I’m excited to accept the Ylva Blog Hop baton from Cheri Crystal. It makes me feel like I’m running a relay. Which is the closest thing to running I’ve done in years, so thanks Cheri!
Ah, running. Something one of my two protagonists in my first novel, Barring Complications, does. And something that two of my main characters in my newest novel Stowe Away do. Have you ever noticed that characters in books are always way cooler than we are in real life? Jae kicked off this blog hop with a post about this very phenomenon (http://jae-fiction.com/blog), and it got me thinking.
My first novel, Barring Complications, had larger than life characters, but that’s mostly because I think that if you’re a Supreme Court Justice, you are larger than life. Stowe Away is a big departure; it’s populated by flawed (hopefully charmingly so) characters. The protagonist, Sam, is socially awkward and has a tendency to blurt out non sequiturs. The woman she falls for freshman year of college, Natalie, is trying too hard to find herself, and makes bizarre fashion choices along the way. Sam’s mom, Eva, is a brilliant artist who isn’t so hot at every day tasks like grocery lists. And Sam’s friend Maria is stubborn and headstrong, and refuses to suffer fools.
For Barring Complications, I tried to write characters I’d be in awe of—just as I’m in awe of the people who have played such a pivotal role in securing rights for LGBT people. For Stowe Away, I tried to write characters that I’d actually be friends with. So, while two of Stowe Away’s characters run together, one of them thinks running is evil and grumbles with every stride.
In fact, I think the only thing I idealized in the novel is Vermont. I’ve spent a fair amount of time there, and I know how bitterly cold it can be. But it’s one of my favorite places—all the small town charm we associate with rural America coupled with liberal attitudes typically found in more urban areas. Plus, cheese. Lots and lots of amazing cheese.
(picture of Stowe, Vermont)
I hope you all enjoy Stowe Away, and its quirky characters, and its deep-seeded love for Vermont. The novel comes out later this month! You can buy it on the Ylva website (http://ylva-publishing.co.uk/product/stowe-away-by-blythe-rippon/) or Amazon (http://www.amazon.com/Stowe-Away-Blythe-Rippon/dp/3955335232/ref=sr_1_cc_1?s=aps&ie=UTF8&qid=1452225592&sr=1-1-catcorr&keywords=blythe+rippon) on January 20. Happy reading!
All right, thus ends my lap around the track—here’s the baton, Ellen Simpson! (http: anamatics.tumblr.com)