Hi everyone! Welcome to my stop on SST! Today, in my post, I’ll be featuring SUMMER OF SLOANE by Erin L. Schneider with an interview and a giveaway! Let’s get started!
Warm Hawaiian sun. Lazy beach days. Flirty texts with her boyfriend back in Seattle.
These are the things seventeen-year-old Sloane McIntyre pictured when she imagined the summer she’d be spending at her mom’s home in Hawaii with her twin brother, Penn. Instead, after learning an unthinkable secret about her boyfriend, Tyler, and best friend, Mick, all she has is a fractured hand and a completely shattered heart.
Once she arrives in Honolulu, though, Sloane hopes that Hawaii might just be the escape she needs. With beach bonfires, old friends, exotic food, and the wonders of a waterproof cast, there’s no reason Sloane shouldn’t enjoy her summer. And when she meets Finn McAllister, the handsome son of a hotel magnate who doesn’t always play by the rules, she knows he’s the perfect distraction from everything that’s so wrong back home.
But it turns out a measly ocean isn’t nearly enough to stop all the emails, texts, and voicemails from her ex-boyfriend and ex-best friend, desperate to explain away their betrayal. And as her casual connection with Finn grows deeper, Sloane’s carefree summer might not be as easy to find as she’d hoped. Weighing years of history with Mick and Tyler against their deception, and the delicate possibility of new love, Sloane must decide when to forgive, and when to live for herself.
Big thanks to Erin for being a part of this interview! My questions are in bold.
Was the character of Sloane based off someone you know in real life?
Not particularly, no. I think I pulled different attributes from a few people I know when I first started writing Sloane’s character — but as I got deeper into her story and learned more about her, she became her own person…which I think is what happens with most of my characters.
Why do you love Sloane and why should we love her as well?
I think you’re either going to love Sloane…or you’re not. For the most part, she has things pretty easy — which is a trait many people won’t like. But what you learn as the story goes on, is that not everything is as it seems. I think what I love most about Sloane, is that her life contained within the pages of the book, doesn’t have a perfect fairy tale ending…I left things open ended intentionally. Because I don’t know about you, but my life sure hasn’t resolved its issues in 300 pages, so I can’t imagine Sloane’s doing that either.
Tell us about your publishing journey.
I’ve always wanted to write and publish a book for as long as I can remember, but I seriously started back at writing in 2008. It took several manuscripts – SLOANE was my 4th completed story – and many failed query attempts to finally land my agent, but once I signed with Lisa, things moved really fast from there. We worked on revising SLOANE for six months, then went out on submission on May 1, 2014. From the time the editor at Disney had my story to the time the deal was made, only seventeen days had passed — something I still look back on in disbelief! For more about my publishing journey, you can read my stories here and here!
Without spoilers, what was your favorite scene to write?
ELS: I think there were a few, but one in particular – chapter 13 – which began as one of the harder scenes to write, ended up being one of my favorites.
Who was your favorite character to write?
ELS: Probably Penn — his character came so easy and he leapt off the page all on his own. Luce was also fun and I knew who she was from the very beginning…and Finn, with all his sarcasm, was also fun. Huh. I’m not doing a very good job picking one, am I?
Names are really interesting. How did you choose the names of your characters?
ELS: I use an awesome online name generator called Seventh Sanctum — but usually I pick the last names it spits out, and make them the first names for my characters. Although with Sloane, I’ve always loved that name and knew I’d use it for one of my MC names one day!
Were there different titles for your book? If so, why did you come up with Summer of Sloane?
ELS: The original title was WHERE THE WATER FALLS — which is actually a line from the waterfall scene. That moment was significant to me, because of it’s importance to Sloane learning to trust Finn and was the start to her learning to live for herself. However, I found out that when it comes to book titles, authors usually don’t have much say in what the final title is going to be. SUMMER OF SLOANE was a name my editor came up with during edits, because of how much of a turning point this summer was for Sloane throughout the story…and it just sort of stuck!
Are you working on any future projects that you’re willing to share with us?
ELS: I just started on a new WIP in February, but am waiting to get past my launch for SLOANE to really dig in. Unfortunately I can’t say much about it, since nothing is confirmed — but I will say it’s in a similar vein as SLOANE and deals with the pain of losing someone close to you and finding someone you least expect.
Erin L. Schneider is native to the Pacific Northwest, attended college in Honolulu – and although Hawaiian – should never be allowed on a surfboard. With more than twenty years in corporate merchandising, she’s now a full-time writer living in Seattle with her husband, Neal; their baby boy, Kellan; a rowdy German shepherd named Ronin; and two crazy cats, Ono and Poke. She’s a member of both the Pacific Northwest Writers Association and SCBWI, and is also co-founder of the YA Buccaneers.
SUMMER OF SLOANE is her debut novel, out May 3, 2016 from Disney-Hyperion. Visit Erin online at Erin L Schneider or on Twitter: @ErinLSchneider1.
Erin is represented by literary agent Lisa Grubka of Fletcher & Company.
Signed hardback copy of SUMMER OF SLOANE + swag (US only)
Have you read SUMMER OF SLOANE yet? What’s your favorite summer-y book?