Do you recall how your interest in writing originated? I won my first writing competition in 4th Grade. I wrote a vampire story called “Bats aren’t Blind.” I guess I caught the bug then.
What inspires you to write and why? The voices in my head don’t really give me a choice
What genre are you most comfortable writing? Literary Fiction. I’m not always very nice to my characters and Lit Fic has more room for cross genre exploration.
What inspired you to write your first book? A friend of mine sent out a challenge to write a Middle Eastern Batman story. So I did. Shadow on the Wall
What do you consider the most challenging about writing a novel, or about writing in general? Endings. I’m terrible at endings. I can keep going forever, writing about what people ate for breakfast for pages and pages. But endings? I always want to blow everyone up. Strangely, White Chalk is the first novel I’ve written where the ending just came naturally.
Did writing this book teach you anything and what was it? Life is never easy, no one gets out alive. What matters is how we treat others and how we care for ourselves. Also, there’s nothing weak about asking for help. Sometimes it’s the hardest thing you can do.
Do you intend to make writing a career? I already have! Yay!
Will you write others in this same genre? Literary Fiction is definitely where my heart is. I think all genres can be subclassed under Lit/Fic if written a certain way. Whether I do it officially or not, yes, I’ll continue to write this kind of book.
How much of the book is realistic? All of it. Every bit of this book could happen. We may not like that, but it’s true.
Have you included a lot of your life experiences, even friends, in the plot? I plead the 5th What I can say is Chelle is not me. I never had sex with a teacher and have never hurt myself like she does. But that sea of confusion, the desperation of first love, yeah, I’ve felt that.
How important do you think villains are in a story? Villian is a hard word. Is there a villain in White Chalk? Sure, but it’s not black and white. Sometimes it’s the cumulative effect of a lot of small evils which make the true villain in life.
What are your goals as a writer? To reach people, to change the world, to spread a little love.
Chelle isn’t what most people consider a typical 13-year-old girl—she doesn’t laugh with friends, play sports, or hang out at the mall after school. Instead, she navigates a world well beyond her years.
Life in Dawson, ND spins on as she grasps at people, pleading for someone to save her—to return her to the simple childhood of unicorns on her bedroom wall and stories on her father’s knee.
When Troy Christiansen walks into her life, Chelle is desperate to believe his arrival will be her salvation. So much so, she forgets to save herself. After experiencing a tragedy at school, her world begins to crack, causing a deeper scar in her already fragile psyche.
Follow Chelle’s twisted tale of modern adolescence, as she travels down the rabbit hole into a reality none of us wants to admit actually exists.
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Genre - Literary Fiction/Coming of Age
Rating – R (15+)
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