Category: memory thief

And the Screenwriters for THE MEMORY THIEF Adaptation are . . .

You might think I have some sort of inside track to all the news on the film adaptation of THE MEMORY THIEF. And maybe I have a little, but today I was reminded how narrow that inside track really is. I’m a librarian, right? And that means I search things. Occasionally I search personal things. It’s been over a year since The Memory Thief movie adaptation was announced. I know they’ve been working on a script for the film. It’s progressing. But that’s about all I knew.

This morning, I took a quick jaunt around the interwebs to see if, perhaps, someone else might have a scoop on things. Maybe the person writing the screenplay had posted about it on his or her blog, or Tweeted about it, right?

It turns out, Deadline announced back at the end of October who’s doing the screenplay: Radio Silence. They also have a wikipedia page. According to Deadline:

Radio Silence is composed of Matt Bettinelli-Olpin, Tyler Gillett and Chad Villella. The collective previously directed Southbound, which premiered at the 2015 Toronto Film Festival.

Checking out their bios online, it looks like they’ve focused primarily on horror. They did a segment in V/H/S, and they did a series of online videos, as well. Their best well-known one (watched more than 33,000,000 times) is this one:

Though they’ve touched on some humor in a few of their shorts, I don’t see a much aimed at a kid audience. Which actually suits me fine. I really like their concept of the Choose Your Own Adventure shorts, and the fact that one of the trio is from Punxsutawney is a definite plus. 🙂

When I first conceived of MEMORY THIEF, I really wanted to do something in the same vein as what I call Disney horror. (Here’s the first post I wrote about it, where I was looking for recommendations on movies before I’d even started work on the book. I also listed my top ten family friendly scary movies in a different post.) Having horror writers take on the screenplay intrigues me. In a different article, I saw Radio Silence is working with a different group–one that worked on the upcoming House with a Clock in Its Walls. That trailer is awesome, and I have high hopes for the movie:

So count me in for intrigued. Not just as the author of the book, but as a fan of horror aimed at younger audiences in general. I’ll try to keep you posted on what I hear, but you might want to keep an eye on Deadline for me. Apparently I’m not nearly tuned in as I might wish to be.


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Memory Thief in Paperback

It’s official. THE MEMORY THIEF is now available in paperback everywhere books are sold. (Meaning, no longer exclusive to just Barnes & Noble.) And when I went to Amazon to double check this was correct, I was rewarded with discovering a new review of the book, left by someone I don’t know. Gaelen Foley (who I assume isn’t the actual romance writer, but perhaps a fan of hers) left this lovely review:

Days after finishing this book, I am still thinking about it with a smile. When a book stays with you like that, you know there’s something special about it. I would highly recommend The Memory Thief to kids and parents.

I was really surprised that this author hadn’t written more books before this, because his style is very smooth and honest, and yet simple. As Charles Dickens said, to write simply is one of the hardest things there is.

Newer authors don’t usually get pacing as well as Moore does here, either, yet the story doesn’t miss a beat, and the tension continually builds, with twists I didn’t see coming. What I liked about it is that the adventure flows out of characterization, it’s not forced action. This gives the tale a lot of heart.

I also really liked the small town setting, and the creepy contrast with the weirdness factor once the fantasy stuff started unfolding. Maybe a tiny whiff of Stephen King influence, especially given the Maine setting (but don’t worry, parents, there’s no horror that’ll give young readers bad dreams.) All I know is that I have been to many a country fair like the main setting for much of the action here, and he captured it perfectly.

The real fireworks come from the whole premise of memory thieves who can steal your memories right outta your head! Very original, I thought. Moore made me believe it was real, and I started thinking about what historical experiences I’d have paid money to try out through somebody else’s memories.

That leads to me to one of the main points I wanted to make about this story. Parents & teachers, if you’re looking for a story to help your 8-12’s learn a lesson about having empathy for others, this book could be a great conversation starter. In this tale, the boy literally gets to enter several different characters’ minds and see the world through _their_ eyes. What a great lesson for all of us, and Moore presents it without ever being preachy. Very classy.

The family dynamics were handled sensitively, without stereotypes, and I guess one of the things I liked best about this book was that there’s just a real honesty to the writing. I’ll be hitting the “Follow” button on this author. I know I’ll want to grab the next books he puts out. 🙂

Head on over to Amazon to see it in all its glory. I know they say authors shouldn’t read reviews, but sometimes I just can’t help it. Nothing helps a book and an author these days quite like a good review from readers.


Like what you’ve read? Please consider supporting me on Patreon. I’m looking to get to $10/month to justify the amount of time I spend on this blog. I’m at $8/month so far. Read this post for more information. Or click here to go to Patreon and sign up. It only takes a minute or two, and then it’s automatic from there on out.

If you’d rather not sign up for Patreon, you can also support the site by clicking the MEMORY THIEF Amazon link on the right of the page. That will take you to Amazon, where you can buy my books or anything else. During that visit, a portion of your purchase will go to me. It won’t cost you anything extra.

MEMORY THIEF Thanksgiving


I’m off on vacation today. Headed to a rental house over by Acadia, and looking forward to relax and try to recharge. And as I drive off, I’m very pleased to be able to announce that step 3 of my plan for global domination is finally complete, just as I planned.


  1. Publish MEMORY THIEF in America
  2. Publish MEMORY THIEF in China
  3. Publish MEMORY THIEF in Turkey.
  4. [. . .]
  5. Take over the world

As with many of the best news I get to announce on my blog, I’ve known about this for months, and I’ve had to keep quiet about it. That leads to some strange celebrations. I’m the most excited when I can’t tell anyone, and then when everyone else is the most excited, it’s already old news to me.

But either which way, it’s great news. Three languages! I think these foreign sales are some of the best surprises I ever get. I love having my agents email me to see if I’d like to accept an offer I knew absolutely nothing about. It’s like if someone comes up to you to say you’ve inherited a bunch of money and asks if you’d like to accept it. You don’t have to do anything to get that money except sign on a dotted line. All the work is done already.

I don’t think I would ever get tired of that.

In any case, have a great weekend, everybody. I’ll catch you on Tuesday, when I’m back from vacation!


memorythief_FacbeookIt’s a new week, and I’m still in Utah, but Saturday the news broke, and I wanted to share it with you lovely people. At the end of May I got an email out of the blue with the bestest of news: a Chinese publishing company (Beijing White Horse Time) has bought the Simplified Chinese rights to THE MEMORY THIEF. The news about the film deal caught their eye and brought extra attention to the novel.

It’s kind of strange blogging about something that I’ve known about for so long. It would be so much more fun to share the news right after I found out. But it seems like everything in publishing operates on a delayed schedule, so I get great news and then have to sit on it for a long time until the ink is dry.

What does this deal mean? Ideally, authors sell as few rights to their work as possible with each deal. Publishers would love to get World Rights: the right to publish the book in any language and country in the world. Authors try to just sell North American Rights, which is what I did with MEMORY THIEF. That frees me up to sell the book in as many markets as I can. (Germany, France, Indonesia, China, etc. Basically each country is a different market.)

Some markets pay a lot, some pay a little. In this case, I almost got as much for the Chinese rights as I did for the North American Rights, so it was a fantastic surprise. Better yet, it’s another advance, meaning it’s money I get right away. And the most fantastic thing about it is that I didn’t have to do anything else other than sign a contract. No revisions. No drafts. No nothing.

The Chinese publisher will take care of translation, getting a cover, and all that jazz. I just get to sit back and look forward to seeing my writing in a new language at some point in the future.

It’s my first international sale, and that feels like a great threshold to cross. Maybe the interest from China will catch other countries’ eyes. Who knows? But for today, I’m just happy things continue to move forward so nicely.


Point of View: Memory Thief Chapter Ten


Welcome to another chapter annotation, where I discuss some of the behind the scenes work that went into writing THE MEMORY THIEF. As always, this assumes you’ve read the book already. Up this week is Chapter Ten, where Benji first sees memory bottles, but not before he is overcome by rage at school and on the bus.

This is a scene that I’d pictured early on in the drafting process, and it stayed more or less true to the way I wrote it the first time. I wanted memories to alter who you were. It’s a concept I’ve always believed, and I wanted it to come out through the story. (Related to this, I also believe our memories of a single event can be different due to the way we each perceive that event individually. This isn’t something that really fits with the world of the Memory Thief, where memories are basically recordings of what we experience. Then again, it might also be an area I could explore more.)

One tricky thing to pull off in this chapter was to show what’s going on with Benji in a way that makes sense and doesn’t alienate the reader. A first person point of view brings a lot of things to the table. It lets you get inside the narrator’s head and get to know him in a way that’s much more difficult with third person. But on the other hand, you can’t just tell the reader what’s up, and that can get confusing.

The example I always think of when I discuss this is Great Gatsby, where the narrator is extremely unreliable. He’s in love with a girl in the story, and so he presents her as being far more charming and wonderful than she is. Then at the end of the book, he sees her for what she is, and her character seems to shift. Not because she’s changed, but because the narrator’s perception of her has changed.

In this chapter, with Benji having taken in so many angry memories, it warps him. I wanted to have some of that bleed through, but this is Middle Grade, and so I needed to be careful with how I did it. Part of me wanted to have it go on longer, but in the end I just thought that would be too much. I don’t want to confuse my readers, so I thought if I kept it tight within a single chapter, it would still make sense to everyone. It was fun writing an angry Benji scene, though. One where he had no patience for anyone or anything. My characters aren’t typically like that.

Maybe in the end I thought it was a bigger deal than it was. No one’s commented that they were confused by it in the slightest, and no one’s commented on how much they liked the scene. You never know.

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