Interview with RuthAnne Snow!

Today on the blog, we have an interview with RuthAnne Snow, 2019 debut author of When the Truth Unravels! So without further ado, let's get into it!

About the Author

RuthAnne Snow was born and raised in Kaysville, Utah. She was a sorority girl in college and social activities director in law school—which was a lot like being back in the sorority. She has interned for the U.S. Senate, worked on policy papers for Congress and the State Department, and once spent a year sorting through emails looking for fraud. It wasn’t nearly as fun as writing fiction. She loves travel, dogs, horror movies, and baking.

Author Interview

First of all -- how does it feel to be a debut author? 
I know it's cliche, but it's literally a dream come true. I've wanted to be a published writer for years and I've had a lot of near-misses in the past, so I am doing my best to embrace this experience and love it--the lows and the highs.

What gave you the idea for When The Truth Unravels
I read 13 Reasons Why, like a lot of people, and while I found there was a lot to be admired with that book, I honestly felt like there was a big piece of the story that was missing, and that was how mental health impacts decision-making when it comes to suicidal behaviors. I think people want to view suicide through the lens of things like bullying because bullying is an external force that people can see and attempt to stop. Everyone wants to find the solution to the problem, right? But the fact is, mental health is a much bigger piece of the puzzle, and a much more complicated one. 

So I had this on my mind at the same time I was thinking about friendship stories and how much I loved my friends--as messy as we all are--and I started to get the idea for these four girls who are best friends but who are all hiding things from each other. Not because they're being toxic friends, but just because a lot of the time, we aren't ready to talk about serious topics even with the ones we love best. Maybe even especially with the ones we love best.

How long did it take you to write this story? Did you start it as soon as you thought about it, play around with it first, get other opinions, try other projects first, etc.? 
It took me a little over fifteen months from when I first started drafting the manuscript to the point where I felt comfortable querying. During that time I got a lot of feedback from my trusted critique partners and Emily Martin, the mentor I found in the Pitch Wars contest. There were a lot of different versions--the version I am most proud of, the one that is being published, is a four-POV narrative with a dual timeline, past and present. But initially I had the brilliant (read: not brilliant) idea to make every chapter skip through time, messing up both timelines to create a two-way puzzle across four voices and ... yeah, that was a really bad idea, haha. I was never able to make it make sense, and every piece of feedback tended to read like some version of, "Why are you doing this?" Listen to your CPs and betas, folks.

In your opinion, what was the best part of writing When The Truth Unravels
Gosh, I loved a lot of it, but when I think back on it, the memories I love most was the ones about writing Jenna--a teenage girl who is hyper-competent and unapologetically ambitious. May we all channel a little bit more hyper-competence and ambition in our lives.

What's the hardest? 
Trying to address anything that could cause harm to a reader and mitigating that in every way I can think of, knowing that it is possible I will miss something anyway. It's important to be cognizant of that, especially when writing for kids and about mental illness. You have to be realistic and also aware that "realism" can hurt kids who are already hurting. But you know what they say, if it isn't hard, it probably isn't worth doing.

How have you been settling in to the bookish (and the blogging!) community as a new author? 
I seriously couldn't adore this community more. I love how people are so enthusiastic about their projects, the books they've read that they loved and want to share with others. The community service aspects--I got the chance to give away critiques for various humanitarian causes, all organized by other writers. I sincerely believe that book people are the best people. 

Do you have any ideas for any future writing projects or directions that you want to go in? 
I currently have a second book with my agent, so cross your fingers for me and the mystery that is publishing. I love writing funny-serious YA contemporary and I hope I get to do lots more of it.

About the Book

Title: When The Truth Unravels
Author: RuthAnne Snow
Hardcover, 304 Pages
Publication Date: January 8th, 2019

Summary: Last month, Elin tried to kill herself. She knows she's lucky that her parents found her in time. Lucky to be going to prom with her three best friends, like any other teen. Like it never happened. And if she has anything to say about it, no one but her best friends will ever know it did. Jenna, Rosie, and Ket will do anything to keep Elin's secret--and to make sure it never happens again. That's why they're determined to make prom the perfect night. The night that convinces Elin that life is worth living. Except, at prom, Elin goes missing. Now it's up to her friends to find her. But each of the girls has her own demons to face. Ket is being blackmailed by an ex. Rosie is falling in love for the first time. And Jenna...Jenna is falling apart. And no one, not even her best friends, knows why. Heart-wrenching and utterly impossible to put down, When the Truth Unravels follows four friends as they confront their greatest hopes and darkest secrets during one life-changing night.

We'd like to thank RuthAnne Snow for being awesome enough to stop by the blog and let us host this interview! If When The Truth Unravels sounds like something you're interested in, then don't forget to add it to your Goodreads TBR, which you can do by clicking here -- and stay tuned for its January 2019 release!

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