Friday, September 12, 2014

Tens List with Gretchen McNeil

Book Nerd Tens List

Gretchen is a former coloratura soprano, the voice of Mary on G4's Code Monkeys and she currently sings with the LA-based circus troupe Cirque Berzerk. She is a founding member of vlog group theYARebels where she can be seen as "Monday," and she is an active member of both The Enchanted Inkpot, a group blog of YA and middle grade fantasy writers, and The Apocalypsies, a group blog of 2012 children's debut authors.

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I'm counting down my favorite male creations – boy characters from my books, that is (not, um, lifelike androids that look like Daniel Craig who may or may not live in my basement…)

*smiles cryptically*

I've tossed in some little-known facts about my boys along the way…

10. Logan Blaine (Get Even) – I know, I know. You haven't met the Get Even cast yet! But you will, and when you do, you'll love surfer dude Logan. Why? He talks like Johnny Utah (look it up…) and looks like Andy Roddick. FACT: He was originally named "Logan McDonough" but in a weird cosmic coincidence, Andrea Portes' Anatomy of a Misfit also has a character named Logan McDonough! So I changed his last name to "Blaine" which is a reference to Blane McDonnagh from Pretty In Pink.

9. Nathan (Ten) – Nathan was the first real a-hole I ever wrote. He's racist, misogynistic, selfish, unfeeling, and a bully. Which means he was so much fun to write. FACT: Nathan is partially based on a cartoon character named Dave from a show I used to work on—Code Monkeys,

8. Shane White (Get Even) – I'm just going to give you Shane's description from the book… " She knew what Shane was like on stage, singing lead vocals in a local indie punk band called Bangers and Mosh. She'd seen him in a tight tank top, skinny jeans, and combat boots, guitar slung low across his waist. She'd seen the full sleeve tattoos on his left arm, and when he peeled off his shirt, drenched in sweat from a performance, she'd seen the tattoos that covered his abs as well." Right? FACT: "Shane White" is a poorly disguised homage to the Flying Tomato Shaun White, who's attitude Shane embodies.

7. T. J. Fletcher (Ten) – I get asked a lot why T. J. is African American. The answer? No reason at all. He just is. And of all my male characters, listed here and otherwise, he's definitely the hottest. FACT: T. J.'s surname "Fletcher" is an homage to the greatest television sleuth of all time – Murder, She Wrote's Jessica Fletcher.

6. Hector Gutierrez (Possess) – Hector is every girl's GBFF (that's "gay best friend forever" for the uninitiated) of which I've had several over the years. I love the scene where he helps Bridget pick out a dress for the Winter Formal. One of my favorites. FACT: I had to cut a whole series of scenes from Possess where Hector and Brad work out their blossoming love affair, but they just didn't fit into the finished book. I was hoping to work that into a sequel, but…

5. Nick Fiorino (3:59) – My favorite thing about track star Nick Fiorino is that I got to write two of him: the Nick in Josie's world (who turns out to be kind of a dick) and the Nick in Jo's world (who starts off sketch, but turns out to be Prince Charming.) FACT: I was originally going to name him Alan, because somehow "Josie and Alan" had a nice ring to it. Then I realized why: Alan is the boyfriend in Josie and the Pussycats. Oops. So he became "Nick."

4. Gunner Shields (Ten) – How does a character who only has like five lines in the entire book end up so high on this list? For gems like this: "I read Lord of the Flies," Gunner said. "It didn’t end well." FACT: Gunner was the first named character I came up with in Ten, even before the main character Meg and her best friend Minnie. I have no idea why, but he popped into my head almost as soon as I came up with the pitch for the book.

3. Matt Quinn (Possess) – Matt Quinn, childhood from of prickly main character and fledgling exorcist Bridget Liu is kind of guy I secretly wanted to date in high school. FACT: I used the last name "Quinn" to honor a recently deceased family friend. In real life, Papa Quinn is a fireman.

2. John Baggott (Get Even) – John plays bass, read comic books, and believes there is a Star Wars quote applicable to every moment in life. He'd probably score the #1 spot on this list if it wasn't for Ed the Head. FACT: Both is name ("John") and his penchant for quoting Star Wars were borrowed from my husband.

1. Ed the Head (Get Even) – Not only is Ed my favorite male character, he might be my favorite character creation in general, not restricted by gender. Since you might not have met Ed yet, he's equal parts Duckie from Pretty in Pink and Anthony Michael Hall's Geek from Sixteen Candles. FACT: I promise I'm not ruining things here, but Ed was originally supposed to die in Get Even, but I loved him so much I needed to bring him back for the second book.

The Breakfast Club meets Pretty Little Liars in Gretchen McNeil’s witty and suspenseful novel about four disparate girls who join forces to take revenge on high school bullies and create dangerous enemies for themselves in the process.
Bree, Olivia, Kitty, and Margot have nothing in common—at least that’s what they’d like the students and administrators of their elite private school to think. The girls have different goals, different friends, and different lives, but they share one very big secret: They’re all members of Don’t Get Mad, a secret society that anonymously takes revenge on the school’s bullies, mean girls, and tyrannical teachers.
When their latest target ends up dead with a blood-soaked “DGM” card in his hands, the girls realize that they’re not as anonymous as they thought—and that someone now wants revenge on them. Soon the clues are piling up, the police are closing in . . . and everyone has something to lose.

You can purchase Get Even at the following Retailers:

And now, The Giveaways.
Thank you Gretchen for making this giveaway possible.
3 Winners will each get a signed, finished copy of GET EVEN and a booklet of bonus material from book two in the Don't Get Mad series, GET DIRTY. Including the first chapters of GET DIRTY!

*JBN is not responsible for Lost or Damaged Books in your Nerdy Mail Box*
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  1. omg!! just reading the preview i cant wait!! sounds like a very good read :) :O

  2. Very excited to read it!!!! Review sounds awesome. Breakfast Club is one of my top ten movies (haven't watched Pretty Little Liars) so I'm interested to see how this turns out!!! Thanks for the giveaway!!!��