I am thrilled to be hosting a spot on blog tour for WAX by Gina Damico!!! I have an interview with Gina to share with you today! And make sure to enter the awesome giveaway for a hardcover of the book!
Haven't heard of WAX? Check it out!
Paraffin, Vermont, is known the world over as home to the Grosholtz Candle Factory. But behind the sunny retail space bursting with overwhelming scents and homemade fudge, seventeen-year-old Poppy Palladino discovers something dark and unsettling: a back room filled with dozens of startlingly life-like wax sculptures, crafted by one very strange old lady. Poppy hightails it home, only to be shocked when one of the figures—a teenage boy who doesn’t seem to know what he is—jumps naked and screaming out of the trunk of her car. She tries to return him to the candle factory, but before she can, a fire destroys the mysterious workshop—and the old woman is nowhere to be seen.
With the help of the wax boy, who answers to the name Dud, Poppy resolves to find out who was behind the fire. But in the course of her investigation, she discovers that things in Paraffin aren’t always as they seem, that the Grosholtz Candle Factory isn’t as pure as its reputation—and that some of the townspeople she’s known her entire life may not be as human as they once were. In fact, they’re starting to look a little . . . waxy. Can Poppy and Dud extinguish the evil that's taking hold of their town before it’s too late?
Now on to the interview!
Hi Gina! First I want to say welcome to Two Chicks on Books! WAX sounds absolutely fantastic and I can’t wait to read it! And am so happy that you could stop by for a visit!
For the readers: can you tell us a little bit about WAX and the characters?
Poppy Palladino is a musical theater geek. She lands an audition on a popular reality show talent competition…only to slip and fall and bleed all over the stage on national television. Returning back to her small hometown in Vermont, she yearns to separate herself from the humiliation, only to get wrapped up in a bullying war – one that somehow leads to her sneaking into the back room of the creepy candle factory for which her town is famous. There, she meets a batty old woman who makes
very realistic wax sculptures – too realistic, as Poppy later finds out, when a teenage wax boy jumps out of her car trunk, naked. He doesn’t know anything about the world or how to be a person, yet Poppy inadvertently adopts him, and long with the rest of Poppy’s theater crew, they begin to discover that not all is well in their town. In fact, its residents are starting to look a little…waxy.
Is this a standalone or a series? And if it’s a series do you have a title for book 2 yet? And if it’s a standalone what are you working on next?
It’s a standalone. My next book is called WASTE OF SPACE, and it is the story of teen teenagers picked to be stuffed into a rocket ship, shot into space, and have the entire debacle taped as a reality show for a morally challenged television network. What could go wrong?
Were any of the characters in the book inspired by people from your real life?
No, but the Grosholtz Candle Factory is inspired by the flagship store of a real-life candle company. I won’t say which, but suffice it to say that it’s gigantic, over-the-top, and has to be seen to be believed. It has a room that snows. IT SNOWS. IN THE ROOM.
Who was your favorite character to write? What about your least favorite?
I really enjoyed writing Dud, because it was a challenge to try and see life through the eyes of someone who has suddenly been thrust into being at the age of 16ish, without the benefit (or curse) of a past or a childhood or any experience with the world at all. It opened up a lot of opportunity for humor, but was also a nice vehicle for the sort of childlike wonder that a lot of us lose as we grow up, especially during
our cynical teen years. And I don’t have any least favorite characters to write – if I did, I wouldn’t write them. Evil characters are fun. Mwahaha.
What is your favorite passage/scene in WAX?
The description of the Grosholtz candle factory was a blast to write, mostly because all I got to be as outrageous as I wanted. If Willy Wonka designed a candle store, what would it look like? This.
What kind of research did you have to do for the story?
Some historical research was necessary, although I can’t say too much about that because it gets a bit spoilery. The really fun research had to do with wax itself – how candles are made, the chemistry of scents, how wax behaves when it burns, etc. Science forever!
Who is your ultimate book boyfriend?
Waldo. He shares my love of travel.
What inspired you to write YA?
For whatever reason, I remember my teen years more acutely than any other portion of my life, and lots of times I still feel like a teenager. It’s my most honest voice, so I like to play in that sandbox as much as I can. All the fun and drama and angst, with none of the zits. (Well, fewer zits.)
Lightening Round Questions
What are you reading right now? Or what do you have on your TBR that you’re dying to read?
Grunt: The Curious Science of Humans at War, by Mary Roach. She writes about science with the best sense of humor I’ve ever read, and if you’ve never picked up any of her books you must do so immediately.
What Hogwarts House would the Sorting Hat place you in?
Twitter or Facebook?
Favorite TV show?
Ya Heard? With Perd
Sweet or Salty?
Getting flung out, untethered, into the depths of space. Everyone laughed at this until Gravity came out and THE THREAT WAS PROVEN TO BE REAL.
Song you can’t get enough of right now?
More of an album than one song: the original Broadway cast recording of Urinetown, since I was just in a local production of it. If you haven’t seen it, you must do so immediately.
Fall Movie you’re most looking forward to?
*googles fall 2016 movies* - let’s see, uh – Tyler Perry’s Boo! A Madea Halloween, and I’m looking forward to it because old timey movie marquees won’t have enough letters for the full title so they’re going to have to get creative. Rise to the challenge, movie nerds!
Thanks so much Gina for answering my questions! I can’t wait for everyone to read WAX!
Thank you for having me!
Gina Damico is the author of Croak, Scorch, and Rogue, the grim-reapers-gone-wild books of the Croak trilogy. She has also dabbled as a tour guide, transcriptionist, theater house manager, scenic artist, movie extra, office troll, retail monkey, yarn hawker and breadmonger. A native of Syracuse, New York, she now lives outside Boston with her husband, two cats, and one dog, and while she has never visited hell in person, she has spent countless waking hours at the Albany Regional Bus Terminal, which is pretty darn close. Visit her website at www.ginadami.co.
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