Monday, July 30, 2012

Janette Rallison Week

Would you be weirded out if a stranger dedicated a week to you on their blog? I probably would, but I'm not a famous author, so maybe it isn't weird that I've decided to blog about Janette Rallison and several of her books this week.

My inspiration for this theme week came due to a recent visit to my sister's library where I saw three Janette Rallison books that I hadn't read yet. My sister generously checked them out for me (because my little library doesn't carry Janette's books . . . yet-I hope to convince them that they are missing out). I devoured the books. Then I got gutsy and emailed Janette telling her about my idea to have a Janette Rallison week. She responded by saying:

"Everybody should have a Janette Rallison week. (I have just suggested the idea to my children, but they are less than thrilled with that idea.)"

The woman is VERY FUNNY, and her sense of humor definitely comes across in her writing. If you don't have time to read a novel, or YA isn't really your thing, you should at least visit Janette's blog. It literally makes me laugh out loud (see her recent doll post).

I discovered Janette's books last fall when a book in the YA section caught my eye. It was My Fair Godmother and it was HILARIOUS! A few months later the laughs continued when I found My Unfair Godmother. Then earlier this year I found out that Janette Rallison also writes as C.J. Hill when I read Slayers (a Whitney Award Finalist-which was up against My Unfair Godmother for Youth Fiction Speculative).

Janette writes entertaining, funny stories (and as you will note over the next few days, heartwarming stories that have some tough issues, but overall still keep you smiling). In addition to these points, I really appreciate that Janette's books are clean!

Janette took some time out of her very busy schedule to answer a few of my questions.

I've read six of your books, and they've all been clean (thank you!). Do you ever have pressure (from fans, publishers, etc.) to include questionable content?

So far, I haven't. My editors and publishers have known from the beginning what sort of books I write. (One of my editors called them Normal Rockwell-esque, which I consider a complement.) Editors who wanted edgy books never looked at mine in the first place. My daughters read my books and I wouldn't want them or any other teens to ever feel uncomfortable about what they find in the pages of my novels so I think they'll always be pretty clean.

From the books you've published, what is your favorite, and why?

That's like picking a favorite child.  I love them all--so I can't choose one. My Fair Godmother was probably the most fun to write though.  After writing about high school life for so long, it was fun to finally be able to write about monsters, fairies, dwarfs, and dragons.

Other than your books, what is your favorite book?

I love the Princess Bride, probably because I love the movie so much.  Pride and Prejudice is also a favorite.

You have some great quotable lines in your books (like the first paragraph in How to Take the Ex Out of Ex-Boyfriend). Do you have any favorites? If so, please share.

There's a site somewhere on the web that has a bunch of quotes from me on it. I ran across it one day on accident and thought: Those are good. Did I really say all of that stuff? Maybe I should remember all of this so I can quote myself in public. 

Maybe I'll do that one day . . .

In My Fair godmother Chrissy says something to the effect that the only things you can really love at first sight are comfortable shoes.  I still think that's profound.

Have you always been funny? This probably sounds weird, but from what I've read on your sites, it sounds like you don't take yourself too seriously, and you're able to laugh at things that other people might let drag them down. What's your secret?

Life is a lot easier if you don't take it too seriously. I'd rather not stress about things so I tend to laugh off a lot of things.

I'm not sure whether I've always been funny or not. (My children still refuse to believe that I am in fact funny--although my son does a comic strip and I'm frequently featured in it as a haggard stick figure with curly hair.) My brothers and sisters are all really funny so I definitely  wasn't the clown in the family. They're still my favorite people to hang out with because they always make me laugh.  It's just too bad that none of them like to write, because I would love to read their stories.

Many thanks to Janette!