New Deal Announcements from Chandler Baker and Victoria Aveyard!

What do Freshman Fifteens authors Chandler Baker and Victoria Aveyard have in common, besides their upcoming 2015 novels ALIVE (Disney*Hyperion, Summer 2015) and THE RED QUEEN (Harper Teen/HarperCollins, January 2015)? They’ve both got a toe in entertainment, recently announcing two very exciting film and TV deals!

We talked to Chandler and Victoria to find out a little more about their deals and to hear how they perform the seemingly impossible task of balancing Hollywood and publishing.

Chandler Baker_biopicTony DiSanto and Liz Gateley, the people who brought you everything from Teen Mom to Teen Wolf, know what young adult audiences like on TV, so it makes sense that they’re jumping into YA publishing. As part of a three-book deal, DiSanto and Gateley will develop a new series called High School Horror Story with an eye toward eventually bringing it to screen.

The first book in the series, written by YA author Chandler Baker and published by Macmillan’s Feiwel and Friends, will be called Teen Frankenstein and will hit shelves in Fall 2015. The High School Horror Story series will re-imagine classic literary monsters in a Paris, Texas, high school. The first book will draw inspiration from Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein, told through the lens of a teenage girl who falls in love with the popular classmate she both accidentally kills and then brings back to life.

“Evidently this is an audience we’re passionate about serving. With the literary world driving more and more television ideas, we wanted to develop our own franchises that begin on pages of a novel before ever being imagined for television,” said Gateley in a press release. “It is taking what we did with Teen Wolf and backing up the truck, so to speak, allowing a book to be the point of inception rather than a screenplay. We have an endless amount of ideas for this audience and want to find the best young writers to bring them to life for us.”

Having already sold a novel, was this second sale more or less stressful and why?

A little of each? With my first book sale, I felt a tremendous amount of personal pressure. I’d gone through the submission process once with another book and I took a long hiatus to ghostwrite after that book didn’t sell. I had this feeling that, if ALIVE didn’t sell, I’d know (and other people would know) that I just didn’t have what it takes to sell a book. In retrospect, this wasn’t a reasonable weight to place on my own shoulders. Every book is different and there are a million and one reasons why a story might not sell. But I’m super Type A and no amount of reasonable self-talk could convince me that I wasn’t in a do-or-die situation. Having a book out there was a very important personal hurdle I’d set, but I never knew, at that point, if I’d get over it.

Are you worried about having to choose which “baby” you love more?

Honestly? A little. But I think it’s more that the projects are always going to be in different stages. So while I’m waist-deep in revisions on ALIVE, my other “baby” (HSHS) is behaving perfectly–but only because I’m not working on it right now!

VictoriaSony Pictures has acquired the spec “Eternal” with Victoria Aveyard rewriting the spec she originally wrote.

“Divergent” producer Pouya Shabazian, Benderspink, and Michael Costigan are on board to produce.

Plot details are being kept under wraps, but the film will involve a modern re-interpretation of the Greek god mythology.

The project gives Sony an original property with which the studio can build its own universe with franchise potential.

Having already sold a novel, was this second sale more or less stressful and why?

I think the second sale was a combination of both. On the one hand, you’ve already got something to your name, so if you fail this time around it’s not so bad. On the other, if you don’t sale, you’ve got the threat of “one hit wonder” hanging over your head. Now that I’ve got two separate properties in development, it’s a huge confidence boost, particularly where THE RED QUEEN’s Book 2 is concerned. I’m getting better at believing in my writing and trusting my instincts, but the little voice is still there, second-guessing. I kind of hope it never goes away, or else I’ll turn into a diva rage monster.

Are you worried about having to choose which “baby” you love more?

I LOVE ALL MY CHILDREN EQUALLY. Again, I’m going to pull a bit of a dodge. TRQ is very different from Eternal, and services difference parts of my writing style. I’m lucky that both projects are so different, and in different mediums, but they still have my fingerprints on them. Another bit of luck: because of my schedule, I got to work on Eternal while waiting for second edit notes on TRQ, and now I’m working on TRQ2 while waiting for revisions on Eternal. It’s a nice back and forth that keeps me working, and keeps the muscle flexing.

Chandler Baker_biopicChandler Baker is a twenty-something lawyer, author of young adult and middle grade fiction, and dedicated nerdfighter.  She graduated law school from the University of Texas in Austin and undergraduate from the University of Pennsylvania. Fun fact: Chandler graduated early so she could take time off and try her hand at this whole writing thing. So far, so good. Chandler likes morbid facts, watching scary movies through her fingers, Thai food, Eminem, and very high heels.

You can find Chandler online: Website | Twitter | Goodreads


VictoriaAfter growing up in small town Massachusetts, Victoria moved across the country to attend the University of Southern California in Los Angeles. She graduated with a BFA in Screenwriting, which is exactly the degree being sought after in a recession.

She tries her best to combine her love of history, explosions, and butt-kicking heroines in her writing. Her hobbies include the impossible task of predicting what happens next in A Song of Ice and Fire, road trips, and burning through Netflix.

Fun fact: In July 2012, she drove from LA to Massachusetts with her dad in three days and managed not to kill anything. She still has a chip in her windshield from falling rocks in Colorado to prove it.

You can find Victoria online: Website | Twitter | Tumblr | Goodreads


Posted in Debut Authors, Film and TV, Publishing Tagged , , , , ,

One Response to New Deal Announcements from Chandler Baker and Victoria Aveyard!

  1. Dahlia Adler says:

    So awesome – huge congrats to you both!

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