My book, Emerson Page and Where the Light Enters, made it into the semifinals of the Cinematic Book Competition with ScreenCraft. I’m ecstatic! One step closer to the possibility of Emerson Page going from page to screen. A million thanks to all of you cheering us on! Grab a copy of the book here: https://emersonpage.com/shop/
There were over 1,200 books submitted and we’re now a field of 128 books. This is such an incredible honor to make it this far and I’m over the moon about it. Congrats to all of the semifinalists. More news soon!
I closed out the week on a huge high. My book, Emerson Page and Where the Light Enters, advanced to the Quarterfinals for the ScreenCraft Cinematic Book Competition. Over 1200 books were submitted for consideration so I’m thrilled to have made it to this stage. This year’s jury is comprised of a literary agent from Abrams Artists Agency, a publishing coordinator from The Gersh Agency, the editor of Red Hen Press, a manager at MXN Entertainment, and a New York Times best-selling author. I’m so excited about this news and couldn’t wait to share it with all of you. Thank you to everyone who’s been so insanely supportive of me and of Emerson. It means more to me than I know how to say.
Today my heart’s so full it’s going to burst. I just got this fan letter and art from 10-yr-old Evie, 1 of my young readers. She addressed it to Emerson Page, my book’s heroine. I’m cry-smiling so much my face hurts.
She said the book “was very well written, with good use of figurative language and action packed. Thank you for your memoir of adventure, friendship, and around every corner was a surprise.” I am overjoyed because Evie is exactly the reader I wrote this book for.
I met her dad thanks to the Ologies Podcast FB group. He said that he believes in providing books with strong female characters for Evie to read so how could we not be immediate pals?!
This is the stuff of my dreams as a writer. You better believe I’m saving this letter, framing this art, and replying to this enthusiastic young woman who is articulate, and by the way, has gorgeous hand-writing and mad art skills. 😊😭😍
I am a meticulous outliner, especially when it comes to my fiction writing. Still, you know what I love best about the practice of writing fiction? I never quite know what will be on the page when I’m done with any single block of work. I sit down and I think I know exactly where I’m going. Then, my characters will do something or say something I never expected. A stranger will arrive. A discovery will be made. I’m living this story in the moment with my characters, and I feel lucky to be along for the ride.
Good morning and happy Friday! In an attempt to bring some good news into the world, I restarted my monthly newsletter. It talks about what I’m doing, where I’m going, and how I’m staying inspired with links to books, podcasts, and products that I’m currently enjoying / learning from. Check it out here and if you’d like to subscribe, there’s a little “Subscribe” button in the upper left-hand corner. https://mailchi.mp/18a…/more-good-news-from-christa-avampato
This month’s news includes: books, storytelling, dinosaurs, my trip to Iceland, fossils, mental health, the healing power of writing, and tours of secret NYC places.
You can also find the links to all newsletters going forward here: https://christaavampato.com/subscribe-to-my-newsletter/
One year ago today, I became an author. Thank you so much for all of the love and support during this entire process. It took me 8 years to bring Emerson to life and share her with the world, and her story both saved and changed my life in ways I never even imagined were possible. Happy birthday to my bold, brave girl, Emerson Page. Thank you for letting in the light.
Next stop: Emerson and I will be at the Miami Book Fair from November 15th – 18th where we’ll collect the Readers’ Favorite Award for Young Adult Fiction – Adventure (Gold).
My book, Emerson Page and Where the Light Enters, is almost 1 year old. A year ago today I launched the trailer. What a year it’s been! I can’t wait to share the next leg of her journey with you in Book 2. You can grab a copy of Book 1 here: emersonpage.com/shop
If you need me today, I’ll be on Cloud Nine. I’m honored to share that my book received the Readers’ Favorite Gold Medal in the young adult adventure genre and the Wind Dancer Films award for film and TV production consideration. Thank you to everyone who has cheered me on and encouraged me along this long and winding road. Your support means everything to me!
Congratulations to all the winners! See the full listing by clicking here.
To move my second novel along, I’m waking up 30 minutes early to immediately write whatever stories come to mind about Emerson Page. That means 1/2 an hour into my day, I already feel like I’ve gotten good work done. Here’s what happened Monday morning, in its completely raw, completely unedited form. It needs a lot of work; and that work begins by getting it down.
I think it’s important to show our work as writers, rough as it may be, so that we can understand and learn from each other’s process. It is a slog, but how lucky I am to be able to write freely. There are so many people in this world who live in places where that’s not possible.
Emerson was frantically digging in the rich, deep dirt. As luxurious as it felt in her hands, her heart was racing. They didn’t have much time. She could hear the group approaching from behind—snapping twigs underfoot, the brushing aside of the thick brush. The jungle was a frightening but beautiful place. The darkness often hid danger but it could also provide a place of protection for those who needed to be hidden. Their voices were growing louder and spoke in a language not her own but one she clearly understood.
“Get the girl and then find what she’s looking for.”
A shockwave of pain radiated through Emerson’s right pinky finger. She had jammed it on something hard in the ground where she was digging. Moving her hands so quickly they were nothing but a blur to her sore, tired eyes, a shiny gold surface caught what little light there was filtering through the tangle of vines.
“Here it is, here it is, here it is,” she thought, her mind reeling.
Quickly making her way around the small box, she could see it measured no more than the size of a loaf of bread. Made of a dark wood with a sheen and brass handles on each side, there was a metal plate neatly tacked to the top of it with one word etched on it in curly script: Erato.
Knowing she had very little time left, Emerson grabbed both of the brass handles and pulled as hard as she could. Heaving herself backward into a giant [name of species of tree in the jungle], her head knocked right into the trunk of the tree. Rubbing the back of her head, the box now squarely in her lap, she looked up to see a team of men looming over her, their smiles wicked and filled with broken, dirty teeth.
“So this is the girl, the girl we are supposed to fear so much? How pathetic she is.” The group sneered and laughed as if they had just corned a prize they hunted. Emerson’s eyes and belly burned.
“And look,” another one said. “She’s shaking.” The crowd of men roared with laughter again.
Emerson smiled. Slowly she let her grin expand across her lips. She felt wild and free, as if she knew a secret that none of them knew and were about to learn in a way that they would never forget. She let her body shake and her light flood into every part of her. It grew brighter with every second, making her glow with such force that the men had to shield their eyes with their arms. Like the blazing, burning sun, they could barely stand to look at her but they were so fascinated and stunned by her that they couldn’t look away either.
The light soothed the pain in the back of her head. Firmly holding the box handles in her two hands, she rose to her feet in one swift action. Standing at her full, though petite, height she walked toward the men. Now that they shook with fear, some falling to the ground, some hiding and cowering behind one another, the group parted neatly down the middle and Emerson walked straight threw the clearing the men had made with their machetes just moments before.
You see the jungle is a dark and dangerous place. It’s stuffed with mystery. It’s laced with fear for those who don’t understand it. But for those who realize and cherish its magic, the jungle possesses a wisdom that speaks directly to our souls. It holds treasures richer than we have ever dared to dream. As Emerson walked out into what was left of the light from the setting sun, she knew what she had, she understood the power of the treasure she now held in her hands.
I’m off to Ireland today to do research for my second book in the Emerson Page series. When I booked the trip, I didn’t know that one of the most historic votes on human rights would happen during my trip. I also didn’t know that the Dublin Literary Festival was happening while I was there. These are synchronous events where I will meet so many people and be able to bear witness to subjects and issues that mean so much to me.
I’ll be doing some on-the-ground reporting, and sharing pictures, encounters, learnings, and experiences. You can find those on Instagram at https://instagram.com/christarosenyc and Twitter at https://twitter.com/christanyc. See you there!