“There will always be a line between who you
are and who you could be. The question is,
are you willing to cross that line?”
Copyright Olivia Carter 2014
Lots of readers and reviewers have asked me about the compilation, the inspiration
for Jake. It is such a relatable book, honestly, because it was never written with
the intent to publish. Jake started as an over exaggerated diary entry one day after
school. I could never have predicted the response received and the impact that this
book would have on readers nationwide.
So – if you’re interested, here’s a little more about me and about Jake.
Feel free to ask any questions that are left unanswered, you know,
except “How does the book end?” ;)
How old were you when you wrote your first book?
Actually, I wrote my first book when I was about nine. It was a children’s story
about a cow named Daisy. I originally told it to amuse my little brother one day
in the car. However, Jake I wrote on the back of chemistry notes during the fall
of my freshman year of high school.
When did you realize that you wanted to become a writer? What was the very first thing you ever wrote?
I’ve been writing pretty much my entire life. I remember keeping a journal of stories I had acted out with Barbie dolls before grade school. The first thing I officially wrote, though, was a children’s book called Daisy the Cow, based off a story I used to amuse my baby brother in the car on a day of errands. I realized writing was my passion and purpose in eighth grade, when I wrote the first few chapters of Jake and discovered how the relatable story inspired my friends.
Are your characters based on anyone that you know?
It is difficult to write total fiction, in all honesty. Most of my characters are loosely based off of friends and acquaintances. I find there are so many good characters already in this world, attempting to describe their personalities is just as fun as creating new ones.
Who are your writing influences?
When I first started writing Jake I was reading Parrot in the Oven by Victor Martinez. He has a unique writing style that I emulated, one that goes into great detail when describing characters, making them the legs on which the story stands. I also picked up Rick Riordan’s Percy Jackson: The Lightning Thief and found myself partial to his conversational narration style. However, I was also inspired as a child by Julie Andrews’ The Last of the Really Great Whangdoodles. Her elaborate use of unique adverbs to build imaginary settings is something I find myself doing in Jake and most of my other plots.
How did you come up with the storyline?
Jake started out at as dramatized diary entries written in the third person. But as time went on, the story became more fiction than fact when I began to imagine those two sides every person has, emotional and logical, as being two separate people. The story of Jake and Molly eventually told itself as I started to grow up and realize that everyone has those two sides, and you cannot be one without the other.
What type of writing process do you use?
Honestly, I am a “get it all out on the page before I lose this thought” kind of writer. The story comes together in pieces, often out of order, usually just scenes that I imagined while brushing my teeth or something trivial like that. It’s after I have a dozen or so scenes that I read through them and try to find a common thread. Then it’s just about filling in the blanks, adding a twist and running spell check.
What scene was your favorite to write?
Anything with Cindy in it was fun to write. However, I think my favorite scene to write is about half way through the book when Jake and Molly have their first “official” conversation. The tension between the two characters at that point is very prominent. Also, I tend to be a very sarcastic person and writing the banter between the two of them is by far one of my favorite things to do.
Who designed your cover?
Actually, I designed my cover, and I had a lot of fun doing it! The picture used for Jake was taken using my favorite little hand held camera. The boy is friend of mine, whose name ironically happens to be Jake.
How did you come up with your characters’ names?
I decided to call the book Jake almost immediately, and naturally name the leading
male the same, really only because it is one of my favorite guys names. However,
my lead girl went through almost ten name changes before I settled on Molly. And
actually, the main character of my first published book is named after my little,
black, cockerpoo, Ms. Molly Sue.
What are you working on now?
Jake is the first in a series of which I have written five books. Right now,
most of my time is spent editing the second book of the Through My Eyes series. However,
I am also working on book six simultaneous to writing a new teen sci-