November 23rd, 2009

Introducing: 2011 Debut Author Jocelyn Davies


A Beautiful Dark
HarperTeen
Summer 2011


Synopsis:

Skye never questioned the story of her life. Her Aunt Jo adopted her after the death of her parents when she was just a child, and together they flip through memories the way some people flip through photo albums.

She never questioned if the stories were true.

Until the night of her 17th birthday, when the arrival of two strangers intrudes on her cozy life. Polar opposites, like fire and ice, Asher is dark and wild, while Devin is fair, cold, and aloof. Skye has no idea what they want—only that their presence coincides with the beginning of some shockingly strange events. Events that Skye, if she dares to think it, might be responsible for causing.

High up in the mountains of Boulder, Colorado, Skye finds herself caught in the middle of an ancient battle, one that began untold millennia ago. Torn between unpredictable Asher, whom she loves, and the infuriating Devin, who she can’t stay away from, her fate is murky as a starless night. And as the secrets of her true identity are revealed, Skye realizes that her destiny may reside in the Heavens—or somewhere darker.

Web Info:

TK! Promise!

What made you decide to be a writer?

I always wanted to be a “writer” when I grew up, but kind of grouped it into the same category as “ballerina” or “pirate queen”. My fifth grade teacher wrote in the margins of a story I wrote, “Keep writing, and publish, publish, publish!” And I always thought that one day, faaaaar in the future, I would send him a copy of my first book. But I never had much resolve to stick things out. All throughout high school, I’d start projects—poems, plays, stories—and before long, I’d get distracted by another Great Idea. It wasn’t until after college that the idea of writing YA occurred to me—and everything clicked.

Favorite books/authors?

I grew up on a steady diet of Madeline L'Engle, Kathryn Lasky, Scott O'Dell, Avi, Phyllis Reynolds Naylor, Judy Blume and Ann M. Martin. Some of my favorite adult books are The Great Gatsby, The Sun Also Rises, The History of Love, Persuasion, Rebecca by Daphne DuMaurier, Everything is Illuminated, Special Topics in Calamity Physics, White Teeth and Bridget Jones’ Diary. Favorite current YA books include Be More Chill by Ned Vizzini (see my Number 5 Random Thing), An Abundance of Katherines by John Green, If I Stay by Gayle Forman, Boy Heaven by Laura Kasischke, The Hunger Games series by Suzanne Collins, and most recently I read Shiver by Maggie Stiefvater and thought it was haunting. I can’t get through a Louise Rennison book without being convinced that Georgia Nicolson and I would be besty pals—if only I was a fictional fifteen year old and lived in England.

Morning person or a night owl?

If I could be nocturnal and get away with it, I totally would. That’s when I get the best writing done! Something about knowing everyone else is asleep, and you’re still awake, creating worlds…

PC or mac?

I'm a Mac lifer.

What did you have for dinner today?

Takeout. Sigh.


Quick! Share 11 random things about yourself.

1. My family used to have this dog who looked like Benji, from the Benji movies. One day an agent stopped us on the street and asked if we’d like to put him in movies. My Dad took his card, and it was all we talked about for days. Of course we never got our act together to do anything about it, but that doesn't stop us from telling the story.

2. I’m really sentimental and have trouble dealing with change. When I was little and my parents decided to buy a new couch, I hoarded all the pillows from the old one so that I could continue to make forts with them. Eventually they made me get rid of them—but not without a fight. I did the same thing when they tried to get rid of the coffee table in the living room. I form random attachments to things.

3. In elementary school, our pet gerbils (unwittingly, I can only hope) re-enacted the plot of Hamlet. It was, needless to say, traumatizing.

4. When I get a great idea or flash of brainstorm or a bit of dialog for a project I’m working on, but don’t have anything to write with, I’ll text it to myself.

5. Be More Chill by Ned Vizzini was the first contemporary YA book I read as an adult, that made me want to write specifically for teens. A teacher friend lent it to me, and I laughed so hard reading it on the subway that people turned to look at me. It’s so spot on, it’s scary. I always get the urge to re-read it.

6. I won second place in a Fourth of July sandcastle building contest when I was in third grade, but because the first place winner left before the reporter got there, I got to be in the local paper instead!

7. My raging enthusiasm for Jell-o pudding cups has recently waned.

8. I’m just now realizing that I’m a perfectionist.

9. I pronounce things weirdly in my head: until I was alerted otherwise, speedometer was speed-oh-meter, posthumous was post-hummus, and Quiddich was Kid-itch.

10. I used to do a lot of theater in high school and college. I’ve died on stage twice, and both times it freaked my mom out so much she was mad at me afterward. Not my character—me.

11. I have fallen both down—and up—stairs.

I’m so excited to be a part of this talented group, and can’t wait to hear more about everyone’s books!