Monday, 28 October 2013

On the quest for the lost boys with Lilian Carmine

Lilian Carmine is a writer and freelance artist, living in Sau Paulo Brazil.
She is currently working on illustrated children's books, animation, comic books, character design and creation, and digital painting - as well as the next book in her hugely popular Lost Boys series.


On October 24th, your new book 'The Lost Boys' was published, please could you tell me about it?
The Lost Boys is a book about a supernatural romance, but the story is also about music and the power of true friendship. It is about a love that breaks all obstacles and endures through time, with a heroin that will never give up and will always fight with all her might for the ones she loves. You mix all of this up with a bit of magic spells, a rock band, unearthly beings and death, and you have yourself an epic adventure of an amazing group of boys and one rocking girl.

They say the journey to being published is one of the hardest an author can take, please can you describe the journey that you went on?
I am very fortunate in my journey. It started in 2010, when I decided to post the story as a free e-book read at Wattpad. After a year and a half of the story being posted there I already had gathered over 22 million reads. By the time I was closing the deal with Random House UK in 2012, the book had about 35 million reads, and then I had to take the story down and off the site because of the publishing deal. It was a very meteoric ascension, I think, everything happened really fast for me. I would never have imagined I would have 8,000 readers following me and my lost boys, and that my story would inspire and touch so many hearts all over the world. It is a dream coming true for me. My debut novel was released in October, 24th of 2013 and it is available now for anyone to read.
I’ve been reading posts about publishing by many authors, and I know I am an exception to the rule. I know having your book published is a very hard struggle and as a beginner in this writing business I most definitely thank my lucky stars every day for the success I have with my story.


Are any of the characters in 'The Lost Boys' anything like you?
Yes, all of the boys (and girl) have bits and pieces of me in them. Sometimes I put a quirk here, a habit there, a belief, a flaw or quality, a thought, there’s parts of me in every one of them, some are hidden, some are at plain sight, some I only let out in small clues, but I am sprinkled over the boys like fairy dust, to give them more life. They are all inspired by real people though, so there are bits and pieces of those people in there as well. And then there’s the parts that are intrinsically their own, it is part of the process of creation when you mix everything and the character comes to life and start having opinions and a mind of their own. After that, I have no control over them anymore, they do what they want to do and I have no say in any of it. People think I’m joking about this, but it’s god’s honest truth, after you put your characters out in their world, they come alive and they are not yours anymore, they are their own selves with all the independency and stubbornness that real people have. Sometimes they say and do things that even surprise me! It’s a wild trip to follow them around and type in their stories.

What can we expect next, any future books in the pipeline?
Yes, you can! I am now editing the second book of the trilogy (The Lost Girl – previously Lost Boys on Tour) with my incredible editor at Random House UK. And after that, I will be writing the third book, I don’t have the title yet as it is a wok in progress.
After the Lost Boys trilogy is done, I have a new story with new characters I want to write, it’s about romance and fantasy, but that is for the future. I have a pile of books stored in my head, all waiting in line. All I need now is time to write them all!

Was there any book you read as a child that convinced you that you wanted to become a writer? If so, which one was it?
I was absolutely in love with “The little vampire” (German: "Der kleine Vampir") by Angela Sommer-Bodenburg when I was growing up. The illustrations in the books from Amelie Glienke are simply incredible, she was the one who inspired me to want to draw (I am now a Bacharel of Visual Arts) just as the author inspired me to write.

If there was one saying that could sum up your life, what would it be?
I think the one that best sums up my life is the line that Tristan says about his love for Joey in the book: “Until the end and from the start.”
It literally means, all my life; from the day I was born to the day I die.

What is your all time favourite book?
Peter Pan by James M. Barrie. I think its self explanatory why I named my band after Peter’s boys, right? They are amazing, the whole book is amazing!

Please would you share who your 5 dream dinner party guests would be?
Tom and Giovanna Fletcher, Danny Jones, Doug Poynter and Harry Judd. They are the soundtrack I played on repeat while writing the book and their work is a true inspiration.

At your dinner party, there's a cocktail in honour of 'The Lost Boys' what are the ingredients?
I think for a ‘Lost Boys’ drink, you have to start pouring a good base of eye-opening mystery into the glass. Add a good dose of sweet rich lip-tingling romance, top it up with some wicked rocking musical ambience to flourish and accentuate all the flavours in the drink, then sprinkle a good amount of friendly humor and fun scenes around, add some fizzing dark suspense and a chilling villain, then shake it all with some good cocktail-shaker-action and pour it all into a beautiful crystal blue glass and there you have it! The most incredible Lost Boys drink you’ll ever have! ;)


If you could give one piece of advice to an aspiring author, what would it be?
Finish your story. Don’t start writing something and abandon it because you don’t have the popularity you expected from it.
Don’t do it because of fame, recognition or money. Do it because you love to write and because you have a story to tell and you can’t get it out of your head and onto paper because otherwise it will drive you mad.
Write. Do if for you, not for others. And you will already be heading in a good direction.

A big thank you to Lilian Carmine for talking to Love Of A Good Book!