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25 May 2011

Guest Post: Elana Johnson (POSSESSION)

Elana Johnson’s debut novel, Possession, will be published by Simon Pulse (Simon & Schuster) on June 7, 2011. Her popular ebook, From the Query to the Call, is also available for free download. School teacher by day, Query Ninja by night, you can find her online at her personal blog or Twitter. She also co-founded the Query Tracker blog and WriteOnCon, and contributes to the League of Extraordinary Writers. Elana is represented by Michelle Andelman of Regal Literary.

Let’s Hear It For The Boys!

Okay, so now that I’ve got that amazing 80s song stuck in your head, let’s see where we can go today.

We’re nearing the end of the POSSESSION blog tour, and we’ve talked about everything from marketing, to tech, to world-building, to music that inspired the book. There have been some amazing giveaways, and some FUNtastic reviews.

Some of the reviews have mentioned the two male MCs in POSSESSION, Jag Barque and Zenn Bower, but I’ve noticed that we’ve spent a lot of time talking about Vi Schoenfeld (she is the MC after all).

So I wanted to explore the boys a little more. From the jacket copy, I think it’s pretty clear that there’s a love triangle in POSSESSION. (Sorry if that’s a spoiler for you!)

We meet Zenn in chapter one, and I have to admit that I really like Zenn a lot. He’s like the silent pillar in the background of Vi’s life. He’s always been there for her, even before they were matched.

We meet Jag in chapter two, and I’ll admit that he tends to steal the scene sometimes. He has a lot to say, but doesn’t always say it. He’s there for Vi in very different ways, but he wants her as much as Zenn.

But they both want her for different reasons—and not all of them are good.

When I was writing POSSESSION, I knew I needed two very different characters for Vi to interact with. This worked out quite well, because Jag was loud and, at times, overbearing in my head. He just wouldn’t shut. up. Ever.

Vi is a lot like him in some ways. Not sure if that’s good or bad, but there it is.

Zenn is still a mystery to me on many levels. He was much quieter, tending to fade into the background of both my mind, and the book. But he was always there, subtly reminding me that “Hey, I’m still here if you need me.”

Vi craves that steadiness in her life. Not sure if that’s good or bad, either, but there you go.

I didn’t set out to write two guys so that readers could pick teams. In fact, the feedback I’ve heard indicates that one of the teams will be non-existent. But I do think that most of us probably know a guy like Zenn and a guy like Jag. They both have value. They’re both strong.

Maybe after you read POSSESSION you’ll be able to see why choosing just one is hard for Vi.

So. Let’s hear it for the boys! If you haven’t read POSSESSION yet, who are some of your favorite literary males? What do you like about them?

Thank you so much, Elana for visiting today!

Bio and images provided by the author, ELANA JOHNSON.

I received an ARC of POSSESSION from the publisher SIMON AND SCHUSTER.

For more information on Elana Johnson and POSSESSION, check out these websites,

Regal Literary YA Summer GIVEAWAY
Sneak peek at POSSESSION
Elana's BLOG


Deana said...

The more I read of this book, the more I can't wait to get my own grubby hands on a copy.

Thanks for a look at the boys...and yes, that song is jammed right in my brain on repeat now:)

Paul Joseph said...

I've been hearing a lot of buzz about POSSESSION and I have Tuesday, June 7 marked on my calendar for a Borders run. And, the fact that Elana is a teacher just gave her major bonus points. I'm not sure how I missed that piece of trivia in all I've read about her.

Two literary males come to mind at the moment - Charlie, the protagonist from 'The Perks of Being a Wallflower' and Steven, the protagonist from 'Drums, Girls, & Dangerous Pie.' For me, Charlie was the perfect open-minded role model who accepted everyone and was blind to stereotypes. He was mature for his age, yet still managed to learn and grow throughout the novel. On the other hand, Steven represented the ideal big brother. In the book, he shaves his head to identify with his baby brother who has cancer, and that moment punched me right in the sweet spot.

Ishta Mercurio said...

Ooh - neat post! And thanks for the earworm, BTW. :-P

Interestingly, I go all goo-goo over fictional guys whom I probably wouldn't be able to tolerate in real life. I love the fierce loyalty and chivalry in Jamie Fraser (Diana Gabaldon's OUTLANDER series), but wouldn't put up with his male chauvinism in real life; I was fascinated by Edward Cullen (you all know who he is) and loved the duality of his character, but in real life would probably find him too reluctant to talk about his feelings and therefore really irritating; Four (Veronica Roth's DIVERGENT) is fascinating, not condescending, and mysterious, but again, that level of mystery in real life is a turn-off.

Thank goodness for books: I can live out my fantasies without them cluttering up my real life. :-D

Elana Johnson said...

Thanks, Jenna, for hosting me today! Hope you have fun at BEA. :)

Nichole Giles said...

Yeah,those boys are a tough choice. I'm still team Jag, though.

Leslie Rose said...

I'm going to scream I want to read POSSESSION so much. Love triangle with two cool cats - I'm double in. *Grabs Kindle to preorder*

Michael Di Gesu said...

I love all these peaks into the wold of POSSESSION! I can't wait to get a copy to get the FULL story.

Nicole Zoltack said...

I am so not surprised that Jamie Fraser was mentioned already! He's such a hero in every sense of the word.

Natalie Aguirre said...

So interesting to hear Elana's thoughts about Zenn & Jag. And they are both so strong. And each mysterious. I don't think I could pick a team because I really liked them both.

Jemi Fraser said...

Zenn & Jag are both AWESOME characters. I love the fact that both are realistic - different strengths and weaknesses. They are both so important to Vi and they call to different facets of her personality and wishes - perfect! :)

Giada M said...

Great post! I so can't wait to get my own copy! Possession sounds goooooood!

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