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C.J. Omololu Interview

if you don't already know about the Nerds Heart YA tournament, you should really check that out.  right here. go ahead.

okay so now that you know it's a tournament for underrepresented young adult literature with a central focus on diversity that's judged by bloggers, i can present to you one of those authors!  [note: i'm not a judge for this author's book, so there's no bias on my part. which is a good idea, because she sounds pretty fabulous.]

meet author C.J. Omololu!
her website
her blog in which she shares her musings on writings and other fun things

a brief background on C.J. before we get started with the nitty gritty interview goodness.  she has two published books, WHEN IT'S SIX O'CLOCK IN SAN FRANCISCO and her book that's part of the Nerds Heart YA tourney, DIRTY LITTLE SECRETS.

C.J. also has two new books coming out. the first is DESTINED (will be retitled, released in June 2012) about a seventeen year old cello prodigy named Cole Ryan beginning to experience flashes of past lives just as the mysterious Griffon enters her world. Griffon brings with him love, knowledge, and suspicion.  The sequel FATED, will be published in winter 2013. both books are from Walker/Bloomsbury.

and now...to the interview!

1. Describe your writing style in 3 words
Realistic, emotional, dark.
[well, color me intrigued.]

2. You write books for children and for young adults. What motivates you to write for those audiences?
These days, I’m concentrating on mainly YA writing, and I didn’t choose it, it chose me. When I started thinking about writing novels, the main characters were always in their mid to late teens, so I just went with it.  I think I relate to teenage characters because it is such an amazing time of discovery and change. Plus I’m emotionally about 17 most of the time.
[as a reader, my fave thing about ya books is the self-discovery so i am pumped to hear this.]

3. I see that you hate scary movies, but the idea of hoarding can be very, very scary.  Why did you decide to tackle this issue?
It’s funny, because I say that if I hadn’t written DIRTY LITTLE SECRETS, I’m not sure I could read it. Scary, intense books have the same effect on me – I can’t tell you how many famous, incredibly well-written books I haven’t been able to finish because they were just too much for me. I read a magazine article about hoarding and that is what got me thinking about the subject. Immersing myself in the character made it all very real and I’ve heard from both kids and adults in hoarding situations that I’ve described their lives, which makes it all worthwhile. I think secrets are only damaging if you keep them. Shining a light on disorders like hoarding can only help the people that it hurts.
[i appreciate the challenge of writing about something so intense and emotional. i know all about the gut-wrenching reads/movies and being amazed, genuinely interested, and yet too anxious to finish.]

4. I know you're an author with a busy schedule, but when you find time to read, what is it you're reading these days?
I only read YA right now because I want to see what everyone else is up to. I haven’t read a grown-up book in forever – I’ve had The Help on my Kindle for months but it’s just sitting there. On my nightstand right now is HUNTRESS by Malinda Lo, WHATEVER HAPPENED TO GOODBYE by Sarah Dessen, SEAN GRISWOLD’S HEAD by  Lindsey Leavitt and the ARC of DARKNESS FALLS by Cate Tiernan. 
[a fabulous variety, to be sure!]

5. You have one day to do whatever you want. What's on your agenda?
This answer is going to reveal far too much I’m afraid. If I could do anything I want, I would like to be alone in a nice hotel room with no view and no attractions. It would have a deep soaking tub and really fast WiFi so that I can catch up on all those movies I missed. I would spend the day reading and watching movies all by myself. At some point, room service would bring up a huge pot of Peet’s coffee and several apple fritters from the donut shop near my house. That’s probably pretty sad to most people, but it sounds like heaven to me.
[are you kidding? holing up to read/watch movies solo for an entire day paired with sweets and coffee sounds like HEAVEN. count me in.]

thank you to C.J. Omololu for taking time out for this interview. thanks to Nerds Heart YA for giving me a chance to chat with an incredible author. 

Lisa is a gamer, crafter, fangirl, mother, wife and unabashed nerd who is pretty ridiculous and it's best you know that up front. When she's not binge watching Netflix or crafting into the wee hours of the night, you can find her spending a lot of her time on Pinterest and Twitter.

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