Today the Best News Ever went public!

“NYT bestselling author of SHIVER Maggie Stievfater, Tessa Gratton, and Brenna Yovanoff’s package of stories, as well as conversations about where these stories come from, taken from their popular blog The Merry Sisters of Fate, from flesh-eating faeries and demons in love, to unearthly magicians and alternate histories, to Andrew Karre at Carolrhoda Lab, for publication in Spring 2012, by Laura Rennert at the Andrea Brown Literary Agency for Stiefvater and Gratton, and Sarah Davies at the Greenhouse Literary Agency for Yovanoff (World English).”


There’s also a great article about it in this week’s Children’s Bookshelf!

Allow me to quote it, because I love this part:

“Andrew Karre, editorial director for Carolrhoda Books and Carolrhoda Lab, describes the project as in line with the Lab imprint’s mission: publishing books that push boundaries in YA fiction. “Passionate teen readers” are as interested in process as they are in the finished product, Karre insists, and they also “expect and appreciate” access to their favorite authors on the blogosphere. Teen readers are sophisticated enough, he adds, to realize the amount of hard work that goes into writing a story, even for the most critically acclaimed authors.”

That’s right, folks. We push boundaries! Hee hee. But you already knew that, didn’t you!

Maggie, Brenna, and I have been reflecting on how amazing working on Merry Fates has been. What it’s done for our writing, for our friendship, for introducing us to so many avid, hilarious, insightful readers. We think the best way to sum it up is to offer some telling statistics.

Start date: May 5th, 2008.
Stories posted: 207
Comments received: 7,457
Entries total: 365
Number of unique visitors: 117,645
Number of visitors a month: 7,000+
How Often One of Us Slimes: 4/per year
Fairy Tales Retold: 28
Vampire stories: 8
Goblins: 4
Contests: 10
Drownings: 5
Kisses: approximately 87
Happy endings: …. 3?

So, Readers, if you could have us put anything into this crazy, wild, innovative book… what would it be? In your wildest dreams? Let us know in the comments, and on Monday we’ll pick a random winner.

The PRIZE? Justin Timberlake.

Ok, no, really:

The prize will be a notebook. A blank one, that the three of us will sign and inscribe with wit, humor, and possibly blood. Then mail to you, so that you can write your own epic stories inside. It’s possible Maggiewe will draw dirty pictures in it.



  1. Congrats! That’s wonderful news. 😀 I think you should include some of the comments from the stories you choose. Hilarious, witty, odd, whatever…

  2. If there’s a story you’re dying to have in it, that’s fine. But what sort of extras interest you? Chats? Silly drawings? Line notes we send each other? That kind of thing.

    Knock-knock jokes?

  3. Having all of you introduce each story would be awesome. The comment idea is also great! And maybe you could each come up with a prompt, however insane, and then randomly trade prompts and write a short story from each!

  4. Oh, fantastic news! 🙂 Congrats!

    You know what would be fun? Illustrations (will there be illos in the book?) — creepy ones, too!

  5. Ok, probably not what you are looking for but was thinking….out of all of ya’lls books (yep ya’ll…I’m from Texas) what people would you pair up as couples? Like who would you pair up in Tessa’s book to a person in Maggie’s book….and what would the relationship be like. Crossing the boundries of the binding of the book, so to say, to see how you think alternate romances would fit.

  6. I love the idea for this book! It sounds amazing!

    I would love some of Maggie’s craziest tweets. Like the contest for Linger where we had to figure out what the mysterious cookie cutter might be.

  7. Super wonderful news! Big congrats to the three! So eager to read you, as I’m kind of a new reader to the Merry Sisters I’ve lost all the fun from the comments.. should read backwards I guess.
    I’d love to see your coments on each other stories and how them helped to grow the stories bigger. And yes, I’d love to see some drawings or even some music if there is any to accompany them.

  8. Okie doke.

    As for stories, I love your Hades/Persephone ones.

    And anything with lots of blood. 😀

    I really like the round robins you guys have posted, and of course, the drawings are fantastic!

  9. I’m so very proud of you all! This is just awesome news. Yes, I do think you should include some of the pictures, comments and blog content that everyone has posted here.

    *big cheesy grin* See Tessa, I TOLD you I’d be able to say, “Yep, I knew her way back when!”

  10. In my wildest dreams, I’d like a friendly Rottweiler in here. Rotties are always being called “vicious”. People need to see that they shouldn’t blame the breed but the deed. I know, pretty wild, eh? Yeah, but that’s basically my big “wild” dream. It would, honestly, be really cool.

  11. Congrats guys that is totally awesome news 😛 It’s been so cool to read all of the stories on here and be apart of a great community of other avid readers.
    If I had a choice I’d say how about writing a random story about each other because then that would add to how you all have become fast friends since starting this.
    I do like the idea about introductions to each story by whoever wrote it.

  12. No ideas, just noting that this seems like it’s going to be really, really awesome… I’m excited to see how it turns out. I also like the new layout–love the header!

  13. !!!!!!!!!! Congrats, congrats — that’s marvelous!! I’m so thrilled for you three and I can’t wait to see the result!

    I would love it if each of you contributed a recipe — I’m thinking about Maggie’s cookie baking. Or, perhaps, a suggested menu for an afternoon luncheon with one of the characters from a story. (Or brunch, dinner, whatever — food is love, right, so literature-themed food events is super duper double love.) 🙂


  14. Can’t wait!!! Congrats!!! (we all knew it was coming!)

    Can we have how you guys met and started this thing?
    Definitely Knock Knock jokes
    Drafts of the short stories if there are any, comments from each other included
    Drawings of you attacking any revisions that you had to do because that can just be turned into awesomeness.
    A dinosaur.


  15. I like mommyalli’s idea. I also like the idea of your opinions on each other’s stories, your favorite quotes from your stories and the other authors, as well as random stories that may have given you ideas for some detail you put into one of your stories you may not have put in otherwise.

    (Sorry if this isn’t right or doesnt make sense. Im kind of new to this kind of thing.)

  16. We now have the opportunity to lug ALL THREE of you around with us to laugh and cry with ANY TIME WE WANT?! That’s amazing! I got happy dance excited when I read about this book! Can’t wait for it to come out!

    I really do enjoy the round table discussions y’all post. It’s insightful to how each of you approach writing, and how well you three get along! Drawings would be fun too.

    But really, I would like to know some really funny stories from when you three get together and just talk. The type of behind-the-scenes things that we don’t even know as readers.

    Or…each of you take a scene from another’s story, any of the shorts y’all have written or even the novels, and rewrite them using one of your characters. Really, I would just like to see one of the werewolves as a Replacement. Could you imagine being a wolf who is allergic to blood or iron? Vegetarian wolf…LOL. Ok, maybe my sense of humor is just warped…

  17. Oh! Congratulations!

    I think that nice little forwards to each story commenting on the complete ridiculousness of how it came about, or whatever, would be great. (Y’all are all hilarious when it comes to backstories on the stories.) Little foot-notey comments on the bottom of the page would be original.

    Also, those IM-y conversations that we’ve seen which start out really, really deep and end up with y’all saying things like “Wow X character from X book does end up being naked quite a bit, doesn’t he?”

  18. To be honest, I’d probably fill it with my own novels. I’m a writer and I plan to publish one day. Hopefully I’ll meet Maggie Stiefvater one day! =D It might not happen, but I’ll write it in there. Or it could be a dream journal, filled with personal goals! Oh wait, I’m rambling. Sorry! Bye!

  19. Maggie made that header this morning and then we spent half an hour staring at it gleefully 😀

  20. Congrats guys! I can’t wait. ♥

    Hm, wildest ideas?

    one-How about telling how each of you got into writing craze? c:
    two-The cover could have little quotes from each of the stories on it, written in different fonts and colors. That would be really neat. :3
    three-Have fans send in pictures and drawings inspired by your stories.

  21. It’s quite pretty to stare at. 😀 I especially like the crawling skeleton and the keys.

  22. I feel I must point out that you didn’t include “Stories w Cannibalism” in your stats. A glaring omission, I think.

  23. It would be cool to see stories about Ogres (because too often they are misunderstood in fantasy stories) and a lot of silly drawings because I love silly drawings.

  24. AHA! So when discussing anthologies on here a few weeks ago (or maybe it was on Tessa’s blog), you said in a very vagueish way that my wish might come true when I mentioned a Merry Fates anthology. Oh, happy dance, it is! Even though I would have been delighted with a straightforward anthology, I also love that this will expose more about the process, your relationships, and everything that goes into what you all do on here.

    As for what I would like, I think that including some of the roundtables would be perfect, plus maybe a chapter on things that didn’t get posted or added to the blog and why. A look, you might say, at why sometimes things are made of fail and why that’s okay as long as you notice that, learn from it, and move on. Constructive criticism on your own criticism? Just an idea. I think it’s really reassuring to fledgling writers to see that all ideas aren’t good ones and how to use that to one’s advantage. However, I’m not a writer, fledgling or otherwise, so if that’s completely pointless as an idea, we can chalk that up to my FAIL of the day. 😉

    And super congratulations to all of you! This is wonderful and exciting news.


  25. Congrats girls, this is very exciting news for all of you and for us fans!

    LOL @ Maggiewe will draw dirty pictures in it.

    I’d like to see pictures in the published book, since you’re all kind of big on doodles 🙂

  26. I would like to know you do your research. Or if you do any research? Do you just make it up as you go? Maybe show us some of the comments you make to each other about works in progress. Also, if anyone wants to doodle dirty pictures in the journal, I think it would be a great source of inspiration!

  27. I would love this journal book including scribbles illustrations and words of wisdom…an excellent giveaway!
    What would I like to see if my wildest dreams were included? I say animals and humans who can exchange characteristics to perform tasks and communicate and maybe some retelling of human and the “the gods” relationships but with a modern day twist. Hows that?

  28. I love it in album notes when the lyrics are in the songwriters handwriting. I enjoy playing amateur handwriting analysis. So, handwriting.

  29. congrats!!! that is really great news.

    I would love for the book to be illustrated, even if it’s just random decorations in the corners. That would be super neat.

  30. definitely put in pictures (Maggie is such a talented artist).

    MY SUGGESTION OF SOMETHING EXTRA: Attack mist. Think of it what you will. 🙂

  31. “Happy endings: …. 3?”
    That says a lot.

    I have no ideas about what to put into the book. Others have way better ideas. xD

  32. Now everybody has already mentioned some good ideas! I like the introduction idea, and also perhaps the process of writing a challenging story. All the chat messages for help! Congratulations! I read NYT best selling author as author’s, but thats because I can see into the future, oh, and we’re having coffee in an airport cafe. You could always dedicate a few lines to your longest serving fan (I don’t know who that might be). I love you guys!

  33. Congrats!!! So excited!
    And first of all, I highly approve of the new layout *nodnod*

    I think the most basic, the most crucial thing that this book should have is: PICTURES.

    Pictures of the Merry Fates in action and I don’t just mean writing x) Ooh, and people love pictures that show notebooks filled with notes, or the writing places and creative stuff like that.

    Congrats again~

  34. 1-Congratulations you guys! I can not wait to see this book 😀
    2-The new layout is amazing! The skeleton is very cute 😉
    3-Ideas: LOTS of drawings & doodles<–these are a must!! You could add little comments on the side of your stories about things you didn't notice before or just your reactions. Also, you could include any music that inspired you while your were writing, whether it was an album, a song, or a set of lyrics.

  35. I think it would be really cool to have words of encouragement to the winner so s/he can feel like maybe getting their writing published isn’t impossible.

  36. First of all, I love love LOVE the new layout! 😀 And congratulations!

    Is it sad that I wildly hoped that the avid, hilarious, insightful readers might refer to me, too? But I digress… The Merry Fates’ contest questions are always strangely difficult for me to answer, but I think I’ve come up with something for each of you. (Can each one count as a separate entry? ;P)

    1) For Tessa: I double-dog-dare you to try writing something that doesn’t involve any blood or death! Muahaha!

    2) For Maggie: I would really love to see the “platonic shower scene” that constitutes your “adult debut.” 😉

    3) For Brenna: I have two questions. What is your favorite outside place to write? And, how do you think homeschooling changed how you approached writing, if at all?

    Thanks for the awesome contest! *crosses fingers and toes*

  37. Since you can’t give Justin Timberlake as a prize, how about each one of you doing a story that incorporates him somewhere? Now THAT would be funny!

  38. Oh wow a hardy congratulations to all of you!

    I’d love to see some awesome pen and ink drawings in it! That’s be cool 8)

  39. Some cool mark from a homemade rubber stamp or something that looks like it was made by a stamp. That way it can be original and Merry Fates like.

    I definitely agree with the rest of the people wanting introductions to all the stories.

  40. First, congratulations, all!! Good things seem to be following y’all around 😀

    Personally, I would love for the book to include an introduction about how y’all met and started writing together. Y’all have come really far (writing a book together!), and it would be nice to hear the origins story(ies) so to speak.

    I also loved the idea of an introduction to each story. Also, have there ever been any Merry Fates stories y’all have considered turning into a larger project?

  41. Yay!

    So I like the story into and/or prompt idea

    Maggie’s mystery cookie cutter tweets were awesome .

    Photos from your adventures together

    And does this mean there could be a Merry Fates book tour? Like the Smart Girls Kick It Tour?

  42. Congrats! That is huge awesome news! Can’t wait to get my hands on that anthology!

    Also, I would love to see a short story featuring the main characters of each of your major works, like how would they act if they met? I think hilarity would ensue. Blood, angst, AND dysfunction? = FUN!

  43. The cover had better be freaking awesome. If they model it on the header Maggie made, it will be better.


    Hmm….I think someone amazing should write an introduction and make little comments on all the stories. CoughNeilGaimanCough.

    And drawings of scenes….preferably by Laini Taylor’s husband, Jim diBartolo.

  44. congrats!
    include drawings! introductions! recipes!
    i can’t wait!!

    exclamation points don’t suffice here! yay!!!

  45. That’s awesome! Definitely would be cool to see lots of little doodles that fit the stories!

  46. The anthology of questionable gchat icons you’ve exchanged? I haven’t the skill with the shift key it seems.

  47. I think some music recommendations/ playlists for the stories would be nice… i also like the ideas of introductions and illustrations. This definitely sounds like it will be a great book!
    Madeline C

  48. I ❤ this news! I can't wait. I would love to see the group editing / advice / snark process. How things go from a draft to the group to the agent. And all the good stuff in between.

    ETA: I know this seems lame, or whatever, but I'd like to see what sparked the stories. Was it a dream? Was it standing in line at Space Mountain at 2AM? (Ha ha!) What went from kernels to full-blown novels, or, at least, what are the stories you keep coming back to to expand over and over again?

  49. Wow! Congrats!

    And I really like the new site makeover.

    I’d like to see something that you’ve never done before. It looks as if the book will be released after Blood Magic. Would it be possible (read: legal) for you to write fan fiction inspired by each others novels? I ask this because I think the common prompt fairy tales are some of the most interesting pieces on this site and I’d like to see what you would do with aspects (however tangential) of each other’s work.

  50. I can’t believe I’ve been reading this blog since the beginning– or more precisely I can’t believe how far you guys have come! It’s so awesome to see. 🙂 I still remember placing in the Halloween contest back in 08!

    If anything could be in the book…I would be interested in seeing a CD that has a non-writing piece of art from each author, inspired by one of the stories another of the authors wrote. Maggie writes a song about Tessa’s story, for instance, Tessa acts out one of Brenna’s stories, and Brenna makes a line drawing of a scene from one of Maggie’s stories, that kind of thing.

    That’s probably not very cost-effective, however. So it could be an ~interactive~ online thing!

  51. That was one of the stories I would like to see included. No matter how many times I read it, it gets to me.

  52. Congratulations! And hooray for the rest of us, too.

    I would also like to see a bit about how you all met and became each others’ support system. Also anything you’d like to share about helping each other through the rough spots (one assumes there are rough spots, as the alternative would be to deify you, and who wants that sort of responsibility?). Insights into finding your voice or anything else about your process would be great.

    I tried to think of the stories I’d want to see (hold!), but there are too many great ones to choose from.

  53. Wow there are some fantastic suggestions out there already! Congratulations on publishing something together, a fabulous way to show how integral you are to each others writing process.

    As for what I would like to see: illustrations from not the author of the story, Maggie to illustrate Tessa’s story for example. Artwork or inspirations aplenty!!

    I love when you take a concept and each write your own interpretation, I would love to see some of that included.

    Playlists, or other inspirations for specific stories.

    I LOVE the idea of recipes if somehow related to a story.

    Round table discussions always make me think, and usually laugh too. Funny things are a favourite of mine, things that are so great they make me snort water out my nose type funny.

    I’m super excited and can’t WAIT to read it!!! Congrats again!

  54. You should put in the book your hilarious stories, kind of like a biography, but with all those added things like goblins and vamps and wolves. So you could start with just say Tessa’s idea of what has happened but into put problems like if there was something you couldn’t forget it introduces the troll under the bridge you couldn’t build…do get where i am taking this??? (this is my first ever comment by the way)

  55. Hey, that’s great, great, great.
    Um, what I could have you put in the crazy, wild, innovative books?
    > Comments. On the story. In between the text, or with asterisks marking the comment that is written below.
    > Introduction by whoever wrote it.
    > Illustrations. And doodles.
    > Playlists, songs, suggestions of songs.
    > Handwritings!!! That would rock.
    > The recipes idea is great. Wonder how blood-flavoured cookies taste.

    And, ah, I’m so glad about this book!!!

  56. Congratulations! I read that in PW, and was like, “Aaaaah!” What an excellent thing. There are not enough short story anthologies in young adult fiction, and I’m always so glad to see more — and this one is so special.

    Also: lovely site update – sorry I haven’t mentioned that earlier.

  57. The murder of Edward Cullen would thrill me like you have no idea.

    But that might make Smeyer cry and sue you, so I guess not. Oh wells.

  58. Wow congrats! This sounds awesome. As for what to put in it…
    The music for One Thousand Paper Cranes
    A lorra doodles
    Some of the craziest fan experiences?
    A pop up wolf (like the ones that pop up when you open the book… know what I mean?) and/or a folded up lifesize drawing of Sam. Or is that too much to ask for 🙂

  59. I think I would like to see one or all of your write a story, and then the other two edit/make fun of/improve the story.

    I bet it would be hysterical!

    OH – and I’d love to see Tess write a love story with no blood or anyone dying/already dead. 🙂

  60. HAHAHAHAHAH I’m so EXCITED FOR YOU GUYS! You have been REAL inspirations. I can still remember my favourite stories from all of you: An Ash-tree Spell to Break Your Heart, by Tessa, Brenna’s The Madness of Lancelot and Maggie’s unforgettable The Last Day of Spring 😀 I’d read them all over again and again!

    I would LOVE to see some of the amazing illustrations and adorkable drawings you’ve guys have done over the years. And a conversation or two. Like the Round Table ones. LOVE them 🙂 Congratulations, guys! You totally deserve it! Can’t wait for the anthology!

  61. OMG. I just thought of something! You should totally do commentary on your stories like what J.K Rowling did for her book THE TALES OF BEEDLE THE BARD, where she pretends to write as Dumbledore. You should like explain how you got your ideas for the story and stuf.. Great work again, you guys! 😀

  62. Definitely each of you should introduce each story. Creepy drawings, yes. I LOVE your rountables.

  63. Congrats ladies! This is indeed exciting news!

    How about adding doodles of your favorite characters interacting with each other? We could have James kicking the crap out of Sam or Nuala making out with Cole. The possibilities are endless …

  64. I love that you guys come together and do these contest for your fans. You are awesome. And as far as what I would like for you to put into the notebook….how bout a dream I had a few weeks ago. (odd dream) I was in a field with tons of leaves and when I picked up a pile of leaves and throw them up into the air, they would turn into beautiful birds. Birds I have never seen before. And I knew they were magic! Since I can’t write or describe worth squat, maybe you guys could make my dream into something magic. Have a great weekend. Sarah

  65. What would I want to see? Well, that’s a hard question.

    I think that I would like to see, mmmm, something closer to the raw idea than the actual stories. Something that shows the starting point from before you start writing and refining it to become something more than what it is at that moment.

  66. Congrats! That is incredibly awesome! I would definitely like to see a lot of your conversations and round tables. Those are always so much fun to read AND insightful.

  67. Love the new site!

    I would love to see doodles, playlists, and chats between the three of you.

  68. the one thing i always like to know is what made the author write a story. why did they have the character act that way? why that personality, or a particular mythology? what was the inspiration?

    sometimes its just really cool to know where a story came from.

  69. Having illistrations would totally make it!
    Whether gruesome or poetic or downright wierd ^-^*

  70. Illustrations by all of you 🙂 and a real live flesh eating unicorn. Or a pass to Faerie.

  71. Well… there should be a princess who falls in love with a boy who lives in a water well. I love your blog!!!

  72. I’m not sure I have any super original ideas to post. I like the ideas of including comments and doodles. It would also be cool if each of you picked your favorite stories from the other authors and said something about why.
    Oooh, and maybe add some of your roundtable discussions too. They’re fun, and I especially liked the ones you wrote about heroines and what you read and enjoyed in your youth.

  73. I love it! Congrats 🙂 I think having some lines that you’ve been forced to edit out of your previous book(s) that you simply hated to part with would be amazing.

  74. i would love for you to put in an awesome battle of wits and/or brawn between the characters from all of your awesome books. i wonder who will win 🙂


  75. Congratulations! It’s definitely one book I will want for my bookshelf at school. I think you should include a little bit of everything–haunting & gruesome stories, discussions on what writing is really all about, comments on stories, and definitely pictures! You could also slip some chocolate in there somewhere, right?

  76. I will buy this book the day it comes out! So excited!

    I would really love to see Maggie’s ‘Wag’ and Tessa’s ‘Vampire Box’ 🙂

    And anything related to your writing life, that never fails to interest me. I love to get a look behind the scenes.

    Crystal Cook (who is lame and can’t figure out how to get my Google Open ID to work, thus the anonymous comment)

  77. I think that since you’re not giving him out as a prize after all, I would like for you to include Justin Timberlake in the book.

    Preferably as the centerfold.


  78. I found my way here back in November, and since you guys have made my Monday’s a little brighter (well, more magical, bloody, monster-filled, etc.). Thank you! And congratulations on your book!

    Okay, things I’d want:
    1. Advice that you’d give to yourself if you could send a letter back in time to the beginning of your careers/a run down of your top advice about your craft
    2. Illustrations by you three!
    3. Music suggestions for your each story.
    4. Maybe a timeline – not just dates, but your reflections on how you’ve grown and developed as writers. (the stories themselves could form the timeline with reflections in those introductions that other commenters have mentioned)
    5. Patrick Sullivan 🙂

  79. You know I love all of you, but if I were to pick one story that I’d love to see inside the book, it’s “Stars” by Tessa. Probably because I printed it out when she published it, and I’ve been known to hug the pieces of paper on which it’s printed.

  80. I suddenly got (a) bright idea(s)!

    – How to make paper cranes!
    – Sheet music of all Lament/Ballad/Shiver/Linger based music, all of it!
    – James A. Morgan.
    – If James disagrees to get packed in a book, Luke Dillon to compensate.


  81. Oh yay! Congrats!
    Hmm, how about poems as well as stories? Or music and songs that inspired you to write these (awesome) stories! Or how about some short stories that you wrote a long time ago, maybe slightly embarrassing ones? 😛
    I’ll defiantly be getting this… 😀

  82. The number of stories I’ve written based on dreams is a sad, sad number. (By which I mean, it is not small.)

  83. Exciting news – huge congratulations. “Passionate teen readers” aren’t the only ones who are interested in the process of writing stories – I can’t wait to read it.

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