February 17, 2011

Interview with Luisa Plaja

Meet fabulous author Luisa Plaja, author of The Kiss Series; Split By a Kiss, Swapped By a Kiss & A Stand Alone Novel - Extreme Kissing and she also has a new novel coming out this year: Kiss, Date, Love, Hate...

Read the review for The Kiss Series here


1. Where did you get the idea for The Kiss series; Have you always wanted to write a novel about people switching bodies, or did you see something that inspired you?

I didn't set out to 'split' the character of Jo when I first started writing Split by a Kiss - it happened while I was writing. When I reached Jo and Jake's cupboard scene, I couldn't decide whether or not Jo's new experiences had changed her, and I decided to follow both possibilities in parallel stories. Initially, I was just figuring things out, but I soon noticed that both versions of Jo had a voice and a story to tell, so I stuck with them. After that, the body swap idea for the sequel came naturally. Rachel was always jealous of Jo and uncomfortable in her own skin, and Jo mentioned the various versions of Freaky Friday in Split by a Kiss, so swapping the friends seemed like a perfect way to tell Rachel's story. As for what inspired me to write a body-swap story... Well, I'm not sure, but I can tell you that the novel Freaky Friday by Mary Rodgers was one of my favourite books when I was growing up. I re-read it recently and loved it just as much. I highly recommend it!

2. Are any of your characters based on real people?

No, they're all made up! Sometimes I might base parts of characters on my impressions of people, though not necessarily on anyone I've ever met.

3. Do you have any favourite books or authors?

Yes, lots, and I add to my list all the time! I love books that explore relationships, especially those that do so with a light and humorous touch. I have too many favourite authors to list but I do name some of them and review their books on Chicklish (a book blog - http://www.chicklish.co.uk ).

4. Do you have a favourite character or a moment in one of your books?

This is a hard one to answer. I spend such a long time with characters when I write a novel that I can't help forming a relationship with each one, and it feels wrong to pick favourites! I think I'm particularly fond of Rachel, though - I loved getting into her head and writing from her intense, troubled but well-meaning viewpoint. Lex is another character I have a massive soft spot for - you'll meet her in Kiss, Date, Love, Hate!
I do get fond of certain scenes as I'm writing, too, though I often change my mind about this over time. Right now I'd choose: the ice rink scenes in Split by a Kiss, Bets and Zac at the arcade in Extreme Kissing, the finale of Swapped by a Kiss... and the film-making scenes in Kiss, Date, Love, Hate.

5. When did you know that you wanted to be a writer?

I don't remember a time when I didn't want to be a writer! I think it must have happened around the time that I first learnt to read and I fell in love with books. As I got older, though, I became convinced that writing novels for publication was an impossible dream. I'm so glad I was wrong!

6. Have you ever written any other works under a pseudonym if not, what would you want your pseudonym to be?

Yes, I have written a series of novels for teenagers under a pseudonym. I'll now insert a secretive smiley of mystery: :-x

7. Do you have a designated writing time or routine, or is it just spontaneous?

I write whenever I can, and when I'm in the full flow of a novel, I'll even try to write when I can't! My best writing time is usually late evening and into the night. I'm a real night person. If only that didn't make mornings such a struggle...

8. Was there a book or an event that inspired you to be a writer?

Hmm, I've probably been inspired to some extent by everything I've ever read! There are a few lovely friends who inspire me to keep writing, and to write the kinds of books I do, and their help and support is invaluable to me. You'll see the names of some of them on the acknowledgment pages of my books!

9. Which character in your books are you most like?

I'm probably most like Jo from Split by a Kiss, in that I have nerdish tendencies, a love of Buffy the Vampire Slayer and hair with a mind of its own.

10. If you were to write another novel, what do you think it would be about? 

It would almost certainly have something to do with friendships and relationships in teenage years - there are so many fascinating issues I still want to explore!

11. If YOU could switch bodies with anybody, who would it be?

Well, I get to do this every day, really, and call it 'writing'! I'm not sure whether I'd want to switch places with anyone in real life, though. (If you'd asked me this when I was a teenager, I think my answer might have been different...)

Thank you very much for interviewing me Isme!

1 comment:

Cliona said...

Ooooh I'd love to know what the pseudonym series is! Fabulous interview.

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