The Next Big Thing!

1. What is the working title of your next book? MORE THAN GOOD ENOUGH is the official title!

2. Where did the idea come from for the book?

Growing up in South Florida, I was fascinated by the Miccosukee tribe. I remember hearing about Tiger Tiger, a Native American rock band formed by brothers Lee and Stephen Tiger (the children of Miccosukee chief, Buffalo Tiger). I wanted to tell a story about a teenage boy who lives on the reservation in the Everglades, his search for identity, and the tension between the old ways and the modern world.

3. What genre does your book fall under?

I write contemporary young adult novels for older teens.

4. What actors would you choose to play the part of your characters in a movie rendition?

I could easily imagine Tyler Posey as my main character, Trent. (also: they're both from multicultural families). I'm a big fan of Chloe Grace Moretz and I'd love to see her play Pippa...if she's willing to dye her hair "ultra violet."

5. What is the one sentence synopsis of your book?

"...about a teen boy whose dad is Miccosukee and whose mom is English--making him 'one hundred percent nothing' --who is determined to figure out where he belongs and who he belongs with..." (from Publishers Marketplace)

6. Will your book be self-published or represented by an agency?

The book is scheduled for publication in winter 2014 (Flux).

I am repped by the fabulous Tina Wexler of ICM.

7. How long did it take you to write the first draft of the manuscript?

It always takes about nine months for my first drafts (in a way, books are my babies).

8. What other books would you compare this story to within your genre?

I haven't read any novels about Miccosukee teens. I'd really like to see more stories about Native Americans in general--also more YA novels with male protagonists.

9. Who or what inspired you to write this book?

South Florida, my home. As I researched this book, I spent a lot of time in the Everglades. My Miccosukee friend was kind enough to share his world with me. One afternoon, we took an airboat ride to the "tree islands." When the sky is reflected in the water, it looks like glass. And the alligators always keep watch with their periscope eyes.

tree islands

10. What else about your book might pique the reader's interest?

I'm intrigued by "friendship caught on fire" stories (Trent and Pippa knew each other as children and meet up later in life).

"Love is like a friendship caught on fire. In the beginning a flame, very pretty, often hot and fierce, but still only light and flickering. As love grows older, our hearts mature and our love becomes as coals, deep-burning and unquenchable."

--Bruce Lee

I was tagged for this blog meme by Gail Gauthier (Saving the Planet and Stuff, G.P. Putnam's Sons).

In return, I'm tagging two South Florida authors:

My fellow Fluxian, Steven dos Santos (The Culling, Flux).

and Patrick Matthews (Dragon Run, Scholastic).