JK: I’ve had the idea for about 10 years, but I just didn’t think anyone would want to read the book. Luckily, my agent convinced me otherwise! In my author’s note in the book, I mention a number of specific influences, both for the Horsemen of the Apocalypse (including Neil Gaiman, Terry Pratchett, and Marvel Comics) and for the protagonist (inspired by a friend).
Me: What lesson will readers get from your book?
JK: Eating disorders suck. (And Death likes playing Nirvana on the guitar.)
Me: Why did you chose to write for teens?
JK: I didn’t set out to write a book for teens. I wanted to write the story of an anorexic teenage girl who became Famine. It just turned out that the book I wrote was a young adult novel.
Me: Why focus on eating disorders?
JK: I used to be bulimic. I haven’t been for a long time, but that mindset—the messed up self-image, the voice in your head that tells you you’re fat and worthless—lingered. I wanted to write a story that focused on a girl in the throes of anorexia. The more than people know what eating disorders are, and what they’re not, the more likely that they can help friends who are suffering from these diseases.
Me: What is the meaning of the cover?
JK: I wish I could say that I had anything to do with the gorgeous cover. But the only role I played was to “ooh” and “aah” over it. There is an old-fashioned set of scales on the cover, and that’s appropriate for two reasons. First, the scales are the symbol of Famine. Second, balance is a theme of the book.
Me: In three words, describe what it was like to write HUNGER.
JK: Intense and cathartic.
Me: Which part do you like writing the most? Beginning, middle or end? Why?
JK: That’s a tough question. I can’t write until I have the proper beginning, and usually the first sentence. From there, if I’m on target, the words just flow. I think I like writing the ending more than the beginning or middle because that’s when everything comes to a boil and gets resolved.
Me: So I heard you have a weakness for chocolate. What's your favorite? Do you write while eating chocolates?
JK: My secret is out! (I also have a weakness for Matt Damon.) My current favorite is Tim Tams from Australia. Ah, those are SO good! Sometimes, I’ll have a Hershey’s Kiss when I’m writing, but usually I wait until I’m done.
Me: You have a master's in media ecology. Does this help with your writing?
JK: Not in the slightest. **grin** But I enjoyed those classes. They were the study of communication’s impact on culture, and vice versa. Of course, this was all before Facebook and Twitter. I imagine those classes are different today.
Me: HUNGER is out now. How do you feel?
JK: Relieved and terrified. **grin**
Me: Any last words?
JK: A portion of HUNGER proceeds will go to the National Eating Disorders Association. So if you bought a copy of the book, thank you for helping to make a difference.
Lisabeth Lewis has a black steed, a set of scales, and a new job: she’s been appointed Famine. How will an anorexic seventeen-year-old girl from the suburbs fare as one of the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse?
Traveling the world on her steed gives Lisa freedom from her troubles at home: her constant battle with hunger, and her struggle to hide it from the people who care about her. But being Famine forces her to go places where hunger is a painful part of everyday life, and to face the horrifying effects of her phenomenal power. Can Lisa find a way to harness that power — and the courage to battle her own inner demons? _______________________________________________________
Thanks to Jackie, there are FOUR signed posters of Hunger up for grabs.
The poster looks exactly like the cover art of Hunger.
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