So, welcome to Fiction and Film, Dahlia!
- If you could swap places with one of your fictional characters for 24 hours, who would you choose to be? Why? And what would you do that day?
Probably Josh Chester, from my Daylight Falls duology. I'd go full-on Party Like a Rock Star, which for him is, like, a Tuesday. He pretty much gets away with everything, and has everything thrown at him. I wouldn't want his life forever, but for 24 hours? Yeah, I'd take that.
- In what way is your story unique compared to other books in this genre?
Last Will and Testament is a Contemporary New Adult Romance, and it's definitely sexy, but I think it places a more unique emphasis on other relationships, too. Connor's also far more of a beta male than you usually see in NA, and Lizzie far more of an alpha female. Sexual experience has nothing to do with anything in this book; he's not her first (by a long shot), and he hasn't ruined her for other men. They're just people who shouldn't like each other at all but really, really do. Nobody has a tragic secret, nobody punches anyone...no one even has a tattoo. Yet.
- What part of the story was the most fun to write? The most challenging?
I love writing romance and I love writing fights, so a lot of this book went verrrrry smoothly for me! The scene in which Connor and Lizzie have sex for the first time was probably my favorite to write, even if I was more than a little paranoid people were reading over my shoulder on the subway.
The most challenging for me, as it was in Behind the Scenes, was writing scenes between the siblings. I don't know how I always end up writing these big sisters, since I'm the baby of my family, but I always struggle with them.
- Which of your characters is most like you?
Ally from Behind the Scenes, hands-down. She's intellectually curious, emotional, often irrational, sarcastic, and so badly wants to be okay with things she isn't. I've seen reviews where people attribute a lot of the conflict in BtS to miscommunication, but it isn't that; it's that she genuinely wants to feel the way she says she does. That's very much me. I've been trying to make it less me since publishing it. Now I'll actually e-mail or text friends and say "I hate that I feel this way, but."
- If you could have one superpower, what would it be and how would you use it?
The ability to read/write/understand any language, and I would travel the world with no limits on communication, read my friends' books in foreign languages, read great works in the original... I love languages so much. My characters tend to also, as a result!
- If you could reenact a scene from any book (not necessarily your own), what would it be? Who would you choose for your scene partner(s)?
There's a scene in my critique partner Gina Ciocca's upcoming YA Romance, Last Year's Mistake, that involves saltwater taffy. I'd take that scene with Ian Harding, please.
- Tell us something we’d be surprised to learn about you.
I have a lot of fears - closed-in spaces, heights (if they're steep; I don't mind actually being on the billionth floor of a building, but I get so nauseated looking down), driving, getting old, that I'll be a sucky parent someday, that I'll publish a book I regret... In some ways I'm a confident person, and in some ways, I'm a train wreck. It's amazing what occupies my mind in a normal day.
- What other interests do you have outside of writing?
Back before alllll my time was taken by writing, reading, and blogging (plus my actual dayjob), I used to do a lot more traveling, which I loved. I'm really hoping to return to Europe next year for my first time since my honeymoon. I also used to do a lot more cooking, but my husband's really picked that one up hardcore since law school, so he does most of ours now.
- Do you have a nervous habit when writing? A guilty pleasure when writing? (example: chew a pen to death or have a stack of Hershey’s kisses while you write)
This is so gross, but I can chew through packs of gum while writing, and by the time I get up, there are just notepapers full of chewed-up gum everywhere. It's usually my "I'll do this instead of eating something really bad for me" thing, but I go through it so fast I usually end up eating something else anyway. I also love Gushers when I write, but those I eat like a normal person. And I'm a compulsive note-taker. My desks are always covered in post-its or turned-over business cards with ideas or names all over them. Basically, I'm a mess.