Sunday, June 22, 2008

Canadian Suspense Author Cheryl Kaye Tardif Signs with New York Literary Agency

Since she was 14, Vancouver-born author Cheryl Kaye Tardif has dreamed about breaking into the US book market. Her goal was simple: get a New York agent and get published by a major publishing house. The journey, however, was not so simple. Nevertheless she has finally succeeded with the first half of her dream. She now has a New York literary agent.

A resident of Edmonton, Alberta, Cheryl Kaye Tardif independently published 3 novels: Whale Song in 2003, Divine Intervention in 2004, and The River in 2005, but distribution was severely limited by her small Canadian publisher.

In 2006, she was elated to find Kunati Books, a bigger, bolder, new Canadian publisher that accepts unagented queries. In 2007, Cheryl's debut novel Whale Song was re-published to critical acclaim as a special revised edition dedicated to her brother Jason Kaye, who was murdered in Edmonton in 2006. A percent of her royalties goes to 3 Edmonton nonprofits, including Hope Mission.

In October 2007, she resumed a focused agent search. She tried dozens of US agents and a few Canadian agents, of which there are approximately 30, according to The Writers' Union of Canada. Then she heard about a US writer who helped authors write successful query letters. Cheryl spent a day via email with this writer, then sent out her query letter.

"The response was absolutely overwhelming," Cheryl says. "I never expected such a short query to work the way it did. I actually had a choice in agents, and I chose the one who was enthusiastic about my work and my career and who came highly recommended by an author friend."

Cheryl signed with Scovil Chichak Galen Literary Agency, a literary agency based in New York. Her new agent Jack Scovil said he was "impressed" by her work, her book reviews and enthusiastic fans, and her promotional efforts. "I'm delighted we'll be working together on CHILDREN OF THE FOG," he says of Cheryl's latest unpublished novel. In fact, he'll be representing all of her novel-length works.

Cheryl's motto is: "Dare to Dream...and Dream BIG! And if that doesn't work, Dream BIGGER!" If her positive outlook and persistence is any indicator, then this Canadian author should see the culmination of all her dreams. Booklist already calls her "a name to reckon with south of the border."

While waiting for Cheryl's paranormal suspense Children of the Fog, please check out her published novels--Whale Song, The River and Divine Intervention--available at select bookstores and, and more.

Read Cheryl's blog post about her new agent.

Cheryl Kaye Tardif's website:
Cheryl's main blog:

Every Baby Company Inks Book Deal with Sterling Publishing Co., Inc.

Every Baby Company and Sterling Publishing Co., Inc. have signed a five-year joint venture deal for the publication of high-end baby/toddler cloth, board, and bath books, based on the award-winning brand, eebee's adventures (

Winner of 15 national parenting awards including the Parent's Choice and the National Parenting Center Seal of Approval, eebee's adventures is the hottest growing multi-platform infant/toddler brand.

Beginning with the popular DVD and On-Demand series, eebee's adventures has expanded to include a new line of “must have” plush toys, and now, an innovative book series. eebee's adventures will debut five books, $14.95 each, beginning this July, available at stores nationwide, including Barnes & Noble and Barnes & (

The joint announcement was made today by Stephen Gass, Co-founder and President, Every Baby Company, and President Marcus Leaver, Sterling Publishing Co., Inc.

Sunday, June 15, 2008

Robert Hough's The Stowaway Optioned for Film

Canadian author Robert Hough's The Stowaway, a modern day tale of mutiny on the high seas which was hailed by The Boston Globe as "masterful" and described by the National Post as "a rare and powerful example of human decency triumphing over amoral self interest," has been optioned for film by First Generation Films, a production company based in Los Angeles and Toronto. Currently, First Generation is completing The Whistleblower, a drama about the Eastern European sex trafficking industry, for HBO Films. Other projects include White and Rice, Amreeka, and the Emmy-winning Miracle Mile.

The Stowaway tells the true-life story of the Maersk Dubai, a container ship in which three Romanian stowaways are found, and then put overboard by the ship's officers. When the crew find a fourth stowaway, they attempt to hide him, and keep him alive until they can somehow get help. Says producer Christina Piovesan, "I'm compelled to tell this story because it has international scope, deep social relevance and it explores riveting moral questions that speak to the very heart of what it means to be human. It will make for dramatic, captivating cinema."

The film deal was arranged by Debbie Wood of Westwood Creative Artists. Hough's literary agent is Jackie Kaiser. The Stowaway, which was a Boston Globe Top Ten Book of 2004 and a 2006 IMPAC Dublin Literary Award Finalist, is published in Canada by Random House Canada and in the US by Arcade. Robert Hough is also the author of The Final Confession of Mabel Stark, film rights to which are held by the Oscar winning UK filmmaker Sam Mendes, and The Culprits. The Culprits, his latest book, published by Random House Canada, was shortlisted for the Commonwealth Writers' Prize for Best Book and nominated for The Rogers Writers' Trust Fiction Prize.

Hyperion to Publish Two Adult Novels

Hyperion plans to publish the first adult novels by Cecily Von Ziegesar, New York Times bestselling author of the Gossip Girl series. The first in the two book deal, CUM LAUDE, will be published in 2009.

Set on a small college campus in fictional Home, Maine, CUM LAUDE follows a cast of characters who meet at freshman year orientation and cause big drama for one sheltered town. With shifting alliances, unrequited crushes, and a tragic murder, this is the year that will change their lives forever. As one student observes, "It's funny how you come to college and just sort of fall in with people." CUM LAUDE is Von Ziegesar's first departure from young adult writing.

Of the deal Von Ziegesar says: "I've mined my high school years for all they're worth, and now I'm moving on to college. I'm excited to be working with Hyperion."

Von Ziegesar is a five-time #1 New York Times bestselling author of the Gossip Girl series and the spin-off It Girl series, which has sold more than 6,000,000 copies in the U.S. alone. The television adaptation of the series is a runaway hit.

The announcement was made by Hyperion President and Publisher, Ellen Archer.

Archer negotiated the deal with Suzanne Gluck at the William Morris Agency. Executive editor Leslie Wells will edit the book. Hyperion retains North American, first serial, book club, audio, and e-book rights.

Sunday, June 08, 2008

Failed Book Leads to Big Film for Internet User

In December, David Elliott began work on a humorous book that revolved around his quest for internet fame. By April, he had all but given up on this endeavor--few people got the idea, and even fewer had any interest in making a stranger famous.

But then, in the middle of May, he received a phone call from a man who called himself Hector Stopp, a self made millionaire who was shown one of David's self-deprecating videos on YouTube. Intrigued, he sat down and spent the best part of two hours watching the rest of David's videos.

The result? Hector offered David a six million dollar budget to bring his film Zombie Sharks with Snakes for Legs (a bizarre spoof of sci-fi monster films) to life.

What David learned from his failed book about internet fame is that countless people want to make it as stars, but don't know where to begin. That's what caused him to have an idea: cast the entire film over the internet, ignoring established actors in favor of undiscovered, raw talent.

Zombie Shark with Snakes for Legs is auditioning from now to November the 5th, anyone interested in earning a spot in the film should visit This is a Crusty Films production.

Walter Dean Myers and Christopher Myers Signed to Multi-Book Contract

Egmont USA announced that Walter Dean Myers, winner of two Newbery Honors and five Coretta Scott King Awards, will have two books on their Fall 2009 launch list. First is an historical novel. The second will be a picture book illustrated by Christopher Myers. This is the fourth picture book collaboration between this father-son team whose books include the Caldecott Honor Book, Harlem, blues journey and Jazz.

This also marks Walter Dean Myers's twentieth anniversary working with Regina Griffin, recently named Egmont's Executive Editor. Griffin edited many of Myers's books, including Somewhere in the Darkness (Scholastic), which received a Newbery Honor; and Jazz (Holiday House), which received a Coretta Scott King Honor.

Egmont USA will publish young adult and middle grade fiction and picture books. Sales and distribution is through Random House. Egmont USA is part of the Egmont Group with over 100 companies worldwide.

Sunday, June 01, 2008

Columbia Pictures to Adapt Goosebumps into Feature Film

Columbia Pictures has acquiredfrom Scholastic Media the right to adapt Scholastic's bestselling Goosebumps(TM) book series into a theatrical feature. The film will be produced by Deborah Forte and Neal H. Moritz.

Goosebumps is one of the most popular series of books for children ever-- in fact, only the Harry Potter novels have surpassed Goosebumps in total sales.Goosebumps has been published in over 32 languages and sold more than 300 million copies worldwide. The series was successfully adapted byScholastic Entertainment for television for the Fox Kids Network, where it was rated #1 for four seasons, and aired in over 100 countries. Episodes of thelive action television series returned to the small screen in 2007 on Cartoon Network and instantly became a sensation. New Goosebumps HorrorLand bookswritten by R.L. Stine hit the stores last month and, this fall, Scholastic Interactive unveils a highly anticipated Goosebumps videogame.

The Goosebumps book series returned to the top of the sales charts againlast month with the release of the first two books in Goosebumps HorrorLand, a new twelve book series by R.L. Stine, featuring favorite characters from the original series such as Slappy the Dummy, the Haunted Mask, and the Mummy. It is the first Goosebumps serialized adventure in which each book is part of the same plot. Fans can also get exclusive Goosebumps HorrorLand content at; and additional Goosebumps chills at theofficial Goosebumps website,, which continues to garner 1.5 million page views each month.

The studio will begin developing the first Goosebumps movie immediately.Andrea Giannetti will oversee the project on behalf of the studio workingclosely with Original Films and Scholastic.

SAGE Acquires CQ Press

CQ Press, the book-publishing unit of Washington-based Congressional Quarterly Inc. (CQ), has been sold to SAGE, the leading independent academic publisher.

CQ Press serves the library, college and professional markets with a diverse array of print and online products. It publishes about 100 new titles each year, with a growing and authoritative list of textbooks and reference titles focusing on political science, mass communication and related disciplines.

SAGE plans to keep CQ Press intact as a separate division based in Washington, D.C., bearing the CQ Press imprint, and retaining all CQ Press employees under the senior management team that will remain in place, including Publisher John A. Jenkins, who will also carry the title of President of CQ Press.