Wow! I can’t believe Thanksgiving has come and gone and Christmas is on the horizon. To celebrate surviving the feast, and continuing my November Chick-Lit/Romance Author Interviews series, today I have YA author Marie Lamba on the blog talking about writing and life.
ME: Thank you so much for joining us today. I’m excited to have a young adult author check in! What are you writing now?
MARIE: I'm putting the finishing touches on a young adult paranormal called DRAWN. It's about a teen artist who moves to England with her dad in search of a normal life, but once she starts channeling a hot ghost through her drawings, nothing will ever be normal again. It's reminiscent of Jude Deveraux's KNIGHT IN SHINING ARMOR, only for the YA audience.
ME: Sounds amazing! This might be a tough one since you write for a younger audience, but… How closely do your characters resemble you? (Any particular quirk?)
MARIE: My female characters tend to really care about their families, but also have a strong need to break out on their own, something that definitely paralleled my own feelings in my teen years. Also, in OVER MY HEAD, my summery YA romance, the family parallels my own in a way. The main character Sang is biracial, just like my own daughters are, and the half Indian half Italian mix flavors the story with lots of humor and culture clashes...especially when Sang falls for a gorgeous college-aged lifeguard!
And Michelle in DRAWN is a Jersey girl and a fine artist with out of control hair. That's me alright. I actually studied writing and fine art in college, but then leaned more toward writing afterwards...and my hair now benefits from mousse...
ME: I love that you weave so much of yourself into your characters! And… Ah yes, hair products are a definite necessity! Do you ever wish you lived a character’s life (not just in your imagination)?
MARIE: My characters often get to put the bad guys in their place, something I'd love to do. Like in OVER MY HEAD when Sang and her cousin Raina get unwillingly pulled into a catfight with two nasty girls who have been tormenting them. They escape with their dignity, while the tormentors lose their mini-skirts! Ah, justice.
Also, yeah, I would NOT mind falling for a hot medieval ghost, like Michelle does in DRAWN. Just saying...
ME: I’m with you in regards to characters being able to tell people off! How about this: Sunglasses (a particular fetish of mine): designer or drugstore cheapies? How many pairs are enough?
MARIE: My older daughter has tons of them, so I live off her hand-me-downs. Sadness!
ME: No fair (but then again, I don’t have children so I get to be completely selfishJ). Would you ever want to work on a combined project with your favorite author? If so, who?
MARIE: I get so lost in my own head when I write that I don't think I could work on a combined project... but I wouldn't mind grabbing a cup of coffee with Ann Tyler, and then perhaps going shopping with Sophia Kinsella.
ME: Definitely shopping with Miss Kinsella! Love itJ! I’ve found that readers really enjoy connecting with authors… what is one thing you want your fans to know about you that they may not already be aware of?
MARIE: That I've been a Girl Scout leader for the past 15 years! Right now I'm leading a high school troop, and we recently took a week-long trip to London. As an author I also do special Skype and in-person workshops for teen Scouts about writing and my YA novels. I've done this now for over 1000 teen Scouts, and it's a great way to share my time and my love of writing with my readers. I hope to do more of these in the future and would enjoy Skyping with book clubs, too.
ME: I bet you get an amazing amount of reader-research done through your time with the Girl Scouts. That’s fantastic! Marie, thanks so much for taking the time to share with us today. I wish you great success!
Don’t forget to check out Over My Head by Marie Lamba, available on Amazon, Barnes &Noble, and many other online retailers! And be sure to look for her upcoming novel, Drawn, available soon! Want to learn more? Visit Marie’s Amazon Author’s page for a complete listing of her books and her author bio!
Happy Reading and thanks for stopping by!