Today we're excited to chat with Alexandra Monir, author
of The Girl in the Picture!
Below you'll find more about Alexandra,
her new book.
YABC: What gave you the inspiration to write this book?
ALEXANDRA MONIR: I wanted to challenge myself to write a very different sort of romance. I hadn't yet read a love story that begins with the romantic lead dead in the beginning, so I thought that would be a really cool starting point for both a murder mystery and love story combined. Sounds twisted, I know. :) But that's what made it so fun to write, and hopefully read!
YABC: What scene in the book are you most proud of, and why?
ALEXANDRA MONIR: My favorite scenes are the two when Nicole is performing, and in those moments she transforms from the sidekick into the star. As a singer/songwriter and diehard music fan myself, I loved getting to write this character who is so prodigiously good at the violin, who has a spiritual awakening whenever she performs. And then it was just as fun to write Lana's internal reactions, as the girl normally in the spotlight contends with that scary feeling of all of a sudden wondering, "Am I not enough?"
YABC: Thinking way back to the beginning, what’s the most important thing you've learned as a writer from then to now?
ALEXANDRA MONIR: To really study writing as a craft and skill, rather than just diving into the story and winging it. :) I now make it a practice to analyze books I really love and take notes on the pacing and structure, ask myself what affected me most about a story and characters and why, etc. The more high-quality writing you read, and the more you are aware and noticing what works and what doesn't, the better your own writing will be- by far!
YABC: What do you like most about the cover of the book?
ALEXANDRA MONIR: This, along with my debut, Timeless, is my favorite cover I've ever had! The photo strip background is a perfect homage to a huge plot point in the book, and the expression of the girl on the forefront really captures the vibe of my character Nicole. The cover artist did an amazing job of capturing the mood of my story, and I love how it also looks kinda like a movie poster!
YABC: What new release book are you looking most forward to in 2016?
ALEXANDRA MONIR: Two authors I love have new releases out this year- both are already out, but as I'm currently on a deadline, I've been saving these for my post-deadline vacation reading: The Darkest Corners by Kara Thomas and A Week of Mondays by Jessica Brody. And of course, Harry Potter and the Cursed Child! I feel like the only person in the Potter fandom who hasn't read it yet, but saving it for vacation as well.
YABC: What was your favorite book in 2015?
ALEXANDRA MONIR: The Walls Around Us by Nova Ren Suma. W-O-W was that amazing. It's a fabulous ghost story with a great twist, and gorgeous language you will want to read over and over again. Walls is an example of a book I took notes on, to try to learn from Nova Ren Suma's brilliance!
YABC: What’s up next for you?
ALEXANDRA MONIR: I'm currently writing my dream project, a YA space thriller called The Final Six. Sony optioned the movie rights this spring, which has been such a surreal dream come true! Fun link here. :) http://deadline.com/2016/05
YABC: Which part of the writing process do you enjoy more: Drafting or Revising?
ALEXANDRA MONIR: I live for Revising! The blank page is the hardest part of being a writer, and you have to face that every day in the drafting phase. But with revising, it feels like magic! You have the guts of your story all laid out, and now you get to have fun moving around the puzzle pieces, polishing, and adding the razzle dazzle. :)
YABC: Is there an organization or cause that is close to your heart?
ALEXANDRA MONIR: My husband and I are huge dog-lovers and we support the ASPCA and Lhasa Happy Homes dog rescue here in Los Angeles. We also love Extraordinary Families, which helps children in the LA foster system find forever families. Please check them out if you can!
YABC: Is there anything that you would like to add?
ALEXANDRA MONIR: I adore Twitter, especially chatting with readers and writers. Follow me there @TimelessAlex!
Meet The Girl in the Picture!
“A dark and addictive mystery that had me flying through the pages: best read late at night under the covers with the doors locked!”—Kara Thomas, author ofThe Darkest Corners
One dead body, one photograph, one comprimising secret. Everyone’s a suspect in this classic “whodunit” murder mystery from Timeless author, Alexandra Monir.
Nicole Morgan has been labeled many things—the geeky music girl, the shy sidekick of Miss Popularity, and the girl with the scar. Now only one name haunts her through the halls of Oyster Bay Prep. The girl in the picture.
After heartthrob Chace Porter is found dead in the woods near the school, the police search for the girl snuggled up next to him in a picture discovered among his personal effects. A girl no one knew was even close to him—and whose best friend, Lana Rivera, was his girlfriend.
Nicole is that girl, and now she’s the primary suspect in his murder.
What happened that night? Were Nicole and Chace dating behind Lana’s back? Were he and Lana over? Could either of the girls have killed him?
In alternating points of view—that of suspect Nicole Morgan and that of Lana Rivera—and weaving between present-day, flashbacks, and the characters’ surreal subconscious, The Girl in the Picture is a unique tale of teen friendship, romance, and deadly secrets.
Meet Alexandra Monir!
Alexandra Monir is the author of the popular time-travel YA novel Timeless, as well as its sequel, Timekeeper, and a romantic thriller, Suspicion. She is also a professional recording artist and composer. Alexandra and her husband live in Los Angeles, where she is at work on her next novel while also composing an original musical. Her music is available on iTunes, and you can follow her on Twitter at @TimelessAlex.