Today, as part of her Kismet Blog Tour for Confessions of an Angry Girl I have the pleasure of having author Louise Rozett here on the blog to talk about how her book originally started out. Because you see, Confessions of an Angry Girl didn't start out as a young adult novel, but rather as an adult one. But I'll let Louise Rozett tell you all about that.
The Angry Girl's Origin Story
by Louise Rozett
Confessions of an Angry Girl was originally called Canceled. It was a novel for adults. And a psychological mystery. With an element of magic realism.
Yeah, I know! Here’s how it happened.
One day, almost 12 years ago, I was on the subway, looking out the window at the station stops as they went by. Suddenly, a few lines just popped into my head, so I wrote them down in my datebook. (Yes, people still wrote in datebooks back then.) (Okay, yes, I still write in datebooks, on actual paper with an actual pen—just call me Old-School Rozett).
Anyway, here’s what I wrote, more or less:
“The subway doors close, the motion starts, and I think about all the lies I told in the weeks leading up to my disappearance. They just waft through my head, a different one for each stop... The subway is often about lies all by itself. It doesn’t need me to sit there, thinking about what a big, fat liar I am. There are lies all around me. Lies about people’s comfort levels with each other. Lies about what people are reading. Lies about what people are drinking. Lies about where people are going...”
When I got home, I typed up those lines and started writing a story about a woman in her 30s who has what may or may not be a psychotic break after she gets two devastating communiqués just a few minutes apart: a voicemail message that someone she once loved has died, and a wedding invitation from someone else she once loved. What I wrote that day was the first chapter of a novel for adults that I eventually titled Canceled.
I worked on this novel on and off for a long time, and the chapters alternated between the woman in the present, and the woman in high school. At some point, I realized that I was really drawn to the high school character—I worked on her chapters even when I was supposed to be working on the chapters in the present. So I decided to pull out the high school chapters and string them together to see what I had. And that’s when 14-year-old Rose Zarelli really came to life.
I loved writing about high-school Rose—she had a lot to say, and she was really, really mad, all the time. I didn’t even know why at first—it took me a while to figure her out because she wasn’t exactly in the mood to talk. But eventually, we developed a good working relationship and she started telling me how she felt, and why. And I loved the idea of writing about a girl who refused to hide her anger from the world and buy into the notion that girls are supposed to be happy and accommodating and polite all the time. It’s a notion that I feel is still somehow communicated to girls today, despite the fact that in many places in the world (but certainly not all), girls have more freedoms and rights and modes of self-expression than ever before.
So what will happen to those discarded chapters that tell us about Rose as an adult? Will 30-year-old Rose get mad about the fact that I haven’t finished telling her story and start talking to me again?
I wouldn’t put it past her.
It's always interesting to know how stories start out, but keep reading to find out more about what Confessions of an Angry Girl became and for a chance to enter in a pretty awesome giveaway.
Freshman Rose Zarelli has rage issues.First of all, her father lost his job, took work as a contractor in Iraq…and never came home.Second, she likes the wrong guy and his super-intense, scary cheerleader girlfriend is now her nemesis.Third, her fashionista best friend, Tracy, is suddenly infinitely cooler than she is—and talking about losing her virginity. (What?!)Rose is ahead when it comes to studying for the PSAT, but she’s so far behind socially that she might as well be moving backward. She needs Tracy’s help choosing the right clothes, she likes all the wrong extracurricular activities, and she can’t even make a decision about which photo of her father to put on the memorial website she’s making (and hiding from her adolescent-shrink mother).With her brother away at college and her mother always locked in her office with her messed-up teen patients, Rose struggles to get through each day without inflicting bodily harm on anyone.
Today you have the chance of being entered into two giveaway simply by filling out the Rafflecopter form below. First off, one lucky winner will receive a copy of Confessions of an Angry Girl. Secondly, by simply entering the first giveaway you are entered to win the grand prize pack shown above. Giveaway is open to US/Canada only.
Good luck to everyone who enters!
a Rafflecopter giveaway
Be sure to follow the tour!
Monday, August 27th - Pure Imagination
Tuesday, August 28th Book Birthday - Book and a Latte
Wednesday, August 29th - Emilie's Book World
Friday, August 31th - The Book Cellar
Monday, September 3rd - Supernatural Snark
Wednesday, September 5th - Harlequin Tour Stop
Friday, September 7th - Fictional Distraction