Hey, guys! Guess what? Today on the blog we have another interview for you (did I tell you I was coming back with a bang or what?)! This time I am thrilled to have Lydia Kang, author of the upcoming (and likely-to-be-awesome) Control, stop by for an interview as part of YA Reads' 2013 Debut Authors Bash. I hope you enjoy my interview with Lydia below, and be sure to check out the other posts by bloggers and debut authors participating in this event, as well!
Series: Control, #1
Released: December 26th, 2013
Publisher: Dial BFYR
Genre: Science fiction/dystopian
An unputdownable thriller for fans of Uglies.
When a crash kills their father and leaves them orphaned, Zel knows she needs to protect her sister, Dyl. But before Zel has a plan, Dyl is taken by strangers using bizarre sensory weapons, and Zel finds herself in a safe house for teens who aren’t like any she’s ever seen before—teens who shouldn't even exist. Using broken-down technology, her new friends’ peculiar gifts, and her own grit, Zel must find a way to get her sister back from the kidnappers who think a powerful secret is encoded in Dyl’s DNA.
A spiraling, intense, romantic story set in 2150—in a world of automatic cars, nightclubs with auditory ecstasy drugs, and guys with four arms—this is about the human genetic “mistakes” that society wants to forget, and the way that outcasts can turn out to be heroes.
Hi Lydia! Welcome to the blog.
Hi Blythe! Thanks for having me.
To start off the interview, introduce yourself to our blog readers in five words or less.
Professional Day Dreamer and Doctor.
Now let's introduce your book to our blog readers: how would you describe your upcoming YA novel, Control, in five words or less?
Girl + Mutants = Love + Complications (Okay, I kind of cheated since I used math. Does that count?)
Why is it that you chose to set Control so far into the future, in the year 2150? Is there a specific reason you chose the year to be 2150?
I wanted the politics, ethics, and technology of the world to be traceable to today's moral and political issues. I wanted my readers to look and the world and think, "Yeah, I could see how this could be." So too far into the future, you make leaps that are so huge (stuff like quantum physics gets involved, and I don't like physics, haha). But I also wanted more than enough time to go by so some things were unrecognizable, too.
You're a doctor; did you put much of your occupation to your advantage when writing Control, having the novel centered around genetics and the human body?
I did. There's an illness that plays a big part of Control, and it came about from studying for my board exam. Also, every mutation that shows up I researched in one way or another. The great thing about being in medicine is knowing how and where to look for answers to my biogenetics questions.
Drugs and drug use could both easily be tricky subjects to cover in YA literature, particularly when not in a dystopian setting, and not contemporary. Did the futuristic setting of Control, where the recreational drugs are completely different from those familiar to us now, give you some leeway to write on the topic more freely?
It did--as far as drug delivery in the club itself. Trying not to be spoilery here. ;) But to be honest, if someone right now had the money, the lab, and a confident evasive strategy to flummox DEA, the illicit drugs in Control could be real. Let's just hope that person doesn't actually exist right now!
Which method do you use when writing--plotting, or pantsing?
I plot the entire book down to what happens in each chapter, but I pants the scenes.
In Control, the main character Zelia is protective of her sister, Dyl. Do you have a sister whom you're close to or protective of that helped make writing Zel and Dyl's relationship easier and more authentic?
I do. I once saw my sister wearing an oxygen mask while she was in the hospital, and that little piece of plastic made me go crazy. I just cried, seeing her in that vulnerable position. This weird animal instinct comes out in you that's so frighteningly strong. The whole protective grizzly bear thing isn't just for moms (and I'm a mom--I know!).
Of all the characters in Control, which one would you say you relate the most to, and why?
Zelia, the MC. The one thing we have (had) in common is that crushing insecurity over looks, as a teen. I'm over that now, but man. I remember writing in a diary once as a teen, asking the universe why the hell I was so damn ugly. I gave that to my main character. Sorry Zelia!
What is your favorite non-spoilery scene from Control?
There is a rock climbing scene that I based on my one and only rock climbing experience. And there's hot and heavy kissing going on (okay, that did NOT happen when I went climbing, LOL) but it was so fun to write!
What was your favorite part of writing Control?
Knowing that it was something special. I guess every book you write when you're a novice writer, you hope it will be the one that will get published. But with Control, I just knew. It was weird. I guess it was a combination of better writing skills, more objectivity about what I could create, and better understanding of the publishing world.
Thanks so much for stopping by for an interview, Lydia!
Thanks Blythe, for having me! I'm excited to get Control into the hands of readers. Come December 26th, it's all yours!