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Monday, March 31, 2014

Glamour Author Andrea Janes Guest Post


I never made a conscious decision to write a Young Adult novel. The idea for Glamour actually came from a friend of mine who suggested years ago that we write a teen-movie script about “a girl who worked in an ice cream store who was an ambidextrous scooper.” It was a little bit Porky’s, a little bit Little Darlings.

I wrote Scoops as a screenplay in 2004. It was pretty dreadful. Because I am not actually a comedy writer (unless I’m not trying to be funny; then everything comes out absolutely hilarious) I decided to make it less a horny teen comedy and more of a psychological thriller, with a lot of madness and identity shifting and Hitchcockian/Highsmithian doppleganger stuff. Interestingly enough, I even included a scene where the girls take a ghost tour, which is pretty funny in light of what my future career would be.

Anyway, I shelved the fairly terrible script and moved on to other screenplays and, eventually, short stories, but I couldn’t get the characters of Reese and Christina out of my head. They kept floating around in there, and eventually I decided to revisit the script when I took a re-writing seminar with Pilar Alessandra. It was at this point that I realized Christina was actually the main character in the story. I also realized I needed a slightly better hook than an ambidextrous scooper who wins an ice cream scooping contest! I’ve always been obsessed with witches and witchcraft, and maybe something about all those women brewing up special concoctions put the idea in my head, because I thought, hell why not make the ice cream store a front for a coven?

Then Scoops became Widdershins, which was what I originally called the witchy version of the script. It actually came out pretty well, much better than the original, but I was still stuck with a script on my hands that featured two female leads (one of whom isn’t around for 85% of the movie) and a lot of costly special effects. How many producers out there would jump at the chance to option a script like that? Especially from an unknown writer?

Right.

There is a blog by John August, a screenwriter. He once advised a fellow writer that it is actually easier to write and sell a novel than it is a script: “If you’re looking to put your story out into the world, paper beats film, hands down.”

After I read that, I then re-wrote the entire thing again as a novel. This was around 2010 or 2011, I think. I changed the name to Glamour because someone else had already written a book called Widdershins, but I ended up liking the new title a lot. I sold it to World Weaver Press and here we are, just ten short years later and it’s a YA book now!


So the whole YA thing was an accident.  I’m not sure if I’ll write a YA novel again. To be honest, I’m not in love with the YA label. People are people, no matter their age. Teenage girls can be miserable or dazzling or profound, just like adult women. So why do they have to be YA necessarily? Do we think of Katniss Everdeen as a teen, or as a person? Lisbeth Salander as a “New Adult” (she’s twenty-three, after all!) or a human? If I ever do write another book with a young protagonist, it’ll be because that’s the right person for the right story for the right time. Or because someone will finally have paid me to write the remake of Little Darlings

Andrea Janes

Glamour a novel by Andrea Janes.
Stealing the life she’s always wanted is as easy as casting a spell.
Townie. That’s what eighteen-year-old Christina Sundy is. All year round she lives in a one-stoplight town on Cape Cod, and when summer comes, she spends her days scooping ice cream for the rich tourists she hates. So when one of them takes a job in the ice cream shop alongside her, she’s pissed. Why does a blonde and perky Harvard-bound rich girl like Reese Manning want to scoop ice cream anyway?
Something else weird is happening to Christina: tiny blue sparks seem to be shooting off her fingers. It isn’t long before she realizes the truth about herself — she’s actually a powerful hereditary witch. But her newfound powers are too intense for her to handle and, in a moment of rage, she accidentally zaps Reese into another dimension.
So that no one will notice that the rich girl has disappeared, Christina casts a disguising spell, or “glamour,” and lives Reese’s life while she tries to find a retrieval spell.But as the retrieval spell proves harder than anticipated, and as she goes about living Reese’s life without anyone on the outside noticing the switch, Christina realizes that there’s nothing to stop her from making the glamour permanent… except, of course, her fellow witches, a 16th century demon, and, just maybe, her own conscience.
Read the digital edition exclusively from these retailers:
Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Kobo | OmniLit
Read the trade paperback from these and other retailers:
Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Books-A-Million | Independent Bookstores

Andrea Janes writes horror, dark comedy, thrillers, and historical slapstick. She is the author of Boroughs of the Dead: New York City Ghost Stories. She is also a licensed NYC tour guide, and offers a variety of ghostly tours around the city.
Her many obsessions include New York City history, old photographs, Mabel Normand, all things nautical, and beer. She maintains a personal blog over at Spinster Aunt, where she discusses these obsessions in more detail than is probably healthy.