Meet The Newbies is a blog event co-hosted by Dana @DanaSquare and I, in which we introduce you to all of the new kids in school, the 2015 debut authors!
Meet Marcy Beller Paul:
She graduated from Harvard University and lives in New Jersey with her husband and two children. Underneath Everything will be published by Balzer + Bray, an imprint of HarperCollins, in Fall 2015. It is her first novel.
Meet Her Debut Novel:
But now Mattie is a senior, and she’s sick of missing things. So here she is.
And there’s Jolene: Beautiful. Captivating. Just like the stories she wove. Mattie would know; she used to star in them. She and Jolene were best friends. Mattie has the scar on her palm to prove it, and Jolene has everything else, including Hudson.
But when Mattie runs into Hudson and gets a glimpse of what could have been, she decides to take it all back: the boyfriend, the friends, the life she was supposed to live. Problem is, Mattie can’t figure out where Jolene ends and she begins.
Because there’s something Mattie hasn’t told anyone--she walked away from Jolene over a year ago, but she never really left.
Poignant and provocative, Marcy Beller Paul’s debut novel tells the story of an intoxicating—and toxic—relationship that blurs the boundary between reality and fantasy, love and loyalty, friendship and obsession.
My debut, UNDERNEATH EVERYTHING, comes out in October from Balzer + Bray/HarperCollins. I guess that makes me one of the new kids, but the truth is I’m not new to the world of publishing. I worked in the industry for eight years before I stopped to stay home with my kids. I even worked at HarperCollins—the company that is now publishing my book!—which is strange and weird and wonderful. But not new. It feels more like taking on a different role in a familiar play—I know the set pieces and the scenes, but I’ve got to learn new lines and blocking.
The funny thing is, I did the same thing in high school. When you live in the same town your whole life, you’re never the new kid. But you can reinvent yourself. Change your lipstick. Your clothes. Your hair. Your friends. And a new group of friends—or the lack thereof—can definitely make you feel like the new kid. At least it did for me. Switch gears and the most basic things are affected: How to walk. How to talk. How to look at people, and when.
And there was always that one friend, wasn’t there?
She switched gears for you. Go there, she said. Wear that. Talk to him.
That friend—she wasn’t a main character in the first draft of my book, but she took control of the story, as those girls often do. When it was my friend, and I was in high school, I eventually shut her out. That was my solution. While I was writing this book, I did the opposite. I let her in. I listened. Because I wanted answers. I wanted to understand: Why did she do it? Why did I let her?
There is official copy for UNDERNEATH EVERYTHING. It’s in the catalog, and on sites like Goodreads, Amazon, and Barnes & Noble. But when someone asks me what my book is about, I can get the point across in four words: “You know that girl?” The response is the same every single time. A tense nod. A squared jaw. A faraway look in the eyes.
So many of us had that friend. So many of us still do. This book is for you.
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