Messages from my closet

Publishing a book during a pandemic is weird as hell, as evidenced by the fact that I recorded the audiobook for Broken (in the best possible way) in my actual closet.

It was a heady mix of needy cats that I am allergic to, mixed with my own recipe for hot toddies that basically involves warm tea dosed with whatever liquor I have in the house in order to (completely inefficiently) cover the fact that I am covered in everything I’m allergic to.

I hate to listen to my own voice but I’ve seen a lot of people who’ve gotten advance copies of the Broken audiobook say that they love it so I am taking their word for it.

My publisher shared a five-minute excerpt of one of the chapters and also included a little puzzle you can do while you listen to it. Click here to check it out. (Also, the puzzle makes the most satisfying clicks when you get a piece right. It took me 18 minutes to finish it. I am bad with puzzles.)

You can get it wherever you normally get audiobooks.

Unrelated: This happened last night and I still have questions:

57 thoughts on “Messages from my closet

Read comments below or add one.

  1. Umm, thank you for the preview AND the puzzle! I’m going to be doing this all day rather than working because this is just what I needed today! Love you and love what I’m hearing! Rock on, sister!

  2. OMG! Thank you for the white rat audio excerpt from your new book. I loved it!
    My husband and I watched the South Park Q vaccination special and I caught that clip and laughed while my husband said “what are you laughing at?” Then he just shook his head and grunted when I explained. He knows you’re the author that makes me laugh so hard I can’t breathe and I have to run to the bathroom before I pee my pants every few minutes when I read your books. It makes perfect sense that the South Park people know of you, I’m sure they’re part of the tribe of us weirdos and slightly off folks who struggle with the normal world.
    Maybe if you ask nicely they will animate you and add you to their wonderful world for an episode?

  3. I loved doing the puzzle while listening to you talk…. I may have gotten a strange look or two from my coworkers….

  4. You get to spend time in a closet for a good reason! Yay, You! I wonder if I can read your new book in a closet without a lot of “What The Fucks?” If it works, I may read all my books in there. :o)

  5. It took me 20:29 to do it because it took me far too long to realize I could increase the size of the table and move pieces out of my way. LOL!

  6. you dont know how much i needed this puzzle today!!! i’m stressed and this was 13 minutes of destressing!!! thank you!

  7. Ok first – Can’t wait for the new book!! *happy dance* You’re magic.

    Second – The puzzle idea is AWESOME. I could actually listen to the words without my brain drifting off into the void. Also, puzzle!

    And yeah, that clicky noise was *mwah*!

  8. Got down to the last few pieces and because I’m a clutz, I accidently deleted the page. It was fun to do, though, and I love the excerpt from the book.

  9. That was fun! By the time the audio clip was finished, I had committed to the puzzle, though it took several more minutes.

    In a completely spontaneous but entirely appropriate tribute of sorts, while working on the puzzle I had failed to notice that the puzzle mat was creeping up on the screen. I placed the last visible piece only to find that there was one missing and for a split second, I was caught trying to figure out how in the world I managed to lose a piece of a digital puzzle. Fortunately, a little mouse manipulation helped right things and let me finish. There was that brief moment, though…

  10. I took 11 minutes for the puzzle because I did it in ghost mode which is sort of cheating.

  11. 16:39for the puzzle. I love your voice, BTW. My voice is fairly deep and I always wanted a “nice” voice like yours!! And I agree, if you escape the snake, you definitely deserve a pardon!

  12. The world is going to LOVE this book! I refresh Amazon every day to see if I can review it yet (I can’t) because I LOVED the advance copy. It is your best work yet!

  13. OMG that click was so satisfying. I need more online jigsaw puzzles like that. And I love your voice! But I totally get that; I hate my recorded voice, too. I can’t wait to hear your audiobook (though I have a signed hardcover coming to me when you talk to Neil Gaiman.

  14. Thank you for the sneak peek!! You’re books are even better on audio! I always buy a hardcover and follow along while listening because your voice makes it even funnier!! You’re the best!

  15. It took me 48 minutes to finish that fucking puzzle. And I’m pretty sure I could now recite that excerpt from your book word by word.

  16. I just love your voice! Thanks for the puzzle, although it feels like cheating because my cat normally helps by hiding pieces, so this was almost too easy!

  17. Excuse me, you are bad at puzzles? It took me 19.58 minutes. And your voice is perfect for your book. Love getting to have your voice in my head as I read to myself instead of the made up voices I was using instead.

  18. It took my nearly 23 minutes. But it was fun. The clicks definitely helped. I love your voice too and might have to buy an audiobook as well as the Strangelings April book and book tour books I’m already going to get. I LOVE your books, your sense of humor, and your caring ways. Thanks for being you!

  19. 38 minutes, but I received my grocery delivery and put everything away in the middle of it, so I think really about 20 min?! Loved the puzzle!

  20. I’m trying that puzzle as soon as I have time!

    By the way, I keep remembering those blog posts from several years ago, where you listed crazy/silly things you had done, and your followers kept adding their crazy things to the list until it was this long list of crazy, hilarious, laugh-so-hard-you’re-crying things people have done.

    I think that would be an ideal list to have on hand during this crazy, pandemically challenging time. Would you be able to resurrect it and post a link to the list? That would be awesome.

  21. What the freak with the South Park?! Woah, I think my reaction to randomly seeing that on tv would’ve been much louder than yours was, lol. (Also, I think most people hate their own voice especially when listening to it recorded, but I’m not exaggerating at all when I say that your voice has calmed more panic attacks than any other ‘coping skill’ I’ve ever tried.)

  22. Great puzzle thank you! Took me 37 min and my husband 25. Guess we need to speed up our game!

  23. I am a puzzle girl so thank you for this interactive post and listen. Congratulations on the book and all that comes along afterward. BTW, I think it took me just under 20 mins.

  24. That puzzle was amazing. And even though I already bought a copy of your book to be in on that Neil Gaiman talk, and I’m also getting one through Strangelings, I’m also totally going to buy the audiobook, because hearing you read you is also amazing. And now I think I’m addicted to the click of online puzzles, so THANKS JENNY.

    That can be read sarcastically, or not.

  25. South Park!?! Not that you hadn’t already made it – you have in many books (pun intended and not intended) but this is the epitome as far as I’m concerned. And I can’t wait for the the book, so excited! (Glad your dad got his shot too 🙂 ).

  26. HA! I like the puzzle! Took me 18:38. You’re very right about satisfying clicks, and then the chimes at the end were a nice finish. YAY! Thank you! Alas, that poor rat. You were entirely right that he deserved to go free. And I’m amazed that it doesn’t sound like you’re in your closet AT ALL! Kudos to you and the sound mastering team!

    I had reptiles as pets, once upon a time. When I left the abusive, alcoholic boyfriend who originally wanted them, the last snake – a Burmese python (seriously, we were stupid in our 20s!) – stayed with the snake of a boyfriend, while I took the iguana and gecko. The lizards both lived well into their teens, which may not have been the fate of the snake. I felt bad leaving the snake behind, but I just couldn’t handle feeding live rats anymore. Ironically, I got into rescuing chinchillas after that (7 became pets; the oldest died at age 18). Perhaps it was atonement for all the rodents I subjected to “the circle of life,” like little furry (doomed) gladiators.

  27. Also, what the sh** about South Park??? That would’ve freaked me out, too!

  28. 26:50! What?? I never did realize you could increase the size, I just kept moving pieces off one another! Wow. But the click is extremely satisfying! Thank you for 26 minutes and 50 seconds of a mind clearing exercise. I also never thought of replaying the audio. Duh. It’s Friday night after a long week so I’m am giving myself a pat on the back for finishing the darn puzzle! So there. Thanks, Jenny!

  29. It took me 18 minutes and 46 seconds to do the puzzle. You’re in good company.

  30. Damn jigsaw took me 30.09 minutes!
    I enjoyed listening to you though.

  31. 10:30 for the puzzle, woot (though I’ve done other puzzles in this format). That is an awesome idea.

    Can I say how soothing it was to hear your voice? I don’t get to read too much right now (because, work) but I may have to go get a copy and hear the sound of your closet.

    And funny. Now I’m going to think about wriggling rat tails all day. :DDD

  32. 18:56 but I was also caught up in Barbara Stanwyck shooting Colleen Dewhurst wile Linda Evans gave Bible lessons on Big Valley…

  33. Yeah, I already commented, but that was before I actually did the puzzle, lol. Took me 16:53, which I thought was horribly long but then looking at the other times in the comments I guess I did alright. I haven’t done puzzles in forever (and never online, I don’t think). Also I think I know that little audio excerpt by heart now because after listening to it twice I realized I hadn’t actually *listened* to it properly because I was so distracted by the puzzle so I listened to it a third time, lol.

  34. I’ve bought (or won! Thanks again!) your previous books in audiobook format and have this one pre-ordered through audible. I love that you read them. There’s something really special and personal about hearing someone tell their story in their own voice. Thank you for spending countless hours in the closet to make that happen. I’m really looking forward to receiving my pre-order.

  35. Amen, Heather26r’s. Your comment—that Jenny’s voice calmed more panic attacks than any other coping method—reminds me of my roughest years (1976 to 1993) when I collected all of Ram Dass’s audio tapes from his talks around the country and listened to them over and over during depression and anxiety attacks. He saw me safely through that time and taught me to hang in, laugh at this human predicament and forgive myself, as Jenny does for us nowadays.

  36. I am with ya on publishing a book during the pandemic being weird. Now make it your first book, and it’s kid’s book about going to Comic Con. And all the comic cons have been cancelled. Talk about a let down after all that work. Didn’t see that one coming, lol. (though of course your book is wildly successful, so your weird is for much better things than my weird)

  37. That South Park episode…purely coincidence, I’m sure. It could have been any one of the many people named Jenny Lawson whose sense of humor probably tickles the SP writers pink and whose father looms large in her books.

    (Congratulations 😉

  38. Thank you – and for those of you keeping track – everyone can feel like speeeeeed demons cause it took me 40 minutes given my challenged brain after a 10 hour day but i loved hearing Jenny and cannot WAIT for the book:)

  39. Jenny, I just read your second book, and now I’ve gotta go back and read your first one, and you’re already putting pressure on me with this new one. That’s in addition to the peer pressure you gave me with your stuffed raccoons which I’m insanely jealous of, so now I’m taking a 4 foot Bigfoot yard statue home from my spring break trip in Charleston. My family won’t get it, but I know you will.

  40. Erm… 9 minutes 51 seconds. Threw me a little as I was making the edges along the outside edges thinking…is this an unfinished puzzle? There are not enough pieces. Then figured it out, moved all the outer bits in and suddenly was finished! Did you all start with the words first? Thanks for the snippet Jenny. Your voice is fine. I had to do a recording for work, and hated hearing myself so much.

  41. ok, it took me 41 minutes, and i only took two breaks, and i never figured out making the screen bigger, and now i’m feeling exceptionally stupid. i know i’m not great with spatial awareness, but i didn’t know it was that bad.
    i did thoroughly enjoy the book excerpt though (repeatedly), and can’t wait for the full version!

  42. OK, never mind the puzzle–where did you get the dress you’re wearing in that picture? I love what I can see of it (long, flowing skirt) and the color/print is wonderful, but I’m wondering about the bodice/sleeves/neckline. Any hints on where I could find it (if it’s even available in my size) would be terrific!

  43. Ok I’m waaaay late to the party but want to thank you for:

    A) Recording your books in closets or otherwise; the snippet was awesome!

    B) Being your awesome author self and bravely putting it all OUT THERE (in the best possible way);

    C) making me feel like a puzzle ROCKSTAR for completing it in 11:34, and

    D) making ok to say all those things. In the same post no less. To the author. Who understands happily broken people.

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