Jennifer E. Smith’s new book might sound like a fairy tale, but it’s actually born of something that happens to the author every day. In This Is What Happy Looks Like, an errant email from a teen heartthrob finds its way to a small-town girl and the two strike up a virtual conversation that’ll have you grinning from ear to ear by the end of the prologue (I promise). Smith’s inbox isn’t filled with love notes from movie stars (much to her chagrin), but emails meant for her often wind up with a different Jennifer Smith. “I have such a such common name that so many of the the emails intended for me end up going astray,” she says. “I wondered, what would happen if the other person wrote back?” We spoke to Jen about her bad boys, Justin Bieber, and a burgeoning trend in YA.
ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY: This is the second YA book I’ve written about in the past month that features a pig. Is this a new trend?
JENNIFER E. SMITH: That’s so funny. Actually, the biggest complaint that I’ve been getting about the book so far is that there’s not enough of the pig in there. When I started writing it, I thought it was going to be a dog. But after typing the words, I was like, a teen movie star would totally have a weird pet. So I kind of threw it in, but I’m getting a lot of requests for extra Wilbur material.
Will we be seeing a Wilbur novella anytime soon?
I’m thinking about it. The book hasn’t even come out yet, but that’s been the focus of so much of the feedback I’ve been getting, so it might have to happen. READ FULL STORY