Friday, January 02, 2009

Girlfriends Cyber Circuit Presents Carrie Jones

Happy New Year! I went to a fun party for New Year's Eve that involved barbecue, mead, some great cheese, Doctor Who, Dr. Horrible, champagne and lots of noise makers and indoor explosives at midnight. Oddly, I was up relatively early in the morning on New Year's Day, then made up for it by way oversleeping this morning. The nice thing about having the new year right before the weekend is that it kind of makes me feel like the resolutions don't really kick in until the Monday after the new year, so there's a grace period. On the other hand, it's got me pretty confused. I woke up this morning with no idea what day it was. Yesterday felt kind of like a Saturday, so for a while I thought it was Sunday. And then for a while I thought it was Monday. Friday may have been my last guess.

Now, for my last weekday semi-holiday before I start all my new, virtuous writing habits on Monday, I've got yet another Girlfriends Cyber Circuit tour, with Carrie Jones, author of the new book Need. Zara collects phobias the way other high school girls collect lipsticks. Little wonder, since life's been pretty rough so far. Her father left, her stepfather just died, and her mother's pretty much checked out. Now Zara's living with her grandmother in sleepy, cold Maine so that she stays "safe." Zara doesn't think she's in danger; she thinks her mother can't deal.

Wrong. Turns out that guy she sees everywhere, the one leaving trails of gold glitter, isn't a figment of her imagination. He's a pixie -- and not the cute, lovable kind with wings. He's the kind who has dreadful, uncontrollable needs. And he's trailing Zara.

Now, the interview:

Was there any particular inspiration for this book?
I was at the Common Ground Fair, which is this huge, cool fair in Maine that's sponsored by Maine Organic Farmers and Growers Association (MOFGA). To get to the main part of the fair you have to walk through this sweet trail that curves through these tall spruce trees.

Right in front of me was this guy. He had a weird vibe. He was wearing all corduroy - blazer, pants. And sticking out from his blazer was this long tail-like appendage that was wrapped in different colored earth-toned cloth. I guess he could tell I was checking him out because he turned his head and looked at me. His eye was this startling silver color. How startling? So startling that I actually gasped and got creeped out.

Then when we were in line to pay we made eye contact again and his eyes were brown.

I know! I know! I probably imagined the silver eye color.

It doesn't matter. That was one of the main things that got me started. Then, I just had this image of a man standing outside an airport pointing at an airplane this girl was on.

It also creeped me out.

So, I started writing.

(Okay, that is the best book inspiration story EVER.)

Do you have any phobias yourself?
I am REALLY afraid of skiing.

I tried to take a lesson with this guy at Sunday River Resort and he looked just like Luke Wilson, which I told him. We spent the entire hour laughing hysterically because I was so scared and so awful at skiing. He spent it laughing hysterically at me being so goofy. I ended up skiing maybe four feet total.

At the end he said, "You are the weirdest person I have ever taught. I mean that in a good way."

And I said, "I don't have much of a future in skiing, do I?"

And he said, "God, no, but I'll teach you again for free."

And I said, "You need laughs that bad?"

He just nodded.

He was so cute. I think the point of that story is that even though he was super cute and I had the best time standing on skis on the bottom of that mountain I still didn't go back for a free lesson because I WAS SO

Bad phobia. Bad.

What are you working on now?
I just started working on the sequel to NEED, which is going to come out with Bloomsbury.

Is there anything else you'd like to say about this book or the process of writing it?

NEED is a pretty big departure for me from my usual writing. It was so much fun to write. I hope it'll be fun to read.

For more info, visit Carrie's web site. Or you can buy the book from Amazon.

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