Hey Everyone! Today Julie and I are part of a Blog Hop called “The Next Big Thing,” a way for writers to speak about their works-in-progress and spread the word about their fellow writers. Julie and I were tagged a couple of weeks ago by the lovely Jackie Resnick (you can read her post here) and were going to place our post up on Halloween, but Hurricane Sandy put a bit of a damper on our blogging. But now we are BACK and ready to answer questions.
Here we go:
What is the working title of your book?
Marirosa Mia: STONE GIRL is my working title at the moment, but I am TERRIBLE at thinking up titles. I thought of doing a little poetry/song research for some inspiration but have yet to find anything.
Julie: LIKE BUG JUICE ON A BURGER, the sequel to my first book, LIKE PICKLE JUICE ON A COOKIE, is due out in April.
Where did the idea come from for the book?
M: Oh gosh. I started writing the piece about 3 years ago and put it away to continue working on another novel for my thesis, then a few months ago it found its way to me again. The idea first came to me like all my others: A scene plays in my head over and over again like a movie. For this particular novel it was a house, decaying, and the lost girl inside it. I simply couldn’t get her and the house out of my head.
J: My first book, LIKE PICKLE JUICE ON A COOKIE, tells the story of a girl, Eleanor, whose longtime, beloved babysitter moves away. For the first time, Eleanor is left by someone she loves. For the sequel, I thought I’d write about Eleanor herself leaving loved ones (temporarily) for the first time. LIKE BUG JUICE ON A BURGER thus tells the story of Eleanor’s first experience at sleepaway camp.
What genre does your book fall under?
J: Realistic Fiction, for young middle-grade readers
Which actors would you choose to play your characters in a movie rendition?
M: Uh. Ada is a strong, athletic, 20-something woman. She’s a bit like an owl, watching patterns and behavior; she trusts few but loyal to those she loves. She’s a bit like Jennifer Garner when she played Sidney Bristow in ALIAS. So maybe an unknown who shares that same strength.
J: Bailee Madison might make a great Eleanor. Should I confess that I’m most familiar with her work as a guest star on Wizards of Waverly Place? (I have daughters! Disney shows are unavoidable!)
What is the one-sentence synopsis of your book?
M: Cursed by a witch, a young girl is unable to step outside the confines of her home without turning to stone; her relationships, her loves exists through the bars of her confinement.
J: Nine-year-old Eleanor attends sleepaway camp for the first time and is not a happy camper.
Will your book be self-published or represented by an agency?
M: Once it’s finished I hope to send out query letters to agents.
J: I’m represented by Rosemary Stimola of the Stimola Literary Studio; Abrams Books will publish BUG JUICE.
How long did it take you to write the first draft of your manuscript?
M: Still writing it. And I just joined NaNoWriMo (friend me if you are doing it as well) so I’m hoping it will help me finished a good full rough draft of it.
J: The first draft took about three months.
What other books would you compare this story to within your genre?
M: It definitely has a fairytale vibe. A bit of Robin McKinley perhaps. Clearly I’m terrible at this.
J: IVY AND BEAN, by Annie Barrows; CLEMENTINE, by Sara Pennypacker
Who or what inspired you to write this book?
M: You know how it is, when characters simply won’t leave your head until they are written down.
J: My younger daughter suffered from intense homesickness during her first summer at sleepaway camp.
What else about your book might pique the reader’s interest?
M: There’s a bit of a tortured romance in there. John who has just came back from the war (World War I) and he can’t seem to connect with anything from his old life finds a flame of hope in Ada.
J: The illustrator for PICKLE JUICE, Matthew Cordell, is also working on BUG JUICE and is doing a terrific job. His sketches make me laugh every time I flip through them.
Thank you so much for reading about our work!