Interview with YA Author of The Penny Project: Betsy Love

penny-project-coverBetsy Love just released her newest YA Novel: The Penny Project. Reading this brilliant story requires an abdominal binder to hold your sides in from laughing so hard plus mop and bucket to clean up the tears. Betsy has graciously answered some interview questions about writing.

Margaret: What writing skill do you feel is most important for authors with a YA audience? Explain.

BetsyThe most important thing to remember when writing for teens is that you need to speak their language. They tend to have a “lingo” all their own. When I write my YA novels I make sure that I read it to teens and get their feed back. I’ll ask them questions like, “How would a 17 year old guy say this?” The other thing is to read, read, read in the genre you’re writing in. That goes for Romance, Mystery, Historical as well as Young Adult.

MargaretWhich author/authors is/are your favorite/s to read and why?

Betsy: When I read Stargirl, I was so touched by Jerry Spinelli’s story and his writing that I knew one day I wanted to write a story like that, one that would have a huge impact for change. Margaret: Is there a particular experience you had that provided the inspiration for this novel? Please tell us about it.

Betsy: The Penny Project is indeed inspired by a true story. When I heard the story I knew I had to write a story around that premise. Many of the incidents in this book are taken from some of the “dumb” things kids have done. My model for Penelope is Spencer Moore, a young man I had as his 9th grade English teacher. (See the dedication in the front of the book). Spencer is truly an inspiration to all who know him.

Margaret: Of the three novels you’ve written which is your personal favorite and why?

Betsy: That’s a really hard question to answer. It’s like trying to pick out which one of your children you like the best. Each of my books has something unique that I love. For Identity it was the whole idea of mistaken identity (who doesn’t love Shakespeare’s mischief with such plots?). With Soulfire I had a passion for this particular story in the Book of Mormon. I love the strength of my main character to stand for what is right regardless of the “popular” beliefs. The Penny Project was a story that would NOT get out of my head until I put it to paper. Because I couldn’t get the story down fast enough, it only took me six weeks to write.

Margaret:  Tell us about your current WIP? Genre, when we can expect to see it on the shelf.

Betsy: I am such an eclectic writer! My next story is a YA Urban Fantasy. It’s nearly complete and you should see it out sometime in November. Thanks, Margaret for this delightful interview!

Margaret: It was my pleasureReaders can find more information about Betsy Love and her books on her website at http://www.betsylove.com and blog at http://betsyloveldsauthor.blogspot.com/.