All the Way Q&A
Brought to you by Therapy Quirks. /shameless plugging
Q: What was the 3rd facet of your inspiration to write Therapy, going off question 2 of the halfway q&a?
A: So happy I finally get to answer this question without spoilers. The third facet of my inspiration stemmed from a desire to write a novel in which young woman fell in love with her therapist. There. I said it. Of course, it had some twists and turns, but yeah.
Q: Considering you wrote a new chapter each week and were able to receive feedback from your readers throughout the process, was the story at all affected by the readers?
… In a sense, yes. I was open to criticism and input throughout the process, so that contributed a small role, but for the most part, all of the creative plot decisions didn’t come from the readers – they came from the story itself. I’m sorry if that’s a terrible answer and makes no sense. Reader input had a lot to do with the rewrites, though.
Q: Did the final product of the story differ from your original plotline? If so, how, and why the change?
A: IT CHANGED QUITE A BIT. I swear the story just grew on itself as it went.
- The original story line included only Darius, Marissa, Andy, Katie, Jarrod, Tabby, and Chris. There was no Asher, no Rochelle, no Leo, none of them. Asher added himself to fill a bunch of plot holes, Rochelle added herself to help complete Asher’s exposition, and Leo popped up to give Andy a sense of closure.
- Obviously, the rewritten chapters changed from their original plotlines. I changed 08 and swapped Darius out for Andy’s parents because, realistically, he wouldn’t show up at her school for a meeting with her guidance counselor, and it helped establish / develop Andy’s relationship with her parents. 12 changed partially because I hated Kenzie so much and wanted her gone, and partially because I thought it dragged like crap.
- The ending changed a wee bit. The ending I had originally planned that after her graduation ceremony, Andy would return home and start packing for California. After her bags were all packed, there would be a ring of the doorbell, and there would be Darius. I even had a monologue for him all planned out. But then it turned into the scene with Leo instead, for two specific reasons. The first of which was the fact that Andy needed to stop using Darius as a crutch. She had to grow up some time and figure things out for herself, rather than relying on him. The second reason I had Leo in line to fill his spot was the fact that Leo was relatively unknown, so he represented a fresh start for Andy.
Q: Which, of all of the ships, do you personally support the most?
A: ANDY/AWKWARD ALL THE WAY. … But seriously, I am the most hardcore of the Andrius shippers. I feel that out of any other pairing, they challenged each other the most. Darius broke Andy out of her shell, and she broke him out of his, forcing him to admit his inferiority issues in regards to his older brother, and forcing him to deal with his lingering resentment toward Marissa. But in the end, I sacrificed my shipping for the sake of Andy’s character development. Responsible author right here. =P
Q: In the Halfway Q&A, you mentioned there were a lot of things you had Asher do because Darius couldn’t. What were they?
A: Remember in 10, when Asher came to the high school and punched Chris in the face? Yeah… before Asher came along, that role was intended for Darius. I even had witty one-liners planned out for Darius to deliver. But obviously, that wouldn’t have worked out well for anyone.
Q: We’re reading To Kill A Mockingbird in school, and Leah commented on the similarities between Atticus and Darius. Were they intentional? Did you draw inspiration for Darius’ character from Atticus?
A: Wow. I didn’t notice it until you brought it up, but they really are sort of similar… Sadly, I cannot say that I drew any inspiration from Atticus. The similarities were accidental.
Q: Do you have any plans to publish Therapy?
Right now, I’m editing for typos and collecting feedback for the readers I have. I’m reluctant to move forward toward publishing, mostly because I feel like the story is directed toward a very narrow audience.
Q: Are any of the characters are based off of real people? And if so, which ones? What made you think of using their personality for that character?
A: Do you honestly think that if I knew people as cool as the characters of Therapy I’d be writing realistic fiction? In all seriousness, there are a few people I can think of, but no one character is based off of no one person. They’re all a mix of my favorite bits and pieces of people. The whole scene that transpired in 10 when Andy beat up Chris was inspired by a situation Zee was in a while back, and Zee served as most of the inspiration for Andy’s temper. There are others, but I’m not sure if the sources of those inspirations would appreciate me publicly sharing.
Q: When did you decide to crush Andrius and Ander?
A: I planned Ander with the intention of crushing it, sorry to say. Andy said it best in 04. Also, Andy’s monologue to Darius in 19 was planned from the beginning. The decision to crush Andrius completely happened as I was priming to write 20. I kept flip-flopping between writing the final Andrius scene, or eliminating Darius for Andy’s sake. Hopefully we all know which idea won…
Q: Was Leo always planned, or a result of your interpretation of fandom feels?
A: None of the above. I knew I had to introduce a character to give Andy some closure after the Jarrod incident, but then when I wrote him, I loved him so much that I kept him around. I love you guys and I respect your criticism, but when it comes to major plot decisions, I follow my instincts. (Peer pressure is bad. Don’t do drugs. Stay in school. I’m writing this on a caffeine high can you tell.)
Q: Is Landy endgame?
A: What is Landy. I support Lando and Lando only. xP Serious answer: nothing is endgame. The ending of Therapy wasn’t only intended to be the ending of one story, but also the beginning of entirely new one. I can’t say I support Lando 100%, just because Leo’s character isn’t nearly developed enough, but even if I did, I wouldn’t go as far as to call them endgame. I haven’t planned that far ahead in Andy’s life to answer this question.
Q: What are your personal thought/feelings/final reflection on Darius? Is he weak, misunderstood, generally honorable…? And given his clear inferiority issues, is it possible that the end of his relationship with Marissa was more complicated than he presented it?
A: WHY WOULD YOU ASK THAT. I AM SO BIASED IT IS RIDICULOUS. I’d rather hear the fandom’s thoughts on Darius. (no… seriously, what are the fandom’s thoughts on Darius?)
For real though, Darius is my homeboy. I see him as generally honorable, and it remains my headcanon that his decision not to pursue a relationship with Andy further stemmed from a desire not to hurt her, because he knew that she had to find herself first. I tried to leave his character open for judgment by the reader, though, because Andy obviously wouldn’t know that. So yeah. Send me your thoughts. Ramble ramble ramble der.