Tumblr tag archive – The Next Together (part 3)

The Next Together (part 1) | The Next Together (part 2)  | The Next Together (part 3)| The Next Together (part 4) | The Last Beginning | Another Together | Another Beginning | The Loneliest Girl in the Universe | The Quiet at the End of the World | Book 5 (ghost house) | Book 6 (loneliest 2) | Book 7 (earth) | Book 8 (fandom) 



I just did some sneaky googling of my book, and found a TON of blog mentions that I’d never seen before! I was so ridiulously gleeful about it that I had to make a post. LOOK AT ALL THE LOVELY PEOPLE EXCITED FOR MY BOOK!

Afterwritten | Sarah Sky @ YA Birmingham | Kendra Leighton | Daisy Chain book reviews | The Book Nooks | Luna’s Little Library |  Fic Wishes | Overflowing library | Neon Yeti Reads

#the next together #blog #aaaaaahhhhhhhhhh
21ST FEB 2015

lylamariemazie: This will be me as a wife

#kate to matt THE DORK #the next together
19TH FEB 2015


#kate’s wedding dress #the next together
14TH FEB 2015



Researching history for fiction

I recently posted about the historical events and locations in The Next Together, so I thought I’d explain how I did my historical research. If you asked my editor and copyeditor, they’d likely admit that I’m not the best at historical accuracy. I’m not a historian.

View On WordPress

#the next together
10TH FEB 2015

one or both members of otp: dead
me: they’ll work around that

#kate and matt #KATE AND MATT #the next together

Anonymous asked: Is there anything in the final version of The Next Together that survived all the way from that first draft of The Red Earth Rolls, or has it all been changed? (Also, can you explain the change/meaning of the titles?) Thanks!

Yes! There’s lots of scenes which made it from my very first draft, usually the more romantic, banter-y scenes, because they weren’t affected by the plot changes. I think all three of my favourite scenes were actually from the first draft.

There’s one particular scene from the 1745 storyline, where Katherine and Matthew have a very flirty hand-holding carriage ride, which I fought really hard to keep. It was one of the earliest scenes I wrote, and it was the first one that really felt like I’d found My Voice, and might actually be able to do the whole writing thing.

The scene nearly had to be cut because it didn’t really fit the plot anymore, but I did a lot of frantic adjusting to make sure it could be kept.

Here’s one scene that I’m really sad to have lost, but it just didn’t work!

The original title came from a Rudyard Kipling poem, about reincarnation:

They will come back – come back again,
as long as the red Earth rolls.
He never wasted a leaf or a tree.
Do you think He would squander souls?
Everyone thought that was a bit too literary for YA, and might put off younger teenagers, so my publisher asked me to change it.

We spent a long time looking for a new title (with tumblr’s help) but eventually we settled on The Next Together, because it gets across the idea of reincarnation, as well as them coming back for a particular reason:

How many times can you lose the person you love? Maybe the next together will be different.
I was really sad to lose The Red earth Rolls at first, but now I absolutely love The Next Together, especially after seeing it on a cover!

(Speaking of which, I saw my final(ish) cover this week, and I absolutely adore, adore, adore it. I’m hoping we’ll be able to share it in the next few weeks!!!!!!)

#Anon #the next together #blog
2ND FEB 2015



cracked:  But come on, it’s not like they can just turn male scientists characters into female scientist characters whenever they want.

#the next together #manifesto
2ND FEB 2015

Anonymous asked: was the next together the first novel you’ve finished/written?

It was, but it took a lot of drafts to arrive at the final version! I originally started writing it when I was 16, and began to write it “properly” when I was 18. Reincarnation was always an idea I had knocking around in my head from a young age.

#the next together #Anon
2ND FEB 2015

The locations in The Next Together

Last time I posted, I had just found out that my American publishers, Egmont US, have closed down. I tried to sound positive but it had got me down quite a bit. However, I’ve got lots of wonderful people looking after me, and being very positive, so I’m a lot less upset about the whole thing now. I really hope that there’s still chance for The Next Together to be published in the USA, but either…

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#the next together
27TH JAN 2015


Anonymous asked: How long did it take you to write The Next Together and how long after that did you get your agent?

I wrote The Next Together, then called The Red Earth Rolls, in my first two summer holidays at uni, so around 4 months total. I spent 2 years thinking about it inbetween writing, though!

I finished it in July 2013, and sent the first 3 chapters to 6 agents in November 2013. I had 2 form rejections and then Claire Wilson at RCW asked to read the full manuscript. She offered me representation in January 2014. (I never heard back from the other agents.)
We revised the manuscript throughout 2014 (because I was busy at uni and couldn’t do anything until the summer) and sent it out to 12 UK publishers in November 2014. Walker offered me a book deal 2 weeks later!

4 months to write
2 months to get an agent
11 months to get a publisher
And it’ll be published 2 years after I finished the first draft.

Hope that answers your question! If you want to know more about the querying process, let me know, I’ve got a ton of links I can share with you.

#the next together #blog
26TH JAN 2015


#matt would have this in his office #with kate’s face on #the next together
25TH JAN 2015


The most important post I’ve ever written.
My second novel has an LGBT protagonist.

I have something that I guess is an announcement, but I don’t really think of it like that. It’s just something I’ve not mentioned online before. Ever.

My second book, the sequel to The Next Together, which doesn’t have a firm title yet, has an LGBT protagonist. The main character is a lesbian.

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#clove #the next together #The Last Beginning
17TH JAN 2015

My page proofs are the prettiest thing in the entire world. This is my BOOK, it’s REAL.

#blog #the next together
21ST MAR 2015


Bringing this back because I just remembered it exists: this Lynx/Axe soulmates advert is the perfect trailer for my book The Next Together. Just….just watch it. You’ll see.

so many feelings

#the next together
18TH MAR 2015

A little ten question interview I took part in for my local Waterstones posted yesterday!

Monday, 16 March 2015

Regency sci-fi romance.

I had to do a lot of historical research as the book contains two plotlines in the past, one in 1745 during the Jacobite Uprising and one in 1854 during the Crimean War. Writing it was a very messy process involving a lot of Wikipedia and trawling through history books.

I love Catherine Doyle, Alice Oseman, and Louise O’Neill. Brilliant young authors who are also very cool!

I don’t know if I can choose between my main characters Kate and Matt . . . this is too hard! They are the best as a pair.

I write at night. I’ve tried writing during the day, but I’m totally unproductive until the sun has gone down!

Mental illness seems to be the new trend, like the recent books All the Bright Places and I’ll Give You The Sun.

I’d prefer a TV series just because I’m greedy and would want it to be as long as possible! I spend a lot of time thinking about my dream cast, it’s probably unhealthy. I see Kate Finchley as a young Gillian Anderson, Matt Galloway is Ben Whishaw and Tom Galloway is Dylan O’Brien.

Young Adult fiction has the huge responsibility of being read by teenagers. The right book can shape a young person’s ideas about important issues like feminism, homophobia, sexual assault and mental illness for the rest of their lives. If you read the right book at exactly the right age it can stay with you forever, and YA does that really well.

Right now I’m working on the sequel to The Next Together, which has an LGBT protagonist! I wrote a blog post about it here. I can’t say much more than that without spoiling something though, sorry!

Love transcends time and space and social constraints, even when the world is working against it.

#blog #the next together
17TH MAR 2015

Get ready!
My cover is being revealed in SEVENTEEN DAYS on Friday the 13th along with the first chapter of The Next Together!!

Are you ready?! I’m not.

Here’s a sneak peek.

Dun dun duuuuuuuuuuun

#the next together #blog #book
24TH FEB 2015 4 NOTES


Anonymous asked: Are you happy with the cover for TNT?

I am! I absolutely love it. Every time I look at it I can’t believe that it’s really my book. It looks so mature and sophisticated and special.

The designer (the fantastic jackdraws) went through a series of different ideas, and I loved each one more than the last. It was kind of heartbreaking that we couldn’t use them all.

Sixteen days until you can all see it!!

Here’s another sneak peak:

#the next together #blog #book #Anon
25TH FEB 2015



It’s going to be on Friday the 13th!!!! TEN DAYS!!!!

I’m not going to give you any more sneak peaks, but here’s a fanmade one by chronicintrovert to keep you going:

The real one is just as good, if you can believe that.

Also today is six months exactly until the book comes out!!!!!! LET’S PARTY LIKE WE’RE TERRIFIED!!!!!

#the next together #blog #book #Anon
3RD MAR 2015

negative-pessimist asked: Hi Lauren! This is a very random question but do you have a playlist for TNT/a playlist of songs that helped inspire TNT?

Rae! I definitely do, and you can listen to it on 8tracks:

shine/anna nalick
love story/taylor swift
tired of waiting for you/the kinks

dear river/kina grannis

rattlin’ bones/kasey chambers

back to where i was/eric hutchinson
radioactive/imagine dragons
young volcanoes/fall out boy
when the war came/the decemberists
to the dog or whoever/josh ritter
la meme historie/feist
centuries/fall out boy
man o’ war/eric bachmann
maybe/ingrid michaelson
brand new day/joshua radin
first day of my life/bright eyes

“But if you close your eyes, does it almost feel like nothing changed at all? If you close your eyes, does it almost feel like you’ve been here before?”

If you’re super ahead of the game you can even listen to the sequel playlist here. This one is a lot longer and very fluffy. It’s that kind of book. There’s a lot of Taylor Swift.

girls like you/the naked and the famous
classy girls/the lumineers
happy together/the turtles
once was love/ingrid michaelson
why am i the one/fun.
exile vilify/the national
girls chase boys/ingrid michaelson
laughter lines/bastille
a better son daughter/rilo kiley
campus/vampire weekend
you’ve got time/regina spektor
become the colour/emily wells
she’s a rebel/green day
brave/sara bareilles
get home/bastille
wonderland/taylor swift
she’s electric/oasis
how you get the girl/taylor swift
high hopes/the vamps
riptide/taylor swift
if she wants me/belle and sebastian
i’m a believer/the monkees
take me to church/hozier
party in the usa/miley cyrus
pencil full of lead/paolo nutini
big parade/the lumineers
feeling good/muse
love you much better/the hush sound
she’s got you high/mumm-ra
year 3000/busted
“She’s electric, she’s in a family full of eccentrics, she done things I never expected. And I need more time.”

#negative pessimist #the next together #book #blog #oh GOD this gave me so many feelings #The Last Beginning
26TH FEB 2015


Anonymous asked: Was it harder to write or edit The Next Together?

Firstly, thank you for all the lovely questions I’ve had recently! The Next Together isn’t even out for *checks* 192 days, so it means a lot that people are interested in my experiences before you’ve even read the book! ❤

I found editing really fun, actually – except for copyediting, when the final checks of everything are done. That just made me feel bad for all my grammar and factual errors!

I really like editing because it really feels like you’re improving your work and stretching the plot as much as you can. I love the feeling when my editor/agent points out something that could be done differently, that will dramatically make it better. It’s a great oh, duh moment, and improving on their initial suggestion (which might be something like ‘maybe add more tension to this scene’) is really, really fun.

That said, I love writing too! There’s nothing better than writing something completely original and making yourself laugh/cry/scream/sigh happily at something.

I think writing is harder though. It’s a lot more stressful than editing, because I’m a big worrier, so I spend a lot of time panicking that I’m writing something rubbish (whereas with edits I know exactly what my editor doesn’t like, so I’m a lot happier with it and not second-guessing myself). It’s a huge gamble for anyone, to spend such a significant amount of time working on a project that you have no guarantee anyone will like, and that doesn’t change just because you’ve successfully published one book! I think that makes writing new things a lot harder than editing, for me.

#the next together #writing #blog #Anon
22ND FEB 2015


negative-pessimist: Bookblr, you are in for something awesome, gorgeous and perfect at 4pm GMT tomorrow. Keep your eyes peeled, and be ready to add yet another book to your TBR. #remember remember the 3rd of september #the release date at long last
#of lauren james’ the next together

laurenjames: Only 174 days to go!!!!

#rae rocks guys #the next together
12TH MAR 2015


My cover and first chapter reveal is happening tomorrow at 4pm!!! It’s going to be on some tumblr book blogs and review sites so KEEP YOUR EYES PEELED.
I’m so excited!!!!!!!!!!!

#the next together #blog
12TH MAR 2015 24 NOTES

Cover reveal for The Next Together + First Chapter!

the-next-together_intro-imageYesterday, the cover of my debut novel was revealed, along with the first chapter! Thank you to Lucy at Queen of Contemporary, Daisy Chain Book Reviews, Jim at YAYeahYeah, Hannah at Luna’s Little LibrarySarah Likes BooksBecki at A Word ShakerTilly-and-her-booksManda at Bookmad, and Ink-slingers for their help with the reveal!

As you can see, it was posted practically everywhere,but just in case you haven’t seen it yet…here it is!

tumblr_inline_nl7y2q6mMA1qzl77qIf you want to read the first chapter, click on the link to see it in full!

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#the next together #blog
14TH MAR 2015

I think the reason I love my cover so much is that it’s not super girly and pink and glittery. It’s a romance, so I could easily have ended up with a cover like that…but instead I get this!

It’s very non-gendered and sophisticated and classy and I LOVE IT. Last week I blogged about coverflip, about how female writers tend to get more fluffy and less serious covers compared to similar books written by men. I think it’s a great sign that my cover escaped that. It could be used for a book by a male writer too, like David Mitchell’s Cloud Atlas! It’s so AMAZING.

#the next together #blog
13TH MAR 2015

I was tagged in a few memes, so I thought I’d do them in one post!

I was tagged by negative-pessimist​ in the Female Authors meme.

1. Favourite female author? (Or authors, I know it can be hard to choose only one!)

Sarah Waters for sure.

2. Favourite book by a female writer?

Fingersmith by the above!

3. Favourite quote by a female writer?

Mainly because it’s relevant to The Next Together:

“Everyoneremembers things which never happened. And it is common knowledge that people often forget things which did. Either we are all fantasists and liars or the past has nothing definite in it. I heard people say we are shaped by our childhood. But which one?”

From Jeanette Winterson’s Sexing the Cherry

4. Favourite fictional heroine?

Lirael from Lirael by Garth Nix

5. Favourite female poet?

Margaret Atwood

6. Favourite female author of your childhood?

Probably Jacqueline Wilson or J K Rowling.

7. Favourite living female writer?
A. M. Homes is excellent.

8. Do you have a not very known favourite female author? Share her with us!

I’m gonna say e. lockhart, because however famous she is, it’s not famous enough.

9. Bonus: Which female author would you have loved to meet? What one question would you have asked her?

I’m going to meet Emily St. John Mandel this week to get my copy of Station Eleven signed (which has just been longlisted for the Bailey’s Women’s prize for fiction!!).

I tag anyone with an s in their username to answer this!

I was also tagged by catherine-doyle​, chronicintrovert​ AND blackbirdonthewire​ to do the Terrible Titles tag, so I thought it was probably about time I got around to that….

The rules of this game are as follows: “Scroll through your manuscript and stop at a random place in the text. Whatever you land on becomes one of ten terrible titles.”

HERE GOES. The Next Together, if it were terrible:

Who Were These People?
That’s What She Said
Wedding Planning: A Threat, A Nightmare, A Powerpoint
With Awkward and Sometimes Even Aggressive Determination
An Air of Quiet Embarrassment
You are ridiculous and I love you.
Her Plans Were Vague
Exactly the Same
A Little Plotting Involved
In A Shocking Turn of Events
Hmm. #8 is actually kind of good, but #7 is the most accurate, I think.

I tag my editor and fellow author A J Grainger/book-sleeves-and-tea-leaves​, because I want to see what else Captive could have been called!

#blog #The Next Together
10TH MAR 2015


The Next Together by Lauren James | Waterstones.com →


#mate don’t even ask why it says laurence i’ll try and get that fixed #the next together
3RD MAR 2015



littlebundleofbooks: Seriously I get so many feelings about it when I’m listening to Lorde (and also just all the time tbh). Look, I’m just here to fangirl and think about Kate and Matt (and Matt’s hair), y’know?

Matt’s hair is supreme. Here is my ultimate Matt’s Hair fancast:

=tumblr_n6vmj33CSt1s49g11o1_500 (1)


#the next together #blog
22ND APR 2015

Today I got to hold my book for the first time as a real physical thing. I’m feeling very emotional and a little tearful about it right now, so please indulge me for this post. Here’s the story of The Next Together, and why this is such a huge huge deal to me.

Two weeks after I turned eighteen I started university. I was very shy and awkward and didn’t really make many friends at first. Especially not in my hall/dorm, where I didn’t know anyone at all. I would sit in my room and feel so homesick I couldn’t bear it.

So to make myself less lonely, I started writing a story. I didn’t really have any ideas, so I started by making a list of all the things I like best in books, and brainstorming from there.

reincarnation 24

I described it on my livejournal, back in the early days pre-tumblr, as a ‘reincarnation type thing’.reincarnation 1

I quickly realised that I wouldn’t have enough time to work on it, so I put it to one side for a while, until the summer.

reincarnation 15

It took me a while – so long that I’d moved from livejournal to tumblr to scratch my social networking itch by then –

reincarnation 11

– but eventually I finished it.

reincarnation 2

Reading back through these entries now, it’s unbelievable how much determination it took to get to this point, where it’s a real actual book I can hold in my hands. On and off, I have been editing this story from July 2012 to March 2015. That’s three freaking years. THREE YEARS. I’ve been thinking about it for even longer – the earliest post I can find about it is from 2009. Six years ago. I was sixteen.

reincarnation 4

The internet has been a huge part of my writing process, from fancasting to research to just complaining about writing. I even ran a poll to ask the internet what I should call my characters!

reincarnation 3

Tumblr, you’ve seen this book develop from the very beginning:

reincarnation 7

You were the first people to ever read it:

reincarnation 8

You were there when I sent it to agents:

reincarnation 18

And then you put up with my panic again when it was submitted to publishers:

reincarnation 6

And celebrated with me when I got a book deal:

reincarnation 19

You helped me objectify actors in the noble pursuit of fancasting:

reincarnation 10

(Many, many times.)

reincarnation 13

(No, really.)

reincarnation 16

You mourned with me when I had to choose a new title to replace the original name, The Red Earth Rolls:

reincarnation 5

And you went mental with excitement when the cover was revealed.

reincarnation 9

The Next Together cover reveal

reincarnation 21

I can’t even count the number of friends I’ve made because of a stupid idea I had for a book.

reincarnation 12

Some of whom have even drawn me FANART!!

reincarnation 20

And now, it’s time.

I’m now twenty two. I’ve been writing this book since I was eighteen. It’s more of a part of who I am, and my personality and my experiences growing up than almost anything else. When I started it, I was a shy teenager who couldn’t bear to be away from home, who wrote to escape the real world. Now I’m a grown up (kind of) (I mean, not really) (I still spend a lot of time on tumblr) and writing is my job: my actual, real life job. This book has changed and evolved and matured at the same rate as me.

And as of today, it’s no longer a figment of my imagination. It’s real. An actual, paper book that I can hold and stroke.



Please excuse me while I stare at it forever. And thank you, tumblr. Thank you, livejournal. Thank you, internet. You made this happen. Let’s celebrate.

The Next Together will be published on 3rd September. You can read the first chapter here.

How many times can you lose the person you love?

A powerful and epic debut novel for teenagers about reincarnation and the timelessness of first love from a talented young writer.

Teenagers Katherine and Matthew are destined to be born again and again. Each time their presence changes history for the better, and each time, they fall hopelessly in love, only to be tragically separated.

But why do they keep coming back? What else must they achieve before they can be left to live and love in peace? Maybe the next together will be different.

Goodreads | Amazon UK | Waterstones | The Book Depository


tumblr look what you did:


I’m gonna die. This is the end. I’m done in.



Is this not MADNESS? Tumblr did this. This is all tumblr.

Wow. WOW. Thank you so much guys. I’m blown away by your support! ❤

#blog #the next together
21ST APR 2015  1,892 NOTES

jenndoesnotcare asked: Aw, that is a great story! I can’t wait to read your book. And (writer to writer) I SUPER understand multiple fancasts! Anyway you seem super adorable and reading your story cheered me up immensely 🙂

Aw, Thank you!!

And yes, I’m not just satisfied by one actor for fancastings. I will collect as many actors as possible and combine them to create the one optimum fancast of my characters, in a kind of ‘his arm’, ‘his nose’ pick-and-mix. It will be my finest creation.

Your message cheered me up immensely too! Thank you!

#nice people #blog #the next together #jenndoesnotcare
21ST APR 2015

nataliebina: YAY LAUREN THIS IS SO AMAZING I AM SO HAPPY YOU HAVE GOTTEN HERE WITH THIS BOOK! I love nothing more than stories of great writers who started with great programs like NaNoWriMo and have taken their stories far. You are an inspiration, and I can’t wait to read The Next Together!

thebookbangtheory: Omg I saw this recommended to me on Amazon and thought “huh, thus sounds like an interesting concept, maybe I’ll get this with my next paycheck”. Never would’ve guessed it would’ve come from someone on Tumblr! That’s amazing!! Congrats, Lauren!!

THANK YOU! I’m tumblr for life ❤

paellego reblogged your photoset and added: oh god i actually have this on my tbr list omgg congratulations! I am so happy about this ❤

keris replied to your photoset: Huge congratulations! x
kirstysmash replied to your photoset: The first chapter was intriguing! Can’t wait until September 3rd!
littlebundleofbooks reblogged your photoset and added: lauren-e-james I’m literally so happy for you that I’ve started welling up at work help

GUYS YOU ARE ALL INCREDIBLE, THANK YOU. I’m so happy right now I don’t know what to do with myself.

#the next together #blog
20TH APR 2015

jardindesfees asked: Hi Lauren, I’m Cat and we have never met, bet let me just say this: I AM EXTREMELY PROUD OF YOU!!! You wrote a book! And it’s out!! I can’t wait to read it! Good luck with your future projects and have a nice day! xoxo Cat

Thank you so much Cat!! I WROTE A REAL BOOK!

It means a lot to me that so many people are supportive of me. ❤

I hope you have a nice day too! I’m just gonna be here cradling my book.#blog #the next together #nice people #jardindesfees #me
20TH APR 2015

rvvve: adds “we just caught our alternate universe selves making out and now everything is super awkward” to list of shipping tropes that need to be implemented everywhere

#the next together #wait what? #who said that
20TH APR 2015

(via malech)

#the next together #katherine? #trying on matts glasses? #hmmmm

I did a debut author interview at the blog of Marci Lyn Curtis! →

Today I’m interviewing Lauren James, incredibly sweet fellow Fearless Fifteener and author of THE NEXT TOGETHER, a remarkable reincarnation romance that I was fortunate enough to read recently. Add THE NEXT TOGETHER (Walker Books in the UK, 3rd September 2015) to Goodreads or preorder on Amazon.

THE NEXT TOGETHER has such a brilliant, twisty plotline! How did you manage to keep everything straight? Did you outline?

Thank you, Marci! It was hard to keep everything in my head, and after a few confused conversations with my agent, where neither of us knew what was happening, I taped about five huge pieces of paper together, laid them on the floor, and wrote out the plot in each timeline. There was lots of post-it notes and highlighting and multi-coloured notes used to keep everything in order!

I think if I’d realised how complicated to would be to write a three timeline, historical, time travel novel, I might have saved the idea until I’d already written one or two other novels. As it was, I chucked myself straight into the deep end as an author.

A good portion of this story occurs in the past. How much research did you have to do in order to stay historically correct?

There are three storylines in The Next Together, each about a different life of my main characters, who are reincarnated throughout history. One is set in the future, one in 1854 during the Crimean war, and one in 1745 during the Jacobite Uprising. So I did a lot of research to make sure I didn’t embarrass myself!

I visited one of the locations, Carlisle Castle, to make sure my descriptions of the layout were accurate. I also read a lot of primary sources, usually diaries and letters from people around at the time, as well as history books about the time period.

I wanted to make sure that my writing was a little realistic, but I didn’t go hugely overboard with the research – I think the story is more important, and I didn’t want to make the dialogue too heavy and historical, especially for a book aimed at younger teenagers. It’s a historical novel, but it’s hopefully exciting and modern and funny regardless of that.

Hopefully I found the right balance between accuracy and plot!

Can you tell us a little bit about your hero and heroine?

Kate and Matt are reincarnated multiple times throughout history, and they always find each other and fall in love. Kate is sassy and rude and rushes into things without thinking, and Matt is more contemplative and careful and a little shy. He thinks Kate is incredibly cool. Kate thinks Matt is exactly her Type.

They’re both a little silly and ridiculous, but they love each other a lot, and have a great time finding out just how much in every storyline.

What is your writing process like?

I write at night, usually from around 7pm – 2am. I listen to playlists I make for each book, and I chew gum and write and write and write. I usually know how a story is going to start and what’s going to happen in the first half, but I don’t know the rest until I get there.

I write dialogue first, starting with funny or romantic lines that I’ve noted down beforehand, and I build scenes around them. I write from beginning to end, and I don’t let myself jump ahead to other scenes however much I want to. I just force myself through the awful bits. It takes me about 2 months to write a first draft, and then I leave it for at least a month before I go back to it and work on edits.

Who are some of your favorite authors?

I love Rainbow Rowell, Garth Nix, Neil Gaiman, but some of my favourite recently published authors are Robin Talley, Alexia Casale, Noelle Stevenson and Lisa Williamson. I have so many favourites it was hard to pick just a few! If you want some more recommendations, my favourite books of 2014 are here.
Lauren James is a scientist by day, writer by early hours of the morning. She graduated in 2014 with a Masters degree in Natural Sciences from the University of Nottingham, where she studied Chemistry and Physics. She now lives in the village of Berkswell, West Midlands. You can find her on Twitter at @Lauren_E_James, which she mainly uses to fancast actors as her characters and panics about all of the overly ambitious plans she has for her PhD, or her website at http://lauren-e-james.tumblr.com.

You can find Lauren on Twitter, Tumblr, or WordPress.


Marci’s book THE ONE THING is also excellent and publishes in September by Disney, so be sure to check that out!

#blog #the next together
8TH APR 2015




#the next together #blog #FREAKING OUTTTTTTT #yes i have been refreshing goodreads all day waiting for this to hit 1000 why do you ask
4TH APR 2015

tilly-and-her-books: STOP WHAT YOU’RE DOING. Have you heard about this book? Well listen up. This is The Next Together by Lauren James. This is the cover reveal and I’m so excited to be sharing it with you because look at how gorgeous it is.

About The Next Together
Howmany times can you lose the one you love?

ForMatthew and Katherine it is again and again, over and over, century aftercentury. Katherine and Matthew are destined to be born again and again. Each time their presence changes history for the better, and each time, they fall hopelessly in love, only to be tragically separated. But why do they keep coming back? How many times must they die to save the world? What else must they achieve before they can be left to live and love in peace? Maybe the next together will be different…

ALRIGHT, ALRIGHT. I bet that’s got you hooked? IT HAD ME JUST AT FIRST LINE. Another thing that got me hooked was the goodreads ratings. This book has a few reviews from people who were lucky enough to receive early copies and it’s all five stars.Take a look for yourself! (add it to your shelf whilst you’re there!)

I also have an excerpt to share. It’s a very special extract from the book!
Part 7 of the exclusive extract from The Next Together by Lauren

>File note: Clipping from The Times classified advertisements

In the dressmakers’, Elizabeth settled on a light green silk with pink braiding. Katherine made sure to express her gratitude to her aunt, but she felt awkward in the close-fitting, expensive clothing. She hadn’t worn anything this fine even when her grandmother was alive.Katherine had a small circle of acquaintances, having spent the last few years looking after her grandmother. She didn’t regret it, but now she had to face the rest of the world she realized how introverted she had become.She was nearly eighteen and it was time to grow up. She shifted in the new clothing, suddenly feeling ready to start her new life. To read the next exclusive extract from The Next Together, go to http://bookmad.tumblr.com/

About the author Lauren James

Lauren James is a scientist by day, writer by early hours of the morning. She graduated in 2014 with a Masters degree in Natural Sciences from the University of Nottingham, where she studied Chemistry and Physics. She now lives in the village of Berkswell, West Midlands. You can find her on Twitter at @Lauren_E_James, which she mainly uses to fancast actors as her characters and panics about all of the overly ambitious plans she has for her PhD, or her website at http://lauren-e-james.tumblr.com.

Hell, If you don’t like the book…you’ve got to like the author. Jump onto her Tumblr too because I really love her blog. You totally will too. At least check it out anyway 😀

The Next Together publishes in September 2015 (Walker Books) and can be pre-ordered now. (Book Depository/Amazon)

livinglovinglangston: I AM SO EXCITED AND I JUST CANT HIDE IT.

brainy13sweetheart: OH MY GOD. OH MY GOD. OH. MY. GOD.


laurenjames: When did this post get nearly 400 notes?!? You guys are all amazing, I am so grateful to everyone in the tumblr/booklr community for sharing my excitement about this cover. ♡

#the next together
3RD APR 2015 389 NOTES

Heads up!
If you’re thinking of preordering The Next Together, some info:

I’m thinking of doing a reward thing for preorders a little closer to publication where I send people who’ve preordered a signed & personalised bookplate of some kind. If that would be of interest to you then could you please like this post to give me an idea of numbers? It will be open internationally. 🙂

Btw, the list price for The Next Together is going up to £7.99 (it already has on amazon) but it’s not changed price yet on other sites. So if you’re thinking of pre-ordering at any point this might be a good time! (I would love it if you would- the more preorders we get the more exciting things my publisher might do for publicity- think posters/bookmarks/postcards!!)

It’s currently at a low price in the following places:

The Book Depository (free international shipping) | Waterstones | Wordery (cheapest + free UK shipping!) | Foyles | Blackwell’s

Okay, that’s all, folks! Thank you my lovelies ❤

#the next together #blog
27TH MAR 2015

Do you think the universe fights for souls to be together?
Some things are too strange and strong to be coincidences.
— (via bl-ossomed)

#the next together
26TH MAY 2015


dapperalbinobudgie: “This has always been and shall continue to be my favorite post

#the next together
26TH MAY 2015


#messy sobbing #matt #the next together
24TH MAY 2015


Upping my signing game with a gold sharpie oh yeahhhhh

#blog #the next together
20TH MAY 2015


Listening to the new Mumford & Sons album while I do my last ever ever checks to #TheNextTogether. Every post it marks a change…..oops…………….

#the next together #blog
19TH MAY 2015

Anonymous asked: I can’t wait any longer to buy your book. Like I’m too excited. I plan on buying it as soon as it’s out so yay me and yay you! Haha 🙂

I can’t tell you how much I love getting messages like this! Thank you so much for being as excited about my book as I am.

I have some cool giveaways and stuff planned between now and September that will hopefully tide you over…but for now, here’s the first sentence of Chapter 2 (following on from Chapter 1 here):

Kate sat at the desk in her dorm room and stared at the concrete wall. She felt like something hugely important had just happened, but she wasn’t sure what.


#the next together #Anon
15TH MAY 2015


Today I went to inkslingerbooks to sign all my proofs ready to go out to bloggers, whaaaaaaat!

#blog #me #the next together
14TH MAY 2015

refrescorojo: Waiting on Wednesday: The Next Together

“Waiting On” Wednesday is a weekly event, hosted by breaking the spine, that spotlights upcoming releases that we’re eagerly anticipating.

WoW of the week is: The Next Together by Lauren James

Publication day: September 3rd 2015

From Goodreads:

How many times can you lose the person you love?

A powerful and epic debut novel for teenagers about reincarnation and the timelessness of first love from a talented young writer.

Teenagers Katherine and Matthew are destined to be born again and again. Each time their presence changes history for the better, and each time, they fall hopelessly in love, only to be tragically separated.

But why do they keep coming back? What else must they achieve before they can be left to live and love in peace?

Maybe the next together will be different..

Thank you! ❤

#the next together
13TH MAY 2015


At a conference my publishers held last week, The Next Together went out in the goody bags!
Look at it! [vibrates with delight]
Credit to Wei Ming Kam for the pic!

#the next together #blog
13TH MAY 2015

askkairi: some reincarnation AUs

I fell in love with you three lifetimes ago and I’ve been looking for you ever since but I’ve been starting to give up and my friend’s new crush has your eyes and oh god I’m not going to steal someone’s date just because I’m hoping you’re the person I met in a past life (jk yes I am)
I’ve met you in every single lifetime and I always hope it will work out but it doesn’t but I’ll still keep finding you again because those few days/months/years together with you are always so worth it
I meet and fall in love with you in every lifetime at the same age but your age is always different so it never works out and for the first time I’m meeting you when we’re the same age and I’m horrified that I might fuck this up
I skipped like four cycles of reincarnation and I know you’re pissed at me for leaving you all those lifetimes but it wasn’t my fault please please will you take me back
We only remember each other in alternating lifetimes so every lifetime we have to find one another and convince each other that we’re soul mates but half the time I won’t believe you and half the time you’re already dating someone else
I don’t know how to tell you this but the reason you didn’t see me in our last reincarnation cycle is because for some fucked up reason I was reincarnated as your dog
We keep reincarnating as people who speak different languages and it’s kind of pissing me off because I can never initially confirm if it’s you but at least I keep learning a bunch of cool new languages each lifetime

#[stares meaningfully into the camera] #the next together

I don’t know if this is exciting to anyone but me (I find the smallest most boring details interesting) but The Next Together is now available for preorder on kindle, ibooks and kobo! Yay!

#the next together #blog
8TH MAY 2015


So ridiculously (amazingly, absurdly) you can now buy a The Next Together mug from a shop set up by an author to promote UKYA books. Isn’t that so cute!! Look at it!!

You can get loads of other UKYA stuff too, including mugs with quotes by other UK authors. Beware, if you visit the shop, you may spend all your money. Enjoy!

#the next together #blog
1ST MAY 2015

damedonger: cool gender neutral things to call your significant other

a winner (because they’re dating you)

#LOOOOOK #it’s kate to matt #the next together
28TH APR 2015

Reviews for The Next Together have started coming in from people I don’t know and it’s the most exciting/nerve-wracking thing in the entire WORLD. [
[dances] [barricades self in bedroom]

#the next together #blog
27TH APR 2015

#Katherine by the pond in chapter 2


I made myself into a classy anemone mermaid lady, because how can I not jump on a mermaid trend set by maggie-stiefvater??

And of course, I couldn’t NOT make my leading lady Kate into a mermaid, could I? She’s flagging…

She’s flagging down Matt the octopus merman, who in this reincarnation is working as a seahorse taxi driver. Kate makes very lewd remarks about all of his tentacles when he drives her anywhere.

He doesn’t mind a bit.

#the next together
9TH JUL 2015


At an event at my publishers last month, my cover designer Jack shared some of the different versions of the cover for The Next Together. Aren’t they so cool?

Pictures taken from the lovely UK Shadowhunters, Walker Books, and Andrew Hall.

#walkerfictionfest #the next together #blog
7TH JUL 2015


chronicintrovert asked: LAUREN AND ALICE FAQ UPDATE. What alignments would all your characters be? (chaotic neutral, lawful evil etc) Which is your favourite to write? Which would you love to write in future? Which is the most boring? (sorry i copied your questions, they were really interesting lol)

I TOTALLY DON’T MIND AT ALL. I will shamelessly always answer my own questions.

What alignments would all your characters be?

Kate – Chaotic Good
Matt – Lawful Good
Tom – Neutral Evil
Lord Somerset – Lawful Neutral
Elizabeth – Neutral Good
and secret upcoming characters:

Clove – True Neutral
Ella – Chaotic Neutral
Spart – Chaotic Good
Romy – Neutral Good
J – Chaotic Evil
Which is your favourite to write?

Definitely any of the chaotic characters. They are so hilariously wild and unpredictable.

Which would you love to write in future?

Lawful Evil. I think the boundary between good and bad, in that grey area between a hero and a villain, is the most interesting.

Which is the most boring?

Mate, Lawful Neutral is so dull. Like, what is even the POINT of you?

#the lauren and alice faqs #claire’s coven #the next together #the last beginning
6TH JUL 2015

Writing a query letter
Before we begin, an announcement. If you preordered my book, firstly: THANK YOU. Secondly, you can get a free signed bookmark! All the details are here. Again, THANK YOU.

I get a lot of tumblr asks with questions about how to write a good query letter, so I thought I’d make a blog post with some advice. There are lots of other similar posts out there with probably better advice; I highly recommend googling round.

Don’t just send your query letter out to all the agents you can find. Sometimes you’ll get given feedback with rejections, and you can make changes to the manuscript based on that. Then you can send the new version to other agents. You can’t do this if you’ve already sent it out everywhere. Send it out in groups of 6 or 7.
Don’t bother printing out your manuscript- there’s plenty of agents that accept electronic submissions and it’ll save loads of money.
Don’t be upset if you don’t get replies immediately. Agents are very busy, and it can take weeks before they even look at submissions. It has no bearing on the manuscript. Honestly, do not take this personally.
Try to find agents who represent books in similar genres to yours, or ones who say they like specific things on their websites. I applied to my agent because she said that she liked humorous stories, so I knew there was a chance she might like mine. It worked!
Don’t give in after a few rejections- it doesn’t mean your MS is bad. It can just mean their list is full, or they already have something similar, or they just don’t fully fall in love with the story. It’s a huge commitment taking on a new client, and they have to absolutely love it to do that. Everyone has different tastes, so keep trying.
How can you get your manuscript read by an agent? I can only tell you what my agent told me about why she read my work. I include little funny messages at the start of each chapter, which I formatted to look like this:

Basically I tried to make it look as much like a book as possible, to trick agents into thinking it was publishing worthy.

When my agent was skimming through a huge inbox full of manuscripts, this apparently caught her eye as something original, that she’d not seen before. It wasn’t enough to persuade her to represent me, but it gave her a push to read the whole thing. So I would say that you need to find something that makes your writing unique, even if it’s only a small element of the story.

Make sure it’s in the first few chapters, along with all of your very best writing, because when you’re querying that’s what agents will read. Read your favourite books, and try to narrow down a few reasons why you like that book so much.

For example, my favourite YA book is probably Sabriel by Garth Nix. I love it because:

unique portrayal of the afterlife
talking cat
shy adorable boy and powerful confident girl
secret royalty
magical paper flying machines
zombie monsters
That obviously isn’t a full list of the great things about the book, but those are the things that I think about when I get the urge to reread it. Try and make a list of the things that you like about your own writing in the same way. If you love a certain element, make sure there’s more of it! Give it the space it deserves. If someone reading it likes talking cats as much as you, then your work is going to stand out to them.

(This is also a good way to brainstorm if you haven’t started writing yet. If you make a list of your favourite things from your favourite books, then those are things you should try to include in your own writing. For example, try and combine a dystopian storyline with something from your list of favourites that’s never been written about in that genre before – like with STATION ELEVEN, where a post-apocalyptic world is combined with a Shakespearian travelling theatre group. If you love theatre, and you love dystopia, that mix is irresistible. In the same way, if you love secret royalty like me, then maybe writing about what happens to the Royal family after an apocalypse would be fun.)

When you’re writing a query letter, make sure you mention all of these irresistible elements. Read some blurbs from your favourite books, and try and copy how they write. How did they drop in the details that first made you pick up the book? That’s what you need to do! Remember that an agent is a reader, just like you, and they are going to pick up books they want to read, not the books written by people who can write the fanciest query letter. Don’t get too stressed out about it. Just write the best representation of your book that you can!

You’re not trying to write the perfect query letter that any agent won’t be able to resist. You just need to make sure that the one agent who will love your book reads the manuscript. Once they start reading, the book will speak for itself! You just need to hook them.

There are loads of examples out there, but here’s my query letter as an example. I sent it to 6 agents along with the first 2 chapters of The Next Together (then called The Red Earth Rolls). I had one request to read the full manuscript. She accepted me as a client!

Dear [Agent],
The Red Earth Rolls is a completed 120,000 word young adult novel based on the idea of reincarnation, and encompasses genres such as dystopia, regency, romance, science fiction and thriller. An adventure spanning three hundred years, this story has something to interest every reader.
Katherine and Matthew have done this before. They keep being brought back to life and every time they do things seem to be getting worse.
In 1745 Katherine Hallward is spending a little too much time with her coachman, Matthew, when the Jacobites attack the city of Carlisle, on the border of Scotland and England. Somehow the city has to defend itself against the feared Highlanders, and Katherine is determined to help in any way she can, regardless of the consequences.
In 1853 Katy, an orphan girl, is running from the police in disguise when she accidentally gets stuck on board a steamer bound for the battlefield of the Crimean war. Luckily a journalist is there to take her under his wing; although there is the slight problem in that he thinks she is a boy. Together they try and help the war effort as much as possible, despite the hostility of the soldiers.
In 2090 Kate meets a new researcher in her biology lab and discovers that together they bear a startling resemblance to her mysterious great aunt and uncle. Meanwhile, Kate keeps recalling memories that aren’t hers: the siege of a castle, a kiss that never happened on a battlefield from a history book.In each lifetime they are fighting for what is right, but however hard they try to help, will it ever be enough to stop them being brought back once more?
Revealing the power of love regardless of circumstance, this book looks at the determination of two people in the face of growing turmoil.This book should appeal to students; people who grew up speaking the language of the internet, who enjoy science fiction but also have a soft spot for Jane Austen.
The Red Earth Rolls was written by a teenager, for teenagers: I’m currently in the third year of a Chemistry and Physics degree at the University of Nottingham. I wrote this novel after becoming increasingly frustrated by the glamorised science often found in media. This prompted me to write a more accurate story about scientists, and my love of history and genealogy brought forth another element.
I would greatly appreciate any advice you could offer me about my manuscript. Thank you very much for your time and consideration.
I hope this helped a little. Good luck!

#writing #blog #the next together
26TH JUN 2015


The Bookseller called me ‘compulsively readable’ today, so I think I’m gonna get that tattooed on my arm.

#the next together
19TH JUN 2015

The lovely bookpigs mentioned my book in her latest video! SO EXCITED ABOUT THIS.

#the next together
18TH JUN 2015

Get a free signed bookmark!
I will send anyone who preorders a physical paperback copy of my novel The Next Together a fancy signed bookmark.

This is open internationally. The offer will run until the book is published on September 3rd 2015, or until I run out of bookmarks, whichever comes first. You can check whether bookmarks are still available here.

How to enter:

Keep reading

#the next together #blog

18TH JUN 2015 152 NOTES

Anonymous asked: Hey Lauren, I can’t wait to read The Next Together! I’m really interested to know what the publication process has been like since you first sent it off to agents – how long did it take between getting an agent and hearing back from publishers? Did you find editing scary or fun? Have final copies of the book been printed yet? xoxoxo

Hello! I’m so glad you’re excited about TNT!

I wrote a blog post about getting my book deal here. It was about 5 months after I signed with my agent before we submitted to publishers (we spent a lot of time editing the book first), and then two weeks before I had offers from publishers!

I found editing weird at first, but I really enjoy it now! I love getting editorial notes back, and feeling yes, that’s exactly what I need to do to make it better. It’s a really satisfying feeling.

They haven’t! We’re still discussing final changes and designing a few bits and bobs on the pages. I think they’ll be ready in July or August.

Thank you for the great questions!

#writing #blog #the next together #Anon
15TH JUN 2015


I am giving away a signed ARC copy of my YA novel The Next Together, which will be published in September.

How many times can you lose the person you love?

A powerful and epic debut novel for teenagers about reincarnation and the timelessness of first love from a talented young writer.

Teenagers Katherine and Matthew are destined to be born again and again. Each time their presence changes history for the better, and each time, they fall hopelessly in love, only to be tragically separated.

But why do they keep coming back? What else must they achieve before they can be left to live and love in peace? Maybe the next together will be different.

Goodreads | Amazon UK | Waterstones | The Book Depository

Rules and junk:

Open internationally
Reblog this post to enter
Must be following me (lauren-e-james)
Reblog as many times as you like
No giveaway blogs
Winner will be chosen randomly on June 15th
Good luck!

#the next together #giveaway #tumblr giveaway #ya #young adult #romance #reincarnation #fiction
29TH MAY 2015 1,853 NOTES

punkscully: i love the victorian era aesthetic.. .shitty ass candles and dirty streets, tweeds, carriages, ghost stories, the widespread existential panic due to newly discovered dinosaur bones and the theory of evolution

#the next together
27TH MAY 2015

8 thoughts on “Tumblr tag archive – The Next Together (part 3)

  1. Pingback: Tumblr tag archive – The Next Together (part 4) | Lauren James – Young Adult Author

  2. Pingback: Tumblr tag archive – The Next Together (part 2) | Lauren James – Young Adult Author

  3. Pingback: Tumblr tag archive – The Last Beginning (part 2) | Lauren James – Young Adult Author

  4. Pingback: Tumblr tag archive – The Last Beginning (part 3) | Lauren James – Young Adult Author

  5. Pingback: Tumblr tag archive – Another Together | Lauren James – Young Adult Author

  6. Pingback: Tumblr tag archive – Another Beginning | Lauren James – Young Adult Author

  7. Pingback: Tumblr tag archive – The Loneliest Girl in the Universe (Part 1) | Lauren James – Young Adult Author

  8. Pingback: Tumblr tag archive – The Next Together (part 1) | Lauren James – Young Adult Author

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