Sarvenaz Tash's THE MAPMAKER AND THE GHOST, about a girl who sets out to make the most accurate map of her hometown that ever existed, and discovers that there is no adventure without danger, pitched as MATILDA meets THE GOONIES, to Stacy Cantor Abrams at Walker Children's, for publication in April 2012, by Marissa Walsh at FinePrint Literary Management (World).
You might be wondering, "what do you mean your deal got announced? Haven't you been pestering us all with Tweets, and blog posts, and Facebook fan pages that you're an author now?"
To which I'll say, "Ooh. Speaking of Facebook fan pages, I have one now! It's at www.facebook.com/sarvenaztash. Won't you like me?"
Then I'll grin sheepishly and answer your real question.
Deals don't get announced in Publishers Marketplace (or Publishers Weekly if it's a high-profile deal), until it's really official. And it's not really official until you and your publishing house have both signed the contract (usually brokered by your agent, if you have one). Working out the details of that contract can take a long time. Which means that I had finished all my revisions and handed in my copyedits before I got my announcement.
Here's the interesting thing, this is not unusual at all. In fact, most of the 2012 debut authors I keep in contact with don't seem to have their contracts finalized.
At first, it made me really nervous to tell people that I was getting a book published without a contract. What if it fell through and I had to say something like, "Ha! Just kidding!" But, within a month of getting my offer, my agent gave me the go-ahead to let people know and, boy, am I glad she did. I'm pretty sure I would have exploded into Sarvenaz confetti if I had to wait 7 months between now and then before I could say anything.The Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Authors would have been seriously displeased.
Anyway, I'm thrilled to be all official now! And, I have to admit, I love what my agent wrote for the announcement, too. Matilda meets The Goonies? Not sure I could ask for better references than that!