To continue the celebration of original League member Elana Johnson’s launch week of her new book, SURRENDER, she’s graciously agreed to give us an exclusive interview. ONLY here will you find out what it is that she hates to do. And also discover the most disgusting thing she saw on reality TV.

What did you love the most about writing SURRENDER?

Writing SURRENDER was liking writing a new book. Since it’s a companion and not really a sequel, I got to explore a new city and new characters. And I loved doing that! Plus, the world-building was already done, so it felt like a lot less work with just as many rewards!

Who came up with the title of SURRENDER?

My publisher and I brainstormed a list of titles, and this is the one we both liked. I had originally named the drafts FUGITIVE. Totally different, yeah?

How did you feel when you saw the cover to SURRENDER?

I love the iconic images on my covers. I think I probably should’ve prepared myself a little better for the cover of SURRENDER though. Because POSSESSION is so perfect, I should’ve known nothing could compare to it. So I’ll admit to a bit of wailing, and then I got happy about it. It is still wonderful and beautiful and appropriate, so I can’t complain.

If a fairy granted you a bonus year and said you can write anything, just not another YA dystopian novel, what genre would it be?

I am a huge lover of what I call “light” fantasy (think GIRL OF FIRE AND THORNS, but not THE WHEEL OF TIME), and I’ve been working on something in that genre. I also love YA contemporary (like Jessi Kirby’s MOONGLASS and Jessica Martinez’s VIRTUOSITY), and I want to write those kinds of novels.

What’s your favorite reality TV show? What’s the worst one you’ve ever watched an episode of?

I love reality TV! Survivor is my favorite, but I also love The Amazing Race, So You Think You Can Dance, Chopped, and Cupcake Wars. I think the worst episode I’ve watched was in Survivor when they had to drink cow’s blood. I am just so not into that kind of stuff.

You were so generous with your time and advice to me just before my book came out. Do you have any tricks for time management? You have a family and a busy life, but you manage to do so much.

Tricks for time management? Um, don’t sleep? Get a job where you can open gmail in the morning and see every email that comes in when it comes in? Ha!

I try hard to squeeze things in whenever I can. If I have 15 minutes, I’m doing something with it. Sometimes that’s email, or writing, or editing, or playing Words With Friends.

What is something about you or your writing that you’ve never revealed before in an interview?

This is much harder than people might think! I’ve done a lot of interviews, and I tweet my brains out most days. I think most people know I’m a pantser. They know I can vomit up novels in just a few days. They know I love bacon…

So how about: I hate shopping. Everything about it. Shocking for a woman, I know. Not even shoes excite me.

Is there anything else you’d like the readers to know?

Just a big thank you to all who’ve read POSSESSION and are looking forward to SURRENDER! Your emails and tweets always make me smile—and they motivate me to keep writing. So thank you!


BIO: Elana's work including POSSESSION, REGRET, and SURRENDER is available from Simon & Schuster wherever books are sold. She is the author of From the Query to the Call, an ebook that every writer needs to read before they query, which can be downloaded for free on her website. She runs a personal blog on publishing and is a founding author of the QueryTracker blog. She blogs regularly at The League of Extraordinary Writers, co-organizes WriteOnCon, and is a member of SCBWI, ANWA and LDStorymakers.

She wishes she could experience her first kiss again, tell the mean girl where to shove it, and have cool superpowers like reading minds and controlling fire. To fulfill her desires, she writes young adult science fiction and fantasy.

About SURRENDER: Raine has always been a good girl. She lives by the rules in Freedom. After all, they are her father’s rules: He’s the Director. It’s because of him that Raine is willing to use her talent—a power so dangerous, no one else is allowed to know about it. Not even her roommate, Vi.

All of that changes when Raine falls for Gunner. Raine’s got every reason in the world to stay away from Gunn, but she just can’t. Especially when she discovers his connection to Vi’s boyfriend, Zenn.

Raine has never known anyone as heavily brainwashed as Vi. Raine’s father expects her to spy on Vi and report back to him. But Raine is beginning to wonder what Vi knows that her father is so anxious to keep hidden, and what might happen if she helps Vi remember it. She’s even starting to suspect Vi’s secrets might involve Freedom’s newest prisoner, the rebel Jag Barque….



Natalie Aguirre said...

Thanks for the great interview Lissa and Elana. I'm so with Elana on her time management advice.

So excited for Surrender. It's such an awesome book!

Katie L. Carroll said...

Hah, I kind of hate shopping too. Great interview!

Anonymous said...

Elana, it must be a Math thing (I read somewhere that you love Math). I am a Math geek, too, and I loathe shopping. I should be embarrassed by my tiny shoe collection, but I'm not. ;)

Enjoyed the interview and much success to your new book.

Jemi Fraser said...

I hate shopping too!Especially for clothes! Blech!

Sara M said...

I can't wait to read Surrender! I loved Possession. I haven't read many companion novels, mostly just sequels, so I'm very interested. :)

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