I'm BEYOND delighted to welcome one of my fave YA authors to the blog today!! Ladies and gents, I give you Kirsten Hubbard! *claps like a maniac* Kirsten is the force of nature behind contemporary YA novels Like Mandarin, and the upcoming Wanderlove (which I've reviewed here). Without further ado, here's my quick interview with Kirsten:
1) Favorite movie genre
Honestly, just like books, I love movies from almost every genre (including really good horror).
2) Favorite teen movie
I adore Clueless, but if I had to pick just one, it'd be Empire Records. I was in junior high when I saw it, a wannabe grunge kid, and I wanted to work in that record store and make out with A.J. SO BAD.
(I've yet to see this movie, BUT I've heard great things about A.J. *grins*)
3) If Bria Sandoval could direct her own movie, which genre would she choose and why?
Bria loves fantasy, art and humor, so I could totally see her working for Pixar someday.
(*makes note to stalk Bria into Pixar someday*)
4) What about Grace Carpenter? Which genre would she choose and why?
Grace is a tough one. She's extremely introspective, and very much a people watcher. I could see her working as an indie filmmaker, making quiet, heavy films with an undercurrent of magic. I'm thinking Sofia Coppola.
(I would totally be her best friend. Forever)
5) What's one thing you've learned as a writer from watching teen movies?
Because movies are visual by nature, they can't just stick conversations and plot events in the same old settings; they often utilize creative, dynamic backdrops -- even when the whole film takes place in a record store, like Empire Records. I took a screenwriting class in college, and it really inspired me to do the same with my novels: to explore the power of setting, on both a large-scale and scene-by-scene level.
(*takes notes from brilliant advice*)
It all begins with a stupid question:
Are you a Global Vagabond?
No, but 18-year-old Bria Sandoval wants to be. In a quest for independence, her neglected art, and no-strings-attached hookups, she signs up for a guided tour of Central America—the wrong one. Middle-aged tourists with fanny packs are hardly the key to self-rediscovery. When Bria meets Rowan, devoted backpacker and dive instructor, and his outspokenly humanitarian sister Starling, she seizes the chance to ditch her group and join them off the beaten path.
Bria's a good girl trying to go bad. Rowan's a bad boy trying to stay good. As they travel across a panorama of Mayan villages, remote Belizean islands, and hostels plagued with jungle beasties, they discover what they've got in common: both seek to leave behind the old versions of themselves. And the secret to escaping the past, Rowan’s found, is to keep moving forward.
But Bria comes to realize she can't run forever, no matter what Rowan says. If she ever wants the courage to fall for someone worthwhile, she has to start looking back.
Kirsten Hubbard lends her artistry into this ultimate backpacker novel, weaving her drawings into the text. Her career as a travel writer and her experiences as a real-life vagabond backpacking Central America are deeply seeded in this inspiring story.
A huge thanks to Kirsten for stopping by!! Make sure you pick up Wanderlove when it hits stores on March 13th, 2012! AND go buy your copy of Like Mandarin, which is in stores now!