My special author guest today is the fantastic Lisa Schroeder, author of I Heart You, You Haunt Me, Far from You, and the upcoming Chasing Brooklyn and It's Raining Cupcakes, a new book for middle grade readers. So let's jump right in, with my questions in bold.
What’s the best thing about being a published author?
The piles and piles of money laying around my house. HA - just kidding! There are NO piles of money. Absolutely none, trust me. I'm pretty sure Stephenie Meyer has taken it all and her house is made OF money.
Seriously, the best thing would most definitely be the e-mails from readers, letting me know how one of my books touched them or helped them. I love hearing from readers, and it makes all the hard work and juggling a family and a day job (see - no piles of money!) with the writing all worth it.
Is everyone taking notes? Send Lisa email! It makes her day! So Lisa, why write your books in free verse? Do you find it easier or harder than writing in prose?
When I wrote I I Heart You, You Haunt Me, I didn't really sit down intending to write that way, it just sorta did. I had ten pages before I sat back and thought, okay, what exactly am I doing? As my agent told me later when she took me on as a client, the verse gave the book an atmosphere I don't think I could have created with regular prose. So the next two books, Far from You and Chasing Brooklyn also have story lines where I hope the verse adds to the book and creates a special atmosphere that works with the story.
In some ways, verse is easier for me, because I find it easier to come up with short, unique ways of describing something than trying to describe it in paragraphs. Having said that, writing a verse novel, where you have to be poetic while also telling a story, is extremely challenging. I don't know...most days, I think it's all pretty hard.
Any favorite books you’ve read recently?
I went to ALA so I've been reading a lot of ARCs lately. Flash Burnout by L.K. Madigan is fantastic and coming out October 19th. Hush, Hush by Becca Fitzpatrick was amazing, as was Shiver by Maggie Stiefvater. And finally, I loved The Brilliant Fall of Gianna Z., a new mid-grade novel by Kate Messner.
Sounds like you got some great new books at ALA. And speaking of new books, I love that your new book It's Raining Cupcakes comes with its own cupcake recipes (and I love the cover art too, by the way). Did you come up with the recipes yourself?
Yes, I did! I actually took a few favorite recipes and took the best parts and came up with my own. So I did have a few to help me get started, but we wanted them to be original, so I couldn't really copy anything exactly. I hope they turn out for people. I'm nervous about that actually. Like people will be e-mailing me saying, when I went to microwave the apples, they didn't turn into applesauce like you said, what did I do wrong? Um, okay, I'm not really Rachel Ray so I'm not sure I'm going to be much help. I also find it funny that there is a Chef Lisa Schroeder who lives in the same area as I do, and she's coming out with a cookbook this fall. I wonder if people are going to think the cupcake book is written by her and is an entire cookbook? Eek!
Wow. Talk about coincidence. That's fate for you. This a traditional question for me. Can you tell us more about your pets?
Stormy is a lhasapoo, which means part lhasa apso and part poodle. She's very cuddly but also LOVES going on walks with me. She's pretty spoiled, I have to say. Then we have a black and white cat named Sparkles. When we first brought Stormy home, for a long time, Sparkles wouldn't even be in the same room with Stormy. But now, I think they're actually sort of friends. We'll find them both sleeping on the floor in a patch of sun or something, and it's really sweet.
Did you have any say about your cover art? What do you think of the covers?
Nope. No say. I have been really lucky in the cover department, I think. I have liked them all. I was a little worried when I heard my MG would have an illustrated cover, but I really think it's adorable. It's all kinds of pink, cupcakey goodness, and I hope it makes people want to pick it up.
Thanks so much for coming Lisa. Best of luck with the new books!
Happy blogiversary Alyssa! Thanks for letting me celebrate with you!
If you'd like to learn more about Lisa, make sure you visit her website. And read her books! If you want a to have a little fun, make sure you check out the phonecall Lisa made to Edward Cullen to celebrate the release of Far from You.
And here's a suprise for those of you who made it all the way to the end of this post. Lisa was kind enough to send me some Chasing Brooklyn bookmarks. Leave a comment if you want one, and winners will be chosen randomly at the end of the month!