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  • Writer's pictureJade Shyback

YA Books Central

~Author Chat~

YABC: Which came first, the title or the novel?

I developed the story and then built the world which, ultimately, became the title. My underwater habitat needed a scientific name and “aqueous” lent itself to submersion and dissolution—the residents of Aqueous submerged to a healthy ecosystem after terrestrial life dissolved.

YABC: What do you like most about the cover of the book?

I like that the artwork was completed by my eldest daughter. Yes, I am the mother of Camryn Jette Anderson. Boom. You heard it here first at YA Books Central.

Note to debut authors: giving cover input is a delicate business. You do not want to brazenly suggest that your kid does it, like I did, but AQUEOUS is richly described, meaning that Aqueous the station had to be portrayed accurately. Camryn is an architect and an artist, so she was the right woman for the job, not that she wanted it. She had to work full-time by day and then deal with her mother’s “vision” by night. A total nightmare for a young professional. Anyway, I’d like to thank Red Hen Press and Camryn for collaborating on my behalf. The cover is amazing.

YABC: Who is your favorite character in the book?

There are so many, but isn’t Felix dreamy? He’s a diamond. Initially misunderstood and disliked, he morphs into the young man everyone would want to be or want to date: athletic, smart, fun, and emotionally intelligent. Shame about the ending.

YABC: Which was the most difficult or emotional scene to narrate?

I’m putting all of my faith in the future readers of AQUEOUS when I answer: page 16 and page 274. Do not skip ahead and read those two pages! Trust that there is loss and there is joy and that by the end of Book III almost everyone will be happy.

YABC: What scene in the book are you most proud of, and why?

I love the ending. It’s frantic, it’s powerful, and it comes down to one word. By design, that word was introduced very early in the story so that the use of it on the final page would convey everything.

YABC: What would you say is your superpower?

Imagination. I can turn anything into a game. I run on fun. That’s what fuels my life. The only things holding me back are time and money (same for everyone), but with the time I’ve got I’m going to create more fun, more entertainment, and hopefully it will pay off.

YABC: What’s up next for you?

My TO DO list includes, but is not limited to:

-finishing the audiobook

-hosting a lunch party

-doing some events

-finishing the sequel

-writing the third book

-more audiobooks

-more events

-getting the whole thing adapted

-then turning it into a theme park experience

-writing the other books that are inside my head, screaming to get out

-banging out a memoir

-and quite finally, dying, happy from exhaustion

YABC: What is the main message or lesson you would like your reader to remember from this book?

That perfection doesn’t exist and everyone belongs. AQUEOUS has many themes and plot lines twisting throughout the story, making it difficult to pinpoint the main message, but it’s about love and acceptance. Be kind, be tolerant, be inclusive, and share. Basic concepts that always make our world a better place.

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