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Saturday, May 19, 2007


I overflowith with things to tell you guys today—partially because Girl At Sea is coming out so soon, and there is banning news, and just plain exciting news. I’ve divided this post into sections to cover it all.


First of all, one clarification on an important point: though I've been told the book is not officially banned, IT IS NO LONGER ON THE SHELF. All copies have vanished, and the last known copy is STILL with the head of the committee, Janet Vernon, who STILL will not reply to me and give me any information at all.

Well, Janet (can I call you Janet?), I’m glad you like the book so much that you never want to give it back! Fortunately, I’ve sent new copies to replace the missing ones.

My many friends in Bartlesville have been giving me some information, and one of them pointed me to this very interesting link. If you go here and have a look down on the right side of the page, you will see a little area that asks if anyone has read The Bermudez Triangle, and if so, do you have anything to say about it?

I’m taking it that this is the “notification of the public” that was skipped over in the earlier proceedings. Consider us notified!

Maybe you guys want to check out that link, too? The friend who sent it to me is concerned that most of the people who take the time to write in will be very negative. Can you help me balance that out?

Meanwhile, notes condemning me, my upbringing, Free Monkey, and the entire civilized world have continued to pour in. My lawyer, C. Catso Fangola, reviewed all of them with a cool and appraising eye, and then promptly took a nap on them. Luckily, I’ve gotten even more notes of support, so I have something to nap on too.

But still, no definite news. What’s going on down there? Will we ever be told whether or not Bermudez is TOO DANGEROUS for the library?

Just a general message to whoever is in charge of the book’s fate now, here’s something you should know—I am stupidly tenacious. I’m an anti-book banning nerdfighter, and I’ve made you my personal interest.

I know that the effort made so far has had an impact. I know you guys were caught with your pants down a little with the “not notifying the public” thing. I know you were well on your way to banning a book unread. I know you didn’t love the fact that hundreds of e-mail poured in to your inboxes and that people around the globe were reading about your actions. I will ride this through to the very end, and if I go quiet, it’s because I AM PLANNING SOMETHING ELSE.

Consider yourself notified!

You never really know what I might be planning. I pride myself on my ability to surprise.


Okay, now I’m going to brag.

Last night, I was talking to Sarah Mlynowski, and she is just as obsessed with playing a dead body on Law and Order as I am! Maybe even more so. She almost cried when I told her that I used to have the casting agent’s e-mail address and that I threw it away because I was too shy to write to them. We have decided to combine our efforts. We may need help, and a plan. A plan would be good. Ideas?

And today . . . today I had lunch with my editor Emma Lollipop, Rachel Vail, Michelle Jaffe, and Meg Cabot.

I know.

In fact, Meg (who is exactly as lovely in life as you imagine, and I know you have vivid imaginations) asked me if I was going to blog about it. And I said yes. We were having lunch to celebrate the fact that Emma is getting married. Now it’s my editor and my agent. (I guess if you’re hoping to get married, come and work on one of my books. That seems to do the trick.)

Gossip: it seems that Gem, Meg’s cat, is every bit as slutty as she says.

Most of today’s focus was on Emma’s upcoming Day of Happiness, but I also got to sit in her extremely sparkly office at Scholastic (my new publisher) and have a discussion with the art director about the cover of my NEW AND AS YET SECRET BOOK.

Guys, I am so excited for this book, I can barely speak. And I can also promise you this: THERE WILL BE NO HEADLESS GIRL ON THE NEW COVER. (Some of you care deeply about this, and I just wanted you to know that I know your concerns.)

And now, a photo (I told you this post was going to overflow) . . . check it out!

Stay tuned for updates on how you can get your mitts on one of these copies! It’s not like I’m keeping them all. Notice who is not sitting on top of this mountain of books, though.


He’s not here! He’s left on a pre-world tour visit. I have been instructed to not say where he’s gone, but he promises to get in touch as soon as he arrives. And don’t worry—he can still access his e-mail when he’s away, and is still reading your applications. You have until Wednesday to get in your letters!

I'm also still taking requests for signed Girl At Sea cards. And if you don't want to wait around for me to have a contest, you can pre-order the book from Amazon or Barnes and Noble or anywhere else you like, provided they sell books.

Also, thank you to Ian for making me a wikipedia page! Feel free to edit it as you so desire!


I promised you guys more video blogs, and I never go back on my promises!*

In my new role as John and Hank Green’s secret sister at Brotherhood 2.0, I will be making various video blogs this year. I still don’t know how to use the camera or iMovie ** very well, but not knowing how to do something has never stopped me yet. So, behold!

All right. That’s it for today. But expect that I’ll be posting like mad over the next few days. And who knows? Maybe we’ll even get an answer from Bartlesville!

* Except when I forget or run out of time or something. I am sure you understand. We are none of us perfect.

** Those of you who are iMovie experts and who want to help me out by giving me tips or making me some credits, please feel free to drop me a line.

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Blogger JessieGirl said...

you will never guess who showed up in my mailbox two days ago... Free Monkey's cousin. Or maybe his brother, or clone- I'm not sure. Is it legal to clone free monkeys? He likes getting into trouble and putting things in his mouth. he is made of awesome and i just had to share the good news with someone who would understand.

4:42 AM  
Anonymous Ammy said...

What can I say? You make me laugh to much for me to be able to type up something coherent. I hope you're planning something else to make sure The Bermudez Triangle doesn't get banned, and well, based on this entry, I think you are.

Anyway, I'm so excited for Girl at Sea! And whatever secret book you are planning that has no headless girl on its cover.

5:01 AM  
Anonymous blue_rose said...

3rd! don't i feel special.
excited to hear that there is no headless girl on the new cover. you probably don't want to know how many jokes i have with my friends about this... unusual layout.

5:12 AM  
Blogger Becs said...

So I discovered this really cute monkey at the Starbucks near my house last Monday, and he was for sale. He was only $1.99. So I bought him and my friends (Steff and Sarah) and I officially christened him Almost Free Monkey. Hahahahahaha!! He is a capuchin monkey and he has the sweetest expression on his face.

And hurray for you!! Continue the fight! Bermudez shall not be banned!!!! :D :D
Wow, you know MEG CABOT. Do you know, like, EVERYBODY?! At this rate, you'll be a dead body for sure! ;) :D

5:13 AM  
Anonymous Shaolin Librarian said...

Fight the good fight!

I need a monkey, I think.

5:22 AM  
Blogger Jennifer Lynn Barnes said...

I can't believe you got to have lunch with Meg Cabot! Or that you've got such potent wedding inducing mojo. Maybe that's your hidden super power...

PS: Becs- capuchins are my second favorite primate- right after lemurs, who are less mischievous and more likely to ride around on your shoulder if you give them a raisin...

5:38 AM  
Anonymous Lauren said...

Hey Maureen. I know iMovie. Next time we do a writerly thing, I can show you some neat tricks. It's a piece of cake.

6:09 AM  
Blogger Little Willow said...

Hurrah for the happy bits!

Bartlesville page clicked and emailed.

8:16 AM  
Anonymous Boothy said...

I will have to continue with the astonishment that you got to have lunch with three absolutely AMAZING writers (Meg Cabot is my hero, lol) AND talk with Sarah Mlynowski.

I am now officially jealous.

Anyway, still loving Bermudez Triangle! About a hundred pages left, and then I'll probably go to my library and get the rest of your books (despite the fact that I have over 20 books that have been bought and not read yet, but I am still able to read tons of library books instead).

Hope you have a good weekend! And I totally want to a copy of Girl At Sea... can't wait to see what the contest is!

8:20 AM  
Blogger Becs said...

Hmm.... could Free Monkey possibly be going somewhere in Oklahoma? That is my guess. :D

Jen: Hehe, I may be biased, but I think capuchins are my favorite primate. ;)

10:11 AM  
Blogger Tobias said...

hmm, Maureen, I think you're getting forgetful. You already told us where Free Monkey was going. But if you don't want us to know I won't tell.

I already said this at BH2.0 but I'll say it again: as a non-native English speaking nerdfighter I ask you not to record videos in front of a fountain.

1:16 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Looool i so wish i cud meet the wizard!


o n fabulous hat

6:08 PM  
Blogger Jessica Burkhart said...

I followed the link and e-mailed Bartlesville. Happy to help! :)

6:25 PM  
Anonymous Amy said...

Yeah! No headless girls! I can't wait to see what you have in store for us next. (Please, please don't tell me there will be a headless boy, instead!) :)

Keep up the good work protecting our youth from bigotry!

7:03 PM  
Anonymous Peggy Banaszek said...

I read Bermudez and I have lots of things to say about it. Unfortunately, I can't get the link to work on their website. Anyone else having a problem? I realize I am not as technically advanced as many of my friends, but emailing and posting I have down.

7:29 PM  
Anonymous Dawn said...

I can't wait to read Girl At Sea!! I would definitely love to get a copy...especially if I won it from a contest. Winning is always SO MUCH FUN!! Just like when I won a signed copy of Magic's Child...:D I wish I had everyone's autograph. Definitely including yours.

11:27 PM  
Anonymous Boothy said...

Peggy- I had the same problem too. It took me to my hotmail account and I signed in, but then it just took me to my homepage and not an email message with the address in place.

And since it was late, I decided to bother any more with it, lol.

Also, Maureen, I stopped by the library today and got 13 Little Blue Envelopes. Can't wait to read it!

2:23 AM  
Blogger Ian said...

Go me!

Hey, I just thought of another great reason not to have headless girls on the covers of your books: I think they could be mistaken for Gossip Girl books. And that could get you banned! ;-)

12:25 AM  
Anonymous Ally said...

Yeah Maureen you already said where Free Monkey is going, but I won't say either haha

4:43 PM  
Anonymous Cristin said...

Just emailed the school board. Go nerd fighters! Finished Girl At Sea last night (top secret publishing connections)-- congrats on another amazing novel. The headless covers are driving me nuts (this one less so than 13LBE, but still!) so I can't wait to see what you have coming next!

4:56 PM  
Anonymous Ally said...

^ lucky dog ^

6:18 PM  
Anonymous Melissa said...

I also just finished writing to the school and um i think i was very bored when writing it..... it is rather an emotional email........ btw i loved that video blog:)

7:42 PM  
Blogger charly geater said...

I did an exam today where I had to write about whether I thought censorship was wrong or not. I used this whole mad book-banning fiasco as an example of how it's very wrong. I thought I'd just let you know! It was one way to actually keep myself awake in the exam, anyway.

9:31 PM  
Anonymous L.M. said...

For anyone with trouble getting the e mail: VernonJM@bps-ok.org

10:54 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I told the Bartlesvillains that The Bermudez Triangle was a wonderful book that didn't turn me gay.
which it didn't.
Good luck!

2:45 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I read 13 Little Blue Envelopes yesturday. I didn't really put you and secret sister maureen together..anyways, I get it now! Whats the whole monkey thing about?

7:54 AM  
Blogger Little Willow said...

Associated Content picked up the story!

Is The Bermudez Triangle by Maureen Johnson Too Cool for School?

*does a little dance*

6:40 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

American Libraries article about Bartlesville:

1:11 AM  
Blogger Tobias said...

Maureen, I think it's time for a new blog. It's been about 6 days since the last! didn't the deadline of the World Tour entries pass? blog about that!! or something else!! even bartlesville would be very good.

I just need a new blog

11:02 PM  
Blogger emily said...

tobias: i totally agree! it's been almost a week!! a whole week! i cannot live without maureen johnson for a week!

anyway, i loved the video, even though when i watched my connection was evil.

also: what nerdfighter are you? i think you have to be one to be a secret sister. please post your song! id love to see it.

2:36 PM  
Anonymous Alisa said...

maureen...where are you? we miss you!!! are you at wiscon?!?!

10:37 PM  
Blogger Jordyn said...

Where are you?
Where is Maureen?
I know where Free Monkey is, but where is Maureen?

5:48 AM  
Blogger Jordyn said...

Also, I don't get all the outrage against headless girls on covers of books... if they're going to put people on the covers of books, I don't really care to know what their face looks like because I am going to be reading the words inside and imagining what they look like for myself. And what if the image in my head doesn't match with the image on the front cover? That would disappoint (sp) and confuse me.

So I don't get the outrage. Enlighten me, please.

5:52 AM  
Anonymous Gabrielle said...

I miss you, Maureen. :( I'm in need of funny. Great need, because my Internet somewhat stopped working midway through loading the video, and now I can't see it past about the first third. Argh.

6:37 AM  
Anonymous Liz said...

Jordyn--You've read 13 Little Blue Envelopes, right? And know how the girl on the cover is quite different than the description of Ginny, yes? It's a [quite common?] reader peeve. And the headless thing, well I think most of us just think it looks tacky.

Maureen--your blog is an excellent procrastination tool...and you just so happened to not blog during final exams. So thanks for helping me not procrastinate. (But now that exams are over, a Bartlesville update would be sweet.)

8:15 AM  
Blogger Becs said...

Argh, am I the only one who missed it about where Free Monkey is going? Bah. My powers of observation are not exactly reknowned. ;)

I miss you as well, Maureen. Perhaps you had to take a sudden trip to Oklahoma? That would be kickass. :D

8:55 AM  
Blogger Becs said...

OH. So THAT'S where Free Monkey went. Ha! How did I miss it before? ;) :D

9:02 AM  
Blogger Tobias said...

Maureen said where Free Monkey would be going in the papercuts podcast.

I must admit I haven't read a book of Maureen (yet!!). But as an owner of Y-chromosomes I would be kind of ashamed to own books with headless girls on the cover because they are associated with typical girl-books (and I already know that Maureen's books are not that girl-targeted)

10:47 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Loved the vblog -- the official wizard is a genius (Nerd of the Rings, indeed). But how cool that he knew all about the Indy 500 bagpipers.

Any word from Bartlesville?

6:39 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I tried to email you about BEA, but it didn't want to go through? Any idea why? I want to meet Free Monkey...what do I do??

6:45 PM  
Anonymous Ally said...

YAY! Maureen has the list for FREE MONKEY. Now, if only she'll tell us.

3:38 AM  
Blogger Becs said...

I made up a song. It goes like this:

Maureen, Maureen, Maureen!
Oh where, oh where have you been?
We miss your blogging
Yes, how we are mourning
Maureen, Maureen, Maureen!

Maureen, Maureen, Maureen!
Oh where, oh where have you been?
We want to know
Where Free Monkey will go!
Maureen, Maureen, Maureen!

Um, is it bad that I started singing this while I was making breakfast this afternoon? It might have had something to do with the milkshake I had prior to making breakfast. Mmm, sugar. Okay, I promise--no more singing. ;) ;D

9:45 PM  

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