Saturday, September 15, 2012

The Next Big Thing

The lovely LG from Bards & Prophets has tagged me for The Next Big Thing meme. That’s where I get to answer some fun questions about my WIP, which I am co-writing with my sister Kath. So here goes:

What is the working title of your novel? 

Eleven. I know, creative, right? Nobody steal that, okay? Took me ages.

Where did the idea for the novel come from?

I watched a documentary about Hadrian’s Wall. Then I listened to Exo-Politics, by Muse. This was all around the same time my sister, an English teacher, was putting together a work unit on Nineteen Eighty-Four by George Orwell. Somehow everything just came together. Wine was involved. 

 What genre does your book fall under? 

Dystopian YA. But then again, I think everything is dystopian. Seriously. Even utopian is just dystopian from another point of view. You know that character in Candide who always says that he’s living in the best of all possible worlds? Yeah, that’s not me, but that’s okay because if we were living in the best of all possible worlds there would be nothing to stand up and fight for.

What is the one-sentence synopsis of your book?

A single sentence? Um…

Danny Sutton, a sixteen-year-old conscript at Outpost Eleven, teams up with Luke Jones, the only guy to ever come back from the Carrier-controlled Dead City, to expose the truth about what’s really happening on the other side of the Wall.

Clear as mud, yeah?

So here’s a longer thing Kath and I were playing around with a while ago:

Danny Sutton, a sixteen-year-old conscripted recruit at Outpost Eleven on the Wall, is homesick, desperate, and slowly pulling together an escape plan when the impossible happens: Lucien Jones, taken four years ago during a Carrier attack, walks up to Eleven from the wrong side of the Wall.

All Danny wants to do is find a way home. He has no intention of getting pulled into Luke’s crazy plan to walk back into the Dead City and stage a rescue for the other prisoners he says are held there. Because there aren’t any – everybody knows that. And it’s not like Luke is exactly stable; if he heard people talking to him over there, it was just in his head. 

Danny has to decide how crazy he thinks Luke really is, how much he is willing to risk finding out, and which side of The Wall the enemy are really on.  

What actors would you choose to play your characters in a movie version? 

Usually I hate this question, and usually I wouldn’t be able to answer it because I rarely describe characters, even to myself. And the only description of Danny that has so far worked it’s way in to Eleven is this: a pale face with big, scared eyes and a bad haircut.

Then, when I was watching TV late one night, I saw this guy:

The actor is called Dylen O'Brien, and he plays the best friend of the main character in the new version of Teen Wolf. And this picture I found of him -- with injuries -- is perfect. Wanna know why? Ouch

Danny has a bad attitude and some big plans. He's also homesick, frightened, and fairly sure he's going to die in the next barrage.  He's very close to breaking point, but so is everyone else. 

How long did it take you to write the first draft of your manuscript?

I will let you know when we finish it.

Will your novel be self-published or released through a traditional publisher?

I guess we’ll try the traditional route first, and see what happens.

What else about your book might pique reader's interest?

We’re hoping the setting might be unique: northern Australia, a ruined city, red dirt, and saltwater. Place is everything.   


And now I’d like the share the love by passing this on to the following helpless victims blogger friends:

Miss Cole at Miss Cole Seeks Publisher
Maggie at The Unibrow.
JEFritz at Still Writing.


  1. Very cool. I love the idea of a wall, and a dead city, and the need to learn the truth about what's really going on. I remember an excerpt you posted once that showed Danny in bad shape after being beat up or something, and that photo is perfect.

    Now hurry up and get it written so we can read it (said the slowest writer in North America). :))

    1. Lol! It's totally on my To Do List, I promise!

  2. I'm loving this book already. MUST READ.

    Get to work, you! ~cracks whip -- hits self with it -- goes away crying~

    Marian Allen
    Fantasies, mysteries, comedies, recipes

    1. Can I have that whip now you're finished with it? I could use the motivation as well!

  3. I can think of eleven reasons I want to read this.

    1. Hmmm...only eleven? We must try harder!



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