Interview about The Harper Effect with The Great Raven Blog
CBCA's Reading Time Blog about The Harper Effect
Pitch Wars Interview - on being selected as a mentee
Pitch Wars Interview - on gaining an agent
Reader Interview: on Taryn and her writing
SCBWI Interview on applying for & receiving an RADF grant
On what the CYA Conference did for Taryn
The Harper Effect has had a few titles. The working title was Game Face, but even previously to that, it was originally called The Purple Wars - is there really a war in the book? Not one involving violence. It's more a war between family and friends and an internal war about choices and making the move into adulthood - let's face it, the teen years can feel like going over the top of a trench in World War One for all involved.
How long did it take you to write The Harper Effect?
Actually, I wrote the first draft when I was 14. Back then it was called Proud Now Ma? So it's been through a lot of name changes and has had a lot of adventures--hand-written, it sat in my trunk of old stories while I moved to different countries.
Are you like any of the characters in the book?
Not now. But I was. Like many teens, each character feels like they're not good enough in some way--whether it's in their parent's eyes, their teacher's, their friend's or sibling's. It's the fate of teens, it seems. And like Jacob, I also once loved someone I couldn't have. And no. I'll never tell.
Harper gets to travel a lot, but doesn't get to enjoy it. Do you like to travel?
It's on my top 5 favorite things to do. I've been lucky enough to have lived in several countries (England, South Africa, Australia and America), and I solo backpacked around the world. Memories of Egypt, China and Peru will be in my dreams forever, while I left pieces of my heart scattered all over America and Europe.
There's a lot of insight into the world of International Tennis - do you play tennis?
No, but my brother does. In his younger days he toured the circuit and eventually became a professional tennis coach. He once took me into the player's lounge at Wimbledon where I watched Agassi having a drink (the sportsperson's equivalent to being in the same cafe as Katie Perry!), and I had dinner in a pizzeria with one of my brother's players - she went on to become world number one for a while. It's an amazing and very different world.
If you had to be stranded on a desert island with one person, who would it be?
My laptop. Um - the solar-powered one.
I have a separate writing room away from my office. I have no access to emails in there.
I write every day. Even if it's only for an hour. I miss my characters if I don't.
The most words I've written in one day is 10,000.
My Writing Room