Life On Hold
Life On Hold
Life On Hold
Karen McQuestion
A Q&A with Karen McQuestion Question: Your path to becoming a published author has been anything but traditional. You became an overnight success after self-publishing your books on Kindle, and a publishing contract with AmazonEncore followed shortly thereafter. What finally made you decide to take matters in your own hands by self-publishing your books? Was that a difficult decision? Karen McQuestion: No, it was an easy decision! For years I tried to get published the traditional way. When I learned that anyone could self-publish an ebook (for free!), I decided I had nothing to lose. I’m very glad I took the plunge. Question: What advice do you have for struggling writers out there who find themselves in the same position you did years ago with no publishing contract, but stories to share with the world? Karen McQuestion: If you’ve gotten feedback from others, and are convinced your writing and stories are solid, take advantage of the new opportunities for writers today. Between blogs, online publications, and ebooks, writers can get their work in front of readers faster and easier than ever. And of course, keep writing, because that’s the only way to improve. Question: Your first book, A Scattered Life, was a huge success--a Kindle bestseller (reaching #5 in the Kindle Store) with more than 100,000 copies sold and over 150 days in the top 100. What has this success been like? Karen McQuestion: It’s been unbelievable. I was interviewed by the Wall Street Journal, appeared on ABC's World News Now and America This Morning, and the novel was optioned for film by an L.A. production company. But the best part? After years of having the novel languish on my hard drive, people were finally reading it and enjoying it. Question: A Scattered Life is an adult novel. Your two new books, Favorite and Life on Hold are young adult novels. Have you always wanted to write for teens and young adults? Karen McQuestion: I think young adult fiction has gotten smarter and better than when I was a teenager. When my daughter started reading YA novels, she’d recommend books to me. I found that I loved them and started to get ideas for YA novels I wanted to write. Question: Life on Hold is about 15-year-old Rae Maddox who has spent her entire life on the move thanks to her mother. To protect herself, she’s decided to put her life on hold until she turns 18 and can make her own decisions. This is a really sad concept. Do you think a lot of teens out there can relate to Rae? If so, what do you hope they take away from this book? Karen McQuestion: I think everyone can relate to the feeling that something in life is holding you back. If only you had a different job, or lost weight, or were done with school, or owned a car, things would be better and you could finally live the life you want. But the truth of the matter is that today is all we’ve got. A person could wish their life away if they don’t find things to appreciate in the here and now. Question: Favorite has a mysterious element to it. Part thriller, part coming-of-age, it is about a young girl in search of her mother who went missing years before. Nothing--and no one--is quite as it seems in this book. Was it fun for you to write a story that has elements of a mystery/thriller in it? Do you think we’ll see more of this from you in the future? Karen McQuestion: I loved writing the book, but since I don’t outline I had no idea how it was going to go. More than once, I wrote myself into a corner, which was a little scary. I’d love to write another book in this genre, but next time I’ll think it through beforehand.

Book Details

Genre: 

  • Fiction

Age Level: 

  • 12 and up
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Rae has never stayed anywhere for long. Her free-spirited mother moves herself and Rae every time things don't work out. Rae, now fifteen years old, has learned to never get attached to any place, but her mom has made her a promise: No moving until Rae graduates. Rae has made a few friends, and is starting to enjoy life but nothing prepares her for Allison. Rae was picked by her vice principal to show this new girl around, but Allison seems ungrateful. Rae has a sleepover to try and break the ice, but it goes wrong. Rae sees another side of Allison, and doesn't know what to think.

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