2012-05-17

Author Interview: Jen Calonita


In place of a new review, today I have a special post featuring an interview with YA author, Jen Calonita, whose newest book Belles was released last month! Read on to find out more about the book and Jen as an author, as well as a quick giveaway at the end!

Brenna: Was Belles always part of a planned series?

Jen: Yes! My brain seems hardwired to think of stories over time and I love getting to know my favorite characters intimately over several adventures in other books. I know the minute I finish something by an author I like, I'm wondering, "When will their be a sequel?" So with Belles, we always knew the story would be mapped out over the girls first year together so readers could see all the struggles and triumphs that come along with integrating a new member into a family that has worked well as is for years!

Brenna: Savannah was probably the character that interested me the most, just because I didn't have a clear idea of why she chose to act and react the way she did. Are we going to get to see more of Savannah and her motivations in later books?

Jen: Yeah, Savannah seems to be a real sticking point with people -- some love how harsh she is (really!) and others can't believe how obnoxious she is! She's actually based on a girl I knew in high school, if you could believe it. The type that loves you to your face and then says something mean the minute you turn around. I feel like she has a story to tell too so she will be in future books, but readers will be amazed at how she changes when life throws her a few curve balls of her own.

Brenna: What are the best and worst things about being a writer?

Jen: Best? Getting to connect with readers and talking to people who enjoy my characters. When I get emails about my books, I get so excited. I love knowing what you loved, what you want more of, what drove you crazy! It's the best. The worst....hmmm....I'm not sure. Maybe just figuring out how to manage your time wisely! I feel like it's so important to connect so I'm always trying to update FB, Twitter, Pinterest, Goodreads....there are days I hate my phone! :)

Brenna: The books you've written have been contemporary, but would you ever write something in a different genre?

Jen: I think I'm definitely more of a contemporary author, but I will say I've been thinking a lot about stories that make my pulse race. When I think about the shows I love -- Once Upon a Time, Alias (back in the day!), Revenge -- I love things that have a sense of adventure and tons of twists and turns. So I think I'd love to write something that gives me the same feeling I get when I watch something like those shows.

Brenna: What types of books are your favourite to read? Any examples or recommendations?

Jen: I love reading YA! I'm obsessed with all things Ally Carter. I read "Out of Sight, Out of Time," the minute I could get my hands on it. I'm excited to read Terra Elan McVoy's "Being Friends with Boys." It looks terrific. I just finished Elizabeth Eulberg's "Take a Bow," which was great, and I'm looking forward to also reading Kieran Scott's last He's So/She's So book, "This is So Not Happening."

I'm also a BIG Ally Carter fan myself, and I'm planning on reading Take a Bow this week. Great to hear of some other ones to check out though! Thank you SO much for taking the time to answer my questions and share more about Belles with us today, Jen!

You can find Jen at her website, add her as a friend on Facebook, & follow her on Twitter!

You can also find out more about Belles on Goodreads, like the Facebook page for the series, and read the first chapter here!

And read my review for Belles here, with 3 reasons why you should read it!







To win a copy of either Belles or a pre-order of Winter White, leave a comment telling me which question and answer from the interview you were most interested in reading about! Don't forget to leave your e-mail so I can contact you if you win!

Contest is international since I'll order from The Book Depository :) regular giveaway rules apply. I'll pick a winner randomly on May 31st.

Good luck!

15 comments:

franchie15 said...

Hi Brenna! This book sounds like The Sisterhood of the Travelling Pants in a way since it's a series and we'll get to see the development of the characters. This is one of the few YA contemporary novels which is in a series that I know of. The question and answer that got me is this:

"Brenna: Savannah was probably the character that interested me the most, just because I didn't have a clear idea of why she chose to act and react the way she did. Are we going to get to see more of Savannah and her motivations in later books?

Jen: Yeah, Savannah seems to be a real sticking point with people -- some love how harsh she is (really!) and others can't believe how obnoxious she is! She's actually based on a girl I knew in high school, if you could believe it. The type that loves you to your face and then says something mean the minute you turn around. I feel like she has a story to tell too so she will be in future books, but readers will be amazed at how she changes when life throws her a few curve balls of her own."

I like how she revealed that Savannah is based on a real person that she knows of. From there, we can see how Savannah is very much a realistic character!

Thanks for this giveaway, Brenna! You're so generous as always. Keep safe. :)

franchie15_nina@yahoo.com

Jess Ramos said...

Brenna: Was Belles always part of a planned series?

Jen: Yes! My brain seems hardwired to think of stories over time and I love getting to know my favorite characters intimately over several adventures in other books. I know the minute I finish something by an author I like, I'm wondering, "When will their be a sequel?" So with Belles, we always knew the story would be mapped out over the girls first year together so readers could see all the struggles and triumphs that come along with integrating a new member into a family that has worked well as is for years!

I am I always so impatient for a sequel but I think its awesome that she likes to continue a story and characters.
thanks for the giveaway
Pa2fl8904@yahoo.com

Zoƫ said...

I loved this question:

Brenna: What are the best and worst things about being a writer?

Jen: Best? Getting to connect with readers and talking to people who enjoy my characters. When I get emails about my books, I get so excited. I love knowing what you loved, what you want more of, what drove you crazy! It's the best. The worst....hmmm....I'm not sure. Maybe just figuring out how to manage your time wisely! I feel like it's so important to connect so I'm always trying to update FB, Twitter, Pinterest, Goodreads....there are days I hate my phone! :)


-- I feel like I can only think of good things about being a publish writer, but I can understand how important time management is.

This book looks awesome and thanks for the giveaway!

strandedhero(at)gmail(dot)com

sarabara081 said...

I loved the question about what the best and worst thing about being a writer was. I have to imagine how wonderful it must feel to be able to connect with your readers. Thanks for the giveaway! :)

sarabara081(at)aol(dot)com

Angkarina said...

Ah, that was so fun to read, I love reading author's interviews! I don't really like stories (chick flicks) like this one, so I'll skip out of the contest xD

You organize so many contest! By the way, what about the April-comment-post contest? I think you kinda forgot about that one since you haven't announced the winners yet? I mean, don't bloggers usually post the (rafflecopter) outcome of a contest on their blog? Just curious.

Thanks for the post!

angkarina_angkasuwan at hotmail dot com

Natasha said...

Great interview! My favorite question was what are the best and worst things about being a writer. Thanks for the chance to win!!
natasha_donohoo_8 at hotmail dot com

Christina Kit. said...

Belles sounds awesome!

This is my favorite question and answer:

Brenna: Was Belles always part of a planned series?

Jen: Yes! My brain seems hardwired to think of stories over time and I love getting to know my favorite characters intimately over several adventures in other books. I know the minute I finish something by an author I like, I'm wondering, "When will their be a sequel?" So with Belles, we always knew the story would be mapped out over the girls first year together so readers could see all the struggles and triumphs that come along with integrating a new member into a family that has worked well as is for years!

I know exactly how she feels, because when I love a book and really connect with characters, I keep thinking about them and what they're doing, which is exactly why series are perfect for me. And when readers are really excited about a series, it shows how great the author is to make us want to spend more and more time with these characters.

Thanks so much for the giveaway!

ccfioriole at gmail dot com

TayteH said...

I like the one question: What are the best and worst things about being a writer?
The question itself allows readers to get a look inside a writer's life. Finding time is a big deal, and being connected is too. This way, if someone is an inspiring author, then they can see what their life might be like. :D

Thank you!

thunter_5@yahoo.com

marybelle said...

It's very interesting reading about the best & worst things about being a writer. It's a glimpse into the world we would not otherwise see.

marypres(AT)gmail(DOT)com

Andrea said...

I liked the question about what authors Jen likes to read. I seem to always find new authors and books to read from those suggestions!

andrea2russia@hotmail.com

Paige said...

I read Being Friends With Boys and it was actually pretty good =) Awesome interview and i can't wait to read the book =)
paigebradish@yahoo.com

~Paige @ Comfort Books
http://paigebradish1996.blogspot.com/

Filia Oktarina said...

Awesome interview and i can't wait to read the book. It so fun to read, and make me to knowing author more :)

filiafantasy at gmail dot com

Manda said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Manda said...

Most interesting was whether she'd write something other than contemporary. I always love it when authors try a different route with their works. :) I met Jen Calonita a couple weeks ago, she was so sweet and interesting! Great interview.

liforda(at)yahoo(dot)com

Netherland said...

Lets first discuss the cover. I liked the cover, It's secretive, what with only showing the girls eyes but it's also classy with the font. Good job with the cover.

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