I’m so happy today to publish Monica Murphy’s interview! We are celebrating the release of Pretty Dead Girls her mystery novel.
You can find my review HERE
Firts details about the tour
January 8-26, 2018
Link to Goodreads:
• Signed copy of Pretty Dead Girls by Monica Murphy
Pretty Dead Girls by Monica Murphy
Publication Date: January 2, 2018
Publisher: Entangled Teen
Beautiful. Perfect. Dead.
In the peaceful seaside town of Cape Bonita, wicked secrets and lies are hidden just beneath the surface. But all it takes is one tragedy for them to be exposed.
The most popular girls in school are turning up dead, and Penelope Malone is terrified she’s next. All the victims so far have been linked to Penelope—and to a boy from her physics class. The one she’s never really noticed before, with the rumored dark past and a brooding stare that cuts right through her.
There’s something he isn’t telling her. But there’s something she’s not telling him, either.
Everyone has secrets, and theirs might get them killed.
First let me thank you for agreeing to answer my questions! I guess you must be really right now with the release of Pretty Dead Girls, Christmas, New Year Eve, buying gifts etc so I really appreciate the time you’ll take to answer these questions.
Thanks for having me! Yes, I’ve been busy with Christmas, the book coming out, and all the other fun stuff, but I’m glad to be here!
I am chatty and love asking some personal questions about authors to let readers know them better. Only answer the questions you feel comfortable with really!
As Pretty Dead Girls is a mystery I tried to ask questions avoiding spoilers.
Now let’s the show begin the floor is yours 😉
First some questions about you:
Did you always know that you wanted to write one day? Or was it something triggered by some event?
I was always a big reader. I’ve devoured books since I was very young, and when I discovered my mom’s secret stash of romance novels when I was a teen, I realized, “Hey I want to write something like this someday.” It took me a while (real life got in the way), but now here I am, with a career as a writer. It’s pretty much like a dream come true.
Who is the person behind the pen? How would your loved ones describe Monica? What are your likes and dislikes? Pet peeves? What is your kryptonite?
I think my loved ones would say I’m nice, I’m funny and I’m always there for them. I like spending time with my family, Stranger Things (almost finished with season two!), traveling, cats, blankets and candles.
My dislikes are rude people, too much cilantro (ha ha), and black licorice.
My kryptonite? Cake. I love cake! I shouldn’t eat it though. It’s bad for us. Sugar is the devil (sobs).
What is a typical writing day for you? Do you need calm or music? Do you write at home or outside?
I can write pretty much in any atmosphere. I need to be able to write easily whether it’s quiet or noisy, at home or at Starbucks. This past year I didn’t write nearly as much, so I got out of the habit. I’m retraining myself to write every single day, and so far, so good! I have to set a goal for myself and meet it every day in order to stay on track.
Now about the story and your writing process:
What inspired this story? You speak about urban legend can you develop please?
Really, it was the TV show Scream Queens (the first season) that inspired me to write this book. But I used to read urban legend tales when I was a kid, and they scared the crap out of me! I think those stories totally influenced this book too, and my decision to write PRETTY DEAD GIRLS.
Why go for a mystery? Is it more difficult to write than another story?
I wanted to change it up a little bit and challenge myself. I get bored writing the same thing again and again so I like to do something different. It was definitely harder to write a mystery because I wanted to get it just right and not miss any important details. Thank goodness for my editor!
What did you battle with writing the book? Some scene that would not be written? What was your epiphany?
I wrote this book over a year ago, and at the time, I had deadlines on top of deadlines. This book was the last in the long string of deadlines, so I have to confess…the entire book (the first go around) was very difficult to write.
What was the easiest to write?
The scene where Penelope and Cass were being chased by another car? I actually wrote that scene a year prior to me writing the book, because that was the first scene that came into my brain when I was thinking about this idea. I realized quick I needed to get it down before I forgot, so I wrote it in a document all by itself and saved it until the right time.
If you had to do it again what would you change? And would you change anything?
I probably would’ve plotted the story out more. I hate plotting! I prefer to write with no real plot in my head, which with a mystery, that’s difficult. So I should’ve plotted better.
How did you give life to Penelope? She is quite snob even if she is not the worst of the bunch. So who inspired you? Confession I don’t like entitled rich girls. Did you like her right away because I did not! She grew on me.
No, I didn’t like Penelope right away, and that was the point. I didn’t want to like her at first, because I knew she had some growing up to do. After watching Scream Queens, those girls were so awful, and I wanted my girls to be similar. But I also tried to redeem Penelope and show some growth. I hope I was able to do that.
I’m glad to hear she grew on you!
Who inspired Cass? How would you describe his personality?
Oh, there was a kid that went to my daughter’s high school last year and his name was Cass. I thought it was a great name, one we don’t see much in novels, so I decided to use it. So he’s based on a real life Cass, though I don’t know real-life Cass at all. Whoops.
Cass is a loner. He’s closed off because he’s been through a lot and he doesn’t trust many people. Some might think he’s weird or whatever, but he’s not. He’s just built up walls because he trusts pretty much no one.
I think Cass is my favorite character out of all of them. Well, and Mrs. Adney. She’s based on a real person too. The vice principal at my daughter’s school, as well as the mother of one of my very good friends. (shout out to the real Mrs. Adney!)
The story broaches topics like bullying, backstabbing, etc. Would you say that high school has become harsher this last decade? Were you betrayed at school or bullied?
I don’t think high school has become harsher. What’s changed is that people can hide behind social media and say harsher things to each other, and that’s a problem. I can’t believe some of the things teens say to each other—they would never say those things in person. But bullying, betrayal, backstabbing, yes. That all went on in high school when I was there, and it’s still happening. I don’t think it ever really changes, they just have new challenges to face.
The girls lie to their parents and cover for each other. Can you share one thing you lied to your parents about in high school? And one thing you covered for your friend?
Hmmm, I lied about going to various parties when I told my parents I was just going to a friend’s house (sorry Mom and Dad!). One time we stole my friend’s sister’s car and went to a party and then drove all around town. But we lied and said we never took the car. I don’t know how we got away with that. LOL
Were you in the “in” crowd in high school like Penelope? Or did you dream to be in?
I was right in the middle. I wasn’t on the outskirts but I wasn’t ultra popular either. When I was in seventh and eighth grade, I wanted to be a cheerleader so bad, but I was awkward and uncoordinated so I gave up on that dream. By the time I was a senior, I was more comfortable in my own skin (but not totally, I still had a bunch of insecurities), so I didn’t worry about being part of the popular crowd.
Now let’s end with some lighter questions:
Favorite quote or excerpt in the book?
The scene I mentioned earlier, where a car is chasing after Penelope and Cass.
Favorite quote in life?
Regret nothing! Seriously, ask for what you want. The worst they can say is no.
Favorite book boyfriend?
Oh, that’s tough. Too many to mention!
What are your favorite books for 2017 and the most awaited for 2018?
I don’t have an anticipated read for 2018 but my favorite read of 2017 was ONE OF US IS LYING by Karen M. McManus. I loved that book soooooooo much.
Name 5 things that would be on your bucket list.
Go to Italy
Take a cruise to anywhere (never been on a cruise!)
Live by the ocean
I can’t think of anything else! I need to plan a better bucket list. LOL
If you were Harry Potter (or Hermione Granger) what spell would you invent?
This is totally unoriginal, but I want to fly! Or teleport. Snap my fingers and bam, I’m where I want to be, no flights or driving involved!
About the Author
Monica Murphy is the New York Times, USA Today and #1 international bestselling author of the One Week Girlfriend series, the Billionaire Bachelors and The Rules series. Her books have been translated in almost a dozen languages and has sold over one million copies worldwide. She is a traditionally published author with Bantam/Random House and Harper Collins/Avon, as well as an independently published author. She writes new adult, young adult and contemporary romance. She is also USA Today bestselling romance author Karen Erickson. She is a wife and a mother of three who lives with her family in central California on fourteen acres in the middle of nowhere, along with their one dog and too many cats. A self-confessed workaholic, when she’s not writing, she’s reading or hanging out with her husband and kids. She’s a firm believer in happy endings, though she will admit to putting her characters through many angst-filled moments before they finally get that hard won HEA.
Thanks for reading!