Monday, November 5, 2012

An Interview with Melissa Pearl

So today I had the honor of interviewing the wonderful author Melissa Pearl. She has just released her book Betwixt and I have to say it was a real tear jerk-er for me. I loved the character creation and felt so attached to both Nicole and Dale. I loved how she created the characters and I could so easily relate to their clicks in school. Here is just a little bit about the book and the interview follows. 

TITLE:  Betwixt
AUTHOR: Melissa Pearl
PUBLISHED:  November 3, 2012
RATING:  Young Adult
GENRE:  Paranormal

Beautiful, wild-chid Nicole Tepper is hit by a car and left for dead. But when she wakes the next morning, Nicole finds herself in bed without a scratch. Perhaps she was more intoxicated than usual, as her mother is giving her the silent treatment and her friends are ignoring her as well. 

Things take a turn for the weird when Nicole soon discovers she is actually hovering between life and death. Her body is lying in the forest while her spirit is searching for anyone who can hear her. Unfortunately the only person who can is Dale Finnigan, the guy she publicly humiliated with a sharp-tongued insult that has left him branded.

Desperate, Nicole has no choice but to haunt Dale and convince the freaked-out senior to help her. Will he find her body before it's too late? Or will the guy who tried to kill her with his car, beat him there and finish her off before anyone finds out?
And now for the Beautiful and Talented  Melissa Pearl!
Thanks for this opportunity. SO cool to be featuring on your blog :)

Did you always want to be a writer?
I've always had an avid imagination. There was always a story running through my head, but I didn't complete my first one until about ten years ago. Since then I haven't been able to stop writing :)

What is the hardest part of writing for you?
I love every aspect of writing and every aspect has it's challenging moments. I always worry that I'm not painting a clear enough picture or that people might find fault with my writing, but then I remind myself that writing is subjective and not everyone is going to love everything. That helps :)

What's the best thing about being an author?
Getting to share my stories with the world. Having this cool idea in your brain and these awesome characters who you get to know so well is a privilege... and then I get to share that will readers and they then fall in love like I did. It just gets better and better :)

What advice would you give aspiring writers?
Study the craft of writing. There is so much to learn and so many ways you can improve. It's worth taking the time to do a course or read those books on how to write fiction well. I look at my first few manuscripts and cringe at all the rookie mistakes I made.
I still have so much more to learn and my goal is to always make each new project better than the one before.

What do you think was the most challenging part of writing Betwixt?
Nicole is a very edgy, uptight character, but she's like that for a reason. I needed readers to empathise with her and like her, but that's hard to do when she is the way she is. Trying to get that balance right without giving everything away too quickly took a little thought and planning :)

What is your favorite scene in Betwixt?
I know this will probably sound strange, but the big fight scene between Nicole and Dale was one of my favourite to write. I think it was just so cool for them to get it all out in the open and say what they were really thinking. It was such an emotional scene and I really got into, so I had fun writing that.

Who is your favorite character and why?
I love Dale. He's so awesome and reminds me a lot of my Dad. He's just such a nice, mellow guy that really cares about people.
I also love Nicole though. I find her really funny and I love the way she just says what's on her mind. I understand her and so I find her little remarks amusing, rather than offensive :)

Did you know people like the ones you wrote about in Betwixt? And if so which "click" were you in?
Good question. I was one of those kids who was really lost in the middle at high school. I wasn't friends with any particular group. I felt like I was on the outside of about three. I hated high school. I found it really lonely and hard.
But I look back and realize that some of those challenges made me the person I am now and I like that. I like that it's made me stronger and more assertive.

I would sometimes hang out with the cool group, not really one of them, but they would tolerate me standing around every now and then. Penny, Amber and Lauren remind me a lot of those girls who just thought they were so fantastic. I remember feeling really intimidated and vulnerable around them, not that they knew it :)

Can you tell us about any upcoming projects?
Yes! I am very excited to be working on a YA fantasy trilogy for 2013. I hoping to produce all three books next year. I don't want to give too much away and I haven't thought of a decent way to describe the books yet... maybe Lord of the Rings for girls? Haha. I'll need to keep working on my pitch!!

I'm also hoping to work with my co-author, Brenda Howson, again on the next Mica and Lexy book. We have no release day planned yet, but will keep people posted. 

Who are your favorite authors? Which ones inspire you as a writer?
Francine Rivers, Dee Henderson and Simone Elkeles are among my top few. I love the emotional depth Francine Rivers gets to in her books. I'm always so inspired when I read them. Dee Henderson writes books that are impossible to put down and I love the way she marries action, tension and romance. She weaves fantastic stories. Simone Elkeles writes teenage romance in such a real, raw way. I love it.

Thanks so much for such a great interview.
That was fun :)

Thank you Melissa for stopping by and answering our questions. I have to say once again how very much I enjoyed your book and can't wait to read some more of your splendid works of art. And for those of you who have not had a chance to read this book grab the link above and grab yourself a copy!

1 comment:

  1. Thank you so much for having me. I loved answering your questions. Very fun :)

    AND I'm so glad you enjoyed Betwixt. It's so nice to pour your heart and soul into something and then have people appreciate it :)