Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Click to Meet: Author L.M. Augustine

l am so excited to be interviewing new author, L.M. Augustine, just days before the big May 9 release of his debut novel, Click to Subscribe (CTS). You may remember my blog post review of CTS. It's an adorable Young Adult romance novel set around two best friends, West and Cat. One of the best things Augustine does is to give his main characters unique, fresh, authentic, and quirky personalities that leave the reader falling in love with watching them fall in love. So, without further ado, let's "click to learn" a little more about L.M. Augustine!

Welcome! I am so happy you could join me and my Albertinis today! As you know, I am a big fan of your new book, CTS. I think it's a refreshing novel for young adults today.

CMA: How did the inspiration for CTS form? What was the first story spark?

LMA: Click was actually inspired by...you guessed it...a YouTube video. I was watching one of John Green's vlogs and he mentioned that two of his fans (one boy and one girl) met online and hit it off so much that they were organizing a real life meet up. At the time, I thought that was so cool. I mean, falling in love through YouTube videos? I didn't even realized that happened. 

Over time, the idea started to develop, and I kept thinking how plausible that could be. I wondered what those two people would have to be like to fall in love over the Internet, wondered what happened to them, wondered what will happen to them. I'm not sure how the rest came about, but the next thing I knew it was midnight and I was scribbling away the first chapter of what would eventually become Click To Subscribe.

CMA: Awww! That's so sweet. I wonder what ever became of those two? (Sorry, I'm a sucker for fated love!) One of the things I liked best about CTS was your use of such an authentic YA voice. I can completely hear your voice and mannerisms in the book. How easy or difficult was it to write a YA novel in that tone?

LMA: It was shockingly easy. I like to think of myself as very versed in how teens really are, especially the dorkier ones, so I already had a leg up there. Plus, I had such a clear image of Cat and West and how they acted around each other in my head that the voice just came. I didn't even have to think about it.

CMA: What's your favorite scene from CTS?

LMA: The graveyard scene. That's all I can say without spoilers. :-)

CMA: Let's move on to the important stuff...where in God's name did you get the term "muppetflails?" It's about the coolest expression I've ever heard!

LMA: It wasn't my invention! I've heard people use it before, did some research, and discovered that THIS is a muppetflail. That was the moment I knew I had to include it in the book.

Muppetflails rule!

CMA: In CTS, it's not all love story and ice cream cones. You address heavy, difficult topics such as loss of a parent, grief and anger, and alcoholism. Any experience that you drew on for authenticity? I like that you got the characters headed in the right direction with these topics, but didn't wrap everything up in a bow. Was that the intention from the start?
LMA: I actually have been lucking enough not to experience any major loss or notably difficult relationship. This lack of experience is usually an issue for me when writing, but the beautiful thing with Click was that the characters were so strong in my head I didn't even need experience. I could just kind of tell how they felt and how, for example, West and his dad would clash; still, portraying the grief and anger and struggles with the dad was certainly the most difficult part of the book. I'm not sure I really dealt with alcoholism, though; it was more about the relationship with West and his dad, not any of the side things. I definitely would not feel comfortable trying to portray alcoholism/commenting on it in any way. I don't know enough there to do so.
Yes, the open-endedness with West and his dad's relationship was planned from the beginning. I like it that way, too. It's kind of a metaphor, and it just didn't feel right to make something that West had been struggling with for over a year just magically fixed. It had to have an element of not being finished, but going in the right direction.
CMA: Speaking of ice cream, what's your favorite flavor?
LMA: Mint chip! Like a boss!

CMA: So, the book comes out May 9, and is self-published, right? Any advice that you want to pass on from your experience to newbie Indie authors?
LMA: Yes! And I'm definitely not one to give self-publishing advice, but I guess I'd say you shouldn't do it alone. Publishing is not an easy process; through traditional, you have an agent and editor alongside you all the way, but with self-publishing it's just you. The best thing you can do is to change that, because you can't succeed on your own. So, make friends. Connect with some of the awesome bloggers. Work together with incredible authors. Make it more than just YOU. Don't just publish your book and spam links and wait for something to happen; go out there and do something.

CMA: As we wrap up, please share the fun things you're doing to launch the book and get the word out.

LMA: Well, I have a blog tour going on the Monday after the release, and I'm also doing a release day party here, which will hopefully be fun. And of course, if you follow me online, there will be a lot of random GIFs and flailing. :-) That's pretty much it!

Thanks for having me!

CMA: Thanks for joining us! Good luck with the launch and much success to you in your amazing debut novel!

Note: Usually, I ask authors my favorite tacky, but award-winning question: boxers or briefs? But due to the age of Augustine's audience, I refrained!

"Click to Connect" with L.M. Augustine:
* Twitter * Facebook * Goodreads * Blog * 


  1. I can't wait for Thursday... those two chapter teasers have me wanting ice cream AND wanting to know how the rest of the story goes down!

    This was such a fun interview, best of luck L.M Augustine ;)

  2. I love this! Thanks so much, Colleen! <3

    1. Thanks for squeezing me in during a crazy, hectic timeframe with your launch just two days away!!! It was a fun interview. Feel free to answer the boxers or briefs question if you're so inclined =)