So this pass Thursday (October 27) myself and my significant other drove to Brampton Ontario to the Chapters/Indigo store where they were hosting the two fabulous authors: Elizabeth Miles (author of "Fury") and Becca Fitzpatrick (author of the "Hush Hush" saga). This was my first time going to this type of event so I wasn't sure what to expect; I was blown away. It was spectacular!! I loved the Q&A portion of the entire event, we got to see such an insight into their story development, their writing process, how they developed their characters, and even their favourite music to listen too while writing (Elizabeth Miles: songs from the sound track of Les Mis, and Becca Fitzpatrick: songs from Phantom of the Opera). Now I wasn't able to get everything down, I only had my iphone with the "notes" option and I can only text type so quickly, so I will try and decipher my notes as best as I can. The only thing that I was disappointed on is that at SOME of the book signings, there were half naked men in wings, and at Brampton's there were none, I dare say I would have thoroughly enjoyed a photo or two with them, hehehe.
Many of the questions revolved around their personal life, their writing process and character development. One question that really had sparked my interest was how did Becca and Elizabeth get into writing; with Becca she says that it was a toss up between a writing workshop or a cooking workshop her husband had put together for her. She had chosen the writing workshop for many reasons, although she had warned the instructor that she was not going to write anything. Surprisingly, that was not the case at all - she began to write from a journal entry she remembered from her High School past; about herself sitting in biology class and was called upon to describe what she found attractive in a "mate" - sound familiar? It turned into one chapter, then two chapters, then she was a roll 300 pages later. Although she could not find a publisher right off the bat, apparently you have to send more than a couple chapters (although at the time she did not know this, hehe). But finally someone took an interest in the seductive Hush Hush, and from there here we are with three very successful books, and a fourth next year.
Another question that really peeked my interest was: How did she come up with Patch? (*swoon* ugh, Patch, lol). According to Becca Patch is based on a boy she use to know back home in High School. He was everything that Patch is, the bad boy, mysterious although also alluring and sexy. She looked him up on Facebook to check him out see if he is still the same boy, and of course he wasn't there. And of course she makes the point of saying that Patch wouldn't be there either. Nora was not even in the first draft of Hush Hush, although Vee was, and a lot of people wanted Becca to get rid of Vee, but she refused, and I think Vee worked out very well for the entire story and character development.
Some more questions did pop up throughout the crowd which I would like to point out, because I think some bonus content is in order. One curious teen asked the question we've all been wondering, will Nora and Patch ever sleep with one another? - Well without giving too much away Becca just hinted at a maybe (hehe - here's one person that hopes a little romantic development will happen with those two). Another audience member asked if Hush Hush would be turned into a movie? - Becca has had a lot of offers but has currently said no. The reasoning behind it is that she does not want a movie to warp her readers perception of the books (good point, a lot of movies do that for books). And third bonus content which I am very happy to announce is (drum roll please): A portion of "Silence" Becca has written from Patch's point of view! YAY! She had said that it was very hard to write from Patch's point of view because he is still a mystery to her. But as she progresses the fourth book (which is almost done) there might be more point of views from Patch.
Becca is such a fabulous speaker, and was such a fantastic person to meet! It was like meeting one of my idols.
Elizabeth Miles, had been given some if not most of the same questions that Becca Fitzpatrick had been asked, and Elizabeth also touched on some of the same points as well. Elizabeth had a different way of getting into writing fiction. Already a writing for a newspaper in her home town of Maine, her good friend Lauren Oliver (author of "Delirium - how cool is that!) had suggested that Elizabeth try out writing fiction. It turns out that Elizabeth had a knack for writing semi-horror based novels, mixed in with some Young Adult paranormal romance. She attributes her likes of writing in a horror-esk, or "fear" driven way to her father, who on every halloween in Maine insisted on Elizabeth facing her fear by scaring her half to bits with the other parents. Elizabeth says that this had played a roll in writing her book, "Fury" - which for those of you who do not know, is about the immortal beings called "furies".
These beings are defined as (in Roman Mythology): the godess of vengeance; hey are equivalent to the Greek Erinyes. The Furies, who are usually characterized as three sisters (Alecto, Tisiphone, and Magaera) - Greek poets saw them as pursuing sinners on Earth.
Of course another question that always peeks interest in the hearts of those swooning, is how she came up with one of her swoon-worthy guys, Chase. Elizabeth claims her charming Chase is an amalgamation of several people she knew in High School. A big part of Chase's life is his poverty, and Elizabeth goes into detail about how poverty affects his entire life down to his particular way he reacts to situations, emotions, etc. After I heard Elizabeth talk so proudly of Chase, I cannot wait to sink into this fantastic read; the characters seem to be phenomenal.
Unfortunately we were given only a short period for questions and not a lot of people in the crowd had a lot of questions specifically for Elizabeth, although once the topic of movie offers had been asked, Elizabeth had some exciting news to share with all the fans! She had announced that "Fury" has been opted to be made into a film, and there is a chance that it will definitely be in theatres! So all of us "Fury" fans should keep our eye's open for any more news regarding that.
I must say although Elizabeth is new to the scene of the book world, she was a wonderful pleasure to talk to and to listen too about her fabulous debut novel. Her second book is already to her editor, and I think she has a gorgeous hit book on her hands!
The last and final part of the chat before the signing began was a favorite of mine and all aspiring writers out in the crowd. Tips on how they write, and their process. I must admit as much as it sounds scholarly of me, a lot of what they had to say about writing can be related back on how you write an essay!
Elizabeth Suggests: Don't stare at a blank page for too long; read passages out loud - for punctuation, over use of words, sentence syntax etc. She suggest to get out into the community, see how people interact with one another, and absorb nature in all its beauty including how the word sounds. Also, editing - DO NOT be afraid to throw out things. And the most important part - an outline (it can honestly do wonders for you).
Becca Suggests: Es-drop on everyone's conversation - really see how people talk, how sentences are formed and how conversations carry on. Keep a journal - as you can see this has really helped Becca write an entire series of books; she had taken from her own experiences and made them someone else's. Form a critique group - a couple authors including herself has formed one of these groups, and she says it helps her a lot.
For more information please check out Becca & Elizabeth's website's:
They both have Facebook Pages as well: