11.01.2012

In which Mara Dyer hits the list.


So yesterday, I announced on Twitter that The Evolution of Mara Dyer debuted on the New York Times bestseller list.

I heard the news on Twitter, actually, due to the S&S infrastructure being down thanks to Sandy, and proceeded to flail in 140 characters. But 140 characters isn't really enough to say what I need to say, and that is this:

You did this.

You read The Unbecoming and you told your friends to read it, too. You handsold it in bookstores and you recommended it to your patrons. You handed it to your students and you reviewed it on your blogs and on Amazon and Barnes & Noble.com and on Goodreads. You begged your parents to let you buy just one more book. An entire year passed between books, but you didn't forget about Mara and Noah--you rushed out to read The Evolution as soon as it was released.

This is especially astonishing to me because The Unbecoming was not a "big" book. There was no major deal. No fortune to fuel the hype machine. It sold to my first editor, Courtney Bongiolatti, who loved it so much and wanted it badly and because she is determined, she persuaded my amazing publisher, Justin Chanda, to take a chance on it too. A book that many people, if not most, still don't know how to categorize. I still have trouble describing what it's about. The odds of a book hitting the New York Times list is low to start, but the odds of books like mine hitting it? Even slimmer.

I wrote the books as well as I could, and my brilliant editors, Courtney and Alexandra Cooper, worked unbelievably hard to help me make them the best they could be. Lucy Ruth Cummins designed the most beautiful, evocative covers she could conceive of to help fit the books' mood and to try and catch your attention. My tireless publicist, Paul Crichton, and Siena Koncsol, along with the Marketing and Sales teams at S&S, worked to get Mara Dyer into readers' hands. But as hard as they worked, things like the New York Times list are out of their hands. They only have so much control, and as I discussed here, I have even less.

I controlled the words on the page--and that's really, seriously it. I couldn't control whether bookstores would buy my book at all, or whether they would unpack it on time or how many copies they would display or where they would shelve it in their stores. And I heard from several of you who told me that your bookstore didn't have Evolution last Tuesday, or that it wasn't out for days after its release, or that it was shelved in strange, hard-to-find places. But instead of walking away, you did something extraordinary. If you couldn't find it on shelves, you demanded that staff unpack it from the back rooms. If they didn't have it at all, you left that store and went to a different one. You not only preordered hundreds of books from Books & Books, helping to support an incredible independent bookstore, but while waiting for them to arrive, you bought the ebook, too. Many of you started reading it the second it was released at midnight, and you talked about Mara on Twitter and Facebook and Tumblr and to your friends and customers and students and patrons and you made fan art and posted reviews.

You have been relentless in your support of my strange, unbecoming* characters and Mara and Noah's twisted story since before the Unbecoming even came out, and there are not enough words in the English language to be able to adequately thank you for everything you have done and everything you do. I am humbled and most of all, beyond grateful. Mara Dyer was a dark horse if there ever was one, but not anymore, thanks to you.


*(couldn't help it)

25 comments:

  1. I just want to point out that for all the pre-ordering, picking-up and begging for book money that might have occurred would not have occurred had you not written such an incredible book (and I’m happy to admit, I’m a book snob). And I was as excited for more MADNESS as I was to get into Library School, or read Harry Potter. Thank us all you want but don’t be surprised when we turn right around and thank you for your stories, your characters, your time and your enthusiasm.

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  2. We are really so very happy for you! Maddie had to to the NY times to see it for her self...hoe cool is that...You are Amazing!

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    1. Thanks so so much Sunday! SHE is amazing :D I hope she enjoys the book!

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  3. YAY! I was so excited, I did some major happy dancing and flailing when I heard the news.

    Congrats, and THANK YOU! There isn't a sequel (OR author, especially) more deserving.

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  4. Insanely excited and happy for you. I love that so many people have discovered what is quickly becoming my favourite series. All your talent, hard work and amazing writing also had something to do with this (just saying...your book is awesome). Thank you so much for writing Mara and Noah's story.

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    1. I can't thank you enough for everything you've done for Mara.

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  5. Aww, I'm so glad! Congrats, chica! You seriously deserve to be on that list!

    ♥Jessica(:
    Just a Booklover

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  6. These books are amazing. So thank YOU, Michelle!

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  7. Thank you very much Michelle! I'm Italian, so I have to wait for a long time (I guess) for "The Evolution of Mara Dyer", but I hope it will be released soon!
    Anyway, I want to thank you for the beautiful trilogy and don't forget that you're the writer! If you hadn't written the book, we wouldn't have read that!

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    1. It totally blows my mind that people in other countries are reading this--I hope you enjoy Evolution when you get it (and I have no idea when that will be!) and thank you so, so much!

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  8. I'm sooooo happy for you! I can't think of a more deserving book or person! <3

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    1. There's no way I could ever thank you for all of your support of these books, Lori. You're incredible.

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  9. Michelle i have the perfect song for how mara feeling in the evolution its called breathe me by sia

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  10. Hi Michelle ;

    U just finished to Read The evolution last day, and it was amazing! Because two point:

    first, your second book is still good! I explain sometimes (often) the sequel is a book of transition in trilogy not really interresting, but here that's not the case! the evolution of the characters (good choice for the title!^^), the creepy story (Jude freaking me a lot!)

    Two, I think you have a lot of information about mental diseases beacause it was so realistic, you mix real life and paranomal , I love that! So continue :D

    Now I hope to see Mara in France one day , she deserve it!

    Have a good day,
    kiss from France

    Noémie

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  11. I just found this in my FB inbox from my daughter (who only has net access via mobile).

    "I read this book a few weeks ago. Then got the 2nd half of it yesterday. Needless to say I finished it just 10 mins ago. I couldn't put it down. The books are by Michelle Hodkin. The 1st book is the unbecoming of Mara Dyer and the 2nd the evolution of Mara Dyer... The front of this book says its a trilogy. Could you find out if the next one is out and the name of it. Or when she plans to release the next one. Im sure its something to do with Mara Dyer... These books have kept me guessing until the last page and I am left wanting more. Everyone is sleeping here @9:30 & I almost want to reread it because I loved it so much! lol. Check into it for me pretty please." —Ashley Matthews, South Carolina

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  12. Found the answer in your "About" section. THE RETRIBUTION OF MARA DYER, will be out Fall 2013.

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  13. I just recently read both of the books in less then 3 days. What can i say.... I am spechless. I am sad that the retribution of mara will be out in the fall of 2013 but I will most definitely buy it as soon as it is out. Amazing. Thank you!

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  14. I just love your books! I think I'm addicted. For your first few books being so good I never expected. Mara dyer is an amazing series and would love to have the next book right now. I am currently emotionally attached and spending most my day reading your books. I can not wait for the 3rd! I can't wait for more books from you! I am speechless. I will read your books over and over till the next one comes out! Keep writing!- sincerely Katherine

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  15. Late to the party, but bringing more to the ship! God I love your story!

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  16. My goodness. Your books are absolutely amazing and the fact that I finished both books in two days, it was overwhelming that I just couldn't put the book down. I love your writing and even though I'm sad that the trilogy is coming to an end, I can't wait for everything to be revealed. I would love it if you would respond, and again LOVIN THE BOOKS. - Leany M.

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