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Nalena Maxwell has been branded ‘The Waste’ at her new school, due to her mom's obsessive paper hoarding. Nalena desperately wants something to change in her life, but when she receives a sign (and it's the wrong dang one) inviting her into a mysterious, ancient community, too much changes. What she knew of her family, what she thought of her life and what she believed about her future, is no longer applicable. Seventeen years worth of family skeletons come crashing into Nalena's life and it is the boy...the one that smiles at her like he wants to hear everything she'll ever say...that already knows her powerful secrets. But it is only Nalena that can choose between protecting the life that is already crumbling beneath her feet and the one that might sacrifice everything she could ever have.***
Thanks for having me over, Brend. Your blog is so clean and spacious!!
1. What do you love about the cover of CORNERSTONE?
Serious, B? I love everything about it!
I love that it’s a clean, simple cover with meaning written all over it.
The torn paper is symbolic of Evangeline’s Memories, but the writing on the paper- you’d find several names on there and some Memories that come from real people in my life. The stone that the title is carved on- love that- is symbolic of the Cornerstone itself and the sun burst shape over the title is meant to signify the (SPOILERYISH) sharp, gear-like flowers that Nali and Garrett find in their tea mugs.
2. What's been the best thing about your self-publishing experience?
There are so many best things, B.
I guess if I’ve got to choose one, it’s that self-publishing has taught me that having a readership is deeply satisfying and worlds more important than my mode of publication.
3. The worst?
It’s takes a tremendous amount of time and commitment to pull all the levers and ring all the bells in order to keep your self-published-machine chugging along. It can also take a lot of cash. Some things you just have to do yourself and do as well as you can.
4. If you could do one thing differently, what would it be?
I would’ve paid a lot more attention in English class. Wait. No, I wouldn’t.
Nah, I think things are doing along just like they should, B.
5. The easiest and hardest parts of writing a story?
The easiest would be getting lost in it. Don’t you just love the whole process?
Finding the story is like excavating dinosaur bones. Learning about the characters is like having a new love affair every time. Seeing it come together…oh man, what a rush…and the revisions, where you can stand back and whack off the sharp pieces and make it smooth…well, that’s my kind of Saturday night, right there.
The hardest part…huh. I suppose it is the uncertainty and doubt that leaks in. I find myself sometimes lost in the whole tail-chasing conversation of perceived expectations. The hardest part is figuring out how to let go and write with joy instead of expectation.
6. What can readers expect from you in the future?
They can expect me to keep on keepin’ on, trying to make every story fresher, twistier, better than the last. They can expect oodles and boodles of stories. They can expect more YA in the near future and probably some Adult down the road. They can expect me to be wearing really awesome make-up, Steampunk boots, and talking about Larry, my wagging-bladder of a dog.
Thanks again for having me over, Brend. Love ya!