Shannon A. Thompson
5.0 out of 5 stars An exciting YA dystopian novel-Elaine Jeremiah
“This was an exciting, intriguing tale. In the dystopian world Sophia, her family and friends are living in, there is a war on between the State who control the various regions in this post-modern America and those who use and promote a clairvoyant drug.”
4.0 out of 5 starsEnticing, mysterious dystopian!-Jen @Star-Crossed Book Blog
“This was truly a unique read! I love my dystopian worlds and while some can blend together, that definitely wasn’t the case in Take Me Tomorrow. The elements of the storyline were enticing and the mystery of all of the unknowns kept me flying through the pages. The little hints of romance were innocently sweet and what blossomed from it left me smiling. And the ending of the book left me completely dismayed (but in a good way)! I can’t even start to imagine where they can all go from here!”
4.0 out of 5 stars A YA novel unafraid to address grown up issues-Allie Potts
“The book’s premise hooked me right away. Set in a realistic future featuring extreme immigration control and harsh anti-drug policies, a teenager named Sophia Gray’s sheltered world is turned upside down after a chance meeting with a stranger in the woods. This stranger has ties to a risky drug believed to provide users with the temporary ability to see everything all at once, including the future. While users are potentially endangering their own lives by using the drug, it is the government that is the most threatened by its existence. The novel asks you to answer the question, what is more important security or freedom?”
I want to say my guest and I have followed each others blogs for some time now. I mean she’s an author, I think authors are cool, so of course I followed the author lady. That of course meant that when I decided to start this site I wanted to interview her and amazingly enough she said yes. I am surprised with each person that says yes, but especially those who have several books out. Now it’s time to meet . . .
RW: Where are you from?
SHANNON: I’m from the road. Even though I’m only 23, I have moved 15 times in my life. I’ve lived in Pennsylvania, Oklahoma, Wisconsin, Georgia, and on the Kansas-Missouri border, so I don’t really have a hometown. It’s hard for me to stay in one place for too long. Traveling is when I feel at home.
RW: Who are your favorite authors?
SHANNON: Jack Kerouac and Edgar Allan Poe are my favorite traditional authors, but I absolutely adore Meg Cabot, Cassandra Clare, Lauren Oliver and Lynne Ewing in the young-adult market. I’m also a huge fan of the poet, Billy Collins.
RW: What is your favorite beverage to drink, any kind?
SHANNON: Coffee! I’m such a coffee addict that I just cannot go a single day without at least one pot of coffee. I’ve actually been drinking it regularly since I was twelve. I am not a fan of chocolate, so I didn’t like having hot chocolate in the winter mornings to keep me warm, so my father thought it was a good idea to give me his leftover coffee. Been hooked ever since. The funniest moment was when my middle school teacher realized what I was drinking every morning, but that’s another story to be told. I’m actually drinking a coffee right now.
RW: What is your escape from writing when you are at that about to explode point?
SHANNON: Writing – I know that sounds like a contradiction, but I have many types of writing. I write young-adult novels, but I’m also a poet, and I work on numerous books at a time. If I’m stressing out about one, I just skip over to something else – something that I don’t have to worry about – and if I don’t want to write at all, I’ve been known to hop in the car and drive without a destination in mind. The road is a comforting place. Unless you’re short like me driving into the setting sun. Then, it burns.
RW: What is your favorite word?
SHANNON: Midnight – I am a night owl, practically nocturnal, and the single word reminds me of how calm everything is late into the evening when everyone else is asleep.
RW: What is your background in writing, what makes you a writer?
SHANNON: I’ve been writing as long as I can remember. In fact, my mother taught me to write in order to cope with my night terrors as a child, but she – unfortunately – died very suddenly when I was eleven, so I began chasing a serious writing career after that. My first novel was published five years later, and since then, I’ve had four novels, two short stories, and a collection of poems published all around the world, including a Norwegian magazine. I also studied literature and creative writing at the University of Kansas where I graduated from in 2013.
RW: Tell us about why you chose Take Me Tomorrow as the title of your novel?
SHANNON: Take Me Tomorrow is my latest novel, and the title created itself. About halfway through the story, one of the protagonists talks about tomorrow and what it means to them, but explaining it too much might give away parts of the story. The novel is a young-adult dystopian tale about a clairvoyant drug. When citizens can see the future, it changes how everyone lives in the present and remembers the past, so time is a huge factor in both the story and the title. The drug is also called “tomo” and everyone believes it is a nickname for “tomorrow” but it isn’t. ::wink wink::
RW: What genre does your book fall into?
SHANNON: Young-adult dystopian.
RW: Why do you write in the genre that you do?
SHANNON: I write in many genres, but I currently only have young-adult, paranormal romance, dystopian, contemporary, military, and poetry published. Whew. I thought that list would be shorter when I started, but – as you can see – I love writing in various styles. I look at it this way: I love reading numerous genres. Why would I only write in one genre?
RW: Tell us a little about your book.
SHANNON: Take Me Tomorrow is a young-adult dystopian novel about a clairvoyant drug, but sixteen-year-old, Sophia Gray, has other problems to deal with. Her father runs an illegal forgery, and her best friend is caught up in small crime, and that is not even the end of it. When a mysterious boy shows up in her backyard, Sophia has to decide whether to fight for a tomorrow she cannot see or sacrifice her loved ones to the world of tomorrow.
RW: What inspired the book?
SHANNON: Take Me Tomorrow deals with many sensitive issues within society, including drug abuse, addiction, and immigration. I decided to write about these topics mainly because my mother was a drug addicted, and it ultimately killed her. I spent many years researching drugs, and that research developed itself into this novel. I actually wrote an article about this if you want more details: http://shannonathompson.com/2014/07/18/why-i-write-about-immigration-drugs-and-addiction/
RW: Tell us about your main character(s) and what you think will them connect to readers.
SHANNON: Sophia Gray is strong, stubborn, and willing to do anything to help her friends and family, but she’s also human. Her anger can get the best of her, but she doesn’t let anyone try to stop her from doing what she thinks is right. Noah, on the other hand, is rather forced into doing things, and everything has slowly broken him down. He’s a very complex and damaged character, but when the two come together, a dark serenity clears the tension around them.
RW: Who would play your main character(s) in a movie?
SHANNON: I would beg, beg, BEG for an open-casting call. I wish Hollywood would do that more often for two reasons:
It gives new actors and actresses a chance at participating in a large project
(I think) Viewers can believe in the characters more when they haven’t seen the actors everywhere before.
RW: What message do you think your book delivers to the reader?
SHANNON: As much as Take Me Tomorrow deals with sensitive topics revolving around drug abuse, I strived to stay neutral to the topic, and so far, many readers have reflected that in their reviews. The message is completely up to the reader, and I wanted it to be that way because society is that way. These things are not black and white. These moments are always gray.
RW: What did you learn about yourself from writing this book?
SHANNON: After it was all written, I think I realized how much of my personal life I have slipped into the story. Sophia is very much like me when I was sixteen years old. She has a knife collection. (Something I do, in fact, have.) And she finds peace in a forest that she checks with her dog, Argos, who she loves very much. That was practically my life. I had acres I had to watch over, and my husky and I spent hours out there. Writing about it brought many happy memories back, but writing about the drug use was also very hard. When my mother first died, I never told anyone how it happened. I just avoided explaining it. But after many years passed, I slowly dealt with the fact that she had been addicted to drugs, and writing allowed me to explore a lot of those emotions. There’s a moment in Take Me Tomorrow where Sophia looks at Noah and states, “I could handle his drug-induced state. His sober state was more terrifying.” This line has been pointed out by readers, and I think that’s because it’s uncomfortable and true. Not for all situations, of course, but for some people who’ve had loved ones addicted. Sharing those moments can be scary, confusing, disheartening, and honest.
RW: Where can we get your book now?
SHANNON: Take Me Tomorrow is available everywhere – Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Smashwords, Apple, etc.
RW: What other books do you have to share with us and can you tell us a little about them?
SHANNON: The Timely Death Trilogy is an award-winning, paranormal romance, and it is also available everywhere. Minutes Before Sunset (book 1) explores the world of lights and shades, creatures that live among humans as humans, and two characters – Jessica and Eric – tell the story of two destinies and one death. Book 2, Seconds Before Sunrise, is also available, and Death Before Daylight, book 3, is releasing in January of 2015.
RW: How do people connect with you through all forms of social media?
SHANNON: I am mainly found on my website – ShannonAThompson.com – where I talk about reading, writing, and publishing. We are so close to 18,000 followers! But I love connecting with anyone and everyone, so I am also on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Wattpad, Instagram, and more.
RW: Do you currently have representation? If so who, and if not describe what qualities you would like in an agent and what you would bring to the relationship.
SHANNON: In 2012, I was signed by AEC Stellar Publishing, Inc., and they’ve represented The Timely Death Trilogy as well as Take Me Tomorrow. My poetry was published by LALUNA magazine and Kansa Publishing, and my short story was in The June Project. My first novel was done by Golden Eagle Publishing, but I’ve gotten my rights back, and I plan on re-releasing November Snow in November of 2015.
RW: What are you working on right now?
SHANNON: For publication, I’m working on my content edits for Death Before Daylight, book 3 of The Timely Death Trilogy, and November Snow. I have other works pending in various stages of publication, but I don’t like talking about them until they’re coming out – I’m a very superstitious person, and I always feel like I’m jinxing it if I talk about it with anyone but beta readers.
RW: What book are you reading at this time?
SHANNON: One of my jobs at AEC Stellar Publishing, Inc., is pre-reading novels before release, so I’ve been reading two novels we’re releasing – The Stars Are Infinite, book 2 of The Stars Trilogy, by Amber Skye Forbes and The Pandora Chronicles by Ryan Attard.
RW: What is your biggest tip for someone to getting published?
SHANNON: Research and research some more to make sure the path you take is the best one for both your novel and your goals. Traditional publishing, small press, and self-publishing all have pros and cons. Understanding those is key to achieving the type of publication you dream of.
RW: List links to all websites you have and social networks such as Twitter.
There you have it all folks. Everything you need to know about Shannon. Below you will see her book trailer for Take Me Tomorrow, enjoy it. I once again thank Shannon for agreeing to join us today. I just cannot believe the generosity of the Literary Community in starting this site off in such a great way.
Much Love & Respect to You All
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