I am BEYOND excited to be able to reveal the shiny new cover of my friend Kelly’s new book- PRETTY WICKED. I had a chance to get an early peek at this novel and was deliciously creeped out by it.
Want to know more about the book after seeing that cover? Of course you do.
About PRETTY WICKED:
The daughter of a local police detective, fifteen-year-old Ryann has spent most of her life studying how to pull off the most gruesome murders her small Colorado town has ever seen.
But killing is only part of it. Ryann enjoys being the reason the cops are frenzied. The one who makes the neighbors lock their doors and windows on a hot summer’s day. The one everyone fears but no one suspects.
Carving out her own murderous legacy proves harder than she predicted. Mistakes start adding up. And with the police getting closer, and her own father becoming suspicious, Ryann has to prove once and for all that she’s smarter than anyone else—or she’ll pay the ultimate price.
*warning – some graphic content
Pretty Wicked is a mature YA novel intended for ages 16 and up.
Praise for Pretty Wicked:
“This creepy novel places you inside the mind of a twisted teen killer, which is even more unsettling because of how familiar and normal she seems. Be prepared to leave the lights on and look at the people around you in a whole new way.”
-Eileen Cook | Author of WITH MALICE
“Dark and haunting, this witty thriller with its petite feminine anti-hero is an American Psycho for teens. Be prepared to sleep with the lights on.
–Lisa Voisin | Author of THE WATCHER SAGA
“Pretty Wicked is fresh, thrilling, and deeply haunting. I’ve never read anything like it! The story escalates from page one and will leave your pulse pounding as you wonder just how far Ryann will go. 5/5 stars.”
–Tiana Warner | Author of ICE MASSACRE & ICE CRYPT
Link for Amazon:
Link for Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/31394680-pretty-wicked?ac=1&from_search=true
Questions about Pretty Wicked:
I’ve always been fascinated with psychology and human motivation. Whenever I read a novel or watched a movie or television show, I was drawn to the villain. I wanted to understand what made them act the way they did––delve into what happened in their lives or minds to make them the person they had become.
When there was the odd story from the “villains” point of view, it seemed to characterize them as “misunderstood” and usually spun them into a likeable character who was the hero of that new version of the story. I wanted to write something unique and portray the villain realistically. What would the story look like if they were a true villain? I got the idea for a teenage serial killer who was unapologetic about who she was and what she wanted and thought it was really interesting to explore what her point of view would be if she drove the story and the “villain” was the detective trying to stop her.
I did query it to literary agents and received a lot of positive praise for the book. In the end I kept hearing the same feedback: it’s a fascinating concept, the writing and voice are great, but we don’t think we can sell such a dark book to a publisher. I completely understand this. I know this book is going to be very polarizing. People will either love the concept of hate it. So far I have had overwhelmingly encouraging feedback from readers who understand that this is a fictional story that is trying to do something different from most novels. There was some interest from small publishers but the wait times were longer than I was comfortable with. I decided if I wanted to see this book out in the world I was going to have to do it myself. It was an intimidating process, but luckily I have an amazing and brilliant support group who helped me along the way.
The Pretty Wicked series will continue with adult books. The sequel, Wicked Fallout, is currently going through editing and the third book in the series is brewing in my mind. I have some very fun ideas for Ryann.
Wicked Fallout takes place twelve years later when Ryann is 27 years old. That’s all I can say right now as to not reveal spoilers.
I actually do. I really enjoyed writing her. I don’t agree with anything she does at all! In that sense, Ryann is deplorable! But what I like is her humor and wit and the way she owns who she is. She was a fun character to write because she is so different to most characters out there. It’s like when you see a Hollywood actor discuss their favorite roles. Often they say the villain roles were their preferred because it was more fun and exciting to play. There are forbidden elements that make it a bit more exciting than the standard hero. It’s no different for me as the writer.
I have a day job so writing usually happens in the evenings and on weekends. I work in a school so I am fortunate to have shorter days, two vacation break periods, and summers off which really help me carve out the time needed.
On a writing day (Saturday or Sunday) I will get up, shower, eat breakfast, procrastinate with some TV and then get to it. I’ll make a coffee and park myself on my couch (even though I have a beautiful desk in an actual home office). I’ll write for about 2-3 hours (about 1500-2000 words on average). I may do another session later that evening if I’m really inspired. I watch a lot of television and read widely to inspire my creativity and ideas.
I also have an amazing group of friends who are writers as well and we meet up to have writing and brainstorming sessions, which is fantastic!
Author Bio and Contact Information:
Kelly Charron is the author of YA and adult horror, psychological thrillers and urban fantasy novels. All with gritty, murderous inclinations and some moderate amounts of humor. She spends far too much time consuming true crime television (and chocolate) while trying to decide if yes, it was the husband, with the wrench, in the library. She lives with her husband and cat, Moo Moo, in Vancouver, British Columbia.
Connect with her:
Sign up for her mailing list or check out upcoming books at: http://kellycharron.com
If you haven’t heard enough about me and WITH MALICE in the past few weeks, then head over to Cultured Vultures where I’m doing an interview.
If reading about me isn’t enough- I’ll be at the Indigo in North Vancouver doing a signing on August 6th from 1:30 -3:30. It should be a ton of fun as the event is a part of their summer reading festival, so there are a range of authors going to be there signing everything from romance novels, crime thrillers, and YA books. Hope to see you there!
And if you can’t come out because you’re working on your own book. I’m over at LitPick talking about editing and revising
Want to see what websites I use when I want to waste time?
1) One can never see too many cute dog pictures (in my humble opinion) So I Can Haz Cheezburger is always a destination.
2) I love odd and random things. I can count on Neatorama to have some every day.
3) Some blogs make you feel like you have friends that you’ve never met. I am quite certain that The Bloggess and I would get along should we ever meet in real life- which is unlikely since we’re both introverts.
4) Knitting Blogs: I can spend hours looking at projects I will likely never make. Ravelery is a favorite- but also Knitted Bliss.
5) A Sharkish view on the world of publishing. I tend to read a number of publishing and writer blogs, but a favourite is Janet Reid’s page. In addition to having a great community of writers, it’s full of useful information and having met Janet I can vouch she’s pretty darn nifty. Not everyone would be so giving of their time/wisdom. If you think you want to write you should check it out.
1) Hands down the best things is the ability to spend time making up stories ALL DAY. I’ve always loved the process of creating stories and characters. I feel beyond fortunate to be able to do it for a living.
2) Hearing from Readers: Writing is a solo activity. You sit alone making things up wondering what people will think when you finally get to share it. When people take the time to email or reach out on social media to say they like what you wrote, it is an amazing feeling.
3) Dress Code: I spend the vast majority of my days in comfy clothes covered in dog hair. If I don’t feel like shaving my legs- no one cares.
4) Work Schedule: This could go on the best and worst list of being a writer. There is no formal start time. No boss making sure you put in your hours every day. It means you can sleep in if you’re tired, knock off early if the sun is shining and the beach is calling. The downside is that you’re always at work. And if you don’t keep yourself on a schedule deadlines have a way of sneaking up on you.
5) Booksellers and Librarians: I have a serious book habit. I am one of those people who gets really anxious if I don’t have a good book on the go and a few dozen more in my to-be-read list. Writing gives me an excuse to read even more. It allows me to meet and talk with librarians and booksellers who are some of my favourite people in the world.
I can imagine no other thing I would rather do. For everyone who has bought my book (or asked their library to carry it) thank you from the bottom of my heart.
Tomorrow is my wedding anniversary. I am a firm believer that you don’t need someone in your life to be happy, but if you can find the right person, it sure does make life a lot of fun. Things I adore about my DH include:
WITH MALICE (have you had a chance to buy a copy? If not feel free to scamper over to your favourite bookselling site right now, I’ll wait) is set partially in Italy. I had the chance to do research in Italy for this book and I fell in love with the place. Some of my favourite things included.
ALL OF IT
So it’s here. WITH MALICE officially hits shelves today. I’ve said it before- writing is a solo activity, but publishing is a team sport. I want to take a couple of minutes and thank a few people.
First, I have to thank my family. My parents were always book people and they gave me that love of reading. I look forward to my cousin Jeanette driving me all around the great Chicago area later this week and all my family for their support and letting people know we’re related.
I don’t want to brag, but I have pretty awesome friends. I could never thank them all, but extra kudos go to Kelly, Denise and Joanne who read early versions. To writer friends: Joelle, Serena, Robyn, kc, Helen, Carol and Lisa who cheered me along the way. Also to non-writer friends Jamie and Laura who provide valuable balance to my crazy.
To my amazing agent Barbara Poelle who believed in me and in this book. It is not going too far to say it would not exist without her.
The team at HMH has been amazing to work with- Sarah, Meredith, Anna, Ruth and Karen all deserve an extra call out. I’ve also gotten to work with the team at Raincoast here in Canada and I would miss out if I didn’t thank Fernanda, Jamie, Melissa and Megan in particular.
To booksellers and book bloggers who have helped spread the word- thank you, thank you, thank you.
To Chevy and Terra who offered their time to read and offer blurbs- much appreciated.
I am fortunate to be a part of the Surrey International Writer’s Conference and I appreciate the support of my fellow conference planners. Here’s to celebrating this October.
To my fellow instructors and students at the SFU The Writer’s Studio. I’ve learned as much as I’ve given this year.
To writers I’ve never met- but who inspire the heck out of me with their books- hugs and kisses.
My two dogs Cairo and Gimlet provide needed distraction, humility and unconditional love.
Most of all to my husband who has always believed in me and my books. As I always say- I could do it without him, but I don’t want to. It would certainly be less fun.
Lastly- to all of you who take the time to read this book, leave a review or tell a friend. I truly appreciate it.
Happy Summer Reading!
The countdown is on! WITH MALICE comes out next week. Eep! I’ve been counting down for so long I can hardly believe it’s here. I’m excited to share this book with the world. To tide you over until next week I thought you might like to hear about some of the inspiration for the book.
1) Friendships: I am fortunate enough to have amazing friends, including one that I’ve known since seventh grade. Friendships are complicated, great when they’re good, but if they’re bad- they can be toxic. I wanted to explore how friendships can include love and envy, loyalty and betrayal- all in the same relationship.
2) Serial Podcast: After I’d written the first draft of this book I started to listen to the first season of the NPR Serial Podcast (If you haven’t listened you REALLY should- it’s awesome.) What I loved about the podcast is that every time I listened to an episode my view of what happened changed. I wanted to see if I could create that sense of how new information can twist what you think you know.
3) Italy: I was lucky enough to do a semester abroad (England) when I was in college. There is something about travel to a place that changes how you see your own life. As I wrote this book I took a research trip to Italy and fell in love with the place.
4) Brain Injury: I’ve worked for years as a counsellor for people who’ve had a significant accident or illness. I am always impressed by the strength people show in recovery. Having worked with individuals who have had brain injuries I liked the idea of creating a character who can’t even trust her own recall of memories.
5) Give them something to talk about: Before I wrote this book I sat down and thought about of some of my favourite books and what it was about them that I liked. One thing they had in common is that they raised a question- made me want to talk about them with someone else to get their opinion. I decided that I wanted this book to make someone finish reading it and then instantly want to talk about it with someone else. Guess we’ll find out next week if I managed to pull that off!
Most of these will come as no shock to those who know me.
Shoes: I have a passion for good shoes. Fluevog’s are a favorite as they tend to be a bit quirky. (like me.)
Knitting: This is my go-to relaxation activity. If I can watch a movie (or hockey) while knitting then life is pretty good.
Dogs: No need to comment on this.
Art: Having beautiful things makes life feel more beautiful. This horse we bought in Italy. I adore him.
Writing: But of course! Few things are better than the chance to make things up for living.
I am a bit dog crazy. You know that person who crosses the street to catch up someone to meet their dog? Yeah- that’s me. As I kid I nagged my parents endlessly until they got me a dog. I believe the argument was won when my grandma said “Get the girl a dog or she’ll turn out weird.” Alas- the weird had already arrived. This does not mean that I dislike cats (or ferrets, or parrot or pet of your choice) just that I find dogs to be the pet of choice. A few of the reasons include:
1) Dogs are Always Glad to See You: I can leave the house for five minutes and when I return the dogs greet me as if I was gone at war for years. It makes coming home extra special.
2) Dog Snores: I find this to be an irresistible sound. I would also include dog dreams here too when their wee paws spin about in the air.
3) Always Up for Adventure: Dogs are always up for something new. Walk? Why yes, they would love to! Try something that just fell on the floor? Don’t mind if I do! Anyone up for a nap? Why indeed! Dogs are eternally optimists.
4) Emotional Sidekicks: Dogs make great therapists. If I’m ever down for some reason my dogs immediately sense this and snuggle up. Or they dig a whole in the ground- but most of the time they are great in the comfort department.
5) They Remind Me of What’s Important: Dogs don’t worry about what other people think of them, they aren’t cruel because someone else is different. They focus on the important stuff- love the people/pack close to you, enjoy a good walk, take a nap in the sun when you get a chance, celebrate a good meal and when you have a chance to play- take it.