Author Chat with L.C. Rosen (CAMP), Plus Giveaway! ~ (US Only)
Today we're excited to chat with L.C. Rosen author of
Read on for more about L.C. and his book, plus an giveaway.
Meet L.C. Rosen!
L. C. Rosen, also known as Lev Rosen, has written several books for adults and children, including the young adult novel Jack of Hearts (and other parts). His books have been featured on numerous Best of the Year lists and nominated for several awards. He lives in New York City with his husband and a very small cat.
From the author of the acclaimed Jack of Hearts (and other parts) comes a sweet and sharp screwball comedy that critiques the culture of toxic masculinity within the queer community.
Sixteen-year-old Randy Kapplehoff loves spending the summer at Camp Outland, a camp for queer teens. It's where he met his best friends. It's where he takes to the stage in the big musical. And it's where he fell for Hudson Aaronson-Lim - who's only into straight-acting guys and barely knows not-at-all-straight-acting Randy even exists.
This year, though, it's going to be different. Randy has reinvented himself as 'Del' - buff, masculine, and on the market. Even if it means giving up show tunes, nail polish, and his unicorn bedsheets, he's determined to get Hudson to fall for him.
But as he and Hudson grow closer, Randy has to ask himself how much is he willing to change for love. And is it really love anyway, if Hudson doesn't know who he truly is?
~ Author Chat ~
YABC: What gave you the inspiration to write this book?
The big inspiration was old 60s Rock Hudson/Doris Day type sex comedies, where there was a battle of the sexes and people pretended to be other people to win people’s hearts but discovered maybe they weren’t pretending along the way. I love the movie Down With Love, which is a postmodern version of those movies, so much, and I really wanted to create a sort of contemporary queer YA version of Down With Love - but instead of the Battle of the Sexes, it was the battle of the gender presentations. The summer camp was a secondary thought – I’d been meaning to write a summer camp book for a while, and this seemed like the ideal plot for it.
YABC: Who is your favorite character in the book?
I don't play favorites, I love them all equally. Obviously, Randy was the one I got closest to because it's his POV, and his 'I'll do it all for LOVE' mentality was fun to write. It's deeply naive (as all his friends point out) but also very sweet, and it's nice to step into that kind of brain now and then.
YABC: Do you have a favorite writing snack?
And get food on my keyboard? No.
YABC: Thinking way back to the beginning, what’s the most important thing you've learned as a writer from then to now?
In terms of technique, I've learned that every book writes itself differently, and things you think you know from writing one book aren't necessarily going to apply when writing the next one. In terms of being a professional in this industry, I've learned you have to be able to shake everything off.
YABC: What do you like most about the cover of the book?
I actually suggested they make it a patch, so I'm so glad they did. I'd suggested glitter thread, but they went with sequins which came out really beautifully! I'm also glad they made it very obviously gay. I had to talk to them about that - originally it was two genderless figures holding hands under a happy rainbow, which for a summer camp didn't really read as explicitly queer for me. So the fact that it's now essentially a sequin pride flag shaped like a tent is amazing.
YABC: What’s on your TBR pile?
SO MUCH. The Fell of Dark, by Caleb Roehrig, Dead to Her, by Sarah Pinborough, Buying Gay by David K. Johnson, just to give you a variety of selections. I'm also really looking forward to You Should See Me in a Crown by Leah Johnson.
YABC: What’s a book you’ve recently read and loved?
There are a lot of those, too! I got an early version of Surrender Your Sons, by Adam Sass, and it's astounding. And early copies of Cale Dietrich's the Friend Scheme, which is sexy and twisty and Julian Winters' The Summer of Everything, which is adorable and so sweet. But as for books that are out already, I just read Far From You, by Tess Sharpe, which is a great dark mystery, Here For It, essays by R. Eric Thomas which are deeply smart and funny, too, Reverie by Ryan La Sala which is the queer fantasia we deserve, Alex London's Red Skies Falling, second in his bird trilogy, which is epic, and The Only Black Girls in Town by Brandy Colbert which is a middle grade and it’s a mystery, sort of, but also a coming of age and just so beautifully done.
YABC: What’s up next for you?
Nothing I can announce.
YABC: Are there any film adaptations, tv shows, audiobooks, or other adaptations in the works for this book?
Yes! It was recently announced that Camp is in development at HBO Max, with Dan Jinks (Milk, American Beauty) producing, and a screenplay by Kit Williamson (EastSiders). I'm so honored and thrilled to be working with both of them, and they've been AMAZING. Just really getting the book and knowing how to translate it to the screen while keeping its heart.
YABC: Which was the most difficult or emotional scene to narrate?
There's a scene which I can't say much about - spoilers - but someone uses the f-word (not the sex one, the slur one) and it's just brutal. That was hard to do, because I didn't want my character to be so nasty, but it also was very true to what was happening and his defenses and emotions.
YABC: Which character gave you the most trouble when writing your latest book?
I had some trouble figuring out how Hudson talks in Camp. I knew his character: life coach as love interest, always telling you that you can do anything, but his actual speech mannerisms were coming off a little generic - I think because when I think about life coaches, they speak in a practiced generic way, because they're trying to relate to everyone. So I had to get a bit deeper into who he was and how he's convey that in verbal tics. It didn't come as naturally as the others.
YABC: Is there an organization or cause that is close to your heart?
FirstBook. They're a group that goes into lower income neighborhoods and give out books to kids who's parents can't afford them and often don't have time to take them to the library. I think kids need books all around them all the time to grow up loving reading, so that's so important.
By: L.C. Rosen
Publisher: Little Brown BYR
Release Date: May 26th, 2020
Two winners will each receive a copy of CAMP (L.C. Rosen) ~ (US Only)
*Click the Rafflecopter link below to enter the giveaway*
This book looks and sounds amazing! I am also very excited that it is also in production to be a movie on HBO Max. This will be a great summer read! Thanks for the opportunity to win such a great prize!
The cover is really cool. No one should have to give up their unicorn bedsheets and hopefully this book will prove it.