I am so excited to be able to host this next YALLFEST author interview. If you’ve followed Turning Pages since the start, then you have probably heard me talk about YALLFEST at one point or another. I attended YALLFEST for the first time last November and had an amazing time! And in two months, I will be back in Charleston, SC to attend again. If you live anywhere remotely close to Charleston and you love YA. . .GO! It’s an incredible time and you’ll just love Blue Bicycle Books. In fact, it is one of my most favorite indie bookstores I’ve ever been to.
If you would like more information regarding YALLFEST, click HERE.
And you can view my post about YALLFEST 2012, HERE.
Kicking off this week with an interview from CJ Lyons!
- Describe your book in 5 words:
CJ: Girl dying of broken heart (literally)
- What is the hardest line to write- the first or the last?
CJ: The first. I’ll often return to it over and over again until I’ve sliced and diced and fine-honed it to that perfect combination of intrigue, visceral reaction, and emotional connection with the reader.
- What one young adult novel do you wish you had when you were a teen? Why?
CJ: Code Name Verity because it is so emotionally honest and inspiring, empowering, not to mention gut-wrenching. Really brings the era to life as well as the sacrifices made in the name of freedom.
- Tell us 5 random facts about yourself.
CJ: When I was a kid I worked summer stock theatre and was actually a theatre major undergrad before switching to pre-med. I’ve had two hard landings in helicopters while working as a flight doc. I survived rampaging Cape Horn Buffalo and a pack of wild baboons, not to mention a leopard (he’s already eaten) while hiking in Hells Gate Park in Kenya. I’m a Capricorn. I diagnosed my niece with the heart condition that’s at the center of my YA thriller, BROKEN.
- What are you working on now?
CJ: DAMAGED, my next YA thriller, due out in 2014. It deals with the really tough topic of abuse and coercion and is the most difficult book I’ve ever tackled—there have been times while writing when I was literally in tears as I typed.
- What is your favorite genre to write in? To Read?
CJ: I created my own genre of Thrillers with Heart—I love writing fast paced stories with raising stakes but centered on the emotional heart of an evolving relationship. As for reading, I read almost every genre but especially love YA, magical realism, and thrillers. As long as a story grabs me by the throat and won’t let me go because I’m too worried about what the characters are going through, I’ll read it and love it.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of seventeen novels, former pediatric ER doctor CJ Lyons has lived the life she writes about in her cutting edge Thrillers with Heart.
CJ has been called a “master within the genre” (Pittsburgh Magazine) and her work has been praised as “breathtakingly fast-paced” and “riveting” (Publishers Weekly) with “characters with beating hearts and three dimensions” (Newsday).