I’m so excited to announce the airdate of the STOP THE WEDDING! movie: Saturday, June 11 at 9pm e/8c on the Hallmark Channel! The movie stars Rachel Boston, Niall Matter (both of whom are pictured on the special movie tie-in cover below), Alan Thicke, Teryl Rothery, Lini Evans, and many more wonderful actors! (For a peek at the full cast, click here to check out the InternetMovieDataBase page for STOP THE WEDDING!) My many thanks to the producers of the movie, and to the screenwriter, Nina Weinman, for bringing my story to life. There’s a lot of work in taking a novel and adding visual elements and set pieces to make it suitable for a 2-hour movie.
This book was probably the most unlikely story ever to make it to the movie stage. I wrote STOP THE WEDDING! almost 20 years ago for an editor in the UK who was looking to add comedy to the line of books she oversaw. She liked the concept of STW, but she said she’d need a full manuscript to show to her boss before she could make me an offer. In the writing world, we call that writing a project on the speculation of selling or “on spec.” In other words, the author is taking ALL the risk because he/she might write it and then no one will buy it. Still, it was a risk I was willing to take, so I agreed to write the book on spec in between other projects I had contracted. But wouldn’t you know it–by the time I’d finished writing it a few months later, the editor had left the publisher! And her boss declined to even read my manuscript. I offered the manuscript to another editor I was writing for, but she turned it down, also unread. I think in total, it was turned down six or seven times by different editors, each time unread. So I eventually forgot about it. Fast forward to 2012 when I was having some success self-publishing. I remembered STOP THE WEDDING!, but I didn’t have a printed copy and I didn’t know where the computer files were anymore. I finally found a 3.5″ diskette languishing in the back of a dusty desk drawer labeled STW. Only I didn’t know if the files were still on there (in those days, diskettes failed pretty often) and I no longer had a computer with a diskette drive. So I sent it off to a service that would transfer the info to a CD–that took a few weeks. When I got it back, I inserted the CD into my laptop and held my breath….and the files were there! And then, the real test–had the story held up over time? I read it through and although it needed some updating (pagers and boom boxes ruled), I still loved the story and the characters. So I polished and revamped it and self-published it with a gorgeous cover (by Andrew Brown at Click Twice Design) and hoped for the best. And the little book that could soon became a bestseller (#2 on the overall Kindle list), and went on to become my bestselling book of all time. Isn’t that the way of things?!
A few months later, I received an email through my website from a producer who had read the book and thought it would make a great movie. I told her my mother totally agreed, and connected her with my agent. Two short years later (yes, that’s how the film industry works!), the book was optioned for development as a Hallmark movie. And now, I can scarcely believe it’s about to air!
I hope you will help me to get the word out about the STOP THE WEDDING! movie on the Hallmark Channel. And I hope you’ll tune in if you have time and are into that whole happiness thing. 🙂 I haven’t seen the movie yet, so I’ll be watching right along with you! Meanwhile, here’s a link to the trailer…I hope you enjoy!