I was tagged by J.M. Sullivan () on Twitter, and I’m always up for a fun game of Tag! Thanks J.M.!!!!
- Thank the person who tagged you
- Link to the original creator
- Answer the ten questions
- Tag at LEAST two other YA writers/bloggers
So here I go… 🙂
ABOUT THE WRITERS:
What draws you to YA?
I spend all day with kids (I’m a middle school teacher), and I pretty much still feel like a kid myself. So, I connect a lot with YA stories. Probably more so than with adult fiction! 🙂
Describe your writing process. Do you like outlines and structure, or seeing where the story takes you?
I am definitely an outliner. I map out each chapter on a series of Post-it notes that I organize into a spiral notebook (the idea book I create for each story idea). Each chapter has a beginning, middle, and end so that I’m sure to hit a high point and keep the story moving along. Sometimes the characters take over as I’m writing, but I definitely need a plan in order to start. Otherwise I feel too overwhelmed.
How long have you been writing? Where are you in your journey?
I’ve been writing since the third grade when I penned my award-winning story “Wild Strawberries” about a talking strawberry that takes a young girl on a wild adventure. It was published on the front page of the school gazette. Haha. But in all honesty, I think that was the moment when I realized I had stories to tell and that I loved telling them. (It was also the moment I learned I would never be an artist. My strawberry graphic was not so fabulous.)
What do you need to write? Coffee? Music?
I love coffee in the mornings. I always have a playlist for my novels. And I must admit, I have a beer every now and then when I write or edit. I think my characters probably prefer that–I become the cool aunt instead of the overprotective parent. 🙂
If you could offer one piece of advice to another writer (OTHER THAN “don’t give up”), what would it be?
Develop a thick skin. Maybe two layers. I guess there are people whose journeys to publishing are easy and painless. I wasn’t one of them. I experienced (too much) rejection, and I’m sure as my novel releases, there will be people who don’t like it. I don’t usually wear a thick layer of skin, so this was something I’ve developed over time. Now I’m like, Come at me, bro!
ABOUT THE BOOKS:
What book still has you reeling from its plot twist? (*no spoilers please*)
I’m going to go with an oldie but goodie: The Grapes of Wrath. I HATED the ending. I loved that book so much and when I got to that final page, I threw the book across the room. I’m still reeling.
What books are you most anticipating for this year?
Haha, well shameless self-promotion: I’m super excited for my own release, Chasing Eveline on July 11. I’m also excited for a new Sarah Dessen novel in June and The Inevitable Collision of Birdie and Bash by Candace Ganger.
In your opinion, which YA book/series has the most unique premise?
I’m still impressed with Before I Fall. I read it so long ago, but that idea of the same day repeating really left an impression on me.
What is your all-time favorite quote from YA lit (I know, I’m cruel)?
Well, there are a million. But I’ll share this one. Maybe it’s because I’m a teacher or still feel like I’m in high school, but this quote from The Perks of Being a Wallflower really stuck with me:
“I walk around the school hallways and look at the people. I look at the teachers and wonder why they’re here. If they like their jobs. Or us. And I wonder how smart they were when they were fifteen. Not in a mean way. In a curious way. It’s like looking at all the students and wondering who’s had their heart broken that day, and how they are able to cope with having three quizzes and a book report due on top of that. Or wondering who did the heart breaking. And wondering why.”
What book do you most hope will have a movie adaption?
Mine! And also the book or series I’m most hoping would be turned into a movie is the Thursday Next series (starting with The Eyre Affair) by Jasper Fforde. I know it’s not YA, but it’s the number one story I’d love to see on the screen.
So, now to all those I tagged…”you’re it!.”
If anyone else wants to play along, comment below with a link to your post! I’d love to read it!