Good afternoon blog readers! I have a very special post for you today. I had the wonderful opportunity to interview Lisa M. Stasse, author of THE FORSAKEN, whose debut novel releases today! I'm reading the book at the moment, and I have to say that it is fantastic so far. Before you read the interview check out the book trailer. :)
Interested in reading the book yet? Or even more excited to read it now? Let me know what you think in the comments. Now here is the interview that I had a lot of fun formulating the questions, and just as much fun reading Lisa's answers.
1. What is the most fun part of writing a book?
The most fun part for me is when the characters start to come alive on the page like they're real people. And they start doing and saying stuff that surprises me. I love it when that happens. Another fun part of writing a book is trying to come up with new and cool stuff that people haven't read before (I love twists and turns, and putting surprises into a story).
2. What do you hope readers get out of reading THE FORSAKEN?
First, I hope they're entertained and feel like they got their money's worth! I am obsessed with books and spend most of my time reading and buying books (I'm also a librarian at UCLA, so I'm surrounded by books pretty much all the time). I definitely want anyone who buys and reads THE FORSAKEN to enjoy it and love the characters and the story. Second, on another level, I hope readers engage with some of the themes in the book: That you must persevere against all odds. That you must believe in yourself at times when no one else does. And that you must fight for what you believe in. Don't let anyone else speak for you—you must always find your own voice, even if it's hard or scary sometimes. My protagonist, Alenna Shawcross, learns along the way that she is much stronger than she first thought.
3. What’s a fun little fact about THE FORSAKEN?
I wrote most of this book on my laptop between 2AM and 5AM over the period of about a year, a few pages at a time.
4. Use three words to describe Alenna.
Strong. Smart. Brave.
5. I heard that there are two main guys in your novel. Can you tell us something about them?
Liam—the hunter—is a fierce warrior who is protective and open about his love for Alenna. David—the wanderer–is more mysterious and enigmatic. Part of Alenna's journey is discovering her true feelings about these two guys.
6. Who is your favorite male character in YA, and why?
Obviously Peeta from THE HUNGER GAMES is awesome, but I also love Miles (aka Pudge) from LOOKING FOR ALASKA by John Green. I think Miles is one of the more complex and well-rounded male YA protagonists.
7. Where is your favorite place to visit in the world?
Ocracoke Island on the Outer Banks of North Carolina. It's pretty desolate, with tons of great beaches. My husband and I go camping there on the beach in the summer. It's a really great spot to reconnect with nature (we live in Los Angeles, so I really crave as much "nature time" as I can get!)
8. What is your favorite holiday?
I love traveling in general. My favorite vacation spots are generally beaches. I love the Bahamas and tropical islands in general. I get really down in the dumps when the weather is gray for long periods, so I'm always trying to get a lot of sunlight to stay upbeat and positive about life (I've always been that way—my parents say I always used to cry hysterically if it got gray and rained a lot when I was a little girl!) I love anyplace where's there's lots of sunshine and it's warm.
9. What is your most favorite scene in THE FORSAKEN (if you don’t want any spoilers you can just put an estimated page number for the start of the scene), and what song would be fitting for that scene?
My favorite scenes are probably at the end of the book, where the book (hopefully) takes an unexpected direction! I don't want to put any spoilers in here, but there is some intense stuff at the end of THE FORSAKEN, when Alenna, Liam, David and her friends are trying to break free from the island. As for music, I listen to tons of stuff when I write. I was actually listening to the album "King Night" by the band Salem when I wrote those scenes (Salem's music is like this weird apocalyptic stuff—very creepy but great music for writing because most of it is instrumental.)
Thank you so much Lisa Stasse for answering my questions. They were a blast to read. Now I'll have to pay a little visit to Ocracoke Island next time I'm in the Outer Banks! Now that the interview is over, I'll just be over here picking up your novel and see where Aleena's journey takes her.