Normal Functioning Adult
by Samantha L. Valentine
Released: May 25, 2023
Genre: Women’s Fiction
Why this book and why now?
I spent several years jotting down ideas for stories, doing some writing here and there, but nothing ever moved past a few pages other than a short story I had to writer for one of my uni courses. The urge to write a novel kept growing stronger so I enrolled in a short creative writing course where one of the exercises was to write a 500 word setting. I had the idea of two people who’d lost their partners meeting in a group therapy situation (I don’t know where that idea came from) so I used that for the setting exercise (which is now in chapter one). During the course, they said if we had more than one idea and didn’t know what to write, then go with what spoke to us the most. The two characters I created for that scene – Amy and Luke – spoke to me the most and I ran with it. Two months later I had a 50,000 word draft. A bad draft but it gave me something to build on.
What is a significant way your book has changed since either the first draft or the way you thought it would turn out when you first had the inspiration?
The plot in the second half of the book entirely changed direction. Initially Amy followed a different course resulting in a different ending, along with a different storyline for two of the other main characters. But after a discussion with someone, I realized it wasn’t right for Amy or the story and changed it all and I’m so glad I had that realization! It was also dual point of view and I even threw in a few chapters from a third point of view, but decided to scrap all of that.
Aside from the obvious food and shelter, what 3 things would your main character want with them if they got stranded away from civilization, and why?
Amy would want coffee, sweet fixes of some kind like chocolate, and a device to watch old movies.
One of your main characters is planning a romantic night. Tell us about it. What do they do?
I’ll go with Maddie, who is a secondary character in my book and an amazing cook. She’d plan a meal, likely a traditional curry with homemade roti bread, pair it with some good wine and serve it by candlelight on the back deck of her house.
Publishing a book is a huge accomplishment and it’s time to party! Choose a celebratory beverage for one of your main characters to toast the release of your new book!
They all like wine, but for something more celebratory, Amy would go with a mojito in summer or an espresso martini in winter because is there anything more comforting than alcohol and coffee combined?
What song does your character put on to start your book launch party?
This Love by The Veronicas. It’s relevant to a situation in Amy’s past, but signifies hope for her future too.