Oct 24, 2012

Don't Look Behind the Bookshelf: Day 7

Dont Look Behind the Bookshelf
What are you doing here? Did you not see the letters in huge red script?! It told you not to look behind here--and you did. Now you have no choice but to pry your eyes open and be exposed to yet another day of Don't Look Behind the Bookshelf. (You can see yesterday's interview here.) Today features an author whose books are ghostly wonderful for Halloween--they have ghosts and have "death" in the titles, after all. You'll want to add her books to your TBR list if you haven't already. Ghouls and guys, please make an appearance for the spectacular... 
Laurie Stolarz
Trick or treat?

Truth or dare?

Best Halloween creature?
What’s the best candy to get on Halloween?
Super-dark chocolate. Yeah, you guessed it, I have to buy my own treats. No one ever gives this out.

What’s your most memorable Halloween costume? (Awesome, embarrassing, scary, etc.)
Devil in a blue dress. Cue music here:
Best movie to watch for Halloween? Best book to read?
Ugh, so tough. I'm partial to the Scream trilogy. Also, MiseryThe ShiningI Know What You Did Last Summer.

What scares you?
The question should be what doesn't scare me. I'm the biggest scaredy cat ever. I'm always on guard when walking around at night or going down into basements. I always check the backseat of my car before I start the ignition. I'm super-protective of those around me. I refuse to go into any haunted houses, even though I grew up in Salem, MA, and they were pretty much at my disposal year-round. I guess I have a big imagination that often gets the better of me.

If you could be any Halloween creature what would you be?
None, too scary. 

Do you have a real-life experience Halloween story?
As part of my research for the book Project 17, I had to figure out how to break into an abandoned mental hospital, rumored to be haunted, in the middle of the night. I connected with a group of urban explorers who  had visited this hospital numerous times on various ghost hunts. Anyway, I became so spooked by the experience that I wasn’t able to sleep at night.  

How do you celebrate Halloween?
I decorate my house with spiders, ghosts, ghouls, cobwebs, etc., etc. I also play scary music (the sounds of screaming and thunder, the chilling music from horror movies). I play it really loud, out the window, so that passersby can hear it. I also give out candy (no super-dark chocolate, though; I know they'd throw it back in the basket). 
It’s Friday the 13th, you’re home alone, and it’s dark. Simultaneously, the phone rings and you hear somebody upstairs. What do you do?
I assume it's my gigantic cat jumping upstairs. If my cat's sitting next to me, I check the caller ID and then answer the phone. If it's some whacko, like in Scream, I hang up and call 911, or use my cell to call 911. If they're watching me, saying I only have seconds until my death unless I correctly answer a horror-flavored trivia question, I go over to the security system and press the panic button. Then I scoop up my cat and leave. 
If you were in a horror movie with a classic killer what would you do to survive?
I'd go to the police station and camp out in the lobby. If they told me I had to leave, I'd do something to get myself arrested for the night. 

Using the letters of DEADLY, how would you describe yourself?
I have a deadly little imagination.

You have quite a few novels in The Touch series. Would you mind telling us what inspired the series?
Following the success of my Blue is for Nightmares series, in which my main character is plagued and then empowered by her premonitions, I wanted to continue working in the supernatural/paranormal genre. I tinkered a little bit with the genre in Project 17 (Hyperion/2007), where my main character breaks into an abandoned mental institution that’s rumored to be haunted, but I wanted to pursue it further, in another series, experimenting with the idea that we all have our own inner senses and intuition, and how with work we can tap into those senses and make them stronger. I started researching different types of supernatural powers and discovered the power of psychometry (the ability to sense the past or future through touch). The concept fascinated me, and so I wanted to bring it out in a character, showing how sometimes even the most extraordinary powers can also be a curse. What I found particularly interesting in my research – which consisted of books, online articles, interviews, and a workshop I attended – was that people who claim to have the power experience the effects of it very differently. For example, some are able to touch an object and picture where it’s been, who owns it, something pertaining to its past or future. Meanwhile, others claim to smell specific scents, taste particular flavors, or hear certain sounds or voices pertaining to the object upon touching it.

In my series, Ben, the new boy at school, is rumored to have killed his ex-girlfriend. He ended up completely reclusive as a result, not leaving his house and getting homeschooled by tutors. But now, flash forward a couple years, he wants to try a stab at normal life again (despite his psychometric powers). He enrolls at a school a few hours from his hometown, where no one knows him (or his past). But then everything goes awry when he accidentally touches Camelia, the main character, and senses that her life is in danger. 
Throughout the series, Ben has to decide how close he wants to get to Camelia, knowing that it was his touch power that contributed to the death of his past girlfriend.
What’s next for you? More novels in the Touch series, or something completely different?
Deadly Little Lessons, the fifth book in the Touch series will be out this December. I'm also starting a new series. I only have a working title at this point, but let's just say it's super scary - my darkest book yet.
Laurie Faria Stolarz grew up in Salem, MA, attended Merrimack College, and received an MFA in Creative Writing from Emerson College in Boston. 
Laurie Faria Stolarz is an American author of young adult fiction novels, best known for her Blue is for Nightmares series. Her works, which feature teenage protagonists, blend elements found in mystery and romance novels.
Stolarz found sales success with her first novel, Blue is for Nightmares, and followed it up with three more titles in the series, White is for Magic, Silver is for Secrets, and Red is for Remembrance. The four novels in the "BIFN" series have sold over 500,000 copies collectively. Stolarz has also announced a graphic novel entry into the series titled Black is for Beginnings, which she published in summer 2009.
To learn more about Laurie Stolarz, visit her website, blog, Facebook, Twitter, and Goodreads. And don't forget to check out her Halloween-esque novels!

Blue is for Nightmares
Publisher: Llewellyn Publications
Publishing Date: November 8, 2003
Pages: 284

"I Know Your Secret..."
Stacey's junior year at boarding school isn't easy. She's not the most popular girl at school, or the smartest, or the prettiest. She's got a crush on her best friend's boyfriend, and an even darker secret that threatens to ruin her friendships for good. And now she's having nightmares again. Not just any nightmares – these dreams are too real to ignore, like she did three years ago. The last time she ignored them, a little girl died. This time they're about Drea, her best friend who's become the target of one seriously psycho stalker. It started with weird e-mails and freaky phone calls. Now someone's leaving Drea white lilies – the same death lilies that have been showing up in Stacey's dreams. Everybody thinks it's just a twisted game . . . until another girl at school is brutally murdered. There are no witnesses. Worst of all, no one has a perfect alibi. With everyone as a potential suspect, Stacey turns to the one secret weapon she can trust – the folk magic taught to her by her grandmother. Will Stacey's magic be strong enough to expose the true killer, or will the killer make her darkest nightmares come true?

Deadly Little Secret
Publisher: Hyperion
Publishing Date: December 16, 2008
Pages: 252
Until three months ago, everything about sixteen-year-old Camelia's life had been fairly ordinary: decent grades; an okay relationship with her parents; and a pretty cool part-time job at an art studio downtown. But when Ben, the mysterious new guy, starts junior year at her high school, Camelia's life becomes far from ordinary.

Rumored to be somehow responsible for his ex-girlfriend's accidental death, Ben is immediately ostracized by everyone on campus. Except for Camelia. She's reluctant to believe he's trouble, even when her friends try to convince her otherwise. Instead she's inexplicably drawn to Ben...and to his touch. But soon, Camelia is receiving eerie phone calls and strange packages with threatening notes. Ben insists she is in danger, and that he can help – but can he be trusted? She knows he's hiding something...but he's not the only one with a secret.

Don't forget to return to Beauty and the Bookshelf tomorrow (and through October) for the rest of Don't Look Behind the Bookshelf--fourteen days, thirteen authors, one giveaway.

1 comment:

I've been having s-to-the-pam issues, and I wasn't thrilled with Disqus, so sorry about the CAPTCHA!