About SOME QUIET PLACE (description taken from Kelsey’s website):
I can’t weep. I can’t fear. I’ve grown talented at pretending.
Elizabeth Caldwell doesn’t feel emotions . . . she sees them. Longing, Shame, and Courage materialize around her classmates. Fury and Resentment appear in her dysfunctional home. They’ve all given up on Elizabeth because she doesn’t succumb to their touch. All, that is, save one—Fear. He’s intrigued by her, as desperate to understand the accident that changed Elizabeth’s life as she is herself. Elizabeth and Fear both sense that the key to her past is hidden in the dream paintings she hides in the family barn. But a shadowy menace has begun to stalk her, and try as she might, Elizabeth can barely avoid the brutality of her life long enough to uncover the truth about herself. When it matters most, will she be able to rely on Fear to save her?
You’re a gifted writer who found her voice at a young age. Many of readers of YA are also aspiring young writers. Do you have some advice for them? Were there any particular challenges that you faced as a young writer?
The advice I would give changes daily, honestly, based on the particular challenges I’m facing. Today I would say “write for yourself”. Don’t worry about the trends or worry about what someone else will think. Doing so will only cripple you or affect your work in a negative way. It’s been said before, but it’s so true. I’m learning to follow this, myself.
And the challenges I faced, being a querying writer at sixteen, was being blind to the fact that I wasn’t ready. My manuscripts weren’t right and I was still improving. Actually, that never stops… I hope. I wish I could talk to that girl and say, “Kelsey, honey, slow down. You’ll get there.” It seems like I always learn things the hard way. It did make the reality of being an author that much better, though, after the years of work put into it.
What is your daily writing schedule like? During the writing of SOME QUIET PLACE, did you have a playlist or a coffee IV or some other way of getting into the writing groove?
I try to write at least 1,000 words a day, even when I’m in school or working every day. Usually it happens in the late afternoon or into the wee hours of the night. During SOME QUIET PLACE I had this strange need to be outside every time I worked on it. Yes, there was coffee. Yes, there was music. I like to listen to movie soundtracks. And sometimes I like to light a candle. Weird but true.
In SOME QUIET PLACE, emotions take on physical forms, which is such a cool concept. Which of these personifications in the book is your favorite? Which emotion do you think YOU personify?
I know this is probably what you’re expecting to hear, but Fear was my favorite. He just came so naturally and he’s so vibrant on the page. Not to mention he’s downright sexy. Come on, I had to mention it. And what a great question! If I had to choose an emotion I personify best I would have to say… Longing. I’m always working towards some goal. Losing weight, getting a book published, getting a degree. It’s never ending.
Because of the personified emotions in SOME QUIET PLACE, your main character Elizabeth tries not to feel. What was it like to write a character who tries not to feel?
It was actually pretty easy. It felt like Elizabeth’s voice was there, just waiting for me to tell her story. There were some things that needed to be fixed, of course, but that’s what revisions are for!
Can you tell us a little bit of what’s next for you?
Absolutely. I have a companion novel coming out next year. It’s set in the same world of personified emotions, and it’s about a girl wanting revenge on the man responsible for the death of her family. She’s influenced by both Forgiveness and Revenge and must ultimately choose which path to take. I’m so excited for the world to read it!
And finally, as this community is All for One and OneFour KidLit, we’d like to know what two or three books inspired you as a kid.
Great question! Not sure which age to look at, but I know I was a huge fan of the Magic Tree House series, the Saddle Club series. I adored HOLES, that was one of my favorites.
Thank you so much for having me! This was a fun interview.
Kelsey Sutton has done everything from training dogs, making cheeseburgers, selling yellow page ads, and cleaning hotel rooms. Now she divides her time between her college classes and her writing. Kelsey lives in northern Minnesota with her dog and cat, Lewis and Clark.
Her novel SOME QUIET PLACE (July 8, 2013) and a second, untitled novel (July 2014) are forthcoming from Flux. She’s repped by Beth Miller of Writers House.
|Sarah Bromley likes the quiet time at dawn when she can drink coffee while staring into the woods behind her house and wondering what monsters live there. She lives near St. Louis with husband, children, and dogs, and volunteers at a horse stable for disabled riders when she isn’t writing. Her debut novel, A MURDER OF MAGPIES (Month9Books, LLC) will be released in Fall 2014.|