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Learning to let go: Sarah Dessen sets aside novel-in-progess

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Fans of Sarah Dessen, eager for more of her writing after her June 2013 release of "The Moon and More," may have to wait a little longer for her next book than anticipated. The YA superstar author of 11 novels, including "That Summer" and "Someone Like You," which inspired the early-2000's movie "How to Deal," announced recently in her blog that she has decided to "abandon" her next novel, a story she has been working on since January 2013. The novel would have been on track to be released summer 2015.

In her blog on her official website, Sarah describes her struggle, explaining that this story is not the first one that she decided to let go. She details that first time when she learned to trust her gut, and how her gut was providing answers without a trace of doubt: "For me, it was not 'Give up on this book, you know, if you want.' It's like Darth Vader voice: PUT IT ASIDE. NOW! NOW!!!!'" Sarah says that she did not want to publish a story that did not measure up to her standards. She took some time away from writing, letting herself slide off the grid until she felt inspired by a new story, a story she was proud of.

With humor and grace, Sarah Dessen depicts her more recent grappling and her decision to cease work on the story that she has been working on for almost a year. She recreates the battles she had, both inside her head and on the page, and all of the times that this writing experience contradicted her typical style and process. She speaks candidly about her trials and her fears and the finality of her decision. Fans will surely be disappointed by the wait, but wait they will, for the honesty of this acclaimed writer's decision is admirable.


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