Alice, what was your inspiration for writing SOLITAIRE?
How exceptionally boring school was and how I desperately wanted something interesting to happen.
What scene was really hard for you to write and why, and is that the one of which you are most proud? Or is there another scene you particularly love?
I don't remember there being a really hard scene to write, but I'm particularly proud of the scene where Tori comes back from Becky's party and finds Charlie in the kitchen.
What book or books would most resonate with readers who love your book--or visa versa?
The Catcher in the Rye by J.D. Salinger - that book was a huge inspiration for me and I'm told that my book comes across in the same light.
How long did you work on SOLITAIRE?
Spent at least six months planning it, then another four/five months writing it, around six months editing with my agent, then a year after that it was published in the UK!
What did this book teach you about writing or about yourself?
It taught me that I was not a very academic person, like I had been led to believe, and am in fact a creative person.
What do you hope readers will take away from SOLITAIRE?
How long or hard was your road to publication? How many books did you write before this one, and how many never got published?
Not as long as most people's, I think! I wrote one book before Solitaire but didn't attempt to send it to agents, I didn't know how and I didn't particularly want to! I just wrote it for fun. I was very lucky to be taken on by an agent only a month or so after I queried agents.
Was there an AHA! moment along your road to publication where something suddenly sank in and you felt you had the key to writing a novel? What was it?
Not really, it was more of a gradual process! I always felt fairly confident about the book, probably because I just loved it so so much.
What's your writing ritual like? Do you listen to music? Work at home or at a coffee shop or the library, etc?
I have absolutely no ritual whatsoever. I write if and when I feel like it. I usually need to be on my own and in silence though!
What advice would you most like to pass along to other writers?
Write the book you want to read. Do your research about how to get published - that's where most people fall short, they just don't bother to Google "how to get published".
What are you working on now?
My second novel! It's a new story, not a sequel, and is another YA contemporary.
ABOUT THE BOOKSolitaire by Alice Oseman
In Solitaire, Alice Oseman has brought to life a vivid, clever, and heartfelt portrayal of what it's like to be a teenager today. This stunning debut novel—which the Times (London) called "The Catcher in the Rye for the digital age"—is perfect for fans of Melina Marchetta, Stephen Chbosky, and Rainbow Rowell.
My name is Tori Spring. I like to sleep and I like to blog. Last year—before all that stuff with Charlie and before I had to face the harsh realities of exams and university applications and the fact that one day I really will have to start talking to people—I had friends. Things were very different, I guess, but that's all over now.
Now there's Solitaire. And Michael Holden. I don't know what Solitaire is trying to do, and I don't care about Michael Holden. I really don't.
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ABOUT THE AUTHORAlice Oseman was born in 1994 in Kent, England. She is studying English at Durham University, probably due to the expectation of society, but mostly spends her time obsessing over fictional characters, drawing really dumb comics, and complaining about things on her Tumblr, chronicintrovert.tumblr.com. Hopefully, she’ll avoid having to get a real job for the rest of her life. Alice wrote a book when she was seventeen. That book, SOLITAIRE, was published by HarperCollins in July 2014.
Jocelyn, Martina, Jan, Shelly, Susan, Lisa, and Erin