MAYbe: May I Tell You Something about Someone Else?
Happy Thursday, my friends. I’ve always appreciated Thursday for some reason. It means the week is coming to a close and the weekend is just around the corner. Which also means, of course, that I have time to do some extra reading and watching movies and browsing around the Internet for random pictures of Chris Evans…oh. I probably shouldn’t have said that out loud.
Today I’m going to tell you fab folks about someone else. Since this is the New Adult Alley, Rebecca Hamilton, a great NA authoress, stopped by to do an interview with us! Rebecca is the author of The Forever Girl Series, which is a paranormal thriller and romance series. Her sense of humor is great and she has a talent for writing about swoonworthy heroes (you will so see what I mean). Read on for the juicy deets!
Hi Rebecca! Thanks so much for stopping by NA Alley! I was very excited to discover your books, and I have heard that they are prime New Adult material. Can you elaborate a little on what it means to have a ‘New Adult’ book?
Hi, Summer! Thanks for having me. The Forever Girl is certainly what I'd call a New Adult book.
The New Adult category to me is all about helping readers find what they are looking for in an ever-increasing book market. Now, when there are thousands of books to choose from, it's harder for some readers to find "exactly the right book". With the New Adult category, it should get easier. Readers who want to read about situations outside of high school but aren't yet ready for "serious adult reads" or "strong adult content" are likely to enjoy a New Adult read. You get the voice and style of a YA novel, but the content is slightly more mature. There may be a little more violence, or you may stumble on a sex scene or two, but you have a nice inbetween. The content isn't missing entirely (as it would be in most YA books) nor is it abrasive or overly-strong (as it can be in many adult novels). New Adult books tackle characters in their late teens through their twenties as they experience life in that stage beyond HS but not yet "fully grown up". I see New Adult as the real coming of age category.
|The Examination of a Witch (Salem Witch Trials)|
Can you tell us a little about the first installment in your series, The Forever Girl: Sophia’s Journey?
Sure I can! In the first installment of The Forever Girl series, the reader follows a young Wiccan woman (Sophia Parsons) as she attempts to silence a hereditary curse by solving a mystery surrounding the death of her ancestor. Three centuries ago, Elizabeth Parsons was hanged as a witch during the Salem witch trials. The body went missing before burial. As Sophia digs around in places she shouldn't, she falls prey to the supernatural world. Soon, however, she will learn that the supernatural world has always had claim on her. The Forever Girl has mystery, romance, flashes of history, and tons of the paranormal. Thematically, and through character, however, what you have is a 22-year-old young woman discovering her purpose in life. What New Adult can't relate to that?
What inspired you to write a book with a paranormal theme?
I've always loved the paranormal. I was a "paranormal chaser" growing up. As subscribers to "Weird New Jersey", my friends I would all look at the latest copy to find out more about local hauntings and places we could visit. I miss those days. Maybe it was all our imagination or maybe there was something more, but we always had a great time. I couldn't get enough. Even my tastes in reading and movies have always leaned toward the paranormal. Most people are surprised to learn I'm not a huge fan of fantasy. To be honest, most of the books I read growing up were horror, mystery, and literary fiction . . . but all of them had a twist of paranormal. Because of this, I suppose it's only natural that the paranormal would find it's way into my writing as well.
Tons! I was a practicing Wiccan for several years of my life, so that made the Wiccan aspects a bit quicker and easier to research. I just had to brush up my knowledge. For the mythology, I looked into the facts about the creatures I was writing, and aimed to make a balance between classic traits and new, unique developments. Sometimes I had to research locations. I printed maps, researched town histories, you name it. One of the most enlightening settings I researched was Damascus, Syria. It wasn't what I expected it to be, and from what I've heard, it's often not for other people, either. Of course, this is one the places where research bites you on the behind, because I had had a person or two tell me that particular setting "wasn't believable" because it wasn't what they expected. But that's the neat thing about Damascus. I will say research can be the hardest part as a writer. There are people out there dying to find something, and that can either be that you got the facts wrong or it can be that the facts don't match up with their expectations. I am one who recommends getting the research done, staying true to your character, and letting the chips fall where they may. But, then again, I love reality-based fantasy :)
Your book can get a little spooky in places! How do you come up with scary or otherwise “otherworldly” scenes?
I think it is inspiration from film and movies. I know what spooks me out without making me look away, and I wanted to make that happen in my books. The "spooky" parts are my favorite.
Why is your book great for readers looking to get their hands on some NA literature?
I think The Forever Girl really embraces the New Adult category because it gives an honest depiction of a 22-year-old. There are other books out there with twenty-something-year-old characters, but that number is just slapped onto what is really a 30-year-old. I made an effort to show that place in life—that mindset—of newly being an adult and being new to the adult world. I think what really defines New Adult are the characters. Is the main character a TRUE New Adult?? Are they doing through what most New Adults go through? While not all New Adults are chasing away ghosts or running from vampires, most can probably relate to being on your own for the first time, or working an undesirable job while trying to find a way to put their college education to use. I've also tried to imbue some thematic issues, such as what it means to be at home and issues of prejudice, that I think will really resonate with the modern-day, new adult audience.
I think that is another things to keep in mind, too. An older person reading a new adult novel these days might think, "This is Young Adult!" I think this is because several decades ago, being twenty-something was different. People got married at 16 or 18. Had kids. Helped their parents raise their siblings. Didn't need a college education to make getting a job easier. So I think it's true that a 20-something-year-old today is different from decades ago. In some ways we have it harder, and in other ways we aren't as quickly rushed out of our youth. I believe the modern-day new adults out there will read The Forever Girl and think, "Yep. This is what it's like being 20-something."
Or, at least I hope so!
Thanks again for stopping by to chat! We hope you come by again soon – keep up the fantastic writing!!
Thanks so much for having me!
To purchase Rebecca’s Books, click HERE!!
To learn more about Rebecca and her life of writing, visit HERE!!
May was an exciting month for all of us, so I just want to say thanks to everybody who has shown the love to NA Alley during the first few weeks of our existence. You guys are amazing! I won't be back until July, so....farewell for a while!