Friday, July 13, 2012

Feature Friday: Katie McGarry

For this week's Feature Friday we have the lovely Ms. Katie McGarry!

Katie was a teenager during the age of grunge and boy bands and remembers those years as the best and worst of her life. She is a lover of music, happy endings, reality television, and is a secret University of Kentucky basketball fan. Her YA novel, Pushing the Limits, will debut with Harlequin Teen on July 31, 2012.

Interview:
A.L.:
What advice would you give to a budding author?

Katie:
Write. Read. Find a great critique group. Never give up.

I began writing because I have characters alive in my mind and stories they demand for me to tell. I love the rush of my fingers tapping against the keys as I delve into a scene that’s been begging to be released on the page. Try to never lose that joy.

A.L.
Where did you get the inspiration to write Pushing the Limits?

Katie:
I found the inspiration to write Pushing the Limits when I was free writing for another story. I thought it would be fun to write a scene with my characters in therapy. Halfway into the scene, I realized that my heroine’s voice had changed. That new voice became Echo.

I gave Echo room to play and when I asked myself who would be the best person to bring her out of her shell, Noah was created.

A.L.:
Did you hit any snags while writing the book?

Katie:
Yes. About three-quarters of the way into the book I had originally planned for Noah to do a certain something. No matter what type of scene I wrote, I could not force Noah to participate in what I had plotted.

Once I realized that Noah wanted control of his own destiny, I replotted with his plans in mind. This meant I had to backtrack and rewrite about ten thousand words.

A.L.:
Who is your favorite character in Pushing the Limits and why?

Katie:
I absolutely love Echo and Noah, but I have to say that Isaiah (Noah’s best friend) is a guilty favorite of mine. One, he’s gorgeous in that tattooed rough type of way. Two, he’s loyal and would defend a friend to the end. Three, he means what he says and says what he means. Four, he’s devoted. This is the type of guy a girl would love to date.

A.L.:
What’s your favorite book and why?

Katie:
The Outsiders by S.E. Hinton. This is my personal favorite and an absolutely amazing story. The story encompasses friendships, family, and loyalty. The main character tears at your heart. This was the first story I ever stayed up all night to read. It’s the first book I ever read over and over again until the cover fell off. It’s the first time I ever read something that, for a few seconds, made me stop feeling completely alone.

A.L.:
It seems that most YA authors are focusing on paranormal, dystopian, and futuristic novels, did you purposely chose to write a contemporary piece or did it just kind of fall in your lap?

Katie:
Pushing the Limits sort of fell into my lap. I love the other genres that you mentioned above, but once I found Noah and Echo I was hooked. Their story was pretty complicated and I think I would have been overwhelmed if I had tried to write them within another genre.

A.L.:
If you could meet one dead famous person, who would it be? What one question are you burning to ask them?

Katie:
Margaret Mitchell, author of Gone with the Wind. I would love to know what she thought really happened between Rhett Butler and Scarlett O’Hara after the story ended.

A.L.:
So, you love reality television. What’s your favorite show of all time and whose your favorite character?

Katie:
Hands down: Big Brother. I watch it religiously every summer. I don’t have a favorite character but I do enjoy anyone who has a great attitude, cracks jokes, and I’m a sucker for a show-mance!

A.L.:
What are you working on now?

Katie:
I’m currently working on revisions for Dare You To. This story follows Beth, a secondary character from Pushing the Limits. Dare You To is scheduled to be released in 2013.

A.L.:
So, you have a ballad written for Echo, the main female character in Pushing the Limits. Is Angela McGarry a family member?

Katie:
Yes. Angela is my sister-in-law and friend. Angela is an extremely talented song writer and singer and she brilliantly captured Echo in the form of a song. You can check out a sample of the song, Can You, at http://bit.ly/N2VDQX and buy it on itunes at http://bit.ly/NsxjHn .

A.L.:
Do you think Echo and you have a lot in common?

Katie:
Yes and no. While I’ve never experienced anything to the level of what Echo experiences in Pushing the Limits, I have experienced the grief of losing a loved one and I also had a repressed memory. I was bitten by a dog when I was in second grade and repressed the memory until I was in college.

Once I found Echo’s personality, I funneled some of my experiences and emotions into her.

The Giveaway:
 Katie's going to send and autographed copy of her debut novel, Pushing the Limits, to one lucky winner.  You'll have to wait a couple of weeks to get this special prize cause it's not even out yet!  But it's totally worth the wait!

Pushing the Limits"I won't tell anyone, Echo. I promise." Noah tucked a curl behind my ear. It had been so long since someone touched me like he did. Why did it have to be Noah Hutchins? His dark brown eyes shifted to my covered arms. "You didn't do that-did you? It was done to you?" No one ever asked that question. They stared. They whispered. They laughed. But they never asked.

So wrong for each other...and yet so right.

No one knows what happened the night Echo Emerson went from popular girl with jock boyfriend to gossiped-about outsider with "freaky" scars on her arms. Even Echo can't remember the whole truth of that horrible night. All she knows is that she wants everything to go back to normal. But when Noah Hutchins, the smoking-hot, girl-using loner in the black leather jacket, explodes into her life with his tough attitude and surprising understanding, Echo's world shifts in ways she could never have imagined. They should have nothing in common. And with the secrets they both keep, being together is pretty much impossible.Yet the crazy attraction between them refuses to go away. And Echo has to ask herself just how far they can push the limits and what she'll risk for the one guy who might teach her how to love again.

"An edgy romance that pulls you in and never lets go. I was hooked!"-Gena Showalter,  New York Times bestselling author of the Intertwined series.


Read Goodreads Reviews.
Get it on Barnes and Noble.
Get it on Amazon.

How to Enter:
Enter the giveaway using Rafflecopter. Hit the green "Do It" buttons, follow the prompts, and hit the green enter buttons when you're done. (You may have to log in using Facebook to do this). There will be one winner (selected by Rafflecopter). I will contact the winner via email. This contest is open to US entrants.

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