Kit, what was your inspiration for writing SEE ALL THE STARS?
I’m drawn to complex characters, and my writer-brain delights in putting them in very tough situations and empowering them to dig their ways out. The idea for See All the Stars began with a “what if?” question: What if a girl lost all her friends and her boyfriend in one fell swoop—and what if she was partly responsible for what happened? Ellory’s story unfolded from there.
What book or books would most resonate with readers who love your book—or visa versa?
If you’re looking for rich, nuanced representations of friendships among teen girls, a few novels that really get at the heart of things are Always Forever Maybe by Anica Mrose Rissi, Underneath Everything by Marcy Beller Paul, and A Line in the Dark by Malinda Lo. One adult novel that absolutely knocked my socks off for its portrayal of a volatile teen girl friendship is Girls on Fire by Robin Wasserman. For atmospheric YA thrillers, I highly recommend Suicide Notes from Beautiful Girls by Lynn Weingarten and We'll Never Be Apart by Emiko Jean.
How long did you work on SEE ALL THE STARS?
I got the idea for See All the Stars in late 2014 and spent all of 2015 drafting and revising with the help of beta readers. Once I signed with my agent, we dove into further revisions before putting the manuscript on submission. See All the Stars sold to my editor Ruta Rimas at S&S/McElderry in October 2016, and from there, Ruta and I did two rounds of developmental edits before the book went into copyedits in its mostly final form in May of last year. So, the bulk of the writing and revising process took place during the course of about two and a half years. All told, it’s been three years and eight months from concept to finished book!
What advice would you most like to pass along to other writers?
Read widely in your age category and genre. Get to know the playing field. Seek out trusted readers for your work and listen to their feedback. Know that you don’t have to take every piece of feedback. Revise. Revise more. Remember that publishing is not a meritocracy. There’s a lot of luck and timing involved in getting a book published, and while both of those factors are beyond your control, understanding that they play a key role can help put your experience and others’ in perspective.
What are you working on now?
My next book is another stand-alone YA thriller, called All Eyes on Us. It’s about two girls under unbearable pressure from their families and communities—and what happens when an anonymous texter threatens to uproot their lives. All Eyes on Us is scheduled to release in May 2019, also from S&S/McElderry, and I’ll be able to share a lot more later this year!
ABOUT THE BOOKSee All the Stars
by Kit Frick
Margaret K. McElderry Books
It’s hard to find the truth beneath the lies you tell yourself.
Then: They were four—Bex, Jenni, Ellory, Ret. (Venus. Earth. Moon. Sun.) Electric, headstrong young women; Ellory’s whole solar system.
Now: Ellory is alone, her once inseparable group of friends torn apart by secrets, deception, and a shocking incident that changed their lives forever.
Then: Lazy summer days. A party. A beautiful boy. Ellory met Matthias and fell into the beginning of a spectacular, bright love.
Now: Ellory returns to Pine Brook to navigate senior year after a two-month suspension and summer away—no boyfriend, no friends. No going back. Tormented by some and sought out by others, troubled by a mysterious note-writer who won’t let Ellory forget, and consumed by guilt over her not entirely innocent role in everything and everyone she’s lost, Ellory finds that even in the present, the past is everywhere.
The path forward isn’t a straight line. And moving on will mean sorting the truth from the lies—the lies Ellory has been telling herself.
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Have you had a chance to read SEE ALL THE STARS yet? Do you empower your characters to dig themselves out of tough situations? Are you able to keep in mind that publishing is not a meritocracy? Share your thoughts about the interview in the comments!
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