I can’t think of a better way to celebrate turning in my manuscript to my publisher than by reading the Selection series by Kiera Cass. These books have changed me in so many ways.
First of all, they’re just really great books. They’re about America Singer, who was born low into the caste system of Illéa, the country that was created after the United States ended. But all of that changes when she is whisked away to participate in the Selection, a competition to win the prince’s hand in marriage. These books are romantic and suspenseful. Plus the series is an amazing dystopian story, which is my favorite genre. I can’t recommend these books enough.
Secondly, something that I’ve always noticed in my life is how I coincidentally read books just when I need to read them. Whether I was assigned them in class or picked them up on my own, they just always seem to line up with what I need to hear just then. And when The One came out, the final book in the original trilogy, these books changed my life in a very important way. For reasons that are too long and complicated to explain and that only my husband and I understand, these books kept us together when we were dating and were a huge push towards me becoming a Christian.
Lastly, it was so perfect that the final book, The Crown, came out just as I was finishing up my novel to send in because I don’t think that I would have even written it without Kiera Cass. Ever since becoming a Christian, and especially since graduating from college, I’d struggled to write. I didn’t know how to be both—a Christian and a writer—so I asked Cass when I got the chance to meet her because she does both wonderfully. She told me to stay true to myself and my faith and only write what I feel comfortable with.
So I prayed a lot, asking God what I should write, and then my novel, Somewhere Only We Know, just poured out from my fingers. I wrote it in three months, and had a publishing contract halfway through.
I can’t wait to share Somewhere Only We Know with the world, and I’ll always be grateful to Cass that she pushed me in the right direction. Time to go read The Crown!