I am lucky enough to be one of the hosts for the blog tour for What They Don’t Know by Nicole Maggi! Please check out the other hosts and their posts down below!
OCT 6th – Gryffindor Books – Interview
Mellie has always been the reliable friend, the good student, the doting daughter. But when an unspeakable act leads her to withdraw from everyone she loves, she is faced with a life-altering choice―a choice she must face alone.
Lise stands up―and speaks out―for what she believes in. And when she notices Mellie acting strangely, she gets caught up in trying to save her…all while trying to protect her own secret. One that might be the key to helping Mellie.
Told through Mellie and Lise’s journal entries, this powerful, emotional novel chronicles Mellie’s struggle to decide what is right for her and the unbreakable bond formed by the two girls on their journey.
Nicole was born in the suburban farm country of upstate New York, and began writing at a very early age. Of course, her early works consisted mainly of poems about rainbows and unicorns, although one of them was good enough to win honorable mention in a national poetry contest! (Perhaps one of the judges was a ten-year-old girl.) Throughout high school, her creative writing was always nurtured and encouraged.
Nicole attended Emerson College as an acting major, and graduated cum laude with a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree. Post-college, she worked as an actress in New York City for over a decade, focusing mainly on Shakespeare and the classics.
Now living in Los Angeles, Nicole balances writing full-time with motherhood. WINTER FALLS, the first in her TWIN WILLOWS TRILOGY (Medallion Press, 2014) is her debut novel. She has a stand-alone novel, HEARTLINES, out in February 2015 with Sourcebooks Fire, as well as the second and third novels in the TWIN WILLOWS TRILOGY in 2015 and 2016.
Now onto my Interview with Nicole Maggi, Author of What They Don’t Know!
Gryffindor Books: Who or what got you into reading?
Nicole: My parents read to me a lot. I was very young so I don’t remember it that well, but I do remember that they read Green Eggs & Ham to me so many times that I memorized it. They would have me recite it when people came over for dinner. I just loved books so much. I was that kid that when I went to a party at someone else’s house I would find the room with the books and read while everyone else was horsing around.
Gryffindor Books: When did you realize you wanted to be a writer?
Nicole: In 3rd grade, we had to write a story and illustrate it—it was on that super wide-ruled paper that had a space at the top for pictures; remember that? I wrote a story about a rainbow and a unicorn that become friends. My teacher asked a few of the kids to get up and read their stories to the class, and I was one of them. I remember that I was reading, I saw one of the little boys in the class lean over to his friend and whisper, “She’s going to be PUBLISHED!” I think the dream of becoming an author was born in me that day.
Gryffindor Books: Do you have any advice for aspiring authors?
Nicole: I do! When you’re working on a novel, at some point you hit this stage where it all just feels overwhelming and you can’t see the forest for the trees. What I recommend doing at that point is focusing on one small thing at a time. For instance, “I just need to write this paragraph where my MC tells her crush she loves him.” That small thing will lead to the next small thing, and then so one until you have a whole scene done. This idea is called the 1” picture frame and it comes from Anne Lamott’s wonderful book Bird by Bird which I highly recommend every aspiring author read.
Gryffindor Books: When you were growing up which characters did you want to be? What characters do you look up to now?
Nicole: When I was in middle school I read the Song of the Lioness Series by Tamora Pierce and I just wanted to be Alanna and live in that world. It was the first time a book ever made me feel like that. I loved those characters so much. I still do. She’s still one of my favorite heroines, and actually I named a character in What They Don’t Know after her. Other favorite characters include Arya Stark in Game of Thrones and Cassandra Mortmain in I Capture The Castle.
Gryffindor Books: What can you tell us about your book(s) without spoiling anything? Do you have any more books in the works?
Nicole: WHAT THEY DON’T KNOW is about two used-to-be friends who find their way back to each other through awful circumstances. When Mellie finds herself pregnant after being raped, she can’t turn to her very conservative and religious family. She winds up turning to Lise, a liberal, outspoken former friend who is hiding a secret of her own—one that can help Mellie. Though the friendship is the central focus of the book, this book is also a call to arms for reproductive rights, and couldn’t be more timely.
Gryffindor Books: Thanks for doing this with me!
Nicole: Thank you so much for hosting me on the blog! Happy Reading, everyone!
What They Don’t Know is now avaliable!! Please go out and pick up your copy of this amazing book now!