Hi friends! I’m so happy to be back today to chat with another debut author, with my feature, A Talk With…!
In case you missed it, “A Talk With” is a brand new feature here on Drizzle & Hurricane Books, where I will invite young adult book authors to chat with me about their upcoming books, share their writing tips and tricks and more!
Today, I have the chance to welcome the lovely Danielle Stinson, a wonderful author debuting with a very spooky, atmospheric and promising debut, Before I Disappear. If you are into sci-fi, mysterious books and strong siblings vibes, I’d definitely recommend it! In this interview, we’re chatting about inspiration, plotting, new exciting projects and sharing some amazing book recs, too, so keep on reading!
1. What inspired you to write Before I Disappear? Was it a specific idea that came to you, a mix of inspirations from movies, diverse stories, an idea that came of people disappearing, a particularly spooky moment in a mysterious patch of woods..?
I love a good patch of mysterious and spooky woods as much as the next writer! But to be honest, the inspiration for Before I Disappear was more internally than externally drawn. The very first thing to strike me were Rose and Charlie’s voices. I focused in on them, and I wrote many of their memories before I wrote anything else. Eventually, it was like I could hear them talking to each other over some great distance, and that’s when I knew they were separated by something. I just didn’t know what. Then I had this dream about a vanishing town, and the rest of the story was born!
2. Siblings are at the heart of the book, Rose trying to save her brother Charlie before it’stoo late. Was it important to you to have a siblings’ bond at the heart of the story?
Yes! That sibling love is what drove everything for me. It’s what made me fight for this story through all the writing and revisions and submissions and then revising some more. Funnily enough, those Rose and Charlie sections are the parts of the book that have remained fundamentally intact from the very first draft. I am very close with my family. Growing up in the military meant we moved every year or two. My three younger brothers are my best friends. I wanted to capture the importance and strength of that bond in honor of them. I also wanted to write a story about the importance of family, both the ones we are born into and the ones that we find.
3. How do you plot your books? Do you have a specific idea of everything that is going on in the story, of the ending of the book when you first start drafting a new idea, or do you let things flow and see where it goes?
I usually have a very clear idea of where I am starting, where I will end up, and the key turning points in the middle. I like to let the rest unfold without too many restraints. As long as I know where I am ultimately going, I’m okay with letting the characters do a lot of the driving. I love being surprised by my own characters.
4. Any new projects in the works you can tell us about? 🙂
I’m always working on new things even when I tell myself I won’t! Right now, I have a few different projects in the very early stages. One of them is another YA with a sci- fi twist along the lines of Before I Disappear. Something falls from the sky and crash-lands in an empty field where a handful of teens are getting up to things they really shouldn’t be. It’s a sort of YA ET type story, and I am loving these new voices.
1. Are there any fellow #novel19s and debuts that you really loved and would like everyone to read? (this may be a little cruel… so maybe you can mention two or three 🙂
There are SO MANY. I loved Chris Baron’s All of Me and Mariama J. Lockington’s For Black Girls Like Me. As for YA, I love love Olivia Hinebaugh’s The Birds, The Bees, and You and Me. I also loved Rules We’re Meant to Break by Natalie Williamson. And The Truth About Keeping Secrets by Savannah Brown. Sorry, that is way more than three, and still, I could go on!
2. If you were in Rose’s situation, everyone around you vanishing into thin air, what is the first thing that you would do?
I love this question! I would definitely have to MOVE. Action in the face of stress is how I keep myself together. I would run around and look for them everywhere, even if I knew in my heart I wouldn’t find them. And then by the time I finished doing that, I might have pulled myself together enough to form an actual game plan.
4. Can you share one line of Before I Disappear with us?
Absolutely! These ones are some of the very first I wrote and they never changed.
“Once upon a time you read the words and the words were magic. They belonged to you and you belonged to me.”
Thank you so, SO much for chatting with me today, Danielle, I loved having you on the blog! Friends, if you’re curious about Before I Disappear, keep on reading for more information! This wonderful book releases on July, 23rd, only a few days more to wait!
📖 More about Before I Disappear
Rose Montgomery parks her family’s trailer in Fort Glory, Oregon with one goal: to carve out a new life for herself and her little brother, Charlie. They need a fresh start for their family, and she thinks she’s finally found it in a town where nobody knows them.
But Rose’s plans come crashing down when, in an instant, Fort Glory disappears and every person in town vanishes into thin air—including Charlie.
Rose and four other teens become trapped in the Fold, a patch of woods caught halfway between the real world and the lost town. In the Fold, a mysterious force suspends the laws of physics, and everyone’s inner darkness has the power to kill.
To survive the Fold, Rose must unravel the clues Charlie sends her from the missing town. And Rose has to find Charlie soon—or he’ll be gone forever.
📖 More about the author, Danielle Stinson
Stories were a central part of Danielle Stinson’s childhood. Growing up in a military family meant frequent moves across the US and abroad. She spent many summers in her room surrounded by unpacked boxes and stacks of library books. She currently lives with her husband and four boys in Virginia, where she writes fiction for young adults.
Before I Disappear is her debut novel.
Find Danielle Stinson on:
Do you want to read Before I Disappear? Did you read it already?
Do you like stories with strong siblings vibes just as well? Any recommendations for me? I’d love to hear from you in comments!