Interview With Angelina Singer, Author of Forgetting What I Couldn't Remember

1.) What was the hardest thing about the writing process for FWICR?

Reflecting on my very real experiences I’d say. To be able to portray this particular story the way I wanted to, I knew I’d have to rip open some very old wounds by placing myself back in those middle school classrooms where I was bullied for years. Thinking back to that place of isolation and deeply stifled anger was painful, but it allowed me to portray these people (and events) more or less exactly the way they really happened. And the funniest thing about that is when you read it, it sounds so ridiculous, and I’ve had readers ask me if they were really that bad. And I chuckle a bit to myself in kind of a sad, but satisfying way when I respond in the affirmative. But allowing myself to face my old bullies with my newfound strength and older, wiser perspective has been incredibly freeing for me. I’d definitely recommend it to anyone feeling suffocated by the ghosts of their past experiences. It’s just incredibly cathartic and therapeutic.

2.) What scene did you enjoy writing about the most?

Oh man, how can I say this without too many spoilers? Okay, there is a club scene where two of my characters get a little… cozy. I enjoyed that quite a bit because I’m a hopeless romantic and I live on moments like that. The other scene I have to mention is a really epic fight scene toward the end. You’ll know it when you read it, but that’s all I’m going to say about it. You gotta just read the story to see how it all lays out.

3.) What are your go-to snacks during the creative process?

I don’t actually snack while writing because crumbs (my neat-freak dad has taught me well, haha). But in between writing sessions, I LOVE anything chocolate. Or anything with frosting. Also my mom got me into these really good gummy candies with really low sugar content called Smart Sweets - and they’re so good, legitimately.

4.) What got you into sci-fi/fantasy stories?

Honestly, I’m not totally sure! I hesitate to call myself a sci-fi super fan because I’m not into the massively-popular classics like Star Wars or Star Trek, but I love dystopian worlds as seen in The Hunger Games and Divergent (which are also massive influences for my dystopian sci-fi trilogy The Upperworld Series). I also LOVED the thrilling world-building aspects of The Search for WondLa by Tony DiTerlizzi (the rest of that series is amazing too). So I guess there’s no clear answer - I just took inspiration from things I really liked that all happened to fall somewhere on the sci-fi spectrum.

5.) Do you get writer's block? If so how do you snap out of it?

Reading novels in my relevant genre always helps me. That and I step away from it for a day or a week. And during that time I listen to music with the vibe I want to portray. If I’m really desperate, I’ll even resort to plotting out my ideas in some kind of outline or chart (but admittedly, that is always my last resort because I know that I do my best work without tying myself to any kind of strict outline).

6.) What are your top 5 favorite books or authors?

I really can’t choose! I will say though, that in addition to the authors and books I mentioned in question 4, I really really love John Green. I know it’s mainstream cheesy romance, but it’s just… so good haha. Rainbow Rowell does cheesy romance really well too, so I’ll add her to the list. And as a clarification to those above-mentioned books, I haven’t actually read the Divergent Series (I know, so lame) but I will soon! From a film standpoint, I genuinely really enjoyed those dystopian movies (like The Maze Runner, which I also still have yet to read). 

7.) Do you read your reviews? How do you deal if you get a bad one?

I do read reviews! And I know all authors probably have different modes of operation for this, but I almost always do because the good ones remind me why I write - to be able to share my stories and experiences with others on a broader scale. And the bad ones? Well, it depends. I’m not a glutton for punishment, so if it’s clearly written by a miserable troll who totally missed the point of what I was trying to get at, then I just ignore it and let it go. But, if it is written thoughtfully with realistic and fair criticism, I try to take that into consideration to make my next book even better!

8.) How long does it normally take you to write an entire novel?

It really varies! The first draft of my first ever YA love-potion romance book, Just Like a Pill, came together in about a month during my freshman year of college! And that was largely because I was head-over-heels for this beautiful, edgy, punk-rock guitarist boy I knew at the time and that book was a way for me to live out my desperate romantic ideals. I’m going to be upfront and say that book is like, glorified fan fiction - except worse because it was about a real guy (who still has no idea about this, haha). But I mean, it’s certainly cute, so if that’s your thing, have at it. Okay so long story short, that was a super fast one to draft. Different installments of The Upperworld Series took maybe 6-8 months each on average, mostly because with a multi-book series, you gotta be consistent and dodging plot holes gets trickier the longer you go with a concept. And my latest work, Forgetting What I Couldn’t Remember, took maybe 8-9 months once I started actively drafting it. I had the concept loosely based on a 10-minute play I wrote for a college class, but I was in the middle of writing my trilogy at that point, so I back-burnered it until earlier this past year. And next, I’ll be working on the sequel for that one and I’m very excited to dive into it!

9.) Does your family support your endeavors as an author?

Oh yeah, they’re super proud of me! I’m an only child so my parents already love bragging about me, which is super sweet. My mom even designs custom-made beaded bookmarks for each of my story concepts, and my dad tells literally everyone he knows about my books. Plus they both help me carry all my display stuff to various author expos and conventions, so I mean it when I say I literally couldn’t do this without them. 

10.) Do you ever google yourself?

I have, yeah! But like, all that really pops up is my Amazon page, Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram. I’m not quite famous enough
for an official Wikipedia page or anything… yet. 


Angelina Singer is the author of Forgetting What I Couldn't Remember

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