I’m super excited to be hosting Julie Hammerle as a part of The Debut Author Bash! Julie Hammerle is the author of The Sound of Us, and TV has a lot to do with her book. Therefore, today she is here sharing some info on that. How fun, right?
Julie Hammerle is the author of The Sound of Us, which will be published by Entangled Teen on June 7, 2016. Before settling down to write “for real,” she studied opera, taught Latin, and held her real estate license for one hot minute. Currently, she writes about TV on her blog Hammervision, ropes people into conversations about Game of Thrones, and makes excuses to avoid the gym. Her favorite YA-centric TV shows include 90210 (original spice), Felicity, and Freaks and Geeks. Her iPod reads like a 1997 Lilith Fair set list. She lives in Chicago with her husband, two kids, and a dog. They named the dog Indiana.
So far while promoting The Sound of Us, I’ve gotten a lot of questions about musical inspiration, but not as many about TV. Television played a huge part in my writing process, maybe an even bigger role than music did. One of my favorite TV shows of all time is Felicity, especially the first season. When I first started working on this book, I wanted it to feel like a serialized TV show, with four-episode “arcs” taking place over one full school year—Kiki’s freshman year of college. That, however, didn’t quite work, and I condensed the timeline to one semester, then, finally, to six weeks during the summer. I still love the idea of trying to write a novel that feels like a TV season. Maybe someday! Since Kiki is so
That, however, didn’t quite work, and I condensed the timeline to one semester, then, finally, to six weeks during the summer. I still love the idea of trying to write a novel that feels like a TV season. Maybe someday! Since Kiki is so
Since Kiki is so into TV, I had to figure out which show would be her favorite. At first, I made My So- Called Life her obsession. (Bobby Krakow’s name is the only remaining evidence of this…I think.) But after a draft or two with that in place, I decided to make up my own TV show, so I could manipulate the characters and situations to fit whatever I needed in the novel at the time, and so that it would be a current TV show, still airing new episodes. I knew I needed to create the kind of show that would get people all riled up on Twitter, something with water-cooler appeal. I came up with Project Earth, which has the sci- fi/politics of Battlestar Galactica, the young female spy aspect of Alias, and the sexy crackpot-itude of Scandal. If anyone wants to pay me to develop this show for air, I’m all ears.
Also while writing the book, there were a lot of spots where I needed Kiki to make a TV reference, and I had to sort of develop a TV repertoire for her, shows she, as a TV Twitter gal, would be able to call up at a moment’s notice. My go-tos for this were The Walking Dead, The Wire, and Game of Thrones. Hey, there’s even a The Good Wife reference thrown in for good measure, and I’ve only seen one episode of TGW, which is proof that Kiki and I are definitely not the same person.
About The Sound of Us: Kiki Nichols might not survive music camp.
She’s put her TV-loving, nerdy self aside for one summer to prove she’s got what it takes: she can be cool enough to make friends, she can earn that music scholarship, and she can get into Krause University’s music program.
Except camp has rigid conduct rules—which means her thrilling late-night jam session with the hot drummer can’t happen again, even though they love all the same TV shows, and fifteen minutes making music with him meant more than every aria she’s ever sung.
But when someone starts snitching on rule breakers and getting them kicked out, music camp turns into survival of the fittest. If Kiki’s going to get that scholarship, her chance to make true friends—and her chance with the drummer guy—might cost her the future she wants more than anything.