You may or may not have seen me raving about Something Real by Heather Demetrios on Twitter. I got the arc from Macmillan and instantly fell in love with
Patrick it. So, of course when Heather emailed me asking if I wanted to be part of the blog tour to help promote her book, I jumped at the chance.
But before we get to Heather and the interview, let’s check out the book, shall we?
There’s nothing real about reality TV.
Seventeen-year-old Bonnie™ Baker has grown up on TV—she and her twelve siblings are the stars of one-time hit reality show Baker’s Dozen. Since the show’s cancellation and the scandal surrounding it, Bonnie™ has tried to live a normal life, under the radar and out of the spotlight. But it’s about to fall apart…because Baker’s Dozen is going back on the air. Bonnie™’s mom and the show’s producers won’t let her quit and soon the life she has so carefully built for herself, with real friends (and maybe even a real boyfriend), is in danger of being destroyed by the show. Bonnie™ needs to do something drastic if her life is ever going to be her own—even if it means being more exposed than ever before.
Sounds good, right?
1. Where did you get the idea for Something Real?
A People magazine cover I saw in CVS! Hey, inspiration can strike anywhere. Kate Gosselin and her eight kids were on the cover and I was thinking about what it would be like for the kids once they were in high school. I mean, high school is hard enough and now imagine that everyone can see your most embarrassing childhood moments, and the most painful ones? All they have to do is download the “episodes” of your life. Right away I knew I had to write the book.
2. What do you love most about Bonnie and Benton and why should we root for them?
I love what a good guy Benton™ is. He’s loyal and protective, but he also tells Bonnie™ what’s up. He’s basically every girl’s dream big brother. I love how they have each other’s backs and genuinely want the best for one another. And they just crack me up–honestly, they both just came to me. I’m, as Anne Lamott would say, “the designated typist.” I swear I”m gong to run into them in a Starbucks one day.
3. The “bad guy” in the book seems to be MetaReel. Was that easier or harder to have an unseen entity causing the problems?
Well, Chuck (the head producer) is the face of MetaReel so I felt like I got to have my cake and eat it too. Yes, this big corporation is the big baddie, but the producer of the show is the one calling the shots. It was really important to me to show how the episodes get manipulated in order to garner the biggest viewer response. I also wanted to show how the kids’ well-being is pretty much the least of MetaReel’s concerns. I mean, can you imagine getting in a huge fight with your parents and then someone asking you to do it again so they can get the lighting better? Yikes.
4. What was the weirdest thing you googled while doing research?
For this book, it was probably the Heisenberg Principle, which I use very loosely in SOMETHING REAL to describe the phenomenon of how something alters its behavior when it’s being observed. But my next book from Macmillan, which comes out in winter 2015, takes the cake: I had to google how to put on a prosthetic leg and also…if people with prosthetic legs keep them on or off during sex. I know! I felt like a perv but I needed to know. You’ll see when you read the book–trust me.
5. Describe Something Real in 5 words.
Growing up on tv sucks. (Is that cheating?)
Speed [ish] round:
1. You get the call/email/letter that says you’re being published for the first time. What happens next?
I have to go to work! My husband and I are jumping around in the kitchen and I have to get on the subway to go teach ESL (English as a Second Language) and I read the email about ten different times on the way just to make sure I’m not mistaken. That was a surreal day.
2. What three things would you take to a desert island?
I LOVE this question. For sure I’d have Shakespeare’s complete works (not because I’m trying to sound cool, but because it would take forever to get through and then I could force the people on the island with me to perform the plays–I would direct, natch). 2. A sarong. I’ve done a ton of traveling and sarongs are all-purpose wonders. You can make it a dress, a purse, a blanket, a turban, a scarf, whatever! I’d be totally prepared to host a dinner party, is all I’m saying. 3. A water purifying system. This is my really practical I-don’t-want-to-die one.
3. You can only read one book for the rest of your life. What is it?
Whoa. Harsh. Oh man. I might have to say Shakespeare’s complete works again, for the same reason (also, I have a theatre degree, so I think Will’s the man), BUT if I could have all of the Harry Potter books in one big fat book and have that be allowed, it would be a super hard choice.
4. Who are your favorite swoony boys?
PATRICK SHELDON, let’s fight for him right here, right now [This is unnecessary because Heather has already given him to me, I have proof!] But seriously, I’m going to need REAMS of paper for this. Okay, obviously Levi from Fangirl. I mean, duh. Jace from Mortal Instruments because I am a sucker for beautiful bad boys who order their girlfriends around (it’s sick, I know). Sean from The Scorpio Races (major, major swoons). Jonah Griggs from Jellicoe Road. I don’t remember his name, but I remember reading Summer of My German Solider in junior high and being all about the guy in it. Okay, last one, but only because you said this was the “speed” round: St. Clair from Anna and the French Kiss. Swoooooon.
5. Are there any authors that you fangirl over?
TONS! John Green, e. lockhart, David Levithan, Laini Taylor, Maggie Stiefvater, Rainbow Rowell, Lucy Chistopher, J.K. Rowling…the list could go on and on. I love YA authors and the whole YA community. I feel so lucky to be a part of it.
Huge thanks to Heather for taking the time and giving me Patrick. Make sure you’re following her on Twitter, liking her Facebook page, subscribing to her blog and adding her books to your GoodReads shelf.
Now. Haven’t had a chance to pick up Something Real just yet? Well, Macmillan has so graciously offered to give a copy away. The book will be coming straight from Macmillan, is US only and additional rules are listed here. Don’t forget to click here and check out all of the other blog stops for additional goodies.