Thursday, June 11, 2015

Kismet Book Tours, Interview, & Giveaway: 32 Seconds (Johanna Pitcairn)

To the average onlooker, the city of Los Angeles represents glitz, glamour, and the celebrity lifestyle. But to seventeen-year-old Julie Jones, the city is a vast host of problems she’s longing to get away from. The latest? An unfortunate disagreement with her ex-boyfriend Mark—one that could land her in some serious hot water.
So rather than face the troubles that torment her, Julie decides to run away from her old life and start fresh somewhere new. But her parents aren’t on board with the plan, and she soon finds her bank accounts frozen and her wallet empty.
With just seventy-five dollars and a full tank of gas, the troubled teen is far too stubborn to turn around and head home. So what’s a girl to do?
What Julie doesn’t know is that her travels are about to take her somewhere unexpected—a place where she’ll be forced to come face to face with the ghosts of her past in order to secure her future.
A tale of redemption, hope, and freedom lost and found, 32 Seconds is a thought-provoking exploration into the human spirit and the nature of forgiveness.

Johanna K. Pitcairn has dreamed of becoming a writer since childhood--authoring her first novel at the age of nine, and countless poems, stories, and screenplays by the age of seventeen. Later, rather than pursuing a career as a director and screenwriter, she decided to go to law school, driven by her father's opinion that "writing does not pay the bills."

Ten years later, she moved to New York City, which inspired her to go back to the excitement, wonder, and constant change of being a writer. Pitcairn is a huge fan of psychological-thriller novels and movies, and delves into her hopes, fears, friends, enemies, and everything in between in her own writing.

Thank you for having me! It’s a treat to be part of such a great tour, and promote my baby, 32 SECONDS. 

What gave you the inspiration to write this book?

When I first started working on this story, I created a main character who I didn’t realize was a mirror image of myself. And Julie Jones, although still a work in progress, pulled me in for some serious introspection. So my life, the decisions I made, and the consequences of my willful actions, are all inspiration for this story. Obviously, a lot of the story is also fiction but the feelings are mine. The struggle is mine too. Julie’s growth is my growth, except she got to turn things around at seventeen, and I did that big one-eighty at thirty. 

Who is your favorite character in the book?

I like Evan a lot. He’s the voice of reason. Some readers don’t really understand his purpose, because he seems to be such an independent character, yet he’s sharing a very strong bond with Julie, the MC. He’s part of her in a sense (I don’t want to give away too much). Julie is a great female lead, with a lot of potential, but Evan is the sidekick who really triggers and encourages her metamorphosis. Without him, Julie wouldn’t grow as fast and as beautifully. 

Which came first, the title or the novel?

The novel came first. It had two different titles before I settled on 32 SECONDS. The title is catchy, and has a double meaning. 32 SECONDS refers to this pause between a thought and a decision. Julie has 32 Seconds to make the right choice, or the wrong choice. And 32, when combined, makes the number 5, which in numerology bears a lot of the character traits Julie has. So that title worked perfectly for all purposes. But the story grew around that title a lot. It’s like a marriage, the title and the book created a perfect union. 

What scene in the book are you most proud of, and why?

I’m going to say the ending. The resolution of the story carries a strong message. Failure doesn’t mean everything’s come to an end. Forgiveness can mend and solidify broken relationships. Honesty helps to live a good and happy existence. Humility strengthens character, and offers a new perspective. The ending summarizes all the lessons learned by Julie throughout her journey. I cry every time I read the ending. It’s full of hope, and it’s a positive happy one. 

Thinking way back to the beginning, what’s the most important thing you’ve learned as a writer from then to now?

I learned to stay focused, and not doubt myself. If I start listening to the voice in my head, which tells me I can’t do something, I’m finished. I have to keep thinking positive. I have to keep telling myself I will finish the story, and no matter how long it takes me to write it, I will publish it. I will find the time to write, and when I can’t write, I will think about writing. Writing is hard enough as it’s a solitary activity, and the muse doesn’t always want to cooperate. So patience, and consistency are key. And not every writer out there is Stephen King or J.K. Rowling, but it doesn’t mean I can’t write a book. ☺ 

What do you like most about the cover of the book?

I love it so much I want to frame it. I love the imagery, and the meaning of each element in the cover. The water, which represents change, and serenity, the girl, which represents Julie Jones, the title font, bold, and strong, yet also fragile and vulnerable, and the colors, which bring that eerie vibe to it. It’s a very successful cover. I’m very proud of it. 

What new release book are you looking most forward to in 2015?

I don’t really follow releases that closely. I’m the reader who finds books and reads them, and when I like them, I try to keep reading more books from these authors, but I don’t keep track on a calendar of when their next book will be out. I’m the reader who will read Harry Potter now once everyone has read them and seen the movies. LOL

What was your favorite book in 2014?

I have to give it to David Wong – This Book Is Full Of Spiders, which is the sequel of John Dies At The End. This book made me laugh beyond belief. And again, it was published in 2012, and I barely got to it in 2014… 

What’s up next for you?

I’m working on an urban fantasy trilogy called The Manicheans, which is a project I initially undertook in 2010. I’m reworking the three volumes, and adding a bunch of characters and subplots, which didn’t exist in the initial draft. In a nutshell, The Manicheans are a garden variety of earthlings with a plethora of problems and responsibilities, who realize they have been gifted with supernatural powers to fight a group of ill-intentioned aliens looking for a new home after their planet was destroyed… or so they claim. The Manicheans mix urban fantasy, and sci-fi, a little bit a la Mars Attacks, so funny and light, but also deep and meaningful on a lot of levels. I’m looking to write an epic tale, so this right now will occupy most of my time. I also have a fictional auto-biographic book of my alter ego Kiki Reynolds, started in 2013, which will be worked on after the Manicheans is finished. 

Is there anything that you would like to add?

Thank you for having me, and I hope you enjoy 32 SECONDS. I love feedback, so don’t hesitate to ping me on Twitter, or Facebook!

Tour Schedule:

Monday, June 1st - Fiktshun - Author Interview
Tuesday, June 2nd - Reading with ABC - Guest Post & Review
Wednesday, June 3rd - Supernatural Snark - Guest Post
Thursday, June 4th - Book Swoon - Guest Post
Friday, June 5th - Candace's Book Blog - Guest Post & Review

Monday, June 8th - Bewitched Bookworms - Guest Post
Tuesday, June 9th - Two Chicks on Books - Author Interview
Wednesday, June 10th - Sassy Book Lovers - Guest Post & Review
Thursday, June 11th - Curling Up With A Good Book - Guest Post & Review
Friday, June 12th - Living in a Bookworld - Author Interview

Monday, June 15th - Me, My Shelf and I - Author Interview
Tuesday, June 16th - Her Book Thoughts - Guest Post & Review
Wednesday, June 17th - Literary Meanderings - Author Interview
Thursday, June 18th - Bibliophile Mystery - Guest Post
Friday, June 19th - Blissful Book Reviews - Guest Post & Review

1 comment:

  1. Johanna,
    I cannot wait to read 32 seconds!!
    great giveaway!!