Friday, January 29, 2010

Author Interview and Giveaway: Lauren Mechling discusses Dream Girl and Dream Life

I reviewed Lauren's books Dream Girl and Dream Life not long ago, and was so impressed with them, I had to get to know the writer behind the books a little better. Thus, the following interview.

In DREAM LIFE, Claire’s friend Becca gets invited to join the Blue Moons who beautify New York City. Let’s say a secret society invites YOU to become a member. What are they called and what is their undercover mission?
This is a question I've already asked myself and given much thought to, as it happens. The secret society I've been dreaming of being tapped to join is the Royal Academy of Stuff and Butternut. The mission is to secretly reward and humiliate those who are deemed deserving of our attention. Light on our feet, nearly invisible to the eye, we will scurry about like rats and make sure that the teenage girl who's being punished by her high school principal for keeping a clever blog keeps finding chocolates in her schoolbag or that the pretentious professor who makes withering remarks to his students accidentally sits in a bowl of butternut squash soup.

Butternut squash soup sounds pretty good about now. I was fascinated by the locations you chose for your books. How much of the NYC we read about in DREAM GIRL and DREAM LIFE really exists?
It's all there--the professor housing complex by the Angelika movie theater, the Green-Wood Cemetery, the Upper East Side shop with deadly-good hot chocolate, the little mews with tiny houses fit for elves or goblins. I didn't make anything up.It's just a matter of waking up and smelling the possibility. And, yes, walking away from your computer.

You know, I’ve been compiling a list of recommendations of things to do in NYC by YA authors. What are your hot tips for a first or second timer in the city?
I'd recommend going for lunch at the Angelika Kitchen, a healthy restaurant that specializes in hilariously glamorous hippies eating piles of veggies and seaweed, on 12th St and 2nd Ave. Then you can go right across the street to Momofuku Milk bar and load up on the most disgusting and delicious desserts known to mankind. I especially recommend their compost cookie. How they get that much butter and sugar into a cookie is a mystery worth a Claire book.

Okay, then I'd go uptown to the Neue Gallerie, a museum in an old mansion that specializes in early 20th c Austrian art. It's a wildly beautiful and stately place--every time I'm there, I feel like a ball is about to break out.

Then I'd call me and ask me to take you to Brooklyn to look at the crazy little mews with the goblin houses described above. You'll feel like you're in some 19th century Gothic novel, until one of the residents stomps out of his house to take out the trash and he'll be wearing shorts and a bathrobe.

I am definitely calling you up! So, I see you were a fellow Tiger Beat subscriber. What posters from that esteemed magazine made it on your wall?
The sad thing is, much as I wanted to be, I wasn't that into boys, so I was entirely undiscriminating. I'd pull out ALL the pictures: Fred Savage, Corey Haim, Corey Feldman, Kirk Cameron, 9-year-old Leo DiCaprio, anyone, and I'll stick them up. My mom thought it was horrifying and came into my room and added some shots of Al Sharpton and Rodney Dangerfield. I didn't notice for a whole week.

That is hilarious! Any more books about Claire in the pipeline? I hope so.
Oh, a girl can dream!

Thanks Lauren!



So now for the giveaway. You can choose either a copy of DREAM GIRL or a copy of DREAM LIFE if you already have DREAM GIRL. Just tell me in the comments what pictures adorned your wall as a tween and you are entered. (As you might have guessed, my walls were covered with cat posters. Sad, but true.) As always, 1 extra entry will be given to those who spread the word either via linking to the contest from your blog (sidebar is fine) or tweeting with @lenoreva (make sure you indicate this in an extra comment for it to count). This contest is US and Canada only and will close at 11:59 PM CST on February 10th.

51 comments:

scottsgal said...

OK I'm dating myself here but my walls were covered with Shaun Cassidy poster lol
msboatgal at aol.com

Jami said...

As a tween I had a thing for Jonathan Taylor Thomas. He took up most of the space on my wall. As I got into the early teen years, it was Nsync and Backstreet Boys. *Hangs head in shame*

extra point for blogging contest!
http://yaaddict.blogspot.com/2010/01/new-contest-presenting-lenore.html

Chris said...

I'm just like Lauren. I had River Phoenix, the Coreys, Kirk Cameron too. I also had lots of unicorns on there too.

readingandrooibos said...

Horses! I also had a large poster of tropical fish from when I visited the Camden Adventure Aquarium with my parents. Kinda wish I knew where that went when I took it down in favor of Silverchair, Bush, Tori Amos and... Hanson.

Lauren said...

Omigod unicorns!! I want a unicorn poster for my room, preferable by Lisa Frank.

Jenny said...

Oh, gosh, I had a big poster with jungle creatures urging everyone to save the rain forests, and then I had a Declaration of Independence (so dorky!), a painting by my uncle, and a poster map of Narnia. And a large poster of a kitten.

Excellent giveaway!

Jenny said...

(I tweeted the contest, also.)

Lenore said...

Never had the unicorns. But I may have had a small, tasteful picture of Tori Amos. And speaking of dorky, my trash can had all the presidents of the US listed on it.

Anonymous said...
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throuthehaze said...

As a tween I don't think I had much on my walls other than those glow in the dark star things and a Nirvana poster.
throuthehaze at gmail dot com

holdenj said...

Oh funny. My trashcan had smiley-faces all over it! I had a bunch of travel type posters up in those years--mostly of France. I still have a beautiful drawing type poster of Sacre Couer in our basement. I made it to France once, but settled right where I grew up.
JHolden955(at)gmail(dot)com

Anonymous said...

i would love to read either book...thanks....

butterflies :) adorned my room

karenk
kmkuka(at)yahoo(dot)Com

Alicia said...

My walls were covered on one side with Backstreet Boys and 'NSYNC posters and the other side had gymnastics posters. You could not even see the paint!

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Michelle said...

Wonderful interview! Very clever to get NYC tips from the authors. I haven't read either of these books and they look quite good.

As far as the posters go, I am ashamed to admit that I was a bit of a tomboy growing up and never posted boy pictures on my walls. Sad right? But I did have pics of basketball teams - so that equates to boys right? Right?

Star Shadow said...

What a great giveaway and contest idea, When I was growing up I had pink rug, pink walls, frilly curtains.. No wonder I hate pink now lol, Unicorn posters adorned my room, i do also remember a photo of Brian Austen Green and Luke Perry on my wall and a picture of my favorite singer Tiffany on my desk

Literary Feline said...

Thank you for such a great interview, Lenore and Lauren!

I had posters of animals on my walls all through my tween and teen years. I've never been big on wanting pictures of actual people. I think I may have had a photo of Mel Gibson from Hamlet up for a short while.

No need to enter me in the giveaway.

Marie said...

LOL! Great interview! I love the bit about the posters & not noticing who was up there!

Jessy said...

I don't and never liked clutter so I didn't put anything on my walls. When I was around 14 or 15 I got a corkboard and had pictures of friends on it. I had and still have a huge thing for Josh Hartnett, so of course I had to have his picture on there too. Come to think of it, he was also my screensaver and backround until my computer shut down for good.

findjessyhere at gmail dot com

Jessy said...

tweeted: http://twitter.com/Emma015/statuses/8380235561

findjessyhere at gmail dot com

Michelle said...

Let's see. I remember Jonathan Taylor Thomas, Leonardo Di Caprio, and Devon Sawa being up there (definitely taken from Tiger Beat). Later on I confess that Justin Timberlake replaced those earlier ones.

What a fun contest. Thanks for the giveaway.

And I tweeted. http://twitter.com/michelleerin/statuses/8383867765

michelle at mybooksmylife dot com

Lorin said...

I made about a bucket of butternut squash soup the other day. You are welcome to have some. Might be a bit difficult to get it to you, though. =)

No need to enter me in the contest.

Staci said...

I got the first one for Lily the other day at the library. Loved reading about Lauren!!

callbrichaotic said...

My walls were covered with "I Love Lucy" calendars and pictures. Also, there may have been some Harry Potter pictures, but the illustrations rather than photos from the movies.

justpeachy36 said...

justpeachy36@yahoo.com

I can't remember who I had on my wall... but I had a great picture of the original Battlestar Galactica cast... It was my favorite. Richard Hatch and Dirk Benedict...

Please enter me in the giveaway.

stacybuckeye said...

Oh, the good old days of Tiger Beat. Do they still print that?

Jenny N. said...

As a tween I think I had posters of The Backstreet Boy and Spice Girls and I was crazy in love with Johnathon Taylor Thomas (JTT).

Tweeted: http://twitter.com/Jullysay/statuses/8403055461

jen4777[at]hotmail.com

Jessica said...

As a tween: NKOTB ALL over my wall

As a teen: The Beatles, Smashing Pumpkins, and Brad Pitt from Legends of the Fall

Jackeline R. said...

I was a tween not that long ago so...Robert Pattison

Yeah not long ago at all.

tink122595 {at}hotmail{dot}com

purplg8r said...

As a tween, I always loved Devon Sawa and had his pictures up on my walls!

belle2211(at)yahoo(dot)com

purplg8r said...

And I blogged about the contest here.

Jill of The O.W.L. said...

C. Thomas Howell!!!!!! He played Ponyboy in The Outsiders. I teach that book and we watch the movie. My students laugh when I tell them!

foltzsfantasticbooks at gmail.com

cantabile--xx said...

My walls were covered with dog posters (= I went through a phase where I was determined to be a vet, even though I'm the most squeamish person alive. Naturally, it didn't last very long!

alannakurt at gmail dot com

Thanks for hosting a great giveaway!

cantabile--xx said...

I posted about your contest on my sidebar here:

http://thedmlibrary.blogspot.com

Thanks again!

alannakurt at gmail dot com

mindy said...

really dating myself the hermans hermits thanks for the giveaway minsthins at optonline dot net

Bani said...

I'd like to be in the running for Dream Life. Pics that adorned my wall as a teen.. I would cut out any images from magazines or newspapers that left an impact on me and tape them on the wall. I kinda miss doing that.

wakeupangel at gmail dot com

Bani said...

Tweeted here.

http://twitter.com/baniclips/status/8465603612

Love the author's NYC recommendations by the way! I want to go to those restaurants.

Simply Stacie said...

I had pictures of 80s hunks like Kirk Cameron and River Phoenix.

simplystacieblog at gmail dot com

Chip said...

I had Adam and the Ants in my bedroom.

chipdip2010(at)hotmail(dot)com

Nicole said...

I was an 80's girl. I had Bon Jovi, Poison, and Motley Crue on my wall LOL!!

choateorama(at)gmail(dot)com

Zibilee said...

I loved this interview! Lauren sounds like a really creative and fun person. I would love to be entered in your giveaway, and to answer your question, my wall was adorned with multiple pictures of Guns N Roses when I was a teenager. Particularly head shots of their bass player, Duff McKagan.

Krista/Tower of Books said...

I'm still a teen, and I have pictures of The Beatles on my walls. :P

I linked this on my sidebar @ http://upthetowerofbooks.blogspot.com

towerofbooks(at)gmail(dot)com

Margie said...

I loved birds...so had a few pictures of parakeets!
mtakala1 AT yahoo DOT com

kelsey said...

I tweeted: http://twitter.com/alice91/status/8641515829.

Pictured that covered my walls: Posters of wolves, beach scenes, and Puss in Boots from Shrek 2. Also pictures of London, Avril Lavigne, cats, fairies, and dragons.

Thanks,
Kelsey
krae991@yahoo.com

Deedles said...

I had a some of those black velvet posters that you colored yourself with markers.
djeanq(at)gmail(dot)com

Wanda said...

I always had pictures of horses!!
wandanamgreb(at)gmail(dot)com

Thuy said...

I never like having "real" pictures hanging my room...never have. My walls were covered with paintings and drawings of unicorns. I love living in a fantasy world.

vision.nguyen AT gmail DOT com

KMichelleC87 said...

Hmm... lets see. I think I had pictures Angel from Buffy and the model/actor that played Tarzan for a season on the WB (when it still was called the WB) just a bunch of cute guys from the shows I watched at the time.

kmichellec87@yahoo.com

Kel said...

Well my walls were covered with Rick Springfield and General Hospital and later Duran Duran and Andre Agassi

Lenore said...

THIS CONTEST IS NOW CLOSED!