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John Searles

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Boy Still Missing: A Novel (P.S.) by John Searles

Strange but True: A Novel (P.S.) by John Searles

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Member: JohnSearles

CollectionsYour library (3)

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MediaBook (3), Paper Book (3)

About meJohn Searles was born and raised in New England, the son of a truck-driver father and stay-at-home mom. After his high school graduation, his parents used their connections to get him a job at the nearby Dupont factory, where he gathered parts for various job orders. It didn’t take him long to realize the place wasn’t for him—three hours into the first day, he pretended to be sick and left, though when his parents found out, they sent him right back. After that, John set his sights on becoming the first person in his family to attend college. To save money for tuition, he stayed on at the factory and worked a night-job as a telemarketer, keeping people on the phone for hours asking important questions like, “On a scale of one to ten, how do you rate Bubble Yum in terms of it’s chewability?”

When he finally saved enough, John quit the factory and began commuting to Southern Connecticut State University. He majored in business, because he thought it was practical, but minored in creative writing, because it was something he loved. A year before graduation, John lost his younger sister, Shannon, to a childhood illness. This tragedy led him to pursue his writing more seriously, and he went onto win a number of writing awards from the university. Encouraged by this recognition, he moved to New York City to pursue a master’s degree in creative writing at New York University. While there, he was twice awarded a major fiction prize for his short stories and also began writing a novel entitled, Stones in the Airfield.

Following his time at NYU, John waited tables and attempted to publish his novel. His most memorable rejection came when an editor mistakenly left this note in with the manuscript: “I could barely make it to page 60 and I feel really sorry for anyone who has to read the whole thing.” Soon afterward, John attended a writer’s conference in South Carolina, where he met the fiction editor of Redbook. She liked his writing and offered him a freelance job reading short story submissions for fifty cents a story. It wasn’t much, but he preferred reading to serving Caesar salads and nachos, so he took that job for over a year until he was offered a part-time position in the books department at Cosmopolitan.

John planned to give Cosmo a try for a few weeks then quit if it got in the way of his fiction writing. For more than fifteen years, John served as the books editor at the magazine, eventually becoming the Editorial Brand Director as well. Under this newly created position, he launched a book line for the magazine, which grew to over one million books in print. He also oversaw the magazine’s website, which grew from 500,000 unique visitors per month to over eight million. In addition, he oversaw the launch of Cosmo Radio on SiriusXM, CosmoTV in Canada, a Cosmo movie, “Beauty & the Briefcase,” starring Hilary Duff, and numerous other successful brand extensions.

While balancing his magazine career, John began writing Boy Still Missing after the first sentence came to him while cleaning under his bed. In 2001, the book was published and went onto become a national bestseller. Hailed as “riveting” by the New York Times and “hypnotic” by Entertainment Weekly, the novel inspired Time magazine to name him a “Person to Watch” and the New York Daily News to name him a “New Yorker to Watch.” His second novel, Strange But True, also a national bestseller, was praised as “sinister and complex” by Janet Maslin of the New York Times and “extraordinary” by Publishers Weekly. Both novels have been optioned for film. John wrote the screenplay to Strange But True, which has been purchased by GreeneStreet Films in partnership with award-winning producer Ross Katz.

John’s third novel, Help for the Haunted, was praised by Kirkus (”Keeps readers guessing until its revealing conclusion…”) and received starred reviews in both Booklist (“Tantalizing!”) and Publishers Weekly (“Unsettling…Keeps readers on the edge…” The book also earned praise from bestselling writers, such as Gillian Flynn (Dazzling…Frightening….Beautiful”), Jodi Picoult (I was completely consumed by Help for the Haunted…”) and Chris Bohjalian (Poignant and touching and will scare the living hell out of you…”. John appears regularly on NBC’s Today Show as well as CBS’s The Early Show to discuss his favorite book selections. He has also appeared on NPR’s Fresh Air, Live! With Regis and Kelly, and CNN. His essays, articles and reviews have been published in the Washington Post, the New York Times, and many other national magazines and newspapers.

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Homepagehttp://john-searles.com/index.shtml

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Real nameJohn Searles

LocationNew York, NY

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Account typepublic, free

URLs /profile/JohnSearles (profile)
/catalog/JohnSearles (library)

Member sinceJun 17, 2013

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