Q & A with Melissa Gorzelanczyk about her debut YA Novel

Melissa Gorzelanczyk’s debut novel ARROWS truly hooked me from the first page. The premise alone was so intriguing — A modern cupid story set in present-day Wisconsin combining the fantastical elements of Greek mythology with the contemporary drama of MTV’s Teen Mom.

Arrows FINAL2.inddAbout the novel: Aaryn is a new cupid and his task is to hit both Karma and Danny with arrows so they fall in love, but after successfully hitting Karma his remaining arrow proves to be a dud and he can’t hit Danny. A very unbalanced romance ensues and Karma falls deeply in love, while Danny acts selfish and irresponsible.

At first glance a story about a cupid creating a love mix-up might sound lighthearted, but ARROWS goes much deeper. Karma becomes pregnant, has a baby, and her dance scholarship hangs in the balance, all while Danny, the so-called boyfriend, responds with immaturity and let-downs.

Aaryn, a god from Mount Olympus, desperately wants to fix his mistake, but in a delightful twist he finds himself falling for Karma. ARROWS takes the reader on a journey of difficult decisions, disappointments, and ultimately the true meaning of love.

Hi Melissa,

Welcome and congratulations on the release of ARROWS! The mix of Greek mythology (specifically cupids) and contemporary teenagers worked so well. Who knew? What gave you the inspiration to combine these concepts?

Hey, thanks so much for having me!BlogAUTHOR-PHOTO-Melissa-Gorzelanczyk_smaller_Credit-Photo-by-Mark-Anderson

During the planning stages for ARROWS, I knew I loved the concept of “cupids among us”, but that’s not enough for a story. I needed to complicate things. That led to brainstorming how someone’s life could be affected by a love arrow gone wrong. And I always knew I wanted this to be a book for teens.

You wrote ARROWS with a dual POV (Aaryn and Karma). Did you initially set out to write it this way? Or did their voices become more apparent to you in later drafts?

Oh yeah, I definitely started out with two POVs. I wanted readers to be able to see both sides of the story.

The novel elicited a spectrum of emotions from me as I read — frustration, hope, anger, tenderness — but there was a steady thread of hope throughout. What is the take-away message you hope your teen readers gain from ARROWS?

I’m really glad to hear that comment about hope. I guess one of the main messages is that true love makes us better individuals. We can be in love and have a healthy life outside of the relationship, too. Hopes and dreams are a big part of that.

I assume you write every day. What does your writing day look like? Are you at the computer early in the morning for a set number of hours? Do you set goals each day, like word counts or scenes?

I always write for a set time before I turn on my phone or check social media. The best goal lately is to put in the time in front of my manuscript.

So, morning, then a break for lunch, and lately I work on marketing tasks for the afternoon and sometimes into the evening.

I know this is a difficult question to answer, but what novels/authors are some of your personal favorites?

Oh man, too hard, no fair, ahh! But okay, I’ll try to list a few favorites. I’ve read so many new books coming out that I’m going to mention those. THE SERPENT KING by Jeff Zentner, FIRSTS by Laurie Elizabeth Flynn, SAVE ME, KURT COBAIN by Jenny Manzer, HELLO? by Liza Wiemer … There are so many! Check out my Goodreads for a full list.
Thank you for chatting with me!

I had fun! Thank you!

For more information about Melissa, please visit her website www.melissagorzelanczyk.com 

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