What is your definition of love? I've asked a lot of people this question and so far no two answers have been the same, which is kind of fascinating because love is such a universal thing and we've all felt it in some way. It's also a big theme in your books, so I'm curious about your answer.
To be honest, I’m not sure everyone has experienced it. Some have experienced lust or infatuation or obsession. I mean, I guess you can say we all love our parents or kids or pets or family members…or chocolate, ha ha. I’ve definitely been in love. Like crazy teenage Romeo and Juliet I’d-die-for-you love, where you can’t imagine living your life one day without that person. Every time you’re with that person, you feel excited and happy and emotional. You can look at that person and when they look at you and your eyes meet, it’s such a completely intense connection you both just “know” it’s real love and nothing can compare.
I try to capture that in my book, because it’s beautiful and scary – I admit you lose a little bit of yourself because that kind of love is so powerful it can blind you and destroy you and might not be the most healthy thing. But if it works out and stays a healthy relationship, nothing can compare.
What is the one book you wish you had written?
Lady be Good by Susan Elizabeth Phillips or The Hunger Games (it’s awesome!)
What are your five books you would recommend to my blog readers (whether it be all time favourites or upcoming novels we should look out for)?
If I can’t pick my books, I’d pick:
The Hunger Games
Lady Be Good (adult romance, so it’s edgy)
It has to be said that your book trailers are definitely some of the best I've seen, which makes me wonder how you would feel about any of your books being turned into a movie?
My latest book trailer for Rules of Attraction really gave me a glimpse of what it would be like to see my characters come alive on the screen. I seriously broke down and cried after the filming of the “book trailer” – shot like a movie trailer – and in my opinion I think it would be amazing to see my books become movies. What could be better than teen romance movies? Nothing! I grew up watching them and still love them today. I know it’s a risk and a lot of awesome books are made into horrible movies (totally no offense but Nick and Norah’s Infinite Playlist was an amazing book but the movie in my opinion was horrible – it didn’t do the book justice at all.)
While we're on the subject, what are three of your favourite movies?
The Cutting Edge
She’s the Man
Recently I re-watched My Cousin Vinny and it’s hilarious I have to add it. I’ve been quoting lines from it for weeks now.
A lot of authors like to write to music or make playlists for their books, is music part of your writing process and if so, what bands/artists might be found on one of your writing playlists?
You can find playlists I created from Perfect Chemistry and Rules of Attraction at: www.perfectchemistrythebook.com
I really like The Fray and if you live in Wisconsin or Illinois in the United States a favorite local singer/comedian is Pat McCurdy.
If you could be a character in any book, which book would you choose and why?
That is one of the toughest questions. If it were one of my books, I guess Brittany Ellis from Perfect Chemistry/Rules of Attraction because Alex is the type of guy who would respect me and take care of me and let me be independent while being my forever partner in life.
Did you always want to be an author and aside from writing, what are some of your dream jobs? (feel free to throw logic out of the window for that one; pirates, presidents and princesses are acceptable answers.)
Unlike most authors I know, I hated reading as a teen and hated English class. I got B’s and C’s in English class most of the time. I have a master’s degree in Industrial Relations from Loyola University-Chicago and a bachelor’s degree in Industrial Psychology. I’ve never taken a creative writing class in my life. I fell in love with reading as an adult – specifically romance novels. I was so in love with them, I started writing them.
Once I started writing for “myself” and not a teacher or for a grade, I realized that I loved writing and never wanted to stop. I pretty much taught myself how to write, because they didn’t teach me how to write a book in my regular English classes. Writing is the best profession and now I can’t imagine doing anything else! Although seriously, I think I was born to be a princess (you said that was an acceptable “dream job” so I’m throwing it out there). I tell my husband all the time I think I was born to be royalty, but he just laughs in my face.
Thanks so much to Simone for answering my questions. You can find out more about her books on her website: www.simoneelkeles.net