Deadly Ever After

The Writing Adventures of The Undead Duo–Julie Hutchings and Kristen Strassel

Julie Interviews Kristen About BECAUSE THE NIGHT

Today’s Brew: Champagne!!

No one can bring you an interview quite like The Undead Duo can. So when I put together my release week blog post schedule, I had to have Julie interview me. Of course, Julie asks all the questions you won’t see anywhere else. So without further ado…

Julie: There’s a lot of buzz about the sexuality in Because the Night. Tell me why you made the book have a strong sexual overtone.
Kristen: I don’t think it’s so much the actual sex, because let’s face it, an 18 year old is not going to reinventing the wheel here. I think it’s more about Callie’s emotions and her attitudes towards sex. She has strong feelings for both Blade and Tristan and she doesn’t apologize about that. I tried to keep the actual relationships as real as possible, and let her make mistakes. I think that’s where the buzz is. You either are going to love Callie and sympathize with her decisions, or you’re going to not agree with what she does at all. I love that.
Because the Night is a New Adult book. New Adult is about finding your way to adulthood, and sex and sexual relationships are both a huge part of figuring out who you are and what you want. Had there been no sex, quite frankly, there would have been no story. Or not one I would have wanted to read.

Julie: Callie does some dumb shit. Explain dumb shit you’ve done and why you think it’s important for NA and YA readers to read about it.

Kristen: When we were teenagers, there was this all ages rock bar about 40 minutes away from us. Deringers. As soon as I got my license, we were there every weekend. Of course, it was a bar. It closed at 1. We were 16, 17, 18, in a bar, with people of age. So many nights, we’d figure out what to tell our parents (one night I stayed out so late…read next morning…and my mother reported her car stolen) and go off and party with whatever hot guys asked us to out. Once a guy named Dragon wanted me to go on tour with him. Sometimes, we’d go up to them and tell them we were hanging out. So why are we still alive? I have some really good friends, and I was a good friend in turn. If any shenanigans were about happen, we’d stop each other, make sure everything was cool, and if it wasn’t…watch out.
I think it’s very important for readers to see the consequences of the less than best case scenario. Not everything has a nice neat solution, and every action has an equal and opposite reaction. In this digital world, we live in our own little bubbles. It’s safe here, we control it. But out in the world, we can only control what we do, not how people will react to it. Books are a safe place to learn and explore about things you might be curious about.

Julie: All of your characters are fumbling a bit, but especially Callie and Tristan. Do you think this makes them stronger or more unreliable?
Kristen: This is why I love writing in first person. It makes everything the perception of one character. Callie might not be the most reliable narrator. She’s honest with us, but she’s not always forthright with Tristan or especially Blade. Plus, we only see what happens through her eyes. What’s happening behind the scenes, hmmm? (Stay tuned). I’m not sure if it makes them stronger, but I definitely thinks it makes them more interesting. I’ve said many times, if I wanted to write about people who had their shit together, the book would have been set at an accounting seminar.
Julie: What do you think is a mistake to do in writing this genre?
Kristen: Holding back. Don’t follow a formula. Just write.

Julie: If it couldn’t be vampires, what would it be?


Kristen: Hmmm…maybe gods. Greek, Roman, and some of the more obscure mythologies. I’m not a fan of all the paranormal cast ofcharacters, so if it couldn’t be vampires or gods then it’s just regular people.

Julie: Tell me the craziest thing you did in Vegas and don’t be shy.
Kristen: Hahahahaha. No.
Julie: You don’t have a 5 year plan and pride yourself on that. How do you think that’s helped you? Does Callie have a 5 year plan?
Kristen: Look back to November of 2008, and tell me honestly if you saw your life playing out exactly as it did. I sure as hell didn’t. I’ve been lucky than I’ve been able to realize two of my dreams in that time, but there was a lot of heartache and struggle that I would have never bargained for. Life doesn’t care if you have plans. You can prepare all you want, but you need to be able to roll with the punches. And some of them are going to be sucker punches from out of nowhere.
I’ve always been someone who will act on an idea or opportunity when it presents itself. Sometimes being safe gets you nowhere. Take chances. Live on your terms. It sounds like a Hallmark card, but it’s true.
Callie doesn’t have a 5 minute plan. Anything she had in mind has gone out the window on the last line of the book.

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2 thoughts on “Julie Interviews Kristen About BECAUSE THE NIGHT

  1. Ha! I just thought back to Nov. ’08 and it completely blew my mind because EVERYTHING is different – I had a major sucker punch just a month into ’09 that changed my life and career track completely (and ultimately – eventually – for the better). Fuck the five year plan, indeed.

  2. Would like to point out that five years ago I was still in high school and my five year plan went as far as getting famous.

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