Johanna and I are good friends. We've worked together, we've cried together, we've brainstormed together, we've grown together and we've helped each other get through writing blocks.
I've seen a her go through stuff and come out the other side stronger and even more driven. So it is with great pleasure that I hand over the reigns of this blog to her for a very special guest post and an excerpt!!
Take it away Johanna!!
“Are you ready to go to any length?"
The story started years ago—as a series titled “Death By Chocolate”. The plot wasn’t extensively developed. I started writing about this seventeen year old girl whose life didn’t make any sense, and who sought an escape to her problems at all cost. After encountering an old lady outside a one-dollar store, Julie Jones ate an enchanted piece of chocolate that immediately transported her to a parallel universe. From there, the story changed, evolved, became extremely personal, and finally, carried a message I didn’t think myself capable of delivering.
There’s magic in writing. I have an idea in mind, and follow my characters’ lead. The idea grows, and blossoms into something bigger. I often surprise myself too. I have to thank my editor for his advice and guidance though. 32 Seconds wouldn’t be what it is today without his help.
“Death by Chocolate” was retitled “The Truth Within” before I decided to go with “32 Seconds”. The meaning is explained at the end of the book—during the grand finale. I won’t spoil anything. Just know that the number 32 (3+2) gives the number 5, which is special to me.
In numerology, the number 5 is a dynamic number. Always in motion, and always in need of change, 5 is feminine with tomboyish qualities. 5 is independent, and a risk-taker. 5 is loyal, but when not in a relationship, likes to fly from flower to flower without any strings attached. 5 can adapt to anything. 5 is charismatic, charming, good looking, smart, but drawn to be an outcast given anything conventional bores 5 to death. 5 is judgmental, self-righteous and sometimes, uptight.
Now you get a portrait of Julie Jones. She’s the number 5. She seeks freedom of thought and action, she cannot be controlled but is far from being narrow-minded. Her sense of humor is healthy, she carries her heart on her sleeve and often gives it to the wrong person because she’s not the greatest judge of character. On the negative side, she’s selfish, reckless and irresponsible. She tends to procrastinate and be unreliable. She will experiment with drugs, sex and alcohol and other weaknesses of the flesh. She deals with a desire for instant gratification, a sense of invulnerability, lack of discipline and restraint.
Julie Jones and the other protagonists ruled my life for one full year and half before I was pleased with how the story flowed. 32 Seconds takes place in California, but my inspiration came from the streets of New York City where I work, and used to live until a year ago. I love the pace, and the energy the Big Apple gives me, but I have to take it in moderation in order to stay sane and grounded.
I’m pasting a little excerpt of the book, and the link where you can purchase it. I love reviews, and feedback, so don’t hesitate to let me know your thoughts.
Thank you for the opportunity to be featured on your blog!
So rather than face the troubles that torment her, Julie decides to run away from her old life and start fresh somewhere new. But her parents aren’t on board with the plan, and she soon finds her bank accounts frozen and her wallet empty.
With just seventy-five dollars and a full tank of gas, the troubled teen is far too stubborn to turn around and head home. So what’s a girl to do?
What Julie doesn’t know is that her travels are about to take her somewhere unexpected—a place where she’ll be forced to come face to face with the ghosts of her past in order to secure her future.
A tale of redemption, hope, and freedom lost and found, 32 Seconds is a thought-provoking exploration into the human spirit and the nature of forgiveness.
Planning my escape wisely hadn’t crossed my mind when I ignited the V8 turbo engine and dashed out of the school parking lot like a hoodlum in panic of being chased and caught by a platoon of law enforcement officials, after an unsuccessful bank heist. Like I said, I wanted out. And whatever I wanted, I achieved by any means necessary.
Running away brought me closer to freedom. No consequences for my actions. No guilt. No pain.
As my foot pressed harder on the gas pedal, I listened to the roar of the engine, which threatened to remind me of the overbearing loneliness I continued to ignore. My hand reached for the radio and I turned the volume to high. My head needed that noise to overwrite any internal monologues. Relentless, like waves on the shore, my thoughts wouldn’t stop crashing inside my brain, giving rise to a series of hot and cold sweats, while my inner self kept screaming the same question.
Why did I always have to run?
Ten years later, she moved to New York City, which inspired her to go back to the excitement, wonder, and constant change of being a writer. Pitcairn is a huge fan of psychological-thriller novels and movies, and delves into her hopes, fears, friends, enemies, and everything in between in her own writing.
Contact her on Twitter @themanicheans
Check her website: http://themanicheans.com
She’s also on Facebook at http://facebook/jkpauthor
And J.K. Pitcairn is also a proud member of the Independent Author Network. Check out her author page: http://www.independentauthornetwork.com/jk-pitcairn.html