Category Archives: Authors Interviewed

Interview with the Author of Crush Control

Today we have an interview with the author of Crush Control, Jennifer Jabaley.

Short bio from her website:

Born in New York and raised in Bridgewater, New Jersey, Jennifer Jabaley is a graduate of James Madison University and Southern College of Optometry. She began writing in 2006 and tries to manage optometry, writing and motherhood. She lives in Blue Ridge, Georgia with her husband and two children.

Did you know you always wanted to write?
Honestly, no.  I always loved to read but career wise, I concentrated more on my strengths in math and science. But after I had my son and was only working part time, I started getting this crazy itch to try and write a novel. (Maybe it was sleep deprivation!!) Interestingly, I never told anyone (other than my husband and sister) that I was attempting to write a book for fear that people would think I was insane.  But when I finished and got an agent then sold my first book, I eagerly announced the news to everyone. And surprisingly, most people were like, “I can see that – you’re such an animated story teller.” So there you go. :)

What are some things we can expect from Crush Control that you enjoyed writing and sharing with us?
Well, I had to do some research on how hypnosis worked and it was really interesting.  Then, I decided to be accurate, I really needed to witness actual hypnosis.  So I booked a trip to Vegas and went to see a show.  It was so much fun and entertaining but also really sealed the idea in my mind that hypnosis actually does work.  So I hope that all my research lends itself to an authentic portrayal of hypnosis for both entertainment and use in changing habits.

Can you relate to any of the characters in Crush Control?
I absolutely can relate to certain aspects of the main character, Willow.  I won’t say I’m a control freak (although my husband and close friends might :) ) but I definitely have a tendency to want to organize and plan things in my life. I’m not one of these spontaneous, fly by the seat of my pants girls. No. I need to iron those pants first and pre-book my flight and pack a bag (overpack is more appropriate) and check the weather. . .

I also relate to the character of Mia.  Mia is a classic overachiever and can be hard on herself.  I do find myself feeling guilty if things are not perfect.  As I’ve gotten older, I’ve relaxed quite a bit. If someone shows up at the house unexpectedly, I don’t freak out if there’s laundry piled on the couch and I don’t feel guilty if I serve guests food that I bought pre-prepared. I did feel a little bad that I bought cupcakes from the bakery to bring for my son’s school birthday party – but they loved them! I didn’t have time to bake, I was planning his party for the weekend! See, I still have to justify a little to myself…it’s a problem. I’m working on it.

What were top 5 songs that got you going when writing Crush Control?
I can not listen to music while I’m writing – I find it distracting. I can block out the TV, but music seeps into my brain and before I know it, I’m singing the lyrics instead of writing.  So, I’m not one of those authors who has a playlist that I listened to while writing.  That said, music definitely influenced certain parts of CRUSH CONTROL.  From the very beginning, I knew I wanted to write a book about hypnosis, but I was unclear exactly where the hypnosis would play in.  Then I was driving one day and zooming across the dial on satellite radio and I landed on the seventies channel (don’t judge!! some of the tunes are catchy!) The song ‘You can do magic’ by America was playing. “You can do magic. You can have anything that you desire. Magic. When you hypnotize; with your eyes; a heart of stone; can turn to flames.”  And suddenly it hit me.  If a teenager could hypnotize people, OF COURSE they would use that ability to make someone like them!!

Also, when crafting Oompa, the dog, I knew I wanted to give him some crazy post traumatic stress behavior after the big move. When thinking of something that would instantly remind the dog of his old Vegas home and calm him down, I just automatically thought of all the Vegas shows.  Last summer, when I was writing this book, there was a big hoopla that it would be Cher’s last Vegas tour.  So I decided to pick Cher songs that would naturally make Oompa remember his home in Vegas.  I spent a lot of time walking around the house singing, “Do you BE-LIEVE in life after love?” My kids wanted to kill me.

Finally, since Max is a drummer, music is his life. I knew I wanted to give him a song that would perfectly epitomize his relationship with Willow. I spent a lot of time searching for the perfect song that portrayed friends that become romantic involved.  I debated between several choices but ultimately I picked Taylor Swift’s “You belong with me” because I felt like Taylor Swift so perfectly captures the longing for one friend to desperately want the other friend to realize that they belong together.

If you could write a book with another author, who would it be and what would it be about?
Hmmm. That’s a really great question.  There are so many wonderful authors out there and right now several projects are  happening with YA authors grouping together. What I think would be really unique and fresh would be to pair together with an adult author and write a book that had an adult character point of view alongside a teen character. It could be written in such a way to have crossover appeal to both audiences.  In that vein, I’d love to pair with one of my favorite adult women’s fiction authors like maybe Sophie Kinsella or Emily Giffin or Marian Keyes….oh to dream!

Purchase your copy of Crush Control!

Thank you Jennifer for this fabulous interview! :)
Follow Jennifer on Facebook & Twitter!

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Interview with the Author of Dream Smashers + Giveaway

Hello! Today we have an interview with the author of Dream Smashers, Angela Carlie. Welcome!!

Can you tell us a little about yourself?
I write fiction for young people—young adult and middle grade. I’m married to a great guy and have an awesome twelve-year-old son. When I’m not writing, I like to hike, kayak, read, and travel. Sometimes when my brain doesn’t feel like creating new things to write about, I’ll paint on the walls of our house.

How long have you been writing?
I’ve been writing most of my life. Not seriously, though. It wasn’t until just a few years ago that I became focused on finishing some of the projects I had started.

Can you tell us a little about Dream Smashers?
Dream Smashers is a coming of age novel about a girl (Autumn) whose mother is a meth addict. It’s a story of how Autumn let go of the dream smashers in her life and fell in love along the way.
Dream Smashers is a book on a very serious topic, meth.

Where did you get the idea of writing about meth and incorporating it into a YA novel?
Many YA novels I have read that dealt with this type of addiction was told in the addict’s point of view. I wanted to read a story from the point of view of the other victims of addiction – the family and friends.


My family has a member who has been a meth addict for over twenty years. It not only destroyed her life, but hurt us all, especially her children.

Was there any other social issues that you would like to write about in a YA novel?
Not right now. This novel took a lot out of me emotionally. I’d like to stick with what I really love writing and that’s fantasy with romance. I may feel differently in the future, however.

What makes Dream Smashers different from any other novel?
As mentioned above, it’s told in the POV of a family member instead of the addict. Dream Smashers keeps the dark and gritty and it isn’t prettied or cleaned up in order to appease society. It’s real and I kept it true to the characters.

Would you change any part of Dream Smashers?
Not at all. Dream Smashers went through several re-writes. I believe it is finally exactly how it should be.

Is there anything else you would like to add to this interview?
Thank you so much Ivy for having me on your blog. I’d also like to let you know about my novel Land of Corn Chips which recently became available in all eBook formats. It’s about a boy who doesn’t believe in dragons and was written for ages 8-12, but can be enjoyed by everyone. For more information about upcoming novels, please follow my blog: http://angelacarlie.blogspot.com

Thanks again!

Purchase your copy of Dream Smashers!

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Angela is offering an eBook of her book, Dream Smashers, for one of my readers.

 

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Interview with the Author of The Lipstick Laws

Hello all! Today we have an interview with the author of The Lipstick Laws, Amy Holder. The Lipstick Laws debuted on April 4, 2011!

Author, Amy Holder

Can you tell us a little about yourself?
I’m a huge animal lover with an affinity for chocolate, writing, laughing, art, my CHI hair straightener, and having fun. I’m originally from upstate New York (close to the setting of THE LIPSTICK LAWS), but I currently reside in the Philadelphia area with my verbally challenged sidekicks (pets).

What made you want to write a book? Did you get inspired by someone?
I’ve been writing stories and poems since I was six years old after falling in love with Shel Silverstein’s A LIGHT IN THE ATTIC. It was one of my favorite books as a child, and I believe his quirky writing was what first sparked my love of writing and reading at an early age. I’ve always written, but I didn’t always think I’d pursue writing professionally, so I studied a different field in college. After college, I realized I wouldn’t feel completely fulfilled unless I tried my hand at writing, something I truly adore… and I feel very lucky to be doing that now.


The Lipstick Laws by Amy Holder



Can you tell us a little about The Lipstick Laws?
THE LIPSTICK LAWS is a humorous coming-of-age story about popularity gone wrong. It follows April Bowers through her popularity catapulting friendship and humiliating fallout with Britney Taylor, the queen bee of Penford High School. It also involves red lipstick and black lipstick…but you’ll have to read the book to find out why.


Can you relate to any of the characters in The Lipstick Laws? If so, who?
I can relate to April the most because we have several things in common, including naturally curly hair, a quirky sense of humor, a knack for making up random words, and a love of good sales. I can also relate to the feelings she experiences in the story with wanting to fit in and be accepted by her peers. I dealt with those same feelings when I was a teen, which I think is pretty common at that age.


If you were one of the characters from the book, which one would you choose and why?
Wow! That’s a fun question! I’m probably the closest in real life to April. However, if I could choose one of the characters to be for a day, I’d probably choose Britney so I could try to right all the wrongs she’s done to people. I’d also love to break all of her Lipstick Laws in front of her other Lipstick Law followers to leave them completely confused and tempted to be Lipstick Lawbreakers themselves.

Did you struggle while writing The Lipstick Laws?
I had a lot of fun while writing this book, so I didn’t struggle with the original manuscript. However, during the editorial process, my editor wanted me to focus on making sure April is likable enough for the reader to root for her. Balancing her likability with the flaws that she needed to have in order to be susceptible to following the Lipstick Laws was tricky at times!


What books would you recommend that you’ve read?
Well, seeing that I obviously love books about popularity and revenge (because I wrote one), I’d definitely recommend GETTING REVENGE ON LAUREN WOOD by Eileen Cook. It is such a fun read and Eileen is a great writer. I’d also recommend any book from my fellow Class of 2k11 authors. There’s a big variety to choose from for all types of readers; you won’t be disappointed. For a full list of titles, please visit the Class of 2k11 website here: www.classof2k11.com


What 5 songs “get you going?”
This is hard because I LOVE all different kinds of music….but you haven’t asked for my favorite songs, you’ve asked for the ones that get me going. I equate this to songs that I can run to:
1) Pump It by Black Eyed Peas
2) Pretender by Foo Fighters
3) The Hand That Feeds by Nine Inch Nails
4) Blow Ya Mind by Lock n Load
5) Smells Like Teen Spirit by Nirvana (because I’m a grunge fanatic)

Thank you Amy for a fabulous interview! I really enjoyed reading The Lipstick Laws and was happy to be able to read it before it was released! Thank you!

Check out Amy out on her blog and tweet something to her!
Don’t forget to purchase your own copy on Amazon!

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Interview with the Author of Meant To Be + Giveaway

Hello! :) Today we have an interview with the author of Meant To Be, Tiffany King. Meant To Be is self-published and was released on March 18, 2011!

Author, Tiffany King

Can you tell us a little about yourself? 
My most favorite thing ever is to read a good book, munching on a chocolate bar and drinking Diet Coke.


Meant To Be by Tiffany King



Can you tell us a little about Meant To Be?
Meant to Be, is a classic love story which is something everyone can relate to, but with a mysterious twist. Krista, the main character, is not exactly your everyday teenager. She has never been able to connect with anyone in her life, and she is un-naturally consumed by the emotions of others, to the point that she becomes ill. The only boy that she has ever been in love with doesn’t even exist. He visits her each night in her dreams. After a tragic event, Krista moves west hoping for a fresh start, but her world is turned upside down when she meets a girl that shares her same traits and a boy that claims to know about her dreams. Krista must overcome her fears and find the strength within her that she never realized she had to solve the mystery behind the connection that binds them together.

What/How was the writing process for Meant To Be?
My writing ritual was complete and utter madness, hehe. When I’m writing, I become a different person, almost like the “Tasmanian Devil.” The problem is that as much as I would love to be a full-time writer, I’m just not there yet.

How did everything come together for you to write Meant To Be?
The time off from work and school at the same time was a huge factor in Meant to Be being written. I was looking for something to read and finally decided to take the plunge. It’s funny how close I came to almost not writing it at all. :o )

When will the second book of Meant To Be come out? Can you share a little bit about what it will be about?
I am working on book two now and hope to have it out by mid-summer. Sneak peeks are hard because sooooo many people still don’t know the big secret from MTB but for those of you that have read it, I can tell you the paranormal in the second book is going to be big.

Here are some fun this-or-that questions for you:

  • Tea or Coffee? Um diet coke please, hehehe. Ok Tea. 
  • Strawberries or Cherries? Cherries for sure.
  • Books or eBooks? Woohoo eBooks all the way. (I’m a Kindle baby!)
  • Eating Boogers or Eating Bugs? Ugh, ugh, ugh, I hate bugs but boogers are worse so I guess bugs ugh, ugh, ugh.
  • Showering in a tub full of worms or showering in a tub full of maggots? Tub of worms for sure (maggots, double ick).
Thank you, Tiffany, for the fabulous interview! I really enjoyed Meant To Be and I hope everyone else who has read it has enjoyed it too!

Check out Tiffany’s blog and follow her on Twitter!

You can read my review for Meant To Be here. If you haven’t read Meant To Be, what are you waiting for?! It is already released, so buy your copy today!

You can buy an eBook or paperback copy now!

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Meant To Be by Tiffany King
I will be giving away an eBook of Meant To Be by Tiffany King!
It’s such a great book and I really enjoyed it! I hope you will too!

Ends 5/13/2011 @ 4PM PST!!

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Interview with the Author of The Mockingbirds

Today we have an interview with the author of The Mockingbirds, Daisy Whitney! :) I was going to meet her, but things came up and couldn’t. :( But today we get to know Daisy and The Mockingbirds a little better.

Can you tell us a little about yourself? 
I am a novelist by night and a new media journalist by day, I love shoes especially non-sensible heels, my friends are like oxygen to me and I need them just as much, my dog is totally awesome and a wonderful companion, I have a thing for 17th century Dutch art, Broadway musicals and movies with talking animals, and I have the world’s funniest husband and the best kids!

Can you tell us a little about The Mockingbirds?
It’s about an underground student-run justice system at a prestigious boarding school and the cases they try including one involving date rape. It’s emotional, hard-hitting, and shows the power of taking a stand for yourself.

It was also picked by NPR as one of the best books of 2010 and Romantic Times said every high school girl should read it! (And there’s a little romance in it too!)

Why did you want to write The Mockingbirds?
I wanted to tell a story about how teenagers can rise to the occasion and do the right thing even in the absence of effective adult authority.

What are your views about drinking underage? Do you think it’s okay? Do you think it’s irresponsible?
I think alcohol is best handled by responsible adults.

I know that there will be a book two to The Mockingbirds, is there anything you can share with us about it?
It picks up where the first book left off and the Mockingbirds will face their toughest case ever.

While writing The Mockingbirds and book two to The Mockingbirds, what kept you going to write them? Maybe some music or a tv show?
What keeps me going are the characters and the need to tell their story. That, and a deadline!

If you could write a book with another author, who would it be? Why?
Chris Lynch! Hands down! I am madly in love with his writing and his books and I would LOVE to write a dark, edgy, but ultimately redemptive story with him, maybe something that pulls together the stories of teens from privileged backgrounds and teens from working class backgrounds and showcases humanity in all its frailties and possibilities. Can you make that happen???

What book are you currently reading?
I am reading a manuscript by my friend Cheryl Herbsman and then I plan to read The Lighter Side of Life and Death by CK Kelly Martin and Food, Girls and Other Things I Can’t Have by Allen Zadoff.

What is one book that was published so far this year that you would recommend? And what is one book that hasn’t been released that we should all look forward to?
I am still catching up on last year’s to-read list!! But I highly recommend the 2010 titles The Things a Brother Knows by Dana Reinhardt, Hothouse by Chris Lynch, and Mostly Good Girls by Leila Sales, and then A Need So Beautiful by Suzanne Young when it releases in June.

If you had to perform at a concert as a singer, what five songs would you sing?
Sweet Child of Mine by Guns N Roses, Tempted by Squeeze, Total Eclipse of the Heart by Bonnie Tyler, 42nd Street, and I would want to perform A Little Priest from Sweeney Todd in a duet with Adam Pascal who I LOVE!!!

Thanks Daisy for the wonderful interview! I cannot wait for the second book of The Mockingbirds and I really enjoyed the first! The Mockingbirds is in stores now, so go buy a copy! The Mockingbirds 2 will be out Fall 2011. You can read my review here!

Check out Daisy and her book(s) on her website!! And tweet her on Twitter!!

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