Meme: Next Big Thing

I was tagged by the lovely and talented Catherine Knutsson to participate in a meme called The Next Big Thing. Catherine is the author of SHADOWS CAST BY STARS, a book I adore. (Check it out here.) You can read Catherine’s TNBT post here.

And now, le meme!

What is the working title of your book?
The Holy Wild

Where did the idea come from for the book?
This one started with the setting, which is a tiny Yukon village in winter. I lived in just such a place for a few years and have very fond memories of my time there. I knew I wanted to set a novel there, so yes, it started with the setting. Then came the main character, then finally the story. (This is typical for me. Plot tends to arrive kicking and screaming after much angst. I should learn to roll with it….)

What genre does your book fall under?
Is there a genre called “slightly weird”? No? Okay, let’s just call it contemporary YA…with a supernatural element.

Which actors would you choose to play your characters in a movie rendition?
I don’t know actors, so this is a tough one, but I could see Alexis Bledel from her Gilmore Girls days as Simone, the main character. And Chaske Spencer as Chase, the friend/love-interest (but he’s too old, I think…). So if they borrow a time machine and make a movie of The Holy Wild in the past, we’ve got it covered, LOL.


What is the one-sentence synopsis of your book?
Skipping this question for now, because I anticipate major changes for this book….😉

Will your book be self-published or represented by an agency?
I’m planning to do some revisions (the aforementioned major changes), and then I’ll query agents.

How long did it take you to write the first draft of your manuscript?
Hmm…maybe about a year, including the months I wasn’t working on it while it needed to simmer on the back brain for a while. During that time, I worked on other things, but The Holy Wild was never far from my thoughts.

What other books would you compare this story to within your genre?
I’ll have to get back to you on that when I know what exactly this story is!

Who or what inspired you to write this book?
I lived in the Yukon for only three years, but in that time it claimed a piece of my heart. There’s a poem by Robert Service called “The Spell of the Yukon”. There’s one stanza in particular that I love:

There’s a land where the mountains are nameless,
And the rivers all run God knows where;
There are lives that are erring and aimless,
And deaths that just hang by a hair;
There are hardships that nobody reckons;
There are valleys unpeopled and still;
There’s a land—oh, it beckons and beckons,
And I want to go back—and I will.

(Read the whole poem here.)

So, that poem plus my own experiences in the North were a big part of the inspiration. And the other part was a personal interest in what Celtic spirituality refers to as “thin places” – places where the boundary between heaven and earth, between this world and the spirit world, is especially thin.

What else about your book might pique the reader’s interest?
spirits, Northern Lights, grief, hope…and a little romance😉

Tag! You’re it. I’m tagging Carol Garvin, Beth Smith, and Kip Wilson Rechea (and anyone else looking for a few minutes of procrastination). If you feel like playing along, I’d love to read about your next big thing!😀

9 thoughts on “Meme: Next Big Thing

  1. bethanyrsmith

    Oh, Shari, I’m so so so glad you are going back to THW! I love this book and I can’t wait to see what you do with it😀


  2. Carol

    Now that was sneaky! I was reading along and then, wham… there’s my name!😉 Like Bethany, I love THW and hope others soon get a chance to read and love it, too. I’m glad Catherine convinced you to participate in TNBT.

    As for me, I’ll have to figure out my own answers to the questions. I *might* manage to get them posted on Friday. Might. We’ll see!


  3. Kristin Butcher

    I really like the concept of “thin places”. Interesting, the things that catch our interest and inspire a creative spark. It’s a good story, Shari. I too am curious to see how you revise it.


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