Tuesday, March 23, 2010

TMI

Today, we have an author interview with Sarah Quigley about her book TMI. So without further ado here is Sarah.



What inspired you to write TMI?
TMI is about Becca, a high school sophomore who can't stop herself from telling everyone her personal business. She finally decides to change her ways when her first boyfriend dumps her for kissing and telling. Becca still needs an outlet to vent all her feelings and secrets, so she starts a blog.


I started keeping a diary when I was nine years old and then switched to blogging when I was 24. At that time, blogs were just beginning to become popular. It's probably for the best that I wasn't able to blog when I was a teenager because I might have encountered some of the same difficulties that Becca does.


I also think that these days, with the popularity of blogs and Facebook, we're all trying to figure out how much information we should actually reveal about ourselves online. How much is too much? Who decides? I know that adults and teenagers alike now struggle with these questions, so TMI explores a problem that a lot of people can relate to.

Your character, Becca, in TMI is quite the oversharer, are you yourself a bit of an oversharer?
Definitely! I used to love saying shocking things to get attention. I also didn't understand why some people were so reluctant to talk openly about their own lives. As I've gotten older (and more mature?), I've come to realize that boundaries are important, even in my closest relationships. It's not a good idea to say anything and everything that pops into my head.


On the flip side, I think my openness is a positive thing as well. Many friends have admitted that they tell me things they don't normally discuss with other people. Maybe they feel more comfortable with me. I'm not sure, but I'm always flattered when someone chooses to confide in me.

Do you have any plans for any other books?
I'm currently working on a second novel, not a sequel to TMI. It's a coming-of-age story about a cellist who spends the summer waiting tables at a resort. I can't reveal more than that right now, but I'm very excited about it.

As an author what is your opinion of book bloggers?
They're great! I don't interact with many teenagers in my day-to-day life, and since book bloggers are mostly teen readers, I'm always interested in their opinions. The bloggers have also helped tremendously in getting the word out about TMI, inviting me to do interviews, guest blogs, and contests. I've also had the pleasure of meeting bloggers at some of my book signings. It makes me feel like I have fans!

Is there anything you hope people will get from reading TMI?
I'm always happy when people tell me they thought the book was funny and entertaining. Those were my main goals when I was writing it. I've also heard from readers who said they identified with Becca or wished they had a friend like Jai. It pleased me to know that people thought the characters were realistic and likable.


I also wanted readers to think about some deeper issues, things that didn't occur to me until I was older. As I mentioned, personal boundaries make a lot of relationships easier (although being too closed off can cause problems, too).

Do you have any tips for aspiring authors?
Give yourself permission to suck. Seriously, perfectionism takes all the fun out of writing and makes it an exercise in anxiety. Get the words on the page and worry about improving them later. After all, you can't fix what you haven't written. This philosophy has gotten me through many, many bad days and pushed me to continue when I wanted to give up.


Some people wait for inspiration to strike before they sit down to write. I don't have the luxury of that much free time, so I make myself write nearly every day, whether I'm in the mood or not. I think this kind of discipline is necessary to improve and develop my skills.


It's also important to set goals. I was having a hard time working on the first draft of my new novel, so this past fall, I rolled up my sleeves and finished the book in six weeks. I wrote 1,000 words a day (trying hard to suspend judgment on the quality of those words) and gave myself rewards for every 20,000 words. Now I have two new outfits, an appointment for a massage, and a completed manuscript that I'm in the process of improving.

Thank you heaps Sarah.  But don't leave just yet.  Thanks to the very awesome Sarah, we have a copy of TMI to give to one lucky person. And what do you have to do?
You have to fill in the form below, AND you must leave a comment below telling us an embarrassing story.  We have left anonymous commenting on so if you want to comment anonymously you can but you must comment.


Rules for all contests can be found here.


Fill in the form below, and leave a comment telling an embarrassing story.

5 comments:

  1. Excellent post! I'm really interested in reading TMI now =D And great advice for aspiring authors, thank you!

    I could choose the anonymous option, but ahh well, I don't mind being embarrassed LOL. Hmm, my most embarrassing moment... I think probably during lunch at school one day. I was mucking around with some friends and couldn't stop laughing. Well, laughing on a full bladder is not the most sensible thing to do and before I knew it I ended up peeing myself! That sure made my laughter dry up LOL.

    Thankfully no one noticed and my school pants were dark anyway, so I quickly went off to the toilets and changed into my PE shorts. Even though nobody actually realised, it was still really embarrassing for a high school girl to pee herself from laughing!

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  2. My most embarrassing moment? hmm... probably banging my head on a pole so hard that I knocked myself out on stage during a drama production at school.

    hehe :P

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  3. I was in a dance recital, and when I did my kick, my shoe went flying into the audience. Everyone laughed and I didn't know whether to laugh or cry!

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  4. Each year we had a Christmas celebration, and that year my class represented "A Christmas Carol". At the back of the stage there was a black courtain and some kids got behind it. I was wearing high heels and there were some holes on the floor. I had already said my lines and my friend and I had to get out of stage but my heel got stuck in the hole, so he tried to help me but he got too closed to the courtain and the kids behind it cought him and then they lowered his pants. Everyone was laughing and I just left the shoe on the hole and got out of there.

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  5. I have so many embarassing stories. I'm always falling or something and am a major clutz. I lost a shoe onstage once dancing.

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Comments are always awesome!