Author Interview – Lisa Burstein

As part of the PRETTY AMY Blog Tour, we’d like to welcome Lisa Burstein, author of the book Pretty Amy, to the blog today. Lisa has been kind enough to stop by to answer some questions that we felines have for her. Purrs and tail waves to you Lisa and we are pleased to have you. Murr!

I love cats! I have two 🙂 – so very glad to be here.

According to your bio, you work in a tea shop. What’s it like and what would you say is your favorite type of tea?

Well, it gives me time to think, which is great for writing and I can have all the free tea I want which helps with caffeine when I need to write :). My absolute favorite tea is Earl Grey.

Our human, Cameron, is a big fan of Earl Grey, though she’s always on the lookout for new flavors. She loves to have a cup whenever she sits down to read. If there was a way to easily get a hold of catnip tea, we’d take up drinking it ourselves! And speaking of reading, who were your favorite authors growing up? Favorite book?

My favorite books growing up were Ramona Quimby books- she had short hair like I did and I always felt like she didn’t care about that. I did, very much so, and so I looked to her strength to handle my own insecurities. I also loved the Baby Sitters Club and anything by V.C. Andrews.

We’ll admit, we’ve not read any of these, but we do own a few V.C. Andrews books. Looks like we have some catching up to do.=^-^= So, what attracted you to writing?

I guess I like being able to share all the weird and wonderful things in my brain and I am a terrible artist and musician, so writing was all I had left. As time went on, I found that people actually liked reading the weird and wonderful things that came from my brain, so from then on, I was hooked.

It might be weird sometimes, but what you write certainly is wonderful. Murr! And out of all the ideas that you had, what inspired you to write Pretty Amy?

I was arrested during my senior year of high school, not for the same reason Amy was, but that was where the kernel came from. I also knew I wanted to write a “shocking” book from a teenage girl’s point of view. I feel like you can get away with your character being a murderer, or a jerk, or just a smart ass more easily if your book isn’t contemporary and I wanted to try to break that mold with PRETTY AMY. I also wanted to write a contemporary YA book that was about what real teens go through. I feel like teenage girl’s lives are complex and I hoped to show that in PRETTY AMY.

What an experience to have! Our human’s senior year was not nearly as adventurous. Actually her’s was rather tame in comparison. May we also add that you did a wonderful job portraying some of what real teens go through in life as they grow up. Since the story idea came from an event in your life, we’re now curious…when you develop your characters, do you model them off of people in your life or do they sort of create themselves?

People in my life. I think that is what makes them seem so real. I always have at least one person in mind as the skeleton for a character, then I will add on to that to make them less like the real person and more like someone made up. Usually it is by making them completely over-the-top. Books are funnier with characters without filters.

Interesting. Maybe someday you will create a character based on one of us! ~looks at Lisa with three sets of big kitty eyes~ Hey, a feline can dream, right? It could happen. Murr!

What do you hope readers will take away from reading Pretty Amy?

I guess that its okay to feel unsure of who you are. That other people feel that way too, whether they will admit it or not.

Powerful lessons to learn! Here’s hoping everyone who reads the book will find something they can relate too and take with them when they are done.

What can we expect next from you writing wise?

A companion novel to PRETTY AMY, titled DEAR CASSIE about the aftermath of the girls’ arrest and its effect told through diary entries of Amy’s best friend Cassie. I’m about 1/5 of the way through and what I can say is, if you liked the humor and edge in PRETTY AMY, you will love Cassie’s story.

Now that should be an interesting read. Cassie is one of those characters who definitely deserves a chance to tell her side of things. It would also be nice to find out what happens to her after the events in the book. And since we’ve been talking about it the entire time, for those who have not yet read Pretty Amy, could you tell our readers a bit about it?

PRETTY AMY at it’s core is about someone searching for her own identity, someone who is
scared and alone and unsure, but with a desire to be heard, to be understood. This was all I wanted when I was in high school and I wanted to write a book that let teens know that other people have had that feeling. What I love about Amy is how real she feels, how she is able to encapsulate the exact feelings I struggled with when I was a teen, the feelings I know so many teenagers still struggle with today: the wish to be like someone else, to find that best friend who makes you complete, to fall in love for the very first time.

Is there anything else you’d like to share with us before we bring this interview to a close?

No, just that I hope readers have as much fun reading PRETTY AMY as I had writing it.

Thanks Lisa for visiting with us today here on What the Cat Read! We enjoyed spending time with you and look forward to having you visit us again sometime soon. Murr!

To see other blogs participating in this tour, please visit HERE! Also, please come back tomorrow for Sara’s review of the book. =^.^=

Where to find Lisa Burstein: Twitter, Facebook, Goodreads, Author Blog, Author Website

PRETTY AMY will be released May 2012 from Entangled Publishing


Posted on April 25, 2012, in Authors. Bookmark the permalink. Comments Off on Author Interview – Lisa Burstein.

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