I've got something exciting to share: We are lucky enough to be a part of The Holders Blog Tour, which meant I got to read the novel early and got to ask Julianna Scott some questions about herself, her writing and of course The Holders. Enjoy!
Allow me to introduce you to Julianna, author of The Holders.
Julianna was born in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, and spent the majority of her educational career convinced she would be a musician. However, after receiving her music degree from Edinboro University of Pennsylvania, she realized that she'd been born in the wrong era for her dreams of singing jazz to adoring fans clad in zoot-suits and flapper dresses to come true, and began to wonder if her true calling might be elsewhere.
While Julianna had always excelled in writing throughout school, she'd never considered it a career possibility until about three years ago, when she'd gotten her first story idea and decided to go for it. She grabbed her laptop, started typing away, and has never looked back.
For those who have not yet heard about The Holders, could you give a short summary of the story?
17-year-old Becca has spent her whole life protecting her brother - from their father leaving and from the people who say the voices in his head are unnatural. When two strangers appear with apparent answers to Ryland's "problem" and details about a school in Ireland where Ryland will not only fit in, but prosper, Becca is up in arms.
She reluctantly agrees to join Ryland on his journey and what they find at St. Brigid's is a world beyond their imagination. Little by little they piece together information about their family's heritage and the legend of the Holder race that decrees Ryland is the one they've been waiting for. However things are not as clear as they once were, and everyone is in for a surprise that will forever change what they thought they knew about themselves and their kind.
A lot of people have described The Holders as a new twist to X-Men. How would you describe the novel yourself, in one sentence?
Hmm… That’s a tricky one. I guess I would say it’s a story about the bonds of family, the power of love, and the strength you can find within yourself if you are brave enough to look.
Becca is very protective over her younger brother and is rather stubborn and determined. In which ways do you recognise yourself in her character?
Well, I am definitely stubborn, and I always think I’m right. ;-) I am also a caregiver and like to take care of my friends and family. To be honest, I think there will always be a little of me in all of my main characters. If I can’t relate to them in some way there is no way I will be able to write their stories.
The Holders is a very interesting story, in different ways. What would its theme song be and why?
This is a hard one for me, because most of the music I listen to is lyric-less. I went to college for music and some of my favorite songs are either classical, or scores to movies. However there is a composer that I found via YouTube when I was looking for music to inspire THE HOLDERS, named Adrian Von Ziegler. He has a ton of amazing stuff out there, but my favorites—and the ones that I feel best suit THE HOLDERS are Crann Na Beatha, Cliffs of Moher, and Celtic Lore.
What books have influenced your life most?
Romance novels, but not for the reasons you might think. In the aspect of reading, I grew up under something of a rock. I had no idea that there were stories out there about love and relationships that weren’t the horrid cheesey $3.99 romance novels that I saw in the supermarket. :-) When I read my first quality romance—which was actually only about 3 years ago—my literary life was changed.
When did you first consider yourself a writer?
Oh goodness, there are times when I still don’t. Insecurity is something most writers have a load of and I am particularly bad when it comes to comparing myself with others. I will try to call myself a ‘real writer’ but it seems to always been subconsciously followed by, “but I’ll never be a writer like her/him/them/etc.”
Do you have any writing rituals?
With two little kids, it’s hard to get into a pattern, and I’ve learned to work pretty much anywhere and whenever I can. The only thing I absolutely require is quiet. I can’t have the TV on or music playing, or anything like that, or it is impossible for me to concentrate.
What do you like to do when you’re not writing?
I love to read, but that is probably a given. Otherwise I love spending time watching TV with my husband, cooking and baking, and being crafty.
If you couldn’t be an author, what would your ideal career be?
Not sure, but it would still be something creative. I love making things, whether it’s food, or crafts, or sewing, or art—I love to create!