November 17th, 2009

books

Interview: Laurie Faria Stolarz

In 2007, Blue is for Nightmares author Laurie Faria Stolarz asked if I'd be willing to help her update her website, which was designed by Chloe Weil. I've been maintaining the site ever since. Today, Laurie's adding her lighted candles and haunting tales to the Winter Blog Blast Tour.

Your bestselling series Blue is for Nightmares and the Deadly Little books all involve nightmares and visions. What inspires your supernatural storytelling?

I first started BLUE IS FOR NIGHTMARES in an adolescent fiction writing workshop in graduate school. I knew I wanted my first book to be a mystery/thriller. I loved suspense novels as a young adult and I really wanted to write something that would have appealed to me at that age, adding in elements of humor, romance, and drama. I wanted my main character to be relatable for teens. She needed to be flawed, to have secrets, and to have lots of opportunity for growth. When I started the novel, I had no idea I would delve into the world of magic and witchcraft – that is, until I did a free-writing exercise in my workshop class. I wrote a scene in which Stacey, my main character, was meditating in front of a blue candle. Someone in the class suggested that since she had the candle, and since I'm originally from Salem, I should try making her a witch.

When I started the TOUCH series, I wanted to write a story where the main character has to struggle with the idea of falling in love with someone who could potentially be dangerous. I tinkered with this concept in the first three books of the BLUE IS FOR NIGHTMARES series, as well as in Bleed (Hyperion, 2006). Additionally, I wanted to continue experimenting with the supernatural, showing how 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 things 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.

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Visit Laurie's website and blog.

Related posts at Bildungsroman:
Booklist: Mind Readers and Ghostly Visitors

Visit all of today's tour stops:
Ann Marie Fleming at Chasing Ray
Laurie Faria Stolarz at Bildungsroman
Patrick Carman at Miss Erin
Jacqueline Kelly at HipWriterMama
Dan Santat at Fuse #8
Nova Ren Suma at Shelf Elf

Here's the Bildungsroman schedule for WBBT 2009:
Monday, November 16th: Courtney Sheinmel
Tuesday, November 17th: Laurie Faria Stolarz
Wednesday, November 18th: Jacqui Robbins
Thursday, November 19th: Thomas Randall
Friday, November 20th: Joan Holub

View the full schedule for WBBT 2009.
books

Readergirlz Wins Innovations in Reading Prize

For more information contact: divas@readergirlz.com

READERGIRLZ HONORED IN NEW YORK CITY
The leading teen online book community is awarded by the National Book Foundation.

November 17, 2009 (Seattle, Wash.) – readergirlz (rgz) proudly accepts an Innovations in Reading Prize from the National Book Foundation at an awards luncheon today in Manhattan. Co-founders Dia Calhoun and Lorie Ann Grover will accept the honor on behalf of the nonprofit organization.

Chosen for developing innovative means of creating and sustaining a lifelong love of reading, readergirlz will use the prize money to continue inventive and engaging literacy projects.

"readergirlz is perpetually creating innovative, fun, and impactful ways to connect teens to the best YA novels and authors. What people may not realize is that readergirlz is run completely by volunteers and has been almost entirely self-funded by the divas. So thanks to the Innovations in Reading Prize, we can now pay for our day-to-day operational costs -- but also kick off a new, exciting literacy program we've been brainstorming for the coming year," says co-founder Justina Chen.

About readergirlz
readergirlz is the foremost online book community for teen girls, led by five critically acclaimed YA authors - Dia Calhoun (Avielle of Rhia), Holly Cupala (Tell Me a Secret) Lorie Ann Grover (Hold Me Tight), Justina Chen (North of Beautiful), and Melissa Walker (Lovestruck Summer). readergirlz is the recipient of a 2007 James Patterson PageTurner Award and the 2009 Innovations in Reading Prize from the National Book Foundation.

To promote teen literacy and leadership in girls, readergirlz features a different YA novel and corresponding community service project every month. For more information about readergirlz, please visit http://www.readergirlz.com and http://readergirlz.blogspot.com or contact divas@readergirlz.com

© 2009 readergirlz

Read the announcement from National Book.