Before Ever After: A Novel Pre-Order

I’m Back!!!

Clipart from

What did I miss? What did I miss? Well, of course I missed YOU, silly! :-)
The quest was a success. I found my three wizards. Are you ready to meet them?
Wizard 1

I found the first wizard over here.

Allow me to introduce you to my incredible agent, Stephanie Kip Rostan. Don’t let the lack of a wand fool you. It was her magic that rescued me from the slush pile. The person standing next to her is no less a wizard. There would be no “Levine” in the Levine Greenberg Literary Agency without the awesome Jim Levine.

I also had a chance to meet the other wonderful members of the agency…
….including Jim’s puppet alter-ego.

Wizard 2

For the record, walking through the Random House lobby, surrounded by their first edition archive was one of the most surreal moments of my LIFE. (Up until the point the security guard told us we weren’t supposed to take pictures there. Oops.)

Finally “meeting” my editor, Kate Kennedy after TWO years of exchanging emails with her was another such moment. If you don’t believe in magic, all you have to do is look at the first draft of Before Ever After and compare it to the final book to know what a wizard this woman is.
Wondering what we’re all happy about? 
I know. Book jackets are great, but what does the REAL book look like? Your wish is my command…
What? Too small? Oh. Okay. No worries. I can fix that. Read on while I get my wand…
Wizard 3

What magical trip would be complete without a pilgrimage to Hogwarts?
Or Hogsmeade?
And while I was there, I got you some presents…
Chocolate Frogs, anyone?
Or do you prefer Butter Beer?
Oh, I know! Wands for everyone!
Well, that’s all for now…Huh? What? Oh, right! I almost forgot. (Too much Butter Beer. Sorry.) I was supposed to get my wand and show you the hardcover mock-up of Before Ever After.
Hmmm. Okay…now how do you use this thing? I suggest you stand back…
Let me try changing this paperback ARC into…

...a hardcover copy!
Phew! For a second there I thought I was going to blow up this  blog. So do you think Professor Dumbledore will let me keep my robe?
Posted in Blog | 42 Comments

42 Responses to “I’m Back!!!”

  1. Janel says:

    Your wizard quest looks like it was fabulous! Glad you had so much fun!! :)

  2. Kara says:

    Welcome back! Has it finally sunk in yet? You're a novelist! (I'm pre-ordering your book – I can't wait to read it)

  3. Welcome back, Sam. We missed you! May your news get better and better… Now, stop disrobing in public. ;D

  4. Glad to be reading you again, Sam! You have been missed. Just a little bit more and we can all purchase and touch that novel! Yay!!!

  5. Tanya Reimer says:

    YAY YOU'RE BACK! And OMG you met your editor, your agent, and your book! And! You got to drink butter beer! Holy tractor's that rocks. That is like the dream trip every writer… well… dreams about. Yeah, I'm drooling.
    Welcome back, it was lonely without you.

  6. I'm so glad you're back Samantha, I missed you. When I saw that first piece of clip art I thought you'd gained a little weight, but realised you were joking! Sounds like you had an awesome trip. Welcome home!

  7. Kathy says:

    Welcome back!!! You were missed but I'm so happy for you and I can't wait to read your book!!! How amazingly exciting this all is, I can't thank you enough for sharing it all with us!! So glad to have you back!!

  8. Welcome back, my friend! It looks like you had a great time. :-)

  9. I thought the 2nd wizard was really the Wizard of Oz (because of the silo-looking house) and you watched Wicked again on Broadway. =) Book looks nice! Can't wait to see it "in person".

  10. khashway says:

    OMG! I'm so jealous right now! It looks like you had a blast. And your book is gorgeous! Congrats!

  11. DEZMOND says:

    is that you in the first pic with red blouse and green flowery skirt? You've changed a lot since the trip, my dear :) )))

    Nice to have you back ;)

  12. vinobaby says:

    What an absolute high that must have been walking into Random House as a PUBLISHED AUTHOR! Amazing. The "real" book is beautiful. Can't wait to see what is inside. And would you believe Hogwarts is only about a half-hour away from me and I STILL haven't visited? It's rather embarrassing. Looks like you had a blast.

    What an adventure!

  13. Welcome back, Sam. You've had a wonderful time…and how absolutely amazing. Continue to enjoy all the experiences your book brings you!

  14. Dafeenah says:

    Welcome back!! Sounds like you had a wonderful time and congrats on the hard copy. It's beautiful.

  15. meaganfrank says:

    Congatulations on all of it Sam! The book mock-up looks incredible, and I am so excited for the final production. It is going to be a New York Times bestseller for sure…and that has nothing to do with magic!! MMF

  16. Mama Mia says:

    Great post Sam! I was on the edge of my seat anticipating photo after photo. Nice!

    Really glad to see you back!

    Hey, did you happen to get me some booger-flavored jelly beans?! Eeeeww!!

  17. Congratulation and welcome back, Sam!

    Thank you for sharing your photos and your unique experience. We aspirants live vicariously through you right now.

    I was looking out for posts about Before Ever After from Book Expo America. Were you there?

    Thank you!

  18. Julie says:

    Welcome back!! What an exciting trip you had, congratulations on all of it. I got a thrill just reading about walking into Random House, how wonderful for you!

    The book looks so amazing and I can't wait to read it!

  19. Brynne says:

    You look soOo happy!! And we are all soOo happy for you!! Welcome back, sweet Sam! HUGS!!

  20. Lorena says:


    I LOVE your book cover! And your trip to meet your agent and editor sounds like a dream-come-true.

    Congratulations and best of luck with your book!

  21. MuMuGB says:

    Welcome back Sam! Thanks fir sharing this journey with us…I can't wait to read your book!

  22. This post is BEYOND incredible. So awesome! Really, really happy for you :D

  23. What an amazing trip! I LOVED the picture from Random House. Every writer's dream come true! So glad you had such a lovely trip…and even got a little Hogwarts time thrown in, woot!

    The hardcover edition is BEAUTIFUL. Gives me chills! Welcome back, girl; you were missed!

  24. Connie says:

    WOW! So glad to have you back. So much to comment on: the book–it looks fantastic. Hogwarts–how cool is that. Meeting your agent and editor face-to-face–amazing.

    I'm really happy for you. Congrats on all of it.

  25. gypsyroxylee says:

    Sam, glad you're back! Wonderful to read about the wizards and their magical abilities! Love the hard back jacket of the book!

  26. I'm so glad you're back!! Your photos are awesome and you're adorable as always. omg the Hogwarts pictures made me so excited, I turned to my s.o. and immediately said, "Let's go to Hogwarts for our next vacation." How amazing.

  27. Diane says:

    Looks like you had a magical time alright!!! Beautiful and fun pictures too! :O)

  28. What an exciting time this must be! Congratulations. Your cover is really beautiful. Simply stunning.

  29. Meredith says:

    Oh my goodness, it's beautiful!!! How fun that you finally got to meet your agent and editor (and that Random House lobby really is awe-inspiring!). Welcome back!

  30. Glad you're back Sam! It is beyond exciting that you got to meet your editor in person and have the beautiful hard-cover copy of your novel. Congratulations!!:) P.S. This is still Danielle – I took on a pen name (Juliette Sobanet) and changed my blog address ( Welcome back!

  31. Scrollwork says:

    I think the next step is getting them to make you your very own puppet alter-ego! Hope the jet lag is gone by now. SO glad we can read you regularly again.

  32. V. Furnas says:

    Sam I am so happy to hear all the exciting news. Would love for you to be add me to your blog tour. Check out my offer…

  33. Welcome back, Sam! I'm so happy for you! Congrats!

  34. Elliot Grace says:

    …now that's a trip worthy of its own photo album! Congrats on the book, looks fantastic:)

    A tour through Random House…my dear, you're living the dream! Congrats again:)


  35. That was fun! And the book is gorgeous!

  36. Janel – Thanks! Meeting the "wizards" was a-mazing.

    Kara – Aww…thanks! And nope, it hasn't quite sunk in yet. It's still VERY strange – in a good way.

    Kenya – *buttons up robe in a jiffy* ;-)

    Joy – Can you believe how time has gone by so fast?? I can't even bear to look at my countdown timer…

    Tanya – Thanks!!! I know what you mean about dreams – I'm actually terrified that I'm going to wake up!

    Elizabeth – Haha! Well, truth be told, I DID put on some pounds. US serving sizes are not good for the figure. LOL

    Kathy – Thanks!!! I missed hanging out with everyone too!

    Kate – It was FAB, my friend. Thanks!!!

    OCMom – LOL!!! Only YOU would come up with that guess.

    Kelly – Nothing to be jealous about. Your awesome book's out in the world!

    Dezmond – Haha! What? You don't like my outfit? I'm hurt. Sniff. Sniff ;-)

    Vinobaby – You HAVE to go! The Hogwarts ride was super cool! I'd stay away from the Every Flavor Beans, though. Scary stuff. :D

    Corinne – Thanks!!! I'm glad to be back!

    Dafeenah – Thanks! It's just a mock-up, but it still feels good to hold it my hands.

    Meagan – Thanks! I don't know about hitting the NYT list, but you can bet I'll be be breaking out the dancing shoes when I see it in a bookstore :-)

    Mia – OMG. Those beans are HORRIBLE. The earwax flavor wasn't so bad, but the "vomit" one lived up to its name! Major trauma! :-)

    Mieke – Thanks! The trip was awesome! Unfortunately, I wasn't able to swing by BEA. (I think I was in Washington at that time) I heard it was really fun. :-)

    Julie – The funny thing is that right after we took that photo in the lobby, the security guard told us that we weren't allowed to take pictures there. Oops! Haha!

    Brynne – *tackle hugs back* Super happy to be back!

    Lorena – Thanks!!! I love it too. I think the designer did an excellent job.

    MuMuGB – Thank you! I can't imagine not having a blog and not being able to go through all of this without you guys. It wouldn't be half as much fun!

    Dwija – Aww…Thanks!!! Glad you enjoyed reading the post as much as I did sharing it :-)

    Katie – Thanks! I also wanted to post photos of the Harry Potter exhibit in NY where they had all the props from the movie. It was super cool, but unfortunately, we weren't allowed to take pictures. Shucks.

    Connie – Thank you! My head was spinning the entire trip!

    gypsyroxylee – Crazy, right? I think it should be illegal to have that much fun. Hehe ;-)

    Sophia – YOU.HAVE.TO.GO. The line at the Hogwarts ride was soooo worth it!!! And the fizzing whizbees were YUMMY.

    Diane – Thanks! I only wish I had pensieve like DumbleDore to store all these memories in!

    KO – I had a big laugh though when I saw what book they used inside the jacket for the mock-up…"The Ayatollah Begs to Differ."

    Meredith – Thanks! That lobby literally gave me goosebumps! :D

    Juliette/Danielle – I LOVE your new pen name! Will stop by your new blog :-)

    Scrollwork -Haha! I shudder to think about what I would like as a puppet! Chuckie comes to mind…

    V.Fumas – Thanks for the cool offer. I'll check it out!

    Malen – Thank you so much!!! :-)

    Elliot – Thanks!!! Would you believe we took 2,000 photos during the trip?? I had a hard time choosing what to post on the blog. LOL.

    Wall-to-wall Books – Thank you!!!! Glad you had fun reading! :-)

  37. How much do I LOVE this post? What an awesome trip, Sam. Thanks for sharing.

    And how good does your book look? ;)

  38. How exciting! What a journey you are on.

    Happy to see you are back and look forward to reading more.

  39. Right, let me see if I got that right… the version I read has been improved upon? Cos it was a draft and it was still called Ever After Happily…

  40. K.C. Woolf says:

    Oh, DEZZ was right: great blog!

    I love the cover, and good luck with the rest of your journey! :-)

  41. Jenny – Thanks, girl!

    Florida (Girl) – Thanks! It feels great to be back!

    Elaine – The one you saw was close to final. :-)

    K.C. – Thank you so much!!!

  42. Kal says:

    WOW…what a trip, with pictures so I could follow right along. Very cool. You are livin' the dream. Hope you are soaking it up like a biscuit soaks up the gravy.

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