I know, I know. I said I would post this on Wednesday. I apologize for it's lateness.
Daria Snadowski is the author of recently released Anatomy of a Boyfriend, which I reviewed on Monday.
Why did you choose to write about a subject that you knew might be controversial in young adult literature?
Precisely because it would be controversial.
This type of literature is valuable for teens because it presents much-needed unromanticized accounts of the highs and lows of love and sex. When we grow up on fairytales like Sleeping Beauty and Snow White, it's perfectly natural for us to expect that our first loves will last forever and that we'll know exactly what to do when the lights dim. YA books like Forever demonstrate to young adults that that's not necessarily the case, and they show all the humiliation and disappointment and awkwardness (as well as the magic and wonder and peace) that's part and parcel of falling in love and being intimate.
What inspired you to write Anatomy of a Boyfriend?
Although I didn't start writing the book until way later, I got my initial idea for it during freshman year of college. I remember that most of my hallmates had high school sweethearts when we started fall semester, but by spring semester, most of those relationships had ended. I realized that although the transition from high school to college is an exciting time, it's also really scary, because often it causes you to cut precious ties with your past. Those were issues I wanted to explore in Anatomy and why I set the story during Dominique's final year of high school and her first semester of college.
Do you listen to music when you write? If yes, what kind? Do you have a special writing playlist?
There were a few songs I listened to a lot, not because their lyrics held any significance for the book, but because I simply found them soothing. Mostly I listened to The Cars' "Drive," The Church's "Under the Milky Way Tonight," and the soundtrack to Sense and Sensibility (composed by Patrick Doyle).
Were Dom and Wes based on anybody you know in real life?
Yes and no. Friends and acquaintances certainly informed some aspects of the characters, but I tried to make Dom "every-girl" and Wes "every-boy." I wanted to keep the characters vague and broad enough so that readers could more easily step into their shoes and identify with them.
Have you had any real-life Wes'?
A few. I'm very familiar with euphoric love and devastating heartbreak.
What are your favorite YA books/authors?
Judy Blume is my favorite author. She's proof you don't need fairies or vampires or wizards or dragons to create page-turning YA fiction. My favorite of her books is Forever, which shamelessly and honestly portrayed the emotional and physical experience of first love. Books like Forever make readers, who are going through these exciting and scary milestones themselves, feel less alone in their feelings and give them insight as to what choices to make.
Where'd you get the name Wesley from?
From Westley in The Princess Bride, one of my favorite movies!