Saturday, December 29, 2012

Interview With...Lisa Schroeder

An accomplished YA novelist, Lisa Schroeder's latest novel is a departure from her style of verse. But that just might gain a whole new legion of fans.

In your YA novels (I Heart You, You Heart Me, Far from You, Chasing Brooklyn, and The Day Before) you've always written in verse. Falling for You is written in regular prose. What made you want to depart from writing in verse?

Not all stories are going to work in verse, to be honest. Falling for You has lots of characters and a lot of stuff going on and Rae's story just didn't want to be told that way. I try my best to do what would serve the story best, and in this case, short chapters with some poetry sprinkled throughout seemed to work well. I hope my readers will still find the things they enjoy about my books - a range of emotions, suspense, and a main character you come to care deeply about.

When it comes to writing novels, what usually inspires you?

Inspiration comes from a lot of places. Music is often a huge inspiration. As you probably know, a line from Pink's song "Glitter in the Air" inspired my last YA novel, The Day Before. Usually I have a few seeds of ideas, and I start writing to see how they might grow into a full-flown story. Usually these seeds come from a place of wanting to explore something, or being fond of something and wanting to put that into a book. With Falling for You, for example, I had always wanted to do something in or around a flower shop, because to me flower shops are such happy places, and I've always thought delivering flowers would be a great job. Mostly, I am inspired by things that make me feel something, and I hope that when I write my novels, those feelings come through for the reader.

Music is a central part with all your novels. What are some of your favorite bands/musicians that you love the most?

Yes, it is, and I've actually put a lot of my favorites into my books! Lifehouse, Goo Goo Dolls, Pink are a few favorites that have made it into my novels. My iPod has a wide variety of songs from the Civil Wars to Bruce Springsteen to Taylor Swift. 

Do you have any advice for aspiring writers?

More than anything, work on craft. Read books, take classes, and whatever else you can do to learn about plot and structure and creating believable characters. Do everything you can to try to become the best writer you can be before worrying about publication. Once your book is out there, it is a tough thing, having people read and judge your work. I don't think a lot of people realize how hard it can be, putting your personal work out there. So take your time and don't take shortcuts - think of it as a marathon, not a sprint.

Lisa's new YA novel "Falling for You" will hit shelves Jan 1st, 2013! For more about Lisa and her amazing books, visit her at her website.

Click here to see the trailer for "Falling for You"!

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