Saturday, June 30, 2012

Interview with Hilary Weisman Graham, author of Reunited + Giveaway

I'm honoured to be joined today by the wonderful Hilary Weisman Graham, author of the funny and extremely entertaining YA contemporary novel, Reunited.

1. Welcome to Bookish Hilary! Thank you so much for being one of the guests during the Contemporary Fiction Month feature! Could you start by telling us a little bit about yourself?

Here are the main details, in no particular order: In addition to being a novelist, I’m also a filmmaker and a screenwriter. I live in the middle of nowhere and I love it, but I used to be a city girl and I still go stir crazy if I go more than a few months without going into Boston or visiting LA or New York. People know me by my big, wild, curly brown hair. As of this month, I’ve been married for nine years. I have one son, and he loves to joke and make up funny stories, just like me. ;)

2. You debut YA novel, Reunited, features three ex-best friends, a broke-up band, and a disastrous road trip! Sounds like just the perfect summer read! Could you tell us who or what inspired you to write it?

I had a friendship break-up of my own freshman year of high school, and even though my story is very different than Alice, Summer, and Tiernan’s, the feelings around that break-up always stuck with me. For most 14-year-old girls, their best friends are the most meaningful relationship they’ve had at that point in their lives, apart from their family, so I thought the idea of ex-best friends reuniting at the end of high school, when they’re older and wiser, would make for an interesting story.

3. Could you share with us your favourite quote from Reunited?

“Fortunately, the boys were both deeply entranced in a game that involved a fork, a balled-up straw wrapper, and Toad’s open mouth.”

4. Have you always wanted to be a writer? At what point in your life did you decide that writing is something you want to do?

I spent most of my career as an indie filmmaker and TV producer, but writing was always a big part of my job. Even in my free time, I found myself participating in poetry slams, or composing humorous essays to share with my friends. But for a long time, I considered myself a “filmmaker who wrote,” as opposed to a writer.

Then, in the summer of 2007, I was selected to be a contestant on the Mark Burnett/Steven Spielberg-produced On the Lot, which, if you never caught it, was like American Idol for filmmakers, and aired on Fox for only one season.

It was there, in Los Angeles, competing head-to-head with seventeen other talented filmmakers on live television that I suddenly realized it was the writing part of filmmaking I’d always enjoyed most. After that, I made it my goal to become a working screenwriter and novelist—and that dream has now come true!

5. What's next in line for you? Are you working on a new book now?
I’m currently working on a new contemporary YA novel and I’m also writing a movie for The Disney Channel.

6. Is there a band or singer you're so obsessed with that you'd travel 2000 miles to see them play?

My new musical obsession is Andrew Bird. It’s hard to believe I’ve been on the planet for this long without listening to him.

7. Which three of your favourite contemporary books would you recommend everybody to read? 

1) 13 REASONS WHY by Jay Asher. 2) THE TRUTH ABOUT FOREVER by Sarah Dessen 3) HARD LOVE by Ellen Wittlinger

8. Summer is (almost) here and we're all prepared to tackle our enormous summer TBR lists (To-Be-Read), can you share with us what's on your reading pile this summer? 

 Right now, My bookshelf is super crowded since I just got back from BEA (Book Expo America) in New York. Currently, I’m reading an ARC of LEVEL2 by Lenore Appelhans. Next up is an ARC of SKINNY by Donna Cooner THE FAULT IN OUR STARS by John Green, ONE FOR THE MURPHYS by Lynda Mullaly Hunt, and THE GIVER by Lois Lowry (which I'm ashamed to admit, I've never read).

9. If your book had a soundtrack to accompany it, what songs would be on it?

Anything and everything by Level3. To listen, go to where you can download two of their hit singles -- “Heyday” and “Parade” -- for free!

10. Do you have a favourite contemporary fiction character/couple? 

 They’re not a couple, but I love the friendship between Tiny Cooper and Will Grayson from WILL GRAYSON, WILL GRAYSON by John Green and David Levithan

Hilary, thank you so much for taking the time out of your busy schedule to join us here today! I'm looking forward to reading Reunited - sound like a perfect summer read!

About the author:

Hilary Weisman Graham is an award-winning filmmaker, screenwriter, and novelist. She lives in rural New Hampshire with her husband and son, roughly thirty minutes away from the nearest grocery store.

!!! ~Giveaway~!!!

Hilary Weisman Graham has generously offered to give away one finished copy of Reunited

OPEN TO: US/Canada only
Ends: July 14th

To enter: 
Be a follower of this blog
Enter via rafflecopter below:

a Rafflecopter giveaway

This Interview + Giveaway was posted as part of the Contemporary Fiction Month feature. Click on the picture for full schedule.


Forever Lost in Books said...

OMG! Hilary hasn't read THE GIVER yet? OMG! She has to read it! Ir's really great!


Forever Lost in Books said...

OMG! Hilary hasn't read THE GIVER yet? OMG! She has to read it! Ir's really great!


Bumbles and Fairy-Tales said...

LOL, that quote totally cracked me up! Another reason to pick up this book really soon!
A movie for the Disney Channel!? I cannot wait to hear more about this, my boys and I are always watching and most of the time it seems that I'm enjoying myself more than they are, lol!
And I haven't read The Giver yet either, sigh...
Great interview! Thanks for sharing :)

Tanja - Tanychy said...

I haven't had a chance to read this book yet! It's on my to-read pile and I can't wait to read it! :)

May said...

Oh, great interview!

I love Will Grayson, Will Grayson. It made me laugh so many times! :)

Your book sounds terrific! Looking forward to reading it!

molly.frenzel said...

I've been dying to read this book! The synopsis reminds of a trip I took in high school with a bunch of my close friends. We drove to New York to go to Woodstock '99. It was a trip I'll never forget.

Hannah said...

I love it! This book looks totally darling and this is such a great book to feature! Lovely Evie! :D And thanks for making the giveaway US! This is one book I just can't wait to get my hands on!

Anonymous said...

Reunited looks great! And I do love the friendship between Will Grayson and Tiny Cooper as well ... great choice!

Thanks for the giveaway!

Jen said...

This looks like such a cute contemp novel:) i can't wait to read this:)

Unknown said...

Great Interview. Adding Reunited on my tbr list. :)

Carl Scott said...

It's interesting to me that Hilary has such an extensive background in film. I'd like to know more about that aspect of her life.

Unknown said...

It sounds like a really cute read.

Unknown said...

I liked that she recommended readers to read The Truth About Forever, because I absolutely loved that book.

Yackers said...

Thank you for the interview :-) I can't wait for this book to come to the UK. It's so pretty and reminds me of me teen years. Van't wait to get this :-)

Amy said...

Awesome interview!! I was lucky enough to meet Hilary this past Thursday at a book signing. She is so nice!! I totally love her hair too!! I am excited to read Reunited!!

Steph said...

Great interview! This book sounds like it would be a fun read!

Doodle said...

I loved Thirteen Reasons Why and I always recommend it. I have a collection of Sarah Dessen Books of my shelf, but I haven't had the chance to read them yet. Great interview Evie!!

Molli @ Once Upon a Prologue said...

Wow, GREAT interview, Evie! I just finished this book and really enjoyed it. It was fun, funny, and touching. I love that Level3 is a real band, and I hope Hillary enjoys The Giver!

Christine said...

This book sounds great and Hilary sounds so nice! I love hearing about the backgrounds of writers and find it so fascinating to discover how people get into being authors, so thanks for posting this interview.

Erin said...

I have read all 3 books that Hilary listed as her Dave comtemps. That's really cool to me mostly because I lived them all as well!

Randi M said...

Wow, writing a movie for Disney AND another novel?! Sounds very very busy! :) I've been meaning to read Thirteen Reasons Why. And to reread The Giver (I hated it when we read it in sixth grade). Maybe I'll read those soon! Thanks for the interview!

Jana said...

Oooo yay! I love Disney channel movies! How fun that she gets to do that, AND write books. At the same time, though? I'd be so overwhelmed! This book sounds so wonderful. I've had my eye on it for quite some time. Thanks for the giveaway!

- Jana @ That Artsy Reader Girl

Christina Fiorelli said...

Christina K. in the rafflecopter

Love the interview! We agree on all her books choices and movies:)

Sounds like an awesome book:)

Thanks so much:)

amy said...

Can't. Wait to read this.

Steph said...

I can't wait to read this book. I think the premise is great. I lost a few best friends in high school and I think it would be great to reunite for a road trip. It's about the adventure not the destination.

Thanks for the giveaway!

Patricia's Particularity said...

A movie for the Disney Chanel hey? I wonder what it is going to be about. I am dying to learn more!!!

Kristie said...

Can anyone say ROADTRIP!!!! I'm just going to pretend its my favorite band that these girls are going to see. Hehe

Vidisha said...

wow sounds really great.....i really want to read it

BookwormInBarrie said...

I really like how she talked about a friendship that broke up when she was younger, I think we all have at least one of those stories, and we do sometimes think about what happened to those people.

Sonia said...

On the Lot sounds like such an interesting show - I can't believe I hadn't heard of it before now! I am super intrigued about this movie for the Disney channel :)

This book sounds fantastic! I've definitely had a couple of break-ups with friends (although it was never anything dramatic, just more drifting apart) and I think the premise has a lot of potential.

Thanks for the interview! <3


Unknown said...

“Fortunately, the boys were both deeply entranced in a game that involved a fork, a balled-up straw wrapper, and Toad’s open mouth.”

I love that quote too haha(: And I agree with Hilary - as a teenager / high schooler, my best friends are the most important people to me outside of my family. Thanks for the interview & giveaway!

Jaime Lester said...

Hilary Weiman's favorite line in this story, is the line that I needed to read to make me want to read this book. And because of the line, which made me snort, I will be reading this book when I have the opportunity. Thanks for the interview.

Lea Krnjeta said...

Great interview :) I cannot wait to read this book, sounds awesome.

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