If you travel in literary circles, you’ve definitely heard of Adam Silvera, who is the most exemplary of lit citizens. At some point, he’s been a bookseller, abook marketer, a book reviewer and definitely an all around book pusher.
This year, he also fulfilled his dream of becoming an author — at the tender age of 25. And what a way to start. Adam’s debut MORE HAPPY THAN NOT, earned not one but five stars over the course of its early life and is a must-read. Straightforward, jarring, emotional and cathartic, the novel follows a 16-year-old boy who’s considering a revolutionary memory relief procedure — to forget that he’s gay.
We caught up with the ever-busy Mr. Silvera to chat about writer crushes, career goals and, of course, what’s making him happy right now!
Talk about one thing that’s making you happy right now.
More Happy Than Not is officially in stores! I set a life goal for myself a few years ago to publish my first novel before I turned 25 and when I sold this book back in December 2013 it was scheduled for a fall 2015 publication. I was a little bummed I missed my goal, but still outrageously happy my book was actually going to be published. And thanks to a couple of publication bumps—one from fall to June 16th, the other from June 16th to June 2nd—I was able to publish the book before I turned 25 on June 7th. That was a dream come true in every sense.
When you were a teenager, what did you think you’d be when you grew up?
I thought I was going to be a wrestler. Not a professional wrestler, but a WWE superstar. I had all these ambitions to become the Light Heavyweight champion. I would fly off the turnbuckle and master all these flips and have a cool entrance, but, uh, that didn’t happen. WWE may be pure entertainment and all the matches are fixed, but there are no soft landings when you’re being slammed around like that or pushed off 20 ft. high cages. I give those men and women tons of props, honestly.
Share something that’s always guaranteed to make you laugh.
This is really immature but I will always laugh when someone who you don’t expect to use foul language, usually someone older, just starts cursing. I will laugh so hard. I don’t know why, but since I was a young teen it’s always been a tickle point for me.
What is the best perk of your job?
The Netflix and Hulu and HBOGo breaks! And chatting with readers, obviously. It’s still so strange to me how there are people in the world I may never meet and have no direct connection to that are picking up MORE HAPPY THAN NOT because they want to, and not out of some familial obligations. It’s a truly kickass feeling. I am also in love with writing and want to do nothing else but write for the rest of my days, and hope this remains my job forever. (Though I’m completely open to building and running Andrew Garfield’s personal Instagram if that’s something he’s interested in. Job perks include hanging out with him 24/7.)
Have you ever met someone you idolized? What was it like?
I met Suzanne Collins at Books of Wonder in August 2010 for the launch of Mockingjay. I thanked her for coming to New York City to launch her finale. The exchange was something like:
Adam Silvera: Thank you SO MUCH for coming!
Suzanne Collins: Thank YOU for coming, sweetie.
Adam Silvera: No, seriously. Thank YOU!
And then I left the store in complete disbelief that that was a moment that happened. I was on such a high and went home to read Mockingjay where I was now on a very different adrenaline rush—one that resulted in a shower a quarter away from finishing because of a thing that happens in the final act.
Adam Silvera was born and raised in the Bronx. He was a bookseller before shifting to children’s publishing where he worked at a literary development company, a creative writing website for teens, and as a book reviewer of children’s and young adult novels. He is tall for no reason and lives in New York City. Connect with Adam on Facebook or Twitter. Find MORE HAPPY THAN NOT here.