Skye Grace resides with her rockstar/high school counselor husband and their cat in the Seattle area. After receiving her Master’s degree from Seattle University, Skye began teaching special education at the elementary level. She’s taken a hiatus from her other passion, community theater, to write Aura in LaLaLand. This is her first book, but definitely not her last!
Facebook * Twitter * Instagram
An Interview with the Author:
When did you first realize that you wanted to be a writer/ a storyteller?
I began writing depressed pre-teen poetry in middle school, in high school I was incredibly active in our theater program. We had this amazing Seattle based playwright, Toni Douglas, come to our Performance class and teach us playwriting. I wrote two one-act plays in school after being inspired by her, which I then directed for our school’s one-act festivals. I was hooked from then on, though I never thought I’d write novels.
What inspires you to write?
I am a giant fangirl, which obviously, my main character in Aura in LaLaLand is too! When I come across an actor, actress, or character I adore, I tend to create different scenarios in my head and I’m inspired to write them down.
How did you come up with the idea for your current story?
To be honest, I was writing a Supernatural fanfiction about a female hunter who falls for Dean Winchester. Then my mind began spiraling… What if an actress was, in her younger years, in love with the character of Dean and the actor that played him, and then later becomes an actress and gets hired on to play the character that Dean finally falls for, only in a movie version of the show, and the actors falls for her just as much as his character does! This is how the character of Aura was born, basically a fangirl whose wildest dreams come true. My obsession with Alice in Wonderland added the magical element to the story.
Are there some stories tucked away in some drawer that was written before and never saw the light of the day?
Generally just the starts of stories, which I quickly lose interest in! I wrote 13, 000 words for a new YA novel last November and then I lost interest! I’m not the fastest novel writer, so it’s difficult for me to remain obsessed with a story that takes me a year to complete!
What is your favorite scene in the book? Why?
I believe I have three favorite scenes in Aura in LaLaLand; The first is her magical, Alice in Wonderland themed birthday party because Aura realizes exactly how magical her new life, 10 years in the future, really is. The second is Aura’s first date with Jacksen, because how could singing with your favorite band that your love interest set up for you not be amazing? And all of the drama that unfolds on the rest of the date… My third favorite would be the ending of the book that starts during Aura’s appearance on the James Cordon-esque late show because she has truly found the people that make her life complete, and some answers are given… Just some! Not all in case I was to write a sequel!
Did any of your characters inherit some of your own quirks?
Aura Liddell, my main character, inherited many of my quirks including her fan girl obsessions, her love of acting, and her intense loyalty. She also shares my insecurities and self-doubt, her distorted body image and tendency to run away from things that make her uncomfortable. She’s a lot like me in a lot of ways, so obviously it stings a little when a reviewer calls her less than likable – Ouch! I think she’s very likable, if not a wee bit confused…
Do you read? Who are your favourite authors and how have they influenced your writing style?
I read a lot of YA. My favorite YA novel has always been The Perks of Being a Wallflower by Stephen Chobsky, but I myself have been afraid to write about subjects that he has no problem tackling. My favorite YA romance is Nick and Norah’s Infinite Playlist by Rachel Cohn and David Levithan. I was inspired by how excitingly and magically they wrote the couple’s love story, how their romance unfolds so quickly and with such incandescent force!
What would be the Dream Cast for you book if it was to be turned into a movie?
For clear, fangirl reasons, I would love Jensen Ackles and Jared Padalecki to play Jacksen and Jameson, because it would be so Meta! Since these two characters were based on these two actors, as their show in the book, The Protectors, was so obviously based on Supernatural! Many of the supporting characters in the book were based on the casts of HBO Girls and Pretty Little Liars, so of course I would love to have them fill the images in my head! As for Aura, I haven’t been able to find an actress that I think matches my vision of her perfectly!
Can you share with us something off your bucket list?
Other than publishing a novel? One item has always been to go to Burning Man… but as a school teacher, the timing really hasn’t worked out! And the older I get, the more introverted I become, so I’m not sure how much I’d enjoy it now anyway! I would also love to see the Northern Lights.
What do you have in store next for your readers?
With the book’s subtle and not so subtle mentions of magick, I would love to write my next novel based on the lives of witches. I want to do something more for adults this time, slightly more scandalous. It will also have to be fun as well as romantic, something a la Sookie Stackhouse or The Witches of East End.
About the Book:
When teenage theater geek Aura Lidell finds herself falling down a mysterious rabbit hole and hurtled 10 years into the future, understanding inconsistencies in the time space continuum is the least of her worries. Suddenly finding herself without her lifelong best friend Rowan, she must navigate her lifestyle as a 26 year old TV star in Los Angeles with no recollection of how she became one. All of the beautiful faces surrounding her are ones she can barely recall, her memories only returning at the sip of any beverage that calls "drink me!" A hit show and a dreamy, teen soap star boyfriend seem like the perfect life until her love for both of them begin unraveling before her eyes. All Aura wants is to find her best friend... Oh and maybe her teenage crush, actor Jacksen Andrews, who happens to be looking for a new leading lady, on and off screen. Meeting Jacksen and the cast turns out to be a much more magically complicated adventure than planned, and Aura wonders if she can find her true self amongst the craziness in order to keep herself from being sent back to her unabashedly normal old life.