Monday, October 15, 2018

Interview with YA novelist Krysten Lindsay Hager

Novelist Krysten Lindsay Hager is here today and we’re chatting about her new young adult book, Can Dreams Come True?

During her virtual book tour, Krysten will be awarding a $10 Amazon or Barnes and Noble (winner’s choice) gift card to a lucky, randomly drawn winner. To be entered for a chance to win use the form below. To increase your chances of winning, feel free to visit her other tour stops and enter there, too!

Krysten Lindsay Hager writes about friendship, self-esteem, fitting in, frenemies, crushes, fame, first loves, and values. She is the author of True Colors, Best Friends...Forever?, Next Door to a Star, Landry in Like, Competing with the Star, Dating the It Guy, and Can Dreams Come True? True Colors won the Readers Favorite award for best preteen book and the Dayton Book Expo Bestseller Award for children/teens. Competing with the Star is a Readers' Favorite Book Award Finalist.

Krysten's work has been featured in USA Today, The Flint Journal, the Grand Haven Tribune, the Beavercreek Current, the Bellbrook Times, Springfield News-Sun, Grand Blanc View, Dayton Daily News and on the talk show Living Dayton.

Welcome, Krysten. Please share a little bit about your current release.
Can Dreams Come True is about a high school girl who goes on a music video audition for her favorite singer and not only gets the part, but ends up getting to date him. She has a chance at her dream career and her dream boyfriend and it’s overwhelming! I had fun writing the parts of the story where she obviously knows a lot about Andrew, but has to try and hold back so she doesn’t look like an obsessed fan.

What inspired you to write this book?
I wanted to write a book about a girl who really connects with a singer/songwriter and then gets the chance to meet him by being in his video and they begin dating. I wanted to explore it from the aspect of what it would be like to feel like this guy is your musical soulmate and then getting the chance to date him. I admit my own music crushes came into play here!

Excerpt from Can Dreams Come True?
I started to feel anxious after lunch. After all, I had been an Andrew fan for a long time, and even though I had seen him in person, this was a huge deal to get to meet him. What if he wasn’t what I had imagined? I didn’t expect him to fawn over me or anything, but what if he was rude or ignored me? It would kill my fantasy of him as being this sweet, quiet, sensitive songwriter who wore his heart on his sleeve while also being kind of a loner/rebel with just a touch of bad boy in him. Oh man, I would be crushed if he didn’t notice me or worse—if he ended up flirting with Harlow.

In all his magazine interviews Andrew always said looks weren’t important to him, and what he noticed in a girl was if she was true to herself. He said he went for “bright girls who were sweet and easy to be with.” Now that I thought about it, that was the kind of fake crap magazines put out about all the teen celebrities. It was like when I saw Lawrence Claibourne, my favorite actor who claimed to be Mr. I’m-just-looking-for-a-sweet-girl-to-read-poetry-to on a red carpet with a model whose boobs were falling out of her dress and had overdone the lip fillers—I mean, you just knew he wasn’t into her for her personality. But Andrew wasn’t like Lawrence. Andrew seemed so sincere and deep. Lawrence had a smirk and you could tell he was a player, but Andrew seemed like he had been hurt and needed to find the right girl who he could open up to and learn to trust again. . .or at least that’s what he said in his last interview.

The final bell rang and my heart shot up to my throat. This was it. I was on my way to meet my crush. From now on, any dreams of him would be marred by the reality I was about to face.
Was it better to keep wondering what if and keep the fantasy alive or to go and actually meet him?

What exciting story are you working on next?
I’m working on the sequel to Can Dreams Come True and also a new adult book.

When did you first consider yourself a writer?
I always knew I wanted to write, but I guess I first started considering myself a writer when I was taking creative writing classes and I knew this was something I would continue doing even if I never got published.

Do you write full-time? If so, what's your work day like? If not, what do you do other than write and how do you find time to write?
Writing is my main thing. I used to do journalism and freelancing, but now my main priority is fiction with some non-fiction pieces. I write mostly at night and do the business admin side of the job earlier in the day.

What would you say is your interesting writing quirk?
I listen to breakup music for hours before writing a sad scene. Once I put a Mariah Carey song on repeat for hours and I thought my husband would lose his mind. I make playlists for each book.

As a child, what did you want to be when you grew up?
I wanted to write for a soap opera! I used to be obsessed with soaps. I think that’s why I like writing series books because I love that episodic nature. I used to come up with my own storylines for the different soaps I watched.

Anything additional you want to share with the readers?
I watched a ton of music documentaries and interviews while writing the Andrew character. I watched stuff on everyone from Ed Sheeran, Elvis, Kurt Cobain, George Michael, Marvin Gaye and more.


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Goddess Fish Promotions said...

Thanks for hosting!

Ally Swanson said...

Congrats on the new book and good luck on the book tour!

Rita Wray said...

Sounds like a good book.

Krysten Lindsay Hager said...

Thank you so much for hosting today!

Dale Wilken said...

Sounds great.

Ally Swanson said...

Fantastic interview! I really enjoyed reading it!