Hello Darlings!! Today I want to introduce you to a very special young woman by the name of Tessa Hall.
Tessa is a 19-year-old author of Purple Moon, her YA Christian fiction novel to be published September 2013 (THIS MONTH!) by Lighthouse Publishing of the Carolinas. She is also a freelance writer, the editor over the faith department for Temperance Magazine, a column writer for Whole Magazine, a contributing writer for More To Be, as well as the PR for God of Moses Entertainment. Other than writing, Tessa enjoys acting, music, Starbucks, and her imperial Shih Tzu—who is named Brewer after a character in her book, as well as her love for coffee. What's not to love about this girl!! So, when she asked me to do a post for her I seriously could not resist. Tessa also writes an award-winning blog, Christ is Write, where she post writing tips, teen devotions, book reviews, coffee recipes, and more. So, if you're an author to be or just someone who happens to love coffee with a passion her blog just might be the place where you need to chill.
What inspired you to write “Purple Moon”?
I wanted to write a character-driven story about a teenager who has fallen way from the relationship she once had with God after her dad kicked her and her mom out of the house. In the story, Selena is forced to leave her apartment in NY and stay with her snobby cousin in Lake Lure, NC while waiting for her mom to get out of rehab. It was initially inspired by the song “By Your Side” by Tenth Avenue North, as well as the skit that many churches have performed to the song “Everything” by Lifehouse.
In what ways can you relate to your protagonist, Selena?
Even though Selena has a completely different past and family situation, I did incorporate a little bit of “me” in her. For example: she’s passionate, a dreamer, an artist, somewhat of an introvert, has the same style as I do, a romantic, and loves coffee a little too much. I've also given her some of my flaws. However, when I wrote “Purple Moon”, I mainly tried crafting Selena in a way that I hoped many teenagers would be able to relate with—whether they share the same backstory as she does, possess many of the same qualities, or are experiencing some of the same struggles that Selena deals with in “Purple Moon”.
When did you start writing Purple Moon, and how long did it take?
I started writing the first version of “Purple Moon” when I was fifteen. When I was sixteen, I completed the first draft and landed a publishing contract with Lighthouse Publishing of the Carolinas. It’s difficult to pinpoint how long it took to complete “Purple Moon”—the more I learned about the writing craft, the more I continued wanting to go back and rewrite the story or add a few changes. However, I have finally reached a point where I am happy with the story and can’t wait to get it in the hands of my readers.
What are you working on now?
I just completed my second book, “Unwritten Melody”, which is going to be a stand-alone novel. As of now, I am brainstorming and beginning to write the first draft of “Fallen Leaves”, which will be the second book of the Purple Moon Series and a continuation of Selena’s journey throughout the next season of her life. I am also going on a blog tour this fall and will continue to write the teen column for Whole Magazine.
What do you hope to accomplish in your writing career?
I hope to never stop writing, whether or not that includes having my work published or seeing my name on the best seller list. I hope to never stop encouraging people—especially teenagers—to follow their dreams. But more than anything, I hope that my stories will represent the power of God’s unending love and His transforming grace. That’s my number one goal, my number one reason for wanting to pursue writing for the rest of my life.
Back Cover Copy:
Selena’s life isn’t turning out to be the fairy tale she imagined as a kid.
That hope seemed to vanish long ago when her dad kicked her and her mom out of the house. This summer might finally hold the chance of a new beginning for Selena … but having to live with her snobby cousin in Lake Lure, NC while waiting for her mom to get out of rehab wasn’t how Selena was planning on spending her summer. She soon begins to wonder why she committed to give up her “bad habits” for this.
Things don’t seem too bad, though. Especially when Selena gains the attention of the cute neighbor next door. But when her best friend back home in Brooklyn desperately needs her, a secret that’s been hidden from Selena for years is revealed, and when she becomes a target for one of her cousin’s nasty pranks, she finds herself having to face the scars from her past and the memories that come along with them. Will she follow her mom’s example in running away, or trust that God still has a fairy tale life written just for her?
What people are saying about “Purple Moon”:“Purple Moon is a story of redemption as powerful as any I’ve read. Selena’s story is one of deep brokenness and healing redemption–the same story that can be found in so many teen hearts today. Tessa Emily Hall, a talented debut author, is one to watch. Writing for her contemporaries, Hall understands the delicate social lives of teens and the need to strike the right balance between role model and reality.”
- Laura Anderson Kurk, YA author of Glass Girl and Perfect Glass“Purple Moon radiates with a light of its own, offering YA readers relatable characters and an inspiring message to encourage teens everywhere to shoot for the moon–and never stop reaching.”
~ Betsy St. Amant, YA author of Addison Blakely: Confessions of a PK
“Purple Moon is a story of ache and courage, of hunger and hope. Selena’s unflinchingly honest voice will keep teens flipping pages well into the night.”
~ Stephanie Morrill, YA author of The Revised Life of Ellie Sweet and The Reinvention of Skylar Hoyt series“Tessa Emily Hall writes with an authenticity that is both compelling and original. I very much enjoyed this new voice in YA fiction. Hold on to your heartstrings—Selena will tug them all over Lake Lure!”
~ Rachelle Rea, freelance editor“I think Tessa Emily Hall is a very gifted new author…The book deals with very actual issues for teenagers today and I think the youth will be able to identify themselves with the main character Selena…The message is very deep and moving. This is the first book that really brought tears to my eyes since reading Nicholas Sparks’ ‘the Notebook’. All I can say is a big THANK YOU and AMEN to the author’s writing.”
~ Becca Maurino, freelance writer