Some Thoughts On SOLITARY

I just returned from being in the Carolinas doing a little research for The Solitary Tales. During the drive there and back, I listened to the audio book for Solitary. I typically don't reread a novel once it comes out, but since this is a series I wanted to go through the books again.

Here are some random thoughts about book one of this series:

#1. I can't believe I actually went through with the ending. Even though I knew what was coming (obviously), I still reacted with horror and surprise at the ending. Seriously. I thought How could you do that? I think it took a lot of guts to go ahead with that. If I had to do it over again, I'm not sure I'd choose that ending.

#2. EVERYTHING is a big, fat question mark in this story. And that's probably why some people really, really hate Solitary. But there are reasons I chose to do this.

First off, I was always clueless in high school. I spent most of my time wondering about things. I went to four different high schools, and every time I changed I went through this whole questioning/wondering phase. That's why I have Chris doing the same--constantly asking or repeating questions. Whether or not this was a good decision, it was a deliberate decision.

Secondly, Chris has absolutely NO idea what's going on around him. Solitary is a book full of 100 questions with almost no answers. Again, some people really don't like ending a book with no answers. But every question that was raised has an answer.

#3. Solitary is more of a teen love story than a teen horror story. It's really about Chris and Jocelyn.

#4. I loved Chris's sense of humor. I know it's a dark series, but I forgot some of the random, quirky comments that are going through his head.

#5. I didn't know where everything was headed when I first wrote Solitary. I knew most everything, but there were small things that I've since answered.

I'll give you an example. Chris's mother drinks. She also has nightmares. I guess it makes sense since she's alone and divorced and living in a creepy town.

But in the spirit of answering EVERY question possibly raised, I have a very specific reason WHY she drinks. And I have an explanation for those nightmares.

I'm going to be writing books three and fourth back to back (Temptation and Hurt). I'm pumped and excited but I know the series as a whole will be judged by book four and how I answer all those questions.

We'll see if I can pull it off.

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