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Sunday, April 06, 2008


Yes! You read the headline! SUITE SCARLETT IS NOW ON SALE! The Hopewell Hotel is OPEN. Scarlett, Spencer, Lola, and Marlene are waiting for you!

I honestly had no idea this was going to happen so soon. I flew back to the UK from Italy last night, after spending six completely excellent days with Scott Westerfeld, Justine Larbalestier, Holly Black, and Cassie Clare. I was planning my post today to be about all the many foods we ate, our tower apartment of fun, the many Vespas I saw (and took pictures of), and the fact that Cassie’s new book, City of Ashes, debuted at #3 on the New York Times list! There was much screaming and joy. There is nothing quite like five YA authors leaping around at the top of an Italian tower.

The fun ended kind of abruptly at the airport. British Air is still having a little trouble since the new terminal at Heathrow went into meltdown last week. So there were some hijinks in which they misplaced our luggage, ate my ticket, and temporarily couldn’t find our plane. Also, somewhere in transit, I realized I was slightly under the weather. So, I came into the London Office, lugging my bags full of cheese and pasta and books . . . and basically fell face-first into bed.

This morning, the little English birds were twittering away, and I came over to the computer to put up my post about Vespas and books and cheese. Then I read your comments. First, Reece said she’d bought the book on Amazon. Then Michelle said she encountered it at a Barnes and Noble in Indiana.

My brain was still kind of fuzzy. I was all "wot?" and "huh?" I had to read the comments a few times before it penetrated.

Perhaps you know the feeling of anticipating something for a long time . . . and then things sneak up on you? When you turn your back? And you had all these plans? And suddenly on morning there you are when everything just HAPPENS, half dressed, one shoe on, hair standing on end, the police knocking on your door, a strange helicopter on your lawn, a mustachioed Russian spy hiding in your Tupperware cupboard pretending to be a salad spinner, six marmosets sneaking off with your coat . . .

Know what I mean? That was me, this morning. And kind of this afternoon. And to a certain extent, now. But I know what to do when feeling this way—I take my vitamin A.B.B.A. and I feel the awesome flood my veins and revivify me. There is no way not to love a video like this, with its Brady Bunch graphics, creeping-killer-fog soft focus, excellent use of chairs, pointless jumping, and dancing that I can recreate. If you are in any way under the weather or put upon my life today, watch this at once!

So, my blog plans went out the window and I had to come and start shouting. Your room at the Hopewell is ready! You can get it on Amazon or Barnes and Noble online RIGHT NOW! If the book is not in your local store yet, it should be VERY SOON.

I’ll return with your normally scheduled blog post shortly. In the meantime, please let me know in the comments if you’ve seen it, if ABBA has had a positive effect on your life, or anything else you want to tell me.

Also, The Eleven have set up and are running this new MJ FORUM. So you can talk amongst yourselves, and I can come and lurk.

Go on! Go on! Scarlett is waiting!



Anonymous Anonymous said...

abba ALWAYS has a positive effect on my life. sweden = <3

4:26 AM  
Blogger Nina said...

Yay for Scarlett! I'm making my way to B&N right now.
As for ABBA... well, let's just say that "Dancing Queen" was the defining song of my childhood.

4:27 AM  
Anonymous JK said...

I went to my bookstore, and they didn't have it, and I asked, and they said that they hadn't even ordered it. Which is bad, because that is the only bookcase that isn't at least an hour away from where I live. I want it so bad!

5:42 AM  
Anonymous Ally said...

Maureen! I have an ABBA positive effect! It was so awesome. So I'm sitting here in Pre-AP American History taking one of Mr. Rich's 30 multipul choice and essay test when I reach a set of answers that spells out ABBA. I'm totally not making this up. And you know what? I got a perfect 100 on that test. And thats never happened before! Essays are hard to get perfect. The power of ABBA.. baha

6:38 AM  
Anonymous danielle said...

Mj, I'm still eagerly awaiting my copy of Suite Scarlett.

6:43 AM  
Blogger Liz said...

Ah, MJ, you have found the ABBA song I've been trying to place for weeks! (Long story that includes cloggers.) Thank you!!
Also, YAY, Scarlett is out!

7:43 AM  
Anonymous Melissa N said...

The ABBA video cheered me up a lot :) It also reminded me of the halftime show we did in band 2 years ago-an ABBA medley I'm sure you would have loved. No Scarlett spottings here, but I haven't been to a bookstore lately. Looking forward to blog about the Vespas and cheese!

9:13 AM  
Blogger Chris said...

You know, you said something about little English birds, and I was wondering if anyone else caught the um... double entendre? Yes, one of those. Google said I spelled it right, Firefox seems to disagree. Oh, you didn't even get it? Very well!

So I was wondering- do you remember, Maureen, the first time you held the first author's copy of your first book? Because it can't be too far different from what you were feeling this morning. Well maybe it was. In the same situation I felt a really sickly fear mixed with excitement on my own book. I actually let it sit in the shipping packaging for a good 45 minutes while I sipped a glass of wine and had a staring contest with it. It won, of course and I opened it. So yes, I think I have felt something similar.

I hope to read Suite Scarlett soon!

11:08 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thank you Maureen! I'm a tiny bit under the weather too. ABBA is making all better! And the bribe of getting better and going to teh store to get Suite Scarlet.

8:00 PM  
Blogger Reese said...

*blush* It's er...Reese actually.

With an S. You know...like the chocolate. Yeah.

8:31 PM  
Anonymous krazykatie said...

Aw, I'm sorry about your problems with the airport system. ABBA made me feel all better, thanx! :o)

8:41 PM  
Anonymous Faith said...

I'm 16 today, and this is officially the BEST BIRTHDAY PRESENT EVER.

8:50 PM  
Anonymous danica said...

Yay for ABBA and Suite Scarlett!

And Happy Birthday, Faith!

9:20 PM  
Blogger Erin said...

my father now loves me more, because i was watching an ABBA music video.

thank you MJ, for making a positive impact in my life, because i am no longer looked at with (mock) disdain by my father.

10:35 PM  
Anonymous ashley said...


seriously, I laughed so hard at one part I got that "oh my gosh it's a crazy person" look. It was worth it.

4:01 AM  
Blogger Bibliocat said...

My library got an ARC on Thursday so I got to read Suite Scarlett over the weekend! Now I am not sure which on I love move, Suite Scarlett or 13 Little Blue Envelopes....

5:33 AM  
Blogger Trish Doller said...

I've spent most of my adult life trying to block out the memory of my childhood obsession with ABBA. I am completely traumatized now. But they did have some fabulous sweaters, didn't they?

(By the way, my word verification code is rexska. Everything is better with a little ska in it.)

7:21 AM  
Anonymous TimmyBuckTwo said...

Suite Scarlet was great. You rock!

7:30 AM  
Blogger Miss Hannah said...

wow. i'm at work, and if forgot my headphones, but i decided to try the abba video without sound just in case it was still entertaining sans audio. thankfully, i am a big dork, and within the first six seconds i could tell by lip-reading that they were singing "take a chance on me" ... and could sing along in my head while watching their crazy shenanigans. oh, abba, what entertainment did the world hold before 1972?

7:26 PM  
Anonymous Alyson Wonderland said...

I cannot tell you if I have seen the book or not because I refuse to go to the bookstore. Why? Because I do not have $17 plus tax. If I go to the bookstore, however, I know that, should the book be there, I would manage to find the $17 plus tax that I don't have and shell it over. I realize that this is your livelihood or something and that I'm taking the food out of your mouth by waiting for a discount, but frankly, if you're that hungry I'll buy you something off the dollar menu at McDonalds.

Have any tips on how a poor college student can come into enough money to buy the book? Getting a job is not an option because I accidentally hypothetically sold my soul to a service organization that requires me to do the equivalent of bashing my head into a brick wall for several hours a week in exchange for 'personal satisfaction.' Any help would be appreciated.

11:54 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hooray for Scarlett!!!! The only thing missing is the money to get it... and I will! .... gah! homework beckons ... and it doesn't have a particularly nice voice... >_<

12:28 AM  
Anonymous Beth said...

OMG, LOL I was just surfing on my library site and after typing in "Maureen Johnson" this is a book title that came up:
To sail beyond the sunset : the life and loves of Maureen Johnson (being the memoirs of a somewhat irregular lady)
by Robert A. Heinlein. And apparently it's science fiction as well! Very funny...
P.S. Thanks for the ABBA lift. I had forgotten how much they can cheer you up!

1:16 AM  
Anonymous Carlen said...

Suite Scarlett isn't out until May 1st in Canada. :( But I might order it from Amazon instead.

1:28 AM  
Blogger Fluffy Tail said...

*goes to gobble up the book from the boostore*

Love your writing. *nod*
By the way, have you seen the new spanish music video 'Bonito'? Its pretty darn funny. And weird. It will put spark in your socks.

8:48 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

i love this book! i wish i were in this book....

and i LOVE Spence!

12:24 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Spencer :)

12:25 PM  
Blogger trashalou said...

I didn't watch the video but I have a smile on my face just looking at the still - that is some serious anti-depressant in a bottle!

1:07 AM  
Anonymous Kiersten said...

Everytime i hear dancing queen, or any of the songs from mamma mia for that matter, i think of my friend Brittany and our 7th grade field trip to Harrisburg. Abba definitly has a positive effect on my life. :)

5:11 AM  
Blogger softindierocker said...

Congrats! I can't wait to read it! =)

7:31 AM  
Blogger Check It Out said...

I just have to say, that out of all your characters, Spencer is by far my favorite. I just recently finished Suite Scarlett and it easily make it into my top ten favorite books.


5:10 AM  
Blogger Breanna said...

Congrats! I bet your psyched that Suite Scarlet is out now! I've always loved that name, I almost named one of my daughters Scarlet, sadly I didn't. But oh well.

I discovered Girl At Sea last week at my library and I love it! I can't wait to read the rest of your books.

9:49 AM  
Blogger Reese said...

I FINISHED SUITE SCARLETT!! IT WAS THE BEST!! Spencer is made of awesome. And I laughed for a week when I saw that dedication. Plus, on page...21 or yeah..on some page you mentioned ABBA which I found hilarious.

It oozes fexcellence.

12:38 AM  

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