Julia Karr is the debut author of newly released XVI, and today she's here to answer a few of my questions about XVI, writing, and more!
In your opinion, what are the top three reasons why teens (or even adults) should consider picking up XVI the next time they see it online or in stores?
1. It's a good story.
2. The dystopian world of XVI looks a bit like where we're headed as a society & seeing the consequences of continuing down the path we're on just might encourage some people to reconsider the things that they feel are so important to them
3. It has an amazing cover! (Just kidding! Well, actually, I really like the cover, but that's not always the best judge of what's in the book.)
XVI tells the story of Nina so would you mind telling us a little about her? Also, if you could offer her any type of advice what would you say?
Nina's an average teenaged girl, busy with school, her friends, and her family. But, she's not sold on the whole sex-teen image that the media and government pushes on girls when they turn sixteen.
I'd advise Nina to question what makes her feel uncomfortable, choose her friends wisely, and, above all, to be true to herself and her convictions.
What was one of your favorite parts about writing XVI?
I loved getting the flow, where the words just poured out. I also loved writing the kissing scenes! :)
XVI takes places in the year 2150, which leaves me to wonder the following: what did you choose to set it in the future, as well as that year specifically?
Good question! And one that nobody else has asked me. I knew it needed to be far enough in the future for several changes in the government. But, not so far that things wouldn't be recognizable for the most part. So, I looked at past history to see the evolution of events (particularly surrounding major wars) and then estimated how long it might take for the world I envisioned to evolve.
I chose 2150 for a secret reason. :)
There's a scene in Lincoln Park with Nina and Sal. I loved writing it. Made me feel sixteen again.
Did XVI change in any big ways from first draft to final copy?
Yes and No. The bare bones of the story was there the whole time. But, when the book was out on submission to editors, one of them suggested I add a little more tension. That "little more tension" ended up becoming a huge part of the story.
How did you spend XVI's release day?
I went to work at my day job. That evening I went out to dinner with my two critique partners. They were so much help when I was revising XVI. I couldn't imagine celebrating with anyone else!
You're part of the Class of 2K11, as well as The Elevensies, so what is like to be in company with all those amazing debut authors?
I'm honored to be included in such an awesome group of writers! I love the support and the encouragement we all share. Writers who write for kids and teens are the best - ever!
Name three things your readers would be surprised to know about you.
That I won't go to scary movies - because I'm a big wuss!
That I'm a vegetarian. Although that might not be a surprise.
That I do not read other dystopian novels while I'm writing mine. I don't want to be influenced by anyone else.
What's up next for you book wise?
I'm working on the sequel to XVI, tentatively titled The Sisterhood.
Is there anything else you would like to add?
Just a big thank you for inviting me to your blog. And, that I hope your readers, who choose to read XVI, like it!
Thanks so much Julia!
To find out more about Julie head on over to her website/twitter.
You can buy XVI on Amazon/Barnes and Noble/Indie Bound.