Today we're visiting with author Christine Klocek-Lim on her tour with Sizzling PR for the YA, "Disintegrate".
What would you write in a letter to your teen self?
I would tell my nerdy, glasses-wearing, bad-hair, introverted self to hang in there. Good things are coming your way. I have a very specific memory of what it felt like to be fourteen years old, the summer right after my freshman year of high school—I was standing on the shore of the Nescopeck Creek in northeastern Pennsylvania (near my family’s cabin), and thinking: I’ll never find a guy who will not only love me, but also be my best friend.
Turns out, I was totally wrong. I met my husband when I was seventeen, the second day of college. We met in an elevator. He was barefoot and wearing shorts. I was wearing a bright pink sweatshirt. He introduced himself. That was the beginning of our epic-romance.
The best part? He has been my best friend. He gave me a book of poems for my eighteenth birthday. He gives me space when I need quiet to write. He has always believed, from the very beginning, that I was a writer, long before I ever published anything.
What candy do you give out at Halloween?
Chocolate! Hershey’s kisses and Skittles. Both of my kids have severe peanut and tree nut allergies, so Halloween has always been the horror holiday in our life. Every time we went trick-or-treating, we’d come home with a bag full of peanut-butter candy. I got into the habit of buying GINORMOUS bags of Skittles so that my kids would always have something safe to eat on Halloween. The sugar-rush from Skittles? Colorful!
Coal or candy in your Christmas stocking? Why?
Would you believe that I once actually got coal? I’m not kidding. I grew up in coal-country in Pennsylvania. Our furnaces burned coal to heat our homes. One of my earliest memories was of when the coal delivery truck would come by. The chute that led from the truck to the house would go into a basement window, and then men would climb into the truck and shovel coal pieces down. It was mesmerizing. It had a peculiar smell, somewhat bitter and cold.
Of course, that doesn’t mean I wanted to get coal for Christmas! Somehow, my dad thought it would be hilarious if he tricked me by putting a few pieces of coal in my stocking when I was about eleven or twelve. I remember staring at the black rocks in my hand, confused, and then my dad started laughing and I knew it was a joke. I began to laugh, too, and then they brought out my real presents. Apparently the look of bewilderment on my face was epic.
For the stockings we pass around in my house now, I always make sure to put in candy. My favorite? Pop rocks!
What superpower would you love to have? Why?
I have always said that I would love to have telekinesis. I want to be able to turn of the lights without getting up! And I’d love being able to get myself a drink or a snack without having to put my book down. On the other hand, I bet having the power to harness electricity would be cool. I have no idea what I’d do with it… maybe make my own fireworks? Out of lightning? That would be cool.
What book is on your nightstand currently?
I don’t keep just one book on my nightstand, I keep hundreds. My e-reader is the most amazing thing that’s ever been invented in the history of the written word—because I already own a thousand paper books and it was getting kind of ridiculous. I even have them shelved in the bathroom! The book I’m dying to read (as soon as I have time) is “Written in Red: A Novel of the Others” by Anne Bishop. It looks awesome. It’s next on my list.
Hunger Games or Twilight? Why?
Hunger Games, definitely! Because Katniss kicks butt. And Bella totally should have chosen Jacob (I know, I know, I’m going to be yelled at for that). Jacob is so nice and handsome and protective. I really found Edward frustrating. I mean, if you love the girl, what are you doing, running away like that?
What reality show would you love to be on? Why?
None! Not ever ever ever. Because I know that I would scratch my butt or pick my nose or something and you know that they would put that on television…
Okay, okay, if I had to pick? I’d love to do Dancing with the Stars. Except I’m not a celebrity, so, it’s kind of impossible. I love to dance, though, and have been taking ballroom dancing lessons for a few years. I’m not awesome at it, but I’m not hideous, either.
You’re stranded on a desert island—which character from your book do you want with you? Why?
I would love to have Emily with me on a desert island. She’s strong and capable and can manipulate matter in a way that would help us survive. She never gives up. She just keeps going, even when everything seems impossible.
Favorite pizza toppings.
Sadly, I’m gluten-intolerant and I can’t eat pizza anymore (cue the sobbing…). When I was still eating pizza, my favorite had caramelized balsamic onions, basil, mozzarella cheese, and sausage. I can’t even begin to describe the bliss one experiences when eating that particular pizza. It’s the prince of pizzas. It’s the pizza every other pizza wants to be. It’s the kind of food you cry over. I, um, kind of miss it… a lot (in case you couldn’t tell).
Emily just wanted a normal life: a boyfriend, college, two parents who loved her. Instead, her dad disappeared when she was fourteen and her life at college is anything but ordinary. When you can manipulate matter like putty and you have no idea why, how do you pretend to be like everyone else? What happens when you meet a guy who has the same powers? Do you trust him to help you find the answers you need? Emily desperately wants to believe that Jax can help, but the stakes grow higher than she’d ever expected: someone is after them and they’re not afraid to use violence to get what they want.