Monday, November 29, 2010

What's Fresh with Caridad Ferrer's When The Stars Go Blue

A dancer driven to succeed.

A musical prodigy attempting to escape his past.

The summer they share.

And the moment it all goes wrong.

Dance is Soledad Reyes’s life. About to graduate from Miami’s Biscayne High School for the Performing Arts, she plans on spending her last summer at home teaching in a dance studio, saving money, and eventually auditioning for dance companies. That is, until fate intervenes in the form of fellow student Jonathan Crandall who has what sounds like an outrageous proposition: Forget teaching. Why not spend the summer performing in the intense environment of the competitive drum and bugle corps? The corps is going to be performing Carmen, and the opportunity to portray the character of the sultry gypsy proves too tempting for Soledad to pass up, as well as the opportunity to spend more time with Jonathan, who intrigues her in a way no boy ever has before.

But in an uncanny echo of the story they perform every evening, an unexpected competitor for Soledad's affections appears: Taz, a member of an all-star Spanish soccer team. One explosive encounter later Soledad finds not only her relationship with Jonathan threatened, but her entire future as a professional dancer.

Hello YA Fresher's, we have our friend Caridad Ferrer chatting with us today! Caridad is not new to YA Fresh, we've chatted with her before, and she's back chatting about her brand new release When the Stars Go please give her a big YA Fresh welcome!

Hello Caridad, it's so great to have you back with us! Readers and writers often like to get a behind the scenes peek of an author's writing routine. It would be great if you could please update us on your typical writing day schedule.

Caridad: A typical day for me is coffee, email, and walking the dogs. Then more coffee and looking over the previous day's work to sort of get into the groove. This is also why I actually try to leave off in the middle of a scene rather than at the end-- it somehow makes it easier to get back into the world and mood. I put on the appropriate soundtrack and get to work. If I'm stuck, I'll pause and do some research or get up and walk around a bit. Sometimes, I'll just try to bull my way through. One thing I always do, however, is work linearly. I find it nearly impossible to jump around in a manuscript and write scenes out of order.

Somewhere in there, I do attend to my family-- driving my kids to and from school and doing the typical errands (although laundry is almost always sacrificed!).

Please tell us about your latest novel When the Stars Go Blue and what we can expect from your characters.

Caridad: WHEN THE STARS GO BLUE (November 23rd from St. Martin's Griffin/Thomas Dunne Books) is a contemporary reinterpretation of Bizet's CARMEN but set against the backdrop of competitive drum and bugle corps. Despite how specialized that might sound, it really is a universal story with a love triangle and lots of passion and intensity and desire and misunderstandings and betrayals. Because the main characters are all artists of some sort, the drama and emotions are ramped up another order of magnitude.

Thank you for stopping by, Caridad! We wish you the best with this latest release. What's up next? Do you have another project in the works? If so, please tell us about it.

Caridad: Nothing that's contracted, but I have just completed work on an adult manuscript that's set in the 1960s and deals with a young woman's emotional journey after her family escapes from Castro's Cuba and I've just begun work on a young adult manuscript with which I'm challenging myself, writing in third person POV for the first time in ages and employing paranormal elements, which I've never done before.

Caridad Ferrer is a first generation, bilingual Cuban-American, whose young adult debut, Adiós to My Old Life won the Romance Writers of America’s 2007 RITA® for Best Contemporary Single Title Romance as well as being named to the 2009 Popular Paperbacks for Young Adults list, awarded by the ALA. Her second novel, It’s Not About the Accent was released in 2007 with Publisher’s Weekly stating, “…this twisting book amply rewards readers.”

She has also contributed to the anthology, Fifteen Candles: 15 Tales of Taffeta, Hairspray, Drunk Uncles, and Other Quinceañera Stories. Her newest young adult novel, When the Stars Go Blue, is a contemporary retelling of Bizet’s Carmen, and will be released by Thomas Dunne Books in November 2010. Booklist calls it, “Beautifully written, with contemporary characters and an engaging story line.” Visit her website,

2 fresh comments:

TinaFerraro said...

Hey, Caridad! Thanks for joining us here, and hearing GREAT things about the new book!

Beth said...

Great interview. I love her suggestion about leaving a scene in the middle, so she can pick right up the next day. Congratulations, Caridad, on your new release!