Interview with Zachary Ryan, author of High School Queens

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My Doodles Ate Me congratulates author Zachary Ryan on the release of his latest book, High School Queens! Let's welcome him on the blog for an interview with us today. Read on!

1. How did you decide to write High School Queens?

I had been writing a lot of serious coming of age novels, and I was kind of bored with that. I wanted to write a good ole fashion bitch book. I want there to be serious elements in it also. I wrote a book called Sex, Lies, and Cupcakes. I wanted to get back to that style of writing. 

2. Can you tell us what kind of research went behind the story?

I will admit that I don't do much research for a novel. 

3. Who's your favorite character from the book and why?

With the trilogy, it changes each of the books. I think it depends on where their storyline goes that gets me really excited. For High School Queens, I would have to say is Danielle. I love that she's ruthless, trying to figure out what she wants to do with her secret and being just a bitch. I love a girl who takes no prisoner. I will say my favorite friendship is Danielle and Calvin. I think having both of them always there for each other is kind of sweet. I love having them interact and talk about the big climactic moments and watching the place burn to the ground. 

4. How did you celebrate the first sale of this book?

A lot of Jameson with my boyfriend. 

5. Tell us about some of the learning experiences or biggest challenges you faced throughout the writing and publishing process.

Honestly finding someone to edit my books or even listen to me talk about my writing process. I am the worst with grammar. Grammar doesn't click in my brain even if I try. I look at something, and I think it sounds right, then I found out I missed a bunch of typos or other issues. Luckily, I have my friend Erika that helps me a lot with those issues. It's nice having someone you can bounce ideas off of, and I love to talk about my projects. 

6. Do you get creative blocks or burnouts? How do you get out of those, if and when you do?

I don't get creative blocks. I will say I'm very lucky. I will say that I will get bored of something really quickly. I had a novel where I had too many ideas, and I never finished the novel. I try to plan it out and power through it as fast I can, so I don't get bored with the book. With each book, I've found that I get a new ability. I know that sounds weird, but after I finished the last book in the trilogy, I'm able to plan out each chapter of the book way quicker than I thought. 

7. Tell us something personal about you that your readers may be surprised to know.

I get weird food cravings when I'm writing. I think I'm pregnant or something. For High School Queens, it was Gatorade and Lunchables. I don't know why I wanted them all of the time, but it was what got me through the book. 

8. What do you enjoy doing when you are not writing or reading?

Hanging out with my boyfriend or with friends. My boyfriend and I will do a movie marathon, and we will go see multiple movies on the same day. My friends and I just get together drink and talk shit to each other. 

9. What's next?

So High School Queens the trilogy is done. Book two (The Revenged Queen) comes out May 15th. I have to edit book three then it will sadly be over. With writing, I'm currently working on an LGBT coming of age novel. I'm excited because I'm going back to my serious roots, but it's nice that I'm adding more camp that I got from High School Queens. I'm really excited because it's my first novel in a long time that's completely LGBT characters. 

10. Lastly, any special thoughts for the readers?

I hope you get a good laugh out of my books and take comfort in some of the broken souls that are my characters.

High School Queens (The High School Queens Trilogy Book 1)

by Zachary Ryan

Publication Date: March 21st 2019
Published by: Kingston Publishing Company
Page count: 311

They all thought they did a masterful job of keeping their secrets close to their chest. These stupid fools thought they were the high court of this kingdom, but they had no clue who was really pulling the strings. You might wonder to yourself, who would be that heartless to make them backstab their friends, expose other's secrets, and lose their morals? You don’t need to know who I am, but you better remember my name, The Marked Queen.

Danielle, Andrew, Delilah, Aman, and Jasmine all are now faced with a mysterious villain whose one goal is to ruin each of their lives. They must protect their secrets at all cost, or they'll be the next victim on Marked Day. They know what’s at stake, and they’ll stop at nothing to continue being: the rich spoiled girl, the normal teenager, the girl who isn’t banging the principal, the straight vlogger, and the girl who isn’t her dad’s punching bag. What happens when The Marked Queen changes up the game just in time for prom? Will each of our favorite puppets survive? Or are they willing to backstab each other just to keep up their personas? The only thing lost at this prom wasn’t going to be their virginity.

Sex, Lies, and High School Queens explores the major theme of self-acceptance. Can they learn to accept all their flaws or pray victim to The Marked Queen? Each chapter continues to fill your sweet tooth until the climactic moment at the prom where you get to have that final bite of the bitch cake you’ve been dying to consume.

Buy the book

About the author

Zachary Ryan grew up in a black-and-white box in Maryland, before moving to Chicago to start a new life. There, he found that he was accepted for his misfit status—and learned that it’s perfectly normal to spend your twenties feeling lost and confused.

After a disastrous sexual encounter, Ryan stumbled on a group of true friends, or “soul cluster,” that he connected with. Through his writing, he hopes to help other broken souls out there find comfort amid the chaos.

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