Today we're welcoming author Suzanne Lilly to the blog on her tour with Goddess Fish Promotions for her YA novel, "Shades of the Future".
Suzanne is giving away a a pair of designer sunglasses to a randomly drawn commenter during the tour, so comment today AND follow her tour (if you click on the banner over there on the left, it'll take you to a list of her tour stops)! The more you read and comment, the better your odds of winning. You could be introduced to a great new author AND win prize!
Suzanne answered all my prying questions, so let's turn the floor over to her!
Why do you write in your genre? What draws you to it?
I must have an affinity for teenage angst and drama. Actually, I’m a teacher, and since I’m around young people all day, I’m tuned in to some of their issues, hopes, and dreams. I love reading young adult books, so it was a natural step for me to write in that genre.
What research is required?
Shades of the Future is a contemporary YA, so I didn’t have to do any world building. The story is set in the fictional town of Honey Creek, Ohio, which was created by my publisher, Turquoise Morning Press. I have a map of the town, and the names of the local businesses, and even some of the residents. It’s a tiny farming community, complete with all the quirkiness small towns have. Also, in a town the size of Honey Creek, there are no secrets. Absolutely none. If a character does something, the whole town knows about it in a matter of seconds.
Name one thing you learned from your hero/heroine.
Mariah Davis suffers a tragic accident in the book, and she goes through a kaleidoscope of emotions while dealing with it. I learned from her that no matter what life stacks against you, with the right attitude and perseverance, you can overcome it.
Any odd or interesting writing quirks, habits or superstitions?
None that I would call weird, odd, or interesting, but my family may feel differently about it. I do need to have a cup or glass of something to drink on my desk while I write. Right now I have ice cold water. Normally I have coffee, black tea or green tea. If I don’t have a beverage, I just can’t write. It’s like gas in the car of my writing fingers.
Plotter or pantser?
What’s a pantser? Just kidding. I absolutely, positively, cannot write anything, not even a short story, without a plan. I plot out every tiny detail before I write a story. I lay out the setting. For example, right now, if you could look above my desk, you’d see a collage of pictures of my heroine’s home, pets, friends, and hobbies. I plan my characters and get to know them. I map out the character arcs and story arc. I lay everything out scene by scene. Sounds tedious, right? Actually, that’s the creative phase of my writing. Once I’ve done my outline, the story is practically done. All I have to do is fill in the scenes and flesh everything out.
Look to your right – what’s sitting there?
The door to my writing room is on my right. My cat is sitting there glaring at me. Yes, she glares. She’s probably hungry or just doesn’t like the outfit I’m wearing.
Anything new coming up from you? What?
Yes, I have a Honey Creek novel coming out in February 2013 called Untellable. Here’s what it’s about:
Aspen Marie Dwyer has a secret to keep and she picks Honey Creek, Ohio as the perfect place to hide. Arriving on a Greyhound bus with nothing but a duffel bag containing her clothes and personal belongings, she walks to the Honey Creek Lake Lodge to begin her summer job as a lifeguard. Four years earlier, Aspen witnessed her father murder her mother, and her testimony locked him away in prison. Before being taken out of the courtroom in shackles, he swore someday he would find her and kill her, too.
Local volunteer firefighter Colton Moraine is always up for a challenge, and Aspen is just what he needs to liven up his small town summer. Through driving lessons, picnics, and romantic kisses under the fireworks, the two fall in love. Aspen fatalistically knows their summer romance will end if Colton finds out her history. But not telling him tortures her, making her feel like a fraud.
When her father is granted parole, she can no longer keep her dark secret. She has to make a life changing decision. Will she continue to run and hide, or fight for the love she’s discovered with Colton in Honey Creek?
Do you have a question for our readers?
I love chatting with readers, so to start the conversation, here’s a question. Which do you think is worse: seeing the future and knowing a bad thing is coming, or not knowing at all and having it blindside you?
Mariah Davis loves animals, running, and her hunk of a boyfriend, Kevin Creamer. Everything looks bright for her until the day she finds a pair of sunglasses that allow her to see the future.
When she glimpses a disaster looming, she tries to avoid it but fails. She has a car accident that lands her in a wheelchair, smashing her hopes for a running scholarship to the veterinary program at Ohio State University. She pushes Kevin away, thinking he’ll want to end their relationship now that she can’t walk.
Will she ever learn to trust and love again? She could search for an answer in the sunglasses. But she’s afraid what they reveal might destroy her.
“You see things?” Eulalie put the remains of her cookie on her saucer and leaned her elbows on the table. She laced her fingers together and rested her chin on her folded hands. “What kinds of things?”
“I don’t want you to think I’m crazy, but I see things that haven’t happened yet,” Mariah blurted out. She went on to tell her about the trig test that day, Hayley’s color-changing outfit, and the hamburger.
“Well, now, that doesn’t seem too bad.” Eulalie stirred her tea even though she hadn’t put any sugar in it. She took a sip.
“So you don’t think it’s strange?” Mariah asked.
Eulalie put her cup down. She shook her head. “I didn’t say that. Have you seen anything else? Anything that might involve other people? Something that might be a burden to you?”
Mariah shook her head no.
“That’s a good thing.” The words meant one thing, but the way Eulalie cleared her throat and looked away made Mariah think that it wasn’t what she truly thought. “If I were you, I’d be careful with them.”
“What do you mean?”
“When you start messing around with fortune telling and seeing the future, sooner or later you might see things you don’t want to know about.”
You can follow her on Twitter as @suzannelilly, visit her blog at http://www.teacherwriter.net, or her author website at http://www.suzannelilly.com.
Author website: http://www.suzannelilly.com
TeacherWriter blog: http://www.teacherwriter.net
Fridays at Honey Creek blog: http://www.honeycreekbooks.com
Suzanne Lilly at Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/5258804.Suzanne_Lilly
Follow @SuzanneLilly on Twitter: http://twitter.com/suzannelilly
Available at Amazon http://www.amazon.com/Suzanne-Lilly/e/B006HY79IY/ref=ntt_dp_epwbk_2 and most online book retailers in digital or paperback.