15-year-old Maya Van Wagenen has inked a book deal for a YA memoir called Popular: Vintage Wisdom for the Modern Geek.
Published by Penguin Young Readers Group’s Dutton Children’s Books imprint, the book will chronicle the teenager’s efforts to follow a 1950s self-help book called Betty Cornell’s Teen-age Popularity Guide, “applying the quaint-yet-timeless instructions to her contemporary life and exploring what it truly means to be popular.” Writers House agent Dan Lazar negotiated the two-book deal with publisher Julie Strauss-Gabel. Here’s more from the release:
When she was eleven, her family moved to Brownsville, Texas. The convergence of her awkward adolescence, culture shock, and the violent drug war in this colorful border town inspired Maya to begin a unique social experiment. She spent her eighth grade year following a 1950s popularity guide, written by former teen model Betty Cornell, to see the effect it would have on her social standing. The results were painful, funny and profound, and included a wonderful and unexpected surprise—befriending and meeting Betty herself.