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YA Week with Melissa Walker, GCC Interview

Yay!  According to the blog counter installed in early April, my LJ has broken the 10k viewer mark.  Thanks to all my guest bloggers and all you readers out there!

In celebration of YA week (which will continue into next) and in honor of the long holiday weekend, I'm pleased to present a Girlfriends' Cyber Circuit interview with Melissa Walker for LOVESTRUCK SUMMER.
  This looks to be a fun beach read!  (And yes, my fonts are playing games with me again.  I'll see if I can wrestle them into submission.)

LOVESTRUCK SUMMER (HarperTeen; May 5, 2009; $5.99) is the story of Quinn, an indie rock girl who came out to Austin, Texas for a music internship. She also plans to spend long, lazy days in the sun at outdoor concerts--and to meet a hot musician or two. Instead, she’s stuck rooming with her sorority brainwashed cousin, who now willingly goes by the name “Party Penny.” Their personalities clash, big time.

But Sebastian, a gorgeous DJ, definitely makes up for it. Sebastian has it all: looks, charm, and great taste in music. So why can’t Quinn keep her mind off Penny’s friend cute, All-American Russ and his Texas twang? 

Sebastian is the kind of guy Quinn wants, but is Russ the guy Quinn needs?  One thing’s certain: Quinn’s in for a summer she’ll never forget!


A former editor at ELLEgirl and Seventeen magazines, Melissa Walker knows her indie rock. She hails from Chapel Hill, North Carolina, and currently resides in Brooklyn, New York. She loves talking about books, fashion, magazines and all kinds of pop culture. Visit her at melissacwalker.com or on iheartdaily.com.


How many fingers would you use to count the books you've read more than three times?  What books do you turn to time and again and why?

I'm mostly a one-timer because I like to keep up with as many new books as I can! However, I've read Flowers in the Attic more than once (partially thanks to the VC Andrews Challenge put out by Reviewer X and The Chick Manifesto: link) and I've also read Sylvia Plath's The Bell Jar a bunch. And Gone With the Wind (can't get enough of that one).

Have you ever fallen in love with a character (yours or someone else's)?  How did that work out for you?

I'm into rogues, so I fell for Rhett Butler at age 12 when I first read Gone With the Wind (I also fancied myself a bit of a Scarlett), and I think I've been looking for that kind of dignified bad boy ever since. I'm marrying one in July, so I found my real-life version. Yay!

Was there a pivotal moment in your writing or a single (or plural) epiphany that really changed or improved the way you write?

When I realized it was okay to use real situations, real character traits, real experiences in my fiction--and tweak them to fit the story--I breathed easier. You don't have to COMPLETELY make everything up... especially if you're writing realistic fiction.

I don't think any character really lives and breathes without quirks. Can you talk about that?

I agree! It's like if someone asks you what you love about your best friend, you don't say, "She's pretty, she's nice..." boring! You say, "I love that she can't watch AMERICA'S NEXT TOP MODEL without imitating Mr. Jay, I love that she always wants rainbow chocolate chips on her cupcakes, I love that she only "reads" the fashion pages of her favorite magazine, etc. The quirks are what we like about people, what makes them uniquely them. Same with characters.

Do you ever fear that people you've known will read your work and see themselves in the characters you create?

Oh, yes! I try really hard to fictionalize things though. Still, I know a couple of people have seen bits of themselves in my work. It's never the full person though, just a quirk or a line or maybe a look.

If you could meet any fictional character ever created, who would it be and why?

Wow. Can I ask any commenters to help me out with this one? I can't decide!

PS-For a chance to win Lovestruck Summer, plus 3 other great beach reads, your readers can go to iheartdaily.com/Harper2009.html

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