Here at YABC, we're thrilled to be hosting an author chat with Angie Stanton as part of the blog tour for Waking In Time!
Q & A for YA Books Central
By Angie Stanton
Author of Waking in Time
Your book involves a character, Abbi, who travels back in time. How did you come up with the idea for that?
The idea was sparked while I was doing genealogy research. I came across a relative with a personal secret that I couldn’t unravel. After months of research I realized the only way to solve this mystery would be to travel back in time, and thus a story was born.
Can you talk about your decisions regarding structure? Did you start with this structure in mind, or is it one you worked your way through?
This is a great question. Upon writing, I soon realized that if Abbi could travel both forward and backward to whatever time was convenient, the story wouldn’t feel as credible or urgent. I didn’t want her journey to be too convenient, so I thought, what if she only travels backwards in time and never forward. How terrifying would that be not to know if it would ever end? And by only going back, it would significantly complicate the brilliant professor’s ability to help her. If the first time Abbi meets him, he is middle-aged, then he will only get younger each time they meet as she travels back, and thus, he’d be less helpful. It also added the fun process of watching the professor’s life unfold, but in reverse order until we see him as a pimply-faced teenager with no self confidence.
It was later in the writing process that I came up with the character, Will, who becomes Abbi’s love interest. What would be more complicated and fun than if he was from the past and only traveled forward in time? Talk about an impossible love. How would I make them connect? It was so confusing to figure out, but I love how it turned out.
The main characters in the book meet at different points in their knowledge of what is going on across time. What challenges did that pose for you as a writer?
Haha! Huge challenges. I had detailed timelines, charts, and lists tracking each character’s age, the year, and what they knew at that point based on which time traveler they came in contact with. On top of that, I had each character withhold certain bits of information. All with good reason. Waking in Time is the kind of book that as soon as you finish, you’ll want to reread right away to see where all the clues were that you never saw the first time.
How much research did you do for the book to show the reality of the years and the times in which the characters find themselves?
Literally every aspect of the book was thoroughly researched. Each year that Abbi travels to I researched everything from the style of clothing, hair and makeup, to the type of alarm clocks (clock radios to electric alarm clocks to old wind ups), telephones, dorm room decor, food served (how about a grilled bologna sandwich or a cherry phosphate?), music, and what buildings on campus were built.
I also researched the historical events of each era so that I didn’t overlook major happenings like the Great Depression, Vietnam, and the bombing of a prominent building on campus. Another challenge was the slang of each time. I watched old movies that were filmed in each era to pick up on the correct jargon.
Your main character finds herself in an “unbelievable” situation, but what are the real life lessons that you think readers can draw from it?
I think the life lessons are that no matter how hard things become in life, never give up. Also, to reach out to people around you for help. By letting in some of the people Abbi met along the way, even though she was terrified and trapped in time, she had friends to help her feel safe and not alone. Abbi discovered a sense of strength and perseverance she never knew possible. I feel that is usually how life works. Sometimes great challenges are hurtled at us and we’re forced to rise up and deal with them.
Meet Angie Stanton!
Angie Stanton is a life-long daydreamer who grew up with her hands on a book and her head in the clouds. As an adult, she’s put her talent to good use writing contemporary fiction about life, love, and the adventures that follow. Angie has a Journalism degree from the University of Wisconsin and is the best selling author of eight novels including Rock and a Hard Place, Snapshot, Royally Lost, Under the Spotlight, Dream Chaser, Snowed Over, and Love ‘em or Leave ‘em.
In her spare time, Angie sneaks off to New York City to enjoy the best entertainment experience on earth, Broadway. She is currently working on a series of Broadway-themed books, and is a contributing writer to BroadwayWorld.com.
Angie’s next release is Waking in Time, an epic time travel. Look for it March 1, 2017 from Switch Press.
Meet Waking In Time!
Still mourning the loss of her beloved grandmother and shaken by her mysterious, dying request to “find the baby,” Abbi has just arrived at UW Madison for her freshman year. But on her second day, she wakes up to a different world: 1983. That is just the first stop on Abbi’s journey backward through time. Will is a charming college freshman from 1927 who travels forward through time. When Abbi and Will meet in the middle, love adds another complication to their lives. Communicating across time through a buried time capsule, they try to decode the mystery of their travel, find the lost baby, and plead with their champion, a kindly physics professor, to help them find each other again ... even though the professor gets younger each time Abbi meets him. This page-turning story full of romance, twists, and delightful details about campus life then and now will stay with readers long after the book’s satisfying end.
Waking In Time
Author: Angie Stanton
Publisher: Capstone Publishing
Published Date: March 1st, 2017