interview with huntley fitzpatrick {my life next door}

On our second day of Teen Love week, I am happy to welcome Huntley Fitzpatrick to the blog. Huntley is author of the upcoming My Life Next Door, due out in June. It has been getting fantastic advance reviews and I’m excited to read it in a few months!

Huntley Fitzpatrick grew up dreamy and distracted in coastal Connecticut, attended Concord Academy and Yale. She flourished in a family of bookworms where the library was always the most important room in the house. She kept an exhaustively thorough journal which frightened her boyfriends but has proved very useful in her career as a writer. Her debut contemporary Romance, MY LIFE NEXT DOOR, will be published in June of 2012 by Penguin-Dial for Young Readers. Now she laughs with and eavesdrops on her six children who provide her with perspective and material.

What 1 book do you think should be on everybody’s must read list? 

I really love the Hunger Games series, though what I write is far from Dystopian. And I think Before I fall by Lauren Oliver is absolutely magic. If I am going to hark back, I’d say Madeleine L’Engle’s Austin series was amazing, particularly THE YOUNG UNICORNS and A SWIFTLY TURNING PLANET.

What is your favorite movie?  Favorite TV show?

ABOUT A BOY kills me every time. Just lovely. I don’t watch a lot of TV, but not in a superior way,  just don’t have time.

What 3 words would you use to describe yourself?

Literary, a little obsessive, smart.

What 3 words would your friends use to describe you?

Probably the same.

What do you do on a typical day?

Try to get kids to school, then into writing, try to plunge out of it in time to pick them up.

What do you do when you aren’t writing?

I love to travel, and read lots of other stories—fictional and non–and pay attention to other people’s lives.

What do you do to relax?

Hot tub and good books.

If you could have any car, what would it be?

Always a Mercedes, the one car I really know anything about. My first boyfriend inherited one from his two brothers and we hung out a lot in various car shops while it got fixed, again and again and again. It was always fun, he made it so….still don’t know how hanging out for six hours in a car shop could  be entertaining.

Where would you live if you could live anywhere?


Coffee or tea?

Hot coffee or iced tea.

Did you always want to be a writer?  If not, what did you want to do? 

I always did. Wrote my first book at six and thought from then “Oh, that’s what I am.”

When did you first consider yourself a writer?

See above

What’s your favorite part of writing/publishing a novel?

There’s this moment when you write something you know is okay…kind of like baseball when you  hit the sweet spot on the bat. The rest of the book may not be that great but you kind of know when you’ve done something okay. That’s the best part.

What do you think when you read a bad review of one of your books?

Haven’t run into this yet.

Do you seek out reviews?

Again, will try not to.

Where do you write?

Up in my room.

When you write, do you like silence or music?

Silence. My husband can work with a soundtrack, but definitely not me.

What comes first: a character or a plot line?

Character, absolutely. I get the guy, then I get the girl, then the plot.

Do you base your characters on people you know?


Where did you come up with the character’s names?

My second daughter gave me the name of the heroine in my book. The rest I just made up.

Who/what influenced your writing style?

I really loved UP A ROAD SLOWLY by Irene Hunt. And everything by Madeline L’Engle.

How did you come up with the title?

It started with WATCHING THE GARRETTS but then I realized the book was really about a girl whose life happened in a different place.

Is there a message in your novel that you want readers to get?

That who you love first can change who you are.

Huntley, thanks again for stopping by today. I can’t wait to read your novel this June!

If you would like more information about Huntley or her debut novel, My Life Next Door, check out the following links:

websiteGoodreads, Facebook, Twitter

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