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I have the pleasure of interviewing author Heather Smith today. She’s from my same publisher, Entranced, and writes contemporary young adult fiction. I love her writing tip for us today. “Don’t expect everything you write to be pure gold.” I think us writers hold ourselves to such high standards and often expect every line to come out like honey. And when it doesn’t, we chastise ourselves. But I like what Heather says about keeping it all in perspective.
1. What do you write? A: I write YA fiction. My published work has been contemporary so far, but I also dabble in other genres.
2. What prompted you to start writing novels? A: I think the first one I wrote was back when I was around 10, and it was about a dragon guarding a treasure (I really loved the Hobbit as a kid). But the first novel I completed was when I was 17 and a senior in high school. I have always loved stories, and it seemed almost like magic how I could crack open a book and escape to a different world for a while. I still feel that way. So when I started writing myself, novels seemed like the perfect way for me to express that magic I’d always felt.
3. What is the one writing tip you’d like to pass on to other writers? A: Don’t expect everything you write to be pure gold. You will have days where you delete everything you wrote, and days you’ll go back and wonder what the hell you were thinking. This is normal. In fact, it’s a good thing. It means you can recognize what’s decent and bad about your own work.
4. What was your writing journey? A: Well, as I’ve said, I’ve been writing ever since I was a little girl. I’d wanted to be published for so long I honestly don’t remember when it started. I wrote my first book for my senior project in high school, and participated in ABNA and NaNoWriMo. I spent one summer querying my first novel to no avail. I got all rejections. So I shelved the book and worked on my next project: Balancing Act. I edited for a while, and then saw a pitch opportunity on Twitter for Entranced. My lovely editor, Emily, requested a partial and said it could take up to two weeks to get back to me. I got an email two hours later asking for the full manuscript. By the end of the next week I had a book deal. It was amazing, and I wouldn’t trade my journey for anything.
5. Give us a little sneak preview/sample of your book and tell us how we can get it! A: One year ago, Callie Harding was the star of the Redwood High gymnastics team. Now, she’s just trying to forget that her Olympic dreams were stolen from her in one failed landing. Most of all, she wants to forget her first love, Ty. That part of her life is over and she’s sure she has got something good with Scott… even if he doesn’t exactly understand her passion for sports. But when Callie is persuaded to take on the position of assistant coach of the gymnastics team, Ty and Callie are thrown together almost nightly, and she’s forced to confront her memories of the night everything changed. As things get tense on and off the balance beam, Callie must find a way to stay strong. But is forgetting her accident – and forgetting Ty – the best way to do that?
Fast Five Lightning Round:
Favorite vacation spot? Hawaii
Fav ice cream flavor? Mint chocolate chip (ooh, Heather, mine too!)
Fav color? Any shade of blue
Fav animal? Horse
Fav movie? Too hard! Currently it’s Thor The Dark World because it’s hilarious.
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