Today I have YA/NA author Danielle Weiler answering questions about her new adult book Reckless! I've already read and really enjoyed Reckless. You can read my review HERE. And at the end of this interview, there's a chance to win one of two ebooks copies of Reckless!
Thanks for having me Alexa!
Thank you being here, Danielle! What was your inspiration for Reckless?
Milly came to me as a broken girl. The first line kept playing over and over in my head:
‘I am reckless. I understand this in its entirety as I’m desperately fumbling at the top button of my jeans…’
But she also assured me, ‘I can explain!’ She wrote her own story/first draft in a matter of weeks. At the time, I was thinking about how strong the connection of twins must be. I have four-year-old twin nieces and they are inseparable. I thought about the concept of long-term grief, not just directly after the event; how families can still be hurting years later and dragging themselves through every day without making much progress; how they can let walls creep up and blame creep in. I also wanted to tell a different kind of story to Friendship on Fire, which was probably more cupcake literature. Milly is edgy and dark, the girl you want to slap some sense into but also feel for tremendously.
What did you enjoy the most about writing this book?
The flashbacks between Milly and Christian (twin brother) were the most interesting in terms of process and creativity. I have five older brothers so I thought back to some of the things we did as kids and altered them to suit the story. Yes, brother number 5 used to make potato gems and eat them in front of me without sharing. Brother 4 ran over our cat. Brother 2 tried to teach me how to surf. I drew on those connections to show how close Milly and Christian were.
Do you have a favorite scene or moment?
Not in particular, but I did love writing from Jerome’s POV and I loved writing the ending.
Where do you think Milly would be if her brother hadn't died? Would Milly and Jerome still have gotten close?
Milly didn’t get a chance to really think about what she would’ve liked to pursue after school and because of the timing of Christian’s death, it knocked her off course to the point where she didn’t want to do anything.
Mmm it’s hard to say if she and Jerome would have connected, but probably not. Christian liked to keep his sister at arms length from any guy who could take advantage of her, even his best friend. Not in a controlling way, just a protective, older brother way. Unless Milly and Jerome were in the same course or job, it probably wouldn’t have happened.
Why did you decide to include some chapters from Jerome's POV?
It was a bit of gratuitous writing for me, but also to surprise the reader and perhaps to get the reader to sympathise with Jerome a little bit. I always love to read those little extra things in novels too. It makes them special, like you’re reading someone’s diary or a love note, like it was written just for you.
Did you already know how Reckless was going to end before you started writing it? Is it a definite stand-alone?
Yes I did know how it was going to end. I wrote the ending quite early on just to see if I liked it, as well as the major plot twist. I actually haven’t thought of a sequel. It’ll probably just be a stand-alone but I don’t want to rule anything out!
Are you planning to write other new adult novels?
YES! I love them. I remember an agent saying to me once, Reckless is a great concept, but make the character a few years younger because publishers prefer them younger. But how could I? Two years out of school, Milly should have had something going for her life, but she didn’t. How many young adults have that prolonged adolescence issue in their lives? They still live with Mum and Dad but technically they’re adults so don’t want to be treated like kids still.
I think there’s more freedom in new adult than YA (and I don’t mean in a Fifty Shades of Reckless kind of way). I still love YA, but I don’t feel such pressure to restrain my language and themes. I’ve started working on Friendship on Fire – the sequel and that’ll have to be NA because Daisy will be 19 and it’s not about school anymore. I like to think that I can help the genre’s popularity and for it not just to have the stigma of upper-YA-steaminess.
Bonus: Jerome or Roman? (Note: Roman is from Danielle's YA novel Friendship on Fire!)
Oh this question is unfair! My instant reaction is Roman, but Jerome is so attractive in his persistence and vulnerability and subtle humour. Can I have both? What do you think Alexa? ☺
Ahh! I can't choose between Jerome or Roman either! haha I want them both too. Thank you for answering all my questions, Danielle! You had some really awesome and interesting answers. I'm so excited for the Friendship on Fire sequel, and I'm glad it's going to be new adult. Great job on your first new adult Reckless! :D
So are you all even more curious about Reckless? Well, you're in luck because Danielle is offering up TWO ebook copies of Reckless! Yay! The giveaway is open internationally and will end August 22. To enter, just fill out the Rafflecopter form below. :)
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