You might remember my sequee fest over From What I Remember … a few weeks ago. I loved this book insanely – like, so so so much! Today, I am even more excited to host the amazing duo that wrote this piece of awesome: Valerie Thomas and Stacy Kramer.
I have a fantastic interview with them and later on, you can also win a shiny signed Hardcover, nicely sponsored by the girls!
and now, please welcome Stacy and Valerie!
Hi Girls! Thank you so much for taking your time to answer a few of my burning questions! Please have a seat, coffee or tea?
You remember when you were ask at the Teen Author Carnival to pitch your book “From What I Remember …” in 6 words? Well, let’s make it 3:
Fast, fun, complex
Perfect, If I wouldn’t be already in love with your book, I would totally need to read it right now..
With the two of you writing together, I am always intrigued about how the process of writing goes. Especially with so many POV’s in your book, did each of you write certain POV’s? Or how does your team-writing-process works?
We did not split up the POV’s. What we’ve always done is spend a great deal of time working out the plot and structure of a book, figuring out the characters’ distinctions and the book’s themes, and then one of us starts writing. Eventually that person passes the work back to the other one who rewrites it. We then switch roles after awhile, and by the end of the process we’ve both written and rewritten the entire book dozens and dozens of times. The process works well for us, it allows us to achieve a unified voice, and we’re both busy writing all the time.
In “From What I Remember …” we have 5 different POV’s – which is a lot and although I normally get easily confused, here, the voices were so distinct I always knew who was telling the story right now. But, why did you decide to include so many POV’s?
At first we were just going to have Kylie and Max, but we began to experiment with Will as well, and then decided to add it Lily and Jake, to make things even more challenging for ourselves!! We liked having three voices that were not in Mexico for a huge chunk of the book because it allowed us to fill in what was going on back home, and we really liked the variety of voices we created. We hope they add a dimension to the book that one doesn’t normally find.
And in light of the “All Male Challenge” that is going on right now. Was writing the Boy POV’s different and more difficult to you? And, did you ask the men in your life for advice?
Writing Max was harder than writing Will, who we both have many things in common with (love of fashion, love of snark…). Max was a difficult character because he’s intentionally opaque for much of the book, and he’s kind of a jerk….once he begins to let loose in Mexico it was much easier to write him. We both drew on the boys in high school who we knew who were similar to Max. And Jake was actually very easy to write, once we figured out what his voice was.
Max and Kylie could be considered classic stereotypes on the outside: The gorgeous all popular Sports Boy and the geeky, nerdy Girl on the outside of the popular crowd. Yet there is so much more about these characters than visible from the outside. I especially loved this aspect – was that something any of you experienced? Realizing that there is more to some kids/people than what they wear on the outside?
We think the big lesson of the book, if there is one, is that everyone is different than they seem on the outside. Especially in high school where figuring out one’s identity can be so difficult, everyone chooses a persona to some degree and is then pigeon-holed there, but deep down there’s much more going on, and many more facets. We really enjoyed creating characters who had unexpected layers that eventually get peeled away.
Seriously, while reading, the whole book played like a movie in my head. I actually embarrassed myself randomly telling my husband that this scene would be awesome in a move… Uhm.. Yes… So, Considering your background in screenwriting was that something you had in mind while writing?
It is not something that we consciously had in mind, but because we both have a background in film and screenwriting, we both can’t help but craft books that are a lot like movies. We were trained in the film business to create plots that move quickly, and to emphasize the visual aspects of a story all the time, so we think that has migrated to our book writing. Luckily, the book has been optioned for film by Paramount Pictures, so hopefully we’ll all get to see it as a movie.
Would you mind sharing who you would be your dream cast ?!? I always love to see who the authors envisioned when creating those amazing characters!
It’s hard to know who the cast would be since by the time the movie gets made, the actors we love today might be too old. We love Selena Gomez. Ryan Reynolds is too old but we think he’d be perfect for Max. Chris Pine? There are probably some wildly talented young actors on the brink of being discovered who will end up in the film, so stay tuned!
So want to share with us what is in store for you now? Will you continue to write together and, maybe you can tease us a little? J
We are still writing together and we’re working on two new books. One is a romantic comedy that involves movies…just like FROM WHAT I REMEMBER, but vastly different (that’s all we can say, sorry), the other is a huge departure for us, it’s an international spy thriller based on true events that occurred in Berlin a few years ago….again, that’s all we’re able to divulge!
I had the pleasure meeting them when I was in NYC for BEA and both are fantastic!!!!
They are funny and awesome and I cannot wait to read more from them!!! And it’m super excited to hear that they are going to write another cute and funny story like this one!
KYLIE: Tijuana WHAT? I should be putting the finishing touches on my valedictorian speech. Graduation is TODAY, and is this a wedding band on my finger.MAX: It all started with Kylie’s laptop and a truck full of stolen electronics Okay, it was kind of hot, the way she broke us out like some chick in an action movie. But now we’re stranded in TIjuana. WIth less than twenty-four hours before graduation. Awesome.WILL: Saving Kylie Flores from herself is kind of a full-time occupation. Luckily, I, Will Bixby, was born for the job. And when I found out she was stuck in Mexico with dreamy Max Langston, sure, I agreed to bring thier passports across the border–but there’s no reason to rush back home right away. This party is just getting started.LILY: I just walked in on my boyfriend, Max Langston, canoodling with Kylie Flores, freak of the century. Still, I can’t completely hold it against him. He NEEDS me. It’s even clearer now. And I’m not giving him up without a fight
This Interview and Giveaway is part of the awesometastic, it#s not to late to join!