"All we have to decide is what to do with the time that is given to us." —J. R. R. Tolkien

Tuesday, March 09, 2010

Sweetheart Jo Whittemore - Interview and Giveaway!

I couldn't be happier to introduce today's interviewee:

The totally awesome,
really cool,
and funny
Jo Whittemore

Jo is the author of the Silverskin Trilogy, a superb YA fantasy from Flux, and her brand new novel FRONT PAGE FACE-OFF was released today! Is the cover darling or what?

**Stick around because I'm giving away a copy!

Not only is Jo a friend, she's also a fellow Texas Sweetheart (along with Jessica Lee Anderson). And without further ado, here is Jo...


PJH: Congratulations of the release of FRONT PAGE FACE-OFF! You’ve had a fantasy trilogy published in the past. Why the switch to realistic fiction, and do you plan to make the change permanent?

JW: Honestly, I NEVER thought I’d write realistic fiction because it seemed so much harder than writing fantasy. I have Michelle Andelman to thank for coaxing me to make the switch. She told me my strengths were humor and character, so why not try contemporary? And so I did…and can I say I love it? Is that blasphemous for a fantasy-phile? I don’t plan for it to be a permanent change, although right now it feels like I’m in a realistic fiction groove (though ideas are still buzzing in my brain for speculative fiction).

PJH: Tell us five things you collect.

JW:Let’s see…those souvenir pennies that you squash flat and imprint, hotel toiletries, miniaturized versions of things (tiny is cute!), stuffed bears, and anything Juicy Couture.

PJH: I love the background for FPFO! Why the background of the school paper? Were you an editor back in the day? If not, where did you get the inspiration?

JW:Thanks for the compliment! I actually worked on my first school paper when I was in fifth grade. We had a fantastically successful one-issue run, and at the time, I wasn’t a reporter, I was the cartoonist. Needless to say, I did not have a future in illustration. My comic was also a flop because it accidentally ran in the paper without words in the speech bubbles. Nobody understood it or thought I was particularly hilarious after that.
The next time I worked on the paper went much better. I was in college, and that was where I got most of the inspiration for headline news, hectic deadlines, and brainstorming sessions. I lived them all, baby!

PJH: What are three books you are looking forward to the release of in the next year (not including mine)?

1) I’m a huge Suzanne Collins fan, so Mockingjay
2) Will Grayson, Will Grayson because John Green’s humor cracks me up
3) As silly as it sounds, the graphic novel version of Twilight

PJH: If an apocalypse came, would you still find a way to write (even if this meant paper and pen)? And if yes, then how and why?

JW:Yes, because I’ve always found writing to be one of the best escapes. I can get out of my head and my situation and into someone else’s. Plus, I’m assuming post-apocalypse that all the libraries in the world are destroyed and technology is wiped out, so no literature is available. The people will need something to read, especially the ones who sprout a second head from the radiation.


OK, now the fun, fast part. Keep your answers as short as possible!

PJH: Fantasy Island or Love Boat?
JW:Can I say The A-Team instead? I had a crush on Face.

PJH: Guilty Pleasure?
JW:Doctor Who and my parents’ home cooking

PJH: Favorite Scooby Doo character?

PJH: Computer or hand written?
JW:Mostly computer

PJH: First Draft: Revise as you go or just get it down?
JW:Revise as I go

PJH: Favorite natural wonder?
JW:Niagara Falls

PJH: Favorite myth?
JW:Cibola (Seven Cities of Gold)
PJH: Oooh, like in National Treasure 2 :)

PJH: Thank you so much, Jo! I loved having you here!


And now for your chance to win a copy of FRONT PAGE FACE-OFF, simply leave a comment before the end of day Sunday 3/14/2010!


Miriam S. Forster said...

Congratulations on your release Jo! That's so exciting!

Anonymous said...

Thanks, Miriam! I'm definitely excited!

Anonymous said...

I'm a fan!

PJ Hoover said...

Thanks for stopping by, Debbi and Miriam (and of course, Jo).

Tabitha said...

Congrats, Jo!!! So awesome!!

I'm also a fantasy-phile, and had the same experience when I wrote a contemporary novel. I didn't think I could do it at first, but then I ended up loving it. And that was the novel that ended up landing me an agent! Shocked the heck out of me. :)

PJ Hoover said...

So cool, Tabitha! I love stories like that!
And both your stories rock!

Anonymous said...

Thanks so much, DMF & Tabitha!

Elana Johnson said...

Wow, that looks like an amazing book. Great interview, PJ.

And Michelle Andelman? She's my agent...is she Jo's? Inquiring minds...

Anonymous said...

Elana, she was my agent when she was with Andrea Brown Lit. Tell Michelle that Jo says hi! And to check the acknowledgements of the book!
Also, thanks for the book compliment! :o)

PJ Hoover said...

Thanks, Elana! And it's about the most darling book ever!

Jessica Lee Anderson said...

Congrats, Jo! This was such a fun interview. =)

Natalie Aguirre said...

Good luck on your new book Jo. I think it's great you can switch from fantasy to contemporary. We all probably should think out of what we think we write like you did.

T. Anne said...

What an awesome interview! You are one cool lady Jo!

Erin Edwards said...

Love the cover, Jo. Can't wait to read it!

Now let's see if that horse shoe I won from Tricia has any luck it it for me....

PJ Hoover said...

Thanks for visiting, Jessica, Natalie, Anne, and Erin! Erin, I hope you get amazing good luck! And Anne, I love the new picture!

Vonna said...

Jo, it is fascinating to hear about your switch from fantasy to reality. Good luck with FPFO!

Thanks for the fun interview, PJ.

PJ Hoover said...

You're welcome, Vonna! I love hearing about the switch, too!

Heather Zundel said...

Surprisingly, I've never heard of the myth of Cibola. I'm going to have to look that up now. And good to see you over here Jo!

By the way, PLEASE tell me you are going the Freer Gallery tomorrow, PJ. Please. It really was one of my favorite museums, and a whole lot less stuffy than some of the other art museums. Fantastic place. Absolutely love it there. And you can't miss the statues, you really can't. If you go, you will have to take a picture and post it on here.

Robyn Campbell said...

Hey Tricia! Hey Jo! I am getting over here late and I'm a dollar short, too. (As usual!)=)

I love your idea about every library being destroyed and the folks needing something to read, post an apocalypse.

Velma? Great answer.

Thank you Jo for doing this interview. So cool to get to know my fellow authors better. Congrads on your release. (^_^)

Anonymous said...

Jessica, thanks again, Sweetheart!

Natalie, thanks so much! I think everyone should try stepping outside their comfort zone at LEAST once.

T. Anne, aw shucks! Thanks! I've never been called cool. Not sure what to do with that! (^_^)

Erin, I was so jealous of your horseshoe acquisition! I hope you like...no, I hope you LOVE the book!

Vonna, thanks for the good wishes!

Hi, Heather! I first heard about it when I was a kid. Nickelodeon ran this cartoon series called "Esteban & the Mysterious Cities of Gold". I LOVED that show.

Robyn, hi and thanks for commenting! The only problem with my interview is that when the apocalypse comes and I survive, people will start to get suspicious...
And Velma? Hellz yeah. Smart chicks rule.

C.R. Evers said...

Congrats on your new release! Sounds amazing. CAn't wait to read it!

Angela said...

I love hearing about your switch, and it's inspiring! As someone who has made the switch as well, it is great to hear of your success. Thanks for the great interview, gals!

PJ Hoover said...

Heather, I will aim for the Greer gallery! How could I not, now?

Thanks for visiting, everyone!

Anonymous said...

Thanks, Christy and Angela!