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Thursday, 26 April 2012

Author Interview: Trish Doller


Before we get started, and you skip this part, I just want to say how grateful and freaking happy I am to have a chance at interviewing Trish. She is probably one of the sweetest and friendliest authors ever, and her debut book Something Like Normal is by far the best contemporary I've read for a long, long time. I was the happiest girl in the world when I learned I got approved on Netgalley, and I literally read it during the night, I couldn't put it down. Okay okay I'm gonna stop now before I start fangirling forever...

This just confirms the fact that people who are born in April are truly the best! LOL  

:: There's already quite a lot of buzz about SLN (Something Like Normal) and bloggers who've read your book already can't stop raving about it! Are you scared about total strangers reading your book,or just excited?
Mostly I'm excited, but it is a little scary because once readers have the book, it's not really mine anymore. It belongs to them to love or not, and all I can do is hope they'll love the story as much as I do.

:: If SLN would become a movie, who would you cast as Travis and Harper?
Riley Harper and Brie Larson looks perfect as Travis and Harper

I don't have a specific actor in mind for Travis, but there is a stuntman named Riley Harper who looks almost exactly like the Travis in my head. Harper has always been Brie Larson, but recently someone suggested Christa B. Allen from Revenge. When I looked her up, she definitely does have a Harper-ness about her.

:: How would you describe Travis and Harper's relationship in five words?

Sweet. Sexy. Fun. Bumpy. Real.

:: Did you base Travis or any of the characters on anyone you know in real life?

Some of the things Travis experienced in Afghanistan came from conversations I had with a Marine who served there, so in some ways he is a part of Travis, but Travis is not him. If that makes sense. There are a couple of characters who were inspired by my son's high school friends, but they're minor roles in the story.

:: Did the story of Travis came easily to you? Like you knew exactly what kind of a character he is, and his story? Or was it hard piercing together? 

Travis was meant to be the love interest in a different project, but once I started thinking about what I wanted from him, I realized it was his story to tell. I gave him voice and the words came pretty easily.

:: Because of the cover, are you scared that boys won't pick up SLN? If you had your choice, what would the cover be like? (I'm not complaining about the cover - I love it so much!)

Honestly? I have no idea what I would do differently with the cover. I think Bloomsbury has been around the block or two when it comes to selling books, so I have to trust that they know what they're doing. And that readers--both boys and girls--will realize that Something Like Normal is a book that offers something for everyone, no matter what's on the cover.
:: Do you usually begin a book with a character or a plot? What's the hardest part writing in a male's perspective?

Characters always come first. I don't know why, but it usually starts with a character and the grain of a plot, and builds from there. As for male perspective, I've got a son a little older than Travis, so I've spent years watching and listening to the boys who've come in and out of our house. And I sometimes think I might have been a guy in a previous life, because I feel pretty comfortable in the perspective.
:: I heard that you've done quite a lot of research about Marines. Did you found out any interesting facts? Can you share?

I did a TON of research for Something Like Normal. I read books about boot camp, Iraq, Afghanistan, and post-traumatic stress disorder, as well as watched countless videos of Marines in Afghanistan. I was lucky enough to come across a Marine forum, where they let me ask questions and gave me so many valuable answers. As for interesting facts...I can't really think of one particular thing, but I do know that in case of a zombie apocalypse, I'm looking for a Marine.

:: In the future, do you think you'll write any other genres within YA? Like dystopian, paranormal, fantasy etc.? Or are you happy with contemporary?

I would never rule out writing in another YA genre. In fact, I have the makings of a Civil War historical in my writing folder on my desktop and would LOVE to do a science fiction story, but right now everything I'm working on is contemporary and I want to get those all out on paper before stepping off the path into a different genre.

:: And finally, do you have any plans on what you'll be doing on SLN's release date? 

My husband gave me diving lessons for Christmas and I'm hoping to start them very soon. If all goes according to plan, I should have my certification before the book comes out, so I will spend June 19, 2012 diving on a reef in the Florida Keys. (And June 20, catching up on everything I missed on June 19!)

Massive thanks to Trish for agreeing to let me interview her since her book isn't actually coming out til June 19th, 2012
PLEASE EVERYONE: Pre-order this book! If not for me, do it for Travis :P

A powerful debut novel about a young Marine's return home from Afghanistan and the new life and love he finds while fending off the ghosts of war.

When Travis Stephenson returns home from Afghanistan, his parents are on the brink of divorce, his brother has stolen his girlfriend and his car, and nightmares of his best friend getting killed keep him completely spooked. But when he runs into Harper Gray, a girl who despises him for trashing her reputation with a middle school lie, life actually starts looking up. As Travis and Harper see more of each other, he starts falling for her and a way through the family meltdown, the post-traumatic stress, and the possibility of an interesting future begins to emerge.

His sense of humor, sense of his own strength, and incredible sense of honor make Travis an irresistible and eminently lovable hero in this fantastic and timely debut novel.

Find out more about SOMETHING LIKE NORMAL, and author Trish Doller :
Goodreads Author Page: Trish Doller
Twitter: @TrishDoller

I've been a writer as long as I've been able to write, but I didn't make a conscious decision to "be" a writer until fairly recently. For that you should probably be thankful.

I was born in Germany, grew up in Ohio, went to college at Ohio State University, got married to someone really great, bounced from Maine to Michigan and back to Ohio for awhile. Now I live in Florida with my two mostly grown kids, two dogs, and a pirate. For real.

I've worked as a morning radio personality, a newspaper reporter, and spent all my summers in college working at an amusement park. There I gained valuable life skills, including counting money really fast, directing traffic, jumping off a moving train, and making cheese-on-a-stick. Also, I can still welcome you to Frontier Town. Ask me sometime.

These days I work as a bookseller at a Very Big Bookstore. And I write.


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