As a writer there are few things better than seeing your book on the shelf. However, right up there is seeing someone you like have his or her book on the shelf. I first met Denise at the Surrey International Writer’s Conference. I was thrilled to hear she had sold her book- and even more thrilled to discover she had sold it to the best editor in the biz- Anica Mrose Rissi. I know Anica’s the best editor because she’s mine as well.
Help me celebrate the release of Denise’s book, Losing Faith.
About the book:
A terrible secret. A terrible fate.
When Brie’s sister, Faith, dies suddenly, Brie’s world falls apart. As she goes through the bizarre and devastating process of mourning the sister she never understood and barely even liked, everything in her life seems to spiral farther and farther off course. Her parents are a mess, her friends don’t know how to treat her, and her perfect boyfriend suddenly seems anything but.
As Brie settles into her new normal, she encounters more questions than closure: Certain facts about the way Faith died just don’t line up. Brie soon uncovers a dark and twisted secret about Faith’s final night…a secret that puts her own life in danger.
Denise answers some questions:
1) I love a behind the scenes story, tell us what inspired Losing Faith?
There were a lot of things that inspired Losing Faith, but I’d say the
nugget that started it all was the loss of my best friend when I was
sixteen. Since I started writing YA, I’ve thought back to that season in my
life many times. It was a very emotional time for me, and I’ve always had a
bit of a fascination with how other young people process such tragedy in
their lives. This led to me telling the story about Brie and how she dealt
with the loss of her sister.
2) What do you like best about being a writer? Like the least?
Like is too weak of a word here! I LOVE being a writer, and only wish I had
more time for it! The biggest reason I love writing is that it’s a great
outlet for my creativity. I feel better when I’m creating something new
every day (and inversely, I get pretty darn grumpy when I don’t write for
several days in a row). I love talking writing and stories with other
writers and I love the supportive community I’ve found myself a part of.
Those are just a few of the reasons, but there are many, many more. Working
in my jammies ranks pretty high up there too…
What do I like the least? Okay, this is a pretty big list too. Rejection.
Waiting. The emotional turmoil not only that I’ve experienced, but also that
I see other writers go through all the time. Ugh.
3) Tell us a bit about your journey to publication.
I’ve been writing for about seven years. I queried three novels for a few
years before finding an agent with Losing Faith. That, for me, was the
arduous part. Once signing with my fab agent, Michelle Humphrey, we sent my
book out on submission in January, 2009. It sold to the awe-inspiring Anica
Rissi at Simon Pulse (I believe you know her 🙂 just two months later. From
there it was about a year and a half, including three rounds of
not-too-daunting revisions, until publication.
4) What is your next project?
Right now I’m working on another YA contemporary novel called PERFECT AIM.
It’s about a teen archer who tries to reunite her problematic family, but
instead shoots way off course instigating family war. She finds solace in
two contrary places: in the arms of a young and understanding teacher and in
her archery club cohorts, who happen to have a secret mission of bringing
down the school faculty.
5) Since you also write for teens- tell us how others would have described
you in high school. How would you have described yourself?
I was the drama geek. Actually, that’s probably how I would have described
myself. Others would probably have described me of the girl who didn’t make
waves and who got along with everyone in all the school sects.