Riveted Original

We All Looked Up: One Year Out

March 25, 2016
Matt Pantoliano
Riveted Editorial Board
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Happy one year book birthday, WALU!

It’s been one year as of today since Brooklyn-based musician and debut author Tommy Wallach’s We All Looked Up landed in bookstores everywhere and what a year it’s been!  The story of four high school seniors putting their hopes, hearts and humanity on the line as an asteroid hurtles towards the Earth, We All Looked Up‘s meteoric rise (See what I did there?) certainly exceeded any expectations for a novel from a first time author and paved the way for much more to come from Tommy, including the recently released Thanks for the Trouble.

Tommy reflected on the past year earlier on his blog at Tommywallach.com:

Today marks the one-year anniversary of the release of We All Looked Up. That’s one year as a published author. One year of seeing my book up on the shelves of my local bookstore(s). One year of hanging out in high schools and talking to lots of teenagers. Oh wait, I did that part before. Back in high school. And then again, when I was working for the FBI and I went deep undercover at Bayside High, pretending to be just your average teenage girl with a taste for cocaine in order to break up that drug ring. That sure was a crazy adventure, wasn’t it? But back to my point.

This year has been an amazing, incredible, phenomenal, awesome…oh shit, my thesaurus program just crashed. Whatever. It’s been a good year. WALU has gone through 14 printings. It’s been optioned for film, and foreign rights have sold in 14 countries. Just yesterday, I found out the damn thing is still on the NYTimes list, at #7 this week. WHAT? WHY? Can anyone be left who hasn’t read it? Are people just using it to line their bird cages and lean their iPads against at this point? I keep waiting for Ashton Kutcher to pop out and tell me that, in truth, nobody has read my book, and I’ve been the target of the longest Punk’d episode of all time. Of course, Punk’d hasn’t really been a legitimate cultural reference point for about ten years. So…that’s sad.

Anyway, the good news hasn’t all been about WALU. There’s also Thanks for the Trouble, a book that I struggled like hell to write, and that I’m so damned proud of now. There’s plenty of cool stuff going on there, though not all of it is sharable just yet. But I’ll tell you that seeing these tables in Barnes & Noble stores all over the country has been a high point of my entire life.

Anyway, I don’t really have all that much more to add. I just wanted to say how incredibly grateful I am to everybody who has traveled with me on this journey. You’re too numerous to name, but if you’re reading this, I’m talking about you.

Love and French kisses,

—T

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