2021 Debut Author Interview: G.F. Miller

In 2019, we made it our goal is to work with as many debut authors as possible and to spread the word about their debut novels. It was such a success last year that we decided to continue the fun for years to come! Follow us this year as we pick the minds of the 2021 debuts and chat with them about their writing process and what it's like to be a new author. Also stay tuned for news of giveaways, Twitter chats, and more!

At the end of 2020, we Tweeted about wanting to discover more debut authors and their books. We ended up finding G.F. Miller and her novel GLIMPSED, and we have been interested in it ever since! We are so excited to have G.F. on the blog today to answer some of our questions! 

G.F. Miller can write 80,000-word novels, but ask her to sit down and write 250 true and meaningful words about herself and she is likely to have an existential crisis. Who am I, really? She ponders. What do I want to be known for? Does anyone even read the back flap or visit author websites? But eventually she will pull herself together and tell you that…She married her college sweetheart and is mom to three littles who routinely make her heart burst and her head explode (it’s a messy business, love). There are puppies big and small residing at her house (you’ll be seeing a lot of them if you follow her on Instagram). She’s been to a dozen countries, but not nearly as many as she would like. She loves learning all the things. She cries at all the wrong times. She makes faces at herself in the mirror. She believes in the Oxford comma. And she’s always here for a dance party. While the stories she has brewing in her soul vary wildly from one another, there are three things they will always have in common: love, snappy dialogue, and happy endings.

Keep up with G.F.: Website / YouTube / Instagram / Goodreads

The Book Bratz: First of all, congratulations! How does it feel to be a debut author?

G.F.: Thanks so much! I am super excited to be on the Book Bratz blog! Being a debut author is pretty wild. There are lots of great things about it—like my book baby finally meeting the world and getting lots of love! I had so much fun writing Glimpsed, and now I get to share that fun with readers. It’s the best! But to be honest I’m way more comfortable alone in my room with a book than “branding” and “marketing” myself. Like, people want to interview me? I’m not even cool. That part is kinda weird. 

The Book Bratz: In your opinion, what's the best part of the writing process? What's the hardest?

G.F.: I can’t choose a favorite!! I love the free-fall creativity of drafting. I love getting to know these new characters and falling in love with them. And I get a little giddy to find out what’s going to happen to them and how they’ll react. I’ll be real honest—I’m drunk on power at that drafting stage. I can do whatever I want! I can bend fictional people to my will! Mwa Ha Ha! If it doesn’t work out, who cares? I can cut it later! But then I really enjoy revising, too. I love shaping that first draft and polishing it until it’s as close to perfect as it can get. That’s the stage when you find the little gems and perfect word choices and realize where you messed up. In real life, you never get a do-over—but with fiction, you have this magical revision stage where you can make everything just right. I even love getting feedback! (It helps that my critique partners and editing team are the total bomb.) Every stage of critique and editing made Glimpsed stronger and more sparkly.

The Book Bratz: Where did you get the idea for GLIMPSED?

G.F.: At one point in the book, the main character, Charity, says, “I’m a fixer, not a hugger.” Ever since at least high school, that’s been me, too. I mean, I *do* enjoy a good hug. But seriously, if there’s a problem, I would very much like to fix it. It’s probably one of my most annoying characteristics. So it came pretty naturally to write a story about someone who felt it was legitimately her job to fix everybody’s stuff for them. Glimpsed was the book I wrote as a mental vacation after writing something very deep and heavy. I was exhausted from pouring myself into this difficult topic. So I said, “Okay, now I’m just going to make myself laugh.” I had so much fun writing Glimpsed. And I loved exploring—in a really whimsical way—the question of “What does it mean to truly help others? How do we engage with people who are struggling without imposing our own will on them or diminishing their dignity?”

The Book Bratz: Who was your favorite character to write? Who was the most difficult?

G.F.: Charity is my favorite character and was also the most difficult to write. She is very flawed. In the first draft of the book, I wasn’t even sure if I liked her. She can be so pushy and insensitive sometimes. Thankfully my editor at Simon & Schuster, Jessica Smith, did an incredible job of helping me discover Charity’s softer side and drawing that out. And now I can’t help but love her despite all her questionable decisions. I hope readers feel the same! 

The Book Bratz: The magic of fairy godmothers is a big part of this book. What were some of your favorite fairy tales growing up?

G.F.: My family had a gorgeously illustrated fairytale book. It was something from my mom’s childhood, and she was pretty precious with it. Like, we knew that she could have more kids, but she’d never get another copy of that book. Every chance I got, I’d look through it, though. Every page was a full-color work of art. It had the standard stories, like “Cinderella” and “Sleeping Beauty,” but also a couple of more off-beat ones. Like “Toads and Diamonds.” I remember really liking “Snow White and Rose Red.” It’s about two sisters—and shockingly they’re both good people—who live with their mom (who’s ALSO not evil, if you can believe it) in a house in the woods. They walk in the woods a lot because I guess there wasn’t much to do for fun back then. And in the woods, they repeatedly help this grouchy dwarf out of sticky situations. But then something happens with a bear mauling the dwarf, but the sisters aren’t afraid of it (stupid or fearless? You be the judge.). Actually, they’re worried that the bear will be cold, so they take it home to live with them for the winter. And their mom is just cool with it. Then in the spring, the bear turns into a prince and—BAM, he has a brother!—and everybody gets married! The end! It’s so random and, I don’t know, I just like it. 

The Book Bratz: What do you hope that readers will take away from GLIMPSED? 

G.F.: Honestly, I hope that readers can get a few hours off from everything heavy and hard right now. They can just escape to this world where wishes come true and nothing truly terrible can happen and there will be a happy ending somehow. I hope they laugh out loud and swoon and stand up and cheer. Then I hope they close the book with a big smile on their face that is stuck there for the rest of the day. 

The Book Bratz: Do you plan on returning to the world of GLIMPSED in the future, or do you have any other projects in mind? Can you tell us anything about them?

G.F.: I think I’ve told the story that needs to be told with Glimpsed. I don’t foresee writing a companion book. My current work in progress is another contemporary romcom with a sprinkle of fairy tale magic, though. I think anyone who loves Glimpsed will not be disappointed!

Title: Glimpsed
Author: G.F. Miller
Publisher: Simon & Schuster
Publication Date: January 5th, 2021

Summary: Charity is a fairy godmother. She doesn’t wear a poofy dress or go around waving a wand, but she does make sure the deepest desires of the student population at Jack London High School come true. And she knows what they want even better than they do because she can glimpse their perfect futures. But when Charity fulfills a glimpse that gets Vibha crowned homecoming queen, it ends in disaster. Suddenly, every wish Charity has ever granted is called into question. Has she really been helping people? Where do these glimpses come from, anyway? What if she’s not getting the whole picture? Making this existential crisis way worse is Noah—the adorkable and (in Charity’s opinion) diabolical ex of one of her past clients—who blames her for sabotaging his prom plans and claims her interventions are doing more harm than good. He demands that she stop granting wishes and help him get his girl back. At first, Charity has no choice but to play along. But soon, Noah becomes an unexpected ally in getting to the bottom of the glimpses. Before long, Charity dares to call him her friend…and even starts to wish he were something more. But can the fairy godmother ever get the happily ever after? 

Thank you so much to G.F. Miller for stopping by and answering our questions! We are super excited about GLIMPSED, and it's out in the world NOW for all of you to enjoy!

We're also giving away a physical ARC of GLIMPSED on our Twitter from today until next week -- check it out here

Celebrate So Excited GIF by Hey Violet

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