1. What's your genre or do you write in more than one?
I write YA fiction.
2. Did you choose your genre or did it choose you?
I think the genre choose me. Either that or I never really grew up. The story ideas I have all seem to lend themselves quite well to that genre, so I suppose it's where I'll stay for awhile.
3. Is there any genre you'd like to try? Or is there one you wouldn't?
Historical fiction is a big favorite of mine, and I could see trying one of those. I don't see myself writing a mystery. I'm not sure I'd be able to plant enough clues throughout to make it all work.
4. What fiction do you read for pleasure?
Young adult, of course, since that's my chosen genre. I also read historical and contemporary fiction - I am more partial to humorous stories than to ones full of pathos.
5. Tell me a bit about yourself and how long you've been writing,
Is it cliche to say I don't really remember a time I wasn't writing. I definitely still have stories I started in fourth grade. And from middle school on I almost always had at least one story going. As for some biographical info. I was an English major in college - no real surprise there, and spent 10 years working as an editor for trade travel publications before quitting to be a full-time Mom to my two kids.
6. Which of your characters is your favorite?
I think my favorite character is Ali from REALITY ALI, a yet to be published story. She's spunky and fun and manages to figure out who she is and who she wants to be, despite the complication of having famous parents and people who think they know all about her.
7. Are there villains in your books and how were they created?
There aren't villains in the sense of the sinister man twirling his long mustache and rubbing his hands together while chortling with evil glee (yeah, and I'm not sure how he could twirl his mustache while rubbing his hand together) but there are people who work to make the main character's life difficult. They are created more or less organically as a result of the story. Though maybe I should work on one of those mustache-twirling ones.
8. What are you working on now?
Currently I'm revising a time-travel story called EMILY'S SONG about a high school senior who finds herself back at the start of the Civil War. She suddenly wishes she'd paid a whole lot more attention in history class.
9. What's your latest release and how did the idea arrive?
My latest release (debut novel) is WHEN MIKE KISSED EMMA and it actually started as the subplot of a different story. A friend suggested I pull it out and make it it's own story, which I did. Several complete rewrites later and it was published last August.
10. Tell me about your latest book and how it came about. Enclose the opening of the book around 400 words.
WHEN MIKE KISSED EMMA is a story about when...(wait for it)... Mike kissed Emma. You see, they weren't supposed to be together. Emma had a boyfriend - and she was quite content. And Mike, well, Mike simply wasn't her type. Her boyfriend wrote her poetry. Mike was a loner who rode a motorcycle. But then Mike gets cast opposite her in the school play, and as she gets to know Mike better she begins to doubt her initial assumptions. And then Mike kisses her - and suddenly nothing is certain anymore.
(Opening of book)
I walked right into him. I didn’t even see him standing there until I bounced off his chest. Books went flying. Pencils and pens clattered across the black and white floor tiles. And I would have landed on the floor too, if he hadn’t grabbed my arms and steadied me. I looked up to thank him, and saw the most gorgeous blue eyes. Really blue. I’d never seen anyone with eyes that blue. But then I saw who those eyes belonged to.
I took a step back, and disengaged myself from his hands. He wasn’t your typical St. Stephen’s student. He looked more like a public school student with his long hair, untucked shirt and sleeves rolled up to show off his tattoo and the leather jacket he wore whenever he didn’t have to be strictly in uniform. No one I knew had become friends with him since he transferred here this year. He came and went every day, on his beat-up old motorcycle. He could be a drug dealer or in a gang, for all I knew. It wouldn’t do to be getting too close to him.
“You should watch where you’re going,” he said, sounding more amused than annoyed.
“Sorry,” I bent down to pick up my scattered belongings. The love poem that Trevor had passed to me this afternoon was sticking out of my notebook. I shoved it back in before anyone else could see it.
Biker Mike bent down to help me. He gathered my pens and handed them to me.
There was a French Lit book on the floor in front of me – not mine – must belong to him. I handed it over, and he passed me my Trig book.
“Well, thanks,” I said as I stood back up again.
“No problem. I hope you didn’t miss your bus.”
“Oh,” That was sweet. “I wasn’t rushing to get the bus. I’m on my way to auditions.” I tapped a nearby poster. It was one Caitlyn had made with lots of glitter and a picture of nun doing an Uncle Sam imitation: I want you to try out for the Sound of Music.
“You’re the school play type, huh?” He asked. He leaned against a nearby locker and looked at me through narrowed eyes.