That’s right – I’m going to be an author! I’ve been sitting on this news for about six months now, because I’m apparently superstitious all the sudden and felt a little like David after dentist…
In early February, I signed a book deal with TarcherPerigee (a Penguin Random House imprint). On Monday, I submitted my first manuscript! Here’s the official announcement from February:
26-year-old personal finance expert and CBS SUNDAY MORNING guest Erin Lowry’s BROKE MILLENNIAL, based on her blog of the same name, using wry humor and real-life examples to demystify the world of money for millennials and including advice on how to handle tricky financial matters that arise in personal and social situations, to Stephanie Bowen at Tarcher Perigee, for publication in Spring 2017, by Eric Myers at Dystel & Goderich Literary Management.
The book, with a working title of Broke Millennial and tentative release date of May 2, 2017, will be a choose-your-own-adventure guide to personal finance. Or, in crasser terms, a perfect book for the bathroom!
You’ll get the same flavor in the book that you’ve grown accustomed to on this blog. Each chapter hits on an element of personal finance including: dealing with student loans, decoding credit scores, getting financially naked with your partner, investing 101 and how to pick the right budgeting style for you. There will be story telling. There will be humor. There will be snarky comments. There is a very obvious inside joke woven throughout it, and I can’t wait to see how many people pick it up! And because everyone always asks, yup – I did get an advance.
Curious how it all happened? Here’s the full story.
It all started with an interview…
It’s so cliché to reflect on how one moment can ripple out and change your whole life – but that’s exactly what happened. I can actually point to the origin of this book getting put in motion: CBS Sunday Morning.
I spoke on the topic of millennials in the work place for a segment on CBS Sunday Morning that aired in September of 2015. The piece mentioned my blog and a New York City-based literary agent, Eric Myers, saw the segment.
A day later he sent me an email saying he’d seen me on CBS Sunday Morning then checked out the blog and wondered if I’d ever considered writing a book?
Of course I had! One of my first childhood dream jobs was to be a writer (and the White House Press Secretary – fun fact). I’d actually been offered a book deal before, but it was a small operation with no real resources to promote a book, plus I still felt green at the time, so I decided to turn it down.
Eric and I ended up getting lunch and I decided to sign with him shortly after.
Then the proposal process started.
I could never have successfully pitched myself to publishers without Eric’s guidance on the proposal process and skills in securing a deal. That thing was a beast and required so many nuances of which I never would’ve thought to include on my own.
After some back-and-forth, Eric and I finally felt the proposal was ready. Except, it was mid-December, which seemed like a terrible time to be trying to pitch a book, so we held on to it until January.
On January 11, Eric announced the proposal in the Dystel & Godrich Literary Management newsletter.
At the tender age of 26, Erin Lowry has already become the go-to authority on money matters for the millennial generation. Her popular blog, Broke Millennial, offers answers to all questions about personal finance for millennials, and does it in a wry, irreverent tone that speaks volumes to her peers. She is also a regular contributor to U.S. News and World Report and has been featured in Forbes and USA TODAY and onCBS Sunday Morning. She is now ready to make Broke Millennial a book, a personal-finance guide that will give millennials the answers to questions they don’t even know they should be asking. Like her blog, Broke Millennial will use a conversational tone, storytelling, and embarrassing personal anecdotes to demystify personal finance for Lowry’s generation, a generation that often finds itself saddled with $30,000 worth of student-loan debts at age 22. Chapter titles like “Getting Financially Naked With Your Partner,” “Down the Rabbit Hole of Insurance,” and “Investing 101: Keep It Simple” will give readers a sense of control over their lives in this precarious economy. As she puts it, plenty of millennials “may be ridiculed for continuing to live off parental welfare way beyond college. But often times I find that it’s simply because they have not been given the tools, or the shove out of the nest, to get by without it. How are we supposed to survive and thrive financially if we are never given the skills to do it?”
Then, we waited.
I got one of the nicest rejections of my life when an editor said she found my voice more hip and engaging than a well-known personal finance author – but she couldn’t acquire mine as it was still a bit too similar and would compete with the backlist on said author’s book.
By January 22, I had in-person meetings with two major publishing houses.
On February 4, I had two offers.
On February 9, I formally accepted with TarcherPerigee!
I submitted the first draft of my manuscript on Monday (July 18th) and will be entering the edit phase quite quickly in order to ensure the book can hit shelves in May of 2017. I can’t wait to share more updates, especially cover design options!
Hope you’ll all join team #BrokeNoMore! (Details on that to come)
Okay, I’m going to go back to doing my happy dance, which looks something like this: