The Book Pixie: Tell us a little bit about yourself.
Eric Luper: I’m originally from northern New Jersey, but currently call Albany NY home. I’ve been writing in earnest for ten years during which time I’ve written four publishable novels and lots of unpublishable stuff. When I’m not writing, I’m typically hanging out with my family in Lake George, reading or… well, usually I’m writing.
TBP: Give us a brief description of your book.
EL: SETH BAUMGARTNER’S LOVE MANIFESTO is a book about one teen’s attempt to figure out what love is, why love is and why we’re stupid enough to keep going back for more. In the wake of getting dumped by his girlfriend and seeing his father out with a woman who is not his mother, Seth begins a podcast called The Love Manifesto to figure it all out. Of course, life never turns out the way we expect and everything unravels more and more culminating at the big father/son golf tournament.
TBP: Did you put any of your own characteristics into creating Seth? If so, which ones?
EL: I’d say all of my characters have a bit of me in them. I like to think of my characters as reflections of different aspects of myself.
TBP: In Seth Baungartner's Love Manifesto, love is often compared to 'the worst chicken sandwich ever'. What inspired this particular metaphor?
EL: That comparison didn’t come about until later in the game. I had Audrey bringing around these terrible chicken salad sandwiches but I had no idea why she was doing it. Only when I got to the end did it all become clear to me. These particular chicken salad sandwiches had meaning!
TBP: How did you go about choosing which songs to include in Seth's podcast?
EL: That was a constant work-in-progress through the course of writing the book. I had different podcast transcripts and the challenge became finding contemporary songs that matched thematically for intro and outro songs. I can’t tell you how many times I changed the songs around. Subsequent to the release of the book, other better songs have come out! Aaargh!
TBP: Are you currently working on anything else?
EL: My next novel is for middle grade readers. It’s called JEREMY BENDER VS THE CUPCAKE CADETS. It’s the story of two 6th grade boys who decide to masquerade as what amounts to girl scouts in order to enter a competition with a large cash award. Of course, they discover being a girl isn’t as easy as they thought!
TBP: Who is a YA author you'd love to co-write a book with?
EL: I think I would pick a female author to co-write a book with. Something with alternating points of view. Someone who writes contemporary realistic fiction. Maybe Lauren Myracle, E. Lockhart, Rachel Cohn or Maryrose Wood. That would be so much fun.
TBP: If today was your last day, how would you spend it and why?
EL: I would definitely spend it with my kids, probably running up my credit cards as quickly as possible.
TBP: What would you consider to be the theme song of your life and why?
EL: This is an impossible question to answer because different songs apply to different times in my life. If I had to pick one single song, I’d have to say “It’s My Life” by Bon Jovi. Heck, you can’t go wrong with lyrics like “I ain't gonna be just a face in the crowd; You're gonna hear my voice when I shout it out loud!” Plus, I’m from New Jersey and everyone from New Jersey has a Bon Jovi story.
TBP: Anything else you'd like to add?
EL: Only that I feel blessed to be able to do what I get to do every day. Thanks!
Well that's it everyone. I hope you all enjoyed this interview and please feel free to comment. Also a HUGE thanks to Eric Luper for letting me interview him.
If you would like to learn more about his novel, Seth Baumgartner's Love Manifesto, you can check out my Review and my Noteworthy Passages. Hope all of your weeks are off to a great start.