Interview with Lisa Stasse, Author of The Forsaken

Lisa Strasse is the author of The Forsaken, the kick-off to her new dystopian trilogy.  Lisa dropped by the virtual offices to introduce herself and to chat about her new book.

[Manga Maniac Cafe] Describe yourself in 140 characters or less.

[Lisa Stasse] Arty. Writer. Reader. Caffeinated. Photographer. Librarian. Obsessive. Passionate.

[Manga Maniac Cafe] Can you tell us a little about The Forsaken?

[Lisa Stasse] It’s a dystopian thriller about a girl named Alenna Shawcross who fails a government personality test (she’s diagnosed with subversive tendencies and a capacity for brutal violence) and gets banished to a mysterious prison island called "the wheel." She has to learn how to forge alliances among the wild tribes that control the island, and also avoid government machines that kidnap kids. She and some friends finally mount a risky escape attempt.

[Manga Maniac Cafe] How did you come up with the concept and the characters for the story?

[Lisa Stasse] It was a merger between a dream I had (about being stalked on an island by men in robes with knives) and a friend’s sister worrying about taking the SAT. That was the seed of the idea for "the wheel"–a horrific place you got sent if you failed a mandatory test at school. I guess it’s a nightmare version of the SAT and other similar tests.

[Manga Maniac Cafe] What three words best describe Alenna?

[Lisa Stasse] Perseverant. Smart. Fighter.

[Manga Maniac Cafe] What are three things Alenna would never have in her pocket?

[Lisa Stasse] Money, bullets, matches.

[Manga Maniac Cafe] If Alenna had a theme song, what would it be?

[Lisa Stasse] "Get Free" by Major Lazer (a side project of the producer Diplo–if you haven’t heard the song it’s really awesome. check it out on iTunes!)

[Manga Maniac Cafe] What are your greatest creative influences?

[Lisa Stasse] I’m really influenced by books, music, and movies. Other writers are probably the biggest influence on me, from Stephen King to Suzanne Collins to JK Rowling to Margaret Atwood and Orson Scott Card. I always listen to music when I write too, so that’s a huge influence. Right now I’m listening to the new album by the Dirty Projectors (a great indie rock band) and also some stuff by Florence and the Machine. As for movies, I’m beyond excited to see The Dark Knight Rises! I also just saw The Cabin in the Woods, which was great and had one of my favorite crazy endings of any movie this year (Joss Whedon is an influence for sure).

[Manga Maniac Cafe] What three things do you need in order to write?

[Lisa Stasse] Music, coffee and my laptop!

[Manga Maniac Cafe] What is the last book that you read that knocked your socks off?

[Lisa Stasse] Level 2 by Lenore Appelhans (I read it as an ARC last week–it’s fantastic).

[Manga Maniac Cafe] If you had to pick one book that turned you on to reading, which would it be?

[Lisa Stasse] Where the Wild Things Are (I loved it as a little kid and I still do!) Also love Pride and Prejudice and Lord of the Flies.

[Manga Maniac Cafe] What do you like to do when you aren’t writing?

[Lisa Stasse] Well, I’m a digital librarian at UCLA so I’m usually working on that. I love my job there–it’s a really cool environment to work in. I’m also a photographer, and I’m working on a screenplay with a friend of mine just for fun.

[Manga Maniac Cafe] How can readers connect with you?

[Lisa Stasse] I love hearing from readers! Here are all my links. They can also send me email anytime at lmstasse[at]yahoo[dot]com.

Website: www.lisamstasse.com

Official Book Trailer: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GtIwks26SZU

Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/12987192-the-forsaken

Twitter: www.twitter.com/lisamstasse

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/lisamstasse

{Manga Maniac Café] Have a great day!

[Lisa Stasse] YOU TOO! Thank you so much, I had a blast stopping by! :)

 

Check out the trailer for The Forsaken:

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Check out The Forsaken on Goodreads!

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