Today we have Samantha Young, the New York Times bestselling author and self publishing sensation of On Dublin Street. She was then picked up by the fabulous folks at Penguin and has taken the romance world by storm. Samantha is here today to talk to us a little about the next book in her series, Down London Road.
Samantha, welcome to The Book Pushers!
Thank you for having me.
The Book Pushers: Can you tell us a little about the call you got from Penguin asking you to join their team of authors?
After interest was expressed in On Dublin Street, my fantastic agent got to work on negotiations until I accepted a deal with Penguin. I was celebrating a friend’s birthday and we were on a night out in Edinburgh when I got a call from my agent to tell me about the offer from Penguin. Obviously there’s a five hour time difference, so while it was still office hours in NY I was in the middle of the street at night in Edinburgh trying not to scream in excitement in public. It was such a surreal night, but absolutely amazing.
The Book Pushers: Did you originally plan to write Johanna’s story, or was the success of the first book the motivating factor to tell her backstory?
The success of On Dublin Street definitely gave me the confidence to continue the series with Jo’s story. ODS was my first foray into adult contemporary fiction and I wasn’t sure how readers would respond to me in this genre. I waited until it was released and as soon as the positive feedback started coming in I began to think about where I could take the series next and who with.
The Book Pushers: Johanna is a character that is not your typical romance heroine. Can you tell us what inspired you to write a character like that?
Partly it was the challenge of writing a heroine so different from any other I’d written, but mostly I liked the idea of taking a character I knew most readers would have judged in a certain light in On Dublin Street and delving deeper into the whys and the hows. I’m always curious about what drives a character and I wanted to create a whole life around Jo that explains why she does and acts the way she does. My favorite part of writing is character development and I just knew Jo had the potential to develop well over the length of a story. Moreover, I’m lucky to find myself surrounded by quiet, strong, loyal and self-sacrificing women and they definitely inspired Jo too.
The Book Pushers: Who else can we expect to see in future On Dublin Street books?
Presently, I’m writing book three and this is Nate and Olivia’s story. We first meet Nate and Olivia in Down London Road and I hinted at a backstory for both of them. And of course the rest of the Edinburgh gang will be returning—Joss, Braden, Jo, Cam, Ellie and Adam and the Nichols family.
The Book Pushers: On your blog, you talk about having to balance the contractual obligations that come with traditional publishing whilst also continuing to work on your self-published series. One such compromise was pushing out the release for Darkness, Kindled to April 2013 in order to work on Down London Road. How has this affected your creative process? Was it difficult to switch gears mid-project?
Yeah, that was probably one of the most challenging moments in my career as an author so far. Not only do I hate disappointing readers by pushing release dates, but DK is such a different world from the On Dublin Street books. They are two entirely different genres, so I was jumping out of Adult contemporary romance to write young adult urban fantasy. That wasn’t easy and it definitely took me a while to fit comfortably back into the YA.
The Book Pushers: Are you able to give us any sneaky peeks into what you’re working on next?
Book three is in the makings, but I’ve also been working on something else. All I’ll say is that it’s romantic fiction and I’ll be announcing more about that soon…
The Book Pushers: Can you tell us how you go about planning your stories? Pantser or Outliner?
A definite outliner. I write character profiles, histories, plot summary and chapter summaries all before I start writing the actual novel.
The Book Pushers: Are you tempted to dip your toes into adult contemporary romance?
The On Dublin Street series is adult contemporary romance. I know some readers have confused it with New Adult but it is firmly adult 🙂
The Book Pushers: Which of your works would you recommend someone read first and why?
I would recommend On Dublin Street as I think it says a lot about who I am as a writer. Just as it is with anything, I’ve developed as an author and still am, so I think the ODS series (being my most recent) really captures my authorial voice. More importantly, I just think there is something for everyone in On Dublin Street—romance, humor, relatable issues and family drama.
The Book Pushers: What is your all time favourite romance and couple and why?
My all time favorite romance and couple is either Mac and Barrons from Karen Marie Moning’s Fever series or Chess and Terrible from Stacia Kane’s Downside Ghosts series. Both romances are atypical, they take time to build, and they’re between incredibly flawed characters who are somehow perfect for each other and I love that. I always think it makes the romance that much more believable and intense.
The Book Pushers: What does the genre of romance mean to you?
For me the genre of romance is about the characters. It’s about following a journey between two people and watching them grow and develop and have their lives change for the better because of their presence in each other’s world.
New York Times bestselling author Samantha Young is a 27 year old book addict who graduated from the University of Edinburgh. She lives in Scotland. Visit her online at:
1 thought on “Interview with Samantha Young”
I really enjoyed On Dublin Street, and I absolutely *loved* Down London Road! Thanks to Ms. Young for populating her novels with intelligent, sympathetic characters who I firmly root for. The whole world you created around Jo was a compelling one.
Great interview, you guys!