I am so thrilled to have the wonderful Elana Johnson here on the blog for an interview!
1) First and foremost, how did writing a sequel compare to writing POSSESSION?
Well, this time I was forced to do an outline, so the drafting wasn’t that bad. (The outlining was.) I wrote SURRENDER in 25 days, and there were things about it that made it hard, like making sure the timelines met up and that everything aligned with what was already printed in POSSESSION.
2) What was your favorite part of writing SURRENDER?
Uh, the kissing scenes! Ha! Everyone knows I like kissing. But seriously, I like writing the emotional aspects of novels, so anything that involves a relationship is fun to write.
3) If Raine had her own reality T.V. show, what would the best title be (besides Surrender, of course)?
Playing Both Sides… Yeah, that sound good. She does have to play both sides in the novel…
4) What would the theme song be?
SURRENDER by Cheap Trick, of course!
5) What will readers find in SURRENDER that will make us love it even more than POSSESSION?
Well, SURRENDER has two new characters to love. Gunner Jameson and Raine Hightower. And this second book is all about what the Insiders are doing to overthrow the government, so it’s not just a “this is what’s wrong with our world” book, but a “now that we know what’s wrong, here’s what we’re going to do” book. And that lends itself to more danger and excitement.
6) Do you have any special writing rituals or traditions that are essential for getting the ideas flowing properly? (music, food, etc...)
Not really. For editing purposes, I need the headphones on loud so I can block out distractions. But just to sit down and write? I can do that and watch Next Food Network Star at the same time. For me, it’s all about just opening the document and getting it done.
7) If you had the opportunity to meet any living YA author, who would you choose?
I’ve met so many awesome ones! I’d say Kathleen Duey, because I love her SKIN HUNGER series, but I’ve already met her! And Beth Revis for her ACROSS THE UNIVERSE SERIES, but again, met her. How about Lisa and Laura Roecker, authors of THE LIAR SOCIETY? Yes, I’d like to meet them.
8) What is your worst guilty pleasure?
Now it's time for the....drum roll....SPEED ROUND!
Summer or Winter?
Summer, all the way.
Guitar or drums?
Blue or yellow?
Bowling date or movie date?
Movie – I love the popcorn!
Escalators or elevators?
Escalators. I’m writing a book about elevators right now, and they’re scaring me.
Thanks so much for stopping by, Elana. You are an absolute delight and I am grateful to have the opportunity to participate in this tour!
Elana's work including POSSESSION, REGRET, and SURRENDER is available from Simon & Schuster wherever books are sold. She is the author of From the Query to the Call, an ebook that every writer needs to read before they query, which can be downloaded for free on her website. She runs a personal blog on publishing and is a founding author of the QueryTracker blog. She blogs regularly at The League of Extraordinary Writers, co-organizes WriteOnCon, and is a member of SCBWI, ANWA and LDStorymakers.
She wishes she could experience her first kiss again, tell the mean girl where to shove it, and have cool superpowers like reading minds and controlling fire. To fulfill her desires, she writes young adult science fiction and fantasy.
Raine has always been a good girl. She lives by the rules in Freedom. After all, they are her father’s rules: He’s the Director. It’s because of him that Raine is willing to use her talent—a power so dangerous, no one else is allowed to know about it. Not even her roommate, Vi.
All of that changes when Raine falls for Gunner. Raine’s got every reason in the world to stay away from Gunn, but she just can’t. Especially when she discovers his connection to Vi’s boyfriend, Zenn.
Raine has never known anyone as heavily brainwashed as Vi. Raine’s father expects her to spy on Vi and report back to him. But Raine is beginning to wonder what Vi knows that her father is so anxious to keep hidden, and what might happen if she helps Vi remember it. She’s even starting to suspect Vi’s secrets might involve Freedom’s newest prisoner, the rebel Jag Barque….