Friday, January 17, 2014

Interview with Ann Redisch Stampler, author of AFTERPARTY + Giveaway!

Q:  Describe Afterparty in one sentence.
A: In an effort to reinvent herself, Emma struggles with a questionable best friend who leads her toward a double life; her conflicted feelings for a cool, imperfect boy; her beloved father’s unbearably strict rules; and fear that if she lets herself go, she’ll turn out like her black sheep mother – all the while telling more and bigger lies to everyone including herself, until it’s almost too late.

Q:  What was your favorite part about writing it?
 With any writing, I love it when what’s happening on the page surprises me.  When a sentence flows out in a way that sounds better than it did in my head, or when a character says or does something I didn’t plan consciously, but which turns out to be just right.

Q:  What is your favorite scene in the book?
 This would have to be the Afterparty scene.  I love the physical setting of the party, the derelict Hollywood hotel with its Spanish tiles, turrets and garishly illuminated gardens, the lurching elevators’ tooled-bronze doors and the feral cats running down the upstairs corridors.  I love the way Emma’s focus careens between tiny details and the most devastating emotional revelations, when she is forced to look at things she’s kept as far from her consciousness as humanly possible. 

 Emma has been preparing for this party throughout much of the book, and it is life-changing – just not in the way she’d anticipated. 

Q:  How did writing Afterparty affect you?
 I try to crawl into my protagonist’s skin, see what she sees and feel her feelings.  So writing Afterparty was emotionally exhausting.  But ultimately, the overall experience was very rewarding in terms of Emma’s growth and the possibility of hope despite all the many truly terrible decisions she’d made from the moment she set foot in Los Angeles.

Q:  I've read in your bio that the first several books you've published are children's picture books. What inspired you to deviate from this category and write YA?
 Most of my picture books are retellings of folk tales.  Which I love.  But I had always wanted to write longer form fiction.  I keep notebooks full of bits of prose and pieces of narrative that could, conceivably, be part of something longer and more complex.  But I realized that in order to write longer books, I needed the luxury of uninterrupted time.  Or maybe that was my excuse not to get started sooner.  In any case, when my youngest child left for college, I had that time. I launched into my first young adult novel, Where It Began, literally the day he moved out.

Q:  Are you currently working on something? If yes, can you tell us a bit about it?
 I’m working on what is turning into the mash-up of a character-driven journey of self discovery (an acutal journey, involving a junker car and Greyhound buses) and a thriller.  With two voices, male and female.  Although there is a slight chance that I’ll lose the female voice, as I am so involved in working out the character of the boy, Jack, whom I adore.

Q:  Can you tell us some random facts about yourself? are there any quirks you're willing to share to our readers? :)
 1.) Pilot pens and spiral notebooks are my most indispensible possessions.
 2.) I am addicted to The Good Wife and Homeland and House of Cards and Foyle's War.  (What can I tell you?  I grew up eating grocery store chocolate cake on a TV tray in a finished basement while watching all things Disney.  You don’t get over that.)
 3.) I am the world’s cheapest drunk.  Half a beer and I’m gone.
 4.) I am a terrible small talker.  The cocktail party is my least favorite form of entertainment.
 5.) I might not like the cocktail party all that much, but I am wild for the little black dress. 

Q:  What is the best piece of advice you've ever received? the worst?
 I am not a big fan of meaning-of-life, this is the one true way, aaaaand the secret of the universe iiiiiiis [fill in the blank] type advice.  Maybe it’s my authority issues.  For me, very basic, reductionistic religious tenets work: Don’t do anything to anyone else you wouldn’t want them to do to you.  Be good to others but don’t stop sticking up for yourself.  Joy cometh in the morning.

 So I guess my advice is, don’t lose sight of what keeps civilization running and (we hope) progressing, and try not to screw it up.

 And for writing, I attribute my favorite advice to Jane Yolen. It is the basis of all finished books: Butt in chair.

 Thank you so much for visiting Teen Readers' Diary Ann!
 Thank you for having me!  I appreciate the opportunity to visit and chat with you!

Paperback: 384 pages
Publisher: Simon Pulse
Release Date: December 31st 2013
Emma is tired of being good. Always the dutiful daughter to an overprotective father, she is the antithesis of her mother -- whose name her dad won't even say out loud. That's why meeting Siobhan is the best thing that ever happened to her...and the most dangerous. Because Siobhan is fun and alluring and experienced and lives on the edge. In other words, she's everything Emma is not.

And it may be more than Emma can handle. 

Because as intoxicating as her secret life may be, when Emma begins to make her own decisions, Siobhan starts to unravel. It's more than just Dylan, the boy who comes between them. Their high-stakes pacts are spinning out of control. Elaborate lies become second nature. Loyalties and boundaries are blurred. And it all comes to a head at the infamous Afterparty, where debauchery rages and an intense, inescapable confrontation ends in a plummet from the rooftop... 

This explosive, sexy, and harrowing follow-up to Ann Redisch Stampler's spectacular teen debut, Where It Began, reveals how those who know us best can hurt us most.
You can purchase AfterParty at the following Retailers:

Author Bio
Where it Began marks the YA debut of Ann Redisch Stampler. She is the author of several picture books, including The Rooster Prince of Breslov. Her books have been an Aesop Accolade winner, Sydney Taylor notable books and an honor book, a National Jewish Book Awards finalist and winner, and Bank Street Best Books of the Year. Ann has two adult children and lives in Los Angeles, California with her husband.
Follow her on these sites

3 Winners will receive a Copy of Afterparty by Ann Redisch Stampler.
1 Winner will receive a Complete Afterparty Swag pictured above!
1.) Emma’s Bob Marley tee shirt that her dad doesn’t approve of.
2.) Dylan’s Curt Cobain tee shirt that Emma’s dad would approve of even less if he knew where it ended up — and when…
3.) Siobhan’s gold nail polish — with a couple of other colors thrown in.
4.) Mara’s bakelite bracelets.
5.) Emma’s Roman Holiday movie poster
6.) The mother-of-pearl barrette that Siobhan takes out of Emma’s hair
7.) Emma’s Chicago snow globe
8.) Emma’s entire stash of Stila makeup
5 Winners will receive a Surprise ART Bookmark by James Vallesteros.
Must be 13+ to Enter
International Giveaway

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...