Welcome to the Sunday Street Team!!! I am pleased to have Danielle Ellison as one of June’s featured authors.
This was your first venture into New Adult, correct? How was the writing process different?
It wasn’t that different. Writing a book is writing a book, and no matter what the genre is, there’s always something you have to figure out. One thing that sticks out to me was figuring out how to keep up sexual tension between these two complicated characters throughout the whole book. I actually had a critique partner go through and add comments of places where I could amp up sexual tension through touches, glances, thoughts, etc. That’s not something you have to do (at least not in the same way) in YA.
I loved the song lyrics that Cassie wrote in her notebook! When you were younger, did you write song lyrics as well?
I did! I actually got my start in fanfiction and songs. I was For Sure going to be a singer, so I had notebooks and notebooks of songs. I even remember a few of them….and no, I won’t tell you.
While we’re on the topic of music, do you listen to music when you write? If so, what type of music?
I don’t listen to it while I write actually. For Days I listened to it when I plotted. I knew Stevie Nicks/Fleetwood Mac was going to be a huge portion of her musical tastes. I’m a fan of them and actually a lot of the other musicians I used in the book. I made a Pandora playlist to see what else popped up, and sometimes songs would get added based on that.
I really enjoyed the dual POV’s with Cassie and Graham. In your opinion, which was easier to write? Why?
Graham because he was adamant about being in the book. Initially this book was only going to be Cassie’s POV and she was very demanding so at first it was easy to write her because it was her story but little did I know…Graham had a lot to say too. I remember the day he popped up in the writing process. I was free writing a scene with Cassie, and then Graham just took over. I stopped and I was like “What is happening?” and then I let him talk. It was like five pages of really great stuff — all about Cassie, all of which made it into the book — and I knew he had to tell the story too. Then, I explored his POV and got his side of everything, and it was perfect. Now, I can’t imagine him not being there.
What’s your favorite food? Curious minds want to know… 😉
Pizza (gluten free) and ice cream, especially with peanut butter.
How did you come up with the names Cassie and Graham?
They came with names. I tried, actually, to change their names for weeks! I remember because I actually hate the name Cassie! (Sorry to all of you Cassie’s…bad childhood experiences with a Cassie.) I called my mom to tell her about this new story and I said the girl’s name was Cassie. She says to me, “But you hate that name!” Yet Cassie was adamant that her name was Cassie, so I went with it and I think it fits her really well. I wasn’t a fan of the name Graham either at first — it just felt like a meh name. But now that I know him I couldn’t imagine anything else! Sometimes (most times) they know better than us.
If you could have been the original author of any book, what would it have been and why?
Um, Harry Potter. Obviously.
But also A Northern Light by Jennifer Donnelly because that book changed my life and really it’s just beautiful. I adore it so much. Sometimes you read a story that sticks with you forever and has an impact — that’s why we write.
On days when you are not reading or writing, what are you doing?
Working. I’m also a grad student, the event coordinator for NoVa TEEN Book Festival, and I like to cook and hang out with my boyfriend. I watch TV — less lately than normal but it’s my de-stresser and I go to the gym. Oh, and sleep!!
Are you currently working on a new book? If so, are you allowed to spill any details? 🙂
I am actually working on a couple things. One is the next book in the Landslide series — and yes, you will see characters that exist in Days Like This. 🙂 I’m also working on a YA that I’m calling Will & Grace meets Gilmore Girls/Heart of Dixie/Sweet Home Alabama about a girl who gets herself and her gay best friend in a messy situation..and that’s all I’m going to tell you.
How excited are you for Bookitcon?! 😀
For those of you who don’t know about this AMAZING EVENT, check out the official website for more details HERE! I hope to see you there! 🙂
SO EXCITED. I can’t wait to be part of it, to give you a hug, and to meet all the readers! I love book people! And hugs!
Danielle Ellison spent most of her childhood reading instead of learning math. It’s probably the reason she can’t divide without a calculator and has spent her life seeking the next adventure. It’s also probably the reason she’s had so many different zip codes and jobs.
Danielle is the author of the YA books, Salt, Storm, and Follow Me Through Darkness. Days Like This is her first NA.
When she’s not writing, Danielle is probably eating cookies, fighting her nomadic urges, watching too much TV, or dreaming of the day when she can be British. She has settled in Northern Virginia, for now, but you can always find her on twitter @DanielleEWrites.
Danielle has also been generous to donate ONE ebook of an author who blurbed her book to ONE lucky winner! The authors are: Rachel Harris, Chanel Cleeton, and Riley Edgewood.