BLOG TOUR: Want by Stephanie Lawton
Julianne counts the days until she can pack her bags and leave her old-money, tradition-bound Southern town where appearance is everything and secrecy is a way of life. A piano virtuoso, she dreams of attending a prestigious music school in Boston. Failure is not an option, so she enlists the help of New England Conservatory graduate Isaac Laroche to help her. She can’t understand why he suddenly gave up Boston’s music scene to return to the South. He doesn’t know her life depends on escaping it. Julianne must face down madness from without, just as it threatens from within. Isaac must resist an inappropriate attraction, but an indiscretion at a Mardi Gras ball-the pinnacle event for Mobile’s elite-forces their present wants and needs to collide with sins of the past. Will Julianne accept the help she’s offered and get everything she ever wanted, or will she self-destruct and take Isaac down with her?
Book Brats: What were some of the challenges from jumping from being a book blogger to a book author?
I miss being able to write reviews on Novel Novice. I still help with the education-y posts, but I feel so out of the loop now! Writing was a challenge because I needed to make sure I wasn’t doing all the things I’d critiqued other books for doing! Blogging and writing a full-length novel are very different things.
BB: What YA books have the most influence on who you are as a person and as an author?
As a reader, there are two books that really stand out for me. The first is Sea by Heidi R. Kling and the second is A Need So Beautiful by Suzanne Young. Both are gorgeous and deep, and mentally take you places you’ve never been. As an writer, I think L.K. Madigan’s Flash Burnout was the most influencial because it was the first YA book I read that didn’t have an ending all tied up in a neat bow. It’s not HEA (happily-ever-after) by any means and I loved that. It gave me the courage to write the ending that I did for Want. As a fangirl, I am ALL OVER Cassandra Clare’s books!
BB: What inspired you to write WANT?
Want was inspired by a stuck-up lady at a Mardi Gras parade for one of the older, more exclusive mystic societies in Mobile. She was obviously the wife of one of the parading society members and thought she was above the rest of us. Her attitude really made me mad so I took a picture of her from the back so I could remember the moment. I began wondering what hell her life must be and how I’d hate to be her kid. That’s where Julianne and her mother came from.
BB: Of all the fun things in an author’s life, what part is your favorite?
Stalking readers online. (Just kidding … sort of.) It’s fun to read comments on reviews and see people debating back and forth. They talk like the characters are real and that’s one of the best compliments, aside from, “Please tell me there will be a sequel!” Fanmail is also a warm-fuzzy, but seriously, when someone says, “Oh my gosh, I dealt with such-and-such, too. Thank you for addressing it,” that’s when I know all the hard work was worth it.
BB: How would you describe WANT in ten words or less?
Sometimes getting what you want isn’t worth the price.
BB: What books are on your nightstand right now?
I’m beta reading for a couple friends, but I plan to start Kenneth Oppel’s SUCH WICKED INTENT very soon. I loved the first book in the series, THIS DARK ENDEAVOR, and can’t wait to get started. I also have TIMEPIECE by Myra McEntire waiting on my Kindle. I need more Michael and Kaleb!
BB: Are there any peculiar writing habits that you stick to?
I don’t really have any rituals or habits, except that I always have a glass of ice water nearby. I like to write in the same spot–my kitchen table. If I move, everything feels different, like trying to write in a different font.
BB: Do you have any advice for aspiring authors?
Learn everything you can, but make sure you put it into practice or else it means nothing. It’s easy to get caught in the trap of preparing to write, but never actually starting. So get going!