16 Feb 2012

RTW - Day 5 with Hilary Graham Post and Giveaway

Releases: June 12th, 2012

1 Concert
2000 Miles
3 Ex-Best Friends
Alice, Summer, and Tiernan are ex-best friends.
Back in middle school, the three girls were inseparable. They were also the number one fans of the rock band Level3.
But when the band broke up, so did their friendship. Summer ran with the popular crowd, Tiernan was a rebellious wild-child, and Alice spent high school with her nose buried in books.
Now, just as the girls are about to graduate, Level3 announces a one-time-only reunion show.
Even though the concert’s 2000 miles away, Alice buys three tickets on impulse. And as it turns out, Summer and Tiernan have their own reasons for wanting to get out of town. Good thing Alice’s graduation gift (a pea-green 1976 VW camper van known as the Pea Pod) is just the vehicle to get them there.
But on the long drive cross-country, the girls hit more than a few bumps in the road. Will their friendship get an encore or is the show really over?
Author Bio: Hilary Weisman Graham is an award-winning filmmaker, screenwriter, and novelist. She lives in rural New Hampshire with her husband and son, roughly thirty minutes away from the nearest grocery store.


Based on Life: How to Write from Personal Experience While Staying Grounded in Your Fictional World
I’ve been on a lot of road trips in my life—backpacking through Portugal and Spain with my sister and a friend, shooting a documentary with friends while driving from Boston to Juarez, Mexico, and wandering around the Irish countryside with four of my best girlfriends in a very small rental car. Though thankfully, I’ve never been stuck in a van with any of my ex-best friends.

And while I was fortunate to be able to draw from my past adventures while writing REUNITED, there are also challenges to telling a story that covers such familiar ground. Sure, most writers inevitably mine their own lives for material. But fictionalizing one’s personal experience requires more than just changing the names of the innocent (or guilty, as the case may be).
While truth can sometimes be stranger than fiction, more often than not, our personal anecdotes lack the drama to make for compelling literature. Luckily, my job as a fiction writer not only frees me, but encourages me, to exaggerate.
But it’s not just about raising the stakes of your story. Even more important is the ability to detach from your feelings about the incident, thereby allowing your characters to experience it from their own perspective. In a way, it’s the same job we writers do when we’re crafting a story entirely of our own invention. The feelings we have certainly inform our characters’ inner lives, but in order to write well-developed characters, we must free them to see the world through their own emotional lens.
And what better place to let your characters find adventure, get lost, or veer wildly off-course than out on the open road. Not only is the road trip a great metaphor for our characters' personal journeys, it’s an environment rife with drama—from the conflicts that arise just from being trapped in an enclosed area with other human beings for an extended length of time, to the disagreements over where to stay, what music to listen to, or whether or not you should let a sketchy dude who thinks he’s Michael the Archangel lead you into the backwoods of West Virginia in an attempt to bring you to a naked swimming hole. (See REUNITED, Chapter 9). Then, of course, are the things you never plan for, like running over a squirrel, or getting your van stuck in the mud.
All of the incidents above happen to the girls in REUNITED, and luckily, never to me. But in the end, it’s not our anecdotes that matter, it’s the feelings we hang onto. Like the God help me moment I had (on my European backpacking trip) upon realizing I’d slept on the floor of the connecting hallway between two train cars on the overnight train from Lisbon to Madrid.
This scene wasn’t relevant to REUNITED, but the emotional reality of that moment is something each of the girls in the book experience their own version of at one time or another—that feeling being completely exhausted and disoriented, of wanting to snap your fingers and be miraculously transported back to your cozy familiar bed, of wanting to be anywhere but on this blasted trip!

In the end, every road trip is full of unexpected twists and turns—some of them good, some of them “character building.” But if we always knew where the road would take us, it wouldn’t be an adventure; which is the reason we take road trips in the first place, and also why we love reading books about them.

Question time:
If you could road trip with any 3 people (alive or dead) who would you choose and why?
If I could take a road trip with any 3 people in the world, alive or dead, it would definitely include my dad (who died when I was 16) and my husband and son.  I often wish I could get to know my father better, and I'd love for him to meet my family.
What a great post! I completely agree with, I love road trip stories for the fact they the story can go anywhere. Once you hit the open road the possibilities are endless, it’s a complete adventure. Of course, I could go on (a lot) more, of why I love road trips, but I’ll stop there… :D
And now onto the giveaway!!!
- Giveaway ends February 24, 2012.
- International

- Winners will be contacted via email. If you do not respond within 48 hours, a new winner will be chosen.

- By entering this giveaway, you are agreeing to the terms listed above.

- I do not take any responsibility for items lost in the mail

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1 comment:

  1. Great post Rebecca!
    There is a book tag that is going around that other bloggers get tagged and asked questions. I tagged you in my post. Go check it out and join in on the fun!