Thursday, August 23, 2007

My Favorite Post -- Jay

This is the news I’ve been hoping to share since I was only halfway into the first draft of Thirteen Reasons Why. There are two poems in that book attributed to Hannah Baker, my main female character. The first poem is called If My Love… It’s a sappy/cheesy poem I originally wrote many years ago for an ex-girlfriend. The second poem, Soul Alone, is absolutely beautiful…and I’m not being cocky by saying that.

My wife just happens to be my favorite songwriter. And that works out real well, because I’m her favorite novelist…so long as Johnny Depp never gets a literary itch (because my wife would love to scratch it). When it came time to write Hannah’s “good” poem, the lyrics to one of my wife’s songs would not get out of my head. Then, one of those lightbulbs ignited over my head and I ran to our stereo. For a songwriting contest, my wife had recorded a bare-bones version of three of her songs…one of them being Soul Alone. And talk about eerie! The lyrics could have been written by Hannah Baker. In fact, I knew that if I tweaked the chapter in which the poem was supposed to appear, it would be an exact match (I wouldn’t dare ask my wife to change her lyrics). Then the lightbulb clicked itself one setting brighter. I knew, because of its premise, Thirteen Reasons Why was a natural for an audiobook. And if that happened, I told my wife, I would fight hard to get her song included as a bonus track…with her singing.

It turns out, I didn’t have to fight hard at all.

After signing the contract, I mentioned to Orli Moscowitz (the producer) that Soul Alone began as a song written by my wife, and that I had a recording of it if she’d like to take a listen. She agreed. I burned her a C.D. and mailed it the next day. She listened. She loved! And now…my wife is an official recording artist.

[We interrupt this blog post so that the author can dry his eyes.]

Below are some photos from the three hours my wife spent at Moon Productions & Recording Studio recording a more polished version of Soul Alone (hey...I’m a blogger…of course I made her document it). Bringing together some local musicians, she recorded a song which will bring Listening Library’s audio production of Thirteen Reasons Why to a perfect ending.


Darrell Voss (drums)


Terry Lawless (keyboards)
-- the dude actually tours with u2! --


Thomas Gingell (audio engineer)


My Honey


I can’t wait for you all to hear Soul Alone…written and sung by JoanMarie Asher.

- Jay

28 comments:

Katie said...

Jay, that is truly soo cool that I can't wait to hear it! when does the audiobook come out?

HipWriterMama said...

Too cool. I've got chills reading this. Sounds like you've got the whole village out there making your first book experience truly magical. Congrats to you and your wife!

"e" said...

Jay, how totally cool! And what a great story! Not to be redundant, but I can't wait to hear it too!
groovy, groovy,
:)
e

Don Tate II said...

This is such a cool blog. Not just this one post, but all of it. Your wife's name — JoanMarie Asher — is the perfect recording artist name.

Danette said...

Wow! Congratulations, JoanMarie Asher!

Danette

Kelly Fineman said...

That's so wonderful! Your good news brought tears to my eyes -- congratulations, JoanMarie!

Colorado Writer said...

This is very cool news indeed! What a talented family!

cynjay said...

Whooo Hoooo to the Ashers!

gail said...

This is sooo cool! You're right. What a perfect ending! I can really imagine the song at the end. All I can think of to say is...WOW! And congrats to your wife!

gail

tammi said...

Now I'm going to have to get TWO Asher autographs!

Anonymous said...

Congratulations to JoanMarie Asher.
Now normally I don't buy audiobooks, I buy bookbooks. But now, looks like I am going to have to buy both!!

Congratulations on this amazing news.
What a talented, creative couple!

~~Laura
the clay lady

Cathe Olson said...

How amazing that one success story turned into two. Congratulations to both of you.

Debby G. said...

That is so wonderful! No wonder she was so understanding of your writing aspirations all those years... she's an artist herself.

Anonymous said...

What a wonderful story, Jay! It's so nice when everything comes together like that. Absolutely fabulous news for the who Asher clan. =)

*Heidi

PS. Have you two seen the movie "Once" about the two recording artists? It's so lovely, I bet your wife would really like it.

AMPace said...

Awwww-that's AWESOME!

Disco Mermaids said...

I can't wait till JoanMarie gets off work so I can show her all of your wonderful comments.

Thanks, y'all!

- Jay

Lisa S. said...

JoanMarie, you look like a pro singing into that microphone!!! May it be the first of many recording sessions for you. I will definitely buy the audio book so I can hear the song!!!

lkmadigan said...

*sniff*

A double dream come true.

LindaBudz said...

Sweet! Can't wait to hear it!

Lisa Yee said...

OMG, what a year you two are having! How totally lovely that you complement/compliment each other so well.

Rebecca Stead said...

Jay -- I love this story. Can't you link to a sneak preview here somewhere??

Rebecca (2k7er)

Jen said...

Sign me up for the audiobook!

Leslie Muir said...

All I can say is "Awwwwww......"

Congrats you two!


Leslie

Rilla said...

What a dream team... but then, Jay, it's been clear from the start... you're a team player... and so much richer for it... and no... I'm not talking about $$$

Sarah Darer Littman said...

That is so incredibly cool! I love the way you two support each other...it makes me all farklempt!

Can't wait to hear it.

Angela said...

Jay - huge congrats - about JoanMarie's song but also the postcard - ingenious. And thanks for posting the first chapter!

LIBRARIAN said...

I just finished listening to the audio book and LOVED the song My Soul Alone!!!!! Is it possible to buy, access, own a copy of that audio file anywhere but from the end of the audio book? Just curious! Thanks.
Marcy
sandbmar@usd437.net

Anonymous said...

i listened to the audiobook and really loved the song (and the book of course!) and was wondering where i could get the song to just listen to?