Google+ Reading Teen: The Mockingbirds Interview and Giveaway!

Friday, November 5, 2010

The Mockingbirds Interview and Giveaway!

I just had the privilege of reading The Mockingbirds by Daisy Whitney and am really excited to share this short interview with her, as part of a blog tour with The Teen Book Scene.

Be sure to check out Daisy's blog here:

And catch up with her on Twitter here:

Describe yourself in five words or less.
Shoe-lover, mom, wife, writer, friend.

Did you imagine yourself writing to a certain person when you wrote The Mockingbirds, or did you have a general audience in mind?
I definitely pictured teens, especially because their passion and their energy inspire me so much.

Where were you when you found out your book would be published, and who was the first person you told?
My daughter! She was in the car with me when I got the call! Then I called my husband!

Which character surprised you the most in terms of how he/she grew as a person compared to how he/she began?
I had to do a lot of work on Martin to get him just right! 

What is the question that you wish I had asked you, and what is your answer?
Why do you love shoes so much? Because they’re beautiful and ask nothing of you but to be worn!

And now for the giveaway!  I'm giving away my Advance Reading Copy of The Mockingbirds to a follower!  If you could ask Daisy anything you wanted, what would you ask?  Leave a comment and tell us and you're entered to win!  (International, ends 11/17)



  1. what advice do you have for people who want to become published YA authors?


  2. Do you have an inspiring quote or message that you live by?

    Can't wait to read this book!

  3. Who is your favorite fictional character and why?


  4. What are the 5 books that you would recommend to everyone?


  5. What is the first book you ever fell in love with?


  6. What is the biggest mistake you've made in your life and what did you do to correct it?


  7. Cant wait to read this, thanks for the chance! Who is your favorite author and why?

    natcleary at gmail dot com

  8. What inspired you to write this novel?

  9. Is The Mockingbirds in your book inspired by the honor and justice issues in "To kill a mockingbird"? If so, how did it influence your work?


  10. Which would you rather win in a giveaway, $1000 bookstore gift card or a pair of Manolo Blahnik's?

    waitmantwillie at hotmail dot com

  11. This comment has been removed by the author.

  12. When you were much much younger, did you ever dream of becoming an author?
    isabookwhore at gmail dot com

  13. Why did you choose to take this type of an 'issue' the direction you did? Do you feel your book could be realistic?


    basicallyamazingbooks [at]

  14. Have you ever based a character on a family member or friend?

  15. I have a wedding in February. Would you go out with me to buy some shoes to go with my dress? What's your favourite pair of shoes?

    ella_press AT

  16. Are you only writing YA novels at the moment or are you trying something else as well ?

    Thanks for the giveaway.

    Carol T

    buddytho {at} gmail DOT com

  17. When did you first realize that you wanted to write a book?

  18. I haven't read "The Mockingbirds", but it always reminds me of " How to kill a mockingbird". Is there any connection to this book, have you read it and did it influence you somehow?

    Long question:D goldie-mail(AT)web(DOT)de

  19. Do you have a playlist for this book, and if so would you like to share?

    I've entered, thanks for the giveaway!


  20. If you could co write a book with someone, who would it be?

  21. I am anxious to read this author and then ... I want to know:
    What inspired or is his muse to write that novel or any piece of this?

    One Kiss

  22. Was this story something that you wrote quickly, or was it a slower process? I am always curious to know who quickly authors write such successful books. Some seem to take years, and other just weeks. Fascinating!


  23. My question will be very personal: I've heard you've been once in Alex's shoes (no pun intended!), what have you done about it?

  24. I see that the playlist while writing question was already brought up... So were you drinking more coffee or more tea during the writing process of the Mockingbirds?

  25. I just want to know what is your favorite book and why! I look forward to reading your book! Thank you for this great giveaway!

  26. Ah, I'm so getting this book! Really.
    Well, why mockingbirds and not any other bird? Everyone seems to be really interested in mockingbirds.


  27. At what age did you decide to become a writer?

  28. What inspired the physical appearances of your characters?


  29. What kind of impact do you want The Mockingbirds to have on this generation of readers?

    I'd love to read this, thanks for making this international!


  30. Do you see yourself writing more 'issue' books in the future?

    I'm really looking forward to reading this.

    ishtamerc (AT) gmail (DOT) com

  31. I´m dying for read this book :)

    Who is the character who most enjoyed writing and why?


  32. If you could be a literary character, who would you be?

    deadtossedwaves at gmail dot com

  33. Good luck to people who take part in the giveaway. There are very good questions. I have another one:There are always moments in writer's life that he/she thinks 'I quit' or 'I can't think straight'. How do you get over this??

  34. Nice mini interview!
    I'd love to know, if you could go back to any time in history and be anyone, famous figure or a plain peasant, which era would you choose and who would you be and why?

    Thanks so much for the chance to win this, I have read great reviews about it!!!


  35. Thanks!

  36. Silly question, but what is your favorite brand of shoes?

    Can't wait to read Mockingbirds!

  37. What made you decide to write about this particular topic for your teen audience?

  38. My questions is about why she chose to write about date rape and was it hard to write about as it is to read about?

  39. Describe the first pair of shoes that you bought yourself?[@]gmail[.]com

  40. How does your mood affect your writing?

  41. When did your shoe obsession start and do you remember the first pair you bought yourself with your own money?

    Kate1485 at

  42. Who were your favorite authors when you were a teen? (And I love shoes too!)

  43. great giveaway

  44. Is it hard being a good mom and writer at the same time?
    xlacrimax at gmail dot com

  45. Haha I love how Daisy puts shoe-lover first before mum and wife :P
    My question would be: If you could live anywhere in the world, where would it be and why?


  46. I have two questions:

    1. How many pairs of shoes do you own?

    2. What's your favorite shoe store?

  47. After receiving rejection leters, how did you become motivated again?
    -Miranda Lyons

  48. Why would you write a story about rape? What inspired you?

  49. This comment has been removed by the author.

  50. Hey guys!! Great questions - I'm going to start answering them...

    @Zoe - My advice to people who want to become pubbed author is to write every day, edit your work relentlessly, connect with other like-minded writers who want to be published and critique each other's work, and then when you work is in the best shape possible - look for an agent!

    @Cialina - Good question! Some quotes I love include Randy Pausch' quote about enabling the dreams of others being as much fun as achieving your own dreams. Which translates into GIVE to others. I like this quote from Aristotle: "Excellence, then, is not an act but a habit." And I like the quote from La Vie Boheme in Rent "To riding your bike midday past the three-piece suits" because that symbolizes to me the joy in pursuing your dreams!

    @Julia - I love Frankie Landau-Banks in the Dispreputable History of Frankie Landau-Banks because she is a butt-kicking teen girl who stands up for what she believes in!

    @Misha1989 - the 5 books I would rec to ANYONE are A River Runs Through it by Norman Maclean, To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee, A Separate Peace by John Knowles, Harry Potter by JK Rowling and Time Travelers Wife by Audrey NIffenegger.

    More answers coming...

  51. More answers!

    @Jenna - First book I fell in love with was Little House on the Prairie by Laura Ingalls Wilder! I read all those books when I was young!

    @ReadingLassie - Good question on mistakes! I'd rather not go into details, but I do believe strongly in learning from mistakes and in making amends!

    @Nat - my favorite author is Emily Giffin. I love everything she has written.

    @Marie - I was inspired to write The Mockingbirds because I am intrigued by boarding school, by codes of right and wrong, and by what it takes to stand up for your beliefs.

  52. @phuongV - yes The Mockingbirds is inspired by To Kill a Mockingbird and the secret society in my book takes its name from Harper Lee's book, which is the canonical story of justice and doing the right thing

    @icedream - Manolos! Only because I'd never buy them myself and I will always buy books!

    @Anne - yes I dreamed about writing, but I also dreamed about being a Broadway star, an Olympic ski jumper and an environmental scientist!

    @Ashley - I wanted to show what a group of smart, ethical teens could do to help each other. I hope if bad things happen in life though that teens will turn to trusted adults.

    @Debbie - yes, I have based characters on people I know, but mostly I use parts and traits from people I know.

    @Ella - congrats on your wedding! My favorite shoes are Christian Louboutins. I LOVE them.

    @buddyt - I am very focused on YA though I also want to write for middle grade readers too.

    @wulfluva - I first knew I wanted to write books about 4-5 years ago when I was reading more contemporary fiction and had the aha moment of thinking "I can do this!"

  53. @MissPageTurner - yes the book was inspired by To Kill a Mockingbird - see answer above!
    @ASimpleLoveofReading - I don't have a playlist, but off the top of my head I would say Wake up by Arcade Fire, Ode to Joy by Beethoven, and Stop Hey What's that Sound by By Buffalo Springfield.
    @AprilX - I'm not sure I'd be any good at co-authoring! I'm so solitary in my writing that I can't even picture it!
    @Lu - see answers above about inspiration!
    @Scoot - I wrote a showable draft in about 5 months, then did some revisions with my agent and many for my editor!
    @Jam - I have been in Alex's shoes and I successfully pressed charges at my university when I was date raped in college.

  54. @Teril - I consume an obscene amount of caffeine daily mainly in the form of green tea and did while writing The Mockingbirds too!
    @latishajean - my favorite book is a River Runs Through it by Norman Maclean because it says so much about people and how we connect or don't with each other.
    @Mika - BC of To Kill a Mockingbird!
    @Lucy - I decided to start writing novels at age 35!
    @LaurenM - the inspiration for physical appearance of characters varies a lot. Some are based on people I know, but most are pictures in my head!
    @kulsuma - I hope the Mockingbirds sends the message that it's cool to take a stand for yourself and for others!

  55. @ishta - I have written a sequel to this book that also tackles some issues and then I will be focusing a bit more on contemp romance stories!!
    @Itzel - I loved writing Alex because she is the heart of the story, Maia because she is so tough and brilliant and Martin because he is such a good guy.
    @Vivien - I would be Frankie Landau-Banks because she is going to change the world!
    @Chiara - "Never give up, never surrender!" I believe in hard work, persistence and talent. I also believe in ceaseless forward motion. Keep writing, keep going!
    @Yllektra - if I could go back in time it would to whoever has the best shoe collection!
    @Ashley - not silly, but important question! My favorite brand of shoes are Christian Louboutins! I am in love with them! I want a pair so much!!!

  56. @mrsheise - I chose to write about date rape because I wanted to show a character healing and recovering from it
    @booksnob - it was not hard for me to write about it because my own personal experience was so long ago that I had a necessary artistic distance from it.
    @EvaSB - I don't remember the first pair I bought! The last pair of shoes I bought though was a pair of 4 inch blue heels to go with a white and blue dress!
    @Precious - I am very regimented about writing, so my mood doesn't come into play much.
    @Jasmine - see above about shoe buying. My shoe obsession started in earnest about 2-3 years ago when I stopped wearing clunky cloggy shoes all the time!
    @Bella - I loved Laura Ingalls Wilder, Judy Blume and Danielle Steele when I was a teen

  57. @xlacrimax - it can be tough finding a balance as a mom and a writer. I try to do the best I can!
    @BlackestNight Reads - I probably have about 40 pairs of shoes and my favorite shoe store is any shoe store with pretty shoes!
    @YAvampirebooks - I would like to live in Paris!
    @Miranda - I knew rejection was a necessary part of the process and I chose to simply keep going and to believe that I would get where I wanted.
    @Polkadots - I wrote about rape because I wanted to show the healing that is possible after a traumatic event
    @GoodGolly - I find inspiration when I walk my dog in the mornings and turn off the phone and just let thoughts and ideas have space to form!

  58. Why was this the book you knew you had to write?

  59. I am one of those people that find it amazing that writers have real lives too. Pleaae give us a glimpse of a typical day in your life. :)


  60. Did you ever have writer's block when you wrote Mockingbirds? If so, how'd you over come it? Unless you had smooth sailing, which is great :)


  61. What if that pair of BEAUTIFUL, DROP DEAD GORGEOUS shoes doesn't look nice on you? Will you still buy them?

  62. Do you remember when you started reading a book? :D

  63. if an amazingly gorgeous pair of shoes and a super interesting book have a deathmatch for your love, which would win? :D

  64. I'd love to read this! I've many great things about it :)
    Do you listen to music while you write? Is there an especific song that inspired your writing?

  65. Hmm, I would ask what's her favourite flavor of ice cream :)

  66. What is her favorite book of all-time? What was the first book she's read?


  67. Daisy,

    What authors inspired you to want to become a writer?
    caliblue7 at gmail dot com

  68. This comment has been removed by the author.

  69. what made you want to become a writer ?

    raluk.93 at gmail (dot) com

  70. If you ever get writer's block, how do you get through it?
    Thanks for the great giveaway :)

    mrsjohnson1982 at yahoo dot com

  71. Where were you when the idea for this novel hit you?

  72. I'm completely curious about this book now. What are the mockingbirds' role in this book...hmm I want to know! Haha.

    Question: Do you happen to have a music playlist for this book?


  73. Since I'm a brazilian, gonna ask you what do you think about Brazil, and whether you'll like to visit it :)

    juiceb0xx at hotmail dot com

  74. What has been the most surprising thing about being a published author so far? Something that you didn't expect at all?


  75. Do you have another work in progress at this time? Thanks for a great interview and giveaway!

    Stiletto Storytime
    stilettostorytime at gmail dot com

  76. 2 Questions I would ask Daisy Whitney:
    -If I wanted to publish a book, could you help me out with it?
    -And also, lol, can you follow my blog? XD
    Hafsah @ IceyBooks

  77. okey, here is the question:
    what are your favorite types of books??
    that´s all!

  78. What is your inspiration?

    lag110 at mchsi dot com

  79. @Gabrielle - I knew it was the book I had to write because it clicked. I wrote every day, was focused every day and the story almost told itself.
    @chrizette - my daily life - walk dog at 630 am, help get kids ready for school, work on client work from 830-230, pick up kids from school, help with homework and take to activities, dinner, bedtime, then write from 8-1030 or 11, watch TV and hang out with hubby, bedtime at 12.
    @Jade - I didn't have writers' block, but that's partly because I use my dog walk time every morning to work out problems and the next scene to write
    @Fi-Chan - I would only buy shoes that look awesome on me!
    @petit - not sure I understand the question. I started reading at 4 or 5.
    @melannie - book wins!
    @sharli - I only listen to music while writing in coffee shops or airplanes. Songs that inspire the Mockingbirds - Ode to Joy.
    @audrey - mint chocolate chip
    @ivy - A River Runs Through it is favorite all time book

  80. @Elise - Emily Giffin was a writer who inspired me to write
    @pinkstuff - I write because I believe in the suspension of disbelief
    @misreneer - the cure for writers block is to go for a walk, then sit down and write
    @missy - I had been noodling on the idea for a while. It was during a call with a friend that the idea crystallized
    @soultified - Mockingbirds are a secret student run society for justice
    @Juliana - long live Brazil!
    @stilletto - yes, a second Mockingbirds book comes out next year and I am working on many more novels
    @hafsah - I will cheerlead you and encourage you!
    @andii - my favorite books are young adult contemporary novels and memoirs about living in Paris
    @lag123 - I am inspired by life, my dog, ideas, people around me, nature, but mostly - people!

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