So I’m EXTREMELY excited about today’s post.
When I heard that Gabrielle Tozer and I were going to be interviewing each other, I…uh, may have flipped out slightly. And fangirled a bit.
As you should know (and if you don’t, clearly you’ve missed my excessive flailing on the matter), Gabrielle Tozer is the author of The Intern and now Faking It. Josie Browning, the protagonist, is someone I can really relate to…no comment on what that means about my clumsiness factor.
Anyway, let’s get to the interviews! First we have the lovely Gabby interviewing me.
Hi Emily! Thanks for letting me hang out on your blog. I love what you’ve done with the place 🙂 Now, move over, Oprah. Step aside, Ellen. It’s interviewing time!*
It’s no secret that Faking It is the title of my second book. Have you ever felt like you’ve had to fake it in life, or at school, or with a friend, or boy, to fit in? What happened?
I was going to say no until I actually read Faking It and decided that yeah…sometimes I have. I used to be a dancer, and I felt that I needed to act dumb to fit in with the others – to the point where I wouldn’t wear my glasses because they made me look like a nerd (maybe that’s what gave me the klutz factor).
But I wouldn’t do it again. There’s no point trying to fit in with people who don’t appreciate you for who you are – glasses and all.
You claim – oh yes – to be a wee bit loony and border-line crazy. I know this feeling well. Would you mind sharing some evidence please?
Well…maybe that’s not quite true.
I once had an imaginary friend. Is that a bit loony? Maybe not. Although maybe it’s a bit MORE loony when I mention that it was…um, last year. Also, this one time I let my best friend draw glasses on me with Sharpie. Even though I already have glasses. If that’s not crazy I don’t know what is.
Plus we own three cats. So I’m well on the way to becoming a crazy cat lady.
I will provide a rare picture of me as further evidence.
When do you make the time to write your books? And how old were you when you wrote your first one? Seriously, though… when do you squeeze it in? Writing books is so hard! You still go to school! And blog! And are online loads! AND READ EVERYTHING! Tell me about your writing process. *bows down in your presence*
I’m still trying to figure this out myself. I guess because I don’t watch TV?? That saves a lot of time. ALSO, LISTS. Lists are excellent. I make good use of my time (and yes, I count Twitter as an excellent use of my time). When I wrote my first book, I was in kindergarten, and I didn’t actually write it, I copied it out of another book. Then I got annoyed when nobody believed me. That one doesn’t really count. I wrote another “book” called Fairy Dust when I was in primary school, which also doesn’t really count. Then there was this one called Daughter of Merlin, which sucked, and my first YA contemporary, Hoping for Rain, which also sucked.
I think my first Actual Proper Book was my 2012 NaNoWriMo novel, Mutual Weirdness. I’ve learnt a lot since then, but I’m still really proud of it.
What are your favourite scenes to write? I love writing kissing scenes. Oh, oh, and awkward scenes! And ‘meet cute’ scenes. Love, love, love those. You?
(Yes, I’d like to read more of your kissing scenes, for sure)
I LOVE funny scenes. Anything with banter. I also like sad scenes because I’m a sadist, apparently. OH, and for this NaNoWriMo, I’m enjoying the kissing scenes a lot as well. My favourite part of writing is dialogue, though. I guess because I love talking so much in real life.
Confessional time: what’s something that your friends, family, blogger fans and I wouldn’t know about you?
Okay, not really.
Hmmm. I don’t have many deep, dark secrets, honestly (I wish…). I own up to most of my embarrassing moments…such as getting my hair caught in the cake beaters, catching the wrong train for work experience, then getting off at the wrong bus stop…
Oooh, okay, got one. Most people don’t know that I really LOVE make-up, and pretty dresses, and all that jazz. I just don’t get much opportunity to dress up. So that’s why my year ten formal last year was a lot of fun.
Oh, also, I don’t think most people realise that lots of things from my life go in my books. I can’t help it. My friends are just too funny, I have to recycle what they say. For example, we had a very intense discussion about whether or not Thomas the Tank Engine can drown or not. The concensus was no, because he’s a freaking train.
You’ve been so kind to say you like The Intern and Faking It’s main character – Josie Browning. Do you share any similarities with her? What about differences?
JOSIE IS THE BEST. Josie B 5 life. As mentioned above, she and I have “being awkward” on our things-in-common list. I’m extraordinarily clumsy, have no concept of direction, and am always getting into stupid situations. I get told about twenty times a day to do up my shoelaces (I think shoelaces should be banned, actually). But also, Josie loves writing, and so do I – she’s also really driven, which I admire.
What’s your favourite subject at school and why? What’s your least favourite? Side note: have you ever wagged PE or wish you HAD wagged PE? (Just trying to see if we were the same person at school!)
Favourite would have to be English or drama – my teachers for both are amazing women who I really admire, our classes are fantastic and the subjects themselves are great. English is excellent because if I want to slack off and read my own books, it doesn’t look odd. And in drama I can pretend to be other people for a while – even better if it’s comedy.
Oh god, I really hope those teachers don’t read this.
I’m shocked, Gabby. I’ve NEVER wagged a class! Not even PE! Although those 40-degree days were torture. Thank goodness I’m past that. In general, I’m opposed to outdoors. 1) I think running should be reserved for zombie apocalypses and/or sightings of Emma Watson, and 2) my skin is what my friends like to call “pasty as f***.”
Serious Harry Potter question: should Ron and Hermione have ended up together and why?
All Harry Potter questions are serious. Obviously. YES. I think so.
I think Ron’s endearing and humorous side balances really well with Hermione’s sensible-ness. (is that a word?) And I am very vehemently against Hermione-and-Harry.
You mentioned that you can do an Irish accent… what’s another party trick or secret skill of yours that you can share with us?
I CAN do an Irish accent. Didn’t realise I’d mentioned that. One day I’ll do a vlog and it’ll be awesome. Hmm. I can quote pretty much the entirety of the first few Harry Potter movies? That is a serious skill. Oh, and I can also say the alphabet backwards (fun fact: I learnt it backwards before I learnt it forwards. Because I’m just cool like that).
What’s the key to getting people, including teens, reading more? Any tips or thoughts on sharing the love (other than writing a kickass blog, of course!)?
Make a movie of the book! That gets people reading (PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE I need a movie of The Intern). Other than that, I have no idea. Teenagers confuse me. But I guess the whole social media thing is a good idea. Unless you’re wanting to target Baby Boomers, in which case you should give flyers to your local garden clubs (I attended one of these meetings with my Nanna once…I learnt more about bonsai plants than I will ever need to know).
On a scale of 1-10, how much have you enjoyed doing this interview and why? 1 being “OH MY GOD, I REGRET AGREEING TO THIS AND WOULD HAVE PREFERRED TO RE-WASH MY HAIR!” and 10 being “BEST EVER, LET’S INTERVIEW EACH OTHER 24/7 WHILE EATING NUTELLA”?
*No bloggers were harmed in the making of this Q&A. Well, not permanently.
10 for sure! And I’m going to hold you to that Nutella-eating-while-interviewing deal.
Thanks so much for your questions, Gabby. I’ve had an excellent time.
Now it’s my turn.
Hey there, G Toze. Do people ever call you that?
Why hello – and yes, yes, they do! I have many nicknames, some other include GT, G&T, G-Unit, Tozer the Bulldozer, GMac, Gabs, Gabby and G.
I quite like Tozer the Bulldozer, actually. You should get a T-shirt. ANYWAY. First question: do you have any embarrassing stories from work experience/your first job? In other words, how much like Josie were you?
Nothing too awkward to do with work. But I have done some spectacularly cringe-worthy things in my life which have inspired Josie’s character. In terms of inspiring the opening chapter of The Intern, an epic nipple slip at a public pool on a family holiday comes to mind…
Oh no! That doesn’t sound pleasant. Okay. If you were stuck on a deserted island, and could have one book with you, what would it be? (note: How to Build a Raft is not allowed)
Toughest. Question. Ever. Maybe Harry Potter. Or The Book Thief. Or Stephen King’s On Writing… although, it would make me want to write books and I wouldn’t have my laptop! Next question.
Your wish is my command. What’s your favourite part of the writing process? First draft? Rewrites? Editing? Reading it a final time before it goes out into the world? Bonus points for your LEAST favourite part.
OK, scrap that, this may be the toughest question ever.
I love the freedom of writing a first draft – I let everything pour out and know that ‘Future Me’ will be there to fix it up. It’s a liberating process. Rewrites and editing are tough – and usually involve a meltdown or five – but I do like polishing and perfecting scenes. It’s such hard work, but god, it’s rewarding. Bonus points: Least favourite? That moment when I realise how much rewriting is usually involved after draft two. I usually flip out momentarily, then – once that’s done (and an exorbitant amount of chocolate is consumed) – I roll up my sleeves and get to work. Then chomp down a bit more chocolate for the hell of it.
We all know that chocolate is a very necessary part of the writing process! Has anything surprised you about your readers or about the world of Being An Author?
Yes… just HAVING readers surprises me! It’s incredible and a (cliché alert) dream come true. I’m always blown away when I meet someone other than my Mum or husband who has read my book (without me begging/pleading/bribing them to). It’s the best feeling in the world.
Josie can sometimes be a bit lost and unsure of herself, especially in Faking It. What advice would you give her if you could meet her right now? (also, how great would it be to meet your characters!)
Poor JB! She’s just trying to find her way in the world. I would tell her… it’s OK. Stress less. You’re doing just fine. And shrug off the awkward moments – everyone has them! (And yes, it would be brilliant to meet my characters! Wouldn’t mind going on a scooter ride with James either…)
This blog is the Loony Teen Writer, as you know. Any crazy things we should know about you? Weird hobbies/quirks?
Quirks… oh god, too many things, but they all seem normal to me! I tend to have a bit of an all-or-nothing personality, so when I do something, I really do it. I have an inappropriate and insatiable appetite for hot chips, musicals and Disney. I’m also a grammar Nazi… big-time! I would lose sleep over a typo in a tweet of mine – let’s not even joke about it! My friends even gave me a written-up page filled with typos and a red pen for a joke present once… they know me too well. I need cooler hobbies and quirks. Should have lied and said acrobatics, but I’m too scared to be upside-down!
Favourite Aussie slang word or phrase? You grew up in Wagga, you have to have some.
My family and I are obsessed with abbreviating words! If it can be shortened or adapted, then we’ll do it. I’ll also fill you in on a bit of Wagga slang… we love to say the phrase “Aww yeah, Wagga!” whenever we talk about things relating to Wagga. Yep. The hashtag #awwyeahwagga gets a lot of use.
BRB laughing forever. So what’s next for you after Faking It? Any other awesome ideas rattling around? Can you tell us any…or would you have to kill us?
I have another idea that I particularly love. It’s a YA contemporary novel set in high school and I think it’s awesome – well, at least, I hope that it’s awesome. And hopefully you will get a chance to read it someday, too! I have a few other ideas floating around, too, but I’m trying to keep them in an orderly queue… they’re just all so impatient!
I’M EXCITED ALREADY. Next question: was there a moment when you realised you were actually a good writer? A memorable time when you were like, “woah, I’m freaking awesome at this”? (and if you’re wondering, I knew you were an awesome writer after reading the first page of The Intern. It’s just that good)
Thank you so much. And, to answer your question… no, I don’t think so! Like many writers, I am plagued with self-doubt, and am driven mainly by my passion for writing and storytelling, rather than any idea of being a good writer. Although, it is rather nice when you read the final-final-final edit of your book and realise it actually flows quite nicely… and it’s a real book! Side note: authors find it incredibly difficult to accept compliments!
Aaaaaand finally, what’s one book you wish you had written?
One book… how about one series? This one’s easy: Harry Potter, for sure!
BONUS QUESTION: (hey, you got to have one!) I’m sure you’ve interviewed tons of people, and BEEN interviewed tons of times. So tell me: how do I stack up?
11/10 – no question! Creative, fun questions… gold stars all round! Thank you so much for having me stop by. Let’s do this again sometime!
Thanks so much for coming along, Gabby, and for asking such excellent questions!
Find Gabby on:
And don’t forget to grab your copy of Faking It! I’ll be reviewing it later this week. Five stars all round.