Thank you for taking the time to chat with my about the release of Hunt ! Congratulations! Please start by telling us a little bit about yourself- the person behind the writing?
A) I know you don’t want the shiny, polished version, right? I’m a writer by choice and passion who finally took a chance and committed to it. I adore summer above all other seasons if only we could get rid of bugs. I’m a blonde and always will be no matter what Mother Nature thinks. I work far too much and love every second of it even when I’m suffering from severe writer brain. And I’m addicted to the voices in my head. I joke about wishing they would leave me alone, but I really love having them around. Sometimes they are all that exists of my social life.
Why don’t you tell us about the book?
A) Hunt is the fourth and final book of The Hunted series, all YA thrillers. The novels are based on Reid, a sixteen-year-old foster kid, who has been rescued from the system by his screwed up sister only to find himself kidnapped and dumped in a wild stretch of New England forest. With no idea why he is there or what is happening, he is forced to run from the hunters who pursue him and other kids with the sole purpose of killing them. Hunt delivers the resolution to Reid’s story.
To buy the book, click here >> http://www.amazon.com/Hunt-The-Hunted-ebook/dp/B005QOKNAC/ref=as_li_tf_ssw?&linkCode=wss&tag=patlarboo-20
A) I love this question. I often receive my inspiration as flashes of images, almost like movies playing in my head. In this case, Reid appeared as he ran down a nighttime forest trail. There was just enough moonlight to see the terror in his face when he stopped for a minute. He turned and looked up. I could see his breath just puffing white in the cool of the air. Somewhere in the distance, something howled. Reid instantly panicked and ran on. I can still hear the sound of his sneakers on the hard dirt path and it will always give me goosebumps.
What was your favorite part about writing it?
A) Everything. EVERYTHING. What’s not to love? Okay, seriously. No, I am serious. I love my job. For this particular book, it was the last chapter. There is one character from the beginning of the first book that Reid needs to deal with and he finally gets the chance. Immensely satisfying.
What was the hardest part?
A) There really was no hard part–it literally poured out of me. If I had to choose something, maybe how intense it was… I found I had to take a day off here and there just to catch my breath. The books are very fast and scary, full of non-stop action and I love that. But it’s tiring.
Can you tell us what the road to being published has been like for you?
A) Long and rocky and full of heartache… seriously. I started writing when I was twelve, so sure I could do it, only to learn it wasn’t that easy. Two attempts at getting published later drove me to give up writing for almost eight years. I fell into other things; screenwriting, acting, singing, hairdressing. But nothing had the draw that writing books did.
I’m so lucky I listened to my niece when she handed me a copy of Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone and told me I HAD to read it. It touched off something inside me I’d almost forgotten about. From that moment on, I was a YA writer, and whether because of my life experience or the fact that I’d found my niche, the writing came easy. Mind you, it always had, but this felt right.
My first novel got hits immediately, requests from agents who had once ignored me or offered scathing rejections during prior attempts. But no matter what they said, ultimately it was like a flip had been switched on, one that had been waiting for me to figure it out.
I’m with two publishers right now with other series and am talking to a third about another. But The Hunted books I decided to put out on my own. Partly because of speed–traditional publishing is not known for its rapid release schedules and I’m eager to create a back list–and partly because I love the independence of being an Indie. Having total control over my work fires me up. I still use a professional editor and cover designer and even hired a print specialist to create the interior of the soft backs. This is a business and I’m treating it like one. No messing around. Professional all the way.
What advice do you have for others joining you on this rocky road?
A) This is HUGE. And in three parts. One, don’t ever, ever stop writing. Don’t do it. Not from fear or the criticism of others. The craft of writing can be taught and your writing can and will get better. The spark that makes us writers, however, can’t be learned. If you have it, it’s special.
That leads to two–keep learning and growing. Trust your instincts, but always be open to expanding your knowledge. I’ve learned so much in the past two and a half years, and continue to. My writing is getting better, stronger, tighter with every edit I go through. Yours will too.
And three–have FUN for goodness sakes! Yes this is a business and you need to treat it like one, but there’s no reason you can’t enjoy yourself while you’re doing it. Celebrate what you’ve created. It is unique and important.
If you can’t get enough of Patti Larsen you can follow her in the following locations:
My writing blog: http://pattilarsen.blogspot.com
My book blog: http://pattilarsenbooks.blogspot.com
My website: http://pattilarsen.com