Tuesday, June 29, 2010

An Interview with Stacey Wallace Benefiel

Stacey Wallace Benefiel has been sweet enough to stop by and answer some questions about her debut novel, Glimpse. Let me tell you my friends, review coming tomorrow and you need to be here. Her book is great! She needs all the love she can get to spread Glimpse fever so let's get to it!

1) Quick challenge: Describe Glimpse in one sentence without using "a" or "the".
Zellie Wells believes in God, but she also believes in love at first sight.

2) What inspired you to write Glimpse?
My little sister and the tv show Roswell. LOL We both really loved the show and after it ended my sister Valerie challenged me to write something similar and submit it to a contest. I wrote a novella called Zellie Wells: Teenage Psychic (I know, worst title ever) and submitted it to a contest in 2005. Then, when I was pregnant with my son I started reading YA again and eventually made it around to the Twilight Series and decided to fatten Glimpse up and publish it.

3) Zellie and Avery definitely have some sparks between them! Was that difficult to write? 
Hmm. No one has ever asked me that question. The interaction between them was definitely fun to write. That first love feeling is one of my favorite things about reading YA. Nah. It wasn't hard. I'm old and I've had a few boyfriends and a few experiences to draw from. The most difficult scenes for me to write are the rewinds. I have to read them over a bazillion times to make sure I'm not leaving any details out.

4) When did you first start writing? 
I've always been into reading, writing, and theatre. Those have been my "things" since elementary school. Growing up I mostly wrote poetry, plays, and memoir essays. Glimpse is the first novel I've written. I do not know how other authors write 600 page books. Getting to 50,000 words is a major accomplishment for me.

5) How did it feel to hold that first finished copy in your hands?
Fan-freakin-tastic. I majorly dorked out and had a photo shoot with Glimpse. There are pictures on my blog and my facebook page of me with Glimpse, Glimpse with books I love stacked on a desk, Glimpse and my writing bulletin board. I have no shame. It was awesome.

6) What book are you dying to recommend to others?
Oh, jeez, I'm probably way behind the times on this one. I have two small children and have just recently started reading for pleasure again. I'm reading Fablehaven right now and it is filling the Harry Potter void nicely. Y'know, everyone should read the Outlander series at some point in their lives if they enjoy fantasy and history and romance...and Scottish people.

7) Random question of the day: Candy Apple or Caramel Apple?
Caramel apple fer shure. Candy apples make my fillings cringe.

8) What are you working on now? Can you share a little bit with us?
I'm currently working on Glimmer, the next book in the Zellie Wells trilogy. I have been saying series, but I only have it planned through three books, so I'm 80% sure there will only be three. Other than that, after I finish Glimmer later this summer, I'm going to complete a YA novella I've been adding to on and off about human sacrifices and guardian angels. I've also got a first chapter of a contemporary romance that has been taunting me, but I probably won't get to that until after I finish Glow-the third Zellie Wells book.

Here's an excerpt from Glimmer:

I jumped from the truck and landed in a dirty snow and leaf pile. Awesome. There's nothing like walking around in squishy cold shoes all day long. I slammed the door behind me and headed for Claire who was waiting at the bike racks.

“Hey!” Avery called, “I love you and your stubborn ass! See you at lunch, Honeybear!”

I considered rewinding the last five minutes and finishing my fight with Avery, trying to get him to see my side, erasing the use of “Honeybear” for sure, but I was almost to the bike racks.

“What’s up H.B.?” Claire grinned. “Aww, did you two have a fight?”

I smirked. “Yes, want to venture a guess about what?”

“Well, let’s see, is it one of the twelve things you guys have going against you?”

“Why yes, it is.” I stuck my tongue out at her.

She pretended to aim a dart and throw it. “Ghost baby daddy?”


We walked to our lockers. I took out my AP History book. Claire had choir first period and Avery had English. The three of us didn’t have as many classes together this year.

I felt Avery come up close behind me. I turned to him, out mouths nearly touching. “What?”

He kissed me. “I couldn’t wait until lunch.” He took off down the hall, looking back over his shoulder, smiling.

“I’m still mad at you!” I yelled after him, but then I smiled too.

“You guys make me throw up in my mouth a little, you know that, right?” Claire asked. She checked herself out in her locker mirror, one of her many daily rituals, running a brush through her black shoulder length hair.

I snorted. “We’re not as bad as you and Jason were.”

Claire looked at me from the mirror as she moved on to adjusting her eyeliner. “He who must not be named and I were a flame that burned hot and strong...until he opened his mouth and everything he said was so stupid that the flame took itself out.”

“If only they’d just keep their mouths shut.”

“Holla.” Claire shut her locker door and turned to me. “I’ll see you in French.” She gave me a hug good-bye.

“Ouch!” I let go of Claire and dropped my books. Clutching my head, a vision crackled and sparked behind my eyes, short circuiting my ability to concentrate on what I was seeing. The pain was excruciating. Wait, why was there pain? I fell to my knees on the ground.

Claire knelt beside me. “What’s wrong? Should I go get the nurse?” She pulled at my hands. “Look at me! What can I do?”

I clutched my head tighter, squeezing my eyes closed. I felt extremely hot. I could see Claire in my mind, coming in and out of focus. I couldn’t tell where she was or what was happening. “Just...hold on. Don’t get the nurse...I’m trying to...you’re in here...”

“Hush,” she whispered, “people are looking at us.”

The halls became congested as other students stopped to stare. Only a few said anything.

“Is she okay?”

“She doesn’t look so good.”

“I didn’t think she could get any paler.”

Claire hovered over me, blocking me from view. “Come on,” she coaxed, “try and stand up. Let’s go to the girl’s room.”

I shook my head. “Wait. The pain’s going away a little. I can see...you...and Benjamin?”

“Am I kicking his ass?”

I managed a weak smile. “No, just talking. Actually, you both look happy...and you’re both in...formal wear? That can’t be right. Benjamin’s too old to go to prom.” I opened my eyes enough to see and stood up. The vision was over. My head throbbed a little, but the pain was gone for the most part.

The bell rang.

Claire shot down the remaining looky-loos with a glare. “Move along people. Nothing to see here.” She took my arm and led me to the nearest bathroom. Stooping to look under the stall doors, she made sure we were alone before she spoke. “What was that?”

“I don’t know, but it killed.” I splashed water on my face and then dried it off with the paper towel Claire offered. I looked in the mirror. There were broken blood vessels in both of my eyes. "What the hell?"


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