We are so happy and excited to be a part of the blog tour for A WEEK OF MONDAYS by Jessica Brody! We have an amazing guest post from Jessica today, but first I want to share the book details!
A Week of Mondays by Jessica Brody
(Website, Twitter, Facebook, Goodreads)Also by this author: A Week of Mondays
Published by Macmillan on August 2nd 2016
Genres: Contemporary, Emotions & Feelings, Fantasy, Love & Romance, Romance, Self-Esteem & Self-Reliance, Social Issues, Social Themes, Young Adult, Young Adult Fiction
When I made the wish, I just wanted a do-over. Another chance to make things right. I never, in a million years, thought it might actually come true...
Sixteen-year-old Ellison Sparks is having a serious case of the Mondays. She gets a ticket for running a red light, she manages to take the world’s worst school picture, she bombs softball try-outs and her class election speech (note to self: never trust a cheerleader when she swears there are no nuts in her bake-sale banana bread), and to top it all off, Tristan, her gorgeous rocker boyfriend suddenly dumps her. For no good reason!
As far as Mondays go, it doesn’t get much worse than this. And Ellie is positive that if she could just do it all over again, she would get it right. So when she wakes up the next morning to find she’s reliving the exact same day, she knows what she has to do: stop her boyfriend from breaking up with her. But it seems no matter how many do-overs she gets or how hard Ellie tries to repair her relationship, Tristan always seems bent set on ending it. Will Ellie ever figure out how to fix this broken day? Or will she be stuck in this nightmare of a Monday forever?
From the author 52 Reasons to Hate My Father and The Unremembered trilogy comes a hilarious and heartwarming story about second (and third and fourth and fifth) chances. Because sometimes it takes a whole week of Mondays to figure out what you really want.
How My Former Life as an Aspiring Pop Star Helped Me Write A Week of Mondays
by Jessica Brody
One thing a lot of people don’t know about me is that I once dreamt of becoming a pop star. And I don’t just mean I sat around and day dreamed about becoming a popstar I actually moved to LA, wrote songs, recorded a demo album (see embarrassing photo below), and even performed at local clubs around the city. So…um…yah.
It took me about two years before I realized that I had much more fun journaling about my aspiring pop stars days then I actually had living them. And that’s when I decided to try my luck as a novelist instead.
But on the day that I made that fateful decision to give up on my pop star dreams, I made a promise to myself. I told myself if I ever made it as an author, I would find a way to insert my love of songwriting and music into my books.
And until I wrote A WEEK OF MONDAYS (my tenth novel to date), I never really had that opportunity.
Enter: Tristan Wheeler.
He’s Ellie’s boyfriend when the story begins. He’s sexy. He’s suave. He’s confident.
He’s a rock star.
Well, on his way to becoming a rock star, anyway. Actually, it’s his growing popularity that is the cause of Ellie and Tristan’s relationship “issues” at the start of the book.
As soon as I created Tristan Wheeler, I knew this was my moment. Tristan and his band “Whack-a-Mole” needed a song. And not just any song. THE SONG. The song he wrote about Ellie after they first met. The song Ellie and Tristan first kissed to. The song that Tristan and his band would play at the town carnival—one of the many events that repeat itself every single time Ellie is forced to relive the same horrible Monday.
This song had to be epic. It had to be romantic. It had to be SWOONWORTHY!
So I brushed off my songwriting chops. I got out all my old songwriting notebooks and I went to work. The result?
Well, to be honest, it was awful. I struggled. I cursed. I threw crumpled up papers across the room in fits of frustration. I could NOT, for the life of me, write the lyrics of this stupid song! It was like I had lost all of my abilities. I was too rusty. I was too amateur. I was too out of practice. For the entire first and second draft of this book, every time THE SONG was mentioned, it looked like this on my screen:
[“insert song lyrics”]
I went back to all the old songs I’d written in my aspiring pop star days and I pored over the lyrics, trying to find inspiration. That’s when I realized what was wrong. That’s when I realized the source of my big epic songwriting failure.
I was trying to write a song from my point of view. Because, after all, that’s the only kind of songs I’d ever written.
But this song wasn’t supposed to be written by ME. It was supposed to be written by Tristan Wheeler, a fictional sexy rock god who falls in love with a fictional character in a fictional story!
I knew if I was going to write this song with any authenticity, I had to understand Tristan and his relationship with Ellie better.
So I decided to attempt a little writing experiment. I’d heard writing teachers suggest this exercise before but I’d never actually done it. I decided to write the actual scene where Ellie and Tristan first meet. It wasn’t actually in the book, but it was referenced a few times in the book. And according to the story, Tristan supposedly wrote THE SONG the night after he first met Ellie. So clearly I had to figure out what the hell happened that night to inspire him to write a song about it!
Essentially I had to invent the inspiration that I was so miserably lacking.
It started out as an experiment—a writing exercise—and it ended up changing the book. I got so lost in the narrative of their first meeting, and I fell so in love with their “meet cute” that I decided to chop the whole scene up into pieces and spread it throughout the story. Like little flashbacks. Now, at the end of every “Monday” there’s a chapter called “The Way We Were” (Parts 1-6). It’s a reminder to Ellie and the reader of why she fell in love with Tristan to begin with. And why she’s been fighting so hard to keep him from breaking up with her Monday after Monday.
And it wasn’t until I wrote these flashbacks that I was able to get into Tristan Wheeler’s mind, and finally write the song he sings to Ellie…about Ellie.
It’s called, “Mind of the Girl.” Here’s a snippet:
She laughs in riddles I can’t understand.
She talks in music I can’t live without.”
Tell me where to go.
To know the things you know.
Kiss me in the street.
Where everyone can see.
Inside the mind of the girl,
Is the reason we lose sleep.
A map through the best dreams.
The secret to everything.
Inside the mind of the girl,
Time passes in light years
Ships sink in the atmosphere
But someday I’ll get there.
Someday I’ll get there.
And speaking of “music I can’t live without,” here’s my teen playlist! (Oh yeah, high school in the 90s baby!)
I hope you enjoy the music…and the book! And, of course, Tristan. J