It's day 15 of The Crossroads Blog Tour! If you're not familiar with how the tour works, you can check out my kick off post here, and then be sure to visit The Crossroads Tour main page for a full list of participating authors and bloggers as well as details on prizes, giveaways, and collecting the mystery clues!
Today I'd like to extend a warm welcome to Shannon Delany, she's popping in to answer some questions about her wonderful werewolf young adult series!
Do you find it more interesting to create individual characters or to build a paranormal world and mythology?
In the case of the 13 to Life series the paranormal world is very similar to our own world but with one important what if thrown in: What if more of the parapsychology-based experiments tried during (and before) the Cold War had worked? So the world is simple. Capturing the characters accurately definitely fascinated me much more.
Did drawing on your own personal loss make the novel easier to write or harder?
It definitely made writing the series (thus far) harder in some ways and kept me up at night thinking about what Jess’s struggle with loss was reflecting about my own issues.
What is your favorite aspect of writing for a young adult audience?
It allows me to reconnect with an age group I’ve always related closely to. Having been a teacher, I loved dealing with teens and all the angst and drama that came with them. Now I get to revisit those memories, tweak them out, give them some twists and write for that same age group although now it’s a different generation.
What was the most exciting moment of your 13 to Life experience: winning the Textnovel contest and getting a contract, finishing the current version, or release day?
Release day. I spoke (and read and signed) at Colgate Bookstore in Hamilton, NY. There was cake and soda and—it was just awesome!
Name one reason werewolves are more appealing to you than vampires, fae, or other paranormal entity.
Werewolves are more appealing to me than vampires (not knockin’ the fae—I adore them and have a story I wanna pursue including them in a big way) because I see the traditional forms of these creatures as polar opposites (other than the fact they’re both deadly!). Werewolves are warm, vamps are cold. Werewolves are wild and represent passion, vamps appear very controlled (to the point of being “stuck up”). Werewolves are symbolic of the transformation of man to his most primitive nature. Vampires...can’t get a tan or go to the beach with you. Well...maybe once. ;-)
Is there any scene you would re-write if you could, or any deleted scene you wish could be added back to the finished story?
13 to Life was kept pretty much intact by my editor—now Bargains and Betrayals?(book 3)—I sliced and diced that one.
A huge thank you to Shannon for taking the time to answer my questions! 13 to Life just released in June and the sequel, Secrets and Shadows, is set to release on February 15th, 2011 from St. Martin's Griffin so mark your calendars everyone! As she mentioned, there will be a book three and it's to release in the fall of 2011 though no specific day is set just yet. For more information on Shannon and her books, you can find her here:
13 TO LIFE (from Goodreads)
When junior Jess Gillmansen gets called out of class by Guidance, she can only presume it’s for one of two reasons. Either they’ve finally figured out who wrote the scathing anti-jock editorial in the school newspaper or they’re hosting yet another intervention for her about her mom. Although far from expecting it, she’s relieved to discover Guidance just wants her to show a new student around—but he comes with issues of his own including a police escort.
The newest member of Junction High, Pietr Rusakova has secrets to hide--secrets that will bring big trouble to the small town of Junction—secrets including dramatic changes he’s undergoing that will surely end his life early.
SECRETS AND SHADOWS (from Shannon's website)
The supernatural stakes are higher than ever now that more than just werewolves prowl the town of Junction--friendships will be formed, choices will be made and allies may become enemies...
Nothing's simple when you run with werewolves. Jess Gillmansen thinks she's seen it all but her eyes are about to be opened to even more danger and a reality far more paranormal than she's suspected.