in the meantime (like next week), I’ll have information for educators who want advanced copies for their students (*wink, wink* One in Ten can be tied into the Health curriculum). Of course, between now and publication (slated for 4/21/20), I’ll have posts with excerpts, posts about influences, the cover reveal (it’s awesome), and other behind-the-scenes looks.

So, Happy 2020. I’m looking forward to being here in a new way, thanks to you.

 

Volume

My family vacation had many moments just like this:

Fortunately, I had my notebook with me and have an understanding wife who gave me moments to scribble what I needed. Because now that I’m back I’m using those notes and it’s all about volume.

For the next three weeks I have the luxury to write from whenever I get up (usually 6 am) until 1 pm. My wife is co-teaching three, week-long, art camps that my daughters are attending. Therefore, it’s just the computer and me.

Yesterday I wrote for five hours. Today four and a half. I am not used to this volume, and I have to admit it’s a bit scary. I am very used to writing brief scenes every morning for months on end and hoping like hell they all string together well. Never before, because of various work commitments over the summer, have I had such luxury to spin and spin and spin the web. I’m honestly afraid that I’ll go too fast, will get too far ahead of myself and will not have the ability to reign it in and reflect.

Then again, I may be able to produce a massive volume now, and with the remainder of the summer, go slower with introspection. Or possibly I’ll just keep churning, caught in the turbulence of the story I’m now creating, and will get spit out come fall.

Right now, I have no idea, but I am enjoying the change of pace. I am also revising my next work, under the superb guidance of my agent, Kate McKean. Granted all goes well with revision, the manuscript will be off to my editor, Lisa Cheng by August. It’s another high octane story, so for those of you who will fall in love with Tap Out come September, get ready for another ride.

Here’s to the summer.

In Between

I’m in between projects right now, waiting to revise my MS under contract and not yet ready to revise my recently finished WIP. How I should spend my time now is a concern.

I typically jump into any writing with the notion that the piece is going somewhere, either into a flash work or a short story or a novel. I don’t often afford myself the luxury to just grip the keyboard and go, to see what comes. This has resulted in more unsuccessful works than worthwhile ones, but that’s fine by me. It’s all a process.

However, the other morning I went Googling for some inspiration and I came across a Wikipedia entry on archetype plot lines in YA novels. The article was mostly an excerpt from a larger work by Sarah K. Herz and Donald Gallo. The authors deduced archetypes into one line topics and then provided summaries and titles of both YA and Adult fiction that fulfilled the concept. Example: The JourneyThe Crazy Horse Electric Game by Chris Crutcher and Of Mice and Men by John Steinbeck.

I know this isn’t earth-shattering by any means, but it has been a fun springboard for me. I’ve written in response to four of the categories, and now have three solid story beginnings and one fully fleshed short story. I’m keeping the file for future reference, because the classic themes never die. It is our job, as writers, to keep them fresh and connected to the here and now. Of course we all get this, but it’s fun to purposefully set out and see if we can.