Exclusive: Tor Teen Acquires The Bright Sessions Trilogy by Lauren ShippenPhoto by Jon Sams Books News Lauren Shippen
Therapy is in session, and we couldn’t be more excited. Lauren Shippen will adapt The Bright Sessions, her science fiction podcast about supernatural patients in counseling, into a book trilogy for Tor Teen.
The Bright Sessions tells the story of a psychologist, Dr. Bright, and her “atypical” patients. As the patients participate in therapy to learn how to live with their powers, their lives intertwine, revealing a secretive world that few people know exists and even fewer are willing to discuss.
Already in its fourth season, The Bright Sessions is one of the most popular fiction podcasts on iTunes, boasting over eight million downloads. It’s currently in development for television with Dark Horse Entertainment and UCP, the group within NBCUniversal responsible for Mr. Robot, 12 Monkeys and Suits. And now it’s getting the novel treatment.
Shippen, the podcast’s creator and sole writer, will expand the stories of popular characters from The Bright Sessions into three books. Book One will focus on two high school boys, Caleb and Adam, and the connection that grows between them when Caleb develops an empath ability. Book Two dives deeper into one of the podcast’s main antagonists, Damien, by exploring his life at 18. And Book Three tells the journey of Rose Atkinson, a young woman who can walk into other peoples’ dreams, and all the dangers that come with her ability.
“I grew up reading Tor books and dreaming about writing a [Young Adult] novel myself someday,” Shippen says. “When I began The Bright Sessions three years ago, I started working on a novel adaptation of Caleb’s story right off the bat, using the familiar medium of YA to get into the character’s head. I am so excited to get to share that story with the world, especially with a publisher that has such a huge influence on who I am as a writer.”
Matthew Elblonk at DeFiore and Company brokered the three-book publishing deal with Tor Teen Executive Editor Brendan Deneen.
“Lauren has created an incredible world with her podcast,” Deneen says, “and I am excited and honored to work with her on expanding that world even further. Fans are going to love what she’s doing with some of their favorite characters, and Lauren is going to find a whole new audience with these fantastic novels.”
Book One is scheduled for a Summer 2019 release date.