The Here. The Now. And the Books!: Rise of Awesome

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Rise of Awesome

I know, I know. Why can’t I just name this post Rise of Renegade X and be done with it? I just can’t is why. I rather like that title…xD

Ok…so if you haven’t heard of The Rise of Renegade X, go shoot yourself in the fo–er…I mean, now you can! Hehe…
The marvelous author of Renegade X, Chelsea Campbell, allowed me to ask her a few

(awesome?) questions and she even answered them!!! Eeek! She’s wonderful.
But first, so you know a little about Renegade X, here’s my review:

Damien Locke knows his destiny-attending the university for supervillains and becoming Golden City’s next professional evil genius. But when Damien discovers he’s the product of his supervillain mother’s one-night stand with-of all people-a superhero, his best-laid plans are ruined as he’s forced to live with his superhero family.

Going to extreme lengths (and heights), The Rise of Renegade X chronicles one boy’s struggles with the villainous and heroic pitfalls of growing up.- From Chelsea’s website!

I was able to get an Advance Copy while attending Austin Teen Book Festival last October. At first glance, this doesn’t seem like the type of book I would read but, as soon as I read the back…I was hooked. After a couple of chapters, I was in love.
Damien is so…amazing. He has this bad kid vibe, but you know he really is good at heart.
While reading this book, I had to get used to all the weird looks I was receiving from my classmates. I got a lot of: Are you okay?, What’s wrong?, etc.
Damien, like his mother, is an evil genius. Okay…maybe not totally evil…but still. This boy did things that made my mouth drop or made me laugh hysterically or both. Things I certainly never would have thought. Things only a half villain could do. I love Damien.
The other characters are still in my mind too!!!
Such as his mom…and his dad…and his ‘sidekick’ and his ‘girl who is a friend but I might love her’.
Chelsea has created a world were villains and heroes exist…!!! And she was able to show you the life of the average superhero and the life of the average villain! It was so cool. It had me wanting to live there.
The story line was well developed too. We got to watch Damien find his true self and all the while, world domination was going on.
This book is packed with heartfelt moments, jaw dropping humor, and marvelous (dare I say kick ass?) superheroes/villains.
Had me rooting for the villains at most points might I add! Loved it. Must read.

Trailer (Love!):


If you could have one co-author, who would it be and why?
This is a hard question! It’s hard to think of people I wouldn’t just want to work with so I could drool at them and be like, “Wow, you sure do write good!” If I could pick anyone in the world, though, I might pick Tina Fey, because not only is she funny, but then I could study her to find out how to be her when I grow up.
Have you always enjoyed writing?
Yes! Even before Kindergarten, before I could read, I wanted to write stories so badly, I would make my mom tell me how to spell each word I wanted to put down. I used to make her join fake book clubs where I would write/illustrate all of the books.
So…are you a supervillan or a superhero?
In real life, I’m more of a superhero. I try to do the right thing and not cause trouble. But when I’m writing, I get to be more of a villain! I pick situations to play out that will upset the characters the most. I get to be just awful to them, taking away everything that makes them happy and pretending I’m never going to give it back. It’s great.
What power would you have?
Ironically enough, for a looong time, I wished I could fly really badly. This seemed like the awesomest power in the world to me, like being able to fly would be the ultimate freedom and lead to all sorts of wonderful adventures. I’ve gotten over it now, though, and if I got to pick a superpower, I think it would be really cool to be able to teleport. Then I could go wherever I wanted, whenever I wanted. I could visit other countries or go to conventions in faraway places, and I wouldn’t have to pay for airfare or hotels, since I could just pop back home again at the end of the day. And I could easily go hang out with friends who live nowhere near me. It would be awesome and save lots of money.
Why did you make Damien to have a fear of heights?
I gave him a fear of heights to make having the ability to fly that much more awful for him. When I was first hashing out my ideas for this book, I gave him super speed, but I didn’t feel like it fit his character or presented any challenges for him. Plus, I thought it would be annoying to write about, and I wanted him to have a power that reflected his hero side more strongly and embarrassed him. So once I decided that meant he was going to inherit flying power, giving him a fear of heights just made sense. 😉

Where did the Rise of Renegade X idea come from?
Originally, I wanted to write a book about a bad guy who had to save people. I wanted to write about someone who understood that everyone needs saving, in some way or another, and I wanted him to at the same time be kind of a villain. A lot of my ideas start out vague like that, but quickly change as I start actually working on them. This one morphed into a supervillain kid who was going to have to do something good, despite being a villain, and then I figured out that the worst thing to possibly happen to him was to find out that he was half superhero and that he had a superhero father. (I have no idea where the Hs and Vs on their thumbs came from, except that I have a hand obsession that works its way into my writing.) The end product was a lot different than that original idea, but I think in some ways it’s still reflected in it.

Will there be a sequel to Renegade X? Companion?
The RIse of Renegade X is, at least for now, a stand alone. But there might be a sequel someday in the future.

Favorite color?
I’m embarrassed to admit my favorite color is YELLOW. I don’t know why, but I used to not think very much of yellow. I liked green, or blue, but yellow was yuck. Or maybe I never gave yellow a fair chance. Whatever the case, I was averse to it, but then slowly it crept up on me. I kept getting more and more yellow things. I have several large, yellow stuffed animals that make me happy just to look at them. I love paintings that are mostly yellow, like some of Van Gogh’s stuff. I ADORE sunflowers and dandelions. So eventually it all piled up, and I had to admit I liked yellow. That it was maybe even my favorite color in the universe.

Some favorite books?
I really love the Vampire Academy series–I can’t wait to find out what happens next! And of course Harry Potter. If I had to move to a desert island and could only bring one book series, I think I would bring the HP books, because they’re really fun and familiar and rereadable. And I LOVE the Percy Jackson books. I haven’t made myself watch the movie yet, because I suspect I will hate it, but the books are serious win. (Can you tell I like series?) I’m also really into Skin Hunger and its sequel, Sacred Scars. (When does the third one come out?!?! Why can’t I find this information anywhere?) For stand alones, I really enjoyed Lauren Oliver’s Before I Fall and Cherie Priest’s Boneshaker. Boneshaker was kind of one of those books I wanted to live in, except that their world was awful so, um, I’ll just stay here.

Favorite bands?

Counting Crows, My Chemical Romance, Pillow Army, The Vincent Black Shadow, and I’m quickly getting hooked on Lady Gaga.

Do you have a playlist for Renegade X or do you write in silence?

I can only write in silence, but I usually have songs I listen to obsessively while taking breaks. I wrote Renegade X a couple years ago, so it’s hard to remember, but I know I listened to My Chemical Romance’s The Black Parade a lot during that time.

Thank you so so so much for letting me interview you, Chelsea! *Waves*

Check out her website:

“The Black Parade” by My Chemical Romance (Because they’re possibly my favorite band!): The Black Parade!


佩怡 said…

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Emma said…

Loved the interview 🙂 I'll have to buy this!

仁南 said…

how do u do?................................................................

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