She hates her family. He’s hiding behind his teenage sex life. They form a band as an escape.
On tour, can they start over….or will all secrets come out on the open road?
Carla Bucchio never cared about things like boyfriends and SATs. If she did, maybe life at 20 would be more exciting than developing photos on Long Island. When she chooses the guitar over a social life, it only makes sense because no one talks to her anyway.
Music may be Pete Albrecht’s life but what good is his talent if he has no one to share it with? When he’s not getting bitched about coffee at work, he’s getting nagged about college by his girlfriend. What would they say if they really knew about him?
At the outset of the new millennium where boy bands and backup dancers have saturated pop culture, the two college dropouts start a rock band. Despite his girlfriend’s manipulations and her mother’s drunken disapproval, they form a secret connection through the music even if she’s a little Riot Grrrl and he’s a little Krautrock.
Before heading out on their cross-country tour, tragedy turns the world upside down forcing them to decide if the band is just a teenage dream or their gateway to freedom…and to each other?
– When and where do you prefer to write?
I write in my attic that I converted into an office in my home in France. It’s a cozy space with slanted ceilings, sky lights that look out onto French roof tops and creaky wooden floors. Up there, I’m surrounded by things that inspire me like photos, books, scented candles and of course, our cat Le Tigre who sleeps on my grandfather’s 1960’s leather chair behind me.
– Do you have a certain ritual?
Yes, I wake up around 4am when the house is still. I make a cup of mint tea and write. During these hours I make it a rule to write and not edit. I feel my creativity is at its juiciest early in the morning and try not to waste these golden hours with rewrites. Around 7, I stop and do a 15-to-20-minute yoga session of deep stretching and mindful breathing just in time for my son to wake up around 7:30. This is when I put my mom hat on and prepare my much-anticipated coffee (the machine is too loud to make it earlier) and my husband makes Nutella crepes. After walking our son to school, we have another coffee together before we go to our separate ways to work with me working upstairs and him in the living room. I write from 9 to noon with a rule that I don’t write after lunch mostly because the creative batteries are drained!
– Is there a drink of some food that keeps you company while you write?
Yes. Either organic spearmint tea or an americano (or two or three!)
– What is your favourite book?
“Women” by Charles Bukowski for general fiction and “Girl” by Blake Nelson for young adult. There is absolutely no relation between the two books! I just read them at pivotal moments of my life and find myself reaching for them from time to time to recall my own coming-of-age…even though Bukowski is as gentle as a Nine Inch Nails song.
– Do you consider writing a different genre in the future?
Absolutely. Memoir is definitely on my radar. I have so many stories to recount from growing up in New York City in the 80s to moving to moving to Paris that one day I’d love to share them.
– Do you sometimes base your characters on people you know?
Yes and no. I definitely get inspired by the people in my life but as the characters develop, they come into themselves and evolve into completely different people than I had first imagined. It’s almost as if they’re telling me who they are and I’m just the dumb writer trying the get their stories right!
– Do you take a notebook everywhere in order to write down ideas that pop up?
Yes. And if I don’t have it, I jot things down in my iPhone notepad.
– Which genre do you not like at all?
It’s not so much a matter of not liking but not feeling compelled toward. Sci-Fi, for example, has never called to me. My TBR list is so long (I have a stack of books on my nightstand) that I don’t have the time to experiment with a genre that doesn’t demand my attention like YA or well-researched biographies (anything from Rimbaud to the Rolling Stones).
– If you had the chance to co-write a book. Whom would it be with?
Yes. Brett Sills, author of My Sweet Saga and Shoveling Snow who so graciously contributed a blurb for my Slanted and Disenchanted. He and I came from the same New York City in the 90s indie rock background, and I’d love to write a book documenting that time of retainers and rock shows together.
– If you should travel to a foreign country to do research, which one would you chose and why?
It’s not so much a foreign country to me anymore since I’ve lived here in France for 13 years, but I’ll be spending more time in the Alsace region next year to complete the third part of The Disenchanted series. My main character Pete’s family comes from this region and while I did spent time there (as well as read countless history books) for Slanted and Disenchanted, but in book 3, we will see more of his French life and perhaps elaborate on his halcyon summer of 95 with his first love…
Thank you, Lisa Czarina Michaud and Rachel’s Random Resources
About the author
Lisa Czarina Michaud is an American writer living in France. Her work has been published in Narratively, marieclaire.co.uk, The Huffington Post, xojane, as well as other publications. Slanted and Disenchanted in her first novel.