When you set out to be an author, you have a few dreams. And I’m betting that most of us dream of making the New York Times bestseller list. It is the list in publishing. And next Sunday, for the first time, I will be on it. Thanks to the strong sales of Evil Spy School’s opening week — which also boosted sales of Spy School and Spy Camp, I hit #7 on the series list. Check it out!
A couple super-cool things about this:
#1) I am above Harry Potter! (OK, yes, Harry Potter has been on there for several years, but still, I beat it.)
#2) I hit the series list with only three books. This list is exceptionally hard to crack, because it takes the sales of every book in the series into account. So a series like, say Harry Potter, with seven books — has a distinct advantage at getting on the list. In fact, my fearless publisher had claimed that it was almost impossible to break into the series list — so he was extra-thrilled when I did it.
#3) An amusing anecdote about all this. By a strange twist of fate, I happened to be at my publisher’s offices when the news came in. I was changing into a tuxedo at the time. This was the same day of the Mystery Writers of America’s Edgar Awards ceremony, for which Space Case was a nominee. Normally, I would have been changing at my hotel, but I had already checked out of my hotel, as I had to get to Connecticut that night for school visits the next day — and I had shipped my tuxedo to my editor so that I didn’t have to carry it around for two weeks of book tour before the Edgars. So, there I am, changing into my tux (which is a very james Bond thing to do) in a spare office when there is a knock at the door and my editor and publisher inform me that I have just hit the NY Times List. So, I came out, not quite dressed, to celebrate. Here’s me with Kristin Ostby, my awesome editor. (She was also dressed for the Edgars, but she had managed to get her shoes on by this time.)
Point being, it was very nice to learn about the Times while I was at Simon & Schuster and could celebrate with everyone, rather than say merely getting a phone call. (I did eventually get my shoes on, and get to the Edgars. I didn’t win. But landing on the List was an awfully nice consolation prize.)