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final cover for What Happened to Goodbye












It’s finally here! My new book is NOW IN STORES. And, apparently, on Kindle and Nook as of midnight as well. Yay! It’s like a giant book party, spread across all these states and time zones. Gotta love that.

For those who are here in MY area, a reminder that we’re having our book launch party TONIGHT, Tuesday the 10th, at the Regulator Bookshop on Ninth Street in Durham at 7pm. I’ll be reading, speaking a bit and signing books. Also, there MIGHT be trivia questions with Luna Blu and Dessen Racing t-shirts for prizes. I have to come up with some really obscure questions today: so far, have not been able to stump ANYONE. Game on!

I’m celebrating this day by packing for my book tour, making muffins with my kid, and trying to remember everything else I have to do. OOH! Here’s one thing. In honor of pub day, here’s my WHAT HAPPENED TO GOODBYE playlist. Ten songs for book number ten. I’ve put the playlist up on iTunes and Ping as well:

1. Time to Move On, Tom Petty Obviously, this is a book that is about traveling and new places. But I remember specifically the first time I heard this song. It was 2009, and I was driving in my car, stressing out about something having to do with my last book, ALONG FOR THE RIDE, which had been out for a few months. Can’t remember WHAT it was exactly, which is a testament to how serious it most likely was. Anyway, this song came on, and it was like the universe saying, “Enough.”At some point, you have to leave one book behind so you can really focus on the next. Thank you, Tom Petty, for the heads up that it was time.

2. The Chain (Live from Webster Hall), Ingrid Michaelson This is just a really mournful song about someone leaving. I pretty much had it on repeat while I was writing the early parts of the book.

3. Open Road, Hannah Werdmuller Another great traveling song. Sad and hopeful, all at once.

4. Fugitive, David Gray The part of this song that stuck with me, and made me think of Mclean (other than the title) is, “You gotta live.” And living, for better or worse, is being who you are, all the time. Not always easy to do.

5. Overkill (Acoustic Version), Colin Hay Confession: I heard this song first on an episode of Scrubs, a show I LOVE. I grew up with Men at Work, being an eighties child, but I love how different this song sounds in this version. Also, who can’t relate to waking up in the middle of the night and freaking out about things? If you can’t…well, I wish I knew your secret. Everyone else, I’ll see you around 2am.

6. Since You’ve Been Gone, The Outfield The Outfield is an eighties band my best friend and I were obsessed with back in high school. I am pretty sure nobody else ever heard of them, and if they DID, only for their one hit, called “Your Love.” We, however, had the whole album, and I have always loved this song.

7. Bedtime Lullaby, Mark Kozelek I’ve written in this blog before (I think?) about how WHAT HAPPENED TO GOODBYE was the hardest book I’ve ever written. This is for various reasons: it took a long time to finish the first draft, which I wasn’t happy with, so I ended up scrapping the entire second half and re-writing it in about thirty days. I would not recommend this approach to anyone else, because it made me COMPLETELY INSANE. Literally, there were tears. Lots of them. This song is actually from one of my daughter’s favorite shows, Yo Gabba Gabba. It is, like, the most soothing song ever. Just what you need when you are curled up under your desk, sure your career is over and you are a total failure. Enjoy!

8. Tennessee Blues, Steve Earle My husband is a big Steve Earle fan, so I’d love this song even if it wasn’t all about leaving one beloved place for another.

9. If Ever I Would Leave You, Aretha Franklin If you don’t get chills when she sings, “I’ve seen how you sparkle, ” I’m pretty sure you’re not human. This song is like a work of art.

10. Families Cheating At Board Games, Ben Lee If you’ve already started the book, you know that the quote at the very beginning is from this song. It sums up everything the book is about so much better than I ever could (and have attempted, in various interviews lately). I LOVE Ben Lee, and when I sent him an email via his website asking how to get permission to use the lyrics, he wrote me back FROM HIS BLACKBERRY OH MY GOD. I almost died. I think I did die. Anyway, he was so gracious and amazing and I will never delete that email ever in all my life, don’t even try to make me. Which is a long way of saying: I love, love this song.

I hope you like these songs. And I really, really hope you like the book. It feels like a secret I’ve been keeping for two years, now finally out. Feels good.

Now, I’m off to celebrate pub day by making blueberry muffins with my daughter. And having coffee. LOTS of coffee.
Have a great day, everyone!