If you caught our review of Back to You, you know that we were big fans of this book by first time author Priscilla Glenn. We were fortunate enough to get an interview with her, which we’re going to share with you below! In this interview, Priscilla talks about how she got her first book published, what she’s working on next, and whether she’d ever consider writing a sequel to Back to You – but don’t look at that answer until you’ve read the book as our question also involved a somewhat major plot spoiler!
Once you’ve finished reading the interview, don’t forget to check out our giveaway to win a signed copy of Back to You!
I’m always curious to know authors’ first-time publishing stories as it seems no two ever have the same experiences. What was that process like for you?
It was actually a really fun process. I’ve toyed with writing my whole life but only got into it seriously about three years ago. My friend Brett had just published his first novel My Sweet Saga and he suggested I try self-publishing. So after taking about a year to finish the manuscript, I was suddenly creating a cover, and assigning an ISBN, and putting it all together. The whole time it felt like I was just playing pretend – like “This is what the cover would look like if it were a real book” or “This is what the acknowledgments would say if it were out there for people to see” – and then all of a sudden, it was! To see all those hours of work finally materialize into something was so rewarding, and every time someone tells me they enjoyed the story, it’s even more gratifying.
Where did you get inspiration for this story and these characters?
I am very much inspired by the relationships in my life; I know firsthand that sometimes the connections you form with others – whether they last ten years or ten days – can leave significant footprints in your world and end up shaping you, or in some cases, defining you. I really wanted to explore that. In Back to You, Lauren and Michael were clearly influenced by each other, but Michael was also very much affected by his relationships at home.
We discussed in our review how difficult it can be to read stories with changing timelines, but you managed to balance it so well! How difficult is it to write a story that jumps timelines like Back to You? Did you find it difficult to keep up with the different storylines, or did you write each time-frame separately and then break them into segments to blend into the story?
Believe it or not, it happened pretty naturally once I had the basic idea for the novel. I created a bulleted list of major plot points that I knew I wanted to include – both in the past and the present – and then I organized them. Once I felt like the timeline was right, I began writing. There were a few times when I’d be writing a scene and it would give me an idea for something I wanted to add or change in another scene, and whenever that happened I would stop and go back to my bulleted list and work it in. I just made that sound really clinical, didn’t I? Writing is such a bizarre and personal process; I have friends who write and no two people do it the same. I’m actually envious of the ones who can just sit down and wing it. For me, I need to “see” where I’m going before I write. I like to have everything mapped out.
[spoiler title=”Only read this question about a potential sequel and its answer if you have finished Back to You!”]
You’re not the first person to ask me about Adam! It’s funny because when I first began writing Back to You, I never intended for Adam to be as incredible as he was; he just kind of snuck up on me! But I totally have a soft spot for him, so I could see myself writing his story in the future – it’s definitely a possibility.[/spoiler]
What was your favorite book/author growing up?
Oh, this is a tough one. If we go back to when I first starting reading, I was a big Nancy Drew girl. In fact, Nancy Drew and the Haunted Bridge was the first book I ever read cover to cover. I also remember really loving Judy Blume as a kid. As an adult, my taste is all over the place. I love Jodi Piccoult, Emily Giffin, Nora Roberts, JR Ward, and right now I’m a huge fan of Tammara Webber, Nyrae Dawn, and Veronica Roth. (I am in DIRE need of book three in the Divergent series!) There are so many more and I’m totally wimping out on this question, but I find it so hard to pick favorites when it comes to books and authors; it’s really more about my mood at any particular moment.
What are you reading right now – or most recently?
I just read Charade by Nyrae Dawn and cried like I was getting paid by the tear. Holy hell, that was an emotional ride, but a great story. Loved it. Next on my list is The Proposition by Katie Ashley.
What can you tell us about what you’re working on right now?
I have two other novels that are complete, but they’re still very much in the rough draft stage. I have a bit more work to do before either one is ready, but the one I’m probably going to release next is called Emancipating Andie. It’s about a girl who thinks she has her life figured out until – due to extenuating circumstances – she ends up having to take a two-day road trip with her boyfriend’s best friend, who she happens to despise. The trip becomes a catalyst for all sorts of chaos in both their lives.