Title: Dead Girl
Author: B.C. Johnson
Publisher: Curiosity Quills Press
Genre: YA, Urban Fantasy, Paranormal Romance
Cover Artist: Andy Garcia
Release Date: 6th November 2014
BLURB supplied by Curiosity Quills Press
Dead is such a strong word …
Lucy Day, 15 years old, is murdered on her very first date. Not one to take that kind of thing lying down, she awakens a day later with a seemingly human body and more than a little confusion. Lucy tries to return to her normal life, but the afterlife keeps getting in the way.
Zack, her crush-maybe-boyfriend, isn’t exactly excited that she ditched him on their first date. Oh, and Abraham, Lucy’s personal Grim Reaper, begins hunting her, dead-set on righting the error that dropped her back into the spongy flesh of a living girl. Lucy must put her mangled life back together, escape re-death, and learn to control her burgeoning powers while staying one step ahead of Abraham.
But when she learns the devastating price of coming back from the dead, Lucy is forced to make the hardest decision of her re-life — can she really sacrifice her loved ones to stay out of the grave?
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Born in Southern California, B.C. Johnson has been writing since he realized it was one of the few socially acceptable ways to tell people a bunch of stuff you just made up off the top of your head. He attended Savanna High School in Anaheim, and an undisclosed amount of college before deciding that weird odd jobs were a far greater career path.
This lead him to such exciting professions as: aluminum recovery machinist, lighting designer, construction demo, sound mixer, receptionist, theater stage hand, wedding security, high school custodian, museum events manager, webmaster, IT guy, copywriter, and one memorable night as the bouncer at a nightclub. He is trying very hard to add “vampire hunter” and “spaceship captain” to that list.
He currently lives in Garden Grove with his supernal wife Gina, his half-corgi, half-muppet dog Luna, and his new half-grayhound, half-living-tornado-of-destruction Kaylee. He also spends time with his two brothers, his parents, and his close friends, whose primary pursuit are usually healthy debates about movie minutiea. When he’s not working or writing, he’s been to known to pursue all conceivable geeky avenues of interest including but not limited to video games, the sort of TV shows/movies Benedict Cumberbatch might star in, graphic novels, podcasts, funny gifs, the whole thing.
He’s also been known to apply his special brand of hyperbole and mania to pop-culture humor essays for various websites that can be found on his homepage, bc-johnson.com. B.C. also has a high school noir short story called “The Lancer” available on Kindle.
Deadgirl is his first novel.
What is your name, where were you born and where do you live now?
I’m B.C. Johnson, Bobby for short, and I was born in Anaheim but currently live in Garden Grove. That’s a distant journey of about three miles, if you’re keeping score at home. I put the pale, flabby “body” in “homebody.”
Do you work another job as well as your writing work?
I’ve pretty much worked all the jobs: the benefits of no college education and a tendency to get bored quickly. I’ve fixed heavy machinery and computers. I’ve been one of the weird guys in black behind the scenes at live theater. Heck I once even did security for weddings for a memorable 3 months.
The wedding gig was a terrible job, but it did give me enough downtime to read the entire “Song of Ice and Fire” on my Kindle, so call it an incredible upside. Though, being at a wedding while reading the Red Wedding scene was . . . nerve-wracking, to say the least.
What is the name of your latest book, and if you had to summarise it in less than 20 words what would you say?
The book’s called “Deadgirl,” and it’s basically this: Girl meets guy, girl dies, girl comes back from the dead, grim reaper doesn’t like that, wackiness ensues.
What can we expect from you in the future? ie More books of the same genre? Books of a different genre?
I love reading pretty much every genre, which means I love writing pretty much every genre. It’s a real problem. As for the immediate future, the sequel to Deadgirl is all finished and going through the editing machinery right now, so with luck that’ll be out soon. Oh, and my publisher, Curiosity Quills, is doing a short story anthology that comes out late November - I scored a spot in the roster with a totally serious, important, dramatic story called “In the Clutches of the Mummy Prince: A Hog McMasters Adventure.”
After that I’ve got a few stories finished or still in the oven – one’s basically “X-Men” meets “Mad Max,” and the other book is a heist movie involving genies. I wish I could just write something easy but it seems to be against my religion or something.
Do you read all the reviews of your book/books?
I really, really do. I’ve been told (ordered, really) by my loved ones that I really should stop doing that, because it’s psychically draining. The good reviews feel amazing, of course, like pouring chocolate over your face. The bad reviews have thankfully been few and far between, but boy howdy do they kick like a kicky thing.
How do you come up with characters names and place names in your books?
I’m a lot like the Riddler from Batman in that I can’t help but sneak references into pretty much every name of every thing, ever. The main character of Deadgirl, for instance, is named “Lucy Day.” Lucy means “light,” and she’s a very bright, bubbly character that kind of inspires others. There’s a character in Deadgirl named “Puck” too, and he proudly lives up to the name. There are other characters in the story whose names hint to their fates in future books, too.
Do you basic plot/plan for your book, before you actually begin writing it out? Or do you let the writing flow and see where it takes the story?
Generally I like to know the ending, the beginning, and a few major points in the middle. I make sure I know the characters really well, and then I just let them start swinging at each other. I’ve tried outlining in the past, but it kind of spoils the story for me, you know? I want to be just as surprised as the reader, ideally.
Is there a certain Author that influenced you in writing?
Stephen King and Joss Whedon have been my two primary influences, with a dash of Raymond Chandler whenever I need to take things gritty. I’m a smartass, so I like reading books written by smartasses about smartass characters. I look to King for organic storytelling, Whedon for dialogue, and Chandler for language. They’re all geniuses, and if I can channel 0.8% of their juice then I’ll be a giddy schoolboy.
Do you think books transfer to movies well? Which is your favourite/worst book to movie transfer?
Some books, especially visual ones, work just fine as movies. Sure, you don’t get the whole story and all the nuance, but it’s not like the movie eliminates the book, you know? I consider those movies to be just visual aids for the books I love.
I think the best transfer from page to screen was probably Jurassic Park. Crichton writes books like screenplays, so it’s no surprise they work just fine on the big screen. The worst transition is absolutely “World War Z.” They didn’t even TRY to make the movie have anything remotely to do with the actual book. Apparently they just went “Hey, that’s a cool title!” and started filming. Don’t get me wrong, Brad Pitt’s a great actor and a handsome devil, but that movie was just fartnoise from beginning to end.
What are you currently reading? Are you enjoying it? What format is it?(ebook, hardback or paperback)
I’m reading “Whirlwind in the Thorn Tree” by S.A. Hunt, and I’m reading it via Kindle, where I devour most of my books. It’s great so far, an interesting look at storytellers, fantasy, and a father-son relationship that’s complicated to say the least.
What piece of advice would you give to a new writer?
Not happy with your first draft and it makes you want to eat your laptop and quit in failure? Here’s a question: Do you ever watch a movie, then discuss it with your friends/family and talk about how X would have been better if only they’d introduced Y earlier in the story? Or, that Pete’s dialogue is god-awful and would have worked better coming from Amanda? Well, you get to do that with your own book. Yeah, okay, it sucks now (they all do, without exception), but you get to mock it and tear it apart and make it awesome later.
However, you have to have something tearable and mockable, so get writing.