Thursday 20 June 2013

Delightful Debutantes #39 - Kate Karyus Quinn and Another Little Piece.

Hi Kate! Congratulations on the publication of Another Little Piece. What’s been the most exciting part of your journey as an author so far?

There have been so many exciting parts, but this – right now – is the most exciting part. Knowing that my book is in the hands of readers and that people are connecting with it is just so amazing. It’s also really thrilling to hold the final hardcover copy of the book in my hands. It is so unarguably real that I don’t even need to pinch myself to make sure I’m not dreaming.

Describe Another Little Piece to potential readers in a tweet: (140 characters or less). 

Oh! I am so bad at this. In fact, almost every time I write a tweet, I have to trim it down before I can actually tweet it. But regardless here I go:

Screaming and bloody: a girl disappears. 1 yr later she's found with no idea who she is except the idea she may be a monster. Is she right?

At the time of writing these questions I’ve just finished Another Little Piece and my initial reaction to this book was a great big Wow! Another Little Piece is one of the most original books I’ve read in a long time. Where did you get the inspiration for this one? I’m very interested to know the thought process behind this book!

I honestly started this book without knowing what it was going to be about. All I knew was that I had a missing girl and there was more to her time being lost than a simple kidnapping. I tried starting the book a few different ways and none of them really worked. Then I saw her walking through this field wrapped in a garbage bag. That’s when I knew that I’d found my beginning. The rest of the book I wrote in mostly the same order as it exists today. I discovered all those different bits and pieces along with Annaliese.

While reading Another Little Piece, I admit I was a little confused at times (at first I thought this was a missing persons/murder mystery book – the paranormal element somehow bypassed me when I first read the synopsis). One aspect of the book I’d really like to know more about is the ‘Brujas’ and the mysterious ‘Physician’.  Are there any plans for a short story/companion novel on the background to this, or should I just relish the mystery here?

The only character who I’ve played with the idea of writing more about is Jess (a fairly minor character who comes into the story briefly towards the end of the book). But honestly right now I don’t have any plans for a short story or companion novel, but who knows – I could be in the shower one day and the perfect idea for one might hit me.

I want to add, though, that I do understand the frustration of wanting answers. I am a huge TV watcher and some of my favorite shows are often the most confusing ones. Lost is a great example of this. Or Mad Men, which is currently on the air. Over time I’ve come to embrace the ambiguity built into these shows and the amount of discussion they generate. In fact, one of my favorite parts of watching Mad Men is the day after the show when I get to read recaps from Slate or Vulture and see what someone else took away from the episode that I might not have caught. There is so much in that show that is happening under the surface and may not ever be answered to the satisfaction of the viewers, but that is part of what keeps me watching and thinking about the show even when it’s not on.

FIVE things readers should know about Another Little Piece:

1.      When I first started writing ALP, I titled it: Immortally Wounded. About a quarter of the way into writing the first draft I realized that was incredibly cheesy and changed it to Remnants. I was never super crazy about that, though, and soon decided to change it once more to Another Little Piece – taken from the song lyrics for Another Little Piece of My Heart. This title stuck all the way through finding an agent and being published by HarperTeen.
2.      The character of Dex was originally named Dezi, but somewhere along the way I started calling him Dex instead and it stuck.
3.      Dex also had a friend in the first version, and she had a whole backstory and history. She was cut in my first major round of revisions.
4.      I was inspired to add the little spitball poems scattered throughout the book after reading THE SKY IS EVERYWHERE by Jandy Nelson.
5.      I live in and grew up in Western New York and that is part of the reason why I chose to set ALP there.

FOUR books you’d recommend to anyone who loved Another Little Piece:

A Certain Slant of Light Laura Whitcomb
Imaginary Girls by Nova Ren Suma
The Adoration of Jenna Fox by Mary E Pearson
Anna Dressed In Blood by Kendare Blake

THREE tips for aspiring authors:

Write as much as you can. Read as much as you can. Don’t forget to breathe.

That last tip is just good advice for everyone.

TWO books on your summer reading list:

Only two!?!?! Hmm… okay, well there are many many more than this, but I have been meaning for quite a while to get around to reading the final book in Holly Black’s Curse Workers series, which I absolutely adore. And I am also dying to read Mindy McGinnis’s NOT A DROP TO DRINK. It doesn’t come out until September, but I am hoping to get an ARC into my hands sometime before then.

ONE book you’re working on now: I read that your next book is called Don’t You (Forget About Me) Can you tell me anything about that one?

Yes, my next novel is another standalone from HarperTeen and it will be out sometime in 2014. Right now what I can tell you is that it is definitely similar to ALP in that there is a creepy scary vibe and lots of twists and turns.


Thanks so much for the great Q&A, Kate. I wish you lots and lots of success with Another Little Piece and I can't wait to read Don't You (Forget About Me).

Read my review of Another Little Piece: HERE.
 Find out more about Kate by reading her BLOG and following her on TWITTER.  



  1. I enjoyed that interview a lot. Thanks! I like what Kate said about the types of shows that leave you thinking about them even when you're not watching. Sometimes not knowing EVERYTHING is a very good thing because then you can imagine all the possibilities.

    I also love seeing the book suggestions considering I've read and loved three out of the four mentioned. Guess I'll be bumping this book higher up my TBR. :)

  2. I am dying to get my hands on a copy of Another Little Piece so I can read it already. I love that interview! Really looking foward to reading ALP

  3. Holy crap, that is one creepy trailer. Totally sold. I'm a huge fan of eerie, creepy and mysterious books, so this one is now on my list. I really liked Kate's explanation as to why there are some questions that remain, too. It makes sense. Great feature, Leanna!

  4. daisychainbooks23 June 2013 at 21:07

    This one will definitely stick with you for days (and even weeks) after you read it! If I had time for re-reads I'd read this one again - I still have so many questions!

  5. daisychainbooks23 June 2013 at 21:07

    I know! The trailer is so creepy! Can't wait to hear what you think of this one, Melissa!

  6. daisychainbooks23 June 2013 at 21:07

    Glad you enjoyed the interview! Hope you love Another Little Piece! :)

  7. daisychainbooks23 June 2013 at 21:07

    All the books mentioned are on my TBR so I really should get reading them! I especially want to read Imaginary Girls - I've heard good things! :)

  8. Any book or movie that makes me think about them days later was a hit! I like creepy, scary and twists & turns!

  9. Great interview. I absolutely love ALP. The title is perfect, so I'm glad you changed it!

  10. I really loved reading this. I especially love that she started without really knowing where the story would go. And that she was inspired by the sky is everywhere with all the little poems, etc. (love books with things like that in it)

    This book sounds amazing and i am very much looking forward to reading it. x Nomes

  11. daisychainbooks29 June 2013 at 14:41

    It's a really good read, Nomes. Very different to anything I've read probably ever in YA. I'll keep an eye out for your and/or Goodreads updates on this one. x


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