Friday, June 03, 2011

Girlfriends' Cyber Circuit Tour - Elizabeth Scott

Greetings from the threshold of the Deadline Cave! Wow, it's so bright and sunny out here. I have a widget on my phone that will beep whenever the National Weather Service issues an alert for my area. Yesterday I got an alert that read:
SEVERE AWESOME WARNING: A high pressure system is moving into the region, bringing sunny days, starry nights, and unseasonably comfortable temperatures. SEEK LACK OF SHELTER IMMEDIATELY!

Anyway, I turned in Shine, so while I'm awaiting revisions from my editor I'll be polishing up the free WVMP serial novella beginning here on July 26 (Mick Jagger's birthday, how perfect is that?) and writing up a few ideas for my first post-SHADE trilogy YA novel, which will be out Fall 2013.

But first! Today on the blog I have one of my favorite YA authors, Elizabeth Scott, whose latest novel, Between Here and Forever, has put her on my very exclusive "auto-buy" list (I haven't counted, but there are probably fewer than ten authors on that list).

I read Between Here and Forever last week after getting back from BEA. Being on deadline, I thought, oh, I'll just read a few chapters so I can get an idea of what it's like before I post her interview. Then two hours later it was, well, I'll just get to the halfway point. An hour later, it was, I'll read until I have fifty pages left so I have something to look forward to tomorrow. A half hour later, I was finished. I did not get up from the couch the entire time.

Me reading a book in one sitting? Never happens. But it did. I was utterly drawn into orbit around these characters.

The thing I love about Scott's creations is that their choices always come from who they are, and I never get the sense that there's a puppet-master author pulling their strings.

Not that I don't also enjoy puppet-master books--it's fun sometimes to notice the strings and go, oh cool, that was an impressive little maneuver. But with Scott's books I'm always completely immersed, completely invested, completely believing, until I pop out of the world at the end of the book and only then truly realize that I've been somewhere else.

Does that make sense? At all?

Here's some official stuff about the book:


Abby accepted that she can't measure up to her beautiful, magnetic sister Tess a long time ago, and knows exactly what she is: Second best. Invisible.

Until the accident.

Now Tess is in a coma, and Abby's life is on hold. It may have been hard living with Tess, but it's nothing compared to living without her.

She's got a plan to bring Tess back though, involving the gorgeous and mysterious Eli, but then Abby learns something about Tess, something that was always there, but that she'd never seen.

Abby is about to find out that truth isn't always what you think it is, and that life holds more than she ever thought it could...


Between Here and Forever has gotten lots of great reviews. I particularly liked this one from Booklist: "[A]n emotionally wrenching exploration of hope, acceptance, and pride, and Scott's messages--that it's quite possible to break your own heart and that everyone deserves love--will resonate strongly with teens navigating their own first romances."

Yup yup.

And now, my interview with Elizabeth, featuring brand-new questions, (some of which I stole from Under the Radar magazine 's year-end interview with bands):

Q: Which moment(s) during the writing/rewriting/editing of BETWEEN HERE AND FOREVER made you tear your hair out?

A: On the fourth draft, I cut a lot of stuff out that just killed me to do, but it had to be done.

Q: Which moment(s) made you think, "ah, THIS is what carries me through the hair-tearing bits"?

A: When my editor told me the book was on its way to production! :-)

Q: We're told we have to "kill our darlings" when we edit. Can you share a deleted line or paragraph you would've loved to have kept? Bonus question: tell us why you decided to cut it.

A: I cut a lot of stuff from my novels--on average, about 40%. And at this point, I really don't want to go back and look at old drafts, so I can't tell you something I cut, but I can tell you I cut it because as much as I loved it, it wasn't right for the book.

Q: If your house was on fire, what object (not including living creatures, human or non-human) would you grab on the way out?

A: As many books as possible!

Q: Is there anything most people are able to do (such as drive a car, swim, ride a bike) that you can't?

A: I can't do a cartwheel. No, seriously, I can't.


Me neither! Even when I was a kid, I couldn't do a cartwheel. I blame gravity.

Congrats again to Elizabeth on the release of another poignant, delicious read!

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This Side of Salvation

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Jeri Smith-Ready

Jeri Smith-Ready is a Maryland author of books for teens and adults.

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