I am so excited to participate in this amazing event! Thank you Kaitlin @ Reading is My Treasure and Eli @ RealityLapse for hosting! For more information, click the banner above and you’ll be transferred to the kick-off page.
1. What inspired you to write My Life Next Door?
So many things came together to make me want to write that book. I majored in English lit and Shakespeare, so a bit of Romeo and Juliet—although that is something of a sad and fractured story and I like it all to work, will always be a fan of happy endings. Also, I wanted to write about someone who was a watcher, an onlooker, and then had to become part of the story.
2. Do you see yourself in Samantha?
I do see myself in Samantha, although I can honestly say I see myself in every character, even the awful ones. What I like about Sam is that she doesn’t easily and comfortably fit into the role she’s assigned. She’s a quiet and careful rebel.
3. Who is your favorite author and what is it that really strikes you about their work?
Favorite author is always a tough one for me. There are so many. Springing to mind, in YA, are Deb Caletti, Sarah Dessen, John Green, David Levithan—and backing up, Madeleine L’Engle, Laura Ingalls Wilder, Carol Ryrie Brink. I love the honest and unexpected, the funny, straightforward and real.
4. What was the hardest part of writing your book?
The hardest part was writing the arguments, the missed connections. I wince at that in real life and it was truly difficult to have my characters screw up and let one another down.
5. Do you recall how your interest in writing originated?
My interest in writing began with reading E.B. White. Unbelievably clear, straightforward, true as an arrow. My father read me all his books when I was five, and the whole way through all I could think was “I want to do this. I want to tell the truth like this.
6. Any advice to aspiring writers?
Advice? to read, read, read. To write a journal without self-criticism or editing. To finish everything you start and try out different styles.
7. Can you share a little of The Boy Most Likely To, the sequel to My Life Next Door?
THE BOY MOST LIKELY TO is the story of Tim Mason, the bad boy secondary character from MY LIFE NEXT DOOR. Tim has spent his whole life never seeing himself as a hero, evading consequences. In this book, that all comes home to roost.
Huntley Fitzpatrick grew up dreamy and distracted in coastal Connecticut, attended Concord Academy and Yale. She flourished in a family of bookworms where the library was always the most important room in the house. She kept an exhaustively thorough journal which frightened her boyfriends but has proved very useful in her career as a writer. Her debut contemporary Romance, MY LIFE NEXT DOOR, will be published in June of 2012 by Penguin-Dial for Young Readers. Now she laughs with and eavesdrops on her six children who provide her with perspective and material.