Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Dear Cassie by Lisa Burstein: Interview: Entangled Publishing Blog Tour


How did you start your writing career?

I got my MFA in Fiction in 2002 and worked towards publication after that. It wasn't until 2011, that it finally all clicked and Entangled agreed to publish my debut novel, Pretty Amy. Since then, I've had a novella, The Next Forever and another novel, Dear Cassie release.

Tell us about your current release.

Dear Cassie about finding love in the unlikeliest place. Cassie is sent to a wilderness rehab program and forced to journal about her experience. Her "journal" is the book. She is so hurt and angry from a relationship in her past that she can't open up to anyone, until she meets one of the male campers, Ben. Slowly, over the course of their time at camp, Ben teaches Cassie she can trust and love someone again.

What is the hardest part of writing your books?

They are very raw and real, so the characters in them feel deeply. It is sometimes hard to have all that emotion in my head and on my shoulders as I'm writing.

Do you have critique partners or beta readers?

I don't. Many people are surprised, but having been in an MFA program I think I got my fill of being critiqued by others. For me at least, I find it doesn't really help my writing process. It muddles it. I know some people can't write without betas, but I'm lucky enough to have an agent with a keen eye, who looks at my work and is honest with me about issues.

What was one of the most surprising things you learned while writing your books?

That I can write romance. I've never thought of myself as particularly romantic, but my last two books have been love stories, because that was the arc the characters needed to follow in order to grow. People are really liking them, so I guess as a writer, I am a romantic.

How do you describe your writing style?

In your face. I don't shy away from hard subjects and difficult characters. Also lyrical. I pride myself on trying to write beautifully.

Plotter or Pantser? Why?

Pantser, my characters arcs come to me from the story, very organically. I am not able to know what they will do before I can see them interact with each other in scene.

Do you use a pen name? If so, how did you come up with it?

I do. It's my maiden name.

As a child, what did you want to be when you grew up?

When I was really little a bird, LOL. Then a writer.

What group did you hang out with in high school?

The outcasts. They are who I write about now.

Do you have any suggestions for beginning writers? If so, what are they?

Write and keep writing. Writing is like playing an instrument. You will not improve without practice. It's really true. I am still learning.

Do you have a milestone birthday coming up? If so, how are you approaching it?

I had one last year, I turned 35. I told myself when I turned 30 that my goal was to be published by the time I was 35. My first book came out 3-weeks before my 36th birthday. Made it just under the wire!

How do you react to a bad review of your book?

At first they really hurt me, but I've come to understand that not everyone will love my work. I write my books for the readers who do.

What are the most important attributes for remaining sane as a writer?

Staying off Goodreads. (not that I do this myself.) But seriously, I think it is having a community. I am lucky to have a lot of author and writer and blogger friends. They keep me sane.

Is there one passage in your book that you feel gets to the heart of your book and would encourage people to read it?  If so, can you share it?

 Yes. This one. 

I shivered and looked out at the water. The sun sparkled on it like millions of paparazzi snapping flashbulbs. Taking pic­tures of me, the outside of me. The part I couldn’t hide.

The only part I know I can ever let Ben see, no matter how he makes me feel. 

What do you find most rewarding about writing?

The readers who are moved by my books.

Lisa Burstein is a tea seller by day and a writer by night. She received her MFA in Creative Writing from the Inland Northwest Center for Writers at Eastern Washington University and is glad to finally have it be worth more than the paper it was printed on. She lives in Portland, Oregon with her very patient husband, a neurotic dog and two cats.

She wrote her first story when she was in second grade. It was a Thanksgiving tale from the point of view of the turkey from freezer to oven to plate. It was scandalous.

You can also follow Lisa on twitter like her on facebook or friend her on goodreads.
Connect with the Author:  Website | Twitter | Facebook | Goodreads




 Dear Cassie by Lisa Burstein
Publication Date:  March 5, 2013

Publisher:  Entangled Teen
ISBN13: 9781620612545
Entangled Publishing/ Entangled Teen March 2013
Young Adult
What if the last place you should fall in love is the first place that you do?

You’d think getting sent to Turning Pines Wilderness Camp for a month-long rehabilitation “retreat” and being forced to re-live it in this journal would be the worst thing that’s ever happened to me.

You’d be wrong.

There’s the reason I was sent to Turning Pines in the first place: I got arrested. On prom night. With my two best friends, who I haven’t talked to since and probably never will again. And then there’s the real reason I was sent here. The thing I can’t talk about with the guy I can’t even think about.

What if the moment you’ve closed yourself off is the moment you start to break open?

But there’s this guy here. Ben. And the more I swear he won’t—he can’t—the deeper under my skin he’s getting. After the thing that happened, I promised I’d never fall for another boy’s lies.

And yet I can’t help but wonder…what if?

Praise for Dear Cassie:
“Disturbing and beautiful… Get ready to be more than entertained. Get ready to be changed.”
– Katie Kacvinksy, author of First Comes Love


No comments: