I’m very excited to have one of my good friends and colleagues, the lovely Sharon M. Johnston on my blog today, talking about her latest release, Sleeper. As a title that is set in Australia and uses our spelling and cultural references, I really enjoyed hearing her take on keeping in the Aussie-isms, and staying true to her Aussie roots.
Firstly, I made the decision to set it in Australia and stuck to it, despite knowing that stories set in America sell better.
Then I decided to stick with my Australian spelling. Entranced were very accommodating on this, which made me squee a bit inside.
Thirdly, they let me keep in Aussie slang/local vocabulary words like uni, gap year and snavel (though no Shelia, shrimp on the barbie or cobba).
Some of my Aussie friends have their stories set in non-descript locations and use US spelling. And I’m cool with them doing that. It’s just not really for me…though I am co-authoring a story where my fellow writer insists we do this.
I got an email from a reviewer who loved the Australianness of Sleeper. She said she felt part of our culture and that’s something I wanted to achieve.
I have a lot of overseas friends who are in my target demographic and they are intrigued with Australia. I love that I can take them there in my story.
A lot of the themes in a NA or YA book are going to transcend boarders, so the location shouldn’t matter as much for the majority of books. Therefore I choose Australia, and always will when the story allows.
Mishca Richardson’s life is at an all-time high after her heart transplant. With new boyfriend, Ryder, the two of them have the perfect summer romance. Even the nightmares that have been plaguing her sleep since her operation can’t dull the high she’s on.
Things start to unravel as Mishca develops superhuman abilities. She does her best to hide them so as not to end up a science experiment in a lab. But she can’t ignore the instant attraction she experiences when she meets her university professor, Colin Reed.
Torn between blossoming love and obsession, Mishca must decide if she wants Ryder or Colin. But the organization responsible for her changes and her connection to Colin is moving to secure Mishca so that she can be the weapon they always intended her to be. If Mishca can’t resist her programming, she’ll have a lot more to worry about than romance.
Title: Sleeper: Toy Soldiers Series
Author: S.M. Johnston
Genre: YA-Science Fiction Romance
Length: 300 pgs
Release Date: December 2, 2013