I recently had the pleasure of reading and reviewing, Chasing Eveline, a sweet and touching new YA novel that I thoroughly enjoyed. Author Leslie Hauser was kind enough to answer some questions regarding the novel and her work. Enjoy the interview, and check out the original review here!
1. Congratulations on your debut novel, Chasing Eveline. Can you give us a quick overview of the story?
Thank you! Chasing Eveline is about 16-year- old Ivy Higgins and her quest to
reunite 80s Irish rock group Chasing Eveline. Ivy’s mom left two years ago, and while Ivy wavers between sadness and anger, she knows she’s not ready to lose her mom forever. So she gets it in her head that if she can reunite her mom’s favorite band, not only will she keep her mom alive in her life but she may even be able to find her.
2. Where did your inspiration for the story come from?
Music was my inspiration for this novel. I love music. I can’t tell you how many iPod mixes, mixed tapes, burned CDs I’ve made for every kind of occasion in my life. So many important moments in my life have been colored by music. So Chasing Eveline is a big love letter to music.
3. I love the way you incorporated music into the story. Is there a band that you felt as connected to as Ivy did to Chasing Eveline?
I loved a lot of the 80s bands growing up. Depeche Mode was the first concert I ever went to. I pretty much wanted to be Susanna Hoffs of The Bangles. I think The Smiths is probably my favorite band of all time. The specific idea for the plot of Chasing Eveline developed from my intense desire for The Smiths to reunite. I was too young to ever see them in concert before they broke up.
4. Completing and publishing a book is a great accomplishment. What has that process been like, and is there any advice you can give to those aspiring to do the same?
It’s been a long journey, that’s for sure. For some people, it seems this process is easy and acceptance comes quickly. I wasn’t one of those people! I worked hard and relentlessly pursued every opportunity I could find. Along the way, I’ve become very good at dealing with rejection. For any aspiring writer, I would just advise that he/she find some sort of inner suit of armour. Rejection will be difficult, but you can’t let it stop you.
5. I had the opportunity to explore your blog (https://lesliehauser.com/blog/), which is beautifully put together and really fun to go through. Can you talk a little about the content and what readers can find there?
Thank you! I love blogging. It allows me to work on being creative and to practice with short pieces because I’m not always writing a novel. On Mondays, I post a Photo Story. It’s a bit of flash fiction focused on a picture. On Tuesdays, I participate in Top Ten Tuesday with the book blogging crowd. Thursdays and/or Fridays, I designate as a “free” day. I write a music match-up (matching a YA with a song or band), longer flash fiction, poetry, cupcake recipes (I love cupcakes and mention one in all the novels I’ve written!), or anything else I can think of. I also participate in a monthly Author Toolbox Blog Hop.
6. I noticed that there is another YA Contemporary project that you are currently working on, Lucky Girl. Is this the next release we can look forward to?
My next project is actually Fireflies at Night, a YA contemporary under agent representation and out on submission. I’m very excited about it because it’s quite topical. It’s about 17-year- old Emma Loukas and her journey to put the pieces of her life back together after her parents and brother are killed in a terrorist attack at a baseball game.
Lucky Girl is actually the first YA manuscript I wrote. I hope to find it a home some day and bring swoony Adrian to life! 🙂
7. For anyone interested in learning more about your projects, where can they connect with you?
I love to hear from people! There is a contact form on my web site www.lesliehauser.com. Or you can interact with me on Twitter or Instagram. I’m @LHauser27 in both places.
8. Is there anything you would like to say to your readers?
I wanted Chasing Eveline to be a book that puts happiness in the world. So it’s my hope that it will bring a smile to anyone who reads it. And if it does bring a bit of happiness to you, sharing your thoughts about the book with someone else is one of the kindest things you can do for an author! Especially an indie author 🙂 I’m very grateful to anyone who writes a review or tells a friend about Chasing Eveline.
Thank you so much for your time. Best of luck with your novel and future projects!
Thank you for having me on the blog today!