A Little Something Different by Sandy Hall
The creative writing teacher, the delivery guy, the local Starbucks baristas, his best friend, her roommate, and the squirrel in the park all have one thing in common—they believe that Gabe and Lea should get together. Lea and Gabe are in the same creative writing class. They get the same pop culture references, order the same Chinese food, and hang out in the same places. Unfortunately, Lea is reserved, Gabe has issues, and despite their initial mutual crush, it looks like they are never going to work things out. But somehow even when nothing is going on, something is happening between them, and everyone can see it. Their creative writing teacher pushes them together. The baristas at Starbucks watch their relationship like a TV show. Their bus driver tells his wife about them. The waitress at the diner automatically seats them together. Even the squirrel who lives on the college green believes in their relationship.
Surely Gabe and Lea will figure out that they are meant to be together….
Today we are luck enough to host a little interview with Sandy Hall herself as well as a giveaway for her debut book A Little Something Different!
1. Your approach to this story with the POV of everyone (and everything) but the main characters is quite a unique one. Where did your inspiration come from? What was your favorite POV to write? (Personally I’m partial to squirrel.)
There’s some writing advice that goes around the internet that I really took to heart, something along the lines of “get out of your characters’ heads.” Now, I realize I took it to the extreme and got into other characters’ heads, but I really liked challenge of trying to write a story about two people who don’t get a say in the matter. I love the squirrel too, but he was hard to write, believe it or not. My favorite to write was probably Victor because he had a much different flavor than the other POVs. I particularly loved writing the scene in the dining hall during midnight breakfast from his perspective because felt so trapped and he was just so done with Gabe and Lea by that point.
2. How does it feel to not only publish your debut book but to be the debut book in a new publishing imprint?
It’s surreal. I say it all the time but it’s the best word for the situation. I think anytime someone sits down to put words on a page they can’t help but hope to get published. All the advice you read says not to get your hopes up and to write for yourself, but you can’t help but HOPE. I feel like Swoon Reads really ups the “hope quotient.” And even if you don’t get selected, you still get to be a part of a great community.
3. Do you think it was important to show that boys can (and do) over analyze just as much as girls do in relationships?
Absolutely! I think it’s so easy to forget that everyone has insecurities and worries. Gabe is definitely on the far end of the scale because he’s always been shy and his new stumbling blocks have left him even more reserved. But I’ve heard boys talk, I have brothers and I had a lot of guy friends, particularly in college. They might not always show what they’re thinking, but they worry and over analyze and try to figure things out just as much as girls.
4. “What happened to Gabe?” is a blank spot in the plot for so long since the readers are left in the dark with Lea. Was this intentional to show how we can misinterpret situations and “signals”?
For sure. I think this happens all the time. I think it’s hard to get out of our own heads sometimes and see what’s right in front of us. And maybe sometimes it’s self-preservation, and sometimes it’s just downright stubbornness, but there are no rules for subtle social cues and signals and that can get us in trouble.
5. I don’t want to spoil anything for anyone so I’m going to tread lightly here. There is a scene very reminiscent of 10 Things I Hate About You in their creative writing class. Was this an homage so to speak to a beloved teen movie?
YES! I needed to figure out a way to wrap up the story and Lea even makes a vague reference to Patrick in 10 Things I Hate About You early in the story. I also really wanted their “moment” to happen in class. That’s where everything started and that’s where I wanted things to wrap up. I liked the mirroring in plot. I also really wanted Inga to have the opportunity to see the big moment because she was cheering for them for so long. She deserved it.
Want to win a copy of A Little Something Different?! Giveaway ends at 12:00am 09/05/14. Follow the rafflecopter link, good luck!
(US ONLY, winner will have 48 hours to respond or a new winner will be chosen.)
Liked our interview + giveaway? Check out the other SC posts!!
Thanks to Macmillan for providing ARCS for review on the SC.