May is my birthday month, and there are some AMAZING books that I feel like are my own personal birthday presents from the Novel19s community! Here we goooo!
by Kristina Miranda
Ellie Quinn has spent most of her sixteen years behind the scenes, helping her father manage a crew of four-legged movie stars. Although she longs to be acknowledged as an animal trainer in her own right, she often gets stuck babysitting actors' personal pets and is known around the studio as "the dog sitter for the stars."
When teen megastar Kate Montgomery's sidekick gets fired while filming a pilot, Ellie is forced to temporarily fill-in. The producers seem to be enamored with Ellie--and so do Kate's two love interests on the show, "it boy" Logan Canfield and brand-new actor Cam Alvarez--causing trouble on and off the set.
Now Ellie must decide between living the drama in front of the camera or behind it. If she quits and the pilot fails, she and her father will have to close their failing business and move to her grandfather's lettuce farm. But if she stays on the road to stardom, it could mean losing the boy she's fallen for--and herself--in the process. Can she save the TV show and her father's business without losing everything else?
May 14th, 2019
Introduce yourself and your debut novel!
Hi! My name is Kristina Miranda, and my upcoming YA novel is titled Scripted, Unscripted. Although I was born and raised in Minnesota, I moved to San Jose, California as soon as I graduated from college. There I was a Bilingual Education teacher for recently immigrated children. I currently live in sunny South Florida with my human family, and a growing number of canines.
Scripted Unscripted is a romantic comedy about a girl named Ellie who has spent most of her life behind the scenes in Hollywood helping her father manage a crew of four-legged movie stars. She longs to be acknowledged as an animal trainer in her own right, but usually gets stuck babysitting actors’ personal pets on the studio lot.
What’s the most surprising part about your debut journey so far?
That I would meet so many people along the way, especially other debut authors. Writing is usually a solitary endeavor, and it’s been great to have a whole group of supportive, friendly people to talk to and get to know throughout this journey.
Give a shout-out to a fellow debut!
My shout-out is to Nina Moreno, the author of Don’t Date Rosa Santos. I can’t wait to read it next month. I love the premise, and the beautiful cover!
What inspired you to write this book?
Two things. The first inspiration was my daughter and her friends, who were obsessed with TV shows and celebrities at the time. Of course, I had to add a few dogs to the story, because my family and I have three of our own, and usually a foster from a local rescue around the house. We love dogs!
The second inspiration was the time I spent with my students who had recently immigrated from Mexico when I lived in California. I became a part of their lives, even outside of school. They invited me into their homes, and my husband Fernando and I invited them into ours. Sometimes we’d take a group to the movies or out to eat. Cam and Santos in the book are based off of two of my actual students.
Describe your main character in 3 words.
Ellie is brave, stubborn, and kind.
What was the hardest scene to write?
Strangely, the hard scenes, as far as emotional, are always the easiest for me to write. Scripted, Unscripted is mostly light-hearted and humorous, but Ellie had to grow up without a mother, so there were times when the effects of that came to the surface. The hardest scenes for me to write are the ones that are necessary to move the story along but aren’t naturally exciting or emotional. I have to work the hardest on those scenes, and make sure they’re interesting and funny.
What advice would you give to a new writer?
I know it’s cliché, but enjoy the journey. I know writers who have confessed that they dislike the actual writing process—they only like “having written.” I think that’s sad. We all love to have a finished product—a completed manuscript, or a published book—but life is made up of our everyday moments. Like the Miley Cyrus song, “The Climb,” it’s not about how fast you get you there, or what’s waiting for you on the other side. It’s the daily process. The mountain top is brief. Find a way to enjoy the journey. At least most of it! (I’m not saying there won’t be bad writing days. We all have them, and they can be terrible!)
Describe your writing space.
Last year, I finally created my own writing space by distressing an outdated armoire we had that has a desk inside, with gray and white chalk paint. I surrounded my workspace with inspiration, like a stuffed unicorn my sister gave me, artwork from a close illustrator friend, quotes, photos, and special remembrances. I also distressed an old bookcase to match and sorted my favorite books by color, like a rainbow. The finishing touch is a pair of dog beds next to my desk, under a bright sunny window, for my writing companions!
Who is your favorite author?
Charlotte Brontë. Jane Eyre is my all-time favorite book!
If you could buy only one book this year, which book would it be?
One that I already bought last month by another debut author, Gail Shepherd, titled “The True History of Lyndie B. Hawkins.”
Show us a picture of your favorite pet!
My favorite animal in the whole world was my Great Dane, Grace, the best dog ever, who passed away last year. I can’t even express how much I loved her. Here’s her picture, when she was young and playful!
Thanks for interviewing, and showing us pictures of your cute doggo! Check out Kristina's book on 5/14/19!